Friday, February 17, 2012

Sustainable Wild Crafting

As we get closer to our goal of moving .I am getting deeper into my understanding of my call as well of the call as a family to go deeper into our life of Sustainable

I feel more and more the need to teach & educate others in our area about proper methods of harvesting from the forest . The purpose of wild crafting .
To teach people not to harvest to access . To harvest with a gentle touch as much as possible . To know the proper times of yr. and amounts which can be safely harvested .
The area in which my family is from has gone through periods of economic hardships . Decline in population at times then boosts in both economy & population.
That is life , up & down .
I notice a difference though from my great and grand parents time . Now I know there always have been people who do out of greed throughout history . Yet I see a change in both how the cottagers in the area wish to live in an sustainable way as do the majority of local folk.
A cottage has gone from a 1-2 room dwelling to a huge city type dwelling . People become used to convenience rather than trying to give it up .
People sell land to attain money rather than live off it . People want ATV and satellite tv .
Locals get used to they should have a $20k truck because that was what they've become used to .
There no longer is train nor bus service . Everyone drives and their children drive and their children's children drive .
My Mother & I are worried for the area not only by development but people seeing the forest as a cash crop in the wild crafting industry .
There is nothing more saddening then to come upon an area of old growth forest ravaged for a certain medicine and 1550-200yo trees left behind . That is not the traditional way to pick medicines .
When we pick the trees we are also conscience of the forest floor , the moss has purpose , the bear berry and winter green etc. my ds and I counted 21 moccasin lady slippers one yr. We try and be aware of all our forest friends big & small.
Wild crafting purpose for us anyway is to self sustain our family first .
Then if we can help community , teach others so they can help their own families .
Then if other local communities within the city need help obtaining local product we can help too . Yet I feel the need not to be global with this to remain local because I truly feel Creator gave all peoples enough to self sustain . Yes at times people have had to migrate because of weather conditions , following herds etc.
I also have a feeling our children's children and future generations will not be able to have access as swiftly and easily to plants from other continents . So it is best we learn to use what we have here so they too can pass on these wisdoms .
So the best way to learn and do wild crafting are
find others who know and share your same passion .
use local books on native plants be they field guides , dvd or books on ethno botany .
Try and get as much info you can from original peoples of the area how they hunted and gathered .what puirpose did they use materials for . How did they harvest and sustain themselves .

learning together as a family & teaching little ones

gathering together different food sources more and more is my goal be it berries for teas , syrups and hearty meals . I very much want to learn how to harvest wild rice .

gather flowers

different items can be used for medicinal and cosmetic use such as bath teas , creams , hair oils & bath salts

we gather as much that has already washed up on the shore  or fallen  in the forest

Different items are gathered at different times of yr.

To make wonderful projects together

the children make homemade beads and other crafts

dh and I make walking and prayer sticks

wise owl has some wonderful wood work too

adventure boy also has some projects he works on

the clay oven is something we have yet to perfect

the forest provides much for home decor and children's play things .

1 comment:

Illustrated Ink said...

Great post, Rox! I love seeing all the craft projects you and your family have been creating. It's so true that now, more than ever, we need to get back to basics. Your post reminded me of when my Lebanese Grandmother would take me to pick wild grape leaves and Sumac to make our meals. It's one of my favorite childhood memories of my time with her. She also could make a veggie garden grow anywhere from nothing (it seemed, anyway!) and was an amazing seamstress. I could show her a dress I liked on TV, and she would make it for me in about an hour! I wish I had all of her old world skills, they seem like magic to someone like me.