Ten children, one yurt

This past Saturday we determined that a 24′ yurt can hold approximately 10 children before you can no longer hear what the person next to you is shouting…

How did we discover this?  As a side effect of burning a giant brush pile.

Last week we were watching the weather, holding our breaths that Saturday looked like it might actually be a good day to burn the enormous pile that has stubbornly stayed with us through a summer drought and a mild fall.  This pile of branches from the trees we cleared, the parts of the trees that we could not mill into boards for our house.  The irony being that the pile was at one point bigger than the yurt we now live in.  Perhaps we should have left it and carved out rooms within the branches instead…

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At the end of summer we even had some of it taken away via dump truck because it was keeping us from putting up the fabric yurt, not wanting to end up burning the full beast with a FABRIC yurt so close by.

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This past Saturday dawned the predicted perfect drizzly day with no wind, the kind of day we’d waited 5 months for.  Josh was out there lighting the fire with zeal.  Finally.

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The kids worked diligently on their own little nearby burn pile.  Or rather, Caden worked on it while Aria diligently spectated from a nearby stump.

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Josh didn’t come back inside the whole day, so glad to finally be removing this pile from our clearing.  But when the drizzle turned more to a pour that morning, the children and I tucked back inside.

It’s hard not to feel tucked into this little space.  A few more pictures to give you an idea of this tininess:

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We had our quiet morning and then soon there was company.  To help burn, to help play.

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And then more company… Until there were 10 children jumping, bouncing, snacking, tunneling under the bed, climbing up the walls, playing music, playing with babies, playing, playing, playing.

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Such energy!  It was fun to see how they each reacted to the yurt.  Some were completely oblivious that there was anything “different” about our current home.  Others were perplexed:

Where is your shower?  …  Will you get a shower?

Why are you building a house?  Why don’t you just buy one?

And others were as captivated as we’ve been:

I want to live in a yurt!

We made a big kettle of soup, fed the hoard…

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And then sent them back outside with an “uh, oh, the kids’ fire might have gone out!”  They scrambled back into their already soaked clothes to tend the kids’ fire, tunnel under the yurt, make detailed plans for trap doors through the yurt deck, fill their boots with water in the stream…

Eventually the fire was down and everyone climbed back into their cars.  I overheard a couple of:

I don’t want to go home.  I want to stay at the yurt!

The pile that had overwhelmed our clearing for months was gone.  We’d had the fun of all of those children and their energetic chaos.  And we were steps closer to settling in.

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