15 minutes sketching in the garden today. Summer has gone, but there is much beauty still to be found in the garden.
Amidst the usual nationwide September back-to-school hullabaloo, it was business as usual here at the Live Grow Nourish Create “Academy”
This week the boys have cycled, practiced shooting hoops in the (now deserted) basketball court, marvelled at the Number Devil, been to swimming classes, sketched ten tiny things, enjoyed reading and listening to poetry from this marvellous book and CD, hung out with other home-ed friends, been inspired by the amazing athletes competing in the Paralympics and had a hand in making the very welcome first batch of apple chutney of the season:
And because not-being-back-at-school didn’t wear them out too much, we were able to all enjoy taking in the beautiful sunset at a nearby beach:
It may be the end of summer, but there’s still plenty to enjoy in life, as always.
And just for Ben Naga, here’s the apple chutney recipe I use (give or take a chilli ) Hopefully you can read my writing
August has just flown by and we haven’t participated in any of Daisy Yellow’s Daily Paper Prompts – until now, that is. Prompt #28 is to go out into the garden and sketch what you see. And we did just that.
Here’s Waif and his muddy knees observing some flowers and stones:
And here are his sketches:
Gman assesses the progress of his sketching:
And here’s his finished sketchbook page:
For me, this assignment was somewhat bittersweet. I enjoyed sketching, and found curling and decaying leaves and flowers to be particularly gratifying to sketch…but it did all feel like rather a reminder that summer is, indeed, all but over . Here’s my page:
Yesterday we visited one of our favourite local nature reserves, Dersingham Bog. The heather is in full flower, with loads of bees and insects buzzing about; more dragonflies than I’ve ever seen; and – look! – the sun even made an appearance! As evidenced by our squinting faces:
DH took this superb photo of a some cross leaved heath:
There’s something quite bizarre and alien about it, but I find it really appealing!
He also took this picture of patterns in the trail, which I am itching to turn into stitch somehow or other:
And in the garden this week, we have had a little croaky visitor:
And yet another shot that’s crying out to be turned into stitch:
Ah, nature. Just stop, notice, appreciate.
This past week has been a busy one, with visits to friends and family; nights out with girlfriends; three picnics; a trip to a nearby waterpark; walks in the woods…all very lovely, but by the weekend I found my brain felt a bit fuzzy! This week looks like being another packed one, but I am going to try my very best to make more time for this:
Although, looking at my posture, I think I may need to sit forward a bit . Any posture tips from meditation gurus would be most appreciated!
And more time for slow nature rambles, especially when there’s a chance of spotting something as awesome as this lizard:
I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a native lizard before. I think it’s a female common lizard. She caught my eye as she ran across the path, and then kept very, very still as Gman took her photo. Just wonderful.
Yep, it’s time for a couple more weird and wonderful words!
First up, n for nepheligenous – producing clouds of tobacco smoke. I was imagining a forest made of cigarettes when I sat down to sketch, but not sure it came out ever so well. Never mind!!
Do you think the world is evil? If so, you could have a case of malism - the belief that the world is evil.
I just love Gman’s interpretation of an evil world!
And, we got well ahead of the game with Sketch Tuesday this week. The assignment, due Monday 6th August, is to “Sketch a rock or a pile of rocks or something you do with rocks.”
Here’s Gman’s collection of sparkly crystals and rocks:
And Waif’s “colourful and shiny rocks”:
And I chose a holey rock to sketch:
For all you home educators, I do recommend taking part in Sketch Tuesday. It’s a bit of non-competitive fun; all are welcome to join; and I can recommend sketching as a lovely, relaxing way to spend half an hour or so together. It works for us anyway – meditation in action
Today, while Waif was joining in with a football session at the local sports centre (that’s soccer to my American friends ), Gman & I went for a wander round the local neighbourhood. Popping in to the Sally Army charity shop, I couldn’t believe my luck at finding this super selection of bargain books:
Funnily enough, I had, last night, just read a review of “Seeking Silence in a Noisy World” and added it to my “to read” list on Goodreads (which, incidentally, never seems to get any shorter…I wonder why that is?!) so I was especially pleased to see this for the princely sum of £1.20!
On returning home, I was struck by the beauty of the echinacea flowers in our garden, and thought I would share a couple of photos, as it’s been a while since my last flowery post!
What has made you smile today?
This is kind of a continuation on the theme of fakeness…
I recently came across Bodhipaksa’s blog “bodhi tree swaying” and in particular his series on fake Buddha quotes. With the preponderance of quotation sites online, it is easy enough to grab a “Buddha” quote to fit what you want to say…but are they genuine quotes of the Buddha? One I have used in particular in the past is “If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change“. I love this quote; I find it inspiring and I believe that others do too. But after reading a few of Bodhipaksa’s posts on fake Buddha quotes, I suspected that it might not be authentic. It turns out I was right! Bodhipaska writes:
It’s from page 112 of Jack Kornfield’s “Buddha’s Little Instruction Book,” in which Jack “distilled and adapted an ancient teaching for the needs of contemporary life.” This is a common pattern: if a book is called “The Teaching of Buddha” or “Buddha’s Little Instruction Book” then people jump to the conclusion that any quote from it is the teaching of the Buddha or one of the Buddha’s instructions. It’s not the fault of the author, of course…
So the quote is fake. I do vow to be more mindful in attributing quotes, and checking sources. But in some ways, I think, does it matter? If the phrase is one which is in line with the Buddha’s teachings, and is helpful to people treading the path, how important is it that the quote be “authentic”? I would be interested to hear others’ thoughts on this.
I have also been skimming through The Life of Milarepa (I will read it properly soon ) and came across this:
Showing others the path
When you don’t know the way
Harms yourself and others
This has become jumbled up in my self doubts of yesterday. Though I don’t think I am trying to show others the path, but only to share thoughts that I have found helpful and others may do too. I think if we took this Milarepa quote too literally, then there would be very few dharma teachers, and that could hardly be a good thing! But it is certainly something to chew on.
But – hey – flowers are wonderful, in the eyes of Jack Kornfield and many others, so today I am going to share a few from my garden. A miracle, every one of them. Enjoy
OM ~ Mothering through Yoga
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