Retreats Created with Love

Ciao Amici

I am Katie. I am a yoga and fitness instructor, certified mindfulness meditation teacher, and a student of all spiritual teachings. I am a hopeful, caring and supportive teacher who wants to show you exactly how powerful you are to change your life for the better.

I am here for you. I want to share with you all the tools I have learned to help improve your well-being. 

I have been teaching Les Mills Bodyflow for over 12 years and have had a huge love of Italy for more than 20 years. I’ve lived in Italy on and off from 2002-2013. My love for Italy, its people, and my ancestors are ingrained deep down into my being. 

My goal for our #retreatscreatedwithlove is to support you, care for you, and show you how powerful you actually are. While teaching you self-love techniques, meditations to ground you and yoga practices that allow you to be you and only you. 

An Italian Mindset

When I first arrived in Italy I thrived on my own motivation. All I wanted to do was get lost. Exploring a city, where I didn’t speak the language, listening to the church bells, dodging cyclists, I physically and mentally wanted to be lost. I left my map at home on purpose so I had to find my own way back.

Wandering through the small, narrow, cobblestoned streets of Florence, was and still is my passion. It was the only way I got to know the city. Because when I got lost I always found my way to a big piazza or saw the Duomo peak out around the corner. It was a life lesson, just keep going because you never know what’s around the next corner. Looking back those first months in Italy was exactly how I spent the next steps in my life.

Like Robert Frost famously wrote:

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.”

I will continue to take the road less traveled because that is where I feel most myself.

So what do you think, do you want to take this journey with me? 

Italy

Have you ever dreamt of visiting Italy? Did you not know where to start? There are many gorgeous places in Italy, Tuscany especially. My goal in creating these amazing yoga retreats is to show you authentic Italy.  Because when you see the real thing, you will cherish it even more. There will be no tourist buses, no waiting in lines, or no tourist menu while you are with me. Guarantee it.

Since 2002, I have been traveling to Italy. Living in 9 different apartments in the 11 years I was a resident of Florence. I met my future husband in 2011 and by 2013 we had decided to leave my beloved country. Times got hard and we couldn’t make ends meet any longer. And like myself, my husband loves a challenge. America was calling us and we made the leap over the big blue ocean.

One of the hardest decisions for me was leaving. My heart still lies in the streets of Florence. I miss it every single day.

My idea was born. Italy had to be my life.

What do I love to do? I love to teach.

What is my favorite place in the world? Italy.

Yoga

Creating yoga retreats was always in the back of mind, knowing that I have been researching the best places to host a Yoga retreat since I left Italy. I wanted to create a space where people are safe when practicing yoga. Safe meaning free to be their authentic self, less judgment.

Needless to say, my yoga training was not a safe space. The path to this endeavor has been long and I obtained a lot of knowledge along the way. The educational activities I did in training did not come from a place of love nor empowerment. Treated less than yourself and told you are doing something wrong take a toll on you. Finally, finding the peace that one person’s opinion does not make mine wrong. I brought my focus on how I wanted people to feel when practicing yoga.

Teaching awareness of the body became my focus. Being conscious of the pose and checking-in to see how each pose is either helping or hurting your body. Yoga for me was never a competition, I am happy that I am able to share what I know with my participants and love to see how they thrive with the help of positive words and motivation.

How to get around Italy: Bus, Train, Car

Italy is famous for its trains. I lived by them when I worked in Florence back in 2009. Yes, the trains aren't always reliable but neither is life. There was an occasional strike that halted the train system every so often. But they always publicized it before it...

Simple Italian Dishes

One of the first dishes I remember learning how to make was simple, easy and a few ingredients. Aglio, olio e peperoncino. Yum! I love it so. This dish was my dinner, sometimes lunch when I was just starting out in Florence. The great part about this dish is it...

Must Try Foods from Tuscany

Crostini Toscani One of the most famous antipasti in Tuscany is crostini (toasted bread) with fegatino. Fegatino is a chicken liver sauce spread over a warm crostino. I know chicken liver is not everyone’s favorite, wasn’t mine either, but it became a staple in my...

Italian Phrases for the Traveler

Italian Key Phrases Here are some basic phrases to help you get through a meal, meet someone new or shopping around Italy. Hi/bye (informal) -- Ciao (chow) (informal) Good Day/ Hello -- Buongiorno (bwohn-johr-noh) Good evening -- Buonasera  (bwoh-nah-seh-rah) Good...

Culture Norms-Italian Style

Italians are known for style, class and speaking with their hands. Here are some things you might not know about the Italian culture. Greeting an Italian When you are introduced to an Italian, you should greet them with ‘Buongiorno’ (good day) and ‘piacere’ (nice to...