Thursday, December 31, 2009

goodbye 2009 - progressing into 2010

one way my 2010 word choice is leading me is to choose to be organized and dedicated to the blog. mid-january the blog will have a complete and exciting re-do. i can't wait for the new design to be inspiring and maybe draw some more readers!!!
i also want to focus a bit more on my fitness life yoga teaching, practice & philosophy, and my modern dance world. i think i need to choose to have a little more focus on the blog. starting on mondays - i'm gonna bring in some inspiration for the week with mindful mondays. the rest of the week is a little up in the air - like i said....i am working on finding focus - i haven't totally gotten there yet! it'll come.

on to....10 for 2010.

here are my 10 goals for this new year. i wanted them all to be achievable and realistic cause i tend to over commit and then end up being disappointed. for 2010 - i choose to:
  1. train (12-15 weeks) and run the biltmore classic 5k in may (last time i ran a 5k, i really hurt my knee, but i didn't really follow and sort of training program, so this will be different!)
  2. practice yoga daily (even if it is just for 10 minutes!)
  3. read and review on the blog one fiction and one non-fiction (probably health, mind/body-based) book per month
  4. give my husband a hug and a kiss first thing when i walk through the door at the end of the day (no more running to the computer or doing anything before that happens)
  5. limit computer. blogging, blog reading time to 30 minutes a day (yes - i can veg out on it forever - not being to mindful - and want to spend time commenting on other blogs and building some readership, but have to live my life in order to have something to even write about!!! the internet totally zaps my time too often and i really must focus on living this blissful life!)
  6. use the planner pad for scheduling, to do's, ideas and goals.
  7. journal often on ideas and life musings
  8. begin word document with writing for book i hope to one day finish and publish on living the mindful life. actually spend time writing at least 1-2 times per week.
  9. have lunch with a girlfriend once per month (at least!)
  10. 15 minutes a day of speed cleaning to stay on top of my house (which so easily gets out of control if i am on the computer or reading too long)
ok - so reasonable and doable goals. not too large scale, but i sometimes feel that all of my thoughts and goals, etc. are super large and big picture and know that i have a hard time scaling down and looking at how i can actually succeed on the day to day. (hence: my general life goal to live an insightful, mindful - in the present life - however successful or unsuccessful that may be!) more on that in 2010.

peace to you and yours.

Monday, December 28, 2009

WORD of 2010

decision made.

my word for 2010 is CHOICE.

there are so many words i want to choose like: balance, harmony, mindfulness, peaceful, compassion, creativity, self-love, grace, spirit, adventure...and the list could go on and on. i decided the most powerful word for me is choice because i can choose to live with all these other fabulous words in mind. all i have to do is choose what's best for me! i did gave it some journal love and want to share some of these thoughts with you all.

in 2010, i choose to:
  • put my family first and spend more time at home
  • make conscious scheduling decisions
  • limit my alcohol intake to once per week
  • exercise daily
  • spend reasonable time on the computer
  • use my time wisely
  • practice yoga daily
  • eat healthy meals and resist over indulgence
  • keep my home organized
  • read even more
  • not react on the defense (it's a bad habit i am trying to break)
  • sip hot tea
  • spread love and compassion
  • be thankful for my body and all that is does for me
  • be creative
  • avoid things that zap time and energy
  • drink oodles of water
  • home cooked meals
  • send more snail mail
  • take weekly yoga class
  • put energy into all that serves me
and the list will go on and on as the year progresses. there are lots more in my journal o' me, but some too personal to post. any other takers on the word of the year? cheers!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

organizing for 2010

in my quest to get it together for 2010, i have been journaling a ton about goals and - dare i say - resolutions, etc. i am resistant to use the word resolution cause i think it can sometimes set us up for disappointment when life gets in the way. i stumbled across this post from christine kane's blog about choosing one word to guide you throughout the year. i really like the idea and so today's thoughts and journaling are going to be around what that might be. don't get me wrong - i am still going to set 10 goals for 2010 and lots of other organizational ideas on setting myself on the right path for the new year - but, the idea of having one word to guide my other intention is inspiring and grounding all at the same time. here's a list from the post i linked to above. she suggests resisting the urge to pick four or five (cause we over-achievers are convinced we can do it all!) and just choose ONE. this will take me all week to settle on ONE, but i will succeed and post about it later.

which one resonates with you for 2010?!?!?!


looking forward to the next week of goal setting, intention choosing and continued organization.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

holiday crazy

whew. slacker blogger here to be thankful that the beast, the hubby, and i survived another holiday tour of homes. we visited four cities in three days. i am home and tired! our agenda went like this:

wednesday: we left bright and early from asheville and met my mom at a gas station in columbia, sc (about a 2 hour drive) sent the beast home with her and continued on to charleston, sc (another 2 hours) to have lunch with the hubby's grandmother. post lunch, we drove to beaufort, sc (1.5 hours) to have dinner and spend the evening with a good friend and his mom.

thursday: had brunch with the hubby's father in beaufort, sc (we can never stay with them as i have a severe cat allergy and they have four...yes, four felines). post brunch, drove to hilton head, sc (1 hour) went to hotel (mom-in-law has a cat, too) and crashed for a much needed nap. woke up, dressed up and went to oh-so-fun christmas eve gathering at the hubby's mother's house. big blended family! about 20 of us with yummy dinner, wine, and white elephant exchange!

friday: woke up a bit grumpy due to excessive wine consumption. (note to self: wine in excess of 1 glass = grumpy mindful when celebrating). went to mom-in-laws for stockings and gifts. left around 11am to drive back to columbia, sc to attend christmas day at my aunt's house with my family. met mom & dad (with the beast in tow) for big holiday dinner and crazy gift exchange. super fun. got in car around 7pm to head back to nc. the beast crawled into the front seat and into my lap around 8pm. (he missed us i think! my 70 lbs. lap dog!) arrived home around 10pm.

saturday agenda:
  • find home for oh-so thoughtful gifts & unpack
  • look into new car purchase (yes, it will happen soon. my brother needs my car!)
  • yoga & exercise
  • 2010 exciting blog plans (to be announced soon)
  • 10 goals for 2010
  • more snuggles with my pup
  • continue to read the new barbara kingsolver book. am loving it. book review to come.
hope you and yours had a marvelous holiday. cheers to recovering!

Monday, December 21, 2009

more snow and some love talk

many many thanks to cristina @ when is there time to sleep? for my first ever blogger recognition/award. i heart it so and am excited that she loved my planner pad post on becoming the best scheduling goddess possible and all the pursuits accompanying living the mindful life (or at least giving it my best!!) cristina is a momma goddess doing at all and i so enjoy her blog! she always makes me laugh!

as a newbie in the world of all things blog - i am still working on meeting new and inspiring folks. i am supposed to give this award to five people and if in the future i find someone new, i may pass is along to them cause right now i've got 2 people i'd like to give this to:

emma @ the joy of yoga: this gal is great! i love her yoga sequencing posts and am so honored to be a guest blogger on her site. she has many a great post sharing the passion that is yoga and inspiring the practice itself!

shannon @ milk and cuddles: super cute name and super cute site with awesome musings on being a stay at home mom. i love getting the insight into that life!

with this award, i have to share 10 things that i LOVE.
well, here they are:
  1. coffee & blogs in the morning! don't always get to have mornings like that, but when i do i am always grateful.
  2. pilot colored pens. purple and pink being the favs.
  3. the planner pad. ok, i know i am a little over the top with getting organized, but it really helps my life stay mindful and my brain focused and ready for anything!
  4. YOGA. can't live without it. brings me peace and mindfulness and a stretchy good feeling body.
  5. quite moments with space and lots of deep breathes.
  6. on the flip side of that - i LOVE music. so grateful for all the music i love and the countless bands i've seen live. i love the soundtrack to my life.
  7. being my own boss. need i say more?!?!
  8. MODERN DANCE and the women i move with. check us out here. the process of choreography and creating and, of course, performing.
  9. my fabulous, snuggly, warm creature who i lovingly call in the blog world: the beast. see his love here.
  10. my hubby. he's the best. what can i say?
on to the SNOW.....we were out of power for about 36 hours. thank goodness for our gas stove. it kept our bellies full and thank goodness for the beast to curl around my feet in the night and keep them toasty. nc is just not uber prepared for this much of the white stuff!

my hubby and brother-in-law just a few minutes before frosty fell over.
that's a lot of snow for a southern gal.
the snow ball fight in action.

hope you are warm and toasty. cheers!

Friday, December 18, 2009

snow: day one

it has taken this southern gal a few years to adjust to living in the mountains. we've been here for 6 years now and today is the most snow i have ever seen! i'm guessing as of the moment there's about nine inches out there and it's still coming! according to, it's going to keep snowing through monday. makes me a little nervous cause we cancelled our dance rehearsal today and i don't want to miss it on sunday. BUT, this gal - no matter what - does not drive in the snow. i know people who grow up doing it and who are used to it think it's no big deal, but the hubby and i were in a wreck in the snow our first year here and i just don't risk it anymore. it's homeward bound for me when it snows! today is also the beast's 3rd birthday and family members have asked what he got for his birthday and my response has been SNOW!!! he loves it and has been super energized all day long!!!

here's our street.
the beast celebrating birthday 3 by burying himself in the snow! so cute!
beautiful mother nature.
still energized and happy.
just before dusk measurement. wow.
we'll see what tomorrow brings after snowfalls all evening. currently we are still with power and hoping to stay that way!
happy white christmas!

Monday, December 14, 2009

mindful goal musings

i am totally on my way to making the top 10 resolutions list and on the way got an email forwarded to me with some life goals for 2010. i took this list and revved it up a bit and added some comments and thoughts on mindful living in 2010. it's from this list that i will begin to derive the 10 for 10 list.

  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a beggar.(most days - truly i fancy a nice royal dinner every once in a while!)
  • Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants, and eat less food that is manufactured in factories. (already do and will continue to do so - it's always a good reminder)
  • Live with the 3 E's -- Energy, Enthusiasm, and Empathy
  • Make space and time for quiet.
  • Play more games.
  • Read more books than you did in 2009. (this one i really love - i thought i did great in 2009, so here's to 2010. you can find some of my favorite reads from previous years here)
  • Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day. (yes! yes! yes!)
  • Sleep for 7 hours each day
  • Take a 10-30 minute walk every day ---- and while you walk smile! (this one would fall into my spend time giving the beast the best life ever everyday!)

  • Do not compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about. (meet people where they are on their journey and they will meet you where you are on yours!)
  • Do not have negative thoughts or worry about things you cannot control. Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment. (one negative thought i am always working on is my body image and a goal of mine in 2010 is not to ask my hubby "do i look fat?" because i know i am beautiful inside and out and am embracing that! getting rid of negative thought only makes more room for the positive!)
  • Don't overdo; keep your limits. (and stick to them. that is the goal of the decade for me. honor my time and commit only to what is nourishing and reasonable. always make time for family.)
  • Don't take yourself so seriously; no one else does. laugh as often as you can!
  • Don't waste your precious energy on gossip. check out my thoughts on the gossip train here.
  • Dream more while you are awake. (journal and get those dreams out so they can become a reality.)
  • Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
  • Forget issues of the past.
  • Don't remind your partner of his/her mistakes of the past. That will ruin your present happiness. (learn from the past and move toward the future)
  • Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.
  • Don't hate others. LOVE LOVE LOVE
  • Make peace with your past so it won't spoil the present.
  • No one is in charge of your happiness except you. (a simple, but amazing thing to realize. the hubby always says "you are in charge of you" and it is so true. embrace your needs!)
  • Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn. Problems are simply part of the curriculum that appear and fade away like algebra class but the lessons you learn will last a lifetime.
  • Smile and laugh more.
  • You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree. (such a great lesson. check out my post on mindful arguing.)
  • Call your family often. (i am thankful to talk to my mom and brother just about everyday!)
  • Each day give something good to others. (even if it's just a smile or holding the door - there is always something to give.)
  • Forgive everyone for everything.
  • Spend time with people over the age of 70 & under the age of 6. (i am so grateful that i get to do both of these things. i am blessed with a client who is my "asheville grandfather." he's 85 and i adore his company!)
  • Try to make at least three people smile each day.
  • What other people think of you is none of your business!!! check out my post all about this! i am energized by it this year!
  • Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your family and friends will. Stay in touch!
  • Do the right thing.
  • Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.
  • However good or bad a situation is - it will change.
  • No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
  • The best is yet to come.
  • When you awake alive in the morning, be thankful for it.
  • Your inner most is always happy. So - be happy!

i must say i love all of the life suggestions! there's always a way to look up and find that the glass is totally half full! yeah for these thoughts!

keep truckin along

another monday down and only one more until christmas week! hard to believe how time flies! i had 7 client sessions today and they all went really well. i love that everyone is in the holiday spirit!

went to my favorite yoga class tonight at lighten up yoga where i will be teaching 2 classes per week beginning in the new year. (tuesday at 4pm and wednesdays at 5:30pm) woo-hoo. i am stoked because i have been asked to take over a class that the director now teaches because i have gotten such good feedback from the students there. that's really moving in the right direction!

just had a simple dinner of un-chicken noodle soup and a spaten beer (brings back memories of my time if germany!)

am baking banana bread right now - doesn't baking just put you in the holiday mood?!?! this recipe is simple and vegan and fabulous. one hour til it's done.

i know, i know.....the new year's resolution is surely to snap more photos of all this. have a wonderful evening.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

weekend away & holiday accomplishments

just returned from a fun 2 days in atlanta of shopping and seeing the fabulous friends we have there. oh yeah - and eating! it was a whirlwind and this lady didn't take any photos. boo. as mindfully as i try to live my life - i am having such a hard time mindfully snapping pics for the blog! and it's really two-fold: not only for the blog, but for my memory and establishing memories of my married life. taking more photos is certainly going to go on my resolutions list.

i do totally feel like i have made progress on the christmas shopping! woo-hoo! the hubby and i made lists and got a lot of things accomplished this weekend. and we were having fun together - who can beat that?!!? the best thing about going out of town for us is that it's like an extended date for a few days. so nice.

speaking of resolutions: my project for today is to make a brainstorm list of all the things i would like to do in 2010. there will be many. then, i am going to bring the list down to the top 10 and make sure they are 10 that i can really accomplish.

holiday yoga party this afternoon with the studio i am starting to teach at in the new year! happy sunday.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

whoa - time is cranking away!

so surprised yesterday when i flipped the page in my calendar to realize that christmas is - what?!?!? - two weeks away! how did that happen! and my beloved blogging has been suffering because this week has been wild. why is it that the holidays seems so much busier than any other time of year? i mean, i have a few gifts to get, but not that many really - it shouldn't be this hard. the hubby and i are taking an overnight trip to atlanta and vow to get it done then. i know we will accomplish! plus, i love last minute road trips! total fun! promise to take photos and be mindful of my blogging friends out there. i will totally be better about my posting in the coming week!

having a glass of wine right now and chilling out. so glad it's the weekend. (yes, my last day of the week is thursday and i am ever so grateful for a 3 day weekend - with dance rehearsals of course)

how do you manage your holiday time? how do you set priorities in the holiday season?

i am trying not to wish time away, but am so excited to use my planner pad and keep life organized! woo-hoo! anyone else have one of these calendars? soon, i will be posting my 10 goals for 2010. be thinking about yours, too! i would love for you to post them here when i post mine and get some new ideas on what to accomplish in the coming year!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

check out my guest blog

i am honored and thrilled to have been a guest blogger today at the oh-so fabulous joy of yoga blog. check it out when if you can! i love the format of her blog for anyone looking to rev up their yoga practice! it's so easy to fall into the same sequencing rut and this is great to give you new ideas for your home practice! om shanthi!!!

Merry SITSmas card

Merry SITSmas to all the amazing wonderful blogging gals!!!

the beast wishes you happy holidays!
(he really loves his holiday bow - he's still wearing it!)

for those who may not know SITS is a fantastic blog for women bloggers. i have found the most interesting people there and am so grateful (especially as a newbie blogger) to have found them and be a part of their fantastic community building. today is their holiday and members are encouraged to post a holiday card. check out the icon to the right and give them a visit to find more wonderful bloggers.'s my mini tree decorated up with beautiful glittery ornaments that my aunt has helped my collect over the years. they all have significant meaning and i love pulling them out of the box each year and reliving the moments when i received them!

my snowman sitting on the mantle....

yippee!!! newest ornaments from the wedding this summer! my aunt had a shower for me and had an table arrangement with them! so thoughtful!

my favorite ornament is a blue crab. i am from sc and spent so much time on the coast with my family growing up! every summer we visit edisto beach every summer with all the aunts, uncles, cousins, parents, and grandparents. we crab, fish, shrimp - you name it. plus, my father is an avid shrimper and fisherman year round and it makes me think of him!

here's a shout out to some of my favorite blogs found through SITS! happy holidays ladies - i know there are many more blogs to discover as we roll into 2010!!!

my hopes for the coming year include blogging more and discovering more amazing women bloggers!!! i hope to grow as a writer and explore new ways to share my passion of health and wellness with others. i wish you good tidings, fantastic joy and much mindfulness in the coming month and into the new year!!!

Monday, December 7, 2009

partner yoga

today has been a fun day! enjoying a visit from my father-in-law, preparing to make a yummy meal with my favorite (kale!) and relax and share the evening with the family.

here are a few photos of my yoga practice this morning. as soon as i went into downward dog, my beast was there front and center! be on the look out for my guest post on the joy of yoga blog coming soon. i am really excited to share my practice!

have a lovely evening....

Sunday, December 6, 2009

what other people think....

i heard one of the greatest quotes i've heard in a long time recently from a friend (coco). i heard it second hand from another friend, but it really stuck with me.

"what other people think of you is none of your business."

i just finished reading an article in the latest yoga journal on gossiping. i really don't like it when i gossip and was aware this weekend when hanging out with an old co-worker how easy it is to gossip when your intention is just to catch up on people you haven't seen in a while. i am going to set an intention to be extremely mindful when i talk about other people. there is some gossip that i know is gossip, but what about when you talk about other people with good intention. like wondering if your best guy's new girlfriend could be the one or what kind of job you think your brother-in-law should get. i think those things could turn into negative gossip, but it's important to be aware that those genuine conversations don't become wrought with judging over-analysis. i would have to live in a cave alone to not talk about people. it's just human nature. i just want to be mindful that i am not causing any harm when i do open my mouth. bringing this focus will help me see what better things i could be talking about or sharing with the people i am talking to!

then it comes back to the quote above. it's so important to have friend's and family to bounce ideas off of and gain perspective, but when it comes down to it - you have to connect with you and who you are and how you are not defined by what other people think!

i totally struggle with this in my ever challenging time management and over committing. for example, there is a yoga studio i have taught for that would like for me to come back and instruct a donation based class. in my heart i would love to share with these students, but the time of day is not so great and i know (based on lots of previous over committing) that it would put a deep rut in the center of my day and i would come to not look forward to it. however, my mind totally wants to talk me into doing it because i don't want the studio manager and owner to think any less of me. "what?!?!?" you ask. yeah, me too. because of course they are going to respect that i am honoring my home commitments and my personal time. that thought pattern still happens though. deep breathes. i am always learning. and i know the quote is helping me stay centered cause i really need to honor what i think about me!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

post per ecto

i'm so excited to give ecto a try! i am really doing all that i can to get myself reorganized and reinvented for the coming year including utilizing programs that can help the blog continue to grow and for me to be more pro active and on top of my game! we'll see if this publishes like i hope it will!

today has been pretty relaxing. i had an acupuncture treatment this morning. ahhhh...there is nothing like it! i mentioned in my skin story how acupuncture and chinese herbs have really made my chronic condition manageable. i typically have a treatment once per week at our local community clinic, but today was the first in two weeks due to the holidays. i love my acupuncturist - she let me sleep for one and a half hours. who knew i was so tired!?!?!

Stress relief

photo from flickr

the rest of the day thus far as pretty much followed suit. it's been rainy and cold and we've actually had some snow! the hubby and i ventured to earthfare where i had a yummy salad and piece of fantastic veggie pizza. then we grocery shopped for the week. i love getting this done and then not having to fret over finding healthy meals during the week!

goals for the afternoon/evening:

  • gym with the hubby for some cardio
  • make christmas shopping list (wow - is it already almost the second week of the month!!??!)
  • finish some personal assistant work from home
  • make list of blog articles i want to work on
  • finish ideas about choreography for tomorrow's rehearsal

the blog article list is uber important as i always think of things to share when i am away from the computer and then am stumped when i make my way back! hoping the planner pad will also help with managing those ideas in the future! woo hoo!

Friday, December 4, 2009

control freak vs. surprise!

my happy body consort jessica give me a great birthday present, but it was a total surprise until last night! even though my 30th was a month ago - we just could never work our schedules out to make my surprise evening a reality.
well, i must say i learned that surprises are so hard for me. as you may imagine (from the previous post of becoming a scheduling goddess) i really like to be in control. what i learned about myself was - sometimes i've gotta learn to let it go and love it! all day long i was so anxious to know what was going to happen. i was to call jessica after i finished at the "office" at 4pm. i called and she told me i had to meet her at the oh-so-gorgeous grove park inn for a glass of vino in front of the fireplace! i am so excited to meet up and catch up that i completely spaced on taking a photo of this beautiful hotel lobby. i got these photos from their website - it's so historic and beautiful! the hotel opening in 1913 and has had many famous guests:

During the summers of 1935 and ’36, author F. Scott Fitzgerald resided in our Room 441. He’s just one of the American luminaries to have stayed here, a list that includes Harry Houdini, Will Rogers, George Gershwin, Thomas Edison, Eleanor Roosevelt and Henry Ford. Not to mention presidents — William Howard Taft, Woodrow Wilson, Calvin Coolidge, Herbert Hoover, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Richard M. Nixon, George H. W. Bush, William J. Clinton and Barack H. Obama.

pretty cool - huh?!? i forget how close this is to my house! i should go more often and pretend to be a tourist and enjoy this amazing spot! you can read more about it's history here.

the view from above in the fall in breath taking!
ok - here's the best part of the surprise. i am thinking we are going to leave the gpi until jessica informs me the surprise is here! we are going for an evening at the spa!!!!! they have a most incredible spa! we were escorted in, given a locker and oh-so cushy robes - doned our suits and off we went to explore. (with a bottle of merlot!) i tried to sneak my camera in to get a few shots, but was politely told "no cameras allowed." no fair for this blogger!
ahhhh...the spa! it was marvelous. hot tubs, hot sauna, dry sauna, cold plunge, cold wash clothes with peppermint essential oils, aromatherapy room, mineral (yes - salt water!) pool and the best was going outside in the cold to the hot tub surrounded by fireplaces. oh-la-la!
we stayed until they closed at nine! there was hardly anyone there and it was so wonderful to just girl talk! we talked about how it should be a once a month routine for us! just to reconnect, detox and relax! all my worry about what the surprise could be melted away as i soaked away. thanks jessica for a wonderful amazing super duper fabulous evening!!!!!

on another exercise junkie note:

i just found the best ab challenge on this fun blog oh she glows. oh how i wish i would have found this earlier and could be participating the whole time! i am going to challenge myself to keep up with this for the month of december starting today. i feel like i get the blahs during december as the weather changes, but this december i am focusing on feeling good and that means exercising and lots of home cooking!

CORE WORK: 6-10 minute core workout, 5 days a week, doing the following exercises:

  • Plank
  • Side plank
  • Plank with elbows on stability ball
  • Stability Ball Jackknifes
  • Stability ball roll out
  • Plank Rotations
check out angela's video and progress here. i'm going to get going with it this morning after a little walk and cardio. wishing you all a happy weekend!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

feeling the crunch & becoming a scheduling goddess

i am so grateful to work for myself, but this week i am totally feeling the crunch of having way too many things happening! i used to feel like this all the time, so i am happy there is relief on the horizon (i.e. next week), but it still makes me mindful that maybe there is too much going on right now. i can't believe it, but i haven't posted since sunday - it's already wednesday!!! i've never let that much time slide! of course - i want to blog everyday and hopefully would like to get in the practice of making it happen more than once a day (we shall see!). i am going to take a good look at my schedule and see what i could possibly rearrange and/or change to make life a little smoother.

don't get me wrong - i love all the hats that i wear: wife, dog "mommy" to a very demandingpup, pilates & yoga teacher, exercise junkie, personal assistant (work from home, but still another responsibility), modern dancer with a company (who has a show creeping up in march), choreographer is said company, blogger and the list goes on and on. i also constantly feel pulled in two directions (1) is to be an uber successful business woman and continue to grow not only the business, but the mind/body services i provide and (2) to be in the creative world of dance and be the homemaker i so desire to be (home cooking, an organized home, travel with the hubby etc.) i know i can do it all! it's just hard to maintain perspective and not over book myself.

i think it is so important to take a step back - at least once a month and evaluate how things are going. i love doing it at the beginning of each month. once i get all the beginning of the month stuff checked of the to-do list (invoice clients, pay rent for office, mortgage, etc.) i love to look at the coming month and prepare - and be open to changing things around to make my life as smooth and manageable as possible!

i am so excited about this plan for 2010. i got a planner pad for my birthday and am already jazzed to get it going! i am in no way have been compensated for writing about this product - i just love it and know that it will help me gain better perspective on balancing and my scheduling life! (why, yes...i am a little calendar obsessed....)

here's the inside - love it! there are 3 different "levels" and then two side bars.

in between each month there is a monthly calendar and a whole page for notes for the month. so many weekly calendars don't have the "look at the whole month" page, so i am totally into this feature.
the weekly view has three levels. the first has seven categories (that you pick and name) that can focus you during the week. i think mine are going to be: blissful body (business), blog, personal assistant job, exercise, home, book thoughts/ideas, and one that will rotate week to week depending on what is happening.
then comes with things to do by the day - based on the categories list. i love to check things off my list! (i'm actually a crosser - i love seeing that big line through what i have accomplished!)
then comes the specific layout of the week and time management. appointments, etc.
on the side there is a list of phone calls and expenses. yeah for keeping up with the business.
i am super (maybe a little overly excited) about this calendar. cheers to celebrating an organized, mindful life.

what do you juggle? and how do you keep your life managed, mindful, calm, and organized?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

beautiful day - yippee hooray!

today was so gorgeous outside. i went out to breakfast with the hubby and brother-in -law. then was home and trying desperately to catch up before the work week starts tomorrow. there is so the hubby and i used to be avid mountain bikers, but i had a bad wreck about 3 years ago and can't handle it anymore. the hubby used to try to convince me to bike, but after broken bones and too many stitches - my heart just isn't in it anymore. the hubby has given up on me biking with him, so now we hike! the beast loves it more than we do! we are so lucky he behaves off leash and he can wander, run, and explore!

we live uber close to one of the many entrances to the mountains to the sea trail. so lucky to be able to drive 5 minutes (would walk, but streets around it are way too dangerous and busy!)

enjoying the fabulous weather.....

working on breaking in these boots! the hubby and i got new hiking boots over a year ago and we are still breaking them in! wowsa! they are serious boots. not to beautiful, but really supportive and comfy!

so about 3 miles in we turned around and the hubby warned me "somewhere along the path i saw some poop in the middle of the path. be careful not to step in it." i said "why didn't you move it or show me when you noticed it?!?!" anyway, i was careful. he really psyched himself out and totally stepped in it. new shoes and all! yuck! oh well, that's how it goes sometimes. we laughed so hard and i made him stick the shoes in the trunk before heading back home.

went to dance rehearsal tonight and feel to good about the progress we are making on the piece i am choreographing. i am committed to having the skeleton done my december 18th. maybe i can post an "in progress" video soon.

have a fantastic evening and a great start to a full week!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

happy turkey day - belated!

hope everyone had an amazing thanksgiving! i know i did. food. family. fun. dogs. playtime. wine. and being at home. the one i spent my whole life (until 18) in. it sounds weird, but i am so grateful to go home to the same physical house that i was brought home to as a child. that's right folks. my parents never moved! hard to believe in this day and age. it's a small house and i think we could have used more room when we were teenagers, but we made it work and i think the fact that we lived so physically close to each other all those years is part of the reason we are such a close knit family!
anyway, i was a very bad blogger this weekend and totally forgot my camera everywhere we went! i thought it was in my purse, my no - couldn't find it! c'est la vie! sometimes it is so so so important to disconnect in order to reconnect and this time at home was all about that! i so rarely get to come home and it's nice to just chill out!
yippee for important family time. i've got a drive to get home this morning. am going to get in a little exercise (jillian micheal's level 2 of 30 day shred), get myself together and get on the road back to the hubby and my beast.
wishing you an amazing weekend of gratitude and thanksgiving. blessings to you!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

the skinny on the skin

my skin. mmmmm....i have had eczema, well - forever. not just your run of the average itchy skin. i mean make you crazy itchy uncomfortable red wanna-jump-out-of-it skin. i am not sharing this to complain or anything cause there are far worse things to deal with and i feel so fortunate that i just have super itchy skin! i just wanted to share because it is such a huge part of my life and a massive motivator for living the mindful life and finding ways to keep my body happy!!! i am also really thankful at how much better my skin is as compared to 10 years ago. It makes such a difference when you find what works!

i have run the gamut with figuring out my skin. anything from traditional dermatology (a lot of that - they are way to ready to give you a few cortisone shots and prescribe some prednisone (ick, yuck, gross!) and send you on your way) to detox diets and elimination diets, but finally -at the moment - have gotten so much relief from a few simple things:
  • traditional chinese medicine
i take chinese herbs everyday and really try not to go without missing my weekly acupuncture treatment. i can really feel the difference if i miss it! thank goodness for the community acupuncture clinic here in town. you receive treatment in a room with four lazy boys and you pay a sliding scale fee. i think the combo of herbs and treatment has kept my symptoms at bay for quite sometime and am grateful to have found such a fabulous practitioner.
  • moisture! moisture! moisture!
boring, but true. what to do if your skin is super dry and itchy? put cream on it - of course! but, i have to do this upwards of 3-4 times a day (more sometimes) to literally feel good in my own skin!
  • low stress living
i've really taken control of my schedule lately and mindfully placed times of relaxation and rest. if i don't put those things into my calendar - i will just fill it up. you could say i am highly motivated - that could be an understatement. i spent my entire 20's giving and doing for others without much thought of what i needed to receive. i know now that i need down time (whether i like it or not). and that down time has to happen or my stress levels start to show themselves in my skin. i guess it's a good measure as long as i pay attention! my favorite ways to unwind can be found in this post.
  • mindful eating
i really try not to overdo any of the "typical" allergens. i hardly eat much dairy at all or at least i do my best to avoid it! i don't do wheat more that once a day and always choose an alternative if there is the option (i love love love ancient spelt bread!!!) i have greens everyday in some way or another. i never overdo acidic foods like tomatoes or citrus. i have dandy blend instead of coffee. i started eating meat again (advised by my acupuncturist) and that has seemed to help a lot, but i don't overdo! i still heart a good vegan meal! also avoiding alcohol - as much as i can - really makes a difference. it's all about noticing what "fires" my skin up and knowing when i am in a place to enjoy it and when i need to avoid it to keep my body from tipping over the edge of comfort.

we all have such different, amazing bodies. i find it so interesting how some people function best with a vegan diet and others need meat while others seem to do great with some other alternative. there are so many ways to mix and match what healthy living ideas work for each body! what a blessing that we are all different (it would be too boring if we were all the same!)

thanks for reading my story of what influences my choices on a daily basis!

ooh la la...le bistrot fran├žais

should have gotten to this post last night, but had a little too much vino and was soooo ready for bed when i walked in the door! the busy day has kept me from getting this posted until now! wow - getting ready for the holidays is work!!! sadly, i am reaching a point where any amount of alcohol in my system totally prevents me from having a good night's sleep. even just a relaxing glass of wine! bummer. i am planning to take as much alcohol out of my life this holiday season as possible! maybe a glass of wine on thanksgiving and christmas eve, but that's about it for me. really anytime i have to wake up in the morning i am not going to have anything to drink. it's just reaching a point where it's not worth it. plus - i am coming to the conclusion that it really bothers my skin (skin story post coming soon.) i also think that i have put on a little bit of weight and want to be mindful how empty those calories are - i would much rather enjoy a yummy treat instead!

had a fun day yesterday although i did skip out on my beloved monday evening yoga class. boo. i just was feeling like hanging around the house with the hubby so i did.

last night, i had the great pleasure of getting together with three girl friends who i dearly love and so enjoy their company. we are all kindred spirits. we met at bouchon french bistro here in asheville. i have been wanting to eat here, but never had the chance! we actually originally wanted to go elsewhere, but they were closed on Monday - we got lucky that we ended up here!

judy (on the far left) really brought all of us together! she now lives on the west coast and we miss her so much - but, we always gather when she is back in town for a visit. kim (in the middle) was recently voted the 2nd best massage therapists in asheville. she is an amazing healing therapist. check her out here. cadence (on the far right) is one busy mama! she owns a fabulous spa here in town called cadence's contouring that offers all kinds of yummy things for the body like massage with kim, endermologie treatments, facials with pevonia, m'lis detoxification therapy and all sorts of good stuff. we always have so much to chat about when we get together and love love love to share our passions for finding a healthy happy body!!

another thing we all share is a passion for great food! here is le steak au poivre i got as my entree. (i actually started with a salad of greens, walnuts, and bacon, but was so famished and enthralled in conversation i forgot to snap a photo!) my favorite part of this meal was the brussel sprouts - they were fantastic. i ate all the veggies and half the beef - took the rest home to the hubby! trying to mindfully eat food so good it's hard to stop!!
le steak au poivre was served with these marvelous pomme frites - i shared these with everyone as much as i could! they were delicious and a special treat!
finally we all split two marvelous desserts - both are the house specialties. this photo does not do it justice at all. the top dish was the creme brulee flight!!! wowsa - four mini-brulees: vanilla, chocolate, cinnamon and coffee. we all agreed the coffee was the best! on the bottom was the african queen: ripe banana wrapped in filo pastry, baked to order and topped with housemade caramel sauce and madagascar vanilla bean ice cream - as described on the menu - it was sinful!!!
after the desserts - i flew out of there and came home to bed! i had a 7:30am client this morning!

tuesday exercise accomplishment: 20 minutes on bike while catching up on the latest health magazine, 50 minute kinesis class with stacey, 25 minute treadmill walk/run! done! had to work off all that yumminess from last night!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

yeah for a short week!

ahhh. sunday. today has been relaxing and rainy. i also got a ton accomplished on my dance piece this afternoon in rehearsal. also, trying to get organized for the beginning of the holiday season. wow. can't believe i am actually saying that! so grateful that i get to travel and be with my family for a few days! my bro owns a retail store so it's s bit of a bummer that he will be working away on black friday and can't stay the weekend. that's ok - i just wish him a much needed super busy day! i am super stoked on this short work week!

am setting some blogger goals for myself this week. i am loving this blog thing, but also needing to step it up a bit, get more clear on what i intend it to be and keep the motivation high. my goals for the week are:
  1. take photos daily for the blog
  2. jot down blogging ideas as they come to me in oh-so-beautiful new journal (pictured above)
  3. commit to bringing mindfulness to the blog (mindful living, eating, playing, loving, arguing, exercising, etc.)
there are probably many many more things this avid list maker could add to this, but i am going to keep my goals realistic. my ultimate goal is to use the blog to be more mindfully committed to living my life (in all ways listed above plus more!!!)

do you set goals for your blog? anyone out there have any suggestions about how they keep their blogging life interesting and inspired?

excited for the last few hours of sunday. going to dive into a book and snuggle with the beast.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

my moving women

i'm probably going to be posting a lot more about my dancing life as we are creeping closer and closer to our march 2010 show so there's lots of creative energies flowing and lots of work to do. this is the tough part. when you're working on all sorts of dances and there is so much choreography in your head (both yours and the other women's) and you still really have to think about it all. the awesome thing about dance is that eventually that thinking goes away and you're able to go on a sort of autopilot. the body takes over and you just flow and move and sense and love. these are the women i create with. you can check us out at our website. i was resistant at the beginning of the season about this upcoming show. we were all having a lot happening in our personal lives and not feeling the passion to create. i am so grateful to have gotten over that hump and now am immersed in the process. cheers to these women who keep the creative spirit in my life and in my body!

this is a promo picture from our march 2008 show called thin walls: a tale of the tangled and peculiar. this particular piece is called pathos sweet & lost choreographed by kathy. it was originally choreographed surrounding a sculpture by the same name in a local park. i'd had a bad incident and had stitches in my foot and a broken toe, so hence i sat. it became one of our favorite pieces of choreography.
this pic is of dead & lovely to the music of tom waits. it's quite dark humor. jenni choreographed it and it has been in our repertoire for many years.
these last two pics are from the movement for peace project we did in 2008. it was a giant event, but a special one and i love this first picture.
we'll be performing this piece again in our march show this year. it's all about the family unit and it's fun and exciting to perform.
hope you all enjoy this tiny glimpse into my creative world. you're invited to check out my dance bio here. it's so fun to see how different people explore their creativity. i'd love to hear about your most recent project/idea. or if you have ever had any experience with modern dance? have a great saturday!

Friday, November 20, 2009

inspiration...move me brightly....

i must admit - this is one of my most favorite pics from my july wedding. i just feel like it embodies the way i felt at that moment. super duper happy. the hubby in the background is making a bit if a funny face, but also looks happy. i found this passage the other day written in a news commentary (and i can't find it now!!). funny, the commentary was about not living together before marriage (which we did!), but i really thought is gave a great perspective.

Marriage is another word for "trust." Maybe "trust, plus." It is two people full of doubts, shortcomings, and love holding hands and jumping together. It's a risk, fraught with the potential to fail, and that makes it beautiful. Three-legged races, where two people hop, stumble, get back up, and maybe hit a stride until they fall again. It's funny, frustrating, and the wedding ring is a symbol for the rope tying two legs together.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

it's the most wonderful time of the year...really?!?!

so whether we like it or not the holiday season is upon us. and for many of us it can be a time of stress. let's not let that happen this year. start your season with some mindful intention and be ready to enjoy (not stress over) it.
last april, i went to duke integrative medicine in durham, nc for an amazing 8 day training on therapeutic yoga for seniors. it knocked my socks off! i loved every second and that really was the impetus for my to quit the drag me down full time job i had and pursue my passion for healing movement (my way!).
i think integrative medicine is the key to healthcare in the future and hope to be a part of it with the movement therapy i offer. i'll be sure to post more later on my love and passion for integrative medicine and why i think it is absolutely fabulous. (maybe, tomorrow?)

anyway, i am on the email list from duke and wanted to share what i received in my inbox today - just in time for the season.

6 Simple Steps to a Stress Free Season

when the world is still sleeping.

The caffeine and polyphenols in tea have the combined effect of mild stimulation and lasting calm.

Breathe in for 4 counts.
Hold your breath for 4 counts.
Release your breath for 6 counts.
This "UJI" breathing quickly reduces stress and calms your central nervous system.

Take a break from demanding tasks
(like shopping or cleaning)
and difficult people (like that family member who rubs you the wrong way)and do something that nurtures you!

Fill a bucket with warm water and add some drops of rosemary and peppermint oil.
Place a golf ball in the bucket as well.
Soak and massage your feet and calm your entire being.

Volunteer at a soup kitchen or a local shelter and help someone who is struggling. Discover the benefits of a practice of gratitude.

the hardest one for me is going to be to walk in the morning. i am going to set a goal to do it 2-3 times each week during this season. i would love to hear how you can bring some of these relaxing practices into your life. thanks to duke for sending these great ideas along to me!