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 Natural Awakenings Lancaster-Berks

Elevating Relationships with Love and Life with Joy

Kendra & Jacqueline, Co-publishers

As November temperatures drop, bringing crisp mornings and clear skies, the season invites a spirit of gratitude and we happily celebrate yet another year of publishing … we’re so thankful for all of you! The connections we’ve made along the way have been an integral part of our evolution, sustaining us in unimaginable ways over the past nine years; these relationships have offered endless opportunities to spread the spirit of living more fully and with joy.

Reflecting on the people, places and the little things that enrich our lives can become a daily gratitude practice, supporting a return to wholeness as our heart space opens and integrates passions and interests into our choices; wellness becomes a gift to ourselves. The exercise of recognizing what we are grateful for by speaking it out loud or writing it down has been scientifically studied and proven to increase emotional balance, improve sleep and overall health and immunity, and strengthen relationships with others. The power of these intentions creates a foundation for responding, processing, adapting and healing when challenges arise.

This month’s edition takes into account the reality of those hardships that do occur and impact our lives in various ways. The following pages sprinkle in cheer with holiday recipes, positive support for stressed out kids and revelations of how hugs can help heal. To honor the balance, we also take a dive into the difficult topics of dying, loss and grief. With this season being a time of gathering with family and friends, coping with the loss of those who are no longer with us and the various transitions in our lives can take on more complex and lingering pain. The question arises, can grief and gratitude co-exist? 

Grief is often present when we’ve lost what we love, and it is in that space that we may find memories of the significant things that have shaped and transformed our lives. In time, writing or sharing the memories can become a healing practice, offering a feeling of positivity even within the loss. 

In pausing to reflect on how we find our way back to center, be it from grief or during times of personal transformation, the support of intentional communities and others who care to understand is a significant factor in connecting the joy and the pain. By honoring the ongoing small and beautiful things that remain available for our most present selves, we can create space and opportunity to say "Thank you" and "I love you".

As we gather with friends and loved ones this season, let us all intentionally recognize those things that contribute to our wholeness, and practice gratitude...elevating relationships with love and life with joy. 

With so much heartfelt gratitude, 

Kendra & Jacqueline