Guest Post - Serene Places from Bubby & Bean >>>

Hello all you beautiful Violet Bella/Roots & Feathers readers!  This is Melissa from Bubby and Bean filling in for my sweet friend Laura while she focuses on her Nanna and family.  Today I'm going to share with you guys some of my favorite places in the world to relax, meditate, and recharge.  Some of these are places I frequent, and others are places I've only been to one time.  Some are spots where I've sat for just a few minutes, and others are places I've visited for days.  But all of these spaces have, in some way, brought me a sense of peace, and enabled me to clear my head of life's everyday chaos. 

I don't have a yard, but that didn't stop us from creating our very own garden last summer, and I can't wait to do it again.  We planted herbs, veggies and flowers in containers and filled our balcony with them.  Sitting quietly among all of the green is one of my favorite ways to relax. 

This particular spot was likely a once-in-a-lifetime for me, but I think about it all the time.  In 2010, I took a trip to Australia with my husband's band.  Everywhere we visited was incredibly beautiful, but one particular beach - Lennox Head in New South Wales - was one of the most serene places I've ever been.  The waves were huge and produced such a calming sound that I fell asleep both days that we were there.  It was really magical. 

There is probably no place in world that has provided me with more peaceful moments than the Tibetan Buddhist Center (now the Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center) in Bloomington, Indiana.  In fact, I lived on the grounds of the center for several years, and would take almost daily breaks to walk around the Stupa or sit and meditate.  I haven't been back in a long time, but I still visual some of my favorite moments there when I'm in need of a little mental relaxation. 

When I lived in Southern Oregon, I would make the quick 25 minute journey down to the redwoods at least twice a week.  There is something so majestic and powerful about these awesome examples of nature, and I would feel instantly nurtured.  All of the moss and massive ferns reminded me of how beautiful life really is, and I would always leave feeling healed from whatever bothered me.  I really miss living so close to such an incredible place! 

I have found that no matter where I am or how stressed I'm feeling, a quick trip to a bookstore can provide instant tranquility.  There's something about being surrounded with books in a (mostly) quiet environment that makes trouble melt away.  I like to grab a soy latte and spend a half hour or so looking through books and magazines that have nothing to do with work.  When I try to step away from work by using the internet (as amazing as it is), I tend to either feel bombarded with information or I end up sneaking back to a work project.  Going to a bookstore gives me just the physical separation I need from work and allows me to spend some time in a calming space.  (image via bookshelf porn) Life can be pretty overwhelming sometimes, and it's easy to get so wrapped up that we overlook the importance of taking time for ourselves away from the madness.  Whenever things start to feel too crazy for me, I try to go to a space that I know will feel calm and peaceful.  Sometimes, I'll even just sit in a quiet room and visualize some of the favorite places I outlined here.  The next time you feel like things are just a little too intense, try finding a special space where you can ease your mind for a few minutes, or reflect on a place you've been that was especially serene.  This small action can make a big difference, and leave you feeling refreshed and recharged.  Do you have any particular places or spaces where you go to decompress? 

 xo, melissa