OUR GREATEST ADVENTURE YET, A LITTLE ONE IS ON THE WAY

What has been your greatest adventure to date? Has it been visiting a place, a crazy experience, a milestone event or ____________ ? You can fill in the blank.

ADVENTURE:

An adventure is an exciting or unusual experience. It may also be a bold, usually risky undertaking, with an uncertain outcome.[1] Adventures may be activities with some potential for physical danger such as traveling, exploring, skydiving, mountain climbing, scuba diving, river rafting or participating in extreme sports. The term also broadly refers to any enterprise that is potentially fraught with physical, financial or psychological risk, such as a business venture, or other major life undertakings.

Life has certainly been filled with a multitude of great adventures thus far. Each in their own element. Often life changing, empowering, liberating, humbling, powerful...etc. I can't imagine that anything will compare to the adventure of becoming parents! Yes, you heard me correctly. Erik and I are graciously embarking on the adventure of a lifetime as we prepare and step into becoming parents this year.  We feel incredibly blessed and share our excitement with all of you. 

Photo By  Mike Byrne

Photo By Mike Byrne

This news completely rocks your life in the best way possible and suddenly every decision you make is now with thoughtful intentions about becoming a family. All of you who've experienced this know what I mean right? With a glorious, deep breath in and out, I look forward to this journey.  Erik and I are over the moon!

As a mamma-to-be in my late 30's there are a lot of varying circumstances that can add worry and fear to what's suppose to be a blissful time. So far yoga, meditation and mindful eating have helped me every step of the way with staying healthy, vibrant, accepting of all the emotions and changes I'm discovering. Having support from an incredible partner, family and friends makes this process even sweeter than I knew it could be. I'm thankful. 

As I continue to share life's greatest inspirations here, this will be another wonderful way I get to connect with you. For you amazing humans out there considering, trying, already experiencing parenthood... I send you oodles of love and light in your adventure and always know this is a shared space of community supporting each other.  I cherish hearing from you guys, comments and tips, fun stories... you name it, they're always welcome here. 

Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body
— Elizabeth Stone

XO ANDREA

Mindful Tips For Travelers

So you're going to be traveling huh?

Photo by my gorgeous friend  Jade Tailor  who showed me around  Lynn Canyon

Photo by my gorgeous friend Jade Tailor who showed me around Lynn Canyon

As traveling is a big part of my life it's important for me to stick to somewhat of a routine, even when I'm put into situations where it can be disrupted. Perhaps I can relate this to most of my friends with children who say how important it is to keep their little one's on a schedule. Well, I need this too... how about you guys?

To keep the body in good health is a duty... otherwise we shall not be able to keep the mind strong and clear
— Buddha

There's no doubt that traveling can influence a major shift in our eating, physical exercise and mindful practices... but if we have some intentions as we wander into new territories we can certainly keep our selves in-check and possibly even shift perspective with how we indulge mind, body & spirit!

My pal  Rod McLean  snapped this for me as he showed me some sights at  Sea to Sky

My pal Rod McLean snapped this for me as he showed me some sights at Sea to Sky

I consider this yet to be another form of practice. How do we sustain mindfulness & productive days when we venture away from our daily environment? I'm a go-with-the-flow gal, but I'm realizing more and more, I'm effective with keeping my mind, body & spirit healthy when I stay committed to my practices that support this.  My most recent acting job landed me in Vancouver for almost two weeks, so it was important for me to feel my best and balance shooting days with exploring around the city a bit.

No matter where you're headed can I inspire you to take your courageous and curious mindset with you? Find what works for you and create a practice for yourself so regardless of where you are you have a few things you know will uplift you and inspire you to stay healthy. I've fallen in love with mindfulness as I travel. Between seeking out yoga studios, hikes, organic restaurants, peaceful areas for meditations, transit systems, socially connecting with friends and meeting locals... I'm excited to adapt and enjoy all that traveling can offer.  

Check out my quick (sped up) Get My Body Back #GMBB4 core series I did on the outdoor hotel patio as the sun was setting. As I incorporated this into my yoga flow, just being outside and in a different setting was energizing for my soul. 

A few stress relieving, mood boosting tips you can take anywhere: 

  1. Daily Gratitudes- I've explored writing them down, using my Gratitude 365 App, breathing them into my heart space as I meditate and mentally engaging with them to calm my mind as I want to drift into a peaceful sleep.
  2. Explore a new area- This can seem daunting when you don't know your way around, but let me encourage you to get out and walk, jog or bike. You learn the lay of the land and discover so much more than when you're in a car. Let yourself get lost... you'll find your way back. 
  3. Nutritionally take charge- Pack some of your favorite healthy snacks if you think they may not be accessible where you're headed. When options are slim you'll be happy you have them. Use Yelp to search healthy organic spots in your location. 
  4. Be Flexible- Accept that you will do your best but remain flexible as you trust yourself and the wisdom of your body, mind and heart to guide what feels right. This most definitely includes relaxing too!

A few of my favorite travel buddies are the magic bullet and vega protein packs. So even if I indulge in other areas I know that I can still get at least one healthy smoothie with vitamins and nutrients down the hatch each day. This saves me. My eko superlite manduka travel mat is another since it's light weight & foldable.

What are your travel tips with staying mindful? Do you have any for me? I love hearing from you guys.... feel free to comment and share if you read anything you like. Thanks for stopping by!

Just BE in India

 

I'm amongst a group of twenty with my favorite yoga Goddess, Andrea Marcum, who's leading an International Yoga retreat through India.  I've taken 3 flights, a rickshaw ride, several hotel cars, two long bus rides, a few boat rides, one wood canoe ride and the journey isn't quite half over.  With limited wifi access and so much internal travel, this is a place to unplug often and I'm loving it.  After spending the night in a lagoon houseboat in city called, Alleppey Lakes in South India I'm filled with inspiration and appreciation for being here. 

2 days ago:  I step onto our 3 bedroom floating bungalow and I immediately fall in love with it's charm and for obvious reasons I realize this is another great day to power down from the laptop and devices and absorb where I am.  We are set to cruise the vivid backwaters of Kerala, India, which is the delta between the Arabian Sea and water coming down from the mountains.  With a crew of three quickly preparing an authentic Indian style lunch, aromatizing smells of turmeric, coconut & ginger are in the air and I'm ready to sit back, relax and take in all the picturesque views.  

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It's in these moments where our senses truly open up and India has been doing that for me since I arrived.  I take in deep breaths of gratitude as I feel very alive.  Visually stimulated by the color pallets of women in saris, wooden canoes sporadically lining the shore,  school children's wide smiles waving to get our attention and beautiful palm trees swaying in the gentle breeze has my attention to say the least.  You could certainly capture something beautiful through the lens no matter which direction you point it.  

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I sip a coffee in between snapping a photo here and there and stretch out my legs to catch the rays of sunshine, the humidity creating that little bead of sweat above my brow and enjoying the stories that already are beginning to permeate as my mind absorbs it all.

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InternationalYoga_RiverBoat__MG_7669.jpg

To see this body of water being used by villagers as a place to bathe, wash their dishes, brush their teeth and transport themselves, I witness the cultural importance of staying close to mother nature in a ritualistic way. 

Dusk starts to settle in and the light is creating such serenity across the lagoon and I'm reminded that living in the moment is spiritual, it's an opportunity to connect to something bigger and embrace right where you are and just be. 

Wherever you are, be all there
— Jim Elliot

My Travel Excitement Ensues

 
Photos by Erik Almas

Photos by Erik Almas

Bare with me as my EXPLORE category finds it way.  I have always loved to travel and I consider myself an explorer at heart, but never have I had the opportunities to travel as frequently as I have in the past 7 months.  A special man, incredibly talented photographer and truly magnificent human being, Erik Almas, came into my life and lovingly invited me into his. I’m feeling overjoyed to be in love and I have to say “thank you” to all of you following this journey because you give us such sweet support on our posts and I feel your happy vibes coming back!  My romance novel will be out next year. I kid… but maybe?

Needless to say there is a lot I want to share about the places I’m exploring!  Everywhere I go has its uniqueness. Be it a great cafe, hiking trail, yoga studio, quiet street, boutique hotel, art gallery, amazing bath tub, city view, best espresso, organic restaurants, cultural experiences… you name it I’m exploring and excited to share the little gems from these places!  By all means if you’ve been somewhere I write about, chime in… share your favorite things back, I love hearing from you!  (A girl can always use travel tips too)

Photos by Erik Almas

Photos by Erik Almas

Getting to flank Erik on his work travels is an experience I cherish.  With a long love for taking pictures, I’m getting some great tips and enjoying taking my own photographs more than ever.  Even when he’s not on an assignment working we find ourselves getting up to catch the moments before the sun peaks its rays of light into our day and adventuring around until it starts to set again, by choice.  I’ve been taking yoga classes to expand my practice, becoming intrigued on finding the best espresso and can confirm how easy it is to pass smile in all these different cities.  

Wanderlust: An irresistible desire to travel to understand one’s very existance
— Pinterest