Monday, May 12, 2014

Ozark Mountain Yoga Retreat

This past weekend, my sister and I traveled to the Ozarks to Circle Yoga Shala.  It's a beautiful teacher training facility nestled between Jasper and Ponca, and this year they hosted their first ever Ozark Mountain Yoga Festival.  For three days, yogis from all over came to the Shala to take workshops, enjoy the beautiful scenery and relax.  It was amazing.

Casey and I were lucky enough to stay in her boyfriend's family's cabin in Ponca.  It's a beautiful place that I've been to a few times, but it was nice to get away and spend some time with my sister.  We relaxed, cooked yummy food and talked into the night.  It was a quick drive from the shala and a perfect place to recharge.

The neighbor dog wanted to come hang out, too.  He was really cute and got a lot of cuddles!

Circle Yoga Shala proved to be a beautiful backdrop for the weekend of yoga.  Casey and I learned how to strengthen our center back, open our hearts, have some fun and reconnect.  We took classes in the open air pavilion and the barn, which were both really pretty settings.  There were always two classes going on, so the options were great.  We practiced from 9 am Saturday to around 4 pm, and again Sunday morning.  There were more offered, but that was perfect for us.  I'm hoping to go back and take more classes throughout the weekend.

It was definitely a time for bonding and focusing.  I spent a lot of time thinking about how I want to move forward in my relationship with myself.  I have a renewed sense of health and happiness, which is what I needed most of all.

Saturday afternoon, before heading back to Ponca, we stopped along the Buffalo River.  Arkansas truly is beautiful, and this little spot was breath taking.

Of course, no post could be complete without the food run down!  I wanted us to have a healthy, happy weekend with a few treats.

Yoga Retreat Menu

arrival snack:  pita chips and hummus
dinner:  tacos (recipe coming)

breakfast: home made protein bars Casey brought, yerba mate tea
lunch: to-go vegan tins, chocolate bar, rice crackers, smoothie from the Shala
afternoon snack: baked tofu, hummus and veggies
dinner: protein packed salad (recipe to come)

breakfast: leftovers, more yerba mate
morning snack: smoothie from the shala
lunch: on the road

It was a lovely time, and I truly can't wait to go back.  The entire weekend helped to reset my system and focused my mind on my health.  I'm feeling stronger than I ever have in my life, and I know while my weight loss has slowed to a trickle, that doesn't define who I am.  I look forward to sharing with you more healthy recipes and happy living.

If you want to see more pictures from the weekend, you can see the full photo dump here.  Take some time to do something for yourself today, and smile! :)


  1. Yoga is having so many benefits and it keep you younger and energetic,it keeps your skin glowing and many other advantages,thanks for sharing

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