My creative spirit is breathing more freely, reaching more deeply, stimulated and revived by two things: immersion in nature, and connection with children.
The summer outflow, or the winter drawing-in — both take us beyond our usual edges and into new awareness.
In the northern hemisphere you will be in the deep inner plunge into winter stillness, and so I have a link for you to a special message about winter.
Here it is the opposite. I’ve returned from a summer holiday at the bach with my family, including two young children, no TV, no screens, and no toys — just the playground of nature where every bird song is an event: the call of the pipiwharauroa (shining cuckoo) each morning, the whoosh of kereru (wood pigeon) wings just before nightfall, and the ring of the tui’s tones throughout the day.
In this world of nature, drama took the form of a shivering young thrush with a broken tail, that we found huddling under a bench in the rain. Celebration took the form of our release of the bird several hours later, after it had made a remarkable recovery in a darkened box with a hot water bottle for comfort and ripe karaka berries for food.
I was reminded how full of life and magic the world of nature is, and how much we are part of it.
On the first rainy day, I brought out three pieces of stiff cardboard, a collection of rain-kissed green leaves, a bag of stones, some handfuls of egg shells, a cluster of renga renga berries, we made nature pictures.
My three year old granddaughter Mika took the egg shells and crushed them into some little containers. Then she arranged the stones on her card.
Mira, the nine-year-old, made a fairy out of yellow and green leaves, with berry stalks for legs and arms.
I made a mandala.
We all loved what we did.
The next day the rain streamed down again and I brought in flax leaves. Mira wove little mats and Mika absorbed herself in splitting the flax into long narrow pieces and then cutting them into squares.
Children are naturally creative. Can you remember your curiosity as a child, and how you explored your world and experienced wonder?
What is happening for you right now?
If you are in the sensory deprivation cave of winter, you may be taking a deep dive within, and accessing inner guidance.
If you are in the drift of summer, you may be experiencing that awakening of the senses that can occur in this season.
Playing with children
Were any of you enjoying nature play or creating a summer solstice ritual with children?
A reader who ordered my book ‘Celebrating the Southern Seasons’, told me that she and a friend will be creating eight seasonal rituals this year with their children, using my book for guidance.
Here’s what they did at summer solstice at Cornwallis beach on Auckland’s Manukau harbour. They scratched through the dry grass to find the black sand beneath and made a spiral.
Isn’t it magical?
I was delighted to receive this from Jo, because it resonated surprisingly with my new writing project for 2018.
I’m so excited to tell you about this, and also about a new way that I can support you with the flowering of your own creativity.
If you are signed up to my Seasons Newsletter,* you will be able to find out more about both of these and to view the video of my first book reading from my bach. As you can see, I’ve returned regenerated and inspired!
Meanwhile, blessings on your creative spirits, whether you are in the depths of winter or the height of summer,
*To receive the Seasons Newsletter, you may sign up on the home page of this website, or on the pop up form on this page, and receive a free audio meditation.