Friday, November 16, 2012

Writing the scripts, Living the dream

There has been talk in my circles about releasing the story of past events. The way we remember things is usually skewed and if you could view it on a movie screen you would likely be amazed at the difference from what you are seeing and what you experienced. When we talk about rewriting past events the focus tends to be on healing a wound, or the negative loop that we keep reliving.

The idea of rewriting ones past or releasing the stories of the past is done in an effort to increase awareness and positivism---lighten the load and retain openness for moments yet to become.

In discussing relationships and relating with my friend Alan, he was explaining how we see what we are focused on and others see what they are focused on, much like we are all viewing life through our own cameras.

Next time you are next to or face to face with someone--- look around and see, hear and feel all the different stimuli surrounding the event and  take it all into consideration...

.... ask them to share with you in this experiment and experience how many different things hold your own and  the other's attention while trying to relate to one another. Even go within and scan the body and the messages and environment that is present there. So much going on!!
Multiply this in the multitudes of persons and dimensions, time and space and the math is beyond my comprehension :)

This different camera focus theory holds true for past event review. Think of a situation with another person where there is a disagreement, a miscommunication of words. You recall clearly that they said "X", they are holding onto that they said "Y". They are sure beyond a doubt as are you... who is right?  What occurred is truly your reality and only your reality.

Unless there was a recording device to review, how can we tell. Well--- we can't go around recording everything and even then we still must develop our own tools and wisdom bank account to guide us through this life :)

I realized to release a story line and cut the fishing line of events that tie you emotionally, spiritually, and physically and so on to these past memories... one must look at both the positive and negative aspects of it.

In surrendering this past cord, one must release the whole nugget, keeping only the wisdom.  The ego strokes and the ego dents alike are cast away, processed and sent equally into the sea.

The wisdom to pull away from a hot burner is kept, but not the burned finger; nor the unscathed finger and the pride of not being burned that time.

To be present, open and free one must pay the burner on the stove the same attention, and knowing that situations may occur in that session of cooking where one could become burned.

In cutting the cord of the whole, incorrect, actually imagined memory the unjaded and green eden of mind can then reemerge.
From this new and open place the vista will be more expansive and release judgements of oneself and others.

Being able to see the red rose for its present and current redness and not a rose from a past lover, or an arrangement from a funeral.
The wisdom gained from being bedside at someones passing can remain, but the swirl of feelings about it need not be mixed in.

To see the light that shines currently on the red rose and then be able to follow a new string. this is the work. this is the key. this is the balance in the release.

Have fun practicing this aspect, it's all we can do ..... ~just journey~

Friday, August 3, 2012

you are served.

Last night I had a plate of Patience, Gratitude and Learning moments that I would like to share. 
After yoga and studying, I went to meet up with friends at the local watering hole. (Barton Springs Pool!
They were finishing a long trail ride on bikes and meeting me there. 

It was a special night because when the moon is full many folks take to howling from the 68 degree Spring-fed waters!! So we meet up, take a dip, make noises akin to a wolf, Chewbacca, and a bevy of Beached Seals!! 
They guys were starved and even tho I was not hungry and wanted to go home to read, I was persuaded to join them in some Tex Mex.

We tried one place but it closed at ten and we were right on the ten o'clock mark so we went one place down the street. Its Austin TX so Tex Mex is prevalent! We were seated right away on an outside patio. This is where it gets really interesting, Really Quickly;

A man drops off some chips without a word. Another table of four is seated near us.
At this point we don't know who are server is, as people are around but no one has communicated with us. The other four top gets waited on and their server departs. She comes back with drinks for them.

One of my friends, lets call him sharing that he notices a table piled full with dirty plates and says this is a bad sign for service and I agree, tossing him kudos for his detective work. I offer to go to the bar for waters as I am in need and the guys are antsy. Quickly Ace takes the initiative and goes inside and I sit back with  my boyfriend.  The man who gave us chips comes back to our table and takes our drink order and we also order a food item.
Meanwhile our friend comes back and has missed this exchange. Ace drops off water glasses at our table, sits for a moment, then says calmly,  "Lets leave."
We reply there isn't really anywhere to go... He says "well, I'm leaving" and gets up, quick pats on our backs and he has gone.

As he is leaving, there is a stir.  Ace had talked to the manager, also a barkeep, and now our server is coming out with drinks. The communication has opened up slowly, yet the action plays out quickly. I wish I had noticed the actual time.... maybe ten or more actual minutes have passed since we were seated?

Yes the other table seated around the same time had a different experience, but how do we compare? Our experience is ours to be with right?!

So he has gone, his drink order and the nachos come and as the remaining twosome we are bewildered. We right our ship to the wave of attention from staff and get things settled that we are staying and its all good. Whew!

As we sit, I recall the teachings I have been learning this summer in my 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Certification at Dharma Yoga. It is all bubbling into the present moment as I am seeing my self observe this situation and cannot believe the patience space I am holding.  I was able to employ an observer's stance and just observe without getting into the situation. This kept me from acting to quickly.

Had we really been on a boat, it would have tipped over soon after we boarded! 

I begin to think about Sunyata- the Buddhist term describing emptiness. Sunyata, pronounced Shun-yah-tah, referes to the inherent emptiness of all things and situations. The value placed on these things is tied to perception and the circumstances applied to it. As situations, perceptions and all things change so does this value... therefore the object /situation is empty of value until we place it there....

Please Read more on the link for a further explanation  pertaining to non-attachment.

An example my teacher illustrated used  the Tibetan Singing bowl we use in class ringing it to signal the beginning and end of class. He rang it a few times while explaining that we all see and hear and agree that his is a singing bowl. He wadded up a piece of paper and tossed it into the bowl it then became a trash can!

This also speaks to the impermanence of all things and how there are no inherently good or bad actions. There is only the circumstances to which the decision or action is applied.

While reading the Bhagavad Gita we are shown that one of the main characters must decide if he is to go to war or leave the land in peace. Both are not what he wants and hurt is heart, but what would serve the greater good???

Another book in the Summer Reading list was Awakening the Buddha Within, authored by Lama Surya Das.  In this wonderful book he relates many stories  to assist us in applying the Eight Fold Path of Buddhism to our everyday modern lives.
One example he illustrates is how an Upstate New York Monastery he was spearheading was being overrun with cockroaches! The monks were at first trying to make it work, but then threatened with being shut down by health inspectors and also with students leaving. Their practice of non violence and easing suffering were being tested in a real and tangible way. After many meetings, meditations, and prayers of release; the extermination trucks pulled up and the school remained open and roach free. The situation may have warranted the School to be turned into a cockroach sanctuary if it was discovered to be the last remaining specimens of the species. In this situation the value of the school and the teachings and works that would be activated called for this action.

To recognize the breakdown in communication and realize that when we act quickly and with lazer focus, so much of what is happening can be left out. As we sat and finished our meal we talked with the manager, the server, another server and we were able to share all sides of the story and
transmute karma in this lifetime! 

There is the the karma of this lifetime and also many lifetimes. I like to think on the karma of this lifetime and apply it in the present happenings.
For example, by choosing to stay and work the situation we eased the outcome. Our server first had come over and said, "What is going on, Now I'm in trouble with my boss." He said this quietly and with a pained expression. This man had been working hard all night and was confused, as he was doing the best he could with his circumstances. Also the manager we talked with during and after the meal was able to understand how the events unfolded.  What if our server was fired on the spot, went home and had to move and leave town and his family, etc etc you get the idea. Ace had just had a long bike ride, sugar crashed, very hungry and thirsty and also had a long drive home and that was his story.

The threads are all woven together in a tapestry and pull on one will push on another
and so on and so forth....

I was watching this happen to me in real time! It was such a different experience than I might have had. I was so excited to dissect the situation  and apply the ideas I had been working on and reading about all summer. My boyfriend and I shared the aspects and had a nice teaching and learning discussion. We checked on Ace and he had safely made his way home. What a weird wild wonderful world we live in. Taking a few deep breaths and using my new toolkit is keeping the Vern Boat afloat with a wave of wonder.........................

Friday, July 27, 2012

What I would tell my newbie yoga-self....

One thing that is hard for many new practitioners of yoga asana is to grasp the meaning of the poses. The meaning as it pertains to why they are performing that posture, how to perform a pose, and also what it means within their body.
If I could tell my newbie yoga self any one thing it would be to FREAKIN RELAX!
One doesn't go to toe shoes the first day of 
Ballet class ;) This practice takes time to cultivate like a rose garden <3

When I first started doing yoga I had heard it was a good thing to try for flexibility. This is back in the 90's :) when Austin TX had a handful of studios, if even that many, as opposed to the numerous locations there are now. A hometown testament to Yoga's acceptance, growth and popularity in present day.

I approached the yoga like I did my kick boxing classes, I would kick faster, higher and better than anybody else, or at least try darn hard!!! 
Well, in case you didn't hear, Yoga is not designed to work best that way. You can hurt yourself trying to make pretzels out of limbs that are not used to that movement. The goal is the ride and journey on the breath, not in getting your hands to touch your toes straight out of the gate. Yoga is about making your own strides and benchmarks and working with what you've got. Others can demonstrate poses, give us feedback, and some people use mirrors for body information: The idea is to be in the body you are in and not worry about what others are doing to their bodies.

In fact, the more I have learned about the body and about Yoga postures, even in the safest efforts of a led class, one should really come to know their own body.  This is hands down the best benefit of my practice. I had always taken my athletic nature for granted. I hardly cared about each step I took, as long as I was going somewhere. As one ages and changes in activities the injuries of repeated efforts can set in. Getting to know your body and becoming mindful of its movements and your own skeletal frame is liberating and informs you of other body processes.

I remember being nervous if I didn't know what the teacher had directed, and jump to make shapes like the others and try not to look like meant to do that... all this to say, I had a lot of mind chatter and judgement and missed alot of what was going on and intended to be going on in a Hatha class. Hopefully the teacher will say a few things like "its not about how you look, its how you feel." "Try to deepen the breath, close the eyes and be in your own practice."

I also attended Kundalini classes which included poses that are held longer, with detailed instructions and a focus on the breath. These classes served to cement me in the work of the breathing. After I saw a vigorous Asana sequence performed on stage as part of a music show, I was hooked, I said "I want to do that!" 

I subscribed to a popular yoga mag and would read and do some of the suggested poses at home. I think signing up for a beginner series or taking a couple of private sessions and learning some of the lingo on ones own is a recipe for success!...Especially if you are competitive or shy in group settings, this will take some of the distraction out of the equation and help you move your yoga train along to the next stop, where you can start linking the poses, getting deeper breaths and great stretches and quieting the mind. OMMMM!

Even though I was still focused on the strange newness of it all, the stage was set for me to begin the journey. 
If I could tell my newbie yoga self anything else it would be to open my take modification suggestions, to use the props, to listen to the teacher and to my inner teacher and my breath.

So many times we want something so bad and are led to steamroll it with our focus and can smother or attain it and hardly recognize it after we've roadkilled it! A decade later, as I attend teacher training I am still learning. The body changes, the mind shifts, the goals get met and new ones get set, and some fade away.

If you have tried yoga and had a bad experience, please try a different class or studio. If you are a dedicated yogi, try to remember your newbie mind and keep it fresh while applying your wisdom :)

Friday, June 22, 2012

Dogs and Cats.... Living together!!!

from IMDB website....
Dr. Peter Venkman: This city is headed for a disaster of biblical proportions. 
Mayor: What do you mean, "biblical"? 
Dr Ray Stantz: What he means is Old Testament, Mr. Mayor, real wrath of God type stuff. 
Dr. Peter Venkman: Exactly. 
Dr Ray Stantz: Fire and brimstone coming down from the skies! Rivers and seas boiling! 
Dr. Egon Spengler: Forty years of darkness! Earthquakes, volcanoes... 
Winston Zeddemore: The dead rising from the grave! 
Dr. Peter Venkman: Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together... mass hysteria! 
Mayor: All right, all right! I get the point! 

.... one of my favorite part of Ghostbusters movie, they are trying to get the attention of the Mayor to approve their "help" with the outbreak in the city.

It's like what happens when working with Yoga poses sometimes. They are trying to get your attention. The poses are creating a dharana, focus point, for you to rest your mind on.

This led me to a new and interesting concept I am excited to try out later.

I woke this morning to my cat poking me as he does most mornings. I try to get mad at him and then he rolls around and purrs and is so excited to see me awake, I can't stay mad. He also helps me study by lying on my notecards and books and looking deeply into my eyes conveying that he would like to be petted now, which is always.

He can roll around and get into total relaxation, his bones seeming to turn to butter. But he sees a movement, and BAM- alert, ready to jump into action. Poised and in control of his body.

He is a dumpy, yet agile, fur ball who starts and ends the day with me and has done so for almost ten years now. :)

I visited a friend and her dog was outside the patio glass most of our visit. He performed some stretches on the lawn and also made several attempts to coax her into letting him inside with the classic puppy dog eyes! When her boyfriend came home we had a front stage view of both of their dogs just excited beyond belief at his return. They were without abandon showing their joy to be with him.  

Dogs brings a loyalty and whole heartedness to their focus. They know what they love and want more of it. 

They share our facial recognition software, allowing them to read our faces and emotions and respond.

Which brings me to my conceptual application to posing in yoga. When performing a posture it can be tough to relax, whether its your first time or you are a seasoned yogi.  It can be a task to hold a posture and clear your mind. Over time I have been able to reach the meditative quality while doing yoga, tuning into myself. This doesn't happen right away and thinking upon this concept can help you to realize this within yourself.

If I could be more relaxed like my cat, alert and fully present....feeling the fascia release from my structure, seeming to melt like butter with every exhale.  
Also, I would like to have the focus and excitement of the dog energy. The focus to wait patiently and know myself and be ready to give. To have loyalty and love something so much I am beside myself with glee when I see it. To be surprised and fully drop in, extending every bit on every inhale. Thus illustrating  the dynamic of what should be going on inside when doing yoga poses.

Many times when we are new to the practice or expecting the same result from a pose, we are not scanning the body and where it is for us right now. Today your poses will be different. Your body needs something different every day from these exercises.  You may have slept in a kink or slept too much or not at all. Your digestion may be sluggish or its hot or cold outside. Take care to factor in these things when you roll out your mat. 

Also let these things go, imagine the cat laying on the instructions like he will learn through osmosis. :) 
Then reignite your inner puppy and give yourself that extra bit of heart. Stay a little longer at the door knowing your master will return.  Go out for the frisbee one more time, just because you can :P

Dogs and Cats living together! on your mat, in your heart in your head, and maybe in your bed. <3

Thursday, June 14, 2012

the blooming of the Lotus

the lotus. 

blooming beautiful from water, muck and dirt.

symbolic meanings across the wide pond of doctrines: 

cosmic harmony.

divine ideation. 


sacred bean. 

openness and wisdom.

 strong and unbreakable. 

a miracle of beauty light and life. 

I find this picture above from Celebrate Austin's Facebook page, profound as it captures all of these aspects mentioned above and flushed out in the article below. 

I like the mirror imagery and imagine the flower above is the same as it is below and reminding us to bring to the surface the true nature of ourselves. We can mask this in ourself or not work to find the deeper meaning in many events of our lives. Glossing, skipping stones over places where going deeper could make a great day greater or show you more meaning in a not so great day.

Stare into the photo above and read over the aspects highlighted. Maybe repeat some of the words and feel them in your mouth, head and heart. 

Breathe deeply and connect to the Lotus flower that you have become thru all of your hard works. The Lotus that you have bloomed from birth to now. And know that you will continue to bloom and rebirth. Picking up, dusting off, diving deeper into yourself, this world and other worlds yet to discover. 

by Rev. Sue Annabrooke Jones

    The lotus flower, a type of water lily, is held sacred among many of the world's religions and cultures.

      With its roots in the mud, the lotus rises through the murky water to blossom clean and bright, symbolizing to the Buddhist purity, resurrection and the enlightened being who emerges undefiled from the chaos and illusion of the world.

      The eight-petalled lotus that is used in Buddhist mandalas symbolizes cosmic harmony, and the thousand-petalled lotus represents spiritual illumination.

      In the iconography of the Greek and Roman Christian Churches, the Archangel Gabriel is portrayed holding a spray of water lilies in every picture of the Annunciation when he appears to the mother of Jesus.

      The Hindus of India noted that the ungerminated seeds of the lotus contain perfectly formed leaves, a blueprint for the future plant. Thus to the Hindu, the lotus represents divine ideation passing from abstract into concrete form.

      The lotus is featured prominently in Egyptian art and architecture, especially in connection with Egypt's temples. In Egyptian mythology, the lotus was associated with the sun, because it blooms by day and closes by night. The lotus also symbolized rebirth, since one Egyptian creation myth tells of the newborn sun god rising out of a floating lotus. The blue lotus was sacred to the ancient Egyptians, who valued it not only for its rich perfume but also for its narcotic ability to produce heightened awareness and tranquillity.

      To Native Americans, who found all parts of the American lotus edible, the flower symbolized the sun's power to transform energy into food. The seeds were once an especially important part of the Native American diet; in fact, the genus name Nelumbo means "sacred bean."

      The lotus is also highly esteemed by Taoists. Among the Eight Immortals of Taoism is Ho Hsien Ku, her symbol the open lotus blossom, signifying openness and wisdom.

      A feature of the lotus plant that has found its way into Chinese poetry is its stalk, which is easy to bend but difficult to break because of its many strong fibres. Poets liken this quality to the bonds between lovers or family members.

      The lotus flower is a favorite of Taoist artists, who paint it to remind us of the miracle of beauty, light and life, and to communicate an understanding of the Tao and of our place in the world.

Monday, June 11, 2012

standing with one leg in the sink

This morning as I was getting ready for work, I decided to wear a girly girl skirt. It is kind of poufy like a tutu, not overly so, but for me it just feels really girly.

I am not a frilly girl, I have always been this way. I can appreciate bows, ribbons, curls and other ruffles that are associated with little girls, but compared to my sister I never took as easily to those things. After putting on the skirt and giving a twirl in the mirror, I felt decidedly girly!

After spending some time with my year old niece the day before, I felt a freshness breathed back into my attitude. She is so gentle and naturally dainty, loves her bows and rocks cute pink shoes. She is also a poignant reminder how the little ones watch and learn so much from our actions.

My sis takes care to allow her to be recognized as a girl and also not to put stamps and identity through that, which I love :) It can be daunting to feel that girly bar raised higher and higher as you grow and so many identifiers along the way.

I had about three minutes in my morning routine before the "must be in the car" deadline.  I decided I needed a last minute shave of the knees and shins to complete my readiness and face the day complete as a girl. I have a tiny stall shower and shaving in that dark corner of a place is challenging enough, so my thought pattern goes......

"Hey I can just stick a leg in the pedestal sink and get on down the road."
...Quick spray of shave cream and so on.

As soon as I put the first leg into the sink, my memory conjured up the first time I secretly shaved in my bedroom in sixth grade with a Tupperware bowl and my mom's borrowed pink Bic (there was a little blood, and fun bonding with mom when I was discovered).

Then a quick montage flash ran the filmstrip of one Zillion locker room minutes from my stint with girls sports through high school and sportscamps: Laughing, pranking, bras, boys and hairspray....

Yet another memory flash of clips:
Behind the scenes in bathrooms, dressing rooms, youth camps and sharing bunk rooms in adult years, and places where women are minus men.Oh how we interact and pass on old wives tales, birthing stories, makeup  and dating tips and just being girls. The flowing and flowering interactions being in proximity to women, older, younger, sharing space and time.

I am all for gender equality and realize that we are historically and genetically and cellularly all human. In my opinion, there truly is not a discernment, on some levels, between men and women. Arguably, in nature vs. nurture conversations, we have a cultural aspect to our wisdom. We learn who we are through the construct of our current culture.

Presently, the trending global connections and enhanced accessibility to other cultures we are able to expand as we age and incorporate new ideas into this cultural mishmash.

I worked hard to erase any lines of men vs. women in my makeup and found a dead end. When I choose to embrace and celebrate differences I feel more freedom.

As I put my second leg in the sink, I felt the pang of missing these interactions. I literally said, "Where are my girls at?" These events have fallen away from my life construct.  So many meetings with family or friends are big gatherings and with a number of people and more diffifcult to have those deeper and organic interactions that you have with smaller or split groups.

Recently I went to a yoga class that was for women only. I had paid ahead of time and showed up to the event as my smartphone calendar instructed me and not until I put the mat down did I realize there were no men in sight, none on campus and none hiding in the bathroom. The studio's mood was decidedly giddy (in part due to those running the class :) and also relaxed in the way that women, in my experience, are behind closed doors; a veil, mask and edge comes off as we soften into each other.

Its not that we perform for the men, I think we are just called upon by them for certain things and they desire/need specific interactions. When men are not present, we dive fully into femininity with no excuses, no barriers.

And this isn't all pretty or petty... Women can be very strong and opinionated and nervous around other women. It has taken me many years to become comfortable within my own skin and flush out relationships with other females. There were many times I was bullied, embarrassed or feeling just plain out of place.

I can recall a first experience in fifth grade, changing out for gym in the room adjacent to the stage. It was such an odd room and poorly lit and the stage was next to the cafeteria so there was this hollowness to the walls and we could hear everything happening outside.

Couple the outer noise with the activity in the room, many girls trying not lose ribbons and keep shoes straight and I don't remember anywhere to sit... it was intensely exciting; being the oldest grade at the school and such important tasks and responsibilities lie ahead. This was where we stood up for our friends, witnessed different developing bodies and could see the true nature of each other.

This year I was blessed to be in a women's circle for a time, where ladies from my community group met weekly. We had no agenda, just a designated time and place...and beautiful sharing and growth commenced.  A palpable support net was woven and we witnessed birthing of deep desires, being able to call them forward and give them voices and eyes through all of us.

  • Create a special space and time with those in your gender group or within your family to meet and just be.
  • Carve out time with yourself to recall interactions you have had in the past and how those have shaped you and your relationships you have had and are having today.
  • Heal any wounds from past experiences with a group and give them the bandaid they deserve! Think on how you might be able to interact/react differently or with new eyes.
  • Feel the support of your kinsmen and women even when they are not around you. and then seek them out and let them know they are special to you ;)
All this to say, I remembered, missed and yearned for more Girly time this morning as I was standing with one leg in the sink...

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

so to begin my day at work I usually log onto STEREOMOOD, which is a very fun playlist website and I pick INSPIRE... and this song  WE ARE YOUNG by FUN comes on! I sang this song for the entire MEMORIAL DAY HOLIDAY recently, humming it in the kayak :) Just popped in and stayed all day. I even pulled up the video to show my friends that day. So when it played first thing this morning I had to share more in depth with y'all!

This video is very cool with its special effects and each time I watch it I see more cool stuff. I really like it as an expression of the song. It takes it to another level for me, rather than telling the story of the song it illustrates the angst, anger, and confusion of youth trying to swim upstream in the night.

First let me tell you how much I love this tune. not just the lyrics, but the actual song and beat, phrasing and music.... couple that with a great message in the lyrics which are shown here.

Then they gotta go and make a spoof which takes this song to a whole new platform and speaks to my mid life nearing heart! ENjoy!!!


Tuesday, May 8, 2012


One year I signed up for Netflix and on my streaming recommendations was this little series called "COSMOS", masterminded by the brilliant astronomer, astrophysicist, cosmologist (star makeup, not face :) MR. CARL SAGAN. 

The setting was late 1970's era giddy sets and costume, but the knowledge was as spell binding as his delivery.  Mr. Sagan was intent on looking into your soul and helping share his knowledge of star stuff in the way he already knew your brain could handle it. The result a masterpiece of scientific communication shown on PBS and now available to me through the magic of the interwebs. 

Carl knew ways to ask the big questions, scare your pants off about how large the universe is and then demonstrate how magical life is with displays of scientific instruction like your favorite neighborhood science teacher.  The top example being the Apple Pie Segment

"If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe."

After the riveting thirteen episodes of COSMOS, I found myself looking for more displays of Saganisms. I became a net stalker, searching for more and unearthed that he also was the M.C. for the ahead of its time book-made-into-movie "CONTACT". Foot note: this movie beautiful and intense in its own right, was also the launching pad for: the beautiful and intense, can't spell his name but don't send him packing with that six pack, Matthew McConaughey.  

Now that you have an idea of the genius and lovable brilliance that comprises Mr. Carl Sagan, I would like to inject the folllowing food for thought:

"One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.” ― Carl Sagan

  • What has bamboozled you that you have long forgotten the truth?
  • What story line have you continued to write even though the bamboozled pen ran dry long ago.... 
  • What can you awaken, refresh, energize from deep within your truest self???? 
  • Forget those playground bullies, latchkey days, daytime soaps, fights with the noisy neighbors, self inflicted wounds...dive in and resurface your non-bamboozled soul. 

We have had some recent rains and storms and illuminating moons here in ATX. I am feeling washed anew and springy.
I also have a deeper understanding of the PALE BLUE DOT that we ride and call home thanks to Sir Sagan.  

If you are short on time, check out THIS LINK... sit down and strap on a belt... 

Big Sagan Love

For more on Sagan try the embedded links. 
***be warned, you may be on your way to a journey deep without and deep within.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Be Free at B Free Yoga Studio

Be Free at B Free Yoga Studio!

BFree is located on the cusp of the West Campus Area of Austin TX uniting the workday crowd and University of Texas Students with the convenience of central location and a great studio spot.  There is ample parking and a wonderful flow that starts from the moment you arrive in the space!  They sport two large rooms with wood floors, men and womens showers and restroom areas.  Towels and mats available for rent.  The main room can be heated and usually is! There are also dimmers to the warehouse-style finished ceiling which help to accentuate each segment of the class from warm up to cool down.

Greeted by a large desk and always a smiling and warm person, the outside energy mixes here creating a freshness.  Once you have signed in you will probably go to the main studio room to the right. This room is oblong and nicely finished for maximum yoga potential.  It is a tight squeeze for three long rows, but you will practicing with some experienced and also generally cordial yogis, who are easy to negotiate mats with. 
The Principal person I have interacted with is Shelby and she is a studio hopper's dream! She effortlessly recalled my name as I returned and made me feel welcome yet not as though I stood out. She also sits in on many evening classes creating a sense of congruence and community.  Her boisterous laugh, smiling announcements, and her yoga enthusiasm echo the positive vibes .  Gioconda Parker's Saturday morning and Monday night flow is a vinyasa wave of "North Shore" Caliber. G'nell brings a huge breadth of knowledge and unending joy to her Anusara Inspired practice. Victoria shares inspiring thoughts throughout her flow classes and also leads the BWeird series which expands the edges of the mat with various themed sessions.

I have relished in the B Hot class and most of the B Flow class and attending evenings and weekends. There is a full schedule holding space for a bounty of classes and workshops and special events. In their own words..."  We are a warm and welcoming Austin Yoga Community with Vinyasa Flow, Hot 26, Yin Yoga and Anusara Inspired classes. Come in and check out BFree with our great 10 day pass for only $20..  

After you have participated in a well led class, received savasana; there are ample cubbies, showers and bathrooms to accommodate you. Now these are space conscious but well laid out.

BFree has incorporated a new monthly offering called BWeird.  The last offering was a class complete with glo-in-the-dark paint, light show set to the back drop tunes of Pink Floyd. The next one is set to be Surfing on the Mat!

I appreciate BFree as a studio in the heart of Austin. They have consistently offered heart and soul in their offerings of classes.

They are a fairly new studio with an upcoming Anniversary event. April 21, 2012. I am posting directly from their website here....

BFREE 1st Anniversary Celebration


Celebrating our 1st Anniversary!
Saturday, April 21st:

8 a.m. -  BNew
10 a.m. - BFlow
12 p.m. - BHot
2-5 p.m.- LIVE! Music/ Lunch
2-7 p.m. - Local Artist + Activities
4-7 p.m. - Workshop style handstand/ arm balance/ hip opener (not a class, come and go as you like, door will be open. Ask, questions, demonstrations, practice)
7 p.m. - Announce Share the Shine! Winner and Giveaways
7:45- 9 p.m. - BWeird Special Event!

Join us for a HUGE Celebration! Honoring the fun, happy, truth that we are ALL made of, 
BFree to BYou! You are appreciated, supported, and loved.
Check it out!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

"Ahead of Their Time"

"Ahead of Their Time"
An Arthouse Exhibition 

Our dear community member, Nany Zepeda, entered the contest, "Ahead of Their Time", for School Aged Youth and was awarded a place on the Gallery wall. The opening reception was held Saturday March 31st at The Jones Center, 700 Congress Avenue in Austin. Her photo and all contestant entries will be on view here through April 22nd.

Nany is overjoyed with her inclusion in the project and says "This contest gives the opportunity to young artists around Austin to be part of an official art exhibition in one of the most influential places that any artist living in Austin dreams to be a part of...the Universe chose me and one of the photographs of India to be one of the blessed artists featured in this exhibition."

NANY ZEPEDA's Featured Photograph

Nany also asks us to "celebrate with me, the magic of art through photography, but most importantly to celebrate the mysteries of India reflected on the eyes of humanity."

Nany is very active in the Amala community:  Participating in Young Artists in ServiceBhatti Mines School , and  One Village Projects.

Nany traveled to India on Service Retreat with the Amala Foundation- Bhatti Mines School Project.  Here she worked with the community and school, headed by Mr. Santosh Singh. The retreat creates a wonderful sharing between the school children, families and travellers. There is much work and play and deep learning that occurs on these occasions.  

Ms. Zepeda is a bright shining lady who is usually found smiling and hugging and laughing. She has been known to say supportive and powerful things to her friends when they need to hear a comforting word. Living large and much beyond her years, she has a grasp of Universal Humanity, that she shares through her art and words here..

"In November of last year, I travel to India for two weeks and a half. One of the most amazing and powerful experiences that I have ever had in my life.  All the mysteries of India hold space for me to exerience myself even deeper; in many way I never thought possible. The trip impact me so deeply that the repurcussions still here, in my everyday life. One of the great impacts that I had from this was reflected on one of my biggest passions. ART!

While in India, I got to take photographs of many of our family member of India. In their faces the reflection of love and gratitude was alive and vibrant. However, every time I took a picture I wasn't thinking about a "Masterpiece" or an "Art Compassion." Every shoot was just a human to human  connection that a simple camera give to me and the side effect was that I was creating a masterpiece with every shoot.
And on the past few months these photographs have given me what India did.....the opportunity to experience myself even more deeply. 
The photographs had won many contests and recognized by so many people, But most importantly they met India through my art."

Many community members were on hand at the unveiling reception and a few  are pictured below.  Thank you all for your continued support of Nany, the Youth and our Community! Peace and Love... and ART :)

Nany with Linda Freiheit

Tammy Howard and Daughter Amber :)

Crystal Schrieber and Jake Howard

Nany and Maya Adjianai

Majida Al-Hussaam
Maya and Kris "Cricket" Ferrari

Nany and Veronica

Thursday, February 16, 2012

around the corner of the corner store

As I waited next to your bike at the quik mart, while you ran in for an energy drink....
I peered around the corner of the corner store.
 I spy a couple leaning against their car....

She holding two pieces of paper and him a cardboard case of beer. 
They are locked in on each other's gaze and smiling really big.

 I zoom in with my natural stare and see her passing the papers over from one hand to the other and
 back again, laughing playfully, showing all her teeth and shining brightly in the dimly lit street.

He reaches out his free hand to point to one and then I realize they are lottery tickets and
they have placed a wish on each paper.

A dream and a prayer held in the space between them, although they have already won.
Winning the prize of each other's shared company and dollars scratched off or not they have a recipe for a grand Valentine's day night.