While there is an abundance of information on our Coho/US website about the variety of cohousing communities, as well as the option to post inquiries to the Cohousing-L list serve, nothing compares to spending time at a community. Whether you are forming a community and in the process of learning all that you can, or living in an established community and wanting to observe how others do things, this is time well spent.
Let's talk resilience! That's what I'll be doing at the Regional Cohousing Conference this year and I hope you all are coming and want to dig in to that concept. What does it mean for our communities to be resilient: economically, ecologically and socially?
Wild Sage had some cool things in our kids space, we took a small plain square room and built a loft, we added an old library ladder to access it, we painted each wall a different color and painted sparkly clouds on the ceiling...but is it really what our kids wanted? We’re not so sure. It became the place where unwanted toys ended up...think about that for a moment...if kids kids play with them at home, why would they become suddenly interested in them at the common house?
I sit here on the Pacific Coast of Mexico watching the sea awaken in the soft pastels of the changing morning light of sunrise. The waves, stirred by a night of winds from the north rise and fall, then crash into transformative white foam, obscuring the boulders that define our boundary between land and sea. It is a continuous rhythm that defines the pulse of the experience of this place.
Wild Sage Cohousing is thrilled to welcome Coho/US Regional Conference attendees to our community. We’ll be hosting the Board of Directors retreat, holding some of the intensive workshops on Friday, April 20, and giving tours of our community on Sunday, April 22. Here’s a handy guide to let you know what to look for when you come to Wild Sage.
It’s the first question newcomers ask when introduced to consensus (or consent) decision-making: What if you just can’t agree? My answer is usually, “That’s when the really good stuff happens!” It is too. It’s when we are pushed to be thoughtful, collaborative and creative and find solutions no one has thought of yet. Most of us have experienced that, but sadly most have us have also experienced gridlock. Whether we’re locking horns or passively standing our ground, we get stuck, feelings get hurt, process grinds to a halt and cohousing isn’t quite so wonderful anymore.
A friendly reminder the early-bird deadline for the Regional Cohousing Conference coming up April 20-22 in Boulder, CO is just around the corner! The early bird rate is $60 off the regular price, so round up your community members this week and sign yourselves up here: http://cohousing.org/boulder2018
My favorite thing about attending conferences is the people that I meet. Don't get me wrong, the information gleaned while attending intensives and sessions is invaluable, but what I really love is the informal conversations with other conference attendees when waiting for the elevator or while sitting in the hotel lobby lounge. This is when you might hear about creative use of an old space, or of someone's challenges with community neighbors that might be similar to an experience you had just a few months ago in your own community, or perhaps you learn of a fun, unique tradition that you can take home to share and implement with your community.
The 500 Communities Program is a year-long training for motivated professionals to acquire the knowledge, tools, and resources necessary for consulting to cohousing groups while expanding career options and collaborating with like-minded entrepreneurs. The program is led by Katie McCamant, cohousing expert who has consulted on, designed, or developed dozens of cohousing communities over the last three decades.
10. Get ideas for your community.
Whether you are a brand new community or you’ve been living together for decades, there is more to learn about how to thrive in community. At Conferences you will meet people who have solved the problems your community is currently facing and hear new ideas for green living, social engagement and community life.