Monthly Archives: October 2012

THREE delicious things I made…

Hellooooo Yogis!!

I got an urge to be in the kitchen over the past couple days…something about being “home” and the weather and….well, just feeling like I want to use some creativity and experiment a bit. I used to act, that was part of my creative outlet…but I’ve always enjoyed being in the kitchen and experimenting….so, I wanted to share the few things I made in the past couple days. (Sorry, no pictures, it all got eaten before I was smart enough to document!! sorry 😉 )

OK…it’s FALL, so I got a squash. I got an acorn squash. I decided to get an acorn squash instead of a pumpkin…for reasons unknown…but do the same things with the squash as I was going to do with a pumpkin.

Squash Ginger Spice Loaf. (Gluten Free, Vegan and Sugar Free!)

WET:
1/2 acorn squash (roasted)
2 1/2 tbs flax meal mixed with 3 ish tbs water (allow to sit in order to “egg up”)
1/2 cup melted coconut oil
1/2 cup molasses
vanilla

DRY:
2 cups GF flour mix (I used the one from HERE at She Let Them Eat Cake)
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
dash of salt (i used himalayan pink, of course!)
cinnamon
cloves
ginger
nutmeg (I used all of these spices quite liberally, I wanted it to be spicy yummy!)

Mix the dry, add the cooked squash and mash it all up, add the rest of the wet and mix until not lumpy. Pour into a greased loaf pan and bake….I baked it 20 minutes, then put some coconut oil on the top (because the recipe I loosely used said to, but I’m not sure it’s necessary), and then baked another 30 or so minutes…but you should check it after the second 20 minutes just in case your oven is different or pan is different shape etc.

Now, listen…it’s a bit fall-apart-y…but it is sooooo delicious!! I will try it again, see about keeping it to hold together…and I promise to take a pic!

Next I made some veggie burgers.

1/2 roasted acorn squash
1 can cannellini beans
1/2 yellow onion
2 large leafs of kale
4-6 tbs tahini
1 ish cup cooked brown rice

Sautee the chopped onion and chopped kale in a bit of oil until soft. Add some tahini and mush it all around…add the cooked squash and mash it together with the other things…add more tahini if you like…then add the cannellini beans and mash them as you go, mixing it all together. I had the pan on a low-med heat. Add some salt and pepper and mash it all together until you like the flavour and consistency.
I let it cool enough so I could form it into patties, then I put it in the fridge to slightly harden up. When I was ready, I pan fried them a bit to heat them and get a little texture on the outside.
They were DELICIOUS!! I put some dijon mustard, hot sauce, avocado and sprouts on them and ate them with lettuce leaves as a bun. SERIOUSLY delicious.

Tonight I had the hankering for some lentils (I’ve been upping my protein the past while as an experiment…I will let you know how it goes), so I made a red lentil dal…

1 1/2-2 cups red lentils
1 box vegetable broth (organic with no extra crap in it)
1 onion chopped(I used a yellow)
1 large yam (I had a HUGE yam and used only half), chopped
a bunch of yellow curry powder
salt and pepper
cayenne pepper
a dash of rice vinegar
Several large handfuls of spinach

Sautee the onion and the yam until it softens, adding a bit of water as you go to keep it from sticking to the bottom of the pot (do it in a soup or other large pot). Add the curry powder and a bit of water or broth to get the flavour going. Add the lentils to the pot and start by adding a bit more broth. I cooked it like this-risotto style-for a bit to start to soften the lentils. (Risotto style is adding a bit of liquid and stirring and cooking and then adding a bit more liquid and repeat). I added the spices and the rest of the broth and then let it simmer for another 20 or so minutes until the lentils were cooked and the flavour was as I wanted it. Then I added the spinach-I tore it up with my hands and stirred it in to wilt.

That’s it! I ate it in a bowl and it was wonderful.

OK…that’s all I got for ya tonight. I had a busy day and I’m pooped. It’s been great being back in Victoria. I’ve already taught a couple classes at BYSaanich and seen so many of you yogis. I’m here for a couple more weeks before I’m off on my next adventure, so hope to see more of you!!

Nighty night.
Love and sweet unicorn kisses,
Ida x

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What Do You See When You Look in the Mirror?

Hi Yogis!

I just finished my morning practice…man am I ever enjoying my yoga practice these days. Some days some postures don’t feel as comfortable physically as others, but the practice of the practice is so amazing for me lately. Why, you ask? Well…let’s see…

What do I see when I look in the mirror? I promised a while back I would post about body image and self image…and I got a reminder (thanks John) about it lastnight, so decided I would give it my best shot today.

I was never skinny or even thin growing up. I was not overweight but I was a chubby child and started developing a woman’s body early in puberty so was never the girl with no boobs and legs for days. My weight has always fluctuated up and down a bit-maybe 10 lbs difference over time, depending on how much I was exercising, how much I was drinking and partying (in my young adulthood) and what I was fueling my body with. When I started practicing Bikram Yoga, I started the correlation between what I did at night and how I felt in class the next day. The amount of partying I did had a DIRECT correlation to how much my heart was pounding the next morning in class….huh….how about that. It got to the point that I wanted to feel good in yoga class and I began making the changes in my life outside the yoga room…such is growing up I think!! In making better lifestyle changes I started feeling better in the yoga room, I began practicing more because there was not as much struggle and more and more my yoga became a constant in my life.

My body did not change right away when I started practicing Bikram yoga. It was a slow and steady process…at first my jeans felt tighter in the legs and I felt like I was holding on in my body instead of letting go. In hind sight, of course, I understand my body now and think I was probably dehydrated back then, as well as building muscles and not flushing my body properly to allow the fat and toxins to be let go…hind sight is 50/50, as they say. When I went to teacher training, the same thing happened to me and my body. I did not lose weight like so many people around me…I felt like I was holding on to everything…like my body was not getting enough fluid and/or the right nutrition that it needed to trust that it could let go of storage…I remember having a conversation with some friends in TT about body image and saying that I accept how I look, the body I have and the size and shape I am. That night in class, Bikram looked right at me and said, “Miss Maroon, I like your size. You know what I mean”…I looked at him, smiled and nodded my head, and was a bit amazed that he somehow knew exactly what I needed to hear in that class. It was the only time Bikram spoke to me in class during my training.

OK…fast forward to a few years later (I think that is a song…!), I was living in Hong Kong, teaching 17 clases/week and practicing every day. I had done my first competition year and started to get more and more inspired about what was possible. I spent all of my time doing yoga and thinking about yoga and, thus, looking at myself in the mirror. I was surrounded by predominantly Asian bodies all the time and started to get a messed up reality of my own body and what was “normal”…I started to lose weight very quickly in the first year I was there…I moved there in May and by Christmas I had developed some kind of intestinal infection or something and was not able to keep anything in. It got to the point that people were telling me I was getting too skinny but it didn’t look that way to me…finally when I got to the point that my body wouldn’t even let me keep water in…I was dehydrated and my body was so stressed I was emotional as well as weak…I finally went to the doctor and he prescribed some anti-biotics to clear up the infection. I remember the day, it was Christmas and I had taught a couple classes in the morning. The cleaning staff manager, who I liked quite a bit, looked at me and said, “ok, it’s time now, you can’t wait any longer, you MUST go to the doctor, you are too skinny and sick”…I didn’t want to believe that I had lost control of my self…but as soon as I started with the medicine, I began to feel better.

Over the next couple years I was still very skinny. It was the fist time in my life that I was a size 2 or zero…clothes fit me, I enjoyed seeing the smallness of my frame, I didn’t have to wear a bra if I didn’t want to…and for a girl who always did, this was a big deal!! When I looked in the mirror all I saw was my shell. All I saw was my physical body, this casing that I had created, and I made it mean everything about ME….did you get that? I will repeat it just in case….when I looked in the mirror, all I saw was this housing, this body, this casing on the outside and I made it represent everything about me and who I was. Whew, that’s pretty big, isn’t it? I completely disregarded my person, my soul, what I had to offer in the world became only how I looked and everything hung on this physical shell of a person.

Wow.

So, when I got back to North America, and I was again around a multi-culture of people, the size of my body started to show up more to me…at first I was still very attached to this image of my shell in the mirror. I didn’t want to listen to people when they said I was too thin…I chalked it up to people being unhealthy and careless with the food they eat and the exercise they did. I “knew” I was right and that I was healthy. Over the next few years, I started to gain a little bit of weight back…slowly. As I began gaining the weight, people would say how good I looked, that I was too skinny before, and how my body was looking healthier now. I would thank them, agree that I felt better, but inside I didn’t like this weight gain. I would still look at myself in the mirror and obsess over how my shorts used to fit and how I would not let myself go back to how I was before.

Through this time, I (as I have learned and discovered) shut myself off to love. Love of myself and therefore love of others. I was too ashamed to have anyone get to know me too well because I was too concerned that I had to look a certain way to be loved and if I did not then well I wouldn’t be loved. Geeze, what a belief!! I would go to visit teacher training and see people I don’t see very often and inevitably the topic of my weight and body would come up. I would always feel defensive when people would say I gained weight and I would feel like I was now well on my way to being fat…yup, fat. I held on so tight to the past and how I was that I had no concept of being happy with the way I looked at any given time because I was only comparing myself to what I looked like before…and before was, in my mind, the ultimate body-it was the body that propelled me into the top champions circle of the yoga competitions, it was the body that fit into clothes at any store, it was the body that could do yoga postures inside and out…but it was just a body, just a shell…and now it was only something that was in the past and this new shell I had was not as good as the old one, and in my mind everyone knew it. So, I felt ashamed. Yup, I felt ashamed that I could not maintain the body of the past, I was not strong enough of mind and character to eat less and do more to keep that body.

Seriously, ASHAMED?? wow.

OK…so, listen…there are always people in the world who now comment on my body. That is the pattern that has been created…I have relied on my body and how I look in my life for so many years now. I spent so many hours and years being in a spotlight using my body that it became the biggest part of me. When I stopped competing in 2009, I knew that it was time for me to use what I had learned and what I had come to gain to share with other people. I started working on my whole self…opening my heart back up to love not only other people but to love myself…I have learned that through loving myself, my whole self, that loving other people is easy.

When I look at myself in the mirror now I don’t only see my physical body. I see who I am as a whole. I see where I have been and where I am going. I see my light and my glow. I am not going to lie and say that I don’t have days when I look in the mirror and don’t like what I see…but on those days I ask myself why. What is it that I am comparing myself to that makes me believe something different? There is always going to be someone who we think has a nicer house or better hair or more money and better postures/kids/clothes/smile/compassion/jokes…etc…but for me now all I have to do is remember the truth. The truth is that, as I wrote yesterday, we are all one. We are all sparked from the same energy source so what we see is what we reflect. So when I look in the mirror I see my whole self just as I see my whole self in your whole self. Nothing exists unless I say it exists and my vision is a reflection and projection of my doing…so I get to create anything and everything. Period.

So, yogis…what do YOU see when you look in the mirror…?

Happy gazing…
Love,
Ida


Namaste…One Love…get my drift?

Good afternoon my lovelies!! It’s an ah-maz-ing day here in Truckee…the summer is holding on for as long as it can…someone said today it’s supposed to snow next week so we’d better enjoy it…but everyone is always talking about snowing around here so I’ll believe it when I see it.

aaaaaannnnnyyyyyhow….this morning I was in class and my mind went to “namaste”. Some teachers say it, some don’t, some understand it, some don’t. Some mean it…some don’t…so, this led me to think about what it means to me and what I think about it (I, by the way, say it at the end of my class…but I will be honest, there have been times I’ve taught class and not said it because I did not feel connected to the students…my issue, not theirs). So, here’s my deal with it….Namaste, as far as I am concerned is an acknowledgement that we are all one. One love. That no matter what the outside package looks like or sounds like or does or how it behaves, we are all one….sparked from one energy, one common light and at that inner most place, we are all one…

I have only had a few experiences, through meditation, where I actually really understood this and got it. This knowledge of everything coming from one and everything being connected…everyone and everything. So, even on days when my ego gets the better of me and I get angry at someone or frustrated or stressed out or whatever, when I allow myself to remember, I always remember that we are all one, one love…namaste.

I also just wanted to say a big thanks to all of you who commented on my last post about the yoga tops!! I managed to make it through a week of doubles at TT in LA without wearing a bandeau and no one died ;). I got a couple new tops from my friends at Yogabela and I also got a few new pieces from my friends at Onzie….I am still on the hunt for the “perfect” yoga top for me, but I also know myself and know that my style comes and goes, so having options is really the most important thing…always on the look out for the things that make me feel the best in class…we all know how it makes a difference how you feel in class when you aren’t constantly tugging or adjusting your yoga costume!!

Have a wonderful afternoon, yogis…I am about to get headed out to teach a double tonight.

I will be making an appearance in Victoria over the next few weeks, at BYSaanich…and maybe a class or two over in Van City if I can wrangle any up…so, hope to see you Victoria yogis soon!!

Love and unicorn kisses.
And, Namaste.
~Ida x


sigh…I have a problem…

Hello my loves!!

I am sad, I have a situation that I am feeling conflicted about…and it might be a bit of a rant…and it might be that I’m blowing it out of proportion…or perhaps there is someone out there who has some good ideas…

I am going to visit Bikram’s Teacher Training tomorrow for my week of posture clinics and classes and seeing so many friends…but since Bikram’s Ban on the Bandeau, I HAVE NOTHING TO WEAR. It’s serious. I *almost always* (99% of the time) practice in a bandeau and now we are not able to wear them at TT and I have no idea what I am going to wear when I’m there. I know this does not seem like too big of a problem…you are probably thinking, “just get a couple other kinds of tops, ones with straps, or borrow something for the week you are there”…yes, I was thinking that same exact thing….but the problem is I do not know of any good yoga tops that are flattering on me!! As many of you know, I was very skinny when I was competing and now I do not restrict my food intake and monitor my yoga practice the same way and my body has gone back to a more voluptuous past…meaning I like the bandeaus because the right one is flattering and supportive (for yoga) and isn’t too “cleavage-y”…

I have been feeling more and more frustrated with yoga clothing makers these past months because I feel not only that they don’t make any styles with the bigger chested ladies in mind (how hard is it to design a top that fits around me but has enough room in the boobies!!???)…actually I have been SERIOUSLY frustrated with the increasingly smaller and smaller fits of all the yoga clothing companies lately (have you notice that the smalls are so small and the mediums and larges are just normal sized?? It can’t be only me who notices this…) and have to go with what I already have because I don’t like the trend of what’s been happening…

Alas, I digress…here is my question…any of you girls out there with breasts but not a huge rib cage like a style of yoga top WITH STRAPS of some kind??

I honestly don’t know what I’ll wear…a Onzie I suppose…

OK…let me know what you think 😉

Love and unicorn kisses,
Ida x