Yesterday was a great day for everyone, starting with a practice led by Sabine and Sarah C, who have formed a wonderful friendship while staying here. They're in the cottage, along with Brigid, which is up closer to the house than the other accommodation rooms.
Their uplifting, joyful energy was palpable and it energized the whole room. You couldn't help but have a half-smile on your face, and stay focused on your breath.
The practice was slightly shorter than usual, as John took us only a little further and suggested having breakfast early.
Lucy made us a wonderful salad and unbelievably good quinoa casserole. I must get the recipe for the latter. It was like quinoa risotto.
For dinner, Evelyn and I roasted lots of vegetables, and I made amaranth, which again, tasted like risotto, but with very, very fine granules. It turned out much better than I expected. Definitely something I'll make at home.
This morning (Friday), Amanda and Brigid met with John early on, and then started the 8 AM practice. Brigid began us with fundamental foundations, using her connection with the Maori to inform her teaching. It was just amazing. We all felt very connected to earth and sun. Amanda continued the theme in her teaching. It was all woven together very well.
John shared a quote with us afterward, that he'd seen, of all places, in Vancouver, Canada: "When you face the sun, your shadows fall behind you" (I'm paraphrasing that...) - it's a Maori saying.
I felt lighter than I have in any practice yet, and felt full of gratitude, full of being.
Morning class included Lucy for some adjustments. Lunch was another incredible salad and even more incredible hummus. It was a bit ironic that Lucy gave us hummus, as I'd planned to make some last night, but the blender broke.
Afternoon class was review and questions, and it really feels like everything is tying in together nicely. John gave us a few quotes to cherish; some were quite funny. If I can add them in later, I will.
After class, it was the "big clean," in which many people helped Sarah P-C finish up cleaning so she can enjoy her birthday and the solstice weekend. Evelyn and I mixed up a carrot birthday cake for Sarah P-C for Saturday night. (She requested carrot). It's now baking.
In about 45 minutes, we'll all take 2 cars in to Nelson to go to a Japanese restaurant for Sarah P-C's birthday. Afterward, one car (not mine) will stay in town for people who want to stay and go dancing.
My car will come back to Stillpoint so we can get a good rest before a day-trip to Abel Tasman National Park tomorrow.
Btw, the sunrise this morning colored the entire sky (with all different shapes of clouds) pink and purple, gold and white. I took a few pictures. Maybe later tonight, the internet connection will be good and I'll post them.