Category Archives: gratitude

A Shivanat I am Not

I’ll admit it I bought the Dance of Shiva DVD months ago.  I tried it a few times, but my shoulder started acting up (for some odd reason, I sleep with my right arm thrown up above my head as high as I can – go figure) so I didn’t push it.  I’d pick it back up from time to time, but even though I was enjoying it, I just didn’t feel like it was doing much for me.  So I went about with my business.

But in the back of my mind, it was always there taunting me.

Havi promised that there’d be hot buttered epiphanies and dammit, I wanted my epiphanies!  I figured the new year was the perfect time to start up again.  This time, I’d commit to 3 or more days a week.

Instead of constantly playing the DVD from my computer, I figured I’d look into burning the Level I practice onto my computer instead.  Easy peasy, right?


But before we even get started talking about today’s Shiva Nata experience, let’s take a brief moment to learn more about it what it actually is (according to Havi Brooks)…

Andrey Lappa’s Dance of Shiva™ — is a unique (and visually stunning), flowing yoga-based movement form that actually restructures neural connections in your brain.

Cool, but why would someone want to do that? Because creating more connections in the brain means you are inviting more light bulb moments into your life. “Light bulb moments”, “hot buttered insights” or “moments of bing” — it doesn’t matter what you call them. You know them when they show up.

And really, who wouldn’t want more “moments of bing,” right?

Here’s a quick Havi video (no sound, quite beautiful) so you can get a visual of what it’s all about.

Okay, so back to my return to Shiva Nata…

The short version: I couldn’t get the right application to pop open, so no downloading for me today.  No biggie. I’ll just set a bookmark instead.

The longer version: I’ve been doing it wrong this entire time!

I know Havi tells us over and over that we will be doing it wrong and that that’s just fine.  She tells us that it’s not about getting it right.  It’s the very wrongness, the clumsiness if you will, that keeps those synapses snapping and the “hot buttered epiphanies” coming.

But, um…I don’t even know what I’ve been doing here.

The “practice” I’ve been well, practicing just had some very basic horizontal and vertical movements.  Simple, single, flowing  movements.  And well, I was actually quite impressed by how much better I was getting at them each time.  It was like my brain recognized the movements and just kind of went with the flow.  Flubs and all.

I felt like even in my wrongness, I was doing it right.

Today though, since I was looking to see if there was a way to make a copy, I found the Main Theory and Practice Menu.  Giving up on the copying thing, I figured okay, one practice with Level I it is.

Only, I’d never seen this Level I before.

And what in the world were these combination things he was doing?!?!?!

So much for my perceived level of comfort.  Now I get what Havi was talking about when she suggested you learn memorize have burned into your brain the names of each arm position before ever really jumping into the practice.  Because once you get to the actual Level I practice you’ll be combining shit left and right, vertical and horizontal.  And holy crap, but slow was even to fast for me.

Now I’m at a loss.  Do I try to flub my way through the actual Level I practice?  I mean if you can’t do it wrong, then it must be okay to flub it all up, right? Or do I go back to whatever it was I was doing when I thought I was doing Level I and just get more comfortable with my movements? And maybe learn the positions and their names a bit better?

And what in the world was I doing if it wasn’t Level I?  I mean it was called some sort of practice…a beautiful, doable, sloooow practice.  Without mixed movements.

Now that I write this out, I’m thinking that going back to that practice just might be the better plan.

The good news through all of this…there wasn’t a big freakout involved.  No massive frustration or outrage. No disappointment.  Just your dog-like, tilt of the head, huh? moment.  Well that and the urge to come here and blog about it, of course.

That said…I’m so loving this new energy that’s all around lately.  It’s some good stuff.

No More Talking, Let’s Dance: The Only Reason I Watch Vampire Diaries

You’re like totally cool and so hot.

Oh yeah he is.  And if it wasn’t for Mr. Ian Somerhalder I wouldn’t even be watching this show.  He’s so much hotter than when he was wimpy ol’ Boone on Lost. Ooh, but rumor has it, he’ll be back for this final season on Lost. Woohoo!

Thank God for Turkish video sites…otherwise I wouldn’t be able to embed this hotness (my fave part about a minute in).

Enjoy and Merry Christmas!

If you need a better quality video, you know, to appreciate the fine cinematography and whatnot, try this YouTube clip (I have a feeling CW was blocking all embedding ability which was why I was left to find a Turkish, embeddable clip).

Holiday Gift Guides: Just Had to Share


I figure I spent SO much time working on these suckers these gift guides that the least I could do was share them with y’all.  You just might find something cool and exciting.

I think in a week or so, I might share my personal gift guides as well.  Or would that be a wish list…hmmm.  Could be useful, you never can tell.

Until then, I’ll be spending the next week or so working on some gratitude and manifestation exercises.  So don’t be surprised if my next couple of posts start to get a little woowoo…consider yourself warned.  😉

Free Audible Audiobook Giveaway


Who doesn’t love free?

Who wouldn’t love a free audiobook?*  I know I sure would.

The fine folks at are giving away one free audiobook as their way of showing thanks this season. The best part, it’s totally free. You do have to sign up, but it’s not a trial (so no credit card info).  It’s completely and totally free.

I’ve been meaning to try, but I just wasn’t sure I was someplace where I could listen long enough to get into it. But now, I think I’m going to have to give this freebie thing a try. I mean you can’t go wrong with free, right?

Now it doesn’t cover every book in their library (they have thousands), but it does give you a good enough sample to choose from.

I remember having loved The Great Gatsby so I think that’s what I’ll go with.  Click HERE for your free audio book.

*As one would expect, there are a few limitations on this Thanksgiving freebie…offer not open to current AudibleListener members. Limit 1 audiobook per customer. Some audiobooks may not be available outside the United States and Canada. Offer expires November 26, 2009 at 11:59pm ET.

Why Didn’t Someone Tell Me Sooner?


I’ve said it before, but I’ve never been the kind of gal that goes crazy for shoes.  Flip flops maybe, but not shoes.  And certainly not heels.

I think one of the many reasons why I love my flip flops so much is that they don’t need time to break them in.  There’s no painful rubbing on the bone near my big toe (sadly, I’m beginning to realize that that might be a sign of age *ack*) And there’s no digging my achilles heel raw.

Thing is, I can’t wear flip flops to work.  You know, I have to be an example of a professional women and all that (no really, this what I was told).

Thing is, when I first got this teaching gig last January, I needed some new shoes quickly.  And I needed more professional clothes as well (read: no jeans or yoga pants).  So, I did what any bargain shopper would do…I picked up whatever I thought might work, as cheaply as possible.

I’ve realized lately though, that buying inexpensive shoes means you have to take time to break them in.  They’re not ready to go from time you cut the elastic holding them together (I told you I went inexpensive here).

In my case, every time I wore a pair of shoes, I either got a blister or rubbed something raw.  And needless to say, once you’ve done that, it makes wearing even more comfortable, broken-in shoes quite unpleasant.  Especially if you have to walk a few blocks from the car to the office and then have to walk around the room or stand for two hours straight.

I figured it was about time to grow up and be kinder to my feet.

So, today I did it. I headed on over to the mall and hit up my nearest Aerosoles store.  I picked up three new pairs of shoes: two flats (one black, one brown) and one pair of black heels (I’ll get brown another time).  Sadly, I only came home with one pair, but the other two should get here next week sometime.

Why didn’t someone tell me that when you spend more than $20 on shoes they actually FEEL BETTER?!?!

I can’t tell you how excited I am to find shoes that feel comfortable right out of the box (and there’s no elastic to cut to separate them!).  I’m actually looking forward to wearing my new shoes tomorrow. Assuming it’s not raining.  If it’s raining, I might have to hold off a day (or wear a different pair to the classroom) since they’re suede.

I think this could be the beginning of a beautiful relationship!!

Calling In Sick


I can’t think of the last time I called in sick.  Then again, I’ve been working from home now, in one form or another for the past 8 or 9 years now.  In which case, I’ve been in charge of my own schedule.  And if I was feeling under the weather and couldn’t make a meeting or client visit, I’d just reschedule.

Not today.

The hubs has been working some loooong hours on a relaunch and typically has been coming to bed between 2:00 and 4:00AM.  Mind you, on days I teach, I get up at 6:00. Some days I sleep through his arrival to bed, on other days I’m not so lucky.

Today shortly after he came to bed, I realizied that I was feeling pretty crappy.  It seemed like last night’s dinner wasn’t agreeing with me.  I tried to ignore it.  I worked on getting rid of it. About 45 minutes later, the chills and the metalic taste started in.

Not a good sign.

Needless to say (without boring you with the details), around 4:30 this morning, I emailed in to my boss and my teaching assistant letting them know that I wouldn’t be in.  I then emailed my kids part of the day’s assignment (emailing attachments) and went back to bed to shiver some more. I figured with all this talk about swine flu (whatever) and knowing that a friend of mine currently has the flu, that it would be wiser to avoid interacting with my students and stay home.  Well, that and I was a little fearful of that commute over the canyon to get to work and back should I actually get sick.

Turns out it was a wasted sick day.  I never actually got sick.  I woke up at 8:00 and felt just fine.  I guess my healing work worked after all – I’m not surprised as I’m getting much better at allowing it.

But now I feel guilty for calling in.  Like I was a slacker or something.

I will say though, based on the emails the kids sent me, my TA did a much better job with the assignment that I would have done.  I totally forgot that I’m not just teaching these guys HOW to do something, but WHY it’s useful out in the real world.  So I think they had a great lesson without me.  And I guess all is good.

What an Amazing Experience

I’ll admit it, I’ve been talking about the Remote Area Medical organization for a couple weeks now. They were coming to LA for their longest gig thus far (eight days) to service the under and uninsured. Their goal was to serve 20,000 or so.

We showed up for our shift on Saturday and there were lines everywhere. In fact, our job wound up being line control in one of the vision services.  There wasn’t all too much organization and we were told to just ask around and see where we might be needed.

I’m not a fan of dentists, so rows and rows of dental procedures (and the sound of drills) was NOT my thing so we walked right on by.  Someone suggested we head over to vision, so we ended up in Vision II (first, basic exam was over, now onto the prescription exam).

We spent the majority of our time there working the end of the line – the hubs took the middle and I took the end.  It was a pretty slow moving process since around lunch (when we arrived) there were only 2-3 eye doctors working.  Eventually, things picked back up again and there were about 6-8 or so available.  Even so, not everyone got seen and a good chunk of my “end” people were sent home without care, told to come back on Sunday.

Had I known they needed more medical, dental and vision doctors, I would have picked up the phone book and started calling.  I remember what it’s like to be broke or barely making ends meet (in my case, in college) and being in serious need for medical care.  And since I’m not a fan of the dentist, you better believe I put that one off as long as possible.  So I get it.

Free services, even if it takes all day – hell, for some it took 2-3 days – is worth it…if you can get it.  I’m looking forward to my next shift on Tuesday (RAM’s last day).  I’m sure it will be gut wrenching knowing we’re turning people away and that there isn’t a come back tomorrow for them.  But I also know it’s doing a lot of good.

Check out the MSNBC video below for some scenes from the event those first couple of days…

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