Move over Covid Retreats & Events coming through Things have changed, the world has changed and I sense from chatting with friends that we have all changed too, particularly when it comes to investing time in ourselves - one of the more positive outcomes of Covid for sure.No bold ‘new me new year’ statements or weird diets that end up discombobulating my innards this year, however, having good physical and mental health to enjoy life to the full as I age has always been important to me. Some things are out of our control as Covid has demonstrated to us in no uncertain terms, however, there are plenty of things that we can and should do to look after ourselves. Now then, I’m not claiming that I had the best start to the year by any means, in fact I’d say I kicked off in reverse. I’m putting this down to too much left-over comfort food (only one balsamic vinegar Christmas pudding left .. what was I thinking?), plus I started a 2021 Family Photo Book and reflecting on the photos and events that happened last January has been quite emotional … I won’t go into the details but reviewing everything made me properly think about the rubbish start we had as a family – alas, in the end we've had an incredible year and I’m glad we’ll have the photobook (thanks to Mixbook.com) to look back on as a reminder of everything (once I’ve finished it that is!).Having started in reverse, I've now gone to full throttle with LET’S JUST BLOODY DO THIS sticky noted to my helmet and have my nifty at 50 go faster (thermal) leggings on – I’ve got some really lovely new retreats and events to announce some of which are detailed below .. oh and just to be on the safe side, I’ve also ordered another shipment of gin and some industrial sized bags nuts just in case it all goes tonics up! Always need a plan ... even if it's not A, B or G.
Good stuff to share this month to boost our brains and our bodies:
1. Everyone’s talking about this little 5-word game called WORDLE – it’s officially gone err … LARGE? – very simple to play, one word a day (even I can manage that) and a bit of fun for your brain - https://www.powerlanguage.co.uk/wordle/
2. Covid and vaccinations have been at the forefront of everyone’s mind during the pandemic, quite right too, however, is it time to think about our general health? What NHS screenings have we missed? Dentist check-ups? Do you know what your blood pressure is? A lady called Dr. Alka Patel connected with me recently on LinkedIn – her TED talk is worth a listen, she talks about health being a verb, not a noun. “If you don’t have time for your health today, you won’t have health for your time tomorrow”. Watch her talk here: https://youtu.be/JpFLNk3_Qik 3. To help power yourself and your family up with some deliciously balanced and easy weeknight supper ideas check out Anna Chwistek (@anna_s_table) “food nerd and ramen junkie” – her recipes are perfect for this time of year and suitable for all the family - easy and balanced did you say? I’m in! - https://www.servingdumplings.com 4. I’d also like to give a shout out to Asa Simmons and Lisa Dunn who are running their 6th online '5 Day Detox Retreat' – this one is all about boosting our immune systems and the secrets to a long and healthy life – it’s a lovely mix of yoga; breathwork; cooking demos; nutrition advice and so much more. To get the most out of it though, you really do need to make time for it in your diary - maybe I'll see you there? https://www.lisadunnyoga.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/ASA-LISADetox-MArch22.pdf
What's been happening at Gin & Yin HQ?
Despite the slow start, I did have a lovely one night stay at the Birch Community just outside London near Waltham Abbey - it was beautiful visiting in the winter with the open fires and cosy rooms, but I can imagine it being even more amazing in the summer too - a fab photo though I hope you agree. This trip was part pleasure (as I took my pal Fran), part research (I'd love to do a retreat there) and part business, I met a fab lady called Lisa James, Founder of the Wentworth Collective in the super creative 'Hub' space - she runs some seriously exceptional corporate events, so if you're in the working world, check her out @thewentworthcollective I've also had some other interesting chats this month with retreat property owners in France and Italy and new potential collaborators too, do you remember me talking about that Small Biz Retreat? Watch this space.
What's Coming Up?
Made with Love & GinHearts & Crafts Workshop Weds 9th Feb 20227pm - 90 mins online - - -
Would you like to create the cutest handmade valentines cards to either send, keep or pop into a frame? Fancy having fun experimenting with different paint styles and paper folding techniques while enjoying a valentines gin (or alternative) with sweet and savoury treats?Yes, Yes, YesBook by this Friday 28th Jan and you'll benefit from the 'Early Bird Offer' of £30 or 2 boxes for £60. You'll get all the gin and goodies, the materials and the live online tuition thanks to China Jordan, Founder of Artistand - you'll just need to a nice big glass of ice and an open heart for fun and creativity oh and your goodie box of course.Love It - I'm In!
Candle Making & Gin Tasting Workshop Fri 18th March - 7pm to 9pm - - -
I'm excited to be collaborating with Nicky the founder of Willow and Finn on this immersive workshop. I really appreciate a good quality candle and Nicky's are the best, but what makes them so good? ... and what makes a really exceptional G&T? We promise to do our best to answer these questions on this sensory journey.This workshop takes place at Nicky's lovely studio in Shepperton by the River Thames - you will enjoy a local gin tasting, plus a full sized G&T of your choice (non-alcoholic drinks also available), plus you'll make a high quality candle to either gift or keep. Only 8 Spaces Available (Psst - it's Mother's Day the following week, just saying)
Retreats - Temporary Portals to other Worlds
I truly believe everyone should try at least one retreat in their lifetime. They are unique immersive experiences that really can transport you both physically and mentally to places and spaces where you properly recharge yourself. Even if it's not a Gin & Yin retreat, there are so many wonderful options out there these days - make this your year for trying something new and investing in your wellbeing."
Ruth's amazing retreats have taught me the importance of taking time out of my hectic life to just 'be', to breathe, learn, listen, laugh and not feel guilty about it! A few days in this nurturing environment calms, inspires and revitalises me, giving me a vital boost to be the best Me for my family, friends and professional life. Her retreats are not so much a treat as an investment." Nicola Taylor
Restorative Mountain Retreat - 9th - 12th June - Shanti-Som, Marbella
In My Element Retreat - 25th - 28th September, Portugal
(Itinerary to be announced next week)
Sanctuary for the Soul Retreat - Sri Lanka - January 2023
The Italian Retreat - Casale San Pietro, Anagni, Italy - 15th - 18th June 2023
Take care, have fun and remember a gin in the hand is worth more than a gin in the bush.
PS. My gin of the month is 'Bone Idyll' - Check it out - Very exciting things are afoot with these guys - a new distillery, gin school and bar in the making in Kingston Upon Thames - always inspiring.