Celebrate Being Grateful

celebrate-being-grateful-social-mediaI am teaching a special yoga class called Celebrate Being Grateful on Thanksgiving morning at Turtles Yoga & Wellness in Beaverton.

Join me from 9:30-11 a.m. for a morning of yoga with a focus on gratitude and self care.

We will practice gratitude while recognizing how blessed we are in this life.

Extend your deepest gratitude for this moment and for all of the many blessings that bring you joy in your life.

We will come together for a Hatha alignment-based practice as we move mindfully while breathing deeply.

We will explore yoga poses that aid in digestion, detoxing naturally and cleansing.

We will also open our hearts with some supportive Restorative Yoga poses to end our class.

All levels are supported and welcome.

Suggested donation of $5. If you can afford $5, you pay $5. If you can’t, you don’t, which allows yoga to be accessible to all.

Sign up ahead of time to ensure you secure a spot in this special class. You can also call: 503-574-4711. Facebook invite can be Continue reading

We can be strong and support each other

Things falling apart is a kind of testing and also a kind of healing. We think that the point is to pass the test or to overcome the problem, but the truth is that things don’t really get solved. The come together and they fall apart. They they come together again and fall apart again. It’s just like that. The healing comes from letting there be room for all of this to happen: room for grief, for relief, for misery, for joy.

~Excerpt from Pema Chödrön’s “When Things Fall Apart”

 

We are stronger together. I truly believe that.

I have been taking the past few days to reflect and think about the election, the results and what it all means and how I feel about it. I’ve been collecting and gathering my thoughts and feelings.

I cried a lot on Wednesday. I am still so very sad, heartbroken, in shock and disbelief, angry …

As a woman I feel as I do; as a Mexican American I feel as I do; as a feminist I feel as I do; as a human being I feel as I do; as someone who was raised to love everyone I feel as I … Continue reading

Preparing for Fall Back 2016

Twice a year I write about time change. And we are upon that time once again.

For most of us in the U.S. we will Fall Back on Sunday at 2 a.m.

Many of my readers are from Arizona, so this post doesn’t apply to you as much. (And note to my family, starting Sunday I will be an hour behind for about four months.) But I think the suggestions I am going to make are great whenever you cross time zones or as we move into the cooler and darker (and in Oregon, wetter) season.

I am not a great sleeper. And time change for me is pretty difficult.

When you Spring Forward, you lose an hour. The light is different. It is more difficult to get to bed on time for your workweek.

When you Fall Back, you “gain” an hour. But that gain can still really mess you up.  If you normally get up at 5 a.m. then you are likely gonna start rousing at 4 a.m. Ugh! And the evenings get darker earlier, which has already been happening lately.

That “gained” hour can throw your day (or even the following week) off.

There are ways to help your … Continue reading

Bittersweet

ombase-class-coming-soonToday was my last Thursday teaching two classes. Two super fun classes. Two classes with amazing students.

About a month or so ago I gave notice for my Sunday classes. I realized I needed another day off. One day off a week (where I was still quite busy and sometimes subbing) was just not enough.

My students were so understanding and supportive. I wrote about it in a post.

And again, I feel (and know) that I have the best students in the world.

Today was bittersweet as I bid farewell to two of my classes. One a morning cycle class and a noon yoga class.

Starting next Thursday, Nov. 3, I will be teaching Thursdays at OmBase in Hillsdale. I feel so lucky to have found this space owned by two amazing people.

At the end of August I started subbing at OmBase. After just my second class the owners got some great feedback on me, my class and teaching. So much so that they offered me a class.

This is a … Continue reading

Sundays off

Today was my last day regularly teaching on Sundays.

I made a decision for me. I needed another day off. I needed to be able to spend more time with The Husband. I needed to be able to sleep in on Sundays. I needed to be able to make a brunch on Sundays with out-of-town friends.

I am exhausted and tired and can’t be the best teacher I can teaching so much and not having more time off for me.

When I told my students I was giving up my classes it was so hard to do. I got teary. But I told them this is not about them, it’s about me.

It has to be about me.

I am considered a full-time teacher with five weekly cycle classes and 10 (some private) weekly yoga classes. (Even with the adjustment in my schedule I am considered full time.)

I only had Tuesdays off. And even though I don’t normally teach Tuesdays (I try to reserve that date for me) I still have a lot to do in order to teach: writing up/finalizing and practicing a yoga sequence for the coming week (after likely doing hours of research/reading/planning over the weekend); … Continue reading

Before … after … and now

For about the past year to year and a half I have been the healthiest I have ever been. Not the smallest or thinnest, but the healthiest.

I turn 42 in one month and I feel amazing. And I think I look pretty good, too. I know that’s not what it is all about. It’s about being and feeling healthy. But I’ll be honest, it feels good to look good.

I work hard at being healthy. At times it is easy. And other times it’s so so difficult.

But I haven’t always looked the way I look now.

When I was younger I was considered skinny. (I seriously hate that word and all that it implies.)

I could basically eat and drink anything I wanted and not gain weight.

Then I turned 25. I had a sedentary job. I worked second shift and ate a lot of my meals at my desk, which weren’t actually healthy and usually came in some sort of wrapper (as in fast food).

Over a seven year period I gained 30 pounds.

I hated shopping for clothes. I lacked confidence. It was difficult to go on hikes with friends.

One day a friend and co-worker asked me … Continue reading

Yoga, a park and cats

I taught two yoga classes in the park this month.

Practicing yoga under the sky with the cool grass below our feet and a view of trees and children playing was a great and fun experience.

I had students from my various public yoga classes join me for both Yoga in the Park with Ann classes.

Connecting with the earth, the ground, nature, each other under a blue or gray sky (one day was a little cloudy) with a green cool floor and green walls with the sounds of the outside world coming into our yoga class must be done one more time before the skies become gray and cold and wet in Portland.

Which means I’m going to teach one more Yoga in the Park with Ann next month.

The details are below:

THE WHAT: Yoga in the Park with Ann
THE WHERE: Evelyn M. Schiffler Memorial Park, SW Erickson Ave., Beaverton, Ore.
THE TIME: 6-7 p.m.
THE DAY: Tuesday, Sept. 20
THE PRICE: Suggested donation of $5 (but no one will be turned away)
THE WHAT ELSE: Bring your yoga mat. Be dressed for a yoga class. Clothing should be comfortable.

Bring friends, kids, neighbors. Children are welcome as long … Continue reading

My Triangle continues to transform

Over the past three years I have been observing Utthita Trikonasana (Extended Triangle Pose) in my body.

To the left you can see the variations and changes over the past three years.

When I applied for Piedmont’s Yoga Teacher Training in May/June 2013 an optional part of the application was to include a picture of myself in Triangle Pose.

Once in the teacher training our long-term anatomy project was to pick three yoga

poses that we were able to do but found challenging.

My three poses were Utthita Trikonasa (pictured); Dolphin; and Ananda Balasana (Happy Baby).

The top middle photo is the first photo I submitted for my long-term anatomy project.

We took the first set of photos of our three poses and did a write-up on the poses.

Over several months we explored our three poses and learned about our bodies in the poses in terms of alignment and feeling, whether emotional and/or physical.

There is a vast improvement between the first and second pose. I learned to eliminate hyperextension in the front leg without losing strength in the pose. I found a better spot for my head and neck. And I found more extension in my side body.

(If you want to … Continue reading

I’m a yoga teacher, not a doctor

In my teacher training, we were reminded that students would ask us all kinds of questions, including us being asked to diagnose something in a student’s body.

I love talking with my students before, during and after class.

Most classes I teach a student tells me it was exactly what they needed. Usually someone tells me they feel so much better after class.

Since I go with themes someone will tell me they are in the service industry and the feet sequence was helpful or they hurt their back earlier in the week and the low back practice made them feel better or the neck sequence felt so good for their strained neck.

Sometimes I have people telling me about an issue in their body that may or may not have anything to do with the sequence I just taught and they want advice.

I can give them advice on poses they can try to help with the issue(s) in the body or poses they might want to avoid. But that’s all I can do. I am a yoga teacher, not a doctor.

But if I don’t know I am honest about that. If it’s something I think I can do … Continue reading

Starting the conversation …

I’ve been struggling to get my thoughts together. And make sense of my words. I feel hopeless, sad, angry, my heart hurts …

Last week I was in my regular Wednesday morning yoga class where I get to be a student.

As class started my teacher mentioned the recent ugly, violent events taking place in our world. She talked about how many of us feel at a loss of what we can do.

It was the first time I had cried over the the night club shootings at an Orlando night club, two black men who were shot by police, one in Minnesota and the other in Louisiana, and the sniper Dallas police shootings. (It’s scary how many more ugly, violent things have happened since last Wednesday.)

Class was physically challenging. But in the challenging poses we were encouraged to look and find comfort. The practice was not about getting into the pose but about being in the pose.

With all the ugliness lately, which includes hate speech, I feel like I am losing hope.

THE CONVERSATION

But like my readers, who are also likely wondering, as a good, kind, open-minded, loving, caring person I want to know, what can I … Continue reading