WALK THIS WAY
Free City Walks around Seattle

Come walk with us. We are leading free fun and interesting urban nature walks in the greater Seattle area.

You can get all the details for our walks by subscribing in the box on the left side of this page. Share with your friends. They are free and fun!

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A Sweet Little Guide to Nature Me For You

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A Simple Way to FEEL MORE JOY in your life

© Cary Given/Given Photography 2016

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Journal Archive
Tuesday
Apr302013

New from the Puget Sound Urban Nature Series

At this urban beach park, you'll feel a world away from the busy Seattle metropolis. Panoramic views, a nice stretch of beach and lots of dune grass are some of the features you'll love.  

Read the latest article from my Puget sound Urban Nature Series to find out more about this very cool urban park.

RICHMOND BEACH SALTWATER PARK
  Love the dune grass

And here are three more articles from my urban nature series about local parks that are fun to visit in the spring. 

 WASHINGTON PARK ARBORETUM 
  -Beauty for you

GREEN LAKE PARK
  -Well-loved by Seattleites

VOLUNTEER PARK
  -A jewel in the midst

And to get most out out of your visit, read...

LEARN HOW TO GET THE MOST OUT OF AN URBAN PARK VISIT
  -Six easy steps

Enjoy and Happy Spring!

Friday
Apr192013

Earth Love - 3 things you must absolutely do on Earth Day

Okay maybe you don't absolutely need to do what I'm about to suggest for Earth Day 2013 (April 22), but if you do, I promise you'll feel more energized and connected with our great big beautiful planet. Get grounded...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Mar062013

A 10-minute backyard nature practice you'll love

"Study nature, love nature, and stay close to nature, it will never fail you." -Frank Lloyd Wright I used to think that I had to take a vacation and travel great distances to experience the beauty and benefits of nature. Visiting a national park or some other type of natural area seemed like the only way. It was a big misconception on my part.

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Jan312013

What's the difference between a seal and a sea lion?

Just as I looked up, it dove under. What was it? I watched for a long time and then movement about 30 feet south caught my eye. I turned, and again, missed it. Just the movement of swirling

Click to read more ...

Monday
Dec312012

PICTURE IT WELL: Play it up in the New Year

Red Fox, © Curt Given/Given Photography Are you thinking about setting New Year's resolutions? Well here is one to consider.

Play more.

According to Dr. Stuart Brown, who is known for his extensive research on the importance of play and founder of the Institute for Play, there is a strong correlation between success and playful activities

In his book, Play: How it Shapes the Brain, Opens the Imagination, and Invigorates the Soul, Brown claims people who play are more creative. And he says playing is essential to

  • strong social skills
  • solving problems 
  • increased energy
  • intellectual and emotional growth.

The Institute for Play describes play for both animals and humans as "a universal training course and language of trust. The belief that one is safe with another being or in any situation is formed over time during regular play. Trust is the basis of intimacy, cooperation, creativity, successful work, and more."

So this year, why not take your cue from Dr. Stuart Brown and our animal friends and put a few play dates into your 2013 resolutions.

Are you all work and no play? What play ideas do you have for us? What do you think about Dr. Brown's research that shows the correlation between play and trust?

If you like this post, share with your friends!   

Happy New Year! 

__________________

(Picture it Well are photographs that symbolize some aspect of personal wellness. The brief text is meant to inspire, get you thinking, and/or show you the healing power of nature.) 

More Picture it Well posts

See the abundance in your life

Dig into your roots

Do one thing

Reflect for growth

Tuesday
Dec112012

7 ways to get your holiday glow on

If, like me, you find the holiday season a little over-the-top at times, I recommend you check out my own tried and true tricks with a twist of nature. I call them instant peace makers. Just Breathe. This is something you can do anytime.

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Nov212012

PICTURE IT WELL: Reflect for growth

Lake McDonald, Glacier National Park, © Curt Given/Given Photography 2010When you want to change things up in your life, personal reflection is a powerful way to do that. According to life coach, Martha Beck, reflecting on a past experience can expand your own awareness about your best and maybe not-so-best qualities. But don't dwell or judge yourself harshly. Just think about what you might have done differently from the perspective of enhancing the best in you or changing what did not serve you well. Then move on by integrating that new understanding into your life.

__________________

(Picture it Well are photographs that symbolize some aspect of personal wellness. The brief text is meant to inspire, get you thinking, and/or show you the healing power of nature.)

More Picture it Well posts

See the abundance in your life

Play it up in the new year

Do one thing

Dig into your roots

 

 

Wednesday
Nov072012

20 inspirational writing tips for your travel journal

"Women have always yearned for faraway places. It was no accident that a woman financed the first package tour of the New World, and you can bet Isabella would have taken the trip herself, only Ferdinand wouldn't let her go." -Roslyn Friedman, 1924, American Writer. This quote makes me smile. Its message is both timeless and dated.

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Oct272012

What is an important part of happiness?

Awhile back I was in a coffee shop eavesdropping on a fascinating conversation between a man and woman who seemed to have just met. The sixty-something man who looked very wise, asked, "What is the most important component of happiness?" I held my breath. That has long been the million dollar question for many of us.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Oct162012

7 fall activities Northwest style (but good anywhere) 

The fall season is upon us, but don't head inside yet. It's still mild enough for an outdoor adventure. Gorgeous colors, earthy scents, crunchy leaves and watchable wildlife are all part of the autumn show. Here are a few ideas to get you going.

Click to read more ...

Monday
Sep032012

How healing the earth empowered thousands of women

When I first heard of the Green Belt Movement I wanted to find out more. I did and felt compelled to share it here. It's a wonderful story about the connection between nature and women and how that connection can heal and transform. It's also a story that shows how caring, courage and love can change a nation.

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Aug222012

PICTURE IT WELL: Do one thing

© Cary Given 2012

Dr. Edward Hallowell, a Massachusetts based psychiatrist and author of "CrazyBusy" says in his book that multitasking is a "mythical activity in which people believe they can perform two or more tasks simultaneously." 

In reality, our brains are not wired for multitasking. (It's a term that originated as computer jargon, and then transferred into workplace resumes.)

According to a study from University of California, when workers were interrupted by phone calls and emails, it took them 25 minutes to recover and return to their work. 

Hallowell further says says that limiting multitasking is essential to our emotional and physical health. Just thinking about simultaneous work can make us feel overloaded.

Do one thing at a time and it will actually increase your productivity. And your single focus will help you learn easier and bring more creativity and wisdom to the task at hand.

__________________

(Picture it Well are photographs that symbolize some aspect of personal wellness. The brief text is meant to inspire, get you thinking, and/or show you the healing power of nature.) 

More Picture it Well posts

See the abundance in your life

Dig into your roots

 

Thursday
Aug162012

Road trip stalled

I have a planning mind and if I don't do what I plan to do, I'm disappointed. In myself. So for this vacation, I've let everything go and tried to quiet my planning mind. Told myself to be in the moment and enjoy whatever comes along. Some would call it spontaneity. I'm not sure...maybe I'm just plain tired of doing...of planning. So by now you have probably guessed that I have not done much the last two days. Just a little wishing and wandering here and there. Here's a little recap.

Click to read more ...

Monday
Aug132012

Day four of solo road trip

The day was incredible. Heavenly is an apt description and I mean that in every sense of the word, but more about that later. This morning I headed south from Ellensburg to Yakima through the Yakima River Canyon. And I read somwhere that it was the first designated scenic byway in Washington state. It was an impressive terrain of ancient towering basalt cliffs.

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Aug122012

Nature Me takes solo road trip

I'm on my first ever solo road-trip and loving every single moment. I've imagined doing this for years, but have always talked myself out of it with one excuse or another (fear?). But here I am doing it and I've got to say...it's empowering. I plan to share regular updates throughout the trip. Not to get you to take this particular trip, but to inspire you to plan your own. (And, I will post descriptions along the way. I just can't help myself...I've always wanted to be a travel writer.)

Click to read more ...