I breath easy: Shasta mountain air.

The truth is like a lion. You don’t have to defend it. Let it loose. It will defend itself.

— St. Augustine

I decided to leave every mountain and every trail I have met in the past behind on this day. I want to meet them as I am today. A new woman.

I’ve been spending time in Shasta. It’s such a gnarly place filled of so much sweetness. I just want to be here forever and maybe I will. It’s a Taurus in midheaven ordeal.

Today, I got my butt on the trail. Because, it’s what I do, because it’s like coming home. Having a place to track my hikes, efforts, reflections, will totally help me to get my butt on the trail even more. I’m getting back to documenting a little bit about my life. I mean, there is a lot I won’t include here but, for now: my adventures and love for alternative living, my love for mountaineering, maps, nature, people, animals, plants and getting lost… I tell stories, sometimes mine own; I also like to help others tell their story, too. Mostly, I love to talk to plants.

Each day I will at least post something I am grateful for about my day/life: and if I happen to do things related to hiking/outdoors/alternative lifestyle related, I will of course add it here to keep track and reflect; but everyday: gratitude. The hardest times in my life often correlate with periods of time that go by where I forget to practice gratitude. Gratitude rewires the brain, it’s no joke and rises your overall energy and builds resiliency. Sometimes it can be tricky, it’s learning a new attitude, an unlearning is involved. It gets easier, the more you practice it.

Bearberries – Manzanita – Arctostaphylos

A light walk today around Gateway Trails: Lolliepop Loop in Shasta-Trinity National Forest.

My “Freedom Locks” are getting more, merrier, and growing up so fast: trying to enjoy them while they are still my babies.

I sat on the edge of the trail to eat carrots and hummus. I just shoved a bunch of carrots in some left over pine nut hummus with some pink him salt, paprika, cumin, and organic mustard: I love my spices.

Sticky sap ooze

There were a lot of trees cut down on this trail. And sap forming all over the stumps. I took a moment in prayer and blessings for the trees that were once tall trees. I felt really sad, but at the same time I felt at home in that moment. Trees are great listeners so they are so easy to listen to and they know so much. They are such sweet beings. When I touched the sap, I could feel how nutrient packed it was. It’s amazing. Often times when you see sap oozing out of a tree it’s because of pruning (or maybe plain just cutting down, too?) damage, pests, and disease. Sap is like a healing juicy gooey bandaid coming to save the day. Thank you, sap, I love you a lot for healing trees that give me breath.

One more thing…

I am so grateful for compost. For a while, I would just toss all my scrap pieces of produce in my compost bucket. But, ever since going minimal and living in True North for about a year now, I’ve been doing this trick more and more: and now every time I have scraps; I just do it up. After I’m done cooking, or eating whatever fruit, vegetable, etc., I will throw all the scraps (peels, skins, etc.) in a pot and make a lot of tea with it. There are lots of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients in the outer layer of most produce: often different kinds of nutrients that are not found in the part of the produce we typically eat. Loads of flavonoids like quercetin that protect the heart, antioxidants, polyphenols… more and more. Think about it: skin protects. So, does this tea. Crazy how we often throw away what it probably the most densely nutrient thing we could consume. And, it’s just something you already have around, you’re not going out of your way really to make it.

*If you let the tea sit overnight, it’s even more potent. Drinking it warm is ideal for absorption.

This tea has: lime peel, orange peel, purple onion skin, garlic skin, dried rosemary, ginger skin, a pinch of pink him salt. No need to add citrus or another acid to draw out the nutrients because of the peels, but you can.

If you add the citrus peels: just be aware, it’s bitter tasting. Funny enough, drinking citrus peel tea helps with getting ride of bitterness: bitterness within you, bitterness of others that is effecting you and draining you. Bitterness and jealously/envy can go together. Plants are pretty straight forward like that. But, yeah it takes courage to drink it, just like it takes courage to let go of bitterness and not engage with lower vibrational tactics that are not of good value. It kinda works that way. Sometimes true medicine is hard to shallow and tastes pretty bad. Simple truths of nature. (As my face prunes up typing this and drinking my tea!)

I can feel it in my body that I’ll be gearing up to climb Mount Shasta in weeks to come. I get this way, needing to eat a lot, drink more, just go within, kind of like a bear; I save my energy for what is important. That is what being on the trail reminds me to do.

Drink your tea, RACHEL RAINBOW BEAR and go to BED. It’s a new day tomorrow and so many things to be grateful for.

I love you I love I love you,

Rainbow Howard

I like songs about drifters, books about the same. They both seem to make me feel a little less insane.

Modest Mouse

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