Welcome, beautiful friends, to our SoulSimple Blog. Gently navigating and guiding you through the journey to a better understanding of your body, health and well-being.
This week we explore what 'Wellness' means to us and how we approach it here at the Retreat, we also explore more learnings about our amazing Lymphatic Systems and the delicious things you can do with blackberries.
And remember....you are AMAZING, you are UNIQUE and you are the HERO of your own LIFE! Have a gorgeous week!
SoulNatural - the SoulSimple Guide to the Natural World
As we continue our celebration of the humble blackberry, this week have begun picking the delicious fruits from the hedgerows! Such a simple pleasure, and an activity that can be enjoyed by everyone. Here are some of our tips for choosing the best fruits:
The best blackberries can be found between the end of August until the end of September. Don't leave it too late though or the birds may have got to them all first!
Try and choose berries which are shiny and firm, the redder in colour they are, the less ripe and more sour!
If possible avoid picking from bushes next to busy roads. Instead, try and hunt out bushes on quieter country lanes, canal paths or parks. Fruit picking can be a great way to find out new areas and walks around where you live.
Try and pick berries from waist height or higher.
Don't put too many berries into one container as the ones at the bottom will get squashed and bruised before you get home! Take a few, smaller containers with you instead.
Decide on what you'd like to make with the blackberries and then keep them in the fridge until you use them, try not to keep them in there for longer than a couple of days as they will go past their best.
Don't forget to pick some leaves at the same time! These incredible plants are very potent and have been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years!
Recipes for Blackberries and Leaves
Once you have picked the blackberry fruits, you can start to decide what you'd like to make with them. If you aren't quite ready to use them, blackberries can be frozen for up to six months, either whole or pureed.
Blackberries are an incredible superfood! Each one is made up of 20-50 single seeds, they can be eaten straight from the bush (after a wash) or used in hundreds of different delicious recipes. There is also evidence that blackberries may help prevent against heart disease, boost brainpower and be anti inflammatory and anti viral.
One of our favourite things to do with blackberries is add them to a health-boosting smoothie. You can use either fresh or frozen berries for this and put them with virtually any other fruits. They work especially well with strawberries, blueberries and blackcurrants and you can experiment with other ingredients until you find your own favourite. Try adding:
Peanut, cashew or almond butter
Milk or vegan alternative
The leaves of the blackberry plant are packed with antioxidants, anti-inflammatory and immune boosting properties. For a delicious raspberry leaf tea, just pick a good quantity of leaves from the plant (take care and use gloves if possible as the spines can be prickly!) and leave them in a cool, dry place out of direct sunlight. Once thoroughly dried, crush the leaves and add a teaspoon to a cup of boiling water. Leave for three or four minutes and then strain the leaves out of the liquid. You can add a teaspoon of honey if you wish to sweeten the tea. Enjoy a cup daily to reap the benefits.
SoulWoman and SoulTouch: Nurturing Yourself at Home
What is 'Wellness?'
SoulSimple was started by Vittoria over five years ago as a complete sanctuary for mind, body and soul. She is totally passionate about empowering people to better understand their bodies and how they can take care of them to achieve a better experience of life.
As a 'Wellness Retreat', we are often asked exactly what this means. 'Wellness' is a very broad term that we hear a lot and can be interpreted in many different ways. To us, it is an all encompassing phrase for living the best life you can, both physically and spiritually. It is, and always should be, available to EVERYONE from EVERY WALK OF LIFE. There are many different parts to the jigsaw puzzle of Wellness but if we can start by teaching you the foundations, you can then build on them and begin to explore what exactly it means to you and how it can help you on your journey.
We run many different Retreats, all tailored to specific needs that our guests may have at the time. We dedicate ourselves to exploring new and unique experiences that will help you discover yourself. Whether learning about your body and the inner pharmacy within it, or through delving into what is happening in your mind right now through meditation and creativity, we promise you will leave with a better understanding of yourself. We run one to one sessions, couples Retreats, mother and daughter bonding and group sessions for friends.
Some of our SoulSimple teachings and tools:
Meditation - a powerful tool for contemplation and quieting the mind.
Crystals - we have placed beautiful crystals throughout the Retreat and all of our accommodations. Crystals are incredible tools that can be used for healing and to cleanse energy.
Breath work - learning to how to REALLY BREATHE! One of our absolute passions and foundations.
Yoga - we teach many different types of yoga, depending on what your body needs. Practices can be soft and contemplative or dynamic and fiery.
Nature - our ultimate teaching. We offer total immersion in beautiful nature to help reset your connection and grounding within the world.
SoulSource: Lifelong Healing - Understanding and Nurturing your Lymphatic System
As we discovered last week, our Lymphatic System is a network of tissues and organs and is an extremely important part of our immune system. It is made up of many different parts including the appendix, tonsils, lymph nodes, bone marrow and the largest, the spleen, which all play a vital part in supporting our health. To simplify it, you can think of it as the sewage system of the body!
Why is it important to keep your Lymphatic System healthy?
The healthier your Lymphatic System is, the more effective it will be at functioning and keeping us well. Although it is rarely talked about and often over-looked, it is a vital part of our overall wellbeing. When it’s not functioning well, the Lymphatic System may have a role in illnesses such as Tonsilitis, Crohn’s disease and other disorders. Other signs that your Lymphatic System may need a little TLC can be swelling of the fingers, bloating and a feeling of brain fog.
How can we start to do this?
A good place to start is by exercising. EXERCISE is one of the best ways to maintain a well functioning Lymphatic System as well as improving your general health and mood. The movement generated by exercise helps move the Lymph Fluid through your system. Another way to assist the Fluid move moor freely is to ensure that you DRINK ENOUGH WATER and keep your body hydrated. One more really easy thing to try is DEEP BREATHING, this will move your diaphragm muscle which also helps Fluid circulate.
As well as the above, try adding Lymph friendly foods that will help cleanse your system. These include GREEN LEAFY VEGETABLES, NUTS AND SEEDS and LOW SUGAR FRUITS such as CRANBERRIES.
SoulScapes: Painting Retreats at SoulSimple
Last week we talked about how we believe that creativity is an incredibly important way of exploring your emotions and inner being. One of our favourite Retreats to run are our incredible SoulScapes Painting Retreats.
Especially fun as a group, we start each session with a Guided meditation
before beginning your SoulScapes painting journey - painting from your inner being with complete freedom and spontaneity. We then take some time for relaxation and herbal tea. Next, we move onto SoulSound Crystal Alchemy Singing Bowls & angelic Reiki Sound Bath relaxation followed by a delicious vegetarian lunch.
We then spend the afternoon by continuing your SoulScapes painting journey and finish by enjoying a seasonal herb tea & delicious cake.
We run our SoulScapes Retreats one on one, for couples or for groups of friends or hen parties. Contact us to find out more!
Until next time!
Lots of love, Vittoria and the SoulSimple Family x