Hello! We are Lisa (49), Moss (23), Liza (25), Aaron (18), and Tommy (15), a family that recently moved into a new home in Nerstrand, Minnesota. right next to the beautiful Big Woods State Park and less than an hour from Minneapolis/St. Paul.
Our lifestyle has changed a bit during these times of worldly pandemic, and usually we are all home during the day besides some errands or visits to Moss' farm up in Hinckley, MN. We have been using all of this time home to our advantage - incubating chickens, building our garden, dreaming about goats...
Everyone in the family has traveled in some way or another. Aaron and Tommy have been travelling around the U.S. for soccer for many years, Lisa has explored lots of North America and has visited Europe a couple times, Liza has road-tripped across this country and love California, and Moss often travels around for months at a time (using workaway!). Tommy even joined Moss' workaway adventures in France and Italy for a few weeks last fall.
There are a few animals in this house - two kittens (Sunny and Mooney), a new puppy named Opal, and a loving Golden Retriever named Forest. We are part of the dog foster system "RAGOM", so sometimes we have an extra furry friend in the place waiting to find a new home :)
This home is one of the cosiest spaces we've ever lived, and it's exciting to work with this space and find all the little ways we can create beauty.
Moss, Liza and Lisa practice yoga often, anyone with interest in sharing that experience is so welcome!
Creating a sustainable lifestyle and being kind to this earth is a priority here. We are collecting bendy plastics to use as building material for cob structures. We will also be harvesting much of our building materials from the woods around the property and other reclaimed sites.
We have a few queer folks in our community, and are working to increase respect and inclusion for the communities of LGBTQ+, people of all colors, genders, disabilities, and folks from all sorts of backgrounds different from ours. Every human has something to teach, and the exchange of information is a beautiful part of this existence.
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help with Eco Projects
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
Our family often has extra folks coming to help for a while, so we focus on building a community where everyone has a voice, and sustainability is prioritized. You are welcomed in this home as part of this family.
Lisa is a great cook, and when her mom Jackie visits we're sure to have a feast. Moss is vegetarian and has been learning dishes from her travels and is always excited to try them out. Aaron and Tommy are both fluent in Spanish, but are sometimes reluctant to jump right into it :)
Everyone here has a unique view on the world, and the exchange of ideas on what it means to be alive in this world is a constant exploration. Moss and Liza are working on implementing permaculture and sustainable living practices, and learning more about them every day.
Most days begin with yoga and meditation in the sun room, a quick breakfast, then we begin around 9am. Lunch is served around 1pm and that marks the end of the work day.
However, every day may be subject to the individual and collective needs of the group. Many days will not fit this schedule perfectly when other types of healing and learning are necessary.
There are many projects we'd like to work on in this new space:
Designing/Constructing a greenhouse
Creating many gardenbeds!
Working on cob structures
Taming the woods around the property and creating a hiking trail
Finishing up the chicken coop
Creating a natural pond
Creating a treehouse
Fencing around the property
Projects will vary depending on weather/material availability. This summer we would like to focus on giving the outdoor area some structure with garden beds and fencing. We will be using as much natural and recycled materials as possible - this may include some trips into the woods! Though if you are called towards any particular project we will do our best to support you in helping towards it.
All special skills or interests are welcomed; including yoga, meditation, cooking, foreign language practice, musical talents, mural painting, unicycling, underwater basket weaving, etc. Any way you exist is perfect, and we're excited to share some time with you.
There is plenty of room in this house, you will have your own room/bathroom or share a room with another volunteer. There is lots of space outside as well, if you would prefer to camp in the beauty. There are many living-room-type spaces to relax, and you are welcome to use the kitchen, etc as you like, When you're here you are part of the family.
The space where we work and live is right next to a creek and woodsy area. In these quarantine times, exploring this amazing space along the creek has led to many adventures and discoveries.
Big Woods State park is a 10-minute walk away, and has more than 11 miles of trails to explore.
As well, when restrictions in MN change a bit, Lisa will go into the city most weekday mornings and could drop you off in the city to explore. Moss lived in Minneapolis for a couple years and would be so excited to give you a tour of some hidden gems and favourite spots.
On your days off there may also be the possibility to go to the famous "Mall of America", Moss' farm up in Hinckley, or to Visit the city of Duluth, MN for a day or so to see the Great Lake Superior.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
More than two
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week