Guess who received a whopping foot and more of snow in the past week? Guess who hit the hills, sliding on sleds? Guess where the goats are these days? Guess who got to sparkle the evening away? Answers reside below…
Hello-hello from the windy, frozen plains of Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage! Prairie here, thankfully staying warm and toasty in the midst of all this weather. I am also grateful for the plentiful opportunities there have been to get out and sled. There has been some snow-fort building as well; a certain 6-foot high structure can be found near the duckweed pond these days. It seems we will have no shortage of snowy sparkles in the time to come, so I expect to find myself both inside and out to enjoy it in the days ahead.
During the last Week in Preview, our weekly meeting to schedule vehicle rideshares and coordinate meetings and other events happening throughout the village, Nathan and Benji spoke about the sparse attendance of our weekly community dinners. (Attendance is often low this time of year, with so many folks off the farm.) Unlike potluck, when folks from our neighboring communities of Sandhill and Red Earth Farms are welcome, community dinner is when some of us from Dancing Rabbit each bring our own food and eat together, to connect. T remarked to me how he finds it interesting that there are times he won’t see certain people for a while. Even as small as our village is, it’s often events like community dinner that bring about the interaction between individuals who otherwise wouldn’t often see one another.
In an effort to gather more of our community together, Benji announced that last week’s community dinner would have a special theme: sparkles. Benji also came as a “special guest” to judge a Benji-themed contest, in which folks were invited to bring a dish with his name somewhere in the title. With the promise of a soiree like that, it was sure to be a record-breaking community dinner.
As expected, community dinner was popping with sparkles that day — people wore sparkles, had sparkles in their eyes, and were truly sparkly in and of themselves. There were folks in bountiful gowns and other such attire (a princess was even spotted in the mix) and the tables were decorated with some festive fiber optic lights to add a little extra sparkle! As for the Benji-themed food, folks brought dishes like Benji cakes (salty potato latkes with applesauce and brown sugar), Benjistrone (minestrone), Benji-goes-to-Quincy burritos, Benji pot pie, and ze-la-Ben’oa (made with a type of grain called quinoa). A special guest for community dinner, once each month, has become official, and I’m excited to see our community grow closer and closer. We set a sparkly new record as well: 66.66% of the village attended!
On another sparkly note, the ambitious barn project is chugging along at a dogged pace. The stairs have been finished and the goats are now moved in, just in time for the bitterest cold yet!
I have been practicing my own sparkle this week. Where can I find more joy and appreciation in my life, and in my community? What are the sparkles I can cultivate for more fun and excitement in all the things I do for myself and others? Just as the seasons shift and change, I imagine my sparkle will as well.
Happy winter, and may your moments be filled with your own whatever-lifts-you. Be curious, if that’s your thing… What’s your sparkle?
Pizza night is another time when folks at Dancing Rabbit like to connect, with each other as well as with our neighbors in the area – it happens weekly at the Milkweed Mercantile, on Thursdays from 4pm – 8pm. They have lots of toppings to choose from, a large selection of beer, and delicious hot cocoa made with coconut milk. Their handmade deserts are known to sparkle like a snowflake on the tip of Benji’s tongue. (Three-layer chocolate cake with mocha frosting, and salted caramel cupcakes, were available last week.) Check google maps for accurate directions, and call ahead to make a reservation: 660-883-5522.