One of the things I love about my job is the various and sundry opportunities I have to use and be involved with calligraphy. This past month I’ve painted a sign for a Carmel Beach Home on a piece of rustic driftwood. I’ve taught a calligraphy class, and demonstrated calligraphy at a large church art exhibit. I’ve had the privilege to judge the calligraphy entries for the Monterey County Fair. One of the more unique and honored opportunities comes up every year. Temple Beth El here in our town has a beautiful tradition of keeping a large book in the foyer of their temple called “Tree of Life – Celebration Book.” It correlates with a lovely metal tree sculpture on the wall with many, many individual metal leaves inscribed with names. Members of their congregation can dedicate a leaf to a celebration of life: a birth, a passing of a life well-lived, marriages, anniversaries, Bar and Bat Mitzvahs, birthdays and other unique events of remembrance. As a scribe I am then given the words they want written in the Celebration Book. The dedications always move me with their poignant words carefully chosen to honor their loved ones.