Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Clay Plaster Workshop with DirtCraft.ca

We had a great two days of learning and working out here on The Simple Farm. We had Ashley and Heather come over from Penticton, BC to teach the class and work with us to apply American Clay to our home. We also went through mixing your own clay and working with clay paints. The possibilities are absolutely endless and now my head is spinning thinking of all the other projects I want to work on in the next few years. Greenhouse, cob oven, small straw bale office, outdoor shower, bath house, clay artwork and sculptures, etc. I better stop.

There were eleven students registered for the course and students came from as far as Nova Scotia, Edmonton, Fernie, and Calgary to our little corner of Southern Alberta to participate in the course.

I was very impressed with the projects, ideas, and desires of all the students. There were many reasons everyone travelled from all over to take the course. Some were planning on building their own straw bale home (even if it was for their dog, ha.), others were looking to remodel their home and wanted to consider using more natural building products in the process. It was amazing to see so many people come together from all areas of life but have so much in common.

We even had Ringo participating in the course. He wanted to make sure his room was done right. He’s a ten year old boy and we were rather nervous to let him do any finishing work but after a while I decided that it’s only a wall and it is his room so we let him have at it. it took him quite a while but the kid finished the main wall in the room and it actually looks better than my finished product. So if you have the skills of at least an ten year old boy (he is magnificent but he is still ten) than you can apply clay plaster.

Here are some pictures of the event.

We met a bunch of new friends and had a great learning experience in the mean time but I think the biggest hit of the event was our outdoor shower (everyone had a shower buddy to adjust water temperature and turn on or off the water) or the homemade whole wheat chocolate chip cookies that were devoured (I made 9 dozen cookies and they were all gone in two days).

I enjoyed seeing one of the participants boy running around trying to catch one of our chickens. I am missing a chicken so wondering if he smuggled one home in the back seat of his car. Poor parents. Our chickens eat wheat, bugs, and grass. You can keep the chicken as long as you let him sleep with it and paint his toe nails.

After going through the process of preparing for this workshop and seeing how much we accomplished in a very short period of time I’m really happy we did the workshop.

Ashley and Heather are wonderful teachers and were very encouraging in the process. We weren’t building an alternative structure such as a straw bale or an adobe home but we still felt like the project we choose was a valuable learning experience and transferred well to all the projects mentioned.

We’d love to see any pictures or videos people took during the course.

Thanks for all the hard work everyone that was at the event.

If you find my lost chicken send her home. We miss her terribly.

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