Thanksgiving is a time for gratitude and sharing our love for family and friends. With passed down family recipes, each year we plan our menu and it always tends to look the same. Why not freshen up those traditional dishes and add a Miraval inspired twist to your dinner party this year? With these mindfully inspired recipes you can create brand new traditions for your family and friends that will encourage mindful eating all year long!

Pumpkin Cornmeal Bread

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By Miraval's Carolyn Crawford, Astrologer

The sun now in Scorpio, the 10th sign of the zodiac rules death and regeneration or transformation. In the northern hemisphere it is the time of falling leaves and the end of the harvest season.  Now the soil can be replenished as it lies fallow for the winter. And so November is a pivotal month asking us to turn inward and become reflective as the year nears its end.

At the beginning of the month Mercury, the planet which rules thought also enters brooding Scorpio. Searing insight into the psychological motivations of others can result in direct and sometimes tough communications.

However on November 2, Venus and Mars exactly conjoin for the third time this year but now in Virgo. These two social planets have been hanging out with nearby Jupiter all month. It is time to mingle as many will feel this as a festive few days. For some this brings new romantic possibilities. Those with a creative bent can be prodigious. This is an especially happy time for those Virgos born near September 16-17 as well as Capricorns born near January 13-14 or Taurus born near May 14-15.

Mercury on the 3rd can overestimate possibilities but turns logical on the 4th bringing clarity and order to most activities.

Then on November 5th, Jupiter and Uranus combine in a somewhat stressful angle bringing disruptions. Opportunities can be denied if behavior is too rebellious or inconsistent. The urge to be independent is strong which can inhibit cooperation. There can be a fear of attachment or conformity. However thinking outside the box can result in unique solutions. Those Aries born near April 6-7 Aquarians born near February 4-5 will feel the restlessness and impatience this period can bring.

On Friday November 6th Mercury blends harmoniously with Neptune heightening intuition and creativity. Inspiration and imagination will uplift those Scorpios born near October 30-31st, Pisces born near February 26-27 and Cancers born near June 29-30th. 

By: Miraval’s Kim Kelder, Lead Aesthetician & Skin Care Specialist

Exfoliate or start a peel series

Your skin can appear dull and dry after a summer spent in the sun; Exfoliation can remove the dull dead layer of skin, and unclog pores plugged by regular sunscreen use. But be gentle with exfoliation use a gentle scrub or mild AHA or Glycolic acid to exfoliate. Exfoliate only once or twice a week, don't get too aggressive, over exfoliation and over scrubbing can scratch, tear, and damage skin and can also dry your skin out.  Make sureif you use a scrub that it is a gentle scrub and use light pressure. Another option is to start a peel series, glycolic acid or alpha hydroxy acid peels, done with your aesthetician or at your dermatologist's office. These procedures are more effective and quicker at removing the superficial dead layer of skin.

By Miraval's Carolyn Crawford, Astrologer

This month begins with Mars the warrior in Virgo in dissonance to Uranus, the tech god in Aries indicates unexpected changes and nervous tension for some and reckless actions for others. Those born near March 7th could experience car trouble or computer problems. Patience and self-control are advised.

Monday and Tuesday October 5 and 6 are full of astro-activity.  Venus and the sun in discord to Pluto the god of change can indicate others question your authority . Cooperation or compromise is advised. Relationships can under scrutiny. Capricorns born near January 2-3 and Librans born near October 5-6 should watch for manipulations. however this is a good time for analysis and research.

By Miraval's Casey Shaw, Yoga & Meditation Specialist

Are you interested in practicing at home but feel overwhelmed by to-dos or don’t feel like you have enough space?  Setting up a special space for your sacred time with yourself can be a motivation and inspiring first step to bringing your practice into your home. 

By: Miraval's Alysa Volpe, Yoga & Meditation Specialist

This year is the 25th anniversary of Tucson’s All Souls Procession and to celebrate we welcome you to learn about and participate in the celebration. I am fortunate to have been born and raised in the Sonoran Desert and feel blessed to have had the benefit of living in a place rich in Mexican and Native American culture and influence. Being able to experience the many traditions that have survived for centuries in Southern Arizona is something I am grateful for. The Day of the Dead came about after nearly 2500 years of indigenous practices focused on remembering the departed through ritual within this area and other parts of Mexico and Central America. With the arrival of the Spanish in the 16th Century, the Catholic Church appropriated many of the native rituals of remembrance and created All Souls Day. Throughout all cultures, people have found ways to feel connected and honor their ancestors, children, parents and all who have touched them during their lifetimes.

By: Miraval's Pam Trudeau, Fitness Supervisor

Poor Posture not only makes you look heavier it takes a toll on your joints. When you “slouch” your upper body appears heavier and larger.  Neck pain, shoulder pain and back pain can all be the result of poor posture wearing on your bones.

By Miraval's Carolyn Crawford, Astrologer

Miraval Resort & Spa 

Late the August 31 or on the east coast early on September 1, Venus goddess of love and beauty and Mars, the planet of action conjoin in Leo bringing romance and social pleasure especially for  the fire signs. Venus is still retrograde but slowing down to go direct on the 6th. This is an opportunity to re-evaluate one's values and what is important in relationships. Creativity and being in the spotlight await those born near August 6-8.

On Wednesday September 2 Jupiter and Uranus combine in a stressful angle to each other can bring up unexpected changes or an erratic urge for independence and impulsive actions in particular for Aries born near April 8-10. 

Thursday September 3, Mercury, the planet or communication and slippery Neptune weave tales of wonder for creative writers or beautiful songs for musicians but can also indicate muddled communications or passive aggressive tendencies when confronted. This is likely to annoy for Librans born near October 1-2.

On Saturday September 5, the sun in harmony with Pluto in earth signs signaling greater confidence and brings a sense or authority or leadership to Virgos born near September 5-7 and Capricorns December 3-5.

After Labor Day the fall kicks into full swing on Tuesday September 8 as Mars, the planet of action synchronizes with Uranus, the planet of innovation. Changes now bring more freedom or ease in your life. This is an excellent time to find solutions or purchase a car or computer.  Those born near August 11-12 and April 8-9 can expect a smooth ride.

Miraval's resident beekeeper Noel Patterson shares his intimate knowledge of honey bees and their importance for a sustainable environment. He will inspire you, ignite your tastebuds, and we guarantee you'll learn something new. 

There are 3 different ways to spend time with Noel depending on your interest from honey tasting to donning a bee suit and going out to Miraval's bee hives for a hands-on experience.  

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Packing Healthy Lunches for Kids - Part 3 of 3 Part Back to School blog series

By Angela Onsgards, R.D.

With the first day of school right around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about how we will fuel our children and keep them energized and alert throughout the school day.  One of the most important tips that I recommend to parents is involving their children in planning and preparing their school lunches.  This will increase the likelihood that the kids will enjoy their lunch and decrease trading with other kids for less healthy choices. 

A good rule of thumb is to provide 1 serving of grain or starchy vegetable, 1 serving of lean or plant-based protein, a healthy source of fat, and lots of non-starchy vegetables and fruit.