We hosted a small group retreat from Wednesday 11th to Thursday 12th May at a spectacular Cornwall location, and a day retreat on the Wednesday. You can see lots of photos from our time together over on our facebook page.
In the meantime, here's the info we shared about the retreat before hosting it...
You deserve some time for you.
You don’t believe that’s really possible.
You dream of having a room or a bed to yourself.
Of having a clear space in your mind to think. Of looking at the sea and feeling the waves crashing below.
Of stretching your well-used mama body without your children hanging from your arms. Of eating delicious health-giving food.
Of reconnecting with yourself again, in a supportive and creative environment.
You dream of having the time to remember who you are.
We dream of that too. So we’re making it happen.
29 child-free hours. It’s a lifetime in the world of a mother.
It can change how you feel about yourself.
It can give you focus, reawaken a hidden passion.
It can remind you of what you love about your life. Of what you love about you.
Join us in Cornwall. In a stunningly located house by the sea. To take time for you.
We’ll be staying in The Haven, in a secluded beautiful coastal location, Prussia Cove situated between Penzance and Helston in Cornwall. This cove is where Pippa got married, almost exactly 11 years before the date of this retreat, so it holds a very special place in our hearts.
The Haven sits looking out over the coast, a moment’s walk from the sea, banked by gorse-covered cliffs and surrounded by stunning walks and beaches. It's the big house that you can see in the top right hand corner of the image above.
Join us at a Mamas' Retreat for:
* Space to hear yourself think
* Heart-opening creative activities
* Gentle strengthening yoga
* Good food and laughter
* Wild and peaceful nature
* Reassurance that you are not alone
* A reminder that you are brave and beautiful and wonderful, flaws and all
* Delicious vegetarian meals
* Support to be heard, make shifts, reconnect with YOU, and move closer towards that life you deeply dream of.
You don’t need any special skills or experience to join us, you just need to be you.
So read on, dream about joining us for this precious mama me-time, and then, book your place below!
The Haven is a grand Victorian House, once the ‘second home’ of the Archdeacon of Cornwall, du Boulay. It stands in a commanding position beside The South West Coast Path with magnificent sea views from most of the rooms towards The Lizard.
In January 2012, the house was the location for the Lamorna Cove painter Laura Knight’s house and studio in the film Summer in February.
We hosted individual retreats here in the same week of May last year, and you can see from the picture on the right, the weather was beautiful.
So fingers crossed for more of that this year! However, we're in Cornwall, so nothing is ever predictable. Bring warm clothes and waterproofs so we can get outside into the elements and appreciate our surroundings if we want to. And be assured that if the weather gets stormy, we’ll provide the hot chocolate and the open fire, and you can simply revel in watching the sea crash below.
This is a unique venue and spaces are limited. As a result, we are offering just 6 spaces for the full residential retreat - 2 sharing a twin room (perfect for two friends - or to make a new friend!), 3 with single occupancy of a twin room, and 1 with single occupancy of a double room (allocated on a first come first served basis).
Bathrooms are shared and simple. There are two sitting rooms, and two kitchens, so you will always be able to find somewhere quiet if you want to - or find some company if you'd prefer that. The accommodation is delciously old and eccentric. The location is awe-inspiring.
What will we do?
You'll arrive between 9.30 and 10am on Wednesday morning to settle into your room, and take a few moments to breathe in and absorb this beautiful location: that heart-swelling view of the sea, green cliffs and rolling hills, dotted with sheep, sweet-smelling yellow gorse and bright white daisies. Waving tamarisk branches gently frame the smooth grey rocks below, the coastline of the Lizard stretching out beyond.
At 10am, our small group of big-hearted mamas will come together for a day of joy, connection and creativity.
Pippa will lead you through a gentle nurturing morning of rest and reconnection. We'll provide delicious fruit and beverages to boost your energy and creative materials to inspire you.
There will be some guided writing, creative collage, and conversation with other lovely mamas.
We'll pause for a delicious vegetarian lunch together (hopefully outside if the weather is kind...).
And after lunch, you'll be able to take advantage of our spectacular location and spend some time in nature (whatever the weather!).
Outside, you'll gather materials for some gorgeous nature art and mandala-making, returning to The Haven for tea and fabulous cake and a big shared creative project. You'll also spend some time making yourself an inspiration card for Pippa to post to you after the retreat - as a vital reminder of this special time together, and of the importance of looking after you.
After a full day of creative activities, you'll have some quiet time to nurture yourself the way you love best while dinner is prepared for you - what does that mama-nurturing look like for you...?
Would you be resting by the fire on a cosy sofa with a good book or another creative project?
Spending some blissful quiet time reflecting on the day, tucked away in your room?
Kicking back and chatting to other mothers around the kitchen table?
Enjoying a treatment from our visiting masseur and facial specialist?
Taking yourself off for another rejuvenating walk to explore this incredible coastline?
We'll all come together again later in the evening for a mouth-watering dinner - likely accompanied with much laughter and a game of Bad Mummy Bingo...
After dinner, the rest of the evening is yours.
Treat yourself to an early night and revel in lying on your bed listening to the sea crash on the rocks below; stay up late talking to friends, new and old; or take a chance to dance outside under the stars!
As evening falls, you might spot bats flitting across the sky, dark shadows against the deep blue sea sparkling orange into the far distance - or even see a badger rustling around outside.
And on Thursday morning, you start the day with a precious lie-in...!
Ahhhhhh, that rare rejuvenating joy of no alarm clock, no children calling your name, and blankets to snuggle into as you listen to the sounds of the sea outside.
Unless of course you want to get up early and watch the sun rise over this spectacular cove, because you can certainly do that if you want...
You can help yourself to hot drinks whenever you want them, and a breakfast of warm croissants will be available from 10am.
Maybe you'll wrap yourself up in a blanket and take a steaming mug of something delicious outside to breathe in the fresh air and listen to the birds singing.
You can watch herring-gulls, gannets, kestrels (we even saw a rare Cornish chough last time we were here) swoop by, and delight in the song of robins, swallows, and numerous curious small birds.
We'll come together as a small group again from 11am for another creative boost, before we're joined by the wonderful Leif Olsen for a gentle 90 minute yoga session and an extra long relaxation.
You'll take time to stretch your body, rest, and be reminded to value all it does for you.
This is your chance to ease out all of those aches and pains gathered from your daily mama life. You'll be strengthening and nurturing every inch of your body, and practicing some simple stretches that you can take back into your busy life.
We'll share a light and tasty celebratory lunch, and come together again for our final group session. Here, we'll support each other to think about how we can take the discoveries we've made over these precious hours together back into our daily lives.
We'll make space to remind ourselves of all the incredible things we do as mothers every day, and celebrate creating this experience together.
We'll finish at 3pm on Thursday.
You'll leave feeling inspired, alive, rested, stronger and more confident. You'll also take away a raft of practical mama-nurturing tools that you can use any time to bring joy and clarity into your life.
Extra one to one support
Pippa is also opening up two slots for a 55 minute one to one mama-nurturing session at the end of Thursday - at 3.30pm and 4.30pm.
In these, you can look in more detail at the challenges you're facing at the moment, and work together to create a simple plan, agreeing small steps that you can take to bring more rest and joy into your life, even when that feels completely impossible. These sessions will be offered on a first-come first-served basis. Find out more about one to one support sessions over here.
Extra FREE goodies
As well as the retreat, we’ll give all those purchasing an overnight ticket for the residential retreat some fabulous additional free resources to take away:
E-books and printables
* A DIY Mamas’ Retreat Kit so that you can host your very own retreat for friends at home whenever you want (worth £37). Your kit includes gorgeous printables, inspiration for creative activities to try, and access to videos to guide you, including a 30 minute yoga session with Leif that you can use again and again...
* A book of Mums’ Reward Charts to inspire you to keep going
* Your very own Bad Mummy Bingo cards!
* Access to a private facebook group for retreat participants - a space where you can get to know each other before, and stay in touch afterwards
* Last but not least, you'll get a very special little mama-nurturing treat in the post after our retreat...
Remember - you deserve some of that support you provide to everyone else. You are the heart of your family, and you need nurturing too.
We know how hard it can be to allow yourself to invest in you, to support all that you do as a mother.
You forget how important you are. You think that everyone else's needs are more important than yours.
But your needs matter. Without meeting your own, you can't meet everyone else' needs. You need to be well-rested, happy and fulfilled - for yourself, and for your family.
To make this precious opportunity for mama me-time possible for you, we're keeping costs as low as we can.
You know what a difference it makes when you feel happy and fulfilled. The benefits of investing time and money in you will quickly ripple out to your whole family - and the value of that is incalculable.
Give yourself something very special to look forward to in 2016. Believe in your own worth enough to take this step towards nurturing yourself, with us. We look forward to seeing you in May!
The retreat will run from 10am on Wednesday 11 May to 3pm on Thursday 12 May.
The price includes all creative workshop and yoga sessions, all simple delicious vegetarian meals as detailed above, and overnight accommodation in The Haven. Click on 'add to cart' below to buy.
We have also agreed an incredible rate (an additional cost) for a massage or facial with our mama-nurturing masseur and facial specialist - so if you'd like to add a treatment to your booking, contact us when you book your place.
For those that prefer (or need!) to return to their own beds, you can buy an individual day pass to join us on Wednesday (including dinner and Bad Mummy Bingo if you would like to stay).
At the moment, we are unable to offer day retreats on Thursday.
Please ensure you read our terms and conditions.
Want to know more about how to get here from where you are?
The nearest train stations for Prussia Cove are Penzance and St Erth - you can book a taxi from either to drive you down some stunning winding Cornish-hedged roads.
If you are joining us by car for the residential retreat, you can drive on past the main Prussia Cove car park down the lane towards Porth-en-Alls. Instead of driving on towards Porth-en-Alls, take the first turning on your right, and drive up the hill towards the large house at the end of the lane - this is The Haven (pictured at the top of this page). It's a short bumpy lane, and there is a small parking area next to the house.
As parking next to the hosue is limited, if you are joining us for the day retreat, please park in the main Prussia Cove car park, and enjoy the short walk to The Haven from there.
Coaches also travel to Penzance. The nearest airport is Newquay, about an hour's drive away.
If you're arriving earlier, and would like to arrange local accommodation for the night before the retreat, let us know and we'll do what we can to help.
Your retreat host, Pippa Best is the inspiring Mum Champion behind Story of Mum, an online and 'real life' community of supportive mamas doing creative stuff to celebrate the ups and downs of motherhood.
She says “Getting creative connects us to who we are and what we want. It makes us happier, braver, and we shine brighter together. Sharing our stories reminds us that all mums are amazing, especially when we make mistakes…” Pippa has worked for many years in film development, helping film-makers to write and share their stories – and is passionate about helping mothers to share theirs.
Pippa runs regular Mamas' Retreats in Cornwall and elsewhere, as well as hosting monthly online #somum Make Dates that inspire mums to get creative and take time for themselves. She has hosted mama events and a national participatory exhibition celebrating motherhood that culminated at the Museum of Motherhood in New York. Participants describe leaving Story of Mum events feeling celebrated and exhilarated, moved and honoured, relaxed and grounded. Trained as a Mama Bliss Coach, Pippa also provides one to one support to mums, and her Story of Mum work has been featured in Good Housekeeping, Parent Tribe, Juno Magazine, UK Handmade and many more magazines, podcasts, radio shows and press. Pippa is mother to a 7 year old boy and a 5 year old girl.
Joining us on Thursday is Leif Olsen, a very special yoga teacher. Teaching from the heart, she changes the lives of those in her classes. People travel from all around the world to practice with her in Cornwall.
Leif has a special knack of knowing just what you need when you need it, whatever your yoga experience – whether you’re a pregnant women who has never tried yoga before or an expert who has already made yoga part of your life. Her gentle and powerful holistic approach to yoga transforms how you feel about your body, and your life.
Leif says “Yoga teaches us about flexibility, balance, strength, relaxation, softness, stamina and patience – benefits that ripple out into our everyday lives. Attending a yoga class is like indulging in a massage, a trip to the Oesteopath, an exercise class, a counselling session, a stress relieving workshop and a confidence booster all in one.” Leif is mother to a 23 year old daughter and a 7 year old son.
Providing our delicious meals will be Kate Binnie. Her cooking makes you sigh involuntarily as you take that first bite...
From fresh and revitalising vegetarian cooking to her legendary brownies, tarts, and chocolate peanut-butter cake, she cooks with love and delight. She lives her life with wholehearted spirituality and you can taste that in her food - and feel it in her company.
Warm and wise, Kate is always exploring – whether that be the world, her relationships or herself. Having worked in adult learning for many years, she remains passionate about helping others to grow. Kate is mother to a 9 year old daughter and a 5 year old boy.
Wise words from mamas who have played with us before:
Don’t just take our word for why this is a great thing to do for you, read this feedback from other mums about our short retreats:
“The Mamas’ Retreat was immediately a very honest space to expose my vulnerabilities and support others to do the same, and that helped me enormously to move forward with some of the worries I had been harbouring on my own. Exposed to the light, I could forgive myself for not being perfect, and then feel light-hearted about it. Creating space for yourself is rare as a mum, but I think space with other mums to actually focus on looking at how being a parent affects you is even rarer. The retreat was essential maintenance and empowering and a giggle all at once!” Emily
‘The Mamas’ Retreat gave me the opportunity to be me! It also gave me a rare chance to be creative, and to get in touch with both my mind and my body though gentle yoga. I was able to take a step aside from my normal daily routine and reflect on what I achieve each day as a juggling mum. I left the day feeling stronger and more appreciated. It was a very beautiful and liberating experience and I would wholeheartedly recommend it to any mum.” Miranda
“As a working mama, I rarely let myself stop and take time out for me – I’m either working or mothering most of the time. It was wonderful to give myself that gift of space. I loved connecting with other supportive mothers, voicing my hopes and dreams, and eating cake! I left as a stronger mum and woman, rejuvenated and inspired.” Kari
To book, contact [email protected].
Let us save a place for you.
Many thanks to Porth-en-Alls, Prussia Cove for some of the lovely photographs above.
The others are from our retreat at The Haven last year
Want to know more about our retreats?
Find more information on the other Mamas' Retreats we offer over here.
If you'd love a retreat, but can't make these dates, register with our lovely free Story of Mum community over here so that you can be the first to hear about any new offers and retreat treats!