Art Brain: Teacher & Artist Marjorie MacKenzie Believes Everyone is Wired to Create

Marjorie MEach day at camp, after our Lunch with Leaders series, Sophia Campers gather in a circle for creative time. One day we journal, one day we make self-care products from natural ingredients, and one favorite day we gather to paint with our beloved Marjorie MacKenzie.

Marjorie has been teaching children and adults for 25 years and has traveled extensively to explore artists in different parts of the world. For example, she is just back from a trip to Spain where she discovered Spanish artist Joaquin Sorolla!

Marjorie teaches directed drawing, watercolor, acrylic, collage and pottery, with a special love for color and mixing media like ink with watercolor and collage. Her passion is art history and mixed media.

She likes to quote Vincent Van Gogh who said to those who say they can’t, “Just start painting and you will find that you can paint!”

Our afternoons at camp with Marjorie are magical. She teaches us that anyone can draw or paint and everyone is an artist in some way.  We are so honored to have her, and look forward to getting colorful with her this summer!

To learn more about her art, or her individual and group classes, you can contact Marjorie at 619-990-1357.



Sophia Camp 2018

Sophia Camp 2017 YogaHello Campers and Camper Families!

We are excited for Sophia Camp 2018, which will be held this year August 6-10 in Coronado. Please scroll through our website to learn about camp ethos and activities, and then click on Register For Camp 2018 Registration above to  register.

We look forward to being with your girls again this year. Thank you!

And that’s a wrap…


In my wildest dreams, I’d never have imagined a week as great and as beautiful as this past week at Sophia Camp, with a group of girls as smart, creative, thoughtful, caring, wise and fun as our campers!

We have been blessed with terrific memories, loving hearts, and fifteen fabulous new friends. We will treasure these moments forever.

To give our families a taste of camp, our talented high school campers created this fun video.

They also wrote the blog post below about our Lunch with Leaders series.

Thank you all, again and again, for a fantastic week!

We wish all our campers a great back-to-school season, and hope to see all of you again soon.

With love,
Laura & Areli


Lunch with Leaders 2017

Written by Sophia Camp junior counselors Teia and Amelia.

Each day of camp, a different female leader would come to have lunch with the girls and give a talk about their career and their leadership story.

For the first day, the guest leader was Karyn Buxman, a self-titled “neurohumourist” — studying the healing effects of humour on the brain. She spoke to the campers about her journey from being a nurse to her current profession, and how she maneuvered the sometimes tough decisions involved in that process. She explained how she is a leader in many different communities around America. After she had told her story, she taught the campers a laughter exercise, in which campers were encouraged to step out of their comfort zones. She taught the girls that laughing every day, even for ten minutes, can have a positive effect.

silviaOn Tuesday, the girls were given the opportunity to hear from Dr. Silvia Mah, who is an angel investor.

But what exactly is an angel investor?

An angel investor is someone who invests in people (in Silvia’s case, specifically women) trying to start or continue growing a business.

Along with that, Silvia is also a full-time mom of three (according to her, its four, including her husband) and a professor at UCSD. She spoke to the campers about being yourself and not worrying about everything. She encouraged the girls that it would all turn out well in the end and that they would end up where they were meant to be.

heidi hannaAnother featured leader this week was Dr. Heidi Hanna. She is an integrative neuroscientist who focuses on how nutrition and stress are connected and their effect on the brain.

Hanna told the girls her story and how she went from being a Disneyland character to what she is now. She explained to the campers how stress can impact you physically. She also taught the girls an important lesson, “Be extraordinary at a few things, instead of ordinary at many things.”

The girls learned so much from the many different leaders and their different perspectives. We were inspired by their leadership and awed by how often there were connections to the yoga and Ayurveda we had learned about during Sophia camp.

A huge thank you to every leader who spent their lunchtime at camp this year!

sophia camp lunch

Write for Life: Celebrated Author Joyce Chapman Teaches the Power of Journaling to our Campers

Joyce Chapman“Joyce Chapman has challenged us to live our dream – but more,
she provides a road map for action.”
  ~ Howard Hunt, PhD.

Joyce Chapman is a best-selling author, speaker, teacher, and professional and personal coach. A pioneer in the field of journal keeping she provides step-by-step journaling techniques for actualizing dreams to individuals, groups and companies through her books, newsletters, workshops, training programs, and coaching sessions.

Joyce is known for her landmark books, and their companion workbooks: Journaling For Joy: Writing Your Way to Personal Growth and Freedom, Journaling For Joy~ The Workbook, Live Your Dream: Discover and Achieve Your Life Purpose, Live Your Dream Workbook, Celebrate Your Dream: Fulfill Your Destiny One Wish at a Time, Celebrate Your Dream Workbook, Notice and Journal, Notice! The Art Of Observation and Raising A Dreamer: How To Inspire And Guide Young Dreamers To Live A Dream-Centered Life.

But what makes Joyce so special is the magical, inspiring, warm and loving way she connects with our campers. Joyce is like a warm hug for the soul.

Our campers adore Joyce, and learn so much in the afternoon she spends with us. We are so honored to have her, and look forward to writing with her this summer!

To learn more about Joyce, visit her website:



The Ayurveda of the Day: Sophia Camp’s Daily Flow

sophia camp

A day at Sophia Camp follows the rhythms of Ayurveda. Morning is said to be Kapha time: After sleeping, our bodies need to move. We begin Camp with active Yoga followed by games to get to know each other. We keep things moving and inclusive so everyone can shake off any cobwebs of “the awkwardness of new” and dive right in to the joy of being together on a summer day by the Bay.

Pitta Qualities
10am to 2pm is Pitta time: Pitta is fire, and is said to give courage, so this is the time when we engage in learning new skills, and sometimes even overcoming fears, through productive play.

Midday, the sun is high in the sky, giving us light to see, and fire to burn. This is a good time for learning, as the “light to see” gives us clarity, focus and understanding. It is also a good time for digestion, whether it is digesting a meal, or digesting ideas, information, or new experiences. During the Pitta time of day, we learn about Ayurveda, with learning-oriented, creative activities to engage the wisdom of this ancient science. At noon we have our Lunch with Leaders series.

Gifts of Vata

2pm to 6pm is the Vata time of day. Vata is the air element (combined with space) which encourages creativity, imagination, invention, so this is the time of day when we enjoy creative arts, like journaling with Joyce Chapman, drawing with Marjorie MacKenzie, and music with Carolyn Sanders Kull.

Air can also be scattering or can make us feel spacy, so we move indoors in the afternoon to create a warm, calming “container.” Imbalanced air element can be depleting so this is a good time to rest, to breathe deep, to enjoy restorative yoga, and to practice good self care, all of which we do in the afternoons.

Finally, the air element relates to communication, as our voices travel on the winds of each breath. We finish every day with a “listening circle,” where we learn the power of deep listening, and complete each day feeling heard and united.

I Am

Our camp is a joy from start to finish, and the campers make it so. We see their innate wisdom blossom with this kind of rhythm, and every day they inspire and impress us with their heart.

The heart of Sophia is love. Love heals. Love unites. Love restores. Love makes us strong. We believe resiliency comes from self-love, and leadership is an expression of love – a passion for life, people, ideas, ideals. Our campers show us that, over and over, year after year.

Kapha Swan

Lunch With Leaders: Meet Karyn Buxman

camp lunch with graceOne of the most talked about times at Sophia Camp is lunchtime. Not just because we get to rest and nosh, but because we get to have lunch with some of the coolest leaders of San Diego.

Our Lunch with Leaders Series, brings in dynamic women, one each day, from the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, or Math. We have been blessed each year with women who don’t just know how to use a calculator – they know how to powerfully connect and inspire our Campers! We love watching these interactions.

ted karyn buxman

This year we are excited to welcome Karyn Buxman to our Lunch with Leaders Series. Karyn is a world traveller, speaker, author and neurohumorist. (Yes, a word she made up – in a fit of giggles probably.)

Karyn’s mission is to heal through humor. As a former nurse, she learned the power of laughter in her practice, and in the details of the research. Once Karyn saw that laughing is healing, she took her science to the road – in powerful, laugh-out-loud talks that uplift, educate and transform.

Watch Karyn’s Ted Talk here and you will see why we feel so lucky to have her ~

Karyn Buxman

Keynoter. Neurohumorist. Author.

Laughter with a purpose. Mirth with a message. Humor that heals. Keynotes and inspirational speeches that enlighten, educate and entertain. All from Karyn Buxman, who is not only funny, but who is a “neurohumorist” – one who researches the neurobiology of humor, and then translates these cutting-edge findings for the layperson, showing how they can harness applied humor to heal and empower themselves. Key messages include “Humor is power,” and “It’s more important to see funny, then to be funny.”

Visit Karyn’s website for more.

To register for Camp, please click here.

***Parents are welcome to join us for the Lunch with Leaders Series.