I love the beginning of spring. Days start to get longer and warmer, the tiny strawflower seeds Sunny-Tao planted 8 weeks ago are flowering. The chookies are happily laying their eggs and stratching around for any titbits they can find.
We are so fortunate we have lots of trees for native birds to nest around our home, so we are seeing lots of newly hatched birds; Noisy Miners, Peewees, Scaly-Breasted Lorikeets, Rainbow Lorikeets and Spotted Turtle Doves, who love nothing more than feasting on our spoilt chookies organic grain. Then there's the musical talent of a family of Magpies, which fills our auditory senses with their unique sound.
I have always loved growing veges, not that they have always grown particularly well. Recently I have been researching the 'science' of soil and Darryl and the boys bought me a fantastic book ''Organic Vegetable Gardening'' By Annette McFarlane, which has been an amazing resource.
So this month our focus is on growing veges, herbs and flowers from seed. Nurturing the seeds with nourishing start and making sure its environment is perfect for it to thrive and grow into a strong and healthy plant, which will in turn nourish us with its nutrients.
We are like those seeds. We have a critical period in our early years that sets the foundation for our later development. Like the seeds we have innate characteristics, past-life energies, genetic pre-dispositions, etc. The nurturing and nourishing of that seed within the womb, and just as importantly pre-conception nurturing and nourishing of both parents so the tiny being growing is given the greatest chance of having an optimal start to life. (A great reference on pre-conception health is "The Natural Way to Better Babies" By Francesca Naish and Janette Roberts, if you are interested in finding ways to enhance your health prior to conceiving).
From those tiny seeds, big things grow. Its up to us to nurture and nourish our children so they grow optimally, reaching their true potential as human beings. Nurturing their spirits with calm and compassionate care, nourishing their physical bodies with nutritious whole food and naturally educating with stimulating real life experiences.
Seed exploration is such a fun-filled activity to enhance natural learning and appreciation of nature. We have a variety of certified organic seeds. We look at the differences and imagine what these tiny objects are going to grow into. Then we either sprinkle or place then into seed trays and let nature work her magic, with a mist of water twice a day and the massive ball of energy in the sky shining down to create life.
As these seeds were beginning their life cycle, one of our much loved chookies, Jenny ended hers. She had been sick with a prolapse and never really made a full recovery. The homeopathic treatment, green rich diet and heaps of love and cuddles were not enough to help her survive. We gave her back to the earth with nastursium flowers and gratitude for the nourishing eggs and humour she bought to our lives.
We spoke about where her soul or spirit may have gone. Sunny-Tao said she will now be a butterfly and Finn said he thought she may be an eagle. We often speak of reincarnation and the immortality of our spirits.
A wonderful book on lifecycles is 'Beginnings and Endings with Lifetimes in between', By Bryan Mellonie and Robert Ingpen. It is a beautiful, touching book to read when a much loved pet dies to give comfort to both adults and children with its sensitive descriptions of death and the magic of living.
So the everyday experience of a pet dying along with exploring and planting seeds, are just two tiny examples of the simplicity of natural learning. Learning from life and all its experiences. As John Holt stated (How Children Learn) "There is no difference between living and learning'....
My goal as a natural learning parent is to foster a love of learning in my children, which in turn fosters a love of life.