Moon Challenges

Moon Challenges are moon-long practices that focus your learning and expand your awareness.  I was inspired to do my first Moon challenge after watching a TED talk.  I encourage you to select a topic from the list or choose your own adventure.  Once you've picked a theme, start your challenge on the next New Moon.

Photo of Moon

Examples of my challenges:

Spring Ephemeral Moon (Apr-May 2017) – seek out and photograph ~12 spring ephemerals (i.e., perennial plants who emerge, bloom, and typically wither away early in the green season, prior to canopy trees' leafing out)

Early Bird Moon (Mar-Apr 2017) – get outside before the sun rises to take in the sounds of spring

Bird Call Moon (Feb-Mar 2017) – record and upload to eBird the calls of 15 bird species

Tree Twig Moon (Jan-Feb 2017) – photograph and sketch a twig of at least 15 tree species

Shrub Twig Moon (Feb-Mar 2016) – photograph and sketch a twig of at least 15 shrub species

Bark Moon (Jan-Feb 2016) – observe and photograph the bark of at least 15 tree species

Mushroom Moon (Sept-Oct 2015) – seek out a wild mushroom every day to appreciate and (at least attempt) to identify

Digital Detox Moon (Aug-Sept 2014) – nature time without binoculars, watch, headphones, cell phones, cameras (you choose)

Blog-free Moon (Jan 2014)– if you blog regularly, try taking a moon off to switch things up

"Who Am I?" Moon (Nov-Dec 2013) – find out who you are by keeping a running list of every species of plant, animal, fungus, and alga that you consume

Wild Berry Butterfly Moon (Jul-Aug 2013) – a perfect mid-late summer challenge; search for butterflies while gathering wild berries all moon

Sit Spot Moon (Apr-May 2013) – quiet down and observe nature by grounding yourself each day in the same spot

Wetland Loop Moon (Mar-Apr 2013) – an early spring practice to locate and learn about local ponds, streams, and vernal pools

Sketch Moon – take time each day to sketch something you find in nature

Examples of Jenny's challenges:

eBird Moon (Apr-May 2017) – submit 12+ complete eBird checklists (with 4+ solo birding)

Sunrise Moon (Mar-Apr 2017) – get outdoors to watch 12+ sunrises (with 4+ at the ocean)

Photo of Monarch male

More ideas to consider...

One-a-Day Moon – choose a focus and locate a different species each day to observe, sketch, sit with, identify, or photograph, etc. (Sample topics include: Flowering Plant, Tree, Shrub, Fern, Bird, Mushroom, Insect, Butterfly, Mammal Tracks, etc.)

One Plant Challenge – observe one particular plant (wildflower, shrub, tree, fern, etc.) daily during a time of rapid growth

Old Tree Moon – choose one, old tree to spend time with every day

Ribbit Moon – locate and learn about all the local frog species you can find

Bird Moon – from a distance observe the behaviors and habits of a single pair of birds

Mammal Sign Moon – look for various signs of mammals, such as scat, tracks, runs, and rubs

Seed Moon – locate and sketch different seeds or plants that have gone to seed

Weather Moon – step outside at least 3 times per day and record the weather (temp, clouds, wind, humidity)

Moon Moon – observe the changing face of the Moon

Star Moon – when clear skies permit, find a dark spot to observe and learn some constellations

Nocturnal Moon – listen for owls, mammals, and insects and get familiar with the creatures of the night

Sunshine Moon – avoid the use of all electric lighting and enjoy a month with only fire and sun-light

Gratitude Moon – express gratitude each day through speech, writing, song, or dance

Camping Moon – sleep some, many, most or all nights outdoors

Barefoot Moon – walk outdoors barefoot for some part of each day

Fire Moon – cook, craft, or simply sit with a fire daily

Primitive Fire Moon – create fire daily using a primitive technique (hand drill, bow drill, fire plow, etc.)

Intro to Wild Food Moon – kick-start your wild food journey by researching and locating common wild edibles, learning poisonous plants, attending edible plant walks and/or spending time with a local forager

Wild Food Moon – eat wild foods once-a-day, at every meal, or exclusively for a moon cycle

Wandering Moon – locate and explore new (to you) wild places, back-roads, conservation lands, cemeteries, ponds, parks, etc. close to home