What’s on

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWorkshops, retreats and day programmes offer a unique combination of nature based experiences combined with a self-reflective theme. They draw on the use of poetry to give focus, drawing and group sharing to help firm up the path ahead, by spending time in nature, with forest and river, a place to find a slower rhythm of being, as they refresh, revitalise and ground us. There is usually several options for accommodation for workshops and retreats longer than a day. We can at times offer individual bedrooms in the farm cottage, house, as well as a house bus. Or you can pitch your own tent. Otherwise there are several B&B options close by. Or you can lower the fee cost and camp in your own tent. Public offers are subject to coivd levels dropping to a safe operational level .


Finding our way back home – Not to place, but a way of being.

This will be a small group workshop in September / October. Details coming soon. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Maintaining Resilience – in challenging times – A workshop for PSA staff May 20th – May 22nd 2022

We are  please to be running this workshop for PSA (public Service Association) staff in the Wairarapa.

Field Based STEM contracts. 

Michael and Deb are now Ministry of Education approved PLD Facilitator’s working with Fieldbased STEM to support Teachers Professional Learning Development. This is exciting work combining class time with students as well as outdoor learning, walks and overnight Tramps.  Website: www.fieldbasedSTEM.com Currently working with Upper Hutt College. May – July (Michael’s old high school)

Maintaining Resilience – in challenging times

Resilience is not about how we endure but about how we recover from challenging moments and times in our lives. At Live like the River Flows we believe nature is not simply a backdrop to our lives. Rather we see it as an active participant in our wellbeing. Join Michael, Deb, and Andrea for this weekend workshop retreat in rural Wairarapa and the local forests of wellbeing Not only will you leave with a renewed focus to maintain your resilience but also have a weekend away offering
  • good company
  • a chance to spend time walking alongside ancient trees in the ngahere and the ever-flowing awa of life
  • and the simple but much needed pleasures of slowing down and having fun.
We will explore together how we know and experience our resilience being low and what resources we draw upon to ‘fill the well’ up again and share those ways and ideas with each other. Part of our Kaupapa is to ensure we remain respectful of each other and the Te Ao, the world around us. Deb will support us in this Kaupapa by ensuring we are supported with tikanga practice over the weekend.  She will introduce us to the wellbeing model Te Whare tapa Wha and will help make our evenings around the fire  playing guitar as we sing Waiata and perhaps your favourite song on Saturday evening. (Bring some marshmallows to toast). Andrea will share some of the most recent research and best resilience practice. Michael will focus on one of the four aspects of Te Whare Tapa Wha and how we might see nature not as background to our wellbeing but as  an active participant. When and Where?
  • This event has been. we are currently offering programmes to organisations.   
  • At the rural Carterton property of Michael and Gaye – Te Ao O Te Pukeko
  • Start at 10am on Saturday and Finish Sunday around 1.00pm after a light lunch.
Where can you stay?
  • The Wairarapa has a lot of farm stays and air bnbs. But you are welcome to camp on the farm by bringing your own tent, sleeping bag etc.
  • For Saturdays Lunch we ask you to bring a small offering to share.
  • We will provide the evening meal, Sunday’s Breakfast and the light lunch on Sunday to see you on your journey home.
  • Register before the end of October and you can pay the early bird fee of $125.00
  • From November the full fee is $150. (full refund if cancelled due to coivd)
 For more details about the two days, what to bring and how to secure you place email Michael at mdwoodcock@gmail.com 

Ngahere of Wellbeing 

Michael, Deb and Andrea invite you to join them in a unique opportunity to celebrate matariki and your own wellbeing. With 3 Guides we will take two groups into the Taratahi forest of the Tararua’s (Mount Holdsworth). What’s on offer
  • A Kaupapa that sees nature not as a backdrop but as an active participant in our wellbeing.
  • Experience mindfulness through walking.
  • Our tikanga practice of karakia and waiata in the forest.
  • A chance to sink deeper into stillness and connection with the all living world.All in the company of likeminded others.
We are offering a one off special price of $15. You will need to register to attend. email Michael  mdwoodcock@gamil.com for more details.

The Nature of Wellbeing – A day workshop for All artists (This successful day may be repeated in 2023).

To be held 28 February 2021 at Te Ao o Te Pukeko Wellbeing Centre. A chance to express your connection with nature and a special place for you in the Wairarapa, (or outside the region if you don’t live here) through your choice of one of three workshops on offer. Thanks to Carterton Creative Communities we are able to offer three exciting workshops,  complete with well known Arts Facilitators for $20 person person waged and $10 for unwaged. You will need to register for the day. Keen to know more or register for these limited workshops please contact us Participants can choose 1 of three four hour long workshops on offer. Limited to 8 people per workshop and to those 16 years and older. Mixed Media with Viv Walker   Viv 2013 copy (1) Viv Walker is well known locally for her painting, drawing and picture books and publishing activities at http://www.swirlbooks.com. Viv studied and trained in Graphic design in the UK. In New Zealand she worked in the advertising industry for many years as a designer and art director. She later ‘side stepped’ into painting and has exhibited and sold her artworks at local and national art shows. Viv’s workshop will allow participants to choose to work predominantly in one or two mediums that include drawing, ink, paint and collage. You are asked to provide an image of a place in nature from your local region that speaks to you, that expresses a connection to yourself and work from that on the day – as Viv takes you on a creative journey. Poetry or Essay with John Horrocks  John lives in Wellington, but spent 15 years in the Wairarapa. His experiences there on a sheep farm north of Masterton were the subject of many of the poems in a collection, Raw Places, published in 2005. In the late 1970s and early 1980s he worked as a researcher and campaigner for Friends of the Earth and continues to write on subjects related to environmental health, as well as reviews, essays, poetry, and articles on New Zealand writers. He has a PhD in English from Victoria University. It was based upon a long-term interest on the way a reader’s mental images affect how poems are interpreted. Dark Empire, a crime novel set in Wellington during WWI, is his most recent work, and was short-listed in the October 2020 Heritage awards for fiction. An essay on how thoughts about climate change have affected New Zealand writers will be published in 2021 by Landfall in a special issue, Strong Words.  John’s workshop is now full, we are taking a wait list for any cancellations.  Print Making with Linda Te Rakau Tilyard Kia ora, I am a Wairarapa Artist, a painter printmaker and sculptor. I have been practicing and teaching for over twenty years. My work often has ecological, retro, surreal, symbolist, animal and/or women orientated themes. I am interested in what connects us. This Workshop focuses on simple but effective print making techniques that can be done without a press. We will explore pattern, shape, and natural elements. Then create a few finished prints which include ourselves and our personal iconography….and have some fun!


The Cry of the Earth – bringing your soul to the mahi

This workshop is now closed. Another will be offered at a later time.  Climate change, mass extinctions, social alienation, no longer need a case to be made, they are in fact ‘a sound to be heard’. That sound is the Cry of the Earth. “At the core of spiritual ecology is an understanding that our present ecological [social and political] crisis is a reflection of an inner spiritual crises. ” Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee. A day workshop facilitated by Michael woodcock, for those working for ecological and social justice change, or simply wanting to be more connected to the all living world. To make effective change in the external world, we must be connected with our spiritual inner world. Leave the day with  having delved into some of the leading thinkers in spiritual ecology to help find a balance between the rational thinking and empirical being we have become, with the spiritual being we have lost contact with,   and and how this weaves into your  life and mahi. A useful definition of spirituality. “An individual’s personal sense of the sacred and its relationship to ultimate concerns like the meaning of existence, morality, suffering and death.” Refresh and revitalise your wellspring so you can draw deeply from it and sustain yourself as the year unfolds. Much of the day will be spent out in nature either on our farm or in the nearby forest. Saturday March 6 2021 at Te Ao o te Pukeko in rural Carterton Wairarapa. 10am – 4.00pm. $50 per person. Numbers are limited. Use the form below if you wish to know more or register. Sufi Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee put together a book called Spiritual ecology – The Cry of the Earth. His writing and thinking along with a number of writers in that book speak to me and clearly influence the day. Joanna Macy being one of them. I draw heavily from Mythologist Dr Martin Shaw this video link is a good overview https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d0T7UP1U1Ts New Zealander writer and thinker Juliet Batten along with poets, David Whyte, John O’Donohue and Wendell Berry will also make an appearance at the workshop. I’m also wanting participants to bring one or two of their own books or writing of people they are attuned to in this field of thinking.


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