I’ve been searching for the perfect Billy goat to join our little goat herd for some months now. My requirements were that he should be horned, and that he be large.
Let me introduce you to Bambi, on the right. OK, maybe he’s not very large yet, but he’s only three months old at the moment (Misty, on the left, is 7 months) and judging by the size of his forelegs and chest already I think he’ll be growing out of that name pretty soon.
Can you help rename him?
The following is an account written by Laura.
“I had a great day on Sunday. Kevin is a brilliant teacher, and his deep knowledge of and love for bees shines through as he speaks. We began by learning the basics of the colony, how these social insects interact with one another and different parts of the beehive. But the highlight of the day was donning our suits and heading for the hives themselves. The honey season is nearing its end, and we were lucky enough to see full frames of honey, ready for extraction in just a few weeks time. We spotted the queen in one hive, as well as several drones, which we had already learned how to identify. After a delicious shared lunch, we watched a documentary and Kevin answered the many questions we had. I came away feeling a little bit closer to the bees, and very inspired to get my own hives.”
This workshop was made possible by the generous contributions made during our last Bee Happy crowdfunding application, and we are already planning the next one. It will have to be timed wisely, as the season is nearly over, but hopefully the next group will get the chance to watch the honey being extracted. Anyone interested in participating should get in touch: It’s free!
Bees are beautiful, and their very being makes people want to give. But it’s going to be the cooperative legal framework that turns all of our hopes and dreams into reality. So our current crowdfunding focus is to raise money to go towards registration, legal and running fees of the cooperative. Time is running out to be a part of this, but if it’s not been possible for you to support us in the past and you feel you’d like to help, there are still 12 days left. We want to make the cooperative live as soon as possible. Your money will definitely help us to achieve far more than we have already, so please give the most you can...even minimum donations (£10) show the strength of our support network and encourage more donations. And don’t forget to share the link with likeminded nature lovers. Don’t underestimate your own power!
The Hive has had bit of a break for the past month or so, while Ray went back to the UK to work at Glastonbury festival with the Greenpeace crew.
But there have been several wonderful house sitters here and the place is looking amazing. Giant courgettes, beans-a-plenty and juicy strawberries are all ready for harvesting and there are hundreds of green tomatoes about to turn.
We are happy to announce that the documentation for the cooperative is all ready to be signed. This is a great leap forward and a very exciting one. But in order for this to happen, we need some financial help with the legal fees. Check out our new crowdfunding application.
One of the friends that stayed here last month seemed to know telepathically what the most important building job was, and got on with it of his own accord. There is now a brand new lintel over the door of one of the most crumbling of ruins, and that’s served to kick-start us into the next venture: that of repairing the ruin.
Which brings us back to the Greenpeace crew. We are putting together a budget to cover the cost of the renovation and with a little bit of help from our ever-gracious investors, we are hoping to lure this highly skilled and motivated group of people over to help. Some help has already been offered, but we can always do with more.
And that’s where you, dear reader, come in. Can you help? We are looking for help with the funds, which are estimated at £10,000. To make this money, we are on the lookout for new investors or people to fundraise on our behalf. So, if you or anyone you know has the relevant skills, please get in touch, or share this page with friends and family.
Completely gutted in every way. Yet at the same time empowered by his life.
|struggling together with this 400kg oak beam...|
This is Paulo's last presentation he sent me. We'd been in constant touch about ways to deal with the disaster that human waste has become, but why it needn't be so.
|With Saffy, his sister Mary, and friends|
|Under Paulo's spell Kira dives in to the|
lime plastering too:)
|With Nikita, bringing up this massive pre-fabricated structure that was to become the terrace for the Alambique|
He would disappear for weeks on various missions. To Croatia with Ruth to desing some mega straw-bale warehouse for his new umbrella company LUSH. Or to obscure communities of German inventors in Southern Portugal, come back bouncing with excitement about their new creations that turned sun rays into ice (the hotter it is outside the cooler the fridge). I’m pretty much obsessed by anything low-tech and radical too, so we’d be there for hours plotting how we’d incorporate these into the aid world, into communities devoid of power and jobs, and how sun & ice could change the picture completely. Especially if we included biogas, rainwater collection, constructed wetlands, and so on. Integrated smart design. Yes… I’m working on that. This has become my mission too.
|Paulo designed this entire straw bale section on the house, and led the construction with our family and friends.|
We went crazy watching the local rivers change through the seasons, and Paolo let slip that kayaking was another of his hobbies (how many can a guy have!!??). A few months later we had all the gear, and Nikita, Paulo and I would drive our van way up some secluded river and charge down, waterfalls and all. These were great moments, staring over at each other in a strange mix of terror, exhilaration and what-the-hell let’s just do it screech, as we hurtled towards some new waterfall we hadn't had time check out first. In the pouring rain. (Argggh. where's the photos of these missions!??)
|With our multi-national team of beam-movers from Romania, England, Portugal, New Zealand, Scotland|
from left - Nikita, me, Nik, Paulo, Shrek (Carlos), Hewel, Petrus, Ilie and Manuel (Neo).
In Pakistan I became humanitarian “advisor” to the UK Government’s efforts to support post mega-flood recovery. Subsequent years brought equally intense rain and destruction. Almost four years on I’m still there, supporting one of the largest shelter reconstruction projects ever – at over 120,000 homes and counting.
|One of hundreds of amazing families i worked with in |
Pakistan, discussing building with lime, how I'd learned
from Paulo and Hywel in Portugal.
We return to Portugal tomorrow, where you appear in just about every picture, in every part of the building and gardening process. You are as much part of our land there as we are and as you planted half the trees you will grow on with us there. Quite fitting really, as Paulo was many parts elfen creature and part-man. He seemed more at home in a mossy corner between rocks or high in the canopy of some tree. A quiver full of carved arrows over his back and slightly pointed ears would have raised no alarm. I’d find him stuffing fresh cut grass into his blender, together with powder of some coco bean, sun-filtered water and some fruits. I asked him if he had become part-goat; he looked at me from under his eyebrows, frowning, to say “grass and weeds are just phenomenal mineral accumulators, how do you think sheep survive?”. I’d settle down with my all-too-human scrambled egg and bread, feeling more like an ork beside this ethereal being sipping his plant juice. (Annoyingly, he would then carry a jug of this stuff around for the next half hour, like an IV, sipping, glowing).
A year or so ago I salvaged a couple of tin cans from the local dump. From the moment I laid eyes on them they were shouting “portable rocket stove!”. They’ve sat around waiting for me to find the time and inclination to put them together ever since, but a friend moving onto a nearby quinta with no cooking facilities finally spurred me into action. In my head, I’d already worked out exactly how the stove was to be made, so it took very little time to assemble. In fact, it all happened so quickly, I didn’t even get any ‘before’ photos.
The stove comprises two identical 1-litre tins (which previously held linseed oil) with tops and bottoms removed, contained in a 5-litre rectangular tin with a top opening which looked (and smelled) like it had been used to store the resin that people collected from the Maritime pines to make turpentine. Whatever it was, it was so ancient and resinous it wasn’t coming off in any hurry so I simply left it.
I cut a circular opening in one side of the 5-litre tin and inserted one of the 1-litre tins into the opening to form the horizontal burn tube. The splayed edges of the circular hole were used to hold the tin in place. Later I fastened them with wire and then covered the lot with aluminium tape.
I filled the base of the 5-litre tin with Leca (lightweight expanded clay aggregate) and then used a fireclay and sand mixture to shape an elbow between the burn tunnel and what would be the vertical heat riser formed by the second 1-litre tin. Using clay/sand for this not only saves messing about cutting metal, but gives some weight to the stove so it’s not easily accidentally knocked over. It will last longer than the metal too.
As I built the elbow, I filled the surrounding area with Leca. Once I’d reached the level for the placement of the second tin, it was all left to dry out completely.
The Leca insulates the combustion area, ensuring the fire burns hot and keeping the outside of the 5-litre tin comparatively cool. (It does still get quite hot, but not hot enough to burn skin or surrounding materials.)
Once dry, the second tin was put in place, the fireclay and sand mixture used to seal the tunnel, and the space around the heat riser filled with Leca. The area around the neck of the heat riser was filled with more fireclay and sand to seal the unit.
A piece of zinc sheet was then cut and folded to form a ‘grate’ which simply finds its own level in the burn tunnel and protrudes from it a way to support longer sticks being burned. It finishes midway across the elbow between the burn tunnel and heat riser to allow the air flowing underneath it to reach the fire. As air is drawn in underneath, it’s warmed as it goes, and keeps the fire burning hot. The zinc sheet is easily removed for cleaning or transport.
A barbecue grill piece completes the stove, allowing combustion gases to escape round the sides of pans.
The stove lit easily, boiled a pan of water in 5 minutes, and sautéed some potatoes all on a handful of small sticks. It also stank of vaporising turpentine! In time, this will hopefully disappear.
Unfortunately, it took me so long to get around to the second stage of construction, the friend I was making it for had already got herself a camping stove and gas bottle. Still, it’s handy for a cup of tea when the gas runs out …
When: 08/09/2014 — 31/10/2014
Where: Awakened Life Project at Quinta da Mizarela- Benfeita, Arganil.
Evolutionary Education Embracing Spirit, Ecology, Community & Health
We are pleased that you are interested in learning more about our new educational intensive at the Awakened Life Project. We have developed this intensive as a response to the many people who are interested in joining the Awakened Life Project for a substantial period of time and who want to fully experience all the dimensions of what we have to offer.
So many people these days want to know how to live successfully in community, how to respond authentically and effectively to their personal relationships and the converging crisis in today’s society and how to actualize the inner calling that so many people are experiencing to reach for something higher. We ran this intensive in the Fall of 2012 for the first time and because of its remarkable success we have decided to make this the main focus of our program.
When: 21/08/2014 @ 19:30 — 31/08/2014 @ 17:30
Where: Awakened Life Project at Quinta da Mizarela, Benfeita – Arganil.
Cost: Starting from 400€
A Transformational Journey through Meditation, Contemplation, Groupwork, Nature Communion, Movement & Celebration
What does it mean to spiritually awaken in the 21st century? How do we manifest our fullest potential as evolving human beings?
Are you looking for a spiritual experience and philosophy that not only has the power to fundamentally free you from psychological suffering and blesses you with inner peace, but also empowers you to radically transform yourself, your relationships and the world?
If your answer is a BIG YES! Then consider joining Peter & Cynthia Bampton for a unique spiritual journey in the beautiful valley of The Awakened Life Project
We are living in times of immense global crisis and transition. If we step back and look at what is happening from a “God´s eye” perspective we can see that this is not only an economic, ecological or social crisis, but an evolutionary crisis – a crisis of consciousness.
Big leaps in biological, cultural and spiritual evolution always burst forth under life and death challenges in which unprecedented new potentials can be revealed. This is the peril and promise of our historical moment. Let us seize the day and awaken!
In this retreat you will:
• Dissolve in the limitless depths of Silent Meditation in the beauty of wild Nature
• Discover the timeless transcendent dimension of Being
• Awaken to your passion for change as the Creative Force of the Cosmos
• Learn how to identify and transcend the limitations of Ego
• Discover tools and practices to align with your Authentic Self
• Engage in dynamic group work to evoke higher Collective Consciousness
• Discover your Unique Passion and Purpose
• Experience the wonder of Evolutionary Love with many others
• Experience Creative Writing as a vehicle for Evolution
• Eat absolutely delicious Vegetarian Meals prepared with Love!
•Practice yoga and/or qi gong every morning
A weekend Journey into Pure Being with Peter Bampton amidst the breathtaking beauty of Quinta da Mizarela.
Experiencing awakened consciousness and sharing that discovery with others is the most fulfilling and liberating experience you can have. When you discover direct access to your inherent freedom you find yourself in communion with life, fearlessly open to the future, and able to respond twith clarity, creativity and spontaneity.
If we want to be free, if we want to live a life of profound wholeness and purpose, then we need to discover and become grounded in this mysterious source of our Being. In this weekend retreat we will dive deeply into the experience of meditation, not through a technique, but through a direct discovery our natural state.
A direct doorway to this miracle of natural awakening is the radically simple yet profound approach to meditation that Peter shares that makes the mystical essence of spiritual tradition accessible to the Western mind.
The instructions are so simple that anyone can begin without any previous experience. At the same time, the subtlety that is revealed about the nature of mind and non-duality offers infinite depth to even the most experienced meditator.
This is an opportunity to put aside the routine of our everyday lives and give ourselves completely to spiritual practice in a supportive collective context.
The retreat will be held in silence except for teaching periods and question and answer sessions. No previous meditation experience is necessary and people from all faiths and spiritual orientations can benefit
Open day is the perfect way for those interested in the project to come and see what we are doing. It offers a chance to meet the creators of the project and participate in a comprehensive tour of the land, as well as meet other people who are also interested in the project.
11:00 -12:00 – Introduction
12:00 -14:30 – Guided tour of the quinta including the ram pump, yurt, outdoor bathroom and compost toilet, the donkeys, permaculture gardens, chicken tractor, beehives
14:30 – 15:30 – Delicious Vegetarian Lunch
15:30 – 16:30 - Guided Tour of the buildings and construction, hydro and solar power systems
16:30 – 18:00 – A walk to the waterfalls of Fraga da Pena
The cost of open day is 15 Euros. If you feel inspired to come but the cost is a deciding factor, let us know why you want to come and what you can afford to pay.
Places are limited so reserve as soon as possible: email@example.com