Late in 2018 I began thinking about three large tree stumps I passed during my regular walks around Lake Merced. They felt like altars to me, and I had an idea about honoring my daughter, who had passed a few months earlier, and about thanking the lake for its beauty and nourishment. In November I started to construct weekly offerings, using mostly materials found around the lake - rocks, branches, leaves, and seeds, and supplemented with purchased flowers. I love the immediacy and impermanence - these are for the moment, and they deteriorate in the weather and go back to the earth. Some weeks the previous offering is completely scattered by the wind and the birds, and sometimes I find that people have carefully put back things that have fallen to the ground. Occasionally, I find that a passer-by has constructed a simple mandala arrangement after mine has been disbursed and that makes me happiest of all. All of these are dedicated to Valerie.
I have been incredibly moved by people's reactions to these offerings, and this has inspired me to offer classes so that others can also create offerings. Imagine these little pockets of peace and beauty everywhere, city and country, indoors and out. It's not difficult - they're just circles, really, and I'll provide instruction and tips on working in public. Classes will begin in early 2020; if you're interested, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org,