Holidays and Solstice Quiet by Roseanna Frechette

The holiday season is like a snowball that continuously picks up energy, speed, volume. If we aren’t careful, we might find ourselves knee-deep in drifts of office parties, family get-togethers, and traditional holiday events. And then there is the planning out, shopping for, wrapping up, and giving — of gifts to others.

Even if we wholeheartedly enjoy the festivities of yuletide, we can end up feeling run down and out of balance by the time New Years Day arrives. A busy agenda for the season has us on the go, regardless of snow and cold. But December is actually a natural time to slow down, stay in, and be quiet. It’s the month of Winter Solstice.

Winter Solstice falls on December 21st. This is the official first day of winter. The word solstice literally means, “standing still.” Winter Solstice marks the longest night (also the point at which sunlight will begin returning each day in tiny increments). No wonder so many of us lose a balanced sense of ourselves during this time. We tend to go overboard with all the merry making and forget the significance of, as the old Christmas song goes, “silent night.”

I’ve always loved the holiday season. But I’ve more recently learned that enjoying this time of year also means slowing down and learning to say no to some of the merriment. I’ve learned that I can sometimes make gifts instead of buying them. I look for uniquely relaxing ways to shop such as a thoughtful stroll through a holiday bazaar. I believe in awarding loved ones with certificates for healthful treatments such as private fitness sessions or comforting massage.

Whatever the season has in store for you, be sure to find a cup of warming tea with special friends along the way. Try to allow for quiet times by yourself in a sort of peaceful hibernation. And consider taking the stress off your gift-giving needs by allowing for some different ways of going about it.

To that end, The Oxford Club, Spa, Salon and Fitness Center is here for you. This month we host a series of Holiday Open Houses featuring relaxing refreshments and unique gift ideas every Saturday and Sunday, noon to five, until Christmas. As always, our signature gift certificates are available (complete with fancy wrapping). From now, through December 31st, when you spend $100 on gift certificates, you’ll receive a complimentary $20 gift card and a 7-day pass for our fitness center. We hope you will consider giving the gift of health, wellness, and relaxation and receive a piece of joy for yourself!

Roseanna Frechette is Yoga Director and Business Development Rep for The Oxford Club, Spa, Salon and Fitness Center; 1616 17th St.; 303-628-5435; This article first appeared in Downtown Denver News LoDo..

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