The loop project has gone a little quiet recently as we’ve been busy baking lots of bread, moving house and gardening. However the biggest project is loopy baby that is due in August. Hence Leanne has been reducing the amount of work she is doing to concentrate on a much more important project!
There was good news recently in that I (Andy) passed my Msc Architecture: Advanced Environmental and Energy Studies at CAT. I was researching and writing about local food production in Llanidloes. I will post a link to the thesis at some point.
It was hard work last winter writing for a January 31st hand-in. However, once the thesis was submitted I felt so relieved but also drained that I had to stop thinking about “local food production” for a time. However I’m now at the point of feeling inspired about the whole thing again, perhaps it’s the bounty of fantastic local fruit and vegetables we are devouring at the moment. I want to use the knowledge I’ve built up to make a difference to the area in which we live, it would be a real shame not to.
Anyway the focus of the loop project is going to change over the next year; the bakery is doing well and I would also like to focus more on research and perhaps do some consultancy work (if any comes our way) surround the mid-Wales region and local food production. Therefore there will be less emphasis on website design although Leanne will still be graphic designing and if the right sort of website comes along we will still work on it. There will also be a little one to nurture and look after.
I am becoming increasingly aware of the need to reduce our dependence even further on some aspects of the consumer society that surrounds us. We have already reduced the constant bombardment of advertising and marketing by not watching TV adverts and not buying newspapers or glossy magazines. We don’t really need much more than we have and by embracing “voluntary simplicity” we’ve had the happiest few years of our lives.
The next stage of this plan is really to spent more time learning simple skills such as pottery, carpentry, making clothes and basic electronics. This is not to say I expect an imminent societal collapse, it is just that we are (happily) time rich and money poor – we can learn these skills to improve our lives whether or not the consumerist world continues to grow for the rest of our lives. Community building is also very important. Luckily we appear to have stumbled across a fabulously strong community in the town we moved to only 18 months ago, Llanidloes. This can only grow stronger as time progresses and we build even greater bonds of trust with those we live and work near to.
We’re looking forward to the year ahead!