Thursday, January 3, 2013

A look back

A list of greenhorn milestones

The following is a glimpse at the path my training has taken since I began writing Woodsman Enough last June. The format of the stories has evolved since I first began recording my neophyte adventures, but if there's one thing I've tried to stick with, it's penning an intriguing title and finding an appropriate quotation to touch on the central theme of each story. My end goal is singular - inspire. I hope some of these will grab your attention (lets face it, some are more clever than others). 

While I'm at it, allow me to shamelessly plug the Website where you can find the full version of each of the Woodsman Enough articles featured below. Simply go to and at the top right search bar type in "woodsman enough" and click search. The site restricts you to reading 10 articles a month before it demands money - tacky, I know, and I apologize.

I am busy making plans for running around outside in the coming months, so I encourage you to hang in there and see if I find anything interesting out there. I'm hoping to find dinosaur bones in my backyard, but that hasn't panned out for me yet so I'm not going to get my hopes up. Regardless, thanks for reading.


Outdoor exercise as enrichment: Creating a Northwoods exercise routine

“Challenge yourself in your environment.”

To pitch a tent: And the battle with the winged wolves

“You are led through your lifetime by the inner learning creature, the playful spiritual being that is your real self. Don't turn away from possible futures before you're certain you don't have anything to learn from them. You're always free to change your mind and choose a different future, or a different past.”
- Richard Bach

Slow summer down

“Warm summer sun, shine kindly here. Warm southern wind, blow softly here. Green sod above, lie light, lie light. Good night, dear Heart, Good night, good night.”
- Mark Twain


Building cabins, good habits: A clear view atop 40-foot scaffolding

“A strong nation, like a strong person, can afford to be gentle, firm, thoughtful, and restrained. It can afford to extend a helping hand to others. It's a weak nation, like a weak person, that must behave with bluster and boasting and rashness and other signs of insecurity”
- Jimmy Carter

Fishing and solitude: A personal preference for cracked oars

“The best thinking has been done in solitude.”
- Thomas Edison

The Northwoods: You can keep your concrete jungle

“There is a serene and settled majesty to woodland scenery that enters into the soul and delights and elevates it, and fills it with noble inclinations.”
- Washington Irving

To go barefoot: Forest urchins, an alley, and a classical lesson

“If you're proactive, you don't have to wait for circumstances or other people to create perspective expanding experiences. You can consciously create your own”
- Stephen Covey


Festivities and friends: How best to marinate a hotdog

“It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them.”
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

The American dream: And why you need a hatchet

“He did not know how long it took, but later he looked back on this time of crying in the corner of the dark cave and thought of it as when he learned the most important rule of survival, which was that feeling sorry for yourself didn't work. It wasn't just that it was wrong to do, or that it was considered incorrect. It was more than that--it didn't work.” - Gary Paulsen, Hatchet

To be hungry: A rogue seagull sighting

“Truth isn't always beauty, but the hunger for it is”
- Nadine Gordimer

At season’s end: A foggy Flambeau River morning

“Nature gives to every time and season some beauties of its own; and from morning to night, as from the cradle to the grave, it is but a succession of changes so gentle and easy that we can scarcely mark their progress.”
- Charles Dickens

Hillside heretic: From the journal of a daydreaming window addict

“We grow great by dreams. All big men are dreamers.”
- Woodrow Wilson


On the deer trail: Listening to your muse

“Creativity is a natural extension of our enthusiasm.”
- Earl Nightingale

Far side of the lake: Nightmare fishermen, they buy too much

“Life is really simple, but men insist on making it complicated.”
- Confucius

To ask for help: No man is an island

“Since it has been my lot to find, at every parting of the road, the helping hand of comrade kind to help me with my heavy load, And since I have no gold to give and love alone must make amends, my humble prayer is, while I live -- God, make me worthy of my friends”
- Unknown

Ground-swatting grouse: More hungry than proud

“First, have a definite, clear practical ideal; a goal, an objective. Second, have the necessary means to achieve your ends; wisdom, money, materials, and methods. Third, adjust all your means to that end”
- Aristotle


Paddling upstream: Stand and feel your worth

“Wake, stand and feel your worth, oh my soul.”
- Dustin Kensrue

Canine companion: The dog chooses us

“The great pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with him and not only will he not scold you, but he will make a fool of himself too.”
- Samuel Butler

Wood-stove perspective: And a cabin full of city folk

“No culture can live if it attempts to be exclusive.”
- Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

The breath and the trigger: A bullet, a boomstick and a choice

“The self is not something ready-made, but something in continuous formation through choice of action”
- John Dewey


To wear a hat: Prepare to enjoy winter

“Where observation is concerned, chance favors only the prepared mind.”
 - Louis Pasteur

Tall tales: And how they speak the truth, Part I

“All at once the wonder and the majesty of being very alone deep in the woods was interrupted by the very real possibility that I was not.”

True stories: And how they bend the truth, Part II

“Half the battle is allowing yourself to win it, the other half is finding your way out of the woods afterwards.”

Giving thanks: 24 weeks later

“Gratitude is the inward feeling of kindness received. Thankfulness is the natural impulse to express that feeling. Thanksgiving is the following of that impulse.”
- Henry van Dyke

Hard work holiday: A tradition steeped in pine pitch

“The more I want to get something done, the less I call it work”
- Richard Bach


Sharpen your focus: Dull blades don’t cut well

“I never could have done what I have done without the habits of punctuality, order, and diligence, without the determination to concentrate myself on one subject at a time”
- Charles Dickens

Snowed in: How to be carefree in a blizzard

“He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe is as good as dead; his eyes are closed.”
- Albert Einstein

Peace be with you: The most wonderful time of the year

“‘Twas Christmas broach'd the mightiest ale; 'twas Christmas told the merriest tale; a Christmas gambol oft could cheer the poor man's heart through half the year.” - Walter Scott

Year in review: Base camp comes before the peak

"How could youths better learn to live than by at once trying the experiment of living?"

- Henry David Thoreau

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