There was a time when ever facet of life was governed by the changing seasons. Seasonal living was a way of life. That time is a faint memory of a time long past for most of us. Our lives are now spent in front of screens large and small, in comfortable, climate controlled environments. How can you possibly live seasonally when the most nature you see is that only lonely tree out your window? Do you need to sell everything, and leave it all behind for an off the grid cabin in the middle of no where?
What is Seasonal Living?
No, you don’t. Even if you spend your days in a climate controlled cubicle you can still live seasonally. But what does that even mean? Growing your own food? Going to bed at sunset and rising with the first bird songs? Well, maybe, if you want, but there’s more to it than that! Seasonal living is all about embracing the seasons as they happen. This means getting out there and going outside, enjoying seasonal activities. Maybe that means going for a walk in your local park, or gardening, or being fully self-sufficient. Whatever works for your lifestyle and your own goals. It’s all good!
It also means embracing the seasonal nature of food and the world around us. Grocery stores carry fresh foods from all over the world. Strawberries are never out of season when you can bring them in from warm southern areas where frost never hits! That’s not seasonal living though. Seasonal living means embracing foods when they are in season, preferably from a local source. Let’s be honest, do those grocery store tomatoes really taste better than the ones from your garden? Yeah, not so much! Seasonal eating means enjoying local produce when it’s at it’s peak. It means you get the freshest, most delicious seasonal foods at the time of year when they are plentiful. It means conserving your foods so you can enjoy them year round by canning, drying or smoking.
Why Bother Living Seasonally?
Living a seasonal lifestyle helps you to connect with the natural rhythms of nature. In doing so you can connect not only with the changes that are happening in the world right now, but also your ancestors who lived and died by the changing seasons. By rooting yourself in nature’s rhythms, instead of the man made chaos of modern life you can be more grounded. You can be more mindful of our daily life, as well as the larger picture.
There is also the sustainability standpoint to consider. It takes a lot of resources to ship foods around the world. The costs of transport, shipping, spoilage, all add up, and it’s not just money! Fossil fuels power the ships, trucks and trains that ship your food around the country and the world. Choosing local, seasonal foods means there’s less need for that. It means supporting your local community, your local farmers and keeping more money in your own community, instead of sending it to a multinational corporation. It means getting fresh vegetables and fruits that were on the vine hours ago, not weeks.
Living seasonally is a way to connect with nature, something all too rare in today’s modern life. As the seasons turn so too do seasons in our own lives. Our lives are full of periods of time of plenty, and of wanting. Times of hardship, and joy. So too are the seasons. By tapping into the seasons we can see the cycles that create the world around us, and find guidance and wisdom that we can apply to the cycles in our own lives. We can connect with something far bigger than ourselves, the very thing that sustains us: the Earth.
How To Live More Seasonally
What can you do to starting living more seasonally? It’s easy, it doesn’t need any major lifestyle sacrifices, or expenses. Here are a few examples of ways you can live more seasonally right now!
- Decorate for the seasons. Choose natural decorations such as flowers, or other natural elements.
- Eat Seasonally. Choose more seasonal produce and incorporate it into your diet. Find out what’s in season where you are! A good way to do this is visit your local farmer’s market or join a local CSA box.
- Spend time in nature. Even if it’s just a walk around the block get out there and start paying attention to the nature around you. Notice how it changes as the days and weeks pass.
- Do seasonal activities. This can be anything from swimming at your local swimming hole in the summer to picking apples in the fall, or making a snowman in winter! Don’t forget to check out local seasonal activities in your community like festivals and other events!
Are you looking for even more ways you can live a seasonal life? Wildwood Living is a free workbook that will help you get started living a more seasonal life. It includes printable seasonal food lists to help you stock your pantry & cupboards full of seasonal foods, and more! Get your free copy of Wildwood Living here!
How do you live more seasonally in your own life?