How to Make an Aperol Spritz

A personal favorite of ours! Even when we drink this at home, it feels like a little bit of Tuscany is still with us.

What is Aperol? Aperol is an Italian orange liqueur. It has become Italy’s most popular light spirit. Aperol Spritz is only 7 to 8% alcohol

What you Need:
Ice Cubes (approximately 3 or 4 ice cubes)
2 to 3 ounces Prosecco or any sparkling wine
1 1/2 ounces Aperol*
Splash of soda water, sparkling water, mineral water, or Club Soda
Orange wedge or slice (blood red orange preferred)

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Preparation:
Fill a glass (highball glass or white wine glass) 1/4 full with ice cubes (you want to chill the drink and not water it down). Pour in the Prosecco and then top with Aperol. Add the soda water. Stir gently until mixed.

Garnish with an orange slice (either add slice of orange, twisting to release some juice and placing in the glass or simply use orange slice as garnish).

Makes 1 serving.

Italy Yoga Retreat Mindfulness Practice

In June I will return to Italy where I am always more conscious of the pacing of life. In the art cities like Siena and Florence the cadence of one’s walk is mindful, never too fast (whether or not you’re walking in heels on cobble stoned streets.) And in the Tuscan countryside the way in which one eats and drinks is even slower so as to savor the tastes completely. Then my travels will bring me to the warmest sun of all, that of the Amalfi area of Southern Italy. There I reconnected to the Sun in the most splendid way while living on Ischia!

And what I observe when living in the sun is that you move more slowly.

Tuscanycollage2013I am inspired to bring this learning back into the practice of Sun Salutations, Surya Namaskar, in yoga class too. There is nothing natural about practicing our Sun Salutes at break neck speed. If that’s the pace then your breath speeds up in a frenetic way causing your mind and body to overheat. You leave feeing frantic even if at first you misidentify this as “energized”.

Try it for yourself, on a sunny day go run around as fast as you can and then observe whether or not you feel more or less connected to your life. For me, I only ever want to feel more, and let light make me see more too. I don’t want to rush in my yoga because I’ve found that rushing in my life only led me to emotional and mental burn-out.

Yoga empowers us to be present to our magnificence but not manic. It is as Stephen Covey writes, “What we have once enjoyed we can never lose. All that we love deeply becomes a part of us.” Celebrating which in sanskrit is “Namaskar” requires us to enjoy the light of each moment. Therefore Surya Namaskar, the Sun Salutations, are a traditional way to celebrate mindfully the light within us for each of us is self-effulgent like the Sun.

We have no need to prove anything or create undue friction by going too fast. As Hafiz so eloquently puts it,

“I am happy even before I have a reason. I am full of Light even before the sky. Can greet the sun or the moon.”

Today practice Sun Salutation A and B with this awareness. Even practice outside on a sunny day. And for variation in Warrior A try this:

*Inhale reach up from your waist say to yourself “I am celebrating!”
*Exhale hands behind your back in yoga mudra, breath in, breath out and fold, “I am releasing.”
*Inhale reach up
*Exhale open your arms into prana mudra say to yourself “I am receiving”

As you celebrate your life, share your brilliance from the inside out and receive the warm blessing of the sun into your heart. Love yourself, love your day, love your life, Silvia
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Fashionable Yogis

Ciao Fashionable Yogis! If you, like me, love yoga and fashion then join me for some retail therapy in Italy this summer! Tuscany Retreat June 22-29 & Amalfi Eco-Luxury Retreat July 1-7! We will be living on Ischia, and learning the secrets to the fountain of youth!

PS I bought these boots shown here in Naples last summer, still my all-time faves. Can’t wait to be back there again! Do the things you LOVE.

http://www.alchemytours.com/2013/01/amalfi-ischia-yogaretreat/7/

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How to Speak Italian

One of my favorite parts of the Italian experience is hearing and speaking the language. I would love to have you join us on our Inspired Travel Alchemy Tours Tuscany Yoga & Wine, Cycling and Cultural Adventure June 22-29, 2013 or Amalfi Adventure July 1-7, 2013! And in preparation here’s a little bit of what to practice saying. Love yourself, love your day, love your life! Silvia

***WHAT TO SAY***

Fortunately, getting around in Italy with little or no exposure to the Italian language is not very difficult. The Italians are, by nature, outgoing and often appreciate even the slightest attempt at communicating in Italian. Here are some useful words and phrases to help you get started:

English Italian

Yes / No Si / No

Hello / Hi / Goodbye Ciao

Please Per Favore

Thank you Grazie

You’re welcome Prego

Excuse me Mi scuzi

I’m sorry Mi dispiace

Good morning Buongiorno

Good evening Buona sera

Good night Buona notte

Goodbye Arrivederci

To the left A la sinistra

To the right A la destra

Straight ahead Sempre dritto

Bicycle Bicicletta

Hotel Albergo

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Italy Yoga Retreat Where is Ischia

#1 question I get asked about my AMALFI ADVENTURE ECO-LUXURY YOGA RETREAT, JULY 1-7, 2013 is “where is Ischia?”

AWESOME DISCOUNT OF 3 OR MORE SIGNING UP TOGETHER = $150 OFF PER PERSON. Details herehttp://www.alchemytours.com/2013/01/amalfi-ischia-yogaretreat/

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$200 OFF for Sun Lovers, Beach Afficianados: The Perfect Summer Vacation!

Ciao Sun Lovers & Beach Goers!

The Summer Solstice of June 21 is getting closer! We will celebrate it by returning on our epic Tuscany Retreat in Italy June 22-29–and as passionate as we are about Tuscany, because we have both lived and breathed there for many years. We are off to the ocean! If you want to:

1. Soak up the Sun
2. Build Sandcastles
3. Rest, Relax, Reflect
4. Collect Seashells
5. Drink wine, enjoy endless limoncello
6. Enjoy ancient spa remedies & healing hot springs

Then this means you’re beach lovers like us. You should know we’re also both Water signs so wearing shoes generally feels over-dressed. Pack some swimsuits, and let’s adventure in barefeet together on the Amalfi Coast July 1-7th living on Ischia! Salute the SUN for REAL!

Grazie mille,
Jake and Silvia
Fun Leaders, Alchemy Tours

*PS Photos are of Ischia!

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Solar and Lunar Energies in Tuscany

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One of the most impressive cultural experiences that have changed my life from living in Italy is the appreciation of Sun and Moon energies. The history of honoring the Sun in the land of Tuscany is epic. There are all sorts of rituals and celebrations surrounding solar energy. And just as important Italy is a place where in the evening people stand up and cheer at the moon! Appreciation of getting Moon baths is equal in importance to enjoying the sun. Here are three poems to inspire the solar, lunar and balance of energies within us and outside us. Remember your right side represents the Solar/Masculine energy and your left side represents the Lunar/Feminine energy. Both are constantly at play.

With That Moon Language by Hafiz

“Admit something:
Everyone you see, you say to them, “Love me.”
Of course you do not do this out loud,
otherwise someone would call the cops.
Still, though, think about this,
this great pull in us to connect.
Why not become the one who lives
with a full moon in each eye
that is always saying, with that sweet moon vision,
what every other eye in this world is dying to see?”

The Sun Rays By Peter S Quinn

The sun rays in your eye,
The love you’re giving that I have found;
Like sun that shines though the sky,
Each love must be worth and sound.
The sun that shines each day,
The love you gave from your heart;
What matter what we do or say,
Never let it depart.

Each heart is broken only once
And never grows from sorrow,
Let there never be no bygones
Not today nor tomorrow.

Sun rays oh sun rays
Never hide behind a cloud,
Sun rays all my days
That’s what love’s all about;
Give me no raining shower thought,
Nor glimpse of shadows I’ve caught.

THE SUN AND THE MOON BY The Poet Keri, Age 11

The Sun and the Moon shine again.
The Sun and the Moon the lights of our days.
The Sun and the Moon, making their amends.
The Sun and the Moon, shining their rays in different ways.
The Sun and the Moon, what light up day and night.
The Sun and the Moon, ones that never fight.
The Sun and the Moon, different but the same.
The Sun and the Moon, on two sides of a frame.
The Sun and the Moon, shining their rays in different ways.
The Sun and the Moon, making their amends.
The Sun and the Moon, the lights of our days.
The Sun and the Moon shine again!
Yoga in Tuscany, at Soul Space Gabriella-2