About this Course
“It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.”(author unknown)
As a fellow traveler on the Grief Journey, this course comes out of my own experiences and from the wealth of interacting I have done with others on this road. The purpose of this class is to help each one of us find glimmers of hope during the darkness of the holiday season after the death of a loved one or other significant personal loss. It is appropriate for those struggling to survive the first holiday and for those who are many years down the road. In addition, although there is a component of faith in these lessons, it is written to be sensitive to the personal beliefs of all who take the course, no matter what their faith backgrounds may or may not be.
Participants do NOT have to be “artistic” or be good at drawing to benefit from this class. We will be using art and writing to sort through our experiences of loss and grief and to document the moments when we remember joy and find hope. People of ALL creative and artistic levels are welcome here.
Each lesson includes the following:
“An Encouraging Word”– This summary of the weekly focus is based in reality, not sugary platitudes nor shoulds.
Art Project – Written instructions and sample photographs are given for each project made with simple items found around home. Journal
Prompts – Each week offers a variety of quotes and questions to interact with in written or art journal format.
List of Possibilities – Based on each lesson’s theme, this list includes activities and suggestions that have worked for other people who are on the grieving journey.
Extras – Some lessons will include a bonus craft or decoration with instructions and photo.
In addition, there is a private facebook group to allow interactions between those who are taking the course. Participants can share photos of their projects if desired. This is a place for encouraging and supporting one another, allowing any emotion to be expressed without trying to fix or change each other.
Intro: Grief and Self-Care (Permission Slip)
Week 1: Hope and Light in the Darkness (Scratch Art)
Week 2: Faith and Traditions (Color Mixing)
Week 3: Joy and Gifts (Collage)
Week 4: Peace and Dreaming (Dream Board)
Week 5: Love and Family (Pieces of a Heart)
Week 6: A New Year, A New Normal (This is Me)
About the instructor
I am in my second half of life. I am a sometimes-too-independent wife and an always-so-proud mom of seven children, most of whom are grown and wandering the world. I am a voracious reader, a dream-chaser, a wounded hope-er, a born-teacher, and a nomadic gypsy (in my heart). I prefer to live “outside the box” and I hate to be expected to color inside the lines.
I treasure hearing the stories of others. There is a richness found in sharing life experiences and encouraging others along the way. It is an honor to facilitate classes—online and at select retreats—which help participants more clearly understand and interact with their own stories. I have taught people of all ages and am delighted to encourage others to uncover their creativity and pursue their dreams.
You will need:
**The most important facet of this class is to make the lessons work for YOU. That includes choosing to use whatever materials you are most comfortable with...or stretching yourself by using something you have always wanted to try. There are no “shoulds” in this class!**
- What kind of journal? Any type of paper or notebook could work, from a simple composition book to an artist pad with heavy watercolor paper. It can be a bound book or loose leaf pages you will store in a box (or in a drawer). Just remember, if you want to use wet media (such as glued collage, paints or thick markers) make sure you choose appropriate paper.
- What kind of art supplies? You can use anything from simple crayons, colored pencils, and watercolor paints to artist-quality supplies. My favorites are watercolor crayons and Derwent Inktense Pencils—both of which can be used dry like school-days supplies, then brushed with water to look like painting. If you want to collage papers or magazine images, modpodge or liquitex matte gel medium are excellent adhesives, but any glue or glue-stick will work.
- You can make illustrations or add background colors by collaging scrapbook papers, images torn from magazines, bits of newspaper or junk mail, color copies of photos (or duplicate photos) and any other papers you find.
Special Supplies - The following “special” supplies would be handy to have available for these lessons:
- Introduction – none
- Lesson 1 – black (or other dark color) tempera paint (child’s quality fine); crayons or colored pencils and white wax candle; toothpicks or sharpened wooden pencil
- Lesson 2 – cheap watercolor paints (or any other colored media that is blendable)
- Lesson 3 – none
- Lesson 4 – foam core board if you want to make a large project instead of journal sized
- Lesson 5 – none
- Lesson 6 – copies of a few maps of favorite places
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