So Wild Mountain

In the last few weeks two blog posts really spoke to me; so clearly, in fact, I feel as if I could have written them.  I didn't though, but you should certainly follow the links to discover the creative souls who did.
"Do you ever find yourself falling in love with the land around you?  I mean, really falling in love, badly, terribly, righteously - like the love for the land might crush you into pieces and you can't really tell where you begin and end when you are walking across it, threading a tight path around aspens and sagebrush, and squinting at the douglas fir as they glimmer in the sun and wind...because the very dirt and root and tooth of it all has become you?  Maybe you feel there's a seamless nature to the interface between you an the stone and the air and the mountain slopes?  Maybe this is what animals feel:  simply and truly a part of it all, born into belonging with their claws, feathers and fur.  I love this land like I'm going to be lost if I lose it.  And I suppose, in a way, I would be.  For right now, I have to be out in it, every day.  Being here makes everything in life so rich and good.  Food tastes better.  Sleep is deeper.  Comforts are pure luxury.  I think this is the way it's meant to be, the way it was always meant to be."

"There is very much a reminder of ones mortality when seed collecting.  Well maybe not for everyone but in my munted mind.  The principle purpose of life as a living organism is to pass our genetic information down to the next generation in the hope that what we are as an animal, our traits, our physical build up, our very being somehow remains on earth in some way, shape or form.  This is all the vegetables are doing by their flowering and seeding process.  It's very much a case of not managing the vegetables but merely facilitating their genetic longevity."


wild awareness

Underneath it all, we are wild and we know it.
-Reggie Ray, Buddhist scholar
I'm curious; what does wild mean to you?  

to me wild means trusting my instincts; lying on a sunny boulder feeling like a lizard, no human sounds but my own breath and heart beat.  wild is knowing how to birth a baby with no instructions from a doctor.  wild is preferring to sip my tea overlooking a trickling creek than in a bustling cafe.  wild is knowing with my entire being that I am part of this earth, just as other creatures are. exactly.

wild is feeling the pulse of the earth as our own.  running. walking through a forest, along a beach, up a mountain and feeling "at home".  wild is building a fire to stay warm; heck, it's just knowing that it is fire that keeps us warm.  taking food from the earth with our own hands is wild.  it's instinct; it's intuition.

wild is being connected to life's processes.  it's feeling something in our gut; that's what animals do. but beyond that, wild is trusting it.

understanding how nature works helps us understand our own wildness but it's not necessary.  we don't need to understand why ants do what they do to appreciate how we are the same (if you don't think we are similar, look at what they are doing.)

babies know they are wild when they cry for a breast (until we teach them it's not time; they have to be nourished on a schedule.)  toddlers still know they are wild until we teach them it's not okay to sit in the dirt.  we culture and domesticize the wild right out of us pretty quickly.  On The Surface.

but if we sit alone by the creek long enough, or watch the birds collecting seeds before a storm, or sleep under stars long enough, we will remember.  growing food.  hunting food.  chopping wood.  birthing babies.  making fire with a stick.  defending our young.  swimming in wild water.  lying in a sunny patch in the forest with a lover.  these things can help us remember.
  -being on the computer?  probably not.
  -rushing in to starbucks for a pumpkin latte? not so much.
  -checking stats on facebook/blog/website?  nope

but hey, I'm not making fun - I do these things too.  They're just not my wildest moments.

we have jobs, we have children and laundry and orthodontist appointments.  we have oil changes, toilets to clean, teacher conferences and bills to pay.  But, I am a wild creature and I know it.  whether it is a trait valued in our culture or not.

So, what does wild mean to you?

To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

cowboy cabin for an introvert

it is no secret i am an introvert; not to be confused with a misanthrope.  i love humans and i love my friends.  
  introverts are often drained of energy after lengthy interactions with other humans; contrast this to extroverts who are energized by being with groups.  
introverts think deeply; talk sparingly.
introverts love solitude; they love quiet; they love home.
enter the wilderness cabin (aka:  the bunkhouse), my dream for introversion.  
it's where i hope to go to recover.
to replenish the spirit.
this particular dreamy cabin is about 300 sqare feet of
remote, rustic minimalist living.
cabin is in an undisclosed location in the mountains of Arizona. 

hand in hand

i found this elk leg with hoof in the meadow; the hunters leave these around after field dressing.  since i collect bones and things, naturally I was excited at this find.  often, the dogs will bring them home, but chew them beyond recognition.  this one was near perfect (would have preferred if it was still running under its live elk body.)

poop with a view

deep in a forest in the mountains of central arizona is my special wild place.
the only eyes around to watch the outhouse in use are the cows, mountain lions, coyotes, squirrels, flying and crawling critters.
i love this outhouse; and, yes, i do use it from time to time.

My Heart's Desire

~deep in the mountains of north-central Arizona is a cabin peeking from the woods~
~surrounded by meadows and ponderosa trees~
~I dream of this place~
~in my dream, I call it HOME.~

Storm Love, Where I've Been, and Why I am Leaving

There was a storm moving in and lots of love going 'round.

I have had a lot of questions and e-mails asking why I have to (chose to) leave the place I love.
Before I answer, please read this:  "Growing Wild" to see what it is, exactly, I am leaving.
The connecting post was published in Natural Life and Life Learning Magazines this past year.
If you are interested in unschooling or living a simple, organic life check out these magazines.
 ***
After reading "Growing Wild", go here: "Leaving What I Love"
***
I am a better person for having been here; I am grateful.
I am also planning the next wild adventure; stay tuned.

Wandering with Wild Perfection

The photos (and a few words) will tell the story.  Old pictures; we don't use a halter AT ALL to trim anymore.  If she stays, I trim; if she leaves, I pick up later.  She always stays.
Chica needed a little trim.  The horses are barefoot and rarely need trimming; their lifestyle takes care of it.  
I love this girl.  Best horse I have ever had.  Pretty beat up by cowboys when I got her (she was three and already terrified of people.)
After the trim, we went to the creek for a drink and a snack.
Here is Chica surrounded by green, looking for a very specific green (apparently.)
Found it!  Wild sweet clover.
While cooling her feet.
Then down for a roll.  She almost rolled on top of me.
Shaking
Joined by the wild girl herself:  Bunny
I give thanks everyday for these two friends and for the land we are able to keep them on:  80 acres surrounded on two sides by wilderness areas and the other two sides by ranches.  They live on Apache Creek which drains out of Apache Creek Wilderness.
The perfection and beauty of this wild land has given me one of the most precious gifts I will ever receive:  knowing that I am a part of it.
~and so are you~

Beloved

Everywhere I turn I am literally surrounded by Wildness and Love.  
Elk in the meadow last night; Coyotes this morning. 
Wild Mint and Watercress.
Finally identified the Yellow-Breasted Chat (with a little help from my friend Ty.)
And I get to see these little lovelies anytime I like.

New Foal Crop!

In the shadow of the Mesa, the mares and foals live a natural life.  For miles there is nothing but creeks, mesas, coyotes and cottonwoods.  We walk out among the herd to feel the presence of fresh, new life.  These foals haven't had many human moments, yet seem unafraid of us.  I even reached out and scratched one on the rump and it turned to see what I was doing but stayed!

Today I am giving thanks for yesterday's rain, new life, my sweet friends, and the wildness still in this world.

Linking to:  Kim Klassen's Texture Tuesday 
Lisa Gordon's Creative Exchange

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Tiny Things I Love

I am in Love.  
And I give thanks for my life everyday!
Some people focus on things they don't want, don't like or don't have.
For most of my life (with rare exceptions) I have focused on what I love, what I have, and the infinite POSSIBILITIES of what may be.

Right this moment I Love the smell of monsoon rain on dry soil and Ponderosa trees, dragonflies, my family, the perfection of nature at work, the late afternoon sun across the meadow, using solar power, being able to see, being able to run, being able to hold the creatures I love (human and otherwise,) silence, laughter, fruit on the pear trees, shade, water, fresh garden veggies, cream from Sola (for my coffee) and.. oh yeah, My Coffee!
What are you grateful for?

Once an Owl; now a Heart

I live under towering, arching Black Walnut trees (Juglans major).  For the past six years, they have provided shade in the summer, fuel in the winter (downed limbs) and sleeping nooks for our four cats.  The same Bronzed Cowbird comes each summer with his ladies and does his famous "wing dance."  Before I lived under these trees, I saw an owl when I looked at the nut.  Now I see a heart bursting open; which is exactly how I feel when I stand beneath these giants and look out over the fields on the banks of Walnut Creek.