What Goes On In The Private Area Of the [Grow] Network?

I wanted to give a shout out to Alex today.  Alex called me during the frenzy of the Summit and wanted to know if he could become a member of the private area of the [Grow] Network in May.

Yup Alex, you can join anytime.  Here is the link to sign up:  http://growyourowngroceries.org/Members/


Well some people join up for the private area but never intend to log in.  They simply want to support the [Grow] Network.  You have probably noticed we only have a meager amount of advertising.  Most of the products we promote are related to sustainability which just isn’t that profitable.  We don’t pester you or hit you up with fear tactics.  We mostly give you free, useful, and inspiring help with growing your own food and medicine.

And you know what?  There are some savvy business people who get how important this Network is and what a skimpy budget we are operating on, and they become members just to help out financially.

I so greatly appreciate that, and if you are one of those key supporters, you have my deepest offering of thanks.

Most of us in the [Grow] Network are ‘life long learners’.  We are learning junkies.  And one big attraction of the private area is the online expeditions,  An expedition is typically about 8 modules with a 15-20 minute video or article, some homework, and a short quiz.  An expedition gives you a chance to go in-depth on a subject to really gain some mastery.

All of the [Grow] Network Expedition Leaders are people who see we need to live differently and they are working on a part of the solution.   The Expedition Leaders are along the lines of what Thomas Friedman called ‘super-empowered individuals’.  They could also be considered “Bioneers”.

In any case the expeditions are led by people lots of dirt time who live in the real world and can really help you in your situation.  We are working to add more expeditionas all the time, and you can click here to see a full list of all the current exprditions (Home Medicine, Bio-Intensive Gardening, Seed Saving…)  http://growyourowngroceries.org/Members/

When you complete an expedition your profile earns an honor emblem.  It’s an acknowledgement of your accomplishment and a way to facilitate communication.  When you are interacting with another member you can see each others honor emblems and start a conversation from a better point (oh! you both already know about Home Medicine!).

We also have a reference area in the private members site with a downloadable copy of every e-book the [Grow] Network has ever published.

And we’ve just started a Groups area where you can meet up with folks in your local area or collaborate on projects of mutual interest.  For example, Gaspar Robles is starting a group exploring how to use kinesiology (muscle testing) to communicate with plants and animals.

Leslie Parson is available to answer your Gardening questions with our online help desk.

We just installed a weather station where you can get your current local weather and a five day forecast.  (Note:  If you are someone who can program API communication we need help getting the Weather Underground widget setup – please send me a comment down below to get in touch with you).

Now I’ll admit the private area is still very rough.  Er, I hope you read that correctly .  VERY ROUGH.  For example  We still haven’t got it figured out how you set up your profile…  Uh is that super dumb or what?  Yes, I am working on fixing it a.s.a.p.  It might even be fixed before you login for the first time.

Actually, my personal focus for the foreseeable future is to take this private area to a whole new level of usefulness.

A new feature I am working on right now is ‘Captains Logs for Bioneers”.  I’ll explain…

Years ago in the very first homesteading workshop I ever attended, I got a gift that is priceless.

And I wasted it.

Butch Tindel was the teacher.  Butch is with that really good practical skills school “Center For Essential Education” outside of Waco, TX.  On the very first morning of the first day of the three days’ homesteading workshop, Butch gave each of us a regular old office supply clipboard and a pad of paper.  He told us “you will accelerate your rate and depth of learning if you use this” and he swept the clipboard dramatically in a wide arc pointing to all the demonstration gardens around us.  “Start keeping notes of what you are doing, when, and where you did what…  and you’ll be astonished how useful that is over the years”.

I have started dozens of journals.  Some on clipboards, some in notebooks.  Some on sticky notes.  Several folders on my computer, and in my desk drawer.

I’ve never been able to consistently record what I was doing.

I’ve looked at garden planning software – none of it appealed.

I tried a word doc on my computer – nah, wasn’t that much fun.

I tried tagging everything outside on the plants or animals themselves – nope, they faded, got lost, or destroyed.

But I do know how valuable having a log would be.  Butch is totally correct.

So I am creating a journal area called “Captains Logs” in the members area where you and I can journal about the various experiments we are conducting.

Why will it be different this time?  Why I am I so sure I will keep a log here when I’ve failed so many times before?

Because I am setting it up so you and I can write text, upload photos, videos, audio, and make drawings, sketches or doodles.  You’ll be able to have comments from other members and ask for help or get research.  It will automatically set enter the date for you.  I am also setting it up so you can download your journals to your home computer for safe keeping.

Isn’t that the coolest?

Plus I am very interested in the weather.  Having a place where I can see my current weather and the 5 day forecast is something I will log in to check pretty much every day.  Plus it will be so convenient to enter a bit of weather history into my log.

Don’t you just love a good inspiring quote?  I am working to add an inspiring quote of the day, and possibly a “fun food fact of the day”.

So that is what the private “Inner Circle” members area is all about.

Sign up here:  http://growyourowngroceries.org/Members/

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This post was written by Marjory


  • B J Jackson says:

    Hello Marjory, Appreciate you for all you do…have been a member since June and have been waiting for the expedition for weather forecasting, would love to know all about it, and have seen nothing on the website that would allow me to take the expedition. Also, the other day I was interested in another expedition (seed saving), but, when I clicked through it said the cost is $27. Did I misunderstand that the course was to be free for members? Really enjoying your site and really want to know how to access the “forecasting weather” expedition. I know how busy you are and would really appreciate a response on how (as a Member) to access the expeditions !
    Thank you so much, BJ

  • Christine says:

    When I initially commented I appear to have clicked the -Notify me
    when new comments are added- checkbox and now whenever a comment is added I get four emails with the exact same comment.
    Is there an easy method you can remove me from that service?

    1. Michael Ford says:

      Hi Christine – No problem. Let me know which article(s) you are receiving updates for, and I will remove your subscription to those articles. Thanks!

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