Where do I even start? How about one foot in front of the other on this muddy trail? Or how about turning down that dusty dirt road, or maybe that one? Or how about just straight through the bush?
I’m just going to bush whack all over that forest, climb that mountain, wander that creek bed, and travel around that country side. I’m off to hunt, forage, fish and gather all the wild natural foods and medicines from the forest. A bush girl’s gotta do what a bush girl gotta do.
I was raised on venison and fish. When I turned 13, I started hunting my own game, mainly upland game birds such as grouse. During my teenage years, I was woken up by my father on weekend mornings to head out to the bush. He taught me how to scout for large game. I quickly developed a keen eye for spotting deer and moose. “DAD! There’s one!” I would often shout in the passenger side of the truck. If we were walking, a quick gasp and a jab to the arm would get his attention. When I was 23 years old, the opportunity presented itself and I got my first deer. Ten years of learning and listening to my father paid off. At the time, I was living with my future husband and I brought home meat for our freezer. Free range, all natural meat.
My husband is a hunter as well. He was new at hunting large game at the time I met him. He harvested a moose a year before I met him. In skill level, we were pretty equal and we have been learning ever since. In truth, you do not stop learning when you are hunting and foraging.
We started having children in 2007. As the children grew (they are seven and nine now), we became more aware of the food and medicines we were putting into our bodies, and also where they were coming from. Foods that are factory processed or sprayed with chemicals. Animals that are unethically raised and injected with antibiotics. Food that is grown thousands of kilometers away. The list goes on. I refer to these foods as “convenient foods” as they are convenient; only a grocery store or fast food restaurant away.
Oh! Plus the Internet or magazine articles…the articles of how these foods make us sick. Feel free to ‘Google’ these articles of our “convenient food”. If you are reading my blog, you are probably already aware of the harmful effects of our modern-age diet.
So what is a mother to do? How about getting back to basics and getting back to our roots? Hunting and gathering. I got the hunting part down, now to gathering. Gather the food wherever it may be. Most years, I have a backyard garden. It’s small. It pretty much provides fresh snacking throughout the summer and fall. I hope to expand on the scale of it on the next growing season. In-between the seed sowing, plant watering and weed pulling, I’m out in the bush looking for what I can bring home to the table. I have been foraging for only a few years. There is a lot to learn.
Each time I head out in nature, a story often develops. These stories often start in nature with the phrase “What’s over there!?” and often ends at home with “Look what I got!”
Please follow my stories of hunting and gathering. I’ll take you on a journey amongst the trees, along the forest paths, into the blue waters, through the tall grasses and into the wild.