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Feb and March fly by

What happened to the time?

It seems only yesterday that I did the January update, and now it's the 19th March - 2015 is flying by! I thought this was meant to be life in the slow lane, lol.

Ok, so what's been happening? Well, we've had a few visitors to the earthship, the fencing is almost complete, work started again on the water tank, I've had my knitwear in two markets and my art pieces have been in a joint exhibition. In between all of that Dave has been working hard on his programming, the cats have been continuing to get their 18 hours a day of sleep and I've been knitting and stitching away at commissions. Aha! So that's where the time has gone.

February visitors

As you know we've had a lot of requests to visit the earthship. Since moving in last september we've been getting used to life here and haven't felt it possible to have visitors. But after being contacted by two sets of couples who are seriously planning their own earthship builds we decided it was time to open our doors again - if just a little bit.

So, we did a select mailing to peeps within driving distance and therefore could all come together on a specific day. That day being Saturday the 21st Feb.

In the end only 4 could make it, but actually that turned out really well. Our earthship is only small so 4 having a look around was quite enough.

We were so busy yaking away about the ins and outs of earthship building and how we went about completing ours that we clean forgot to take any photos, sorry. The one below was taken by Karina, thanks hun.

We'll probably be doing something similar again soonish. Contact us if you'd like to be a part of the next visit.


Fencing matters

We're putting up animal fencing around the earthship, an area roughly totaling 3,000m2.

This is to give the cats a fighting chance to run for safety when dogs come sniffing around. And there have been a few dogs come sniffing. We think they're from one of the hamlets in the surrounding area. In this part of Spain a lot of people let their dogs roam free, which is kinda nice but these dogs can form packs that go a hunting on their own, making life for a cat (or rabbit, or quail) quite precarious. I've already had one cat killed by a dog pack.

Anyways, back to the fencing. All the posts are now in and about 180m of fence in place. Just the gates and last 30m to do.

Water tank

Alius, one of the February visitors, was very keen to learn how to do tyre pounding and see what having volunteers on site entails. Him and his wife Karina have a plot of land in Lithuania where they hope to build an earthship. So we invited Alius to join us for a day to work on the water tank. Karina stayed at home looking after their 2 year old bundle of energy - I wonder if you can buy mini sledge hammers?!!

After a late start, having got lost on the way, he soon made up for it and by the end of the day we'd done 12 tyres between us. Dave and Alius were pounding the tyres and I was digging out the hole - providing soil to fill the tyres and creating the extra depth we need inside the tank.

If you'd like to read Alius and Karina's blog and maybe volunteer at their build one day go to Earthship Lithuania. It's written in Lithuanian at the mo, but I think they're planning to do an english version too.

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We were worried we might lose Alius in his work overalls!

Local Eco Markets

My favourite market is at Cariatiz, organised by artists Thomas and Frederique in their beautiful house and gardens.

As well as the locally produced food and craft stalls, there's also an art exhibition, philosophers cafe and live music. Thomas plays the violin and Frederique percussion, they're joined by a variety of musicians. It's very relaxed and fun.

A small market with a lovely atmosphere, if you haven't already experienced it I would recommend coming along.

This month it's on Saturday 21st, but normally it's the last Saturday of the month.

I also tried the market at Lucainena which is on once every three months. Look out for the posters. A different atmosphere and larger than Cariatiz, again with all locally produced food and crafts.

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Trying out a new table set up for Lucainena market

Art Exhibition

The art exhibition at the Cariatiz market is held in a beautifully preserved part of Thomas and Frederique's old cortijo made into a gallery. There has been a variety of artist's work on view for the last few months, and I'm very happy to have 9 of my little art pieces there again this month.

The one below is an example of one of my pieces. Called 'Blossoms and Butterflies', it's a celebration of the beauty of the almond blossom with an acknowledgement to the passing of time.

Mixed media using acrylics, fabric, hand embroidery and reclaimed tin, it also incorporates the wings of a butterfly. But don't worry I would never kill a butterfly for my art, or anything else for that matter. I found it already dead and wanted to preserve it's delicate beauty.

Blossoms and Butterflies

Knitting a way

Since starting up KnitaFrolic last August it's been a huge learning curve. Working out how to create a shop on Etsy, taking accurate and compelling photos of my knitted accessories, writing descriptions that can be found in search engines, the list goes on and I'm always learning.

All I really wanted to do was knit! But now I've started I'm going to keep on refining and improving what I offer.

The driving force behind KnitaFrolic is my belief in the wonderfulness of pure wools. It's totally sustainable, warm even when wet, breathable, hard waring and oh so beautiful. And for those of you allergic to wool from sheep, there's the super soft hypoallergenic alpaca.

To showcase all this woolly wonderfulness I source rare breed, hand dyed, hand spun (some of it myself), organic and fair trade wools. I'm also dedicated to sourcing from producers who love their animals and look after them with care and compassion.

I refuse to source cheap yarns from China made from fur torn from Angora rabbits. Or merino wool from Australia where lambs are mulsed without anesthetics causing them great pain. And don't even get me on the subject of oil based acrylic yarns!

If you believe in preserving this beautiful, diverse world please choose eco and animal friendly pure wool next time you're shopping.

Below: 3 pairs of gloves commissioned by a lovely lady in America. She had already bought a pair of my gloves and wanted 3 more to gift to friends. She left a fabulous review in my Etsy store - I felt so appreciated which was much needed at the time.

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A different flower for each friend

That's All Folks!

So now I see where all the time went in February and March. I'll try to get back to more regular posts, hope you're still enjoying reading about our life in an earthship here in Spain.

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