Vida Luna 2018: Community

The concept of Vida Luna Women’s Wellness retreat was conceived in January 2017 with longtime friend and Transpersonal Development Coach, Nikki Hartley.  We wanted to provide an affordable long weekend to help women refresh their minds, renew their spirits, and heal their bodies. To recharge.


Vida Luna was born.

This past weekend, 10 women carved time into their busy schedules to their make their way from four different states to Lake Ouachita for our second Vida Luna Retreat. It was an honor and privilege to welcome back so many familiar faces, to witness the joyful reunions, and to see arms outstretched to the first-timers. By the end of our first meal together, it felt like a group of old friends catching up at a weekend getaway.

Throughout the weekend we practiced morning yoga overlooking the lake, and guided meditations lit by candles and the stars. We turned inwards; cultivating mindfulness through daily journal prompts and the use of oracle cards. There were delicious family-style vegan and vegetarian meals, quartz crystal hunting, dancing on boats, flamingo floats, teary-eyed hugs, and endless laughter.

IMG_1720 2

Being surrounded by other women open to listening and sharing their own experiences creates the sacred space and support we need to allow ourselves to lean into one another’s shoulders, and inspire each other’s awakenings. Because working through your own shit alongside another human working on their own shit reminds us that we aren’t alone in our pain and fear. That on some level we’re all the same. Connected. One.

Everyone who signs up for a wellness retreat is searching for something – even if they don’t know what it is they’re seeking. I’m not sure if anyone found what they were looking for last weekend, but I believe they all left having found a sense of belonging.


Someone responded to one of my posts on Instagram asking if it was a retreat or just a girl’s weekend.

The answer: BOTH.

And I wouldn’t have it any other way.


That time we howled at the moon

Exactly a month ago, I packed my car with shorts, a swimsuit, 8 meals for 12 adults, and a long-lost friend from my early 20s to co-lead a wellness retreat in the tiny town of Mt. Ida, Arkansas.

Nestled in the Ozarks overlooking Lake Ouachita, Nikki (of Mind Body Mana) and I lead ten beautiful souls through a 3-night wellness retreat focused on helping women take a break from the daily grind to reconnect with their feminine energy.


Life gets fucking intense. It can get so overwhelmingly busy that you lose track of tasks, goals, dreams, friends, and which day of the week it is. I get it. Nikki gets it. We live it. We get that other people are living it too. And we understand that many of us have jobs, kids, families, and other obligations that don’t allow us to drop $1k+ and take off for a week to do the self-caring.

But all this stuff? This life stuff?

That’s exactly why we need to take time for ourselves.

To take care of others, you have to take care of yourself first.

So Nikki and I set out with a mission: Design an affordable long weekend to help women refresh their minds, renew their spirits, and heal their bodies. Recharge. We knew it didn’t need to be fancy (and quickly discovered that keeping the price point low actually forbid that), but it did need to be a comfortable and beautiful place that would allow connection with self, each other, and Mother Nature. (Also, room for all of the yoga mats.)

FullSizeRender (5)

After scouting several extravagantly priced locations that were exceptionally difficult to get to in Colorado, we opted for the exact spot on Lake Ouachita that my family has been visiting since the 1970s.

Lake Ouachita Shores is charmingly rustic, economical, and a short walk to the marina where we rented a beautiful, brand new party barge large enough for 15 adults and equipped with Bluetooth and badass speakers.

The natural beauty here is exquisite. We began each day saluting the sun on their two-level gazebo over looking the lake. (Confession: I occasionally paused practice to point out deer, ravishingly red cardinals, and adorable striped chipmunks. #sorrynotsorry).

We scoured the shoreline for quartz as Lake Ouachita features one of the largest crystal veins in the world. (Fun fact: Mt. Ida has been dubbed “Quartz Capital of the World.”)

We ate meals together, meditated together, worked with essential oils, wrote, laughed, sang, and even cried together. Our group encompassed women spanning more than 3 decades decades. We brought many different ideas and insights to the table, but we each gave, received, and practiced kindness, compassion, acceptance, and love, love, love, love, love. We honored our divine potential and created space for new opportunities and infinite possibilities.

And, yeah.

We howled at the moon. We did a lot of cool girl cult stuff. I’d share with you here, but that shit is sacred. If you want to find out for yourself, you’ll have to come next time.


A very special thanks to the following who contributed to gift bags to greet our ladies of the lake. I am so happy I had the opportunity to share products I use and love from companies I support and have a personal connection with.


When your dog steals the show.

Let’s face it: No matter how brilliant, attractive, funny, or charming you are… If there’s a baby or a dog around, they steal the show. No questions asked. Cute wins every time.

I should have known better. But I let Mr. Darcy tag along to a Nativ photoshoot a few weeks ago. Not only did he photobomb about 70% of the images, but he stole the show with his excess of sass, style, class, side eye, and superior athletic ability.

No, seriously. I’m almost 5ft2. Dude has jumps.

Images by Mandy Yelvington. 


Nativ | Texan

When people ask where I’m from, I almost always reply: Texas.

I spent my childhood in Little Rock, but I was born in Dallas, transitioned into womanhood in Austin, found my true calling in the great state of Texas. Theoretically, we all continue to grow and evolve as the years pass, but from ages 18-32 I feel like that change is pretty profound. Maybe it’s because so many of the experiences are unprecedented, or perhaps with newfound understanding of yourself and the world you interpret and absorb things differently. I have spent literally half of my life in Texas. It is home.

You can guess my answer when Mandy Yelvington messaged me asking my origin for a project she was working on with, Nativ, a local apparel company. Nativ believes that no matter where you roam, adventure, explore, or wander – your roots are with you always. Home isn’t a location, it’s a part of who you are, and how you experience the world around you. Nativ has finally introduced state collections so that we non-Arkansans can enjoy their clean designs, bright colors, and super soft t-shirts and tanks. You can check out all of their awesome products at And as they say… Wander far. 

Images by Mandy Yelvington.



Weekend in Little Rock

Growing up in Little Rock, Arkansas wasn’t exactly the most thrilling of experiences. I spent the majority of my teens plotting my escape, and my present day visits are fewer and further in between than either of my parents would like. It’s a sleepy spot in a forest-covered state caught somewhere between a town and a city. There are no professional sports teams (in the entire state), no opera (they barely have a ballet company) the restaurants all seem to close by 9pm (midnight on the weekends if you’re lucky), and there’s not even a real Lululemon (it’s a “pop up” store or something like that). However, when a former schoolmate asked me to teach at her studio’s summer intensive, I found that I couldn’t say no. So I spent the beginning of this week in Little Rock.

Rock City Dance Center is nestled in a shopping center in West Little Rock next to the only Whole Foods in the state (score!). Four studios (one underground) painted in bright colors, with new marley flooring in 3 of them (one remains wood for the tappers), an awesome health vending machine, a vibrant faculty, and enthusiastic students! The class slots were too short for a full master class, so I taught ballet variations (Silver Fairy & Aurora’s Variation from Act II of “Sleeping Beauty”) on two days and yoga for dancers on one. The mentality was very similar to my current studio and I felt right at home with the friendly staff and dancers.

I was also able to catch up with another former schoolmate who started Little Rock Urban Farming which grows, processes, markets and distributes produce in the Little Rock community. They do tons of community outreach, education, and training as well as dining events. It was so exciting to see the farm and how much it’s grown (no pun intended) over the past few years! Here are some photos I took while visiting the farm in between yoga classes on Tuesday.

Little Rock is growing and progressing in leaps and bounds, and it’s a joy to see the success of so many friends!

lruf lruf2 lruf3


Lake Ouachita

Lake Ouachita is one of the most beautiful lakes in the country. Even the WSJ says so! Despite an insane summer schedule, I try my hardest to plan at least one trip each summer to the stomping grounds of my youth. Last weekend I introduced 7 of my dearest Dallas pals to “the lake.” The weekend was filled with fun, food, pups, a few awesome games of Head’s Up, boats, and oh so many cocktails. It was such an amazing, easy getaway and I’m so glad I was able to share a place with them that is pretty much sacred to me.

lake boat cptn jump