How are you rewilding today?

i’ve been living in a town since late may of this year, and it’s been driving me nuts. before that, for the last decade, i’ve been lucky enough to live rural (or Very Remote), and have had a relatively easy time in terms of surroundings/circumstance when it comes to making changes in my daily habits. now that we’re back in a town, it feels like a much bigger, more time/energy-consuming PUSH to hold to my more sustainable routines & habits.

for example, for most of the last decade i’ve been drinking rainwater, creek water, river water, etc. now i have to walk up the side of a nearby mountain to get wild water to drink, and i definitely don’t manage that every day. on the other hand, living in a town again makes it more obvious just How Much i had managed to change about my life, and i’m pretty proud of how far i’ve come.

so… all that being said, i wanted to start a thread for sharing what step(s) you’re taking today (every day, any day, just today, whatever) toward rewilding or living the life you want for yourself. what tough thing did you manage to pull off today? what little thing are you doing consistently? what new thing did you try or make plans for?

i went big yesterday & decided to leave facebook for the foreseeable future. that’s my win for the moment.

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Congrats on facebook! the moment I am adding new handles to my 5 foot two man crosscut saw


today, rewilding means drinking a licorice-burdock-dandelion infusion to help support the healing of a broken collarbone, rather than running out to buy supplements. the licorice helps the flavor somewhat, but it’s still a very rooty brew. the taste seems appropriate, somehow.

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Today I am convalescing. That is all. I have made a promise to do whatever I can in the future once circumstances have changed, but for now, anything beyond convalescing and making my small ripples of influence in the pond of this website remains out of the question. Today – very little in terms of what can be measured, tomorrow – as much as I can muster in all ways I can think of. My heart stays devoted to the idea either way.


Embracing the bitter cold as much as possible. All my employment is outside, so while still dressing smartly as not to risk injury, really trying to practice breathing and mindfulness with the elements rather than hide from them completely.


Being financially trapped in the city makes my rewilding look more urban than I want, but that’s the way it goes.

There is basic health/body stuff like: collecting spring water in 4, five gallon carboys every time I go to my favorite woods so that I don’t have to drink chlorinated water. Blacking out my windows so my melatonin production won’t be affected by the city lights. An air filter in my house that is put to good use (I suppose I could have a lot more house plants but that would increase my water bill rather than electric and water is crazy expensive in Portland now). I eat mostly organic paleo stuff and take vitamin d supplements.

Every day off I spend outside exploring/foraging or inside crafting. This is not only for skill-building but for mental health. I’ve been really focused on subsistence this year, and will be going hunting more on my excursions to the forest. I’m also focused on gathering seeds of starchy foods (cattails, oaks, wapato, root vegetables) and planting them in the more wild places that I frequent. I’d like to have enough starchy calories for any sort of future famine but it’s also just fun planting and eating more wild.

For crafting project, most folks know I’m a basket weaver. I’ve also been really getting into bone tools lately. Winter projects include stocking up on winter harvest season raw materials like Willows, Hazel, Ivy, Scotch Broom, Ridge Poles. I’m going to bark tan an aplodontia hide (I still need to skin it, it’s frozen in my freezer). I’m going to bark tan another raccoon hide in my garage and add an extension to my raccoon fur vest. I think I’m going to dye a little buckskin deer hide I traded for a couple years ago with Lungwort for that cinnamon brown color and then make a hood for the raccoon fur fest. I’m in the middle of a bunch of basket projects, but my favorite right now is this one (keep in mind this is probably 25+ hours of work already and I’m not really even halfway finished):


today rewilding just meant going back to using my flannel wipes instead of toilet paper. i’ve been traveling, and then house-sitting, and had forgotten to bring my wipes with me, and so had grudgingly reverted to toilet paper. now that we’re back at home on our sailboat, it’s back to cloth wipes. i’ve been using them most of the last decade, and have been so happy about it.

if you haven’t heard about using cloth wipes before, or would like to know more about the process, you can see some of my blog posts regarding them here on our site.


my rewilding thing for today was to make a minor head accessory - a knitted, cabled wool headband. i’m hoping to make myself a felted hat at some point this winter to replace a knitted one that’s no longer appropriate… but i can’t quite felt at the moment given my current injury, & now that i have a long ponytail i figured a headband would work for our mild, wet winter here. i picked out a rad celtic knotwork pattern & figured out how to do it in two colors, started it last night, and finished it tonight. my ears will be so warm now even when the cold, wet winds are a howling :hugging:

my goal for tomorrow is to take my pup for a walk up one of the local trails where i harvest water, so i can quit drinking town water again. unfortunately, with my shoulder still messed up i can only do a gallon at a time… so there will be a lot of long walks in my future.


Wow, @joan, you knitted that in two nights?! Awesome.

For my part, I went outside today (Saturday) for the first time since Monday morning (!). My kids and I have had the flu. I was the last to get it, and it’s really hanging on. I went for a little walk today and realized I still feel woozy. This sucks because I am itching to move. As soon as I’m well, I’m heading for the hills.

Meanwhile, since I’ve been stuck in bed, one thing I’ve done is hatch a few plans. I’m feeling psyched to make some felted booties soon (or maybe mittens) after watching this great tutorial the other day:


@mindyfitch, hooray!!! that’s my tutorial! :smile: so sorry to hear you & family have the flu, though :frowning2: though the have-to-stay-in-bed planning time can sometimes make up for a bit of thwarted-outdoor-ambitions for me.

and yeah, i was surprised at how fast the headband knitted up! it was kind of nicer than i expected, actually, because the cabley-bits were only dealt with every-other row… so every other row i had a nice, easy time. And, even though i changed it to do it with two colors, i did Significantly less screwing-up & re-doing than i normally do with knitting projects :slight_smile: normally i tackling something crazy & way beyond my skill level, and end up re-knitting stuff like five times. so this project made me very happy. :heart:


@joan, yes, I subscribed to your channel and enjoyed a few of your videos this week! :slight_smile: All this talk of craftiness is getting me psyched for starting projects this week. Thanks for the inspiration.

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i’m just resting today. i wanted to go for a walk up a nearby mountain to get some wild water to drink, but didn’t do it. i slept in really long instead, and haven’t done much other than bathe & eat some good food. in my defense, my broken collarbone has been a lot angrier in the last few days… so i’m back to not really using my right arm for much of anything.

so… my rewilding thing is resting. and continuing to take my tinctures to support my healing. which apparently are making a huge difference, because four days ago when i only took them once early in the morning, i was seriously hurting by nighttime. i had been taking them every 5-6 hours.

this is what i’m using (all tinctured fresh in 80p liquor)
-wintergreen leaves (tastes best in gin, in my opinion) for serious anti-inflammatory action, and some pain relief
-solomon seal root, for tendon & ligament repair… because even though i broke a bone, i’m sure the surrounding connective bits were strained, and i’m gonna need them to be ready to go when i can start stretching normally again
-my happy joints mix, which includes horsetail (joint lubrication), chickweed (anti-inflammatory), probably more wintergreen, yarrow (pain relief & anti-inflammatory), mullein root (for helping bones re-align), and blue vervain (for muscle cramps/spasms)

i’m also applying salve daily after bathing the area. i’m using an alternating cast of devil’s club (pain relief & muscle healing support), cottonwood (antimicrobial, muscle support), and comfrey (supports bone healing, bruising, muscles).

thanks to these lovely plants i have been able to take only half doses of the narcotics i was prescribed, and then used them only at night, and then stopped using them completely after 13 days. i stopped taking anti-inflammatory pills at the same time, instead using these tinctures to serve the same purpose.

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i recently finished my felted wool shoes by trimming up the tops and adding an antler & felt strap:

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Beautiful! I’d love to see more of the pattern in green, too. How did you do that?

hey @Anneke! thanks :slight_smile: the main body of the shoes was wet felted with a resist. the patterns were needle felted on with a single needle.

i tried to combine irish & hungarian vibes overall (my heritage) even though neither culture wore felted shoes that i’m aware of. hungary does have a pretty nice felting culture, though, in terms of vests, blankets, etc & that’s where the green pattern comes from - it’s made up of hungarian embroidery patterns that i pulled bits & pieces from to make something that i liked & that worked for the shape of the shoes. then i added a hare & salmon on the side for some irish flair (as both have many stories attached to them & are iconic in ireland, as well as incredibly relevant to my life & wellness living in alaska, since they’re important food sources).

here are my sources for the green pattern:


and sources for the critters:


here’s a link to the blog post i wrote about the initial making of the shoes, which has better photos of the green patterning (click through for photos): making felted wool shoes

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yesterday made some salves after going for a walk & harvesting horsetail & devil’s club. guessing it’s a bit quiet here right now since saskatoon circle is going on & some of our regular folks are in attendance. :heart: hope you guys are having an awesome time. wish i could be there.