So You Think You Can’t Draw?

Image from Page 142 of ‘The Book of Woodcraft’ (1912) Flickr Creative Commons

Imagine, for a moment, the sparkling waters that sit alongside Hollyhock’s beach, or the hand-crafted driftwood gates in to Hollyhock’s garden.  Could you sit quietly and draw these vistas, or do you reach for your Digital SLR to capture the moment? Does your artwork represent simple line drawings, albeit perhaps out of scale?

This month, you could have the opportunity to exercise the right side of your brain and amaze yourself at your ability to create realistic drawings and portraits. Continue reading

resized refuge photo peter b

Refugee Dreams

Refugee Dreams by writer and Hollyhock presenter Peter Behrens first appeared in Granta.

He sits up in his hospital bed in Montreal, ordering me to fetch his suitcase. We must hurry. To the bahnhof. He has to catch the last train leaving for Rotterdam, before the Dutch frontier closes.

The hallucination wells up out of his history, leaving me depressed, scared. I’ve never had to pity him before.

My father, Hermann Henry Behrens, was born in 1910 on the Isle of Wight, England, in a house called Sans Souci, after Frederick the Great’s summer palace in Potsdam. The house belonged to my father’s godfather and namesake, Baron Hermann von Eckardstein, First Secretary at the German embassy in London, a notorious Edwardian roué, a party animal with a walrus moustache.

My grandfather, Heinrich Behrens, served in a Grenadier Guards regiment at Potsdam, then moved to England, where he Continue reading


The world needs you to be you

photo credit: Lachlan Hardy, Flikr Creative Commons

Girlvana Yoga is an initiative that supports youth development through yoga, meditation and healthy eating.  Where was that when we were young, you might ask yourself?

Today, our teenaged girls have a chance to disconnect from the pressures of social media and constant peer connectivity for 5 days of calm, creativity and joy at Hollyhock.  By learning how to empower themselves through writing exercises, art projects and time with nature on Cortes Islands girls can embark on a journey of self-discovery.  This program offers the ‘summer camp’ experience in a safe and inclusive environment, allowing the participants to  create dreams and goals that fire up their imagination.

Yoga for youth is a growing movement,  focusing on the benefits of yoga to teach youth physical fitness; self awareness and inner calm.  What a Summer Camp this will be!


Girlvana Founder, Alex Mazerolle, dedicates her life to the empowerment of Teen Youth.  A dancer, entrepreneur and yoga instructor, Alex invites Teen Girls aged 13-17 to join her for 5 days of fun, inspiration and leadership here.  


Enjoy Summer – have a bike picnic!

photo credit: The Norse, Flikr Creative Commons

This article was originally published on July 22, 2014  and written by Melissa Davies in Momentum Magazine

A gentle breeze and sun that wants to warm your back is calling. What would be better than a picnic by bike?

The plan sounds dreamy, but I worry over the details. How many deviled eggs? Should I bring my lace parasol? Hypoallergenic or anti-bacterial baby wipes? I’m a sweaty mess even before I touch the saddle. Continue reading


Summer Mindfulness: 10 Exercises and Meditations

Published on June 29, 2013 by Joseph Cardillo, Ph.D. in Attention Training, Psychology Today

Each of nature’s seasons contains unique calming and invigorating energy and you can learn how to use it.

In holistic arts, for example, summer is a cycle that is all about robust energy and creating abundance. Additionally, you can use its high energy to help focus on, expand and coordinate the pieces of your life, especially those that can manifest themselves, into a super new you. If you are feeling in a rut, this cycle’s soaring energy is there to help you out.

Start today. A good place to start is to step back and make yourself aware of how this season’s (or any season’s) energy presents itself in your external environment and within yourself. Insofar as summer is concerned, observe what new elements of your life are taking shape and which fit into your goals and desires and so you’d like to grow them to their fullest. Prune those that present themselves as dysfunctional. This will help you focus, organize and give more time to the “important stuff.” Continue reading