About

In December 2012 we moved into our earthship after 3.5 years of construction (with many breaks).  It was a harrowing fall before we moved in and we spent the following year recovering from a hectic 2012 construction schedule.

In June of 2014 we cleared the building permit (!) and installed the first half of zone 1 of our permaculture design.

Spring 2015 brought renewal in all forms to the Darfield Earthship. Our first-ever garlic crop poked up through the hugel mulch and seeding started in earnest in April and May. Most exciting was a sudden, but most welcomed hip replacement for Sandra. Sudden onset of osteoarthritis in 2013 was followed by two years of rapid deterioration.

On March 16, 2015 in went the new hip and Sandra, true to form, tackled her recovery with everything she had and was walking unassisted in two weeks, and was finally free of all painkillers. Several months later life is almost normal for her again.  She has been able to participate fully in our earthship activities, including outdoor maintenance and planting. Many spring blessings for all of us as we finally feel able to tackle some outstanding projects on our home.

We are a busy family with three teenagers. It’s often chaos in our house with piano, flute and voice lessons and dance classes and coding sessions.  The next school year sends the kids to Grades 10,11 and 12!

Welcome to our modern homesteading adventure!

About Chris Newton

I’m Chris and we first started this blog/website to track our building efforts. Although the big jobs are finished, I hope you find our experience useful as you follow your own dream.  I am an engineer and had been designing and building log homes for the previous 10 years. So, I had a construction background, but no prior experience with earthships. I have always been interested in sustainable housing, and reading Mike Reynold’s books was like a call to action. I am married to Sandra Burkholder (co-author of this blog), and we have three children. Contact me at chris@darfieldearthship.com if something I’ve written catches your attention!

About Sandra Burkholder

I’m married to Chris and we have three children and a way too busy life!  Until we moved into our earthship in 2012 we had been living in a really small house; only 600 square feet!

Chris rented the documentary “The Garbage Warrior” in the spring of 2008 and was sold on the earthship concept from the beginning.   It took me a while to get on board this ship, because I had a lot of questions (including why, why, is it called an eathship????).  Thankfully, I manged to get past the  name and we are now paddling the same boat!

I trained as a journalist, but worked in health care public relations for 13 years before we operated a log home business for 10 years.  In 2008 we slowed down our work to spend time with our children, and to finally build a home for ourselves.  We wanted the time to enjoy the process and to do as much of the work ourselves as we could.

We started building in the spring of 2009 and the contruction process led us to many, many new friendships with some wild and kooky people.  It’s nice to know we are not alone in the world!

We are now looking to new adventures as we finish the earthship. Have fun learning along with us!

If you have any questions about our journey, feel free to contact me at sandra@darfieldearthship.com.