Ahhh. The holiday season. The most wonderful time of the year.

Family gatherings. Gift giving. Twinkle lights.

There is something very magical about this time of year, no matter how old you are.

But unfortunately for many of us, it is also the most stressful time of the year.

Travel. Entertaining. Holiday spending. Family expectations.

The holidays can be downright overwhelming and exhausting.

This year I want to help you to have a different holiday experience, to consciously choose and create just how you will celebrate.

Enter Slow Holidays: An Online Holiday Retreat

My intention with this Pay-What-You-Can online program is to help you to create more of the moments that matter most during this holiday season and to give you a quiet space and supportive community to retreat into during the month of December.

Those of you who have participated in my past online programs know that this will be a gentle experience and will not in any way add to your holiday to-do list. This program will do the exact opposite. It will guide you to identify what is most important to you and to set clear intentions for how you want to experience the holiday season, while celebrating the small, daily moments.

Similar to my Planting the Seeds online workshop, this program will run for three weeks (starting December 1) and I will create a video centering / lesson for you each week. We will culminate with a virtual gathering (via telephone) on Monday, December 22.

It’s going to be a gentle and wonderful experience and I do hope you’ll join me.

 

Click the image above or right HERE for more details and to register for this Pay-What-You-Can program!

 

{ 0 comments }

Over the weekend, I was scrolling through the photos on my phone and I realized I’ve seen some pretty cool ideas at weddings this year. I thought it would be fun to pull some together in a post and share with you.

1. Instant Camera Selfie Station

2. Beach Stones and Sharpies for a Guest Book

3. Flower Seed Packets as Wedding Favors

4. Hanging Vases of Flowers

5. Homemade Paper Flowers as a Bridal Bouquet

How about you? What fun ideas have you seen at weddings?

For those who are married, what fun and creative things did you do at your wedding?

{ 0 comments }

My most recent wedding ceremony took place in the cozy back patio space at the Duck & Bunny in Providence, RI.

When I met with the bride and groom to talk about their intentions for their ceremony, they said that they really wanted it to feel like a big party with a wedding in the middle, rather than having the wedding ceremony be the main event. And I think that is just what we were able to create; a nice short and simple wedding ceremony wrapped by a lovely afternoon party.

Before the ceremony started (I always arrive about an hour early to get settled in and coordinate with other vendors) I spent some time inside the Duck & Bunny, enjoying the cozy, sweetness of the place while the bride and groom greeted each of their guests personally as they arrived.

And then it was out to the back patio where the ceremony took place.

After the ceremony, I stuck around to hear the groom’s young son give his (flawless!) best man’s speech and then as I exited through the restaurant, I paused to take one last photo of the bride’s beautiful homemade paper flower bouquet.

It was a relaxing afternoon at a lovely venue and I am grateful that I got to be a part of it.

{ 0 comments }

At each wedding I perform, I always find myself pulling out my iPhone to photograph some of the sweet details of the ceremony and reception site and so today I thought I would start a new feature here on my blog: scenes from a wedding.  In it I will include a few photographs from each wedding with a short description of the ceremony.

Come, join me with a peek into my latest wedding ceremony…

This past weekend I had the honor of officiating a Hindu-Western Fusion Ceremony.

The bride’s family took the lead on the Hindu traditions and I served as a guide to give guests an overview of what to expect and then took over and led the Western portion of the ceremony.

The ceremony began when the groom arrived and his family and friends led his car into the estate while drums played. It was one of the most festive and celebratory greetings I have ever been witness to. Shortly after, the bride arrived and walked down the petal-covered aisle, barefoot, as is customary in Hindu ceremonies.

During the the first part of the ceremony, the bride and groom exchanged Garlands and walked the Seven Steps of Marriage. The bride’s family sang blessings.

As the bride and groom removed their garlands and put on their shoes, I took over the ceremony, leading a traditional Western wedding ceremony, where the bride and groom exchanged their “I do’s,” were pronounced married and had their first official kiss as husband and wife.

It was absolutely beautiful from start to finish and it was an honor to be part the day.

(Setting: Wetherledge Estate in Jamestown, RI)

{ 0 comments }

I begin (again)

by eringoodman on May 23, 2014

in breathing space, energy management

A photograph on the wall at my doctor’s office.

It was part of my annual exam.

A simple question that followed the typical discussion about my anxiety and depression and how I am doing with managing my moods.

“Do you meditate regularly?” she asked.

I wanted to jump in and say, “Oh yes, of course I do,” but before answering I mentally scanned the previous months.

“Not exactly regularly,” I said. “But I do meditate. Er…I mean I know how to meditate and I have taught others how to meditate and I’m very mindful in my day to day life but ummm…I’ve been busy…” my voice trailed off.

I knew where this conversation was going. And I knew I needed to face the truth. I have not been practicing what I teach. I’ve let busy slide in and tucked my yoga mat and my meditation cushion away, waiting for the perfect circumstances to arrive so I could pull them back out.

“You really should be meditating daily,” she said. “Just 20 minutes each day is enough to tell the nervous system that it is safe to relax, which has a ripple effect on all the body’s systems.”

I took my scripts for various blood work and my first mammogram (I just entered my 40s last month!), but it was the prescription for meditation that really stuck with me.

In the coming days, I made an effort, not to sit for 20 minutes, but to pause for micro-meditations throughout my day, to catch myself reaching for my cell phone to fill a void with Facebook or Instagram. I reminded myself that it is the breath that leads me into a meditative state and revisited my own guided meditations on Three Deep Breaths.

Slowly, I am finding my way back to my seat, remembering how good it feels to commune with my own quiet, inner knowing.

Slowly, I begin (again).

How about you? Do you meditate regularly? Tell us about your experience with meditation (or your hesitation to try it) in the comments. Let’s inspire each other!

{ 12 comments }