Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year-Pose of the Moment

It's New Year's Eve-2012, and I sit here in a quiet moment at my in-laws house just outside of NYC.  My little family and I have been away from home almost 2 weeks now, but it's been such fun to be able to gather both with my family and my husband's family for the holidays.  We feel so lucky that we can do that!  My sister married her love of the last 5 years 2 days before Christmas, which was a classy and fun affair down in Pennsylvania.  Plus Isak has gotten to play with his fun toddler cousins on my side of the family, and now his other cousins on his dad's side.  Nothing too stressful has evolved, but it can still be challenging to keep up with a decent yoga practice and healthy eating habits when immersed in so many other people's homes and schedules.  I think I've done a pretty darn good job considering all of those things.  It helps to bring a big bag of essential snacks, teas, tinctures, vitamins, yoga mat, and foam roller along.  Thank goodness we live close enough to family to drive so that I could do just that!  ;)
I haven't gotten in many long and full practices, but I have managed to fit in 20-40 minute ones at least every other day, plus random poses daily that have been calling my name.  One pose that has helped over these last 10 days of being away from home, is the one pictured below.  Thanks to my awesome friend, Checka, I discovered to combine Eagle Pose arms with Wide-legged standing forward fold!  Ooh, it's fantastic to de-stress all over the body.  My new favorite of the moment.  Try it today and tomorrow to freshen up your system as we cross over into a brand new year.  Maybe you'll continue it daily for weeks to come!
Tip:  If you have the time, it's nice to start out with a warm-up of sun salutations of your choice, and/or combine this pose into a sequence of lunges or warriors.

Step out into a grounded, wide-legged stance where you can press evenly through all corners of feet and keep legs active/knees slightly bent.  Set up Eagle pose arms.  

Deep breath in, then exhale to fold forward using your grounded legs.  Keep squeezing the arms or if you need to, just relax the upper body and let the tension melt away.  After at least 5 breaths, connect to your feet, then switch arm twist and try it again.  
*I'm back in Cambridge/Somerville to teach starting this coming Thursday, January 3rd to sub classes at Karma Yoga-Harvard (check my facebook for updates)...then my usual classes are back on starting Sunday morning.  Can't wait to be back and see so many of you then!
Also, remember I start Tuesday morning vinyasa classes at Bow Street Yoga on January 8th at 9:30am!
**And, I'm doing my Winter Body/Soul Recharge (Hatha Yoga) Workshop at Karma-Harvard on Saturday, January 12th from 2-4:00pm.  Check my website for description and details.

Here's to a moment of inner love and gratitude today for whatever 2012 has brought into your life, and then to more awareness, inner/outer peace, love, and strength for the new year ahead!  Many, many wishes and energy to you all.


Saturday, December 15, 2012

Winter Solstice/Yogini Playlist

1.   Nils Frahm: Snippet
2.   Olafur Arnalds: Poland
3.   Amiina: Sogg
4.   Soley: Pretty Face
5.   Bat for Lashes: Rest Your Head
6.   Nils Frahm: Keep
7.   Bat for Lashes: Lilies
8.   Soley: I'll Drown
9.   Nils Frahm: More
10.  Bat for Lashes: Oh Yeah
11.  Bjork: Thunderbolt
12.  Olafur Arnalds: Pu Ert Jordin
13.  Bat for Lashes: Winter Fields
14.  Olof Arnalds: Surrender
15.  Bat for Lashes: Deep Sea Diver
16.  Amiina: Sexfaldur
My son assisting me in upward-facing dog in Iceland

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

December Schedule/Subs Update

I'm teaching 6 more public classes this week.  The last for me in 2012!  Hope to see many of you.  Big thanks to my lovely friends stepping in over the holidays for me while I'm away.  I'll post again at the start of January, as I'll be subbing a lot post-holidays in return.

Wednesday, 12/12: My usual 6-7:15pm vinyasa, but this is a special donation class to support CARE initiative and the hard work that the KYS owners provide for animals every day.  I'm donating what I make for the night to their cause.  Plus it'll be the new moon!
(*If you can't make it to my class, the 7:30pm class directly following, taught by Larisa Forman, will be donated as well.)  Cheers to teamwork, giving back, animal causes, fun! 

Friday, 12/14:  I am subbing for Larisa 10:30am and 12:00pm at KYS.  Maybe I'll see some of my old morning friends?

Sunday, 12/16: Teaching my usual 10:15 hatha and 11:45 vinyasa at KYS.  My last 2 classes of this year!

Then I'm away and the subs are:
Wednesday, 12/19An Li Liu teaches the 6:00 vinyasa
Sunday, 12/23An Li teaches the 10:15 hatha, Mickey Barr teaches 11:45 vinyasa
Wednesday, 12/26Mickey teaches the 6:00 vinyasa
Sunday, 12/30Sarah Baumert teaches 10:15 hatha, Mickey teaches 11:45 vinyasa
Wednesday, 1/2Bethania Bacigalupe teaches 6:00 vinyasa

Bow Street Yoga-Union Sq.
Only 1 more Thursday night Beginner's Vinyasa class with me before Angela Harrity returns from maternity leave.  
12/13-- 7:30-8:45pm  -I've been loving this class, so hope to see some of you for my last one of the year.  
*** Good news is that it looks like I'll be starting up a Tuesday morning 9:30am vinyasa class at BSY as of Jan. 8, 2013!  Check the BSY website at start of new year.  :)

Finally, mark your calendar for my First Workshop in 2013:
Body/Soul Recharge for the Winter Season
Saturday, Jan. 12th from 2-4pm at KYS-Harvard
A balanced hatha yoga practice focused on restoring the immune system, with discussion 
*A few weeks into the true winter season, we will find stability with intentions on transforming ourselves to a healthier body and mindset.  Join me post-holidays to rev-up your system and get grounded in body & spirit for the new year!  We will move steady & strong from rooted feet up into our core in hopes to release any stagnant energy from our tension spots in the hips, neck, shoulders.  Plus, focus on how to breathe and move with awareness to release stress and strengthen our immunity.  
After 90 minutes of asana and relaxation, we will gather to discuss techniques to stay healthy and strong in a season where germs and flus are easily caught and passed among one another.  Discussion may touch on nutrition, herbs & teas, meditation, and the yoga practice we just completed.  

--I have some pre/post natal workshop ideas for the new year.  Plus more body/soul recharge for each season change and other women's workshops.  Let me know if there are other workshop topics or portions of the practice you'd love for me to offer, and I will do my best!  

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Fun Gift Ideas-Happy Holidays!

Hannukkah begins today and Christmas is right around the corner!  Sending everyone some cheer and here are some of my gift ideas:

-a spot on my late spring Xinalani Mexico Yoga Vacation that I'm co-leading with Checka Antifonario!
(heehee, had to throw that one in)

-private yoga session or series of sessions with me in my home studio (email me personally for rates or questions, and check my website for pics of my space) Includes a consultation of what you need from your practice, how to take it further in your life away from a class, and maybe a cup of tea.  :)

-class package or deal at a local studio (anywhere that you find comfortable or have been curious about)

-subscription to Yogaglo for at home yoga classes 24/7.  

-Flowerfolk herbal products or consultation

-beautiful and quality-made scarf, shawl, hat, or coat from my dear friends at Irish Imports in Cambridge
-while you're at it, stop by my other friend's at Abodeon

-Yoga attire or gear, of course!  My fave mats are JadeKulae, or Manduka.  You can shop local at Cambridge Naturals for mats, books, dvd's, props, etc.  
My fave clothing for women includes Kira Grace, Be Present, Lucy, or randoms from Garnet Hill or Target.  
For men, Be Present or Target usually seem like good finds.  

-Donations to the Half the Sky Movement-- I saw the documentary earlier this fall and have since donated, and am currently engrossed in the book.  I have a feeling my action in this movement is far from over!  Maybe you will feel moved by it, too...

**Wishing you a fun, cheerful, releasing, strength-building, relaxing, positive holiday!  Happy Hanukkah, Winter Solstice, Christmas, Kwanzaa, New Year, and anything else I'm forgetting!  I am constantly grateful and energized by all of your attention and support in my career and growth as a yoga teacher and person.  Cheers to us all at the end of 2012.  

lots of love,

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Post-Thanksgiving Photo Reflection, Back to teaching

We're still getting re-settled into Boston life again after a week out west in the Seattle area for Thanksgiving with my husband's family.  We all rented a house on Whidbey Island out in Puget Sound for the days surrounding the holiday and it was just exquisite to be there.  I am the lucky one who was up at 5:00 every morning with my not-yet-adjusted-to-time-change toddler, so I got to see the sunrise over the water each day.  Grateful indeed.  Living room yoga was had during the week, as well as sporadic yoga moments to stretch out.  Mostly, it's a season to remember yoga off of your mat, in your reactions and interactions.  And don't be too hard on yourself if you need a break to ward off a cold, or can only fit in a shorter practice in order to get your work done.
Last weekend we then scooted over to another island, this time our east coast home away from home, Nantucket.  My husband's parents couldn't make it out to Seattle, so we met them here for Christmas Stroll weekend.  A quick blast of holiday cheer before taking in these next 2 weeks of go-go-go leading up to Christmas.
I'm back to teaching all regularly scheduled classes for the next 2 weeks.  Will post my holiday subs soon.  xoxo
View from our rental house of the Olympic Mountains

Our pre-meal Thanksgiving table


Isak strapped to my back for a quick sunrise walk before the high tide comes in

Ooh, another one

Anyone else love the film "Practical Magic"--filmed here.  :)

My boy loves pointing out the boats!

Awesome forest hike to the beach

View on way back up

Pacific Northwest fog and trees

Grandma, David, and Isak on Nantucket walk to the pond