Blog Posts

Currents: July 2019


Currents is published monthly by Windhorse Integrative Mental Health of Northampton, 211 North St., Suite 1, Northampton, MA 01060. The Executive Director is Victoria Yoshen. For questions, concerns, and suggestions about Currents, contact us at


Upcoming Events

mark your calendar
Mark your calendars for upcoming community gatherings!

Community Events:
The Annual Windhorse Kickball & Pie Event
Wednesday, July 24th, 4:30-7pm at Sheldon Field. 
For those who haven’t attended before, Kickball & Pie is a summer tradition for Windhorse. Staff, clients, community members, family members, and friends are all welcome. We get together to enjoy the outdoors, play a few laid-back games of kickball, and treat ourselves with pies of all kinds (both the pizza and the sweet varieties). We hope you’ll join us! Please bring a pizza or pie if you are interested and able. Other refreshments as well as outdoor games are appreciated too. Contact us at for more information.

Events Committee: Wednesday, August 7th, 9:30-10am in the Windhorse community room. The Events Committee plans Windhorse community events. Clients, staff, and community members are welcome to attend and share their ideas. The committee meets on the first Wednesday of every month from 9:30 to 10am.

Community Lunch: Tuesday, August 13th, 12:30-1:30pm at the Windhorse office. This is an opportunity to enjoy a potluck lunch while meeting and socializing with others in the Windhorse community. All are welcome to come for the whole hour or just stop by for a visit. Please feel free to bring your own lunch or contribute something yummy for the group.
Community Education: Wednesday, August 14th, 9-11am with an optional guided meditation 9-9:30am. Join the Windhorse staff during their monthly discussions and trainings on topics relating to the work of Windhorse. Open to the entire Windhorse community. 2nd Wednesday of the month, 9:30-11am. You are also welcome to attend the 30-minute guided meditation from 9-9:30am.
Upcoming Events in the Area:
Northampton Sidewalk Sales (Northampton), July 25-28th
Springfield Jazz & Roots Festival (Springfield), August 10th 
Westfield Fair (Westfield), August 16-18th
Northampton Arts Council Transperformance (Northampton), August 20th 4-9:30pm
Cummington Fair (Cummington), August 22-25th
Three County Fair (Northampton), August 30th-September 2nd

For more information, contact us at

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Development Corner

The other morning I went swimming at a nearby lake.  The water and air were similar temperatures and I felt welcomed into the whole space.  We have had a spate of glorious New England days that bring my gratitude surging forth.  As I lay in the water soaking in the sky I sent my sense of belonging and marvel out in to the world. 

And the world sent an idea back to me!  I have been curious about how to make the Windhorse approach more accessible, as we know that it is costly.  Most of the time the people receiving our services don’t have a job or a need to support a family while spending so much time with our staff.  I have questions about how it might translate both in time and money to different segments of the culture.  We need to find a grant that allows us to research and cover the cost of implementing the proposed form that comes out of the research.  And then we can raise scholarships for THAT program.  If you have ideas or interest in supporting this, please let me know.

Victoria Yoshen
Executive Director of Windhorse IMH Northampton
Windhorse IMH 211 North Street, Suite 1 Northampton, MA 01060

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Windhorse Conference 2019

A Celebration of the Common Ground and the Unique Attributes of Ten Windhorse Centers.

Written by Mary Tibbetts, LICSW, Psychotherapist and Family Coordinator.

Greg, Jeremy, Mary, and Kate attended the conference on behalf of Windhorse Northampton.

The long-awaited Windhorse Conference titled, “The Evolution of Windhorse: Relational Medicine, Community, Inclusivity”, was held in Boulder, Colorado at the end of May this year.  The gathering included ten Windhorse centers from Frankenthal and Freiburg, Germany; Turin, Italy; Vienna, Austria; and the United States.  The U.S. delegation was comprised of representatives from Boulder, CO and the three sister sites of San Luis Obispo, CA; Portland, OR; and Northampton, MA.  Additionally, Windhorse Eldercare and Mindful Works joined the group.  This unprecedented diversity of representation resulted in an interesting exploration, during the four day conference, of our common roots and the evolution of our unique “branches” over the past several years.

Mary and Jeremy speaking to the group.

Thursday evening we gathered in the Naropa University performance space and enjoyed catching up with old and new friends and colleagues over dinner.  Later, the ten centers presented on their origins and evolution.  We heard the unfolding stories of germination, nourishment and growth of the past forty or so years, into our current, established organizations.  After the origins presentations, a follow-up question about future aspirations brought forth hopes of making our services more accessible and affordable, increasing our learning opportunities, integrating related modalities, and continuing to be of service to the healing of extreme states in as active a role as possible.

The full days of the conference began with looking deeply into shared fundamental values and practices: meditation, council, maitri practice and compassion practice on Friday.  Saturday morning our discussion explored the meaning of relational medicine and community.  During the rest of the conference we listened to panels discussing work programs, research, Windhorse psychotherapy, psychiatry and medication, music therapy, family work, eldercare, diversity and inclusivity and the development of Windhorse teachers.  Throughout the conference, participants engaged with curiosity and spontaneity allowing for honest and in-depth exchange across centers, roles, and experience levels.

The Windhorse Conference illuminated our shared history and laid the ground for further innovation.  Dr. Ed Podvoll and the founding Boulder group developed the contemplative practice of basic attendance, embraced the importance of environment in healing and emphasized the central role of human to human connection and compassion, open and honest dialogue, and the core belief in each individual’s sanity and goodness.

Beyond the fundamentals we share, each center was seen by all at the conference in its unique aliveness.  The days together in Boulder at Naropa (where it all began) were rich, provocative, and stimulating.  The original passion and inspiration of the Windhorse founders was abundantly evident and the creative energy that continues to drive the search for more effective and compassionate relief from suffering was exciting to witness. 

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Things To Do: Free Concerts

The Pioneer Valley has a thriving music scene and summer can be an opportune time to enjoy it as many towns hold a series of free outdoor concerts. Here’s a list of local towns that hold free concerts, along with links for more details on each.

Northampton’s Summer Park Series in Pulaski Park.

South Hadley’s Summer Concert Series on Thursday nights in the Village Commons.

Amherst’s Summer Concerts in the Parks.

Florence’s Music on the Porch Series on Thursday nights at the Civic Center.

If you enjoy those concerts and you’re willing to pay to attend additional music events, then we might suggest you check out Watermelon Wednesdays in West Whately, Springfield’s Jazz & Roots Festival held in Court Square on August 10th, Northampton Arts Council’s Transperformance held at Look Park on August 20th, or the Arcadia Folk Festival held at the Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary in Easthampton on September 28th.

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A Poem for the Season

We’d like to share with you this poem entitled Afternoon on a Hill by Edna St. Vincent Millay.

        I will be the gladdest thing
            Under the sun!
        I will touch a hundred flowers
            And not pick one.

        I will look at cliffs and clouds
            With quiet eyes,
        Watch the wind bow down the grass,
            And the grass rise.

        And when lights begin to show
            Up from the town,
        I will mark which must be mine,
            And then start down!

And if you would enjoy more poetry, please click on these links to read Heart to Heart by Rita Dove, as well as Briefly it Enters, and Briefly Speaks by Jane Kenyon.

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Board Meeting Report from May 28, 2019

Written by Victoria Yoshen, Executive Director of Windhorse Northampton.

Another Board meeting took place on Tuesday, May 28th, just before the Windhorse Conference.  Ana, the Operations Manager in Portland, spoke to a school project where she is noticing our focus on relationships — not just clinically, but also between colleagues —  in how we run meetings and our administrative systems.  She plans to create a “master training manual” for how things at Windhorse work. 

We went over the usual reports, such as the financials and a site report from each Director.  The Directors had reviewed the survey the Board asked for and reported the results to the Board.  There were no surprises to the Directors.  There were similar responses between sites.  There was some direction, and some proposals in response to that direction.  The Board appreciated the detail and the working together of the three sites to formulate next steps. 

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Recipes: Love it all!

One look at the Western Mass Harvest Calendar (courtesy of the CISA website) will show you that July falls in our peak harvest season. Of the many locally farm-grown or farm-raised items available in the Pioneer Valley, almost all are available in July. Given that, how could we limit ourselves to just one type of fruit or vegetable to showcase in our recipe section? They all deserve the spotlight! But… we didn’t have room to feature all of them, so we hope you enjoy this small sampling. May it inspire you to check out one of the local farmers’ markets, pick up some goodies, take them home, and create your own gastronomic masterpiece.

P.S. Please let us know if you try a recipe and how it turned out!

Lemony Broccoli, Chickpea & Avocado Pita Sandwiches from Cookie and Kate

Healthy Zucchini Bread from The Food Network

Frozen Yogurt Bark [with Raspberries and Pistachios] from Epicurious

Cucumber, Blueberry, & Mint Salad by Abby Getman of CISA

Zucchini Pancakes from Ina Garten of The Food Network

Garlic Lemon Shrimp from Athena Russell of Taste of Home

[Roasted] Sugar Snap Peas from CJ Collins of All Recipes

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  • Zoe has joined the staff as an Intern.
  • Ariel has rejoined the staff as a Respite Housemate.
  • Erica left her position as a Housemate.
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