Montauk

Gurney’s Montauk Retreat with Fern Olivia

GurneysMtk

If there is one thing I love about spring, it is that the weather is nice enough to take a day trip out to Eastern Long Island—before the official start of tourist season begins. I usually reserve such excursions for the warmer weather (read: beach season), but when my beloved thyroid guru, Fern Olivia, told me she was going to be in town and was having a weekend retreat at Gurney’s Resort & Spa in Montauk from May 5th – 7th, I knew I needed to keep that weekend open.

Last August, I attended my first of Fern’s Thyroid Yoga Retreats (which was held at a private home in Montauk). It was one of my fondest memories from the summer of 2016. I met so many inspiring women, whom I still keep in touch with and who have become friends. Since then, Fern and her teachings have had a lasting influence on me, and she is someone whom I both admire and respect for the important work she is doing to raise awareness and help those of us suffering with a thyroid condition. Her essential oils and morning thyroid yoga sequence have become daily rituals in my life. Through her event at The Ash Center with Dr. Gabrielle Lyon this past January, she taught me the importance of self-love and has guided me when it comes to nutrition.

Needless to say, I am beyond excited to attend her upcoming event in a couple of weeks, and I am looking forward to walking away with even more knowledge about my body and overall health (and making some new friends in the process!).

So, if you find that your schedule allows for a trip out to the beautiful Gurney’s Resort & Spa, or you just need to take some time for yourself and want to be surrounded by incredible women, then join us! The retreat promises to be both restorative and informative with meditation, yoga, and of course, spa time.

You can peruse the schedule of events and register, here. Hope to see you there!

Montauk Magic Part II

The Surf Lodge

I can’t even begin to tell you how incredible the Montauk Magic Retreat was. First off, a huge thank you to Fern Olivia for having me for the day, Alyson Charles for making an amazing smoothie in the morning and for sharing her wisdom, and to Jacqlyn for ensuring a successful day for the attendees.

If you saw Friday’s post, I mentioned that I would be heading to the east end of Long Island on Saturday for a wellness retreat with Fern Olivia, the founder of Thyroid.Yoga. The day was both a transformative and restorative experience for me.

Montauk Magic Retreat

Montauk Magic Retreat

Montauk Magic Retreat

The morning began around 8:30 am with breakfast smoothies at a private home in beautiful Montauk. Alyson, a shaman and the co-host of the retreat, whipped up some delicious berry smoothies with avocado and cacao, while Fern served us a very healthy chia seed pudding. I’m no fan of avocado, but after one sip of the smoothie, I was sold! It may just be my new summer drink of choice. The morning smoothies proved to be a great time to meet the other attendees, all of whom welcomed me with open arms. After some brief conversations and getting acquainted with everyone, it was time for our yoga session at The Surf Lodge, a beachy hotel and restaurant on the water.

The Surf Lodge, Montauk NY

If you ever find yourself in Montauk, The Surf Lodge is well worth a stop for either an overnight stay or, at the very least, lunch at its scenic outdoor dining area. Its funky exterior and coastal interior will give you lots of cool decor ideas while you take a break from the summer heat.

Montauk Magic Retreat

For our yoga class, Fern and Alyson took over the outside patio area. The setting was ideal — the sound of the waves lapping in the background and the steady breeze made the July heat dissipate.

WTRMLN WTR

I’ve been taking a hiatus from my regular yoga practice, so I was thrilled to start the morning in such a rejuvenating way. I managed to secure a small piece of shade on the deck and laid out my colorful yoga mat. No detail was overlooked to ensure that we enjoyed the practice — including having refreshing WTRMLN WTR, a cold-pressed watermelon juice, and Supergoop! sunscreen on hand.

Our yoga practice began with chanting before breaking into a cat-cow sequence, moves that are beneficial for thyroid health. We also did a series of twisting poses, another fabulous way to relieve tension in the throat chakra.

Thyroid Yoga, Fern Olivia

Fern created a beautiful Morning Thyroid Sequence Book, which includes poses that are conducive to stimulating your thyroid, adrenals, and glandular system.

Montauk Magic Retreat

After getting our circulation up, we partnered with whomever was next to us. The exercise was for us to sit facing each other and to study the other person’s left eye — in silence. At first, it felt a bit strange to be staring deeply into a relative stranger’s eye, but after a minute or so, it began to feel tranquil and natural. The woman whom I partnered with, I later learned, also had a thyroid condition and we bonded over our similar treatment plans.

The Surf Lodge, Montauk, NY

The Surf Lodge, Montauk NY

The Surf Lodge, Montauk NY

As if the morning could get any better, after yoga we all sat by the water and took in the sights. The Surf Lodge has this incredible area in back with chaise lounge chairs…and even a swing. I could have sat there all day.

Grace Ajai, Fern Olivia Essential Oils

Fern brought her essential oil, Grace Alchemy, which includes rosehip, geranium, patchouli, and sandalwood, ingredients which are beneficial for overall health and healing. (Click here to watch Fern mix up my very own bottle of Grace Alchemy!) I’ve been using the essential oil in place of my perfume. The scent is calming and perfect for wearing during the day and before bed.

Montauk Magic Retreat, The Surf Lodge

The afternoon activities were just as enlightening as the morning session. Alyson led our group on a guided meditation to find our spirit animal, which is an animal that embodies our traits. I’ve been hearing lots of things about spirit animals lately, and I always wondered what mine would be. Now I know. Alyson did a fantastic job laying the foundation for us to connect with our animal. As she talked first about being in a meadow and then seeing this large tree, which led to a jungle, I began to feel an animal walk alongside me. It was large, powerful, and graceful. The more Alyson talked about the scenes around me, the more I could visualize this creature. It was fast and slender, but tender and gentle. Before long, it revealed itself. It was a cheetah, and it was both playful and shy. My intention for this guided meditation was to be given strength. And in my mind, there is no better animal for me to connect with than a cheetah. These large cats are majestic creatures that not only captivate you with their beauty, but also their speed, agility, and strength.

Montauk Magic Retreat

Our time at The Surf Lodge was ending and we were ready to head back to the house for lunch. But the day didn’t end there. Stay tuned for more about the retreat and what the experience taught me. Part III will come later in the week!

Summer Scorchers

Last week was a scorcher on Long Island…and if I had any doubts that summer was in full-swing, it completely allayed my fears. Usually, the hot summer days leave me feeling lazy (except when a trip to the pool or beach is involved), but last week reminded me of when I was a kid — carefree and embracing the summer heat.

Here are some highlights:

Sam Edelman Sandals

{Breaking in my new Sam Edelman sandals}

Chocology Unlimited

{A sweet surprise from Chocology}

Cooling off in the pool

{Cooling off in the pool}

Coffee break in Montauk

{Coffee break in Montauk}

Pretty in Pink

{Pretty in Pink}

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Day Trip: Montauk, New York

Montauk, NY

Sometimes you just need to get away for a day. That’s exactly what I did yesterday, as the car got packed for a little road trip. I didn’t stray off Long Island, but being a mere 50 miles away from my town and familiar sights made all of the difference.

Montauk, NY

This week we had a heat wave, and I tried my best to keep cool by taking a dip in a pool or heading to the beach. And since I love Long Island’s East End, once the pool and beach had been crossed off my list, a trip out East was in order.

Apparently, everyone else had the same idea, and the traffic was brutal for mid-day on a Thursday (actually, the road congestion in these parts will be brutal all summer long from now until Labor Day!). So I braved the heat and the traffic, and after way too long in the car, arrived in Montauk.

Montauk Lighthouse

The weather looked threatening all day, and combined with the oppressive heat, Montauk was covered in a thick blanket of fog. The famed Montauk Lighthouse was barely visible from the road, which made the view less spectacular than normal.

The Gig Shack, Montauk, NY

After a quick lunch at The Gig Shack (the colossal shrimp skewers were excellent), it was off to Sag Harbor, just west of Montauk. You may remember that I’ve posted about Sag Harbor before (you can catch up here), but the quaint town is one of my favorites to visit. There are tons of cute local shops, great places to eat, and incredible yachts to see.

Sag Harbor, NY

Muse in the Harbor, Montauk, NY

Muse in the Harbor, Montauk, NY

On this visit, I tried a restaurant called Muse in the Harbor. The ambiance was nice and the dining area featured a large fish tank that can be mesmerizing. I ordered the scallop mac and cheese, which was every bit as good as I hoped it would be.

In the evening, the rain finally came and cooled things down a bit. Here’s hoping for clear skies this weekend — and slightly cooler temps.