I’ve been anticipating it all winter, and after weeks and weeks of clear skies and uselessly cold days, it finally happened. We awoke to the clean, refreshing stillness that only a heavy snowfall can bring. We ventured out, hiking aimlessly through the woods together in tranquil silence, taking it all in. I saw my home in a new light, a new energy. The contrast of the red rocks peeking through the fresh powder reinforced a universal truth: mountains are better with snow.

Manitou Healing

I’ve been drawn to Manitou lately. Drawn to it’s earthy, solemn, calming vibrations. Manitou Springs is a beautiful little town right outside of Colorado Springs. It’s a ten minute drive from home, but we usually avoid it due to the overwhelming crowds. However, I’ve been recently feeling more and more connected with this magical place. With the tourist season dying down, I can finally feel the energy I’ve heard so much about. Soaking in the healing powers of the spring water, taking part in ceremonial crystal cleansing, discovering the expressive dance and yoga community, and exploring the mountains and trails long ago discovered by the Ute tribe. Luke, the imaginative archeologist that he is, helped me connect with this part of history on the Ute Pass, looking down from the top of the ridge to greet the new year. The spiritual connection I’ve felt since the crowds have dissipated make me wonder if the historical and sacred significance has been somewhat desecrated by tourism, the endless streams of traffic and commercialism, overpowering the subtle flow of the spring, the whispering voices of the past. There’s a spiritual piece to this quirky little town that seems to be disappearing, lost in the shuffle. There appears to be a specific attraction to the healing properties of the spring water, but how can we ask the earth to heal us and offer nothing in return? Respect for the natural earth is fading all around us. It’s time to reconnect with our planet, to appreciate and protect her, and to reverse this cycle that we’ve created.



I want to dedicate this post to my partner, Luke. Thank you for your endless inspiration.

Hello, Winter

The temperatures are steadily dropping out here in Colorado, and I’m loving every second of it. Snow, candles, and snuggling are on the top of my list this time of year. Last weekend, Norah, Molly and I welcomed winter early with a scenic snowy hike, followed by a mug of hot rosemary cider.

Yesterday was the solstice. The longest night of the year, the beginning of winter. Since I had a full day of clients, I’d been wondering how I was going to celebrate. As fate would have it, I happened to stumble upon a local yoga class honoring the winter solstice in Manitou Springs last night. Of course, I had to check it out. The sequence emphasized alignment, as well the balance between light and darkness as we begin to move toward the sun. The class ended with live music, expressive dancing and a crystal/water ceremony. It was an unusual, freeing, beautiful way to honor the solstice.

How did you celebrate?

Twenty Seven

I turned 27 this week. 26 was a busy year for me. Traveling, moving across the country, starting a new counseling job, and adopting not one, but two furbabies. Looking back on this past year, I’ve realized that I focused a lot of energy on my surroundings, but not quite enough on my mind, my body, my soul, even my community. As my Saturn Return approaches, I want to allow more time for introspection. I want to promote change, growth, and peace within myself, and also in my environment. I’m using this occasion to truly reflect on the past year, to identify areas for growth and to create tangible goals for myself. Here’s to upcoming resolutions, embracing constant change, living life authentically, and evolving into our best selves.

It’s that time of year again. Nights are longer, days are colder, and I’m dreaming of blankets, candles, and comfort food; however, I still want to feel healthy and be mindful about what I’m putting into my body. During the summer months, I love making Buddha Bowls, colorful vegan bowlfuls of fresh veggies, quinoa, and tofu, and I just started making comfort food versions. This one features root veggies and mashed cauliflower, as well as kale and rosemary which are still going strong in our winter garden!

You will need:

  • 3 cups Cauliflower, Chopped
  • 2 cups Fresh Kale
  • 2 cups Beets, Peeled and Diced
  • 2 cups Sweet Potatoes, Peeled and Diced
  • 3 tbsp Fresh Rosemary
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • Olive Oil, Salt, and Pepper (to taste)

Heat oven to 425º. Toss beets with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and half of the rosemary. Toss sweet potatoes with olive oil, cayenne, cinnamon. Arrange side by side on a baking sheet, leaving some room on one side, and place in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove from oven. Toss kale with olive oil and carefully place on baking sheet next to the root veggies. Place baking sheet in oven for additional 10 minutes.

Bring 5 quarts of water to a boil. Add cauliflower and remaining rosemary to boiling water and boil gently for 10 minutes. Drain. Add cauliflower, garlic, salt, and pepper to a food processor and blend until smooth. Add vegan butter or unsweetened nut milk for a creamier texture!

Arrange mashed cauliflower, sweet potatoes, beets, and kale in a large bowl, top with vegan gravy or cranberry sauce, and enjoy!

What’s your go-to vegan comfort food?

Royal Treatment

I felt like a queen this weekend. Why? Could’ve been the castle. 

After a winding drive through the mountains, a gap in the pines revealed Bishop Castle, a towering structure of metal and stone, dragon included, of course. I abandoned my fear of heights for the day and climbed the delicate spiral staircases, to the top of the world, it seemed. I became enchanted with this mysterious place. It was right out of a  fairytale. After a cold day of romping around the mountains, still in my fairytale-castle-mindset, all I wanted was a warm bubble bath… & while self-care is about so much more than “pampering”, I think it’s necessary to indulge every now and then. Everything in moderation, right?

How do you indulge?

Morning and Evening Routines

How do you start and end your day? It’s so easy to snooze a few more minutes, or go to bed staring at a screen. As a counselor, it’s important for me to be present and focused with my clients, and my night and morning routines have a huge impact on my mindset for the day ahead. Let’s try to be more purposeful in the mornings and evenings by starting and ending the day with mindfulness and self-care. Here’s what’s on the schedule:

Morning Routine

Make Your Bed

Brush and Floss

Drink Warm Lemon Water

Morning Yoga Sequence

Meditation & Intention Setting

Healthy Breakfast

Making the bed is the perfect way to start the day off with intention and purpose. It’s also important to stretch and nourish the mind, body, and soul in the morning to feel refreshed and rejuvenated all day long. I love starting my day with a short yoga sequence, walk, or bike ride. Warm lemon water and a good breakfast, such as chia seed pudding, oatmeal, or avocado toast can help maintain focus and energy throughout the morning.

Evening Routine

Shower & Salt Scrub


Drink Chamomile Tea

Lavender Oil in Diffuser

Bed Yoga


With colder weather on its way, my skin is in constant need of my tea tree lavender scrub. I’ll be using it everyyy night this winter. Journaling and reflecting on the day, warm chamomile tea, and the soothing smell of lavender can help keep the mind calm and quiet at night. As for the body, there are lots of easy, gentle yoga sequences that can be done right before (and in) bed. And rather than trying to relax with the glaring light from a phone, TV, or laptop, how about opting to fall asleep with a good book! The perfect way to end the day. Ahhhhh.

The light within me honors the light within you.


It’s inevitable. No matter how much we enjoy the snow, towards the end of the season, the winter blues are bound to set in. We start to long for warm sunshine and lush greenery, and the constant windchill and bare branches start to seem monotonous. This week, on a particularly cold and cloudy day, I decided to offset my winter blues with the blue hues of the Blue Ridge Mountains, as if to seek out my own pathetic fallacy. I grabbed our pup, Molly, and headed out toward Tennessee to a magical place called Roan Mountain. As luck would have it, the clouds slowly dissipated as we made our way up the winding mountain roads. One thing I’ve learned while living in the mountains is that gazing out at the endless ridges and visualizing how small we are compared to the earth  around us can really help shift our perspective, and, in some cases, even brighten our mood. Exploring the snowy forests and hiking the various balds of Roan Mountain was an amazing counterbalance for the winter blues. Molly seemed to be in good spirits as well, rolling around in the residual patches of snow and gazing out at the breathtaking views.


Of course, we are often stuck inside during these cold winter days, but even indoor comforts may offer an escape from the frigidity, like creating a cozy atmosphere inside to compliment the cold weather, or experimenting with different herbal tea concoctions to warm up during those particularly chilly mornings. Here is one recipe I’ve been loving lately:

  • Black tea leaves
  • Dried rose petals
  • Lavender
  • Cloves (optional)
  • Cinnamon bark (optional)

Simply blend ingredients, add one tsp to a loose leaf tea strainer, and steep in hot water for 5 minutes.


Waking up to a blanket of snow feels like a dream when you live in Asheville. We usually only get a handful of snow days every year, and last week, we woke up to one of those days. Within the same week, we were greeted by 70 degree weather. Mother natures offers lots of contrast, as does day to day life. Major changes can happen overnight, and we can either try to resist such contrast, or we can embrace it. The idea of contrast and change has been coming up a lot in recent meetings with my colleagues and supervisors. One of my fellow counselors always tells me: “roll with resistance”. When unexpected changes come up, roll with it rather than push against it. The capability to roll with resistance can depend greatly on our ability to give up perceived control over our environment. In many cases, the only true control we have is over our own reactions and responses, which can be used to create flexibility and balance when we are faced with difficult or unusual situations. Additionally, my supervisor recently advised me to let go of my expectations of certain situations, and challenged me to find ways to change my perspective and create my own ‘silver linings’, which is something I have been working on. Even when we are faced with darkness, we can bring our own light into it.
Truthfully, I was hoping that the snow would last longer. I definitely appeased my inner child: sledding, playing, and just taking in the scenery. When my toes were nearly frozen, I warmed up inside with hot tea and spent some time wrapping crystals. I was enjoying the quiet, vast energy of such a short-lived wonderland, only to see it melted away so quickly. It was then that I reminded myself of my ability to take control over my own reaction to the contrasting weather patterns. Rather than ruminate over the loss of the beautiful snow, I took advantage of the unexpected warm weather. I visited some of the same areas that were covered in snow just days before to capture the contrast (pictures below). In the end, I know that I feel happiest when I am living in the moment; when I let go of my expectations and constant planning, and embrace the contrast that life, and nature, offer to me.

& what a difference a day makes…

Winter Glow

A new year is upon us. The perfect time for a clean slate, a fresh start, or renewed resolutions. One of my resolutions is to continue to improve my self-care practices, including my skin care routine. As much as I love the winter, snow and all, my skin definitely does not. A lot of us suffer from dry, wintery skin this time of year, and for me, exfoliation is the answer. My homemade body scrubs, both sugar and salt based, helped me ring in the New Year with hydrated, glowing skin.

I mentioned this Yule Oil sugar scrub (above) in my last post. It smells incredible and is the perfect way to pamper rough skin during the winter season. Here is the recipe:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup olive or avocado oil
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 10 drops Yule Oil

Mix ingredients until well combined and use as an exfoliant in the bath or shower.

My lavender and tea tree oil salt scrub (above) is my go-to this time of year. It saves my skin so I can enjoy the winter weather, especially the occasional snow day (which we are anticipating this weekend!). Tea tree oil is great for dry skin and lots of other conditions. Here is the salt scrub recipe:

  • 1 cup sea salt
  • 1/4 cup olive or avocado oil
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 5 drops tea tree oil
  • 5 drops lavender oil

Mix ingredients until well combined and use as an exfoliant in the bath or shower.

Happy New Year, lovelies!