beauty or Beauty?

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In a recent conversation with a dear teacher, Katharine Kruger creator of JOY Journey of a Young Woman, we were discussing how we demonstrate to girls the of value Beauty.

I really loved how she described beauty.  She says,“beauty with a small b is often seen on billboards or magazines to sell products to girls with the fear that they won’t be accepted without looking a certain way.

Beauty with a big B is Beauty all around us, inside us - it is the way we connect with the Earth and each other.”

How can we change the conversations with girls?

By saying something other than “you are so pretty” every time you see a girl can really shift her perception of how she is valued. If this is the main compliment she hears, it is easy to build beliefs that it is her job to be pretty and please others with her body.  

We can easily shift the language to compliment her Beauty, her uniqueness and the way she connects with the world around her.

Another common phrase girls hear often is “it’s what’s on the inside that matters.” Girls will be the first to see that for many people this is not reflected in their actions. People are judged and promoted by their looks and girls pick up on this quickly. It is so important to have an honest conversation and acknowledge that these different value systems do exist. We can share that we all have the choice of how we value Beauty in the way we live our lives. Letting girls know that how you show your inner light and through your actions is true Beauty.

We can invite girls to have positive experiences by noticing the Beauty around them, the Beauty within them and their direct actions and connection to the Earth. By modeling acts of kindness to those around us, honoring the Earth cycles and observing the Beauty in the places and people all around us we can redefine what Beauty means to girls. Let's open our vision so we can give them a feel for how they can weave the threads of their Beauty in the world.

May I walk in Beauty
Beauty behind me
Beauty in front of me
Beauty above and below me
Beauty all around and within me
-Navajo prayer

An Invitation to Fathers

A father’s presence is so important during a girl’s coming of age process and can shape how she sees herself in the world. Between the ages of 8-21 is the time when daughters greatly benefit from supportive caring fathers / male role models.

Many women have shared with us that they remember their fathers becoming distant as they were going through puberty. This is the time when they needed to know they were supported and loved more than ever. The words and actions during this time in a girl’s life can affect her self-esteem and how she views her value in the world.

Now is the time for fathers to be welcomed to share a part of this journey with their daughters. 

"Fathers can model good female-male relationships and respect for women in a wide variety of roles. Fathers can change the narrow definitions of their daughters worth and support their wholeness. They can teach their daughters that it is okay to be smart, bold and independent.

Supportive fathers have daughters with high self-esteem and a sense of wellbeing.  These girls were more apt to trust men, to feel confident in relationships with the opposite sex and to predict their own future and happiness. They described their fathers as fun, deeply involved and companionable.” Reviving Ophelia - Mary Pipher

Fathers who are emotionally available to their daughters give a sense of comfort, security and a space where she can explore who she is authentically becoming. 

How can you be a part of your daughter's journey into womanhood?

  • Reflect on how women and girls are viewed in society and question how we can change our language as a culture to empower girls
  • Build intentional relationships with your daughter and her mom by being emotionally available
  • Focus on her strengths
  • Showing her acceptance and letting her know you value her for how she is in this moment
  • Meet her where she is at and get involved in activities she enjoys
  • Empower her through letting her make choices
  • Cheer her on, no matter how long it takes for her to find her path.  She may slam doors, roll her eyes and say unkind words and when she sees you still holding space for her, you are giving her permission to believe in herself.
  • Modeling values you wish to see in the world for your daughter. The words and actions you share are the memories she will carry with her. This is the reflection of how she sees herself in the world.
  • Connect with other fathers and groups to talk about this transitional time - No one is perfect and we can all learn from one another

Please connect with us if you have a daughter in the Central Florida area to find out more about the programs we are offering to support girls and their families through coming of age programs.

Are We Preparing Girls For Their Voyage Into Puberty?

Are we preparing girls with the tools to feel supported on their journey into puberty?

In “The Seven Rites of Menarche”, Kristi Meisenbach Boylan writes about the journey of a young girl moving into womanhood. She is being called on a voyage from the home she knows well to a mysterious island. A place that keeps keeps calling to her. In this book she explores the process of preparing girls for the journey through the waters of puberty that lie ahead. 

“It is so important for the guardians and parents of a young girl to make sure that she has all the safety belts, life rafts and other protection devices available before she sets out on her first voyage. For the ebbing and flowing of estrogen in a woman’s body is synonymous with mood swings, alternating periods of energy and fatigue and spiritual high and lows. As the rise and fall of hormones over the next five years begins to peak, the ups and downs become more dramatic. Thankfully, the onset of hormones are only released in tiny amounts and the ebbing and flowing are relatively mild for a few years before she begins her moon cycle.” The Seven Rites of Menarche

Pre-puberty is the time  3-4 years before a girl begins bleeding where she begins to experience small amounts of hormones being released. This is her body’s way of slowly helping her transition into the new growth that comes with puberty.  It is normal for girls at age 7 or 8 to have be extremely needy and affectionate one moment and then throw an intense tantrum the next moment. These are moments of her growing. Through these increased emotions and hormones she is getting ready to break through the tender green shoot with the beginning of a rose blossom.  

By assuring her that her feelings and wide range of emotions are all okay to feel. Letting her know through actions and words that she is supported and loved will be a great tool for her to use in her vessel as she journeys into the waters of puberty.

Tools to add to a girls toolkit during the First Rite of Menarche:

  • Normalize emotions - talking with girls and letting them know that it is okay to feel all emotions
  • Make it easy to check in with their emotions - create a How I feel today chart or wheel that she can use to show how she is feeling in the moment
  • Outlets - Giving girls creative outlets to express their emotions
  • Get out in Nature - giving her a way to connect with the natural rhythms happening all around her 
  • Connect with the cycles of the moon and journal or check in with her emotions and learn how they change with each phase of the moon
  • Join a girl's circle or program where she can connect with other girls and be supported by women mentors that share tools to help her prepare for her journey

Please connect with us if you have a daughter in the Central Florida area to find out more about the programs we are offering to support girls and their families through coming of age programs.

May Day a Holiday of Kindness

                                                       May Day Basket of Kindness 

                                                       May Day Basket of Kindness 

The traditions of May Day over the past few generations have slowly started to disappear. If you ask your Grandparents they may remember a time when May Day was celebrated in their community or even in school. They would wake up early on May 1st to collect flowers to place in a basket on an unsuspecting neighbors door knob and run before they were discovered. A Maypole would be constructed with a rainbow of colored ribbons for the children to dance around. 

May Day is a celebration of flowers, fertility, life and the welcoming of Summer. The history of May Day can be traced back to the Northern Hemisphere in Europe. In pre-Christian times it was called Floralia, the festival of Flora, honoring the Roman goddess of flowers. 

Beltane is a Pagan Celtic holiday which means "The Return of the Sun" and is celebrated to welcome the beginning of Summer. They believe that the Sun was held prisoner by the Winter months. On Beltane the Sun was released and they would celebrate with huge bonfires and a feast to mark the occasion.

As Europe became Christianized, May day became known as a secular holiday that was celebrated with the dancers of the Maypole. This colorful dance of winding and unwinding the rainbow of ribbons symbolizes the lengthening of the days as Summer begins. It is said that the dance is a way to give thanks for life and the pole acts as a giant magic wand in the celebration of Summer.

At the Rose Tent, we held a May Day celebration for women and girls. The response was incredible. We connected with the Earth in the garden while we harvested greenery and flowers to create flower crowns. We guided the girls to start a dialog with the plants. They practiced asking the plant if it is okay to have branch or a flower, listening to their intuition and then harvesting. We talked about offering corn meal back to the Earth as a symbol of being thankful. The girls loved giving the corn meal back to the Earth as much as harvesting the flowers.

It was such a joy to create May Baskets with this community of women and girls. They colored cards, created lavender sachets and picked packets of seeds to add to the baskets. On May 1st they are encouraged to add flowers from their yards and hang these beautiful baskets as an act of kindness on someone's door. 

Happy May Day!


First Rite of Menarche - Opening The Dialog

As girls approach the journey of becoming women there are natural progressions of rites of passage that support them along the way.  Parents, guardians and teachers we are the guides that can help girls prepare for this journey. Through having an open and honest dialog with girls during the years before they start puberty can prepare girls for the many changes to come. 

“By the time a girl first hears the calling of the outer world and begins to respond with her own inner beat of ebbing and flowing, her parents have probably prepared her for the basics of what will happen to her body as she moves through puberty. But often parents neglect to prepare their daughters for the emotional roller coaster caused by the surges of hormones. This emotional rollercoaster is a lot like riding waves. Holding on to a surfboard seems okay as long as the waves are not very high. The journey through menarche has frequent tidal waves.

This is why it is so important for guardians and parents of a young girl to make sure that she has all the safety belts, life rafts and other tools during this first rite, before she sets out on her journey.” Kristi Meisenbach Boylan in The Seven Sacred Rites of Menarche

This first rite of menarche is the series of initial talks between the girl and her parents or guardians. Discussions on our amazing bodies with structural layout of the names of female reproductive organs and a general discussion on hormones and the effects they can have on emotions and moods.

Once parents are sure that their daughters have a basic understanding of the anatomy of her body, introducing the concept of ebbing and flowing and the natural cycles that we share with nature can be a great way to continue the discussion. 

This is a time in a girl's life where she can benefit greatly learning that her emotions and her body's cycles are natural and normal. The more that we can normalize this dialog and not make our bodies, cycles and hormones a taboo subject will strongly empower girls to embrace the many changes to come. 


Holistic Well-Being - A Guide to Wellness

The Rose Tent understands and honors the wellness needs to raise healthy girls in our community. Through Holistic Well-Being we incorporate these four needs in each session to provide a healthy environment. We strive for a future where girls are thriving and healthy in all aspects of their lives.

Physical Well-Being- Through the foundation of the physical well-being, we honor our physical body's needs and wisdom.  We guide girls to tune into their bodies through vision, hearing, taste, smell, touch, balance, breathing and intuition. Respecting their own bodies as well as the body sovereignty of others. In the Rose Tent, girls are encouraged to protect and care for their bodies. We model ways to embrace the cycles of being a woman as she moves through puberty and begins menstruating. Through yoga, meditation and nature connection activities we honor the Mother Earth for all the gifts of life.

Emotional Well-Being- The Rose Tent is a place where girls can explore their feelings. We believe emotions are allies that share important information with us. We provide a toolbox for girls to work with when their emotions feel "too big" or overwhelming.  We create a safe place where girls can be uniquely who they are and know they are completely supported. We discuss the rollercoaster of changes they are experiencing and encourage them that their feelings are healthy and okay.

Social Well-Being- An inclusive culture is a foundation in the Rose Tent. We demonstrate how to consider the feelings and needs of others, while still caring for themselves. Through activities and exercises, girls practice finding their voice, being kind and assertive and learning to define healthy boundaries. We model healthy listening, inclusion and standing up for others. Through these practices, girls are experiencing a collective sisterhood of connection and belonging.

Spiritual Well-Being- In the Rose Tent, we honor all spiritual beliefs. We provide girls with the tools to deepen their own spiritual beliefs through experiences and connecting their self with nature. All backgrounds and beliefs are welcome.

Holistic Well-Being  is used in planning  each session to ensure that we are creating a healthy space for girls to thrive as they journey into womanhood.

Guiding Through Wise Woman Ways

Wise Women by Jess Kovach

Wise Women by Jess Kovach

In the Rose Tent we are inspired to guide from a tradition of Wise Woman Ways.  

Guiding from the heart of Wise Woman Ways allows us to:

  • Respect, observe and learn from nature

  • Trust our intuition and body wisdom 

  • Honor all life in the interdependent web of our planet

  • Build personal relationships with our plant, animal and Earth element allies 

  • Celebrate and value all stages of being a woman from maiden to crone

For thousands of years, people lived in nature and developed a strong communication with everything around them. By being immersed in natural environments our sense of touch, smell, hearing, taste and sight are amplified. The more that we use our five senses to perceive our surroundings, animals, plants and each other, the stronger our intuition becomes.

What is intuition?

According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary: 


  1. A quick and ready insight
  2. a: Immediate apprehension or cognition b:  Knowledge or conviction gained by intuition c:  The power or faculty of attaining to direct knowledge or cognition without evident rational thought and inference

Intuition is the knowing; the “gut feeling” that we feel and often have a difficult time explaining it rationally to others. We perceive information through our skin, nose, mouth eyes and ears. Through our senses our nervous system responds viscerally and this is the feeling in our stomach. Intuition is activated when our entire body becomes the communicating instrument of many forms of information.

In the Rose Tent, we guide by connecting girls with nature and learning to trust the wisdom of our bodies to deepen our intuition. The more we can connect with nature the greater understanding we will have about our bodies, emotions and this incredible life we are living.