Purposeful Play

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“If you wait to do everything until you’re sure it’s right, you’ll probably never do much of anything.” – Win Borden

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Upon leaving teaching dance full time to be a mom and explore my other passions, like teaching yoga and making malas – I spent a lot of time playing. A lot of time tinkering, experimenting, journaling, asking questions and figuring things out – as I continue to do.

Things have evolved. I didn’t start with it all figured out, and I certainly still don’t have it all figured out now. My first blog post looked like this. One of my first mini malas looked like this. My first days as a mom looked like this. My workspace once looked like this

Beginning was the best thing I could have done. Figuring it out along the way with a sense of play + curiosity created motion and lightness informing where I am now.

There is tremendous freedom in doing what lights you up. In giving yourself permission to do what you love, because that is your unique gift you have to offer this world. So go ahead and begin. PLAY. Let it be MESSY + confusing and I’m sure you will come out with something beautiful on the other end. And of course, I’d LOVE to hear what you create. I’ll be making a mess right alongside you. :)

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How to Create an Altar : Part 2

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Once you have found a space, start to gather and arrange meaningful objects on your altar. Chose things that inspire you and lift you up.

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Here are some options to get you started :

  • A symbol of something that helps you feel guided and protected : Maybe it’s a statue or picture of a god, goddess, angel, saint, etc..  I have Mother Mary, Ganesh, and Shiva sprinkled on my altar.
  • Pictures of loved ones that perhaps you don’t get to see anymore but feel a strong connection to. I have a picture of my grandma.
  • Candles: Something light + bright that can symbolize your desires burning and forming into this world. I love my magic hour candle.
  • A little bowl of water for fluidity and nourishment.
  • Plants to purify, ground you, and watch grow. I love my air plants & succulents and although they aren’t on my altar, they are close by.
  • Elements from nature : leaves, branches, flowers, fruits, rocks, shells, etc.
  • Crystals : for added magic.
  • Mala beads : to use for meditation or charge with positivity.
  • Dried sage : To clear your space.

 

Here are some items you can keep nearby :

  • Journal : help you connect to yourself
  • Inspiring book : some of my favorites
  • A meditation shawl : to keep you cozy
  • Deck of intuitive cards : to play with and receive guidance from
  • Your yoga mat /meditation cusion : to create a comfortable seat
  • Essential oils : to energize and refresh

Whatever you decide to collect will be something that is in constant flux. This is what my altar looked like when we were living in Germany, and now it quite a bit different, but still feels right. So give yourself permission to let it evolve. And I can’t wait to hear what special things you gather!!

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5 Things I Do to Stay Upright

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In a city that is zooming and buzzing finding time and space to connect to myself has become so incredibly important. When I practice my daily rituals I am way more grounded and clear.  When I don’t (which, with an 8 month old showers are still a little tricky) I am completely off my center. I end up whittling the day away with no clear focus – other than being a mom of course.

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Here are a few things I try to tune into daily:

The trick is to prioritize these even though there are countless other ways I can spend my time. The small investment in these moments really ends up paying off.  I become clear as to how to spend my time and most importantly I end up feeling good.

My mom rides horses. My friend Valerie cooks.  My husband hikes. And my grandma knits – even though she is blind! What do you do to keep yourself plugged in and grounded to yourself?

 

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Trajectory Shifts

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I write to process things… like my many evolving answers to the question: “What do you want to be when you grow up?”  I started my meandering career with the dream of being a professional dancer, then I wanted to be a really effective dance educator, then I wanted to be a rockstar yoga teacher that leads retreats all over the world (I still want that), and most recently I was an aspiring health coach after my incredible year at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition.

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rainbow notes from my last call with Jeanne

So I began to work with a business coach to help me build a successful health coaching practice, but while working with Jeanne I realized if I was really true to myself and what I wanted MOST I would instead focus on making things (like mini malas) and teaching things (like yoga) that help people connect to themselves…because that is what I really feel called to do.

So right now I am a MAKER and a TEACHER and that feels really good.

The amount of shifts I have had in my trajectory might seem crazy, but I think it is all a part of the game of figuring out that very BIG question “What do you want to be when you grow up?” and listening to the answer your heart is giving.  

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Figuring Things Out

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Summer is the perfect time to play – but really anytime is.

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I have been playing for the past six months every mini mala I made.  I needed to explore so I could figure out how I want charm & magic to look and feel like.  Now I am starting to create an actual structure so I can make many, many mini malas to be shared with many, many people (!).  I don’t think I would have arrived to this place of clarity, if I didn’t play with flea market findings and explore different ways to package with washi tape.

So go ahead and explore whatever your heart wants to figure out, and if you want to read more of my ramblings – here is a little blast from the past post on play 

“The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the objects it loves.” – Carl Jung

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Be Seen

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I used to get stuck when I wanted to express an idea.  I didn’t know where to share it (Facebook / Instagram / blog post…) or if it was even worth sharing – so I mostly kept it to myself.  But I am figuring out that when I am able to fully express myself I feel super fulfilled and happy.  It’s tricky because I have all these personas: new mom, expat, health coach, yoga teacher, mini mala maker, etc. and I want to share really meaningful things without being self-promotiony or preachy.

Through working with my coach Jeanne, and taking this Personal Branding E-course by Braid Creative – I realize that when I am creative, when I am making things, wrapping packages, using hot pink or washi tape – I feel fulfilled.  I still may overstep my boundaries on Facebook and Instagram, but maybe I will figure it out one day. I’m trusting myself more and saying what I want to say (most of the time) – and that feels really good.

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playing with stamps and mini mantra cards.

The point is (I am going to preach now): it’s important to express yourself. To be seen, to be heard.  Whether it is through the pictures you take, the stories you write, the letters you send, the crafts you make or the clothes you wear – you will leave your mark on the world in a way that only you can.

So go forth and express yourself freely!!  Would love to hear how you do it.

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