Happy Summer, Friends.
It's been glorious and hot. The air has been clear with more blue sky than I've seen for several summers. I am so grateful for the extremely mild fire season we have had so far this year.
My summer has been full and is quickly flying by. I spent much of July traveling and guided 4 Forest Bathing Walks. I attended The First Annual International Forest Bathing Conference at Sonoma State University. It was wonderful connecting with many of my forest therapy guide colleagues and friends from North America, Europe and Asia. It was exciting to experience the collaboration that is taking place as Forest Therapy takes hold as a solid, evidence-based wellness practice. There were cutting edge insights into the world of forest therapy and forest bathing practices and sessions related to new and emerging science on the benefits of nature connection. It is a reciprocal connection. "It's not just about the forest healing humans; it's about humans and the forest healing each other." Workshops offered creative and sensory approaches to forest therapy and informed us of some very exciting collaborations and partnerships being built in the profession, including with The U.S. Forest Service and ParkRx America. It was great to meet professionals from The U.S. Forest Service and several medical professionals, doctors and educators who are now Certified Nature and Forest Therapy Guides. Being at this gathering of like-minded/like-hearted people, joined together in learning, actualizing, and celebrating was incredibly heart-warming and inspiring.
I stopped in my old home of Ashland, Oregon on my return to Boise and guided a forest bathing experience in magical, Lithia Park, where we all relished the cool morning as we breathed in the crystal clean air. While in Ashland, I had a surprise meet up with my friend, Julia Plevin, founder of The Forest Bathing Club in San Francisco and author of, "The Healing Magic of Forest Bathing." We reconnected as we slowly guided ourselves through some very slow time at Lithia Park.
From Ashland, I headed North and East to Breitenbush Hot Springs, for a couple of quiet days in The Willamette National Forest, where I soaked in the healing wild waters; dunked each day in the icy Breitenbush River and immersed in the forest. I discovered a lovely new trail for the first time, called, "The Inner Path." I had a meeting with their events coordinator and after one and a half years of being wait-listed, I have been given dates for the forest bathing retreat I'll be guiding there in May, 2020. Join me at this beautiful, healing resort for some slow-time and letting-go as we connect with "The More Thank Human World", ourselves and one another in the elemental medicine of the forest.
Wild Wellness Guide has three Forest Bathing Walks coming up next week in Boise. Two morning walks, one at The Idaho Botanical Garden and one at The Foothills Learning Center. There is also a walk at the beautiful Julia Davis Park Rose Garden, in the magical evening twilight.
Next month I'm off to Colorado to assist at an A.N.F.T. Forest Therapy Guide Training for 10 days. I'll be posting more dates for Autumn Forest Bathing Experiences soon.
If you have not made it yet to one of my events, please come and discover this beautiful facilitated, mindfulness practice of slowing down and connecting in a new way, through your senses to the natural world, yourself and with others. There are still openings for all my walks next week, though The Botanical Garden date is rapidly filling.
I hope you are getting outside and slowing down. A few days ago, while doing qigong practice in The Boise Foothills, in the early evening, under my favorite Oak tree, a beautiful, large spotted Bobcat, gracefully wandered past.
Be well and may you be with the forest and may the forest be with you.
"The Forest is The Therapist, The Guide Opens The Door."