Om for the Holidays: 5 Tools for Relieving Holiday Stress with Yoga

As we barrel full speed ahead towards the holiday season, I can feel the stress and frantic energy mounting; not only in myself, but in my students. Too much to do, too little time. Gift buying, holiday parties, baking, card-writing, the list goes on. On top of the stress from the extra activities, the food and drinks we typically indulge in this time of year can also make us feel sluggish, drained and certainly not on top of our game. If this is sounding all-too familiar, then rest assured you are not alone. Also rest assured: there are some simple steps we can take to counteract the stress and make this season the enjoyable holiday it is intended to be.

Here are 5 tools to help you along:

1. Breathe. Hands down, the simplest and most effective thing we can do to calm the nervous system is to breathe deeply with awareness. Sit tall or lie on your back. Close your eyes. Fill your belly with breath on your inhale and release all the air from your lungs on the exhale. Continue for 5-10 minutes resting your awareness solely on your breath and feel the tension melt away…

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Spring to Life! Simple Cleansing Tips (Part Two)

As we cleanse our bodies by eliminating irritants from our diets such as dairy, wheat, alcohol and caffeine, there a number of things we can do to help move toxins from the body.  Our skin, kidneys, liver and bowels all play a huge role in the detoxification process.  In order to get the most out of a cleanse, we must make sure we are also eliminating impurities efficiently. Below are some simple additions to your daily routine that can make a huge difference in how your body looks, feels and functions.

Continue reading “Spring to Life! Simple Cleansing Tips (Part Two)”

Spring into Life! Reset and Restore with a Detox Cleanse (Part One)

It’s Spring cleaning time, and along with clearing out the cupboards and dusting away the cobwebs, why not try a detox cleanse to clear out your body as well?

Spring is the perfect time of year for a detox cleanse. Our bodies are naturally craving lighter foods after the long, dark winter when the foods are typically heavy and dense.

If you have been experiencing symptoms such as fatigue, insomnia, allergies, constipation, headaches, sugar/carbohydrate cravings, and/or a “foggy” brain, it is likely that you would benefit from a good detox cleanse. Cleansing allows the digestive system to rest, encouraging the body to remove waste and reset. The result is more energy, glowing skin and usually a few dropped pounds to boot.

Continue reading “Spring into Life! Reset and Restore with a Detox Cleanse (Part One)”

All They Want for Christmas is You (Simple Homemade Holiday Gift Ideas)

Chocolate pecan tartlets by Epicurious

There’s nothing like cranking the Christmas tunes and busting out the baking sheets to get me into the Christmas spirit.  Rather than just checking off items from my loved ones’ wish-lists (which is nice but kind of impersonal) I like to surprise them with some homemade treats as well. After all, we all just want to feel loved, and what better way to show you care than a package full of handmade treats?

I’m a little dyslexic when it comes to reading recipes, so whatever I go for has to be pretty basic as well as time-efficient for my hectic schedule.

Here are a few things I’ve got on my radar so far this year:

My mom is a big bath-lover, so I like to treat her with some homemade bath salts. This recipe is super easy and you can use any combination of essential oils you like. (My favourite is lavender to enhance relaxation.)

Also for bath-time is this beautiful gentle exfoliating scrub by Sophie Uliano at Gorgeously Green. This oatmeal and lavender based scrub is good for all skin types and a great natural way to pump up the pampering factor. If you’ve never read “Gorgeously Green”, it’s a great read that provides fun, well-rounded advice for living an earth-friendly life. (It’s easier than you might think!)

I also like to give my friends and family some sweet treats. I like to try new holiday recipes each year. This year I’m experimenting with these Chocolate and Pecan Tartlets from, as well as these scrumptious thumbprint cookies.

Stay tuned for pictures and updates. If you have any other easy homemade holiday gift ideas, I’d love to hear it!