The Foley Family

Here is the Foley Family’s summary of the  last 9 months of getting greener and greener by the day.

First of all: we love it. We loved being part of it. We loved meeting all of our lovely neighbours. We loved the changes that we incorporated into our life during this time. And we loved all the things we learned.

The Foley's abundant garden of veggies and herbs

So here are some of our highlights:

  • Getting our home insulated. We went with the Sustainability Trust after numerous other companies came to us explaining their products and giving us a quote. ST were the cheapest and have a lovely recycled polyester product that is safe for the people installing it and safe for the people who have to live with it.
  • We attended a few of the Chill-Ed series workshops: fruit tree pruning and bio digester weed drum were my favourites. I also ran my first ever vegetarian cooking workshop as part of the series. It was great fun! Due to high popularity I have organised the next series of seasonal cooking workshops. What a wonderful outcome.
  • We finalised our alternative health clinic based in our backyard. A provision for the local community to access holistic ancient healing based on Ayurvedic principles.
  • Our property now has a thriving medicinal herb garden that produces and supplies locals with natural home remedies.
  • We continue to be part of the Te Ra school co-op where we get 80% of our dry food from.
  • We also still enjoy our weekly delivery of organic fruit and vegetable through Chantal Organics.

The Foley's have created a very tranquil space around their little wellness centre in the back garden

  • We resisted several offers of family members to purchase a second car. It is challenging at times having only access to one car but we manage.
  • Kristen has now been car pooling with 2 others from Paekakariki (1 person from Kakariki St) to and from the Hutt Valley for over 2 years. What an achievement. It means a lot more communication and flexibility is needed regarding starting and finishing times and who is driving when but it is a happy crew.
  • We’re proud of the wide range of fruit and vegetables we harvested and are still harvesting from our garden. We have about 50sqm of land for growing veges.
  • But the best thing really, and I leave it to last were the ultra cool working bees we held every week over summer to this day. What a fantastic way to get your garden back up to scratch, dig into the long awaited project and with 4-5 adult helpers and about 10 children running havoc – these afternoons have been a real blessing in terms of working together and having fun. And of course there is the pot luck dinner afterwards. Thanks to Steve for the yummy vege curry last week!
  • So here we go………lots of achievements – small and big….but what will last forever is the relationships we formed through this competition as it pulled the neighbourhood together striving for a common aim. A unique chance to meet, talk, help and grow together, not just our children but also we as grown ups.

She makes gardening look so good!

We’re still keen to:

  • Get a couple of watertanks
  • Use more greywater on our garden
  • Build the bio digester – super weed killer
  • ….and if money would fall from the sky we would install a few solar panels and a windmill.

Anja, Kristen & Kailash

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