Our girls have loved seeing the make-up on the nightly performers around the circle. They’ve also been noticing people with beautiful body and face paint walking around in the day. I was able to track down the girl who is so creative with her paints, and Ambra happily agreed to paint our family!

Gyan and Sara painted for the corroboree, Rainbow Gathering, November 2011
We've seen several Indigenous corroboree dances, and the performers are painted beforehand, inspiring our girls to dot their own bodies with clay and mud that they find by the creek. Gyan and Sara painted for the corroboree.

When Ambra was painting the girls’ faces, Calista was reluctant to participate. I know that she really wanted something beautiful on her face, but she wouldn’t sit willingly until both David and I had also had ourselves painted.

Painted faces at Rainbow Gathering, November 2011
We all ended up getting painted by Ambra. David was transformed into a lion reminiscent of the Wizard of Oz, and I received a lotus on my belly. Delaney kept sitting in front of Ambra to get more paint on her face, so by the end of our session, she looked a bit haphazard.

Painted faces at Rainbow Gathering, November 2011
After examining her purple butterfly in the hand-mirror, Calista declares herself to be "so beautiful".

Painted faces at Rainbow Gathering, November 2011
Brioni's decoration is fairy make-up. Or is it princess make-up? It's very artistic, anyway.

Painted faces at Rainbow Gathering, November 2011
Aisha's flowers are full of lovely details.

I can’t help but feel that a Rainbow Gathering is like attending a giant party for several weeks. There are so many fun activities going on, so much entertainment, so much goodwill and good humour.

David has contributed to the communal running of the camp by working in the kitchen, collecting firewood and running other errands, but I’ve largely been occupied by looking after our girls. We are having such a good time here — it’s wonderful to camp freely among like-minded people.

We like leaving our truck and trailer open all day, and I can still doze in our trailer in the middle of the day. Our children roam quite freely from the creek to the food circle, and we know they’re safe. This is a good place to be, among family, among the Rainbow Family.