Our solar-powered home is set in the rainforest of Mount Glorious, 45 minutes from Brisbane. We are a couple with three children (12, 17 and 21 years).
We embrace a philosophy of sustainability and building resilient communities and households, with a focus on practical skills.
Erika is a midwife working part time in Brisbane. Bruce is an activist and craftsman, working in bush timber work, traditional hand tool woodwork, and blacksmithing with charcoal made from our forest. We build and repair bicycles and electric bicycles (our son is a bike mechanic).
We have a long history of sharing our home with visitors from many places. We enjoy learning about other people and the places they come from.
The natural environment around us is very beautiful. Our living space is busy all day with projects, study, housework and stimulating ideas. We enjoy engaging our helpers with all that is happening.
Our home is not a place for visitors who depend on frequent access to phones, screens or internet. We discourage screen use in our living area: this is an opportunity to connect with a real things and the natural world.
Bruce publishes a blog on some of his practical projects.
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help with Eco Projects
Help around the house
Help with Computers/ Internet
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
We welcome our helpers to engage with our daily activities and eat and work with our family through our daily routine. Visitors who enjoy this and have an interest in developing their skills will find a more rewarding experience.
This is a good place to learn about ideas and skills of "transition" households and communities. We are keen to share craft and home production skills, including cooking delicious whole foods on our wood and charcoal stoves, renewable energy, constructing and fixing bikes and electric bikes, traditional woodworking, blacksmithing gardening and building. Our family has a focus on a healthy lifestyle and we eat a range of vegetarian and non-vegetarian foods.
Visitors should plan to help every day with dishwashing and other household tasks, particularly at meal times. This is really important for keeping our busy house functioning well.
Other work includes outdoor tasks, including veggie gardening, maintaining our orchard, building, painting, fixing and landscaping.
Current activities on our property include: Building a new bathroom from local timber, chainsaw milling, rock wall building, chopping and stacking firewood, installing a new water tank and working on house and shed and landscaping, creating a new bicycle workshop. There are many things needing making or fixing.
We like our helpers to be happy doing things that match their skills and aspirations.
We (usually) provide a room with a double bed and bedding, within our house.
We don't have smoking in or around our house or buildings.
We offer limited access to wireless internet. Visitors are asked to leave their screens in their room.
Our house is supplied by solar electricity (with batteries), and electricity use must be very efficient.
Water is supplied from our rainwater tanks, so must be used carefully.
Time off: Local options include extensive bush walks, a choice of cafes, and beautiful mountain cycling. At our house there are a lot of recreational options with crafts including woodwork and blacksmithing.
Transport: there is a school bus from The Gap State High School on school days. The closest train station is at Ferny Grove, where lifts can be arranged, sometimes with Erika returning from work.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Maximum 5 hours a day, 1.5 days off/week