1,000 Posts {Wow!}


Today is my 1,000th post !!!

Hard to believe. What a journey it has been over the last 3 years since I decided to start blogging. With a bit of trepidation to "put myself out there," I haven't regretted it for one moment. It has connected me to so many wonderful people that I've been pleasantly surprised that the connections made would be the best part, along with having a forum to express myself, and collect my thoughts.

I want to thank anyone and everyone who has ever visited my blog, commented, emailed, or who I've met personally through the blogosphere. Thank you!

I Thank You All !!!


Easy Does It


Beautiful Iceland

"Nothing in the world is more flexible and yielding than water. Yet when it attacks the firm and the strong, none can withstand it, because they have no way to change it. So the flexible overcome the adamant, the yielding overcome the forceful. Everyone knows this, but no one can do it."

Pranayama Basics {Richard Freeman}


The Golden Circle

Faith is not about having the right answers. Faith is a feeling, faith is a hunch — a hunch that there is something bigger connecting us all.


Þingvellir National Park

The Golden Circle. The popular sightseeing tour for foreign visitors. I decided to give the hike leader who took me on the torturous hike last week a second chance to redeem himself. Hahaha.  To my surprise he posted my blog commentary regarding the hike on his facebook page. I was a bit mortified when I found out. Quickly, I went back to reread my post hoping I didn't say anything too harsh. Whew. Good thing. I was honest, yet gentle. However, I cringe when thinking back, during the heat of the moment, while on last week's hike, how I told him if I would have known it would have been this bad, I wouldn't have come! Eeeek.

Good thing is, all is forgiven.

Fresh off his second chance, he picks up the group a half hour late! Ha! I feel compelled to add this in to give him a hard time. There's something about exuberant, excitable, enthusiastic, Icelandic hike leaders that have a way of getting under your skin, even with all their faults. Just kidding. No faults. There's something about being here that's gotten me a bit cheeky at the moment. At any rate, the hike leader had enough energy to put everyone in a delightful mood.  Even me, when feeling sour. That's no easy feet, let me tell you. Which was nice. Must be the mountain air or untainted drinking water.  He knows every mountain on this side of Iceland like the back of his hand and drives a tricked out bus. Believe me, it's nothing like the buses cruising around here.

"It's got personality." 

 This is how we roll ...

First stop on the Gloden Circle, Þingvellir National Park. What an expansive landscape! And, for dramatic affect, you can stand between the North American and Eurasian continental plates. You actually see where they are pulling apart at a rate of 19 mm per year. Fascinating.

The split between the North American and Eurasian Continental Plates.

Þingvellir National Park

 Þingvellir National Park

Second stop, a view of water shooting out of the ground with theatrical flair. Oh, how Mother Nature teases us with all her antics, as tourists circle the geysers, cameras in hand, ready to snap a shot. The Geysir geothermal area has an abundance of geothermal springs everywhere, steam lifting off in various parts of the park. Pretty awesome.




Third stop, the queen of Iceland's waterfalls, Gullfoss. What magnificent beauty and power this waterfall exuded. Quite breathtaking. Once closer to the waterfall, you can feel the force of the rushing water, the temperature dropping a good ten degrees, and windy as hell. I loved it. Talk about prana. It's in abundance. Alive with energy.

 Gullfoss Waterfall


 A closer look at Gullfoss

And, last but not least, a 3 km hike to take a dip in a natural hot spring. This is one of the most incredible and special things about Iceland. The land of fire and ice. Even on a cool day, you can sit in a hot spring, out in nature, without a care in the world. Now that's something. Deep in the hills, hidden down in an exquisite, glorious valley, as if in the middle of nowhere. This is life.

 Valley of steam from hot springs.

So to wrap it all up. I was asked time and time and time again, by the hike leader, "Did I redeem myself?"


In all seriousness, I would recommend him over many of the tours given. He gives a personal touch to seeing Iceland, and c'mon it's all about the bus.

Long Days {Short Nights}


"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication."

(Leonardo da Vinci)

Last Thursday, the Icelandic national holiday, the First day of Summer (sumardagurinn fyrsti), marks the day where the country is graced with more daylight than nighttime. Obviously, not the official first day of summer, but you get the point.  Kinda cool, eh?

The pace at which daylight comes in is staggering, and something I'm getting used to. Here for over two weeks we've already gained about an hour of daylight. Though I've tasted long days in Stockholm, the pace of the transition is a bit quicker in Iceland. I'd have to travel farther north in Sweden to experience the midnight sun.

The unique beauty and energy of Iceland is captivating. Stunning. Beautiful. There's an energetic component that has taken me by surprise. In the news, much fascination extends toward the volcano eruption. Which you can imagine affirms the energy circulating around these parts. I can't help be absolutely entranced by the magnificent beauty and dynamic intensity of a country such as this. Not necessarily wildlife, but with the forces of the very Earth itself.

It's times like this I feel small and insignificant in comparison to the awesomeness of the world. It's a humble feeling, rightfully so, and in turn, a feeling of gratitude to co-exist with it.
With my time alone I contemplate the importance of balancing the forces within myself. I've had the chance to marvel how well the natural environment unfolds beautifully. With patience. The more time I spend in nature, the more I realize the significance of going inward. Amazing how it happens. To be struck by the outer power and allure of the natural enviroment, to see and feel the draw to connect to my own inner power, pure and unobstructed, teaches me, deep and profound.

Again, the cosmos pull at me. Teaching me to be aware. To listen. As Saturn moves back into my sign, like a dark cloud coming in, I've learned to embrace these lessons. It's time to buckle down, yet again. Interesting how it happens just as I arrived. Oh, the synchronistic events of my life weave in a way that I cannot even fathom. Hopefully, looking back, I'll see the grand design.

I can admit I'm scared. I can admit I doubt my strength from time to time. I guess now, I'm finally willing to embrace these fears. Embrace my darkness. It's a part of me too. I only give power to that which I ignore and suppress. This is how I understand it. The good thing, I have better tools to work with. A mind not as agitated.

In my quietest moments I see the higher work at play. I make the connection of taking these dark places and shedding light on them. And as the days become longer, and the nights shorter, I am comforted that in time, I will feel the light again, in all it's glory.

Ashtanga Yoga Toronto


A beautiful demonstration of floating in Sūryanamaskara A.

Hopefully David will be putting out more lovely videos demonstrating the progression of daily practice - balancing strength and flexibility, power and release, in each and every breath.

 YouTube channel link: AshtangaYogaToronto.

Vist to the Blue Lagoon {Relaxing Magic}


The other day I finally made it to the Blue Lagoon. What an amazing place. We soaked for nearly two hours in the psychedelic, ice blue, colored water. All natural, of course, the geothermal heated pool is a combination of sea water, and fresh water filled with minerals, especially silica. When in, it almost has a milky texture. Incredibly relaxing and healing.

Even the drive over from Reykjavik was a bit surreal. The spa sits about half way between Reyki, and Kevlafik International airport. With an expanse of old lava fields, they stretch for miles and miles. Absolutely stunning. Captures the imagination for sure.

Heaven and Hell {Hiking in Iceland}


 Heading to the trail head. The mountain to hike in the back.
Oy vey. I'm a broken woman. But, somehow I've come alive through the process. It all begins with taking "a little hike" up, down, up again, down again, and through, the Icelandic wilderness.

It goes like this ...

Last week I just started instructing an Ashtanga New Beginner's course. The only man in a sea of women, sat in the back of the room. Tickled by the scene, he stuck out like a sore thumb, and didn't seem to mind. I like that. No sense of self-consciousness what so ever.

After class he mentioned that he takes hikers on various tours in and around Iceland. I told him I'd be interested on going on the next hike. I've become a bit of a hiking enthusiast on several of my trips, and felt it would be a perfect opportunity to see more of the country.  He told me he'd be taking a group on a "little hike" up to see Iceland's tallest waterfall. Glymur. Perfect.

Later on, a "little hike" became a running joke. Oh, how innocent, and naive I was!

The next day I was given an email confirmation regarding the details of the hike. The only instruction given was to dress warmly, but that it would be sunny, clear, and to pack food for the day. Ok, cool I thought. I can handle it.

On the day of the hike the group met up at 9:00 am to drive to the trail head. It was a beautiful drive. Seeing more of the countryside was a treat. I was alerted to various volcanoes on the drive. None active at the moment. It's a bit surprising how many are laying dormant around these parts. In my mind I know there are over 100 of them on Iceland, but when they are visually pointed out it gives a different, more real perspective.

Once we arrived at our destination everyone tumbled out of the bus. I dressed warmly, so I thought, wearing four layers up top and two on bottom, gloves, two pairs of socks, and my trail shoes. However, I quickly noticed everyone else had on hiking boots, and other proper hiking gear. Like real weather proof pants,  and gloves. It crossed my mind that maybe I was out of my league.

When the hiking guide told us we'd be climbing up the mountain before us I did a double take. Whhhhhaat! I gazed up. This wasn't exactly what I signed up for. I thought I was seeing a waterfall. As we started down the trail he mentioned, "Oh yeah, if you look to your left you can see Glymur."

I squinted to take a look. Waaaaay down to my left. Nice. Not really.

So the pack took off, and I reluctantly followed. It was cold, about 0° Celsius, and mind you we were on the ground, steadily hiking up to higher elevation. I was already shivering.

 A closer look of the mountain, yet to climb.

Right away the path was rocky and I felt ill prepared with my meager trail running shoes. My ankles kept rolling out as I did my best to mindfully take each step without tumbling. Good grief. While the pack kept rolling on with their hiking poles, and well equipped feet, they glided, while I stumbled.

Guide number two told me, "This is the worst part, once we round the corner it gets better. Not as rocky."

We rounded the corner MORE rocks.

Later he reiterated, "Once we make it above the ridge. It won't be so bad."

Above the ridge. Bigger rocks. Higher incline. I wanted to scream. I was in hell.

"Once we round the bend it won't be as rough," he went on.

Around the bend we went. Even more rocky. Rougher terrain. He must be joking, I thought. He must be.

I said things under my breath that would've made a sailor cringe. Every explicative in the book. I wanted to hurl one of those rocks at somebody. Or maybe just knock myself unconscious. Obviously, I was in a sour mood. Which totally caught me off guard. With a mixture of low blood sugar - my bowl of muesli for breakfast quickly burned off - numb hands and feet, fatigued legs, and altitude, didn't make for a good combination. I was struggling.

Am I seeing elves? Okay I gotta get off this mountain. I had already made it up around 600 meters. 

Yes, many Icelanders believe elves inhabit the island, along with trolls of some sort. However, I was obviously hallucinating because the elves I saw were of the Keebler elf variety. Too bad. I would have preferred one of those elves from the Lord of the Rings. Lol.

Quickly I had to assess my feelings. This hike was really kicking intense feelings up for me. No it was kicking my ass. More than anger, I was feeling overwhelmed with frustration. Why?

Call it stubbornness, call it whatever, I don't like to quit, and I wanted to get up this mountain even though it wasn't what I had expected in the first place. Then I had to ask myself, what do I have to prove? I'm ready to accept my limitations in this situation, and bow out. I couldn't feel my hands any longer. Talking was becoming an issue because my face was turning numb. Do I need to struggle and push against the flow when everything else is telling me to just stop?

 Rocky incline.

Guide number two offered to walk me down the 600 meters we climbed. Haha. Which is easier said than done, but nonetheless eased my mind, with each knee cracking step. Then he told me ...

"By the way they call this trail Leggjabrjótur." Which literally translates as leg breaker. My word. Now you tell me. I just had to laugh. I was delirious, but something about the climb gave me a sense of inner compassion. Which was interesting. 

 A bit wearing, but happy the mountain is behind and not before me.

When we made it back to the bus I was able to de-thaw and eat something. I needed to refuel and get feeling back into my limbs. Essential number one. My mood started to lift. The clouds parted. The sun began to shine. 

Over another hour or so the hike leader was back at the bus as fresh and happy as he started. He told me the rest of the pack is still headed down, but he wanted to take me to see the waterfall. I hesitated. It would be about a 400 meter hike upward. However, his enthusiasm won out in the end. I relented. I let go. I changed my perspective. I decided, okay, I'll go. 

More rocky, intense inclines, but I was okay. Since we were ascending on the opposite side of the valley the sun shown more brightly and warmly where we were. Which made everything easier. Especially for my poor little fingers. Once to the top it was a spectacular view. A feeling of intense energy. In font of me, the tallest waterfall in Iceland rushing with life. To my left the mountain I didn't finish climbing with all it's beauty. To my right, a view of the ocean. It was sight to behold.

 Top of Glymur waterfall.

The best part of the entire trip, at the top of the ridge I filled my water bottle up from a fresh mountain spring, water cleansed from Mother Earth. I tell you, and I'm not exaggerating when I say this, it was the best taste of water I've ever had. Amazing. The abundance of fresh, unpolluted water in Iceland is truly something special. I was in Heaven. 

 Filler up! Fresh spring water!

What did I learn? Weeeelll, I learned never to trust enthusiastic Icelandic hike leaders. Just kidding.

No really, accepting my limitations, having compassion for what I can handle, being alright with it, truly taught me something. It's okay. As simple as that. And, in the end, I was able to brush myself off and get out there again.
Guess it's true what the old adage says, it doesn't matter if you fall, or in my case stumble, it only matters if you get up again. 

Ardha Baddha Padma Paśchimottānāsana


Still to this day, one of my favorite postures.



Where beauty is, then there is ugliness;
where right is, also there is wrong.
Knowledge and ignorance are interdependent;
delusion and enlightenment condition each other.
Since olden times it has been so.
How could it be otherwise now?
Wanting to get rid of one and grab the other
is merely realizing a scene of stupidity.
Even if you speak of the wonder of it all,
how do you deal with each thing changing?


Hallgrímskirkja Church {Reykjavik}


The courtesans are turned out in their best,

How delightfully they speak and laugh along the lovely green river.

They call out to the gentleman all the day long,
And tempt them with songs that
charm the hardest heart.

They mince about with flirtatious glances
so difficult to resist.

Someday, though, even these captivating women
will have nothing left, And they will be left out in the harsh cold.

Leave off your mad rush for gold and jewels, I've got something
far more precious for you:

A bright pearl that sparkles more brilliantly than the sun and moon,
And illuminates each and every eye.

Lose it and you'll wallow in a sea of pain;
Find it and you'll safely reach the other shore.

I freely preset this treasure to anyone,

But hardly anyone asks for it.



Astāvakrāsana A


Primal Forces of Nature

Since landing in Iceland everyone has mentioned I gotta see the volcano eruption. Hearing of it's beauty piqued my interest for sure. It's been the talk of the town. But then, just the other day, the SECOND eruption occurred. I looked a bit dumbfounded. I had to clarify.

"You mean to tell me there's been another eruption?"

Yep. I was told. One that is 10x's as powerful as the first. But to make things interesting, this one is springing up out of a huge glacier. The Eyjafjallajokull (ay-yah-FYAH'-plah-yer-kuh-duhl) glacier, to be exact. Talk about a shit load of melting water. Hundreds of people have had to be evacuated.

Reykjavik is out of the line of fire, thankfully. However, should I be worried about another one going off closer to home? Things aren't dull around here. That's for sure.

So why is Iceland such a hotbed of activity?

Weeeelllll, let's cover a few interesting facts about this geo-active island.

  • Iceland is situated astride the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, and on top of a hot-spot presumed to be fed by a deep mantel plume, located under Central Iceland. 
  • Iceland is slowly being pulled apart. At the plate boundary, the two major plates, the Eurasia and North American Plates, move apart today with a velocity of about 19 mm/year. 

  • The divergence of the ridge started in the north about 150 million years ago. As the plates move apart the Icelandic hot-spot, excessive eruptions of lava construct volcanoes and fill rift valleys. 
  • The divergence continues today and is accompanied by earthquakes, reactivation of old volcanoes and creation of new volcanoes.
  • Iceland is one of the most active and productive sub-aerial volcanic regions on Earth, with eruption frequency of ≥20 events per century.
  • Iceland is home to more than 100 volcanoes and on average, a volcano erupts about every 5th year. Volcanoes define a wide spectrum of forms, ranging from a crack in the ground to stately stratovolcanoes like the Hekla volcano

One of Iceland's largest volcanoes when active.

  • Because of Iceland's location, on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, the island is in the process of formation. The old parts, the east and west carried away by the wind, sea, rain, and ice, while new parts are created by volcanic action. 


It seems to me Iceland is a geologist's paradise! I've even found it interesting as a layperson. With events such as this, it only reaffirms whose really boss, and it ain't us!!!!!!



Chaos Order - Order Chaos

"At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet."

Press to Handstand


Hotbed of Creativity {Reykjavik}

The volcano isn't the only thing erupting around here! There's a creativity boom in Reykjavik. Amazing. With a population at a mere 120, 000, it probably has one of the highest percentage of artists and creative minds in the world. Though my findings are far from scientific I'm impressed by the creative energy bubbling around these parts.

The main street in Reykjavik, Laugavegur, hosts an abundance of private label fashion boutiques,  teaming with their very own fashion designers. I don't know about you but I was highly impressed by this. Being a fashion merchandising major in college I can appreciate what all this entails. I love and appreciate what unique fashion tastes bring to the table, and I have to say in Iceland, I've gotten a taste of what it's all about. With a mixture of off beat presentation, and awkward coordination, from what I've seen it works beautifully, and somehow always pulled off as c-h-i-c, chic!. I love, love, love it.

I know, I'm sounding like I work for the tourism board of Iceland. However, being an avid admirer of all things artistic and creative I love the vibe of possibility this community supports. It's a wonderful thing.

Along with finding unique and fashionable digs, Reykjavik has an alive music scene, plenty of art galleries, and museums to check out. The way I heard it, with the extremes of weather and the darkness during the winter, I guess the energy has to go somewhere. Why not towards creating something interesting, beautiful and thought-provoking? Better than the alternative.

A Land of Contrasts {Iceland Weather}


Oh my. When researching Iceland before my arrival I had read how quickly the weather changes. I didn't really fall for it, because I've heard the same thing about other places. Heck, I've heard that about Columbus, Ohio, and even Sweden. Nope, those two don't come close to the schizophrenic nature of Iceland. OMG!

From the time I awoke till about noon it had rained and become sunny in a cycle of about five to six times, with bursts of wind mixed in. Later, there was a bit of snow sighted. Sun came out again. Then sleet. The fiercest burst of sleet I've ever encountered. It was coming in sideways, and felt like rocks pelting me in the face. Ummmm, yeah. Not the best feeling in the world, lol. I relented to walking backwards. Ha! Then sunny again! As if nothing ever happened! I was told with the changing of seasons the weather is a bit more neurotic. Should be settling soon. Now I know I have to be ready for anything. With all this, I don't get how the Icelanders can STILL be so chic and stylish. A mystery.

I encountered my first Icelandic pool experience. A huge part of the culture. Deals and acquisitions are even made over a dip in a hot pot. The majority of pools are outdoors. Yes outdoors, even with all the elements. That's the beauty of it. You start in the slightly heated pool then work your way up in temperature moving into warmer and warmer hot pots (or hot tubs). There's a steam room too.

The mixture of sitting in a geothermal pool, filled with spring water, and fresh air is intoxicating, and brings with it an abundance of health benefits. No wonder Icelanders have one of the highest life expectancies in the world. They don't live without taking a dip, regularly.

I'll be adding it into my regular routine! My skin glowed, and I felt completely relaxed. Ahhhhh. The perfect remedy for challenging yoga practices.

 Iceland. A contrast of hot and cold. Makes for interesting synergy.

Blue Lagoon {Iceland}



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