The Art of Hosting

Janet Blayone
  • Peace River, Ab
  • Canada
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How did you learn about Art of Hosting (please add the date and place) and what attracted you to it?
Learned about AoH 9-ish years ago. That AoH is a practice rooted in individual response and commitment, its organic fluidity and connectiveness to other practices in my life sparked a deep re-awakening. Because I live in a remote area and life was full, attending a workshop wasn't an option. So I read everything I could get my hands on. Some pieces (like Circle & Appreciative Inquiry) were old friends. Other pieces I yearned to experience in person. Finally on November 11 - 14, 2013, I convened on Bowen Island, BC with 35 other seekers and host team Chris Corrigan, Caitlin Frost, Amanda Fenton, Teresa Posakony and Tenneson Wolfe. It was even more magical than I had hoped!
Tell us about your experience with Art of Hosting as part of your life and work. What would you say your competence in it is? (new, starting practitioner, experienced practitioner, steward)
I am a geeky, gawky freshly hatched AoH chick.

At this first workshop, there were some dear old friends (Circle, The Work of Byron Katie, Appreciative Inquiry, NVC, mindfulness living) and some exciting new ones (Open Space, World Cafe, enriching Check-ins/outs). (One I did not meet is one I most cherish: the practice of living from heart space which I've studied with Heart Math, Drunvalo Melchizedek's "Awakening the Illuminated Heart", the Hathors, Bashar, Matt Kahn and others.)

But the big gift was Pro-action Cafe. The collective wisdom of the group has galvanized me to put the Call to a dream I've held for several years. Total delicious transformation, with all the shivery chills of fear and twangs of excitement.
What is the primary field/topic/focus in your hosting work?
I am blessed with a life of flow, where personal, family, community and work are woven together by practices that help me live in coherence with myself, with others and with All That Is. I see AoH as another valued container and tool to integrate into all the parts of my life.

My Big New Calling is to repurpose my home into a homestead garden/farm where people can learn essentials to sustain themselves and the planet through the tumultuous changes ahead.
Where do you live/work?
I live in Peace River, a small remote town in northern Alberta, Canada - up where the Prairies meet the Permafrost. I'm a sister, a mother, a grandma, a friend and a neighbour. A gardener in love with soil, a cook, an artist and a sometimes writer. I've worked for a non-profit community council for 25 years, providing life long learning opportunities for adults. A elder edgewalker, I foray out periodically to forage and harvest juicy bits to bring back to seed and feed my northern peeps.
Are there interests/passions that you'd like to share?
Earlier this year I purchased 160 acres of land 20 minutes from Peace River - old growth boreal forest with clean abundant spring water and deep rich virgin soil. Then I found a castoff farmhouse to be repurposed, moved onto the land and renovated for energy efficiency and shared living. I had a vague plan to create a space to share my grandmother and garden growing wisdom using my retirement savings. Now I know we'll begin in the spring, using permaculture design and Art of Hosting to create the space for Humanity 3.0 to learn the practical living skills and bush-craft knowledge of their ancestors while reconnecting to their inherent inner wisdom and our deep, collective interconnectedness. I invite you join us, in body or in spirit.

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Comment Wall (4 comments)

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At 6:03pm on February 16, 2015, Susan Johnstone said…

Hi Janet.

Thank you SO much for replying with this wonderful list of your sources! I've been exploring Stephen Harrod Buhner's books for about 8 months now, including the 2 you mentioned, plus his guide to fasting, which is very good. I think you might like his most recent book, Plant Intelligence and the Imaginal Realm. This one is the book version of his workshops, with a set of practices in the back.

And I'm off now to look up the others you mentioned, esp the one on Dirt, as well as Machaelle Small-Wright's website. So nice to connect with you!

At 3:49pm on February 14, 2015, Susan Johnstone said…

Hi Janet. I just joined the AoH online space and saw your posting about your land in the thread on subtle worlds. I'm also a fledgling steward of a property, learning permaculture and gardening in Nova Scotia. I recently found the perfect resource for learning to garden with nature spirits and elementals and I wanted to pass along the name to you.

It's called the Perelandra Garden Workbook, by Machaelle Small Wright. It's out of print (it comes in a 3-ring binder!) but you can get used copies on I just stumbled across it one day, after feeling for months like there was an invisible "someone" that I should be consulting about the land and the garden and where to put new things, etc. This workbook is answering ALL my questions. Hope things are going well in your labour of love!

At 4:38am on November 26, 2013, Amanda Fenton said…

Welcome Janet - it was so good to meet you on Bowen and to feel your energy here on the ning!

At 5:04am on November 18, 2013, Nancy Bragard said…

Hello, Janet, and welcome to the Art of Hosting community! Glad to see you here. Your road to reach the community has been rich, it sounds like you've "come home"! Post a photo when you can so we can really "see" you here. Then join in with all the conversations. You'll find plenty of resources here, too, to help you deepen your practice. And the more you add to your profile, the more the community can learn from you and share with you. We hope you will find value in exchanging in this virtual community!


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