Saturday, April 21, 2007

April 21st...Throne

Well, it's been a long road and we're just getting started. Your faithful Stupa Anis are not carpenters by any means, but without any handy dudes to help we're heading out today to start cutting some lumbar! Ted, who was involved in building the first throne has provided us with this drawing to give us a guide, and we disassembled the current throne to see how it was built....

This is a view of the base, from the bottom. This is where a lot of the strength seems to come from. We've measured out some boards...we'll see how it goes!

Here are some images that show how the boards fit together...

We took this shot so we wouldn't forget there's going to be a lip on the bottom and top pieces, which will then hold the "box" which will be in between.

If there are any handy folks out there wanting to help with the construction let us know! Otherwise, we'll keep you posted as we muddle our way forward!

Friday, April 06, 2007

April 6th...Preparing the soil...

With spring now upon us (photo above taken of a tree at the Stupa Park last Saturday) we realized we're running out of time to address the mounds at the Stupa Park. We decided to devote the day to getting it ready for planting this week. We were only able to get four of the eight mounds ready...but here's a glimpse of how we went about it!

The mounds had been completed last year with fill dirt, which has no nutritional value for plants. To plant new flowers or ground cover out there would only result in their failure. Tossing around ideas on a tight budget, we came up with a solution...

We spent the morning at Rabden's alpaca farm collecting alpaca pellets. We were told it is "the cleanest poop you'll ever see" and it was pretty benign. We were fortunate that Rabden had such a rich supply, and was willing to share it with us...

Here we are shoveling the fertilizer into the Stupa truck...

These are the guys that produce the pellets that we're collecting!

Once we got the truck loaded up, the fun wasn't over....we headed to the Stupa Park pull out the old ivy and weeds. That was tough work, but then we got to spread the pellets!

Beth gets a little silly for the camera....

We ended the day by mixing the manure in with the fill dirt to create a slightly more hospitable environment for the future plants. Our muscles let us all know it's been a while since we were out working like this. But, we have four of the eight mounds ready for planting. So go ahead and grab some phlox and head out to make an offering at the Stupa Park that will continue to make offerings to the Stupas for years to come! If you can't make it out, just let us know and we'll plant one for you!

All that you see on these pages is done in the hopes we can inspire you to come visit this amazing place. The temple is open 24 hours a day, it and the many gardens and wooded walks are all here for anyone who is looking for some peace and beauty in this hectic world.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Teens Volunteering and Drumming

The teen program is looking to make a difference in the they volunteered at the Manna Food Center in Rockville, MD.

The group arrives and is ready to get started!

Ashley grabs the camera and snaps a photo of the photographer, Ani Sonam...

The staff at Manna explain our mission for the next few hours...we were to sort the donated foods into an organized area of shelves and bins. Later the items will be picked up and distributed to those in need.

Kyra and her Dad arrive and join in on the fun.

Sean also jumps in and helps out.

Here is a shot of Kiran sorting the larger items.

Michelle and Ashley working together.

Amar fills a crate in order to move the cans to a different location.

Immediately after our time at Manna, we moved on to the drum circle at the temple. As you can see, Jacob was front and center!

It didn't take long for everyone to find an instrument and join in.

Even little Sophie joined in with her mom Amber's help.

Val investigates to see what Atira is up to.

I would like to end this post with an invitation to join us at the temple for lots of fun and activity. No matter what your interests are, there is a place for you in our community. The prayer room is open 24 hours a day for prayer and meditation. The temple is here for you!