solar power

Great piece by the great Mike Kilen of the Des Moines Register on a great Fairfield couple, John Freeberg and Susan Walsh.

Yep, these home artists are rocking it big time, as this piece elucidates. Solar-powered, too. John, long-time community radio supporter who helped with reconstruction at the station and much more, is even wearing his "Join the KRUU" t-shirt!

Congratulations, John & Susan, on doing Fairfield proud with your amazing vision and work together. [Click on title to read the whole piece...}

An Iowa Couple Used the Earth Around Them to Build A Small Home That is Powered by the Sun

FAIRFIELD, Iowa — The house is made of soil, timber, straw and rock that John Freeberg and Susan Walch gathered on their land and assembled over the last six years. It is powered by the sun and its water pumped from a pond.

Sitting atop a wave of meadow near Fairfield, the home is an expression of art from the landscape and connection to curious community members who often drive down a gravel country lane to see it.

“People come here and they don’t want to leave. They say it makes them feel good,” Walch said. “This is heaven. We never want to leave.”

Their 1,100 square-foot home is featured in the new book “Small Homes: The Right Size,” which showcases dwellings between 500 and 1,200 square feet.

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Eliminate Scarcity to Eliminate the Need to Go to War

Ideal Energy co-owners Troy & Amy Van BeekIowa husband-and-wife duo Troy and  Amy Van Beek pooled their resources and talents--he's an ex-Navy Seal with a degree in Sustainability; she's an Eco-Architectural Designer and Builder with a degree in Fine Arts--to create Iowa's pioneering solar company, Ideal Energy Inc. Idealism motivates this dynamic couple, who believe creating energy abundance through sustainable practices will help eliminate scarcity, a primary motivation for war.

Stuff Etc Truck"Talk less, listen more," Iowa entrepreneur Mary Sundblad advises. She grew a small craft and used kids' clothing shop into the largest consignment service department store in the Midwest. Her business now boasts three corporate-owned stores and three franchise stores, each ranging in size from 23,000 to 45,000 square feet. Find out how being receptive to others' suggestions led to Mary's success: tune in this week to The Studio with Cheryl and Stuff Etc founder Mary Sundblad. Her daughter-in-law Sara Sundblad, Stuff Etc's Corporate Director of Operations, tunes in, as well.