Jim Moran





4/23/2009
On Earth Day 2009, the Plastic Bag Reduction Act was introduced to the House of Representatives, proposing a five cent tax on single-use bags. We want to know, would you vote yes for the tax?
8/19/2013
After three years of trying to build the barndominium in three week per year spurts, Jim has relocated back to Texas to complete the build while Julie remains in Australia to finish her work there and transfer to the US.
10/11/2013
After three years of trying to build the barndominium in three week per year spurts, Jim has relocated back to Texas to complete the build while Julie remains in Australia to finish her work there and transfer to the US.
1/14/2013
We've been planning for months and years but now we're in fast build mode. The slab is poured, materials on site and in nine days, we will have the shell of the barndominium completely done and ready for the framing inside.
1/14/2013
We have few opportunities during our stay in Australia to fly home and do work ourselves on the property. This blog features a set of planned activities that we wanted to be personally and directly involved with. When we left, we were very happy.
1/15/2013
Now that the Barndominium has been fully enclosed, it's time to work on the interior. Also the basic utilities, pump house and access roads have been beefed up. It's beginning to look like a real house now. Chateau Christie is becoming a reality.
6/24/2011
In order to build skills for our move from Australia to Texas, we have been taking various classes and workshops. Recently, we took a weekend workshop at an excellent cheese factory close to where we live on the Mornington Peninsula near Melbourne.
1/15/2013
We're getting very close now to our relocation to Texas. After years of planning and developing, it's time to go home to our sustainable lifestyle. We leave with some sadness but a great deal of enthusiasm and excitement for our new life.
9/4/2013
After three years of trying to build the barndominium in three week per year spurts, Jim and Julie have relocated from Australia to Texas and are building out the barndominium. However in growing gardens and potential fruit plants for use in future years, we’ve encountered a horrible pest and want to share it in hopes of ideas from the Mother Earth News community.
10/7/2013
After three years of trying to build the barndominium in three-week-per-year spurts, Jim has relocated back to Texas to complete the build while Julie remains in Australia to finish her work there and transfer to the United States.
4/10/2012
Electric car battery range is worse in cold weather: A drop of just 10 degrees could theoretically sap up to 50 percent of a battery’s charge.
6/12/2012
My vision of the Texas homestead, complete with family and doting grandchildren nearby took a hit this year when my daughter and husband split and my daughter moved to Austin. Could I reinvent the vision? Or would this issue derail our plans?
1/14/2013
After many months of preparation and planning, we are very excited to be starting to build our homestead - a barndominium. The first stage is to get a good solid foundation so our new homestead will be solid for today and future generations.
1/14/2013
The building of the barndominium is in high gear. After all of the ground work, the slab is poured, cured and the steel framework of the barndominium is erected in one day. With the progress, there were a few problems but quickly solved.
1/15/2013
On what will probably be the last trip to Chateau Christie as Australians, we are trying to get the property to a livable stage - completing the electrical and plumbing and getting things ready for an inspection so we can sheetrock and finish.
8/7/2011
One of the first steps to building our homestead in Texas was to get water and electricity on the property so we had the basics from which we could build. This blog discusses how we implemented the first phase of our utilities.
4/13/2012
Hybrid cars now have a 12-year history in the United States, but hybrid car battery replacements have been surprisingly unnecessary. Most of the hybrid cars on the road are still using their original battery packs — even many of the 300,000-mile Ford Escape Hybrids used as taxis in New York and San Francisco. 
7/10/2012
A key choice was what type of house to build. We aren't in Texas more than a few weeks a year until we make our final move back. We wanted a structure we could enclose to protect the interior from the elements and yet build in stages as time and money allow.
6/19/2012
Keeping bees is something I've wanted to do on our new homestead. But would I like it? Taking a class is a good way to find out.
9/19/2013
With just about every breed of standard bred, heritage poultry, we have work to do. They are not producing like they once were.
7/23/2014
We started our adventure of building a barndominium on our Texas property while still in Australia. The past year has been spent finishing and enjoying the house. As we've learned, finishing the house is only the first step in developing the homestead.
6/13/2011
Jim and Julie are starting their homestead in Texas while still living in Australia. Managing the project by remote control is the challenge, and they are learning as they go. This is an adventure of faith and confidence.
6/16/2011
Our process of buying the land for our homestead had little to do with logic and a lot to do with emotion. For me, it was a chance to return to the plains where I grew up and be close to family.
6/20/2012
As part of my education on how to be more self-sufficient when we make our move back to Texas, I've been taking classes while here in Australia. One of the more enjoyable classes was in beekeeping. This is our class practical exercise.
8/26/2013
So, what makes a flock of poultry sustainable? What is standard-bred poultry? If you purchase chicks from a hatchery, are they true to the breed? Why does every hatchery sell Rhode Island Reds and they all look different? Why do the Cornish Cross meat chickens have so many problems? Raising standard poultry is the only true way to improve the sustainability of quality local food while preserving the strength of Heritage poultry.
10/3/2012
Describes two internet radio stations that provide environmental music.
1/9/2013
Describes hopeful developments toward healthful soil and a safer climate.




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