Category Archives: travel

Silvan & Spring retreat next spring in England

Cotswolds_walkingpathsJoin us next spring as we explore and share two magical places in England for a beautiful and nourishing seven-day/six-night retreat in the Cotswolds and Bath. We will explore the forests and landscapes of the Cotswolds and enjoy the sacred waters in Bath as we create art, write, and explore our surroundings between April 26 – May 2, 2018. We’ll celebrate the ancient Gaelic festival of Beltane together as we mark the transition between spring and summer, and learn about the history and traditions of this important annual celebration. You will have plenty of time for relaxation and conversation as you explore these inspiring places with our small and intimate group. Both Gretchen and Laurie have traveled to England many times and will serve as your tour guides as they show you the best parts of this enchanted country.

Bath_RomanBathsWe’ll start and end in London, taking the train through the English countryside west towards the Cotswolds where we will spend four nights and three days in one of its charming villages. We will enjoy the cobblestone streets, thatched roof houses, and access to walking paths that weave through woodlands, along ancient hedgerows, and cross sheep-filled fields. Then we will take the train south to Bath and stay for two days and two nights near the heart of the town’s ancient Roman spring-fed baths, within steps of Pulteney Bridge and its artisan-owned shops. This is the same town filled with the Georgian architecture that inspired Jane Austen. We will return to London by train. We have a lot of fun things planned including: natural plant dyeing, watercolour studies, tarot and oracle card explorations, journaling practice, guided plant walks, sketching, DIY herbal facials, and more.

PaintingInCotswoldsFor more information please visit: silvanandspring.com

Or email us at: info@silvanandspring.com

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Timing the Trip of a Lifetime

A great deal of thought went into the timing of my upcoming trip to Europe (which starts three weeks from today). Summer and Winter were out. Winter for obvious reasons and Summer because only fools leave Oregon during the summer. This is our best season and shouldn’t be missed!

So, it was really a toss up between Spring and Fall, but if I went with Spring I would have had to wait another six months and I’d already been waiting a few years. If my bout with cancer left any type of lasting impression it was to do it now – no matter what “it” is. You never know what’s right around the corner. So Fall it is for many reasons, let me count them down…

  • I love this season and honestly think the weather is less volatile at that time of year. Knowing that a good part of my itinerary would be visiting landscapes that was a big consideration.
  • I’ve found amazing deals. I was able to book my flight using only 40,000 miles for a round trip ticket to London and out of Madrid. Spring offers some similar options, but not as many in my experience.
  • I’m taking advantage of a trip to New York where I’m speaking at a conference and launching my trip from there. Less time on the plane is always a good idea.

Happy Anniversary

This weekend marks six years for my blog. Six years since I moved back to Portland from Boston. Six years of writing about my obsessions: travel, design, sports and history. Six years of photographing the amazing places I’m fortunate to live in and visit. Six years baby, it really doesn’t feel like that long.

Though I’ve been neglecting this space (for a while I know) I plan to inject it with more energy during the next several weeks as I prepare for a month-long trip to Europe. And of course plan to document my travels through London, England, Paris and Spain this fall. Stay tuned…

four months

Four months from today I’ll be on a plane. That’s not atypical in a life filled with frequent travel, but this will be a special trip. Originally slated to coincide with my 40th birthday, but delayed due to life’s unplanned events (take that cancer), I’m heading to two countries I’ve never visited – England and Spain – for three weeks in the fall.

Though I typically start documenting a trip the day it starts, that doesn’t really tell the whole story, nor does it capture all the fun that goes into traveling. Mapping out the journey; reading about the places you will visit; making decisions about going east or west, north or south; determining what you’ll leave to chance and what you’ll plan ahead is one of my FAVORITE parts of traveling. It’s where the dreaming comes in, and who doesn’t LOVE to dream.

Plus I’m interested in your advice. I  have some “can’t miss” places on my list, but there are still many holes. Perhaps you can help me fill in the gaps. Where would you go? What would you do if you had three weeks in two amazing countries.

Indian Wells 2012: Rafael Nadal

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Rafa and his team before Ernests Gulbis starts practicing.

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Rafa meeting Elizabeth Shue

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Rafa must have redone his grip a half a dozen times – wanted to get it just right.

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Favorite shot of Rafa from this year’s tournament

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His afternoon practice was a hot ticket.

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I love his hands

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A little late afternoon coaching from Francis Roig while Benito Perez Barbadillo takes a call.

taking the long way

If the last couple of months illustrate anything it’s that I’ve been “taking the long way” around. The reason my site has been silent since late May is that I’ve been traveling nearly non-stop for the past two months. The bad news is that I’ve had no time to document all of my adventures. The good news is that August is looking much more mellow and I’ll be able to catch up and share details about some amazing places with you. In the meantime, I wanted to provide a little preview about what’s to come!

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