18.11.15

The Traveling Medicine Show || Rosehip November










 p r e s s

p l a y




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I traveled to Oregon and it brought me alive.  The cold, damp air, the mossy limbs of towering Fir and Maple; the soft skin of a newborn friend, and warm embrace of so many of my Beloveds.  Oregon was my cosmic reward; the place where all my mossy dreams came true.  It was a week outside of time and space spent in the company of those I love most.  A journey indeed, within and without. 






H O O D     R I V E R









It had been six months since my last visit -- a dim vision of Summer in my memory. We camped by the creek and sanded down tipi poles; soaked in the wild waters and laughed late into the night beside the fire; gathered Rose Petals and California Poppies and Elderflower. This was different. The flowers had turned to fruit; my dear friend Hannah's pregnant belly, now a beautiful baby boy in her arms. I retraced my steps and returned to the Wild Roses of Summer to find their branches heavy with berries.











These Rosehips were like none I had ever tasted, succulent and sweet; bursting open each time they were plucked from the branch to reveal their precious antioxidant rich flesh.  Rosehips are one of the last fruits before the dark of Winter.  Rich in vitamin C, they are an important food to have on hand for folks who may not have access to fresh food the winter long.






Like the Roses themselves, Saylor was but a blossom in his mamma's belly last time I visited, and now fully ripened, he joined us as we braved the cold to collect herbs and wander the wood.



Above // Hannah, Saylor + Me // This Autumn

Below // Hannah, pregnant + Me // Last Summer







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Rosehips, Hawthorn Berries, Doug Fir Tips, Violet Leaves, Saint John's Wort, Usnea, Raspberry, Yarrow + Cedar filled my basket each morning -- the bounty of Autumn, astounding.


From this wild harvest, I dried and processed many Moons worth of medicine to share with the folks back in Texas. I also brought together a few new Seasonal Offerings, now available through La Abeja Herbs for friends to far afield to stop by for a cup of Rosehip + Hawthorn tea . . .



wildcrafted
Rosehip + Fir
Sugar Scrub
Ultra-nourishing and antioxidant rich, this sugar scrub will leave your skin radiant and glowing; your heart, hopeful, and ready to greet another Winter day. Notes of burnt sugar and the stimulating scent of evergreen boughs, combine with ruby-hued rosehips and petals to totally revitalize and brighten the skin.  Ideal for face and neck, but can be used all over for a truly decadent mid-winter treat.   Made from wildcrafted Fir and Rosehips, gathered in Northern Oregon just before the first snow.


4 oz jar

made with // Wildcrafted Douglas Fir Needles,

Rosehips, Rose Petals, Sugar, Fir Essential Oil,

​Rosehip Seed Oil, Olive Oil, Vitamin E Oil






Wildcrafted
Rosehip Honey
There is nothing I know more likely to brighten the Spirit in the depths of winter, than teaspoonful of Rosehip Honey.  Piquant yet subtle, and shimmering with flirtatious hints of fragrant flowers and the vitamin C rich Rosehips which follow in their stead  -- the taste of this infused honey is  reminiscent of early Autumn crispness, and fireside reverie. Flowering in Summer and bearing salmon ripe hips at the first frost, the Wild Rose reminds us that things coming to fruition in their own time, and cannot be rushed. Take a spoonful daily to allay the seasonal blues and combine with plenty of fresh air, vigorous exercise and ample vitamin D supplementation to keep the Doldrums of deep Winter at bay.

4 oz jar


made with // texas wildflower honey
+ wild oregon rosehips (unfiltered)













     It is slowness which reveals the world to itself.




It was such an honor to spend this time with new Mamma, new Baby. We gathered the juiciest Rosehips, fawned over the countless tiny Mushrooms amongst the moss, and sat together upon the forest floor while he nursed and she sang, and the tender green sprouts all about us listened on, contented.







I   f o u n d   I    h a d   n o   t i m e   t o   r u s h .

I treasure those forest mornings, bundled many layers deep and making my way through through Rosehip meadows to taste the beckoning Fir Trees. Moving slow and careful through blackberry bramble, soft singingly medicine songs to honor the ancient Hawthorns, branches heavy with ripe fruit, who offered me the strength of forgiveness along with each berry I placed in my basket. Stopping each morning to smell the mossy places, the imperceptible flow of sap from the tree; to watch the slick black wild water flow downstream before the cold turns it to ice.

These Autumn moments taught me this -- When you begin to feel that life is moving too quickly past, see how slow you can move. You will watch the world around you exhale a sigh of relief, grateful for your example and permission to do the same. I imagine you will find that there is no time to rush.







Hawthorn was, indeed, one of the plants I was most grateful to harvest on my journey. While standing amongst the rain-wet blackberry brambles, moving deliberately to gather each berry and leaf, Hawthorn offered to me a moment of profound release; silent tears of forgiveness and understanding. And letting go. I felt a part of myself return home to my body as I plucked each glistening fruit.

























WE ARE THE ANCESTORS 

In every thing that you do, in every choice that you make--take the time to ask yourself, how will this effect my children's children, and theirs after that, and on down the line for as far as you can reach through time and space . It is a great many challenges and atrocities we have inherited. May we be the ones to once again leave this world filled with more beauty, more love, and more meaningful connection to bless all our relations as they walk their paths, in hopes that they will do the same for all generations to come.

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P O R T L A N D





M E D I C I N E • W A L K

On a rain-wet morning, moving slow down the dewy neighborhood streets of Portland, I gathered red clover, dandelion, yarrow, hawthorn, comfrey, lemon balm, horsetail, cleavers, and many more, offering my hair, my gratitude and awe, and a small song of loving in return. Together, these herbs do not seem a terribly elegant formula, and yet they comprise the medicine of this place, this time.

Wherever I travel, one of the first things I do upon arriving in a new landscape is venture off solo to wander aimless, and fully arrive. These are Medicine Walks. First and foremost, a medicine walk is a sacred arrival; a time to meet the plants, the birds, the trees, the fungi, the forest floor or city sidewalk. Wild things, and herbs least of all, are not confined to the deeply wooded places where no humans tread--they thrive and persist everywhere.

On my medicine walks, many plants call out to me, and those that do often find their way into my teacup. By drinking in the stories and gifts of the plants which grow closest, you begin to cultivate a relationship with the wider ecosystem of which you are both a part. Whether you plan to stay in a place for a day, a month, or a lifetime, this practice of engaging with the wild plants, the wild places, will forge a relationship which weaves you into the land as intimately as the subterranean mycelium which nourish and connect all things green and growing and are nourished in turn.








In Portland, I had the opportunity of seeing dear friends from the deserts of New Mexico (as evidenced by the photos below) as well as attending the Plant Medicine Gathering taking place that weekend. What a happy accident. I had the distinctive pleasure of attending a class entitled, Herbs + Eros, taught by my friend and teacher Sean Donahue and the eloquent and charming, Kirsten Hale. They brought me to tears with their tales of Yellow Pond Lily and the other plant medicines they invoked to nourish and sustain the sexual center, the seat of Creativity.









B R E I T E N B U S H

H O T    S P R I N G S






From Portland, I traveled into the darkness of Oregon Winter toward Breitenbush Hot Springs. It is there that my friend Renee, dearest to my Heart for the last decade, lives and works. I had spent time there this past Summer, soaking up the mineral scented waters and eating dinners by the fire -- the memory of these moments lingered still, in the forest paths and the places where I'd make camp. 





The landscape was changed though by so many months passed. The Sun did not shine for a week and I spent my quiet days in a steady rotation of soaking, napping, reading, cooking, and hiking in solitude.








Renee's Warm Cabin




Many of my most wholehearted friends and colleagues traveled to meet me at Breitenbush as well.  Wandering mystic, Olivia Pepper, arrived one evening in Renee's living room and we sipped honey wine by dim lamplight before spending an entire evening soaking in the Springs and speaking of the places we came from.  Activist and Rewilding Muse, Ayana Young joined me as well. We took a whirlwind walk through the forest, stopping to admire the cycles of life and death, life and death that we read in the Fungi and Flora surrounding us.  She brought the Sun with her when she came and we shared a magnificent renewal in Breitenbush's Geothermal Steam Room.  I brought boughs of Cedar + Fir into the warm wooden chamber and thrashed my back and legs to move my blood and lymph.  And finally, Tender Hear, Itinerant Musician and Beloved Friend, Joe Hay, accompanied me for much of my journey as well and with him I shared much magic, much medicine, much gratitude.



Joe Washing Dishes



Crossing The River With Olivia + Joe



My Nest For The Week


The Wonderment Of The Forest Floor



Fomitopsis pinicola





Ayana Amidst The Fallen Leaves Of Autumn








I do not know the fungus above, but it was my favorite of the whole trip. Soft and pliable as a marshmallow, and whiter than white. It called to mind the exquisite softness of a woman's lips. Do you know this mushroom? If so, I'd love to learn its name! Let me know in the comments below.











I truly believe


that we are all

doing our best.

That includes me.

And that includes you.

So, be gentle when you can.

Be generous when you can.

We are all doing our best.

I truly believe that.










Drying my many medicines in the pump house, where the geothermal waters are cooled and
directed toward the pools. The natural heat makes it the perfect place for a readymade dehydrator.





Joe, In The Woods








Wild Ginger
Asarum spp.

One afternoon, I entered into a mystical staring contest with a Wild Ginger leaf.  I recommend it highly, if you can find the time.  Allow yourself to get lost in its surface, and watch its expression emerge.  It has a surprisingly playful way about it. I so love a plant with a sense of humor.





                 The Mountains

The Mist

My Soul.


S a n c t u a r y








My time at Breitenbush reminded me of the importance of not to getting lost in the D E T A I L S and drudgery of everyday life.



When to-do lists seem to trail on for days and the various minutiae of life begin to overwhelm, widen your gaze to take in the the larger view of your world. do not forget the simple pleasures, do not neglect your soft animal body, make time always to feel the crystalline sunshine and enlivening breeze and chilly autumn air. Carve out hours and afternoons to wander and wonder, to be with those people who light you up from the inside out. Time moves so very fast--until the moment we make the decision to just stop. In our culture of more, always more--this is one of the most revolutionary acts we can undertake: simply to stop rushing, stop striving, and to revel in this moment, right here, right now.





My return to Austin was met with Wild Sage + ancient graves; Juniper caves and bareback rides through the tinder-tall underbrush and old, old Mesquite. Retsina and laughter-filled Venison dinner parties. Radical Sisters gathering together to share in Life and in Death; mid-morning plant walks, giddy and flower-drunk, with my beloved apprentices.


Even back in the [blindingly] bright sun and brisk Autumn air of Texas, the wet warmth and fertile beauty of Cascadia still radiate from deep within me, a Selkie song which tells of my Heart's Home within the wild. I am so grateful for all of the healing and connection which found me during my time in Oregon. I feel forever changed by the Medicine of the River and Forest floor, by the hands and Hearts of the many Beloved friends who converged to drop in and go deep with me. This memory lives as a reminder of what is possible, when we are kind to one another, when we are patient, when we are gentle with ourselves and with the Earth all around us. Thank You.




2 comments:

  1. I can read your posts for hours! I love your words & just the feelings inside your sentences that transpire to your voice inside my head! Please keep posting pictures an these lovely little journal entries! I need them in my life.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for your kind words Tyeler! I will keep sharing my journey as it unfolds. <3

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