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We Are All Connected

From my very earliest memories, I have had a love affair with Nature. I have stayed in touch with that love and know that there is a deep benefit that comes from an ongoing relationship with Nature.

I tap into this love every day in my work as a poet, an artist, a writer, a therapist, mother of two sons, and a teacher of creativity. I am such an advocate of the importance of encouraging our children to have a relationship with nature because I attribute much of my strength and creativity to that connection.

The best way to share this love with our children, beginning at the earliest of ages, is by modeling it OURSELVES. By connecting with the simplicity and authenticity of our natural surroundings, we instinctively slow to a more natural and saner rhythm or pace and begin to see the emergence of our own authentic, creative, and true nature – to be more open.

As this opening occurs, I like to say, our inner landscape becomes spectacular by transforming to reflect the beauty and wonder of the natural world. We also realize that, like our inner selves, nature is fragile and in need of care and love and respect.

And, like the great circle of life, one thing leads into another and back again. We are inspired and we inspire others to be good to each other. It is you and me, at our best. Like Robert W. Fuller, Ph.D. says, “Dignity is not negotiable.”

We are connected by that goodness and it is our greatest strength;

A river runs from you to me
This river runs for eternity
A silent promise never broken
Of true love, so sweetly spoken
A heart that beats for you and me
One pure heart for eternity
A world like ours is never broken
With my song, like wings, now open!

Janine L. Kimmel

Author and artist, Janine Layton Kimmel, is the mother of two sons and resides in Locust, New Jersey. She is a registered nurse with a Bachelor of Science in human development and a Master’s degree in transpersonal studies. She travels frequently giving workshops for children emphasizing the connection between nature and creativity, inspiring imaginations
She has also worked with students to improve interracial and intercultural understanding through the ‘Project Writing Link,’ a federally funded grant program.

Kimmel’s art has been described as having a visionary quality suggesting an altered magical reality where lush blossoming vines, vibrant colorful forests, and luminous animals and birds will “invite” you into their world.

Kimmel’s first book, The Magic Gown, won six awards including Book of the Year in 2009 for ages 8-12, Creative Child Magazine.

In 2011, a grant from the Angeles Arrien Foundation for Cross-Cultural Research and Education was awarded to send each child at The Thai Freedom House in Chiang Mai, Thailand a copy of The Magic Gown and her original Magic Doorway Booklet. The Thai Freedom House is a community language and arts learning center for refugees from Burma and Indigenous Peoples. The donation was in honor of Burma's Aung San Suu Kyi for her courage, elegance and unyielding determination to stand by her principles of human dignity.

Her latest young adult fiction, co-created with Italian artist and author David Ceccarelli, The Yawning Rabbit River Chronicle, was released in September 2012. It has been awarded a Nautilus Silver Award 2013 for YA Fiction, Book of the Year 2013 for Fiction Adventure, Creative Child Magazine, and a VOYA Perfect Ten Title 2012. "This story will make life-long readers of youth not previously committed to reading." - VOYA

Kimmel has a private transpersonal and wellness counseling therapy practice in Red Bank, NJ.

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