Let’s get started! If you are ready to comment or chat about what you’ve been loving or learning from this book, hop aboard dear ones!
Welcome to our very first Homesong book club discussion hang out! If you haven’t grabbed a glass of wine or cup of tea, go get it girl. I am going to start by telling you up front, I do not know exactly how this is going to flow, but I am optimistic and am going with it!
First and foremost, I want this space to be a positive and respectful one that lifts this of readers community up as we offer our insights, understandings, inquiries, and observations. Please remember to be kind and gracious to those sharing – opening up is a vulnerable and beautiful thing! Because we are not in person and instead are sharing through our writing, it is important that we all extend grace to one another and give each other the benefit of the doubt. I am so excited to dive in and see where this takes us! And just so we are all on the same page, here are some basic guidelines for this discussion:
- If you want to share your overall experience thus far and your reaction to your journaling, please do! I would love to hear how these first weeks of reading have been going for you. No judgement here. Life is moving at different paces for all of us and no matter what season you find yourself in, you have a seat at this table.
- If you want to reference a specific question below, make sure to include the number at the beginning of your comment. Example: “(Question 6) Spring is my favorite month and all the freshness and new growth makes me feel so alive. I love that the change of the seasons gives me permission to sort of start over. It’s a refreshing way to live through the changes nature gives us.
- If you want to comment on someone’s insight or answer a question they pose, do so as a reply and try to refer to them by name. This will help us keep things a bit more organized here.
- If you want to share your journal reflections for more than one question, you can do so in the same comment. You do not need to write multiple comments if you have more than one thing to share.
JOURNAL QUESTIONS FROM WEEK 1 & 2:
- Chapter 1 delves into the complexities of root systems of which we cannot see, specifically how forests are like “superorganisms with interconnections much like ant colonies.” How does this information change or impact your view of trees, and therefore, the natural world as a whole? In what ways does knowing that trees are mindful of one another’s growing space help encourage or support your reverence for the natural world?
- When talking about the supportive nature of tree communities the author states, “This is because a tree can only be as strong as the forest that surrounds it.” The truth behind this statement and the metaphor it carries is profound, don’t you think? What people or groups of people are the “forest” in your life, and how does their support specifically make you stronger? If you find yourself in a season where support is lacking, what steps can you take to water this area of your life? How has your idea or perception of “support,” and whatever that means to you, changed over the years as you’ve grown out of and entered new phases of life? Do you find that your culture is a supportive one like the community of trees, or one that values quite the opposite? How does this make you feel?
- Chapter 5 teaches us about the slim odds of trees producing one adult offspring to take its place. Have you ever considered the notion that trees reproduce? Have you ever thought of them as parents? After reading this chapter, how does knowing that “one out of 1.8 billion beechnuts will develop into a full-grown tree” change your outlook on their lives or their presence in our world?
- Chapter 6 takes us into the slow lane of tree life. Let’s think about what we’ve learned and apply it to children and raising them. In what specific ways, if any, do you think “slow” is a better pace when raising children? How do you think slow practices both support and hinder development or growth in raising children, or perhaps even, within our own lives as adults? Do you think our culture, or the culture within your household, nurtures a slow pace or one that rushes to keep up? Why is this? Feel free to journal about the topic of slowing down vs. fast-paced encouragement, and how the symbol of a slow-aging tree can give us a new lens through which we can view our lives and where we personally fall on this continuum.
- At this point you’ve learned more about trees than you may have cared to know. So, why does it matter? I am constantly finding myself returning to my own why as a mother and blogger and how this ebbs and flows over the months or years. What nuggets of wisdom, quotes, or scientific facts from these chapters are you planning on taking with you? Consider things you find yourself returning to as you go about your day? Explore the “so what factor” of all you’ve read thus far, and create short and convincing statement to share with others who are interested in picking up this book.
- Chapter 10 references early spring and how if one was to put their ear to the trunk of a large tree, he or she would hear the sound of rushing water. I dare you to try this, and double points if you do so in public! Ha. Good times. On another note, in what ways does the turn of the season from winter to spring ignite a similar rush of excitement inside of you?
- Wohlleben states on page 65, “Some trees acquire their wrinkles at a younger age than their contemporaries…similar to the human condition.” Our Western culture has a interesting perspective about wrinkles. What do you personally think about them and the aging process in general? What does it mean to age gracefully in your opinion?
- Chapter 15 share that “there are more life forms in a handful of forest soil than there are people on the planet.” When I read this I had to put my book down and just soak this amazing concept in. Have you ever dug your bare hands into soil? How does feeling the earth in its raw state make you feel? Why, especially in the age of immediacy + technology do you think it is important to connect with the earth in this way?
- Let’s ruminate on climate change since it has been brought up a bit in these chapters. What is your current take on this controversial (to some) subject? From what we’ve read, how do forests play an important role in climate change?
- Chapter 17 discusses trees and their habitats. How, like large forests, have you created your ideal habitat? What does this look or feel like? Why do you think you value such things?
With Care, Amanda