Sacred Nature Retreats
Tara Simkins & Martha Simkins Davis

Bound to Bloom | A Spring Retreat Blossoming with Possibilities

Camp Merrie Woode, Sapphire, NC | March 30 – April 2, 2017


Emptiness is bound to bloom, like hundreds of grasses blossoming.

                      ~ Eihei Dogen


Photo by Martha Simkins Davis

Your Invitation

Join us for a three day adventure in the magical woods surrounding Camp Merrie Woode along the banks of Lake Fairfield.  Together, we’ll take time to attune ourselves to that wise intuition within; we’ll welcome and allow the seed of joy to implant itself deep within our souls; and we’ll brim with expectation at the setting into motion of all that is necessary for the hundreds of grasses ready to blossom in our lives, as if each and every one already has.




Photo by Martha Simkins Davis

Imagine giving yourself the space and permission to step out of the chaotic political and media driven energy swirling around you, and instead wake up inspired by a future ~ your future ~ waiting to set its buds within you …

Imagine yourself waking to the presence of a beautiful view every morning, cradling your morning tea or coffee, and humbly bowing your head in gratitude for the life waiting to delight and surprise you.

Imagine harmonizing the energy of your soul with gentle chi gong by the lake, a bath in the forest, laughter, yummy food, and the expansive and ever present Oneness of the season.

Wouldn’t it be lovely?

And wouldn’t it be lovely to do this with a group of like minded women and two willing and knowledgeable guides?

Then join us for this retreat!


Where : Camp Merrie Woode


Photo by Sarah Turner Davis

Nestled in the arms of the sacred Appalachian Mountains of western North Carolina, Camp Merrie Woode, founded in 1919, is a “place of rarest beauty.”  It is a place where young women have been loving, laughing, learning and growing for generations, and a place where a new generation of women, through Remembering Your Sacred Nature Retreats, are learning to grow in peace, harmony, sovereignty, laughter and love.


When : March 30 – April 2, 2017

Spring is a natural time of budding intuition, creativity, and imagination.  Spring reminds us that we are here to give birth to something for the world by allowing ourselves to be the vessels of expectant joy.  Spring is a time to turn our attention to the seeds planted within us, carefully chosen, and a time to allow all of the powers of heaven and earth to take care of the rest, careful of containing the energy needed to fulfill the promise of ripening the future fruit for another season.  Thus, we have picked this weekend especially for you to help you remember the preciousness of this season and your role in holding the expansiveness necessary for a future season.


What : A Summary

This retreat is an unplugged weekend adventure.

The group is limited to the small, intimate size of 8. In various cultures, 8 is associated with joy, the symbol of new life or the final resurrection,  bringing harmony and balance, abundance and power, and the ability to make clear decisions. It is also the symbol of Infinity.

Your guides for the adventure – Tara Simkins and Martha Simkins Davis, certified life coaches, mountain lovers, adventure seekers, seasoned guides and spiritual pilgrims.

Our accommodations are at High Heaven, Camp Merrie Woode’s alumnae lodge. With 9 bedrooms and 8 baths, it will be our home for the weekend.


How : Our Daily Rhythm


Photo by Sarah Turner Davis

Mornings: We’ll begin our days on the banks of Lake Fairfield with the ancient practices of chi gong and meditation to ground ourselves and fill ourselves with deep appreciation for all that has ripened within us, all that we want to gather and share, to calm our minds and fall into sync with our spirits.  Morning workshops and gentle hikes will encompass tools and meditations to lead us into the woods and back to ourselves.

Afternoons: More activities in the woods, around the lake and camp. Rest.

Evenings: Good food, stories, laughter and nurturing discussions.


Little Details : What is Included, and Not

Your payment includes:

Dinner Thursday night; breakfast, lunch and dinner Friday and Saturday; breakfast Sunday. All healthy, farm to table meals prepared by a renowned local chef. Vegetarian options are available at each meal.
Three nights accommodations at Merrie Woode – double or single occupancy.  Rooms are comfortable, but simple and rustic.
Exploring the flora, fauna and rocks of the woods, yoga, chi gong, and meditations. Classes led by Tara and Martha.

Not included:  
your airfare
your ride to and from the airport of your choice
decent internet and cell service.


Logistics : Into the Woods

The closest airports are below.  Rent/share a car or call a local driver whose names are also listed. Enjoy the beautiful drive through colorful hardwoods near the Blue Ridge Parkway, where the Blue Ridge, Appalachian and Great Smokey Mountains come together.

Greenville- Spartanburg Airport (GSP), SC- 1 hour, 45 minute drive to CMW
Asheville, NC Airport (AVL)- 1 hour, 10 minute drive
Atlanta- Hartsfield Airport (ATL)- 2 hours, 50 minute drive

Local Drivers:

Bo Alexander: 828-506-2400
Liz Nichols: 828-507-7212
Matthew: 704-860-4515


Photo by Martha Simkins Davis


What to Bring : Besides Willing Minds and Hearts

-Your favorite pillow (we always sleep better with our own pillow-you might too)
-Comfortable walking shoes
-Sweater weather, super casual, comfortable clothes
-Poncho or rain jacket
-Bathing suit for those who dare to try the cold mountain water
-Things you don’t mind getting dirty


Payment Details : Your Investment

Option 1: $1,899
a shared room with two beds and private bath – only one shared room available.  

Option 2: $2,099
a private room with your own private bath- 6 private rooms available.  

To save your spot, your non -refundable deposit of $600 is due as soon as possible. All rooms are first come, first serve.

Balance due by March 15, 2017.  If you’d like to set up a payment plan, no problem! Please email us and we can help. ( or

Our Refund Policy:  Your payments are all non-refundable. We really want you to come! BUT… if you have to cancel AND we or you can easily fill your space within 2 weeks of the retreat, we will refund your payment, minus your deposit.

See you at Merrie-Woode!

Explore : If you would like to lengthen your trip in NC

Highlands and Cashiers, NC are lovely, bustling resort towns dating back to the mid 1800’s.  Full of delightful boutiques and magnificent antique stores, the charming towns have much to offer.  The surrounding area is abundant with hiking trails, waterfalls and beautiful vistas.

If you’d like to lengthen your stay, make your reservations NOW.  We highly recommend the following places to stay:

-Old Edwards Inn, Highlands, NC          866-526-8008
-High Hampton Inn, Cashiers                 828-743-0263
-Hampton Inn,  Cashiers                         855-283-9591

Testimonials : In Praise of Remembering Your Sacred Nature Retreats

We were humbled by the vulnerable and ennobling presence these women brought to last Fall’s retreat.  Each one remembered her sacred nature and walked back into her life grounded in her own loving and empowering presence, buoyed by the understanding that we returned to our families, work, and communities connected by wise and knowing, fully integrated hearts, minds, and bodies.  We walked back into the world remembering our Sacred Nature, living invitations to friends and strangers.

Here are some of the things these women shared upon returning home that touched our hearts:


“I really remembered my sacred nature and experienced I know who I am.  I know what I am.  I know how I serve.  Thanks Tara and Martha.”


“Martha, every time I hike, I see and notice things, and I can hear you … It’s like a little bit of you is with me.”


“…Thanks to you and Tara and the construct of the retreat you created a place where I was safe, I was loved, and I was free to either do anything I wanted or needed.   Judgment and rigor were removed. Expanse and sky were opened for me. The entire experience released a self-imposed hold and opened my heart and moved me much further along in my search to accept myself.”


“Depending on where an individual is in their life – whether they just need to take a break, or they needed a strong, gentle nudge to pursue personal dreams, or like me, a seeker on a pilgrimage – I strongly believe what you and Tara have created and bring personally to the moment is what The Sacred Nature Retreat is all about.”


 “Martha and Tara, I wanted to leave a thank you note and a “So long for now” … here is a copy of my first journal entry.  I hope it suffices as it kind of sums up how profoundly grateful I am for this time with you.

‘We noiselessly went about getting our morning tea and coffee in this beautiful place.  Silently sharing the interior space of the warm house with 9 other beings – breath and the beginning of NEW came easily.

Now we have finished a very slow paced walk in the woods with the stated intention of FOREST BATHING and it also brings a sense of calm and easy breathing.  The path was soft and plushly carpeted with the jewel-toned leaves of autumn, and the sounds of the wind really did feel like the whisperings from something m u c h  b i g g e r  letting us know we were welcome in the sacred space, and that just being there was our whispered password back that gave us passage into the sanctuary.

The leaves on the trees are the thoughts and dreams and wishes from all of us here now and embody the spirits of those who came before us.  The presence of THEN and NOW in harmonious and informative co-existence is palpable.  The sun-light rained down through those leaves on each of us, standing just as we were, like a forgiving baptismal blessing.'”

Register Today

If any of this invitation resonates with you, makes something in you come alive, we would love for you to join us.

Here’s how:

2018 Year of You Mini Retreat SeriesRegister Today