Archive for volunteers

volunteer and donation opportunities

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on July 21, 2008 by phoenixtree


When we finished erecting The Swamp, the sky helped us celebrate.

When we finished erecting The Swamp, the sky helped us celebrate.



it’s always weird to say “opportunities” – more like, “how you can give ’til it hurts…”

no hurting allowed.

Still, lots of people locally (and a few out in the Big Bad World) have asked how they can help.  Whenever I’m asked while on the hoof I can never think of anything.  it’s when I’m at home, sleepless, worrying and making mental lists all night that my long “needs” list appears.


So here it is, my current list of help and stuff desperately needed.


  1.  Volunteers!  I’m compiling a list of people to call for when it comes time to build.  we’re going to do a good old fashioned house-raising when the SIP panels arrive.  Volunteers will probably need their own tools and I’m not even sure what those particular tools will be, but I suspect a hammer is a good start.  more info on that later.
  2. Food!  during the house raising I want to keep all of the volunteers well fed with warm food, as it will likely be pretty late in the fall.  (bonus – no mosquitos!)  prepared meals would be great.  if you want to help either as a volunteer, a chef, or both – let me know, I’m making a little list… 
  3. Stuff!  okay, okay – more specifically, for the actual house and the construction:
  •   small wood stove – I really dont want one that’s too big because the house will be small and I hate spending my winters trying to stifle a wood fire and living in 90 degrees.  blech.  Used is just fine, I’ll clean and recondition as necessary.  Free or low cost, let me know what you have.
  •  kitchen stuff – propane cookstove, sink, used cabinets.  I’ll happily refinish, so it’s okay if they’re ugly or mismatched.  and I want lots of cabinets to try and make best use of the small floor space.  I have a fridge and a chest freezer large enough to hide a couple of bodies, so I’m set there.
  • bathroom stuff – toilet, sink, shower stall, tiles.  I don’t think I’ll have room for a tub.
  • building stuff – plywood, 2x4s, 2x6s, drywall, sand paper, scrap lumber… I’ll take whatever you have!
  • tools – of course I have most of the small, cheap kind of tools.  I need power!  I need a chainsaw, a cordless drill and selection of drill bits, a circular saw, a mitre saw, and a reciprocating saw. I also could use a snowblower (trying to plan ahead!) and I’ll really need some saw horses. I know these are not cheap and chances are I’ll be buying them.  But, if you happen to have old ones that you never use, or know of someone thinking of donating theirs to Sally’s, call me!  I’m a hopeless mechanic, though, so if you have something that “needs a little TLC” chances are it will just Rust In Peace if you give it to me.
  • ladders – there will be two small lofts, one for each Menace.  I need loft access ladders.  I can build my own if necessary, but not without the tools and the lumber.  (you see the problem…)


before the construction, I need a few other things and some help, also.  This is the “right away” stuff:


  1. a chainsaw, and even better someone to operate it!  I have a lot of downed trees that need to be cut up into stove-sized rounds.  I also have a few trees that need to come down before the house goes in, either because they will be windfall risks in the future or because they are already standing dead.
  2. a digger.  Either someone with a backhoe in the Woodpecker neighborhood or someone with a shovel and lots of energy.  We need an outhouse!
  3. Pallets!!!  The Swamp needs a floor, as does the storage tent.  I also need pallets for the construction of a wood shed, the outhouse, and for a compost bin.  This adds up to many pallets.  and if I get too many, I’ve found a wonderful set of directions on how to make a bench out of pallets.  So everywhere you go, ask for them!  please!
  4. Plywood. needed to finish the temporary “floor” in The Swamp.  I want to put down pallets and plywood over the top, so we’re a little protected from the damp of the ground.
  5. A Post Hole Digger.  The hand tool variety is fine, and I just need to borrow it for a few.  trying to get a wood shed and a few other things erected before the house build date.
  6. Tire Movers!!!  This is critical.  We have these huge tractor tires the boys use as a playground of sorts.  I need them picked up and moved to the property as soon as possible.  Now, they’re extremely heavy – this requires something like a forklift or at least the high school hockey team.  Please, if you can help call me ASAP!
and we still need donations for the money to finish the place, do the foundation, drill the well… all of that important stuff.  I’m going to investigate how to get a Paypal account for the Building Fund, but until then you can email me and I’ll put you in touch with the trustees of the Fund.  I don’t want to publish their information all over the web!  if you wish to be anonymous, that’s just fine!  but it will have to wait for the Paypal account.  Hold that thought!
Meanwhile, anyone and everyone, email me if you think you can help.  This is a big job and I need all of the help I can get.  
more updates to come.  and I promise to keep the pictures coming!
Menace Leader
Phoenix Tree House
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