Reminders from Acorn gathering

A couple weeks ago, my children and I attended Acorn gathering, a natural living skills community

11011564_10152854294048719_1107943943098580856_n event just north of Santa Barbara.  Five days of camping solo with my children often feels daunting to me, but at Acorn it was filled with ease.  My children were noticeably different;  the way they can sometimes seem frenetic, like animals in a cage/house seeking a diversion, was simply not there.  They were calm, intrigued, and enjoying themselves immensely making bows and arrows, primitive knives with flint, going for walks to a natural spring, playing “dark tag” in the glow of the campfire, playing and chatting under the stars.  They were free and peaceful.

I spent most of my time with my three year old, wandering from class to class, observing animal hides being preserved, creative sculptures made with cob, shoes made from buckskin and recycled bicycle tires, fire being made with two sticks, silk scarves dyed with plant hues, and so on.  My soul was filled by the deep rootedness to the earth and ancestors.  I relished being in a community that felt so attuned to what seems natural for us as humans and so conscious of their impact and connection to all of life.  In the evenings, people chatted and laughed near their sleeping children in tents, or sang and told stories by the fire. There was no Netflix and we not only survived, we were filled up by the moon, the stars, our dreams and visions.

It wasn’t all easy.  There were many moments that were disappointing, like not being able to fully participate in some of the classes I wanted…or lonely at times when I felt a bit outside of the social interaction. Still there was a palpable feeling that nourished me, like the ‘rightness’ that Jean Liedloff speaks of in her book “The Continuum Concept,” when we just know we have returned to the peace of our essential nature.  I felt myself reconnecting to this, I saw it in my children and I saw what it looks like in community which expanded my vision of what is possible for all of us.

Again it was clear that so much of the strife our lives with children, and society in general stems from the ways in which ‘modern life’ contradicts what is natural for humans to thrive.  And when our predominant community is running the same rat race, it is hard to remember what is true, underneath the rushed, isolated, layers of competition and consumerism. When ‘everyone is doing it’ it seems normal and we go along with it against our better judgment/intuition. This is why events like this are helpful; we may not be able to live this way at all times, but we can use them as a time to remember the essential…and consciously return to this in our lives back home. When we know more about what feels truly nourishing, we can reach toward more of what is truly loving for us as we care for ourselves and our families.

For us, this means bringing in more of what we enjoyed at Acorn; more singing, more outdoor games, more hiking, more open fields to shoot arrows in, more slowing down to nature’s pace, more nighttime play and stargazing…. and more kindred community to do all of this with :)

So as always, I will keep bringing this naturally conscious hope, healing and reconnection to North OC and our online friends and I invite you to join us, because this precious life deserves to be lived as deeply as possible!





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