The Daily Walk

Begin 2016

What does it mean to begin? Typical expressions may center around starting or commencing an experience, yet what does it mean to you to begin? As it is the beginning of a brand new year and in the message written for the New Year’s wish for a simpler year, 12 words were issued as a greeting. As we can find meaning in the metaphor quite easily with the labyrinth, perhaps it can be a quest for simplicity to find the value for what lies within the simple values we can create and live by this year.

2016BeginExplore the simplicity in beginning and take it in stride in your daily walks this month to examine the complexities in how we live and the ways we do things for ourselves and for all that extend outside ourselves. What does begin mean to you?




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Welcome 2016!


Create a simpler year
Begin. Walk. Discover. Reflect. Appreciate. Accept. Learn. Grow. Live. Love. Inspire. Contribute

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The Curious How…

Generally “How” can be identified as Hundreds of Ways. The how of anything is up to the creator of the desire to know. It is embarked upon with a point of reaching satisfaction and sometimes this point of surrender and completion comes from reaching a destination and sometimes it is the fascination of the journey from here to there.

How ?

Yesterday I was asked how I created my traveling journey labyrinth. I found it a playful excursion in relating and reflecting upon my year and my artistic or enjoyable rendering of the travel in lines and segments. It does little to tell of the bounty of the travel, the hardships, discoveries or the purpose of each transit, rather it paints a simple outline for the story to flow with a prioritization that is anchored in time. Sometimes that is all we need is the mere outline to give us the structure to share rich content.

To form the outline, I simply wrote out my travel log from beginning to end. What I discovered was that I began the same place I ended, very like the unicursal travel of the labyrinth. I also found that I had a center point to all the separate trips that I traversed and each took me generally to more than one location and back again, mostly on the same path or along a vein that ran in the same direction. How labyrinth like is that?

If we only looked at our daily trips around the house, we might also see a pattern as to where we begin and end and where we find our central focus. We might also see the revolutions we create and the extensions that allow us to more fully utilize our space followed by a return value to center or beginning point. We might do this in our daily travels; knowing home is our beginning and consummation as the day draws to a close.

I simply used the same concept to materialize the many places I moved from the center in exploration and further purpose and returned again. Indeed it is a marvelous reflection for I have traveled a number of places this year and all with diverse purpose that flows into one larger meaning. It’s reflection speaks volumes to me and in doing so, perhaps your travels of the year, no matter how expansive or how close to home they may have been, will impart a memory, a moment of realization or a meaning that affects you.

How do I ...

As to the How….

  1. I began with a piece of paper as I attempted to list out the places I had been on a map, though found the map to small for visual appreciation. Listing the geography on a timeline.
  2. Next I turned the paper over and simply dotted the paper with all the locations.
  3. Then I drew intersecting lines of my trip to and from, watching the circles develop.
  4. I noticed the pattern of Chicago as my center from which I traveled.
  5. I noticed Las Vegas from where I began and now ended
  6. I noticed the labyrinth of my separate journeys were one larger one of my year
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Consider where you have been….

Where have you taken yourself this year?

Where have you taken yourself this year?

Often to really consider where you are going, it is good to reflect upon where you have been. If you have not played along with the game outlined in our blog of December 1, then perhaps take each week in reflection a little differently.

I seem to have posted to different ways to reflect in our Facebook page and on this blog, so take which ever way makes sense and reflect well.


This design is from all my travels this year. I decided to plot them out on the path and as many were circular routes that came back to a home base, it was a labyrinth in a labyrinth. See if you can figure out my path…  The image is the cleaned up version of the path.

Travel Log 2015

Share your labyrinth… where have you been in 2015?

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Of the Labyrinth and Reflection

foot labyrinth in snow

The foot labyrinth in the snow at Colorado College

The month of December calls a close to the year and a great time for reflection of the labyrinths we have created, the labyrinths we will have traveled and perhaps the labyrinths we have been in the full year of 2015.

Last year we played a game in December to close the year in reflection and in this year we might do the same thing. Simply take each week like we did in November and reflect a little differently upon the ways in which you have achieved the following this year:

Ice rink labyrinth

The labyrinth can take you in circles and back out again… they are everywhere in life.


1st Week in December:  Where have I been?
Consider the the many turns of the labyrinth and where you might have criss crossed, looped and moved out and then again returned. Reflect this week on where you have been and plot the journey on a map. Connect the dots and be amazed at how wherever you begin and where ever you end, there is always a home point that draws you back again. It does not matter whether you have just traveled back and forth in your house, the great reflection is in what you have found on your path. Have fun in discovery and reflection


ice sculpture labyrinth New Brunswick Winter Fest

New Brunswick’s Winter festival creations

2nd Week in December: What have I accomplished?
Consider things you have been wanting to do, big things and little things that matter. Think of the first thoughts that come up and write them down and then place them on a page. Make a word up about what each is all about and then draw an image that fits around it. Prioritize the importance, what was most significant and what was least and perhaps put the important at the center, etc.

Keep it simple and let your mind begin to realize more and more as each point ventures out in expansive directions, notice as they end they come back and discover where good ideas return and begin…

in reflection of all you have accomplished.


snow blocks of labyrinth

Endless Opportunities to travel far and wide

3rd Week in December: Who did I meet this year?
Who is new in your life or who has come back? Who has made an impact and what is the significance of each person? Maybe it is a book you read where impact was created, a workshop, a Gathering or someone who didn’t seem to make much difference until you think of them now.

Place their names on a page and circle each, add a characteristic, meaning or significant purpose of this person in the center of your page, like the center of a labyrinth. Now create a beginning point with the first person you met and then connect to another person with similar traits or the next step in meaning and follow with the next and complete with others. When you have prioritized all on your path where ever you put them on the page you can then move into the center. Reflect on your way back out and do share this… if you wish add photographs, drawings or symbols… would love to see what you create!


Questions of the labyrinth

Questions of the labyrinth

4th Week in December: In what ways was I a labyrinth this year? What paths did I create?

We often don’t realize how our bodies, thoughts, emotions or spiritual sense of who we are can be much like a labyrinth winding around, moving out and returning to familiar only to stretch outward and then return again in a sense of completion. Where have we expanded, diverted and sought out new destinations for the many aspects of ourselves?

Explore the phases, extensions and variables of your year in reflection to really take on the aspect of the labyrinth of your life, in your life and about your life differently this December to realize greater value in the gifts you are and give to the world.  Not everyone walks the same labyrinth in the same way over the year. This is your opportunity to make notice by adding the ways you have walked, the different labyrinths, and the paths you have created for yourself or for others.

Beyond what you accomplished, this is just about the labyrinth journey. On a page write a description of each, prioritize importance in your life and trace your path to a center place on your page where you drop a note or two of thankfulness, appreciation and gratitude for the gifts. Then reflect in your journey back about the gift of each in your life… this is a life purpose labyrinth. You may discover how you have become the labyrinth in the journey.


Welcome to December… Our Monthly News and Reflection

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Labyrinth Center

CenterLabyrinthBetween the crackling calls of the crows


Between the sweet swishes of the wind


Between the questions questions questions


Between then and now


Between now and whatever will come


Between the body and the pulse


Between the open hands


Between all the names of mystery


Between the silence and the silence

Still deeper the silence

And the call

Gary Boelhower

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New Inspirations Repurpose our Paths

Suzanne SjogrenAfter the TLS gathering in Indiana recently, I was really excited to make the labyrinth a daily part of my life. I don’t have easy access to a walking labyrinth, but I have a wooden lap labyrinth that I purchased in 1999. First I had to find it, then I had to clean it as thoroughly as possible. On inspection, I found a crack forming on one side and the finish didn’t have the same smooth feel I once remembered. There was a certain amount of apprehension on my part to sit with it and actually run my fingers along its roughened path. Once I began my ‘new’ journey, tears started to well up. I was coming home and once again leaving home all at the same time.

My beautiful labyrinth and I survived a devastating house fire three years ago. Most of my possessions were lost, but a few remained by some miracle and my labyrinth made it, not unscathed, but functional and dare I say with more meaning and power.

When I look at this beautiful tool of journey, I can’t help but think of the path it has represented in my life. It has been pristine in its origin, a tool of reflection, meditative prayer, decoration, healing and enlightenment through the years. My labyrinth feels like an ancient Grandmother. It has stood the path of life and remains with me not only as a representation of the past, but also as a doorway to the future. It has the scars upon its face, but it’s beauty and function have increased and best of all, the heart of its message remains steadfast, filled with hope and alive to what lies ahead and for this I am deeply grateful.

Suzanne Sjogren

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November’s Gratitude

November Labyrinth of AppreciationThe month of November is an easy time to remember gratitude as our month of thanks is celebrated with our festival of appreciation on the fourth Thursday of the month in tradition. It can easily be the best holiday of the year because it demands little and gives us much in remembering the value of gratitude.

When we walk the labyrinth this month, we have the opportunity to appreciate each day a little more if we remember what is vital, what is happening and what has occurred during this interval of time. Just asking what am I grateful for, how am I grateful and who might be grateful for me can move the mountains of heart in the world, especially touching the magnitude of our own being.

Feel the change of the seasons and the change in your countenance this month by enveloping a week of thanks, then a week of appreciation, follow with a week of gratitude and finally a week of great fullness for all.

Enjoy the bliss of giving thanks.

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IF… the way is lost


If the way is lost in you

stop breathe pay attention.

Step again onto the path of your belonging

the path that calls from the center

of who you are and who you long to be.

Claim the journey that belongs

to your song, your story, your name.

Claim this day as the next step

this day as a promise

as a small hope that wakes up

something inside you that has been sleeping.

Step to the center of that hope

and let it surround you with light.

Let go of everything that doesn’t call your name

of all the baggage that keeps you in chains.

Let go of your certainty and your doubt

of your small plans and your grand designs.

Take this step

this one in front of you.

This breath this step is the only path

that brings you alive.

Gary J. Boelhower

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Traveling Curiosities

Atlanta Airport artistic expression Photo credit: @

The last two years I have had lots of traveling time and that means lots of waiting for flights and transit. I’ve found it a wonderful opportunity to simply be expressive and creative. I wonder how many might plot the course of the labyrinth in their head and then simply walk the path around objects present?  Airports and terminals are full of opportunities. We are always walking the labyrinth!

Instead of taking along a finger labyrinth, I found that I had a variety of ways to create a daily dedication and walk even on an eight hour flight.  I drew them on paper, exploring possibilities with design and meander. I used my food and with a child, the chocolate pudding is always a great forum to spread, swirl and share ideas in. I used strings, necklaces or tissues even to make small patterns and I found I had so many interesting thing tucked into my bags or pockets.

Sometimes I would outline my ideas, a schedule or topics that I would discuss in a training or presentation I was to give, then I would plot it out by drawing the labyrinth and adding the ideas as they popped up where I finger walked.

I also like to print out different designs on paper and laying out three on my tray table, I consider a topic and walk the first in release, using it to support me in just letting go of all the things to do. The next one assists me in being a good receiver so I can really listen to whats at the core and the last allows for the juicy bits to come to fruition. The reflective walk always leads to something more that I didn’t see before.

For a daily practice, I recommend curiosity… its where the labyrinth comes alive!

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