"Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” —Marcel Proust, Remembrance of Things Past
As I reflect on the events of this year, my heart swells with gratitude. Integrating yoga and mindfulness into a career in wine has made for an exciting yet challenging path. There is the exhilaration of inspiring others and creating something new, but without a roadmap it can be difficult to find your way. My own journey has been marked by disappointment, frustration, and sadness...not to mention frequently feeling lost. However, if there is one thing I have learned from many years practicing yoga—which happens to be the same wisdom derived from my 500-mile spiritual pilgrimage along the Camino de Santiago de Compostela—it is this: all will be revealed, just listen to your heart and keep going. And guess what? Every time I choose to listen to my heart and take the next step, something remarkable happens. There you are. Whether it is through attending an event, showing support online, or letting me know in your own way that you're listening and you care, I know in my heart that that there is a greater purpose to my work. It keeps me going. And so, in the spirit of November, the month of gratitude, I send a heartfelt THANK YOU to all who have made 2022 the exciting and rewarding year it has been for me and for Mindful Wine.
You know who you are. That said, Mindful Wine has been blessed with some extraordinary press recently, and for this I wish to offer a few personal notes of gratitude. I am deeply grateful to Liz Thach MW for interviewing me for her fabulous FORBES article about the yoga and wine trend, and for highlighting my role in its evolution. I owe great thanks to Amanda Wittstrom-Higgins of Dream Big Darling for giving me the opportunity write my own piece for the Fresh Voices column published in The Tasting Panel Magazine (and to the editor, Meredith May, for saying yes). Further thanks go to Cathy Huyghe and Rebecca Hopkins of A Balanced Glass for graciously welcoming me as a guest contributor to their important online platform dedicated to advancing wellness in the wine community. And lastly, many thanks to Adam Huss of Centralas Wine and The Organic Wine Podcast. I was interviewed on Adam's podcast last year, but recently he invited me to help carry the torch in revolutionary wine dialogue as his guest interviewer—a great honor indeed. The gratitude train continues post-Thanksgiving as soon I will be heading to Santa Barbara Wine Country to join one of my favorite partners in yoga and wine, the lovely Cori Lassahn of Vineyard Yoga Santa Ynez Valley. I have had the pleasure to collaborate with Cori on a number of events in the past, and this weekend we are hosting a special Vineyard Yoga and Mindful Wine experience at Vega Vineyard and Farm. Our day begins with yoga to open the heart and awaken the senses, followed by guided Mindful Wine tasting with yours truly to inspire gratitude, appreciation and joy—the perfect way to rest and rejuvenate for the holiday season ahead. With Gratitude and Cheers, Chiara