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Ivanko and Kivirist - innkeepers, authors, and wearers of many other hats - truly walk the green talk, detailing the nitty-gritty of running a green business. - Library Journal I'm not even sure I'd call this a "business book." ECOpreneuring contains plenty of advice on starting a small, eco-conscious business, but the authors focus primarliy on how entrepreneurial efforts can incorporate values and priorities beyond the bottom line. Lifestyle choices trump profit motives, but neither have to be sacrificed in order to create meaning and income. This kind of positive thinking is repeated again and again throughout the book. In addition to sharing their own success, and the stories of others, ECOpreneuring is filled with practical information about starting and running a small green business. A potential ecopreneur will discover ideas on everything from bookkeeping to marketing, and the authors point to numerous other resources that will help you set up your company, and run your business without running afoul of tax codes, licensing agencies, or litigious competitors. I really enjoyed this thoughtful, well-written book - a business book that's inspiring and practical is hard to come by. ECOpreneuring lays out a blueprint for making health, happiness and abundance an integral part of the work we do.Reviewed by Jeff McIntire-Strasburg, Sustainablog Powerful social trends toward green living, relocalization, and self-sufficiency have fanned the fires of would-be ecopreneurs in North America, driving a shift toward prioritizing purpose over profits, and building community over building market share. A nation of nine-to-fivers is giving way to a spirited bunch of innovators, searching for ways to make a life instead of simply making a living. This accessible and inspiring guide includes profiles of successful ecopreneurs and provides an in-depth exploration of: Eco-business basics Purposeful management Marketing in the green economy Running a lifestyle business Ecopreneuring shows how we can earn our daily bread on a local or regional level while saving money, strengthening the economy, and helping restore the planet to ecological health and social stability. Part small business manifesto, part personal finance primer, Ecopreneuring is essential reading for small business owners, prospective entrepreneurs, and anyone who dreams of a livelihood based on independence, creativity, passion, and a commitment to green practices and sustainability. John Ivanko and Lisa Kivirist are innkeepers of the award-winning Inn Serendipity Bed & Breakfast, which is powered by renewable energy. This husband-and-wife duo are national speakers, organic growers, marketing consultants, and authors, whose books include Rural Renaissance and Edible Earth and a number of Global Fund for Children multicultural books.
Like so many other city-dwellers, Cam and Michelle Mather longed for a simpler, quieter life in the country. When they found a century-old farmhouse on 150 acres of land that was in their price range, they jumped at the chance to make their move. The fact that the home was "off-grid" with no power or telephone lines connecting it to the outside world seemed like a bonus Twelve years later their life in the country is not quite as simple as they had envisioned, but it is peaceful. There were more challenges than they could have anticipated, as well as more rewards. Along the way they installed more solar panels, erected a wind turbine, and upgraded and replaced all of the major components of their off-grid electrical system. They installed a solar-thermal hot water system; figured out how to have a phone, internet, and satellite TV; and kept their home heated with wood cut from their own property. They also carved out a garden and began growing much of their own food. They acquired new skills and knowledge, but, most importantly, they learned to appreciate the value of good neighbors, good books, and good manure. Cam Mather is a writer, publisher, and video producer who knows how to equalize batteries and pinch suckers off of tomato plants. Michelle Mather looks after the editing, the website, and the dwindling bank account and keeps Cam calm during times of crisis.
Anyone who wants to learn basic living skills-the kind employed by our forefathers-and adapt them for a better life in the twenty-first century need look no further than this eminently useful, full-color guide. Countless readers have turned to "Back to Basics" for inspiration and instruction, escaping to an era before power saws and fast food restaurants and rediscovering the pleasures and challenges of a healthier, greener, and more self-sufficient lifestyle. Now newly updated, the hundreds of projects, step-by-step sequences, photographs, charts, and illustrations in "Back to Basics" will help you dye your own wool with plant pigments, graft trees, raise chickens, craft a hutch table with hand tools, and make treats such as blueberry peach jam and cheddar cheese. The truly ambitious will find instructions on how to build a log cabin or an adobe brick homestead. More than just practical advice, this is also a book for dreamers-even if you live in a city apartment you will find your imagination sparked, and there's no reason why you can't, for example, make a loom and weave a rag rug. Complete with tips for old-fashioned fun (square dancing calls, homemade toys, and kayaking tips), this may be the most thorough book on voluntary simplicity available.
"The Human-Powered Home is a level-headed book which focuses on informing and entertaining. There is no utopian hyperbole, just useful facts and anecdotes that provide the foundation necessary to take appropriate action. Dean has produced an accessible primer for novices in the area of people power as well as a book that is thorough enough to benefit even experienced tinkerers. - Joel Gillespie, Momentum Magazine "Tamara Dean, author of The Human Powered Home, doesn't want anyone to get the wrong idea. Creating one's own power is not an easy undertaking. But it can be very energizing. The bicycle is the real hero in the book. There are photos and descriptions of dozens of jury-rigged devices, built to do everything from wash clothes to make soap to power laptops. While it's a thorough guide for confident do-it-yourselfers, the book also details how pedal and treadle power can make life-changing differences globally." - Marsha Walton, Mother Nature Network What if I could harness this energy? An unusual question for anyone putting in a long stint on a treadmill perhaps, yet human power is a very old, practical, and empowering alternative to fossil fuels. Replacing motors with muscles can be considered a political act--an act of self-sufficiency that gains you independence. The Human-Powered Home is a one-of-a-kind compendium of human- powered devices gathered from a unique collection of experts. Enthusiasts point to the advantages of human power: Portable and available on-demand Close connection to the process or product offers more control Improved health and fitness The satisfaction of being able to make do with what is available This book discusses the science and history of human power and examines the common elements of human-powered devices. It offers plans for making specific devices, grouped by area of use, and features dozens of individuals who share technical details and photos of their inventions. For those who want to apply their own ingenuity, or for those who have never heard of human-powered machines, this book is an excellent reference. For those who are beginning to understand the importance of a life of reduced dependency on fossil fuels, this book could be a catalyst for change. Tamara Dean is a technical and environmental writer who lives in Wisconsin, where she and her partner David human-power their grain mill, blender, coffee grinder, and assorted electrical gadgets.