Braiding Sweetgrass by: Dr. Robin Wall Kimmerer

I have heard so many good things about this book! I kept seeing people suggest it and so naturally I was pretty pumped to get my hands on it.

When the time came and I got my notification from the library I was like YESSSSS! Unfortunately, I only had it for 14 days which was pushing it because I also was listening to another book at the same time.

Anywho let’s get to this book review, all I can say is WOW! I absolutely loved this book (as expected). I felt so calm reading it and if made me want to go and learn more about the earth around me and more about the Indigenous People that were here before the colonizers.

Each chapter was a story, which I love because it helps me keep things straight in my mind.

I super loved that she told some stories that were about the classes she taught and others about her roots and her family. I really liked the variety of the stories that were told because they were all so interesting.

“We are referred to as the younger brothers of Creation, so like younger brothers we must learn from our elders. Plants were here first and have had a long time to figure things out.”

I honestly cannot recommend this book enough. I loved it so much I might buy it (not a common thing for me). So I highly recommend reading it. This books gets 5 stars because it was such an amazing read.

5 pink stars in a row

I probably won’t have a post next week because I have started a new day job. Getting back into working and having an influx of new information has really wiped me out. However, keep your eyes peeled for the week after!

Until next time,

Devan

5 PLACES YOU MUST SEE IN SOUTHERN SASKATCHEWAN

Hello all! It has been a while since I actually wrote something that was not a book review, but I come with some awesome stuff to check out while or if you are traveling in south Saskatchewan.

I really have not gone to southern Saskatchewan other than to visit friends in Regina. So when I was casually just looking at things to do in Saskatchewan (thanks COVID-19) I found some awesome places that I knew I had to visit.

Now that I have some spare time on my hands, I decided to go on a solo road trip and visit all of these places that I wanted to go to.

I will say there is probably way more stuff to do in southern Sask, but I was a girl on a mission to get to all these places in just a few days so here is my list.

1. The Great Sand Hills

In Saskatchewan, there are two super sandy areas. One being accessible by plane that are the Athabasca Sand Dunes. Then there is the Great Sand Hills which are accessible by car.

There are a few hills here I believe, I only adventured the one because it was 33 degrees Celsius out, I am a little fatty whose cardio is horrendous and I was fucking warm.

I will say that the one hill I climbed was amazing! The sand was so soft! It was exactly like some beaches in Cuba.

There was a family there who just came out to play in the sand for the day and I thought that was the cutest thing. It is just one big sand box.

2. Grotto Gardens

This stop is just outside Maple Creek and it is definitely an awesome place to stop. There is a restaurant to order food and a little gift shop to get some local goods. But the best thing about this place is the goats!

There were some other animals there too but I felt like the goats were the main animals. there is a little area where you can go and pet the goats and feed them. There is feed available for 25 cents I believe.

There is a whole goat apparatus here so you get to watch the goats climb up top where you can also feed them by a pulley system. On Sundays they do have goat yoga, which would be awesome to go to, if I didn’t live 4 hours away.

The whole area here is really awesome and beautiful and is definitely worth a stop if you are near by.

3. Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park

this is at Bald Butte

The number one reason that I was stopping here was because it is a dark sky preserve. I love looking at the stars and if you are away from any light pollution, the night sky looks so fucking amazing! It really just makes you feel small and knowing that the universe is so big is quite emotional ( for me at least)

So the original reason I was coming to Cypress Hills was for the night sky, but once I arrived my literal first reaction was holy shit this place is gorgeous! The park is just massive amount of trees. I was like this feels like BC because of all the trees and slight hills.

this was the view just outside my room

Actually there are two parts of the interprovincial park. There is the centre block and the west block on the Saskatchewan side. The centre block is more like a tourist area. There are Cabins you can rent, lots of camping areas, and a few other things.

The west block has a few notable areas to also check out. When I entered the west block, you are driving up quite the hill surrounded by trees again and many curves and swerves (aka BC like). Overall I will be going back and hopefully spend more than a night there.

4. Conglomerate Cliffs

overlooking the valley standing on the edge of the cliffs

I never thought I would see such a breathtaking landscape in Saskatchewan! But I did. These cliffs are super accessible by car and are just amazing. You overlook Adams Lake and the rolling hills. The cliffs can be found in the west block of Cypress Hills. All I can say is if you have a chance visit this spot, the photos are not doing it justice.

There is also the Hidden Conglomerate Cliffs, which require a hike. I fully intended to go to them, but once I started I soon found out that it was much more of a vertical hike than I was capable of. That with the fear of hiking alone and the warning of cougars (low but still a possibility) I decided that I would come back another time, with others for encouragement and safety.

5. Castle Butte (Big Muddy)

The best way to describe Big Muddy is like this, You know the big red rock that stands alone in Australia? Also known as Ayers Rock or Uluru. It is like that but not nearly as big or square and not in Australia. It is kind of like that. This is really an awesome stop. You are surrounded by rolling hills where you can see the layers of rocks that formed it. You can also climb Big Muddy if you feel obligated to do so. I was watching people coming down from the top and they were basically sliding down on their asses because it was such a steep path. So with that I was like NOPE and just walked around the rock.

So these are all the places that I hit on my small solo road trip. I will say take your time and stop in at other places becuase between all of these places and then back to Saskatoon it was 1500km.

There are a few small towns in Saskatchewan that have interesting pieces of art that the town boasts as their thing. I stopped in Leader, Saskatchewan because they had a huge adirondack chair ( I tried sitting in it but it was very sloped and my sandals were not having it.)

me in front of the big adirondack chair

So here are some places to visit if you are in south Saskatchewan or are just looking for something to go and see. It was an awesome trip overall and I highly recommend all of these spots.

Is there somewhere in south Saskatchewan that I didn’t mention? Let me know in the comments!

until next time!