• avodahliving

In the spotlight: the wonderful sponsors for our Poiema Retreat 2019.

Gift giving is one of my love languages and consequently, when we started preparing our creative retreat, I wanted to make sure our attendees received a thoughtful, perfectly curated, beautiful welcome gift!

I wanted a box filled with things to nurture each of the senses, that came from local businesses who have similar values to us and who are known for their quality and heart in Switzerland.

I reached out to some of my favorite local businesses, people who create organic, artisanal, quality products made with love in Switzerland. They so graciously donated the items for our retreat in France and today I wanted to highlight them here as a way to thank them. Each one of them have become in some way a part of our family, as we often use them in our home!

We are beyond grateful for their generosity and for coming alongside us to give a memorable experience to all of our participants.


I wanted something that could represent well Switzerland, since many of our participants came from other countries. What better option than dark artisanal chocolate and from our very own town!

Cedric Pilloud is one of the most inventive and creative pastry chefs I know and we have him right here in Orbe. I always joke that one day we will make an official budget for our visits to his cafe, because we could be there all the time, eating all his delicious creations!

Not only did each person got a chocolate bar but we also used his chocolate for some of the desserts we served during the retreat.


With a natural approach to body care, Cocooning have a vast variety of products with hight quality ingredients, recyclable packaging for the most part and no animal testing.

It was hard to make a choice when it came to which product to get, but ultimately I went back to the idea of nurturing the senses, specially touch and smell as well as no plastic packaging (as we did our best to have a zero waste retreat too!) And so, an Apricot seed or Jojoba oil bottle --- perfect to revitalize and protect the skin--- plus the soothing balm 'Fleur de Calme' with lavender and ylang ylang essential oils, came to the gift box. For our bearded Michael, instead of the Apricot Seed oil, he was gifted a Bergamot Beard Oil.


Another product to nourish the sense of smell as well as to invite a sense of warmth, was soy wax cubes from Kaptus Nature, a small company based in Estavayer-le Lac, owned by Gentiane and her husband.

These particular perfumed cubes, 100 % natural and biodegradable, are elaborated from essential oils and when heated in a perfume burner with a small lit candle, they melt to release their scents, embalming the whole space!!!

Since choosing a particular fragrance was difficult and knowing that each participant was different, we got one of each and intuitively placed it in each box. Some of my favorites are definitely Santal, Poudre White and Orange Blossom!


Last but not least was a custom mug made by my mother in law and talented potter, Georgette, from Atelier Cythère, based in Arnex-sur Orbe.

Because there is nothing more delightful and cozy than a warm cup of tea (or coffee) during autumn, Georgette created a minimal and simple mug, the very firsts of a new collection!

On top of our sponsor's gifts, I made little bags of dried lavender and a nurturing roller with mix of essential oils.

All the items were packed in a white box, wrapped with Silk & Willow's cinnamon ribbon, a little branch of foraged french lunaria and sealed with a wax stamp. Every attendee upon entering to their rooms the first day, found this little welcome treasure with their handwritten name on it: a loving introduction of the experience to come.