The reason that I am the only member is that I have been in a process of defining my vision, values, and beliefs since October 2016 when Jesus Vegans (now Vegan Utopia Ecovillage) was born and financial support from a wealthy friend was offered.
Even though I was sure that by age 62, I was clear on where I was headed, our Creator had other plans! In the months leading up to Feb. 1, 2018, I was able to take more time to learn and grow because I did not have to work at a day job.
I had more opportunities to interact with people locally and online, travel, do spiritual practices, and be outside in nature than I had ever had in my life. Even though I was eager to reach out and find people who were members, my intuition said, "not yet." Also, I experienced delays such as a 3-week depression in June where I was unable to work and almost lost my motivation to fulfill this dream.
On February 1, 2018, after a series of very intense conflicts and conversations with Christians that lasted for months, I realized that after 17 years of trying to fit into the Christian Box, I needed to give it up. You can read my story here. The short version is that I love Jesus very much, and he has been my friend and guide all my life. Yet I can no longer call him The Only Way. This goes against my value of respecting all people and not thinking they have an inferior path.
Thus, I am so glad that I did not reach out in a big way. Now we are a vegan, interspiritual Ecovillage where Jesus is respected greatly by all, and for some, he is their friend and guide. Now I can open up the doors wide and invite people of all sorts of spiritual paths to come here. I feel so happy and relieved.
Here is a place where you can get to know me very intimately. I do daily practices which I call Soul Pauses for Body Mind and Spirit. If you are seriously interested in joining this community or being a co-founder, I recommend that you like this page and join me for some of these sessions. In addition, you can look at past sessions.
I found this quote about visionary leaders by Carlos Eduardo Espinal
"Effectively, a founder’s vision facilitates the decision-making process the team uses to create a company’s products and services. It is through the clarity of a founder’s vision that focus is brought to the planning and decision-making process within a company, and as a consequence, the company can function efficiently and increase its probability of success."
Our products and services are not making money--but rather to build a community where everyone is empowered to use their talents, skills, and resources to the maximum. We will have products and services eventually, though, because we want to become financially sustainable.
I am working to figure out how to present Vegan Utopia Ecovillage in the most accurate way possible and to then develop an outreach strategy.
I am also experimenting with the daily schedule by stopping up to 6 times during the day to do spiritual practices. This is something I think is going to greatly enhance our ability to live harmoniously and to stay connected to God all the time.
I choose to work on the Vegan Utopia Ecovillage project in order to manifest my dream of both living in and building an intentional community as well as fulfill what I believe is my destiny of supporting the growing movement of people who are concerned about the welfare of animals.
I love working on this project because everyone who has worked for us has been so enthusiastic about what we are doing. The amazing talents that each person that we have been able to hire has helped me to get to this place.
Some of my main skills are organizing, facilitating, writing, and communication. I am at my best when I can encourage people and empower them to grow on all levels. Facilitating prayers and practices which are that nourish their bodies, minds and souls gives me great satisfaction.
I have had a desire to live in an intentional community since I was 21 which is 42 years ago as of 2018. When I first heard the words, “intentional community" back in the late 70’s, I was so curious! And when I learned more from very first Directory of Intentional Communities, I was hooked on this dream.
You can find out all about me in depth by going to these links where I have done most of the writing:
Vegan Utopia Ecovillage blog: You can find a lot of the history of Jesus Vegans here, including stories about my various adventures like going to London for the Christian Animal Rights Conference. Even though the name has changed, all of what has been done so far has taught me profound lessons that were essential for me.
Facebook Page: Joyful Vegans: Much history and pictures of the sites we are working on are included here.
Twitter: Get an idea of the kinds of things I am interested in here.
Youtube: This will provide you with a nice history of Jesus Vegans and the kinds of things that I personally am interested in.
Facebook: Joyful Vegans: Previously "Jesus Vegans," you can find a lot about our history here.
Facebook, Free Thinking Friends of Jesus: Get to know my spiritual beliefs and theology better on this Facebook group. You do need to be a member to read posts.
Animal Lovers of the Ozarks: I co-founded this group.
Can you tell that I love to start projects? I am happy that I had wonderful people who wanted to help with these projects.
Critical Mass Project: Even though I did very little with this blog, it really was part of my motivation to go to the Bay Area in 2016 where my life changed forever in so many ways!
Berkeley Politics: In the past, I have taken on too many projects. This was one of them! We had one interesting meeting.
Timebanking in Bay Area: I worked with AZ Zahid and a few others to try to get the Bay Area Community Exchange up and running. Although
Kindness Alliance: When Bob Jordan fell off a roof and had brain damage which inspired him to be very kind, we felt inspired to start this group where we met every month at Ann Shaw's home for a year. Some have said that this was what inspired the Compassion Fayetteville project.
The Flight to Light Experience: With Chris Mikkelson, my son, serving as the coordinator, I assisted him in getting a really successful concert and outreach event produced at Faithful Servants Ministries in Huntsville, Arkansas. I really enjoyed working with my son and supporting him in being a wonderful leader.
I Luv Fayetteville: For some reason which I do not remember, I just felt compelled to take on yet another project! We had a very successful event using Open Space Technology at the co-working place, The Ice Berg, but things fizzled after that. I think God was telling me to focus, and not get spread too thin!
40 Days for Life: I worked closely with Sheena Archambault to get this beautiful blog up and running. I thought for sure I was going to focus on pro-life issues for the rest of my life, but I realized through a series of disappointing experiences (or one could even say devastating), I realized that I would probably never totally fit into the Christian pro-life community.
Life Coaching: My friend, Scott Masters, and I kept trying to hone our coaching skills and start a coaching collective. Although our dreams never became reality, we enjoyed the ride. I think all the skills I learned got into my subconscious and I use them in my day to day life and in mentoring others. Scott and I continue to be close friends, and he is so supportive of Jesus Vegans.
Wellspring Ecovillage: When I returned from my month-long tour of Christian communities, I felt inspired to start a community with my two former husbands and our children. They agreed! We really did have fun meeting often to discuss community dreamsm share a meal and have wonderful fellowship together.
Dignity Village: I wanted to support hardworking Michael Brown get a community for homeless people established in Fayetteville. So I started a Facebook page for him and administrated it for a while. Last time I talked to him, he was still working on this project.
Personal, including my family and former businesses
Facebook page, personal: I am an open book! I've been on Facebook for a long time. Anyone can view my profile.
Family blog: At one time, we were experimenting with calling our family a community, and this is a record of that time. In addition, I posted here many posts from when we were first beginning Jesus Vegans.
My business blog: (I am not doing this business at this time, but may engage people in doing team organizing as one of our community businesses.)
My personal blog: You can learn about what I've been up to since 2007!
Recommendations and history: I gathered most of my recommendations up on this page, and I could add a bunch more.
Organizing Stories: An old blog about some of my first organizing experiences
Experience with NonViolent Communication
Pictures of my stay at Koinonia Community https://www.flickr.com/photos/99499629@N03/
I used to be a musician and I produced 7 tapes (yes, that was when cassette tapes where in vogue). Here is a sample: http://www.songsforteaching.com/store/can-do-kids-cooperative-learning-mini-album-download-pr-58272.html
Another song: http://www.songsforteaching.com/charactereducationsongs/illpicturemyselfsucceeding.htm
More songs: https://betterworld.bandcamp.com/album/can-do-kids-self-esteem
Us against the problem: http://www.songsforteaching.com/charactereducationsongs/itsusagainsttheproblem.htm
An article in the Free Weekly: http://www.freeweekly.com/2015/12/16/making-the-holidays-meaningful-sustainable-and-simple/
I have 81 hidden blogs and 45 visible blogs, a total of 126 blogs. I started blogging about 11 years ago, so that is an average of about 10 blogs a year. I am glad to at last be focused on one thing!