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Happy Holidays in this Winter of 2015

IMG_1999Dear Students and Friends,

I hope this finds you healthy and happy this holiday season, and enjoying your yoga practice which certainly helps us remain healthy and happy as the years pass. I’m seeing that very clearly, as I recently celebrated my 71st birthday, and also welcomed our seventh grandchild into the world!

The holiday season in all spiritual traditions and religions comes back to what Yoga is really about, Love. Love of Self, Love of Other. To open our hearts with more and more compassion, tolerance and understanding in these challenging times is what our practice invites us to do. It’s much easier to close down and ignore or deny the pain and fear in the world, living happily in our own personal little bubble. Yet that is neither honest nor useful.  To take the fearlessness, confidence and acceptance we find on the mat and channel it into a cause that is meaningful and inspiring to each of us is to contribute to making our world a better place.

My colleague and dear friend Betsey Downing and I shared an incredibly meaningful time in Maya Tulum, Mexico with a group of inspirational women who are doing some amazing things in the world, on our annual Spirited Women’s Retreat. It was a time to share and discuss and be inspired by each other in so many wonderful ways.  We will be staying in the U.S. next year, on Emerald Isle on the coast of North Carolina at Trinity Center. The dates will be August 21-August 28, and we are in the midst of doing the brochure now which should be on our websites by January 1.

Coming up in February are not one, but two yoga retreats to Jamaica!  I am excited about doing my first retreat with my friend and awesome Willow Street  yoga teacher extraordinaire, Maria Hamburger.  Maria graduated from one of my earliest Teacher Trainings, in 2002, and has gone on to study and explore the therapeutic aspects of yoga, as well as specialize in yoga for MS and Parkinson’s Disease. Her teaching is direct and precise, as well as creative and exploratory. And fun!  The retreat is January 30-February 6, at Sunset on the Cliffs and you can download the brochure from this site.  And then more fun two weeks later, when Moses Brown and I will be doing our 12th Jamaica Yoga Vacation back at the Negril Escape. The dates are February 13-Feb. 21.  Moses teaches with a wonderful combination of humor and love. You can download both brochures with registration forms from this site. Each retreat will be a great respite  from the February chill, and non-yogi spouses are welcome.

Betsey and I will also be doing our annual 4 day mini-Spirited Women’s Retreat for women 45 and older at Kripalu Holistic Health Center in Lenox, MA.  The dates are April 28-May 1; more information is on this site.  Our intention is to encourage and inspire all of us to step into our greatness as wild, wonderful & wise women!

I continue to enjoy splitting my time between teaching at Willow Street Yoga Center and Oxford, MD on the Eastern Shore. We now have a wonderfully dedicated group of Eastern Shore yogis and yoginis that is growing each year. Wherever did I get the idea that I was even going to “semi-retire?”  But I can’t imagine ever stopping. I also love my Hospice work in Easton, Md that is tremendously rewarding. We are blessed to be close to five of our seven grandchildren who we see in each week on the Western Shore.

I wish you all the happiest of holidays. May you experience the love, compassion and abundance of the season. May you grow closer to the Grace that each day offers and may you offer back that Grace in a meaningful way. My very best to each of you, may you prosper and grow in every way in 2016.

Namaste with Love,



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photo credit to John Hurley