As Chief Experience Officer, my role is to make sure your retreat with Laurel and your fellow travelers is relaxing, fulfilling, and most of all… fun!
My journey to finding this career did not start in the travel industry or as a yogi. Formerly, I was a speech language pathologist, specializing in using play and other engaging activities to help children learn to better communicate. Meanwhile, in my personal life, I had a knack for organizing fun activities for family and friends—theme parties, wine tours, concert caravans, group vacations, or just turning a mundane day into a spontaneous celebration. Along with my husband and biggest supporter, Dave, I have always thrived on trying to turn every day and any situation into a fun adventure (or party), whether at home in Arlington, VA, traveling within the States, or exploring a new destination abroad.
After having our third baby in three-and-a-half years (Max, Riley, and Gavin), I decided to take on a new adventure as a stay-at-home mom. Impromptu nights out on the town were replaced with living room dance parties, and trips across the world were replaced with trips to a new playground across town. Travel was still possible but took a lot more planning and organization (and OMG more packing!). Then just as I started to think about getting back into the workforce, and we started preparing for “real” vacations again, the pandemic put a halt to those plans, as it did for many, but it also gave me a chance to reevaluate what I wanted to do with my career.
2021 was a big year for all of us as life slowly started to return to normal. For me and my family, it was a year of getting back into traveling again. Our kids got their first stamp in their passports, and we hope it was just the first of many! I also decided I wanted to try something new with my career, something that better tapped into my love for adventure… but I didn’t know what.
Then, in September, I had the pleasure of joining Laurel on her sailing trip through Greece, and it was LIFE-CHANGING! The people, the yoga, the food, the excursions…were all amazing! As not only a guest, but Laurel’s cousin my desire to help out combined with my love for instigating fun, I fell into the role of answering questions for guests when I could, providing behind the scenes support to Laurel, and initiating impromptu social activities that helped bring the group together for a truly unforgettable experience. Laurel and I both quickly realized we were a natural fit to plan future adventures together!
I am extremely excited to now officially be a part of Laurel’s team and to help bring these experiences to more people. My years both working with kids and as a stay-at-home mom have been great training grounds. In my work, my secret to success was making every situation fun. As a mom, my primary role (after keeping them healthy and safe) is to keep our kids happy, which includes planning activities, excursions, meals, and answering ALL the questions. I’m so ready to do the same for all of Laurel’s guests as her Chief Experience Officer! I plan to take my passion for travel and organizing fun to help keep the yoga adventures coming, and as Laurel likes to say, to spread love and the travel bug!
I hope to see you on our next adventure!!!
It sounds so cliché, but Zeek truly rescued me. After our yellow lab of 13 years passed away, we never thought we could find a replacement. And, as I continued to struggle through the transition of full-time executive to full-time yoga teacher, I didn’t think I had time to care for anyone else. But, after countless friends recommended adopting a dog, I gave in after seeing Zeek’s profile online. Zeek and his siblings were all abandoned on the side of the road in Tennessee. I could not resist this four-week, four-pound ball of fur. I was so excited to rescue Zeek, but I never thought he would rescue me.
I cannot tell you enough how much Zeek’s companionship had helped both my husband and I get through challenging moments. Zeek’s unconditional love and friendship is so apparent as we walk through our hometown of Bethlehem, Paddle Board through water or jog paths across the world. Whether strutting his stuff on my yoga mat or in a yoga class, he is a true yogic soul that gives more then he gets.
If you have never considered adopting, I hope this encourages you to look for a pet you will love and who will love you back. If owning a pet is not an option, I encourage you to donate to one of the organizations below. Zeek will be forever grateful!