Who am I?

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Jefferson, Georgia, United States
Hello everybody, I am Heather. I love yoga, food and loud rock shows. I am here to lead you on a lifestyle that will have your soul shining! P.S. Cancer Sucks!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

When you miss somebody

You miss all of them. When you miss somebody you don't just miss them as they were a few months or years ago, you miss them running around in diapers with curls bouncing and baby teeth grinning. When you miss somebody, you miss their moods - good bad and ugly. When you miss somebody you miss their laugh, their cry and the occasional laughing snort. I miss her plumber's crack (plumber's daughter and all) her tiny teeth, the freckle in her eye and her fire. I miss our childhood, running around on 5 acres in our birthday suits playing in the hose. I miss the way she would fill in my memories, I don't know if I will ever remember anything correctly now. I miss her perfectly round nostrils, but I have a living breathing pair of those in my house now. I tuck her in every night and look at those circular nostrils and think - she is not dead. She is here. And then my tears betray me and I realize that Hailey is gone, but I have the best gift she could have given anybody.


video

I don't know if this video really "goes" with the blog... but it's one of the best videos I have of us. 

Friday, November 25, 2011

Cheesy Apples Recipe

2 cans of Comstock Apples, not pie filling (if you can not find these, get a bag of apples - peel, core & slice - simmer in a pan with a little water for about 15 minutes just so they get soft)
1 lb of Velveta Cheese, cut into small cubes
2 sticks of softened butter
1 1/2 cups of self rising flour
2 cups of sugar

Beat together softened butter, flour, sugar and velveta (use a hand mixer) mix until all ingredients are incorporated and mixture is creamy

butter a 13 x 9 pyrex dish

put apples in the dish and then top with the cheese mixture, spread the cheese mixture with the back of a spoon

Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 20 minutes, uncover and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Serve warm as a side dish or as a desert.

We always eat this on Thanksgiving as a side dish.

Everybody always says "ewww, cheesy apples, that sounds gross but I'll take a bite" 2 seconds later with a full mouth "More, give me more! That is so good!"

I have had a hard time finding canned apples for the past few years, so I just get a bag of apples, peel, core and slice the apples into wedges. If you have one of those handy apple slicers, this is an easy job. Put the apples in a pan and add a little water, cover and let them steam for about 10 - 15 minutes, just until they are softened. And trust me, peel the apples - any sort of nutrition in this dish is strictly prohibited.


Monday, November 21, 2011

Transitions



A time has come in my life that I need to make a transition. Transitions are often scary, exciting and calming all at the same time. The time has come for me to take a step back from owning a yoga studio and focus on family. For the past three years, I have enjoyed teaching, fallen in love with you (my students) and with yoga more than I could ever imagine, and I thank you for that. Soul Shine has been my source of peace, a refuge during the stormiest times and an injection of strength when I did not think I could take another step. The beautiful space is just the icing on the cake of the love, support and laughter I have received from the amazing souls that have come through the door. Thanks to you, I have not lost hope. I have seen more compassion and love poured out in the past three years than I ever thought possible. Kindness from nurses during the hundreds of  hospital visits, the focus and strength of hospice staff, hugs from random strangers and of course, you.  You have given me more than I could ever teach you in a yoga class. I am forever grateful.
This being said, Soul Shine Yoga and Wellness in Hoschton will have to close for now. I want to be the best mom, wife and me I can be. In order for me to be the best person I can be, it means I have to let go of something I love dearly. Yoga teaches us non-attachment. I have unattached myself from furniture, clothes, houses and really cute shoes, but this is my first real test voluntarily letting go of something I truly love for my own good. Letting go of the space in Hoschton is also for your good. I can not be the best teacher I can be if I am stressed and burning the candle at both ends.
During this transition, I am looking into alternative ways I can teach yoga. I am considering teaching private and semi-private lessons at your location next year.  Online classes and meditations are a 99% probability. Also, I am seriously considering converting my garage into a fabulous yoga and art studio, so I will be able to teach semi-private lessons with all the comforts of home. This will open us up to have a deeper experience with yoga, food, art and spirit because teaching at home will allow me to have laser sharp focus on what is really important. I will finally be able to let go of the administrative side of the business that drains me, plus will also have the availability of a kitchen for cooking classes, a big back yard for a community garden and possibly a babysitter. 

YOU are Soul Shine. The online community and at home community will continue to grow and spread like light though a cloud. 

Subscribe to the blog to stay in touch and to keep up with my next transition. 

Namaste my friends

Heather 

Friday, October 21, 2011

A better teacher

You learn more from other's examples than by their words. When you watch another's actions that has much greater impact than the words that come out of their mouth. I want you to be happy, healthy, and whole. For is to have super shiny souls we need rest.
The last year of my life has left me dried up, tired, and messy. Like my mom explained to me yesterday "this is like sucking syrup through a straw." A long, arduous process. So, for my own clarity and sanity I am taking a one week sabbatical. I do not know where I am going, I just know I need to go and rest.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Fluffy

Recently I got a lot of pictures from my mom. Most of them were older, when Hailey and I were kids. Looking through these pics, I found one and I said - out loud, mind you - "hey, in this one I don't look like a fat girl" I am 8 years old in the picture. I have always told myself, and others, that I have always struggled with my weight. Looking at these pictures of me as a kid, I came to the profound realization that I have not always struggled with my weight, I have always struggled with my body image. I have also struggled to have a healthy relationship with food.
Comfort.
Food.
If you go to the doctor, you get a milkshake.
If you did not do well in a pageant, eat salad.
I was called "fluffy" by a dance teacher around 9 years old.
I can blame my parents, dance teachers, the media, blah blah blah... for the size of my butt, but I am now 36 years old and I need to take a realistic, healthy look in the mirror - and not just at my "thunder thighs."
My weight since I have been an adult has fluctuated over 60 pounds, up and down, up and down. At my most emotionally uncontrollable, I was either at my lowest weight or my highest.
I have realized that my weight, a number on a scale, has more to do with my mindset than a diet.
I am at a higher number on the scale now and it is driving me nuts, but, am I at an insane juncture in my life? Yup. Am I eating healthy food? Yup. More green smoothies than french fries? Yup.
So, what's a girl to do? Lie around all day eating berries, drinking water and foregoing stress for an opulent life... c'est la vie?
Hardly! I don't think that is in the cards. I don't want that to be in the cards. I have shit to do! Places to go, people to see and a family to tend to.
So - the balance between your emotional state and food???....???...
Is this just the way life is? Sad = too fat or too skinny, happy = healthy weight or happy and fat??? I will let you know how it goes.
Love, honesty and eat a friggin' cookie if you want to,
Heather

Friday, August 26, 2011

Longing

I really, really miss my sister
I knew I would miss her...and I would get to see her through her daughter - which is a gift that I will never be able to comprehend - but oh God, I miss her so much that my body aches, my mind races and my nose runs.
I am not sure where her wedding rings are. During the craziness of planning for her final rest, I don't know what we decided to to with her rings. I looked in her dresser and I did not find the rings, but I did find other things in every drawer that bonded us together more. In the top drawer were her pajama pants, each pair brought up fresh memories of her lounging around the house. The Valentine's Day PJ pants that we bought at Target the last time she had a major scare were hard, but worse were the cute white ones with pink stars...I don't know why, but she did wear them a lot. The next drawer down held something special for me. The CDs from the Tibetan Freedom Concerts. Um...ouch. This is a searing pain from my gut to my throat, numbing my fingers and my toes. She saved these in a special place because that trip was special. We got to go to DC together for the first Tibetan Freedom Fest shows. We stayed in a hotel room and partied together, just the two of us... it was such a great time. I drove down the wrong way down a one way street and we survived! We took her Jeep... that is a great memory and she kept it in the bottom of her t-shirt drawer. Next I arrived at a t-shirt that took me by surprise because I have never seen it before, it was a Thundercats Tee! She LOVED the Thundercats! Thundercats HOOOOO! She would yell and run around the house with an imaginary sword. All those curls bouncing around and all that Hailey energy bounding through the house would shut everything else down. We loved watching the Thundercats with her because she loved it so much, she got so fired up that she got the whole house fired up... that is Hailey. Ha.
IS IS IS
I have a hard time with WAS... that WAS Hailey... she still IS to me
IS IS IS
she still IS somewhere... I just cant see it or hear it - I really wish I could, but I am not a part of that party.
There were more shirts... GA tees, Phish tees, Panic tees... she has more tees than me! dang! All of them are soft like she was. Her skin was so soft. When she left her body, her skin did not feel the same, I knew that she was not there... SHE made her outer shell soft, even when she was so rough - she was truly soft. I hope everyone can hear that, feel that, see that - she may have been crazy, rough and loud - but what she really wanted to show was that she was soft
That's her true self, sweet and soft.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Doshas and Chakras

Tonight's yoga class lead to some interesting discussions about Doshas and Chakras. One of our regular students went on an amazing trip to a spa/yoga resort and had Ayurveda treatments plus tons of Yoga. Ayurveda is the sister science of Yoga.  Ayurveda is a form of alternative medicine that puts your body, mind and spirit into a category called a Dosha. Ayurveda is an old (very old! 5000 years or so) system of natural healing that has its roots in the Vedic culture of IndiaMost of us are dominate in one dosha, but we have elements of all three. Deepak Chopra has a great selection of products and tons of info on Ayurveda and your dosha.

Click here for a quiz to find out what your prominant dosha is and you can find some products to help balance your doshas. 

Then we talked about chakras. Another regular student has started to meditate and keeps seeing colors, and felt a covering or protection over her head while meditating and thought that this may be a little, um, off. When you live for 30 years and never experienced a feeling like this, it can freak you out. However, getting in touch with our energetic body is totally natural and better than OK, its amazing!  Our chakras are energy centers in our bodies that correlate to major organs and our nervous system. Our fabulous ancestors pretty much figured out our nervous system before modern science, x-rays, or MRI machines. Chakras are easy to feel, you know the feeling of being "all choked up" having "butterflies in your stomach" or having "brain fog" - these all relate back to our chakras, or energy centers. In my research tonight I found a neato torpedo web site that has a chakra quiz and tips on how to balance the chakras using mudras and mantras.
Click here for a great chakra quiz - see where you are in balance and where you are out of whack.

Till next time...
Love, Light and Mantras

Monday, August 8, 2011

Donna...the Transformational Life Coach - and what the heck is reunion energy healing anyway?

Hola!
Here I go again, pouring my heart out on the computer screen.

I have had 3 energy healing sessions with Donna and its always amazing, right on the money and very peaceful. If you are wondering what this is all about here is a summary of my last session with Donna using reunion energy healing.

My issue: a permanent lump in my throat, it has been there for years and it drives me nuts, its stuck qi (or energy) and I want it OUT

Here is what Donna discovered through the healing... the stuff in italics is my 2 cents. 

  • Dimension: where my issue is located is in my 3rd Chakra, the throat and that "Love as a presence, your trust in the Divine is a supporting radiance in every situation" - basically I am not trusting God to get me through all of this crap I am going through.
  • This is "affecting my Charisma as an unwitting loss of gratitude and joy, this loss of joy has been graying your charismatic presence in the world." - Ugh...grey charisma, that is not pretty, loss of joy and gratitude...sounds about right even though I am fighting to hang on to the light.
  • Kundalini: (interesting that my healing went to a yogic term...the universe knows my language) I am in a boxed in place that has confused my ability to nourish, fulfill and feed myself. TRUE DAT! At this point in the healing Donna started to feel a boxed in feeling in her throat, which is exactly what I feel all the time. This may sound woo woo crazy, but the way I look at it is energy is energy, it can not be destroyed so as I am trying to get rid of it I transfered some of it to her. Another way of looking at it is "releasing the flies" as my massage therapist friend calls it, just like in The Green Mile when John Coffey heals somebody then coughs up flies. 
  • Nourishment: I need to be supported by my inner resource (aka GOD)
  • Resource: my inner strength and the urge for a grander and more potent life has been leaking away :( 
  • Territory: losing faith, losing instinctive understanding...yes, that too as much as I hate to admit it, but the darkness I am in is blinding
  • Implant: on my tongue (makes sense since this is manifesting in my throat), this denies me the heart energies that enable me to manifest in the material world. At this point we do some visualization exercises that help me release some of the pressure in my throat
  • Reunion: A failure of heart and profound sense of struggle is trying to resolve, but its being jammed in some way.
  • Complete resolution requires the courage to awaken from this implanted trance that hoods my existence. (hoods is a nice way to put it, some days I feel trapped under a house a la Wizard of Oz)
  • Trance: feeling wrong, limited, sad, condemned, manipulated or distracted by others - shielded from the WONDER of LIFES INFINITE POSSIBILITIES - I can not tell you how true this is in my life. I KNOW there is more, but I feel stuck. So how the heck to I get out of this "trance" ???
  • Now for the good part... Abilities & Blessing: Being in the flow, restating your true purpose and happily gliding toward their accomplishments. As your higher self, be aware that you are opening your heart to your loving and courageous artistry. So the way I get out of this trance of grey, trapped, boxed in limited thinking and doing is to rest in the Divine flow of the Universe and opening my heart to the possibilities of an amazing life.

So, is the lump in my throat gone? No. It was for about a day and then it came back. The work is up to me. I need to trust that God will get me through all of this, open my heart and get in the flow. Its time for me to get off the bank of the river of life and jump in. I am aware this is going to take time. Three years of fear, sadness and helplessness has beaten me up. Now my sister is gone and it sucks. I don't have to worry about her dying anymore, that part is over. I miss her and I just want her back. I need to have the courage to jump in the flow of life without her.  I don't want to. So this work is up to me and God will be my guide... listening to my heart and having the courage to follow it.


Friday, July 15, 2011

Yoga Music

Some teachers do not use music at all in their classes. It can be distracting especially if the music has words. I do use music, some days I do use familiar songs that have words like some Bob Marley, The Beatles and U2. Those are normally fun classes, a little looser and chill. In most of my yoga classes I use music that is soothing and instrumental - or with Sanskrit chanting. My favorite is Deva Premal. Her voice is so soothing and you know she truly has a big, loving heart that is expressed in the gift of voice.  This song Om Namo Bhagatave is one of my personal favorites. The meaning of these words according to her website is...


Om is the name of that inside me,  
which is aware of the unity of  
all things



Enjoy:

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Soul Food

It has almost been one full month since my sister's cross over and I am feeling drained. There have been many changes in the last few months of my life and lots more in the last few weeks. I know I need more energy and I want my zip back. I know that depression, tears and bad days are normal and I welcome all of them. I want to move through this with dignity, strength and clarity.  Clarity of the mind, body and spirit. A clear head can not come with spirits, dairy, fat and sugar clogging my veins. I have enjoyed comfort food of mac and cheese, pasta and fried everything for long enough and I feel the need to gain clarity (not to mention energy).  My brain fog is thick and my sleep is sketchy at best. I do not want to continue like this.

Almost every morning I wake up and one of my first thoughts is "The Daniel Fast." I ignored it, and I don't know why the thought is there. I have only heard of this fast in passing and have never fasted before in my life. The closest I have come to fasting for spiritual reasons is giving up brownies for lent. Last week I brought up the Daniel fast on facebook and in yoga class. It just so happens, that most of my students have fasted for spiritual and mental clarity. Another happy "coincidence" was that one of my newest students had a book on the Daniel fast in her car.
OK God, I hear you. I submit.
Tomorrow, I am starting a modified version of The Daniel Fast which is based on the Biblical scripture Daniel 10:2-3: "In those days I, Daniel, was mourning three full weeks. I ate no pleasant food, no meat or wine came into my mouth, nor did I anoint myself at all, till three while weeks were fulfilled."

I have not completely heard from God the exact details of my fast. I will spend time in prayer and meditation tonight and see if I can gain more clarity on this. This meditation will be post yoga and pre -sleep.

This much I know:
Vegan - no meat, no dairy, no animals
No alcohol
No sweets
No pre-packaged food

God has the vision for my life, I need to plug in and connect. This may mean that I unplug my toys too - TV, computer and iPhone for specific periods of time during the day. I am not sure how long this fast will last - I am still waiting to hear what God has planned for me.  It may be for the full 21 days, it may not.

Ahimsa in Sanskrit means non-violence, peace. I think factory farming is violent to animals and our planet. When I see "Mechanically Pulled Apart Chicken" on Colleen's chicken nuggets - I cringe. Yikes. What a way to die. If you don't think this is nasty, watch the documentary Food Inc. and tell me what you think after you watch it.  *By the way, that brand of chicken nuggets do not cross our threshold now.

Ahimsa toward myself is not allowed. No violence in my body. To torture my liver, gall bladder and intestines with toxins is a form of self deprecation.  I will not belittle my body with toxins. I will not be foggy because my veins are clogged with unnatural food. I have said for years that "this is not what God intended us to eat" now its time to walk the walk with a spiritual cleanse. I have cleansed before, but never for spiritual reasons. All my other cleanses have been for me, my flesh, my ideas. This is God's plan for me. I am listening.

My intention is clear, I need more clarity, peace and sleep.  I need to be closer to God and my family needs me to be at my best. I want to feel better. God wants me to feel good, He loves me, and He is showing me the way.

Monday, June 6, 2011

I will see you in your dreams...


She's got wings, she's got wings...
 Hailey always told Colleen that she would see her in her dreams. I asked Colleen if she has had any dreams about her mama. "Yes." This is what she is dreaming every night...
Mama and Colleen are flying on winged unicorns in a shiny turquoise sky. Mama has on a pretty purple dress and has lots of curly black hair.She looks beautiful. Colleen is laughing and flying on her unicorn, which is also purple. Mama's unicorn is green. The music is beautiful and "Airplane" is playing. Mama tells Colleen that she loves her, and Colleen tells her that she loves her too.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

I don't believe in coincidences

My sister passed at 5:05 PM, this song was played at her funeral at her request. She made this request in February.


China Doll ~ by the Grateful Dead


A pistol shot, at five oclock, the bells of heaven ring,
Tell me what you done it for, no I wont tell you a thing.
Yesterday I begged you before I hit the ground,
All I leave behind me is only what I found.

If you can abide it, let the hurdy-gurdy play,
Stranger ones have come by here before they flew away.
I will not condemn you nor yet would I deny,
I would ask the same of you, but failing, will not die.

Take up your china doll, take up your china doll,
Its only fractured and just a little nervous from the fall.
La-la-la-la-la-la-la.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Jump Out of a Plane

Today at the hospital I saw mass amounts of suffering.
The man in the room next to us, moaning, not able to lay down because he was in a body/neck brace and could not move. His mother sitting across from him not hiding her tears.
The doctor that walks into another room and asks "what's wrong today sir?" "Everything!" he says with pain in his vocal cords.
Someone I love writhing around in bed, not able to get comfortable because of the tumors in her belly.

I realized something walking the halls of the hospital today. There are more people suffering in the hospital than enjoying the day at a park. Or taking lunch outside. Or turning on the sprinkler for their kids and running through it with them. Or turning on the sprinkler for themselves and enjoying the feeling of water on their skin. There are more people suffering everyday at a desk, staring at a computer screen wasting their lives on a job they despise so they can keep up with a house they can't afford to keep.

So, this is my advice - because one day we will end up in the hospital either watching someone in pain, or in pain ourselves, regardless we will suffer.

If you want to:
Jump out of a plane
Quit your job if you don't like it
Smell the roses, peonies, gardenias and a fresh picked tomato
Let go
Stop comparing yourself with others
Feel your emotions, stop stuffing them down with food, alcohol or work
Close your eyes and listen to the birds
Live life without a script
Drive with the windows down
Stop being a harbor for negative thoughts
Dance on tables
Cry, scream and let it out
Dance on bars
Dance naked in your living room
Kiss your friends, children, parents and lovers
Give free hugs regularly
Turn the computer off and turn on your imagination
Paint
Love yourself, be kind to yourself, say nice things to yourself
Play
Sing
Create
Play the guitar
Unplug your TV
Eat a chili dog
Go vegan for a day
Take the grocery cart in for somebody in the parking lot
Spend less on jeans and spend more time outside
Give something away to a stranger
Leave a big tip for a waitress even if its a bad service
Smile
Stand on your head
Be nice to others
Feel the rain on your face
Climb a tree
Sit in the grass if it feels good
Read
Cook a meal for someone you love
Throw a party
Quit whatever it is that is holding you back from the life you truly deserve
Bake bread
Say yes
Love
FOLLOW YOUR BLISS

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Zumba!

I LOVE ZUMBA.
My first love was dance, so Zumba fits in with my child like energy to move and shake. However, Zumba is a far cry from the controlled moves of ballet, tap and jazz in my childhood. In Zumba you are free to cut loose, shake it, shimmy your shoulders and have FUN moving. What? Oh, I am exercising? Did I just burn 700+ calories - yes you did.

We are blessed at Soul Shine to have our own hot tamale, Maria Cardarelli teaching two times a week. Tonight is Zumba night and it is always a latin flavored, loud, sweaty, amazing night.



Even Hollywood celebs have jumped on the Zumba train - click here to read more about how Zumba is heating up Hollywood.

Also, Maria was honored with 3rd place in Project Safe's Athens Dancing with the Stars, see the video of her ballroom dancing here. 

Aiiiiieeeee!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Love your belly

I really don't think I can add anything to the article in the link below. Many of you have had the treat of learning dance from Oracle at Soul Shine and her "love your belly" speech changes the way you view and treat your pooch. I needed to read this today. I woke up and put on a tight t-shirt and said to myself "no, not yet - wait to wear this shirt until you have a flat belly." Then a beautiful voice in my heart said "what if you never have a flat belly again?" and I thought to myself...so what? I am pretty healthy, I have a strong back, strong abdominal muscles and a six pack is truly not what I desire. Be stong in your core, but recognize your potential for beauty without six pack abs. You will breathe better, practice yoga better and perform hotter belly dance moves. Soul Shine's new core strength class will teach you all about how to be strong in your core, move from your core and possibly lose a few inches if you need too - all without cruches or compressing our diaphram/breath.

Click the link below to read the article below by Oracle and learn more about loving your belly...the center of LIFE.

http://www.examiner.com/belly-dance-in-atlanta/love-your-belly?CID=examiner_alerts_article

Friday, May 13, 2011

Lunch Time!

Avocado Sandwich with Veggies
I have a slight obsession with avocados. They are so tasty and good for you. The only thing I don't like is when you cut into one and its brown and mushy, or hard as a rock. My secret is to buy them when they are green and gently press the tip of the avocado. When the avocado is really dark green (but not black) and the tip gives a little bit - its avocado day! Eat it, today. It may not be good tomorrow and that $1.00+ is in the trash.

This is one of the yummy things I like to do with avocados. Make a sammy!




Avocado Sandwich:

1 perfectly ripe avocado
1/2 lemon
2 slices of sprouted bread (my fav is Ezekiel bread, find it in the frozen section)
bell pepper
tomato
lettuce

Mash the avocado in a bowl with lemon juice and salt. Toast bread
Spread avocado mash on both slices of bread
Add slices of veggies (get creative - cucumbers, squash, hot peppers) to the sammy
top with lettuce

Eat your veggies and love it!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Letter to a new meditator

Dear friend,

You are looking for a way to calm your mind. You have admitted and realized that your mind is like a spinning top and it only stops when it hits a wall. Congratulations - you have made the preverbal first step - admitting you have a problem.  So, what do you do? How do you meditate? You have heard the word but what do you actually do? Sit down and clear your mind, right? Sounds easy enough...until you try it. The spinning top is more prominent than you thought and you give up. That sucked. Game over. Lets get back to doing the dishes, or was it the laundry....mmmmm peanut butter. Oh, crap, we were talking about meditation...

Well, I have some words of hope and wisdom for you.  You need tools. 

First, you need to realize that if you know how to worry, you know how to meditate, or at least focus. You are just focusing on bad things.  The past, future and the past again - then the future... worrying about things that don't matter and will probably never happen. 
Second, you need a place. Find a quiet spot in your home (this can be the bathroom with the door locked and the fan on - I promise nobody will bother you).  Sit, relax, be comfortable and take a short 10 minute break. 
Third, you need to breathe. Deep, long inhales (let your belly go!) and longer exhales are key to quieting the mind.
Next (tired of counting now!) you need to focus on something. One single thing. What is this object of attention? It is not your to do list honey, you can count on that. The object is up to you. What is the basis of choosing the object? Choose an object with an appreciation of your potential at the present moment. Begin with a less complicated object - then as time goes on you can focus on something more complicated. 
Are you able to contemplate an ocean wave? A tree? A candle flame? A simple mantra such as peace?
At the heart of it all this is what we are seeking - peace. So focus on what brings you peace. 

There is much more to this subject, so dear friend, I will continue this letter to you later.

I am off to my quiet place for about 20 minutes.

Namaste,

Heather 

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

I hate my butt

I hate my butt, I hate my arms, I hate my legs, I hate my pinky finger...the list goes on and on, and its silly. My butt allows me to walk, my legs keep me standing, my pinky finger can reach small things that other digits can't. 



As a yoga teacher I hear all kinds of body image issues. When will this madness stop???? Last night while I was teaching a private lesson, I had a long time student sheepishly tell me that she did not understand what I meant when I said "tuck your hips/butt/booty/tailbone" under. OK - so I will show you - stand in the mirror, put your hands on your hips and tilt the pelvis back and forth.
She could not do it.
Why? Its because she admitted that she hated her small tushy and that she is so used to sticking it out that she could not tuck under. First I told her that this is a samskara, or an habit that is so stuck we are going to have to work on getting it out of her system. Then I coached her through tucking her butt under and she said "This feels great!!" Yea! A long spine, not a crunched up, unhappy lumbar and SI Joint. Whooo hoooo! Freeeeeedom on more than one level! That is why I love yoga. Love love love yoga.
Her lack of booty love is not only a self esteem issue (I also told her that I would happily give her some of my booty, so I need to work on this as well) her negative body image was also hurting her in almost every pose she was practicing in class. She thought that the pain was because she was "old" and "it was just too late for her to be pain free" and "she would never look like taller people in class."

Oy! Yoga is not a competitive sport. The competition is in your head. You are battling yourself here. Your EGO tries to stay in control. And do not be fooled, the ego is not just the voice in  your head that tells you that you are better than so and so, but its also the nasty voice that tells you "don't tuck your butt under, everyone will see that you don't have a banging booty."

At the end of this class, she said that she felt better than ever before at the end of class. The pressure is off and she can now start really tasting the freedom of yoga.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Shew....Stinky!

Nobody wants BO
Nobody wants cancer either or to stop our bodies from detoxing the way mother nature intended. I have am sure you have heard that traditional deodorant is not good for your bod - but what are you supposed to do? Run around smelling like a dirty hippie? What, am I supposed to give up lip gloss too?
No way beautiful!
But, honestly, do you like the feeling of chiseling off your deodorant everyday? That can't be good for you. Use natural products, there are more and more out there to choose from and I have finally found a natural deodorant that works! Crystal Essence roll on with lavender and white tea. I have used the rock form of this brand in the past, and it worked for a little while - but after a few hours stinky stinky pits were noticeable, not sexy. Ew. So, I tried this product and so far so good! Give it a shot and give your body the chance to detox naturally! You don't need to clog up your lymph nodes and keep toxins in the body that need to get out.
I love this product!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

You can't LIVE without your LIVEr!

On Friday night Soul Shine Yoga & Wellness had our first nutrition workshop with Donna Terrazas. Let me just say she is AMAZING - a true wealth of information. She has been doing the whole natural healing, great diet, and energy healing before it was cool. She used to give her kids "ninja juice" green chlorophyl and juice mixed, named after the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (the 80s version youngins). One of her children was doing his first anatomy project and he was diagraming our insides and she was telling him how important our livers are to the body. He perked up and said "Mommy! Liver, Live! See LIVE. You can't live without your LIVER!" He was right on.
In the West we do not give our liver its due. In TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) the liver is the most important organ in the body. We tend to focus on our hearts in the USA. The liver is the "general" he tells us what to do. Right now its time to create, live, plow the fields and eat greeeeeen.  We also need to eat tart, sour foods like lemons, limes and grapefruit. Herbs that support the liver are milk thistle and dandelion.

Here is a simple recipe for a gentle liver cleanse:
2 beets (raw)
1 - 2 lemons, juiced
1/4 - 1/2 cup of flax oil

Mix this all together and eat 2 teaspoons a day. If you eat more, the cleansing will be more intense. Trust me, beets are very cleansing! I juiced an entire beet one time, added some other stuff like apple and a cucumber. I drank about 5 sips before I had a headache, and then it was off to the bathroom I went!

Take care of your liver - just don't over do a cleanse.
Love & Light
H