With social distancing being our new normal and having our grandchildren for 7 days we have taken this opportunity to teach them a few things in between their online schooling. We worked with them as we planted potatoes, asparagus, onions, and rhubarb. We have a trail in our yard and they have hiked and biked it and recently we took them rock climbing for the first time on a small ledge in our yard. We live on the continental divide and it is a wondrous place. It backs up to Mountain Bridge Wilderness and it is wild. They have learned to make homemade noodles and pizza in our wood-fired pizza oven. It is a joy to mentor them and spend time with them. We have also spent a lot of time on the phone checking in on neighbors and family. It is nice to have conversations instead of text and emails, which we get occasionally when we drive to wifi access. I am deeply touched by the amount [...]
We are super excited to announce our family-friendly moving to zero-waste series with education for children provided by Pisgah Collective. You can see the details here: https://movingtoconservers.com/event/join-us-for-a-family-friendly-potluck-gathering-at-the-cedar-mountain-canteen/
A friend recently mentioned a book she read, Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer. I have made a goal to read more so I went to the library and checked it out. Robin is a scientist, a Distinguished Teaching Professional of Environmental Biology and a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation. The book compares the scientific communities views on biology to those of her nation. It talks about the community between plants and humans and how they have evolved. It talks about the honor and gratitude they have for each other. She talks about going out in the Spring to harvest leeks. She uses a hand trowel instead of a shovel. While a shovel would make quick work of the harvest it would also shorten her time in the woods. She says, “Not everything should be convenient.” Indeed. In our convenience economy that is a soothing message to hear, more as a form of reinforcement than a new message for me. My husband John and I have changed [...]
Connecting children to nature has been proven to improve their health and quality of life. The first time I heard universities were doing studies to see if children benefited from being in nature I was floored. I was in a meeting once with a group of MD’s who were reviewing the study. I told them I had been doing that study for years by taking children into the woods and such. The impact was obvious immediately to me. John and I spend a lot of time outside and we absolutely love sharing those experiences with youth. We have helped organize a hiking club at Rise and Shine for the school year and welcome those who would like to help us hike with the scholars. We hike most Fridays from 3:30 – 6 pm. If you would like to be on the notification list of hiking opportunities, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know.
In March, we hosted the Use Food Scraps symposium. A part of the event was an essay contest where members of our community gave suggestions for keeping food out of our landfill. Those suggestions have been used to create a community poster! We received a $100 donation to print the posters and the poster will be unveiled during our presentation to the Transylvania Natural Resource Council this Friday. Many thanks to everyone who made this possible and to Thea for using her skills to analyze these essays and bring them together as a community asset!
We had a productive meeting this past Thursday evening at Oskar Blues. Sue, Kathleen and Owen, we missed y'all there. I have attached the document that we used as a basis for discussion. (Moving to Conservers Cooperative Discussion) To all: please review the the information below and let me/all know of any corrections: We discussed the 3 questions on our discussion sheet and they are summarized as follows: 1. What is the need that the Cooperative will meet? Summary: We will build community by loaning tools and other items so that members will not have to purchase when needed. 2. What products or services will the Cooperative provide? Summary: Tools, Dishes/Event Items, Sporting Goods and Party Items. 3. Is it feasible? A: Who would be the potential members? How many potential members are there? Summary: A: Membership would be open to anyone in our community. B: We made a conservative estimate that about 200 people would be initial members (there are about that number on the Moving to [...]
This summer, we have organized 12 hikes with Rise and Shine scholars and have completed 4 of them. John and I love spending time in the woods with them. The volunteers who help make this possible bring an amazing variety of talents to each hike and make each unique. We hope, by connecting the hikers to trails in their neighborhood, they will continue to explore them after our organized hikes are finished. We hope they will connect with nature during these outings and develop a love for conserving our amazing surroundings. We can always use more volunteers. If you are interested in helping, let us know. We hike every Monday and Wednesday from 1 - 4 pm through July 1st.
On June 24th, we kicked off the Rise and Shine summer hiking club. Mary, of 4-H worked with the scholars to define the values and rules for each hiking group. She also helped the scholars create a journal so that they could document their experiences over the 6 weeks of the hiking club. While each of the 3 hiking groups worked with Mary, we hiked the other 2 groups toward Bracken Mountain Preserver to teach them how close this amazing trail system and gateway is to their home. It is such a gift to spend time in the woods young minds. I highly recommend it. It is only because of community volunteers these hikes are happening. Thanks to all of them and Rise and Shine for allowing us to hike with the scholars!