The Season of Spring:

A Time for Rejuvenation, Joy, Grounding & Balance

Spring is upon us! The vegetation is showing apparent signs of re-awakening. The red buds are splashing the color of the heart throughout the muted colors associated with the remnants of winter. Hues of every color abound. When I slow down and immerse myself into the sensual experience of a walk-in nature, I see the smallest detail. I feel the energy rising up around me and through me. I feel alive! Scents from the earth permeate the air. The animals that share this world with us are increasingly becoming active. The songs of birds have shifted to vocal songs of advertisements signaling availability to begin families. The calls of the Spring Peepers rebounds with a primordial beaconing. The rising temperatures of our environment are enticing us to experience and enjoy this beauty emerging around us.

 

As a result of these times, I am gifted with an opportunity to experience this movement of energy in ways I would have never imagined! The first thing I have noticed is that I am no longer caught up in a flurry of activity and rapid pace of life. I am experiencing a different reality as the pace of life around me has slowed and sometimes screeched to a halt. My rhythm is resonating with this new community tempo. This altered experience of time has opened a portal to intense gratitude and appreciation for what I once thought were the small things in life. I am open to and willing to embrace all aspects of life and self with intense love in my heart. With the profound awareness that yes, all things are impermanent and subject to change. My quest is, to stay in the moment fully to experience life.

 

Ruth and I voluntarily temporally closed our Blackstone Massage Studio for the health and well-being of ourselves and our clients. The tenacity of the Coronus virus in our community and world has presented the opportunity to shift my perspective to Gratitude, Mindful living, and a greater sensitivity towards self, people, places and things I took for granted. This change in perspective is only possible through the awareness of how I can invest my energy into the things I can control and make choices that can strengthen my immune system and fortify the strength of my mind, body and Spirit. The greater question that is surfacing is, how am I choosing to live?  How will I choose to live after all is healed in our communities?  What no longer serves my Highest Good?  What does, and am I willing to allow these people, places and things in?

Am I willing to leave room, time and space within my full life to “smell the roses”, to seek the matters motivated by the heart? To truly BE, instead of continually Doing!

 

Through the practices of Yoga, massage and Ayurveda (the study of life in relation to the elements of nature), I have come to experience greater balance in an ever-changing situation and crisis. I am grateful to my teachers of massage and yoga who have passed down this knowledge to me to use and share. I greatly appreciate this gift of time to further dedicate my efforts to embrace the very things that feed, nourish, protect me and enable me to grow, and flourish in a steady state regardless of the changes happening around me.  By remaining grounded and connected, I am not only able to help myself, but also to reach out to my family and community in helpful and resourceful ways.

 

May you benefit in every way from these humble ramblings and suggestions. May you experience health, balance, strength, revelations and the experience of mindful living.

Blessings, Love, Namaste (I see and honor the light in you and in myself), Debbie

The Season on Autumn: A time of letting go, change, and a time of returning to self.

 Outside

Walk and listen to the sound of the footsteps

Walking on the grass

Walking on fallen leaves

The sound of footsteps on gravel…

On pavement…

Breathe while listening…

Without any sense of hurry…

Listen to the sound of the breath and the footsteps

Yoga through the seasons   by Sandra Sabatini & Silvia Mori

 

 

 

Activity for the Spirit

Take a walk in a favorite natural place and experience the placement of each foot on the earth as you slowly walk in nature aware of your breath, your supportive skeleton and the sensations of your body in this movement. Your exhalation expresses the practice of letting go so you may receive again. Touch in with the sensations you experience and the emotions that present. Allow them to flow through and out of you.

At the end of your walk, breathe in, raise your arms up overhead and feel the Gratitude for all you have received in this experience and in your life. End with eyes closed, one hand on your heart and the other on your stomach returning to the constant rhythm of the breath. Feel and Relax!

 

 

Autumn brings a sadness for me as I let go of the beautiful bounty of the harvest and growing season, as I become aware of the fading heat and availability of sunlight. I let go of visiting friends and extensive travel. I feel the pull and invitation of my energy to begin the journey inward.

This autumn holds even more of these elements as I and my family prepare for our migration Southward to Virginia, our new home. How I will miss the familiar! Our home, our community, our friends, family and practice. The comfortable, predictable familiar!

As we sort through our material possessions we have carried with us so long, and pass them onto loved ones, it is bitter sweet. I am so very aware of the joy and sorrow as I let go to let in. As My life, as I know it, begins to die, I parallel the natural world. Holding the hope of rebirth in the new beginnings of Spring! It is only through this process that I can experience rebirth. I am willing and open to this experience. May I learn the Graceful ways as nature teaches me.

May the following Mind, Body and Spirit suggestions, ease you into your rebirth as you experience the transformative qualities of this season of letting go.

Love and Blessings to all,

Namaste, Debbie

Autumn Thoughts

Tadasana (Mountain Pose) and upper and lower body warm-ups help me and my students to stay grounded and flexibility during this time of year. Please visit my YouTube videos at IWDS for instruction and guidance. Enjoy

Ideal Autumn Foods

Seasonal foods are best for our nourishment. Foods that will be of substance for the energy level of the body throughout the winter. Foods that are warming, grounding, and moist will offer balancing qualities in a dry time of year. Bitter and astringent foods such as cranberries, pumpkins, dark leafy greens, root vegetables. These foods will also help to release accumulated summer heat. Adding building foods like Coconut oil, oats, figs, and sesame seeds are ideal.

A Balancing Fall Spice Mix

1 tbsp. coriander seeds

1 tbsp. sesame seeds

 2 tsp. fennel seeds

1 tbsp. turmeric powder

2 tsp. ginger powder

In an iron skillet or heavy bottomed skillet, dry roast the cumin, fennel and coriander seeds using medium-low heat until you can detect their aroma in the air. Place seed to cool in a wide mouth bowl to cool completely.

Grind them to a uniform consistency using a grinder or mortar and pestle. Pour back the grind-ed seeds into the wide-mouth bowl and add the turmeric and ginger. Mix thoroughly. Pour the mixture into an airtight storage container or spice shaker.

Add to foods and feel and enjoy the warming and nourishing qualities!

The Everyday Ayurveda Cookbook by Kate O’Donnell

The Science of Life

The snowflakes twinkle with a soft glow as I tilt my head up towards the sky to feel them as they land gently on my skin. I feel the wetness created as they are heated and change states. The silence and stillness around me help me to focus on the moment, this time of transformation and stark beauty.

For me winter holds a melancholy feeling. I begin remembering the loss of people, places and things.  I long for the familiar, the ease of certainty.  Why do things have to change?

How can I embrace change as the snowflake? How can I remember the balance of letting go and letting in? When I am willing to let go of the past, a newness floods in. I am recreated! New loved ones, experiences, and circumstances allow me to grow in different directions and stretch beyond what I ever thought possible.

When I remember this principle, I appreciate the tempering this season offers in all ways. Great opportunities to come in the Spring of a new time.

Namaste (I honor the light and Divinity within us), Debbie

Debbie Vigneri, Devoted body worker, student of Ayurveda, Student and Instructor of Yoga and Health Coach

May you have great ease as you let go, may you grow and flourish beyond your wildest dreams. May the information and suggestions offered here benefit you in every way.


Seasonal Foods as Medicine

The environment provides nourishment, health and sustainability. What types of seasonal foods are available that provides health, well-being and energy?

  • Starchy and root vegetables (potatoes and squash)
  • Wintry weather greens: sea vegetables, kale, collards, chard. Artichokes later in the winter
  • Warming Spices: Cinnamon, ginger, cumin, salt, black pepper, chilies, and vinegar in moderation, unrefined sweeteners such as maple syrup, raw honey and molasses
  • Warmed and spiced milk (cow’s or goat’s), and yogurt
  • Raw or roasted nuts and nut butters
  • Moisture filled grains, such as wheat, brown rice, and oats (cooked with extra water)
  • Fruits that are heavy, moist and have building qualities such as, oranges, bananas, dates, figs, papayas, mangoes, grapefruits, and lemons (in late winter)

Proteins, such as lentils, small beans, tofu, eggs, and most meats

Winter Spice Recipe:


(from: Kate O”Donnell: The Everyday Ayurveda Cookbook, pg. 269)

Providing the balancing tastes of salty, sweet and sour. These spices induce warmth and movement of prana (energy/circulation)

  • 1 tbsp. coriander seeds
  • 1 tbsp., turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp. cumin seeds
  • ½ tsp. pink salt
  • To taste cinnamon powder (1/2-1 tsp.) or i/2 tsp. sugarcane
  • 1 tsp. ginger powder
  • 1 tsp. black pepper (optional)

In a cast iron or heavy bottom skillet, dry roast coriander and cumin seeds (only for 2 mins. or less until their scent is in the air). Set aside to cool. When thoroughly cooled combine with other ingredients and grind (with hand grinder or mortar and pestle). Store in a recycled glass spice shaker or glass container with a tightly fitting lid to preserve freshness.


  • Dress Warmly protecting ears and neck from the sharpness of the cold, wind and cold temperatures
  • Swab the nostrils and ears (outer) with sesame oil
  • Use a humidifier in sleeping space at night
  • Sit in a steam room or in a hot bath
  • Moderate motion such as, yoga, dancing or walking

Winter Lifestyle

Self-massage with warming sesame oi in the morning and if needed at night. Heat your oil and mix a favorite essential oil to further enhance relaxation of the nervous system (para-sympathetic branch of the central nervous system). Start at your feet and work your way up toward the head. Arms and legs receive long strokes, circular motion at joints, abdomen and scalp. After at least 20 mins. take a hot shower to facilitate passage of the oil applied, into the pores of the skin for deep penetration. Avoid using soap and blot dry the skin.


Breath Work

Practice sitting quietly after some Mindful Motion Yoga, and sense the breath. By growing the length of your exhalation, your body will now sense a calmness and enter into the para-sympathetic nervous system (the energy or prana can be directed to resting and digesting). Follow our video for the technique specifics.

Mindful Motion Yoga

Due to the elements (air and ether) that make-up this season, grounding and connecting to the earth for a sense of stability is essential to establishing balance. With each posture, practice deep, complete breathing.

View our videos on YouTube  for the following suggested daily postures (asanas):

“Every body can do yoga!”

Debbie

Debbie Vigneri

Yoga Instructor

 

 

 

  • Goat Pose (grounding and direction of energy downward for stability, strengthens the legs and adds to lower body circulation of energy/prana)
  • Yoga Mudra (alleviates constipation, lifts the mood, eases sciatica, low back discomfort and headache tension)
  • Bridge Pose (relieves back pain)

 

 

Hello Everyone!


We want to invite you to come to see our new office in Blackstone, VA.  We are having a ribbon cutting at noon on October 26th and will have the doors open for an open house from noon to 4pm that day.  We would love to see you there.  It is a great time to for us to meet your friends and loved ones who are open to or curious about massage – or about us! 

If you haven’t seen our latest video, it is on our home page!  Our love and thanks go out to all of you who have added your support and prayers to our journey.  Life does not look like we had planned, but we seem to be a part of a plan bigger than us… 

Gratefully and humbly,

Ruth & Debbie

The fruiting energy of summer!


Of the ten thousand trees

Along the banks of the river

The apricots have just come into flower

In the wind of a night

Wang Wei

Summer is the season of bright light, heat, activity and abundance. Nature invites us to come and play in the garden of life! Long, hot days and the abundance of fruit entice us to feel the support of our world and the call to thrive and bask in health and well-being. Numerous health studies indicate that this vital connection to nature is beneficial to us physically emotionally and mentally.

Balancing Summer Foods

  • *zucchini, broccoli, leafy vegetables, celery, green beans, and fennel root) are all bitter and astringent
  • *Lighter dairy products that are sweet (milk, and ghee – clarified butter)
  • *Quinoa, basmati rice and barley, grains that are light and neutral (in acidity)
  • *Grapes, pomegranates, melons, limes and fruits that are sweet, cooling and neutral
  • *Coconut products (water, milk, meat, sugar)
  • *Mung beans, tofu, and lean white meats and fish)
  • *Cooling spices and herbs, such as fennel seed, coriander, cilantro, cardamom, mint, and turmeric and aloe juice

 

Cooling, calming, and slightly dry

Farmville, VA
May you feel and absorb the energy of this season in every way that feeds and nourishes you! May you thrive and flourish!

 Shanti Shanti Peace and Blessings, Debbie

The Season of Heat

To keep cool (especially if you tend to run hot) consider trying the following:

  • *Avoid the heat of the day (12-3pm)
  • *Wear light colors to reflect the light
  • *use a straw hat to keep the head cool, and the delicate tissues of the face and neck protected (apply sunscreen to protect the body)
  • *Expose the eyes and skin to the early morning light
  • *Choose cooling physical activity especially water play (swimming)
  • *Take walks under the light of the moon
  • *Avoid spicy hot foods
  • Sip coconut water or fruit water (cut up fruit into water), and Drink room temperature or cool water
  • *take short naps
  • *Take cool baths and showers
  • *eat light, cool, and watery foods
  • *massage the skin with coconut oil scented with cooling peppermint essential oil
  • *Avoid overextending or scheduling, increase play and down-time

Cardamom Limeade

A cooling refreshing drink that will calm irritable and overheated moods

3 cups of water

¼ cup lime juice (2-3 limes)

1/3 tsp. cardamom powder

1 tbsp. coconut sugar dissolved in 1 tbsp. hot water

Mix together all the ingredients in a small pitcher or 32 oz. glass.

Serve in 2 tall glasses that are chilled or place juice in the refrigerator to slightly chill.

Enjoy and savor the coolness!

Intentional Yoga Summer Moves

Breath of Cooling Green

Find a safe and quiet space in nature where you can take a small circular walk barefoot in the grass. As you breathe allow your feet to step feeling all the sensations in your feet and body. Imagine breathing the energy of the earth through your feet and up through the body and out of the crown of the head. As thoughts come to mind, acknowledge then and detach, allowing them to drift away as if they were fluffy clouds in the most beautiful summer sky. Come back to the sensations of the breath and the body. Enjoy this meditative and connecting walk for at least 5 minutes.