This morning with my window open, I am receiving the cool air as a gentle reminder that summer is coming to a close! I can see the sunflowers standing tall and reaching upward, but there is also an awareness that soon the leaves will fall and those seeds will scatter on the ground offering nourishment to birds and squirrels and the delightful possibility of more sunny flowers next summer.
It has been a very busy summer for me, with many exciting opportunities for learning and growth. I turned 50 in August! It is a season for harvesting my courage to truly embody the wisdom of the first half of my life. What an incredible gift to have made it this far with bountiful blessings of my health, a supportive family and a rich community. Leaning into the second half of my journey, I am guided by the words of Angeles Arrien. Her remarks about this threshold moment at midlife inspire me:
"Your character is opened, deepened, strengthened, softened. You return to your soul's highest values. You are now prepared to create your legacy: an imprint of your dream for our world—a dream that can fully come true in The Second Half of Life."
This summer, I reconnected with one of my dreams: to be of service as an artist and a teacher. Here are a few photos and highlights from my summer:
The Road Map Project
Working within The Road Map Project, I had the chance to use my skills as an artist and capture collaborative problem solving in real time. Working as a graphic recorder, I listened and then created a record of what transpired. I was truly amazing and I learned so much from the parents who participated on the leadership team.
As a Connect Facilitator at the Discovery Session for Middle School Youth at Caldera Arts Summer Youth Camp in Oregon, I helped youth to integrate all they were learning through arts in the natural world. I focused on ways to connect with themselves, one another and the natural world. The youth were strong and creative and the teaching artists were dedicated and shared their gifts so graciously. It was hard work and felt honored to be a part of such a powerful program.
Summer Educator Institute at SAM
Indigenous Voices: Part, Present and Future was the focus of this inspiring intensive. The Double Exposure Show at SAM allowed me to consider the complexity of the historical treatment of Native Americans, their contemporary radiance as artists, and their incredible resilience despite systemic oppression. Pictured here is Printmaker Fox Spears who writes: "The art that I make is intended to help fix the earth and build new Indigenous futures."
I hope you will write back and share your summer reflections with me!
Many blessings, Luci