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Meet Kelli

IMG_20180316_191201_086Kelli grew up climbing trees, caring for critters, and exploring the unique Everglades and Coastal ecosystems of Miami, Florida. She quickly discovered what made her happiest in life was new learning opportunities and a constant connection with the environment.

Kelli follows the belief that “education is not preparation for life but is life itself.” After graduating with an emphasis in Experiential Education she has worked to purposefully connect others to direct experience with focused reflection in order to increase knowledge, develop skills, clarify values, and develop people’s capacity to contribute to their local and global communities.

Kelli’s passion for learning, sustainable practices, and environmental stewardship has lead far from her suburban South Florida upbringing. She has worked as a Youth Event Program Director in Western North Carolina; a Naturalist and Program Coordinator in Mendocino, California; and as an Educator and Outdoor Center Program Director in the Delaware Water Gap of New Jersey.

After 10 years in leadership positions, Kelli decided to focus on expanding her personal knowledge in sustainable growing practices. Since then she has volunteered for organic and permaculture farms in the states and abroad, apprenticed at a large organic CSA farm, developed a market garden business, and managed an organic greenhouse operation.

When shes not barefoot in the dirt, researching sustainable growing information or organizing her next travel adventure, Kelli enjoys hiking, developing primitive skills, sunny beach days, and binge watching or reading most anything in the realm of Science Fiction or Fantasy.

Meet Stephanie

Stephanie is the CEO and founder of Pineapple Acres – a holistic healing and educational center. This is a place where she combines spiritual healing and nature. For Stephanie, gardening is not simply about growing plants. Gardening is a chance to reconnect to nature, where she can seek the space to listen to her soul. Stephanie wants to spread this magic through experiences and education in her outdoor classroom. Stephanie has been gardening since she was a little girl. She has experiences in landscaping and is certified in permaculture design. She co-created a children’s gardening club and designs school educational gardens. She recently partnered with a county park to design another children’s garden in the Fall. When she’s not gardening, Stephanie enjoys writing, surfing, cooking, and spending time with her family. She has published several poems and is creating an epic fantasy novel. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point with a degree in English and an emphasis in Creative Writing. She is also earning certification in meditation, mindfulness, energy medicine and stress management.

Meet Jessica

33098920_1675253345923370_1749710843928379392_nYoga instructor, novice herbalist, and permaculture nomad, Jessica Jonovski, has practiced yoga for over 10 years and started teaching in 2015. She was first inspired to teach while practicing with the Africa Yoga Project in Kenya, where she came to appreciate and embrace the deeper gifts of the practice: its universal teachings of mindfulness, presence, and love. Through her later adventures studying, teaching, and traveling in India and Southeast Asia, she eventually found herself immersed in the world of permaculture as well. As her connection to her natural surroundings grew, she came to understand that the teachings of yoga and the teachings of plants were undeniably intertwined – each containing a beautiful world of mysteries begging to be explored!

In addition to being a certified yoga instructor (Sampoorna Yoga, India), Jessica is also a Level II Reiki practitioner (Asian Healing Arts Center, Thailand) and has dabbled in herbalism studies (Appalachia School of Holistic Herbalism, North Carolina), Thai Massage (Shivagakomarpaj, Thailand), and Vipassana meditation. And, along with the other facilitators, recently earned a Permaculture Design Certificate from Grow Permaculture. When in the US, she resides somewhere between the countryside of Old Florida, the mountains of North Carolina, and her homeland of southwest Ohio.

Jessica is guided by the ancient vedic mantra Soham, meaning “I am that”— a reminder that we are all connected to the same Divine source energy, that our souls are interwoven with one another and with all beings on this earth and beyond. It only makes sense for us to allow nothing but love to flow through them. May all beings everywhere be happy and free!