Food pantry drive

On Thursday evening I was part of a Huddle.

I gathered with other women at a coffee shop in Beaverton to define our next steps, and envision how to transform the energy we saw at Women’s Marches into local and national action.

Many things and ideas were discussed. It was a really beautiful and empowering experience. An amazing way to continue our work as peaceful and loving activists.

I will write more about my experience at my first Huddle meeting later on. But for now I want to talk about something that came out of our meeting.

We decided as a group something we can do easily is to help resupply the Disability, Aging and Veteran Services pantry in Washington County, Oregon.

This is the full pantry wish list: (items marked ** are especially needed)

  • **CANNED TUNA, CHICKEN OR TURKEY IN WATER**
  • **SPAM**
  • **SMALL JARS PEANUT BUTTER**
  • **SOUPS – (POP TOPS EASIER, LIKE PROGRESSO BRAND, FOR HOMELESS AND SENIORS)**
    HEALTHY COLD CEREALS
  • HOT OATMEAL PACKETS
  • SMALL BOXED RAISINS
  • GRANOLA BARS
  • CANDY BARS
  • SMALL PACKAGED NUTS
  • SMALL PACKAGED CRACKERS
  • FRUIT CUPS
  • PUDDING CUPS
  • JUICE BOXES
  • MEALS IN A CAN: CHILI, STEW, RAVIOLI
  • **MICROWAVEABLE INDIVIDUAL PORTIONS MAC AND CHEESE**
  • **LIQUID PROTEIN DRINKS LIKE BOOST OR ENSURE**
  • PASTA
  • INSTANT MASHED POTATOS (SMALL PACKETS)
  • MICROWAVABLE RICE (SMALL PACKETS)
  • PASTA SAUCE
  • SUGAR FREE FOODS FOR DIABETICS
  • PET FOOD FOR CATS AND DOGS
  • **For Homeless Hygiene Kits: bar soap/small toothpastes/toothbrushes/individual sized shampoos**

Items can be dropped off at Solace & Fine Espresso in Beaverton (4655 … Continue reading

Making my voice heard

“We work peacefully while recognizing there is no true peace without justice and equity for all.”

I along, with millions of others, around the globe marched and protested last Saturday, Jan. 21.

It felt amazing to be surrounded by love, kindness, mutual respect … to feel welcomed, loved and safe.

Marches around the globe were peaceful. Just as a peaceful protest should be.

I loved looking at all of my friends’ pictures posted on social media and pictures from around the United States and world. Check out pictures posted on the The New York Times website. It’s so powerful, beautiful and amazing. I took a few photos at the march in Portland, Ore. You can view them here.

Why did I march?

I marched because I believe our president has made clear that he doesn’t care about all Americans. He has openly lied. He has mocked, offended, said awful, terrible things about women, people of color, people with disabilities, immigrants, non-Christian religions, a Gold Star family, the media, etc. A true president represents ALL Americans.

I believe he is just in this for himself. A president works for the people. He should be serving all Americans. I don’t believe he … Continue reading

Goodbye, 2016 … Hello, 2017

Today is the last day of 2016.

I know many are saying good riddance to this year. But really, why?

There are some things that happened this year that I am not happy with. But many great things happened this year as well.

And we can’t have joy without suffering and we can’t have suffering without joy.

And I truly believe that everything we experience good and bad make us who we are today. So on Dec. 31, 2017 we will look back and see what has changed (good and bad) and how we have changed over the past year.

As we all are well aware many celebrities died this year. Their deaths stand out more because they are celebrities.

But many people lost someone this year who they really loved and cared about. Whether a parent, spouse, friend, child, grandparent, sibling, etc.

I’m not discounting your feelings toward a celebrity whose music meant something to you when you were an awkward teenager and needed someone to relate to or a fabulous actress or actor who really spoke to you or an author who got into your imagination and made the words from the pages real in your own mind/imagination or … Continue reading

Reflective/self-care sequence

reflective_self-care-sequence-2My theme over the past week was about being reflective and showing self-care.

The sequence was more about being in the pose than getting into it. Reminding ourselves of peace, love, compassion, kindness and acceptance for ourselves.

I was really excited to teach this and share it.

But then Snowpocalypse part deux happened in Portland. My classes from Wednesday evening through Saturday were canceled.

This sequence was basically my Christmas (or whatever you celebrate or don’t) gift to my students.

So many didn’t get to practice the sequence with me. Those who did seemed to enjoy it and I received some good feedback.

So, I decided to whip up (well, work diligently–I’m no artist) some stick figures of the sequence for my students and readers and friends to use and enjoy.

If you would like me to e-mail you a full-sized PDF, send me an e-mail at ann@gofitgirl.com and I will send one your way.

If you’re one of my regular Portland-area students I will have some copies of the sequence with me.

As we move through … 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

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

Each day is a gift …

FryeWe need to remember how precious each day is and live life to the fullest.

I recently lost a student in cycle class. It was traumatic and scary.

The very first cycle class I taught in the Portland-area I was a little nervous to teach as I was still new at teaching cycle, I was taking over a class where the students were used to their regular teacher (who went on maternity leave) and later I found out the group had been cycling together for years.

But he introduced himself to me and made me feel welcome.

He was a kind man and had a big heart.

His loss is a big one.

I’m so grateful I had the opportunity to know him and have him as a part of my life.

In this tragedy I have gotten to know the family of my student, I have gotten closer with many of my cycle students and staff at the gym and I am reminded about what is really important in life.

Tell those you love that you love them. Tell those that … Continue reading

Love is love

A week ago today the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) ruled on marriage equality.

The Constitution grants … (all) equal dignity in the eyes of the law. It is so ordered.

In light of the great news, my Facebook post read: Love is love. Marriage equality for all! As it should be.

Some people are against gay marriage. For reasons of religion, morals, procreation, etc.

Here’s the deal: Marriage is about two consenting adults making a commitment.

Merriam-Webster defines marriage as: a (1): the state of being united to a person of the opposite sex as husband or wife in a consensual and contractual relationship recognized by law (2): the state of being united to a person of the same sex in a relationship like that of a traditional marriage.

Marriage is a consensual and contractual relationship recognized by law, not by religion or the bible. And actually, there is nothing in there stating love.

Though I personally think love is an important factor when you get married. But it is not required to be legal.

But people get married for a variety of reasons. And their reasons are none of my business even if I disagree.

If you want to get married in a church … Continue reading

A greeting practice

On Thursday night in yoga teacher training we had two hours of anatomy and an hour of a meditation practice and learning session.

The first hour was dedicated to our teacher Ericka and her reasons for practicing meditation, which is a truly fascinating story.

At one point she asked us to get up and walk around and greet each other, without words.

I will admit I find this stuff hokey and just not my thing. But I went along with it.

I got up and greeted my first person with a smile and a nod, the next with a smile and mouthing “hi,” the next smile, nod and Namaste hands (pictured), the fourth person with a smile and a hug … a pat on the arm … another hug … more smiles … kind eyes …

I got back to my mat and I realized I was smiling from ear to ear. I really enjoyed that practice and felt the love and support of my fellow students.

It was an amazing feeling.

Ericka told us after that practice that she does with kids she works with. One time working with a group of kids they did the exercise and … Continue reading

Kid cares with (hot) chocolate

A former colleague of Curt’s has two family members battling cancer.

He also has a daughter. His daughter, who is 7, has decided to do something. She lives in New Jersey and is setting up a hot chocolate stand this Sunday to raise money for Stand Up to Cancer, which allocates 100% of the funds raised from individual donors to research.

One time one of Curt’s friend’s kid’s opened up a lemonade stand to donate toys to kids who were less fortunate than him. Curt and I drove about 40 miles to buy lemonade.

We can’t drive to New Jersey this weekend. So we bought some virtual cups of hot chocolate to support this amazing kid in her heartfelt efforts to be aware and kind and generous and giving and passionate.

If you want to support this awesome kid, you can use PayPal to paypal at thefriedmans.net, or use cash@square.com to lex at lexfriedman.com.

According to her dad, who wrote a blog post about this, she’s raised more than $600 $750 $900 $1000 $1300 $1500, and we haven’t stirred a single cup of powder yet. Thanks, Internet. Her mind is blown.

The latest update from the dad says: 24 hours later after my initial tweet, she’s sold $2,000 … Continue reading