Despite us being in the midst of moving chaos— and adding more things to our plate than we actually need to add, Marlowe and I started a new craft project idea that I’m sort of loving and thought I would share with you guys. It was an accidental collaborative idea between the two of us— which makes it even better: Homemade, hand-sewn merit badges.
We’ve started collecting a handful of wilderness-type gear with our plans to live outside— you know, full-time camping life. And it’s given me an excuse to buy even more resource books to gather more knowledge to fill my hungry brain with. On Alex’s last trip to the US. I asked if he could pick me up some herbal books— well, he found one called, “Herbal Medic”— it’s decent. My only negative review so far (haven’t fully read it yet) is that I would like there to be pictures— or more pictures because I guess there are some. But the book is decent anyway and we all agree some of the knowledge might be useful for us living our very outside and secluded life.
With all our other favorite books packed up, with zero wifi, and games also tucked away, we have had a lot of quiet downtime once the sunsets. To avoid more packing and cleaning, we’ve mostly been passing around this one book. I suggested to Marlowe that we should set up challenges— safety protocols in the dark, and other need-to-know procedures. She was into the idea. And she added to the idea by suggesting we make badges to offer once each skill is learned. I loved the idea, obviously. Crafts and learning? Win/win. It’s given us a peek into what our future quiet, post-dinner, 6pm sunset life might be like for sure.
We’ve designed some after the chapters in the book, but also created some of our own…. She wants to make a “running badge”— I told her good luck with that, as I don’t think I’ll be earning that one anytime soon, haha. I want to earn an “aid in an emergency birth situation” haha. I have weird things on my bucket list— like a massive van-life road trip, stitch someone up, and I recently added, “assist someone in a birth” to my list 😉 We have a long list of skills and wilderness-based homeschool classes ahead of us.
Anyway, merit badges aren’t new. And making your own aren’t new. And survival /wildness skill challenges are also not new, but we’ve had fun thinking of our own challenges and creating coordinating badges to go with them— I thought maybe you guys would enjoy the idea too. Not sure if you guys will be needed to know about emergency stints, wound disinfection, or how to aid a scorpion sting anytime soon—- but maybe you could create badges for clean rooms, great grades, the best chef in the house, or whatever!
If you have embroidery thread and a needle, you’re pretty much set to go! We found leftover thin canvas and just used a pencil to sketch out our designs. Easy-peasy. You could always use an embroidery hoop too— but ours were already packed 🙂
Ps. The book, Herbal Medic is totally not sponsored. I’ll just forever be a book nerd and we found ourselves inspired by this one. Again, it’s decent. There are far better herbal books out there— (I like this one and this one) but this one is handy for safety out and emergency protocols out in the wilderness.