* NEW LIFE IN THE COUNTRY – by Luke Potter
Posted by loiswstern
Building your own home can be an incredibly satisfying journey, particularly as you see your dreams take shape and become real. This is the story of my wife Leanne and me in following our dreams to build a kit home in the district of Budgeree at the foothills of the Strzelecki Ranges of southern Australia. Starting with practically nothing, we were amazed at what we were able to create using a good plan, some basic skills and a clear idea of what we really wanted.
Once you have lived in the country, it is difficult to return to the boundaries of suburban life. However, like many, that is what Leanne and I did at differing times of our lives. Leanne grew up in Budgeree – a place of rolling grassy hills that in the closing decades of the 19th century was cleared for dairy cattle and is now the home to an eclectic mix of beef cattle, market and hobby farmers, and simply those seeking a quieter life. She left for Melbourne to study teaching in her late teens, but home was never far away. A two-hour drive would see her at the kitchen table of her parents, with coffee in hand, catching up on local news.
I had but fleeting experiences of the country compared with Leanne, but those experiences have stayed with me. Most memorable was living in the hinterland of northeastern Australia whilst in my early teens. Pineapple farms, friendly people that would treat you as one of their extended family, bare feet, and living most of the day outside made me feel as though I was truly home.
This yearning to return to the country grew inside Leanne and me to the point where we were unable to ignore it any longer. So we made the decision to sell our home in the suburbs, and move to that part of Budgeree where Leanne grew up.
We arrived in Budgeree in January 2007 to a bare paddock, and a shipping container filled with our personal belongings from our previous home. Our only refuges were our caravan and a rickety and breezy shack. Built in the 1880s as the original district schoolhouse, the shack was pulled down on bullock dray from the settlement of Budgeree in 1901. It was then converted into a house, and mid last century was turned into a hayshed. In its current form, it offered some protection from the rain and no protection from the wind and cold, but did sport two working fireplaces.
We had just returned from a trip around Australia financed from the sale of our home in the suburbs, towing the camper van that would be our home for the next 4 months. Leanne and I are people that love to explore roads less travelled, filled sometimes with excitement, sometimes with apprehension of what the next bend in the road may bring. And, it was in these extremely remote places that we got to know each other all over again and found a sense of contentment in living simply. Thoughts of self-sufficiency and to living more in-tune with nature crystallized into ideas for our new home.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR Luke is an Electronic Systems Engineer and Computer Scientist with a passion for sustainable technologies that can help make our life easier and reduce our impact on the planet. Luke seeks to challenge our thinking about sustainable building and living. It is not about spending a fortune to achieve a meagre gain. Rather, it is about living a comfortable life, lowering your dependence on consumption, and living in harmony with the earth and all things around you. Luke lives at Budgeree House with his wife Leanne, and his three children – Lauren, Ryan and James. Click here to visit his website.
About loiswsternI was in education for just over 20 years when I unexpectedly pursued another passion and entered the world of authors and journalists. I have since published two non-fiction, full length books on different aspects of beauty, but also avidly endorse the confluence of Inner and Outer beauty. I have written feature articles for Long Island Beauty Guide and LI Woman, and have served as Editor-at-large for MakeMeHeal.com, the largest Internet site for plastic surgery and beauty needs. I enjoy researching what's new in the world of aesthetics & anti-aging and devote one of my blogs: www.FabulousBeautyBlog.wordpress.com to sharing cutting edge, hype-free information. I devote my second blog to my other passion: writing, collecting and sharing stories to warm the spirit and inspire the soul. To this end, I have created an 'Authors Helping Authors' project/contest, to create books for inspiration, the first of which is titled: Tales 2 Inspire ~ Beyond Coincidence. It is a jewel of a book, filled with inspiring stories and full color original photos and/or drawings. If you're a talented writer with one inspiring story to share, visit www.tales2inspire.com to learn how to participate. FREE to enter. All you need is the talent and perseverance to do so. Lots of positive platform building opportunities for the winners. Learn more at: www.tales2inspire.com.
Posted on January 11, 2013, in "Tales2Inspire Writer's Contest", Authors helping authors project, Tales2Inspire, Tales2Inspire Contest and tagged "authors helping authors", "inspirational stories", "TALES2INSPIRE CONTEST", author, Lois W. Stern. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.