living a well tended life... at any age

“this book was a tree”: review & giveaway!

A few disclosures, first.

1. Marcie Cuff is a fellow blogger, neighbor and dear friend.

2. I was planning on reviewing this book before Marcie asked me to participate in her book tour – that’s how much I love this book:

This Book Was a Tree is for anyone who feels a little (or a lot) disconnected from the outdoors.

And maybe a little intimidated too.

One would think, given that I have designed gardens for a living for many years, that I would be immersed in nature on a daily basis.

Nope.

Aside from work I rarely venture out into the natural world – no walks, no scavenger hunts, no hikes in the woods.

And that is why I love this book so much. As Marcie puts it, “we live in a spectacular time of unprecedented digital connectivity. Yet never before have we been so disconnected from the natural world.”

So true. So Marcie has taken a bold step toward remedying this with her magical, wonderful “guidebook for becoming a modern pioneer.”

This Book Was a Tree is filled with beautiful prose, charming illustrations, and – most importantly – fun, inspired ideas designed to connect (or re-connect) with the natural world.

The projects range from  felting wool, to making “seedbombs” (!!), assembling a nature junk journal from an upcycled book, and germinating edible sprouts.

Ironically, the first project I decided to tackle was  probably the simplest:

Explore More.

In my birthday post I alluded to some private promises I made to myself – one of which was to try to get outside every day. And the chapter in Marcie’s book that spoke to this was just the kick I needed to get started.

There’s even a contract.

this book was a tree

And I took the opportunity of the first beautiful day we’ve had in many months to prep my gardens and really look around.

hellebore

nepeta

lilac

I’m delighted to have a copy of This Book Was a Tree  – along with a handmade bookmark – to give away to two lucky readers!

this book was a tree

Simply leave a comment sharing how you connect with nature – no matter how big or small that connection is. Be sure to include your e-mail address if it’s not already linked to your comment. The giveaway is open through Sunday, April 13th at 5 p.m. EST. The winners will be chosen at random, and announced on Monday, April 14th. Update: Nicole S. and Sara B. are the lucky winners! Thanks for participating!

If you’d like to read more, take a look at what some of these wonderful writers have to say about Marcie’s book – you may discover some new blogs to love as well (I know I have)!

Week One:
4/1 House Wren Studio
4/2 Mindful Momma
4/3 The Long Thread
4/4 Maya Made

Week Two:
4/7  Rebecca Sower
4/8  Sara Bakes Cakes
4/9  Donuts Dresses and Dirt
4/10 Tinkerlab
4/11 Resurrection Fern

Week Three:
4/14 Small Measure
4/15 Lil Fish Studios

Note: I was given two complimentary copies of This Book Was a Tree. No other compensation was received, and all comments and opinions are – as always – completely my own.

103 Comments

  1. Sandra on April 9, 2014 at 10:17 am

    How do I get out in nature? Well, I don’t think that I can avoid it living in Vancouver on the west coast of Canada. It’s ALL about hiking and skiing and road biking and running. You just get absorbed into the outdoors borg by osmosis.

    My daughter is an active girl and up for anything so luckily it’s not a chore to convince her to go for a walk or a hike. And with mountains just 20 minutes from downtown and being on the Pacific Ocean, we have lots of choice for a quick venture or something more adventurous.

    • allison on April 12, 2014 at 6:27 pm

      Oh what a lucky, lucky girl you are!!!! BC is by far my most favorite place that I have visited. It truly is my version of Utopia!

  2. Jeff Ray on April 9, 2014 at 1:34 pm

    Over much time I’ve lost my childhood connection with nature. While health and location minimize my ability to return to such simple joys, I still try to find some connections. The most prominent is my humble sit-spot out on my small wooden deck. It overlooks a small creek and green area. While not as satisfying as feeling rich humus beneath my feet, it certainly offers endless wonders and pleasures.

    Thanks for making this giveaway possible.

  3. handmade by amalia on April 9, 2014 at 2:00 pm

    What a lovely lovely book! And it does make you think. My main source of inspiration is the beach, that early morning walk is one of the great joys of my day. But there is so much more out there, makes me wonder at all the time I spend inside.
    Thanks for organizing this!

  4. Nicole Sender on April 10, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    This book is awesome! I connect with nature by growing my own vegetables and planting flowers that attract hummingbirds and bees!

  5. Brodie on April 12, 2014 at 9:31 am

    I try to get outside at night whenever possible. Usually to stargaze at the infinite wonders of the universe. But there are infinite wonders in our OWN world too and I’m so excited to read this book as a source of inspiration in connecting with nature! I do feel a connection during my night time backyard wandering, though. Without all the traffic and human noise-making of the day, every other sound is amplified. Crickets chirping, the rustle of leaves… even the air smells fresher to me. In that stillness, I find I appreciate everything around me more. The cool breeze, the feel of the grass under my feet, the silhouette of the trees against a moonlit sky…. it’s breathtaking.

    I would absolutely love to be entered in to win a copy of this book, but as I live in Australia, I completely understand if the giveaway is not open internationally. Thank for the opportunity either way!

  6. Kirsten on April 12, 2014 at 3:30 pm

    Spending the first afternoon of gardening today, and boy has it been a long time. There’s a difference between ‘passing through’ outside and really BEING outside & connecting. Funnily enough I just snapped a screen shot of this book on IG today bc I wanted to check it out… 🙂

  7. Hannah on April 12, 2014 at 6:18 pm

    Happily I have an almost 2 year old daughter who LOVES the outdoors. We spend a lot of time out there, I love watching her discovery of nature. She tends to want to wander instead of playing on playground equipment, therefore we tend to stick to the wooden areas of parks. It is LOVELY!

  8. Sarah Reames on April 12, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    I love taking my daughter outside. She is currently obsessed with everything the “birdies” do and will soon be making her up her own potted plant to take care of

  9. Amanda on April 12, 2014 at 6:21 pm

    I would love to win this book. Came here from The Artful Parent and it looks like just the type of read I could use right now 🙂 We bought our first house last year, and this is the first season I’ve really gotten out in the yard and am spending every day connecting with the layout, digging, pruning, preparing soil, observing the sunlight patterns and learning from the earth here in my home. It’s really quite wonderful.

  10. melanie martinez on April 12, 2014 at 6:23 pm

    I incorporate nature in my artwork. I prefer to work outdoors surrounded by the warm sun and fresh air.

  11. kathi dunphy on April 12, 2014 at 6:24 pm

    I am an organic market gardener and as soon as the snow is gone I’m out in my gardens more than I’m inside. Love this time of year when the geese and robins return and we’re listening in the evenings for the first spring peepers!

  12. Beth on April 12, 2014 at 6:25 pm

    I love to spend time on an uncrowded beach. Collecting shells and watching the waves.

  13. Melissa on April 12, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    I connect to nature by learning from how my two young daughters do so! Every bug, every plant, every rock is a treasure to them and I try to get outside everyday (even if it’s just the backyard) and get good and messy with them.

  14. amy on April 12, 2014 at 6:31 pm

    I connect with nature by trying to get outdoors with our children daily. This book looks like a wonderful book.

  15. allison on April 12, 2014 at 6:32 pm

    I try to balance our lives and connect with nature as often as possible. I have an 8 year old son that is brilliant with electronics (he’s been dismantling and rebuilding toys since he was 2, and beats every silly videogame he gets his hands on). We explore wildlife parks, go camping and hiking throughout the year, have several container gardens, and we simply just acknowledge the beauty that nature shows us everyday like the amazing flower (well, weed, but lovely nonetheless) that was bursting through the cracks of our urban neighborhood.

  16. Kim Tabora on April 12, 2014 at 6:33 pm

    Walking my son to kindergarten since September has been a fantastic way to guarantee me and my son and daughter a chance to spend 40 minutes a day in nature. Sometimes the seasons in St. Louis fly by, but walking trails to his school helped us soak up the crunchy fall colors and wintery cold snowy days. Just this past week in full fast forward action that spring can be, we noticed budding trees and full on daffodils and tulips bloom. I don’t remember seasons being this dynamic or beautiful because I didn’t take the time to walk slowly and observe them.

  17. Kelly Zusan on April 12, 2014 at 6:34 pm

    We get out as much as possible. I have 2 very active boys. The love animals and nature in general. We love going on jokes and exploring. The local state park has lots of activities for the kids. We get there as much as we can. We are currently waiting for one of out favorite hiking spots to dry out for hike.

  18. Shellie on April 12, 2014 at 6:34 pm

    A book to help me not be intimidated by the outdoors! Brilliant! I so need this!!!! :0)

  19. Anne Asplin on April 12, 2014 at 6:35 pm

    I try to find time every morning to have outside play time with my 3 year old daughter. Sometimes it is a nature walk on a trail and sometimes it is just her playing alongside me while tend to our yard. I also keep a seasonal nature table in our dining room that is at her level so she can add “treasures” to it from her outside adventures.

  20. Anna on April 12, 2014 at 6:37 pm

    Quality time outside with my eleven month old girl simply breathing the fresh air, brushing our hands through the grass, wriggling our toes in the sand and singing to the sounds of the birds in the trees, is so important to us. Nature helps us learn and grow and forms many special memories.

  21. Sarah M on April 12, 2014 at 6:37 pm

    I love to be outside in just about any capacity. We take our kids on hikes (3/4 of my family is out camping tonight!), canoe, go to the beach regularly and just sit while the kids play. Being outside is something I prioritize for health, just like sleeping. I notice when I haven’t been outside for 48 hours or so.
    Sarah M

  22. Cherie J on April 12, 2014 at 6:37 pm

    I get out in nature by heading up to the local mountains and large parks. Living in Tokyo can make getting out difficult, but we also volunteer at a large Forrest/park helping to plant rice and maintain trails. We love planting a vegetable and flower garden around our home every year too! I love how versatile pots can be.

  23. Ronda Duluoz on April 12, 2014 at 6:38 pm

    My kids and I go geocaching. It typically involves some driving, but then you have to get out and hike! They love this sport and I’m happy that they are outdoors. Our goal for this summer is to build a garden in our backyard. The kids will be in charge of selecting the plants, keeping pests away, and harvesting our crop. I think digging in the dirt is the ultimate outdoor activity for kids (although as an adult I prefer being barefoot at the beach 😉

  24. Tara Harrison on April 12, 2014 at 6:40 pm

    Now that I have a yard gardening is big for me. Also love having bird feeders by the window.

  25. Noel Sharratt on April 12, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    I connect with the outdoors by making our yard inviting to be outside in for me and our three daughters that I am home with all day! We have fairy playgrounds and little impromptu camp houses under the trees…nothing too rigid or formal that it feels unapproachable.

  26. Amy B on April 12, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    I love to get outside when I can. In the spring I really enjoy getting outside and walking at the park by my house. When the weather starts to get nicer, I will even try to sit outside and grade papers. I grew up outside all of the time. It is sometimes hard to get my kids outside much though. I think we lead a busier life. This book looks like a great way to get back to nature!

  27. Molly on April 12, 2014 at 6:46 pm

    I love to work in the garden. Thanks for the chance!

  28. Janice Beeghly on April 12, 2014 at 6:47 pm

    I get outside every day by taking an urban walk in the city neighborhood where I live. There is always something wonderful to observe from the birds that winter over to the cherry blossoms that just beginning to appear. Every season has its own beauty!

  29. Jade on April 12, 2014 at 6:53 pm

    I take my toddler for lots of walks as we talk about what we see, we spend a lot of time in our backyard and he helps me water the garden. I also make nature bins for sensory play using leaves, petal, sticks and stones to explore. We would love to live closer to nature but as we are stuck living in the suburbs we like to venture out for walks in the hills when we can.

  30. Runa on April 12, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    There are several things I like to connect to nature. Even though we live in a very urban area, we are lucky enough to have some mountains and preserved areas where we go hiking and walking. I also love spending the summers out in the country. We go for walks in the woods and play on the cool Lake Michigan water. I also love having my own backyard garden and getting my kids involved in planting and harvesting fruits and veggies.

  31. Erin Murphy on April 12, 2014 at 7:00 pm

    I am a photographer, so the senior portraits that I take are 100% outdoors! hiking thru wooded areas! and around lakes! streams, etc…. I also have a huge vegetable garden in my back forty

  32. Alina on April 12, 2014 at 7:05 pm

    My son loves birds! When he was around 2 years of age, he would stand at the window and watch the pigeons come to the lovely feeder in our front yard. One of the pigeons was mostly white with a few black spots. “Look, Mama, a snow pigeon!” he exclaimed upon seeing him for the first time. Since then, we made a little bird habitat in our back yard with at least a dozen of feeders and bird houses. We have seen and identified a countless number of birds we otherwise would have not know even existed. And we got him his first real bird–a chicken named Helen. The delight of his days now is taking turns with his sister at getting the egg that Helen lays each day and digging for worms for which she will run to him with all the happiness a chicken can muster.

  33. Kim Fries on April 12, 2014 at 7:09 pm

    We have a garden and chickens. We love to sit outside and watch the chickens, work in the garden, look for caterpillars, butterflies or chrysalis.

  34. Lucy on April 12, 2014 at 7:10 pm

    We play in the yard, garden in the summer, try to take evening walks when the weather is nice, but I would love to do more!

  35. Amy on April 12, 2014 at 7:10 pm

    I like to drink on my back deck. But honestly I know I really need to reconnect.

  36. Michelle on April 12, 2014 at 7:13 pm

    I love to be able to enjoy nature walks, trips to the zoo and park with my 3 year old. There’s nothing like being outdoors with the sun beating down on you, the gentle breeze and being with the people that matter the most.

  37. Bridget on April 12, 2014 at 7:17 pm

    I connect with nature by following my children around, and really looking when they show me a bug. Like, down on my hands and knees right next to them.

  38. Dana on April 12, 2014 at 7:19 pm

    I’m a country girl lost in the city! I grew up in a rural Austrian village, where roads and buildings were planned around the hills, woods, and streams. I spent every waking minute playing and exploring outside.

    Now I’m back in North America and living in the city, which means I have to be more strategic about planning engagement with nature. But now that I’m a mom, I want my son to have a childhood as rich as mine was.

    Right now, that looks like walks around our neighborhood where we stop to look at leaves and wildflowers on the grounds of our local elementary school.

    From the sounds of this book, it seems it could help me plan much more creative adventures for my son. 🙂

  39. Meru on April 12, 2014 at 7:31 pm

    I love to walk barefoot in the grass in my yard. I do a lot of art work in my yard and there is nothing like connecting with nature in that way while you work. I also love to take walks in the rain and note all the subtle differences in how things look when they’re wet. Oh, and gardening! I’m just learning how, but I was blown away by how good it felt to get your hands in the earth like that! It’s amazing!

  40. Melissa malburg on April 12, 2014 at 7:34 pm

    I love connecting to nature through the eyes of my 2-year old. He discovers new and amazing things daily, and I get to rediscover these things in a whole new, beautiful and innocent way.

  41. Dey on April 12, 2014 at 7:40 pm

    I connect with nature by bringing the wee ones out with me and seeing it through their eyes.

  42. Julie U on April 12, 2014 at 7:42 pm

    We go on nature walks a couple times a week. Not the fastest walk, but the kids love finding bugs, nature “treasures” and lots of flowers!

  43. Sharon on April 12, 2014 at 7:52 pm

    This is something I definitely need to do more of. We live in the city and it’s not always on our mind to get into nature. Thankfully, my husband works at a golf course so the kids and I get to be outdoors together as a family and enjoying a sport.

  44. Melissa on April 12, 2014 at 7:56 pm

    This looks like a fantastic book! I know over the years I’ve grown more distant from nature, but now that I have children, I care more about getting outside with them! We go for a small hike every weekend, collect little treasures we find and keep a collection in the windowsill, and we also garden together. Thanks for the great giveaway opportunity!

  45. Kim on April 12, 2014 at 8:05 pm

    I’m outside everyday feeding and watering animals. I love the outdoors. I’m trying to get my son more involved outside. He used to stay outside. Now he would rather stay inside. I need ideas on different things to do outside. Where we live the wind blows the dirt, you have to watch out for rattlesnakes. Thank you for having the contest.

  46. Marina on April 12, 2014 at 8:07 pm

    During the summer we go camping. And we go hacking year round. We just moved to a house with a backyard, best thing ever! Bugs under rocks, baby egg shells, all kinds of birds….can’t wait till we’re a little more settled to start nature journaling on our own back yard! Thank you for the chance to win this book! Looks amazing.

  47. Andrea Lee on April 12, 2014 at 8:07 pm

    I don’t get out in nature nearly enough, living in Chicago. But every summer, my hubs and I drive up to the northernmost point of Wisconsin, Door County — and at the edge of that peninsula, we take a ferry to a Washingtob Island, where we leave our car and take a second ferry to Rock Island, an uninhabited island designated as a state park, where we camp and swim and forget about modern life for four glorious days. Ahh… I can hardly wait until this summer’s trip!

  48. Lilium on April 12, 2014 at 8:14 pm

    I love looking at flowers. They seemed to be the only thing that helps me differentiate the different species of plant. Well, now I start to look at shapes of trees and leaves. A walk in the park with tags indicating the names of trees help. I enjoy needle felting wuth wool roving.

  49. Trisha Cooper on April 12, 2014 at 8:15 pm

    I am surrounded by the Rocky Mountains. I LOVE to hike in the local canyons and camp with my family. I also grow vegetables in a small garden and grow flowers. Teaching my children about nature and doing activities is one of my favorite things to do. I would love this book.

  50. Natalie on April 12, 2014 at 8:19 pm

    I take my delightful little 5 month old Isaiah out in our garden, out to parks and out on walks. It is truly wonderful and just beautiful seeing his big brown eyes take in every tree, every flower, every plant – every colour, every texture, every smell… We look and touch and smell and it truly allows me to live presently and connect with our beautiful world – which is something I’ve struggled to do previously with the hustle and bustle or work and life. It is amazing looking at nature through the eyes of children too – they are fascinated with the simplest things and get excited about such little things too. I can’t wait to get out with Isaiah today!

  51. Cara Stepanik on April 12, 2014 at 8:30 pm

    Through nature walks my preschool class has experienced a learning environment using all their senses. They open my eyes to the beauty that surrounds us!

  52. Antoinette on April 12, 2014 at 8:30 pm

    I try each day to notice the world. Sometimes that means walking my yard and garden, other times it’s just comprised of noting the red tailed hawks on my drive to work.

  53. Christina W. on April 12, 2014 at 8:44 pm

    I love exercising outdoors! I take my dog for long morning walks and meet with a girlfriend for beach runs! I’m looking forward to this Summer to take my kids out exploring!!

  54. Kirsten on April 12, 2014 at 8:47 pm

    I try to get out in nature as much and as often as I can. I have a wee son who loves the outdoors and cries whenever we have to come in, even after being outside for hours! We hike and bike and garden. We cross-country ski in winter. His love and interest in birds has made a self taught ornithologist of me. We love art and try to incorporate nature whenever possible.
    I recently spotted this book on a blog and was super excited to check it out!

  55. Michelle Canavan on April 12, 2014 at 8:48 pm

    I take my two three year olds to a park called Beaver Lake- they love running full out on the trails. They detest the cold, however, and I struggle to get them out during our very long winter months.

  56. Amber W. on April 12, 2014 at 9:13 pm

    My husband and I take our two small children for daily family walks. We like to take a path that runs along a creek, and where our 3 year old son can run and explore. We like to talk about the different animal sounds we hear.

  57. Ulanda on April 12, 2014 at 9:31 pm

    We have 5 kids and homeschool, so sometimes me connecting with nature isn’t so easy! The kids get outside everyday and I try to get out for walks, at least to the post office! We went skiing with the kids for the first time this winter, it was such fun and we plan to do it much more. In the summer we camp and spend much time at the beach/lake.

  58. Elizabeth on April 12, 2014 at 9:31 pm

    I feel so lucky to have a wonderful neighborhood with sidewalks so I can easily take my four children for a walk. We love to look for the signs of the current season. We finally saw the crocuses blooming last week after a too-long winter!

  59. Dena on April 12, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    It’s mud season here and we like making mud pies for the fairies and over course getting covered from head to toe in mud:)

  60. Shaivite on April 12, 2014 at 9:53 pm

    My young children help me to connect with nature as I rediscover the wonder and beauty of the natural world through their eyes.

  61. Sara B on April 12, 2014 at 10:06 pm

    Our family has been making a huge effort to re-connect with nature. We used to live in the big city with year-round sunny weather but once we had our two sons, now 7 mo. and 23 months, we decided to move to the country where they have all 4 seasons and try to have a more natural life for them. We have been learning how to take care of the land, grow our own food, and raise animals. For my eldest son’s 2nd birthday in just a few weeks I decided his present would be for me to make sure he has outside time with us everyday for the next year. This book would really help me being a city girl transplanted in tjis beautiful forest.

  62. Namrata on April 12, 2014 at 10:15 pm

    Hi
    Can so relate to what you have written. I too lead a completely digitized life with negligible connection with nature. That lightness and peace that you feel when are near nature is something I I ignorantly miss unless I get on a holiday to some beautiful serene place.

  63. Tina on April 12, 2014 at 10:49 pm

    I am lucky to live in the woods and teach next to a State Park. I have caves and waterfalls in my back yard and coyotes, deer, raccoons in my yard on a regular basis. We have dogs, cats, giant tortoises and chickens. I am grateful every day to be able to live this life and be part of nature. I sled in and out of my house when snow covers the hill that is my driveway and sleep under the stars when possible. I have boots for all my students so that we can tromp in the woods whenever we like. Although most of them live close by on the edge of the park, they don’t play outside near enough. We observe, preserve and study all that goes on out the classroom door.

  64. Aimee LaPerle on April 12, 2014 at 11:16 pm

    Four years ago as I drove my young daughter out of the city into a suburb to visit the zoo I noticed she was being very quiet. The question that she asked after a long silence floored me. She asked me why there were so many trees.
    It broke my heart. I grew up in Vermont romping through the woods and fields every chance I got, and now I found myself raising children in the city.
    I now often take the kids out if the city where they can run and explore without the hum of urban life directly in their presence. I encourage them to build structures out if bits of nothing, to use their imaginations, to get dirty, to be curious.
    We have made bird houses & fairy houses out found objects on our nature walks. We adore picnics and basking in the sun, building giant snow forts and snow people.
    I love nothing more than having my children come in at the end of the day dirty and tired and so content that they’ve forgotten to ask for any television.

  65. Anne Boudewyn on April 12, 2014 at 11:32 pm

    I am lucky enough to live in a province rich in natural habitats! Victoria, BC Canada. I have a preschool and try very hard to teach the children about nature.in Monday we are going to begin making fairy houses in the play yard! I have collected beach stones and driftwood to start the children off. I can’t wait!! They will love it 🙂

  66. Kassy Lee on April 12, 2014 at 11:48 pm

    We live in central Australia and get out as much as we can camping and learning about our environment. We have a 1 and 3 year old girls who love getting sandy and checking out all the dangerous things our outdoors offers. We are learning more about nocturnal life while out camping. I love this age and our little girls sense of wonder. If we were lucky enough to win a copy I will read it and pay it forward to our local birth and beyond service which is the hub library for us Mummas xxx

  67. Sarah on April 13, 2014 at 12:56 am

    I go on listening walks with my daughter, we make long lists of the nature (and city) sound we hear, it’s always a fun adventure.

  68. brittany snellings on April 13, 2014 at 1:05 am

    I love getting into nature and living in brooklyn ny, it gets a bit tricky. But I am lucky enough to garden in the summer for people’s small outdoor space and teach children about plants during the school year. I find so much joy in wha I do. Thank you for the cance to win this book, Looks like a good read!

  69. Christy on April 13, 2014 at 1:46 am

    I am trying to overcome a black thumb. Finding my time completely absorbed as a mom and a first grade teacher I am looking to find the outdoors as a place of re-creation for me.

  70. Christy on April 13, 2014 at 1:46 am

    I am trying to overcome a black thumb. Finding my time completely absorbed as a mom and a first grade teacher I am looking to find the outdoors as a place of re-creation for me.

  71. Nichole on April 13, 2014 at 1:54 am

    I have a daily ritual of sitting on my back porch in the morning to do yoga and meditate before the family wakes up. Then in the late afternoon when it cools down enough we go outside and play, explore, enjoy.

  72. LauraC on April 13, 2014 at 1:58 am

    Love love love the idea of this book! How I connect with nature… Go outside, explore. I take my 2 kiddos to the park, plant, go on walks and bike rides, collect leaves and pine cones for craft projects and just enjoy fresh air (hopefully vitamin D while were at it! Sometimes in Seattle, that’s not always the case). Thank you!!

  73. Cara on April 13, 2014 at 2:05 am

    I try to ask my 18 month old daughter as often as I can what she sees and what she hears, whether we are outside or inside looking out the window. When I am not asking her, she is usually telling me something lovely she is noticing. She is constantly saying “Do you hear that? Birds!” I love nature, but feel passive in my approach and connection. I would appreciate the advice and inspiration of this book.

  74. Camille on April 13, 2014 at 2:30 am

    Nature walks with my kids, hiking with a ladies group, and getting outside every opportunity we can here in Washington State!

  75. Agata Marc on April 13, 2014 at 2:37 am

    Me and my three kids love nature. We have a big garden and we really love planting flowers and see them grow! We especially like observing the great power of life hidden in seeds – this year we put some very old (over 20 yesrs old!!!) seeds of a plant into the flower pot and we’d actually thought the flowers wouldn’t come out – but they DID! MAGIC!!! 🙂

  76. Georgene Cleary Dignan on April 13, 2014 at 2:42 am

    After my divorce from a 30 year marriage I rented for the first time for 11 years. It was a dark small place and the yards were common yards with only a tiny patch of cement or stone patio for each unit. Three years ago, my son bought a house for me! It was a fix-me-up and I absolutely love my home <3 It also got me outside and doing some gardening, which I found was so enriching and healing. I have planted perennials, annuals, vegetables and herbs and love spending hours outside on my gazebo or deck or just walking around my property! I happen to be a book collector as well and love sharing with my Girl Scout troop and other children. oh yeah…my name means "farmer"..pretty cool right? Lovely book <3

  77. wendy havers on April 13, 2014 at 2:54 am

    Hi I try to get the children out everyday we visit gardens forest and a local nature reserve, I am wanting to set up a outdoor toddler group to encourage others to explore the wide outside I would love your book!

  78. Lisa Teagan Kenndy on April 13, 2014 at 3:37 am

    This review mad me realize that I need to get out and experience nature more… especially since I am a parent to a 3 year old daughter. For awhile I lived in fear of going outside. I let two abusive relationships change me, my health suffered, and I became isolated. After having my daughter my health hasn’t been the greatest. I was just diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. This (among some other things) has really been a wake up call. It’s so important to breath in fresh air, feel the sunshine, smell the flowers, and enjoy life.

  79. Anja, Lola & Tabitha on April 13, 2014 at 4:12 am

    Anja (mum & reiki person) Lola (6, lover & artist) Tabitha (5, dancer & cuddler) we love to get out and be in nature, we pick wild flowers and make poseys, we press leaves in to our books and make pictures. We hug trees, the girls love to find a trunk that perfectly fits their arm spam! We plant seeds on our tiny beds on our back garden, we blow dandelion clocks, and at night we wonder at the moon and wish upon the stars. Your book looks beautiful, and our fingers are crossed! Have a lovely Sunday! Blessing from London xx

  80. Melanie on April 13, 2014 at 4:47 am

    We have been spending most the day outside lately, watching the birds, running around, feeling the softness of clover. Lucky to have two kids who appreciate being outside as much as I do! I grew up on an island in British Columbia, so living in the greater DC area right now, I work to connect with nature the way I am used to.

  81. Diana on April 13, 2014 at 5:18 am

    As cliched as this may sound, I connect with nature simply by taking a walk through my neighbourhood. (I live in the U.K, in a semi-rural area near Cambridge). It’s a great way for me to look at what is around me; watch the changing seasons and see the things that grow and the insects that pollinate them, or wildlife that dash amongst the plants. I am a great believer that it doesn’t take much to enjoy nature. After all it’s right on our doorstep. I’m also seeing it through my young children’s eyes. At the moment, all my toddler wants to do iOS pick stones and throw them in the puddles. He finds that fascinating.

  82. Morana on April 13, 2014 at 5:25 am

    I connect with nature when I go to husband’s village. Nowdays we often take walks with our little girl, pick flowers and listen to the animals. She is in love with hens and cats and rubs around chasing them. When she’s asleep we just sit on terrace and relax by looking all nature’s colours and shapes. 🙂

  83. beth on April 13, 2014 at 7:14 am

    We connect with nature by playing outside as much as possible. Which had been a little rough living in New England this winter. We rest on our hammock, garden, tend our chickens and explore nature and the emerging signs of spring. I hope I win this book so I can continue to shield my babies from the technology generation a little longer.

  84. Kim on April 13, 2014 at 7:26 am

    We connect with nature by playing outside all the time, gardening, and playing at our neighborhood parks. And I love my early-morning runs, when the streets are quiet and I get to watch the sun rise over the mountains.

  85. Mary on April 13, 2014 at 8:43 am

    I take my dog into the woods to run free, I love having picnics with my 6year old. We daydream of living in treehouses and hammocks.

  86. Andrea in Vermont on April 13, 2014 at 8:44 am

    I get outside every day as a family child care provider – backyard, walks in our small city neighborhood. I miss more “wild” environments of my childhood – woods, water, fields. I think every child deserves these. And I do my very best to get to the ocean every summer – it heals me…

  87. Elizabeth Stipp on April 13, 2014 at 8:48 am

    I have been trying to learn all the trees on my block and identify those same types other places. Hoping to eventually know all the trees by name, but starting slow! This book looks great!

  88. Stephanie Combs on April 13, 2014 at 9:38 am

    One of the ways I connect with nature is through dance. Not only by dancing outside in the grass barefoot to the natural sounds and patterns of the world, but nature is inside my dance. When using a prop such as a hula hoop, natural geometry can be found in repetitive motions made by my body and hoop.

  89. Debbie Rosenkranz on April 13, 2014 at 10:02 am

    We walk almost a mile to school every morning and play outside in the garden

  90. Robin Guerra on April 13, 2014 at 10:04 am

    I connect with nature everyday in my garden, but most importantly I connect with the children at my school. We go on bug hunts, we plant gardens recently we just hatched baby chickens from eggs. I teach them to respect nature and teach about the circle of life. Everything is here for a reason and a season. Nature has many many aspects that can be taught, and I try to instill the value of why we must care for nature and our earth. It is wonderful to see the children react with nature and become caring to nature around them.

  91. Barbara Zaborowski on April 13, 2014 at 10:31 am

    Reading all these comments encourages me more to get my class outside a few more times, before it gets too hot here in Phoenix.

  92. Erinn on April 13, 2014 at 10:37 am

    We connect with nature by gardening and having the kids have their own little gardening space , we go on nAture walks and collect what we need for upcoming art projects or to display our found treasures on our seasonal nature table!

  93. Toni Smith on April 13, 2014 at 11:25 am

    Having two kids has pulled me back into the beauty of the outdoors. Children seem to have a natural draw to being outside, and I love to be there to see the wonder and curiosity as they discover the beauties of nature. We go out every single day – sometimes for minutes, sometimes the entire day is spent outside. It is such an honor to be the one who gets to teach my 1 and 4 year old what a magical place we live in.

  94. JJ Killins on April 13, 2014 at 11:27 am

    I’d love to get this for summer in Minnesota!

  95. nancy on April 13, 2014 at 11:28 am

    we love to start our day walking to school- enjoying the early morning light and fresh air and wonderful conversation between myself and 6 year old.

  96. Christina on April 13, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    I am incredibly fortunate to be married to a man who lives for nature and the outdoors. It is because of him that my connections to nature have been awakened. It’s a simple as looking out the window at the bird feeder and pausing to look at the cardinals and jays and the woodpecker that comes to visit.

  97. Kylie on April 13, 2014 at 12:23 pm

    I need to get back out into nature. Hiking biking playing with the kiddos outside after a short journey out of the valley. I used to be an avid outdoorsey gal. Then life happened and I stopped enjoying one of my most favorite past times. Packing the family up and taking a day trip somewhere new to set out and explore the trails and beauty of the many hidden places here. I have to head to the mountains and get out of the dry not so beautiful desert but thats the amazing thing about living in AZ. A short road trip and its like youve traveled for hours to another state. The outdoor contract is what i need. My husband would be in heaven if I suggested a day trip. Its still early…Just may start this today!

  98. Candice on April 13, 2014 at 2:48 pm

    I always feel at one with nature either out at the beach or walking through the trees. The sound of the ocean or rustling of the leaves always brings me back to my senses.

  99. Corina on April 13, 2014 at 3:49 pm

    Living with the natural beauty of B.C. for the past 10 years- big mountains, big ocean, BIG nature everywhere, my husband and I came together in exploring, discovering and connecting with it. Then chronic illness came. Now, our yard in a manicured suburb in virtually treeless southern Ontario is the grandest nature-scape I can access most days. Silver spray-painted chain link fencing, astroturf lawns and chlorinated swimming pools surround us and yet… Nature is here: in big skies, the true dark at night; in the morning birdsong at the feeder; in four clear seasons; and in myriad wee creatures for whom our pedestrian suburban span IS a Universe. So we carve out space. We invite her in, and still feel nourished by her daily.

  100. Karen on April 13, 2014 at 4:22 pm

    It’s kind of funny but I’ll connect with nature when I’m driving. I’ll notice how blue the sky is, and how green the trees are with the sky in the background. Or driving down the 405 how green the hills looks after a recent and rare rain (I live in SoCal).

  101. Tracy on April 13, 2014 at 5:32 pm

    I love to take my dog daily to a close by forested area and stroll around … very relaxing and a way to de stress while connecting with nature.

  102. Ranae Robinson on April 14, 2014 at 8:15 am

    I have two favorite ways that I connect with nature. All year long I enjoy being outside, capturing special moments with my camera. The tiniest bits to the beautiful landscapes. But when Spring comes round, there is nothing I enjoy more than sinking my hands into the earth, feeling the dirt as I prepare gardens for another wonder*full season.

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