Author Archives: Barbara Belknap

About Barbara Belknap

Barbara Belknap spent the first half of her life in almost twenty different communities, from her birthplace of Portland, Oregon, to Kodiak, Alaska, to Puerto Rico. With a father in the Marine Corps and then a husband in the Coast Guard, moving was the norm. In 1989, her family chose Juneau, Alaska, to put down permanent roots. Her community of Juneau and the stunningly beautiful nature that surrounds it are very important parts of Barbara’s life. In October of 2001, Barbara was diagnosed with Stage 1 ovarian cancer and had two major surgeries. She reluctantly retired from her job as Executive Director of the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute in 2002 to allow her body to recover. After several months of healing and adjustment, she went about the task of learning how to follow her passion for lifelong learning, community building, women’s issues, politics, and travel. Barbara has been involved with many women’s organizations, and is the current President of Gather the Women. She is also one of two Alaska delegates to Vision 2020, a Drexel University program that is focuses on achieving equality for women by 2020. Barbara married her husband Doug in 1969. They have two wonderful adult children: Amy, a Chef at the University of Washington in Seattle, and Will, a computer programmer with the State of Alaska, and a wonderful daughter-in-law, Shonda, in Juneau. Their grandchildren, Patrick and Marlena, live just 6 miles away.

Matrilineal Succession

August 17th, 2015 | Posted by Barbara Belknap in Gather the Women - (0 Comments)

Genealogy is a passion of thousands of people. Maybe millions. My husband has been doing genealogy for over twenty years. When we were stationed with the Coast Guard in Washington, DC, we spent many weekends combing through files and micro-fiche at the National Archives, the Daughters of the Revolution, and the Library of Congress. Virtually …
Read more

Circle Practice

August 1st, 2015 | Posted by Barbara Belknap in Gather the Women - (0 Comments)

In late August of 2004, I traveled to Marsh House on Whidbey Island to learn how to contribute to the world from Christina Baldwin and Ann Linnea of PeerSpirit. The Circle Practicum was called “Building Communities of Reflection, Adventure and Purpose”. Each day for a full week, we sat in circle in a beautiful building …
Read more

Because I’m Her Mother

July 24th, 2015 | Posted by Barbara Belknap in Gather the Women - (0 Comments)

Several times, I’ve sat down to write the blog for Gather the Women, but my mind is on one thing: Our daughter Amy is expecting her first child on September 25th. We know that the baby is a little girl. We know her name is Edie Simone Fisher. So, this blog will be personal, and …
Read more

Judge not lest ye be judged

June 24th, 2015 | Posted by Barbara Belknap in Gather the Women | Inspiration - (0 Comments)

This is a personal blog that I want to share with all of you. It’s what keeps coming up for me even though it doesn’t fit inside the circle of GTW themes. My sister Kathy spent a month in California moving our father out of his home and into the local convalescent home. Our two …
Read more

Yes. That is grammatically correct. TuBearsandLorraine. That’s how it rolls off my tongue. Tu Bears the Wise Woman. Tu Bears the Funny Woman. Tu Bears the Generous Woman. Tu Bears the Healer. Lorraine the Wise Woman. Lorraine the Artist. Lorraine the Teacher, Lorraine the Techie behind the Feather. Tu Bears and Lorraine. Every single day, …
Read more

Of Bellies and Babies

May 12th, 2015 | Posted by Barbara Belknap in Empowerment | Humor | Inspiration - (0 Comments)

On May 3rd, I went to a baby shower for Heather, a friend who is a transplanted Rhode Islander and a distant cousin of my husband Doug. It had been many years since I’d been to a baby shower. At 67, the only two women I know who are pregnant are Heather, the honoree, and …
Read more

Another Life Lesson

April 6th, 2015 | Posted by Barbara Belknap in Gather the Women - (0 Comments)

My last blog was about “Forgiveness” ( and I wrote that my sister was going to help my father move out of his home and go into a nursing home. She was in California thirty-three days and flew home to Tennessee yesterday. Dad is safe and in the local nursing home. Our younger brother and …
Read more

Space for forgiveness

March 18th, 2015 | Posted by Barbara Belknap in Empowerment - (0 Comments)

Heather Plett recently wrote a blog post about holding space. It struck a deep chord for me. My sister and I are going through a dark time with our elderly father, and I shared those feelings with Heather. I thanked her for a way to express my experience as holding space. I am holding space …
Read more

Monks and Visions

February 22nd, 2015 | Posted by Barbara Belknap in Gather the Women - (0 Comments)

I had a vision in 2007 and I painted it. First and last time I’ve ever done that, but I have had the painting on the wall in “the room of my own”*, unframed and a little crumpled, ever since. In 2007, when the Army in Burma was attacking Buddhist monks, there was an image …
Read more

GTW Haiku

February 7th, 2015 | Posted by Barbara Belknap in Gather the Women - (0 Comments)

Women in circle speaking from their hearts strong, safe, and loving. Circle contains us. Women are holding the rim strong, safe, and loving. Held by our sisters our hearts are open and tears flow because we are safe. Gather the women from all around the planet. We will save the world. A candle is lit. …
Read more