TreeHouse: Part one, The Beginning Dustin Lively Dustin Lively UCM Columnist November 4th 2013 I will one day live in a forest. Well maybe not a forest-forest, but I plan on planting lots of trees in my yard. I plan on having fruit trees, shade trees, tree-bushes, as well as plants, flowers, garden of edibles, and what ever else may sow. Right now my yard is dirt. There is nothing but a few scattered weeds and lots of dirt. I have been in my house since Feb 2013 in Apple Valley, CA and this fall will be planting the first of my trees. I am going to fill my yard with life and over the years watch it grow, breath in the sanctity, eat it’s offerings from the Mother Goddess, and in the process learn a little about myself. I will learn the usual: patience, basic gardening 101, schedules of necessity, etc. I will learn about reducing air temperatures through transpiration and thereby helping to lower ozone levels, as well as removing air pollutants and creating oxygen through leaf stomata. But I will also learn why I am a part of this Earth. Part of the soil, intertwined with physical, spiritually rooted yet able to roam freely. It’s not that I have yet to learn any of this at my age, exact opposite actually. I have learned all my life, I have first hand experience with being an Earthling and all this has led me to realize life. Realize life is simple. Realize simple is cleansing, and cleansing enhances happiness. I also realize simple is hard work, even though that makes no sense at all, but it’s probably because of the advancement of civilization and how our culture no longer practices the natural way of surviving. I will work the land, work my muscles, work my brain, all while relaxing my soul. I will get dirt under my fingernails and water the soil with my sweat. I will see exactly how many licks it takes to get to the center. Why is this important to me? Why am I writing about this? This is the first chapter of many and the first entry into documenting my journey. I will document this journey with word and photo, and one day show my daughter. I hope to show her my growth as well as the life we have created, nurtured and shared together. I hope to document my evolution into a self-sustaining role model for her. Throughout this experience, I will learn why I have tree-hugging tendencies, why I dabble in Hippy-dom. I will unlearn what modern society has down pressed upon me, unlearn what they have tried to endoctrine me with. This is only the beginning. Editors note: As we wait Dustin’s progress on this Hippy-dom yard endeavor. Be sure to check out some of Dustin’s recent articles by clicking here.