Dear Curiosity Journal,
Some who come across this post may recognize the format from my previous creative project, “Dear Farm Journal” for Keewaydin Farms (https://keewaydinfarms.com/dear-farm-journal/). After a break from writing, I’m reimagining my journal through the scope of curiosity. Over the last couple of years, my work has shifted from being a full-time farmer to a part-time farmer and a full-time executive director for our land-based learning nonprofit, Driftless Curiosity. In 2022, we experienced so much expansion in our endeavors that I often didn’t take enough time to tap into my own sense of wonder. This season, I continue to seek balance within the high demands of this work and the impulse to explore sanctuary in the forest. I aim to weave curiosity and play into everyday life for my own happiness and the opportunity to share the joys of curiosity in community. Saturday, I was curious about the Friends of Vernon County Parks and Forests outing at Lower Duck Egg Park, so I ventured out for an afternoon ski (unsure if there were even trails fit for skiing or if that was something people were doing). Most of my skiing this year has involved breaking my own trail around the farm, so the park trails seemed great to me, however, no one else was skiing. First I skied down “Stagecoach Trail ” which seemed relatively untraveled, save for the evidence left behind by a few deer making their way to the water’s edge. I reached that edge, turned around and skied the “Loggers Loop” which was populated with much more foot traffic and I was greeted with a number of friendly “hellos” from hikers. The smell of the community bonfire and a blend of voices and laughter filled the air as I passed by the gathering. Feeling a bit too shy to strike up a conversation, I was content to ski around the edges, satisfy my curiosity, and share in the beauty of the winter wonderland.