Dear Friends & Yogis,


This time together in spiritual community will give us each a chance to follow the counsel of the gracious and wise philosopher/poet, John O'Donohue:


“Let there be an opening into the quiet that lies beneath the chaos where you find the peace you did not think possible and see what shimmers within the storm.”


  Through a variety of heart-opening practices from various traditions, we will rest beneath the "storm" and journey inward, attuning ourselves to our heart's wisdom and desire.
 
Please scroll down for retreat details and click below to register.

Click here to sign up through Eventbrite for all our Events.




Here is an overview of what we are offering in January & February: please scroll down for details

GENTLE YOGA:
Saturdays 10 am - 11:30 at NBS (Jan 27, Feb 10, 17, 24)

Thursdays 9:30 - 11:00 at CFP (Feb 1, 8, 22))


GROUPS:
February Women's Wisdom Circle @ NBS, Tuesday, Feb 6th 6:00-8:00 PM

Sacred Time Book Group @ NBS, Tuesday, Feb 20th 6:00-8:00 PM

Sacred Time Book Group @ CFP, Thursday, Feb 22nd 11:00-12:30 PM


EVENTS:
Gentle Yoga and Sacred Sound Journey @ CFP 
Sunday, Feb 25th 6:00-7:30 PM


RETREATS:
RESTORE - Mini Retreat, self-care, yoga, community @ CFP
Sunday, Feb 4th 2-5 PM. 

RESTORE - Mini Retreat, self-care, yoga, community @ NBS
Saturday, March 16th 2-5 PM

This email has our upcoming offerings, all of which we do with the hope that together we can continue to explore how breath, movement, sound, stillness and sacred conversation enrich our lives.


Sending you all prayers and wishes for peace,
health & happiness now and always.

Namaste, Rev Shelley


As always, please feel free to email me or text (860-965-9995) with any questions.
TIPS FOR THE CHANGING SEASON

Friends & Yogis, Here is the advice my wisdom voice is speaking to me at this time.  I figure there may be some of you who will find this inspiring and helpful:)

My inner wisdom voice is saying, "Now is not the time to push and hurry and scurry… you did plenty of that in the warmer months of Summer."  Wow, that feels freeing!  The seasonal cycle here in New England invites us to explore different ways of “being”, different aspects of ourselves as we journey through a year. Shifting gears from one season to another tends to throw me a little out of balance.  I try to remind myself that adjustments take time. Self awareness, when done with tenderness and attention, helps us connect with our intuition, a trustworthy source of guidance 🙏🏽.

Here are some of the things I am doing to support a smoother transition into the colder months:

#1 NOTICE: I try to notice my inner response/thoughts/feelings/melancholy about the weather changing and let myself honestly feel my feelings about it before I try to fix, change, plan or modify anything. Can I respond tenderly to whatever emotions are arising?  My new mantra is… “Does this (present discomfort) need to be fixed or just felt?” If you’re like me you go to fixing (problem solving) mode very quickly and that’s not always the most beneficial path. I use the R.A.I.N. compassion meditation by Tara Brach when I feel stuck or need help getting in touch with what is making me feel off: 

#2 NEST: I consider how to make my “nest” (home) more conducive to relaxation, restoration and reflection. I put up some strings of those little white lights that add cheerfulness to the atmosphere after the sun goes down.
I put more attention into where I want to place my most loved items since I know I will be spending more time indoors looking at them.  I do some de-cluttering and organizing in order to put the Summer things away and make space for the Winter season.

#3 PLANTS: I survey my growing collection of house plants and see if I can have some healthy, flourishing green house plants in each room of my home. I remind myself daily to really admire their beauty and uniqueness, engage with them, appreciate them as supportive "members" of my household that are there to keep me connected to the life force that lives in everything.  They are such a good reminder that life is still happening even when outdoor plants have lost their leaves. 

#4 SUNLIGHT: I try to get at least a few minutes a day outside, facing the sun if possible. I try not to retreat completely from the cold, I try to gradually acclimate to the cold by getting out into it every day. I also get out my light box and start to use it on the days that I don’t get natural sunlight. For me, it helps ward off the winter blues. This is the the one I have from Amazon

#5 SUPPLEMENTS: Now that there is less sunlight, I resume taking my vitamin D supplement in order to keep my levels between 50 and 80 which is what my Naturopathic Physician reccommends. This will help support my mood and energy. I also review the supplements I have been taking in the warmer months and consider if a change is called for.

#6 MOISTURIZE: Now that the heat is on inside the house, the air gets dry. I remind myself that I need to stay hydrated with water just as much as I did in the summer. I set up my humidifiers to moisturize the air and add oil to my lotions to moisturize my skin more.

#7 MOVEMENT: I review my movement practices & routines.  I ask myself what needs to change now and see what adjustments I can make given the shorter days and colder temperatures. When is it realistic to get in the 30 minute walk my doctor recommends? I recommit to my personal home practice of yoga, 5 breath pauses, meditation & mindful movement. I figure out how to take at least one yoga class a week:)

#8 NUTRITION: I shift my diet away from the colder foods I enjoyed in the Sumer to warming, grounding foods and seasonings.  I even arrange my spice collection so the warming spices are easier to reach for.  Since colder, damper, darker weather can make me feel heavy and sluggish, I make every effort to eat dinner early so there are plenty of hours to digest the food before I go to sleep. That way my sleep can be truly restful, focused on integration and cellular repair as opposed to digestion. This sets the stage for me to have more energy the next day.

#9 JOURNAL: I dust off my journal and put it someplace visible. I often neglect this fabulous practice when I am so busy with Summer activities. With my journal where I can see it,  I am ready to write in it when the reflective, contemplative energy calls to me, knowing that this indoor season can potentially be a very insightful part of the year.  When I spend time journaling I am always amazed at the clarity and wisdom that surfaces. Sometimes the “answer” I have been struggling to find just appears and I wonder why I did not turn inward in this way sooner!

#10 INQUIRE: I ask myself “Where do I want to invest my precious energy at this time?”  “What do I want to learn and how can I make that happen?” (I just enrolled in a new meditation training in response to pondering that question) I ask, "How can I welcome my creative dimension more?" “What relationships do I want to cultivate and which ones do I want to minimize?” I sensitize myself to any “energy leaks” that need tending, “Where am I unnecessarily wasting my time, my strength, my passion?”  I recommit to keeping my “inner well” full through self-care and spending quality time with thoughtful people who want to explore life in deeper, more meaningful ways...the kind of folks who come to my classes and discussion groups!

Thanks for reading this and I hope you find it helpful.  If you have some tips for me, just email me :)