Relaxation for Kids During the Holidays

Are the holidays feeling hectic? Here are a few things to bring a little relaxation into your home or classroom during these busy December days.

Snow angels

Plop down in the snow (or the sand if you live in SoCal!), and make snow angels. Inhale: Move your arms up over your head and move your legs out. Exhale: Move your arms down and legs in. Look up at the sky, take deep breaths, and feel the joy!

Star drawing with breaths

Hold an imaginary pencil (or a real one), and draw a star in the air (or on paper). Inhale: Draw a line of the star. Exhale: Draw another line of the star. Continue drawing and feel your mind sync with your breath. Ahhh…


With each present you wrap, each card you stamp, take a moment to feel gratitude for the person it is for. Share a funny story, think of a nice thing they’ve done, or just send them some love.  Share this practice with your kids and students.

Cinnamon Stick Breaths

Hold a cinnamon stick to your nose and take deep slow breaths in and out. Smell the holidays!

Yoga Bedtime Story

Try winding down with some yoga at bedtime (or anytime you need to bring the energy down). I love Giselle Shardlow’s Good Night, Animal World.

Relax in Savasana

Try a relaxation story to help kids calm their minds while they settle their bodies in savasana.  As a gift, you can download the Wintertime relaxation story from Imaginations 2 here. (You will need to enter your information into the shopping cart, but there is no charge for the story during December.)


Happy Holidays! Remember to breathe and take in all the moments of this holiday season!

With love,


St. Patrick's Day Kids Yoga

St Patrick's Day Relaxation Story Kids love holidays! And they love yoga! So it's fun to do a holiday themed yoga class, like St. Patrick's Day Yoga! Put on your green yoga pants so you don't get pinched!

First, download a FREE relaxation story about rainbows and leprechaun from

Then, check out some of these great ideas from:

KidsYogaStories (a trip to Ireland!)

OMAzing Kids (great printables to use in class).

And some more from Food.Yoga.Peace. (Including a Leprechaun Warmup, and a parachute game).

Have fun! And hope you catch a leprechaun!

Carolyn Carolyn Clarke




Kids Yoga and Relaxation for Fear, Anxiety, and Worry

Local Authors with Arrow

I was honored to be part of the San Diego Local Authors exhibit. My book is enclosed in glass in the San Diego downtown library, along with a few hundred other local authors' creations. All the authors gathered for a reception and to accept an award.  This seems like a great thing, right?

Well, I was afraid.

It's funny how fear works.  Sometimes it's good- your fear might get you out of a dangerous situation. Other times it may be completely irrational.

I was scared to go to this author reception, alone, where I knew no one. What was I afraid of? I don't know, really. I guess the usual.. What if no one talked to me? What if no one liked me? What if I did something that made me look stupid? What should I wear? Ironically, I had anxiety about accepting an award for writing a book on relaxation!

So to help me face my fear of walking into a big reception alone and unknown, as I was driving to the reception, I thought through some of the stories in my relaxation book, Imaginations. I took deep breaths, and I walked in relatively relaxed and calm.  I ended up meeting many interesting authors and learning about a ton of local books.

I am an anxious, worrier. Sometimes I feel like a fraud for writing a relaxation book. BUT, I've realized that it's a good thing that I truly have to WORK at staying relaxed. I have to remind myself to breathe deeply. I have to do yoga. I have to tell myself that it is going to be okay, and I have to actively picture a "happy place" .  Each of the stories and techniques in my book have actively helped me, so I know they work, and I know that they can help an anxious, worried, or fearful child too.

I've been working on a lesson plan for my kids yoga class about fear, and thought I would share a  few suggested yoga poses for kids and fear/worry/anxiety:

  • Mountain Pose- Abby Willis has written a blog post called Yoga Poses for Kids: A powerful asana for soothing fear. It's a sweet way to address fear in Mountain Pose.
  • Warrior Pose- YogaKids Brave Warrior with Affirmations: "I am BRAVE"
  • I find that when I am scared, I contract my chest, so any chest-opening, heart opening yoga pose would be helpful. Like: Camel pose.
  • Sun Salutations or any Vinyasa flow- I find that when I get my body moving, the fear dissipates. It's like it burns off... Here We Are Together has a cute collection of pictures of a child doing Sun Salutations.
  • Animals- Anytime I am using fear as a theme, I give kids a chance to share what they are afraid of- lots of times they afraid of animals. We act out those animals with yoga: Dog Pose, Alligator Pose, Shark Pose, Bee Pose. If there isn't a pose, we make it up! I make sure to make it fun and silly... (I secretly am afraid of dogs, so anytime I'm around a dog that makes me uncomfortable, I imagine that I'm in Downward Dog Pose, and that helps.)
  • Breathing exercises- Slow calming breaths are great for facing fears. Try breathing with a Hoberman Sphere. Open it big and tall when you breathe in and close it when you breathe out.
  • Guided Relaxation- Reading a relaxation story, or "going to your happy place", can help calm your fears. Check out the Freebie section for a relaxation story here.

Here's a book that I have found helpful: What To Do When You Worry Too Much by Dawn Huebner

Also, I love:

There's An Alligator Under My Bed by Mercer Meyer

And don't forget some music for Savasana:

Three Little Birds by Renee and Jeremy

I hope these techniques help the children in your life! (Or maybe even you!)



Carolyn Clarke



5 Ways to Calm Your Elf On A Shelf


1. Read it a relaxation story! Elves love hearing relaxation stories, especially ones from the book, Imaginations: Fun Relaxation Stories and Meditations for Kids!

2. Take deep breaths! When elves get tense sometimes they forget to take deep breaths. When elves are tense they misbehave and make MESSES!!!

3. Go outside! Seeing the sunshine and feeling the ground under their feet helps elves relax.

4. Take a bath with some lavender essential oil! What elf can resist the scent of lavender? ZZZZZzzzzzzz....

5. Do some yoga! Elves love doing balancing poses because they help clear their minds and focus on their task at hand- helping Santa!

Wishing you Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year!

Carolyn Clarke





Announcing My New Children's Relaxation Story book!!!

A collection of read-aloud relaxation stories for kids accompanied by guided imagery that allows them to close their eyes, imagine, relax their bodies, and focus their minds. Image

This book provides stories to help children learn to calm their bodies and relax their minds. Teaching children the ability to consciously relax the body and clear the mind can also help address larger issues such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Sleep disorders, nightmares, or being scared of the dark at bedtime
  • Depression
  • Low self-esteem or negativity
  • Life changes such as moving, divorce, changing schools, etc.

Wildly imaginative and full of whimsical joy, Imaginations: Fun Relaxation Stories and Meditations for Kids imparts to children a life lesson as important as any other they will ever learn: relaxation makes your body feel good, your mind calm, and it's fun!

Here's a preview of the pictures inside:


Purchase this gift for your children, grandchildren, neices, nephews, students and any other children in your life here.