Your Hosts, Brian and Jody
Your hosts, husband and wife team Brian and Jody Calvi, are often described as the perfect compliment to one another, the Yin and the Yang of Farm of Life. While Brian is an adept visionary and teacher, Jody is the maestra of details. They keep a pulse on the needs of the guests, farm, employees, volunteers, etc and together manage nearly every aspect of farm life. Brian and Jody are attentive to the guest experience, seeking excellence for you in all aspects. They specifically provide assistance, education, support and motivation, arranging tours and services, guiding tours, giving health coaching, sound therapy, water aerobics and reiki, teaching workshops and Qigong and so much more.
Their respective histories recovering from chronic disease inspired them to open Farm of Life. They are grateful for the healing journey they’ve experienced, and feel their higher purpose is to give back to others in need. You can read about their journey to wellness here, including Brian’s triumph over Fibromyalgia and Jody’s lifelong journey with Rheumatoid Arthritis and Asthma.
The Volunteer Team
We maintain a small and specific volunteer program and invite only the most exceptional and qualified candidates to support our mission and vision. Our volunteers are not only supremely talented within their fields of expertise, but they also embody our core values, which are to be compassionate, in loving service, a team player, a hardworker and a model of the healthy lifestyle.
Anna Enders has been Head Chef at Farm of Life since May 2015. She is divinely gifted with clean cuisine food preparation and thrills guests continuously with her raw vegan and cooked vegan creations. She is also an absolute treat to have around, with her bubbly personality and friendliness and willingness to teach and share her mad skills.
Stephanie Singh began her yoga practice in 2010. Deciding to share the gift of yoga, she attended a teacher training in 2014. In May 2016, Stephanie visited Farm of Life to make healthier habits, seek her truth and learn what it truly means to live her highest potential. She had an epic transformation and we came to appreciate all that she has to offer. Now, serving as the farm's Yoga Instructor, Stephanie gives back the same compassion, tenderness, and unconditional love that was given so freely to her during her stay.
Jack Seidel has been our greenhouse volunteer since May 2015 and he too is a talented body-worker, offering reflexology, abominable massage and deep tissue massage. Jack has an exceptional countenance with guests, being compassionate, kind and approachable. He is a beautiful example of being in loving service and his quiet work in the greenhouse feeds his sweet soul.
Our Costa Rican Staff
We have 5 staff hired from our nearby village – 3 farm workers and 2 maids. We know with total clarity that we could never do this without them… their knowledge of the tropics, their innate desire to be in service, their physical strength, willingness to work hard and wise counsel have kept us afloat since the beginning. With Om so much gratitude for Henry, Beto, Frank, Ruth and Lili!
Brian's Triumph Over Fibromyalgia
Brian enjoyed a successful life as a dedicated athlete. He went to college on a tennis scholarship and later worked as a tennis professional and schoolteacher. Then, in his mid-20’s, his health deteriorated rapidly.
It began with severe sinus congestion — and surgery that resulted in a persistent infection unaffected by antibiotic treatments. His symptoms soon exacerbated with fatigue, muscle pain, insomnia and a persistent high fever that kept him hospitalized. After relentless testing by the medical professionals, he was finally diagnosed with the ‘wastebasket’ condition named fibromyalgia. His symptoms worsened; cherished athletics became a thing of the past. While he continued to teach, he suffered through the days, his social life disintegrated, and friends and family treated him like a hypochondriac.
He visited one health professional after another, but their solutions were to prescribe more drugs, herbs and supplements, none of which delivered lasting relief. One surgeon even recommended removal of the first two cervical vertebrae as a possible treatment for his condition. After four years of seeking solutions, he found himself bankrupt, desperate and demoralized.
Brian resolved to heal himself on his own. This shift in consciousness served him well. Visiting a bookstore, he picked up a book on raw food. The principals of raw foodism made sense to him. The belief that the body could heal itself resonated well with Brian. His body had, after all, accomplished amazing athletic feats.
In 2002, Brian made the commitment to eat raw foods and heal his body of fibromyalgia. He announced to friends and family his change in lifestyle. He befriended raw foodists in his community. He got informed; his coffee table was littered with natural healing books; he had consultations with raw food experts; he joined online raw food groups and chat rooms. The transformation to health took several years of discipline, overcoming cravings and learning from the process. He experimented with different raw foods and eating patterns — including raw milk, the 80-10-10 diet, wheatgrass, blue-green algae, sequential eating, fasting and mono-meals — and paid attention to how his body responded. He experienced profound and interesting detoxification, and slowly, his body regenerated. The total transformation to health took several years.
Brian now enjoys great health and remains committed to eating raw, living foods. Brian has since learned about the principals of natural hygiene and now applies those to his life as well. His motto is to just enjoy the lifestyle and enjoy the process of healing.
Jody's Life-long Journey with Rheumatoid Arthritis and Asthma
In 2004, several years into his raw food journey, Brian met his wife, Jody, at a holiday party. With a plate of cooked food in front of them and feeling self-conscious about his lifestyle, Brian confessed, “You wouldn’t believe what my diet is.” Jody answered, “What are you, a raw foodist?” You can imagine Brian’s surprise. He was not accustomed to meeting women who were even aware of this lifestyle.
At the time, Jody was on crutches, undergoing an 11-month stem cell treatment to re-grow cartilage in her ankle. Jody had been diagnosed with Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis as an infant, and had lived her whole life with its crippling effects. Throughout her childhood, there was “no running, jumping hopping, skipping...” She underwent physical therapy twice a day, including heat therapy and painful range of motion exercises. She took every pharmaceutical drug ever marketed for arthritis and experienced nearly every side effect too, including liver and kidney malfunctions, GI irritations, dead bone in her knee and constant fatigue and sinus congestion. At age 16, she was diagnosed with asthma and 30% lung function. For over a decade, she gave herself daily treatments with a nebulizer and asthma inhalers, and took monthly courses of prednisone and antibiotics to treat attacks.
In 2000, Jody delved into alternative methods of healing. She removed 8 mercury amalgams from her teeth, and promptly experienced total relief from asthma! She visited alternative practitioners and tried modalities of every kind — homeopathics, Jaffa-Melor technique, Neuro-emotional technique, different types of chiropractic, EFT, Radical Forgiveness, far infrared modalities, magnetic therapies, acupuncture, colonics, foot baths, psychic healing, bioenergetics, blood type diet, hyperbaric oxygen therapy, yoga, neuromuscular massage, PEMF treatments and many, many herbs and nutritional supplements. While some of these treatments granted Jody incredible breakthroughs in her physical and spiritual healing journey, most of them only soothed her pain and fatigue — they did not contribute towards reversing the cause of disease.
Despite her efforts to find the true healing source, she failed to recognize the one great truth— healing is a divine right and health is a divine presence within. All her seeking had been towards modalities outside herself. Through a newfound spiritual orientation, she began to recognize this greater truth for herself. She also began dating Brian, who taught her the raw food lifestyle and reaffirmed the belief that healing can be accomplished from the inside out.
Reversing old and outdated beliefs about disease, health and healing was Jody’s greatest personal health revolution. Having spent her impressionable childhood entrenched in mainstream medical mentality and battling chronic disease well into adulthood, she was initially incredulous, hard pressed to believe that she was safe with her body or that her body could heal itself without a drug, herb or gimmick. Today she continues to integrate superior thoughts and beliefs about health, lifestyle and her body. She surrounds herself with people who share this faith and confidence in the body’s ability to heal. She finds strength in spiritual teachings, such as Religious Science (www.slc-atlanta.org), Mike Dooley (www.tut.com) and the Abraham collective.
Jody’s transformation to health is a work in progress. She tiptoed her way into the raw food and natural hygiene lifestyles. She came to realize the extreme extent of her body’s toxemia and enervation and the need for rest and detoxification, as well as proper nourishment and re-mineralization. Eliminating stress from her life, getting to bed early, having appropriate exercise, connecting with the elements, practicing self-love and acceptance and doing short fasts are all practices that help restore her body to vitality.
"This was the most life-changing trip of my life. I have never been around such positive, genuine, and spiritual people in my life." Lina, Florida
"Thanks for giving people the opportunity to get their thoughts straight, guts clean, eyes sharp and heart open. It works, big time." Judith de Grauuw, Netherlands
"This Farm of Life radiates positive energy and healing in ways that, if you allow yourself to remain open, you may not have expected." Vienna Sunflower, New Jersey
"Words cannot describe what healing powers your love emits. Thank you for all that you do." Ashley, Florida
"Not only is the setting straight out of Mother Nature’s heart, but the atmosphere that Brian and Jody have created in every detail of the farm is nothing short of inspirational and mesmerizing." Angela Bliss, Canada
"Arrive with an open heart and willingness to grow and you will leave with an activated and revitalized Vital Life Force." Zan, Alaska
"The meals were prepared with great love & joy." James, Canada
"No worries if you are not raw or even vegan, the fruits here are soooo amazing and delicious they won't leave you wanting anything else." Nina, Slovenia
"It was awesome waking up at dawn listening to the howler monkeys & the other sounds of nature all around. The outdoor shower was to die for." Arlene, Canada
"I definitely recommend this place to all who search for truth, transformation, living in harmony with life, eating vibrant raw foods and pure fun and laughter!" Tina about the Living Yoga Retreat
"The vibes were incredible as well as the connections with other kindred spirits & souls. I will treasure this experience of a true farm to table." Craig Ridgeway about the Raw Advantage Retreat
"This is not a traditional vacation but one that is very healing in all ways. You will leave feeling totally rejuvenated." Linda about the Raw Habilitation Retreat