Family Travel, Parenting, Thrifty

Yurt Sweet Yurt – Family Life under Canvas

8 April, 2014

Yurt Sweet Yurt – Family Life under Canvas

Waking up with something crawling on my face has pretty much been a lifelong fear of mine. A fear that was finally realised last Wednesday when a tickling sensation on my cheek pulled me from my dream (my dream was probably about sleep – both my day time and night time reveries are basically about getting more sleep…)

I pulled the tickling thing off my face and flung it on to the floor, I hunkered under the duvet and begged my dream to return quickly, quickly, quickly. But it was too late, I was wide awake and needed to know what the Thing was.  I grabbed the torch and peered under the bed.

I was actually relieved to find an enormous Praying Mantis. Far, far better to have a goggle eyed, try hard stick insect having his devout way with my face than his cruel, shiny black scurrying cousin, the Cockroach.

We have a lot of cockroaches and other members of the insect community in our place. ALOT. There isn’t much you can do when the outside is so inside, y’know? Little cracks where the canvas wall meets the floor and gaping holes in the tree house kitchen. There are some serious blurred lines between our home and nature right now. family living in a yurt

If the rest of it wasn’t so darn perfect it would definitely be too much.

family living in a yurt

But fortunately (unfortunately?) we LOVE living here.

We love the yurt which feels like an almost sacred space with it’s circular fluidity. The few things we lugged over from England just fit in it so ideally. The look is retro-yoga-retreat-chic, yeah.Yurt Life

We actually love having nature all up in our grills. We spend 90% of most days outside, which is what life is meant to be like I think. It is still HOT here so we eat our meals on the deck. Both the girls have swings that fly off the deck in a yurt

We have a sort of kitchen cabin off the deck, and through that an old caravan which has become a bit of a play / craft room. We don’t have a bathroom (we smell more than usual) and have a little walk to the composting loo which takes a bit of getting used to.
living in a yurt

We love living cooperatively with the other two families on the farm. It is making us fairly certain that we want this community life for our in a yurt

We are surrounded by these little native owls called Moreporks and they sing us to sleep cooing “morepork! morepork!” There are plenty of nocturnal possums too but they have an unwelcome, evil witch living in a yurt

We love milking the cow (Yep! I am rubbish at it as I have way too much empathy) and collecting the chicken eggs and eating whole meals with 0 food miles. family life yurt

We will have to see how we get on with the winter. It will involve waking in the night to put a log on the pot belly stove and pinning up wooly stuff all over the inside to insulate. It will be cold but hey, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, eh? We will be so jolly hardy by the end of living in a yurt

I just need to be more assertive and get on less intimate terms with the local bugs.

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  • Ruth 8 April, 2014 at 8:56 pm

    Ooh mate. Not sure I could be dealing with the crawly things, which is a real shame because the rest of it sounds so very, very lovely. A praying mantis I’d be okay with but cockroaches and big spiders give me THE FEAR. If it’s any consolation though, the outdoors is moving indoors even in our nice respectable brick house at the moment. It’s just that time of year. We’ve got a ninja mouse who keeps running straight at us every time we surprise him, and Portugese millipedes EVERYWHERE which are harmless enough until you accidentally crunch one underfoot and then they let off an almighty stink. Gorgeous photos 🙂 xxx

  • LydiaGrace 8 April, 2014 at 11:03 pm

    Oh, the irony of the spiderman jumper, you’re just encouraging these insects! A lot of people must wonder how you can possibly be healthy, but looking at your wee ones would put anybody’s doubts to rest. They’re the picture of health and happiness!

    You are very, very, very brave to have dealt with that mantis, I would have been on the next plane home!

  • Eline 8 April, 2014 at 11:58 pm

    Wowzers. Everytime I mention to Husband that I want to live in the countryside, he reminds me that I HATE bugs. And then I scurry back into my urban flat, glowering at the fact that he’s right. I’d have been screeeeaaming at the mantis, and don’t even get me started on roaches.
    Everything else though? Looks utterly amazing. I imagine it’s not always idyllic, but I love that Juno is sitting around without her kecks on. Can you imagine trying to do that in a carpeted British house?? I’d love to have my son grow up as part of a self-sufficient community too, so good on you if you can make it happen.

  • Katie 9 April, 2014 at 8:47 am

    Perhaps all the woolly stuff piled up in winter will keep the bugs at bay? This does look rather magical, bug-faces aside. xxx

  • Laurence 9 April, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    This looks like Eden. The freedom that the kids and you guys must have to play and explore must be great. An amazing way for them to grow up.

  • Miree 9 April, 2014 at 7:05 pm

    The great thing about NZ bugs is even if they gross you out they don’t hurt you 🙂 Which makes living with the great outdoors less scary than other places… Here’s hoping for a mild winter! Enjoy

  • Eumaeus 10 April, 2014 at 3:26 am

    Inspirational for sure… gonna gonna gonna do this… get some yurts… get some community…
    love the deck idea
    love how your accent comes through

  • Lluisa 10 April, 2014 at 8:54 am

    Hi there, I have just discovered your place here, so inspirational.
    I am definitely going to follow you.

    Lluisa xx

  • Roger Driver-Burgess 10 April, 2014 at 10:22 am

    I don’t know what it is with the mantises at the moment. They just love the face! Leila pointed one out to me the other day and I got some snaps for you…
    (if you can ignore the fact that it’s eating a wasp, I think it looks really pretty!)

    • Lucy 11 April, 2014 at 9:01 am

      Haha, awesome – was anticipating facial mantis though! Beautiful shots 🙂

  • Reality bites – but technical freedom beckons | Raising Jonah 11 April, 2014 at 3:42 am

    […] want to slow down, appreciate the days, take time off –  I want, if truth be told, to live in a yurt, like this mum I follow on WordPress, but perhaps that’s pushing it for a London gal like me. In any case, I have four days off […]

  • Jess @ Along Came Cherry 11 April, 2014 at 9:24 am

    I love these photos and reading about your adventures, I have to admit there is no way I could do it. I’m not good with bugs or other outdoor type things, as much as I wish I was! It does looks so much fun though x

  • Annaliese 12 April, 2014 at 6:47 pm

    Might need to invest in some mosquito netting 🙂

  • Belle 13 August, 2014 at 7:21 pm

    Tehe you make me giggle. My sister in law and niece are in NZ and the niece freaks out every time they come to Australia for a visit because ‘the ants will eat me’ and she does the whole dancing on the spot and hands in the air…
    Stick insects and praying mantis are such awesome animals, enjoy them!
    Cockroaches, get your revenge and break their head off and they still run around.

  • Jenna 21 February, 2017 at 11:29 am

    Hi! Really excited to read your stuff. My family and I are moving into a yurt in Washington in May. I have two toddlers and a question. I’m really intrigued by the idea of not having a separate bedroom. We cosleep and share our room already, but it looks like you don’t have your bed space separate from the rest of the living space (in other words, do naps happen?).

    • Lucy 23 February, 2017 at 11:00 am

      Hello! We have since moved into a big yurt (see recent posts) and have a kinda bedroom of sorts!

  • hanna 29 March, 2018 at 1:29 am

    Hi there, I’d be interested to know more about how you found the yurt ? did you buy the land that it sits on ? where did you hear of the community ? I used to live in NZ and am from the UK and have always wanted to revisit.. this time with my son and partner. Fantastic blog, very inspirational ! 🙂