For those of you who know me well, this story may be very familiar to you. I think you would agree that it is a story worth telling over and over. I am pleased to say that it has inspired a few to follow me down the trail and sit for a while in their own backyard.
A handful of years ago, I was oh-so-fortunate to run in to an incredible group of folks in Toronto who were dedicating themselves to helping young people connect with nature in out of the ordinary, meaningful ways (The PINE Project). I was determined to get my children to these folks. It took us a couple of years to finally make it to a program, but once we did, our lives were changed. Five years ago, as I drove my youngest son to his first Teen Program at the Art of Mentoring, little did I know, that, not only was my son's life about to be filled up with soulful, transformational, goodness, but, I was about to be catapulted to a wonderful new level of nature awareness myself. It was here, during a week of nature immersion in the gentle hills that make up the Mansfield Recreational Centre that I was introduced to so many wonderful practices, one of them being 'the sit spot'.
The sit spot?: A spot to sit in nature and watch and listen and feel and soak it all in. To sit with nature. To be still. To hear for the quietest of sounds, feel the gentlest of breezes, watch the grass swaying, the leaves shimmering and, maybe just maybe, catch a glimpse of beaver, or chipmunk or hawk. And it sounds so simple, and yet twenty minutes of sitting, daily can be hard to find. And yet twenty minutes brings quiet, brings stories, brings answers, brings a sense of grounded belonging and connects us to who we are. It fuels a fire that can become so dim in the busy, hectic lives we live.
Why am I taking part in this fundraiser?
The PINE Project is transforming young and old people's lives in powerful, measurable ways. The philosophy, the approach, the skills, the relationships that are being handed down, developed and nurtured through this project is incredibly hopeful and effective. As parents we want our children to feel connected to this planet, confident in their relationship with themselves, each other and this earth. We want them to be guided by strong, conscientious people who are walking on this earth with care and foresight. My entire family and my community have benefited so much from what PINE is offering, I would like to help raise funds so that they can continue to make these programs accessible to all. All of the proceeds from Sit-a-thon 2017 will go to the Best Day Ever Fund, p.i.n.e.'s bursary program.
My aim is to raise $800 as I sit for six hours in the woods at the back of our farm! I promise to take some good pics and tell some good stories!
Sending you so much gratitude for reading through and for donating to a wonderful cause!