Monday, May 30, 2016

Rooftop Yoga - May 31 & June 3

Views for our Rooftop Practice
Please join me this Tuesday, May 31 and or Friday, June 3 for Illuminate Yoga Around Downtown.  Both one hour mixed level yoga classes will be held on the rooftop deck of Browncamp Lofts.  I am overjoyed to be sharing this space with you as it features views of the Capitol, Des Moines River, and Principal Park.  Details and directions are below.  Please register for class as size is limited to 8 so that you get the attention and space your practice deserves.  

Another great announcement to share... moving forward all registered class participants will receive a unique to class home practice guide.  I will create and share with you a unique 20-30 minute guide that consists of the poses we did during that class to empower you to dig into the benefits of a consistent yoga practice.  This evening unwind home practice guide is an example of what the sequence handout will look like.

Remember... your mat and I welcome you to class no matter how long it has been.  

Details for May 31 & June 3 (same spot both days)

  • Under Your Mat: Wood deck
  • Parking: You can Google (100 Market Street Des Moines, Iowa 50309) to view the image below.  Yellow indicates on street metered parking.  The blue squiggle is the park bench where we'll meet.  Free parking may be available in the Principal Park parking lot near the cabin (corner of SW Water St and W MLK Jr Pkwy).
  • Meet:  At the bench on the corner of Water Street and Martin Luther King, Jr. Parkway. As soon as everyone arrives no later than 5:30 we'll continue our walk together to the roof of Browncamp Lofts.
  • Bring: Yoga mat, water and any props you prefer to use.
  • Overhead:  Sun or shade is available for all.
  • Register & PayRegister and pay at this site at least 4 hours before class time. Single class is $15, 3 classes for $42 and 6 for $72
  • In Case of Inclement Weather: We'll meet at the same spot and practice in my home.  My loft is on the 5th floor and features a view down the river and 3rd baseline of Principal Park.  
Call, text or email me if you have any questions.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Farmer's Market Spring Recipe Favorite

I'm lucky to live just a few blocks from the Des Moines Farmer's Market.  Tomorrow, I'll be stopping at the Grinnell Heritage Farm booth for fresh asparagus while it's still in season and Grade A Gardens for their garlic scapes.

This recipe is one of my favorite spring meals.  Who am I kidding I love every recipe with bacon in it.  I hope you enjoy this holiday weekend with good food and smiles.  Maybe I'll bump into you at the market.

Springtime Asparagus & Noodles 

  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 1/3 carton cherry or grape tomatoes; cut in quarters
  • 3 garlic scapes; chopped (optional)
  • 1 bunch of asparagus, chopped*
  • Noodles*
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 lb bacon* cut into pieces
  • salt
  • pepper
  1. Cut veggies and set aside.
  2. Cook noodles according to package instructions.  Drain and set aside.  (You may cook the noodles while continuing with the next step.
  3. In a large (approx. 4 qt pan) bring the olive oil and bacon to a medium temperature. 
  4. Continue cooking the bacon until edges become crispy.  Stir occasionally.  There may be some grits stuck to the pan... no worries.  It will add flavor to the dish.
  5. Add garlic, tomatoes, and asparagus to the pan with the bacon.  Stir occasionally.  Salt & pepper to taste.
  6. Check the asparagus by spearing it with a fork... when it is soft and the fork goes in easily the dish is ready for the noodles to be added.  It may take about 5-10 minutes before you're ready to add the noodles.
  7. Turn the pan to medium low.  Stir the noodles in with the other ingredients
  8. Continue to heat until the noodles are warm.
*Ingredient Tricks
  • A little trick for getting the best of your asparagus... Take the end of the asparagus between your thumb and forefinger and bend until it breaks. The asparagus breaks where the woody part ends and the fresh, juicy asparagus begins. So you don't need to worry about breaking off too much or too little.
  • I like the Ancient Grains gluten free elbow noodles which are sold in most health food sections.
  • Of course most bacon will do; Beeler's bacon really is the best.  This Iowa business raises pigs humanely and in a way that allows the meat to be free from unnecessary chemicals.  I prefer Beeler's available at Hy-Vee & Campbell's Nuitrition Des Moines

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

What is a Yogi?

View from My Mat in San Diego
An eleven year old yoga student came with his mom and shared that he had participated in a few classes. I shared that teachers often put emphasis on different aspects of a practice and that I would be happy to answer any questions he may have.  He surprised me with his response, " I hear people talk about yogis. What is a Yogi?"

His thoughtful question deserved an equally thoughtful response.  I explained to him that I don't believe a yogi is someone who just does yoga poses.  A yogi is someone who strives for balance of mind, body and spirit.

In a yogi's pursuit of balance he or she may use various techniques including mindful physical movement (yoga), breath work, meditation, healthy eating, reading material that uplifts/challenges/encourages and connecting with others. A yogi aims to authentically unite with others, Earth, and him or herself by way of action and observation.  A yogi doesn't find a state of balance and then he or she is done.  It is a lifelong practice.

What do you think a yogi is?

Monday, May 23, 2016

New Name for Guerilla Yoga & 2 Classes This Week - May 24 & 27

Views from the Illuminate Yoga Mat

May 24 & 27

Join me and bring a friend this Tuesday, May 24 and Friday, May 27 for an hour yoga class that begins at 5:30pm by the Shattering Silence sculpture.  You read that right, class on Friday.  I'm happy to be kicking off the holiday weekend with you on this beautiful hilltop by the Iowa Judicial Building.  To ensure you have the best personable experience, I ask that you reserve a space in class at least 4 hours before class begins.  No worries about the potential rain... I've got us covered.  Details and directions below.

Btw this Friday isn't the only one on the calendar and if you like it I'll add more.

Name Change - No More Guerillas!

Guerilla Yoga was intended to be a fun, cheeky way to take the practice to different outdoor locations and inspire play on the mat.  I believe the name has kept some from joining our class as it sounds scary or intense which does not describe our relaxing practice together.  My goal in teaching any yoga class is to welcome ALL to the practice to receive yoga's benefits.    

So today, we let go of the Guerilla name and move on calling our traveling Holistic Yoga class Illuminate Yoga Around Downtown.  As you know, this practice is appropriate for any level of yoga student from beginner to experienced.  I thought long and hard about what name to move forward with and during my moonlit yoga practice last night it hit me... go back to your roots.  To me that meant back to my mission and reason for naming my business Illuminate Yoga + Natural Solutions.  So Illuminate Yoga it is =)

View from the Illuminate Yoga Mat

Details for May 24 & 27 (same spot both days)

Call, text or email me if you have any questions.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Choose to Be Good to You and Those Around You

One of the things I love about my yoga practice, is that it reminds me that I have a choice. Every position can be modified. Based on my energy level, tight spots, or injury, I can receive the benefits of yoga by choosing the position that serves me best. The choices don't stop with what I do with my body. In observing sensations and thoughts, I am able to recognize an internal dialogue that may be tearing me or another down. It is then, when I catch myself thinking negatively, I can choose a different thought.

I'm not saying that making better choices is easy, but that it is something that we can practice on the mat just as well as off. When I feel stuck at work, in a relationship or creative assignment, yoga kindly reminds me that I have a choice in what I say or do next. This awareness brings me a sense of freedom and internal peace.

I have no doubt that when we are mindful of our choices we are also mindful of others and how our actions may affect them. Are you making choices that serve you in your yoga practice and beyond? It is my hope that you chose to serve, to be creative, to love yourself, to open your heart to another… ultimately that you choose to be good to you and those around you.

I'd love to see you again and share a yoga practice that cultivates an awareness of choice, gratitude and love. Until then, I've added a Chair Yoga class to my YouTube Channel.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

May 17 Rain Location

The sweet smell of rain reminds me to be present and nourish myself with a deep breath.  With the cool rain, also comes a need to move Guerilla Yoga this evening.  I will be contacting registered students with the indoor location for the Holistic Yoga practice this evening.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Shattering Silence - May 17

It may be a little chilly today but Tuesday's forecast is BEAUTIFUL.  I would love to see you at this season's first Guerilla Yoga class.  This holistic yoga practice will begin at 5:30pm Tuesday, May 17 on Capitol grounds.

Perched on a hill overlooking downtown Des Moines, the Shattering Silence art sculpture is one of the several sights in view from our mat.  The Japanese Bell of Peace and Friendship is also in view.  We'll be practicing on a cushion of grass under the blue sky beside the Shattering Silence monument pictured below.  This practice will strengthen and stretch the muscles in your body while relaxing and rejuvenating your mind.

Free parking is available in the visitor lot of the Iowa Judicial Building (1111 East Court Avenue Des Moines 50319).  In this map, the parking lot is labeled number 26.  Once parked, you'll walk West past the Judicial building and the bell.

I maintain a small class size (no more than 8) to allow for individual attention and need you to register prior to class to ensure I may provide you the best service possible.  Can't make it to this class be sure to reserve your spot at another class using that same registration link.  Don't forget to bring your mat.

You know me... I go where the yogis are.  If you'd like to book a private group or individual class view all options here.

Buzz me if you have any questions.  I hope to see you soon.