Not Just Another Raven-Wolf Work Weekend

DSCF0066The Sun was shining and the ground was dry as we entered the gate on Saturday morning. A few had already arrived and were in the process of opening the gate as we pulled up to the edge of the driveway. Today, there would be seven of us and we were determined to see how much could be done before we all had to leave toward evening.

It had been five weeks, this time, since anyone had been down and things had pretty much grown up again. There wasn’t much mowing equipment to work with – one gas-powered weed whacker and one mower, both brought by volunteers, but people set to work anyway. Someone grabbed a hand weed whacker and started doing what he could as well.

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The rest grabbed brushes and paint and set about trying to complete the job of painting that had begun the last time. We did manage to get a few things completed: the first-aid station, the upper outhouse, the bridge across the drainage dish and a few benches, but there are still picnic tables, more benches and another outhouse (once the rebuilding is complete) to paint.

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A lot of mowing and weed-whacking got done (just look behind the bridge in the picture), but then the throttle cable on the mower broke and the weed-whacker decided it was done for the day as well. So, there’s still a lot that needs doing. The proof of that is the pond. Here’s what it looked like at the end of May and also how it looks now. Yes, more time, more equipment and more volunteers are definitely needed to maintain this lovely, sacred site.

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We felt good though. For seven people with little equipment, we got a lot done before we decided it was time to stop. You always feel a sense of accomplishment when you realize how much was done with so little. The bonus is that you touched the Earth, you gave back, and you sweated off a pound or two to boot!

As most were cleaning up brushes and packing up equipment and other items, the Coordinator, Mary, came in with her daughter, Jen and Jen’s new baby, Sean. They planned to see what they could do for a little while. We talked about equipment needed and what needed to be done on many levels to make Summer Solstice Gathering 2016 happen to celebrate the rebirth of the Sanctuary.

Yes, there is still much to do, but, you know what? It IS doable!!! We will find a way, just as we always have. We invite you to join us on this adventure. We could use the help. Here’s the thing though…. Once you step foot on this Land, you will see the reasons why we care so deeply for it and want to restore it. The Land has a way of capturing your heart and pulling you in. As we help heal it, it heals us in so many ways and on so many levels. It’s a place where you can leave your mundane problems at the gate and share some time with Nature. You may leave tired, but there will be a smile on your face and in your heart. The Land believes in giving back to those who come to heal Her.

If I’ve peaked your curiosity and you feel you might want to come and help, you can contact us on our Raven-Wolf Nature Sanctuary Facebook page or email us at RavenWolfNature@aol.com. You can also contact me either on Facebook (Samantha Herron) or email me at Durga1974@aol.com. Ask for the next dates someone will be down there and request a map to the site.

In the meantime, I want to profusely thank the following people for all their hard work last Saturday – Del, Joslyn, Crystal, Ed, Ray, Gary, Mary and Jen. You folks are absolutely awesome!!!

Thank you 7Love & Blessed Be

Elder Maya

We Came, We Saw, We Painted!

DSCF0055It had been seven weeks since anyone had been to Raven-Wolf. It seemed like all we had done in April and May had been undone by Mother Nature Herself. Just like everywhere else in Ohio, plenty of rain had fallen creating glorious mud and lots of green growth as far as the eye could see.

There were only four of us this time, but we were determined to see how much we could do in the day we had allotted ourselves. So, it began with weed whacking to create spaces to stand in to paint the buildings and benches along with scraping and sweeping off the areas to be painted – beginning at the lower area of the Land.

We’d brought twelve gallons of paint, five brushes and a roller on a long pole. The storage shed and the lower outhouse were the first to be tackled. With all that rain, some areas of the buildings had to be left alone in hopes of drier times. For the most part, both received their first new coat of paint in more than a decade.

DSCF0057Once that was done, the three guys (Gary Herron, Del Smarr, Chris Peterson) went up the hill to work on the “Elder’s cabin”. More weed whacking was required to reach it and paint, but afterwards, well, it looked really good!

While they were up the hill, I started working on the registration area, including the picnic table that has sat there for probably 22 years. While I still need to paint the under side of the table, I think you’ll agree, it’s not looking too bad… DSCF0065

I pushed on next to the benches that sit around the communal fire. Having sat in all that rain, I was doubtful that they would be able to be painted at all. Fortunately, in the time it had taken to do the outhouse, shed and registration, the Sun had been shining down on them. Sadly, one of the benches, which I thought just had gotten a little moldy, had been invaded by ants and will have to have new back board put on it so there was no sense painting that one! Another bench remained too damp for painting, so I focused on the one that the Sun had dried out well. Granted, like the picnic table, the under side needs painting , but, this is the end result…

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I walked up the hill to find that the guys had moved on to the what used to be the First-Aid deck. Although it didn’t get completed, a lot did get done and it looks good.

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So that was our day at Raven-Wolf. We got there a little before 10 a.m. and left a little after 5 p.m. feeling like we had really accomplished something.

There is still a great deal to be done. Regular mowing and trimming, buildings to be repaired, an outhouse to finish rebuilding, downed trees to cut up and dead trees to bring down and, of course, finishing first coats of paint and then putting on second coats. The list goes on.

While people say they want to see Raven-Wolf come alive again and be a place of gathering, it takes people being willing to come for even a few hours to make that dream a reality. I realize most people lead very busy lives these days. I do myself. Look what four of us accomplished in less than seven hours. If we can do that much with four people, imagine what we could do with eight, or twelve or sixteen people! Just in one day!!!

We have gone off the schedule of work weekends and are going when we have time. If you would be willing to come, even for just one day, please contact us. Let’s see if we can match your schedule with one of ours and continue to bring Raven-Wolf back to life so we can all enjoy meeting and sharing on this sacred site next year!

Until we meet again…

Peace and SerenityLove & Blessed Be

Elder Maya