Posted on January 27, 2017
Last year we adopted two donkeys into the family. I still get excited when I think about them. They are such foreign creatures to me, they delight me to no end! We named the brown, five year old girl Rosa and her best friend Paulie, a two year old male. They live here and there, since donkeys are nomadic by nature. We move them around to a new field or hill every time they finished the food in the old spot. And let me tell you, donkeys eat a lot! So we learned. They can also drink a lot, especially in summer, so one of our daily tasks is to bring them fresh water. Even if they didn’t finish the old water, we change it because donkeys are picky when it comes to the quality of what they consume. Who can blame them, I also like fresh things!
So we let them graze and we treat them to (veggie) kitchen scraps or leftover produce, basically the stuff that otherwise would end up on the compost. I don’t like to waste food, I always try to figure it out just right, but sometimes we just have an excess of something. You may remember that we had a lot of zucchini, well, as it turns out, donkeys don’t like zucchini. But they do love a lot of other veggies and fruits, they even love lemons. It is so funny to watch them eat something juicy, they chew the apple or lemon or orange but they can’t keep their mouth shut so the juices will just stream over their chin onto the grass. Rosa gets real protective over treats, she always tries to kick Pauli away so she can eat it all! We obviously make sure everybody gets their share.
These past winter months they got a little extra, a combination of peas, oats and corn. I didn’t expect it but they loved it. It must be the sugar in the corn, right? Usually the winters here are very green and there is enough to eat for the grazers, but this year we had the feeling that they were hungry. It has been really cold for a couple of weeks and even though they have a winter coat, (Paulie has a bit of orange in his!) we both felt that a little extra nutrition couldn’t hurt. We are careful though, donkeys tend to overeat and get fat!
Posted on January 20, 2017
Fermentation Facts will be a recurrent blogpost where I like to chat about all things that have to do with fermenting. I would love to hear your experience with it, share any recipes or tales and trade tips and tricks. So please let me know below in comments what you like to ferment, how you got into it or what your favourite taste is.
One of the things I love about my new life in this Sardinian little village is that I finally started fermenting. For the first time in my life I have access to the treasures of a vegetable garden of our own. This is quit the experience in itself, since I didn’t really grow up having a green thumb (I blush when I admit there have been times in my younger days that I couldn’t keep the simplest little plant alive). For me a whole new world of learning and growing (pun intended) opened up. These days I try to keep up with the seasons, the moon and the gardening work to create a tasty harvest all year round. It’s a bit tough still, we just have so much work to do and attending to the garden sometimes just isn’t possible. We didn’t have anything to harvest this winter but lemons, lots of lemons yum!, but last week Alessandro sowed a bunch of seeds to plant around march. Since I tasted food from my own garden I admit I am really excited about getting back into the gardening routine so we can have more of that!
I noticed last year that gardening means having a lot of the same produce at the same time. At least that’s what happened to us. I can’t tell you in how many different ways we ate zucchini last summer. We sure got creative! Now I know another good way to deal with all the surplus: fermenting. I simply love it. Not only is it super healthy for many reasons, it is also really really tasty. And while you are fermenting you are simultaneously storing and preserving your food. Can’t get much better than that. So why is it healthy? For one, it is a probiotic food source. Fermented food is alive, that means that your fermented yumminess contain a lot of good bacteria that your body needs. The proces of lactofermentation also creates omega 3 fatty acids, b-vitamins and beneficial enzymes.
I do not stop at homegrown veggies, I also brew some pretty darn tasty probiotic, all natural drinks. I have water kefir, milk kefir, kombucha, jun and, at times, ginger and turmeric fermenting on my shelves. All of these brews contain a different array of probiotic bacteria, some more complex than others. Together with the fermented veggies these homemade ferments have become an important part of our diet. When we are on the road and it’s not possible to bring along our bubbling, sizzling jars, we notice how our bodies crave the salty, sour and sweet tastiness that is fermented foods.
For christmas this year we decided to give the whole family a jar filled with homemade kimchi. This is a Korean type of ferment that contains cabbage, carrot, onion, garlic, chili and ginger. You can play around with it of course, that’s what makes fermenting so much fun, but I believe these ingredients are most often in it. You should have seen their faces! As home fermenting is not really a big thing (yet) in Sardegna, they were a bit surprised to receive a jar filled with colour and liquid occasionally letting out a bubbly sigh. They eyed it suspiciously and I can’t wait for them to try what’s inside when it is ready. Actually I might sneak into the kitchen right this moment, a little taste now and then to check the progress is necessary, right!
Posted on January 11, 2017
That pretty much sums up the new year’s celebrations in our little Sardinian village. While most of the people got their guns out at midnight to happily shoot in the air, we were already in bed after an intimate meal with a dear friend. As I was feeling a bit under the weather I thought an early night was just the thing so we made our plans to celebrate the next day. On the 1st of January, when most people were still in bed with a small headache and tired eyes, we set out to Fordongianus (a village 30 minutes to the south west of us) to take a long relaxing bath in their thermal river. We made sure to bring a good bottle of bubbles, fruit and panettone so we could catch up with traditional celebrating. We left out the shotgun though. It was the most rewarding experience and a delicious way of starting the new year. We stayed in the water for a couple of hours, contemplating the old and the new year, and came out super tranquil and cosy, refreshed and with lots of renewed energy. We even tanned slightly because the sun was shining the whole day. This treat definitely is going to be regular in 2017!
Speaking of which, we are very excited about 2017 and all the new things that we will be able to share. We will open in the spring and have yet a couple of months of hard labour to go before this happy event but we are looking forward to it a great deal. In the coming months we will finish some big renovations like the yoga studio and the meditation attic and fine tune the details. Su Ferreri will be available from spring on for all kind of gatherings, sleepovers, retreats, workshops and visits. We will keep you updated through this website and our other social media (like instagram and Facebook) so you won’t miss anything!
Posted on December 2, 2016
So I wanted to write a little bit about all the help we are getting with the works we have to do. This project that we started about a year ago has been, and still is, a huge work. We don’t have a lot of finances and we try to be as environmental friendly as we can. There is a lot of work to be done and we have three dogs, a cat, two donkeys and a little nonna to take care of on the side. Everywhere we turn there is more of unfinished projects, cleaning, constructions or gardening to be done. It sometimes really makes my heart sink to have the feeling of being incapable to make it all happen. That is why we are so very grateful for all the help we get. It is truly the best feeling ever to have friends and family around that are supporting and caring. We get all sorts of help in all sorts of forms; small, big, financial, manual, encouraging words, dog and nonna sitting, mail and many more. So although we are at times overwhelmed by the size of our dreams and we feel alone, deserted and cut off from our previous lives, again and again there are those moments that feel like warm embraces after a good cry. We want to thank every one of you who extends a hand and helps us in any one of those many ways. All of it makes a huge difference in our process.
THANK YOU! ALL OF YOU! You know who you are! You might not be in one of these pictures but you are in our hearts.
Posted on November 30, 2016
Welcome to Su Ferreri, the Blacksmiths House. A house that was built by Alessandro’s grandfather and given in our care for the time being. The style of the house is authentic and traditional but we will add a few twists of our own. We are excited to revive the workshop of the blacksmith into a yoga studio and get the energy flowing in there again. Our attic we will renovate into a place of quiet and contemplation where one can retreat for meditation, relaxation or simply to enjoy some silence.
Su Ferreri will open this spring as a School of Life. A center for everybody to come together and share, teach, learn and experience all that makes life the adventure it is. We encourage you to stay with us and (re)connect to yourself and all that is around you. We believe in a holistic approach of life and rather than focusing on only one aspect we like to stay open for all that life has to offer. Well being,health, growth and gratitude are important to us, not only on a personal level but also on a communal and even worldly level. We try to engage as much as we can in these matters and invite you to do the same while you share your time with us.
Posted on November 30, 2016
It had been some time now that I found myself thinking about organising a women circle. The thought found it’s way into my already busy mind and although I had a million other things to attend to it lingered there and did not leave me. So I decided to take myself serious and send out a few messages to see if women around me found this idea as appealing as me. As it turned out I got many enthusiastic reactions and this convinced me to just go for it instead of postponing it to more calm times.
We had our first circle half of October, here in Sorradile. It was a magical meeting of women from Sardegna, Holland and Germany. Each of them with beautiful things to share and the circle turned out even better than in my thoughts.
I feel that a women circle gives the perfect opportunity to teach to and learn from each other. I asked each participant in advance to think of something that they wanted to share. It could be anything and so we ended up with some really cool things, from breathing exercises to friendship rituals to sound healing and more. We talked (a lot) about what it means to be a woman and how we feel about the woman archetype in this society. There was a lot of laughter, a few tears and many hugs. After three days of spending time together the group was close and intimate and the connection strong. This connection still remains with me today as I think of these women often and send them love and support from my heart to theirs. The women circle was an elevating and profound experience for me and I can’t wait to organise the next one.
Here are some feedbacks from the participants:
Last week I came back from a magical time and place in Sardinia, Italy. A place where life can truly be enjoyed to the fullest and where I was taken to places were I became silent because of it’s beauty. How? Meet Sandra and her two donkeys. I feel so lucky to know such brave, warm and inspiring persons as her and her lover Alo (not on the picture 😉 who for the past year have been building and creating with their own hands a place so beautiful and that holds energy so peaceful, it cannot be described but should be experienced. At the guest house the scenery feels like a painting, their Olive Garden looks like one out of a fairytale and they have three dogs, one cat and two donkeys to complete the picture. This serene mirage is situated in a picturesque little village where their dream is to start The School of Life for all who wish to learn, love and share. For now the rest of the world is lucky enough to get the chance to meet these incredible lovebirds and experience it for themselves.
P.S.: they made the best pizza I ever ate!
Girls and women out there! there is so much we should talk about ! So much to share.
My approach for this is not a political nor a hyper spiritual one. It is about strengthening femininity – not by discrediting the masculine – but by opening the heart, building down walls, sharing wisdom, connecting and really meditate about what it means to be a woman. And so we did in our circle. We walked up a mountain and stayed for two days at the sacral place of the village, being surrounded by endless nature and silence. It felt like a community vision quest. Ceremonies, meditation, rituals under a bright full moon, before we went back to the village, the boys and reality.
The magic that happened in this week was deep. What we did and what came up stays in that circle but each of us 8 women left it with a message for ourselves and a mission for all the other women out there. (www.yogalisa.de/surreal-sorradile)
What a powerful thing when women gather together. In this weekend I felt I could be myself completely, under the good care of Sandra, the amazing homemade pizza of Alessandro and the unconditional love of the women. I felt accepted in my strength and vulnerability. It was wonderful to experience the nature of Sardinia, the sweet village and the wisdom we shared. I am grateful and went home with a bigger bag than I came with. I hope to be back soon on this special island. (www.breathbliss.nl)
The credits for these beautiful pictures go to Alisa Portuondo
Posted on October 23, 2016
Wow, we are so excited to have this space to share all of our enthusiasm and experiences with you! It is the first time for both of us to have a blog and we will probably learn a little along the way so stay with us and don’t be shy to share your feedback in the contact section.
First of all we want to give you a very big welcome.
Welcome to our little corner of the internet! We hope to see you soon in real life but for all those moments and kilometres apart, we have the opportunity to stay connected this way. Here we will share with you all that goes on in our community in this little sardinian village.
Autumn has arrived and although the sun keeps shining throughout the day, the mornings and evenings become colder. We had to arrange heaps of wood for the stove in our house. And, as we speak, we are manifesting a new stove in Su Ferreri. This is very exciting for us because that house only has a big fireplace and this was not suitable for warming up all the spaces. Now we will stay cosy and comfy throughout the seasons!
Furthermore we have many works on the agenda for this season. We want to officially open our School of Life in the spring and to do so we still have a lot of work ahead. We are strong and positive so it will definitely happen. Among other things we are going to build a yoga studio and meditation attic. These spaces will allow us to accomodate groups and workshops and they fit perfectly in our plans of this growing community.