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 The temperature outside has fluctuated to a chilly low in Colorado this week.  I have often been bundled up with blankets by the fire, drinking hot tea and relaxing.  My brisk wintery walks have been invigorating, and my warm soothing baths have been the perfect anecdote for getting cozy.

The winter is definitely upon us.

Both the winter and summer solstice have been my favorite days since I was just a young child.  In northern Canada, where I grew up in my early years, the solstices (winter and summer) were pretty extreme.

The dark nights of winter were very dark, cold and long, and the light days of summer made the days seem to go on forever.  For me, there was an obvious magic to nature and her cycles, even back then.

So today, on one of my most favorite days of the year, I decided to OPEN registration a little early for THE YOGA OF EATING 2017 as well as bring to you my wintery gift – THE SOLSTICE SESSIONS.

For the next few weeks, I will be sharing with you the FREE rich and heartwarming Solstice Sessions.  These are my little whispers of winter’s wisdom, some guidance as we descend into the darkest nights of the year, and some appetizers from my most complete body of work, THE YOGA OF EATING 2017 that begins this January. (registration is open).  I hope you enjoy some of this free content, as much as I love creating it for you.

Because… what I used to consider a cold, stressful and tender time of year has now become a time I cherish.

When I say descend, what I mean is my descent into my inner world - through all her peaks and valleys – where the darkest nights of the year have become a great teacher and chaperon to my own insight and wisdom.

Some would say this descent has been known throughout time, myth, and story as a descent into the underworld.  Others see it as the most potent nights to pray or connect to our higher selves. Often we hone how to vision with clarity and precision for the upcoming New Year.

The dark nights expand to cultures worldwide with unique and diverse wintery wisdoms and rituals.

In today’s Solstice Session you will learn:

  • Learn the biggest challenge women face over the holidays.
  • Some short and sweet solstice rituals begin your own dark night descent – embracing winters wisdoms.
  • How to restore your life force and your energy with my most favorite winter warming smoothie.

Have you been busy bustling and hustling to get ready for your holidays? Amidst all of the gift buying, holiday parties and decorating things can get pretty zany out there.

The most common complaints we all know during the holidays: tired, drained, doing too much, over extended, and trying to please everyone else.

This is the # 1 challenge women face each holiday season.

The energetics of winter remind us to hunker down, slow down, and restore our prana (life force). We benefit from cooking our food slow and long, finding coziness and warmth together in our families and communities, while warming our hearts with connection to ourselves and others we love. Follow these three R’s for some simple reminders and reflections.


This year, turn over a new “snow flake” and give to yourself first. You will have plenty more to give to those you love when you do.

How you might ask?

That is exactly what Solstice Sessions are for. Little winter wisdoms to inspire you and remind you that you can live as your own VIP.

Try these daily practices to stay centered and calm:

  • Create some daily down time – just for you.
  • Go bed a little earlier – winter is a time for rest and restoration.
  • Reflect with your inner self – journal, meditate, listen inward
  • Take warm soothing baths – these will relax you, boost your immune system and help you sleep
  • Bundle up and get outside – the crisp winter days bring energy and vitality
  • Order your gifts online – avoid those lines and the holiday bustle
  • Say NO more often – save your YES's for the important stuff
  • Keep things simple in your celebrations – simple is the new smart


The winter solstice is the perfect time to begin a reflection practice for the years end. The darkest night in many cultures has symbolized the new year and returning of the light.  Often winter solstice rituals include candle light, fires and warming foods.

Take some time to look back on your year and enjoy contemplating all the things you have been through (easy or tough), and the life lessons learned in the process, the intentions actualized, and finally bridge some ideas as to where you are heading for the new year to come. (more on the years beginning ritual to come soon)

  • Release the old with reverence
  • Celebrate the small successes and the little things that matter most
  • Relish in the magic of synchronicities, the power of intentions and the opportunities that have come your way.
  • Let go of judgement and self-criticism (pretty please)
  • Most of all…Count your blessings – big and small

Here some ways create a winter solstice ritual moment:

  • Light candles or lanterns and savor the darkness as you take some time in silence to hold your year in a magical embrace.
  • Release the old with a fire ritual – burning a list of the aspects of your year you would like to release or let go of. Be gentle with yourself. Use a fireplace, a fire pit, or even hold the burning paper and flush it.
  • Spend some time writing in your journal reflecting on the past year, who you were when the year began last January, and what you have learned about yourself and life since then.


Winter eating entails preparing seasonal whole foods that can be stored, canned, or kept for the colder days of winter. Emphasize warming foods that stimulate digestion, circulation, and immunity.  Share food with loved ones, focus on the pleasure of eating and the coming together of love and light.

Here are some good winter foods to explore:

  • Warming soups and stews
  • Root vegetables
  • Beans (especially adzuki and mung beans)
  • Miso and seaweed
  • Garlic and ginger
  • Warming spices like cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg and cloves.

Try this wintery warming smoothie to nourish your body, mind and soul.


Recipe by Chef Bailey Ruskus

This is my holiday treat for you this year.  A candlelit path into the darkest nights of the year and some tasters from the The Yoga of Eating 2017Online Course and Community that begins this January – check out all the details below.

The Yoga of Eating 2017: the most in depth and detailed body of work I offer, a way to work with me personally while feeling the support of others on a similar path … to transform your relationship to food and your body.

Many of you have daydreamed of life filled with positive thoughts and habits that support your health and your happiness. If that is the case, The Yoga of Eating is just right for you.

This 6 month online course and community is full of incredible resources, potent international guest teachers, deep and reflective monthly content, guided yoga and meditation practices to enhance your inner journey, a beautiful circle of women from many corners of the world, and age old practices that guide us to deep healing from the inside out.

Click Here to learn all about The Yoga of Eating 2017 … and how this year you can become your own VIP in all things health and happiness.




  After sleeping in and slumbering around for the 5th morning in a row, I was reflecting on how I had barely checked my email all week.

I have enjoyed some of these darkest (and coldest) nights so far by cooking yummy winter meals, snuggling up by the fireplace, sharing in heartwarming conversation and reflection of the past year, and visiting with friends and loved ones.

These dark wintery nights around the holidays are a time I gift myself this slow and peaceful pace.

Long winter walks and snowshoes under the blue bird sky, personal reflection, and this slow revealing of what my visions are for the coming New Year feel like an appropriate focus.

This week's Dark Night Delicacy (week #3) is coming to you from my pajama palace, where much creativity and care has been born.

From my restful slumber, much clarity and cuddled-up contemplation emerges in this week's dark night delights.

Dark Night Delicacy #3 is HERE for you

The Dark Night Delicacies are my holiday treat for you this year.  A candlelit path into the darkest nights of the year, a taste of the Eat.Pray.Yoga Online Course and Community that begins this January, and a wintery-wise wanderlust that will keep you connecting inward to your winter warrioress.


Want Peace?  Live Peace.


Each year around the New Year many of us contemplate what we are striving for in our lives, how we want to achieve certain goals, amend bad behaviors with resolutions, and turn over a new leaf.  It is natural for the mind to crave a fresh start.  The gyms get busier, diets or cleanses become all the rage, and often we focus on the bad habits that we hope to no longer do.

This year when you are contemplating what it is you are wanting, I invite you to join me in the remembering that in creating our NEW YEAR as we wish for it to be does not come from self criticism, chance, or something outside of you.

This year as we contemplate what it is we are yearning for in our hearts and minds, try to imagine how we can align both our thoughts and our actions with this desire.

If you are wanting PEACE, begin by focussing on your thoughts being more peaceful.  See if you can find more peace in your actions, in your way of relating to others and in your way of loving yourself.

If you want more prosperity, try practicing abundant thoughts, giving more to others, and finding gratitude for what you have.

If you want more happiness, keep choosing unconditional happiness that is not based only on certain circumstances lining up just right, but rather seeing happiness and joy in how you think and how you move through the world.  Try spreading more happiness in your interactions with others. 


Wintery Wise Recipes


Roasted Spagetti Squash with Wild Mushrooms, Savory Chicken and Kale


Serves: 2-4


1 medium-sized spaghetti squash, roasted

2 TBS olive oil

6 large gloves of garlic, minced

3 cups baby portabello mushrooms, chopped small

2 tsps fresh thyme, chopped

1 or 2 large chicken breasts, sliced into strips

4 cups dino kale leaves, packed

¼ tsp kosher salt

1/8 tsp cayenne pepper, or to taste

Zest of 1 lemon


Roast the spaghetti squash and set aside for later use.

In a medium-sized skillet, add the oil and heat to medium. Add the minced garlic and mushrooms. Saute for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until garlic is fragrant and mushrooms have browned.

Add the chicken strips, and cook for about 30 seconds before adding the chopped kale. Cook 3-5minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.

Add the lemon zest, salt and cayenne pepper. Stir well and cook for about a minute. Remove from heat.

Strip the spaghetti squash into spaghetti strands and place in a medium-sized serving bowl.

Add the chicken/mushroom/kale mixture and toss together.

Serve with fresh grated parmesan and enjoy.


New Years YOGA Pose



Open your heart and free your mind this New Year.


  • Anahatasana (heart chakra pose) is a nice opening for the upper and middle back
  • Release tension in your neck and shoulders
  • Softens your heart.


Find your way into Anahatasana

  • On your hands and knees, walk your hands forward, allowing your heart to drop toward the floor. Keep your hips right above your knees. If possible, keep your hands shoulder width apart.  Bring either your chin or forehead to the floor and breath into both the front and back of your heart.



Sign Up for the Eat.Pray.Yoga 2016 online Course and Community Right HERE

We begin January 18th, 2016.Become a VIP early bird and sign up before January 1st.  You will receive these delightful extras to explore until our circle of women meets officially on January 18th.

Set your SANKALPA:  A virtual intention setting workshop with Sue for the New Year (January 1st, 2016). Join me for this special bonus 1 hour virtual workshop where I will share with you some of the most potent and powerful yogic practices around setting clear and precise intentions for your upcoming year.


Sync up with the seasons: with the Winter-Wise Whole food purification program.  With each season come unique currents and energetic rhythms that we can specifically tap into with our eating and our self-care.

Health Wise:  A hard (and signed) copy of my most recent book to offer you just a few more supportive strategies for a healthy, happy and whole living.

Eat.Pray.Yoga BALI 2016:  Take an additional $200 dollars off of our magical women's week in Bali this spring. Check out all of the details HERE.

EARLY access to Module 1:  Right off the bat, you can log in to the first Module of Eat.Pray.Yoga.  Early access is only offered to the VIP early registrants.


If you missed any of the previous Dark Night Delicacies, you can check them out HERE.





Selectively Numb

Time to nurture, listen, love and BE is time that is well spent when we are on a path to inner freedom. The quiet of nature, inner connection, and rest allows us to notice what is arising, listen to the messages from our bodies and choose how to navigate through them wisely. When we get to busy in our day-to-day life, overwhelmed by our to-do's piling up, stressed that things aren't going as planned, we often resort to our habitual numbing – ways of coping.  We tend to move away from the uncomfortable feelings in order to avoid them.

Sometimes these feelings do not have enough space to be felt, listened to, or even healed.





Shooting for SELECTIVELY NUMB is a coping skill many of us buy into - often without even realizing it. You know... choosing to feel the good stuff, while ignoring the bad.

It is temping isn't it?

It IS tempting, because who wants to feel those old negative or traumatic or stressful feelings that seem to weigh us down?  The ones that curl us up in the fetal position in our beds, make us nauseous, or even trigger our past trauma.

As we adventure down the pathway to freedom, it is often found that those old icky beliefs and feelings from the past can come up for a couple of reasons:


First, to be felt and listened to in a way that they were possibly never honored before.  

Second, so they can be released, cleared, dumped from our energy bodies altogether.


The truth is SELECTIVELY NUMB does not exist.

When we turn away from suffering, ignore our pain, or just simply numb ourselves out with our usual vices – food, alcohol, busyness, or a variety of other addictions – we actually numb ourselves completely.

Our level of pain and suffering may feel numbed in the moment, but so is our joy, bliss, and happiness.

The path to freedom teaches us to embrace it all.  To sit in the uncomfortable and to also expand into our pleasure and bliss (both of which can be challenging).

Here are my favorite personal strategies (the ones I use regularly) for more FEELING, FREEING, and FINDING my power so that I can expand into my FULLEST.  Perhaps some of these will work for you as well...



When we build our life force or prana, in any awareness practice, we enliven whatever is already happening. Prana is non-discriminating.

Strong feelings of stress, anxiety, overwhelm, sadness, or fear can be daunting and we surely do not want to exaserbate what already exists in the mind-body if it is unpleasant of challenging.

When you give yourself time to sit, center, breath and calm your system, you are in fact strengthening the calm.

Balancing our your breathing so that the inhale and the exhale mirror each other in length and quality will in fact calm your entire system, engage your parasympathetic nervous system, slow down your brain waves and tame your strong emotional feelings.

Breathing is often thought of as the vehicle into the subtle body in the yoga practice. The ancient yogis believed that if you can regulate your breath, you can regulate your mind.

**I find a quiet space to sit for 10-15 min and practice balanced breathing. I focus on the quality and rhythm of your breathing.


Somatic Serenity

One of the most effective tools I use when strong emotions arise for me is doing a body check in. Once I can see where my body is holding the emotion I place my hand over this area.

Often when we experience strong emotion our bodies experience physical sensations such as tingling, clenching, or heat. There is wisdom here.

When we tap into the bodies physical sensation, we are able to get out of the mind spin and drop into the body. This practice is calming, nourishing, and helpful in our inner listening.

*I find a quiet place and do a body check in or body scan, searching for strong sensations associated with the emotion at hand. I then place my hand over that part of my body in a gentle and nourishing way. I return to the breath and ask for any information that my body is ready to reveal regarding this emotion. I ask for healing, peace and calm.


Become a Flower Fairy

Flower remedies are used to work on the emotions of the body bringing back balance and taking us out of a fight or flight stress response.

There are a wide array of flower remedies available in your local health food store. Each remedy is designed to support a different emotional imbalance restoring equilibrium and balance back into the body and soul.

**I venture to the flower remedy section of the wellness area of the health food store or natural pharmacy and I ask for the best remedy for my current emotion. I hold the bottle and ask myself if this is a good remedy for me. I may try a few before I decide. I keep the remedy in my purse and I use whenever the emotion arises. I also use it in my daily meditation practice.


Take a Ritual Bath

Aside from the warming and relaxing qualities there are also deeper support from certain types of baths.  Just like you make yourself that intentional cup of herbal tea, you can soak away your sorrows in a intentional ritual bath with herbs and tonics that will fine tune your energy and emotional bodies.

You can always resort to the simple Epson salts bath if you like, but here I am going to provide you with some specific and unique baths to use to cleanse your energy and emotions – mind, body and soul.

*Sweeten up your mood with a “sweet like honey” bath.  Add a cup of raw honey to your bath and watch your sweetness return.  Honey baths remind us of the sweetness of life.

*Purify your energy body with lemon juice in your bath.  Add one cup of lemon juice to your bath for a gentle clearing and supportive shift of old beliefs and emotions.


Get Naked with Nature

One of the quickest ways I know to clear my mind and reset my thoughts is taking myself right into the foothills of Boulder.

For 20 years now, I have lived here in Boulder CO, and I have to tell you I will always be in awe of these mountains. Over the years, nature has held my sorrow, my pain, my trauma, my confusion, my self hatred, my heartbreaks and everything else that I have gone through.

These mountains truly hold a blueprint of my life.

So, when I say 'GET NAKED' with nature, what I really mean is to shed all that is not serving you, and SHE will hold it for you.  Reveal your truth, and SHE will guide you. Let go of what is blocking you, and SHE will lead you into the light.

 *I go into the woods and hike with the intention of nature holding a healing space for me.  I give myself time and permission to heal, and I let go into the great mother earth.  This is a time of surrender, release, trust, and clearing for me.





The WINTER SOLSTICE is one of my favorite days of the year. WHY?  Why is the darkest day of the year so enchanting you ask? I have been resisting the cold and dark this year,  like never before. This resistance to the natural ebb and flow of the season is new for me.  The returning of the light is a comfort to me, knowing it will start tomorrow eases my mind and heart.
I decided in the past few weeks, after a few ENCHANTING moments with myself - one in front of the fire place listening to Van Morrison on one of the coldest nights I can remember, and a few sitting in front of my sweet sparkly holiday tree in the early early morning - that I would find the MAGIC in the moments of the cold and dark winter nights.
We are on the FINAL descent into the darkest night, tomorrow, and I am READY to birth the sun both around me and within me.  Will you join me??

I often think of the idea of LIGHTING myself up at this time of year, and that is where the work ENCHANTMENT comes in.  How can you be ENCHANTED in your own life.  As the light returns, what do you YEARN for in your life?  How do you want to FEEL in the upcoming year? What are the core desires that you seek to fulfill in yourself?

I invite you to go inward and sit with these questions. Ponder what your heart is desiring and honor both where you are now, where you have been in the past year.  Be sure to include your successes, your completions, and all you have accomplished, as well as the direction you seek in your feeling body.  How do you want to feel?

The magic is always there to keep life full of ENCHANTMENT. The beauty and gratitude we focus on in our lives GROWS the more we focus on it.

May your darkest nights be full of MAGIC, SPARKLE, and WISDOM.  May the rebirth of the sun in your HEART guide you HOME.



Winter Myths Exposed

  How are you feeling??  As we make the official descent into the darkest nights for the next couple weeks, we are also wrought with holiday shopping, family in town, colder weather, and even what some consider the toughest time of year on the immune system.  

I thought it would be a good time to EXPOSE some winter MYTHS for you so you can enhance your darkest days with wisdom and wellness.    Do we REALLY need to worry about our WINTER WELL BEING?  Or our we designed perfectly to match up with the season and its energetics?

Here are some of the TOP winter wellness MYTHS to explore, and then move into the season with GUSTO feeling better than ever.



Myth #1:  Can you catch a cold by getting cold?

FALSE ~ A famous Chinese Medicine saying, "Dress for the season, not the day.", has always been my rule of thumb.  Traditional Chinese Medicine has been around for a long time and it definitely provides some brilliant wisdom.  

Being in the elements poses no problems directly to our health, in fact it is invigorating and energizing to be outside even during the winter.  The only concern is if we are exposed to cold and wind, especially in a few target areas, we are weakened to on coming pathogens.


The wind gate it is often used to talk about the entire back of the neck and upper back. Accord­ing to TCM, exter­nal pathogens enter the body through the wind gate. In other words, we are most sus­cep­ti­ble to envi­ron­men­tal forces such as wind when our necks are exposed to the elements.


Inva­sion by wind can lead to those all-too-familiar cold and flu symp­toms — chills, fever, body aches, runny nose, con­ges­tion, and cough. This vul­ner­a­bil­ity is increased if we also go out­side with damp hair or do other things to impair our immune sys­tem responses (poor diet, inad­e­quate rest, lack of exer­cise, drink too much alco­hol, etc…).

**Cover the back of your neck, find some cozy scarfs to accent your outfits and stay protected!


Myth #2:  How is your mood?  Are folks sinking into the deep dark depression of winter more than ever?

TRUE ~ It is true that people have a harder time with depression in the colder and darker days, but it doesn't have to be the case for you!  WIth just some simple tweeks  you can improve your mood during the winter months!  

The holiday blues or SAD (seasonal affective disorder)?  Does this sound like you?  Try some light therapy, a heavy does of vitamin D, and if it gets unbearable, amino acids such as tryptophan, tyrosine and glutamine to the rescue to boost up your brain chemistry.

Be sure you eat a protein rich diet to build your seratonin, and get enough rest to rebuild and regenerate your energy.  

Find some magic in the darker nights by lighting a fire, slow cooking your dinner, cozying up with your favorite book and tapping into your creative side with your favorite art project.


Myth #3:  Does grandma's chicken soup and homemade ginger tea really do the trick??

TRUE ~ The old wives tales usually have a good story behind them.  This is one of those.  Warm soups and liquids have a direct impact on your immune system by creating a bringing the white blood cells (aggregation) together to fight off infection and help you feel better faster.

These warm fluids can soothe a sore throat, nourish a cold or flu, and warm you up from the inside out!!

Need a recipe?  Click here for the best 24 hour ginger chicken soup this winter...


Myth #4:  Do you really need more sleep during the winter?

TRUE ~ Tired?  The bears like to hibernate at this time of year, and so should you!  You may still have to live out your daily obligations, but it is natural to curl up and snuggle up earlier than in the long summer days.  It is organic during winter to rest more and rejuvenate your life force so you are ready for a zestful spring and summer season.  

Weather or not you NEED more hours of sleep is questionable, but most of us enjoy earlier quiet winter nights and more down time to connect inward.


Myth #5:  Do we have to gain those extra few pounds in the winter?

TRUE ~ It is true that this is a common phenomenon.  We may not get outside as much, or move our bodies as often.  We tend to whole up at home more with food a plenty especially over the holidays.  Is that what you want for yourself?

TRUE.... but not necessary.  Following your hunger cues attentively, doing a New Years cleanse, and being sure to move your body regularly will prevent those winter pounds from creeping on.  

It takes a plan, some good routines, and personal commitment to health and radiance!  You CAN do it.




When the SUN stands still in the SKY - Happy Solstice

Ever since I was a little girl, the summer solstice has been my most favorite day of the year.  Somehow the concept of the most light + the longest day of the year always inspired me.  Living in Canada as a child I remember camping in the Canadian Rockies where it would stay light until after 11pm.  It felt magical.  Today I still honor these prominent celestial holidays. Shiva_Mystic-96-of-125

Along with the winter solstice, we have these two high holidays to mark what we came into the new year with back a few months ago, and how it is unfolding.  How are you continually manifesting the life you want, and where have we forgotten to focus or be diligent with (as all humans do)?  What seeds in your life were planted in the darkest nights of winter and are now growing into full bloom?

Awed by the great power of the sun, civilizations have for centuries celebrated the first day of summer otherwise known as the SUMMER SOLSTICE.  The Celts and Slavs celebrated the first day of summer with dancing and bonfires to help increase the sun's energy. The Chinese marked the day by honoring Li, the Chinese Goddess of Light.

SOL + STICE derives from a combination of Latin words meaning "sun" + "to stand still."  As the days lengthen, the sun rises higher and higher until it seems to stand still in the sky.  I ask you this beautiful solstice day, to STAND STILL and pause to ask yourself the following questions:

1.  How am I living my potential?

We all know life is very precious.  What would it be like to be honoring and celebrating your life each and every day by living your calling?  When we live in the manner of passion and purpose, we have more energy and feel connected to an inner force within us driving us to our potential.  The life force with in us is flowing freely.  We are ignited in our own lives.

2.  Do I feel connected to the earth?

The seasons and the rhythms of nature have a bigger force on our own personal health and inner rhythms than we may realize.  Sometimes, rather than thinking of ourselves as living close to nature, (which is a wonderful way to think), I think of myself as being PART OF nature.  We ARE nature, therefore we are part of it's web.  Living with this in mind, especially on a day like today, the SUMMER SOLSTICE, we can match our rhythms and synchronize ourselves with the expansion of summer.  This can also lend itself to more life force, and an organic quality to how we move through life.  In the summer we are more expansive, active and move with a different pulse than the darkness of winter.  Sync yourself back up this SOLSTICE Day.

3.  Am I respecting myself?

One of the most important ways we can honor our health and well being is through self love.  This means we eat with self love, we think of ourselves with self love and we move in our world with self love.  When this is happening it is a lot easier to give love and act in a loving way towards others.  It starts from the inside out.  When we slow down and listen to our thoughts many of us are surprised at how critical and hard on ourselves we can be.  As the SOLSTICE is the lightest day of the year, I invite you to use it as an opportunity to bring in more light to your life.  Move towards loving thoughts, nourishing your body with love and staying in the light as much as possible.  YOU DESERVE IT!

Having practiced yoga for many years, I still bow to the sun every time I set foot on my yoga mat.  Today I bow, to the light in each of you.