You may have noticed that I love trees. One of my favorite things is walking down a winding path through the woods. Add a lovely babbling brook and I’m in heaven. I naturally enjoyed being in the outdoors as a child, but as an adult I’ve become convinced about the importance of spending time in nature for body and soul. Going for a walk is a wonderful way to improve fitness, strengthen your immune system and manage stress. Its benefits are amplified when you are outdoors, especially away from urban elements like traffic and noise. I more fully appreciated the need for open spaces in urban settings during my time as an urban planning student and intern. My involvement in labyrinth walking also created a new understanding for the benefits of sacred spaces.
Two of the organizations whose updates I enjoy in my social media streams are the Therapeutic Landscapes Network and Open Spaces Sacred Places (formerly the TKF Foundation). Yesterday I attended the webinar for the OSSP National Awards Initiative for Integrated Design and Research. I haven’t had a chance to visit any of the current OSSP garden locations, but I’m excited about the idea of them coming to us here in the Southeast.