The City of Peekskill and EMBARK invite ALL Girls, Boys, Women and Men of ALL ages to join the One Billion Rising Campaign Community Dance.

On Thursday, February 14 at 4 pm in HAYES PLAZA (in front of THE FIELD LIBRARY) we will join in SOLIDARITY with the world to STOP the Violence against girls and women.

Sadly, One Billion girls and women around the world are abused verbally, physically, mentally and spiritually. As part of the V – Day Movement, started by American playwright and activist Eve Ensler 15 years ago, this year the Campaign encourages us all to DANCE to the song BREAK THE CHAIN.

You can learn the dance on your own:, search:
“Break the Chain”

You can also LEARN THE DANCE with women from the community on TUESDAY, February 12 at 8:00 pm at
EMBARK @ Energy Movement Center (First floor: 925 South St)

Practice Yoga for a Healthy Heart

Increase Lung Capacity, Improve Respiratory Function and Heart Rate, Build Strength and Manage Stress

As the American Heart Association, and most of our doctors have told us, anything that works your muscles is good for your heart and blood vessels– and getting into the various postures (asanas) during a yoga class will certainly do just that.  Exercising the muscles also helps muscles become more sensitive to insulin, which is important for controlling blood sugar.

The deep-breathing exercises (pranayama) practiced in a yoga class help slow the breathing rate which not only increases lung capacity (shortness of breath can be a sign or an effect of cardiovascular disease), but also lowers blood pressure and calms the sympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for generating stress hormones.

When we put asanas and pranayama together, we end up with a sort of moving meditation.  The act of clearing the mind (meditation/mindfulness) has been shown to help those dealing with cardiovascular disease as well as those wishing to prevent it by reducing the frequency, duration and overall effects of stress.

And as if you needed more reasons to make yoga a part of your wellness routine, yoga allows room to tune in to your own specific needs.  In a Vinyasa Flow practice, one flows from posture to posture, allowing the heart to regulate blood pressure while the position of the heart is sometimes above the rest of the body and at other times it is below.  Simply by adjusting the pace or speed of each “Vinyasa” one may control the overall working of the heart and therefore honor their body’s unique needs.

Recipe of the Month: Mushrooms and Greens over Millet

1 onion chopped

2-3 cloves of garlic chopped

1 bunch of collard greens, swiss chard, or spinach chopped

2 tbsp of olive oil and 2 tbsp butter

120z cremini mushrooms

1-2 portobello mushrooms

8-10oz shitakii mushrooms

salt and pepper to taste

a little wine to taste (red)

Fresh parsley


Saute onion and garlic in olive oil and butter till soft. Add chopped greens. Saute until bright green. Add chopped up mushrooms, wine, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook until mushrooms are tender.

Millet Recipe:

1 cup millet, soaked

3 cups water

a few grains of sea salt


Place millet and salt in a pot of water. Cover. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Simmer 30 minutes or pressure cook 20 minutes.

Serve mushroom mixture over millet. Chop parsley, sprinkle on top. Add grated pecorino romano cheese to taste.


Soul Food

When I think of soul food I think about high fat, heavy rich food that sticks to the ribs (and other places not so appealing). But when I think about food that truly feeds the soul, comfort food, I think about the food that brings me to a place of pleasure, warmth and contentment. Sometimes in the dark cold days of winter it is just what I need to feel warm and safe.

Think for a moment of a food from your past, one that makes you feel great after you eat it for no specific reason. Maybe it is macaroni and cheese, slow-simmered tomato sauce, ice cream cones or potato pancakes. Eating comfort foods (every now and then) can be incredibly healing, even though your rational brain might not consider it highly nutritious. Maybe it was the people we were with that made the food more meaningful.

Food has the power to impact us on a level deeper than just our physical well-being. What we eat can reconnect us to precious memories, like childhood playtimes, first dates, holidays, our grandmother’s cooking or our country of ancestry. Our bodies remember foods from the past on an emotional and cellular level. Eating this food connects us to our roots and has youthening and nurturing effects that go far beyond the food’s biochemical make-up.

Acknowledging what different foods mean to us is an important part of cultivating a good relationship with food. This month when we celebrate lovers and relationships, it’s important to notice that we each have a relationship with food—and that this relationship is often far from loving. Many of us restrict food, attempting to control our weight. We often abuse food, substituting it for emotional well-being. Others ignore food, swallowing it whole before we’ve even tasted it.

What would your life be like if you treated food and your body as you would treat your beloved – with gentleness, playfulness, communication, honesty, respect and love? The next time you eat your soul food, do so with awareness and without guilt, and enjoy all the healing and nourishment it brings you.

Foods for a Healthy Heart

Let yourself be silently drawn by the stronger pull of what you really love. -Rumi

Foods for a Healthy Heart:

  • Grains (whole wheat, brown rice, oats)
  • Mushrooms
  • Silicon Foods: cucumber, celery, lettuce, oatstraw tea, barley gruel, oat goat tea
  • Fruit: mulberries and lemons- calm the mind. Schisandra berries- calm the spirit.
  • Seeds: jujube seeds- nourish the heart.
  • Spices: dill and basil- give a calming effect.
  • Herbs: chamomile, scullcap, valerian- help with insonmia and nerves.
  • Animal Products: quality cow and goat milk- nourish the spirit of the heart.
  • Oyster shell- for the yin of the heart.

* Pitchford, Paul. Healing with Whole Foods, 2002.