Posts Tagged With: Introduction

Where have I been?

In November I moved off the farm and into a cabin in the woods on the opposite side of town for the winter.  The cabin is one room, small (12′  x 17′) and about 6 miles from Viroqua on 5 acres of wooded ridge land.  My water comes from a well pump about 100 feet from my door and my bathroom is an outhouse about 20 feet away. Despite not having water, I have electricity, wireless internet, and a landline.  My heat comes from  beautiful and efficient woodstove and my food is cooked on the gas stove.  It’s a pretty sweet deal.

After my work/study position ended with the Drifltess Folk School I applied for and got the job of Administrative Coordinator.  For now it means that I am in charge of registrations and publicity and this summer I will also be coordinating the work/study program.  Sometimes it is stressful but in general it has been a ton of fun.  We are currently seeking new instructors for our upcoming catalog so if you are reading this and have some skills you want to teach then let me know.  I plan on teach a couple classes myself this time!

Besides folk school stuff I have also been teaching chemistry to juniors at the local waldorf high school.  The experience has been very eye opening.  I went from knowing very little about Chemistry to feeling like I have been teaching it for years!  I would love to teach an ecology, humanities, or outdoor class with them but for now Chemistry is excellent.  Next week is my final week teaching and the students are giving presentations.  They made me promise that we would have at least one explosion and one baking day.

In my free time I have been embroidering gnomes, drinking copious amounts of tea, eating my pickled goodies from the summer, spending hours at the food co-op and/or cafe, hanging out with friends, and baking lots and lots of bread.  I have also been doing a lot of pleasure reading and garden dreaming/planning.

My time in the cabin is up the first week in late March and I am currently on the hunt for my next place to live. I want it to be close to town but with enough space to hold some folk school classes, have a large vegetable garden, and have chickens. Where  I am now I rely a lot on my neighbors to drive me into town and for my next place I want to be within biking distance.  Money is tight but maybe I can throw in a box of vegetables and eggs for rent reduction!

Now that I have filled in some of the blanks on what has been happening in my life, I plan to continue updating regularly about my adventures in rural living. Enjoy!


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Obligatory Introduction Post

My name is Annie B. and I am a 23 year old college graduate doing what many of my peers are doing in this economic climate—traveling, doing internships and work-trades for little or no money, and blogging about it!   Growing up in Massachusetts, spending summers at camp all around the Northeast, and going to college in North Carolina has all contributed to my current state of wandering and I couldn’t be happier with all the experiences I’ve had. After graduating from college with a degree in Outdoor Leadership Studies I stayed on campus as a Resident Director where my duties mostly included planning under attended events for my residents and writing up or lecturing loud underage drinkers.  I then moved to California for a year-long position as a Community Intern for the Woolman Semester—a radical semester program for high school juniors, seniors and gap year students based on peace, sustainablility, and social justice.  As an intern I wore many hats including: “grown-up”, gardener, vegetarian chef, trip leader, nanny, camp specialist, chaperone, etc. and loved them all. Now my wanderlust has pulled me to Southwestern Wisconsin where I am a work/study for the Driftless Folk School.

Driftless Folk School is a community based program focused on sharing knowledge, skills, and passion related to sustainable living.  The school has no physical location and classes are held at various homes, schools, farms, and homesteads around Viroqua and Vernon County. Classes are signed up for individually so that a person can take as many as they want throughout the year. Local experts and enthusiasts are hired to teach skills like pickling, natural building, chicken butchering, cheesemaking, blacksmithing, etc.  As a work/study I live with a host family on their farm outside of town where I work for room and board and a couple hours per week for the Folk School itself for a small stipend and free Folk School classes.  The folks I am living with out at Turtle Hollow are absolutely fantastic and I feel so lucky to have this opportunity!

My goal for this blog is to make it appealing to family and friends as well as those interested in Driftless Folk School, folk schools in general, or farm/rural life.  I feel I should mention that each work/study lives a very different life depending on what their host farm is like so it would be impossible to represent each experience in my blog. I’ll just keep to what I know! To follow will surely be photos, recipes, anecdotes, class reviews, and whatever else spills out of my brain. Enjoy!

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