The Creative Joy Retreat

Led by Jennifer Louden, Marianne Elliott and Tracey Clark

A retreat for women, open to the public

Creative Joy Teachers

For most of us, joy can be such an ephemeral experience, something that comes upon us unexpectedly, but perhaps not something we know how to make a part of our daily lives - especially during stressful times or when life has been handing us a lot of those so called learning experiences.

Joy can also be frightening - how much is okay? If I’m too happy, when will the other shoe drop? If I have this much, shouldn’t I be doing more for others? Finally, it’s tough to enjoy life if you’re exhausted, worn down, or out of touch with your self.

Is it possible to infuse joy into all of life,  your daily commute or yet another trip to the grocery store, as well as taking care of the kids, the parents, the dog? We say YES YES YES! Your life can be joyful, enjoyable, joyous - no matter what.

It’s not all about giggles and glitter -  we’re talking creating a deep, rich, sustainable joy, one that is a close and true as your own heart.

Join us in June for the JOY retreat, where we’ll experience and expand the JOY in our lives in delicious, safe, and creative ways.  You’ll refill your joy well through the flow of yoga, the stillness of meditation, the thrill of writing and the creativity of photography, practicing ways to ground yourself into the present moment, cultivate gratitude and tap into the stream of JOY that lives within you all the time.
You will come away from this retreat feeling rested, resourced, expanded and centered, with simple practical ways to keep the joy flowing, and deeply aware of the potential for JOY in your own life no matter what.

The retreat will flow through yoga, meditation, writing and photograph each day with all sorts of small surprises and community of like-minded people and love love love: 

Writing into JOY with Jennifer Louden

Writing is both a way to notice joy, a way to remove the obstacles to joy, and yes, it’s possible to write with joy.  Everyday we will play with writing, with words, for the sheer joy of self-expression - not product!. We are also going to use writing to help us understand our personal style of joy, our limits and edges and fears, and how to love ourselves into more self-love. 


JOYful yoga with Marianne Elliott

Yoga sometimes gets the reputation of being terribly earnest and serious, and there is a serious side to yoga. But for this retreat our focus will be on JOY. Can yoga help us reconnect JOYfully to our bodies? Can it help us play more freely and joyfully with our writing, and our photography? And can it support our meditation practice? The practices at the JOY retreat will be designed to do just that. Marianne will lead a series of joyful yoga practices suitable for all levels of experience and all bodies. You don't need to have any previous experience of yoga; if you are an experienced yogi, come along and play with us as we rediscover the joy of the fundamentals. 


Capturing JOY with Tracey Clark

Learning to see the beauty around us is the first step in finding our JOY. By observing the world—color, space, shadow and light—we are able to create and carry a perspective that is rooted in appreciation and gratitude. As we move forward, we can tap into creative outlets to further heighten our awareness. Photography is an ideal tool to use to translate what our heart and mind see into a distilled and tangible expression of what is authentic and true to each of us. Exploring the woods and grounds of the Garrison Institute, sharing stories and capturing JOY as we go, you’ll gather the insights and inspiration to picture your life in a whole new light (literally and figuratively). No previous photography experience is necessary. DSLR, point-and-shoots and/or iPhones are ideal for this work. Bring your laptop if you have one. 


About the Retreat Leaders

Jennifer Louden is a personal growth pioneer who help launch the self-care movement with her first book The Woman’s Comfort Book. She’s the author of five more books on well-being and personal wisdom that have inspired more than a million women in 9 languages. She helps creative people who want to change the world get to it, and that includes herself. She believes self-love + world-love = wholeness for all.

Marianne Elliott is a writer, human rights advocate and yoga teacher. She created 30 Days of Yoga to help people take care of themselves so they can do their good work in the world. She’s the author of Zen Under Fire about her work with the UN in Afghanistan, where she found joy in yoga even in the midst of war. She is RYT 200 with the Yoga Alliance, and Regional Leader for Off the Mat, Into the World.

Tracey Clark is a photographer, author, teacher, and the founder of Shutter Sisters, the online collaborative photo blog for women with a passion for photography. With a creative career spanning 20 years, Tracey brings her experience and enthusiasm to everything she does; from shooting to writing to teaching. She believes that perspective—and love—changes everything. Tracey co-wrote Expressive Photography: a Shutter Sisters Guide to Shooing From the Heart and is the author of Elevate the Everyday: A Photographic Guide to Picturing Motherhood, (June 2012, Focal Press).
 Registration will open in late spring.


For more information and to register please visit the Creatve Joy website at

June 28th, 2012 3:00 PM   through   July 2nd, 2012 3:00 PM
Phone: 845-424-4800 ext 106
Open to the public