experiences 1

A Chain Reaction

Written & Photographed by A Wild Dove

 
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How can you create a chain reaction of kindness? Think of yourself not just as a filament within a bulb, but as a glowing light meant to radiate past its own shell. It’s about sharing, about thinking of more than yourself, and about paying attention to the opportunities that the universe keeps sending your way.

For the final summer installment of Hamptons-infused wellness panels by A Wild Dove and Five Pillars Yoga, hosts Lynn Levoy and Karen Mehiel brought Transcendental Meditation, acts of service, and neuroscience into the spotlight. Coined “The Kindness Reaction,” the conversation joined voices from experts including The Ladies of Hope Ministries founder Topeka K. Sam and Bob Roth, author of New York Times bestseller Strength in Stillness: The Power of Transcendental Meditation and yogi and author of One Simple Thing, Eddie Stern. For each, the path to kindness has been paved in real change—and important choices.

 
 
 
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Sharing is the Key

“I worked for Bobby Kennedy,” Roth shared Wellness Coach and Energy Mover, Jamie Graber opened the topic as moderator for the evening. “I saw Bobby Kennedy speak in San Francisco, and then four days later he was gone. I went to college with the plan to become a United States Senator. In my upbringing I wanted to change the world—I realized politics would never heal the soul of the nation.” It was this realization that brought Roth into modern service, teaching Transcendental Meditation to those in need across the globe via the The David Lynch Foundation. For Stern, too, it was about sharing a veritable wealth of knowledge in the form of mindful movement. “In America, about seven billion dollars a year is spent on yoga, yoga clothing, yoga workshops,” he notes of the powerhouse industry. Now, he empowers the next generation. “I thought let’s shortcut that and give young adults and kids access to become yoga teachers— and entering into that economic stream.” And for Sam, her journey to redemption was exactly what it took to help other women regain their rights under the law. Thanks to her experience in the prison system, she was able to change the lives of incarcerated women across the nation through dignity provisions. “I do believe there’s a chain reaction to kindness,” says Sam. “I believe that what we put out we receive back on many levels in the universe.”

 
 
 
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Service is Paramount

“I meditate, but for me, I think one of the secrets is service,” Roth shares of the kindness concept. “There’s a beautiful proverb- the world is my family. People need us. Whether it’s one hour a week, it’s amazing to give anonymously.” And aside from clocking hours, it’s a matter of making sure you’re in the headspace, and heartspace, to be truly illuminated for others. “Everyone has deep within ourselves access to a reservoir of a field of light,” Roth explains. “When you light a bulb, you’re lighting a filament, but it doesn’t stay within the bulb, it radiates out. When we light up from within ourselves in a genuine way—not in a moody way of pretending kindness, but in that we do the work—then it has a profoundly transforming effect on our environment.” It’s this attitude that’s led Roth and The David Lynch Foundation to open an office two blocks away from the Supreme Court, where they’re teaching transcendental meditation to members of congress on both sides of the aisle. “I use a broader vision. Nothing good can come out of two angry people talking, nothing good can ever come out of a disruptive, divisive, hateful dialogue—so nothing good can come out of our political climate as it is.” Instead, the focus must be love. “I think kindness is the spontaneous result of love,” Roth admits. “Ultimately, kindness is the expression of love and that expression can take many forms. A parent can feel complete love for a child and really reem the child because the child needed, as you all know, firm stern language. Kindness is a beautiful expression of ones’ love that you feel within.”

 
 
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Train Your Brain

For Stern, a little bit of awareness, even pessimism, can be helpful in understanding how to master the positive. “To actually train the way your brain functions, to be positive, takes work. We learn from threat very, very quickly,” he shares. “We don’t learn as quickly from positive experiences. A negative experience will go into our long-term memory in under a second and stay there with us—and that’s how we frame all experiences. But a positive experience can take up to 20 or 30 seconds or more to actually soak into your long-term memory.” So what does training really look like? You keep your mind as calm as possible on a daily basis. “Yoga is a preventative medicine for your mind,” he notes. “We should exercise a few times a week, keep our bodies fit because we want them to carry us through the rest of our lives.” The same goes for your mind. “We need a bit of pessimistic thinking ‘something’s going to happen later, I need to prepare for it.’” Don’t get so comfortable that you don’t maintain a consistent check-in with your thoughts.

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Uncomfortable Opportunities Are Still Opportunities

It wasn’t easy to accept an invitation from President Trump, as Sam explains. On the first offer, she took her friends’ advice and declined. When it came up again, she knew that God was giving her a signal. When she arrived at the White House, she realized why. “I was the only person who had been incarcerated so I was happy to have been there or an authentic voice about what was going on and conditions wouldn’t have been heard,” she shares. “Though I wanted to feel this level of disgust, this level of hate I had for the administration, it wasn’t there. People feel our energy and get on the defense and they end up behaving a certain way—if we focus on giving kindness, that can permeate through people.” Thanks to following her instincts, instead of her misgivings, real change spread to the women who need it. “Through that experience we worked on the First Step Act. The bill passed and we were able to get the dignity provisions into the legislation.”

 
 
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Kindness Will Shape Our Futures

Ultimately, the way that kindness is spread today effects every generation moving forward. “The most impactful years that really determine the trajectory of the child are conception to three years old,” Roth shares. “They have something called ACES- adverse childhood experiences—that’s when a child is growing up and there’s a rough divorce in the family, or there’s a death in the family, or there’s violence in the neighborhood. Neglect is more traumatizing to a child than physical abuse,” he notes. “So children are coming into the world traumatized. If someone is sick, what do you do? You have the person rest and the body’s own repair mechanism can heal the body. So when you give a child or an adult the silence of meditation, when you give a child or adult the ease and flow of yoga, when you give a child or adult the love and wisdom and guidance of a mentor, then you’re giving them a safe space for that nervous system to heal itself and grow.” For Stern, part of that growth is in moving forward. “Kindness needs to be coupled with forgiveness,” he says. “Forgiveness toward yourself, what you’ve done to yourself, what you’ve done to other people, and what other people have done to you.” And for Sam, it’s about including gratefulness. “I’m connected to so many women who are still incarcerated, so the pain and suffering and trauma that I see them experience on a regular basis is something that allows me to motivate myself to remain in a space of gratitude,” she shares. It’s with gratitude in all practices that the change can really happen. “People need to be able to shift their darkness in order for them to be able to be in the light.”

 
 
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A Wild Dove x Five Pillars Yoga Women Wavemakers Event

Written & Photographed by A Wild Dove

 
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WOMEN WAVEMAKERS

It’s Friday before sundown at Karen Mehiel’s cinematic Hamptons home, and guests draped in tie dye slips, floaty embroidered linen, and beachy floral dresses are filing indoors. The group is gathering as part of the first summer collective hosted by Five Pillars Yoga and A Wild Dove called Women Wavemakers, dreamed up by Mehiel and Lynn Levoy to offer a holistic style and wellness event that shares in the personal processes and practices of female visionaries across the industry.

 
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Inside, stroll through stations of flower-garnished hors d'oeuvres arranged under a crystal starburst chandelier, bottles of San Pellegrino and rosé chilling on ice, and with a gallery of Le Prunier face oils, Moon Juice elixirs, Pursoma healing bath salts, and Act + Acre cold-pressed hair products at A Wild Dove’s Lotions & Potions Pop Up. Close by, a skateboard emblazoned with “Hell Yes” flanking Malia Mills swimwear. With rows of white chairs arranged in the late afternoon shade, the party moves poolside for the panel discussion of female entrepreneurs selected for their contributions in shaping a more modern wellness landscape. Leading the first discussion, Samara Sine, NY director of Common Sense Media, introduces the panel members. Designer Malia Mills of her eponymous label and health guru Medea Juhasz of super-supplement Catalyst Gold join hosts Karen Mehiel and Lynn Levoy settle in for a conversation about second acts in life, keeping balance when “occupational burnout” is a real 2019 work-life hazard, the women that helped them along the way, and how they’re helping women now.

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HUSSLE AND HEART

For the entire group, the path to success has been winding, often unpredictable. “I’m going through an evolution, I keep evolving,” admits Mehiel, who’s dedicated to various boards including Robert F Kennedy for Human Rights and Stony Brook Women’s Leadership Council, a mentoring program connecting young women with mentors. “You have this one life that we know of—where are you? Are you taking care of yourself? If you’re letting things go, and you find that you’re not the person you want to be—maybe that’s when you say ‘maybe I don’t need to go to that next place’.” Aside from running her own manufacturing company along with the Five Pillars Yoga project she started with Olga Palladino, Mehiel puts her energy into activism that brings awareness to inequalities in the world in hopes to provide a support system. It’s this kind of support that Malia Mills calls out as the driving force for opportunity in cities like New York.

 
 
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“All of us get curveballs thrown at us, and I think the important thing to remember is that we have these villages surrounding us,” Mills shares. And for NYC, where she dreamed up her American-made RTW label in the basement of The Odeon restaurant where she waitressed to make ends meet 25 years ago, it’s a particularly powerful village for female voices. “Everybody who is there is there because they have a ton of hussle and a ton of heart, and all they want to do is help you and want to put you in touch with people who they know and give you good advice,” says Mills. “When we started to talk to other women, we felt a real camaraderie.” With her sister Carol, Mills brings their shared mantra “love thy differences” into their swimwear designs. The pair celebrate diversity of women on the street every day via their non-profit brainchild. In their studio, they teach women in need industrial sewing skills and help place them in jobs in the tristate area. That pull toward something more—for a new purpose, a second act, is something she knows well and references to the group. “I think for a lot of us, what we do, whether it’s launching a business or starting a new hobby- it’s about feeling very intuitive about what’s getting our heart beating faster.”

 
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SECOND, THIRD, AND NEXT ACTS

For Levoy, who kicked off the conversation of finding balance through an updated career vision, it was about seeking out a life that included optimism, happiness, and new priorities. “I wasn’t as happy as I thought I’d be working in fashion,” says Levoy, who styled editorially in New York for years before launching A Wild Dove. “For me, after my son was born, I wanted to create something that I could do while I was with him, and that he could be a part of–he was very much my inspiration for starting my company- as he grew, my business grew, he’s with me half the time and sitting in meetings.” Whether it’s shooting health gurus with fashion photographers or tapping a ten-year-old for his preference on image selects, Levoy put her new life ahead of the cultural norm of a more-is-more office hour attitude. For others, it was a total-body balance issue that sparked change.

 
 
 
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“Somebody told me once that your career should be what you would do for free,” shares Medea Juhasz, whose culty Catalyst Gold supplement line sits on the Lotions & Potions table just steps away. “I have a classic story of a wellness entrepreneur who basically went through very extreme health struggles, and healed herself to be able to help and heal others—this is, I guess my third career act,” she admits, noting that she started out in the music industry as a teen, then moved into fashion over a decade that she experienced a dip in her personal health. “I was a mess when it came to my health, I had digestion issues, allergies, liver problems, my hair was falling out, I was addicted to sugar and processed foods. Western doctors gave me western medicine which gave me more side effects.” Once she started reading books from herbalists, she ordered a mix of adaptogensand started to play around with them on her kitchen table—ninemonths into experimenting (interesting timing for the birth of an idea) she finally “reached a certain ratio—all of my health issues started to disappear.” It was a long road to her realization—and after encapsulating her discovery into one pill, one formula for Catalyst Gold, things finally started to unfold naturally. “When you get on the right career path, which took me almost 40 years to figure out, things will align and things will really work out,”she notes. “I’m one of those people that I was very comfortable at my career—the universe had to push me to change careers, heal myself, and develop a product and work basically as a nutritionist and holistic health coach to help people.”

 
 
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DAILY RITUALS AND RESPECT

“One day I was leaving a yoga class and I felt a really powerful shifting,” shared Mehiel of the moment she tapped her partner Olga Palladino, the first instructor to sign on with Five Pillars. “I would not have imagined 10 years ago I would be an owner of a yoga studio—and to even say that I’m a teacher now!” enthuses Mehiel. “I’ve gone through a transformation with yoga, and it’s been incredibly beneficial—what I needed and I didn’t know I needed it.” Levoy seconds the notion of powerful practices. “A major shift was when I started to do transcendental meditation—20 minutes in the morning, 20 minutes in the afternoon—I became a better mother, a better partner, a better friend, a better coworker,” she notes of the first thing she does in the morning, before she even looks at her phone. “I like to work out every day, I have to fit it in, to me it’s not taking time away from something else, it’s making me a better person. Eating clean, taking supplements in the morning (which take 30 minutes to get through!), it’s a checklist.”

 
 

For Juhasz, it’s about appreciation. “I start my day every day with a gratitude list—sometimes I do it on a subway, sometimes if I’m not in the greatest mood I do it three times a day!Gratitude list and boxing—non-negotiable!” Mills even brings the idea of daily “Chi jacks.” What are they? According to her sister Carol, the inventor, they’re essentially jumping jacks performed while thinking happy thoughts. “You stop thinking about the thing that’s really stressing you out, you force yourself to think positive, and then just literally the physical movement kind of gets your whole system going—and then loud music is always a good thing, too,” says Mills. “It’s great to have women in our lives like Lynn who have a great rhythm to what they’re doing.”

 
 
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TINY ACTS OF REBELLION

These are what Sine calls out as “tiny acts of rebellion”—taking time back for yourself, her own version in the form of a morning cup of tea. And as Sine wraps up the convo with Gigi Mortimer, founder of the blue light blocker EyeJust, the concept of respecting your own time expands. “One third of teens wake up in the middle of the night just to check their social media,” notes Mortimer, who adds that the blue light from screens triggers your brain into thinking it’s daytime, disrupting sleep. “Sleep is when our brain is detoxifying. The fact that we’re spending 7 hours a day on screens and then we aren’t sleeping well really worried me for my kids, and is what inspired me to launch this company.”

 
 
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And considering that sleep is what balances our body’s cortisol, our moods, our happiness, there’s a lot of logic in the idea of locking phones in a box outside of the bedroom every night (a practice that Sine has taken on with her family). Mortimer references a study of NBA players who, when they tweeted after 11pm, scored worse the next day and are no longer allowed by the league to tweet at night. Yet another reason to relax in a bath of Pursoma salts, enjoy a sleep elixir, and set aside the phone until after your first morning “act of rebellion,” whether that’s transcendental meditation or simply catching another fifteen minutes of quiet before embracing the moment.

 
 

For those seeking a summer focused on balance, our next A Wild Dove x Five Pillars Yoga The Kindness Reaction Event happens this Friday, 5:00-7:00, same place. Message Lynn to reserve your space.

 
 

Next-Gen Mindfulness

Written by A Wild Dove | Photographed by Osvaldo Ponton

 
 
 
 

Walking into The Sacred Space’s lofty entrance in Miami’s Wynwood Arts Disctrict, at first glance you may not expect its gallery-like setting to be the perfect venue for a kid-friendly escape. Crisp white, neon-lit, and peppered with crystals, the gilded LOVE OVER FEAR sign drenched in sunlight is the first hint at founder Karla Dascal’s holistic, community-driven vision. An attitude that “love is everything” drives Dascal’s efforts toward conscious, high-vibrational living (not to mention years of recognition as one of the top event designers in the country) and sets the stage for this singular urban oasis she’s created in the heart of the city.

 
 
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In an effort to open the experience to parents and children for the first time, A Wild Dove teamed up with The Joy Alchemist to host the multi-dimensional Magical Wellness Wonderland experience. The whispers-only atmosphere that so often comes along with formal spaces was delightfully skirted by an inclusive opportunity to share mindful practices with our youngest generation. And isn’t that the point? An afternoon of thoughtful experiences offered kids an introduction into everything from healing crystals to meditation—plus a wealth of hands-on creative outlets and healthy snacks thanks to Radiate Kombucha and Cielito Artisan Pops.

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Meeting of the minds. Founder of The Sacred Space, Karla Dascal (left), founder of The Joy Alchemist Daniela Garcia (center) with Lynn Levoy.

 
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Lil’ guests chose their spirit animals, from butterflies to lions and tigers, as inspiration for the afternoon’s outdoor face painting station.

 
 
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In The Sacred Space’s lush courtyard, A Wild Dove’s Lynn Levoy with Buffy Koczwara (left) and Orion Nevel, Co-Founder of Gryph & IvyRose.

 
 

Gathering inside the serene sanctuary, The Cristalline’s Rashia Bell helped children get a first grasp at the importance of their day-to-day environment and the powers of energetic stones. Breathing lessons got a hands-on boost from Komuso’s wearable tool The Shift, which doubles as a necklace to encourage pausing, destressing, and feeling present in the moment. Gryph & IvyRose joined the group with their pediatrician-approved line of children’s elixirs (and organic heart-shaped chocolates!) designed to boost miniature immune systems with a blend of Traditional Chinese Medicine and organic herbs.

 
 
 
 
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Sweet treats in the form of artisanal vegan popsicles were quick hits from the Cielito Artisan Pops spread.

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Daniela Garcia, Lauren Arboleda, Laura Galvis, Rebecca Eisenmann, Annette Felder, Paloma Teppa, Sarah MacMillan, Mary Gamarra, Danielle Bigby, Lynn Levoy

 
 
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Lounging on blankets of painting tarps, children mixed up their finger-painting instincts with stamps cleverly cut from repurposed peppers, potatoes, apples, lemons and even celery stalks.

 
 
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Whether making fruit stamps in Gryph & IvyRoses’s natural art lessons, bonding over braids by Shop Flow, or reading A Time for Rain aloud with New York Times best-selling co-author Kelly Brogan M.D., age barriers blurred for the day of future-focused wellness workshops.

 
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Author of the children’s book A Time for Rain, Kelly Brogan host a storytelling gathering.

 
 
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Circling up for a moment for instruction. Rashia Bell, co-founder of The Cristalline, hosts her workshop on the energetic power of crystals and a customized meditation practice.

 
 
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The next generation. Grouping up with the founders and their very special guests.

 

A Wild Dove x Charitybuzz

Written by Lynn Levoy

 
 

I was so honored to be asked to be a part of Charitybuzz, an on-line auction platform. For their most recent auction, A Wild Dove curated a wellness and beauty section that raised $2000 in just one week for the David Lynch Foundation, an organization that is very close to my heart. Not only has Transcendental Meditation changed my own life, but their overall mission is to help and improve the lives of at risk populations facing severe stress and trauma. I am grateful we were able to help support these amazing programs.

Find out more about these important experiences that were so generously offered from the women of the A Wild Dove Community…

 
 
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The One Day Retreatment at Deer Creek Lodge in Malibu on October 6

Join us from morning till evening at a stunning villa in Malibu for a day of depth, light and inspiration on October 6th at Deer Creek Lodge in Malibu, CA!

The One Day Retreatment is the full experience of The Retreatment for those who do not have the ability to leave their responsibilities for too long a time.

 
 
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Dr. Barbara Sturm World-Class Skin Care Products Package

Dr. Barbara Sturm is a German aesthetics doctor, world-recognized for her anti-aging and rejuvenating skin treatments. Dr. Sturm’s notable client list spans from loyal patients to high-profile figures, who visit her Dusseldorf clinic from all over the globe to achieve youthful, healthy, and beautiful looking skin.

Inspired by her daily work, Dr. Sturm formulated the Dr. Barbara Strum Molecular Cosmetics Skincare collection for those yearning for an uncomplicated, yet highly effective skincare regime that hydrates, protects and regenerates the skin.

 
 
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Crystal Chakra Clearing Workshop for 10 with The Cristalline Founder, Rashia Bell

Rashia Bell Founder of THE CRISTALLINE will introduce you and a group of friends to the healing energy of stones during your Private Crystal Chakra Clearing Workshop for up to 10 people at your New York City home or location of choice.

Also, each guest will receive a personal Chakra Crystal set to take home!

 

Floral Notes and Freaky Health Chocolate - Our Latest Kids Learning Workshop

Written by A Wild Dove | Photographed by Conrado Veliz 

 
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It was a winter-meets-spring day when we gathered our lil’ doves for one of our signature learning workshops with a favorite of ours, Freaky Health Chocolate, a purveyor of organic chocolate whose benefits range from natural energy to beauty to immunity thanks to adaptogenic herbs like Maca, Chlorella, Gogi Berries and Ashwagandha. The subject of the day? Cooking deliciously healthy desserts using nutrient-dense chocolate. We set up shop at Freshmade NYC, the amazing kitchen and event space in Soho, to teach the kids the joys of making a sweet snack that packs a healthy dose of superfoods to boot.

 
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As our little ones gathered around a long table, their cooking utensils at the ready, Freaky Health Chocolate founder, Karolina Palmer opened the workshop by introducing the idea of healthy eating, in particular using flowers as a surprising ingredient to many foods. “We realized many of us had already eaten them.” Karolina says. “Some examples we shared were chamomile tea, hibiscus ice pops, and rose jam.” The group then went on to try the two flowers they would be working with - borage and pansy. They shared the reactions and the nuances of the fragrant notes in each, like mint, cucumber, grass, and pepper. Each child then came up to the stove and dropped their Freaky Health Chocolate bar into a bowl of a double boiler to melt it down. Everyone received a piping hot bag filled with melted chocolate and that’s when things got freakishly fun. The kids had a blast filling the lollipop molds, pressing in the sticks, and decorating with their edible flowers. “It was magical watching them work and seeing the beautiful work they created with just two ingredients,” says Karolina. 

 
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While enjoying their high vibe cocoa snacks, the kids learned that historically flowers have been eaten medicinally and they discussed what that meant. They discovered that one of the flowers, borage, was associated with summoning courage when eaten. The kids shared what their understanding of courage meant and appreciated the idea that eating this sweet blue flower could make them feel brave. As the afternoon sun peaked in over Soho, the kids licked up the last of their lolly's, feeling a little more courageous and proud of the magic treats they created. 

 
 
 
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And so you can make these magical Fairy Lollipops at home, here’s the recipe below -

 
 

Chocolate Fairy Pops

Ingredients

  • Freaky Health Chocolate
  • Edible flowers (pictured are borage and pansies)
  • Lollipop/candy molds
  • Lollipop sticks
  1. Create a double boiler by inserting a metal bowl over a gently boiling pot of water.
  2. Break up chocolate bar into metal bowl. Mix frequently until bar is melted and chocolate is smooth. An alternative is melting chocolate in the microwave for 10 seconds, giving it a mix and microwaving for 10 more seconds, if needed.
  3. Pour melted chocolate into piping bag or zip top bag with a small corner cut off. Let cool for a few minutes.
  4. While you wait, place edible flowers into each candy cavity. Do not overfill.
  5. Pipe melted chocolate into molds.
  6. Place sticks in appropriate slot.
  7. Let chocolate harden in the molds for 30 minutes before you release them.
  8. Gently pop out each lollipop and ENJOY!!!
 
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We are committed to bringing one of a kind experiences to mamas and children. Learn more about our unique upcoming events.

 
 

Go Inside Our Love Filled Workshop with The Cristalline

Written & Photographed by A Wild Dove 

 
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Once the new year came and went, our thoughts naturally turned to that special, once-a-year day of love when we get to pamper our kids with a total heart-filled explosion. So when Valentine’s Day was on the horizon, we knew we had to do something super special with our number one loves that was geared towards mindfulness and inner discovery. Who better to show us how to connect with our hearts than Rashia Bell, crystal healer and co-founder of our favorite crystal interior design firm, The Cristalline? Together at the gorgeous new Hatch store, we hosted some of our favorite lil' doves and their mamas for a special Valentine’s Day crystal class full of heart chakra stones and a lot of crystal love. 

 
 
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As mamas sipped on our fave pink drinks by Dr. Smood featuring grapefruit, lemon and green coffee and we all munched on bite-sized heart cupcakes with pink and purple frosting by our go-to bakery, Erin McKenna (because it’s dairy, soy, egg and gluten free and tastes SO yum), Rashia gathered the kids to start working on her signature crystal healing game. “It teaches them how to connect stones to learning about the energetic properties that they resonate,” Rsahia says. “It’s always fun to see what stones each child is drawn to by color, shape, texture as they unrecognizably are creating an energetic alignment to the stones.”

 
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Next up was a mini meditation that was all about connecting to the heart space and the ability to both give and receive love. According to Rashia, if we teach children how to connect to their own energy at a young age, we are empowering them by fostering a connection that gives them the know-how to tap into their intuition. “This can create a drastic effect in how they use to express their emotions,” she says. “It is ultimately giving them the tools to strengthen and support that inner-muscle as they continue to grow.”

 
 
 
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We knew were in a sacred space, as the beauty of the shop was matched only by the little beautiful beaming faces smiling up at us in total peace. Like all of our workshops with The Cristalline, it was a special loved filled afternoon, perhaps only with a bit more pink. Be sure to RSVP for our next crystal children’s workshop on April 22nd, when we’re making crystal jewelry in honor of Mother’s Day!

 
 
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We are committed to bringing one of a kind experiences to mamas and children. Learn more about our unique upcoming events.

 
 

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THE CRISTALLINE

Our Latest Signature Workshop with Mama Medicine

Written & Photographed by A Wild Dove

 
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It might have been chilly outside, but our little ones warmed up the SoHo space of our latest signature workshop with Mama Medicine, founder Deborah Hanekamp’s wildly popular integration of ancient healing traditions, designed for modern times. With their wild imaginations, active bodies and excitement for more, more, more, the children opened up the space for the day and let it all go, which is exactly the point of Medicine Dance. Led by reiki master, Luciana Naclerio         brought our little doves through a practice of physical interpretation of a ceremonial Medicine Reading...which includes breath work from yoga and dance using your own rhythm.  

 
 
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While us mamas snacked on popcorn from Sakara and enjoyed their Beauty and Detox drops in our waters, the kids burned palo santo, watered the plants and set the altar for their circle. They then sat in the space they created and grounded, meaning they connected to their breathing by watching an amethyst crystal placed on their bellies rise and fall. They each shared the ways in which they release, and then all together, they activated the energy of the release with shaking! “We held space for each child and they came to the center of the circle to release a different part of his or her body,” says Luciana. 

 
 
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After even more shaking, the children then each took a piece of lavender from the altar they created and sat in meditation with its calming scent. They used crystal sound bowls to relax deeply into their little love-filled hearts, then lied down and completely released onto the floor and thought about what it was that made them happy. Through the sweet sound of chimes, they melted into their happy place before coming back into the circle and sharing their experience with their moms. Each child left Mama Medicine that day, happier, calmer and more centered.

 
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Mama Medicine

Our Signature Learning Workshop with Bob Roth, Master of TM

Written by Lynn Levoy | Photographed by Jennifer Young

 
 
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I’ve heard  so much about Transcendental Meditation for years. I have many friends, with varying professions and personalities, who swear by how it has changed their lives - that they can’t imagine life without it, that it allows them to manage their day with more clarity and focus and less stress. But I always had an excuse. I was too busy and couldn’t quiet my mind (the exact reason I needed it), or my workouts were my form of meditation (perhaps, but definitely not the same).

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So, when I was given the opportunity to learn TM directly from the source, Bob Roth, CEO of The David Lynch Foundation, and the most seeked-out TM teacher with a yearlong waiting list, I could not pass it up. And the timing felt just right for me. I had recently been seeking out new forms of self care and knew in my gut the stars were aligned for this one.

 
 

After my first lesson on a Sunday night, I was hooked. It was an amazing, life-changing experience. I felt like a new person - lighter, clearer, more focused, calmer. I couldn’t wait to get up the next morning to meditate. After four days of learning with Bob - an hour and a half the first day, one hour the next three days and a mantra later - I was on my way and mediating twice a day. First thing in the morning and then again in the afternoon somewhere between 2:00-5:00. To be honest, I thought this would be impossible to fit in, but it’s the same as any other appointment. I look at my schedule the night before and figure out where I can do it - sometimes it’s in the back of an Uber, sometimes in a beautiful, quiet place. Truthfully, it doesn’t really matter, TM is an amazing tool you always have and can do anywhere. At the end of the day, I crave it and I see the huge difference it makes in my work, personal relationships and in parenting. I find I never reach that level of frustration, and I don’t need to take a breath, because I just don't get to that point. I know it’s hard to believe, but I am truly so much calmer and everything else just seems to flow with such ease. What’s also so great about TM is that anyone, no matter where they live and what they do, can learn TM from a certified teacher. You don’t have to be in New York or learn from Bob, but it really is universal, which is what’s so amazing. TM.org also makes it easy to find a certified teacher in any neighborhood. 

 
 
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So with this in mind, I knew I had to gather my favorite mamas and women to have Bob share his knowledge about TM. These are the women who embody everything A Wild Dove is about and who place a huge emphasis on self care for themselves and their family. So we gathered at The David Lynch Foundation one evening, over snacks from Dr. Smood and drinks from Dirty Lemon and Bob began the session by explaining what TM is and how it differs from other forms of meditation. He spoke about the incredible benefits of the practice, how our brains find their deepest states of rest and a reduced rate of cortisol (stress hormone) of up to 40 percent (compared to an 8 hour night of sleep, which only reduces cortisol levels 10-15%).  He explained that we are given a mantra, that it is ours alone and that we use it to access the deepest, quietest purist level of the heart, that it’s a gentle effortless process.

 
 
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He then invited one of his students who has been with him for nearly a decade to talk about how TM has changed herself, her family dynamic and her relationship with her husband and her son. She explained that by practicing TM with her husband, her home has reached a state of peaceful calm. They used to rush around and lose their patience easily, and now even when they’re rushing, they can invoke that calm whether on the way to school or doing the most mundane tasks. She had her son learn TM at 5 years old also and feels better knowing that he has something to call upon that is entirely his. Bob is an expert is teaching TM to children, as through his organization The David Lynch Foundation, he’s brought the benefits of TM to hundreds of thousands of at-risk children. It was a wonderful evening and I can only hope that my fellow mamas and friends will go on to learn TM and experience the tremendous benefits that I have found in such a short time. 

 
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Even though it’s only been  a couple of months, Callum sees how important TM is to me. He recently turned 8, but I believe so strongly this can be a game changer for him. If all children were equipped with these tools, they’d be able to focus better  in school, deal with their academic and social frustrations and all sort of issues. I plan to introduce it to him gently this coming  year in the hopes that he’s up for it. For now, I plan to keep up my twice daily meditations and spread the gospel of TM to anyone willing to listen. It is truly a life-changing practice and I am so grateful for it.

 
 
 
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Be the first to sign up for Bob's book, The Power of Transcendental Meditation, out on February 6th. All proceeds are be donated to the David Lynch Foundation, which will help provide free Transcendental Mediation instruction to veterans suffering from PTSD.

 
 
 

We are committed to bringing one of a kind experiences to mamas and children. Learn more about our unique upcoming events.

 
 

A Wild Dove x The Cristalline: Part Deux

Written by A Wild Dove | Photographed by Ciara Brinn Perrone

 
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The last time we partnered with The Cristalline on a signature learning workshop, we were taking it easy and breezy in East Hampton over the dog-days of summer. Fast forward a few months, and we figured it was time for another crystal meditation experience with our little ones, so we dialed up co- founder, Rashia Bell to figure out the who/what/where for our part deux. We love The Cristalline for so many reasons, not least of which is because their primary role is that of interior designers, where they create positive, healing spaces through their use of crystals that can completely transform their clients’ health, career and well-being. Rashia is also a certified crystal healer, who uses her knowledge to educate others on their endless benefits for the mind, body and spirit.

 
 
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So on a sunny Saturday in December, we got the kids together at Red Flower in Nolita, the absolute perfect venue for the class, since this beauty haven is already stocked with rose quartz and crystals. Before we even began, the vibes were oozing with love, light and positivity. While the kids snacked on Watermelon Jerky by Sakara, the mamas stood around chatting holiday plans and nibbling on Sakara’s Beauty Chocolate and sipping on Health-Ade Kombucha’s new flavors like Holiday Cheers and Reishi-Chocolate.

 
 
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Rashia began working with the children, who were surprisingly armed with some gem and mineral knowledge. She began the class by talking a bit about the science of crystals and formed a connection between the facts and experiments that the kids were already doing in school. “If they understand how stones are formed on a scientific level first, then it makes it that much easier to see how there is energy within them,” Rashia said. She then created a fun drawing and matching game, where the kids matched the stone to its property. For the grand finale, the kids were able to select stones to meditate with and explored the different sensations they felt, like temperature change, tingling, and other physical elements. “The children are really great at tapping into the differences between the energy of different stones,” she said.

 
 
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Some of the stones the children worked with included:

  • Obsidian for Grounding 
  • Amethyst for Intuition 
  • Clear Quartz for Balance 
  • Carnelian for Courage 
  • Blue Lace Agate for Communication 
  • Citrine for Creativity 
  • Selenite for Clearing 
  • Green Aventurine for Self Love
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While the excitement of the holiday season was aflutter outside, it was amazing that our kids were given the chance to stop and chill for a minute and connect back to mindfulness via crystals and meditation.  "It is great when moms have their own mindfulness practice, but it is awesome to have the opportunity to empower children to create their own that they are able to share with their friends and family," Rashia said.

We couldn’t agree more.

 
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The Cristalline

Strike a Pose

Written by A Wild Dove | Photographed by Ciara Brinn Perrone

 
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Countless studies have shown that practicing yoga not only benefits adults, but children too. From decreasing anxiety to promoting a state of calm and happiness, the positive outcomes of a regular yoga practice extend from the mini-set all the way to the elderly. Since we’re all about wellness for both mamas and kids, we knew we needed to dedicate one of our signature learning workshops to the practice of yoga, and who better to lead it than Eda Ozman, teacher of Power Cubs kids yoga at Lyons Den, our favorite spot for some downward dogging into the mind, body and spirit.

 
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“I believe that kids who are exposed to yoga and mindfulness are building a strong foundation for a healthy and happy life,” said Eda. “They are learning essential skills at a young age such as respect, compassion, the ability to regulate emotions and building a connection to self and others.”
 
 
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So on a recent Sunday we decamped to the Outdoor Voices boutique on the Upper East Side for a fun kiddo yoga sesh. It was the perfect setting, as not only does OV promote #doingthings at all ages, but it’s all about the magic of movement with friends. As mamas snacked on popcorn and Detox and Energy bars by Sakara and sipped on Dirty Lemon Ginseng and Matcha juices (cuz, it’s Sunday morning), Eda began the yoga practice. She started with a group Om before leading the children into a Sun Dance. They also practiced breathing exercises, and she showed them eagle, tree, airplane and group flower poses, as well as Warrior 1, 2 and 3. “The kids were very receptive to the tools I taught,” Eda said. “I’ve been teaching kids for two years and every class is so different. I quickly learned that while it is good to have a structured lesson plan, you may have to shift and change the class based on the energy of the group. This keeps me on my toes and really trains me to be present.”

 
 
 
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The kids also worked on their partner poses and engaged in a group stretching circle as they held hands and moved back and forth. Eda then blew bubbles while the kids watched in an effort to teach them patience and observation. Then, of course, they blew their own to work on breath. Eda ended in Savasana with short explanation of the meaning of “Namaste” as the children said the word to each other. “The kids teach me a lot about myself and how to be more patient,” Eda said. “When they don't listen, instead of getting worked up, I am able to notice my emotions and not react right away. Kids are like a sponge in that they are in touch and aware of everything happening around them.  As a kids yoga teacher, it's crucial to remember this and lead by example to create a safe space where kids feel accepted and understood.”

 
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Outdoor Voices

Good Medicine

Written by A Wild Dove | Photographed by Angela Baltra

 
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OK mamas, what exactly is Medicine Dance, you ask?

Luciana Naclerio, describes Medicine Dance as “the call to remember the sacredness of the body and the power of its expression.” Think of it as a fusion between dance and yoga, where the warm-up and the breath work stems from yoga teachings, while the dance comes from one’s own rhythm. The practice is then capped off by a healing session using reiki to balance and bless the spirit. 

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Luciana was inspired to create Medicine Dance while studying under Deborah Hanekamp, aka Mama Medicine, an Initiated Amazonian Shaman, Reiki Master and Yogini who has facilitated her famous Medicine Readings and Medicine Reading ceremonies all over the world. These full-sensory experiences engages the faculties of scent, sound, and feeling that result in deep joy, physical radiance and the ability to be open to love.

 
 
 
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Well, we at A Wild Dove thought that Luciana and Medicine Dance would make for a perfect workshop for our wee ones, who need no reason to shake things up! Even more so, what child wouldn’t benefit from understanding that in Medicine Dance, the message is that we are our own healers? That we can  discover that all that we want in life is already inside of us!

 
 

So we gathered, some of our favorites from the under 12-set and gathered at Mama Medicine to get dancing, Medicine Dancing, that is. While the mamas watched enjoying snacks from Sakara and Kombucha’s from Health-Ade, Luciana led kids in the five stages of the practice -  beginning with dropping the body into the breath, shaking to release, dancing to celebrate, sitting in stillness to bless and finally using reiki to seal. “Kids are so responsive to Medicine Dance because there is less ego involved,” said Luciana. “They surrender to their bodies almost right away and let the music and movement carry them. Each group of kids is so wildly different. By now I know that while some structure is important, the purpose of this workshop is for the kids to let loose however they feel they need to that day.”

 
 
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Luciana taught the kids this very active form of meditation, the root of which she learned from Deborah, who serves as her personal mentor and inspiration. But what surprised her most was what she learned through them. “Children have always been my biggest teachers,” Luciana said. “When working with them, I find myself being the best version of myself. During this particular workshop I learned the importance of not forcing a structure upon the group and allowing the class to flow in a way the kids could comfortably express themselves.”

 
 
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Check out some pics from our Mama Medicine workshop below, and don’t forget to sign up below for our upcoming workshops, where we’re creating activities and adventures for our children to discover the spirit of mindfulness and wellness!

 
 
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We are committed to bringing one of a kind experiences to mamas and children. Learn more about our unique upcoming events.

 
 

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Mama Medicine

Freaky-n Delicious

Written by A Wild Dove | Photographed by Vicky Nikolaeva

 
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As Halloween approaches, we mamas are constantly stuck in the conundrum of how to satisfy our children’s sweet tooth while promoting mindful eating, wellness and health. The constant sugar highs and lows around this holiday is simply too much to bare for their bodies, their minds and frankly, our sanity! Thankfully, Karolina Palmer, founder of Freaky Health Chocolate set out to create just that, a line of health-driven chocolate bars that we and our little ones are obsessed with. In each delicious bar, you’ll find adaptogenic herbs used to modulate our body’s hormonal response to stress, plants that can strengthen our nervous systems and a wild variety of cacao to add a dose of sweetness. So a few Saturdays ago, we asked Karolina to lead some mini’s in a Freaky Health Chocolate workshop to teach them how to make delicious energy balls packed with nutrients and a variety of antioxidants. In her own words, Kristina take us through the beauty in the mess of creating that perfect Halloween lunchbox treat that is sweet, protein-packed, and school safe.

 
 
“I love gently encouraging kids to get messy with food,” says Palmer. “Often the message is “Don’t play with your food!” and so it’s fun to then say, “Go ahead! Touch, squish, smear, feel! It often takes a bit of time to feel comfortable but once they do, they are so into it.”
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As the children squished their way around a table at Freshmade NYC, mamas sipped on juices by Juice Press while Karolina explained what exactly was going into the energy balls and how each ingredient worked off the next one. “These kids loved talking about the different textures of the ingredients,” she said. “The sun butter was sticky but once we added the other ingredients it got easier to work with. They were so excited to see the alchemy of putting together ingredients. The fun was seeing them taste the finished product and say, ‘I love the chocolate chunks!’ It gave them an idea of how the final product can be somewhat different when all the raw ingredients are combined.”

 
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Check out the recipe for Karolina’s Freaky Health Chocolate Healthy Energy Balls, featuring sun butter (you can substitute any nut butter) as well as pumpkin seeds for zinc and immunity. Additionally, the Freaky Health Chocolate bars included are free of processed sugar and sweetened with mulberries, which is loaded with antioxidants. If you or your little needs a dose of sweetness, add a drizzle of maple syrup or honey:

 
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Freaky Health Chocolate Healthy Energy Balls

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 cup oatmeal
  • 1/3 cup coconut flakes
  • 1/4 cup sun butter
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 Freaky Health Chocolate bar, broken up

DIRECTIONS

  1. Stir all ingredients together in a medium bowl until thoroughly mixed. Cover and let chill in the refrigerator for half an hour.

  2. Once chilled, roll into balls of whatever size you would like.

  3. Store, refrigerated, for two weeks.

 
 
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We are committed to bringing one of a kind experiences to mamas and children. Learn more about our unique upcoming events.

 
 

A Wild Dove x Bhumi Farm - Our Signature Learning Workshop

Written by A Wild Dove | Photographed by Jay Wen

 
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In our latest Signature Learning Workshop, we partnered with Bhumi Farms on teaching children the joys of eating a local, plant-based diet.

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Often when kids bite into an apple, peel an orange or suck the juice of a tomato, they have no clue where the food is coming from, other than the market. So in our latest signature learning workshop, we collaborated with Farmer Frank Trentacoste of Bhumi Farms in East Hampton, on a one-of-a-kind experience for kids, where he led children on a tour of the farm, where they learned about where food comes from, as well as the difference between organic and nonorganic and the importance of eating a local, plant-based diet.

 
 
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At A Wild Dove, our goal is to evolve the minds of our little ones towards wellness, so that habits like eating well and enjoying natural food with fresh ingredients will come early and easily.

So while the mamas enjoyed rosé along with Sakara Popcorn, Flatbread and their Beauty Water, our little doves went into the field to discover the bounty of fruits and vegetables and the joy that is eating locally and naturally. Included in this flock was Lynn’s son Callum, so we asked him to report back on his findings.

 
 
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“I learned lots...” said Callum. “I learned there there is a girl zucchini and boy zucchini. Farmer Frank also showed us the tomatoes, sunflowers and peas and explained that tomatoes can taste like like sweet candy. He also spoke about how his farm doesn’t use chemicals and why chemicals are bad for us.”

 
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Sounds like Farmer Frank did his job. Check back on A Wild Dove for more information on our upcoming Fall workshops and join our wellness conversation for mama and child. 

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Fall workshops, 
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Kid Rock - Our Crystal Workshop with The Cristalline

Written & Photographed By A Wild Dove  

 
 
 

In our latest signature learning experience, we hosted a crystal workshop for kids in collaboration with our favorite crystal design firm,  The Cristalline. Amidst a spread filled with snacks by Moon Juice, vegan and gluten-free donuts from Erin McKenna’s Bakery and rosé for the mamas, The Cristalline’s co-founder Rashia Bell took our little ones through an understanding of crystals followed by a mini-meditation using the crystal of their choice. Suffice to say, the kids loved it. Get Rashia’s take on this mindful, mind-blowing experiential event.

 

 
 
 
 
 

“I wanted to create a workshop for kids to discover the meaning of crystals and their various uses. We started by discussing how crystals and stones are created, since most kids are into chemistry and how to create things by combining elements. Next I wanted them to experience crystals without any preconceived input as to the meaning of the different stones. Each child assembled a set of crystals by choosing the ones they were most drawn to. This aspect of the workshop was important because kids are very receptive to crystal energy, since they haven’t been through the energetic disruptions that adults have. This is why many kids have rock or shell collections, because they are drawn to nature’s energy.

 
 
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Once they had made their own set, I then revealed the energetic properties of the different stones, which provided them a fun analysis of the stones they chose.

 

Stones & Their Meanings -

 

Amethyst - Purification

Green Aventurine - Confidence

Red Aventurine - Determination

Rose Quartz - Love

Kyanite - Connect to Nature

Obsidian - Grounding

Carnelian - Courage

Yellow Jasper - Removes Worry

Black Tourmaline - Protection

Citrine - Creativity

Blue Lace Agate -Communication

Clear Quartz - Clearing

Hematite Manifestation

 
 
 

We then talked about how to care for crystals by cleaning and clearing them.  One of my favorite moments was when I mentioned that you could use moonlight to charge your crystals when it was a full or new moon.  One boy asked, “How do I know when it is going to be one?” I said that you can look on a calendar to see where the moon is. He said, “I know, I can look on my dad’s apple watch!”  This generation has the ability to be extremely mindful and combine the holistic with the technical world. I love that A Wild Dove is strengthening that combination by providing something that mamas and kids can share together.  I think introducing your own personal practice to your children and then letting them find their own is a gift and will only help them to grow into more well-rounded adults.

 
 
 

"It was really lovely to see how open they were and the tenacity with which they approached the meditation."

 
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The last part of the workshop was spent showing the kids how they can use their crystals. We did a mini meditation with a stone of their choice, which blew me away. It was really lovely to see how open they were and the tenacity with which they approached the meditation. They fully embraced the process and the power of crystals without questioning it.  I am so excited to continue this exploration in the fall and doing more events that empower kids with both the knowledge and tools to be mindful of the energy in their bodies.

 
 

To learn more about our upcoming
A Wild Dove x The Cristalline workshops
please sign up below!

 
 
 
 

learn more

Go to thecristalline.com

 
 

An Experience of Artistic Proportion

Written & Photographed by A Wild Dove

 
 
 

We partnered with kids learning organization, Shine to bring our latest unique learning experience to the Hamptons. Our mini flock explored the works of Jackson Pollock at the very studio he shared with artist and wife Lee Krasner. The kids channeled the artists’ practices and mediums to create their own diverse works. The result? Nothing short of genius. Read on for a first person account of our exciting collaboration straight from Aaron Goldschmidt, director of Shine and proud member of our Flock...


 

 
 
 

"We have always loved discussing Jackson Pollock in our art classes, but when asked to create a workshop at the Pollock-Krasner house in East Hampton, we jumped at the opportunity."

 

We couldn’t wait to craft one of our signature workshops introducing children to art and its concepts in a fun and age-appropriate way.

 
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As always, we began our morning with a discussion, but it was no ordinary talk. We were in Jackson Pollock’s studio! After reading Action Jackson, we discussed Pollock and his work.  It’s important to help children understand that Pollock originated an idea about art. His canvases were on the floor and he didn’t use traditional techniques of brush to paper. Instead, his paintings were as alive as he was and made with using his whole body, thus creating “action painting” by throwing, dripping, splattering his paint on the canvas. Pollock wanted people to feel the energy he felt while painting.  

 

 
 
 
 

We then discussed Pollock’s wife, Lee Krasner, also an important artist although overshadowed by Jackson and her role as caretaker to his troubled life. We noted the progression of her art from small, organic forms inspired by still lifes to the big bold shapes, lines, and colors that was fueled by her emotional state once Pollock died.

Then on to the art. We devised two projects, one representing Pollock and one for Krasner.  

 

A common through line for us was that each artist used movement and action in their work.  While Pollock’s were fueled by expression, movement, and rhythm, Krasner’s were more gestural, representing her emotions.

For Pollock, we put out individual canvasses and let the campers choose colors. Pollock loved to listen to jazz as he painted so we listened to some improvisational jazz so the kids could get into their bodies.  We mentioned that if Pollock dropped a penny, or if a bug landed in the paint, he would leave it there as part of the art.  We actually had a camper leave a piece of rope on her canvas that was used to drip paint.

 
 
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To encourage action painting, we told everyone to move their whole body, not just an arm or hand, to reach the entire canvas. We told them to experiment with different kinds of lines, varying the height, speed, and angle of actions. The kids were having fun making a mess and getting into their action painting.

 
 
 

For Krasner, we used black ink to create our gestural lines.  We asked campers to think about how they were feeling and then move their arms and hands in broad strokes to create bold, expressive lines. Once dried, we returned to add bright colors to our paintings, both individual and group. For the kids, the juxtaposition of using paint for the Pollock and ink and oil pastel for the Krasner gave them a variety of mediums with which to create.

 
 
 
 

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As we continue to expose kids to a variety of art and artists, it’s important to let them know that not all art is created by standing in front of a canvas and painting landscapes. After spending the day in such an iconic location and bearing witness to the inspiration that fuelled both Pollock and Krasner, it was clear that our art comes from a combination of so many things in our life. Translating concepts of art into everyday activities doesn’t have to be challenging, but rather a way to allow children to see the world a little bit differently.  And if we continue to let the world change us, we can change the world, one canvas at a time. Keep Shining…

 

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As modern mamas living in the over information age, (where everyone is an expert and parenting opinions are shared as freely and easily as an Instagram post) it can be tough to filter through the white noise to find the facts. Naturally, we’d love to consider ourselves wise in all sorts of ways, but the truth is sometimes we’re scrawling SOS in the sand. Good thing we’ve got the guidance and expertise of our own personal rockstars - the people who inspire us on the daily. Our rockstars (our flock) are enthusiasts, professionals and influencers in the fields of wellness, travel, education, style—the list goes on. Each one brings a profoundly different perspective to the table, one informed by their own experiences and outlooks. And that perspective is priceless.

They say it takes a village…we say it takes a flock.