Monday, December 16, 2013

Life and Inspiration

Living a life of inspiration requires work on your side. I feel this involves discovering the true you, aligning your values to the work you do and finding that thing or things that make you truly happy.

Who is the true you, what does that look like or feel like?

Are your values aligned with the work you do?

Have you found that thing or things that make you happy?

I have been asking myself these same questions a lot lately. And, I am also doing my home yoga practice which helps me to find that silence space.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this matter.

Mount Hood

Great pose that helps you slow down and focus.
Warrior III

Monday, December 9, 2013

“Our obligation is to give meaning to life, and in doing so to overcome the passive, indifferent life.”

~Elie Wiesel

Hiking in central Washington

Sunday, December 8, 2013

When you chose a path and discover that the journey is not what you imagined, why sit in a place of unhappiness? Is it because we fear what others will think, or that we have failed.

Why are we here? I think we are here to map out a path that inspires us which inspires others. I think we are here to connect to our community. I think we are here to open our hearts and try everything that excites us. I think we are here to discover ourselves and learn from one another. I think we are here to be happy and free.

So it is our jobs to embark on what ignites our flame and go for it. Because if you don't you will always wonder. What do you want to embark on that you haven't yet?

Living on a tropical island, growing my own food.
Traveling to India, Bhutan and Nepal to see the beauty
Designing my own botanical garden that educates youth about our natural world
Backpacking the Appalachian trail

Beauty in flowers

Beauties in adventures

Sunday, November 24, 2013

A quote to live by

Every physical being on this planet is your partner in co-creation, and if you could accept that and appreciate the diversity of desires and beliefs, all of you would have a more expansive, satisfying, fulfilling experience.
 Love this reminder for myself!! Enjoy this Sunday.
Doing yoga together great way to connect



Tuesday, November 19, 2013


Choices are a part of our everyday life and range from small to large. We choose what to eat for breakfast, to go to work, do our homework etc. Yet, when our choices carry more weight such as a new job offer, or moving out of state, ending a relationship we have been in for years. We find it harder to settle on which choice to make. There is a feeling that these larger choices will impact our lives more than the small ones. So, we must reframe that way of thinking and know that the small choices lead to the large ones. Just because we make a choice doesn't mean that is going to be right or wrong it is a choice and better to choose then to not and wondering what would have happen if you didn't. Don't allow the choices to paralyze you.

Listen to your inner voice, be you, be bold, be free.


Sunday, November 17, 2013

Connection to a Place

This conversation I had with a man that had recently moved here from Colorado made me think about my connection to places. He had lived in Colorado his whole life and was in Portland visiting a friend. The way in which he described Colorado as a place of high elevation, bright sun even in the winter months with powdery snow. I could hear his love for this place that brought him joy. After this conversation it made me think about places that I have a connection with.

My yoga mat because when I do yoga it brings me back to my inner stillness
Orcas Island surrounded by ocean and beaches
Thailand for all the beautiful temples, culture and food
Teaching yoga
When I connect with something it brings me inner joy that trickles out into the world where I want to share this joy with others. This also is a whole body reaction when you connect to something that ignites your spirit. It also makes you think that finding connection in what we do ignites that joyous spirit that resides inside, awaiting to be connected.
What connection ignites your spirit?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Ebb and Flow of life

Just as we flow from one pose to the next in yoga, we also do this in life from one event or situation to the next. We may have days where the flow feels smooth, balanced, inspiring and creative and other days we feel off balance. Is life all about movement and the stillness. This may be seen as a time to look inward and reflect upon what your vision or passion is. Then we adapt movement to create or fulfill our inner reflections. While in our stillness we pose questions seeking answers that may arise now or later. As we journey through these two spaces stillness and movement I invite you to practice meditation.

Light a candle
Sit in front of your alter if you have one if not sit in your favorite spot
Start to focus on your breath, maybe label in/out to help you center yourself
Place your hands palm down on your knees to process or palm up to receive
Tuck your chin and close your eyes
As we focus on our breath we can start to let all
that is not serving us go.
We can feel the inner stillness
that resides within us. So when
moments arise we can remember
that we always have our breath.

My favorite sunset at Discovery Park.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Spending our days

        "The way we spend our days is the way we spend our lives"
-Unknown source

Wow, I came across this quote while looking through some papers. This makes you think that we have some amazing choices to make everyday. These lead to the whole of our lives here on earth.
After reflecting on this does it make you want to challenge yourself? Take risks? Make different choices than you are doing now? Or help you to see that when a new day starts we have fresh choices to make.

So, I am grateful to this quote for reminding me that everyday is a gift filled with choices to make and experiences to have.

A hike in eastern Washington, love the bumble bee

Felt inspired to do up dog at Discovery Park in Seattle, WA

Friday, November 1, 2013


So, I went to a yoga retreat this summer in central Washington. The place was peaceful, and relaxing. I stayed in contact with one of the teachers and she recently created a Gratitude event for 30 days. So, you can journal, share with family/friends. I love this idea because life gets so busy we forget to find the great in everyday.

So, I invite you to join me in these 30 days of Gratitude, Thankfulness, Recognition etc. to find the good in your life.

I'll start I am really enjoying the beautiful sunny fall days because I am able to run and hike.

Fall farm fun


Thursday, October 17, 2013

There will be a time, not so far from now, that you will look back on this phase of your life and instead of condemning it or beating up on it... Instead of blaming or guilting, you will feel appreciation for it, because you will understand that a renewed desire for life was born out of this time period that will bring you to physical heights that you could not have achieved without the contrast that gave birth to this desire.



Oregon hike viewpoint

Triple falls hike

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Inspire life and let life inspire

Do what feels good. Keep practicing to inspire your life.       
 Let your favorite places inspire you to be silly or adventurous!

Be adventurous, and do yoga poses on your travels 

Be inspired by natures beauty!

Try new poses even if it isn't perfect.  Oops, I fell. 

When you feel like posing, practice and inspire others. 

How does life inspire you or how do you inspire life? 

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Success, defined

“Wild success isn’t about your possessions or your portfolio. It’s about knowing that you’re doing the right thing with your time on earth.” – Tama J. Kieves

Found on Kirplau facebook page

For me this quote brought to light the importance of doing what inspires me, not the recognition I get or the status I have. Finding that true success is being connected with body, mind and spirit. What puts a smile on my face? When do I feel confident and inspired? How do I keep this focus?

Wow, so glad I found this quote as I have been struggling with the success of portfolio, possessions which doesn't do anything if I am not connected to what I do.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Do you ever find yourself losing touch with your yoga practice. Well, I must say this is me right now. These last several weeks have been busy for me and I let my yoga practice slide. Why do I do that when I know that yoga is the one constant thing that brings balance and clarity to my life.

So, I have devised an action plan to reconnect with myself and my practice.
1. Read one of my favorite books Living Your Yoga Finding the Spiritual in Everyday Life by Judith Lasater.
2. Start attending group yoga classes which helps me find inspiration and motivation.
3. Remember that taking care of you by practicing yoga sets you up for success.

Reconnecting with yourself is essential and brings forth your inner light that makes each and every one of us unique. So, I find it to be our duty to find that thing that ignites us.

I invite you to share a time where you lost your connection to something you enjoyed and how did you reconnect?

Finding the fun in yoga, Ballard Locks beach

Feels so good, yoga in the sand

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Yoga Retreat in the Woods

Wow, I just got back from my first yoga retreat as it was a gift from my mom and sister for my birthday. It was a sis and yoga get away.

The retreat started with stretching and relaxing yoga before dinner. Then Saturday self guided meditation from 6-7am, breakfast then Iyengar focused yoga, pranayama, break to hike around the lake, and last somatic movement. After dinner we sat around the camp fire playing different drums with the occasional bat flapping over us, eeeh!

Overall, the take away from that experience was surround yourself with positive people, take time for silence, enjoy and connect with nature and yourself when possible. Lastly show gratitude to yourself and others.

I will leave you with a pranayama practice I learned over the weekend. So, you can do this seated in lotus or lying down. First start with inhaling through the nose and exhale out the mouth for one minute while counting your breath. Next, place a large or small straw in your mouth, inhale through the nose and exhale through the straw for two minutes while counting the breath. As you finish you will find that with the straw your count is lower which is because you are deepening your exhale. I found this very relaxing. I would love to hear about your experience, so please share.

Morning hike up Strawberry Mountain. Sunrise!

Had to do tree pose!

Our cabin.

Lost Lake 5 minute walk from the retreat.
My sister Alicia and I at the top of Strawberry Mountain.
View from up top of Lost lake.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Life and Joy

The joy of life!
What is my joy in life?
Where do I find that inner peace that feeling of aliveness?
I find it in Yoga
Hiking to discover waterfalls
Connecting with new people and most of all being me uncensored, haha
Where do you find joy in your Life? I would love to hear.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013


Yoga for me is a settling of the mind a stretching of the body and a set of fluid movements that require you to be challenged.
As we all grow in our yoga practice we slowly start to see the changes within ourselves. The benefits of having this in our lives.
Yoga has changed me for the better!
What does yoga do for you? 
Hike in Portland, OR

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Is Yoga an Art?

I am reading a book written by Geeta Iyengar called Yoga a gem for women. As I was reading I came across the question is yoga an art?

Living is an art. Yoga enhances the quality of
 one's life. Hence it is an art. It lifts up one's
thoughts and enables one to face life's difficult situations happily
 and with equanimity; it teaches one to strive to
achieve a goal in life; to cultivate friendliness, concentration,
piety, contentment, joy, and to discard what is non-essential; to cultivate good habits
and to lead a righteous life. Yoga is disciplined action to
achieve and attain final freedom.
                                                                                                     -Geeta Iyengar

Monday, July 22, 2013

Life brings waves which we believe at times we cant handle

I wanted to share something with my blog reader's that I came to realize today. So, I don't want to bog this down with details but there are times in life that others can make you feel sad, angered, vulnerable and the list could go on. However, today I chose to not let that other person have control over my emotions. They are my emotions and I do have control.
I yoga has taught me about not getting attached to objects, relationships, possessions etc. I know that I am a strong woman who doesn't have time to let others control the strings to my emotions. So, I write this while treating myself to pizza and a beer because I deserve it. And, I think everyone does. So, when you experience your emotions going haywire due to someone else's behavior just stop breath and cultivate your beautiful inner strength and wisdom that can at times reside deep within our soul. We can cultivate these qualities in the Warrior series.

The Warrior series helps us find strength in the present moment, Where my Warriors at!!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Yoga Workshop

I took my first yoga workshop which was on restorative yoga and chanting. We did some chanting while the instructor played the harmonium. Then 1 hour of restorative yoga which left me feeling so light and relaxed. Even though, I learned Vinyasa flow I see the value in incorporating some of the restorative poses into my teachings. Also, I feel it to be essential for yogis to take different classes and learn because Yoga is all about learning and growing. It is also a lot of fun to explore new linages and teaching styles.

Lastly, I wanted to share a common chant that is easy to incorporate in your home practice or studio.

Om Namah Shivaya
(om na mah shi vaa ya)

This mantra is chanted to honor your divine spirit. So when I chant this I honor the divine that resides in us all and yoga helps us on that journey. So I invite you to start chanting with our eyes closed and your heart open.

I would love to hear about your experiences if you want to share. Chant on!

Angkor Wat temple


Friday, July 19, 2013

Orginality leads to greatness

“When you're always trying to conform to the norm, you lose your uniqueness, which can be the foundation for your greatness.”
— Dale Archer
This a great reminder that conformity does not suit us but relishing in your originality leads to self inspiration and empowerment. What has helped you find your true spirit?


Sunday, July 14, 2013

Satsang (sat=true, sang=company)

So, I attended the weekly Satsang which I always enjoy and we begin with meditation. Next, is chanting with drums and the harmonium. This always puts me in a state of comfort and joy. I seem to find my voice which is not so great but I am having fun so sing on.

We ended with some wisdom from Sivanada and tonight we talked about freedom. What I took away was that freedom is a state of mind, so realizing this is the first step in real freedom.

Freedom from guilt
Freedom from self judgment
Freedom from attachment to things

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Over coming fear

Fear is excitement without the breath,
 so as we focus on our breath in yoga poses,
 pull that focus and courage when fear shows up.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

yoga on the beach

“Yoga practice can make us more and more sensitive to subtler and subtler sensations in the body. Paying attention to and staying with finer and finer sensations within the body is one of the surest ways to steady the wandering mind. (39)”
Ravi Ravindra
Discovery Park

Thursday, June 20, 2013

A day to reconnect with me

We all may have a day of internal contemplation and self doubt. When these days appear in my life I must admit I do sulk for a time, but then I turn on some kirtan music by Jai Uttal or Snatam Kaur. I sing along with this beautiful heart opening lyrics. Then I cook myself a nice well prepared meal and top it off with a glass of white wine. Lastly, I do some restorative yoga and prepare a bath to read a book.

After, I take the time to treat myself I find that my mood lifts and I notice that every now and again we need to take time to love and celebrate us. I needed to surrender to my self doubt in order to come out of this self doubt.

How do you treat yourself when in a space of self doubt?

Monday, June 10, 2013

Dharma teachings

I am house sitting in Seattle so that means I get to attend my favorite meditation/ dharma teachings class.  The teachings were about helping others be happy by giving gifts, an ear, love, advice etc. Then he guided us through a meditation that has us envision those we want to give happiness to whether that be a person, a group the whole human race. Next,  he had us focus on the feeling of joy and begin to cultivate that within ourselves. He also talked about the true joys of giving to others. Lastly, he asked us what the obstacles would prevent us from giving happiness to others.

As I sat there listening I thought I use to be resistant to giving because I expected people to be appreciative or give back. But, I have found through yoga my heart has become more willing to give without expecting anything in return. Just as we all come to yoga for different reason we all are at a different place in our spiritual journey. So, if your giving ignites joy in another then find the beauty in that.

So, what are some of your big yoga learnings?

A buddha in one of the Angkor Wat structures

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Listening and following your heart

To ignite ones passion is to ignite ones inner being,
yet to not allow one
 to follow their heart is to deaden ones spirit.
We as the human race must
 invite all that makes us unique
and know that a life lived following
your heart is a life to be honored.
How are you honoring your life?

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Am Prayer and meditation

These last few days my emotions have been filled with self doubt, fear and sadness. Yet, today I awoke early to do my prayers and meditation which alleviated my suffering. As I read from: Illuminata a Return to Prayer by Marianne Williamson. These points are what shift my self doubt, fear and sadness. My thoughts in purple.

"The problem is the voice of the spirit is not the dominant voice of the world." or of your mind.
"Sacred energy renews us." For me that is yoga and meditation.
"Prayer enables us to transform the world which transforms us."
This is yoga it transforms the way in which I view myself and treat others.

As I share these with you I have come to find my faith in the universe again. I know there is a reason I am studying yoga and horticulture therapy. May my light shine so bright that fear gets lost in the rays. When times of these arise try to step back and know that this is helping you to get where you need to be or just helping you learn. May you find inner peace and beauty today.

Angor Wat  Cambodia
Such a sacred place

Friday, May 10, 2013

Yoga Sutras

I awoke today feeling, oh I have so much to do. My mind was going down the list and so I reached for the Yoga Sutras to bring me back to the present. So, I am reading The Essential Yoga Sutra Ancient Wisdom for your Yoga.

I.14 You must cultivate your practice over an extended
period of time; it must be steady, without gap, and it must be done
 correctly for then a firm foundation is laid.
I think I am going for yoga and my spiritual practice as it fills my soul and helps me be better.
What do you chose to cultivate in your life?

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

My yoga learning throught teacher training

Delving deeper into this yoga journey I find myself craving spiritual history. As I read The Gita it grabs my heart and allows me to see the beauty in the true essence of ones yoga practice.
The Bhagavad Gita A walkthrough for Westerners by Jack Hawley Ch.6 lines 24-26

"Renounce all selfish desires, which are but products of the ego.
Use the mind to curb all your senses. Rein in your restless and fidgety mind
from wandering outside to seek stimulation and
satisfaction. Turn inward and train it to rest in God.
Keep attention anchored in the Atma, your true self.
Think of nothing else. Then , peace and quiet will gradually arise in you.
I hope this ignites something in you to explore while practicing yoga or to seek while practicing. Be the great yogi you are meant to be both on and off the mat.
Multnomah Falls

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Passions and Yoga

Well, I am back and committed to blogging as I feel good sharing my thoughts and experiences. I have started my 200 hr yoga teacher training. I can't describe in words the feelings of pure joy I am having by doing this. Because I have talked about this for a year and it is now a reality. I feel for the first time that I found my passion and it's amazing. For me when this all fell into place yoga as well as horticulture therapy my attitude shifted, I had a pep in my step a smile on my face and real gratitude for this life. So, I say this because we all need to keep pushing ourselves to find our passion. Just think if we were all on the path to our passions what would this world be like? I challenge everyone to keep exploring and pay attention to your responses to experiences, and events in your life that ignite, joy, playfulness, curiosity and an open heart to share.

This is a picture of a hike I did in Washington State called Lake Twenty-Two,

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Once you find your inner voice, Listen good

I have chased a dream that I thought was me because I wanted to be significant. I defined that by seeking jobs and degrees that I thought would give me significants. This thinking has taken me on a journey that helped me become aware of my true passions and made me listen to my inner voice. As I embark on this new level of awareness may I reflect and check in with myself. 

I want to share my plans which are coming up in April. I plan to move down to Portland as the Community College has a horticulture therapy program. I was first exposed to horticulture therapy in my undergrad studies then I had the opportunity to do a independent study project at a local assisted living home with horticulture therapy. After this hands on exposure with planning a curriculum and seeing how much the ladies enjoyed themselves, I knew then this was going to be a part of my life. So, I am now taking steps to make that desire come true and I am so excited for this journey. 

I also state in my blog the desire to further my knowledge in yoga as it helps me shift my energy to the positive and brings clarity to my perspective on life. I say this because it helps me be a better me, so I found a school in Portland that teaches the 200 hr. Wow, just when I thought I couldn’t do both horticulture therapy and yoga. 

I feel that life can really amaze you and to never give up your true desires because there is only one life so live it seated in passion. I feel when you live a life of passion your perspective of the world shifts and you see the lessons, the blessings and the beauty in all that surround you. 

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Big questions for 2013

Wow life can throw you some curves especially when you have an idea of what your next move. The year of 2012 I wanted to stay in the horticulture industry, so I applied to a local farm which was a great experience. Then I was offered a job as a produce manager for two farm stands. I took this job which was physically challenging and I released my stress at the nearby yoga studio. When I stepped into those classes I felt a sense of excitement and a commitment to self growth. The warm flow classes grounded my spirit and livened my soul. I felt a deeper calling to further my knowledge in yoga, so I researched some. Yet, when I was laid off from my job that research became a reality to pursue yoga teacher training. I became excited again and was looking at training in India and Chicago as my cousin lives there. Then over the holidays my Nana passed so family gathered together to support one another. Life became clouded and grief set in. I must say she went peacefully which is a blessing.

Now I have interviewed for a job as a trail coordinator for a big wholesaler and they want to do a second interview with me. So, I say which way should my path go and I have no solid answer. I don't even hear my inner voice talking and I am at a place of questioning this next step.

I read the Daily Love today from one of the co-authors and she talked about the question we all ask ourselves WHO AM I? She says to find this answer you need to identify the feelings you feel when your doing something you enjoy.

So, when I do yoga I feel





open heart

life learner




So, when I do horticulture I feel









I think this is a great exercise to do and to keep yourself aware of your feelings when doing certain things. So, I plan to delve deeper to hear that inner voice. Where is my life path? Where do I want my life path to go? What direction ignites the most fear within me?