Release, Reclaim, Renew – A Recap of Our Expansive Reiki Renewal Retreat in Laguna Beach
I’m still in a beautiful space of warmth from the inside out from this past weekend’s Reiki Renewal Retreat in Laguna Beach, California. I know many of you had wanted to attend and some of you at the last minute were unable to, but I also know that everything always unfolds in Divine alignment and I look forward to when that timing presents itself again to connect with each of you in the near future.
For those of you who have been wanting to hear about the weekend and what you have to look forward to on future retreats, I always love to share our adventures together, both in word and photo story format, so you can feel a part of the experience and feel into the energy that can be created when souls come together in intention and love like this.
I know also that this weekend’s Reiki family is looking forward to seeing the photos and having a memoir recap of our time together. So here it goes….
There is always so much magick, synchronicity, and symbolism that unfolds in subtle and not so subtle ways. While I do make it a point to share the things that come to me during our time together and to point out things I see along the way, I do also save some for later, as it adds to the continued integration that can be seen from a different perspective than at the time.
Our extended weekend began on Thursday afternoon at 3pm on the Spring Equinox. I’d been immersed in the energy of the weekend all week previous to it, and then some. My mom arrived on Monday the 17th to assist me and I am ever-grateful for her help, as I couldn’t have pulled it all off without her.
It was so special for me to have my mom with me (who is 71, although you’d never know it!), not only because she’s my mom and I love her so much, but because I knew how huge this weekend experience would be for her (I get chills as I write this). And it was. I had finished off attuning her to Reiki Level 2 and 3 Master Teacher, after my Teacher and dearest friend, Laura Bruno, had trained her to Level 1, but they were simple trainings and quite some time ago.
She had never had an official class with me and so not only did she get a chance to experience me in my “element”, but I was able to gift her with my deepened experience since I trained her, along with her being able to participate in sharing her own experiences, to get a lot of hands on practice with everyone, to share “her” gifts of love and cuisine talents, but also to have others reflect to her what an amazing healer she is, as they experienced her Reiki practice.
It was also the first time she was able to “receive” so much from others in terms of love and Reiki treatments, as she is ALWAYS the one giving. I LOVED being able to gift her this weekend and I look forward to more of these shared collaborations with her.
After she arrived, Mom and I spent the next three days immersed in recipe planning, shopping lists, the mother-load of shopping adventures at Mother’s Market here locally, and then preparing and prepping everything so we’d have time during the retreat to fully engage with everyone and not worry much about things other than getting everything presentable and doing last minute prepping that can’t be done ahead of time.
Knowing how people love food, like I do, I thought you might enjoy exploring what we filled our tummies with this weekend.
Here is the menu we enjoyed for our Retreat experience: Everything was 100% Vegan with some Raw Vegan mixed in to integrate and balance the days and the meals, and with a high amount of gluten-free too. Our beverages were a mix of flavored sparkling waters, coconut water, water, teas, and smoothies.
Appetizer: Baked Almond Feta Cheese Ball with Dill Oil and French Bread
Lunch: Stuffed Mushrooms with Tunisian Eggplant side with Pita Bread Wedges followed by Raw Fudge Balls rolled in Coconut for Dessert
Dinner: Evening out at Au Lac
Appetizer: 7 Layered Mexican Dip with Tortilla Chips
Dinner: Raw Tacos (Taco “Meat” with Baja Spicy “Cheese”) on Red Cabbage Shells followed by Raw Spiced Chocolate Brownies with Sticky Caramel Frosting for Dessert
Lunch: “Cheesy” Kale Quinoa Patties on Lettuce with Baked Potato Fries and 3 Varieties of Hummus with Carrot Sticks and Tortilla Chips followed by Raw Key Lime Mousse Pie sprinkled with Coconut for Dessert
Breakfast: Banana/Raisin/Cinnamon/Vanilla/Oat Breakfast Squares with Fruit Smoothie
I have to say that our planning paid off, as we ended up with not only the right amount for everyone who I knew would be eating with us, but we were also able to accommodate guests that came in and out of the weekend with enough to keep everyone’s tummies more than satisfied. Yay!
I am also super grateful for my sweet friend Lynne (you may remember her from the interview I did – Lynne Day) who was our onsite photographer/videographer and my assistant (thank you for your amazing photo captures!), while she was returning to receive her Reiki Master Teacher training.
Lynne was my eyes during this weekend and I couldn’t have asked for a better second pair, as it was like she read my mind as to what and how I would have wanted to capture the moments. So once again, while I’d love to try to simplify down to just a few photos, I simply could not and so you will not only see photos throughout my share, but a huge album extravaganza at conclusion, because a few just wouldn’t do justice to capturing the essence. (We actually had over edging towards 700 photos, so I think I still did a pretty good job cutting down 😉 )
Between mom and Lynne, I had the dream team that rocked!
But equally rocking was the amazing group of souls that one by one trickled in on Thursday, and throughout the weekend, who graced us with their courageous hearts and willingness to embrace this accelerated expansion in their lives. I couldn’t have been more blessed to have such a wonderful group with us.
We had an intimate group of 6 housemates that were at the house round the clock and then several others that came in just for the workshop days and dinners some nights.
There were a few returning students that were just auditing and reviewing the classes to deepen their own practice and prep for their own teaching, others that were joining to receive all 3 levels of training, one person that only wanted levels 1 and 2, and a couple of people that just stopped in to share in the celebrations.
And all around, everyone did and will continue to receive an exponential shift in expansion because of the energy shared and elevated during our time together.
I found it so brilliant how the Universe brought together this magickal and masterful number of 11. How more perfect could that be?
I sent this info to everyone who joined us for the weekend, after we all returned home, to share the beautiful synchronicity of this number with them:
11 – MASTER TEACHER – KARMIC MASTER TEACHER
The Master Teacher, illumination, enlightenment, inspirational, transformation, idealism, intuitive, psychic, channeling, poetry, art/artistic, symbols, expression, dreamer, sparkling qualities, revolution, alternate consciousness, mysticism, catalyst, prisoner, prophet, celebrity, highly energized, radical, sensitive, visionary, enthusiastic, creative/creativity, vision, perfect balance, invention, refinement, congruency, fulfillment, higher ideals.
11 develops ‘Soul Power’ through loving, selfless service. 11 is a magical message asking us if we are centered or off kilter. Balance is the key with the #11.
Some of the people that joined I have known and others I got to meet for the first time, but across the board it was a “coming home” to a soul family we will always have connection to. Whether near or far, we are always in heart and soul, and with the added benefit our distant symbol provides us, we will always have extra energetic connection to draw and call upon.
So our weekend began Thursday, as we celebrated the Spring Equinox getting to know our housemates and digging in to our vegan cuisine extravaganza for the weekend. Each night we also concluded with a magickal crystal bowl sound healing bath by the amazing Shane Chunephisal, who also was a wonderful part of the workshops each day, as he provided valuable information and experiences for the group – not to mention shared his healing hands providing massage body work to some of our house guests.
Each house guest was provided a gift bag upon arrival, courtesy of me, and everyone who attended a workshop received a special Golden Labradorite crystal in a pouch – one chosen for each – that I felt carried the perfect energy for everyone attending and the perfect support for things everyone is going through right now, especially those who are really stepping into new experiences.
For anyone curious, here is the information I provided everyone when gifting them their Crystals, to understand its metaphysical properties:
Also known as Oregon Sunstone, introduces essential life force energy as the golden solar energy that can connect you to the Great Central Sun – the nucleus of the spiritual Universe. Stimulates the Solar Plexus (or Power Chakra), assisting and teaching one the right use of power and will and to better manage your personal power. It is a premier manifestation stone that if used consistently, aids with intentions you are investing attention into creating. Also supports manifesting financial prosperity and in general, aids you to let go of things that hold you back so that you can embrace and embody the new qualities that come through from using it. Excellent to use in curbing procrastination and can help develop consistency in action. Helps one perceive their gifts and abilities and to develop strong self-esteem, assertiveness, physical vitality, guidance, and confidence. Enhances one’s confidence to use one’s spiritual abilities. Empowers and encourages one to let one’s Light shine. Connects one with joy and childlike playfulness. Its energy helps strengthen and enhance creativity, brings greater clarity of mind, courage, revitalization, and expanded thinking. When placed under your pillow at night, you will wake up in the morning feeling more eager, refreshed, and invigorated for the day ahead. It is wonderful for meditation, as it will guide you into this realm and help calm your emotions to help you better see the direction of your life and to let go of control. It will infuse you with a feeling of reverence, love, and gratitude for all that the Divine gives to you, and remind you of consistently feeling these and deepening them, even if you already do. As a Sunstone, it has a very positive effect on your psyche, promotes good humor, cheerfulness, even temper, supports stamina, increases feelings of self-worth, optimism, and enthusiasm, and help you to say “no” and cease sacrificing yourself, while working to help remove inhibitions, support healthy detachment, and help you to see release the ideas of failure so you can see the silver lining in everything. Physically it enhances digestion and metabolism of food. Detoxes kidneys, spleen, and gall bladder, and promotes healthy, stable organs.
I also had been guided to bring along Raja Seraphina, my Crystal Skull, whom you may remember has told me her desire to be a part of my events, gatherings, and workshops – wanting to add her energy to the mix. So we were graced with her powerful presence, alongside several other crystal friends Shane and Yasmin brought along, as well as myself and mom, and all of the Golden Labradorite friends. You can see Raja Seraphina’s energy captured in the photo here, as we prepped for our very first sound bath healing on Thursday night. She was definitely revved up and ready to go!
We even created a crystal grid infront of Shane’s crystal bowls for our sound baths and that all proved, alongside the Reiki, to be quite powerful. Having the combination of Reiki and sound healing was such the perfect partnership of energy to really accelerate things for everyone.
We were definitely in our own little world up on top of that hill, and we now each carry the energy of our time together along with us throughout our day-to-day because it IS a part of us now that is integrating and recalibrating from the inside out.
Our home for the weekend was such the perfect blend of spaciousness, comfort, intimacy, and peace. We had the most amazing view from the huge deck area, along with a side “zen-like” garden with fountain and bench, and being at the very tip-top overlooking everything certainly mirrored our elevating our energy and raising our frequencies to a whole new level.
We were even graced with 2 Banana mascots for the weekend, which goes back to a long running joke between Lynne and I, which is part of Lynne’s interview you can read at the link above. Both Lynne and my Banana Masters were along for the journey, every step of the way.
They helped bring things down to Earth, infusing our days with lightness and laughter, child-like innocence, and good old-fashioned fun! Just the way every day of life should be danced and just the way I like to roll and play. 🙂
On the morning of our nature integration day, as we sipped on tea, a strange thing floated in the sky towards us. As it approached, we could make out that it was a balloon – where from, who knows? – but interestingly it was an Orca Whale immediately reminding me of the recent movie “Blackfish” and how that symbolizes “freedom” and our awareness that is needed.
But it also brought to mind key symbolism that was meaningful to our group, such as: connection, leadership, teamwork, community, communication, soul family, intuition, depth, playfulness, intelligence, environment, and Divine Feminine guiding us (as Orcas are a matriarchal society).
So, to back track, after we settled in and enjoyed Thursday evening’s dinner welcome and sound bath, we then began our first workshop of the weekend that next Friday morning. And of course, every day was balanced out with the perfect blend of meals from morning until night to compliment the energy we were working with.
On workshop days where we were working in the spiritual realms and raising our vibrations, we ate a majority of more grounding, cooked vegan foods. And on our nature integration day, in between both workshops, when we were grounding with the Earth, we had a more raw vegan lightened meal plan to keep things balanced. I always strive for creating harmony and balance in everything we do, as that is key in my book.
Friday we began our Reiki training with Levels 1 and 2, greeting new arrivals to our group. Our evening concluded with a night out on the town at the infamous Au Lac, where everyone inhaled a ton of great foods after our energetically opening day, followed by a crystal bowl healing sound bath.
It was an amazing first training day to say the least. I was so excited to see everyone beaming from their attunements and their own excitement about the experience of Reiki for the first time.
Saturday we woke to a lovely and relaxing day ahead of leisurely eating, conversation, nature, Reiki practice, and more sound baths. Four of us went on a hike down the canyon, just a two minute walk from the house. How lucky were we to have nature in our backyard and every variety of flower and bird imaginable, as you can see from the photos. We also came up on fuzzy caterpillar and lady bug friends, and even saw what appeared to be mountain lion-looking tracks. I could feel her presence and that was a beautiful gift.
Looking back in reflection, I do find it fascinating that “birds” seemed to be the main theme of animal guides around us the entire weekend. As mentioned, we saw so many varieties and they would also come around each time we did the initiation attunements during Reiki trainings. One time it was some crows that swooped in just above our group on the deck and actually spoke to one of our group in his attunement, telling him to “let go”. Another time musical birds came to the window chiming in with our frequency shift.
And of course, when outside, they were all around including some hawks and every variety of small bird. We even had a sandpiper guide that was leading ahead of us on the beach and always stopped to wait for us. And on the way home on Monday, just as we were exiting the freeway ramp behind my house, one of my mainstay hawk sentinel friends was peering down from the street lamp in all of his glory, as if to say, “welcome home” – having of course twofold meaning.
I thought you might enjoy this article I posted last April on Bird Wisdom, which shares some of the symbolism and medicine they have to show and support us with:
We also came upon interesting caves in the rocks across the way, some huge statue that someone had placed on the hill that was of a prehistoric Triceratops! and mystical Cairns sitting atop a
We were graced by the sun beaming so bright and hot in the middle of our laying and sitting on the rocks…making us feel very much like Usui on the top of the mountain receiving the very first natural Reiki attunement from Source.
After a leisurely lunch we then proceeded to Crystal Cove State Park Beach – my favorite – and had ourselves a walk along the water, grounding our feet in the sand, enjoying the sea life and air cleansing through us, and having fun practicing Reiki symbols in the sand.
This led us to Sunday’s Reiki 3 Master Teacher workshop and another new day of experiences for all. Great food, conversations, lots of love, and beaming smiles and souls were the day’s joys.
We had a lot of practice time, which really was powerful for everyone as they all got to experience just how naturally gifted they each were as unique healers, surprising themselves with how intuitive they really all are. Beautiful!!
And as we said goodbye to each of the souls that had journeyed with us during our workshops, the group of housemates that remained, decided to embark on another beach journey to celebrate a weekend of profound change and accomplishment.
So we took a sunset walk back on Crystal Cove Beach and the Universe gifted us a most stunning sunset that shifted from golden enchantment to red/orange with a portal in the sky, and then to amazing vibrant pinks like that love energy, which was all like a celebratory display of the renewing energy experienced all weekend. Not to mention, quite the send off for our little group.
The golden glows you’ll see in the photos below capture the golden expansion of consciousness experienced. This shifted into a creative power portal rooted in passionate oranges and reds we’re integrating for embodiment, and then the feathered and pulsing pink, like that of our hearts taking flight more gracefully in our lives.
We again enjoyed some Reiki symbol practice in the sand and took some fun group shots of our vibrant and freeing energy. That evening, rather than go out to eat, my mom and I were gifted a beautiful meal created by Shane of a variety of Thai curries that he and Yasmin prepared for us. MMM…MMM…GOOD!
Of course it was hard to leave the next morning, but after we cleaned up and organized, said our farewells – for now- until the next time. With teary eyes and love filled hearts, we know that what we created here together that weekend will remain with us always and that these new friends will eternally be our Reiki family for life and beyond.
And so, everyone is integrating back from our Reiki Love Bubble weekend. As mentioned in a previous post yesterday, there is a huge expansion that I personally, also, experienced. This manifested as blow outs with my cell phone and the ATM machine. Everyone will, and is, experiencing their own version of an upgrade, as the accelerated energy of this weekend was through the roof.
It couldn’t have been more perfect and truly reiterates to me where my heart lies, in supporting empowerment of others and helping people on that fast track to integrating the lives they have always wanted, and to getting aligned with the paths they have soulfully intended.
I honor and celebrate the courage and heart conviction everyone who showed up this weekend has to their personal journey, understanding how integral that is for the collective when they align with who they are. I am deeply grateful, humbled, honored, and in love with each of you for who you are and congratulate you for taking the leap into a more expansive and synchronous life experience.
You are each powerful, natural healers in your own unique ways. Remember to honor that individuality that you have and bring it confidently into everything you choose to create. There is only one of each of you and we need the special gifts you have to offer. You are valuable in every way!
It’s really challenging to express what experiences like these feel like until you actually experience them in person, but this is why I try to capture what I can through my sharing and in photos, to give you a glimpse to reflect on and explore. Words are far too limiting to express the infinite felt and the love that will stay with you always from the connections made and shared.
Our weekend was full of laughs, play, deep conversations, intimate connecting, vulnerable sharing, opening and healing tears, expanded hearts, expanded awareness, and conscious elevation. All the ingredients that provide the potentials for big leaps and empowered transformation.
Some of my most cherished moments, besides all the intimate times that you see captured in these photos and the bonds shared, were the times I got to sit back during teaching in silence as I got to listen to everyone in conscious conversation, teaching each other. I was there as a facilitator/observer/space holder to provide a foundation, direction, and different perspectives. However, the empowering thing that happens – which I LOVE – is that everyone discovers that they are teachers and leaders themselves and so holding that space for them to step into this aspect of themselves that is awakened, and to see people process their experiences out loud, means everything to me.
I also loved the times I got to guide them and then watch them practice on each other, as their faces lit up and they discovered their intuitive gifts and abilities they never acknowledged or knew about before.
PRICELESS! INVALUABLE! And is the reason I do what I do.
I love what I do and am able to offer. It doesn’t come without its sweat and work, but my soul commitment and love is to be of service through the unique vehicle that is expressed by my embodying my personal frequency. I know no other way in life than to integrate who I am seamlessly/simultaneously in service to the collective.
If you missed this retreat and are interested in joining another, you can find updates here on my blog site at the Retreats link, as well as can find updates on the Inspiring Classes & Workshops link. I’ll be teaching (and soon posting) some upcoming advanced Reiki classes, which include combining with crystals, as well as working more with Chakras and creating a magickal and Divine life experience. And there are more retreats this year as well. The next being in Bimini, Bahamas in July.
There are several new inspiring workshops I’m putting together, as well as 2 more retreats later this year. I’m already receiving guidance on next year’s retreats and their whereabouts, so stay tuned. And don’t forget that I will be in Chicago teaching an accelerated Reiki workshop weekend on Saturday October 11th and Sunday October 12th. I don’t know yet if I can make it to Toronto in June, as hoped, to teach Reiki and speak at AnandaFest, but I’ll know that likely by Monday.
So some fun to look forward to, alongside all of the amazing creations coming forth from so many of you, including this weekend’s students. I know a couple of them are already gearing up to start teaching their own Reiki classes and putting together retreats. And I anticipate some co-creations in store, as I’ve already discussed some cool collaborative ideas with a couple of you. 😉
I love that life’s experiences are only limited by our ability to utilize our imagination and free our minds. I hope that you will actively engage your own creative power, as truly it will gift you tenfold if you do.
Much love and creative magick to you all!
I hope you enjoy the photo album story of our beautiful weekend shared together, realizing that the shifts and expansion each of us make individually, directly impacts the collective and provides others greater ease to make transformational shifts too.
Posted on March 28, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged bird symbolism, california spiritual retreats, laguna beach retreats 2014, reiki certification training, reiki retreats, spiritual retreats 2014, spiritual weekend retreats 2014, spring equinox 2014 retreats, spring retreats laguna beach, vegan retreats. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.