Nature Journals

175 :: Nature Journals

Three years ago, the girls and I started nature journaling. What this looks like, for us, is gathering natural objects from our garden and walks; laying them all out over the table; and sketching and watercolor painting in our journals. We also write the names of plants and creatures and other items in French when we are inspired. Nature journaling is definitely about the process for us. We did it regularly for about two years and then got out of practice. Today we gathered around the table again, and I was so happy . . . even when Wallace started painting blue stripes all over his arms. I hope we will make space to nature journal all summer and into the fall. There’s nothing quite like the meditative space it inspires.

Poppy Muse

174 :: Poppies

My poppy muse has appeared,
June evenings
her dwelling place.

Late to bloom,
long to stay
with petals open
and falling
into tomorrow together.

Homeschooling Heart

132 :: Greenhouse Painting

This is where I found Amie on Mother’s Day: painting in the greenhouse. My girls have had a truly wonderful year in public school with excellent teachers and friends. But I think we all still have a homeschooling heart.

SCHOOL

126 :: Bubbles

SCHOOL

You’re like a little wild thing
that was never sent to school.
Sit, I say, and you jump up.
Come, I say, and you go galloping down the sand
to the nearest dead fish
with which you perfume your sweet neck.
It is summer.
How many summers does a little dog have?

Run, run, Percy.
This is our school.

– Mary Oliver

I think Mary Oliver would have made a wonderful homeschooling mom . . . for dogs and kids!

Seeding

117 :: Seeding

Here in a quiet and dusty room they lie,
Faded as crumbled stone or shifting sand,
Forlorn as ashes, shrivelled, scentless, dry –
Meadows and gardens running through my hand.

In this brown husk a dale of hawthorn dreams;
A cedar in this narrow cell is thrust
That will drink deeply of a century’s streams;
These lilies shall make summer on my dust.

Here in their safe and simple house of death,
Sealed in their shells, a million roses leap;
Here I can blow a garden with my breath,
And in my hand a forest lies asleep.

– Muriel Stuart