Tender Tracks Tues. Day 11

Oct. 18, 2016
Waning Moon
Lake Lagunitas

Kai was not with us today and Michelle brought her 10 year old daughter and 8 year old son. They are always such a great addition to our days.
I will be posting over 20 photos of today as it was a very special and great day.
• made fire by friction/hand drill
• used all the fire making material that we gathered last week before the rains
• We filled the big pot with water and then with the large amount of dried Pomegranate rinds that were given to me ( we have been eating and looking at pomegranates and their rinds over the last few weeks)
• We made popcorn
• Fire roasted sweet potatoes
• Had a great morning circle
• Met their two new friends: Eland and Nayela
• Dyed our capes

Well, that is the gist and here are some more details.
Right as we walked out of the bus and onto the Earth, before Michelle arrived, we found a fully intact Raven, dead upon the ground. It did not seem like it had been dead for very long as there was still a great deal of flexibility in it. We were all so very fascinated by this BEAUTIFUL being. We finally gathered it up and took it to our spot for the day and laid it in a nice and protected spot. We then got all that we needed for our day’s adventure for dying our capes. Right about then Michelle and her children arrived. The children played a little bit while we Michelle and I set up morning circle.

Morning circle was so very, very sweet, calm and very present. Most of them were mesmerized with Nayela and watched her the entire time we sang as she sang. The story was about how the Yellow Jacket Sisters were the original Guardians of the Fire and how the animal people stole the fire from them. From that journey they all learned how to coax the fire out of trees and that is why we sit around fires and tell stories during the long winter months. We did a “backwards day” where they ate some of their lunch and drank their own water for snack,because it would take too long for us to get snack ready due to making fire. So, when they ate their lunch they then got the popcorn.

After circle it was time to play a bit and Michelle and I moved our camp to our favorite fire pit that was earlier taken. Everything got set up so nicely and then, it was time to make the fire. Our first fire of the year!! Kuba, Isabella, Archer and Ruby took turns holding the “nest” for the fire. The nest is the dried grasses with cattail and thistle down inside of it. Michelle took our her hand drill and the children all took turns, the way it was done in the story, on the hand drill to “coax” the fire out of the tree/wood. It was taking a long time and someone remarked upon this. And my thoughts are, It is soooo good to have these things take time because taking time provides room to more deeply experience what is going on. It provides time for moments to unfold, no real rush, being present in the moment and the ability to be still, wait, postpone the desires so that when the desire is fulfilled it is truly received and welcomed with gladness. And with that, the smoke started to come. The delicious smell of burning wood began and then, and then, and then, A BABY COAL!! Michelle gently tended it and got it ready to be placed in the nest. I held that and then I gently blew on it to bring it more to life. Each of the children added their breathe to it and then we put it in the other material in the fire pit and POOOOFFFFFF the flame came but, we had to continue working with it very carefully so that it would not go out and so that it would continue to stay alive. And we were successful! The fire burned, we built it up and stability took place.

Then I put the popcorn in the over the fire air popper. But alas, the fire was too strong so the first batch burned. It got dumped into the fire and a new batch was put in that came out GREAT!!!

Water was put into the kettle with the pomegranate rinds by Jake, Skylar and Archer. The three of them took turns pouring the water via the faucet or holding the kettle pot. Then off to the fire. From here Kuba found his calling: he with the most focused intent, tended that fire before and after lunch with such love, care and a knowing that “I can do this!”

Jesse and Ruby played down by the water with a great deal of peace and joy. Skylar, Eddie and Isabella were REALLY taking care of the Raven. They made it a great blanket. I was told though that at one point Isabella and Ruby were about to stomp on it. Their mischief was intercepted. Jake and Archer got back into sticks and for quite some time they were really doing great but then, something changed in them and from that point on we had to stop with sticks again. This might take a while for them and I do hope that their enthusiasm for their games will combine with the awareness of others physical bodies. A bit more time for them on this.

Towards the end of the day, after the dye pot had boiled and the color was bright and beautiful we put the redwood cone dye in a plastic bucket and poured the hot dye in a cooled pot so we could transport it. From there we called all the children in and, one by one, they chose the color they wanted, put their cape in the pot and with a stick pushed it down until the white color was gone, gone.

Then there was cleaning everything up, putting out the fire fully and making our way to the bus. Many games of course of make believe were played throughout the day as, like in a village, the children would come in and out to be with all that was being offered, eat lunch and enjoy life. 🙂

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