Treasure in The River

While hiking on the river, you never know what you might find. We carefully climbed down the steep bank and onto the rivers narrow sandy shore. We looked around and saw many pieces of river glass. We collected as many glass pieces as we could so that they would not get stepped on in the future.  Some of the glass pieces that we found had smooth edges from being caught and worn down over time by the river.  We will use the river glass in different art pieces for found object bottles, skull sculptures and dream catcher centers.

After combing the riverbanks for a couple of hours, Sam and I decided to split off and explore. Sam chose to walk a path running parallel to the river as I walked further along the river’s edge. When we came back together, we had treasures to share. Sam found a ground hog skull destined to be a skull necklace and large bottles that will soon hold curiosities and other found objects. I found deer bones long forgotten and bleached by the sun, that we left for the rodent population to enjoy. (Left behind bones can be a source of calcium for them.)

              With a pack full of river glass and our last bit of daylight we began to head back to our car. On the way we could not resist stopping in one last spot, the bridge. Under the bridge the water rushed over large rocks past us. There is a heavily used foot path on the bridge itself so you never know what you might find fighting the current and sharp rocks beneath. I saw something square in the water, I stuck my hand into the quick, icy, water and carefully tugged on something shiny. It was a small, crushed, metal box. I cupped it in my hand inspecting it. Algae covered and forgotten I thought I could fix it, so I carefully put it in our pack we made it to the car just as the sun was setting.

              When we got home, we cleaned up all our river finds. I pulled my prized find out of our pack and cleaned it up. Sam had to solder it back together because the hinges were rusty and broken. After cleaning it up, we believe that it used to be a cigarette case. I made a skull sculpture with it, with a rat skull. A little scene of forgotten treasures.

We hope you have a great adventure today!!

Be safe and stay alert!

Sam and Riley

Visit to “The Country”

Today was a family exploration day down at “The Country” (Riley’s family land). We walked the rocky path to the pond through a sprinkling mist of rain, looking for cool rocks along the way. My Papa told us many stories and explained that there was a treasure trove of abandoned bottles, hidden just under a layer of leaves in a pile. We spent the day with my papa, mom, and brother. We searched and searched as we all spread out looking through the briar patches, around persimmon trees, and past a sea of poison oak. It was my brother who found the first one with a quick, “Found one!”. Papa was right, just like he always is… We found three piles of old bottles! There was every kind of vintage soda bottle that you can imagine. These bottles will come back to the shop, where they will be washed. We will then fill them with tiny treasures. Our bottles are designed so that when you pick them up and turn them, you see different exciting objects throughout the bottle.

              As we walked down the path, it comes to a big pond. The pond is home to many different types of fish, as well as many other animals. The pond has several deer paths leading from the main path around it. We followed the paths through the woods, over rotten logs, and around huge, uprooted trees. My brother found a few bones of animals long since passed. We collected a few that will be made into jewelry intended to honor the animals from which they came. We left some of the bones behind so that small animals may use them as their calcium intake.

              “The Country” has beautiful moss growing. I collected a few bundles to dry. I dry the bundles and put them in bottles along with other small treasures. The moss is a wonderful pale green. I make sure to take only a small amount, I know that it spreads quickly but I do not like to create bare ground spots, and I only use small amounts of it at a time. This will help the moss grow.

Today was a great family day and a beautiful visit to “The Country”.  We were able to spend time with the people that we love in a wonderful place.

Go have a wonderful  adventure!

Be safe,


The Green Owl (The Little Green Cabin)

We went to visit the Green Owl, our cabin in the enchanted forest this afternoon. The Green Owl was built by Sam’s grandparents in the sixties. Inside of our enchanted forest many types of plants grow. Two of these plants are bamboo and paw paw trees, they are very special to us. The bamboo works to hold the creek bank in place. The bamboo grows so quickly that it could completely take over the other trees and our enchanted forest. Therefore, we harvest the bamboo. Once we harvest the bamboo it will go back to our workshop to dry. When it dries it is destined to be drinking glasses, dream catchers, and didgeridoos.

              As we walked through the forest on the animal made pathway, we saw deer, bird, raccoon, and opossum footprints on the creek bank in the mud. We gathered paw paws as we walked through the Paw paw tree grove.  Paw paws are a fruit that grow in the Virginia mountains in early fall. We believe that a paw paw tastes like a banana and a mango mixed together. They almost look like a giant lima bean. We make many things from the pulp: bread, ice cream topping, and jam. We make many things from the seed: beads, runes, and earrings. We even harvest saplings that grow in the middle of the paths to make walking sticks. Paw paw picking for us comes once a year. It usually takes us an entire evening to pulp the fruit.

              We went from tree to tree collecting fruit. As we collected, we pulled grape vines, and honey suckle vines off the trees. The vines can wrap around the trees and harm them. We removed the vines and wove them into dream catcher hoops. We will let then dry out for about a month before we can finish them. They must harden so that they are not longer malleable.

              Our trip to the Green Owl was wonderful today and the enchanted forest was beautiful. Overall, we got to spend time in a beautiful place with family history and gather some fantastic treasures to share with you all.

Go have an exciting  adventure!

Be safe,