Autumn upon us

My son Freddi was born almost two years ago, and since then he has lived in at least five different homes.  A 550 square foot apartment in Brooklyn.  A hillside home on the jungly west coast of Costa Rica.  An art-filled, dog-filled, kid-filled Victorian in Vermont.  A family lake cottage in northern Indiana.  A creekside cabin in the Catskills.  Some for several months. Others for just a few weeks. Each required another letting go and a new letting in.  And all that happens in between.


This week we moved into yet another space, the apartment above the yoga studio.  It is a cavernous loft of leaf-filtered light, sloped floors, and cozy nooks.   Also of boxes half unpacked.  Clothes with no hangers or closets to put them in.  Some windows without curtains.  I am making lists and scattering them around.  Pinning them to the refrigerator and sticking them into my pockets.  They include things I need immediately.  Things I want to get done as soon as possible.  Things about which I dream. Shuffling around, I clutch my lists like they will save me from the chaos, I myself a half packed/unpacked thing.

Transition.  Limbo.  The old gone.  The new not yet embodied.  Summer ending.  Fall approaching.  School to start and new schedules to be slipped on like stiff fall jackets and  and all of it not quite yet.  For me, this is both exciting and anxiety producing.  The possibilities!!  And the chaos before they are realized. The potential!! And the uncertainty of how to make it all happen.   Isn’t there some easy way to just grit our teeth and jump in? Power through this period as quickly as possible?

My son, on the other hand, seems unfazed by all the changes, exploring them instead with curiosity and delight.  He peers inside a mysterious drawer.  Cool highlighter. What will it look like on the wood floors? He picks up the new toilet brush.  Hmmm, scratchy.  Why not dip it in the toilet and try it on his own body?  He checks out the inside of a cabinet.  He fits perfectly.  Why not close the door and see how long it takes mama to panic?

All silliness aside, I marvel at the how willingly he enters this transitional space without expecting it to be what he has always known. Rather he seeks to know it now just as it is.  To him, this period of transition is not actually something to pass through on the way to the next seemingly permanent, hopefully recognizable thing, but just another moment to encounter and live within.  Cool, indeed.  Also, no big deal.

This no- big- deal transition mind is what we'll ponder this month at Catskills Yoga House where many changes are slowly being realized.  The fall schedule begins on Monday, September 5 with the following:

  • Will Leblanc’s Monday night 2 hour offering of Yin Yoga. Appropriate for all levels, ages, bodies, and political dispositions (had to say it… it IS the season!) Yin is a deep practice in which students work hard by sitting still, becoming curious about the sensations that the body is communicating, and noticing the language of their minds. 
  • Christie's fantastic Tuesday night one hour Lalita Basics class.  She’ll guide you through a slow and deep practice, taking you into a journey that strengthens your core, engages your breath, and leaves you feeling centered and strong. 
  • My new Wednesday morning open level vinyasa hour for mid week morning movers. Expect an active class with plenty of modifications offered for those who want to move more slowly or take it into more challenging variations.
  • My Thursday night 90 minute Renew/Restore.  60 minutes of active vinyasa, followed by deeply relaxing and restorative asana.  Think of yourself as dipped in honey and then propped by blocks and spread sweetly over blankets and bolsters. 
  • My Friday morning vinyasa fundamentals class for you who fear the idea of flow or wonder how the heck to transition from one posture to another in a way that suits your body. Slow moving with some workshop elements, this is a great class for beginners and newer students or those who simply want to return to the basics.
  • A Friday night Happy Hour class taught by Kim who will infuse it with some of her exciting new teachings.  (Expect occasional visits from Selena who is taking time off to wrangle and tend to her busy family). 
  • My 90 minute Saturday and Sunday morning class.  Expect an open level vinyasa class with plenty of movement, plenty of long, deep holds, plenty of challenge, plenty of stillness, and plenty of guided breath-work. 
  • And Elizabeth Andes-Bell's 90 minute Sunday morning Energy Yoga Therapy class. After decades of teaching and running yoga studios in NYC we are so happy to have her here at CYH where studying with her is like undressing in front a kind and gentle healer who gazes at you lovingly for awhile, shows you how beautiful you are, and then shifts you with her instruction and hands into the very center of your being where she realigns your spine and energy and internal geometry so that you can begin to live from that place of strength.  People.  It’s serious, subtle, and cool stuff.

And there’s more!  Don't miss a fantastic workshop on October 8th by NYC yoga teacher, dietician and cookbook author Julie Peacock - Get Grounded: Transition Gracefully from Summer to Fall with Yoga and Food.  A great asana class followed by discussion and information about food, cooking, and integrating essential oils into our self-care practice.

And, of course, there is more to be done: painting and re-arranginging, art to be hung,  an opening party on October 1 to be planned, press releases to write.  It's definitely happening around here in an almost but not quite yet sort of way, and I am so grateful you are part of it. The core of it, in fact!  Please keep coming to classes and telling friends, family and colleagues about this practice that has blessed all of our lives in so many ways.  What an honor to experience this journey together. Lets keep warming up this space so that it really feels like a home in the Catskills.

Here's to a September transition that is marked by the equaling out of light and dark, by curiosity and delight, and by many long, slow breaths.

Bowing my head to my heart, the wisdom of the mind to the knowing of the heart,

with love,