March 2017

Welcome March!

 

We can already enjoy the early signs of spring with flowers popping up in the garden and longer hours of daylight.

Two significant events are coming up on the March calendar. The Spring Equinox will happen on Monday, March 20th at 6:29 a.m. here in London. We return to Daylight Savings Time on Sunday March 12th, so remember to Spring Ahead!

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Update on Classes

We start our new session on Monday, March 6th for 8 weeks until April 27th.

There will be a class on Easter Monday, April 17th.

Class times remain the same as those in the winter session.

Please note that all of our classes are full. Unfortunately, we are no longer able to accommodate any drop ins or offer make ups for missed classes.

If you would like to be put on a waiting list for the next session, beginning in May, please contact Valerie or Catherine.

 

Valerie Hobson:

Valerie’s Class Schedule:

Tuesday       9:30 – 10:45      gentle yoga and meditation   
Wednesday  9:30 – 10:45      mixed level

 
Fees
$90.00 to register for 8 week session
Cash or cheque only payable to Valerie Hobson

To register: contact Valerie at (519) 702-0534 or ahimsa1st@rogers.com

Catherine Heighway:

Catherine’s Class Schedule:
Monday     11:00 – 12:15   mixed level 
Thursday   10:30 – 11:45   mixed level  

Fees:
$90.00 to register for 8 week session
Cash or cheque only payable to Catherine Heighway

To register: contact Catherine at (519) 871-0661 or catherineheighway@hotmail.com

To see our schedule, please click here
 

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Restorative Yoga
 
Valerie’s Sunday afternoon Restorative Yoga Classes for this session will conclude on March 19th. The class is full.  The Restorative Classes will resume again in the fall.
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Springtime in Paris – Yoga Retreat for Women
May 26 – 28th 2017
Five Oaks Retreat Centre – Paris, Ontario

 

 

   
Price: $395.00 Early Bird Rate. Payment in full must be received by April 14th. After April 15th, rate will be $425.00. Space is limited to please register early.
 
Included: Single room with shared bath, full yoga and meditation program for all levels throughout the weekend, all meals (vegetarian – some dietary requests can be accommodated), access to walking trails at Five Oaks and use of the outdoor labyrinth.
 
To register: Please confirm your attendance with Catherine at spandaretreats@hotmail.com.  Please include your phone number. We will have a health form for you to fill out at the start of the retreat.
 
To pay: Contact Valerie at ahimsa1st@rogers.com  to arrange an e-transfer or mail a cheque payable to Valerie Hobson, 53 Orchard Street, London, N6J 2R4. Our regular students may also bring a cheque to class. Receipt of your payment will confirm your registration for the retreat.
 
Cancellation Policy: Prior to April 14th, we can give a full refund. After April 14th, there will be a cancellation fee of $185.00 to cover our expense for the accommodation at Five Oaks.
 
Please contact us if you have any further questions. We hope that you can join us in May!

 
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March Practices

 

As we move into March and toward Vernal Equinox, we can think of Spring as Nature’s New Year. It is such a perfect time to “De-clutter” our bodies from the detritus of Winter. It’s a good time to consider a spring cleanse, in consultation with your health care practitioner. 

In the spring, organs in need of support are the liver and gallbladder. Twists are especially helpful in hatha practice to stimulate and cleanse the internal organs and bring a sense of refreshment to the body.
 

Good Essential Oils to incorporate in springtime to help enhance detoxification include: Cinnamon, Clary Sage, Frankincense, Geranium, Grapefruit, Lavender, Lemon, Rosemary, Ylang Ylang. These can be can be diffused aromatically or applied diluted in carrier oil on skin after bathing. Note: the exception is Cinnamon which is to be diffused only.

The following recipe for Kichadi (Kicheree) will stimulate the liver and gallbladder and support the body’s natural spring cleaning. 

“Kichadis are at the core of Ayurvedic nutritional healing.  They are a relatively simple stew of basmati rice and split mung dal, which are suitable for all doshas (constitutions).” from – The Ayurvedic Cookbook – by Amadea Morningstar with Urmila Desai

Spring Kichadi Recipe

1Tbsp. sunflower oil or ghee
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp black mustard seeds
1/2 tsp whole coriander seeds
1 tsp turmeric
1/3 cup dry split mung dal (yellow dal)
1 cup dry pearl barley
6 inch burdock root, peeled and chopped 
1 parsnip chopped
1 Tbsp dried dandelion root chopped (available in herb sections of stores)
1 tsp fresh grated ginger root
1/2 stick kombu
1/2 lb. fresh broccoli OR 1 bunch fresh dark leafy greens (dandelion greens are especially good)
3/4 tsp sea salt
1 Tbsp coriander powder

Warm oil/ghee in 4 quart saucepan.  Add cumin, mustard and coriander seeds.  Saute until mustard seeds pop.  Add turmeric, and split mung beans and saute for 30 seconds.  Add 6 cups water and barley, then burdock, dandelion, ginger and kombu. Bring to a boil, then cook covered over medium heat for 50 minutes or until barley is tender.  Add additional water (about 4 cups) to keep the kichadi moist, stirring occasionally  to prevent sticking on the bottom.  Wash and chop the broccoli/greens. Fifteen minutes from serving, add the vegetables, salt and coriander powder.  Stir, cover again and cook another 10/15 minutes.  

Enjoy this simple stew for a day or a few days to give your digestive system a rest and cleanse. 

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“A light exists in Spring
Not present in the year
at any other period
When March is scarcely here.”
–  Emily Dickinson 
 

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We look forward to welcoming you at Yoga East!
 
Namaste
Catherine and Valerie

February 2017

Happy February!
 

On February 1st, we are halfway between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox. The Celtic calendar celebrates this day as Imbolc (i-MOLK) or “Ewe’s Milk” acknowledging the traditional lambing season. It is a time to celebrate some of the first signs of spring as the days gradually lengthen and the earth begins to slowly warm.  Underneath the snow, seeds are responding to the increased minutes of daylight by beginning to stir!

In this part of the world, we have Groundhog Day, on February 2nd when we wait for the Wiarton Willie to predict how much winter is left. Whether he sees his shadow or not, there are still 6 weeks left until the Spring Equinox!
 

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Update on Classes

We are half way through our Winter Session at Yoga East which runs until March 2nd.

There is no class on Monday February 20th for the Family Day Holiday.

Class times remain the same as those in the fall session.

Please note that all of our classes are full. Unfortunately, we are no longer able to accommodate any drop ins or offer make ups for missed classes.

If you would like to be put on a waiting list for the next session, beginning March 6th, please contact Valerie or Catherine.

 

Valerie Hobson:

Valerie’s Class Schedule:

Tuesday       9:30 – 10:45      gentle yoga and meditation   
Wednesday  9:30 – 10:45      mixed level

 
Fees
$90.00 to register for 8 week session
Cash or cheque only payable to Valerie Hobson

To register: contact Valerie at (519) 702-0534 or ahimsa1st@rogers.com

Catherine Heighway:

Catherine’s Class Schedule:
Monday     11:00 – 12:15   mixed level 
Thursday   10:30 – 11:45   mixed level  

Fees:
$90.00 to register for 8 week session
Cash or cheque only payable to Catherine Heighway

To register: contact Catherine at (519) 871-0661 or catherineheighway@hotmail.com

To see our schedule, please click here
 

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Restorative Yoga

Valerie’s Sunday afternoon Restorative Yoga Classes continue through this session. There is currently one space available so please contact Valerie to register: (519) 702-0534 or ahimsa1st@rogers.com

Dates:  February 19th and March 19th.  

Time:   1:15 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Fee:     $15.00 per class or $30.00 for both classes

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Springtime in Paris Retreat
May 26 – 28th 2017
Five Oaks Retreat Centre – Paris, Ontario

Please note that due to a scheduling conflict, we have had to change the date for our retreat. As we are ahead of the Summer Solstice, we are returning to our original theme of “Springtime in Paris.” Once details are finalised later this month, we will be able to take your registration and payment. If you are interested or would like more information, please contact us to let us know and we will add you to our list. 

 
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February Practices 

To feel in greater harmony with nature, we bring more fire (Pitta) to the practice to balance out the earth and water (Kapha) energies of this time of the year. This helps relieve any congestion and sluggishness that we may be experiencing. On the mat, we can continue to create opening and heat in the body through more dynamic standing poses, posture flows, back bends, side opening poses and twists. 

Warming cooked foods continue to be recommended, with spices like ginger, turmeric and cumin. Remember to stay hydrated and support your skin with a warm sesame oil massage before or after a shower.

Essential Oils to use in February to strengthen immune system and help fight colds/flu viruses that have lingered through this winter are Lemon, Tea Tree, Oregano and Rosemary.  The essential oils can be diffused into the air, or diluted in a carrier oil and applied topically over chest, back, sinuses and soles of the feet.  Add 1-2 drops in favourite carrier oil to apply topically.
 

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Easy Winter Brew

To one cup of hot water, add:
 
2 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 Tsp Honey (or sweeten to personal liking)
1/2 Tsp grated fresh ginger.

To warm, cleanse and nourish the body on these cold days!

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The February sunshine steeps your boughs and tints the buds and swells the leaves within
William C. Bryant

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We look forward to welcoming you at Yoga East!
 
Namaste
Catherine and Valerie

January 2017

 And now let us welcome the New Year, full of things that have never been – Rilke

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Update on Classes

Our Winter Session at Yoga East will start on Monday, January 9th and runs until March 2nd (8 weeks).

There is no class on Monday February 20th for the Family Day Holiday.

Class times remain the same as those in the fall session.

Please note that all of our classes are full. Unfortunately, we are no longer able to accommodate any drop ins.

If you would like to be put on a waiting list for the next session, beginning March 6th, please contact Valerie or Catherine.

 

Valerie Hobson:

Valerie’s Class Schedule:

Tuesday       9:30 – 10:45      gentle yoga and meditation   
Wednesday  9:30 – 10:45      mixed level

 
Fees
$90.00 to register for 8 week session
Cash or cheque only payable to Valerie Hobson

To register: contact Valerie at (519) 702-0534 or ahimsa1st@rogers.com

Catherine Heighway:

Catherine’s Class Schedule:
Monday     11:00 – 12:15   mixed level 
Thursday   10:30 – 11:45   mixed level  

Fees:
$90.00 to register for 8 week session
Cash or cheque only payable to Catherine Heighway

To register: contact Catherine at (519) 871-0661 or catherineheighway@hotmail.com

To see our schedule, please click here
 

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Restorative Yoga

Valerie’s Sunday afternoon Restorative Yoga Classes will be begin again in January.

Please note that these classes are full and cannot accommodate any drop ins.

Dates:  Sunday January 15th, February 19th and March 19th.  

Time:   1:15 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Fee:     $15.00 per class or $45.00 for all three classes

If you would like to go on a waiting list for the next session, please contact Valerie at (519) 702-0534 or ahimsa1st@rogers.com  
 

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Winter Solstice Candlelight Meditation – December 19th, 2016

We raised just over $400.00 for Wellspring Cancer Support Centre! Thank you for your generosity!

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Winter Yoga Practice

As we are experiencing very cold weather now, our practices can help to keep us warm and uplifted. Sun salutations or other posture flows after a gentle warm up for the joints are recommended. Our lungs and immune systems are particularly challenged through this time, so continuing with back bends and chest opening postures is helpful. Working with a strong foundation in standing and seated postures will help to keep us grounded and stable in this contracted season. Increasing the length of the inhalation and Surya Bhedana (Sun Piercing) or right nostril breathing are energising pranayamas that brings focus and clarity.

A good way to replenish energy throughout the winter is to eat cooked, spicy foods. It is the perfect time of year to make soups, slow-simmered stews, beans, roasted root vegetables, and warm drinks. Spices such as garlic, ginger, black pepper, cloves, and basil add a warming effect. Avoid raw vegetables such as salad greens and cold drinks.

A gentle self-massage with warm sesame oil will help to fight the drying winter weather. The oil helps to pull out toxins from the skin and also leaves a protective layer between your skin and the harsh winter environment.

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The following recipe is excellent for fighting winter colds, flus and bronchitis. Ajwain and ginger help to decongest the lungs, while onion and garlic warm and stimulate the immune system and circulation. Sweet potato is rich in vitamin A, which soothes the lung and bronchial membranes and supports the immune system. This Kichadi decreases Vata (air) and Kapha (water) while increasing Pitta (fire). It is relatively hot and spicy, so adjust according to your taste. Check out Indo-Asian grocery stores or the Indo-Asian section of your grocery store for the less familiar flavourings. Or make the recipe without them and you will still have a tasty and warming dish.

Winter Kichadi – serves 2 – 3

1/2 cup basmati rice
1/4 cup split mung beans
6 cups water
2 tablespoons ghee or other oil
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/8 teaspoon hing*
1/2 teaspoon ajwain**
1 stick of kombu***
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/4 teaspoon cardamom seeds (about 1 pod)
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/4 teaspoon powdered ginger
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon turmeric
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 small onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 medium sweet potatoes
2 – 4 cups fresh vegetables: carrots, greens, beans, zucchini or your preference
2 more cups of water, as needed

Wash the rice and split mung until the rinse water is clear. Warm a tablespoon of ghee in a medium saucepan and add the whole cumin seeds, hing and ajwain. Lightly brown them. Add the rice, mung, sweet potato, kombu and water and bring to a boil. Cook for about 45 minutes.

Warm a tablespoon of ghee in a small skillet. Add the coriander, cardamom, peppercorns and ginger. Saute for 2 – 3 minutes. Then stir in the rest of the spices, onion and garlic. Put the sauteed spices in the blender and a little water (about 1/2 cup) and grind well. Pour this spice mixture into the rice and mung. Rinse out the blender with the last 2 cups of water and add it to the kichadi as well. Add the remaining vegetables. Cook for 20 minutes until vegetable are done.

*Hing – also known as Asafoetida is a spice used as a digestive aid, in food and in pickling. Very pungent!

**Ajwain – these small fruits resemble caraway and cumin, with a bitter and pungent taste, a flavor similar to anise and oregano and a scent similar to thyme

***Kombu – edible kelp, widely eaten in East Asia

from: The Ayurveda Cookbook by Amadea Morningstar and Urmila Desai (1990)

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Summer Solstice Retreat
June 9 – 11th 2017
Five Oaks Retreat Centre – Paris, Ontario

We have recently learned that Five Oaks Retreat Centre in Paris, Ontario did not close and is still accepting bookings through 2017. After meeting with the new Executive Director this past week, we are confident that the standards we have come to expect will be maintained. We have booked for our annual Summer Solstice Retreat on the weekend of June 9 – 11th, which is just ahead of the Solstice and will give us a wonderful opportunity to welcome the most expansive and joyful time of the year. 

There have been some changes in the organisation and we will be once more be looking after the registrations and payments for the retreat. Details will be posted on the website shortly so stay tuned. 

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We look forward to welcoming you at Yoga East!
 
Namaste
Catherine and Valerie