Falling into Place – what a great name for an Autumn Equinox event! Recent arrival to Bellingen, experienced kundalini yoga teacher Brie McAlpine, came up with this wonderful name for an event that will be held at North Farm on Saturday 22 March, from 2.00 pm – 5.00pm.

Brie will use gong healing and ceremony to honour life and its cycles to ‘directly harness the balanced energy of the equinox and our own inner energies to clarify and mobilise our personal cycles, creativity and life force for a powerful healing experience.’ Hope to see you for an inspirational gathering at this significant turning point of the year …

For information and bookings, please contact Brie on 0422 963 207 or email [email protected]. See also www.spiritrisingyoga.com.au

Cheesemaking in the Home Kitchen

Sunday 23 March from 8.30 am – 2.30 pm – learn how to make feta, haloumi, quarg and ricotta and yoghurt. Cheese-making is a beautifully simple and satisfying craft, and offers a way to show love for friends and family. Come along to get inspired, broaden your existing cooking skills, or just to have some fun and then share in the feast we have at the end of the workshop!

For information and bookings, please phone Gai on 6655 1948 or email [email protected]


Looking after the bush that looks after you

Saturday 5 April Bellinger Landcare will explore how local forests and nature provide us with a host of benefits. Learn skills, tips and techniques to keep the forest healthy. With local landcare coordinator, Colin Matthews, and Bellingen Bush Regenerator, Kim Cheney.

For information and bookings, please phone Colin on 6655 0588.

Cleanse Your Heart: self expression through art and movement

11-13 April yoga teacher and artist, Fiona Scope, will present a gentle journey of self-discovery and self-expression. The theme for this workshop is water and celebrating the ebb and flow of life. Just before the April full moon, this retreat offers space and time for self-expression through art and movement. The weekend will commence on Friday evening with a viewing of the artist’s works, dinner and a meditation. This will be followed by 2 days of yoga, meditation and art.

For info and bookings please contact Fiona Scope on 6556 6000 or email [email protected]. See also www.soulartyoga.com.au


And don’t forget our regular weekly events:


Restorative Yoga – Tuesdays 8.00 am – 9.00 am

A blend of gentle yoga, supported poses, and shiatsu massage to ease your body and mind into a deep state of relaxation … The stretching is passive and performed with the use of props for support. Each yoga pose is gently held for a few minutes which allows you to fully stretch, strengthen, open and release through the entire body.

Taking time out each day to relax and renew – this is an essential part of healthy living. The emphasis is on being rather than doing, and this practice brings you in harmony with your body’s inherent rhythm.  The benefits include releasing the joints, deeply relaxing the muscles, soothing the nervous system, deepening breath & enhancing internal organs. Rather than unnecessary straining, this is Active Relaxation. These soothing and well-supported poses offer you the opportunity to linger quietly for a few moments and savour the simple sweetness of life.

Class costs $15 or $10 concession.

For bookings, please phone Matthew on 0427 539 382 or email [email protected]

Student Massage Clinic – Tuesdays 10.00 am – 4.00 pm

The Australian College of Eastern Medicine offers student treatments every Tuesday (during school term) for only $15.

The student clinic serves as a valuable, real-world experience for the students of Remedial Massage and Shiatsu. It allows them to grow in confidence as they apply the knowledge gained throughout their studies. All treatments are under the guidance and supervision of qualified and experienced Practitioners.

For bookings, please phone Matthew on 0427 539 382 or email [email protected]


Iyengar yoga – Wednesdays 9.30-11.00 am

Olivia Bernardini has been studying, practising and teaching yoga most of her life. She currently teaches Iyengar style, while also drawing from the insights and knowledge she has gained from other yoga traditions she has studied. Through appropriate sequencing of postures, attention to body alignment and breath awareness, Olivia takes her students through a transformative journey of self-healing and exploration, from the physical through the mental, emotional and spiritual realms.

Benefits that you may experience from attending Olivia’s classes include improved posture, increase in strength and flexibility; deeper sleep, reduction of back pain, reduction in stress and anxiety, hormonal regulation, a sense of connectedness with yourself and the whole web of Life… and much more. Olivia welcomes both beginners and experienced practitioners to her classes.

For more info and bookings, please call Olivia on 0408 322 393

And for the future:

Over the summer, we’ve been pondering how best to describe the sort of farming we do here. Yes, we use biodynamic principles wherever possible. Yes, we draw on the insights that come from permaculture. But we’re not pure enough or big enough to jump through the hoops of organic certification (because we still use Round-Up on or gravel paths to manage the grassy weeds, and because we can’t yet justify the cost of organic certification), so what label would best describe what we do here at North Farm, and why we do it that way?

We’re not sure of the answer to that question, but we’ve decided we like the term ‘microfarming’.

We like it because we love all that is small (as well as soft, and slow …) and also because we focus so much on microbial life here. We aim to feed the microbes in the soil rather than think we can feed the plants directly. We feed the microbes in the rumens of our goats, and it is there that the magic of milk production happens. And of course we use microbial cultures to make our cheese and yoghurt.

The additional ‘magic ingredient’ for us is a probiotic brew that we get from our microbe magician friend Rob Gourlay. Once a month or so, we send Rob a couple of litres of whey left over from our cheese-making, and he sends us probiotics by return post! For details of his products, check out the highly informative website, www.phion.com.au

Rob will be returning to North Farm in on 7-8 June to run another of his workshops on microbes. It will be in two parts, with the first day focussing on microbes and human health, plus their use in the home for cleaning, odour management etc, and the second day focussing on microbes in the garden and small farm. We’ll put booking details on the website soon but please do let us know in advance if you’re interested.

Later in June we’ll be hosting the second event in our Microfarming series: a one-day workshop on ‘The Happy Healthy Dairy Goat’, featuring local goat experts Noelene and Ted Dean. They bring decades of experience to goat herding, and are generous in the sharing of their hard-won wisdom.


Our agenda (not ‘hidden’!) is to canvass interest in re-establishing a Bellingen Goat Club as a community of practice where we can learn from each other. Noelene tells us that in the 1980s Bellingen Show had more dairy goat entries than almost anywhere else in the country – up to 300 entries apparently! For various reasons, interest waned in the 90s, but according to Noelene there is a real resurgence happening … so if you or someone you know is interested, pencil in Saturday 28 June. Again, we’ll send out more detail nearer the time.

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