Removing Layers

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OPEN DOOR
Integrative Wellness
www.opendoorworkshop.com
__________________________


 

“Our challenge each day is not to get dressed to face the world but to unglove ourselves so that the doorknob feels cold and the car handle feels wet and the kiss goodbye feels like the lips of another being, soft and unrepeatable.”

Mark Nepo

 

As the snow storm begins gaining traction outside our White River windows, I note how everyone is buried warmly in their clothing. One sees only eyes peeking from behind scarves, hoods, hats... This necessity makes it difficult to see each other, to recognize a friend from a far, to read people’s expressions, to connect. During this season it is my hope that Open Door can offer respite from the loneliness and isolation that can occur for some of us in winter.  Coming here, you might experience the pleasure of  Britton’s warm table, the deliciousness of hot tea as you sit and speak with Miriah or Holly, or the physical release as you move through a dance or somatics class. You might be able to remove layers that prevent you from connecting to what serves you...truly appreciate the subtlety and richness of our human experience. So, may you stay warm and safe, and enjoy the sweetness of solitude. May you also find ways to strip down, feel connected, and not let the cold create a barrier from joy and ease.

Happy New Year!

Kate


“Just because you are soft doesn't mean you are not a force. Honey and wildfire are both the colour gold.” 
Victoria Ericson

Open Door's team is pleased to move into the new year with  exciting projects on the horizon. New collaborations, new team members, expanding programs...
We are heading into a 3rd year with a sense of optimism and  purpose!
We are grateful to the community for the opportunity to provide wellness programming that, at its core,strives to improve everyone's well being. We will build on relationships started on 2017 and develop new ones in  2018. 

Thank you: Confluence Behavioral Health, Kimball Union Academy, Lebanon High School,, Hanover High School,King Arthur Flour, The Family Place, White River Family Practice, Upper Vally Yoga,River Valley Club,High Horses Therapeutic Riding, Adimab, Center for Transformational Living, Bayada Hospice.
 
Moving into the new year we remain committed to our mission:

Open Door helps you achieve maximum vitality

Stay tuned for upcoming programs and, if interested, sign up for our mailing list: https://www.opendoorworkshop.com/
Young Women's Self-Defense (girls ages 13-18)

Instructor: Kevin Comeau

Fridays January 5, 12, and 26, 4-5 pm

Series of 3 classes: $50

This three-part class will cover the fundamentals of physical self-defense, while touching on its emotional and psychological elements.  We will cover such topics as evasion, escape, blocking and striking, improvised weapons, awareness of the environment, and the use of the eyes and voice.  Students should come prepared to move- wear comfortable clothing.  Practice will be realistic but respectful.  All questions and ideas are welcome.


Kevin practices and teaches traditional Japanese martial arts with the White River Budokan in White River Junction, and has recently added tai chi to his studies. He has been studying for 35 years.  His bodywork practice at Open Door focuses on deep tissue massage, myofascial release, and personal training.  He teaches advanced massage technique and body awareness classes at River Valley Community College and the Community College of Vermont. 
New Classes and Workshops

Receiving Space

Date: Saturday, January 13th
Time: 3-5pm
Instructor: Anna Mei Roques
No experience necessary.
Price: $35 

In this class we will use movement improvisation to wake up our senses + sensuality, meeting the unknown as a dance partner.
 

Strength, Flexibility and Awareness

Date: Saturdays, January 13-March 10
Time: 2-3:30pm
Instructor: Joseph Sargent
Price: Series: $125, drop in $18 

This 8 week series of classes will provide tools for developing strength, flexibility, awareness and control of the body through locomotion. It will draw on Ido Portal’s locomotion system, which is based in his experience with Chinese Martial Arts, Capoeira, modern dance techniques, and acrobatics. 


January Nutrition Notes

Holly Westling
 
Happy New Year!!  As we welcome 2018, many of us will be considering different ways we can improve on the past year while creating resolutions.  Often we will include making nutritional or lifestyle changes in these resolutions.  The New Year is the perfect time to try to get rid of old, maybe bad, habits and introduce new, healthier habits.  Creating new habits can take time - studies have shown that it will take on average about 30 days to adopt new habits so stick with it and be patient with yourself - it can be difficult.  When people ask me what habit I think can make the biggest difference in our health, my answer is almost always the same: eliminating the sugar habit.  This can be particularly difficult as sugar is very addictive.  When we eat sugar, we can feel a false burst of energy that shortly after leaves us feeling fatigued and craving more immediate energy (more sugar.)  The best way to eliminate sugar is to completely, 100% cut it out of every aspect of your diet.  This includes any foods with added sugar (foods with natural sugar such as fruit are not included in this elimination.)  

On January 9 and 16 at 6:00 pm, I will be offering our Open Door New Year’s Cleanse.  This will be a 10-day practice of very clean eating, eliminating all sugar and some other toxins. Participants will be provided detailed instructions, a 10-day meal plan with a recipe booklet, as well as individual support if needed.  By committing to this cleanse plan for these 10 days, participants are able to create a healthy lifestyle that gives them the guidance and boost they need to successfully overcome unhealthy habits and create new, healthy habits.  Please check out the details of our cleanse on our website at www.opendoorworkshop.com or if you have questions, please email me at: hrwestling@gmail.com

Here is a sample recipe from our cleanse:
 
Chopped Salad with Cod and Curry
(other forms of protein can be substituted for cod)
1/4 lb cod per person
1 bunch purple kale, stems removed and chopped
6-8 leaves Napa cabbage, chopped
1 carrot, shredded
1 bell pepper, diced
1 avocado, peeled and diced
2 mangos, diced
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1⁄2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tsp coconut oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Coconut Curry Dressing:
1 cup full-fat coconut milk
Juice of 1 lime
1 1⁄2 tbsp coconut aminos
1 small garlic clove, minced
2 tsp curry powder
Pinch of cayenne pepper, or more to taste
Sea salt to taste

Whisk all of the ingredients for the dressing into a medium bowl.
Taste and adjust the seasoning if desired.
Place the dressing in the refrigerator while prepping the rest of the salad.
In a large salad bowl, combine the kale, cabbage, carrot, bell pepper, avocado, mango, green onion, and cilantro.
Toss to mix well and set aside.
Heat a large skillet with the coconut oil over a medium heat.
Season the cod with salt and pepper and add it (or protein of your choice) to the skillet.
Cook 2 - 3 minutes on each side or until the cod is opaque in the center.
Place cod on top of the salad, drizzle with the desired amount of dressing and serve.
 
ABOUT US
Through our wellness programs, Open Door offers clients the tools to be self reliant and resilient, and to achieve vibrant health and well-being. We take a fresh approach to healthcare that encourages the use of preventative practices and collaboration between client and providers. We work with clients in private sessions and group classes in our studio. We also bring our services to the workplace and out to the community.
Learn more about our Services>

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OPEN DOOR
Integrative Wellness

Contact Us:
opendoorwrj@gmail.com
802-698-8006
www.opendoorworkshop.com

Find Us:
18 N. Main Street, White River Junction, VT
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ABOUT US
At Open Door, we offer clients the tools to achieve vibrant health and well-being and to be self reliant and resilient. We take a fresh approach to healthcare that encourages the use of preventative practices and collaboration between client and providers. We work with clients in private sessions and group classes in our studio. We also bring our wellness services to the workplace and out to the community. Learn more>

*   *   *   *   *
Host an Event at Open Door>
Open Door offers an elegant and versatile space to hold a celebration, board meeting, or workshop. Contact us for details. Learn more>
OPEN DOOR
Integrative Wellness

Contact Us:
opendoorwrj@gmail.com
904-626-5284
www.opendoorworkshop.com

Find Us:
18 N. Main Street, White River Junction, VT
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ABOUT US
Open Door offers clients the tools to achieve vibrant health and well-being and to be self reliant and resilient. Our fresh approach to healthcare encourages the use of preventative practices and collaboration. We work with clients in private sessions and group classes and bring our wellness services out to the community. Learn more>
OPEN DOOR
Integrative Wellness

Contact Us:
opendoorwrj@gmail.com
904-626-5284
www.opendoorworkshop.com

Find Us:
18 N. Main Street, White River Junction, VT
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A Winter Pause

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OPEN DOOR
Integrative Wellness
www.opendoorworkshop.com
__________________________


 
As I began to think about writing this December note, I was overwhelmed with all the disturbing events that I could react to ...we all feel them...it is a challenging time. Truly, not to be reactive, to not feel overwhelmed requires an abundance of equanimity. I realized maybe we need less fuel in the fire, maybe these words could be offered as a reminder to be mindful of the potent impact of gratitude and compassion. In my classes I remind people to go toward what feels good, what brings ease. Our minds so easily drift toward what is not working, what is uncomfortable. During these crazy,busy days, we could pause and notice how the winter's light casts a lovely,quieter hue, the mountains beckon us to play, the fireplace offers respite from the biting cold... These moments of appreciation can be a powerful tool to reframe our perspective. We all need to remember to open these gifts...presence, gratitude, graciousness. So, may you just take this as a simple reminder...maybe right now...pause, look up, go toward what feels right in the world and love that deeply, wholly...
May you be well- Kate and all of us at Open Door.


Please join us December 15th for our day of Gratitude:

Screenshot 2017-11-17 20.43.04.png

We at Open Door have been so fortunate to find a home in WRJ over these past few years and would like to take a day to give back. On December 15th we are happy to offer the following free classes and services to members of our community.

Schedule
10-11am Tai Chi
11-2pm Chair Massage
2:30-5pm Group Acupuncture
5:30-6:30pm Restorative movement class

 

Please email Miriah at  to register for classes or to reserve a space for massage or acupuncture.

Do you bow your head when you pray or do you look up into that blue space? Take your choice, prayers fly from all directions. Mary Oliver

Discussing Sexuality with your Children

Parents and guardians of upper elementary and middle school children are warmly encouraged to attend this informative session on talking to kids about sexuality. The presentation and discussion aims to guide what sexuality topics are developmentally appropriate for 11-14 year olds and how parents and guardians can overcome the discomforts of talking about sex with their children. Please join us with an open mind, sense of humor and many questions! 


Cindy Pierce educates and entertains audiences with her message about making healthy choices and navigating cultural pressures. She is the author of Sexploitation: Helping Kids Develop Healthy Sexuality in a Porn-Driven World. 

Dr. Michael Lyons is a family physician who has provided care to kids and adults in the Upper Valley for over 20 years. He is also a clinical assistant professor at Dartmouth’s Geisel School of Medicine. 


 
Winter Solstice

Winter Solstice Ceremony at
Open Door and Veteran’s Park,
White River Junction, VT 
December 21st 6:30 - 8:00

All are warmly invited to the second annual Winter Solstice Ceremony in White River Junction, Vermont. On this shortest day of the year, we will pause to honor the stillness and movement both inside and out.  

Opening Ceremony
 6:30 Open Door

Contemplation on the Solstice, silent meditation 
6:45 - 7:30 at Open Door

Procession to and through the Labyrinth
at Veterans Park 6:45-7:30

Closing Ceremony 7:30 Open Door

This will be a contemplative gathering, so all are invited to observe functional silence throughout the event. Please come a bit early, so we can begin punctually.


             
 

New Team Member:

Open Door welcomes Julie Clemons, our newest massage therapist, to join our team. Her background as an adventure educator informs her practice by infusing it with the joy of discovery and the spirit of problem-solving. She integrates Swedish relaxation massage, deep tissue, myofascial release, and proprioceptive techniques in her work. During her training, she completed her internship under the tutelage of Kevin Comeau here at Open Door. She enjoys working with all clients, but particularly those who want to improve their daily adventures with freer, more spacious movement.

To schedule with Julie email or call her directly.
 603-304-5227.
julieclemons@gmail.com


 


December Nutrition Notes

Holly Westling


December is the time to gather indoors, spend time with family and friends, and celebrate the holidays. Nutrition is often not on our minds during these gatherings. Often we will indulge in holiday treats and foods that look and taste wonderfully -again, and again, because they are just “soooooooo good”. But after the holidays, we are left picking up the wellness pieces and trying to get back on track with a healthy lifestyle in the New Year. To avoid this frequent post-holiday regret, I challenge you to practice mindful eating while you are enjoying those holiday treats.Through mindful eating practice, you will eat less, and more likely eat foods that make your body feel good.December is the time to gather indoors, spend time with family and friends, and celebrate the holidays. Nutrition is often not on our minds during these gatherings. Often we will indulge in holiday treats and foods that look and taste wonderfully -again, and again, because they are just “soooooooo good”. But after the holidays, we are left picking up the wellness pieces and trying to get back on track with a healt


A few tips on how to eat mindfully:
1) Assess your hunger before you eat by asking yourself these questions: Am I actually hungry? How hungry am I?
2) Choose your food carefully. Is it a food that will nurture your body. If not, is it a food that you truly enjoy and want to eat?
3) Focus your attention on your food. Try to sit at a table in a pleasant environment and be with your food.
4) Taste each bite carefully. Try taking small bites and chewing slowly and thoroughly. Chewing for at least 15-20 times per bite allows you to thoroughly taste your food while slowing down your eating. Try putting your utensil down in between bites to help slow things down.

Here is a recipe for one my favorite long-time holiday treats that will leave you feeling satisfied with no regrets. This chocolate bark is full of nutrients and anti-oxidants from the dark chocolate, nuts, seeds and dried fruit. Enjoy.
Dark Chocolate Bark

Ingredients:
8 oz high quality semi-sweet or dark chocolate ( 70%+) chopped 8 oz high quality bittersweet chocolate (I use King Arthur for my chocolate ingredients) chopped
2 1/2 cups of your favorite, unsweetened nuts, seeds and dried fruit; I like to use pistachios, pecans, almonds, pumpkin seeds and dried berries such as dried blueberries, gogiberries, cherries or cranberries (fruit juice sweetened)
Directions:
1) Place a piece of parchment paper face-down on a pan that has edges.
2) Melt the chocolate in a pan (or double boiler) over a pot of water
3) Pour the melted chocolate on the parchment
4) Add your nuts and seeds evenly
5) Let sit for 2 or more hours to harden at room temperature
6) Cut into pieces and ENJOY!

For those of you who would still like some guidance on how to start the New Year back on track with healthy eating habits, I will be offering the Open Door New Year Cleanse. Please check out our website to register and for details.  
ABOUT US
Through our wellness programs, Open Door offers clients the tools to be self reliant and resilient, and to achieve vibrant health and well-being. We take a fresh approach to healthcare that encourages the use of preventative practices and collaboration between client and providers. We work with clients in private sessions and group classes in our studio. We also bring our services to the workplace and out to the community.
Learn more about our Services>

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Host an Event at Open Door
Open Door offers an elegant and versatile space to hold a celebration, board meeting, or workshop. Contact us for details. Learn more>
OPEN DOOR
Integrative Wellness

Contact Us:
opendoorwrj@gmail.com
802-698-8006
www.opendoorworkshop.com

Find Us:
18 N. Main Street, White River Junction, VT
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ABOUT US
At Open Door, we offer clients the tools to achieve vibrant health and well-being and to be self reliant and resilient. We take a fresh approach to healthcare that encourages the use of preventative practices and collaboration between client and providers. We work with clients in private sessions and group classes in our studio. We also bring our wellness services to the workplace and out to the community. Learn more>

*   *   *   *   *
Host an Event at Open Door>
Open Door offers an elegant and versatile space to hold a celebration, board meeting, or workshop. Contact us for details. Learn more>
OPEN DOOR
Integrative Wellness

Contact Us:
opendoorwrj@gmail.com
904-626-5284
www.opendoorworkshop.com

Find Us:
18 N. Main Street, White River Junction, VT
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November - The Lung and Autumn

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OPEN DOOR
Integrative Wellness
www.opendoorworkshop.com
__________________________


 

The Lung and Autumn
Britton Mann

For the spring edition of the Open Door newsletter, I wrote to you of the growth potential characterized by the season. Tender shoots were pushing up everywhere, the collective birth and vitality of which stood out against the quiet storage phase of winter.

In New England colloquial, spring and autumn are “shoulder” seasons – and just as that joint in the body swings, so does springtime swing open the door to life, and autumn shuts it.

It is difficult to gently state the fact that autumn is about death and dying. The sun is withdrawing its warmth, and desiccated leaves are falling from trees. Living things are responding to this season by packing up and shutting down.

There’s a certain longing that this season engenders - a wistfulness for long summer days and a tidy mudroom. It is no coincidence that grief, in traditional east Asian worldview, is the emotion associated with autumn.

But letting go of that longing is also made easier by autumn. As much about death, autumn is about letting go of that which no longer serves you. Leaves and vines have done their job of transforming the sun’s energy into the colorful nutrient-dense squash left in the field. That is the prize of death.

The quality of sunlight – metallic and clear on a crisp day – is no longer good for production of material, but about refinement and seeing reality. The academic calendar starts in autumn to take advantage of that clarity. It is easier for children to focus their energy during this season than in the heat and effulgence of summer.

Autumn is also the season of the Lung organ network, and – in my acupuncture clinic - the colds, coughs, and respiratory distress that afflicts the organ itself. The Lung is considered “the delicate organ,” and it is susceptible to the change in season, the introduction of new pathogens, the mold on decaying leaves.

Part of my role as a diagnostician is to place my patient’s health concerns in context of seasonal change, and the fall season presents its own unique challenges and opportunities for health.

If you’d like to learn more about me and the acupuncture clinic at Open Door, check out the recently published UV Daily profile.

 

A sampling of
November Offerings at Open Door

BETTER COMMUNICATION: A GIFT FOR ALL
Sunday, November 12 from  3-5pm
Price: $30 per person or $50 for you and a friend
Instrutor: Michele Sacerdote
  For more information or to register, email Michele at:
msacerdote@comcast.net


READING OURSELVES, READING OTHERS
Round Table Discussion on Narrative Medicine with Dr. Kathryn Kirkland
November 15, Wednesday from 6-7:30pm
Free and Open to the Public


PILATES MAT CLASSES
 Thursdays, November 2- December 14 (no class on Thanksgiving) from 5:30-6:30pm
Instructor: Susan Burke
Price: Drop in, $18.00; Series, $96.00
To register or for more information email Susan at: Susan@susanburkepilates.com


TUNING IN: ADVENTURES IN INTUITIVE EATING

 Saturday, November 18 (Pre-register by November 13)
11:30am-1pm
Price: $50, bring a friend or family member and save $5 each
Instructor: Ali Rose Price
   Snacks and recipes will be provided. 
This workshop requires payment upon registration and has a limit of 8 participants. Course will run with 5 participants. 
To register contact Ali directly at 603-726-0646 or at 
aliroseprice101287@gmail.com
 
Mindfulness in Schools

Open Door is excited to be working with Lebanon High School in helping teachers and staff incorporate more mindfulness into the school day.  

For more information about how Open Door can work with  your school or business around mindfulness programing contact Kate Gamble at:
opendoorwrj@gmail.com

November Nutrition Notes
Holly Westling

The most common nutrition question I am asked during the month of November is, “ What do I do during Thanksgiving?” My response is always, “Enjoy it!”  Thanksgiving is the time to gather with friends and family, be grateful and share a delicious meal together.  Food is one of the great pleasures in life and should be enjoyed.  It doesn’t mean to disregard all of your hard work of creating a healthy lifestyle, but moderation works well.  When you are planning your meal, consider making a few healthy substitutions in your standard recipes.  These minor changes won’t compromise the taste and will make a difference in how you feel afterwards.  For example, let’s look at a typical mashed potato recipe:  you can replace butter with coconut oil or olive oil; cream with plain kefir or for non-dairy try unsweetened coconut or almond milk.  Instead of using white potatoes, try yukon gold or other higher fiber yellow potatoes.  I always like to add a head of roasted garlic cloves for extra zing and added nutrients.  

Portion control can be helpful in avoiding the “after-meal blahs".  Remember that a portion of carbohydrates such as potatoes or yams should really only be about the size of a hockey puck while green vegetables should be at least the size of a tennis ball.  When building your plate for dinner, try to make at least half of your plate non-starchy vegetables.  This will help minimize those dishes that are not as nutrient rich.  By taking the time to chew each bite of food about 20 times, you will slow down your meal, improve digestion, and most likely eat less.  As far as dessert goes, try to get away with having a bit of your favorite dessert or make your own dessert that is more forgiving such as the apple crisp recipe I provide below.  You can also fill a whole grain, coconut oil crust with this crisp and pass it off as a pie.  Happy Thanksgiving!

 
Apple Crisp
 
Slice and core 6 apples (granny smith apples work really well). Place in large bowl with a squeeze of lemon juice and sprinkled with cinnamon.
In smaller bowl mix together:
1 cup plain oats
2 T melted coconut oil
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup
sliced almonds
2 T agave nectar or coconut sugar
Place apples in baking dish; cover with oat mixture
Bake at 375 for 20 - 30 minutes
Enjoy!
ABOUT US
Through our wellness programs, Open Door offers clients the tools to be self reliant and resilient, and to achieve vibrant health and well-being. We take a fresh approach to healthcare that encourages the use of preventative practices and collaboration between client and providers. We work with clients in private sessions and group classes in our studio. We also bring our services to the workplace and out to the community.
Learn more about our Services>

*   *   *   *   *
Host an Event at Open Door
Open Door offers an elegant and versatile space to hold a celebration, board meeting, or workshop. Contact us for details. Learn more>
OPEN DOOR
Integrative Wellness

Contact Us:
opendoorwrj@gmail.com
802-698-8006
www.opendoorworkshop.com

Find Us:
18 N. Main Street, White River Junction, VT
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Opening Doors

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“Be an opener of doors” 
 Ralph Waldo Emerson
 
Often I am asked why I named my business Open Door. One of the several reasons is in the question. The name produces, in many cases, curiousity and I view curiousity to be the stem of change and growth. At Open Door Integrative Wellness, we consider the client to be a partner and prime driver of their healing and transformation. It is critical that they are curious about themselves and the ways in which they can take control of their health. Through knowledge, support and time, one can make choices that have tremendous impact on one’s well being. So, by being curious, walking through the Open Door, a person or organization can connect with our team in order to learn and experiment with pragmatic tools that will bring greater vitality and resiliency.

An Open Door is also fully inclusive. We are constantly trying to find ways to open the door wider by reaching out to the community in order to make our offerings more affordable and accessible. Aside from seeing clients at our WRJ location, we are doing outreach and pro bono work to broaden our reach.

Open doors have always symbolically represented transformation and opportunity. Our hope is that by walking through the door, literally and figuratively, one can begin to make steps toward the health and wellness that is inherently available to all of us. It invites discovery and investigation. This is the premise of much of our programming and is especially important in our Experiential Learning Labs

The Labs have been developed so that participants can learn about the nature of a topic and gain skill and knowledge with tools that can minimize the negative effects of stress, pain,and poor sleep. Specifically, this October we are, again, offering our 6 week Stress Reduction Experiential Learning Lab. It will be an opportunity to decrease the negative impact of stress on your life. Please check out or website for details. https://www.opendoorworkshop.com/special-eventsnew

Please know you are always welcome at Open Door and we are available to discuss ways you might discover a better quality of life.

To your health and opportunities to open doors in your life,

Kate Gamble, Founder

SOMETHING’S GOT TO HELP  & MEDITATION CAN
Landon Hall


 The word is out:  Meditation is good for you – for your heart, for your relationships, better sleep, better eating habits, and more.  Name an area in your life where you’d like to experience greater health and well-being, and you’ll probably find some evidence saying that meditation can help.  While this kind of hype inflates expectations, it’s kind of like the old joke:
 
Worried that their son was too optimistic, the parents of a little boy took him to a psychiatrist. In an attempt to dampen the boy’s spirits, the psychiatrist showed him into a room piled high with nothing but horse manure. Instead of displaying distaste, the little boy clambered to the top of the pile and began digging.
“What are you doing?” the psychiatrist asked.
“With all this manure,” the little boy replied, beaming, “there must be a pony in here somewhere.”
 
Kidding aside, while the benefits buzz may seem overheated, there is good science and anecdotal evidence behind it. Nevertheless, in our busy lives, carving out time to develop a meditation practice can be quite daunting.  Creating new, sustainable habits of any kind is hard to do.  What helps?  The answers are different for everyone, but there are some universals when it comes to meditation:  create a doable practice structure, practice with others, and mix in pleasure and fun to sweeten the task.
 
A new class beginning in the studio at the end of October, Cultivating Mindfulness Through Practice and Play, combines these elements. Structure and companionship: the group will meet on Mondays at 5:30-6:30pm from October 30- November 20. Pleasure, accessibility, and fun:  we’ll be using the meditation app 10% Happier, which offers excellent content delivered in short videos of some of the best meditation teachers working today.  Check it out for yourself at 10percenthappier.com.  Come join us to create a new habit of meditation practice in your life or to reinvigorate your practice that has waned.


For more information or to register please email Landon Hall at elhall888@gmail.com or visit Open Door's website.

Fall Back and Relax
 An Art as Therapy Experiential

Alison Hunt

On October 21st join Alison Hunt, mental health counselor and art therapist, for an afternoon of relaxation and art making. Alison will walk the class through a guided relaxation, which will be followed by a painting experiential and discussion. Class open to individuals 16 and up. 

For more information or to register please contact Alison a.hunt.art@gmail.com or visit Open Door's website.
 
Flavors of Fall
Holly Westling


October is my favorite month in Vermont - all the colors outside and all the yummy smells of garden harvest inside  With our long winters, we need to preserve the sweet summer goodness of vegetables grown in our rich New England soil. Many vegetables will freeze just fine as is:- such as kale (rinse, chop and freeze); tomatoes (rinse and freeze - some people like to parboil them first but this is not necessary); peppers (chop and freeze).  When I have extra time, I love to create delicious stews, soups and sauces from my harvest.  There is nothing like eating a vegetable stew during the short days of February that fills you with flavors and nutrients from your summer garden.  Cooking stews over low heat such as in a crock pot help preserve the flavors and nutrients.  One quick and easy recipe that enables you to enjoy your sweet summer tomatoes 4 months later is to chop your tomatoes (about 5 pounds) and simmer them in a big pot over low heat partially covered for a couple hours.  This also works well in a crock pot if you do not have the time to cook on the stove.  You can add garlic, onion, basil and oregano while cooking and freeze it as a sauce or just freeze the reduced tomatoes and use this as  a soup base later on.  One of my favorite harvest recipes is this ratatouille recipe I adopted from Killdeer Farm.  It is so easy and a delicious way to preserve many of the garden vegetables.  Enjoy!
 
Slow cooker Ratatoulle 
(Modified from Killdeer Farm)
 
4 T olive oil, divided, plus more for drizzling
2 medium yellow onions
1 pound eggplant
1 pound zucchini
2 large, red, green or yellow bell peppers
1 pound tomatoes
4 - 8 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons unsweetened tomato paste (optional)
1/2 tsp sea salt - plus more for seasoning
1/4 c coursely chopped fresh basil leaves

Heat 2 T olive oil in large plan over medium/low heat.
 Add onions, salt and cook while stirring occasionally until onions are softened and light, golden brown (about 30 minutes).
Trim eggplants, peppers, tomatoes and zucchini and cut into 1 inch cubes and place in crock pot.
Finely chop the garlic and add to vegetables.
When the onions are ready, add tomato paste and coat completely before adding to the vegetables stirring until well mixed.  
Add remaining olive oil and a little sea salt if desired.
Cover and cook over high for 4 hours or low for 6 - 8.
 If there is excess liquid, uncover for the last 30 minutes of cooking.
Stir in the basil and drizzle with olive oil if desired before serving, salt as desired.
Sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan cheese before serving.
Enjoy!
Copyright © *|2017|* *|Open Door|*, All rights reserved.

Transitioning into Fall

*|MC:SUBJECT|*
Lines Written in the Days of Growing Darkness

Every year we have been
witness to it: how the
world descends
into a rich mash, in order that
it may resume.
And therefore
who would cry out

to the petals on the ground
to stay,
knowing, as we must,
how the vivacity of what was is married

to the vitality of what will be?
I don’t say
it’s easy, but
what else will do

if the love one claims to have for the world
be true?
So let us go on

though the sun be swinging east,
and the ponds be cold and black,
and the sweets of the year be doomed.

— MARY OLIVER
 

Transitioning to Fall with Open Door

As the sunbeams begin to hit the Upper Valley at an angle announcing the coming of fall sentiments can be mixed. Lazy summer days are slipping into the rearview and a sense of gearing up is in the air- for school, for work, for settling in for the coming cold month. And while this is not a bad thing it is something to watch. To make sure that we don't get swept away in the business of life and hold on to a thread of the ease and restfulness of summer. This fall, Open Door offers a multitude of ways to slow down and maintain a connection with the leisurely and nurturing qualities of summer.

Experiential Learning Lab for Stress Reduction
Open Door has created a simple 6-week curriculum to examine the nature of stress and to learn strategies to minimize its impact. Our team has targeted three primary areas: mindfulness, physical activity, and nutrition. We believe fostering these skills will increase your capacity to manage stress. Our guided curriculum includes discussion, practice, and independent work between classes. Your progress will be measurable using the provided workbook and through a follow up session one month.

And please, take a look at the website to check out our other fall offerings including:

Classes:
Meditation
Tai Chi 
Baguazhang
Pilates
Movement classes for kids and adults

Workshops:
Cultivating Happiness through Mindfulness Practice and Play
Black Collective Action (Project X)
Nutritional Workshops
Feldenkrais Method 
Playback Theater
Death Cafe

We look forward to seeing you at the studio!

To your good health,

Open Door 
Baguazhang

Baguazhang is one of the three major branches of the Chinese internal martial arts. Like its sister arts taijiquan and xingyiquan, bagua trains the practitioner to move in a relaxed and fluid way, coordinating movement with breath. Training this art over an extended period of time can cultivate whole-body power that is effective as both a fighting art and general health maintenance. Bagua was created in the second half of the 19th century in northern China, as a synthesis of a variety of fighting styles with Daoist meditative circle-walking exercises. As a fighting art, bagua emphasizes circling and flanking your opponent to catch them off-guard with a variety of strikes and throws; as internal cultivation and health maintenance, bagua emphasizes dexterity, coordination, and fluidity of motion. The bagua class currently offered at Open Door focuses on the neigong, or internal cultivation, aspects of bagua. The class starts with a series of warm-ups designed to recondition the body's movement patterns, gently opening the joints while teaching the practitioner to coordinate movement with breath. These exercises will test your mental and physical capacities, challenging your body to move in new ways that will ultimately improve your balance, coordination, flexibility, and ability to think quickly on your feet. After warming up, the class trains the signature circle-walking exercises that have made bagua famous. These exercises involve walking slowly and meditatively in a circle, while holding the upper body in a series of fixed postures. These circle-walking exercises can be considered a type of qigong. In the words of the late baguazhang master Li Ziming: “In baguazhang, the feet walk and turn continuously like a swimming dragon, the postures change quickly like a nimble eagle, the strokes and gestures change swiftly and the palms strike like an active ape. The result is a visually impressive form; light but not floating, deep but not stagnant, and an excellent physical culture. It is little wonder it has spread around the world and been accepted by so many.”
For more information visit Open Door's website!
Open Door Welcomes Alison Hunt

Hi my name is Alison Hunt, LCMHC, ATR and I am new to Open Door!  I recently moved myself, and my mental health practice from Middlebury to the Upper Valley and am now accepting new clients.  I am a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor as well as a Registered Art Therapist.  I work with individuals and families of all ages on issues including but not limited to: anxiety, depression, transitions, communication and behavioral challenges, parenting, nutritional support, spirituality, and developing healthy coping strategies for stress management.   I grew up in Vermont and did my undergraduate studies in Studio Art at Skidmore College.  I received my Masters Degree in Counseling and Art Therapy from Eastern Virginia Medical School in 2010 and have been practicing in Vermont since then. I believe in a holistic approach to counseling which incorporates the mental, physical and spiritual parts of a person.  I am excited to be a new part of the Open Door and greater Upper Valley community!
Please check out my profile on the Open Door’s website www.opendoorworkshop.com. To learn more about art therapy check out the American Art Therapy Association website at www.arttherapy.org.  
New!
Small Group Somatic Movement Classes 

The intent of the class is to explore moving from within. Through a gentle exploration of our habits, nervous system and bio mechanics, we will gain insight and ease with our body's potential to guide us toward healing and listening deeply.
For more info contact Kate at opendoorwrj@gmail.com
The Nutrition Corner
by Holly Westling

A common question I hear these days is, “How can I improve my energy?”  There are many lifestyle choices we can make that will help increase our energy.  One is to make sure we are drinking enough fluids to keep us well hydrated - especially in the summer heat.  I recommend hydrating with water or cool, herbal tea.  Limiting caffeinated beverages to only one or two a day is helpful as they contain a diuretic that does not help with hydration. After exercising when we are particularly dehydrated, some coconut water is also excellent for rehydration and replenishing electrolytes.  I like to avoid sports drinks as they often contain added chemicals that can cause inflammation and deplete nutrients.  Ideally, we would take in about half our body’s ideal weight in ounces of water.  It is helpful to keep a water bottle handy to sip and refill throughout the day to help get into a habit of good hydration. Another tip to improving energy is to make sure you are eating regularly throughout the day.  I usually recommend having something to eat every 2 to 3 hours.  This will help stabilize blood sugar and metabolism providing more consistent energy throughout the day.  What we are choosing to eat is also very important.  We want to avoid foods that will spike our blood sugar such as sweets and refined grains.  While these foods will provide us with an initial boost of energy as the sugar from them enters our system, they will always lead to a significant drop in energy afterwards.  Eating whole foods such as fruits and vegetables along with lean protein and healthy fats is an excellent way to help maintain energy throughout the day. In order to have enough energy to do everything we want to do, it is also important to make sure we are getting enough protein (not too much) each day.  It is a good idea to check with your nutritionist to see what amount of protein and what source of protein is best for you.  
Here are some examples of healthy snacks to keep on hand to ensure that you have a good source of nutrients readily available: a variety of nuts and seeds including nut butters with sliced apples, pears, or celery; hard boiled eggs, avocados or guacamole with endive, sugar snap peas and sliced cucumber; humus or healthy dips (see recipe) with vegetable sticks.

Creamy Spinach Artichoke Dip

Ingredients:
10 oz. organic, frozen spinach, thawed and drained
14 oz. can organic artichokes hearts, rinsed and drained 1 roasted red bell pepper, peeled and chopped
1/2 ripe avocado
1 garlic clove
2 tablespoons fresh chopped basil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon chopped red onion

Drain the artichokes and spinach well, then add them to the bowl of a large food processor fitted with an S-shaped blade. Add in the rest of the ingredients, and use the “pulse” button to combine into a chunky dip.
Open Door Integrative Wellness
18 North Main St.
White River Junction, VT 05001
www.opendoorworkshop.com
opendoorwrj@gmail.com
802-698-8006

ABOUT US
At Open Door, we offer clients the tools to achieve vibrant health and well-being and to be self reliant and resilient. We take a fresh approach to healthcare that encourages the use of preventative practices and collaboration between client and providers. We work with clients in private sessions and group classes in our studio. We also bring our wellness services to the workplace and out to the community. Learn more>

*   *   *   *   *
Host an Event at Open Door>
Open Door offers an elegant and versatile space to hold a celebration, board meeting, or workshop. Contact Miriah at miriah.opendoorwrj@gmail.com for more information.






New Offerings for Fall!

Movement Studies at Open Door continues to EXPAND

“Consciousness is only possible through change; change is only possible through movement.”  Aldous Huxley- "The Art of Seeing"

“Consciousness is only possible through change; change is only possible through movement.” 
Aldous Huxley- "The Art of Seeing"

Dear Friends,
     This coming fall we are excited about expanding our movement curriculum. We have enjoyed a steady growth in our dance classes and increased depth in our somatic work. Our intent is to offer a broad spectrum of movement opportunities for all ages. We are committed to the highest quality of teaching which focuses on strength and flexibility as tools toward broadening one’s vocabulary along with a good understanding of bio mechanics and optimal developmental process in learning. In our creative programming we do the same but, also add an opportunity for authentic expression and a supportive community which supports  personal growth and inquiry.
     Below is a list of our upcoming classes.
     Try one…

CHILDREN'S CLASSES

Creative Movement
     Creative Movement introduces the elements of dance....weight, space, time, flow, shape, awareness of body parts, personal space vs. general space, relationships, etc.  
-     CM Level 1Sundays, 9-10am beginning Sept. 17th.
     Ages 5-8 y/o.

-CM Level 2 Sundays,10:15-11:15 beginning Sept. 17th
Ages 9-11 y/o.

Fundamentals of Modern Dance
This class will explore fundamentals of modern dance through floor work, standing center work, traveling phrases and creative exploration of concepts.  We will work toward healthy, skeletal alignment, greater strength and flexibility, and attend to both our inner and outer experience of moving through space. Concepts will include grounding/centering, release/recovery, various forms of partner work and more.

-FMDLevel 1- Saturdays 10-11:15 am beginning Sept. 23rd
Ages  8-11 y/o

-FMD Level 2- Saturdays 11:30-1pm beginning Sept. 23rd
Ages 11-15 y/o

-Modern Dance, Level 2/3- Tuesdays 3:45-5:15pm beginning Sept. 12th
Ages 11-18y/o
Using imagery and grounding techniques from somatic traditions, we will play with gravity, weight, release, and recovery to enliven our movement. Some experience necessary.
 

ADULT CLASSES


-Rotating Fridays- Fridays 5:30-7, beginning Sept. 15th
Faculty and guest teachers offer a myriad of dance explorations including repertoire, advanced technique and improvisational scores
Keep an eye on the Open Door calendar to see who is teaching. Class will depend on the instructor.

Open Door’s Somatics programming includes classes, workshops and one on one sessions which are more therapeutic in nature and  focus on the internal experience of movement. Kate Gamble is the primary teacher of these classes but is committed to bringing in gifted guest teachers.  She incorporates her in depth knowledge of anatomy, biomechanics, Feldenkrais technique and other somatic practices to facilitate transformational movement experiences. Whether your are healing from injury, frustrated by habitual movement patterns that no longer serve you or simply wanting a deeper internal experience of moving with ease and grace, this work can be of benefit.  Somatic Techniques vary greatly and may focus on promoting body-awareness, mindfulness practices, assessing and improving posture, working with the breath, movement, or having integrative conversations.

For more information email Kate directly at opendoorwrj@gmail.com
Small group classes begin in the Fall. Individual sessions can be arranged through emailing Kate.


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Introducing Our Newest Members....

Mason Stabler
Director of Community Acupuncture at Open Door

Mason’s interest in Chinese medicine began at Kenyon College where he received his bachelor’s degree in biology. He then completed his Masters of Science in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine with honors from the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine. After graduating, Mason traveled to Chanaute, Nepal where he ran a rural health clinic, treating 20-40 patients per day for four months. Mason is a dedicated advocate for the therapeutic power of Chinese medicine and believes strongly in the benefits of integrative care. Currently, Mason is a Doctoral Fellow at PCOM and soon to be a Doctor of Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine. In his practice, Mason uses moxibustion and nutritional counseling alongside acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine, to provide the most effective and individualized care possible for each of his patients.

Stefan Grace
Master of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine

Stefan practices a lineage of Chinese medicine that combines tuina (Chinese medical massage), Craniosacral therapy, acupuncture, and Chinese herbs. He has been training in this lineage of medicine for over ten years, through his affiliation with the North American Tang Shou Tao Association. He is a graduate of the National University of Natural Medicine in Portland, OR. His time in school was focused on the clinical application of classical Chinese herbal formulas. Stefan has almost twenty years experience in the Chinese internal martial arts, training baguazhang, xingyiquan, and taijiquan as medicine for both himself and his patients. He utilizes a variety of modalities during the course of treatment to take full advantage of the breadth and flexibility of traditional Chinese medicine.

For more information about Mason or Stefan or to schedule a session, visit Open Door's website.


New Offerings!
Workshops

Stress Lab: Open Door has created a simple 6-week curriculum to examine the nature of stress and to learn strategies to minimize its impact. Tuesdays  9/19- 11/14 from 6-8pm

White Awake: Looking deeply at ourselves through the lens of mindfulness with Melissa Laverack. Mondays 9/18-10/23 from 6-8pm.

Cultivating Happiness through Mindfulness Practice and Play: with Landon Hall. Mondays 10/30-11/20 5:30-7:15pm

Martial Arts

Tai Chi with Paul Mahoney. Fridays from 10-11am

Baguazhang with Stefan Grace. Tuesdays from 12-1:15pm


ABOUT US
At Open Door, we offer clients the tools to achieve vibrant health and well-being and to be self reliant and resilient. We take a fresh approach to healthcare that encourages the use of preventative practices and collaboration between client and providers. We work with clients in private sessions and group classes in our studio. We also bring our wellness services to the workplace and out to the community. Learn more>

*   *   *   *   *
Host an Event at Open Door>
Open Door offers an elegant and versatile space to hold a celebration, board meeting, or workshop. Contact us for details. Learn more>

Summer Days

Summer Days

The Summer Day

Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper? This grasshopper, I mean-
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don't know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
 how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?
—Mary Oliver

Back to Basics
 
I almost didn’t plant the garden at Open Door today when I realized I didn’t have a gloves or a spade. But then I heard my pragmatic, Vermonter father’s voice in my head asking, “What, are you afraid of? Getting dirty?”. I quickly came to my senses and realized the ridiculous nature my previous line of thought. I don’t know when I disconnected from that childhood love of playing in the dirt we all have but, thankfully, its back.
 
My initial aversion to the messy task quickly dissipated as my hands remembered how absolutely delightful it is to play in the dirt. I reconnected with how rewarding it is to gently help the small, delicate plants out of their pots, giving their roots a quick little massage before escorting them to their new home. And while I’ll admit a bit of grumbling about the cigarette butts I had to evict from the bed even that felt kind of good. Like I was doing my tiny, tiny part to help with the beatification of the parking lot behind Open Door.
 
Working in the dirt this afternoon felt a bit like a coming home. Like perhaps the ancestral parts of my brain were lighting up at the familiar actions of being in such close contact with nature. This season in general feels very much like a return. A getting back to how life is supposed to be. Shedding clothes, opening windows and, for those of us lucky ones, letting go of at least a few obligations.  With the long summer days it feels as though there is a little more time and with that time opportunity to take a breath and enjoy this beautiful corner of the world we live in.
 
I think that at Open Door our mission is in part to help people get back to the simple and beautiful basics of life. Eating real food, moving the body everyday, finding support in community, connecting with the rhythms of the seasons and enjoying this precious life we have been given. As Kate put it recently, at Open Door we are fairly “low-tech” but that feels right to us. We believe in the healing power of deep breathing, quietness and reflection. We hope that this summer you too are able to slow down, get outside, enjoy naps in hammocks, picnics under the sun, swim breaks, dirty feet, time to pause in nature and laughter and play with loved ones.
 
Happy summer, my friends!

Miriah Wall, MS, CMHC

Tastes of the Season June in the Upper Valley is the time to enjoy the outdoors and welcome fresh, local produce after a winter of last fall's root cellar and frozen harvests. Now that Memorial Day weekend and chance of a frost is behind us, we can focus on planting our gardens. If you find that you do not have the time and space for your own vegetable garden, you are in luck- the Upper Valley has many wonderful farm CSA's to choose from. Even if you are unable to commit to a CSA, most of the Coops in our area have a local produce section. Buying local  not only benefits our community, but benefits your health. Eating fruits and vegetables that were just picked a few hours earlier is an excellent way to meet your vitamin needs. Most vitamins that provide anti-oxidant support are water soluble which means that the longer produce sits around, the less fresh it is and the fewer vitamins it retains. If you decide to plant your own garden, remember to add herbs to your garden bed or box. Fresh herbs, such as parsley, cilantro, basil, mint and oregano are loaded with vitamins and minerals. Adding a small handful of fresh herbs every day to your green shake or salad can provide you with enough vitamin C and phytonutrients to boost your immune system and your energy - plus it tastes great!   Here is a recipe for my favorite energizing green shake: 1 cup coconut water 1 cup packed kale 1/2 cup packed chard 1/2 cup packed, fresh parsley 1/2 banana 1/2 cup chopped, fresh pineapple or blueberries 1 inch sliced fresh ginger 1 inch sliced fresh turmeric Add all the ingredients to a blender in that order - modify quantity of liquid to desired consistency and ENJOY! - Holly Westling, RN,MS,CNS

Tastes of the Season
June in the Upper Valley is the time to enjoy the outdoors and welcome fresh, local produce after a winter of last fall's root cellar and frozen harvests. Now that Memorial Day weekend and chance of a frost is behind us, we can focus on planting our gardens. If you find that you do not have the time and space for your own vegetable garden, you are in luck- the Upper Valley has many wonderful farm CSA's to choose from. Even if you are unable to commit to a CSA, most of the Coops in our area have a local produce section. Buying local  not only benefits our community, but benefits your health. Eating fruits and vegetables that were just picked a few hours earlier is an excellent way to meet your vitamin needs. Most vitamins that provide anti-oxidant support are water soluble which means that the longer produce sits around, the less fresh it is and the fewer vitamins it retains. If you decide to plant your own garden, remember to add herbs to your garden bed or box. Fresh herbs, such as parsley, cilantro, basil, mint and oregano are loaded with vitamins and minerals. Adding a small handful of fresh herbs every day to your green shake or salad can provide you with enough vitamin C and phytonutrients to boost your immune system and your energy - plus it tastes great!  

Here is a recipe for my favorite energizing green shake:
1 cup coconut water
1 cup packed kale
1/2 cup packed chard
1/2 cup packed, fresh parsley
1/2 banana
1/2 cup chopped, fresh pineapple or blueberries
1 inch sliced fresh ginger
1 inch sliced fresh turmeric

Add all the ingredients to a blender in that order - modify quantity of liquid to desired consistency and ENJOY!

- Holly Westling, RN,MS,CNS

Expansion of Acupuncture and Chinese Martial Arts Program at Open Door

In June we are delighted to welcome two new practitioners to Open Door who will diversify the traditional medical arts program at Open Door, offering group acupuncture, more individual treatment times, and baguazhang.
 
Stefan Grace, L.Ac. recently moved back to Vermont from Portland, Oregon. Stefan is a board-certified acupuncturist and herbalist with two decades of training in Chinese martial arts and tuina (Chinese medical massage).
 
As well as individual acupuncture and manual therapy treatments, Stefan will be teaching baguazhang on Tuesdays from noon-1:15pm. Bagua, along with taiji and xingyi, is a pillar of martial arts practice. It emphasizes non-linear meditative movement that builds strength, flexibility, and resiliency of mind and body. For an illustrative video on bagua, click here. Join for a series of classes or drop-in as schedule allows.

For more information about Stefan, to schedule a session, or sign up for baguazhang please email us at opendoorwrj@gmail.com.
__________
 
Mason Stabler, L.Ac. also recently moved to the Upper Valley after a 4-month stint in Nepal where he ran a rural health clinic treating 20-40 patients each day. Drawing on his experience in Nepal, and from his experience treating patients in Chicago community clinics, Mason will direct Open Door’s group acupuncture clinic. A board-certified acupuncturist and herbalist, Mason will soon receive his Doctorate in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine.
 
Midday on Thursday, patients will be able to receive acupuncture at Open Door in the comfort of zero-gravity chairs for just $30. This style of acupuncture can address a wide variety of health concerns, and is particularly suited for chronic pain conditions where more frequent treatment confers enduring relief. We hope this clinic will make the healing power of acupuncture accessible to a wider socioeconomic demographic in the Upper Valley.

For more information or to schedule a group acupuncture session please email: opendoorwrj@gmail.com

Spring is coming...

Spring is coming...

On the slowness of Spring in the Upper Valley

Britton Mann, DAOM, L.Ac.

       Spring takes its time to arrive in the Upper Valley, but murmurings have been around for a while. Small moths have appeared and first crocus greens have pushed up.
      Following suit, soon, is the surge. There is an enormity of biomass getting ready to push its way up and out of the soil to take advantage of the ephemeral growing season. At first it will look young and tender – undifferentiated thin green shoots. But collectively, it is a massive force of growth.
      Chinese medicine associates certain physiologic processes with seasons. The anatomic liver has awesome anabolic and regenerative forces: it cooks up bile, packages fats, makes proteins, and is able to regenerate after trauma. Unsurprisingly, springtime is Liver time. The capitalized “L” refers in Chinese medicine to not just the anatomic liver, but also to the physiologic processes governed by the organ.
        The Liver governs emotions, and in its governance of emotions, does not like to be constrained. Constraining the Liver is akin to throwing weed guard over all the green biomass wanting to push up and out of the earth. A constrained Liver is an irritable Liver. An irritable Liver makes for a bad neighbor – it harasses the Stomach and causes indigestion, it pokes at the Heart and adds to anxiety and insomnia.
      Here we come to the Upper Valley springtime conundrum. At a time when much of the country is enjoying blossoming trees, warm breezes, and spring salads, we still have snow on the ground. We want to throw off the scarves, enjoy a slow walk outside with friends, roll down the windows in the car. Instead: cabin fever. This is the New England analogy for the Chinese medical diagnosis of Liver Constraint.
     There are many possible remedies for Liver Constraint – herbal medicines, acupuncture, qigong and taiji, yoga, meditation, eating sprouted seeds, mindfulness training, talk therapy. There is patience. Spring is coming and the biomass is unstoppable. Channel the springtime Liver energy appropriately and the irritability becomes growth potential.

Offerings:

Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Tools
Tuesdays, 5:45 - 8 pm, May 9 – June 27
Daylong Program: Saturday, June 17th
Instructors: Landon Hall  and Miriah Wall 
Please register via elhall888@gmail.com, miriah.opendoorwrj@gmail.com

Mindfulness-based Cognitive Tools (MBCTools) is a practice and study group that strengthens mindfulness-based cognitive tools for living.  It is based on Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program at UMass Medical Center.  The program is designed specifically for people living with chronic emotional distress, and has been scientifically proven to help people suffering from anxiety and depression.  This group is not recommended for anyone in the midst of a period of acute depression or anxiety, and for those suffering from chronic (not acute) emotional distress, it is recommended that they be under the care of a licensed counselor or therapist while taking the class. 

Nutritious Soups
Instructor: Holly Westling, RN, MS, CNS
April 27, 6:30 - 8:00pm
Price: $50

Bone broth has been used medicinally for centuries in many cultures.  While its name may not sound appetizing, it is loaded with minerals and nutrients that support digestive, bone and joint health, and tastes delicious.  Join our nutritionist this evening and learn how to make your own nutrient rich broth and nutritious soups.

Bootcamp For Yogis and Dancers
Hanna Satterlee
Friday, April 14th 3:30-5pm

Using a mix of yoga, pilates, ballet barre and body weight resistance training, intermediate to advanced dancers can enjoy conditioning specifically for their art form. We will train for length and strength in our muscles, integrating proper alignment and dynamic use of breath for health, longevity and endurance. Together we will cultivate a supportive and uplifting atmosphere while becoming strong and resilient.

Guest artist, Hanna Satterlee

FOR MORE INFO OR TO REGISTER: https://www.opendoorworkshop.com/registrations

I am going to try to pay attention to the spring. I am going to look around at all the flowers, and look up at the hectic trees. I am going to close my eyes and listen.
 Anne Lamott

Shadows and Light

Shadows and Light

         Late winter afternoons offer a crisp contrast of light and shadow.  The tall pines cast  gray paths along the pristine white snow.  I like the the idea of shadow and light symbolizing choices we make throughout our days. We stand in the light, faces to the sky, hopeful. We, also, at times walk along the shadow path, needing time to reflect. Both these options call us and the contrast and appeal can be most clear on winter days.
         Many of us are ready for spring, have had enough of the cold and muck. And many of us still find a way to walk the winter paths, enjoy the quiet of snow, and notice the rosy cheeks of our companions. Each moment is a fleeting opportunity to revel in the season as it is. This is what I love about New England- the ever changing climate offers an opportunity to be present, to wake up and to be patient as winter turns to spring.

         May you find time to savor the quiet and may we all get enough time to stand in the light.
                  Kate

Upcoming events:

Cooking/Nutrition Classes

         Open Door is now offering monthly nutrition/cooking classes.  Last month, we successfully offered an anti-inflammatory cooking class where people learned about the importance of reducing inflammation and how best to do that. Attendees also enjoyed some great cooking tips and a delicious dinner.  This month (March 29) we will be offering a “Healthy Eating on a Budget” class.  Often I hear, “I would eat healthier if I could afford to, but the more processed foods are just so much cheaper!”  Well, that is not always the case!  During this hour and a half class we will be learning how to create a meal plan while sticking to a budget, and we will prepare and enjoy 2 inexpensive and delicious dishes.  In April, we will learn how to make our own Bone Broth and nutritious soups.  Stay tuned for more upcoming cooking classes by checking out our website.  Also, please send Holly an email and let her know if there is a particular cooking class you would like to see on the schedule.

Mindfulness Based Cognitive Tools

         Mindfulness-based Cognitive Tools (MBCTools) is a practice and study group that strengthens mindfulness-based cognitive tools for living.  Based on Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program at UMass Medical Center, the program is designed specifically for people living with chronic emotional distress, and has been scientifically proven to help people suffering from anxiety and depression. The program emphasizes working with and understanding the psychological and cognitive aspects of experience.  It includes many components of a traditional MBSR class, such as meditation, gentle stretching and movement, as well as group dialog, all aimed at increasing moment-to-moment awareness in everyday life.

Tuesdays, 5:45 - 8 pm, May 9 – June 27

Fun

Ben Cosgrove in Concert
April 7, 7:30pm
Price: $10-20 suggested donation 

       On the night of April 7th, Open Door will feature a live performance by Ben Cosgrove, a traveling composer and performer whose instrumental music focuses on place and landscape. His music has been called both "compelling and powerful" and "delicately romantic," and his live performances have been described as "electrifying and exhilarating." Ben has performed several hundred shows in 47 states and composed music in collaboration with the National Park Service, the National Forest Service, the Schmidt Ocean Institute, the Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, and other environmental organizations. He is the recipient of a St. Botolph Society Emerging Artist Award and he has held fellowships with Middlebury College, the Vermont Studio Center, and Harvard University. More information at www.bencosgrove.com.

Tea and Cake at Death Cafe

Article written by Jaimie Seaton: 
https://www.purpleclover.com/relationships/7544-tea-cake-death-cafe/?icid=pclver|swipehp

Death is the last taboo in our society, so who better to discuss it with than a roomful of total strangers.
Join us at Open Door for our monthly Death Cafe.

DEATH CAFE
Meets the 3rd Sunday of every month from 3-4:30pm, except March 19.
Free and open to the public.
A group-directed discussion to explore death and how to make the most of our (finite) lives.

Update:
Our first run of our Experiential Learning Lab/Stress Reduction has gotten off to an excellent start. We plan to offer the course as outreach and in house.
Please be in touch with questions.

Ongoing Classes:
Tai Chi, Dance, Yoga, Cooking, Melt

Each Step Creates the Path...

Each Step Creates the Path...

Dear All,
Lately many of us have been thinking: What can we do to make this world a better place? Crazy times indeed. At Open Door we ask that question daily, focusing on wellness. We believe part of the answer to this question is for all of us to look at our daily habits and choices. Do they facilitate vitality, bring our best side forward? It is the every day moments that are the most ripe for change. One step at a time we create our path. Being aware and taking personal responsibility are critical components to choosing a journey that supports wellness. 
        May you be well,
                     Kate

New Programming at Open Door

Open Door has created a simple 6-week curriculum to examine the nature of stress and to learn strategies to minimize its impact. Our team has targeted three primary areas: mindfulness, physical activity and nutrition. We believe fostering these skills will increase your capacity to manage stress. Our guided curriculum includes discussion,practice, and independent work between classes. Your progress will be measurable using the provided workbook and through a follow up session four weeks after the five core Labs.

Join us on Monday Feb. 27th from 6:30-7:30 for our next Round Table.
The Open Door team will discuss our exciting new experiential learning labs.
Topics include simple strategies to work with stress, sleep, and pain along with maximizing                                          vitality.
Free and open to the public.


I asked our business and creative consultant, Caroline Cannon to give us a bird's eye view on what Open Door is up to. I am grateful for her excellent summary below. - Kate
       Our bodies are amazing ecosystems of interrelated parts and processes and like any piece of complex machinery, need maintenance and an occasional tune up. Today’s medicine can do remarkable things to help us manage acute problems, but sometimes the maintenance leading to long-term good health gets lost in the shuffle of daily life. 
       What I appreciate about the Open Door approach to wellness is that it acknowledges how some key daily activities contribute to our health. Open Door looks closely at the contribution of movement, nutrition and mental balance to overall wellbeing and identifies areas for better care at that intersection and by individual need. The goal is to educate clients about how each discipline contributes to lifelong vitality and to give back to the individual agency over personal health.
       The Open Door integrated programming is rooted in science and the specifics of each practice are backed by research data and published studies. Kate, Holly, Miriah and Britton work separately and together to create practical plans that address an individual’s specific health needs at the body’s systems level. What they have discovered is that small changes in key activities and daily patterns can have major impact on how we feel and how our bodies perform.
       Because the programming is based on specific needs, the Open Door team works with individuals to assess wellness issues, define personal goals and develop a reasonable health plan to be acted on. These plans can be as simple as “I want to feel stronger”, as common as “I am pre-diabetic and need a practical plan to manage/prevent onset”, or as complex as “I live with chronic pain and want to reduce my dependency on medication”. Open Door is experienced working with an individual’s physician to address more complicated needs and providing the day-to-day lifestyle balance to augment the standard medical care.
       Open Door’s mission is to provide practical ways for people to feel good every day and to continue that good health throughout life. As someone who has benefited from their work, I can say it is a treat worth exploring. 
                     Caroline Cannon


  • VALENTINES DAY YOGA AND DINNER
    Tuesday, February 14 - 6-8:30pm
     
  • DINING FOR OPTIMAL HEALTH
    February 21, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
     
  • INTRODUCTION TO TAI CHI
    Begins Feb. 17th, Fridays, 10-11am
    Begins Feb.28th, Tuesdays, 5:30-7pm (first class free, 10 week series ending May 2nd)
     
  • MINDFULNESS-BASED STRESS REDUCTION
    Begins March 16th, Thursdays, 5:45-8pm
     
  • MINDFULNESS BASED COGNITIVE TOOLS
    May 9 - June 27, Tuesdays, 5:45 - 8 pm
     
  • New movement and dance classes. Guest faculty. Opportunities for everyone. More info forthcoming.