It can be life giving and regenerative to take time away from the every day demands of life, and retreat to a beautiful setting where one can shift the pace of life, engage in creative, contemplative processes and uplifting conversations, and enjoy awesome food and deep rest. A wide variety of retreats with this in mind are designed and facilitated each year to welcome people into such an experience. Check each retreat for details and locations or contact me if you would like to arrange for one to be brought to your area.
Flowing Through Life
Letting Go of Control and Perfectionism
Day 1 (4 pm) – Day 3 (1 pm)
"People are just as wonderful as sunsets if you let them be. When I look at a sunset, I don't find myself saying, “Soften the orange a bit on the right hand corner. " I don't try to control a sunset. I watch with awe as it unfolds."
- Carl R. Rogers
Many people tend to live out of the left side of the brain and look at life through a critical lens. Creating dreamscapes with alcohol inks, helps us to loosen up, open our minds to a myriad of possibilities, be gentler with ourselves, and flow through life with greater ease. In this retreat you will be guided through the process of dreamscaping with alcohol inks, as well as consider ways to quiet the critical mind when it kicks in. As we draw upon June Rollins dreamscape techniques during this retreat we will:
Experience the sheer joy of watching sunsets magically appear as the inks run and mingle with each other before our very eyes
Explore 4 questions put forth by Byron Katie to help us “Love What Is.”
Consider Dewitt Jones perspective of “Celebrating What’s Right with the World.”
Become familiar with Alison Cook and Kimberly Miller’s “Map of the Soul” and 5 steps to take a “you-turn” when we become overwhelmed by an emotion.
The beautiful dreamscapes that we go home with will continue to inspire us to flow through life freely as it unfolds.
Nestling into Stillness
Tuesday, December 3 (4 pm) to Thursday, December 5 (2 pm)
"There are times when we stop, we sit still. We listen and breezes from a whole different world begin to whisper."
- James Carroll
During this time of year it can be refreshing to step outside the busyness to enter a few days of deep time to nestle into stillness, and deepen our spiritual connection as well as refresh our creative energy. During this retreat each participant will receive a copy of “Listening Below the Noise” by Anne LeClaire, that will become our companion as we nestle into the beautiful Qu’Appelle valley at The House of Prayer, which is a very quaint place that draws people towards an experience of stillness. As we gather, we will prepare ourselves to walk into a snow-filled day with ears open to the divine. This retreat is all about slowing our pace, preparing to enter into times of silence, sharing our experiences, talking about the shadow sides and resistance to silence, and imagining ways of crossing the threshold of deep time that are designed for our unique selves, as each of us returns home. I hope something in this retreat will whisper to you, and will awaken you to the benefits and pleasures of a world that is waiting beneath the noise.
Leadership: Marg Janick-Grayston; Expressive Arts, Reiki and Quantum Touch practitioner, Spiritual Mentor, Retreat Leader, and Business Owner of Free Flow Wellness
Location: Qu’Appelle House of Prayer, Fort Qu'Appelle, Sask.
Registration Fee to be paid by November 18: $245
Facilitation Donation: Suggested Range $110-$160 (Paid during the retreat)
Number of Participants: 6
Cancelation Policy: Full refund up until November 18, 2019. Partial Refund TBA if you cancel after November 18. Full refund if leadership cancels the program.
To Hold a Spot: Send a cheque for $245 along with any necessary dietary needs to:
Marg Janick-Grayston, RR2 Site 2 Box 44, Canora, SK. S0A 0L0
Or an e-transfer to email@example.com
Retreats Available Upon Request
6-9 participants required
Expressive Arts Studio 1 - Theory & Practice
Day 1 - 3 (9:00 am - 5:00 pm)
This course is part of the WHEAT (Winnipeg Holistic Expressive Arts Institute) Expressive Arts Therapy Certificate Program. This segment of the course will introduce the use of expressive arts strategies that are geared towards multiple intelligences and right brain ways of knowing. Principles and practices of expressive arts, and interventions that can be creatively applied in schools, agencies, creative programs, and private therapy practices will be explored through highly experiential expressive arts processes including the modalities of visual art, movement, music, writing, drama, and meditation. There will be a strong emphasis on developing skills that build connections with students/clients through a person-centered and invitational relational style that creates trust and empowerment, and exploring expressive arts activities that promote self-awareness, emotional health and positive change. Through participating in this course, students will explore aspects of their own lives and become more prepared to work with others through expressive arts interventions. For full course information refer to https://www.wheatinstitute.com/aeatipp
Leadership: Marg Janick-Grayston: Expressive Arts, Reiki and Quantum Touch practitioner, Spiritual Mentor, Retreat Leader, and Business Owner of Free Flow Wellness
Location: WHEAT Institute, Winnipeg MB
Inviting the Winged Ones to Inspire our Living
Day 1 (4 pm) – Day 3 (2 pm)
"May my heart always be open to little birds who are the secrets of living." - EE Cummings
Birds seem to catch the interest of people from far and wide, so much so that they have inspired humanity to discover ways to take to the air in numerous forms. Each bird species is incredibly fascinating, and once we begin to delve into their unique characteristics they begin to inspire our own living. What better time of year to enjoy connecting with and learning from these amazing winged ones than Spring time? In this retreat we will have time to meander outside to commune with the local birds, look at the power of a feather, and become versed in the characteristics of the familiar and smarter than we even imagined magpies, the majestic eagles, the ancient loons, and the amazing hummingbirds. As we zoom in on these amazing birds we will create an expressive arts piece that reminds us of the ways they inspire our living.
The Art of Creating More Time for What We Love
Day 1 (1pm) - Day 4 (1pm)
'"Once she stopped rushing through life, she was amazed how much more life she had time for."
Are you feeling like you don’t have enough time or energy in a day to get through your to-do-list, and still take care of yourself, enjoy hobbies, and have quality time with your family and friends? Well, it seems many of us suffer from “Time Scarcity” in our lives, which creates stress, and depletes our vital energy. In this retreat, participants will receive a copy of “The Art of Stopping Time: Practical Mindfulness for Busy People” written by a monk, doctor, teacher and bestselling author by the name of Pedram Shojai. His book offers us 100 short, daily reflections on slowing time down, discerning where our time is leaking, and making adjustments to habits that eat up our time. During the 4 day retreat, we will explore numerous themes in the book through creative processes, and experience some blocks of free time as we get off to a great start in living from a perspective of “Time Prosperity.” And we will have our very own copy of the book to return home with to continue the practice of stopping time, and creating more energy and enthusiasm aligned with the things we most value and love in life.
A Pathway to a Resilient Spirit.
Day 1 (4 pm) – Day 3, 2018 (2:00 pm)
"People are like stained-glass windows.
They sparkle and shine when the sun is out,
but when the darkness sets in,
their beauty is revealed only if there is light from within"
- Elizabeth Kubler-Ross
Much of the messaging at this time of year is about Joy. Some of us embrace joy fully, some of
us catch glimpses of it, and some of us really struggle to experience it. Ever wonder why some
people seem to be able to stay connected to joy, and have a resilient spirit even when life get’s
tough, while others just can’t seem to bounce back? In this retreat we will draw upon the
research of Brene Brown in her book “The Gifts of Imperfection” to discover the essential
elements of a resilient, joy filled spirit. We will come to understand that resiliency is grounded
in spirituality, and practices of gratitude and joy. We will reflect on these aspects of our own
life through creative explorations, and DIG deep to get Deliberate, Inspired and Going as we
focus on cultivating joy and building our own resilient spirit.
From Monkey Mind to Mindfulness
Finding the Sea of Calm Within
Day 1 (5 pm) – Day 4 (1 pm)
“Last week I online shopped too much. Then I ate 2 pounds of jelly beans to feel better about that. In fact, while I was trying to read soul-nourishing things
all I could think about was shopping and jellybeans.
Points to the monkey mind."
- Anna White, Mended: Thoughts on Life, Love, and Leaps of Faith
Neuroscientists now tell us that the practice of mindfulness is fundamental to our mental health, to
forming healthy relationships with ourselves and others, to our creative pursuits, and to moving through this world with deeper compassion. Neuroscientists also say a practice of mindfulness can literally change the brain in positive ways, and it is as simple as paying attention! This 4 day educational retreat will be filled with creative fun as we focus on an exploration into the nature of our minds, and the practice of mindfulness. Over the course of the retreat we will:
- Discover aspects of mindfulness, the benefits of mindfulness, & practical mindfulness skills.
- Monkey around with wool as we create a Mindscape of our Mind
- Get intimate with the rhythm of our breath
- Create a Sea of Calm Mandala to expresses our place in the universe
- Tune into music as a mindfulness practice to our inner-world of thoughts and emotions
- Create an introspective sacred space
- And have plenty of free mindfulness time to simply be!
Come, let’s open our awareness to our beautifully complex minds together, as we move from monkey
mind to mindfulness in a sea of inner calm.
Rooted In Nature
Inviting Trees to Inspire Our Living
Day 1 (5 pm) – Day 4 (2 pm)
We read in fairy tales of trees with human faces, trees that can talk, and sometimes walk. As we explore the groundbreaking scientific discoveries of how forests are social networks that communicate, support and nurture each other, perhaps forests will become magical places for us too. Come take a walk in the woods with us, as we welcome our new understandings of trees to inspire us to reflect upon our own lives. During this 4 day retreat we will reflect on information in Peter Wohlleben’s new book “The Hidden Life of Trees” and enter into creative processes that help us explore our own rootedness, stability, growth, pace of life, and how to bloom where we are planted. At the end of this retreat we will take home an expressive art piece of a tree depicting our own unique life in symbolic form. After this event, our view of the forests, will change forever, and a walk in the woods will be an experience like never before.
Enlightenment in Slow Motion
Elders in Training
Day 1 (4 pm) – Day 3 (2:30 pm)
"Apprenticeship for becoming an Elder begins very young, and continues over a lifetime."
Are you intrigued by the idea that enlightenment comes to us in slow motion, and that
throughout our entire lives we are indeed “elders in training”? Are you interested in exploring
ways to move through life with grace as we age and grow towards enlightenment? If so, come
engage in creative processes designed to help us explore this fascinating topic together. There
will be lots of individual reflective time, as well as time to share our thoughts and learn from
each other, as we:
- Recall shape shifting/transformative moments in our lives
- Become fierce with reality as we explore a pathway to wholeness
- Consider where we are speeding through life, and where we yearn for moments of
deep, unrushed time
- Explore what nurtures our deepest longings and connection to the divine
- Reflect on Thomas Moore’s 7 steps to becoming an Elder who inspires others to engage
the world meaningfully
Come join us in this engaging opportunity to explore our natural process of aging through a lens
of positivity and wholeness.
Listen With the Ear of Your Heart
A Contemplative Practice for all of Life
Day 1 (4:30 pm) – Day 3 (2:00 pm)
During this time of year, when life is often more hustle and bustle, than reflective and contemplative, it can be a real gift to slow the pace down long enough to breath, and listen with the ear of our heart. During this retreat we will create time for that part of us that longs for silence, reflection, creative space, and stillness to soak in the presence of the holy. As we explore themes of hope, love, joy and peace, we will reflect on inspirational writings, art images, music, and nature by engaging in a 4 part contemplative practice that invites us to listen to our heart through a process of Shimmering, Savouring, Summoning and Stilling. We will spend time sharing how we imagine this contemplative practice might be integrated into the rhythm of our entire days when we re-enter whatever awaits us upon returning home. Come and join us. We just may discover renewed energy that is sustainable through this unique contemplative practice.
The Extreme Art of Well Being
A Practice of Holding Our Own Wellbeing Sacred
Day 1 (4 pm) – Day 3 (2 pm)
Feeling overextended? Wishing you could care for yourself as well as you care for others? Just want life to slow down a notch so you can catch your breath and replenish your energy? The practice of extreme well-being focuses on making choices that reflect the true nature of our soul, and allows us to make our greatest contribution to the world with renewed energy. During this retreat we will explore 12 practices of wellbeing. Each participant will be invited to explore creative processes that delve more deeply into the 6 practices that most catch their attention. By the end of our time together we will each identify one practice that we wish to focus on in our life as we return home. Throughout this retreat there will be blocks of spacious time for us to truly rest, or soak in some fresh air out in the beautiful prairie landscape, as well as time for personal reflection and sharing. Each of us will go home with a creative journal including information about all 12 practices that will inspire us to engage in the Extreme Art of Well Being for years to come.
Art Making as Mindfulness:
A Breathtaking Path to Living in the Moment
Day 1 (10am - 6pm) – Day 2 (10am - 6pm)
During our time together we will experience processes that draw on breath meditations, visual arts, writing, movement, and sharing as they explore the practice of mindfulness. We will engage in creating soul infused creative expressions that help us wake up to the truth of what’s happening inside & outside us, moment by moment, and embracing whatever arises with unconditional acceptance. Practical knowledge about how to plan sessions for groups, work from a person-centered approach with people’s art, and art making ideas to integrate into your personal and professional lives will be interwoven throughout this experience. Come learn how mindfulness can take us on a breathtaking path to living in the moment.
An Excursion into the Land of Emotions
Day 1 (4pm) – Day 3 (2:30pm)
Emotions are what make us human.
“They are energy in motion.”
- Peter McWilliams
As humans we experience an array of emotions popping up within us every day. We express some openly, we hide some intentionally, we love the feeling of some, and we dislike the feeling of others.
In this retreat we will begin our exploration of emotions by drawing from the fascinating characters of Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear and Disgust as portrayed in the movie “Inside Out”. We will be invited into creative processes that help us reflect on how each of these emotions moves through our own lives. We will consider the stages and strengths of each emotion, and learn processes that aid us in responding emotionally in ways that lead us towards positive relationships within and without.
Come join us for this time of befriending these predominant emotions that move within and without out us throughout our lives.
Art as a Spiritual Practice
A Breathtaking Path to Whole Hearted Living
Day 1 (6pm) – Day 3 (1pm)
A spiritual practice involves breath, courage, vigor and soul.
Come explore the diverse nature of spirituality, discover the power of your breath, and delve into the realms of your heart as we engage in expressive arts processes that open up the doors to new ways of being. Take time to consider the principles of spiritual practices and ways you can embrace the arts leading to a breathtaking path to whole hearted living. Participants will be invited to explore life through guided imagery, visual arts, writing, music and movement that are catalysts for healing and transformation. The focus is 100% on the insights gleaned alone and together through the power of creative expression rather than the finished products so artistic ability is not a requirement to participate. Spaciousness for rest, relaxation and personal down time will be woven into this retreat.
Shining Our Light in the World
Day 1 (5pm supper) – Day 3 (1:30 pm)
There is no time like December to slow the pace of life down, peer into the amazing star filled night sky, and consider how we might shine our light in the world as the New Year approaches. During this retreat we will take time to consider a map for living through the Courage and Renewal Touchstones that have been newly depicted as Touch Stars in the night sky. As we peer into the night sky, and enter creative processes, we will consider shining our light in the world through the touch stars of: welcome, presence, speaking truths, being invitational, refraining from fixing, listening to the inner teacher, finding what we need, asking open and honest questions, turning to wonder, soaking in silence, and holding things in confidence. We will consider which of these Touch Stars shine faintly in our lives and which ones light up the night sky as we expand our brightness together. We will leave with our own personal Mantra/Touch Star painting to guide our way through life.
Mapping Our Lives
Exploring a Map of Human Experience
Day 1 (5:30pm supper) – Day 3 (1pm)
In this retreat we will be exploring a typical looking map that substitutes the names of cities, rivers and seas for concepts, feelings and everyday human experiences. We will find beautiful regions and desolate ones: Climb mountains of work, survive the dessert of despair, and be cradled by the Bay of Wisdom. Through an exploration of this map, and creative processes to fire the imagination, we will be invited to discover where we are in life, where we want to go, and map out our route for getting there. Come and join us for this unique adventure as we explore a map of human experience that has something for everyone.
Moving to Life’s Rhythms
A Practice of Moving the Body, Releasing the Heart and Freeing the Mind
Day 1 (5:30pm supper) – Day 3 (1 pm)
It is said that movement is our first language. Gabrielle Roth, author of Sweat Your Prayers, created a musical map that focuses on the embodiment of 5 distinct rhythms in life: Flowing, Staccato, Chaos, Lyrical and Stillness. At this retreat we will explore each of these states of being through movement, and expressive arts processes that give expression to our experiences in life. People will be invited to adapt the movement components to their own physical comfort levels. All other expressive arts components (visual arts, journaling, EST.) will focus entirely on what we learn from the process, rather than what any finished product looks like, so artistic ability is of no concern. Come join us as we explore this dynamic movement practice that helps our bodies feel quieter, our minds become clearer, and our inner space cope with life in new ways.
Pearls of Wisdom
Exploring Maps for Living through Rhythms of Nature
Day 1 (4pm) – Day 4 (1pm)
Are you aware of a decision you have to make, an idea you want to implement, or a dream you have for your life but don’t know how to proceed? Have you ever experienced the first stirrings of intuition where you know something wants to take shape within your life, but you don’t know what it is? At times like this we often want immediate clarity, rather than waiting for it to unfold naturally. In this retreat there will be spaciousness to explore the natural stages of waiting, opening, closing, holding, releasing, emptying and sitting that occur in the creation of a pearl. Each of these stages will be explored through a process of information, meditation, symbols, art journaling, and sharing to discover Pearls of Wisdom that can be applied to our own lives. We will discover the places that pull us out of synch with this natural process, as well as consider what stage we need to settle into in the present moment. All the expressive arts components will focus entirely on what we learn from the process rather than what any finished product looks like so artistic ability is of no concern. As we leave, we will each take a book of our creative art journaling and information about each stage with us, to assist us in being mindful of this natural cycle in all areas of our life.
A Full Voice Adventure
Exploring Five Elements of Our Voice
Day 1 (4pm) – Day 3 (2:30pm)
“Imagine your throat as a very personal universe.
Imagine that the top of your universe opens
to receive the wonderful vibrations from the infinite universe around you…
You will feel your voice flowing with strength and energy...”
The Tao of Voice – Stephen Chun-Tao Cheng
Do you ever wish your voice would flow with strength and energy, as you try to project your knowledge, express your passion, extend compassion, convey clarity, or offer inspiration to others? Do you ever wish you could understand the voice of others better? During our time together we will discover the potential of our Full Voice through 5 elements shaping unique voice styles. We will explore the groundedness of our Earth Voice, the passion of our Fire Voice, the compassion of our Water Voice, the clarity of our Metal Voice, and the spiritual connection that our Air Voice conveys. Learning to consciously tap the full range of expression available to us makes it much more likely that our messages will reach the minds and hearts of our listeners. Understanding the Full Voice of humanity also strengthens our ability to listen more fully to others we encounter. Come join us for this play-filled retreat where we will be guided through a variety of creative processes, including music, singing, movement, writing and imagery that help us embody the 5 elements that will surely help our voices flow with strength and energy.
Prairie Labyrinth Pilgrimage
Day 1 (5:30pm) – Day 3 (1pm)
The point of a maze is to find its centre.
The point of a labyrinth is to find your centre.
Come join us for a relaxing retreat where we will experience a variety of labyrinths in the Saskatoon area. Our retreat will begin with a meal around the supper table followed by a time of community conversation, reflection, and sharing. Our first morning will be spent at a 40 acre site where you will be invited to follow your intuition as you walk a Cretan style labyrinth, enjoy walking paths, a medicine wheel, and a crystal gift shop with over 200 mineral varieties. We will draw the morning to a close as we gather in the onsite “Inspiration Hall” for a time of reflection on our experience and a picnic lunch together. In the afternoon we will travel to a second location to experience the walking of a labyrinth together as a community. In the evening we will relax around a bonfire where we will enjoy a meal together, visit and possibly roam the hills or riverbank in the valley. On our final morning we will experience walking a homemade labyrinth and consider how we might continue aspects of this experience in our everyday lives. As people engage in this retreat they will be invited to reflect through creative processes including journaling, poetry, meditation, movement, and sharing that sparks a deepening spiritual journey.
Presiding at Funerals & Ministering to the Bereaved:
A Retreat for Lay People Interested in Funeral Ministry
Day 1 (6pm supper) to Day 2 (1pm)
It is a very sacred moment in time to be able to journey with a family experiencing grief, and accompany them through a process of creating a funeral service that meets their needs. The focus of this program is to honour and encourage the gifts lay people have for funeral ministry and explore and further develop the skills needed to preside at funerals and offer ministry to the bereaved.
During the weekend, time will be spent exploring, learning, and reflecting upon topics that include:
Phases of bereavement and emotions of grief
Pastoral care skills
Exploring the components of various styles of services
Reflecting on our theology on death and dying
Reviewing sample services and resources
Creating a service that meets the needs of the family
Exploring the need for self-care
Looking at Boundaries and Ethics and Pastoral Charge policies that support lay people in this ministry
Participants are encouraged to arrange a tour of a Funeral Home prior to coming to this session, and to bring a copy of their church’s funeral policy if they have one.
Building Communities of Care
An Introduction to Pastoral Care
Day 1 (7pm) – Day 3 (1pm)
At a time when congregations are struggling to meet pastoral care needs this retreat will offer an opportunity to reflect upon our Christian roots in offering pastoral care as a whole community and building pastoral care skills. Together we will practice essential pastoral care skills, discern our strengths and growing edges, consider pastoral care as a theological action, and explore areas of spirituality, prayer, scripture, and boundaries and ethics as they relate to pastoral care. In this way we can embrace an ancient Christian model where pastoral care is offered as part of our natural flow in life as people of faith accompany each other throughout life.
Lay Worship Leader Going Deeper Retreat
Day 1 (5:30pm supper) – Day 3, (1 pm)
I offer Lay Worship Leaders Going Deeper Retreats for people who are Licensed Lay Worship Leaders in the United Church of Canada with the purpose of providing an opportunity to reconnect with their peers, support each other, and further develop skills for worship leadership in particular areas of interest that they identify.