An integrative approach to healing ourselves and our world: honoring people, plants, planet

Archive for the ‘Shinrin-yoku’ Category

3 Spring Wildflower & Medicinal Plant Walks to show a BIG THANK YOU to Lookout Mountain Conservancy

Lookout Mountain Conservancy purchased from a developer around 60 acres on the side of Lookout Mountain, which included an informal trail to Glenn Falls, and now it’s protected for generations to enjoy and appreciate. Plus, from the perspective of the creatures who have no voice, this purchase protects the habitat for the many spring ephemeral wildflowers on these trails, and the really special spring migratory birds who come through in April and May, and all the other creatures who live there. Not to mention the steep slope protection that will maintain the integrity of the hillsides.

To show my deep gratitude, and to provide a way for others to show how grateful they are to LMC, I’m leading a Spring series of wildflower/medicinal plant ID walks. My hope is that these walks will also help anyone who is interested in learning the plants in their neighborhood to appreciate this great gift even more.

We might be able to make this a Citizen Science, iNaturalist thing, too, with documenting the species we see. Any advice on that is welcome.

Suggested donation is $10-20, or more!, and all of it goes to Lookout Mtn Conservancy. Lookout Mountain Conservancy doesn’t just protect land, they grow people. If you’re not familiar with what the organization does, read about them on their website.

Hope to see you on the trail!

3 Spring Walks, come to one or all:
Sunday, March 22nd at 2pm, meet at Glenn Falls Trailhead
Friday, April 17th at 10am, meet at Guild Trail Lot Trailhead
Sunday, May 10th at 2pm, meet at Glenn Falls Trailhead

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Women’s 2020 Nature Retreat: 3-Day Effect in Nature, Disconnect & Reconnect

Spring Renewal Self-Acceptance Retreat for Women, April 6-7, 2019

Self-Acceptance Retreat, April 6-7, Johnson Woods Lodge in McDonald, TN near Cleveland. An overnight, nature-based retreat for women who have survived trauma, led by Holli Richey and Bonnie Cretton. Bonnie is the founder of Woodsong Forest School. Experiences include, Forest Bathing (mindful walk in nature opening senses to nature’s elements to calm and soothe our mind and body), gentle yoga, herbal identification walks, herbal tea blends, meditation. Meals are included. Lodge setting, but must bring linens, yoga mat, comfortable outdoor clothing. Space is limited. Register with Holli by March 25th, 423-240-4578.

Into the Wild: A Wise Woman Herbal Gathering

On top of the beautiful Lookout Mountain in Northwest Georgia, we will be gathering for a wonderful herbal experience this September. I will be teaching a class on Herbs for Stress and leading a Forest Bathing experience to calm our nerves and enliven our senses. I’m excited that herbalists Ila Hatter and Lauren Haynes will be leading herb walks and teaching medicine making. You won’t want to miss this herbal gathering for women.

For more information and to register click here for the Into the Wild Herbal Gathering.

 

Forest Bathing–A Mindful Experience with Nature, June 10, 10:30-12:30

In partnership with Crabtree Farms of Chattanooga, TN, I will be leading a Forest Bathing experience. Contact (in advance) Crabtree to register.

Forest Bathing, also called Shinrin-yoku, is a Japanese concept of immersing oneself in the rich sensory experience of the forest with open awareness and no expectations. The body and mind “bathes” in the smells, sounds, light, movement, taste and feel of the forest.

Through mindful experiences such as Forest Bathing, we can be present with the body and senses, simply resting in natural awareness, grounded. We will practice skills in how to work with difficult thoughts and feelings to reduce stress and anxiety.

Research in Japan is providing evidence of what nature-lovers have intuitively known for years: that reconnecting to the forest will heal us. Studies show, specifically, that intentional forest walking elevates the mood, reduces stress hormones such as cortisol, boosts the immune system, and reduces the heart rate.

Experience it for yourself.

Location:  Guild-Hardy Trail at Lookout Mountain Conservancy.  (The trail is located at the northern end of Lookout Mountain within the Chattanooga city limits.  Park in the far west end (gravel) lot at Ruby Falls where we will meet to start our walk.)

Why Wilderness?

Tellico Wild reconnects people with the wilderness.   http://wildsidetv.com/video/tellico-wild/

In August 2015, Tennessee’s Wildside adventured into the Tennessee Citico Wilderness to film naturalists and people seeking a day of reconnecting with their wild side. Bill and Laura Hodge organized the event, sponsored by Wild South and SAWS. I was honored to have Tennessee Wildside come along to film the edible and medicinal plant hike I led to Fall Branch Falls. This is one of my favorite areas in East Tennessee’s Wilderness region. Medicinal plants abound right at the trailhead and throughout the entire hike. In August, it is a cool, moist day in the 70s, a refuge in the southern heat.

It’s winter now as I post this, but at the end of February, the earliest of spring ephemeral wildflowers will soon emerge. Once the days start getting longer after the winter solstice, I’m already dreaming of spring wildflowers. I post this now to remind us of the beauty to come, and urge people to get out and enjoy our precious wilderness areas in 2017. I’ll be leading some edible and medicinal hikes this year. Stay tuned!

And PLEASE! contact TN Congressman Chuck Fleischmann to tell him to sign the Tennessee Wilderness Act. It takes an act of congress to protect Wilderness forever, which is a forever “thank you” to those who made it happen. Wilderness is where you can lose your urban worries, and find the wild heartbeat in your soul. Don’t you think we need that right now?

To watch the 5 minute video on Tellico Wild, including some of my hike, click this link:

http://wildsidetv.com/video/tellico-wild/

I hope you make it out into the wilderness this year. You can be transformed in just one hike.

 

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