Thursday, May 31, 2007

Kaili Iolani

I still can't believe it...she is just as cute as a button, with those dark eyes and that little bald head. It was hard buying little baby clothes for her, because it just made me remember that once my boy's were that small and now they are well over 6' tall.
Amazing how fast time passes before our eyes...
I guess that's why they say "Live today like there is no tomorrow"

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Being the Change we wish to see

People who travel to India are touched in a way that isn't easy to explain....
just yesterday a friend and I were talking about what it is that pulls me towards India each year....
it isn't just the Yoga, it's just being in such a place where you have so much time to just BE and to really think about your life and what it is you are doing with it, or aren't doing with it...
You have realizations, you have moments of clarity, and you have many moments of Peace...
It's a place you can go to and be who you genuinely are and then bring a little something MORE back home with you.
You realize things that you never thought you would....
you see things in a different light, and you are truly humbled by the experience...
It makes you WANT to be a better person, do better things with your life and for those in your life.
When you have so much, not monetary wise, but just have a life that is pretty much full of "things" that you own and have around you, within your reach..sometimes it's easy to forget about others who don't have those things.
But somehow, when your heart is open and your eyes are too, you do SEE, and you go on and become that better person that we all can be if we just dig a little deeper....

"We must BE the Change we wish to see in the World"

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

the journey begins with just one step....

and this is how it all started to come together....Thanks so much to Ganesh for the lead on where we would donate the shoes. Below is his email to me~I have had lots of emails today from friends and bloggers who will be sending in some shoes...So stay tuned for updates and photos of how many we receive!!

hi tracy (lotusgirl),

Thank you for the mail. And thank you very much for the noble deed of collecting footwear for the orphanage children in Mysore.

There are many orphanages in Mysore. I suggest and highlight the bestwork done by an organisation called Operation Shanti, who are doing a lot for the destitute and poor street people of Mysore. You can log on to http://www.operation-shanti.org/ for more details. The mysore operations are very abley headed by Tracy kunichika, to whom i am copying this mail. You can contact tracy (kunichika) on the mail tracyk223@yahoo.com she would help you out.

Sure i will get you an accomodation when you come here next year for a week. Say hi to Ray and Oliver from my side.

warm regards


another option...

I just realized that some of you may not have the time to actually go out and purchase shoes and then pack them up and ship them off....

so I thought this http://www.payless.com/ might be easier for some of you to do.

You can just have them sent to me and include your name. I will be sure to take some photos each day that I receive your shoes so you know when they arrive and how many we have collected so far.

I would really rather not have people send me money...as I think it means more for you to actually pick them out yourselves!

Just a thought....

any other ideas are welcome!

Helping out in India....

Last weekend my son wanted to watch our copy of "Born into Brothels" if you have not yet seen this movie, I highly recommend it. After he was done watching it, he came out and told me how much he enjoyed the movie and that when we go to India he would like to do something to help the children while we are there.

Of course I agreed as having been there myself 3 times now, each time I go I do something to help the people and the animals. The first trip we brought 2 huge suitcases filled with clothing for the Tibetans that had just arrived into India. It was a touching moment to see the gratitude and joy in their eyes...and it brought back the fact that it is indeed much better to give than to receive.

The next two trips we brought food for the stray animals and bought food everyday for the children on the street and the poor older people.

So this year we have come up with a new way to help out. We have created "Walking in their Shoes", and what we are doing this time is collecting as many pairs of children's shoes as we can until we leave for India in January of 2008.

I will be working in conjunction with Tracy at http://www.operation-shanti.org/ . They are based in Mysore, India. My son, husband and myself will be delivering the shoes when we arrive in Mysore and I will be posting photos of us giving the shoes to the children. If you would like to send a pair we would be most grateful and will be attaching on the shoestring a slip of laminated paper with your name and where you are from.

We thank you from the bottom of our hearts for donating to such a good cause and you know what good Karma it is as well!!

Here is my address and the cut off date will be December 15th,2007.

We are each allowed 70 pounds to take on the plane...and we have purchased extra luggage in order to bring plenty of shoes!!

Tracy Cox

242 Fairmont Drive

Grass Valley, CA


Please feel free to forward this to as many people as you feel would like to help as well~



Monday, May 28, 2007

todays project....organizing Books!!

Did I mention that I LOVE books? I have loads of books...mainly on spirituality,yoga,saints and gurus,Indian Novels,Tibet,vegan cooking,animals,crystals, chakras..so many books! Today I took them all down and organized them...here they are!

lunchtime in the grass

Hanuman went outside this afternoon to walk around and chomp on some nice fresh grass~~

isn't he wonderful!

Yoga practice was hot, hot, hot today. Sweating all the "poisons" out as Sharath says. Feels so good!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

The new man in my life!

I would like to introduce you all to "Hanuman"!

He is the newest addition to our family~ he was rescued yesterday and he is a Sulcata Tortoise.

He is the largest of the "African MainlandTortoise" and will grow to be up to 110 lbs....OMG! I am glad we have a BIG yard!! He is so irresistibly cute! He is so responsive and loves to sit in the palm of my hand and look into my eyes~~~he's like a little Buddha! Little for now that is!

He will grow to be about 50 pounds within 5 years. And he is..(so important to me)...a Vegetarian!

So, stay tuned and watch him grow!

I am SO relieved I have such a great pet sitter when I travel...that's 3 dogs and one tortoise..for now anyway!

Happy Sunday All!

Saturday, May 26, 2007

~~~New Energy~~~Good Energy~~~

In India, outside of most homes in some cities. You will see wonderful designs of little symbols, flowers, om's....done in a colored powder. They sweep it away the next morning and design another. They say it brings new energy/good energy into the home.

I started doing it in front of my home ever since.

Here is what I did today...and what my son created along with mine.

His is the "abstract" design, and mine is the flower.

Happy Saturday!

Om Shanti

Friday, May 25, 2007


One of my most favorite Hindu Deities is of course the beloved Ganesha.

In India he is everywhere. In my home he is also everywhere...

One of the reasons I admire and adore India is because the people there are not afraid to show their affection and thanks to the many Gods and Goddesses. Everywhere you go there are little places of worship with a Hindu God being worshiped and prayed to. It starts in the wee hours of the morning...you will hear bells and chants and prayers and to me it is like a warm blanket enveloping my whole entire being. I love that about India. India is pure and raw, in your face as Saskia puts it.

That is why she loves living there so much. People say what they feel and there are no hard feelings. Just like when you are in a rickshaw or taxi and another rickshaw or taxi cuts in front of the other driver...here they would scream obscenities and throw up a finger. In India, the drivers will give each other a look, a honk and then drive on. It's all forgotten.

Ganesha~The remover of Obstacles...."Om Gunuputayah Namaha"

Thursday, May 24, 2007

prayers in the wind

I had a strong practice this morning (other then falling over once or twice during some standing poses!!) I slept so well last night..emotions are all in check after my little "incident" the other day.

I find that Yoga balances my emotions beautifully and my Buddhist practice is like the "icing on the cake"! For me it just works~

Soon it will be "ladies holiday" for this Lotus Girl...hmmm, maybe that was part of my problem earlier this week?? Maybe so. Oh well...it's over for now and we have moved forward. At least I have.

So, now for my quote of the day~ they all come from this little red book I have called "A guide for the advanced soul" You are supposed to put forward a request while randomly opening up the book. The first words you read will tell you what you most need to hear"

So here goes...."If one desires a change, one must be that change before that change can take place" I know that to be true..my favorite quote by Gandhi of course.."We must be the change we wish to see in the world"


Wednesday, May 23, 2007

like a rose~

What a beautiful day~

Today was my Yin practice as I am balancing my Ashtanga practice which is 5 days with one day of intense stretching which is my Yin practice. It helps me personally...

I feel so dumb sometimes, I have to admit that I do not know a lot of the asana pose names by heart...so I am learning them now. Or at least trying to learn them and I know that they will all come to me by heart eventually. It's like the practice itself...it all takes time. It takes time for the body to open, like the unfolding of a rose, day by day.

It will come, as it all does with the practice.

I was tested today, in a HUGE way, and all I will say on the matter is this...

If you truly open your heart and mind to something and really show compassion everything will work out in the best way possible.

So now for the quote...

"Be very very still and allow every new experience to take place in your life without any resistance whatsoever.

You do not have to do anything, you simply have to be and let things happen."

Truly words to live by, at least they were for me today.


Tuesday, May 22, 2007

oh these dog food companies!!

I always thought that the dog food I fed my dogs was one of the "safe" ones...one of the "Better brands". I was actually out of the country when this whole dog food recall went down. Today I received my copy of "The Whole Dog Journal" in the mail, thank goodness, and was leafing through it only to see that "MY Brand" was listed as a new recall. So of course I immediately went into "panic mode" I had just bought 2 cases of the two that were recalled. It is by the way, Natural Balance, but not ALL of the foods were recalled and thank goodness I only fed them a few times with the "new stuff" and took it back immediately.

So for all of you dog and cat owners out there, for your animals safety and well being, go to www.petfoodtracker.com and see if any of your foods or treats are there. It was just recently updated. We are now feeding them Innova and I feel so much better now that I found this all out...so are Lola, Elf and Bindi!


Monday, May 21, 2007

and so it goes....

I knew it! I just knew it. We are definitely going back to India next year. We just have to decide on the month. Then of course Oliver's passport,visa,shots....the whole shibang! He has the worst time swallowing pills..so we will have to smash up the Malrone and put it in Jam or Honey. That is a daily "must". It will be exciting seeing India through his young eyes...showing him all the places we so love in India. We may just stay the full month in Mysore and practice at the Shala and then break up the last 2 weeks in Singapore and Thailand....nothing for sure on that yet. But the plans are jelling...

Wow, I just got back and were already planning again~

and so it goes....

Sunday, May 20, 2007

sunday practice and talks of india!

Had an awesome sunday practice with the husband. Last night we all sat and watched our videos that we took while in India in March/April and then we watched Gurujis Video that was filmed in 2000 in Hawaii. We saw one of our good friends from Tiburon on the video as well as David Swenson. What a trip to see a friend on a video all of a sudden! Very cool!

Our 16 year old son, who has always been opposed to traveling with us on our trips to India is wanting very much to go with us next trip. I think it would be so great for him to experience India, and have always asked him to go with us...but he has always declined the invitation. It's so cool to see how he is opening up and changing the older he gets. So, now, were thinking maybe we will be going back in January or February 2008. Nothing is set in stone...but India always draws us back year after year, so you never know!

Going to go out and enjoy this beautiful, sunny day!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

place of spirituality

I find such peace within my heart in front of my altar. It is where I can pray for my friends and those who I don't know personally but who may need some prayers sent their way. It is where I chantand pray for Guruji to be well and healed...and it is where I pray that we will one day have peace on earth....

Friday, May 18, 2007


All done for the day~

Morning Blogs and Emails...check

One Hour Ashtanga Practice...check

Chanting for 30 minutes....check

Walk dogs for 45 minutes...check

2 loads of laundry...check

Return phone calls....check

Nice cup of home made Chai...check
photo taken at "Tea Time" Fort Cochin, India

His Holiness the Dalai Lama

I was in Dharamsala last month and I was staying across the road from His Holiness the Dalai Lamas' home. I could see his back deck from my hotel room at the "Chonor House" a Tibtan owned and run hotel. Everyday my husband and I would walk around the property of the Temple and his home saying out moring and evening prayers "Om Mani Padme Hum" spinning the prayer wheels with all the the Tibetan refugees, old and young alike. It was such a special feeling to be able to be there and to do that each day for 10 days.

We weren't able to have an audience with him, although he was home. In a way I was a little dissapointed...but then I thought to myself, if I did have an audience with him what would I say?

I know what I would do...I would beam form ear to ear as I bowed down before him taking his hands in mine and then I would cry like a baby. I always do when I see him. He seems to have that effect on a lot of people. Pure Love.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

A Sadhu...

I have these dreams at night and while I am sleeping I know I am sleeping and I start to talk about really complicated things...things I don't even know what I am talking about. They are really advanced and hard to understand and then I slowly wake up while I am saying these things and wonder what the heck I was talking about. What's up with that?

Maybe in my dreams I am a Professor or a Scientist or maybe even a Sadhu??? I would opt for the latter personally! I have a really awesome photograph of this very old Sadhu that was taken while we were in Bodh Gaya, India two years ago. This wonderful old man just kept following us around the Stupa there and we took his photo and I have it hanging on my living room wall next to the Lotus Flower and Monk photo. The photo above is the Sadhu we gave to at Chamundi Hill in Mysore this year. (although I spelled it wrong in the photo)

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

finally here....

So yes, I am one of those little people who have been watching from afar and finally found the "gusto" to actually be here! I love reading my favorite blogs everyday with my morning cup of whatever strikes my fancy...whether it be my "World Famous Chai" recipe compliments of Biju from The Kashi Cafe in Fort Cochin,India...or the usual Starbucks java. Blogs are indeed a part of my morning ritual. Can't live without 'em! Thanks Julie for adding me~!~

Today is a Moon Day and I will go out for a 5 mile run later...then pay for it tomorrow.

Thanks Krista for your words of advice, and I am hoping your foot heals fast, though you are dead on when you said "Everything happens for a reason".

I am trying my best to keep my mind off of heading back to India next year...I promised my sweet husband that I would take one year off, but it's pulling me back once again.

Monday, May 14, 2007

mothers day and being a grandmother...

Yesterday as we all know was Mothers Day. It was really quite wonderful though...I saw my sweet new Grandbaby Kaili and she just loves me as much as I love her (i love her more) and my two beautiful sons were present and loving. We ate at "Cafe Gratitude" in Berkeley, a completely raw restaurant which I LOVE!! The day was full of all the people I love the most in my life and I couldn't have asked for more quite honestly.