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Did anyone have a stressful Thanksgiving? I did. Just imagine that scene in A Christmas Story where the neighbors' dogs come through and eat the entire turkey. That happened to our turkey while we were out. The culprit was my sister's dog. Thankfully, it happened after our meal though 70% of the turkey was still intact when we left the house.

Anyway, there are a variety of reasons for stress around the holidays, but here are two free and healthy outlets to calm the mind and equip you with a little inner tranquility for the season.

Saint Paul's Cathedral downtown (2728 Sixth Ave) opens its labyrinth to the public regardless of religious affiliation each second Wednesday of the month. For December, it'll be the 12th from 6-8 p.m. How does one walk it? The first stage, which lasts "until you reach the center of the labyrinth, can be called shedding, a releasing, a letting go of the details of your life. This tends to quiet the mind. The second stage can be called the illumination, when you reach the center and linger there. The center is a place of mediation and prayer. The third, as you leave the center and retrace your steps back to the outside, can be called union with God and the healing forces at work in the world."

My second pick is Pilgrimage of the Heart's (3287 Adams Ave) free community sessions. Heart Hymnals: Exploring the power of mantra, affirmation and intention, a yoga philosophy class welcomes the public and will run on Thursdays in December from 7-7:45 p.m. Afterward, from 8:15, Musical Meditation with Pilgrimage of the Heart's Band will provide live music for personal meditation for an hour. Both are free and open to the public.

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