What a weekend!

Rolf Gates, me and Kathryn Budig

Rolf Gates, me and Kathryn Budig

 

Guys I am feeling so good tonight. I’m fresh off of yoga weekend workshop with Rolf Gates. The workshop was held at my local studio Guruv Yoga and so it was nice to share this experience with many folks who I see regularly. I had the opportunity to practice with Rolf three times this weekend and today, for the last session, Kathryn Budig joined the workshop as well. Although Kathryn is new (and wonderful) to me – I have been a long time fan of Rolf’s. Actually, when I first started my yoga journey back in 2008 (?) he was the first “master teacher” I saw outside of my regular, local yoga circle. Since then, I have seen him at least 3 times and I think it might even be 4. As you can see from the above photo he is a big guy! Not at all what I envisioned a male yoga teacher to look like back when I was new and full of preconceived notions about EVERYTHING! Rolf immediately had my heart with his profound story, his sense of humor and his expertly sequenced and challenging asana practice. Rolf is also well known for his widely popular book – Mediations from the Mat. Its practically a staple reference guide in every studio and yogi’s bedside table that I have ever been to or seen. Please take a moment to check him out if he is new to you.  His website is: http://www.rolfgates.com/pages/home.html

This weekends schedule is below:
Friday, 6-9pm: Vinyasa Session: Right Effort
Saturday 2-5pm: Vinyasa Session: Concentration + Mindfulness
Sunday 9-12: The Chakras in Action Teacher’s Workshop
Sunday 2-5pm:Vinyasa Session: Understanding + Aspiration
(Special Guest Kathryn Budig)
And a foreword from Rolf:
“We are on a journey to become who we already are.” -Rolf Gates
We will come together this weekend to explore Yoga + The Eight-Fold Way. These teachings offer us a way to explore our relationship to our practice and give us the means for creating a life that works. These sessions will be a synergy of the dynamic freedom of a powerful vinyasa class and the structural integrity of yoga’s therapeutic alignment principles. They are intentionally challenging but open to all levels. The only requirement is that you show up…do your best and let your best be good enough.

 

Just one of the many concepts that hit-home with me this weekend was this – Rolf described that many of us live these days with an underlying sense of hurry and control all the time. 24/7 no matter what is going on in our lives (good, bad,happy, sad) we are not only rushing though it in anticipation of the next thing we are also trying to control the events and circumstances as they unfold. Whoa did that strike a chord. When I reflect on this idea it seems to me that even when I am successful at “living in the moment” I still try to hurry/control it. Who knows why? But a light bulb went off and now I can recognize that tendency and try to be more accepting of the present moment and strive to sit back and let life unfold at its own pace.

 

And Kathryn Budig was know only to me from her beautiful and insanely popular (and controversial?) ad campaign for Toesox. So, it was a real treat and “icing on the cake” to get to hear part of her “Aim True” speech today. She told a great story about jumping out of an airplane that had my heart pounding as she relayed her own fear and excitement. Afterwards she and Rolf team taught a wonderful and juicy flow that left everyone in the room feeling blissful and centered (albeit very sweaty).

http://kathrynbudig.com

KB toe sox

 

And lastly – the workshop weekend was extra special because my teacher – Mary Kay Berg was there in attendance as well and I got to see her beautiful face and practice next to her bright spirit. Truly – when my mat is next to hers I feel so comforted. Its weird but I guess thats how we feel about those who have taught us so much!

http://www.mkyogini.com

May Kay Berg - teacher, author, dog-lover, friend!

May Kay Berg – teacher, author, dog-lover, friend!

 

On a separate note – we were out of town all last week for the Thanksgiving Holiday. We had a great trip to North Carolina. I’ll share some details about that next time!

Hope you all have a fabulous start to your week!

Peace, Love and Happiness – Jessica

 

No tricks here… Halloween treats galore!

Well, I’ve got quite a few treats for you this Halloween Week. No tricks here! Its hard to believe how BIG Halloween has gotten in recent years. In our community and school the celebrations seems to get bigger and longer every year. I read recently in Better Homes and Gardens (no judgement please!) that Americans now spend in excess of 8 BILLION dollars a year on Halloween decorations, costumes and candy. Christmas is the only other holiday that tops Halloween in monies spent. Wow!

* Speaking of the frightful night – Hungry Girl shares a nice pdf of Halloween Candy options and how “scary” they might be for your healthy eating plan. This might be good to take a look at before Halloween – just so you know what your getting in to!

http://www.hungry-girl.comHGHALLOWEENCANDYGUIDE2013

* This is a link to a neat new app. Its called GPS for the soul and there is a review here from The Huffington Post. These meditation/relaxation apps are becoming more and more robust and sophisticated which is pretty neat. This one even takes a blood pressure reading and uses that to gauge your level of stress. Based on that level recommendations are made for things you can do quickly and immediately to calm down and center. If you don’t like the recommendations made by the app you can customize your own based on the things that soothe you best. Pretty cool!

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/25/arianna-huffington-gps-for-the-soul-how-to-use_n_2624774.html?utm_hp_ref=gps-for-the-soul

* Spark People is always a great resource and this week they have provided a nice list of quick and healthy snacks.

http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=1938

* Funny Cartoon I had to share!

So true...

So true…

* Lastly – this is a helpful printable from a fairly new to me blog. Its called “Life in Yellow” and Cassie has made some really festive and useful printables you can download for free. I always keep a list of Holiday Gifts. It really helps me keep a budget and not forget anyone or anything important as I prepare for Christmas. I love hers and have already started my shopping!

http://www.lifeinyellow.com/2012/07/gift-planner-worksheet-free-download/

http://www.lifeinyellow.com

Handy Way to start shopping/tracking and budgeting your purchases

Hope everyone has a fun and safe Halloween. After that – we are headed towards Thanksgiving. The season is ON!

Until next time… health, happiness love and light to you all!

Jessica

 

I’m back from vacay ya’ll!

IMG_2134

Love that little girl (not actually so little anymore)

Hello All! I’m finally back from a WONDERFUL vacation to California. We had a lovely 2 weeks traveling from San Francisco down to LA. A great time was had by all but it sure is nice to settle in back home. As much as I love to get away it does make you appreciate all that you have at home. The daily routine is funny that way – you cant wait to leave it but then you yearn for it after you are gone for a while. We took lots of great pictures. Here are just a few to share….

WHo doesn't love a good Duck Boat Tour? Quack Quack!

Who doesn’t love a good Duck Boat Tour? Quack Quack!

HOLLYWOOD

HOLLYWOOD – the sign is way back there in the distance!

View from Half Moon Bay Hotel - pretty awesome right?

View from Half Moon Bay Hotel – pretty awesome right?

Since I’m just getting back into the swing of things I will make this post short and sweet but I did want to mention a couple of quick things that caught my eye.

I recently read an article in Experience Life Magazine that highlighted what many of us already know. The article states that as little as 10 minutes of exercise can improve your mood as well as your energy. To keep the good vibes going the AASP (Association for Applied Sport Psychology ) recommends 30 minutes at least 3 days per week. What was interesting about this research was that not only did cardio based workouts lift mood – more aggressive type of movements were also shown to help with depression and anger. This makes me think of kickboxing/kenpo/and even cross fit. I think we all have had that experience of being angry at someone or something at work  - and then after a good, sweaty workout you can hardly recall what you were so worked up about?  Just more evidence that moving our bodies regularly is the key to overall health and wellness.

And on a sweet note – have you ever tried chocolate from Wei of Chocolate? www.weiofchocolate.com. This organic, fair trade, vegan chocolate is created using a variety of herbs, spices and flower essences.  They are designed to be savored slowly during a two minute meditation. (Its a challenge just to savor the chocolate for the whole 2 minutes in your mouth – trust me!). You can mediate on gratitude, relaxation, love, or whatever else you desire for the 2 minutes it takes for the individual piece to melt on your tongue. The chocolates come in a wide variety of unique flavors – citrus, chai, chili, sea salt (my favorite) and can be purchased in sampler packs which is how I first bought them. If you are looking to splurge a bit on yourself or someone you love I highly recommend these!

Wei of Chocolate

Wei of Chocolate

 

Sky Spa

My daughter and I have the most interesting chats before bed – many of you moms may already know that this “sleepy” time right before they doze off is often when you will get to hear whats really on their minds and in their hearts. Its a great time to connect and have a few meaningful moments at the end of the day. This is when my Hannah and I verbalize our gratefuls each night. And sometimes we talk about silly things too – like the other night. Somehow we determined that airlines should figure out a way to offer manicures and pedicures while you are flying. They could take out maybe just 2 seats in the back of the plane and offer these services on a pre-paid sign up basis. I mean – if the flight is a couple of hours you certainly have the time to get it done. And since you cant really do much else – its a great time to pamper yourself and let those nails dry! Sure they would give up the revenue of those seats but at least a portion of that lost income would be recouped by charging for the services. I bet you could get $25.00 for a manicure and $40.00 for a pedicure if you marketed it right! If only I owned a commercial airline ladies – we could Spa in the Sky!

On another note – is anyone very familiar with Tapping? Tapping is also known as EFT or Emotional Freedom Technique. I first heard about it through Marie Forleo who I have mentioned on the blog before. As I have said previously, I really love her and if she mentions something she advocates – I listen. She interviewed Nick Ortner about Tapping on one of her Weekly Q and A Tuesday videos. You can check that out here. http://www.marieforleo.com/2013/04/tapping-eft/ Nick has a book out called The Tapping Solution – A Revolutionary System for Stress Free Living (available on Amazon of course).

According to Wikipedia – here is what Tapping is:

Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) is a form of counseling intervention that draws on various theories of alternative medicine including acupunctureneuro-linguistic programmingenergy medicine, andThought Field Therapy. It is best known through Gary Craig’s EFT Handbook, published in the late 1990s, and related books and workshops by a variety of teachers. During a typical EFT session, the person will focus on a specific issue while tapping on “end points of the body’s energy meridians“. This is thought by practitioners to treat a wide variety of physical and psychological disorders, and has the advantage of being a simple, self-administered form of therapy.[1]

Other than what I have researched on the internet I don’t have any real experience with Tapping. But, from my yoga training and background I do believe that the energy meridians in the body can be very powerful and if you can access those via acupuncture, yoga postures, Reiki, tapping or any other method you can affect major change in the energetic as well as physical body. I’m curious to try Tapping to relieve anxiety. There are lots of YouTube videos out there if you want to take a quick lesson with me.

Lastly – check out this guy. On the way home from the kennel last weekend. So happy to be headed home with the fresh breeze in his face. Our little “Gizmo” makes us smile!

I'm free!

I’m free!

 

Question – Have any of your ever tried Tapping? If so – I’d love to hear your thoughts! I think it takes a pretty open mind to explore some of these concepts but it never hurts to try new things, right?