November marks the mid-point of autumn. The first frost came early this year, laying down its sparkling veil. Yet October was filled with light and warmth and abundance at Common Ground. These pages reflect the fruits of years of community building, and we’re particularly happy about the many young people and children, neighbors and friends, who showed up to experience–and enrich–our outpouring of autumn offerings.
Are we where we want to be; living in houses on the land? Not yet. But we can be sustained in our strivings to “get there” by the beauty, nourishment, healing, and joy that that comes with already having so much to celebrate right “here,” particularly in our deepening relationships with each other and the land.
Though shadows lengthen and darkness falls earlier now, it’s not a time to hold back. We hope you’ll look closely at this Almanac and choose to accept some of the invitations extended. You’ll be very welcome.
In the waning days of summer, our farmers witnessed something miraculous. Several monarch caterpillars chose to dangle from the farm fence, dissolve into chrysalises, and bust out as butterflies. Though it happened in plain sight, it’s still hard to fathom how such a radical transformation can possibly occur.*
Scientists tell us that the blueprint of the butterfly is hidden within the caterpillar in the form of single cells poetically called “imaginal.” These seeds of future potential at first operate independently and are perceived as a threat by the creature’s immune response. But gradually they persist, multiply, and connect with each other. Ultimately, they begin resonating and acting together until they hit a tipping point, and presto—a butterfly is born!
Creating an intentional community such ours takes imagination for sure. But even more, the vision requires cooperation among all its pieces and parts to coalesce, take form and to emerge, maybe even in miraculous ways. In this Almanac, you’ll find many opportunities to come together and originate something that has long been envisioned and is well on the way to being born. We invite you to come and be a part of the emergence!
See you at Common Ground
P.S. There’s still time to come to the Cooperative Skills workshop on Friday, September 30, from 7-9pm. RSVP to Hope for a link: firstname.lastname@example.org
*Here is a short video showing the progress from caterpillar to butterfly. Enjoy! https://www.floridamuseum.ufl.edu/exhibits/blog/monarch-metamorphosis-video/
Wild persimmon trees abound on the Common Ground land.* Long after blueberries are picked and peaches are past, these gorgeous persimmon globes begin to turn from green to bright orange. But wait–don’t pick them yet! They are not completely ripe until the color dulls, the skin begins to wrinkle and sag, the body becomes mushy to the touch; even until they release their hold on the bough and fall to the ground. If you rush it and eat them too soon, you’ll end up with a very unpleasant pucker! But if you are patient, you’ll be rewarded with the sweetest taste of autumn ever.
Though the persimmons are taking their sweet time to ripen, our pace is quickening.In this Almanac, you’ll see that much is coming to fruition. Every day, we are fostering caring relationships, evolving our structures and policies, working towards building the village, growing food and stewarding our forests, tuning ourselves to the rhythms of the natural world, and receiving gifts of beauty and connection that are available to us every moment of every day.
If you want a place at our table, we strongly encourage you to start now. The Almanac will show you how.
See you at Common Ground.
*Persimmon trees are dioecious, meaning that some are pollinators and some bear fruit.
It’s high summer and nature is unleashed. Everything bursts its bounds. Temperatures rise to oven proportions, storms dump rain like waterfalls, weeds and vegetables vie for soil, and insects and parasites become utterly uncontainable. Even summer’s song is made of loudness, a primordial surround-sound, seething and swirling on air as soft and sticky as breath.
Summer is not a time to hold back, and we’re in full swing at Common Ground Ecovillage. This Almanac* is packed with goodies – news, events, and images that aim to feed inspiration, purpose, and delight in all our lives. If you are hungry for meaningful connection and contribution, look at what’s cooking at Common Ground.
If you like what you see, there’s a place for you at our table.
There’s a lot to be grateful for at Common Ground Ecovillage. New members with terrific skills and life experience are appearing at a steady pace. We’re nearly through the pre-development engineering stage for the village and are making steady progress on achieving financing for our limited equity housing co-op. The farm is in its high summer glory.
Yet there are challenges aplenty as we feel the need to shift into a higher gear; evolve our systems to meet new needs; develop stronger relationships; and keep the faith that yes, we can do this, if we pool our talents and resources towards a common vision.
This Almanac will help you to catch up and catch on to what’s happening. Does this feel like something you want to be a part of and a world you want to help create? If so, then let’s show up, lean in, and help strengthen each other’s hearts and will to make a real, positive difference in our lives and communities, right now.
The Summer Solstice is nigh and the natural world is exploding in fullness and fertility. The tiny buds that wintered on the tress have yielded leaf upon leaf, each unfolding, stretching, and galloping towards the sun. Itty-bitty seeds sown in Spring’s soil have (somehow) morphed into creamy cauliflower and exuberant cabbages. Butterflies and bees visit eager flowers of every hue. Who can fail to be dazzled by it all?
Amid the searing tragedies in our human world, we yet have it in us to behold beauty and create connection, aliveness, and harmony. Sometimes its so simple and other times so seemingly impossible; the obstacles within and without too great. But, at Common Ground Ecovillage, we persist in tending to dreams planted long ago that have firmly taken root and are continuing to emerge and evolve as conditions and resources support.
You’ll find in the pages of this Almanac so many ways to grow, learn, and express your gifts and passions in the service of a more loving way of living. It’s not easy and certainly not always pretty, but we continue to reach towards the sun by day and the stars by night, as best we can, together.
Spring is a time both tender and powerful as new life wakens and stretches out of winter’s sleep. In this month’s Almanac,* you’ll get a taste of the aliveness of Spring at Common Ground—children frolicking on the farm, sweet blossoms and baby leaves unfolding out of their cozy bud-beds, and the first lip-smacking strawberries, fresh for the picking.
The growth spurts and changes of Spring are mirrored at Common Ground. It’s a time of Great opportunity as we become more visible to the wider world through new branding and messaging (unveiling soon!). Great challenge as we forge ahead with a vision that bucks the status quo. Great contribution as we continue to invest time, money, and energy into creating more beautiful and life-giving ways to dwell and relate with each other and the land.
A great vision attracts great people. We have a lot of them and need more. You’ll find opportunities galore in these pages to visit, explore, join, relate, and offer your resources and talents to help manifest this culture-shifting Ecovillage.
Spring is coming at its usual unsteady pace. Some days, blustery wind blows warm and thick; other days dawn with a twist of frost in the air and ice underfoot. Spring reminds us that no progress is linear or without risk. Sometimes, like oak leaves still encased in buds, you can hold tight; sometimes, like the red maple trees, it’s time to burst out of what confines you and give your gifts of beauty and aliveness, whatever may come.
We’re doing a bit of each at CGEV this Spring. Waiting for YOU to invest in this vision and say YES to co-creating a life-giving space for generations to come. AND, bursting with activities, ideas, projects, to connect us with each other and the land to bring about the vision of an agrarian ecovillage that will address the imperatives of our time.
Well, it takes a village to build one and you are just in time. May this Calendar/Newsletter inspire you to show up, pitch in, and experience community-in-motion. We’ll be welcoming you. Your friends at Common Ground Ecovillage
P.S. For those of you who contributed photos for this calendar, apologies if you were not credited–Hope lost track!
Walk anywhere on the land near water these days and you’ll be serenaded by Spring Peepers. They are tiny but, oh my, they sound a stupendous chorus! And daffodils, crocuses, red maple magenta blossoms, spring beauty–they are all popping up FAST as late Winter tussels with Spring. The season is calling us to be awake and aware, for all that lies dormant will soon emerge.
At Common Ground Ecovillage, seeds we planted long ago (and have carefully tended and amply watered) are sprouting as our village and farm rapidly attract those who will help bring all to fruition. We hope you’ll pour over this Calendar and find what inspires you to show up–on the land and/or on Zoom–and add your unique voice, talents, and rhythms to this Ecovillage chorus.
We are small, yet we can make a mighty noise in a world crying for justice, harmony and right relationship with each other and the land.
Though there’s a cold wind blowing outside, our hearts are warm as we pull together to realize our vision of an agrarian ecovillage. There truly has never been a better time to join CGEV. Momentum is building and reservation forms to live in the village are coming in fast.
It takes a village to build one, and we’re thrilled to welcome new members who value this community and wish to help shape and realize its mission. If you think you’d like to be a part of what’s happening here, then don’t hold back.