36 Things I’ve Learned in 36 Years [And How to Survive Divorce for Modern Girls]

  1. You can always find something to be grateful for, even in your darkest moments.
  2. Pray. Praise. All the time. Sing. Yell. Thank God + the Universe for those good things in your life. In the kitchen. In the shower. Driving with the windows down.  Whenever, wherever—it never falls on deaf ears.
  3. Love. Even if it’s a risk and you get hurt. It is never a mistake.
  4. Speak the truth.
  5. Move towards things that feel like sunshine and away from things that feel like rain.
  6. Refuse to wait around for a “probably” to turn into a “yes.”
  7. When people tell you who they are, believe them.
  8. When they show you who they are, believe them more.
  9. If it’s not a “hell yes” it’s a “no.” You have zero time for bullshit. Be kind but say no early and often.
  10. If you intimidate people and they leave you  Continue reading “36 Things I’ve Learned in 36 Years [And How to Survive Divorce for Modern Girls]”

Mother’s Day + A Eulogy

I lost a friend recently. We hadn’t talked for a while when I found out the bad news. No reason other than I haven’t talked to anyone for a while, really. Instead, I spend my time inundated with little people goings-on. (I have two boys now, in case you’re counting: One almost four-year-old and one four-month-old). Our last exchange was just before the birth of my second child. I can’t believe I didn’t ask more about her: How was she? What was new? When would we see each other? Alas, I was too wrapped up in the upcoming birth and riding on the tail end of a nasty pregnancy during which I was constantly ill. That said, I’m disappointed we hadn’t seen each other in so long – disappointed I couldn’t carve out a few extra minutes to catch up on the phone. I wonder, Continue reading “Mother’s Day + A Eulogy”

Confessions of a [Former] Woman

I’ve sat down to write this post about nine thousand times.

<I wrote that three days ago.>

As I was saying, I’ve sat down numerous times [I’ve lost count by now but am pretty sure I started this blog post a few months ago] to confess, share, and muse about my experiences as a new mother.

It wasn’t until reading Nancy’s post about breaking our silence as women that I finally said enough is enough – I need to get this blog beast out of my system.

Initially, I started writing to confess things about motherhood that my alter ego Miss Independent is not fond of: a screaming baby, vomit caked on my Seven jeans…[read the rest here at Live.Breathe.Grow.]

[Not-So] Breaking News

I spent what started as weeks and turned into months debating what clever segue I’d use to share the news. Convinced one of the numerous crises anecdotes I’ve logged during the past seven months would provide ample opportunity for disclosure – about one night stands with food, burping in public, being annoyed by gravity, etc. – what materialized instead was an extreme lack of writing or interacting with people in general. What’s this news that could leave me feeling anti-social with a borderline personality disorder while napping through most of the day? Why, a baby, of course! Continue reading “[Not-So] Breaking News”

If Not Me Then Who…

It feels like five minutes – not five months – since I last sat down to post. Like any art worth practicing on a regular basis, writing becomes more difficult the less frequently one engages in it. So, today I’ll use lots of pretty pictures to tell my story. [Yay, pretty pictures!]

In early 2011, I was offered the opportunity to serve as one of the 26 national Volunteer Race Directors for the Travis Manion Foundation‘s 9/11 Heroes Run. Having never even been to a 5k let alone participated in one – the girl who walked the 1-mile test during high school gym class? You’re looking at her – the idea of being in charge of a race scared the s*%t out of me. Then I saw the commercial.

So, I signed up! [Cue chaos.]

Initially, I figured we’d call it a success if a few of my closest friends showed up on race day…

Maybe a handful…

Six or seven…

However…

….

On September 11, 2011, seven HUNDRED of my closest friends showed up to race. [In the words of McLovin’, ChickaChickaWahWah?] Oh yes, you heard me: Almost seven hundred people participated – and that doesn’t count volunteers (who I am forever indebted to) or vendors. Continue reading “If Not Me Then Who…”

Look, look!

Check out The Yoga of Writing (and the Writing of Yoga) on EJ Yoga.  That’s right, my mug finally made it to the one-and-only Elephant!

The Summer issue of Brite Magazine is here, too.  Check out my column on page 16 – you might see a cameo from my favorite vegan cook/writer, too.

I promise I’ll be back soon for some banter yoga-related blabber once the crazy schedule subsides.  Much love!

-VY

Summer Solstice Promo and Giveaway!

Sunny skies, beach trips, popsicles, and lazy days are almost upon us, dear readers!  Although heat waves have parts of the country convinced it’s full-blown summer already, Señor Summer isn’t quite here yet – but he is definitely peeking around the corner. In fact, the Northern Hemisphere’s summer season officially begins in just four days on June 21, 2011, also known as the Solstice [apologies to my Aussie pals].

In honor of the longest and sunniest day of the year, VY has teamed up with Nancy and Terra at Live.Breathe.Grow. to make sure you look your brightest and best for the dog days to come.  [You might remember Nancy and Terra from our interview a few months ago].  Whether riding your mat or hammock gliding all through the lazy days, LBG’s 100% organic cotton tees will keep you comfortable and stylish [and motivated – a positive affirmation adorns the back of every top!].  Breathable, soft, and free of environmentally-damaging chemicals, LBG’s newest collection features a Lotus, Om, and Sun tee.  Browse the tees at their online shop.

Like what you see?  [you will. it’s obvi].  Great news! Nancy and Terra have extended a special summer solstice offer exclusively for VY readers. Get 15% off AND Free Shipping on any order placed by June 21, 2011 by entering VYSOLSTICE2011 at checkout.

As a bonus [yay, we heart bonuses!], we’re also giving a Sun Tee to one lucky VY reader.

[The back reads: I am Light. I am Fire. I am Radiant. I am Me.]

Take advantage and get your hands on LBG’s 100% organic cotton, short-sleeve fitted scoopneck Sun Tee! All you have to do is:

  1. Like Live.Breathe.Grow on Facebook;
  2. Comment on this post and tell us how yoga has changed your life. How do you Live, Breathe, and Grow through yoga? For example: “I Live through yoga by __________. I Breathe through yoga by ____________. I Grow through yoga by ____________,” or in your own words.  Get creative!

Comments will be accepted until Tuesday, June 21, 2011 at 1:16 p.m. EST, when the sun reaches its highest point in the sky during the solstice. Then, we’ll choose a winner by random and [poof!] a Sun Tee will arrive in your mailbox.  It’s a win-win situation, methinks!

So what are you waiting for?  Get commenting, y’all!

Live.Breathe.Grow….into who you are meant to be.

UPDATE: Kelly Creamer is the winner of the Summer Solstice giveaway. Congratulations, Kelly! Enjoy your LBG love. 🙂

In Other News…

  • The Summer issue of Brite Magazine deadline just passed. My column, My Savoir Faire Lady, explores do’s and dont’s of summer parties and might even incorporates a recipe or two from the fabulous Angela at Oh She Glows [hint, hint!]. Watch out for that in July.
  • In September – which seems like worlds away but will be here before we know it – I’m chairing a race for the Travis Manion Foundation, an organization that grew from one Marine’s dedication to selfless service. Travis Manion was killed in combat in 2007. His family started the foundation in order to benefit disabled veterans and families of fallen service members, among other things. Yours truly is serving as the Race Director for Orlando’s first annual 9/11 Heroes Run. Just a few days ago at his Memorial Day speech from Arlington National Cemetery, President Obama spoke about Travis Manion and one of his brothers-in-arms, Brendan Looney:

As an extension of Travis’ commitment to the first responder community, the 5k and 1-mile fun run is held to honor and benefit firefighters, police, EMT’s, and military personnel, among others. Presented by Chevy and supported by countless other generous organizations, the Orlando race will benefit the Special Operations Warrior Foundation, which provides college scholarships for children of Special Operations service members killed in combat. Needless to say, theirs are causes that are dear to my heart. More race on specifics later. In the meantime, learn more about Travis here.

  • I’ll be in NYC for a quick trip next weekend and am welcoming class suggestions and date requests [Nancy and Terra, that means YOU!]. Holler, y’all.

The Yoga of Writing [and the Writing of Yoga]

If you’re curious why things have been quiet ’round these parts lately, it’s not because I’ve actually been keeping my mouth shut [chatterbox status established circa 1989 in Miss Oberley’s kindergarten class]. And, despite my lust for glamour, it’s not because I’ve been asked to spend a sultry summer working at Tom Ford in Milan [but if you’re reading this, Gucci, I hereby offer up my kidney life savings for the opportunity, kthx].

Instead, my efforts have been geared toward a very non-glamorous endeavor: writing. After a good friend gave me Judy Reeves’ A Writer’s Book of Days, I committed to write every day not only to satiate my creative appetite but also to improve my writing. Reeves’ book is genius: in addition to providing inspiration in the form of daily writing prompts, she offers expert creative writing advice in the form of a practical how-to.

So you ask, why do I care? [fair query]

Well, dear readers, you care because like all great things in life, writing is exactly like yoga – and Reeves’ book reminded me of that. In her introduction, Reeves explains the importance of developing a writing practice and does so by speaking from experience:

On any given day, a writer can write the best she’s ever written, or she can compose a piece that’s clunky and misshapen and downright embarrassing in its black-and-white awfulness. Practice isn’t about being a good writer or a bad writer; it’s about being present with the writing, surrendering to the process, and trusting the pen.

I chuckled to myself after reading this sentence and thought of the yoga practices that left me feeling like a sleek ballet dancer versus those that left me feeling as graceful as a teletubby [or is it teletubbie? whatever].

Photo Credit: PBS.com

[yeah, they’re still creepy…!] Continue reading “The Yoga of Writing [and the Writing of Yoga]”