Facets: Meet Lisa. She plays a mean hammer dulcimer.

Lisa, Yoga Instructor, Music Teacher, Mindfulness Guru.

Meet Lisa. She plays a mean hammer dulcimer.

Lisa was born in Schenectady, New York. She grew up in the tiny hamlet of Preston Hollow in the Catskills. She and her 3 siblings loved exploring the outdoors. Her mother kept a big garden, and much of their food came out of it in the growing months. School was a long car ride away and she'd gaze out the window - looking, observing, wondering - for hours. She'd just let her imagination run wild. When those long rides finally delivered her to school, Lisa was involved in theatre, music and all kinds of sports.

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She wanted to be a music teacher. So Lisa studied music and music education. After, she taught music in Boston public schools. She found yoga and discovered that she felt really at home on her mat. She fell in love with meditative movement.

After 10 years of teaching, Lisa decided to take some time off and re-set post-divorce. She moved to Martha's Vineyard. She taught yoga and gardening and started the Martha's Vineyard Children's Chorus. She dreamed of Carly Simon, who lived on the Vineyard, coming to play with her chorus. It's weird how dreams come true sometimes. Lisa happened upon Carly Simon's son in one of her yoga classes and mentioned her dream. Later, Carly asked the chorus to come do a Christmas concert at her house. Carly sang Silent Night with the Children's Chorus.

Lisa decided that Martha's Vineyard wasn't for forever. It's a tough place for a young, single woman. So she attended a training by Confluence Behavioral Health in Thetford in October 2016. There she found opportunities to do many of the things she loved - gardening, yoga, mindfulness, and wilderness immersion, among others. She also met a guy there who shared some odd, identical family history with her. How many parents paid their kids to pick up rocks from the garden? How many families designed their houses as a family? She decided to work at Confluence Behavioral Therapy and moved to the Upper Valley 3 months later.

She's still here. Lisa lives in Hartford with that guy she met at the training session. They don't have a garden. Yet. She does arts outreach and education for Dartmouth, gives private music and yoga lessons and has recently started working at Open Door in White River Junction, where she does all of the above as well as teaches mindfulness practice. Lisa is 32.

Favorite musical instrument: hammer dulcimer

Favorite cupcake: gluten-free chocolate with almond butter icing

You’re reading Facets, a blog that features brief portraits of the people and the places that collectively comprise the Upper Valley. Each one of these people and places is a facet of the Upper Valley. If you'd like to read about more facets, subscribe here.

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