Clear Vision Costa Rica Retreat 2020

I have this beautiful life.

February 18, 2020-  Tuesday,  Arrival Day- Costa Rica

It’s time to escape New Jersey and fly off  to nature lovers paradise. Myself and yogi friends, old and new, will be soaring above the clouds to land in the beautiful Nicoya Peninsula, Santa Teresa, Costa Rica.

Thanks to Danielle Wilkinson (our wild child), our leader,  special soul, and owner of http://www.aquarianyoga.com this dream is coming true. She brings forth a spiritual connection and vision for all of us to share on this retreat week together, not to mention insane fun!

We have  days and nights of wide, long beaches to walk and soak in gorgeous Pacific sunsets. Santa Teresa is a surfer lovers dream come true. Guaranteed waves. Yoga, mediation and adventure, sunshine, good friends and food- what’s not to like?

I’m ready!  After our flight to San Jose we take a short 20 minute hopper plane and we make http://La Casona and Palm Grove  our home for the next six days.

There are 2 houses on the premises. Oceanfront. Jaw dropping. Tropical. Period. Can we move in forever, please?

 

 

Our adventure explorers soul seekers  include  Danielle, Kenny,  Cherylee, Helena,  Brenda, Hyacinth, Amanda, Patty, Jim, Cate, Savitri, Stacy, Glen and myself. (+Katie and Chris)

Chris and Katie greet us with a Mango/Peach welcome drink and sliced pineapple. Katie is the owner of http://yogabohemia.com and our host/ Badass. She is love and light in the flesh. Chris is our talented soulful  personal chef who will now proceed to spoil us for life.

I  look up at the sky. Did I just see God smiling down?  A few of us walk through  the open glass doors to the huge pool surrounded by flowers and fauna towards a winding stone path to the ocean past the Yoga Shala.

We hit the beach for a swim in the Pacific.

We are then served a beautiful meal on a huge hand carved wooden dining table.

– Chris explains that our meal is a typical Costa Rican plate. We have salad, rice, beans, and stir fried mushrooms , peppers and onions with plantains or chicken. Beautiful herb teas of every color. Oh Yum.

Later we share out thoughts and dreams in an opening circle. We are now officially united.

Yeah. I am not in New Jersey anymore.

February 19, 2020 – Wednesday Day 1

Every morning we are invited to  sunrise mediation on the beach at 6:30 AM. A time to go inward, listen to Mother Nature roar in and out, silent reflection, golden sun.  Time for journaling, collecting small stones and sea glass. Our goal for the day-  “Choose a stone that speaks to you and your intention”. As we carry this with us, we are reminded of the strength  of our words felt deep within our hearts. (  look close- these stones actually spell LOVE)

Later tonight, these stones will blend with the Pacific Ocean and our intentions will be given to the earth.

8:00 Am- We are blessed with a beautiful meal prepared by Chris’s loving hands. Refrigerated oats with mango and coconut, hard boiled eggs, and fresh tropical Pineapple, Watermelon, and Mango! . Divine and Delish!

9:30- 11:00 AM- Its time for Yoga! Kundalini and Yoga Flow Combo on the Shala with our talented teachers, Danielle, Cate and Sivitri.  We move our bodies and still our minds. Pure Bliss.

Time for lunch Tacos! (I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like taco’s!) Crazy good.

Its Tico time in Costa Rica!

The rest of the afternoon we are off to explore the town or whatever our hearts desire. The waves, the surf- (our expert surfer dude Kenny, can always be found catching a wave!) or the funky laid back town of Santa Teresa. Some us enjoy a massage under tropical trees at the shala, great coffee or a surf lesson!

As the sun begins to set, we share a beach cacao meditation with Danielle and then a special cacao ceremony led by the beautiful Hyacinth. We are smudged with sage and walk towards the beach as she drums and we sing  medicine songs. We give thanks to the great spirit and Mother Earth for all our blessings. Hyyacinth’s  gifts award all of us with inner peace and nourishment for our minds, bodies and soul. We sip our medicine and feel the power within reaching deep into our souls and shared energies.

https://www.earthmedicinehealing.com/about

The music of the ocean, the gentle breeze brings us back to reality and soon its time for another fabulous meal! Local fish, Beets, Veggies and Potatoes. Simple and Delicious! Thank you Chris and Katie for your warm, open hearts.

We chat is up a bit and then its time to sink into our comfy beds and dream of the adventures that day 2 will bring!

February 20, Thursday – Day 2

After our sunrise meditation, we are treated with another mouth watering breakfast. There is a bakery in town that makes Empanada Croissants  with spinach and cheese. (and other goodies). Okay, so I have literally died and gone to heaven. This is truth.

The energy from this sustains me throughout the day, which I  will soon need  because today we ride on ATV’s to Montezuma waterfalls! I hop on with my new bestie Amadma for the 45 minute ride. (including photo ops on the way to practice tree pose!)

Once there we enjoy Ceviche and salad for lunch at  Bar Y restaurant on the beach.

Montezuma is a tiny, quaint village perched at the edge of the sea known for its  magnificent waterfalls, natural beauty and abundant wildlife. It definitely puts your happy face on.

https://www.costarica.com/montezuma/

The ocean breeze and blue skies accompany us. Life is good! Pura Vita! A bit of shopping in town for some T-shirts and jewels seals the deal.

The hike to the waterfall is about 20 minutes. Not bad going down- (up will be another story later!) We jump off the cliffs like the badasses that we are. Choose your cliff! 10, 20, 30 feet? Then climb up the rocks to get back. Success. Check!

Back at the Shala, we are treated with a special guest, Daniel, who leads us thru a somewhat  challenging hip opening Yin class. To help us forget the possible discomfort of  holding, Daniel tells ancient stories as we stretch our bodies. It works. I leave feeling happy and healthy.

Dinner is on our own tonight. I get lucky and share the last  amazing croissant empanada with Hyacinth. Happy camper. Happy Yogi. Now I can go to bed and dream of moving here to open a bakery shop.

February 21, Friday – Day 3

Is this all we do on a Costa Rican Retreat?

Eat healthy luscious meals, drink fruit smoothies, sleep in luxury, practice yoga on the beach, share giant hugs in circle, read  good books, journal to empty our crowded brains, swim in blue/green waters with colorful fish, ride the waves, experience new adventures, meet the locals, have great conversations, meditate, enjoy 80 degree weather, dance and sing, get massages, stare at sunsets for hours, snap photos of igauanas, lizards and monkeys, and eat chocolate from the gods?

Yup. Thats what we do.

If you have a problem with that, well then I guess you have a problem.

Today was also Zip lining canopy tour day through the rainforest, photos of sunsets, an Alchemy Identity workshop with our always joyous lovely Brenda- ( Who are you?), and another kick ass dinner – Pork chops or Vegan sausage, beets and onions with mango sauce, Sriracha and BQ sauce.

Yeah, just another day in paradise. Hey, somebody’s gotta do it.

February 22 Saturday – Day 4

I wake every day at 6 a.m. I do this at home too. I like peace and quiet in the early morning hours, like to watch the sunrise and hear the birds sing. But here, I get up early for other reasons. In Santa Teresa I am surrounded by Mango trees and Papayas. Coconut Palms and Howler monkeys. Apples and limes. Fresh Pineapple. The sound of ocean waves. Sand in my toes and the sun on my face. Can I package this up and bring it home?

Today, most of us leave early and and hop in our private van to the island of Tortuga. It’s snorkel boat trip day!  After hearing about possible rough waters, we switch gears and head to another piece of land (we’ve named it  Gilligan’s Island) to wait for further instructions. But, who cares? We are in heaven!  We spend an hour or two swinging on a rope, collecting shells and swimming in the blue waters.

Our guides are the sweetest and most accommodating. We are served fresh pineapple, watermelon slices and a few Imperials to share!

Before long we get the green light and we are off to Tortuga to swim with the fishes! Yellow, blue, green, stripes and polka dots! I get my gear and jump in. Me and Patty hold hands and explore the deep blue sea. Others spotted a giant turtle. Life is good underwater too.

Lunch on the island is next- fresh tuna, roasted potatoes and veggies. Super Delish. More swimming or shopping. Coconut drinks in the shell. And, of yea, I take a walk on the beach with an 8 foot peacock. Just another day in Costa Rica.

After the glorious boat ride back to paradise, Danielle leads us in a meditation on the beach followed by a powerful Shamanic journey at the Shala. Loved ones appear, tears flow, hugs follow. The journey continues …. thank you Danielle!

Soon afterwards, appetites are up again and we devour another special dinner of fresh local fish, Congor (that you can only catch here I believe) cooked in butter and garlic. We are so spoiled.

Some of us go out, but I hit the sack after a quick swim. I need to process and absorb, sleep and dream.

February 23, Sunday Day 5

I won’t let my brain know that this is our last full day here. I instruct her to stick that thought in a drawer way in the back and I move forward.

I sit on the beach with Stacy feeling the energy of the powerful ocean before me. I breathe in the waves and let go of fears and expectations of others. I float off to another dimension. Have I landed on another planet and someone forgot to tell me?

Today is chill day. Time for self reflection. Hugs. Laughter. Stories. Smiles. Dreams. Yoga. Breath. Sand, Swims. Massages. More incredible food from mama earth prepared with love by Chris and Katie.

Oh, did I forget to mention horseback riding on the beach at sunset?

I almost chicken out but in the end, my warrior self comes through. Yeah!!  I ride.  I  weave through the forest and the beach over rocks and water on Shapita, my horse. She’s a beauty.  Our guide, Glen, Kate,Savitri, and another guest Allison join too. As promised the glorious sunset arrives as we approach our villa.

Let go of comfort zone. Check.

There is no way life can get better than this. But it does.

tonite we gather on the beach for a Dharma talk with Katie. Who, by the way, is not only beautiful, strong, and smart, she has a way of making everyone feel special. Her greeting is always “Good morning sweet soul.” I love that and will now steal those words.

She explains her journey and shares the knowledge she has gained  so that we may all find love, peace and beauty in our hearts. We learn the meaning of Bhakti Yoga. The Union of Self Realization. Be like salt,(be humble)  be like a chicken, (see the good in others) be like a crane, (be patient) be like yourself( be the seeker). Also, we go over the six pillars of practice. Now it’s time to continue on our own  journey. We will not always be able to live on the beach surrounded by sweet souls. The real world is sometimes challenging. But now I have the seeds. They will grow. They will sprout. My heart will fill.

Speaking of filling- Its time dinner! Roasted Cauliflower, broccoli, mashed yams with ginger. Okay Chris and Katie can you fit in my suitcase?

And the finale tonight- Yoga and then the Fire ceremony on the beach with a massive star filled sky. Magic. Period. Thank you Mother Earth and Father Sky.

Thank you Danielle for your vision and endless love. Thank you Kenny for your open heart, hugs and ears. Thank you Katie for your smile, wisdom and generous heart. Thank you Chris for your hands that prepared loving food from momma earth. Thank you Cherylee for sharing your space and your heart -my roomie!  Thank you Jim for your enthusiasm and stories of lands far away. Thank you Cate for just being you. Perfection. Thank you Sivitri for your soothing voice and gentle yoga practice. Thank you Patty for your presence, your abundant nature and swimming with the fish with me! Thank you Brenda for your endless joy and love of life.  Thank you  Helena for your presence and warmth. Thank you Stacy for gentle heart and conversation. Thank you Glen for saying you are happy everyday!  Thank you Hyacinth for your beautiful gifts and sharing them with all of us.

February 24 Monday Day 6

This is a day I’d rather not write about so I won’t. (but I will say the hopper plane back to San Jose was actually  smooth and fun!)

I enjoy my last yummy breakfast or maybe its dessert! Sliced bananas with drizzled hazelnut sauce and coconut flakes! (Oh yeah, I am stocking up on jars of this chocolate concoction  back at the NJ  ranch!)

It feels odd that sand is no longer between my toes. 🙁

Farewell Costa Rica and beautiful friends – until we meet again you will be forever in my heart, soul and dreams! (with sand!)

I have this beautiful life that I share with friends and I am grateful.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Roses of Abundance” Yoga Retreat Begins!

“Roses of Abundance” Yoga Retreat
Alajuela, Costa Rica

Alajuela, Costa Rica


United Airlines Flight # 1082 from Newark NJ brings me to Costa Rica for a much needed spiritual yogic journey. My beautiful, angelic yoga teachers Krystle and Claire will be leading the way for our healing, blissful practice- Roses of Abundance- not to mention, insane fun!

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After a 6 hour flight with my friend Zophia and a cab ride close to midnight, we settle in at Finca Luna Nueva Lodge in Alajuela, CR in Cabin #7 with comfortable beds and dreams of abundance!

(* sidenote- I fainted on the plane in the aisle on route to the ladies room for no apparent reason. I was fine- seems like the altitude got the best of me! Apparently, **** happens even on spiritual journeys!!)

You can reach these beautiful women at the sites below for an unforgettable yoga retreat!

http://crystalclarity.wixsite.com/krystleclear

http://www.theblissvibe.com

Day 1 – Organic Breakfast, Farm Tour, Yoga

Day One- Organic Breakfast, Farm Tour, Yoga
Alajuela, Costa Rica

Alajuela, Costa Rica

What’s not to like about awakening at 6:30 AM from a comfy bed and walking down a path of magnificent, colorful tropical flowers to the smell of fresh baked bread? Well, I guess that would be a heavenly organic breakfast of papaya, eggs, fig jam, pineapple, passion fruit, watermelon and a steaming hot cup of herbal tea! This is what awaits you at Finca Luna Nueva Lodge on a daily basis! Not to mention, beautiful smiling faces! Our group of connected yoga souls consist of seven. Me, (Deb) , Zophia, Ed and Lisa, Alexa, and our incredible, OMazing teachers, Claire and Krystle. Our Welcoming Yoga & Life Intention Meditation before breakfast was a perfect way to start this spiritual journey!

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After a relaxing break in our room, we look forward to a tour of this sustainable farm by Isahmel, our sweet handsome, informative tour guide. For 2 1/2 hours he fills our brains with the history of the farm and of Costa Rica.

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Finca Luna Lodge is dedicated to producing the healthiest food for their guests. They practice “regenerative” agriculture unusual to most farms.

We pass through luscious vegetation of in this amazing lush tropical rain forest. We can’t get enough of the scent of hibicus and lemon trees.
We taste the fresh herbs of holy basil, peppermint, oregano. Spices of cardamon, black pepper, turmeric are tasty too. There are 90 species of tropical fruit tress. We eat Raw Cacao directly from the tress! Its magical in the rainforest jungle.

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We savor the moments. We treasure the time together listening to birds, monkeys and frogs!

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Attention: back at the lodge its time for our daily 2pm afternoon luscious fresh fruit Smoothie! Today is Pineapple and Papaya!

As the sun sets in late afternoon, we all walk the path to the yoga pavilion for an AbunDance Vinyassa Flow and experience heaven on earth with Krystle and Claire as they guide us to another level of consciousness. We work our bodies through gentle movement and stretch our arms and legs to the heavens. Insence and sage flood the air. We breathe and we move with each other in harmony with the earth, the forest, the flowers and the nectar of the fruits beside us.

And if that is not enough for Day One, we feat on a heavenly organic dinner with veggies and fruit
harvested right from the farm! They do not serve wine or beer but you are welcome to bring your own- which, of course, we do! Our group of beautiful souls share good food, stories and laughter. Its been more than a good day..

8PM – We practice New Moon Meditation under purple star filled skies.
I decide to set an intention/insight for each day here.
Today my insight is JOY.

But it just would not be right if we didn’t jump into the hot tub after that, would it? So, of course we do! (no brainer)

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Sweet Dreams!

Here is some history of this most amazing eco-farm: MUST READ!!
http://fincalunanuevalodge.com/discover /who-we-are/

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Day 2- OMG…It’s Zip Line Day!

Day 2- OMG…It’s Zip Line Day!
Alajuela, Costa Rica

Alajuela, Costa Rica


The morning sun breaks through the clouds and its time for yoga at 8AM..
Today we practice lengthening, stretching and breathing with the monkeys singing in the distance.

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Breakfast soon afterwards- Perfect nourishment for what awaits ahead.
Some journal writing back at the cabin and then its time to get crazy!

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http://arenalecoglide.com/en/

We leave on a small van for an adventure that I was not sure I was ready for, but apparently the stars have aligned for me to get geared up and ZIP thru the trees! Many trees actually. This is not a zip line adventure for wimps!

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The canopy Ecoglide Arenal Park is located 3.5km west of the Catholic church in La Fortuna de San Carlos, it was built according to the standards required by the Costa Rican Tourism Institute and the National Insurance Institute.It consists of two wires traveling in parallel, one slip and complementing the other two pulleys separate cable for the safety of our visitors.It consists of 13 cables and 15 platforms, most of which are located in the trees so that visitors can have more contact and closeness with nature, flora and fauna of the rainforest.Within the tour managed to find the Tarzan Swing to enjoy full insurance, this involves swinging from a platform into the forest, where reached to 38mts high ropes tied to security.

The course is divided into 3 sections, the first consisting of 8 wires and 9 platforms with length of 210mts long and an average height of 25mts, which are being fully immersed in the rainforest.In the second stage you’ll place the Tarzan Swing. And the third has 5 cables and 6 platforms with lengths ranging from 100m up to 430mts, the largest burst of adrenaline and fun that continues to jump back to Tarzan.

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But we are are nearly pro’s by the days end. ( I skipped the Tarzan swing but everyone gave it a shot- it was fun to watch thou!)
I am having some light bulbs moments, realizing I am afraid of pain and not wanting to let go of this fear. I have a pinched nerve in my neck and although its not debilitating, its always there. I am not trusting my body enough to just let go. So, I was a bit tense zip lining but once I “let go” and looked at the treetops, I relaxed and enjoyed.
I am glad I went, I didn’t fall off or screw up and now I can brag to my grandkids that I Ziplined through the rainforests of Costa RIca!

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After all that exercise, we definitely needed a recharge- Our meal at Finca Luna was spectacular!

We end the night with Gentle Rose Yoga, a dip in the spring water pool, and then hit the sack in our cozy beds.

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Today’s intention is RELEASE FEAR.

 

 

 

Day 3 – An Incredible Mother’s Day

Day 3 – An Incredible Mother’s Day
Alajuela, Costa Rica

Alajuela, Costa Rica


Its Mothers Day-

I am a mother of two sons and 5 amazing grandkids. This is a special day. I am not with them today but, I must admit, I had an incredible Mothers Day! Krystal and Claire made it so special for all of us! They organized a beautiful yoga practice in honor of Mothers Day. The theme was “Inspired Circles” for the circle of life. We spoke of our mothers, their names, their history, and the impact they had on our lives. We celebrated their laugher and their tears. We cried, we grieved, we hugged. We shared love. Our souls connected.

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It is incredibly powerful to share space with people who accept and love you for who you are. No judgements or worries. Only love and gratitude. No complaining!
This becomes our motto for the week!- if we do complain, we notice it and replace it with gratitude. (thank you universe!)

Today a gentle breeze touched us as we enjoyed a beautiful breakfast of yucca patties, luscious fresh fruit, eggs , coffee or tea.

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It was also a silent breakfast. I loved it. Sometimes we talk too much so it  is actually a welcome treat. Bird sings daily day and night in their special language. I love the ones with the brilliant cadmium red and yellow bellies, but they are only visible when they take flight. The air is light and heavy at the same time. Every so often it reminds me to breathe in and breathe out.

It’s mother nature speaking with gratitude and the presence of the mind. The leaves and the trees are talking to each other. I am reading a biography about Georgia O’Keefe. I breathe it in. This is what Costa Rica does to you.

Today we also go on the Sacred Seed Tour and a Medicinal Herb Walk:

SACRED SEEDS TOUR

The Sacred Seeds Sanctuary at Luna Nueva is a dynamic collection of medicinal plants that protects and celebrates not only biological diversity in Costa Rica and the tropics, but also the diversity of cultural knowledge related to these plants worldwide. Our Sacred Seeds garden currently houses over 300 tropical medicinal plants. In a world where 50 to 200 species become extinct every day due to deforestation, over harvesting, or other human activity, the sanctuary aims to preserve the genetic material and cultural use of these plants.The winding path of the sanctuary brings the visitor through three different sections of environmental diversity representing the various cultural groups of Costa Rica; indigenous, Afro-Caribbean, and European descended Ticos.We offer a guided tour of the Sacred Seeds Sanctuary.

After seeing all the varieties of plants and herbs, it is not hard to realize that God gave us all we really need to be healthy. Period. Another light bulb moment not to be ignored.

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So, here’s to Mothers on Day 3! – We practice Roses and Thorns Yoga in late afternoon in the heavenly yoga pavilion and then enjoy another fab organic dinner of pasta, veggies of every color, cauliflower soup, salad and a homemade brownie for dessert!

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Later on in the evening a few of us took the Rainforest Mysteries Trail Hike:

A mile long trail laid out in the secondary rainforest near the main lodge. We enjoy the sights and sounds of the rainforest at night. You may see kinkajous, sleeping birds, translucent glass frogs, red-eyed tree frogs, or perhaps lizards or snakes. You never know – the creatures come out on their schedule, guided perhaps by the phases of the moon and whether it has just rained. We feel the rainforest at night -a great mystery on this planet Earth.

Today’s Insight is LOVE.

 

 

 

 

 

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Day 4- La Fortuna Falls & Baldi Hot Springs

Day 4- La Fortuna Falls & Baldi Hot Springs
Alajuela, Costa Rica

Alajuela, Costa Rica


A brilliant orange ball rose between the mountains and the trees at sunrise this morning. This is what you witness when your body arises at 5:30 AM from your comfy bed. Every morning in Costa Rica shares this wonder.
Our peaceful, yet rejuvenating, yoga class with Claire and Krystle begins at 8AM. This too takes place between the mountains and the trees and the valleys. We hear birds sing and look for monkeys in between OM’s and breath. This just doesn’t happen mornings in New Jersey, no matter how hard you try to visualize!

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Our breakfast is amazing always. Can hardly get enough fresh squeezed orange juice and fresh baked bread!

But the best is yet to come as we are off to La Fortuna Falls for an afternoon of diving into waterfalls!

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Arguably the most visited waterfall in the whole country, La Fortuna waterfall has attracted travelers from all over the world for years.Dropping 75 meters into a bright blue pool, La Fortuna waterfall in Arenal paints a perfect postcard of the Costa Rican jungle and is usually one of the highlights of an Arenal trip for its beautiful views and scenery.Sitting just 6 km outside of the town of La Fortuna and at the base of the Cerro Chato volcano, the waterfall makes for a great day trip for travelers of all ages.The water is fed by the Tenorio River that goes through the rainforest in the Arenal area until it reaches a cliff to create this waterfall. Visitors can get several different views as they make the somewhat arduous hike from the visitor’s station to the base of the fall.

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Getting there was a feat in itself. We climbed 500 steps up (and yes, 500 steps down later in the day) but the view was incredible and the Falls spectacular. We swam in warm waters, climbed on rocks and took silly pictures of each other. There was nothing to do but BE. Time to reflect and time to meditate.

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But all that swimming does bring on an appetite so its off to lunch in the town of La Fortuna. Our tribe of eight shares chips and guac, veggies quesadillas, yucca and beers. Yes, we have entered the eternal gates!

A little shopping afterwards doesn’t hurt either. Colorful bags and scarves nearly float thru town.
Shopkeepers with big smiles are friendly and helpful.

 

At this point we can’t imagine our day could be more perfect than it already is- but we are wrong. We head to one of the most amazing, unique places I have ever seen! The Baldi Hot Springs Spa and Hotel.

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Baldi is located in La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica on a privileged site at the base of the imposing Arenal Volcano and sorrounded by exuberant nature, is the largest resort of the world with its 25 pools of thermal water, rich in minerals and healing properties. Grab your bathing suit, swim up to a pool- take your pick, they are all different surrounded by lush trees, singing birds and waterfalls. Added plus- swim up to a bar stool inside the pool..Perch there for a while and enjoy a refreshing margarita!

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We spend 2 hours here in paradise and then have dinner inside the hotel. Good food, wine, friends. Yup, God must be here. I’m sure she is.

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Back at the ranch—-

Relaxing yoga nidra – internal blosseming.
sweet dreams.

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Todays insight for me today is Gratitude.

 

 

 

Day 5 – Making Cacao and Closing Ceremony

Day 5 – Making Cacao and Closing Ceremony
Alajuela, Costa Rica

Alajuela, Costa Rica


8 AM–Morning Yoga -Sunshine bliss vibe asana!

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9 AM—Our usual amazing breakfast!

But the real treat today was making Cacao!….Oh YUM!

After seeing the CacaoTrees on the Farm- (There are more than 300 and most are over 30 years old!), we learn how to make chocolate the way ancient civilizations did and also the modern way. We will partake in the ” Drink of the Gods”!

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First we roast and then grind fermented cacao beans. For the grinding we an use an ancient “metate” or grinding stone, thought to be almost a thousand years old and carved by indigenous people from volcanic rock. Once the task of grinding is completed, we add the desired spices and flavors to our drink, selecting from New World ingredients such as Vanilla, Jamaica or Allspice, Spicy Chile, and Achiote or Annatto.

Drinking the chocolate with different flavors is a unique experience. It’s spiritual and mystical to enjoy the healing powers of chocolate. And then to top it all off, we make chocolate with spices and ingredients from the farm and eat the organic chocolate!

As the sun dips below the treetops, I relax in this lush green forest, overlooking large green, red and yellow leafed plants with pink flowers. I sit and sip tea and realize how much my mind craves silence.

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At 4pm we gather together for our Cacao closing ceremony in the yoga pavilion. “External Blossoming”. A special scared afternoon.

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But, of course, after all the chocolate, we still want PIZZA!

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Yup- at 7PM , our last night in the rain forest, we have a special wood oven pizza celebration with salad , green soup and a glass of wine at the pool as the sun sets.

The stars own the sky tonight, so we all climb up the tower on the property and get a closer look. I’m not sure how many stairs we take to get to the top. The stars are a brilliant white against the pitch black sky. It feels as if we are on the top of the world and in a sense we are. Thank you God.

When I land back home in New Jersey I wonder if I will be able to re-create this magical, spiritual land in my minds eye? At home there is noise from TV’s, cell phones, air conditioners and lawn mowers. I need Enya, Solitude and Tree Pose! I breathe in the gentle breeze and look towards Father Sky for answers. Then I sit and listen.

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This week of healing at Finca Luna Lodge has brought me peace of mind, gratitude, wisdom, and a stronger body. I shared food from the earth, stories and laughter with amazing beautiful soulful friends. Friends who will be part of my life from now on, I am sure.

Todays Insight is Abundance.

 

 

 

Day 7- Jaco Beach Here We Come!

 

Jaco Beach Costa Rica

Here We Come!

Jaco Beach, Costa Rica


Sadly, our last day at Finca Luna, however, more adventure awaits!

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After our morning yoga- Yoga AbunDance Celebration- at 8:00 AM and our always incredible breakfast, we stroll the grounds for one last look until we can plan a return visit. The sun is shining, our bodies are tanned, our minds are at peace, our HeARTS are full.

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11:00 AM –TAXI!! – It’s time to head out to the coast to Jaco Beach for a few more days of Costa Rica!
( Giant hugs to Lisa and Ed as they head back to NJ- They will be so missed)

It’s a fun ride- we stop along the way and pick up coconuts, mango’s, papaya, pineapples, and avacados for our next home away from home.

We arrive about 6:30 PM to our Beach Hostel Casajungala and settle in.

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Everything is nearby walking distance. The beach is 5 minutes. We walk to a nearby restaurant and enjoy a great meal of fish, mashed potatoes and fresh veggies. A walk under the stars on the beach and a meditation follow. Nighty- Nite!

Todays Intention- Trust that the universe will provide for you.

 

 

Day 8 -Mangos, Mangos and More Mangos!

 

 

Mangos, Mangos and more Mangos!
Jaco Beach, Costa Rica

Jaco Beach, Costa Rica


The Breakfast of Champions in Jaco are mangos that fall from the Trees! Literally! Our host of Casajungle informs us that breakfast is ours for the picking! Yup, it’s true. And we know because we heard them falling on out tin roof during the night! Zophia was not to happy about this- it kept us awake and we had no idea what it was! Sounded like jackhammers but were workers really out there in the middle of the night?

But, I digress. Our Hostel is sweet and cozy and our breakfast of mangos and avocados is divine. A hot cup of tea and we are ready to pull some angel and tarot cards. I pul the Exemplar card. Claire and I spend a couple hours chilling, reading and writing in our journals. Great way to start our day. Afterwards we take the free bikes they provide and ride to the local store for milk, tortillas, guacamole and beer for our lunch. The best part is we don’t need a clock, a cell phone or a TV..Who cares?

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Later on, we all walk to the beach to mediate under the crescent moon. The sand is dark, unlike New Jersey. The beach is long and wide and beautiful. I am feeling free here- free of worry and full of spirit with my incredible loving friends. We walk for hours guided by mother nature, the stars and the moon.

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As luck would have it, we stumble upon a Tiki Bar on the beach! A couple of ice cold beers and veggie quesadillas hit the spot!

But to really be free- you gotta ditch the clothes and ride the waves in the spectacular black ocean. So we do! Hey when in Costa Rica baby!

The night is still young though so a stop at the coolest place ever “Bar Nirvana” (very fitting, I must say) is on our way back our rooms. Its almost hidden except for the sign, so of course, very intriguing. We peak behind the gate and there you have it. An Oasis in the middle of nowhere!

Bradley, the owner, is an eccentric dude to say the least. Once a hot shot photographer for ‘W” and Vogue magazine in NYC, he chucked it all for the simple beach bum life. He shows us all his photographic work form back in the day. Impressive and Very cool ****. He buys us a Belgian Beer and we proceed to dance the night away.

Not bad for Day One at the Beach!
ps..Todays Insight – Speak less, Listen more.

 

 

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Day 9 -Beach, Chill, Tarot…

Beach, Chill, Tarot…
Jaco Beach, Costa Rica

Jaco Beach, Costa Rica


At the Beach, there is no schedule. We do whatever we feel like doing, whenever we feel like doing it. I think that’s why beaches are here. Mother Earth’s gift to us. To come back. To connect. To draw inward.

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We pull out oracle  cards. Mine is Dancer and Coyote. I am new at cards and sorta clueless but I get the vibe. I understand energy.
So, Question today– ” Am I in harmony with the good in all portions of myself?” Claire and Krystal know this stuff better than me. They guide us. They love us. They make us smile. And yes, we have been smiling a lot!
Today we beach it, and swing on hammocks.

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I learn how to peel and cut a mango the correct way today- thanks Claire!
We have a great dinner across the street- Ceasar Salad with bacon, and mussels in garlic sauce.
And , of course, our spirits are drawn to “Nirvana” for a cool brew.

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Sweet Dreams!

Todays Insight – Live in the present moment, for it may be gone in the next.