Rainbow Bridge LifeWays
Rainbow Bridge LifeWays
Painting Project
at Rainbow Bridge in Boulder, CO
Rainbow Bridge LifeWays
Warm Summer Greetings from Cynthia

Once again Michaeleen has gathered an inspiring group of articles for us, and I hope you will think of it as a booklet of stories that you read over a few days. Or perhaps you prefer to jump in and read it straight through. Either way, enjoy the inspiring offerings and please share with your friends – all the way to the end where you can read about new trainings, workshops and online courses, and a yummy recipe! I know it’s a lot of going back and forth between the emailed newsletter and the website, but it’s worth it!  It’s not like the good old days of holding the whole newsletter in my hand. On the other hand, we do save a lot of paper this way!

Every new newsletter seems to be my favorite. This one, however, is personally poignant as we are now living in a three-generation home with our eldest son, daughter-in-law and two little grandchildren. When Michael became paralyzed three years ago, our beloved sons and daughters-in-law rallied to relocate us with the idea that we would continue to live in family community going forward. Blessedly, he has since recovered from paralysis and continues to heal – walking, driving, working and playing with his grandchildren. This is due, in no small part, to two of the most amazing and profound gifts that can ever be bestowed upon someone – love and devotion. Due to the nature of our adult children and grandchildren we are blessed that this love and devotion is coming from them. We see this reflected again in Rahima’s story of care for her own mother and mother-in-law.

What about our elders, however, for whom this blessing of family is not available? I just read a heartbreaking article about...

The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his information and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence at whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he's always doing both.
LifeWays Principles throughout the Life Span
by Rahima Baldwin Dancy
The advantages of intergenerational programming are many, as illustrated throughout this newsletter! In this article I want to share that LifeWays Principles and Practices, including relationship-based care and creating an experience of home, are vital throughout the life span. Because you're all getting older—or may already be dealing with your own parents' aging and requiring more care—it’s helpful to realize that it's similar at the end of life as at the beginning: our efforts to de-institutionalize childcare and make it more home like are echoed by the leading-edge work gaining momentum to de-institutionalize long-term care for elders and make it more home like. No kidding.

When my mother and mother-in-law could no longer live alone, I took care of both of them in our home for six years. That time was very rewarding and felt very spacious, but it wasn't very intellectually stimulating for me as both ladies experienced increasing memory loss. So I managed to stay out of trouble

Join Rahima Baldwin Dancy in her exciting NEW Online Course:
October 3, 2018 - October 31, 2018
More details are below under "Online Courses" and Online
Seeing Our Imprint
by Mary O’Connell
“If a child does not see his imprint on the world around him, does he even exist?”
This was the question posed by our colleague, Bente Goldstein, in her keynote address at the Community Education Conference this spring, held at Prairie Hill Waldorf School outside Milwaukee, WI. Bente had just published her book Childhood is a Verb ( available on the LifeWays website). Her keynote speech (and her book) began by examining the virtual, indoor life experienced by most children today that offers very few opportunities for them to contribute in ways that are meaningful and significant to their families and communities. Bente, a Waldorf teacher, has run a farm immersion program for kids on her organic farm in Elkhorn, Wisconsin for decades. She was born and raised in Norway, and her Viking spirit, which has always positively challenged and instructed students in our Wisconsin LifeWays training community, is woven into a strong, practical thread that runs throughout her new book. Her question at the Community Education Conference has really stuck with me since that day in March. Do the experiences we offer children and adolescents give them an opportunity to see their real and lasting imprint on the world around them? Are we giving them...

Mothering the Mothers
by Kerry Ingram
Years ago when my belly was round and ripe, I met someone who would become one of my greatest teachers. At the time, it felt like serendipity, but in retrospect I see how we were destined to meet. Daphne, Grandma Daphne, was referred to me by a friend when I asked around for a prenatal massage practitioner. She was 69 when I met her and had decided to become a massage therapist in her sixties. She met me at her front door with a big smile, an apron and a warm hug. I was about 8 months pregnant, slow moving and missing my own mom who lived on the other side of the country.

Her home was decorated with family photos, ceramic angels, a singing clock and flowers. I felt like a child stepping into my own Nana’s home. She took me into her extra bedroom that was made into a massage room. It had Lazured walls, veil paintings, essential oils everywhere and was warm…I knew we were going to be friends!
As we sat over tea and chatted, we shared...

Grandparent’s Day in the Firefly Kindergarten
by Jane L. Danner
I love being a grandparent. My granddaughter, Abryanna, and I putter around my little house. We chit chat about nothing or do not speak at all. Quietly my house is filled again with the talk of small children. She reminds me so much of her mother. My granddaughter follows me around in my work, but we are each absorbed, me with my thoughts, she, with who knows what. I wash dishes and do laundry and wander in and out of my inner monologues, listening intently when she is too quiet and gone from my sight and sighing contentedly when she is making noise and suddenly appears under foot. My grandmother told my mother once that a grandchild is both the best of parenting and the hardest. “When you are a parent,“ she said, “you must set the boundaries, but when you are a grandparent you can let that go. When you are a parent and your heart gets broken, it only breaks once. When you are a grandparent, it breaks twice.” I think I am finally beginning to understand what she meant.

Abryanna, therefore, is the reason it is a great honor for me to welcome ...

baby toddler read

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Magnolia Blossom Preschool
at Harvest Homes
Portland, OR
One day the preschool children, my assistant Chelsea, and I were eating lunch when Michelle came downstairs to visit us. Michelle works upstairs and is the daughter of the owners of Harvest Homes Assisted Living, a 50+year old family-owned care facility. I jokingly call the property the family compound, a nod to the Kennedys, when I speak to Michelle because she and her two brothers grew up on the property while their parents were at work there. Her grandparents started the business. Here aunts, uncles, cousins and other assorted relatives have worked and/or lived, too. It was a special place for children to roam back then when Michelle was little, and now, with the Magnolia Blossom Preschool children bustling about. I think part of what makes this place special is the fact that it is family owned. Nowadays corporations own the majority of assisted living facilities. The preschool children call their teachers and all the caregivers at Harvest Homes, aunties or uncles. The residents and older employees are grandmas and grandpas. Given that this place, since it’s inception, has been about family, I was delighted when Michelle pulled me aside and told me that there was a grandma who was lonesome and would love the company of children. Perhaps she could tell us a story, Michelle said. The timing was perfect since we were all seated at our dining tables enjoying our lunches and visiting with each other. In five minutes time, into the room came.. .

Marguerite Aichele-Smith opened Magnolia Blossom Preschool at Harvest Homes in Portland, Oregon the same year she started her LifeWays training in Boulder in 2010. She likes to call the intergenerational program a little slice of heaven.
LifeWays Representative Programs enjoy the highest level of recognition. Their approach to working with children and families is based on concepts taught in the LifeWays training with particular emphasis on Rudolf Steiner’s research on human development. All primary caregivers in Representative Programs have completed the LifeWays training or its equivalent or are currently enrolled in LifeWays training.
Graduates of LifeWays training who become Representative Programs enjoy a monthly video conference.

Regin Dervais, from Nettlewood Playgarden in Palmer, AK writes about her experience with this wonderful opportunity to connect with others in Representative Programs:
Living in a remote area, the representative zoom call allows me the connection I seek for myself and the collaboration needed to strengthen my program. Thoughtful and engaging conversations from colleagues scattered throughout (the US) offers inspiration and insight from accomplished educators who share a common vision and mindfulness in their work. I treasure these moments of kinship and end our conversations with enthusiasm and rejuvenated commitment for my work. I equate our calls to sharing a cup of tea together.   

“A  cup of tea shared  with a friend is happiness tasted and time well spent!”  -Anon
An Intergenerational Garden in the West of Ireland
by Lina Pelaez
When 10 years ago, our efforts to meet the needs of the younger children in our community were recognised with Government funds to build a permanent home, we decided this had to be somewhere where the children had access to nature.

We set our eyes on Raheen Woods, an old oak forest. This is the home of the oldest oak in Ireland, over 1,000 years old and known as the Boru Oak after the last high king of the Irish, who reigned at that time, and had his palace ‘Kincora’ in the nearby town of Killaloe.

The land was expensive and obtaining planning was not easy but once we realized that our only neighbours inside this woodland were the elderly from the local nursing home, we knew we were in front of our dream location.

Ever since we decided to offer the young children a ‘home from home’ and started to look at...

See more at the Brigit's Hearth website!
If you’ve been thinking about taking the LifeWays Certification Training, there is no better time to do it.
We’ve been waiting for you. Won’t you join us?
Open new opportunities - both professionally and personally - in the fields of early childhood, parent education and after-school care. Or enrich your life as a parent!

Our one-year , part-time curriculum includes over 200 onsite hours , with independent study and personal mentoring between sessions. It can prepare you to open or transform your own in-home program , classroom or early childhood center. Many parents also enroll to deepen family life.   

There is STILL TIME to save with early registration for upcoming trainings.
See below for details and links!
Westport, CT - begins 10/19/18
LifeWays Training ~ Westport, Connecticut

If you've been looking for a retreat getaway to take your LifeWays training, this is it! A beautiful old manor, a short walk from the beach on Long Island Sound, this home even has a swimming pool for you to enjoy during your down time. This beautiful old home near the beach in Westport, CT is an ideal site to immerse yourself in your coursework, form deep connections with your teachers and other students, and still have plenty of space to enjoy solitary reflection.

Training Dates:
October 19 (evening only) - October 26th, 2018
February 23 - March 1, 2019
April 22 - 28, 2019
June 21 - 28, 2019

Contact: Eileen Foley, Student Services Director, (203) 794-2983
Miami, FL - begins 11/3/18
LifeWays Certificatio n Training ~ Miami, Florida
***NEW** this training offers the first session completely ONLINE !

Training Dates:
November 3-6, 2018 Online
(Students must attend video conferences on November 3 & 4 at specified times)
February 16th (evening only) in person
February 17-20, 2019 In person
April 22-28, 2019 In person
July 13-19 and 21-26, 2019 In person

Contact: Barbara Jiminez , Student Services Director,  305-301-4894
Longing to embrace the year-long
LifeWays Certification Training
and looking for creative financing options?

Start by visiting the Admissions and Fees page on the website for the application along with ideas and inspiration for payment options.

Allison Cruse, Boulder, CO LifeWays student shares with us her experience using Crowdfunding to raise the money she needed.

I think that the seeds for my fundraising campaign were actually planted awhile before I applied for LifeWays and officially created my Indiegogo campaign. I began talking with friends and family about the program and about my hopes for all of the amazing opportunities we could bring to children and families in our community. I talked with the parents of little ones who have been a part of our co-op efforts for many years, and new parents who were concerned about childcare/education opportunities in our town. Several people suggested raising funds and using community support to help pay for the costs of the program. It seemed like there was definite interest and support, so I applied for the Boulder LifeWays training and ...

Introduction to the LifeWays Training

Learn about the full-year LifeWays Seminar and how the rhythms of day, week and year together with the living arts create a nourishing, inspiring foundation for your home life and/or your home based program for children birth to age 5.

2/2/19 AND 6/1/19
at Marin Waldorf School

More Details about 2/2/19 and 6/1/19
  "Cynthia and Mary, thank you. Your course has been my refuge for the last month. I started with a grumble of an overwhelming life and piles of "do this" balanced on my head and shoulders. But my soul needed this nurturing. Each article, the laughter in your videos, the cumulative wisdom, churned my thoughts and settled my busy limbs. "
~ Ren, Hawaii, regarding The Living Arts online course
Scheduled Courses
Home as the Model, Life as the Curriculum
Our most popular course with Cynthia Aldinger and Mary O’Connell

September 5 – October 6, 2018

15 Hours of Continuing Ed

Have you wanted to learn more about the magic of LifeWays? Join Cynthia and Mary for a four-week course exploring how the best curriculum for the young child springs from life itself. Learn how Life, the Child, the Adult and the Environment all form the perfect learning ground for the young child.

Includes the book,  Life is the Curriculum!
NEW Online Course!
Bringing "Home" into your Early Childhood Program
with Rahima Balwin Dancy

October 3, 2018 - October 31, 2018

15 hours of Continuing Ed

A new, creative and practical exploration of ways to bring more home-like elements into early childhood programs in all settings - centers, schools and homes.

Whether you’re seasoned in the LifeWays approach or new to incorporating these elements into your program, this course is for you! 

Includes the video Family Matters: Homemaking 101 for Busy Parents !
NEW Online Course!
Learning to Observe Children
with Mary O'Connell

November 7-21, 2018

Celebrate the individuality of each child while gaining an understanding of archetypal childhood development. You’ll learn how to use your observations to become better prepared to meet the needs of the child. This course approaches the child’s unique arc of development as a spectrum of growth and not a threshold for success.

Includes the book Observing Young Children AND downloadable Recordkeeping PDF!
The L ivin g Arts
Cornerstones of Care for the Young Child
(birth – six) and for Yourself
with Cynthia Aldinger and Mary O’Connell

January 9 - February 9, 2019

15 hours of Continuing Ed

Join Cynthia and Mary for a four-week course exploring ways to use the Living Arts as the cornerstones for a solid foundation of learning for the young child and enrichment for your own life. Each week we will explore one of the Living Arts in detail and you will learn how to bring these activities into your life with young children, whether at home or in programs.

Includes The Living Arts Journal for your exploration of the concepts!
Discipline with Loving Awareness
with Cynthia Aldinger

February 6 - March 9, 2019

The time-tested tools available in this course have served as inspiration to parents, caregivers and early childhood teachers for two decades.

Includes free audio download of Cynthia’s lecture, The L.O.V.E Approach to Discipline .
On-Demand Courses
Creating Your Family Culture
An Elemental Approach

Created by Mary O’Connell for parents of children from birth to 21.

We don’t always pay much attention to culture, but it’s always there. It holds us, sustains us, and informs the way we act, feel and think about the world. Wouldn’t you love to create the conditions in your home that help each family member live your shared values in a positive way with life-affirming practices?

The course uses the four elements of earth, water, air and fire as a starting point from which to create your own positive family culture based on your values.
Healthy Home Rythmns

This popular online course, developed by Kerry Ingram at Mothering Arts, supports you to create a balanced home rhythm rooted in presence and joy.

Create a more connected home life with the help of this inspiring, step-by-step, course that you can do any time and access again and again as the seasons—and your family—change.

Create time for fun, home-care, family traditions, self-care and nourishment.
Creating Home Away from Home :
A Course for Home Childcare Providers

This on-demand, at-your-own-pace, online course will help you open your own early childhood program at home providing relationship-based care steeped in LifeWays Principles.

25 CEUs

$99 for the online course, OR
$199 for the online course AND three (3) hours of private consulting (phone or video conference) with Mary O’Connell to assist you with your unique childcare business needs.
Students from all over the world come together in LifeWays Online Courses! Join in the lively conversations as you learn alongside caregivers and parents from France, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Israel, Switzerland, Iran, Nova Scotia, Portugal and more!
Quick Links to Online Courses:
***NEW***: For the International community and those who want electronic versions for phone, tablet, or computer display, we are happy to announce that most titles in the
are available for download!
*CDs * Books * DVDs * Forms*
~ Convenient ~ Portable ~ Accessible ~
NEW in the LifeWays Bookstore:
Childhood is a Verb!
by Bente Goldstein
Childhood is a Verb!   is a gift to give to every parent and teacher you know from early childhood to college professor! Bente’s wisdom of the developing child and her decades of bringing joyful “will work” to children of all ages is brilliantly shared in a way that is practical, clear and easy to incorporate into daily life. It was a privilege to be a colleague of Bente’s in the 90s and so gratifying to see how her work has continued to serve children and families in such profound ways. If more children were offered the foundation Bente heralds in this book, what an amazing change would we see in our culture.

Childhood is a Verb! is an ideal book for a parenting book club or study guide for teachers and pure inspiration for others interested in offering farm education or other activities that engage the will of the child in such meaningful ways.
What Bente offers here is not only the antidote we need to rescue childhood from the overarching virtual world; it also a remarkable testament to the value of including children in the real work of our households, schools and
everyday life! 
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Editor's Note:
The Summer Sun Cake is fun for all ages! Here is the version we made to celebrate my daughter's sunny, summer, 18th birthday in July.
The Sun Cake first appeared on the Living Arts Weekly Blog
as the Practical Activity!
Lynn Coalson's program Outside Kids is located in Atlantic Beach, FL
Questions? Ideas? Comments?
Share them with your editor:

Michaeleen Hinca
Transform your life with young children!