Archived Blog Posts by Ann Linnea

(September 2012 – November 2022)

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Conversation Matters

Originally posted on Wednesday, December 28th, 2016 by Ann Linnea It was a privilege to have the resources and skills to go to Standing Rock (Dec. 2-10, 2016). I was able to be there at a moment when the David vs. Goliath battle between a small tribe of Native Americans against a huge corporate entity tipped in favor of the underdog. The seemingly intangible powers of prayer and nonviolence manifested in a tangible order from ...

Home From Standing Rock

I am just back from the Standing Rock protest in south central North Dakota. It was a pivotal time in the ongoing history of this poignant struggle. During the week of December 2-10, three important things happened:
  • thousands of military veterans arrived prepared to stand between police and water protectors;
  • the Army Corps of Engineers denied a permit for further drilling, effectively halting the project until further study can be completed;
  • and North Dakota ...

Apologies to the World

To those living outside the borders of the United States, the majority of Americans who voted on Nov. 8 send apologies. Our election results sent the message that we don’t care about you. I and millions and millions of Americans care about you. Please remember that: 231,556,622 registered voters pre-election day 26% voted for Clinton—she won the popular vote 25.9% voted for Trump—he won the electoral college 2.6% voted for "other" 45.4% (105,195,013 registered voters) ...

Let Us Stand Together

NBC News, Oct. 17, 2016 “The largest gathering of indigenous nations in modern American history has set up camp on land belonging to the Army Corps of Engineers at the confluence of the Cannonball and Missouri rivers in North Dakota. Tents and teepees, now home to whole families, stretch the plain.  They have come by the hundreds to protest construction of the 1,172-mile Dakota Access oil pipeline, which would run within a half-mile of the ...

Powerful Lessons from the Forest

The North Cascade mountains of Washington state are a testament to the juxtaposition of life and death. They normalize the presence of death, the surprise of death, and the essential nature of death. Like many people who have lost a loved one “before their time”, I must constantly work to make peace with my son’s death at age 33. For me that takes the form of an inner convincing that Brian might not have lived ...

Being a Responsible Traveler

Mid-August and I’m back home on Whidbey Island bringing in garden bounty and kayaking in local waters after a 10-day vacation on Kaua’i with family—my partner, my daughter Sally, her partner Joe, our grandchildren, and also my sister Margaret and her family. We were a party of nine, ages ranging from 5 to 70. When she was sixteen, I took Sally to Hawai’i in a special mother/daughter trip. She’s thirty-three now and has been wanting ...

The Courage of a Quester

Carrying a tent, tarp, sleeping bag, and clothing back from a solo site one mile from base camp, a lone quester returns from 48 hours of living alone. Eleven other questers will also soon be returning from their solo spots around this valley in eastern Washington in the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest. In the tradition of vision quests, these people went seeking answers to life’s questions by spending time alone in nature without electronics, food, or ...

Can you see anything positive about this?

This is the most common question I am being asked once people learn I attended a Sea Level Rise conference in Seattle sponsored by the Tulalip Tribe, the University of Washington Climate Impacts Group, NOAA, EPA, USGS, and several other Puget Sound agencies. It is an impressive list of sponsors. One hundred fifty people gathered at the Mountaineers Building on the shore of Lake Washington on April 26 and 27, 2016. I served as scribe ...

Play Makes Everything Work Better

Our annual two-week Grandma Camp just ended. We had a marvelous time working and playing together with our 11-year-old and 5-year-old grandchildren. And one of life’s powerful lessons that I relearned yet again is that everything is more fun, efficient, and productive if play is involved. Beach outings to walk the dog have to involve getting wet even when the water temperature is 50 degrees F. and the air is barely 5 degrees higher than ...

Pilgrimage Back to Denver

Recently I was asked to give opening remarks at a pediatric care conference named in honor of my son. My preparation included both a careful crafting of remarks and a deep recognition of the significance of returning to Brian’s home city of Denver. There was a ritual for getting there. First, call close family and friends. All of us love Brian. We draw strength, meaning, and understanding from one another’s stories, words, and actions. We ...