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Why Sleeping in Nature is Better than your Bed

June 30, 2016
Car horns, sirens, noisy neighbors, and other disturbances that interrupt our sleep can dramatically affect the quality of rest we get per night. Poor quality sleep affects our mood, mental health, physical health, and other crucial aspects of our life. Due to Costa Rica’s close proximity to the equator, the sun rises and sets roughly at the same time all year round. Sleeping in nature in Costa Rica is the perfect environment for retreating back to the basics and enjoying healthy, tranquil rest. Many who travel to Costa Rica for yoga retreats, relaxation, and adventures in nature are seeking to pursue a healthier way of living. More are opting for comfortable outdoor sleeping arrangements immersed in nature as a way to balance their bodies and gain a more recuperative, restful night of sleep. Here are 3 surprising benefits to snoozing in a sleepless jungle:

1. Wake Up to Playful Sounds 

Imagine a morning where your body wakes up with the first morning rays of the sun, breathing in crisp air, feeling refreshed, rejuvenated, and energized for the day’s activities. Croaking toucans, howling monkeys, fluttering blue morpho butterflies, and fresh morning dew coat the abundant foliage of the Costa Rican jungle. Wake up and experience the liveliness and excitement of the morning with the animals of Costa Rica. With a restful night of sleep immersed in the sounds of nature, you can be sure to get the most out of your day!

2. Body Balance

Abnormal wake-up times, which range from all hours of the day depending on work, school, and personal schedules, create major body imbalance. Natural light helps our system release the correct amount of melatonin at the end of the day when we are ready to sleep. Spending more time sleeping outdoors in a short amount of time resets our body’s circadian rhythm, provides us with ample amounts of natural light, and helps us balance our bodies’ natural rhythms.

3. Mood Booster

Along with exercise, yoga, and healthy eating, snoozing outside also contributes to better moods and a reduction in stress. This back-to-the-basics way of sleeping can also assist in the treatment of insomnia, depression, mood disorders, and contribute to overall better mental and physical health. Partaking in the Pura Vida outdoor lifestyle that Costa Rica has to offer allows mother nature to soothe and regulate our bodies so we are better equipped to nurture other important parts of our lives! Trade the high pitched sirens and alarms for the natural low hum of the Costa Rican jungle. Enjoy sleep the way nature intended! You have nothing to lose besides the noise and you can finally gain the peace and balance that your body craves. The time between 5:00AM and 6:00AM seems to be the most magical! Post by Sarah Elena yoga_costa-rica-nature_sleeping-in-nature2-june_2016
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Delicioso Plantain Ceviche Recipe

December 22, 2015

A Costa Rican Ceviche Recipe from the kitchen at Selva Armonia

Ceviche is mad popular in Costa Rica! It's sold everyday in the streets and even on the beaches. It's usually made with raw fish, but this recipe uses plantain, which is still a very common dish in Costa Rica. I suspect the Ticas on the beach make it better than I do, but it's still a delicious dish to enjoy!
  • 1 large plantain
  • 1 large red onion
  • 5 limes or limones mandarina (as they are known here. They're a sort of cross between a lime, lemon and an orange).
  • 1 large red chili pepper
  • Around a quarter of a bunch of cilantro. Use the stalks, too, as they have loads of flavor.
  • A good amount of salt & pepper to taste.
Dice the plantain into cubes, put it in hot water on the stove to boil for around eight minutes. While that's cooking, dice the red onion, red pepper and chop the cilantro. Throw them in a bowl and squeeze the juice of 5 limes over them, add salt and pepper. Once the plantain is cooked, throw that into the bowl and stir, then leave it to marinade. A few hours of marinading is good, but overnight is better. It's delicious when served with rice and beans or yucca flat bread. Today I just ate it with a nice salad. Buen Provecho!
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Living Yoga is Living Free

November 16, 2015
Living Yoga is Living Free. Unclench your jaw right now. Relax your shoulders right now. Shift your eyes from your computer screen to something of the natural world, even if it’s a plant in your office or a photo of nature, right now. Take three deep breaths into your belly…right now. Yoga is not something we need to wait to do later on a mat in a studio. You don’t have to have the perfect yoga clothes, a bendy body or Popeye forearms. Yoga is right now. It’s the way we feel. It’s the choice to be in a body that feels a little lighter than the moment before. Yoga isn’t about waiting for our bliss. It’s about realizing that bliss comes and goes. It’s about releasing the aversion to change. It’s about letting life flow through you, rather than resisting whatever it is that is actually happening. Resistance is futile. Acceptance is liberation. Relax. Breath into right now. Live your freedom. Live your yoga. Namaste, Heidi Michelle
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Raw Vegan Dessert Bliss Balls – Yum!

September 6, 2015

Selva Armonia's Raw Vegan Dessert Recipe!

Enjoy these delightful vegan, gluten-free, nut-free, grain-free raw treats….we do! Yield: 12 macaroons Ingredients: 1 banana, finely mashed 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted 1/4 cup pure maple syrup (or other liquid sweetener)* 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract 6 tbsp cocoa powder, sifted 1.5 cups unsweetened shredded coconut 1 tbsp chia seeds (optional) small pinch of fine grain sea salt, to taste 1. In a medium mixing bowl, mash the banana until most of the clumps are gone. Stir in the melted coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla. 2. Sift in the cocoa powder and stir until combined. Now stir in the coconut, optional chia seeds, and fine grain sea salt to taste. 3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a non-stick mat. Using a spoon or retractable ice cream scooper, scoop rounds onto the sheet. Place sheet in the freezer for around 20 minutes, or until macaroons are firm. Store in the freezer until ready to enjoy. They will soften at room temperature. Note: 1/4 cup pure maple syrup results in a lightly sweet macaroon. Feel free to adjust the sweetener to your own taste buds, especially because some cocoa powders may be stronger than others. Have fun and stay healthy! Heidi Michelle  
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