Come When You Can, Do What You Can

Goddess in SpringtimeEarth Day has come and gone. The Lady continues to spread Her Springtime gown. The weather is growing warmer. There is still much that needs done on the Land known as Raven-Wolf if we are to bring it back to a place where gatherings can once more be safely and pleasantly held there.

I’ve heard many say that due to health issues or other complications in their lives, they don’t feel they could be of any help or they couldn’t endure sleeping on the ground. These comments have come from both new people interested in what Raven-Wolf will have to offer in the future and from those who have been members for some time.

As I have stated before, I’m not the 42 year old that helped open that Land 25 years ago. Soon to be 67, my body does balk at sleeping in anything other than a comfy bed. Sitting at a computer 6+ hours a day and having arthritis makes doing any kind of physical work exhausting and, the next day, painful. But, you know what? That Land is a very special place and I want to be a part of restoring it. After the first work weekend, it took me four days to return to what is normal for me. It was a good soreness though. I felt like I had gone there and aided in the healing. However, being a practical Taurus, I realized that I had to find a compromise – one that allowed me to be part of this and still keep my body as happy as possible (and also keep up my responsibility to two cats who were freaked out by being left alone for 36+ hours). So, I gave it some thought and came to the conclusion that the best option for me was to go for the day and then return home to my cats and my bed to rest from whatever I am capable of doing to help heal this precious, sacred site.

It is here I would like to address the fact that although strong, young people are needed to do some of the work, there are other things that those with less strength can do to help. Can you rake? Can you take a bucket and sponge and clean? Can you cook? Can you pick up sticks or stack wood that others have cut? Can you sweep? Can you sit at the gate and be sure that new people are directed to where they need to go or that those who don’t belong at Raven-Wolf are turned away? There is so much that doesn’t require you to be a “lumberjack” or a “ditch digger”. I, myself, am mostly a “paper-pusher” these days. So be aware that we could use people that can raise funds, promote the Land and our web sites, write articles and more.

There are a certain number of campers and cabins available on a “first come, first serve” basis right now. So if you are not able to sleep on the ground or don’t have the equipment to do so, check on the availability of these limited spaces with Mary Borden. If that still isn’t something you can do, then think about doing what I will be doing – come for the day. Saturday would be the best bet. The gates open at 8 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. That’s 12 hours that could be devoted to helping in whatever way you are able and you can still return home to sleep comfy in your own bed.

Once we restore the Land, then maintenance will take far less time and less people. Right now, however, I ask you to consider or re-consider what, when and how you might be able to help in this large task that faces us. The end result will be that next year you will see a schedule of actual events with the Summer Solstice Gathering being the primary big gathering of the year where you will experience workshops, rituals, a potluck ritual feast with a big bonfire and drumming to follow. Is this not something worth working towards and being a part of? I think it is and I hope you do to.

The Goddess calls…

Mother Nature - A

Blessed Be,

Elder Maya

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Earth Day- Recycle!

earth-dayConnecting to and taking care of our Mother Earth is a big part of what Raven-Wolf Nature Sanctuary is all about. Our little piece of Land is a sanctuary in so many ways, and it is so because we are focusing our intent on bringing it back to a place of worship and reverence.

We carry out what we bring in, leaving behind no trace of inorganic litter as a sign of that reverence.

But “church” is everyday, not just on work weekends and gatherings. Treating our own neck of the woods in the mundane everyday is just as important. Today I’m including some information, the act of reverence manifested in the simple act of recycling.

A used aluminum can is recycled and back on the grocery shelf as a new can, in as little as 60 days. That’s closed loop recycling at its finest!

Used aluminum beverage cans are the most recycled item in the U.S., but other types of aluminum, such as siding, gutters, car components, storm window frames, and lawn furniture can also be recycled.

Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to run a TV for three hours — or the equivalent of a half a gallon of gasoline.

More aluminum goes into beverage cans than any other product.

Because so many of them are recycled, aluminum cans account for less than 1% of the total U.S. waste stream, according to EPA estimates.

An aluminum can that is thrown away will still be a can 500 years from now!

There is no limit to the amount of times an aluminum can be recycled.

We use over 80,000,000,000 aluminum soda cans every year.

At one time, aluminum was more valuable than gold!

A 60-watt light bulb can be run for over a day on the amount of energy saved by recycling 1 pound of steel. In one year in the United States, the recycling of steel saves enough energy to heat and light 18,000,000 homes!

Blessed Be

Lady CrowW

The First Work Weekend – Restoration Begins

DSCF0415It was obvious, when you looked from the Sanctuary driveway, that Guernsey county had gotten a lot of rain. Granted, I hadn’t been there for over a decade, but it had been another decade on top of that since I’d seen flooding in the valley that lies between us and Pennyroyal Rd. on the other side. Especially since they had dredged Skull Fork Creek.

Seeing that flooding, certainly explained the muddy condition on the Sanctuary road, preventing most cars from heading up the hill. Only Dave’s 4×4 would make it up the hill. The rest of us had to park at the bottom and haul stuff up “Dragon Hill”. (Smile) Just like when it all originally began. Yup, Mother was/is taking us back to the beginning.

Since the times of regular gatherings, there has been much wood come down from wind and lightning strikes. All the paths that led you out into various areas of this sacred site have been covered with many layers of leaves and blocked by some of that fallen wood.

DSCF0438All the cabins are still standing and the trailers that still reside there are in fairly good shape. Two of the three double-seater outhouses still stand in good shape. The third has had a tree come down on it, but is being rebuilt. (Thank you, Dave.)
I felt like I was on an archaeological dig when some of us went to the Lower Circle to clean it up. The four pillars, marking the Watchtowers, are still standing and in good condition. Amazingly, the chimenea, that stands in the South, was not only still there, but in good condition as well. The flat stones, that had been transported there years ago by us, were hidden – buried, if you will – by leaves and composted earth from years of not being used or cared for. Briars were growing everywhere, both inside and outside the Circle. We did our best, for now, in removing those briars, raking away the leaves and beginning to uncover those buried stones. It’s a start. DSCF0455

Originally, I had painted the “Rules” signs. They sorely need repainting. I’m hoping we have a new artist out there who would be willing to donate time and maybe even materials to redo them.

Much of what still needs doing involves sawing, chopping, stacking that wood that’s down. Mary’s even marked dead trees that need taking down. Those will require a chainsaw. If anyone has one they would be willing to come and use, we would be most grateful.

DSCF0412Please don’t think that this is some kind of “downer” article. Yes, there is a lot that needs doing, but none of it is beyond hope or repair. What is need is help – both physical and financial. We will soon be creating a page on GoFundMe.com where people can use their debit and credit cards to help with the financial part. As for the physical part, we could use all the help we can get to make this go as quickly as possible. The end result will be a restored sacred site where regular scheduled gatherings will once again take place along with continued work weekends for maintenance.

In the meantime, a BIG “Thank you!” goes out to all those who have already contributed time, effort and/or money to this cause. Yes, we’ve notice and we are extremely grateful!!!

For those who couldn’t make it this time, the next work weekend will be from 3 p.m. on April 24th to 3 p.m. on April 26th.

DSCF0448

Blessed Be,

Elder Maya/Samantha Herron

Being Prepared—First Aid

Raven-Wolf is definitely primitive camping and almost 20 miles from the nearest hospital or AMA doctor. Natural remedies are always best, but if you don’t have your comfrey leaves (for a poultice) or feverfew (tea for headache), the items below can be essential for a safe and happy camping experience.

I found the article below at Camping-field-guide.com for a simple and effective first aid kit.

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Packing a camping first aid kit and knowing how to use it is an essential element for a fun and safe trip. The adventures of living outdoors come with a fair amount of risk and it’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to planning for these conditions.

Your camping first aid kit should be small and compact, while still being able to fix the injuries you may encounter. Take a moment to ask yourself some questions about your trip to see what items you should pack:

  • Are you doing a lot of walking?
    If you’re trip involves a lot of trails, hiking, and walking through the woods, you might want to consider items that treat blisters, twisted ankles, poison ivy, scrapes and cuts.
  • Will you have a campfire or other exposed flame?
    Burns can be extremely painful and serious if not treated and protected. If you’re camping with kids, it’s a challenge to keep them a safe distance from the fire and the fire ring of rocks can get extremely HOT! Having some burn gel, gauze pads, first aid cream, and tape is good idea to have if you’re around the camp fire.
  • What critters do you expect to encounter?
    Depending on when and where your camping trip takes you, you’ll likely be sharing the woods with some pesky little critters. Tweezers to remove ticks, alcohol pads, Benadryl cream for bug bites & bee stings, and any allergy serums are good things to have. If you’re going out into areas where snake encounters are likely, a snake bite kit may also be wise to pack.
  • Plan for the “what-ifs?”
    I’ve found that it’s always helpful to have some travel size pain-killers in my camping first aid kit. Things like Ibuprophen, Sudafed, and Tums can ease unwanted discomforts when you’re away from home. I’ve also got in the habit of packing a small bottle of chewable aspirin in my pack which can assist in clearing blockages of heart attack victims.

The list below is a list of recommended items for your camping first aid kit.

First Aid Kit

Item Quantity
Band aids, ¾” 5
Band aids, 1” 5
3” x 3” gauze pads 5
4” x 4” gauze pads 5
Triangular bandage 1
Gauze roll, 2” wide 1
Adhesive tape, roll 1
Antiseptic wipes, packets 10
Antibiotic cream, tube 1
Motrin, tablets 20
Chewable aspirin, small bottle 1
Sudafed, tablets 12
Antacid tablets, roll 1
Tweezers 1
Burn cream, packets 5
Benadryl cream, small tube 1
Caladryl lotion, travel size 1
Elastic ACE bandage, roll 1
Safety pins 7

Many outdoor and retail stores sell nice kits in zipper pouches that allow you to expand, like the one pictured above. You could also use something as simple as a zip-lock bag or small toiletry kit.

Whatever your camping first aid kit contains, put some thought into it, pack it, and hopefully you won’t have to use it!

http://www.camping-field-guide.com/camping-first-aid.html

Lady CrowW