Wednesday, December 26, 2012

{Merry Christmas}

I know this is a day late, but Merry Christmas and happy holidays everyone! I hope you all are spending this wonderful time doing something you love with the ones you love, and if you're not with family, I hope you find the love where you are.
This time of year is always nice to slow down a little, to remember to take some time for yourself, even in the midst of all the holiday parties, festivities, and running around. I am soaking up some much needed family time in the snow and doing some yoga at my favorite yoga studio in Breck. It's so nice, just to breathe a little. I feel like I've been going 90 miles an hour and I can tell my body is a little more tired than usual or perhaps this is the first time, I'm actually taking a break and not pushing it. I am one of those people that will run in the morning, ski in the afternoon and do yoga in the evening. This year, I am slowing down. Enjoying the rest and simply soaking up a little bit of everything. Wishing you all a merry holiday! I am going to try to post a little more this week. :)

Sending everyone lots of love!

image via pinterest

Thursday, December 20, 2012

In Life & Love

It's almost the end of the week, which means it is almost time for a break. I can't wait for some good quality family and friend time.

I've spent the morning traveling through some fashion blogs and videos by Garance. No matter if I work in fashion or not, it's still in my blood and my bones... I think there are some things in life, we love no matter if they are in our lives or not. I am no longer in the fashion world at all, but there is still something that draws me to it. The authenticity, or the rawness of a fashion show, ohhh how I love it. I remember the first one I ever went to. I sat there, taking everything in, and I cried, I know it probably sounds silly, but I cried because there was something so honest about it. These designers put themselves out there to be critiqued and with any creative process, often the heart and soul is involved, which means that it can be very personal. It's something that captivated me at the time, because I knew I didn't have that kind of courage then. I knew that I couldn't put myself out there like that. But, funny how life works... I may never be in the fashion world again, but even with teaching yoga, it calls for the same kind of authenticity. I think that God places people and things in our lives to help us along the way. I think that if we look back on all the things we have loved, from people to places to jobs and everything else... there is some common link. Perhaps, something we were supposed to learn, something we were supposed to get to help us along in our journey.  Sometimes we have to let things run their course, we have to let our lives and ourselves unfold. "There are all kinds of love in this world, but never the same love twice." F. Scott Fitzgerald

I like this because it's true. I have fallen in love many times over, with a city, a mountain, a sport, a place, a person... it is never the same, because as we evolve, grow and journey down the road, it is necessary to have people, places and things that teach us along the way. 

I hope you all have a very wonderful Thursday. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Maitri Yoga and the birth of a logo...

Hello my dears, I hope all of you are having a great day. I finally have a logo and the website for the yoga studio is almost complete. Woohoo! As I approach, the actual opening of the studio, I can't help but feel like in many ways it is already open. I've been teaching an evening class, and with such wonderful friends and people who believe in this studio as much as I do, I am feeling an enormous amount of gratitude. My wish is that Maitri gives to others what yoga has given to me. I wrote this morning that when I stepped onto my mat in Houston, Texas, I never dreamed that it would lead me back to exactly where I started. I was born here in Fayetteville, right up the street from where Maitri Yoga studio is located. The studio itself used to be my mom's doctor's office. The doctor just happened to be the one who delivered me and as my mom has pointed out to me, I was in this space where I'm teaching yoga, before I was ever even born. Kinda weird, yes? Even if you had told me a year ago that I would be teaching yoga and living in Arkansas, I would have told you that you're nuts! But I think the universe has plans that we never could have dreamed up or imagined ourselves... and often times those plans are the biggest proof that the universe is always at work.

This yoga practice has been a gateway back to myself, back to my core and back to my roots. As humans I believe we can be really hard on ourselves. I think in all of this we somehow forget to have compassion for who we are. It's almost like we forget that we aren't meant to be perfect, much less have everything figured out, so we just start judging ourselves. This practice is one that meets you exactly where you are. It is one that met me exactly where it needed to. It didn't ask me to know exactly where my feet and hands were supposed to go on the mat, it simply called for authenticity, and the willingness to show up and I mean really show up.

The reason why I chose the name Maitri Yoga is because the word, maitri itself means loving-kindness or compassion. It simply suggests that we embrace all the parts of ourselves. The dark and the light, the happiness and the heartbreak, the fear and the courage. It's just about bringing all the parts of you together, not shaming yourself, but instead embracing it all.

It is only through our humanness and imperfection that we can connect to each other because that's where the compassion lies, that's where the heart is. Yoga is not about the perfect pose, it's about the willingness to be imperfect, to be seen, to be vulnerable and to breathe through it all, release, forgive and let go...

Ahh, and not to mention how good it feels! Yoga works on us, without even knowing it... the change is from the inside out and outside in. :)

Wishing you all a wonderful day! Just wanted to share this with you guys.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Life Lately:

Hi everyone! Happy Tuesday! Since I missed posting Monday, I figured I would give you all a glimpse into what in the world I've been doing with my time. The top two pictures are of the yoga studio. It is coming along quite nicely! Almost every piece of furniture I have stumbled upon randomly, yet it seems to be taking on a life of its own and it knows exactly what it wants to be without me even thinking about it too much. Do you ever feel that way in life? Like things just show up, and somehow everything fits? That's kind of been how the studio has come together. The fourth picture is one inside my house. My mom painted this abstract for me and I absolutely love it and again it's a perfect fit. It is soft against my light yellow walls, but adds lots of character. The painting I like to call is "Spiritual Connectivity." She added lots of things in the painting that appear hidden, crosses, and picture of herself... but, if you look closely you can see them. My house is filled with very meaningful things to me, some have been with me since college and some things have come to me from my grandparents that have been in our family for years. We are big on that kind of stuff. :)

The last picture is of course, my sweet Addie. She is enjoying her backyard very much, often coming in with muddy feet and prancing her paws all over the place. I never stop cleaning!

I hope you all are having wonderful day/week! I can't believe it is almost time for Christmas. I still need to do my Christmas shopping. Hoping to get some done today!

Lots of love to you all! 

Friday, December 14, 2012

Joy, Hope, Peace, Believe

There are so many things in life that I find myself wondering about, and today is one filled with them. As I think about the people in CT, the families, the children, the teachers and the people in the community, I can't help to think about the world as a whole. There seems to be so much tension, so much disruption in the world today and around this time of year-- a time for giving and receiving, a time for great faith, peace, love, joy, hope and believing, it's very hard to hear of something so tragic. My heart goes out to all of those in Connecticut.

Praying this afternoon for peace, serenity and healing for the families affected, and for the world. My heart is praying for all those who are hurting, who are in pain, that their hearts may be filled with light, warmth and love.

Praying for more kindness, compassion, peace and hope.

Wishing everyone a blessed weekend. Perhaps send a blessing or a prayer out into the universe for more healing, and less pain. More love and less hate. More self love and less self-loathing. More faith and less fear.

Love to you all.
image via pinterest

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Sacramento Street's Rustic Christmas from M&G


Happy Wednesday, all! I hope you guys are having a wonderful week. With Christmas wreaths up at my house and a few little decorations here and there, I am starting to feel settled into living in a new place. Which is a really, really good feeling, because as I'm starting to get a little more grounded in my home, I beginning to feel a little more grounded in every other aspect of my life as well. Finally, getting my feet on the ground. :)

This morning when I was looking through blogs, I came across this beautiful table setting on Sacramento Street. Ah, I don't know if there is anything I love more than a rustic table setting. Perhaps it's the simplicity of them... I'm not really sure. Whatever it is, I love it. Caitlin did an absolutely beautiful job. She has me sold! See some of the great items she used on Mark & Graham.

Hope you all have a lovely day!

Monday, December 10, 2012

{Happy Monday}

Happy Monday, everyone! Hoping all of you are having a great day.

It is freezing outside today, which means it's actually starting to feel like Christmas time and I am planning to kick off the week by enjoying it. I'm finally starting to feel better, after weeks of feeling somewhat off balance, off center and heavy. The heaviness for whatever reason, maybe it's been all the crying, or just simply letting go, but it feels like it is lifting off my shoulders. Which is very nice! :) I've been thinking a lot lately about giving and receiving. What I wish to give... and one thing that I've really noticed is that, we can not give unless we have been willing to receive and vice versa. I think one of the things that began to feel so heavy was the pressure of achieving, and then I realized that there is nothing to actually achieve, I'm just here to share through yoga and writing and being a friend, sister, daughter... what I have received. I used to feel really bad for ever accepting anything. Whether it be a compliment, a gift or just anything like that... it would make me uncomfortable. I didn't want to receive it. And then I read something in Yoga Journal about how it is actually an insult to others when you don't allow yourself to receive the gift that others are trying to give to you. Whether it be a smile or anything else. Kind of an interesting way to look at things, isn't it? I have never really thought about it that way before, but now it makes so much sense to me. 

Now, I think to myself that it is only in our own willingness to receive that we can really give because without receiving then we become depleted and have nothing to give. So this December, remember to allow yourself to receive. Allow yourself to soak up really wonderful things, and remember that it is in "perhaps it is in receiving that we heal others and in giving we heal ourselves." :) That quote is from Soul Soup

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Twinkle, Shine, and Open Up... your life. Because you're absolutely meant to shine. We all are. So this weekend, remember in your heart that you are a child of the universe and as Marianne Williamson said, "Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” 

I know I just shared this quote a couple of weeks ago, but I don't think I can ever be reminded enough of this very thing.

Wishing you all a great Saturday. I will be rocking my ugly Christmas sweater, that I secretly love and think is kind of cute. Shh, don't tell.

image via pinterest

Friday, December 7, 2012

Wishing you all a very wonderful weekend. Don't be afraid to enjoy yourself, who you are, where you've been and where you are going...

It has been a pretty tearful time for me as probably many of you who read this blog can tell. I feel like I am staring many of my vulnerabilities in the face and I am having to make the choice... the choice to not allow my fears to take over my dreams. And I'm having to make it over and over and over again, every day. There will always be thoughts in our heads telling us that we're not enough, that we can't, but I guarantee there is another place inside of us, that calls for something greater. A little twinge or perhaps a pull at the heart, that knows we can't allow our own limited beliefs about who we are to get the best of us. I guess one of the reasons this transition has been so hard for me, is because I've never really stood up for myself before and I've definitely never really gone for it... There is some part of me that feels safer playing small and that thinks something bad is going to happen if I allow myself to be really seen. I've had my family and many other people to lean on during this process, but the only person who can really get me though this, is myself. And it isn't about anything other than, finally telling the truth, being honest, authentic, open and for once not leaving, but instead sitting here, and being okay with not knowing. Like I've mentioned before,  I think that the universe is always giving us the chance for healing. Sometimes we don't want to go there, sometimes we're not ready, sometimes we might feel that if we really looked at it, it would be all too painful, but if we never go to it, then it's always lingering and the shadow wins because without us even knowing it, it has the control. But if we go through it, grieve it, forgive ourselves, forgive others and release it then we're not so afraid of it anymore, it loses the control. Last night I was talking to my parents and my dad, who has been in recovery over a year now, told me that I should try to give it up to my higher power. My fears... of not being loved, not being enough, failure, saying too much, not saying enough... that I need to give all of that up to God, because it's too much, it's too heavy and as I wrote about yesterday it's keeping me from seeing the magic in my own life. That's what our fears do, they turn our attention away from the magic, the blessings and the miracles and we miss the moment, the beauty of it all. Throughout this week, I've found myself teaching yoga, but at the same time, not really teaching it because I've been missing the moment. And teaching yoga is my favorite thing to do and I'm missing it because I've been so worried and focused on I don't even know what. Ridiculous! This is a work in progress, this letting go thing, the surrender, the working through it... I think it takes time especially when we have allowed some of our beliefs about who we are to control us our entire lives. But we just have to keep giving our fears up to the universe and allow God to do his work, every day. Every single day.

This post was a little bit heavier than I anticipated, but that's just what came out. I never really plan what I am going to write, kinda like how I never really plan what I'm going to teach in my classes, I just kinda let whatever comes up, come up.

But, I do want to let you all know, that we often attach labels to things... good times, bad times, hard times, fun times-- I think that all times, are necessary. :) I think that what I am going through now is a very necessary part of growth... at least that is what I tell myself! As I mentioned in an earlier post, after I went to Baron's, he kept telling us that the only way out is through, and to go to the places where we have most resistance.... well, lemme' tell ya, I'm there. I'm sitting in it, and this time I'm going to hold the pose, and breath my way through it.

Lots of love to you all! 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Quinoa Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

I love sweet potatoes. I came across this recipe the other day and wanted to share it because I'm making it tonight. It sounds so good, and easy! Click here for the recipe.

Lightening Up...

Good morning my dears. I haven't really had the chance to sit down and write you guys since the last post. I started this post yesterday, got distracted, had meetings and never really got back to the computer after that. I hope all of you are having a great week. I wanted to send many blessings to one of my best friend's who has a birthday today. I want to thank her for being such a source of support for years and years and years. I am forever grateful. 

On a different note, I've been thinking... in the midst of all of this, I've found myself trying to be the perfect yoga teacher, perfect student, perfect everything. I've been exhausting myself. And you know what? All I do is teach and write about loving all the parts of ourselves and being okay with who we are right now, but the person I often forget to give that permission to is myself. I was talking to my mom last night about just how heavy I've felt lately. Heavy heart, heavy load and I am doing this to myself.  Teaching yoga is something I love to do, but as soon as I start thinking it needs to be or look a certain way, I lose the fun. I remember when I was little, and I used to play dress up all the time, I didn't really care what the outfit looked like, I just loved putting it on. The jewels, the dresses, the purses and then I would just walk around the house in them. I remember thinking it was the best thing ever. I think sometimes it can be very easy to get wrapped up in nitty gritty. But, I also think it's very important to remember the magic. Remember the beauty and remember to have fun. 

Wishing you all a very blessed, very magical day. :)

Monday, December 3, 2012


Hi all! Long time, no talk and I apologize! Last Saturday I went to sleep thinking about Seane Corn. Do you all know who she is? My mom and I took her yoga class in Colorado at Wanderlust and it was one of the best classes we had ever taken. We both felt like in some way she was talking to us, individually, even though there were over 300 people in the room. That was awhile ago, and I had still been thinking about it and carrying it with me. Well I woke up on Sunday and googled her schedule, and I saw that she was going to be in Dallas for the week doing a training. I called Uptown Yoga, which is where it was held, asked if they had spots, and when they said they did, I threw my mom's yoga mat in the car and headed that way. I really had no idea what to expect for the week, but I can say this now, it was more incredible than anything I ever expected. From a soul to another soul, I feel like something shifted last week. Perhaps there was some last little bit of fear that I had been holding on to-- I'm not sure. But each day that went by, I began to feel like I was processing through something in that room that kept me trapped in a limited belief. I would even catch myself wanting to prove something on my mat, and then it hit me, I've spent a lot of my life asking for approval. I've mentioned in some other blog posts, that I tend to ask for permission, but now I also realize that I have had thoughts in my head, telling me that I needed to prove myself before I could do anything. Lemme' tell you, that belief has kept me hooked in; hooked in to some pain in my past. As soon as I realized this, I began grieving. Grieving for every moment that I didn't stick up for myself, or have the courage to say what I wanted, for all the moments I was too afraid... and especially for the moments that I let things go because I felt like I didn't deserve it, wasn't worthy...

So, as you can imagine. I was falling apart. Falling apart in front of Seane Corn. Seane Corn and 80 other people. I couldn't stop it. We hadn't even gotten to the "emotional day" yet. We were just focusing on alignment. One of the guys who was helping to assist came up to me in a pose, moved my ribs, opened my chest and he said, "you're resisting to this, submit to the pose." Right there I was broken open and full out started sobbing. And not little sobs. My friend Ellen was next to me and she said when the practice was finished I had snot and tissues all over my face. Lookin' good, I'm sure.

After the day was over I was in every way, exhausted. Thank goodness for some really wonderful friends to come home to who fed me and took me to get frozen yogurt. :)

Sometimes, we hold on so much in life that we don't even notice it. Sometimes, we have to allow ourselves to grieve, to let go, and cry and I mean really cry. As humans it's almost like we're programmed to think we need to earn our worth and we carry with us pain, shame and guilt that is often passed down to us through our parents and families without even knowing it and then we have experiences on top of those that we take into our systems. Our bodies are like a blue print of what we've experienced. Our traumas are held within the tension of our muscles, and it's only in releasing that tension, that we can let go, experience it, grieve it and release it.

The next day we did chakra work, which is an entirely new blog post. It was also incredible! Less crying, but man did my whole body seem to shake. The last day we dedicated our practice to prayer. This class really sealed everything in for me. I thought about all the experiences I've had- from relationships to journeys on my own. I left the class with gratitude, gratitude for every experience, because they've all taught me something crucial for my own growth. The universe is always sending us chances to heal ourselves. If we don't get it the first time, we are sent it again and the point is not to judge it, but to use it for our own wisdom. Seane kept asking us what we're going to do with our experiences. How can we use our own journey to help heal? For me, I feel like yoga has been presented for that very reason. I feel in some way, it chose me. I think a lot of people who want to teach this practice feel very much the same way. I walked out the door, got into my car and drove back to Arkansas feeling like I had left something there and gained a new perspective, one of gratitude and acceptance.

I think that's all we're really here to do after all... use our experiences for the greater good of other people. Passing on that which came as a seed...

I am forever grateful for last week. For the people I met, the advice, the kind words and most of all the loving support and space to let go!

I just wanted to share that with all of you. I hope you guys have a blessed week, and it's back to regular posts!

image via pinterest

P.S. I am forever grateful to Chrispy for giving awesome assists all week and life lessons he probably didn't realize he was giving.