Love Letters {February 2013}

February 2013 workshop

SPREAD THE LOVE :: Art Heals, Love Heals

It is the season for LOVE, and in this month’s workshop, we focused our creative expression on opening our hearts and spreading love. The girls sketched a heart shape {added their own unique embellishments} and carved it onto a rubber stamp.  Using their one-of-a-kind stamps, and gelatin plates and templates they made beautiful monoprints ~ the perfect colorful expression of love, perfect as a Valentine’s Day card, or simply to SPREAD THE LOVE any day of the year.   These LOVE LETTERS were sent to their friends from Gather {old and new, alike}. They took home a few extras that can be used to spread a little love, kindness, and thoughtful words to those who may be in need. The world needs more love letters; wouldn’t you agree?

In this day and age, when almost everyone is on their smartphones, computers, or iPads, and a little “disconnected” from one another, it may seem old-fashioned to create a card, express your thoughts on a hand written note, and send it through the postal service. But imagine being the recipient of that beautiful letter and work of art delivered straight to your door ~ it can warm your heart and soul; it can heal and inspire.

We are so grateful for the girls that joined us for this fun-filled, expressive workshop, and joyfully SPREAD THE LOVE, the love that heals. It was a  day that was filled with lots of creative expression, art techniques, printmaking skills, and, of course, at the heart of it all…mindfulness, meditation, and yoga.

Our yoga offering of the day including a lot of “heart opening” poses which were embraced by all the girls.  And our mindfulness practice centered on loving-kindess, gratitude and sending out loving thoughts to ‘secret buddies’.  It is such a wonderful opportunity to see them, as they learn to explore, accept and acknowledge a greater sense of self through yoga and mindfulness.  They have fun, they laugh, they fumble in their “steadiness” ~ but that is all perfect.  We are planting seeds.  Who knows when or where the girls will use their mindful skills and their breath work and yoga …. who knows.  But, from their conversations with us ~ they are finding their way, uniquely.  Some use it before a test – to calm and center; some before bedtime – to soothe and relax; some with friends – to respond rather than react.  It is with such gratitude that we get to be witness to this.

Each lovely young girl took home a  hand-carved Heart Stamp, a collection of Monoprint Cards in bright, cheery colors, and Love Letters ~ in a personalized fabric pouch stamped with …. what else?,  LOVE.  We drew names from our Tibetan Singing Bowl … in order to write one Love Letter of inspiration and kindness to another friend from Gather; it was stamped and delivered! Oh, how I wonder what giggles of delight, what warmth and gratitude ensued when the girls received their letters in the mail?  For after all … art heals, love heals.

  1. Ashley K

    My favorite part of the Gather February workshop was the meditating. After that, I finally knew how to go to sleep at night. I used my breath as an anchor, and when I opened my eyes, I was suddenly ready for the morning (not like the average kid)!

    February 22nd, 2013 // Reply
    • Cheryl Smith Alvarez

      Ashley,

      I am so happy that you’ve been able to incorporate meditation and mindfulness into your everyday life. Isn’t it wonderful to use your breathe to bring about a sense of calm, peace and relaxation? Good job!

      February 23rd, 2013 // Reply

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