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Summer 2019



  • May 4th. Green Up Day VermontThe largest statewide volunteer event (22,500 people). 247 (of 251 total) Vermont towns and cities held events. 13,000 miles of roadway was cleaned
  • 'Your Body is a Temple' second hour conversations included discussion of food as relates to health in the realms of personal, population, and environmental well-being.
  • Insulation project. Thanks in part to a $9,300 matching grant from Interfaith Power & Light, we have improved the energy efficiency of our building.  Van de Ven Construction out of Hartland was contracted to do the insulation:
    • attic space- 1 inch spray foam plus 16 inches loose cellulose potentially getting up to r70
    • walls - with wrap and dense pack cellulose insulation going from r3-14
    • basement- spray foam around joists improving to r20
(Note: r-value is the resistance of heat transfer through the insulation. Higher is better.)
In addition to his residing work Dave changed out the basement door to be fiberglass. Dave comments “The other big piece of energy efficiency upgrades is air sealing, preventing air from entering and exiting a building. The spray foam in the attic and building paper we are putting on should reduce that significantly. It would be interesting to do a blower door test and see what the difference is after the upgrades are done.”
  • New Garden Tools! We used our prize winnings (from the Rivers 2018! Clean Up flamingo bottle) to get 2 Felco pruners. They are available so that you can  help yourself anytime- snip some herbs or cut a bouquet for home or the sanctuary. Consider this a community garden. All are welcome to enjoy it, all are invited to help maintain it. Gloves, Cobrahead weeder, and weeding bucket available under the steps next to the lawn mower.
  • Pick-Your-Own Gardens open for the season! Check the marquee sign board each week to see what is ready for harvesting. Snips are available next to lawn mower under the steps.  Garden maps are on our creation care bulletin board if you are wanting to identify plants.
  • New (3rd)  Composter! Thanks to Melissa Ayers donating a third composter to our line-up, composting is re-open for use (after siding project is completed). Remember the 3:1 ratio of brown:green material and the principle of having brown all around, sides and covering top. Use the available (in metal trash container, brown (carbon rich) material such as hay, straw, and shredded paper to surround your deposit of green (nitrogen rich) food scraps.
  • #MennoCon 19 biennial MCUSA Convention July 2-5, 2019 Kansas City, MO
    MCCN will have a vendor table in the exhibit hall with faces and quotes from members across their network. Our Vermont liasons will be represented: TCMF's Heather Wolfe (foodie) and Bethany Mennonite's Gerry Hawkes (witness).


Outdoor worship services: July 28 @ Bethany Birches camp;  August 18 @ Owl's Head Pavilion, Groton VT

Sept.1-Oct.4 Season of Creation: The 2019 theme will be Biodiversity . 
Clothes dryers use a lot of energy as they spin and heat. To dry a load of laundry will use about 8 times the amount of electricity that was used to do a cold cycle wash (90% of energy used to wash clothes is spent on heating the water, and unless you have oily stains, cold water cleans just as well. Efficiency Vermont has a chart of most household appliances if there are others you are curious about.
Meet a Permaculture Plant:  
Egyptian Walking Onion, aka tree onion (under apple) perennial providing food all growing season. Robust flavor without the strong sting of some onions. Instead of flowers it forms bulblets (mini onions) at the top of the stalk which then bend under the weight and start new plants away from its parent, which is how it 'walks' around the garden.


This Quarter:

Generated: 3589kWh
Used: 1719kWh
Donated: 1870kWh
Estimated Value to BBC: $483
Estimated Value to TCMF: $315
Total Value for Quarter: $798

Grand Totals
Generated: 25,826kWh
Used: 11,553kWh (10,851kWh from Solar, 702kWh from the grid)
Donated: 14,975kWh
Estimated Value to BBC: $3,664
Estimated Value to TCMF: $1,989
Total Value: $5,653

Q: What is something you love about creation?
I love seeing how beautiful and diverse God’s creation is. I love being surrounded by and designing my flower beds. I also love finding spots in the woods that are God’s gardens and being amazed by the detail and design. 

Q: What is something you do to care for creation?
I’ve been learning to identify more of the plant life in the woods around our house. I try to teach the girls to appreciate the natural beauty around us. 
Pick an animal you are afraid of... snakes? spiders? bats? bears?  Then learn something about that animal that is interesting, something about how God made them special. For example, did you know that bats eat 100% of their body weight each night, which is about 1000 mosquitos and other insects in an hour, so 8000 each night! Did you know that by some estimates bears can smell food 20 miles away!
Quick Click for Blessed Earth's SUMMER list!

“Look at the birds of the air…” -Matthew 6:26
On a day when I was feeling particularly discouraged, I happened to glance out the window of my home office and saw something unusual. Just above the tree-tops across my yard was a large bird spreading its wings. My attention was captured as the bird unfolded to its widest wingspan. What is this, I wondered? With wings spread it soared directly towards my house where I was sitting, I could clearly see its white-head and dark feathers on its body. Sure enough, it was a bald eagle! It flew right above me where I was--gliding as though effortless with fully-spread wings.
Strangely, just a week before, I had been driving on Interstate 91 (with my two boys asleep in the car) and had seen a bald eagle in the wild for the first-time in my life. Two nights ago (at the time of this writing) my family and I saw another bald eagle at sunset, soaring nearby.
What does all this mean? Why am I seeing eagles?

I looked up the symbolism of eagles and found that they are near-universally understood as signs of hope and strength. Could this be a sign from God?

How could I be seeing this rare bird so frequently? I was encouraged to learn that the population of bald eagles has substantially increased; in 2007 they were removed from the Endangered Species List! The recovery of eagles is a testament to the success of conservation efforts.
Whether or not God was conveying a specific message through these eagles to me, I am encouraged by these sightings; both because of the recovery of this formerly-endangered species, and because of the aura that I felt in seeing these majestic birds. My spirits were lifted!
“...but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”
-Isaiah 40:31




Have ideas, stories, resources you'd like to share related to creation care?

Contact Heather Wolfe,
Taftsville Chapel's creation care liaison

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P.O. Box 44, Taftsville, VT 05073

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