Wednesday, July 20, 2011
I was browsing one of my favorite websites for design-y/kitchen-y/awesome stuff, and found this picture. I immediately saw myself doing some yoga in the early a.m. followed by coffee and a book on that comfy couch! I will have a room for that exact purpose - someday! Happy Hump Day to you all - here's to ending the week on a happy note!
Thursday, June 16, 2011
I found this recipe in Gweneth Paltrow's new cookbook My Father's Daughter. I first bought this cookbook because I have a father who is an amazing cook, and has pretty much taught me everything I know in the kitchen. Food and eating together was always a priority in our family, and there are countless memories of the five of us laughing uncontrollably around our dining room table. The title of this book struck a chord with me, so I had to have it. I've made a few things so far, and all have been delicious and really easy, too! Baking was my mother's forte and I have a passion for it, as baking = yummy, sweet treats!
This recipe is so simple - with a focus on using a few, clean & healthy ingredients. I substituted whole wheat flour for barley only because I couldn't find barley flour at my local store. Anyway - they were a cinch to make and filled the house with a comforting, sweet smell that elicited a "Mmmmm! What are you baking?" from my hubby before the front door was even closed behind him! Chopped almonds, maple syrup, and cinnamon make these cookies super hearty and completely perfect with a cup of tea. Or, if you're in a hurry (like me) on most mornings - a really good breakfast! Topped off with your favorite jam - you can't go wrong with these.
I'm not sure if I should post the actual recipe or if I'd get in trouble for that, so I'll need to gather some feedback from my amazing food-blogger friends out there. If I can, I'll post later! ;) For now, just come over to my place for some tea and they'll be there to greet you!
Thursday, June 9, 2011
Friday, April 29, 2011
** I wrote this in my journal on Wednesday, but was only able to post today. Happy Friday & Good Weekend to you!
This morning I heard birds chirpping while outside of my office. Happy, hopeful little chirps. Not a caw or a cry; no warning or protest. These were the chirps of baby birds new to the world - their slate free of history or responsiblity. They seemed to be relishing in the mere fact that they had discovered their voice. The sound made me stop. The thought of those happy birds made me smile. Yet others walked by, unaware. I was reminded that many of life's truest pleasures and most sincere lessons are so often blantantly ignored or rather drowned out by the "noise" of complicaiton. So it is with sun on my face, that I take a moment to reflect on why and how I experienced that moment with the singing chickees.
It was a moment when I was completely present in only that moment. Like a photograph, everything was frozen in that moment - the light, the sound, the smells. There were not thoughts of future or past, no worries and no thoughtless-ness. I heard the chicks. I saw the sun through the trees. I took in the scene and observed it with all of my senses. (okay, I didn't taste it... please try not to picture me licking a tree!) It was a quick moment, but as I write this now - 4 hours and 1 bad mood later - I'm re-living that moment again and again. That moment has proven itself very worthy of the time I took to recognize it. It's coming back around to snap me out of a mid-day funk!
This is yoga.
So often you'll hear a teacher of yours encouraging you to focus only on the present: where you are mentally/physically/emotionally during your practice and the thoughts that these things bring while on your mat. When you spend some time cultivating this part of your yoga practice those moments and observations will surely translate to your everyday life. The objective is to be less burdened by the things you can't possibly predict (a particular struggle for me) or by the things that have already happened and therefore cannot be changed. Instead of spending your energy spinning your wheels, you focus it on what is in front of you. What is in front of you? It could be you. It could be a loved one or co-worker needing help. It could be your child who is encouraging you to get down on the ground and play with them. The choices and observations you are able to make when you are present allow you to actually participate in the moment!
Friday, April 22, 2011
I did it though, because there was much to be done and no good enough reason to put it off. As I approached the stairs from the parking lot to the office, I began to pump myself up. Eye of the Tiger playing in my head, and plans to annihilate my to-do list - I wasn’t excited, but I was determined!
As I sat down to get comfortable, I quickly checked my personal email to make sure all was well with family and friends before I buried myself in work. Man, am I glad I did! To my complete surprise, I found an email from the Haute Apple Pie ladies informing me that I was the WINNER of their latest giveaway! I recently found their blog through a friend and it is beautifully designed, bursting with amazing recipes, DIY projects and photos, and is just really, really, enjoyable. I won The Earth Dinner giveaway sponsored by Organic Valley, the organic dairy cooperative. (Check out The Earth Dinner initiative page on facebook!) I’m looking forward to a year’s worth of free Organic Valley products, 4 Earth Dinner books, and a new re-usable shopping bag! Yay!
As it turns out, this Friday was worth waiting for! I hope you all had something worth waiting for this week!
Happy Earth Day, and Happy Weekend!!
Wednesday, April 6, 2011
What most impressed me about Lisa was her warmth from the very first moment that I entered the room. She made me feel welcomed! There were candles all around the room, music playing, and it just felt comfy. I loved that she started her classes by encouraging us to set an intention for our practice, and she reminded us of that intention throughout the class. This was so helpful for those moments when a challenging pose starts to tug at your concentrtaion, threatening to weaken your focus! At one point she said "Breathe... and remember: we're all in this together..." WOW. At that moment, I was really struggling, and it gave me this boost of energy to know that the person on the neighboring mat was willing me to continue and to support her too so we could both get to where we were trying to go. It was just what I needed.
Lisa was very encouraging to the students who were newer to yoga. She was gentle yet inspiring and very good about validating all of our efforts. Lisa also had amazing soundtracks! They really set the mood and also picked up the beat when we were heating up our bodies. I was able to sweat and be challenged, focus and breathe, relax and rejuvinate - a very well rounded class!
Sadly, Lisa's class at the studio won't be continuing. However, she's promised to let us know of new classes she'll be teaching around town. I'm really excited for a possible "Happy Hour" class on Friday evenings! I can't think of a much better way to start the weekend than an hour with Lisa and her positive vibes, her challenging classes, and her reminders of bringing our minds and bodies together, exploring the endless opportunites available to us. I give Lisa so much credit because it takes a lot to get in front of people and teach yoga! I'm so glad I roamed into Lisa's class, and I look forward to seeing her again soon!
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
On many days, we fall prey to "the grind" or "the routine". It's not necessarily negative - I mean, we have things we need to get done! Our dogs need walking, children need feeding, bathrooms need cleaning! After we finally regained control of ourselves, I said "Whew! That felt really good!" It was like I extricated every ounce of stress from my body with just a few minutes of laughing!
It's true it can be hard to force a laugh, but I'm going to feel encouraged now to focus more on life's little idiosyncrasies that can be an excuse to just laugh!