Sunday, September 30, 2007

30 reasons

Today is my very best friends 3oth birthday! Here are a few of the reasons why she rocks:
1. She gave me my very first quilt...and made it too.
2. She put up with my crazy college antics.
3. She flew to TX and helped me settle into my apt. after graduate school.
4. She flew to TX and drove my car back when I moved back home to KY.
5. She makes delicious cakes.
6. She engages in big hearty full belly laughs.
7. She helped me tear my space for the studio apart, and put it back together.
8. She puts furniture and things together like nobody's business. Really, it's crazy.
9. She gave me a pt job when I embarked on the journey of becoming a yoga teacher.
10. She always, always thinks of other people first.
11. She's laugh out loud hilarious.
12. She holds out for what she wants in life.
13. She's a dreamer and a believer. Just like myself.
14. She's very animated. And that makes her fun and a very bad liar.
15. She requested a punching bag and pink gloves for her birthday.
16. She's the most helpful person I've ever known.
17. She introduced me to my husband.
18. We've sunbathed in the Dominican Republic and explored the English countryside.
19. She taught me how to wrap the perfect gift.
20. She's loyal.
21. She's a financial whiz of sorts. Quickbooks, checkbooks, she's my definite go to gal.
22. She's witnessed me at my weakest and vice versa.
23. She's great with people. Young, old, male, doesn't matter. People gravitate to her.
24. She can make a dress and lay tile.
25. She's full of willpower. Don't challenge her. She will kick your arse.
26. She sings loudly in her car. To music most of us would never recognize.
27. She loves barns, birthdays, and babies.
28. She made my wedding bouquet.
29. She amuses and amazes me.
30. She's a one of a kind friend. For all seasons and reasons.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

living your yoga

"It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy and creativity in the learning process" -Einstein

For me, creativity, and joyful living go hand in hand. When I think about all the avenues that there are for me to explore as a yoga teacher (and there are oh so many), this is the one area that really grabs at my heart. After I started doing yoga, I could feel that something deep in me was being stirred and awakened. It was my (creative) spirit, my intuition, and a deep sense that we are all born to be happy, joyful creatures inhabiting this beautiful earth. However, this all to often gets lost during our journey from child to adult.

Yoga provides this amazing outlet for me. It's my way of finding balance (mentally and physically), tapping into my "true" nature, opening my heart and my mind. And my college degrees are in Recreation and Park Administration (more on the recreation side). It's an avenue that seems truly built for me! So please join for a day of discovery and delight. If you plan to register, email me and let me know. The registration deadline is next Monday.

Join Sharon in the historic and charming town of Midway, KY for a half day yoga retreat. Learn how to infuse your life with yoga, both on and off the mat. Sharon will reveal creative and practical ways to weave your yoga into your day-to-day life.

Together we'll dive into a vinyasa practice , stroll over and have lunch at Quirk Cafe, which Southern Living calls a "Midway Marvel". We'll finish the day by discussing and exploring creative exercises to discover what it means to "live your yoga". We'll finish early enough that you will have time to explore the wonderful, eclectic shops that Midway has to offer. Please plan to join in this day of fun, insight, and creative exploration.

Timeline for the day:
9:30 - Presentation of the day and theme, centering, inspirational reading
10:00 - Vinyasa yoga practice
11:30 - Stroll over to Quirk for yummy lunch
12:45 - Discussion of what it means to "live your yoga"
1:30 - Creative activity and discussion/sharing
2:15 - Guided meditation and closing

Saturday October 6, 9:30 am - 2:30 pm
Cost: $70(includes yoga instruction, lunch, and supplies)
Location: 208 Dudley St. Midway, KY 40347

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

morning practice

My morning practice went something like this:
6 Sun Salutation A
6 Sun Salutation B
Standing Sequence
Warrior 1
Warrior 2
Warrior 3 (arms behind back from previous pose)
Down Dog
Repeat with left leg
Side Plank (lift top leg to bottom inner thigh, think tree pose)
Tripod Headstand
Saddle Pose
Head to Knee
Seated Forward Fold
Reclined Hand to Big Toe
Finished with alternate nostril breathing and mini meditation
I tried to link the poses with pics from Yoga Journal, but their site is down. Sorry :-(
Also, as much as I can, I list the poses with their English translation, but sometimes it's actually easier for me to remember the Sanskrit name as the English translation could be about five words long. Too much, too much. ;-)
The pretty little gal getting married above (and me with a solemn look for some odd reason) is one of my best buds that lives in Seattle now. We worked together in TX and I haven't seen her in over two whole years. Far, far too long. I'm going to Indianapolis tomorrow and we'll get to have some girl time over the next couple days. Yip, Hip, Hooray! I'm hoping to catch a yoga class here and here.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

things that brought me joy this weekend

*Giving a proper send off to summer on Saturday. I taught the Sat. morning flow class, which I just love. We grooved and moved to the sounds of Norah Jones, then ended with a few restorative poses. The two combined made for a perfect practice to transition from summer to fall.
*The beautiful bouquet of flowers that I bought for myself.....just because.
*Cooking and celebrating with friends. And watching another very exciting game for the Cats! Dinner included shepherds pie, fried green tomatoes and raspberry mojitos. Yum! And Tony made delicious homemade chocolate chip and raisin cookies. It was indeed a night of indulgence.
*And a certain little gal turned 7 this weekend! A fun party honoring her and games outside in the yard with family made for a really great Sunday.

Check out the pre-wish/blowing out of candles!
And I bet you too got this excited over Curious George!
The tiara was a last minute gift from me that turned out to be a big hit!

I hope that you too found some seven year old, tiara toutin', curious george lovin', summer salutin' excitement somewhere in your weekend. I imagine you did! ;-)

WELCOME FALL. I hope it brings all things festive and fabulous.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

lover of the list

I got to spend some quality time with my best yoga bud today in Louisville. Shelli and I both loove to plan, organize, and dream up crazy fantastic things to do. When I suggested that we spend some time discussing our plans for the next five years, she was equally enthused (yes I suppose we're a bit nerdish that way). When we got to the restaurant we realized that both of us had left our notebooks...finding ourselves ready to make some lists, but without a perfect and proper notebook. As luck (or life) would have it, a great little locally owned bookstore was right next to the restaurant. We went in and searched like giddy little schoolgirls for the perfect spiral bound journal. Does anyone else have this much fun purchasing new notebooks?
We had lunch at a delicious place called Ramsie's. We sat outside on the patio on this gorgeous day in KY. I found myself wishing I had brought my camera along to capture the great colors, the green vines all topped off with a perfect blue sky. The place felt very European and the food was so very yummy. I always find myself just a tad envious of all the great establishments in Louisville. There are so many darn options...eclectic shops, great eats, quaint shops, and a whole lotta yoga.
After lunch we moved on over to Java Brewing Company to sip coffee, lounge on the couch and jot down things to do in our respective studios for the next six months. Such fun! We decided that it's amazing how crazy busy things seem to be but how we wouldn't change one single thing. Life is good having a small business/yoga studio/job/baby. And yes the baby I refer to would be the studio. Right now most of my love goes to that place over at Patchen Drive. And I wouldn't have it any other way. Nothing like a good list to keep you focused and on track!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

ace weekly

Aww shucks...Barefoot Works was voted one of the best places in Lexington to take a yoga class. Happy, happy day! Check out the Ace Weekly that's out right now to view their "Best Of Lex 2007" edition.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


"He who is not everyday conquering some fear has not learned the secret of life."

"Fear defeats more people than any other one thing in the world." Both by Ralph Waldo Emerson

Last week I was talking to my sister, asking her about my niece and how she was doing at school. You see, she is surprisingly shy at school (which just blows my mind, because she is a beautiful and bright little gal). However the other day she came home from school with a story of bravery...a story of facing her fear. She was in class and the teacher asked a question and no one knew the answer (or maybe they did, and they were as fearful of speaking up as she). The class sit there all quiet. Finally Brooke raised her little hand high in the air and the teacher called upon her. She answered. And she answered correctly. I would like to hope that she answered with a certain amount of know again the thing of heart being open, head held high, and direct eye contact. But she could have been quiet as a mouse in answering, or she could have even answered incorrectly.

To me, when her hand went up and she gave an answer...whether it was right or wrong, it was a victory. And the next time it will be easier, then easier again and so on.

This quote, "Fear defeats more people than any other one thing in the world." How true is that? How many of us don't do something because we fear failure.... looking silly, sounding ignorant, or because we think we're not smart enough, not skinny enough, not talented enough, not creative enough. Simply not enough.
Today, I challenge you to do one thing that scares you...maybe a little or a lot. Maybe it's speaking up at school or work, turning yourself upside down in a headstand or handstand, taking your very first yoga class, parallel parking (that one is for me), looking for a new job, etc. Try it and just see how you feel afterwards.

Monday, September 17, 2007

yoga news

*A recent study conducted at California State University found that women who took yoga class twice a week were better able to concentrate on tasks, less anxious, and more motivated to succeed. So roll out your mat, take some some deep breaths, and get your yoga groove on.
*Yoga Bitch (no I'm not being mean)...check her out here. If you've got a couple minutes, watch the video. She's quite funny!
*Global Mala - I hope you received your email today about this event I'm a part of. Local yoga teachers are joining this Friday and leading the peeps of Lexington through a light, lively, and lovely yoga practice followed by a peace meditation. We'll also take part in a moment of silence at noon. Please, join us at Woodland Park at 11:30 and join millions of people around the world and form a mala around the earth!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

lost it...

Both my husband any myself....I've lost my zen and Andy has lost a bit of his mind. We're in the midst of the UK vs. UL football game. It's neck and neck. I keep telling him to stay steady and take a deep breath. He looks at me as if I've lost my mind. I'm taking a deep breath...for myself, Andy and most Lexingtonians. Going back down to watch the game. Wish me luck. ;-)
Kentucky can't help but love it.

Friday, September 14, 2007

inside your body

"Don't go outside your house to see the flowers.
My friend, don't bother with that excursion.
Inside your body there are flowers.
One flower has a thousand pedals.
They will do for a place to sit.
Sitting there you will have a glimpse of beauty
inside the body and out of it,
before gardens and after gardens."
I hope each of you have some peace, stillness and happiness this weekend inside your body... inside your house.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

phenomenal woman

This is my dear sweet friend Indrani. I was lucky enough to meet and get to know Indrani in August during my yoga training in Asheville. Let me tell you, she is a force to be reckoned with. I can't even imagine the mark that she is bound to leave on this earth. She's a mother of two, a wife, a triathlete, a marathoner, a yoga teacher, a life coach, an inspiration, and one of the best storytellers (don't worry Indrani, your stories and secrets are safe with me ;-) you'll ever meet. Oh yeah, and she's in the process of building a retreat center in the Himalayas and she's a faculty member for Martha Beck. That's why I chose her to be the very first Barefoot Works Phenomenal Woman...the first of a series to come. If you know a phenomenal know the one that's making a difference, a daydreamer and an achiever, living life by her own set of rules, going for the gusto, and living life to the fullest, drop me an email at and let me know who this phenomenal woman is.

I hope you enjoy learning more about Indrani.

Indrani's journey has taken her across oceans from her country of Trinidad and Tobago to her adopted country of the United States of America. She has called the USA home since 1974. She did her undergraduate work in communications at CUNY in New York City.

Her graduate studies in public speaking and interpersonal communication were done at Kent State University. She has held management positions at Lazarus in Columbus, Ohio and at Blue Cross and Blue Shield in New York City, NY. When she and her husband relocated to Houston, Texas in 1985, she decided to start her second career as a full time mother.

1. How do you define phenomenal woman? Any woman who is willing to investigate her present situation/life/circumstances and ask herself if this is where she wants to be. She does not have to know how to make changes, just whether she has a desire to make changes or not. If the decision is not to make any changes, then there can be no complaining. I must emphasize that these changes always involve the individual not the people surrounding them. For instance, if I am thirsty for compassion and empathy, do I give compassion and empathy to others in limitless quantities?

2. Can you think of one magical moment that led you to believe that you were destined for greatness (because you and I know that you are ;-) I knew that I was headed towards great things at the end of my triathlon as my physical body was ready to die right there on the spot but my spirit was soaring to heights I never knew existed. I realized that I had been living a life of limits and boundaries that I allowed others to impose on me. So at the ripe age of 50 years, as I was declared an Olympic distance triathlete, I knew that I was never going to go back to limits and boundaries. Stepping out of that self-made prison was the magical moment.

3. Why do you want to build a retreat center in the Himalayas? I have asked myself this question so many times and the answer is the same, because it's at the top of the world where heaven meets earth. So if I going to ask people to reclaim their divinity, they may as well do it close to the heavens.

4. Since you are a life coach, what advice would you give to women about creating their own success? It is very important to know where you are headed. You must have some general idea of a destination; otherwise you don't know which way to turn. Imagine if you got into your car and were stopped at a light. Which way would you go if you had no idea where you wanted to go, left, straight, right. You could figure this out by taking each turn individually, and that may be ok for you. My personal philosophy is that at this stage of my life I really want to have a clear destination, regardless of whether I know how I'm going to get there. I encourage my clients to dream a big dream and together we can figure out how to make it come true.

5. What do you find yourself most thankful for these days? For the ability to look for the gift in all of the challenges that life sends my way. I know that if I don't get the lesson/message the first time I am destined to keep getting the message over and over.

6. What is your mantra? Every body is doing their very best.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

yoga for children

This was one of the projects that I've had going on. I was contacted by a representative of Expert Village to do some video segments for Yoga for Children. I had my very lovely niece Brooke act as my assistant. There are some things I would change for the piece (I didn't provide any of the text) and the meditation part wasn't supposed to be included with the yoga for kids part. It was my understanding it was going to be separated. But other than that, it was fun time spent with my niece and seeing myself in this way is something that I'm definitely not used to. There was more time and work that went into this than what I was expecting. Guess that yoga video I want to do out in nature will have to be put on hold. Anyway, if you wish...check it out here.

Thank you Brooke for being such a beautiful and patient little yogini. ;-)

Monday, September 10, 2007

student x2

That's me! I got to be a student soaking up loads of useful info. today. Ahhh, and I couldn't be more thrilled. I started the first of an eight week Spanish class at the Carnegie Center today. So much fun to be in that type of environment. So much different then the last time I took Spanish in high school. It wasn't nearly as interesting and it seemed much more challenging at that time. We got to choose our Spanish name, which I also remembered doing in high school. In high school I chose Gabriella and today I chose Ana (ah-nah). Much, much fun. Anyway, when I left Mexico in July, that was one of the things I added to my "want to do this year" list. Learn some Spanish. Hopefully when I go back next summer I'll be able to communicate a bit better.
I also took the very first 4:30 Level 1 class with Teresa at the studio. Again, so very wonderful to take the teacher hat off and be a student. Teresa is a dear sweet soul and her love of yoga pours through in her teaching. I will forever be a student of yoga. There is just so much to discover and devour. It's one on the main reasons that I keep coming back to the mat day in and day out. I can't think of any other subject, philosophy, form of exercise, etc. that has held my attention the way yoga does.
Here's to all ways being a student of some sort. Adios Amigos!
"Education is simply the soul of a society as it passes from one generation to another."
Gilbert K. Chesterton

Sunday, September 09, 2007

pretty pretty purple

"I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it." Alice Walker

Saturday, September 08, 2007

5 reasons why i love these yogi's

1. Not only do they rock on the mat, but they obviously rock in the kitchen. The food that my yogi's brought to the bash was de-licious. I wish I would have taken a photo of the spread, but I didn't. The cake which I brought says "Celebrating 1 Year of Yoga." Yummy cake from McGee's Bakery.

2. I love that one beautiful yogini phones me earlier in the day, saying "I don't think I've asked this question since high school....but what are you wearing tonight?" Oh good I thought, there could have been a lot worse questions to ask. ;-)

3. They'll try anything at least once. Even flying through the air. AcroYoga anyone?

4. They get as excited about Barefoot Works as I do.

5. They stay until late in the evening, post bash, insisting to help me clean and tidy the studio. Thanks Irene. :-)

I did make a favor to give away for the evening, a celebratory cd. Here is the playlist:

*Somewhere Over the Rainbow -Isreal Kam...
*The Rainbow Connection -Sarah McLachlan
*Buffalo Soldier -Bob Marley
*Banana Pancakes -Jack Johnson
*Always Look on the Brightside -Monty Python
*Have a Nice Day- Bon Jovi (we had to have at least one tune!)
*Relax, Take it Easy -MIKA
*Beautiful Day -U2
*When the Stars Go Blue -The Corrs
*This Little Light of Mine -Gospel Dream
*World Spins Madly On -The Weepies
*Beautiful Flower -India Arie
*A Smile Connects Us -Kermit the Frog
*Three Little Birds- Bob Marley
Thank you to all those in attendance, those that sent balloons (thanks Shelli) and those there in heart and spirit. I can't wait to see what the next year holds for all of us.
My very best to all of you!

Friday, September 07, 2007

a bash

"So many of our dreams at first seem impossible, then they seem improbable, and then, when we summon the will, they soon become inevitable." Christopher Reeve

A bash, a gala, a gathering, a celebration or a it what you will. Join in tonight at 6:30 for a celebration of yoga, dreams, people, and a place. It's been a year since Barefoot Works has been open, but it's been several years of dreaming, planning, and working that brought it into existence. What was once a tiny little seed has blossomed into a beautiful flower. As always, many thanks to you and the universe. :-)

Thursday, September 06, 2007

new school supplies

Do you remember how much fun the start of the school was? Not because you were going back to school, but because you got all the fun stuff that goes along with the school paper, fresh crayola crayons and a shiny little plastic box to put them in. Well I'm finding myself embracing that same feeling with the studio. I opened this time last year, when the school session begins. Last year I didn't get to experience that feeling of excitement about new stuff. Well I suppose I did, but I was probably more focused on "I hope people like me and that they come and do yoga." A bit more nervousness combined with excitement.
Now I'm getting to buy and do some fun stuff, preparing the studio for fall. I've replaced the lights in the ceiling (the Christmas lights did last nearly a year), done some reorganizing, ordered more Mexican blankets, got some new music, got another set of "cubes" for people to store their belongings, and I'm getting ready to buy a laptop for the studio and order software specifically for the yoga studio. Hopefully this will eliminate "signing in" as we know it and help me get rid of the paper trail. I've also gotten a couple new plants and have done some rearranging with old ones. I think it's important for students to enter a space that is maintained and well cared for. I love Barefoot Works and I can't help but hope that everyone that comes through the door loves it as I do. OK, so maybe they won't love it quite as much as I do. That's understandable :-)
It's also the time for new students to join and begin coming to the studio. It's very important to me to know people by their name. So I'm working on building a relationship with these new yogi's. Chatting with people before and after class helps build trust, and when you're teaching and leading people through poses that are mentally and physically challenging, trust is important.
I do enjoy this time of year. There is a certain sense of renewal and excitement in the air.
*Many congrats to my sis-in-law Beth and her husband Clint. They welcomed their very first little bundle of joy into this great big world today. Joseph Luke Netherland is his name. Welcome Luke. Lots of love awaits you.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

the heart

This is Irene (I know, she's sute)! Irene posts comments on this blog quite often (thank you Irene). Tonight before the yin yoga class she and I were talking about yoga and of course the wonder-fullness of it. She has another yoga friend and when they speak they speak about "leading with the heart". And I just love, love this. And how many times do I say this per class? I haven't counted, but I'm sure it's a lot. Isn't it such a perfect idea....leading with the heart open.
When you take a look at people, notice their posture. Are their shoulders rounding forward, or are they back and down (heart open), is the head dipping down low (chin to chest) or is the head held high, chin parallel to the floor, steady gaze straight forward. The heart open and the held held high...that's the posture of a yogi my friend. I jokingly tell my students "Even if you are having a day straight from hell, open your heart and lift your head." It's a lot more difficult to be depressed in this position. And you'll even appear happier.
Leading With My Heart,

Monday, September 03, 2007

lesson learned

"Look, I don't want to wax philosophic, but I will say that if you're alive you've got to flap your arms and legs, you've got to jump around a lot, for life is the very opposite of death, and therefore you must at very least think noisy and colorfully, or you're not alive." Mel Brooks"

I got to spend some time with family this weekend in Whitesburg. My three nieces, Whitney, Brooke and Lexie were getting a little bored on Sunday so I decided to take them out on a little adventure...and give a mama (my sister) a much needed break. So we hopped into the box and went down the road to the lake where I learned to swim.

I wondered how much fun they would have since they didn't actually have bathing suits and wouldn't be able to swim. What was I thinking?! I had clearly forgotten what it was like to be a kid and have the ability to find (or create) some fun where ever you might be.

The girls excitedly took their shoes off ran into the water. They waded into the water and it didn't take long until that got boring. So Lexie was the leader in coming back closer to the shore. She proceeded to jump over these small waves with such joy and excitement. I swear, you would have thought it was Christmas morning. So of course Whitney and Brooke heard and saw how much fun she was having so they came and joined in. I looked down the beach a few minutes later and there were kids all down the beach jumping little baby waves. They clearly set a trend.
Well that got old (and tiring) about 10 minutes later. So their next adventure was finding beautiful little shells and rocks in the water. Here Lexie is showing some of her early finds. They searched for the smallest, biggest, most colorful and distinguished rocks in the lake. Each find was a "Oooh, look at this one!" And they would gather round and admire, then heads back down, scouring for the next find.
Every time I'm with these girls I'm reminded of the simple joys of life and it always instills in me the belief that there is really never an excuse to be bored. I mean really.... aren't there always waves to be jumped and beautiful rocks to be discovered? And I think it's funny and interesting to think about just how much there really is to learn from the little ones of the world.
I hope you all had a joyous weekend. :-)