As life unfolds certain memories repeat themselves. Whenever directed to go to a place of serenity during meditation I often go to places at my Grandfather River Cabin. At an early age of 51 My Grandmother passed. My Grandfather, Pop, (known affectionately by all), was an over the road truck driver. Pop retired, sold their beautiful grand old home on South Broadway and moved to their river cabin in Old Monroe, MO. My Aunts and Uncles also had cabins in this small river community.
Many a weekend I would spend with Pop, walking in the woods, looking for frogs mostly. Yes, he taught me to frog gig with a 22 rifle. I never quite got over the fact that even dead their leg muscles would react to the hot water and almost jump out of the pot, or was that just a story they told me to keep me away from the stove??? Fishing and hunting were a big way of life for Pop, he never shot or killed anything he did not consume in one way or another.
My Father also was very instrumental developing my love of Nature. He diligently took us to Missouri Conservation meetings. Even though at the time very boring for our young age we learned the right and wrong of hunting and fishing as well as to enjoy nature.
Now that I have more time in my own life and two (soon to be four) great little grandkids and a River Cabin, I feel the need to share with them as Pop did with me. No, I probably won’t teach them to kill frogs, actually we have tons of frogs in our own pond that the boys find great joy in watching and chasing as they emerge from tadpoles to tiny tiny frogs and toads. We will begin with simple sketching of plant and flowers.
Journaling is not new to me, ever since I participated in an Artist Way workshop (thanks Deb Weltman) I have been enjoying the freedom of thoughts through journaling. Nature Journaling came naturally. Then it hit, what a great way to get the boys really interested in Nature. So is the beginning of a new workshop. Nature Journaling with the Grandparents.
Whether it is synchronicity or fate, I truly believe. Two days ago a very dear friend of mine came to check on my pond he created 15 years ago. Todd would come to check every year but last year he was unable to make the rounds as usual. Todd is now back and working harder than ever and came to see me. We started talking about his experiences during this time. As devastating as they were Todd never complained but only elaborated on the wonderful time he was able to spend with his children, Eli 8 and Zoe 10. How going into nature with them was so healing for himself. Todd has volunteered Eli and Zoe to help me with my program and research. I’m so excited!!
The following two books have become glued to my arm where ever I go. My workshops utilize a lot of the format presented here.
Nature Journaling – Learning to Observe and Connect with the World Around You:
Clare Walker Leslie & Charles E. Roth
Nature Speak – Signs, Omens and Messages in Nature:
As a Grandparent I don’t want to miss this boat, they are growing up so fast!! I sure hope my boys will enjoy the Nature Journaling pathway as much as I plan to. Currently my grandchildren are a little too young (2 and 3) for the journaling but we still spend a lot of time in Nature and they love it!!
Colin and I play spiders and snakes, Willie and I crow like the roosters.
I’ll be adding a photo gallery of our adventures soon . . . . . . Thanks for taking the time with me . . .