7 musts for your trip to Bar Harbor, Maine

Bar Harbor is a coastal town in Maine wedged against a popular lobstering spot—Frenchman’s Bay. Rich with culture and historic buildings, this town also backs right up to Acadia National Park. It’s location, and bustling culinary and shopping scene make it an awesome place to visit. As a life-long visitor and new local from away, I wanted to share some ideas to make your visit to Bar Harbor extra unique and fun!

The Travelin Lobster: This place services lobster rolls on Brioche. Do I need to continue? Seriously though, whether you are on your way on or off Mount Desert Island you must stop here, play corn hole, and eat a lobster roll.

Mount Desert Ice Cream: Located in the heart of Bar Harbor’s village square, this place has flavors like blueberry basil and blueberry crumble made from New England berries. They also have classic chocolate and vanilla. There is something for everyone. Shout out to this shop for using all local ingredients. When you come to Maine, please support locally owned businesses. Big business is literally killing the economy of the State of Maine. Shop local!

Acadia SUP: Getting off the beaten path is everything if you visit Maine in the summer. Acadia SUP is a complete gem. You will have a personalized and truly unique experience if you go for a paddle with this crew. The storefront is located on Main Street in Bar Harbor, with paddle-board trips off the sand bar and to the quietside of the island (secret spots where no one else is going!). A bonus, they offer paddleboard yoga twice a week which is the best deal EVER! It is for all levels even total newbies.

Yoga in Your Park: Want to be in the park and find some cool spots where it’s not overrun with people? Join Yoga in Your Park for one of their daily classes inside Acadia National Park or message me to set up a private class!

Mount Desert Campground: This place is the best when it comes to camping on island. It has tent platforms that hang out over the Somes Sound. You can put your kayak or paddleboard in right from your tent site. Unreal. It also has a unique location with access to Bar Harbor, Acadia, and the quietside.

Bar Harbor Inn: This one is totally biased. My husband and I were married at the Bar Harbor Inn almost exactly 12 years ago. It is beautiful, classic, historic and literally right in the heart of town. You can walk anywhere from this gorgeous hotel.

Acadia National Park: This is my all time favorite National Park. There are so many places that go undiscovered in this park. The loop road is really cool and accessible, but I recommend finding a hike off the main path. There are also three secret spots that I won’t write in this blog, but you can email me if you want to know more.

I’ll end it with that. Eat, drink, paddle, and be merry my friends.

Whoopie Pies 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 .

Why I decided to be more vulnerable in 2019

I have struggled with lonliness for the better part of my life. I have always been connected to my family and have been blessed with great friendships through the years. So from the outside, it would seem odd that this is an issue for me. However, the feelings of connectedness and closeness come from our friends and family responding to our vulnerability.

All. The. Cold Sweat.

I pride myself on being strong and steady. I feel ashamed to have big emotions. Just like everyone else, I want to appear to have my shiz together. I avoid the V word to the point of isolation.

Statements like if they really knew me, they would judge me or not be my friend plague me regularly.

It has been a process for me to begin to be vulnerable with my closest people beyond my husband. Somehow I have been able to be open up to him which is in part why our marraige has been very fulfilling to me. Here is what I have learned so far. Vulnerability is so much easier when you love yourself.

Think about it. When you don’t love all of you and are afraid to show people the less than stellar parts, the space between you and vulnerability is like the Grand Canyon. You will need all the courage you can get to make the leap across.

But when you love yourself, and I mean all of you, you don’t worry so much if someone else doesn’t. And when you’re less afraid of rejection, you step right into that place of openness. Vulnerability takes practice. Just like any other skill

So this year, I will practice vulnerability. One day at a time.

Mapping 2019: how to set soul-aligned goals for genuine breakthrough

It seems like only yesterday you were basking under a hot summer sun after swimming at the beach. Or sitting on your back porch reading on a warm August night. Time slowed down. You felt so good.

Now, here you are. The temperature has dropped several degrees. Booties are covering your non-pedicured toes. You’ve got a warm cup of tea in your hand and your wearing your coziest bulky sweater. You’re feeling as hygge as you get.

Suddenly it hits you. It is now 2019. That sweater doesn’t feel as comfy anymore. Despite it being ten sizes too big, you feel everything around and within you tighten. That tea you were enjoying moments earlier is now cold. You quickly respond to this feeling by deciding that you need to make your 2019 plan. Stat.

Not only do I have what you need to make said plan, but I also have what you need to feel loose in that sweater and give the best gift of all this year: Your beautiful presence.

Read on for how to savor it all.

Before you start trying to figure out what you’ll have accomplished by this time next year, take a minute to slow down and breathe.

 

You wouldn’t want your mechanic putting your winter tires on while he’s feeling rushed, stressed, and doing 10 other things at once; you make an appointment knowing that he’ll be taking his time and focusing on nothing else but your car. One tire at a time. It’s intentional and efficient.

Be like your car mechanic. Start by making an appointment when you’ll be creating your initial 2019 plan. You’ll need to set aside some intentional time for this task. I usually break it up over the course of a few days allowing myself som oh yeah moments to remember things I’d like to integrate into the next season.

Show up.

Show up for yourself and finish this task. Set a reminder or put it in your phone to remind you to reflect and plan.

Have what you need: favorite pen, paper, good music, a pot of chai tea, and your calendar.

Take a minute to breathe before you start. Clear minded after sitting and breathing, pour that chai, and get to work. .

Take a step back before getting ahead.

You’re excited to put down on paper a long list of goals that make you feel good now but burnt out by mid-February. So we’re not going to do it as you normally would in 2019, ok?

Before you look ahead, root your feet firmly into the floor, sit up straight, and acknowledge where you are right now. You are not behind by any means. You’re where you are and that’s where you should be. 

Let’s take a look back.  Check out last week’s post before charging full speed ahead.  

Resist the urge to rush through this exercise. Review your answers. Let them sink in. Smile. Laugh. And if tears come, let them. Chances are they are simply a sea of gratitude. So many amazing things happen every day.  

Lean into the future.

With your heart full and your soul calm it’s time to lean into the future. To do this, imagine yourself one year from now or at the end of 2019. Ask yourself:

        1. What will you be most proud of having experienced, learned, contributed, accomplished, started, or stopped in 2019?

       

       

 

        1. What memorable moments will you have created?

       

       

 

        1. Who will be part of your soul tribe?

       

       

 

        1. What will you be celebrating about who you have become?

       

       

 

 Capture anything and everything that comes up. Make a list of all the ideas, goals, and projects that you want to focus on. Write yours. Then do this next step: choose your top three items. Max.

PC Jacki Carr

Why you need to review your year before planning the next

Goal setting.

New Years Resolutions.

Intentions.

We have all heard these words on repeat recently. We might dislike this seemingly random pressure as we begin another year. We already have so much on our plates. A list of things to be more perfect doesn’t help. Or we might love the chance for a fresh start.

No matter how we approach the new year, the end of the year is a natural time of reflection, whether we embrace it or not.

Where I fear I have failed, I have an opportunity to reflect, learn, and grow. Where I fear the year has been less than I hoped. Reflection allows me to see that there are so many things to celebrate.

Taking time to intentionally reflect and write allows me to see and recognize growth I might otherwise have missed.

PC Jacki Carr

Let’s use this time to celebrate the victories no matter how small. Let’s look back on our year not with a harsh hand but with kindness.

We can use this as an opportunity to check in with what went right, what didn’t, and what just went.

Let’s review lessons learned. Gleaning what will benefit us as we move ahead.

Take a moment to truly soak in what brought you joy. What resonated. We can use this to enter the next season with more purpose. Aligning our lives with our greatest desires.

Why is it so hard to hold on to the good that happens in our lives?

The hard things are like super glue. Our old brain were so useful in keeping the human race alive for generations when most threats were life and death. However, for most events in our modern day life, we don’t need that super glue. We need something lighter. Like a sticky note. What we do need is super glue for the good stuff. The reflection exercise below can help us reflect more lightly on the hard things and more powerfully on the good.

Check out this list below as you take 15 minutes to reflect. I will join you all for this in Instagram and Facebook LIVE and link it here. I can’t wait to hear how it goes for you.

To get started, take a few grounding breathes. Inhaling through the nose. Exhaling out the mouth. Now, let’s rewind together.

Happiest new year. Be well beautiful friends.

Stop the hurry with this simple, heart-centered yoga

Hello wonderful people.  I hope this finds you well.  As we head into the especially busy season of the year, I wanted to put together a practice for myself that would feel accessible even on crazy days.  I thought maybe you all would enjoy it as well.

Remember, even little bits of yoga add up and have benefits of lowered stress, feeling calmer, and allow space for authentic joy and appreciation in our lives.  Let me know how you are doing with your practice and how I can support you.

You can practice these asanas individually or in a sequence.  Let’s get started.

1. Breathe.

I always start with my breathe when I feel busy or overwhelmed.  It is always with me and I find myself unconsciously taking a deep breath all day long.  My boys have started doing it as well.  So cute!

The easiest method to use in any situation is simply learning to slow down your breath.  Inhale to the count of 4, hold for a count of 4, exhale to the count of 4, hold for a count of 4, repeat. Over time, you can play around with increasing the count. Practicing controlling your breath will help calm your nervous system, relax your body, and quiet your mind.

img_63252. Hip-opener.

Before you get out of bed, take a few moments to find a happy baby or a reclined cobblers pose.  I especially love Happy Baby to start the day. It’s a good reminder to go out into the world feeling playful, happy, and in touch with your inner child.

Reclining Cobblers Pose

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3. Forward Fold.

Whether we spend most of our day seated or on our feet, we can all use a little stretch, a little release of the lower back, and a lengthening of our hamstrings. Take a few short breaks each day to stretch and release physical tension. Standing up with your feet flat on the ground, just fold forward as far as you can, bringing your hands down to the ground, to your shins, or to a block. Allow some bend in your knees if you prefer.  You can even rest your forehead on your knees, giving yourself a little nervous system reset.

4. Savasana.

On the days when I skip my mat, I always say, “Well, at least I practiced Savasana in bed.”  When I go to bed, instead of just getting into my usual position for sleeping, I get into Savasana.

To try this, lie flat on your back, allow your arms and legs to extend and relax. Breathe deeply at first, and then forget about your breathingSurrender. Feel as if you are melting into your bed. Dissolving. You might fall asleep. Give yourself a few minutes here before switching your brain to sleep mode.

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5. Live your practice.

Yoga isn’t just about the movements or breath. It’s what we learn on the mat. The lessons of strength, focus, perseverance, awareness, self-acceptance ultimately take us into our lives.  When you feel too busy to hit the mat, consider one lesson you’ve learned on the mat and challenge yourself to carry what you learned off the mat and into your day.

Regardless of how busy you are, you can always choose to live your life in a way that reflects the principles and purpose of yoga. In that way, you are weaving yoga into your daily life.

As we barrel towards 2019, what are your yoga goals? What feelings do you want to grab a hold of with both hands next year? And how about today? Let me know in the comments below or send me an email.

Namaste my friends.  Take care of yourself in this season.