Stuff

I'm about to go out of town for three days to a conference on dealing with poverty issues, energy depletion and climate change, and I'm a little nervous. We've had no babies born since Meadowsweet's appearance two weeks ago, and I have three does due in the next week - not only am I a little nervous about abandoning Eric and Phil-the-Housemate to delivering baby goats (which has historically been a she who did the birthin' of the boys job), but I'm also a little sad at the thought of missing all the fun!

Still it is a good and important thing, and it reminds me to let y'all know about various and sundry a'doins a'transpiring in my world, if you've any interest.

First of all, I'm offering my food storage and preservation class starting on Tuesday, August 17 and running for six weeks until the first Tuesday in October (I know that doesn't add up but I'm going to be gone on September 7, so we're skipping a week ;-)). The wonderful thing is that for once, I'm doing this class right as most folks are hitting peak preserving season - so we'll be trying everything. You can fill your root cellar (or make something that functions like one) with fall produce, fill your shelves with jam and pickles and canned produce, learn to lactoferment, dehydrate, preserve with salt, sugar and alcohol, as well as get strategies for building up your pantry and food storage, buying in bulk at reasonable cost, managing your food supply, etc... All that good stuff!

As always the class is online and asynchronous - you can participate at your own pace, and from home when it is convenient. Cost of the class is $150, I also accept equivalent barter and have five scholarship spots for low income participants who can't otherwise afford the class. Please email me for details, but don't expect a reply until Monday, since I'll be out of town.

Second, I'm going to be doing some talks here and there, and I'm hoping I'll get a chance to meet some of you.

First, I'll be at the Heritage Harvest Festival at Monticello in Virginia all day on September 11. My whole family is going to this one - we're bringing the boys and making a family adventure out of it! From 11:30 to 12:30 I'm giving a talk (and no, I won't be offended if you want to meet Garden Girl, who is speaking in the same time slot, more than you want to meet me - I'm right with you!) on Jefferson and _A Nation of Farmers_ and from 12:30-1 I'm giving a class on low energy food preservation.

The whole thing is going to be terrific - great food, great fun, a gardener or eater's dream. I can't wait to get there! I hope you'll come too!

In October, I'll be at the ASPO USA World Oil Conference in Washington DC - my first as a member of the board from October 7-9. It is going to be a fascinating lineup and present the most up to date and critical energy data out there. I will be speaking at some point, but we're still finalizing schedules - but ASPO is taking full advantage of the power of being in DC to bring this issue to the mainstream, and to provide a Senate briefing as well. I hope to see some of you there. One of my roles has been to bring speakers that bring the food-energy connection to the front and center of the global strategic issues created by peak oil and climate change, and I'm really excited about that.

Also, Transition New Haven is putting together an event still not wholly finalized, around the theme of Urban Adapting-in-Place and its challenges and possibilities. I'll be speaking on both Friday night October 22 and on the 23rd also, and many community activists and agencies will be participating. We're hoping to explore the real possibilities of making a promising future for people who don't want to move, don't have the cash to build the apocalyptic dream bunker and who are working with real, ordinary people and need to have a future they can believe in. More details on this one as they become available, but I wanted to give everyone a heads up. I'm hoping to see and meet you there.

Finally, if you want to come live next door to me and start a tell-all-blog, now's your chance - my neighbors are moving and their 4.9 acres and their house with in-law apartment are yours for the buying. Check it out: http://sharonastyk.com/2010/08/03/if-im-not-going-to-sell-my-house-mayb…

Ok, I'm off to a Maryland conference center - play nice among yourselves in the meantime!

Sharon

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