“It is good to know that out there, in a forest in the world, there is a cabin where something is possible, something fairly close to the sheer happiness of being alive.”– Sylvain Tesson
Depending on where you live, heading to the cabin to recharge is a time-honored practice, or what Always Uttori calls a folkway. In Minnesota, instead of going to the warm and sunny south, there are many who are, instead, drawn to the soft quiet of a snow-covered wood, the reassuring crunch of walking over a frozen lake, and the serenity and solace of good company beside a warm fire, all of which represent the contentment to be found in life at the cabin. It is no wonder then that, for some, this annual winter pilgrimage to the northern woods is engrained in the soul.
If you’re lucky enough to have a cabin nestled deep in a tranquil wood, or even if you’re not, and, like many of us, can only dream of the life lived in a cozy cabin, we hope you’ll enjoy these 5 rituals of the folkway that you can bring into your winter season to capture that sense of tranquility inherent in the cabin life folkway. Plus, we’ve included 2 bonus rituals. Best of all, you can practice the rituals from the comfort of either your home or your cabin so that you’re living Uttori to the fullest.
Cabin Life Rituals to Capture Uttori
Set up a tent in your living room/make a pillow fort
If you can’t get to a cabin, pitch your tent indoors or make a pillow fort (the pillow fort can apply to cabin life too!). If you can’t get away, changing your space creates a sense of novelty and escape. Even doing something like making a pillow fort at the cabin makes for a fun activity to indulge in at the cabin.
Roast, or oven bake, S’mores
Make smores with a bonfire or wood burning fireplace. If you don’t have that option, you can easily recreate them in the oven by assembling your graham crackers with chocolate on one half and a marshmallow on the other. Roast in the oven for about 5 minutes at 400 degrees and you have fresh oven roasted s’mores.
Make stovetop potpourri
If you are at a cabin, try gathering pleasantly scented materials from the surrounding area (if it is ok to do so) to bring the outdoors in. If you are looking to bring the cabin to your home then try the recipe below.
This potpourri recipe is from The Herbal Academy and brings the smell of a forest to your home.
*5-6 evergreen sprigs,
*1 lime or lemon thinly sliced
*juniper berries, pinecones, etc. for decoration.
Place in a pot of water and simmer on and off making sure the water doesn’t evaporate
completely. Lasts for several days.
Play nature sounds in your home or try to identify animals and bird calls you hear at the cabin
Sound can be healing and relaxing, so if you don’t have a cabin of your own, find some nature sound videos on YouTube like this one here, to bring the feeling of being at cabin home.
If you are at a cabin, make a game out identifying the animal sounds you hear around. Check out this website to get a start on animal sound identification.
Get cozy with your favorite hot drink, a blanket and a good tv show or book
It might be a little obvious, but one of the best things about cabin life is getting the chance to get away and take a break. So put on your comfy clothes, get a warm blanket and a hot drink and indulge in something you enjoy but haven’t had time to do.
Uttori Read Recommendations
- Mystery/Fantasy: Fairy Tale by Stephen King
- Audiobook: Sherlock Homes: The Voice of Treason by George Mann and Cavan Scott
- Family Listening: The Three Musketeers by Alexander Dumas
- Fantasy Fiction: The Fade Series by Luke Arnold
- Non-fiction: 2030 by Mauro F. Guillen
Uttori Watch Recommendations (Mostly Netflix)
- Korean Remake of Dix Pour Cent, also known as Call My Agent: Behind Every Star – Netflix
- Neil Gaiman fan: The Sandman Netflix
- Witcher Fan: Blood Origin with Michelle Yeoh – Netflix
- The Peripheral – Amazon Prime
- Jaime Foxx Fan: They Cloned Tyrone – Netflix
Bonus Tip One:
Dress the part. Ok, this isn’t exactly a tip, but how else were we supposed to talk about the fashion we’re presenting in this post. Cabin life requires layers of course! Boots, and jackets for nippy wind and trekking through forests. A touch of prep with argyle, button downs, and dress pants to stand out from your flannel wearing family members.
Bonus Tip Two:
Revel in the transformation. There is something in pausing to watch snow fall, in appreciating how the world transforms with layers of freshly fallen snow. Taking the time to do nothing but watch this process of transformation is to accept the invitation to tranquility. Clear your mind of the need to do, and fill your mind with images of bonfires, cozy socks, and a good book.
If you don’t want to make your own potpourri, but still want the feeling of cabin life in your home, check out our room sprays and wax melts inspired by this cabin life fashion editorial. Visit our Etsy store here to try Cabin Life, a scent that transports you to a brisk morning in the Northern Woods surrounded by the homey scents of woodsy cedar, apple, and pine. This scent is available as a room spray and a wax melt. Depending on when you’re reading this article, the scent is available seasonally (fall/winter).