Category Archives: Move

What We’re Capable of Accomplishing

Anything that I get to cross off my bucket list is a source of pride for me; however, some mean more to me than others.

I have been working on my headstand in yoga for almost a year now. It’s one of those parts of my practice that represents my inner strength for me, and the process of finding that balance and support within myself has been a little frustrating at times. However, I spent every day this week at my new yoga studio (which you’ll hear more about in a couple of days) and found that it wasn’t necessarily a question of strength or balance, but of method… it turned out that the way I had been taught by a teacher in L.A. wasn’t the ideal path to achieving a proper supported headstand. When one of my new teachers taught me the right way to do it, I was able to accomplish it with her help on the spot.

Still, the eureka moment for me came a few days later, when I started the motions in class towards balancing on my own, rather than making it halfway, stumbling, and landing on all fours once again, I suddenly realized that, slowly and steadily, I was moving up, up, and completely straight into the headstand of my dreams. Did I stay in proper form forever? Hell no. But I have a lifetime of mastering that aspect and right now I am reveling in my personal accomplishment.

I have to admit, at first I was iffy about dedicating a post to this, but then I realized that there is no reason why I shouldn’t feel proud of myself. Yoga has become an indispensable part of my life and with each step and goal I attain I have found an even deeper connection with my body.

Finding out what we’re capable of accomplishing is one of the best challenges we can constantly maintain in our lives. In other words, in my opinion, when we can surprise ourselves with our strength, intelligence, curiosity (the list goes on and on…)that is how we can live our lives to the fullest. It’s the best possible way to be selfish! And when you’re on the road to such self-discovery, I bet you’ll find that you make the most of relationships with others and the world along the way.

So whether you’re mastering a headstand, running a marathon, writing a book, or working for that promotion, even when times are tough, just think about how good it will feel when you reach that goal!

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Filed under Live, Move, The Bucket Lists

Mantra of the Week

How’re your Mondays going so far?

Mine’s a little slow, but that’s a good thing! It’s always nice to have a day where you can just do what you want because we have some free time. We shouldn’t feel guilty for “wasting time” when we’re relaxing and passing the day by feeling happy!

My day so far:

Slept in late, and had a nice yoga session upon waking up. I’m still feeling that hike from the other day, so it was nice to stretch so much.

Then, breakfast, including this:

A Homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte!

2 heaping tbsp canned pumpkin

2 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp ground cloves

pinch of allspice

sweetener to taste

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 cup almond milk (or other milk)

coffee

Mix all the ingredients except the coffee in your coffee cup. Add the hot coffee and… Drink up!

Starbucks doesn’t hold a candle. Trust me. Plus mine doesn’t cost $4. Or 400 calories. Not even close.

Anyways, I’m off to enjoy the rest of my day… probably a little boxing to expend some energy, and I’m thinking tonight is a good night to light a fire and snuggle up with a good book. Or my Free People catalogue :)

And a decaf Pumpkin Spice.

Happy Monday!

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Filed under Eat, Live, Move

Remembering.

Where were you?

I was 9, almost 10; an excited 4th grader who was almost double digits.

I was one of the first kids pulled from school, so when I was called to the main office to go home with my mom for an “appointment” I was confused but giddy about the unexpected day off. Me and a few other neighborhood kids walked home with our parents, who told us at first that we were having a spontaneous continuation of the block party we had the previous weekend.

Skipping home, one of my neighbors ran up and told me that her dad had just told her what really happened. “A plane crashed into the World Trade Center!” Used to hearing them referred to as the Twin Towers, I had to ask what the World Trade Center was.

It’s funny how that part is so vivid, but honestly, the rest of the day was a blur as my 9 year old brain tried to comprehend the weight of the tragedy of what was unfolding. I remember the TV being on for hours. I remember my mom beginning to cry, spurring me to do the same really because I hated (as I still do) to see her upset. I think the first moment that I began to grasp the devastation was the first glimpse I caught of my father’s face when he made it home from the city late that afternoon (he still won’t talk about that day).

I owe so much to a decision that my mother made that day: to take my siblings and I on a hike that took us to the highest viewpoint of all the trails in the park near our home; a view that, on such a crystal clear day as that Tuesday, would all but guarantee a perfect Manhattan skyline, the Towers always the easiest to make out. Instead, nothing but haze and smoky plumes. Another parent might have wanted to shield their children from such a view, but my mom understood that by having us witness it, no matter how far away, with our own eyes, we would never, ever forget just how terrible that day was and what and who were lost. From that clear memory, my understanding of it has never waned. Pulling from a 9 year old’s mind, I think that’s pretty amazing. And since then, I’ve made it a tradition to make that trek every year.

Life goes on, and we have rebuilt the city and ourselves. But regardless, we can never forget. I know I will never ever let myself.

In the meantime, we can continue to make new, beautiful memories with our families and loved ones, because these memories are the ones that help us to heal, and we know now that we can’t afford to waste a second.

Cranberry White Chocolate Chip Cookies

¾ cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

¾ cup brown sugar, packed

½ cup rolled oats

2/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/8 teaspoon baking soda

½ cup butter, softened

2 tbsp soy milk

1 tsp vanilla

½ tsp almond extract

½ cup white chocolate chips

½ cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and oats in a large bowl. Add the butter, one bit at a time, and combine with a pastry cutter or by hand until fine crumbs start to combine a little.

Add the soymilk and extracts, and combine. Add the white chocolate and cranberries and combine until evenly distributed. Drop in rounded tablespoons onto parchment paper lined cookie sheet.

Bake for 7 minutes, until edges are very slightly browned. Let cool on cookie sheet before transferring to cooling racks.

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108

I spent the beautiful start to summer mostly outside running around with my crazy little monster… also known as my dog. If ever I need to expend some energy, she keeps me on my toes.

But when I was perusing my favorite blogs this morning, I read this great post from Love Veggies and Yoga. Averie is one of my favorite bloggers… the way she goes about her life is so inspirational! And she’s a yogi.

In this post, she talks about how it’s often customary in yoga to practice 108 Sun Salutations on solstices. She goes into further explanation about why 108 (which is very interesting) on the post; I highly recommend checking it out.

My first thought: how did I miss this???

As someone who is beginning to incorporate yoga into daily life, and is completely devoted to nature, this is exactly how I would love to welcome my favorite time of year.

So, a day late, I will be doing my 108 sun salutations today. I’ll let you know how it goes!

* you can learn the sequence of the sun salutation here.

I took this picture in LA last summer… palm trees aren’t exactly abundant here in NJ!

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Filed under Move