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Wonderful Wanderlust

Around the time Col and I first looked at Stratton for a possible wedding venue, they were gearing up for the first Wanderlust Festival — it sounded amazing, and I knew I had to go one day.

And what do you know? Lucky for me, I got to go this year!

Stratton

Stratton

I honestly didn’t know what to expect of the festival. I knew that, yes, there would be lots of yoga, tons of yogis, and let’s be real…lots of Lululemon. I read up on the events for the weekend, so I knew that there would be hiking, live music, and delicious food. What I didn’t realize, or couldn’t research beforehand, was the amount of heart and soul it took to put this festival together.

I didn’t know that I would be doing hip hop yoga in the room where Colin and I will host our reception (or that I would be doing a back bend to “Shoop” by Salt ‘n’ Pepa for that matter…might have to recreate that at the wedding?…), or that I would listen to a talk on EFT Tapping in the chapel where we will recite our vows. I didn’t know that I would eat the most delicious empanadas I’ve ever tasted (from Ana’s Empanada’s in Rutland, VT), or that the chicken at the farm-to-table dinner would knock my socks off. I couldn’t predict that I’d sit with the founder of BreastCancer.org, and her lovely daughter who is currently interning at Stonyfield (great company!) at said farm-to-table dinner. I didn’t realize that the amount of lucy activewear that I spotted would rival the Lululemon ladies (and gents for that matter) — and how their clothes are just as comfortable and fashionable as their competitor. I didn’t know the number of laughs Kate (my friend and Wanderlust partner in crime) and I would share, or how great the people watching would be when I took a moment to just sit and watch. I forgot how much I love Ziggy Marley’s music, and couldn’t predict which of his father’s songs he would play. Before I arrived at Wanderlust, I couldn’t tell you how BIG my heart would smile when I heard Ziggy sing Bob Marley songs.

Ana's

Ana’s

Hip Hop Yoga courtesy of South End Yoga in Boston: http://www.southendyoga.com/

Hip Hop Yoga courtesy of South End Yoga in Boston: http://www.southendyoga.com/

Thanks lucy!

Thanks lucy!

Ziggy Marley

Ziggy Marley

I didn’t realize my favorite part of the weekend would be the media tour with founders Jeff Krasno and Sean Hoess to learn more about the why’s, where’s, and how’s of the event. (That, and Ziggy Marley of course — he was beyond words.)

Jeff and Sean

Jeff and Sean

Watch the video below for more info from Jeff and Sean. I asked them why they chose Stratton — since I am a Stratton lover — and they explained that for one, they were drawn to the beauty and size of the resort / mountain, but that they also wanted to bring in some revenue for the area especially after the devastation from Hurricane Irene as well as the mild winter we had this past year. I thought that was really awesome, and very interesting.

I enjoy yoga, but am not even close to being any kind of yoga master whatsoever, so I was definitely intimidated by the folks that would be there. Once I got into the swing of things, I was pleasantly surprised at how friendly everyone was. I decided to just go for it, and not worry about what I looked like in a pose, whether or not I liked my ‘yoga outfit’ for the day, or the fact that I was a little anxious about the ‘unknown’ of the weekend. I decided I wouldn’t feel foolish if I did something I wasn’t used to like meditating, or hiking with a barefoot man (our guide, not some random person). I dove right in, and came out feeling great. I think that’s the way you have to go after most things in life. Be open to new opportunities, make sure your heart is in the right place, and try to just enjoy the ride.

Check out some more of my pictures from the weekend:

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*A BIG thanks to everyone at Wanderlust and Stratton Mountain for allowing me to attend this festival free of charge. All opinions expressed in this post are honest and from the heart. xo

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I’m beyond excited for Wanderlust!

I leave for the Wanderlust Festival tomorrow evening, and I cannot wait. It’s finally here! There are so many amazing things going on over the weekend, and I am excited for all of it. Although, here are the things I am probably most excited about:

The music!

The music! Photo courtesy of Wanderlust

Specifically, Ziggy Marley. :)

Ziggy

Ziggy. Photo courtesy of Wanderlust

Doing all sorts of yoga in the room where our reception is going to be (at Stratton)!

So cool!

So cool! Photo courtesy of Wanderlust

Definitely excited for the farm-to-table dinner! I LOVE FOOD

Delicious

Delicious. Photo courtesy of Wanderlust

Among other things I’m excited for, are hanging out with my friend (and roommate for the weekend) Kate, meeting new people, relaxing, taking time out for myself (amidst a crazy hectic time in my life), spending time in Vermont, and learning something new. It should be a great weekend, and I hope you have a fabulous one as well. And if you don’t have plans, feel free to grab a ticket to Wanderlust! There are still some available here.

Wanderlust Festival

I haven’t always loved yoga. Actually, I used to really dislike yoga. I didn’t gel with certain teachers, I wasn’t patient enough, and overall I just didn’t have the right mentality towards it. I wanted a workout, but I also wanted to rush through it so I could get it over with and go home. That doesn’t really work with yoga. I’ve realized that I needed to slow things down, and appreciate yoga for what it is (to me) — a great workout, but also a way to calm myself down from my daily anxieties, slow my brain down from a crazy day at work, stretch my body out, and to take time to focus on myself. I really enjoy yoga now, although I am still searching for a class and teacher I really like in my area. It’s a work in progress, but I’ll get there!

One thing I have always loved is music. Ever since I was a little girl, music has always been a big part of my life — listening to Raffi, or Sharon Lois and Bram while dancing around the house, singing along with ‘the oldies’ on B103  in car rides with my mom, going to some of my first concerts with my parents — James Taylor, the Doobie Brothers, Steve Miller Band, etc. Certain songs, or bands, always remind me of  different stages of my life. I play it loud, I (badly, but happily) sing along with the lyrics, and it’s my number one go-to when I need to cheer myself up, get pumped up, or relax.

Wanderlust truly is a one-of-a-kind festival that brings both yoga and music together (Ziggy Marley is going to be there!), along with local food, wine, inspiration, and motivation. Not to mention it’s at one of the most beautiful ski resorts around — Stratton (I mean, we chose it as our wedding venue, come on people, its gorgeous). There are pools (think sipping cocktails under the sun), there will be a delicious farm-to-table dinner, yoga on top of the mountain, incredible views, plenty of laughter, and new friends.

When I found out about Wanderlust last year while we were checking out the resort as a potential wedding venue, it really interested me. I was unable to go (unfortunately), but made a mental note to keep it in mind for this year. It’s at Stratton Mountain at the end of June — which will only be about two months from when Colin and I will be getting married there — pretty cool. I really can’t wait to go! If you aren’t able to attend the one in Stratton, or rather travel somewhere other than VT, please note that they will be making stops in Colorado, California, and Canada as well.

With a mission statement like this, “Wanderlust’s core mission is to create community around mindful living. Mindful living is a conscious, value-based approach to leading a sane & healthy life”, how can you say no? I’m always striving for a more sane and healthy lifestyle. :)

The nitty-gritty:

Purchase tickets here.

Lineup of speakers, musical acts, and more here.

For more info about the full experience, check this out.

Lodging info can be found here.

And don’t forget to check the Wanderlust Festival out on Facebook and Twitter for the most up-to-date news!

*Photos courtesy of the lovely people at Wanderlust.

Samuel Adams Crowd Craft Project

Ok I have two questions for you:

1 – Do you need a break from work for a minute?

2 – Do you want to give Sam Adams your input on what their next beer should look / taste like?

Well then, you’re in luck! Samuel Adams has paired up with social media guru, Guy Kawasaki, for the first ever Samuel Adams Crowd Craft Project. The point of this contest is to take valuable feedback and suggestions from Sam Adams beer enthusiasts from Facebook, Twitter and Google+ in order to create a crowd-sourced beer of fan-approved perfection.

With Guy’s passion for social media and innovation combined with Samuel Adams passion for high quality craft beer, this social collaboration brew is sure to be a standout.

So hurry people, because there are only TWO DAYS left to vote!

What you’ll vote on:

  • Color
  • Clarity
  • Body (mouth feel)
  • Malt (sweetness)
  • Hops (bitterness)
  • Yeast (finish)

When the voting period ends on February 5th, brewers will take the top choice from each category (above) and use them for the collaborative ale recipe, which will be brewed throughout the month of February. The beer will be revealed at Guy Kawasaki’s Girl + Guy party in Austin, Texas on March 10th during an annual interactive festival.

Here’s my beer that I voted on :)

What my beer creation looked like

And just as a reminder…if you have two seconds, please head over to my Facebook profile and click on the photo I shared of my fab friend Kate striking a yoga pose. Then click “like” in order to vote for Kate. She could win tickets to the Wanderlust Festival at Stratton Mountain in Vermont on the weekend of June 21-24. Thank you SO MUCH!

Tortellini = happiness

This past weekend was wonderful – it was the first in a while where we didn’t have too much on the agenda. I (as I’m sure many people do) have a tendency to over schedule myself. Especially on the weekends when I feel like I have to cram every last bit of fun and relaxation in (did I just say that I need to cram in fun and relaxation? Sad, but true).

Friday night we got to babysit Declan, Saturday I attended a wonderful yoga class taught by my fab friend Kate (more on her in a few – we need your help with something!) and then Sunday my sisters and I went to a bridal show and then a bunch of us tried out Sweet Cheeks Q in Fenway. It was great – the whole experience, decor, and vibe in the restaurant felt very authentic to me. I also loved the deeelicious pulled pork. I surprisingly didn’t love their mac ‘n’ cheese unfortunately…but their cole slaw definitely redeemed the negative feelings I had toward the mac ‘n’ cheese.

Saturday night Col and I wanted to make a tasty meal for a night in of hanging out and wedding chatter. We decided to try out our first recipe from the cook book my future mother-in-law gave us. That’s right, Mrs. T compiled a bunch of her and her families recipes and made an amazing, beautiful cook book! She printed out a copy for Colin and I for Christmas and it is honestly one of the best gifts I have ever received. I know Col and I will put it to good use together when we’re making dinner for each other and eventually for the little Colin and Colleen’s that will be running around one day. :)

Check out our meal! And scroll to the bottom for a special favor I need to ask of you, please…

Ingredients

The sausage is cooking away!

Almost there...

Yum!

Yay wedding stuff!

Now on to the special favor, if you don’t mind! I will be heading to the Wanderlust Festival at Stratton Mountain in Vermont on the weekend of June 21-24. I am SO pumped for it and I truly think it’s going to be amazing (more on this soon). Anywho…my friend Kate entered their Facebook photo contest and I really hope she wins so I have a buddy to come to the event with me! All she has to do to win is to have the most “likes” on her photo….soooo if you don’t mind, please go to my Facebook profile and click on the photo I shared of Kate striking a yoga pose. Then click “like” and it will count toward her votes! Thank you SO MUCH in advance!

Here is the photo to look out for on my Facebook profile:

Kate - the amazing yogini!

Two cool things

I have two cool things to share tonight –

The Jimmy Fund is hosting a BIG, FUN race this Tuesday called:

Race to “The Town”

Where you can: “Take to the streets of Boston for a scavenger hunt benefiting the Jimmy Fund, and win tickets to the premiere of Warner Brothers “The Town,” starring Ben Affleck, Jon Hamm, and Jeremy Renner.

Teams of two will race throughout the city to pick up clues at different locations featured in the Boston-based film. The first 15 teams to complete the race will win tickets to the Sept.14 movie premiere at Fenway Park, and the top 2 teams will also be granted access to mingle with the stars at the afterparty.”

“The Town” –


I’m sorry, but anything involving an amazing charity PLUS Ben Affleck gets not one but two GIANT thumbs up from me (Ben Affleck is my #1 celebrity crush and always will be). The movie looks reeeally good as well. If I didn’t have to work, I would be there in a SECOND! Sign up and good luck!

Also, congratulations to all of those who participated in The Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk today!

—————————-

This Wednesday is free yoga in Copley Square hosted and taught by a Healthworks Instructor in partnership with City Sports. This is the last of the three-week series, so make sure you don’t miss out! Class is from 6:00 am – 7:00 am; bring your mat and sign up by emailing events@citysports.com.

Wine Chicken – [wahyn chik un n] noun – A chicken which produces wine

A few things tonight…

I haven’t been able to blog all day – it’s been a crazy one! THANK THE DEAR LORD it’s Friday. This week was long – it felt like a few weeks squished into one. And not only that, but today was a very terrible day at work. They have decided to move my work BFF, Nicole along with my college/work BFF Adam upstairs to the 6th floor while I stay downstairs on the 5th floor! This is a very big deal. Nicole and I walk over to the coffee machine about fifty times a day with each other. Who will I walk with now? Just me? All alone? No one to chat with?

I think this is both uncool and rude. How can you take my buddies away from me? They make sitting in a cube all day a little more cheerful. I don’t know what I’ll do! This is like when you were in fifth grade and the teacher decides the classroom needs to do a little switcheroo. Everyone gets a new seating assignment and you’re pissed because you had the best seat in the whole classroom. It’s devastating! I hope I can bounce back from this…

Then after hearing this news I got reprimanded at the printer by a woman because I printed too many pages out. Oh, I’m sorry! I didn’t realize their was a printer monitor. This was just flat-out embarrassing – I don’t even know what I said to her. I do know that I was as red as a tomato. Love when that happens.

Anyway – Colin picked me up early from work then we picked up his sister Elizabeth and got on the road, headed to Vermont.This is my first holiday away from my family – we decided we just couldn’t take another holiday with one another, so I’m in Vermont, Meg is in New Hampshire, Patrick, Kelly and Pa are in California and Mom, Dad and Molly are in Chicago, IL. We figured spreading the Mescall bunch across the United States would help eliminate fighting over the holiday (just kidding – I miss you guys!)

Luckily the Temple’s allowed me in their beautiful home for Easter. Tonight was a great night, we went to the Stations of the Cross for Good Friday and then out to a nice dinner.

We had a lovely chicken at dinner.

No, not that kind of chicken! It’s Good Friday and we’re good Catholics! We had a chicken with wine in it (that’s my kinda chicken.)

Wine Chicken - a chicken which produces wine

I love Vermont – and I’m not even a hippie, too much of a Liberal, or looking to get married to a woman, I don’t drive a truck and I don’t hunt. It is funny because I’m from Long Island (which I love as well) and LI is so different from VT. I guess it’s nice to experience something different from what you’ve known all you’re life – refreshing, if you will. One big reason why I love Vermont is, the Vermont Country Store. You haven’t lived until you’ve visited the VCS. They sell anything you could ever think of – everything from muumuus, to lingerie, to toys, food, toaster ovens, vacuums, etc. etc. etc.

Check it out here – http://www.vermontcountrystore.com/Shop?

Now, Jean, the Temple’s next door neighbor and dear friend works here. Since Jean is an employee she is eligible for the $5 mystery box special. You pay $5 for a box (you have no idea whats in it) and let me tell you – the surprises in there are worth it! Last box I got everything from tablecloths to flannel PJ’s to XXXL woman’s underwear. This time, Mrs. Temple gave me a beautiful bedspread from their mystery box which I am thrilled with! It reminds me of my Nana and Pa’s house because they always had blankets like this, so I really think it’s special :)

2 good deals for the day (which even though its late right now, it’s not too late to purchase these gift certificates!)

$10 for $20 at the Upper Crust’s Watertown location:

http://www.buywithme.com/boston/deals/501-upper-crust-pizza?utm_source=the+BuyWithMe+Mailing+List&utm_campaign=32d55c6f50-BOSTON_The_Upper_Crust_watertown_4_2_104_1_2010&utm_medium=email

$30 for 6-8 yoga classes at Real Life Yoga Studio:

http://livingsocial.com/deals/1091?ref=BOSDeal040210email&utm_source=bronto&utm_medium=email&utm_term=buy+now&utm_content=cmescall%40gmail.com&utm_campaign=BOSDeal040210

Who knew kids that went to Middlebury College were so damn funny?

(thanks Liz!)

Lastly, here are some excellent tips on the importance of sleep from Women’s Health Magazine (as I’m falling asleep while typing this… must.go.to.bed.)

http://www.womenshealthmag.com/health/sleep-myths?cat=11296&tip=11297

Goodnight!

Penny Lane is in my ears and in my eyes…

I have a confession to make. It might be shocking. It might be offensive. 

Here it goes: 

I.despise.yoga. 

I really do. I’ve tried it a handful of times and each time I’ve despised it equally (except when I did Bikram yoga, I despised that even more – yoga in a room with the temp set to 100 is not normal.) I just don’t understand, every other woman in the world loves yoga, so why don’t I?! My sister Meg and I decided to do a candlelit yoga class at a place in Andover tonight. It was free and sounded intriguing. I always trick myself into thinking that the next time I go to yoga, I’ll like it; it’s like my brain blocks out the hatred I hold for it. We arrived and got settled on our mats, as the class began it really wasn’t too bad… Then the annoyance and boredom kicked in. A- Why do yoga instructors always have to have such eerily calm and soothing voices? I know you’re not gonna want someone up there teaching your class that sounds like Fran Drescher but come on! B- The whole class all you hear is the instructor saying: downward facing dog, iiiin-hale, exxx-hale, warrior one, namaste blahblahblahblahblah, C- The instructor should do the class with everyone! I’m sorry, but having someone walk around the room telling me what to do while I stretch, bend and contort my body in ways I didn’t think possible is simply rude. And D- I am honestly just not mature enough to be in a room full of people ‘om-ing’ with our eyes closed. You better believe my eyes are opened and I’m laughing to myself because it sounds like I’m at some sort of cult meeting or something. 

On a more positive note, there was a pregnant lady in front of me who was so cute with her little belly sticking out. She was doing such a great job with the yoga – waaay better than me! She looked so strong and beautiful. Pregnant women amaze me. 

I’m sure I’ll be tricked by yoga again (somehow Megan is always involved in this by the way, I never voluntarily go to yoga on my own… maybe I’m on to something here…) Maybe one day I’ll actually enjoy it, you never know? I’m not giving up on it, but for now I’ll stick with things like running, lifting, zumba, basketball, etc. Your workout is what works best for your body, what makes you feel powerful and happy with yourself – you have to do what’s best for you. However, I do recommend to keep an open mind in reference to trying new ways to workout because at some point you’re inevitably gonna have to spice up that old trusty workout, or else you could lose interest, focus and motivation. 

After yoga Meg and I went to Palmers (a small upscale restaurant in Andover) and sat in the bar area. Meg had chardonnay, I had pinot grigio, we shared the grilled brie and then each had a grilled shrimp and goat cheese salad (love that goat cheese!) This salad is so incredibly delicious and is just what I needed tonight. PS- Our waitress’ name was ‘Penny Lane’ which I thought was worth mentioning… 

Lastly, I wanted to share this with you: 

Reese Witherspoon (Avon’s Global Ambassador) was in Washington DC this past Wednesday in order to promote Avon’s products which they are selling so that their proceeds can go towards the effort to end violence against women. http://ow.ly/1h4eP   

   

If you click here: http://multivu.prnewswire.com/mnr/avon/42564/ You can watch both Reese along with Andrea Jung, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Avon Products Inc. speak to the crowd at the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Women breakfast. You can also go to the link below to order any of the Avon empowerment products. 

http://shop.avon.com/shop/product_list.aspx?level1_id=300&level2_id=380&pdept_id=383&cat_type=C  

I bought this bracelet for my mother, my sisters and myself - it’s so pretty! 

From Avon.com

From Avon.com

 

What a great message these women are putting out there; I really admire Reese Witherspoon and I think it’s wonderful she has chosen to use her fame in order to help a good cause. Violence against women is heartbreaking and it has most likely affected you, someone close to you or someone you know through someone else (a friend of a friend, etc.) The issue of violence has been lurking for years; no matter how equal women and men seem to be, no matter how strong and independent we are, violence is going to remain an issue unless something is done. Support your sisters, your mothers, your aunts, your nieces, your friends, yourself. Help these women get a fair chance in life – buy the bracelet/necklace/ring/t-shirt and spread the word! :)

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