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It's the small things

By Kelly Prentice, Bija Initiative

· change,Nature,creativity,community

I'm learning, a small shift in your daily routine can yield big results!

Here's one. I've started walking a lot more as a mode of transportation. The weather is shifting from hot, sticky summer days, and there's a cool breeze that spurs me on during autumn months. We're lucky to have neighborhood schools, which in many places is now an antiquated thing. We love our charming, old streets here in Easton, Pa., where massive tree roots sometimes wreak havoc on our sidewalks. I take my inspiration from the massive, burly trees.

Some days, my two young boys take their bikes to school, just several blocks down the hill. Other days, they are happy to walk with me or a neighbor, running when they get excited. Today, we noticed men chipping paint high on a ladder, another group of construction workers digging a ditch, butterflies flitting about, and intriguing flowers that look more like coral under the sea.

Paintings courtesy of Lauren Kindle, artist and writer based in Easton, Pa.

As you can see, not only has this small change made a difference in our physical fitness, it has had a number of unexpected benefits.

  • It's brought me into rhythm with Nature, her ebb and flow. Yesterday, I got a little bit soggy, since I didn't realize rain was coming when we headed out. It felt refreshing.
  • It has brought more peace to the morning ritual with the kids, since we know we will have that time together, that walk on the way to school to breathe fresh air and commune with Nature.
  • I notice things about my neighbors, their homes, and the energy in the neighborhood... things I would not notice if I hopped into the car every morning and drove quickly from point A to point B.
  • It's created space in my day and in my mind, the space I need in between the rush of morning time and jumping in to my work. It's a creative spark.
  • It's helped me to connect more effectively with my community and my neighbors of all backgrounds, and brought a smile to many faces.

I am grateful to my neighbors who have shown me the way, who walk to work even when it's a little bit of a trek, who make the effort to say hello when they pass by, and who care about the people in their community, rich and poor, young and old.

Think about the small things that you might do to create a shift. You never know, it might surprise you how many benefits can come from one small alteration. We'd love to hear all about small changes you've made that have brought about a positive difference in your life. Perhaps your first small change is to schedule an office yoga session? Simply email us at

Thanks to Lauren Kindle, artist and author based in Easton, Pa. for contributing these beautiful images. Please check out her blog!

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