Here, we nourish the creative life,
Here, we howl. - Clarissa Pinkola Estes PhD
(Fox reading by my dear friend, Pixie Campbell, click on photo to enlarge)
As Chelsea and I set up the tipi this morning we chatted about the totem animals that greeted us each morning during MGA 2010.
I said, "Lets see who comes to visit today".
No sooner had those words left my mouth, a fox appeared. (Photo above) She sat there and stared at us for quite some time. We knew she was there for us.
Entering the House of Belonging...
(The gorgeous Gypsy Caravan flags were donated by Art To Go and we're thrilled to have their creative presence in our camp!)
Anne, our 2011 intern arrived. Soon after, the girls came and I invited them to use the body markers and tattoos until all eight AMAZING girls were there. Then we formed a circle.
We meet in a circle. Why? Because the circle is an ancient symbol for the feminine. The circle is associated with wholeness and protection. It is a sacred ceremonial space where everyone in the circle is equal.
We began the morning with our Belonging Ceremony. I told them that we are here to celebrate our power and that one of the reasons we are mighty is that every single human on this planet arrived here through a woman - we are the gate keepers to earth. I recited a passage from a David Whyte poem...
"You are not a troubled guest on this earth,
you are not an accident...
you were invited from another"
I tied a piece of red Tibetan silk yarn around my wrist and began announcing my maternal lineage...
I am Wendy, invited here by my mother Joyce, invited by her mother Irma, invited by her mother Geneva. I passed the ball of yarn to the girl to the left of me and she did the same and so on until each girl recounted her maternal lineage acknowledging that she too, is invited.
After our opening ceremony we began the first half of our Validation Ceremony. Each girl wrote her name on a tag then placed it in a hat. The tags were shuffled and each girl drew a tag from the hat then sealed it in an envelope. She is to secretly observe the girl whose tag she chose and make a mental note of all the qualities that she admires. The mystery of this ceremony will be revealed on the last day of camp.
Before we begin creating, I like to give gifts. This morning's gift was Joy Juice mist from Lotus Wei. I am a big fan of Lotus Wei and I am humbled by their generosity.
We got right to work prepping our art journals. The art journal is the foundation of Mighty Girl Art camp. The girls sanded the pages and applied gesso. This took up most of the morning.
Did I mention the vintage aprons?
While the journals dried in the sun, we began our second project of the morning - prayer flags. Prayer flags are used to promote peace, compassion, strength, and wisdom to all beings. We used Kool-Aid to tie dye the fabric. Once the fabric dries we will use fabric markers to write our messages on them.
Before we closed our session, I gave the girls some home work. In the evening they will go on a Wisdom Walk with their moms. The mission of today's Wisdom Walk is to look for circles in nature. They will record their findings and incorporate these images when they begin creating background layers for their art journals.