food, dancing, and yoga everywhere

I absolutely love last week.

Sunshine on my shoulders on a run/walk. With no timer. Just organic intervals.

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I have rediscovered my love for Fage + granola.

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I am starting to think about how I dress as yoga on the top and business on the bottom. I feel strangely more authentic this way.

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I found this field on a walk the other day. It is off-the-beaten-path in a city park. I’m excited to teach classes here in the spring.

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Yoga completes me.

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This is where I coach. Where the magic happens.

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While Nathan ran Saturday morning, I had coffee, toast, and got some serious studying done.

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Flash cards!

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I am so proud of my husband.

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I love our church.

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And chili.

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And me.
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Be Still starts Wednesday! A month of focusing on quiet and stillness. Join us!

where am i going?

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I keep having this dream.

I’m going back to college.

It usually involves three of my friends from around the time of my college life, but they are not consistent from dream to dream. Last night, I was accompanied by William (my close friend from college), Lucas (an acquaintance from high school), and Sarah (my grad school best girl and Maid of Honor). I am my current age. We are living in the dorms, usually in a suite of the four of us. Four random adults in their mid-thirties among a sea of college kids.

It is the first day of class at an unfamiliar school. My backpack is packed. We stop at a coffee shop between the dorm and the classroom buildings. They all have class earlier than mine. I drop them off at class. Settle in at a table outside. Take a long, slow drink of my latte. Pull out my schedule. And I realize that it doesn’t list locations for my classes. I have days and times, but no locations. No big deal, I’ll check the website. But I go to the website and it says something like, “This information has expired.”

In other words, I should know where I’m going by now.

I feel lost. Frustrated with myself. And a little scared. I’m sitting on at uncomfortable metal table. I’ve got my school supplies ready. I want to learn. I have all of this information right at my fingertips and I have no idea where I’m supposed to go.

I wave down a friendly stranger. I ask if he/she knows where my first class is held. The person always does, and I am always led on an adventure.

Last night, my helper was a young lady. Petite, platinum blonde, artist type. Her vibe felt very similar to Retta. Yes, she knew where that class was and -hooray!- she was in it, so she would take me. But we had to get on a bus. And -look!- there it is. I second guess. I ask if she is sure. She smiles, beckons me with a smile, and we board the bus.

We didn’t have a lot of time to chat, though, because this bus became a non-frightening version of the boat ride in the original Willy Wonka. Even though it was daylight, we drove through a neon-light casino area. We went around and around a skinny mountain-climbing gravel road. We drove through an up-and-coming section of town and my helper pointed out a few restaurants I needed to try. We drove though an area that I frequently run in my dreams – a two lane, hilly, tree-lined country road. And then we pulled back up at campus, exactly where we started.

And we walked into a classroom building beside the table where I was originally sitting. With plenty of time to spare.

The details are often different. But the result is the same.

I wake up comforted.

It is okay to not know where I’m going.

I get to ask for help.

I get to go on an adventure.

And I will be exactly where I need to be when I need to be there.

What a way to wake up on a Saturday morning. Have a lovely weekend, friends.

Paying attention to poses – yesyogahascurves

Friends. I am loving this #yesyogahascurves photography challenge. I feel like it is bring so many of the things I love together in one place. Yoga. Yoga with props and modifications. Photography. Yoga photography showing the available expression of the pose. And then focused reflection on one specific pose in my practice. I’m just eating it up.

My process looks like this. I pick out the spot (in my house, so far) where I want to take the picture. And that is where I practice. I do whatever I had planned as my class. The last few weeks, I’ve been practicing at home. I am able to truly focus on form and movement. When I am at the end of my practice, I set up my camera and set the picture. After that, I’ll cool down and do my savasana.

Day 3: Bridge // Setu Bandha Sarvangasana

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I love bridge. And I love this picture. This was one of those times that I took dozens of pictures (with my camera under my dining room table, on a block, with a remote trigger in a 2 second delay). Unsupported. One block. 2 blocks. Legs straight in the air. Tons of pictures. And one looked like this. Only this shot had the sun in just the right place. And I love it. So so much. I feel so open and responsive in bridge. And I love how the sunlight looks like my heart is shining.

Day 4: Bow Pose // Dhanurasana

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This set-up was different. This was shot using my iPad and the Gorillacam app. Mostly because this pose intimidates me. It reminds me of Bikram, where I always felt very inferior. So I just wanted to get this over with. iPad propped up against the bottom stair. Grabbed my feet. Held while it snapped 15 pictures. Posted to Instagram immediately. Moved on.

Then Nathan came upstairs and I showed him my picture. Then I showed him the full expression of the pose. He made a groaning noise. So I got on the floor and showed how the chest actually rises when you push back through the feet. And, what do you know, I came up off the ground. Quite a bit. With a lot less effort than went into this photograph. When I wasn’t intimidated. When I wasn’t thinking about taking a picture. When I was just doing yoga.

Thank you for letting me share this process with you. I am so curious how all of this will fit together – yoga and coaching and writing and photography- in a new hybrid cross-over presentation of Krissie. So, so curious.

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BeStill starts Wednesday, October 1. I am so looking forward to being your guide through quiet, rest, and what you find there. 4 weeks. 3 video prompts each week. We’ll cover finding quiet, reducing noise, being held, and self-support. This offering feels peaceful and timely and so very important. You can find details and registration information here.

#yesyogahascurves

I was thinking yesterday how I needed something like Curvy Beloved. I was so changed by the combination of yoga and self-portraiture. But I wanted something that felt like more than casual selfies. I wanted to take portraits again.

I thought about starting Curvy Beloved over, but then I found an instagram challenge from YesYogaHasCurves. And I knew it was exactly what I needed.

Luckily, it started Monday so I only had one day of catch-up to do.

Day 1: Camel // Ustrasana

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I am super glad we started here. Camel has always felt way too vulnerable for me. And, after the post I had written yesterday, I was feeling a little raw. I love that Diane Bondy showed modifications on the Instagram post. It allowed me to find space that felt safe. I love that this picture is out of focus.

Day 2: Cobra // Bhujangasana

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Now this is my yoga home pose. I love few poses more than cobra. I have incredibly tight hamstrings, so every part of the sun salutation up to this point feels like a challenge and is somewhat emotionally uncomfortable the first flow. My forward fold isn’t foldy. My downward dog has super bent knees. But then I get here, and I sigh. With contentment. Audibly. Every time.

I am so looking forward to the next 19 days of this challenge! You can follow me on Instagram or the album on Flickr.

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BeStill starts October 1.

A month of intentional quiet.
…of purposeful noise reduction.
…of pursuing stillness.
…of allowing more of what supports us.

You can grab your spot (and more information) here!

Permission to find a different way.

Raga : clinging to past pleasure and the fear that it will not be experienced again. Manifests as suffering. Letting go of attachment avoids future suffering.

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When I read that yesterday, I felt like both the bottom dropped out of my world and a weight was lifted off of my shoulders. At the same time.

I cling to running. I so want it back in my life. I want the earth to move under my feet. I want to move through space with ease. I want achievement and medals. Or that’s what I told myself. Because it was easiest and safest.

More than that, I want the community that running once gave me.

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There are a lot of reasons I’m not running regularly right now. My life is full. Time would be a challenge. Distance running takes over your life. I have put on weight and I don’t feel good at it anymore.

The biggest reason, though, is the reason I quit. My body just doesn’t like it. I remember having a conversation with Erin toward the end of my last double-digit run about a year ago. Pretty close to the taper of a marathon that I didn’t want to run. Around mile 16 of an 18-miler.

Erin, I just don’t want to do this.

My body didn’t like it. My body felt punished instead of energized. I could physically do it. But, dammit, I just didn’t want to. It wasn’t fear. It wasn’t end-of-training-cycle exhaustion. It wasn’t that point where you just want to quit training. I realized I had felt that way when I started training.

That was the moment I started getting honest. Honest about my feelings – physically and emotionally – about running.

I didn’t want to do it. Just like I’ll eventually get tired of having the same thing for breakfast every morning. I had my fill. It had run it’s course. I needed a break.

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Over the past year, I have fought this truth. I have created training plans. I have set goals. I bought a fancy-pants watch.

I have created hopes and dreams. And I have failed. Repeatedly.

Because they weren’t honest. Because I wasn’t honest about what I wanted. Or why I wanted to run. Or what I had lost that I fear I’ll never feel again.

Community.

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This is what I lost when I stopped running.

I had a built-in group of friends. I spent probably 10 hours a week with a variety of people. I heard and shared stories. And bugs to the face. We got lost together. We got rained on together. And there were lots and lots of sweaty hugs.

Tuesday night. Wednesday night. Thursday night. Long run Saturday morning. Recovery run and donuts Sunday morning. Common interest. Common challenges. Hugs. Laughter. Love. Just built into my schedule. I knew it would be there.

I lost my community. The community that I built. And there are no words for how much I miss it.

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Today, I am working very hard to tease apart the connection I have between being a runner and having community. I am trying to let go of my belief that running is the only way to find community.

I have been operating from a place of fear. A place that believes that running is the only place I can fit in. That running is the only community that there is for me. That running is the only way I can connect with those I love.

And that isn’t true. It was the commonality that got us all in the same place, but it isn’t the only way I can connect with people.

I’m letting go of my attachment to running. I am allowing it to be present – or not present – in a way that feels organic. I am not giving up on myself or my intentions for my health and my relationships. I am just giving myself permission to get there a different way.

And this is both liberating and terrifying.

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30 days of intentional quiet starts October 1st. Head over to my coaching home to learn more about Be Still.

the week that was – in pictures

I didn’t expect the week back from yoga teacher training to be this exhausting.

But I wanted to make a point to listen to my body. To give what I needed. To take the time to really be present with myself. I am so glad that I was gentle with myself. Not only do I feel proud that I tuned in, but I’m super excited to get back in the swing of things this week.

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This week brought a few days of scarf weather. I’ll take it wherever I can find it. I’m sure I’ll be singing a different tune in March, but it feels awesome right now.

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We found a piece of clover in our bag of spinach. I know it doesn’t have four leaves, but it still felt super lucky to me.

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I am so super excited to have these full-sized Erin Condren notebooks (ordering through that link will get $10 off for you and $10 off for me). I am so excited to start deciphering my yoga school scribble into organized notes. I think I’m going to use the top one first. I think.

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I love that Nathan and I are such nerds. One night, we were in bed at 9:30. Reading. Nerdy stuff. I just love that man.

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Miranda came to visit us this weekend. There are no words for how hard we laughed. And a good portion of that was because of the Woodchuck+Woodfords we enjoyed. I mean, seriously friends. Hard cider and bourbon. Yes, please! (Oh, and local pumpkin+chocolate chip loaf.)

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These two are seriously my favorite people on the planet. We need a family-friendly insulting gesture! (This is right before Nathan got all “Get off my lawn!”)

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Bonus happy today! Our favorite local coffee shop has a small batch of some of our favorite Asheville chocolate! We are savoring it. But, dude. I just want to stuff it all in my face.

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I am so incredibly excited for the week ahead. I have several blogposts (and a newsletter!) just waiting to come out through my fingers. I’m back on a regular in-studio yoga schedule. I feel focused and energized and driven, but still oh-so content.

Maybe part of that is the chocolate speaking.

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Be Still starts October 1. This offering presents information that I am so glad that I have learned. And that I was truly able to experience this past week. Now I’m inviting you to embrace the same knowledge.

Let’s find some quiet.

When I make a commitment to spend time each day in stillness, the better I feel. The more prepared I am to be intentional. The more content I am with what I do. The more fulfilled and present and alive I feel. The more I experience my life.

Let me say that again. By choosing to spend time in quiet each day, I experience more of my life.

I know quiet can be scary. Quiet can seem elusive.

Where is the time? Where is the space? Where is the energy?
I don’t know how to do it. I don’t know when to do it. I don’t know what I’ll find.

Yes, yes, and yes.

But you’ve got me. To help you find stillness. And to help you figure out what you find there.

We’ll look at the noise, the nonsense. We’ll look at how we distract ourselves. How we don’t allow ourselves space to recharge. How we use technology and busyness and achievement to create distance between ourselves and the stillness we need. We’ll explore the tendency we have – as adults – to avoid quiet in a similar way to toddlers that fight sleep.

We know we’ll feel better, but we’re afraid we’ll miss something. Forget something. Learn something.

Allow peace. Embrace quiet. Be still.

Click here for registration and additional information.

elementary school

So I don’t know if you’ve noticed but I haven’t written a lot this week. There are several reasons for this. First? Complete and total exhaustion. I had no idea what yoga teacher training would take out of me – physically, emotionally, and mentally. I’ve spent my evenings with yoga, SVU, and snuggling with my honey on the couch.

Since I’ve been back home I’ve wondered about how to present to y’all what I am learning and the impact on all of me.

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I’m in that space of feeling like the more I learn, the more aware I am of what I don’t know. I have all of the stuff just swimming blissfully around in my head but I don’t feel articulate enough -yet- to share this with you.

I feel like I’m just on page 1 and I see the opportunity and the potential of everything ahead of me. I don’t want to come off like I think I know everything already, but it is all I want to talk about.

Maybe this a better analogy. I feel like I’m back in elementary school. And everything just feels amazing and fascinating and vast. The world feels huge and waiting to be understood. I feel like I’m learning how to write physically. And I want to say things like, “Holy shit friends! I just made a cursive r! And tomorrow I’m gonna learn how to make a cursive s!”

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I realize that where I am is the beginning of this massive adventure. But I still want to share it with you in a way that I won’t look back in a year and feel feel like a big goober.

So I will share my process with you. I have a list of things to write about, but I’m still figuring out how to make them even remotely coherent. I’m working on it.

Today I want to share with you a few things would’ve totally rocked my world in the last few days. Places that I have found words that I don’t have to give yet.

The first is a article from poweryoga.com on what yoga is and what yoga means. This speaks so openly and eloquently on how my thoughts on health and fitness are evolving. You will see writing from me around this topic, but I’m not sure how to write it without potentially being viewed as judgmental toward a community I thrived in. He speaks truth.

This podcast with Jess Lively and Kate Arends? Blew my mind. I love the talk about authenticity and minimalism and approaching both from a spiritual and true gut level perspective.

So that’s what I’ve got today friends. Expect more. Expect me to flail and some points. Expect me to maybe get a little radical. But expect me to be me.

I am in elementary school. And I love it.

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Be Still starts October 1. A month of finding space, quiet, and getting cozy with the stillness you find. I am super excited about the potential within this offering. I’d love to have you along! Click for more information and to register!