More of Our Story
We began our mold-avoidance sabbatical in May, 2021. We stayed in two small tents even when other accommodations were available (we found it to be true that more than half of all buildings have had water/mold damage, and RVs are even worse), but enjoyed most of our sabbatical on free BLM or Forest Service land in the gorgeous Rocky Mountains.
Before we left we had become interested in growing our own food so we could control what inputs were used on it (especially with multiple chemical sensitivities). We’ve since learned that even organic produce can have up to 25 different chemicals used on it.
We found Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms, USA (WWOOF-USA), an organization that links visitors with organic farmers for an educational exchange. Visitors, or WWOOFers, spend about half of each day helping out on a farm, learn about organic agriculture, and share in daily life with the host who typically provides room and board.
We thought small organic farms would provide a clean environment with healthy food and water, moderate work, and a great learning opportunity. It was certainly a learning experience! In 2021 we WWOOFed in MT, ID, WA, NM, and TN for an average of about a week with each host. Part of what we were doing was looking for a healthy area to settle in, plus we got to experience farm/ranch life. There were pros and cons at each location, but none had an ideal environment.
We were able to determine that probably the best structure for us to sleep in would never have had any leaks and maybe no indoor plumbing. We liked the idea of an outdoor kitchen, laundry, shower, and outhouse for plumbing needs and grew interested in learning about different building styles that could work for us. Some of our favorite things about WWOOFing were: The incredible variety of interesting projects, animal care, gathering nutritious food and turning it into meals – and homegrown culinary and medicinal herbs are phenomenal!
Birth of an Idea
We spent late fall and early winter exploring AZ and found an area that felt really good for us! But it got too cold for tent camping so we headed to south TX and spent a couple months where it was the least cold in this part of the country. Again, not the ideal environment with their high humidity.
It was in TX that I came up with the idea for Sabbatical Ranch after reading a heartbreaking comment at the bottom of a blog post about mold avoidance. A lady was destitute after walking away from everything and was living out of her converted van. The matress she had bought was causing reactions and she couldn’t afford to replace it. It got me thinking about all the folks going through this and how devastating it can be. I was moved to do something about it and my girls loved the idea.
We had the area in mind where we felt good so we went to help a WWOOF host there while looking for property. But we also had to figure out how to build something that could not only be tolerated by us, but also by those who have worse sensitivities than us. We really liked the low off-gassing, mold-safe, traditional adobe and then we discovered superadobe. But we also wanted a healing garden type setting with fragrant plants alongside quiet, contemplative seating and paths, a food forest to provide shade, a splash of color to provide visual stimulus, along with the sound of plants that rustle in the breeze.
Here are some short videos about creating an oasis in the desert. There’s obviously more to it, but this opens your mind to possibilities that most people aren’t even aware of. What we want to create is a cross between WWOOFing and a glamping experience.
We welcome volunteers but can’t provide accommodations yet. This will require time, money, and a lot of work. Once we’re fully operational, guests can expect an experience we would have loved with WWOOF:
- Healthy homemade food, movement (eg. garden therapy, superadobe building), sleep (without EMFs), and a clean, peaceful environment
- Heal your gut, balance your microbiome, and strengthen your immune system
- Get grounded, sunlight (vitamin D), and gentle detox
Learning opportunities: We plan to offer public classes based on demand (as well as provide one-on-one mentoring based on interest) on a variety of topics including:
- Healthy lifestyle
- Natural healing
- Delicious, nutritious cooking from scratch
- Fermenting, food preservation
- Organic/regenerative gardening
- Healthy animal care & processing
- Healthy building
- Responsible stewardship (eg. personal, family)
- US Constitution
- Self defense
- Home church
- Frugal, minimalist living
- Emergency preparedness
We need help growing food, raising animals, and building infrastructure for guests. We do not allow pets, but we do allow children. Biblical ethics and morality is practiced and expected. No smoking, drinking, or mind-altering drug use is allowed. Transportation, prescription medications, and other medical care are your responsibility (we prefer natural medicine over conventional medicine). Visits are based on voluntary arrangements that can be canceled by either party at any time.
Our goal is to equip you to go love others sooner or later. Contact us with questions and to make arrangements. We look forward to your visit!