Let this be the year you celebrate you and what makes you unique. Let this be the year you embrace your body for all of the amazing things it allows you to do. And the year you stop chasing after the “perfect” body.
I posted this quote to Facebook in 2010. I’d spent most of my life punishing my body for not being perfect. Yoga allowed me to (finally) celebrate my body. Celebrate, not only the way I look, but more importantly, celebrate what my body can do and the way I feel about my body.
This is my story of how I overcame shame about my body. Maybe you can relate. If you’re struggling with acceptance for any aspect of yourself, join us for our Love Yourself Retreat. Begin the journey of love, acceptance and compassion for your body and every aspect of yourself.
I started hating my body when I was eight. My dad and brother called me fat and constantly made fun of me. I look back at photos from that time, and while I had baby fat, an 8 year old should NEVER be called fat. Over the next couple of years, I grew taller and slimmed down. But I STILL felt fat. I started hunching over as I grew taller – so nobody would notice me. My dad admonished me, “Stop slouching. Stand up straight. What’s wrong with you?”
Ha. I felt like so much was wrong with me. Not just with my body, but me. It’s interesting how the two are related.
One of my favorite creations from Kaycee, homemade applesauce, it’s delicious, yet simple. A great way to start your morning, by itself, or on top of our Ayurvedic Crockpot Oatmeal. Or for a snack, with a little more decadence, with a dollop of vanilla ice cream. Or still creamy, yet not as decadent, a dollop of Greek Yogurt. And of course I add extra cinnamon on top of mine for extra deliciousness.
- 5 lb of apples (peeled and cut into chunks)
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 5 whole cloves
Maybe you know someone in your life (maybe it’s you!) who would benefit from a weekend away. It has been quite a year!
Give the gift that will keep on giving, long after you or your someone special returns home. A retreat is an excellent way to press pause on life and take a breath. It’s an opportunity to slow down and find stillness in the mind, relaxation in the body and possibility in the heart.
Our community of women support and encourage each other – at the retreat and in the days that follow – through social media or in-person connection. Some guests make instant connections with each other and return to a retreat together.
Retreat guests are able to –
- Consider the direction that life is taking.
- Find a fresh perspective.
- Discover gratitude for the little things.
- Truly relax and unwind – no chores to do, no meals to prepare, no errands to run.
- Savor delicious home cooked meals without chopping, cooking or cleaning a thing.
- Enjoy quiet time in contemplation – walking, journaling or simply sitting in nature.
- Engage in conversation with inspirational women, sharing stories and laughter.
- Reconnect to self.
Choose the retreat you think is perfect, or let your recipient choose her perfect retreat. Gift Certificates are available for either option.
Choose the ideal retreat here.
Email for your Personalized Gift Certificate.
“There are all different kinds of women at a retreat and you’d think we have nothing in common. But we really have everything in common,” Dionna, a frequent retreat guest, sharing with her sister what makes our women’s yoga and wellness retreats so special.
I have found that’s so true. Even though our guests travel from across the country, have different backgrounds and experiences, we are ALL women. And because of that, we have so much in common.
Our mission is to support and empower EVERY woman. Yoga and meditation are a crucial part of our retreats, but women gathered together, sharing laughter and stories and supporting each other in community is where the real magic happens. Just ask our guests. Our yoga classes suit all levels, perfect for women of all ages and body types, with absolutely no yoga experience required. Yoga is breath-based movement. I tell guests at the beginning of every retreat, “If you can breathe, you can do yoga.”
Join us for a retreat, discover exactly what you need here. We offer Retreat Assistance and keep our retreats affordable, so we can serve ALL women.
Sweet potatoes are abundant in East Texas in the Fall. Join us for a retreat the fourth weekend in October and you can check out the Golden Sweet Potato Festival. So much fun…even Oprah made a visit a few years ago.
We absolutely love sweet potatoes, not only for their great taste, but also for the nutritional value. They are high in fiber, yet low in sugar, plus a great source of Vitamin A (366% of the necessary daily requirement).
We serve mashed sweet potatoes and mini sweet potato pies (as a birthday treat) in the Winter. We add sweet potatoes to our Chicken & Vegetable Curry and we have a to-die-for sweet potato hash on Sunday mornings during our Fall and Winter retreats. But this recipe is my absolute favorite. A little bit of spice makes it interesting. This is especially good for you, based on Ayurveda principles, to warm you up in cooler weather and keep your digestive system happy and functioning properly. Plus, you can make a double batch and freeze what you don’t use. Enjoy!
Do you ever find yourself driving with no recollection of how you arrived at your destination? Or going through the motions of listening – while not paying attention at all? Or watching TV, while checking Facebook on your phone? I’m definitely guilty.
Practice mindfulness and find peace, joy and so much more when you join us for one of our Mindfulness and Meditation retreats. Learn more.
I admit, I have struggled with being mindful. I keep thinking to myself (instead of being mindful) “I’m busy! I don’t have time to be mindful.”
But I’ve realized just the opposite, I don’t have time to be mindless – to let the moments of my life pass me by. I don’t want to miss a single thing – interesting conversations with friends, a beautiful sunset, the relaxation of moving my body in yoga, the deliciousness of my first cup of coffee, laughter, tears, hugs.
Thank you to each of you who participated in our 12th Anniversary Celebration & Giveaway. We are so grateful for our Retreat in the Pines community! We loved seeing your comments and we appreciate you sharing your stories, inspiration, memories, and love with us. We are grateful for each one of you. Thank you for supporting and loving each other on our journey of yoga, wellness and healing.
Maybe you’re thinking, “How can I choose gratitude?” Then again, how can you not? Gratitude, like many things, really is a choice. Some choices are challenging, while others come naturally – if you let them.
A yoga retreat puts everything in perspective, and allows you to choose gratitude. We finish every retreat with a gratitude meditation and a gratitude brunch. Discover your retreat here.
Benefits of Gratitude
“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more.” Melody Beatty.
Gratitude improves physical and psychological health. Gratitude allows more restful sleep. Gratitude is good for self-esteem and improves relationship. Studies have shown that gratitude leads to happiness. Gratitude really is a game changer. Read More
Now’s the perfect time to savor the flavors of summer before it’s too late. The end of summer is always bittersweet for me – the promise of cooler weather, yet the end of the season for my favorite fruits and veggies. There’s nothing better than a juicy peach from Ham Orchards or a handful of plump East Texas Blueberries to make my heart sing.
If you have yet to savor our freshly prepared, Farm to Table dishes, you’re in for a treat. Our guests rave about our healthy and delicious meals, prepared with lots of love – from locally sourced produce and meat to homemade rosemary and garlic breads. Best of all, you don’t have to lift a finger. No chopping, no cooking, no cleaning up – just relaxing, chatting and enjoying the flavors. Hungry for homemade meals alongside yoga, laughter and wine? Book here.
It’s an Adventure! When I traveled with my kids when they were younger, my common phrase when things didn’t go as planned (which is quite frequently when you’re traveling with children) was “It’s an Adventure!” Of course they grumbled and made fun of me (and still do!), but now I know when things don’t go the way I plan, it is indeed an adventure. Whether in travel or in life.
My favorite adventure is solo travel. The absolute best place to travel to by yourself is Retreat in the Pines. Find your tribe at a retreat.
My divorce was messy, I was stressed, I needed to do something for myself. As I pondered my future, I knew I needed to do something to challenge my comfort zone and give me fresh perspective. I decided to take a trip by myself.
I started to plan. I was thrilled when I bought the plane ticket, excited as I booked a room with Airbnb (Airbnb is my first choice when I travel) and feeling proud of myself as I figured out the details of a trip to San Francisco for the Yoga Journal Conference with a few nights in Napa.