The Evolution of Mountain Bliss Women's Weekend

Bring on summer! 

Right about now friends, family and acquaintances start asking about my women’s camp. I started Lake Tahoe’s Women's Sports Camp 6 years ago now (renamed Mountain Bliss Weekend in 2015) and have met the most amazing women who have attended over the years. Thanks to social media I’m able to keep in touch with so many of you. I’ve also loved working with our coaches - those incredible women (and men) who are out moving mountains, creating change and inspiration where ever they go!  Some of our regular coaches are doing some pretty cool stuff. 

Heidi Boynton continues to grow her successful Mini Mermaids running clubs into international territories. She’s even included a boys component - Young Tritons. Marla Streb and husband have opened the doors to a super cool new Baltimore hang-out, Handlebar Cafe. Jessi Stensland has landed in the Italian Alps, creating inspiration through Vibram Five Finger product innovation through her love and knowledge of being barefoot.  Stay tuned…. I’m sure she’ll resurface with some mind-blowing stuff that’ll make us all want to throw off our shoes and feel the dirt between our toes like when we were 10 years old. Crystal & Jeff Robertson are living the van life. Check it out!  I just love following their Le Grand Adventure Tours.  Cortney Knudsen continues to build out the ongoing phases of the Truckee Bike Park for all of us to enjoy (Thanks Cortney) and hosts her own event The Little Big.  If you need to brush up on your bike skills - hit her up!    Nick Nicastro of SAGmonkey - Continues to provide professional support for athletes - all over the country!  Super awesome. Anik Wild just had a great article come out on ESPN-Women.  See below or read HERE! She’s brewing up some good stuff. More on her… keep reading below!

Currently, I’m splitting my time ⅔ in Rome, ⅓ in Lake Tahoe with my husband and kids. As far as my own personal journey, it’s been long, but great. And I’m not done of course. None of us are done otherwise we’d be dead.  We keep adding more chapters to our own book. Life is beautiful that way. Sometimes fabulous, sometimes messy. Plots thicken, drama elevates, characters come and go. Some chapters are more interesting than others, but every chapter is important to the story.

I’m two years into our relocation to Italy and it’s been quite a ride.  I’ve stepped back from Mountain Bliss Women's Weekend last summer and decided to work on my family, and then me. And while my Italian is still terrible, my taste buds for good wine has gotten much better. In the past 18 months I’ve been busy collecting life experiences. I’ve encountered more change, excitement, discomfort  and adrenaline than any other time in my life.  It’s been an incredible journey so far. I’ve had a change in environment, scenery, habits, routines and friends. I now live in an apartment, not a house. I now live in an ancient city, not a mountain town. I live with culture differences and language barriers.  I’ve emptied my pockets to pay cab drivers and played charades at the Italian post office. I’ve talked my way through passport control and uncomfortably borrowed money when my bank card didn’t work. I’ve run for trains and busses that wouldn’t stop, I’ve run from wild bores in a park. I’ve ignorantly undersold and been overcharged. I’ve held up lines shoving back packs into suitcases and slept in airports due to delays and canceled flights. I’ve been lost and I swear I’ve lost my mind, a few times. I’ve had moments of questioning our decision to move and questioned my place in this world.  Our kids have learned about the holocaust, legal prostitution and marijuana much earlier than planned (Thanks Amsterdam). They’ve seen really drunk people at Oktoberfest (Thanks Munich) and breathed more second-hand smoke than a child standing in the front seat of a 70’s station wagon with the windows rolled up (Thanks Italy).  It’s been a journey of getting comfortable being uncomfortable - and I wouldn’t change a thing!

So why did I say “yes” to Rome? One reason was because even though we were living in a small town (Truckee, CA) life seemed too busy. Seasons were flying by and we (as a family) could barely finish one thing before on to the next. We seemed to be more reactive than proactive. Dinners were rarely at the dinner table anymore and Sundays quickly rolled into Thursdays.  And while lines are appearing on my face faster than I know what to do, my true measure of time are my kids. I can see how people (parents or not) wake up one day and say, "Where did the time go?"  "How do I get off this roller coaster?", and "What happened to the person I was going to be?"  I thought maybe, just maybe, time away from home (still considered Truckee) would provide a space to pull us back and allow us to slow down, reassess, regroup and do a little personal inventory; check to see where we’re at and figure out what’s most important. So far it’s been priceless in helping me realize what’s working and what’s not, where we need to simplify and where we need to upgrade. This time and space has felt a lot like spring cleaning of the mind. Even looking back on Mountain Bliss Weekend, I’m realizing that while many women had shown up seeking better bike skills or improved running techniques, it was the time and space they loved the most.  

Where did I land in all this? Well, after experiencing the benefits of what time and space has done for me I’m thrilled to announce this year’s Mountain Bliss Weekend has been redesigned for just that... a bigger space for women to reflect and reset before re-engaging in life. Afterall, we know the amazing things women can do after they clear their mind, catch their breath and recharge their batteries.   This summer I’m partnering with Anik Wild, professional paddler and co-owner of Waterman’s Landing and together we’re taking women through 4 days of fun water sport activities, yoga, hiking, amazing personal development workshops and inspiring informational clinics with breathtaking views in a healthy, supportive environment where ladies will experience increased self-awareness, decluttering of the mind, revitalized confidence and renewed motivation to charge on.  

Please consider joining us for this infusion of laughter, learning, exploring and paddling in Lake Tahoe! I’m excited about all the possibilities.

Thanks for reading,