Blog

Your Teen is an Animal. And that’s Normal!

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Today's blog post is from Corie Washow of Elemental Counseling.


As a step-parent to 2 young adult children, a therapist to countless parents and several teens, and a person who was once a teenager myself, I am very clear that adolescence can be painful, overwhelming, confusing, and amazing--for both parents and teens.  I know and appreciate a lot of the developmental and cultural reasons for the turmoil and growth that can characterize this time.  But I had no idea how much the human journey …

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6 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day

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This Thursday, April 22nd, is Earth Day. At Through the Trees, we encourage connecting with and caring for the Earth every day, but finding special ways to do this on Earth Day serves as a celebration for our beautiful planet. This week we would like to share several ways to care for and honor Mother Earth. 

  1. Practice Sit Spot. We talk about and practice Sit Spot quite a bit, because it gives us the opportunity to slow down and be mindful in nature. Finding a place to sit or lie down outdoors …

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Nature Teaches Us To Find Our Light Through the Darkness

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"All the buried seeds crack open in the dark the instant they surrender to a process they can’t see."

- Mark Nepo -


Nature is such a powerful teacher. Spring, especially, is such a gift in this way, a reminder to wake up. All winter we are in a sort of hibernation, tucked away just waiting to burst back to life. All around us, everything small and buried surrenders to a process that none of the buried parts can see. 

It is almost certain that all of us are working on something within ourse…

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Three Ways to Care for the Natural Places that Have Cared for Us This Year

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Today's blog post was written by Through the Trees board member, Corie Washow. Visit Corie's own blog here.

Are you one of the many people who has developed an extra deep appreciation for Maine’s abundance of beautiful outdoor spaces this past year?  What a refuge our public parks and trails (and backyards) have been over this tremendously challenging time.  As a Through the Trees community member, I know you don’t need me to tell you that! But I do want to take a few minutes together to reflec…

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Wild Edible Plants: Making an Oxymel

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If you enjoy foraging wild plants to use as food or medicine, you will love knowing how to make an oxymel. An oxymel is a sweet and tangy extraction made with apple cider vinegar and honey. Honey is know for having anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral properties and the apple cider vinegar is good for the gut and does a wonderful job of extracting nutrients from the plant material. This extraction also stores well and keeps for indefinitely. An oxymel can be taken straight by the spoonful …

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Making Pine Needle Tea

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Whenever my kids and I take a walk in the woods, especially in the winter, we almost always want to collect some evergreen needles to bring home for tea. Eastern White Pine is our favorite and makes a fragrant, woodsy tea that is full of vitamin C, so it's wonderful to have during illness or to support overall health anytime.

The white pine (pinus strobus) is easy to recognize with it's long (approximately 3 to 5 inch) needles in clusters, or fascicles, of five. Young trees have smooth, greenis…

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A Simple Life Hack For Deep Happiness: Practicing Gratitude

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“Gratitude is when memory is stored in the heart and not in the mind.” -Lionel Hampton

 

Maybe the simplest and most effortless habit for living a happier life is to take a few minutes every day to focus on what is already here in your life for which you feel grateful.

Gratitude can help you to…

  • Lift your mood and boost motivation very quickly.
  • Find the things in your life on which you want to focus even more of your time and energy.
  • Not just take things for granted and find joy even dur…

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How to Practice Maitri: Loving-Kindness to One’s Self

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Are you someone who has zero trouble accessing compassion for others, but when it comes to lending that same compassion to yourself, you fall short?  I know I have an easier time accepting other people’s mistakes (a.k.a. humanness) than I do my own; I freely forgive other people’s flaws while I beat myself up for mine. I readily feel empathy and compassion for the suffering of strangers but sometimes have a hard time comforting and being kind to myself.

Sound familiar? We’re not the only ones.

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The Power of Play

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“Play is a child’s work. 

It is through imaginative play that children process and integrate the social and cultural information they experience. The social learning that happens during play lays the foundation for social communication and emotional regulation skills that become important for getting and keeping a job, and maintaining close healthy relationships throughout life.

The imaginative games that children play equip them to read and intuit the feelings of others, laying the groundwork…

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Survival Skills: Eating Tree Bark

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Learning how to find food in the wild is a hobby for some, but it can mean the difference between life and death if you are ever caught in a survival situation. While foraging in your backyard or woods can be enjoyable, resourceful and a beautiful way to connect with the earth, knowing some basic information on how to eat should you ever need to find sustenance is an important skill to have. There are many plants that are edible, but one food source that is often overlooked is the bark of trees.…

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