December is here, and we are coming upon the darkest time of the year, yet it is also a time of great celebration and deep connections. A time to celebrate our love for our loved ones and our community as a whole, whether near or far.
This beautiful, cold month is a wonderful time to honour the quiet voice of nature and to let our bodies rest a little bit more than normal. Take notice, and see if you are pushing yourself to get things done, and listen to what your inner voice tells you. Trust that what needs to be done, will get done. It has been beautiful here on the West Coast, clear, bright and filled with sunshine. The sea lions are barking, the light of the morning and evening sky is filled with colour, and the energy is peaceful and full.
I have many announcements this month, there really are so many wonderful things going on. If you scroll down to the end of the newsletter you will see the special events happening (A wonderful yoga fundraiser and wellness raffle for the Philippines, and A new Healing Light Yoga Therapy Class that begins in January, and of course Gift Certificates for Christmas). Also, I am excited to announce that the documentary I filmed in 2012 is finally being released on February 3, 2014- there will be much more information on that coming soon.
Life has been wonderful here at Ananda Ayurveda, lots moving, and shifting as we continue to grow. The new space is beautiful and has been infused with such powerful healing energy already.
In the spirit of Christmas I am offering a December special of a 1 hour massage for $100. I don’t usually offer this shorter treatment on its own, but it’s a beautiful opportunity to try a taste of Ayurveda. The 1 hr massage is powerfully clearing- strokes are quick, and light (usually), the body is drenched in warm, organic oils and the treatment is extremely relaxing.
Yoga Classes are ongoing at Oceanfront Suites in Cowichan Bay, Mondays, and Wednesdays, 4:30-6:00, we are inside now, but still with the glorious ocean view. It is a lovely class, great for all levels, and a beautiful community to practice with.
As always I am offering beautiful and wonderful Bodywork Therapies, so soothing and nurturing, conscious healing, on such deep levels- in a very gentle heart opening space. Consultations, Ayurvedic Counseling, Tarot Readings, and Jyotish Astrology are also available.
Gifts That Are Larger Than We Are
As we enter the holiday season I am reminded of the importance of giving, and of honouring those that are around me. At a time when the media and stores are promoting mass consumerism I would like to take a little space to look at giving from the heart and also expressing gratitude to the community around me. Yes, every day is an opportunity to give, to share, and to show gratitude, but when there is so much energy directed in that way, then the flow of light is even more supported. Also, its a cold time of year (at least in the northern hemisphere), and energetically it is important to nurture and take care of the self and those around you. I think of the people in my life, and I feel so blessed to know all of them, whether they be close friends, and family or those that I find more challenging. I see and honour the expression of consciousness in each being and the more that I embrace that seeing the clearer it is.
On my walk today, in the beautiful sunshine of Cowichan Bay, I passed a few people, all with a smile and a hello, they were different sexes, ages, sizes and manifestations of spirit, but each one glowed in thier own way, and it reminded me of how blessed I am to have connections with others, even through something as simple as a greeting. Just sending a smile to someone can sometimes be the biggest gift in the world. We can lose sight of that at times, when we get stuck into our story, or caught up in some of the traumas the world is facing (and there are many). If we can remind ourselves to open to the connections that are there for us in daily life, something as simple as a smile can make a huge difference in our day.
This brings me to the importance of community in our lives, of connecting with others. Whether it be with our family, friends, towns, or just a larger awareness of the earths community as a whole, it brings so much to our lives to realize that we are part of something so much bigger than ourselves. There are times where we may feel alone, or spend lots of time on our own, but just the knowledge that we are part of a larger fabric, and that our role is integral to the entire tapestry of all that is. Of course it is wonderful to connect one on one with those arounds us, to share ourselves and give of ourselves to our friends and family, to anyone in need, but even without the physical relationships there is so much happening beneath the surface, so much sharing, talking and loving. It is important to remember that the entire world is our community, and what we share radiates through that community The smiles I shared today were felt all the way across the world. It’s pure magic. A gift of presence, of openness, of acceptance that touches everything and everyone.
And that takes me to the final part of my sharing this month. Gratitude. How much I care for all of those in my life. As my heart light continues to shine bright, I am constantly amazed at the beauty and the love that I feel for those in my life and in my community. As I work with my clients, I just feel the peace and beauty of universal light running through my cells, and as my yoga classes melt into Savasana I often experience great joy. I am so honoured and blessed to be able to work with each and every being in my life. I have my days and moments where I get stressed, or I may not agree with everyone (they might not fit into my story the way I desire), but when I let things be and am present, it’s amazing what I feel. And this feeling, this opening, is a gift from all of you, a constant reminder that you are just reflecting back to me all that I am, all that we all are, and it’s amazing. Beyond the gratitude I feel on an energetic level, I want to express my thanks to all of you for your continued support, for showing up just as you are, and for allowing me to grow in every moment. For your acceptance of me as part of your community.
In the spirit of the holidays I thought I would share a few seasonal holiday recipes. As vegetarians we like to come up with healthy, yet luxurious things to treat ourselves with over the holidays, and these are a few of our favourite dishes. Brussel sprouts are in season here on Vancouver Island, and are delicious with maple syrup and toasted hazelnuts, and the Cranberry Orange Chutney is a wonderful replacement for the more sugary traditional Cranberry Sauce. Both of these recipes do use some sweetener. In Ayurveda, the cold winter (vata) season is a time to eat heartier, warmer, and sweeter foods. Not that sugar is good at every meal, but when you do have it, enjoy it, and always use a more naturally sourced kind.
Maple Roasted Brussel Sprouts1/2 lbs Brussel Sprouts 1/4 cup Olive Oil 3/4 tsp Sea Salt 1/4 tsp Black Pepper 2 Tbs Maple Syrup 1/2 cup Toaste Hazelnuts Coarsely Chopped (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- To prepare the brussels sprouts, remove any yellow or brown outer leaves, cut off the stems and cut in half.
- In a large bowl, toss the brussels sprouts, olive oil, salt and pepper together.
- Once all of the brussels sprouts are coated in oil, spread them into a 9-by-13-inch (or larger) baking dish or sheet tray to roast. Note: You may want to line your sheet tray with foil for easy cleanup because the caramelizing process leaves a sticky residue.
- After 15 minutes, stir the brussels sprouts with a spatula or large spoon to even out the browning. After 30 minutes, stir in the maple syrup. (Steps 1 through 4 can be done a day in advance; store covered in the refrigerator. Continue with Steps 5 and 6 right before serving.)
- Continue to roast the brussels sprouts for about 15 more minutes, or until they are fork tender (about 45 minutes total roasting time).
- Toss the roasted brussels sprouts with the hazelnuts and devour!
Cranberry Apple Chutney with Ginger And Orange2 Cups Fresh Cranberries 2 Cups Chopped Apples Juice and Zest of One Orange ¼ Cup Raisins 1/3-1/2 Cup Honey or Coconut sugar 1 ½ Tbs Fresh Grated Ginger 1 tsp Cumin Seeds ½ Tbs Ghee of Coconut Oil 1/8 tsp Ground Cloves ¼ tsp Star Anise Ground ¼ tsp Ground Cinnamon ¼ tsp Ground Cardamom pinch of Mace ½ Cup Water
- Combine cranberries, apples, orange juice and peel in saucepan and bring to a boil.
- While fruit is at a simmer, add sugar and raisins.
- If needed add a little extra water to stop from sticking
- In a separate frying pan heat the ghee, and then add the ginger and cumin seeds. Cook a few minutes until ginger is soft, and cumin seeds are starting to brown.
- Combine the two pots together and add other spices.
- Cook for a few minutes until desired consistency, adding water as necessary.
Upcoming Special Events
In the spirit of giving this holiday season I am so excited to share some of the fundraising events that I am taking part of in my community. Its amazing how much energy we can create when we share with others. It is the season to give, and what better way then to give to those that are really in need. I am also excited to announce a new session of Healing Light Yoga Therapy. Our last class was a powerful and transformative experience for all involved, and this next session will encourage more growth, opening and emotional flow- there is no experience necessary.
Yoga And Wellness Raffle For The Philippines
Sunday, December 15th, 2013
10:00 AM to 12:30 PM (Yoga and Chanting will be 1.5 hours- the rest is tea time and sharing)
Raffle Tickets Are Being Sold Until The Draw At The Event
Practice will be guided by Sadie, Asrael, and Paulina. Stay for tea and conversation after class. Guaranteed to be a heart-full event!
Admission is by donation (suggested $20) and of course any amount is appreciated if that is above your budget:)
Stay for tea and conversation after class
Tickets are $5 each or 5 for $20
Draw date: December, 15, 2013
Package 1 includes:
3 Prenatal yoga classes or 1 private yoga class with MarySue Henneberry
“The Chakra Series,” an eight DVD set of full-length Kundalini Yoga classes with Swarn Leung
Package 2 includes:
Ayurvedic massage with Asrael
Gift certificate for organic veggies from 8 1/2 Acres
Package 3 includes:
Body Talk session with Christy Greenwood
Therapeutic Massage Treatment with Lindsay Campa
Donations of $25 or more are tax deductible:)
Feel free to email me to purchase tickets- and if you live faraway you can click on the link below to make a donation online.
All Donations Are Going To The Philippines through Plan Canada– Plan’s emergency teams are on the ground and responding to the needs of children and families affected by the storm. Plan has worked in the Philippines for more than 50 years and we are doing everything we can to provide life-saving support like food, water, healthcare, shelter, sanitation and protection for vulnerable children and families.
This is not just a regular yoga class, this is an experience and a journey of great transformation and growth. This is a great opportunity to release held emotions, and to deepen your experience of the more subtle energies of your being.
This practice A six week series beginning Saturday, January 11. Classes run 8:00 am-9:30 am PST. If you miss a class they are available by streaming during the weeks that follow.
Healing Light Yoga Therapy Series 2:
Happiness – Embracing Emotions, Emotional Flow, and Emotional Clearing
Live Online Classes – Can Be Taken From Any Location
Emotional healing often precedes physical healing, as it is on this level of life that much of dis-ease originates. Learning how to unwind tightly held emotional experiences from our emotional bodies paves the way to emotional freedom… and greater happiness, joy, and ease. This second series of Healing Light Yoga Therapy focuses on creating happiness through embracing, flowing, and clearing emotions. In this six-week course, the basic principles and techniques from Series 1 will be applied, along with additional techniques of Chakra clearing and balancing, and the use of sacred symbols. By healing the emotional body we tap into our ability to experience bliss, gratitude and contentment in everyday life. If you are ready to release that which no longer serves and experience the sweetness that lies beneath, join us for this transformative course beginning January 11th, 2014
Registration for this course is open everyone, including those who have never done Healing Light Yoga Therapy before. Introductory videos and handouts that illustrate foundational principles are included.
For more information or to register click here:)
I have beautiful gift certificates available for all of my offerings- many which are available online. Its wonderful to be able to give a gift that nurtures, expands and honours the individual. Feel free to contact me for more information or to buy a heartfelt gift for that special someone:)
I wish you all a beautiful holiday season, whatever it is that you are celebrating. Embrace those around you, feel the joy of the sparkling lights, and the nighttime sky. Take rest when you need it, and allow yourself to relax, to let go, and to move in the flow of all that you are.