Survive, Thrive & Be Fit at the Christopher Farm & Gardens: Our 44th Visit on August 30th!

Survive, Thrive & Be Fit at the Christopher Farm & Gardens: Our 44th Visit on August 30th!

NOTE: Click on PDF on bottom of page to view all photos related to this article.

Cancer survivorship does offer its privileges! And one of those for area cancer patients and survivors is the gracious hospitality offered to us by Mr. Jay Christopher and the wonderful staff at the Christopher Farm & Gardens who have welcomed us 44 times since May of 2017! Some of our visits are more extravagant (like the WANDER-thon earlier this month). Others are quite casual and simple... like last night. Folks were invited to “WANDER the Wonderful Gardens” starting at 4P on an absolutely gorgeous August evening.

The highlight for me (and a few others) was a Qigong session held in the Asian Water Gardens!

See attached PDF for photo: ST&BF Qigong for Cancer Survivors practicing in the Asian Water Gardens at the CF&G!

A growing number of area cancer patients/survivors and co-survivors are enjoying the many benefits of this simple but profound practice. Qigong practice can be described as a moving meditation that involves slow gentle movement with deep rhythmic breathing and a focus on mindfulness.

Although we often practice indoors, most of us strongly prefer outdoor settings – and we’ve practiced in a variety of outdoor settings: along the Lake Michigan Lakefront, underneath a sky full of kites, high atop the North Point Overlook; but none were as beautiful and serene as this! In addition to the visual beauty of this perfectly manicured Asian Garden was the sound of the flowing water of the koi pond, the sound of the gentle waterfall, and the sound of wind-blown chimes!

Qigong for Cancer Survivors requires no experience and is easy to learn! Consider joining us on Monday, September 12th and/or September 26th when we will be joined by Michael Finney, CYT who will provide us with in-person Qigong instruction from 4:45P to 5:25P followed by an hour of Gentle Yoga for Cancer Survivors starting at 5:30P. Join us for one or both activities! See attached flyer.

The evening continued as folks “Wandered the Wonderful Gardens” before gathering at the Conservatory for a Bonding Bonfire (with the usual hot dogs, s’mores, treats, and snacks) and a Game Gathering featuring various dice games!

See attached PDF for photo: DIY hot dogs & s’mores over a bonding bonfire in the Conservatory’s outdoor fireplace.

See attached PDF for photo: Survivors/co-survivors enjoying some games in the beautiful setting of the Conservatory (Photo submitted by Mary Schueller).

NOTE: I wrote a piece about Qigong in the previous issue of this Update ( to which Michael Finney, CYT responded with the following information:

Interestingly enough. Tai Chi and Qigong weren't really a thing until the 50's as their own separate practice. Chinese yoga, Tai Chi, and Qigong were all one practice called Taoyin. If you look the word up you will see a lot of Qigong stuff you do. As I understand it, the Daoist monks would practice this daily. Think of it as Qigong was more the standing movements, yoga was more the sitting movements, and Tai Chi the self-defense practice. But there was no separation of the three. When the communist government realized people were still practicing Taoyin and couldn't get them to stop, they instead embraced it by separating out the Daoist traditions and made the three approaches to exercise.

Thanks Michael and we’re looking forward to practicing Qigong (and yoga) with you in September!

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