200hr YTT Fall 2018

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Quick update on the YTT program I will be part of starting October 13th! Super excited to let you guys know I am teaching the Yin section of this teacher training program hosted by my friend (and awesome Yogi) Steph! If you are looking to strengthen your practice or have been playing around with the idea of becoming a yoga teacher but are not sure where to begin, because for real, finding a YTT can be extremely confusing and overwhelming, this is the program for you! What sets this teacher training apart from the others? You will learn and be certified to teach different styles of yoga such as chair, yin, vinyasa and pre-natal.  By having knowledge in multiple areas, instead of just one, will help set you apart in the vastly growing yoga community. Hope to see you there!

XOXO

CC

Beach Yoga

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Its FINALLY that time of year again and I am beyond excited to share with you that I will be teaching beach yoga again this summer in Lavallette through Breathe Life Sangha Yoga Studio. Classes will take place on the oceanfront at Trenton Ave, 7:30 – 8:30AM. We have a great line up of amazing teachers from the studio set up to teach. Classes are open to all levels and cost $10.00 for a drop in. Children under 13 are free.  (please bring cash)

To sign in online, more information or to view the schedule visit their website: www.BreatheLifeSangha.com

Dates I am teaching:

Friday July 6th 

Thursday July 12th

Saturday July 21st

Thursday July 26th 

Friday August 3rd

Saturday August 18th

Thursday August 23rd

Thursday August 30th

Tips:

  • Make sure your wearing waterproof sunscreen so if you sweat it does not run in your eyes.
  • Bring a large beach towel or sheet as a mat.
  • Don’t forget water for hydration
  • Bug spray incase there are flies
  • Bring your friends!

Hope to see you on your mat at the sea!

XOXO

CC

 

30 years of living

With getting older, the first thing that comes to my mind is ANTI-AGING and it kind of bothers me. Aging both physically and mentally is a funny thing. Instead of dreading it I have decided to embrace it. I refuse to be the person chasing after her twenty year old self.  Yes, I am a sucker for creams that make our skin look beautiful BUT I refuse to edit out or act like I do not psychically age. I have wrinkles and little puffs under my eyes now. I have trouble staying up past 10PM. I have more scars on my body now then I did when I was younger. And you know what? Thats all ok.  I may be getting into my thirties with out a house, kids and husband under my belt but thats ok. Everyones journey is different. If someone is reading this post who may be down and out about “aging” I hope you find confidence in your journey and realize that success looks different on everyone. Do not compare yourself to others, your doing a great job.

When I look back and see what I have accomplished, experienced, and learned in thirty years, it made me proud. All the friendships I have made with beautiful people all around the world got me thinking, you know, 31 aint so bad. The most important thing I am proud of is that I really pushed myself to “LIVE”.  I know that if today were my last day here on this earth, I could leave it being content, which sadly, most people can’t relate too.

I have zero wasted time. Every tough time was a lesson. Every change was a blessing and every relationship I have in my life is cherished to infinity and beyond- Because at the end of our road, the only thing that matters is how hard you lived and how much you loved. I am so lucky to have so many special moments in my life its hard to count. But, I put together my top thirty “moments” in my life where I was changed in some sort of way. (in no particular order)

Cheers to my 31st year, and cheers to a few more laugh lines! I can’t wait to celebrate with my loved ones with lots of hugs and kisses and some cake too.  #grateful AND #aging

  1. Becoming Auntie CC: If you follow me on instagram you have probably noticed by now its mostly posts about my baby. This little love muffin has come into my life and rocked my world. The love I have for this little human is indescribable. My little princess  makes me smile and laugh everyday. I can still remember the first time Elle told me she loved me and said “Auntie CC”, Which was November 9th, 2016. (Still have the recording on my phone) I love love love you!  23379886_10214599850012893_5649369662475197271_n.jpg
  2. My first Gondola ride in Venice 11694036_10207297497138635_1693994927820440017_n.jpg
  3. My first sunrise in Bali. I could not believe that I actually had the courage to travel across the world to start my new beginning in life at 27 years old. The beauty was overwhelming. To this day I do not think I have ever experienced sunrises like these, and will always cherish the memories. I can still smell the smells of Bali waking up, and hearing the waves of the ocean from my bed. IMG_7245.jpg
  4. Completing my yoga teacher training program. This was one of the hardest things I have ever done in my life both physically and mentally. I look at this picture all the time to remind myself of this moment. This picture was taken at the end of my Bali journey. This picture shows a different person, with different perspectives. I fell in love with myself on this trip, gained confidence in myself that I literally can do ANYTHING I put my mind too, and learned the importance of forgiveness and letting go. So grateful for everything I have learned there and carry the knowledge I learned there with me everyday. (oh and that was my first beer in a month too so it tasted extra delicious!) IMG_8311.jpg
  5. Seeing “The Medicine Man”. Yes I totally had an “Eat Pray Love” moment! This man was insanely accurate and to this day things still happen that he said were going to! IMG_7567.jpg
  6. Being blessed and spiritually cleansed while visiting the Elephant Cave in Bali. The Elephant Cave is a sacred place dating back to the 11th century.  I can’t even describe how special this moment was. IMG_7779.jpg
  7. Holding a Koala in Australia. I specifically traveled to Brisbane since that is the only area you can actually hold one. How friggin cute is this little chub chub. He was heavier then expected! 12011185_10207673762145025_3933524761571571061_n
  8. My sunrise camel ride in the Outback in Uluru! 11998834_10207673793785816_7907976313071214470_n.jpg
  9. Experiencing a traditional BBQ in the outback. This photo was taken at sunset. (oh and thats the famous Uluru Rock behind me!) This night was full of magic. I tried authentic Australian BBQ food, even tasting kangaroo! A tribe performance took place under the stars. I will NEVER forget the stars. I have never seen so many stars so bright and so close. I remember wishing on a star to send me my love already. Fast forward a few more months after this trip-of-a-lifetime and I was granted my wish. Funny thing, Steve and I have a thing for stars and always take moments to look at the sky together when the stars are out. May sound corny I know, but dreams really do come true and I am a firm believer to this day on wishing on stars ❤ 12003011_10207673791025747_7811796380683273154_n
  10. Seeing the 12 Apostles on the “Great Ocean Road” road trip. This road trip will stay with me forever. Jenn if your reading this love ya and miss ya and will always remember our memories! 11205575_10207673810706239_5563078505679842081_n.jpg
  11. Bondi Baths: I will NEVER forget this moment. I remember taking a screen shot on instagram of the Bondi Icebergs pool thinking wow this would be amazing to see, but I will probably never get there. Well low and behold! Here I was!! Swimming like the mermaid I am in the Bondi Iceberg Pool. (and yes I cried when I stepped foot in it) 11150789_10207673827066648_893673832496948421_n.jpg
  12. This was the end of our “Great Ocean Road” road trip. My friend Jenn and I stayed at the cutest boutique hotel. We awoke at sunrise, ran across the street barefoot and jumped into the ocean. This picture will always be my favorite because the feeling I get when I remember that morning was so liberating. It is a moment I can’t really describe. It is a moment I felt so free. Its just a moment of a memory that moves me to this day. 11998911_10207673833306804_4178271864185747817_n
  13. My first trip to Italy! Not only was I proud of myself for doing the flight alone, I would up reconnecting with my friend Chrissy and we obviously have been BFFS since then 🙂 Italy is literally the most beautiful place I have ever seen. The people the food the culture, its just so special. I cried a lot (happy tears) my first trip and must say Italy still brings me tears to this day, its just that special! This was also my first “Trekking” adventure with Chrissy. We almost died on a glacier but getting to this view was worth it. 11742761_10207297463177786_2427549309481794058_n11755077_10207297509578946_7987126340863091004_n
  14. Falling in love with a little town called VV and Galletto<3 11753686_10207297423616797_5343841252077143628_n
  15. When my friend Chrissy surprised me and took me to THE vineyard to go to in Tuscany. It was my first vineyard experience and let me just tell you…NOTHING will top it. The first time I saw the rolling hills in Tuscany it literally took my breath away!11781634_10207297468817927_1873444842110060170_n.jpg
  16. Seeing Aushwetz in person. LITERALLY this was a moment. I have read, probably over 500 books regarding the Holocaust and have watched countless documentaries in all different languages. I never thought I would have the opportunity to not only visit the camp and have a private tour but visit the Warsaw Ghetto as well. This trip was truly a trip of a lifetime for me. And it was under 1000 dollars for EVERYTHING. #justsayin IMG_9711
  17. Moving to NYC with my BFF, a city people worldwide dream of visiting! This picture was on moving day! Loved my time living in the city but I also learned I need to live by the sea down the shore. Its truly where I am happiest ❤ 470699_4649911208714_833950391_o
  18. Visiting Casa di Giulietta in Verona Italy which was the home of Juliet and rubbing her boob for good luck in love. It worked! 11745583_10207297520939230_7599981838804451015_n.jpg
  19. Discovering this little medieval town when staying in Tuscany called San Gimignano. I was so so connected to this charming town, I know in a past life I lived there! Pictures do not do it justice but the beauty I saw is etched in my memory forever. They have amazing Gelato as well! 11148583_10207297457697649_1250951913432626319_n.jpg
  20. Our day spent together riding through Prosecco vineyards on Vespas. This was truly one of the best days of my life spent with the best people ever.12143328_10207815887458069_406567353085605804_n12107117_10207815882577947_858677986411224045_n
  21. My night in Venice by myself. So many magical things happened to me in that 24 hours thats a blog post in itself! This was the view from my room! Lets just say I was a super happy gal ❤12112265_10207815845577022_8779935476362107836_n.jpg12074979_10207815844576997_2681186902775927059_n12105785_10207815844977007_5487488485681450393_n
  22. The first time I visited the Amalfi Coast. No explanation needed! Oh and that was the view from our room. #unreal 12193479_10207994419961270_1942561029854334309_n.jpg12189172_10207994401720814_7334360008505495707_n.jpg
  23. Spain, this hike, this lunch, this town with these girls! One of my favorite funniest days! 1936284_10208319063037144_5238016220971237987_n
  24. The beach in Lagos Portugal and the time Chrissy surprised us with this adventure of ATVing through the cliffs of Portugal LOL and yes we had to sign out lives away. Oh the things Chrissy makes us do!14937312_10211102949752572_9166315864692312576_n14937201_10211103003713921_5787820170137401234_n.jpg
  25. South Africa. Everything about this trip was a moment. AND I can tell you one thing, I never in my wildest dreams have thought that I would go on a Safari in AFRICA. 17022503_10212208774717505_4946049538056830551_n
  26. Dancing the night away in a tiny town called Bari with my BBF Martine and her now hubby and his family. This was one of the best nights of my life, a dinner party with little english spoken full of amazing wine, food, company and dancing until the sun came up!12106911_10207815819736376_5298006770254381448_n.jpg
  27. My first New Years Eve spent with the love of my life and making wishes on lanterns ❤ 12439157_10208375815495920_7329145124430406140_n10623013_10208375825176162_1874208221374079539_n
  28. Floating in the sea in Italy with Steve. This trip in general was amazing between the watermelon dance, our new Italian friends and company. This was Steves first time to Italy and he got to see first hand why I am obsessed with it there. 22046132_10214243699749359_4081053532851837616_n21765070_10214243685589005_1934810647774323705_n21765077_10214243648348074_7513990811651027400_n
  29. My first ever trip out of the country by myself to Costa Rica to attend a yoga retreat hosted by Yoga Girl! It was the first time I have ever attempted to surf and I was beyond terrified! I was so proud of myself for getting half up on a wave, and being brave enough to be open to new experiences and accomplishing my first headstand! IMG_1997IMG_1959.jpg
  30. Teaching beach yoga at Lavallette boardwalk and mommy being one of my students.  Ever since I got my certification it was my DREAM to teach beach yoga on that boardwalk. There is something so special about that place to me. When I got the opportunity to do it I was beyond grateful. Im pretty sure I cried just a teeny bit during my first class. Thank you Regina for this experience! So looking forward to teaching again this year 🙂 IMG_123720245674_10213681739380701_7824755105323543316_n

 

XOXO

CC

Crown Chakra

Crown Chakra (Sahasrara): 

LAST BUT NOT LEAST!

The Crown Chakra is the meeting point between the body and the ego. It brings out our spiritual side connecting us to greater cosmic energy. It helps embrace gratitude for ones life, finding serenity, peace and joy.

Located: Top of the head.

Means: Thousand petal.

Organs/Area: Central nervous system, pineal gland, top center of the head, midline above ears.

Influence on the Body: Integration of your complete self, universal consciousness, physical knowledge, and wisdom.

Color: Violet or white.

Symbol: A thousand petal lotus.

If Imbalanced: Chronic exhaustion, brain disorders, coordination problems, mental sickness, learning difficulties, epilepsy, lack in ethics and purpose.

Cures and how to balance: 

  • Wear white or violet clothing or jewelry
  • Meditate/touch/carry quartz crystal
  • Light myrrh incense
  • Repeat the affirmation in your head “I cherish my spirit” during meditation
  • Eat Gotu Kola Herb
  • Diffuse or wear lavender or frankincense oil

What I do: I Light a candle, place my quartz crystal on my alter, and put frankincense oil on my wrists. I then set my timer for 12 minutes. I take a comfortable seat on my pillow, sit up nice and tall pressing the shoulder blades down the spine and close my eyes. I take 5 deep breaths and start chanting the affirmation “ I cherish my spirit” in my head. There are many different affirmations you can chant but this is my favorite one.

XOXO

CC

Third Eye Chakra

Third Eye Chakra (Ajna): 

This is an important Chakra since it is the key to learning and wisdom. It allows you to put things in perspective and helps differentiate between reality and fantasy.

Located: Forehead, in-between the eyes.

Means: To perceive.

Organs/Area: Neurological system, brain, pituitary gland, ear, nose, and eyes.

Influence on the Body: Sense of trust, intuition and coordination.

Color: Indigo.

Symbol: Descending triangle within a circle.

If Imbalanced: Discipline, sleep disorders, concept of judgement and reality, confusion, blindness, stroke, seizure, brain tumor, pride, arrogance, learning disabilities, and illusions.

Cures and how to balance: 

  • Wear indigo clothing or jewelry
  • Meditate/touch/carry amethyst stone
  • Light mugwort incense
  • Repeat the affirmation in your head “I trust my intuition” or “I know that all is well in my world” during meditation
  • Eat blackberries, blueberries, grape juice, red wine and poppyseed
  • Diffuse or wear frankincense oil

What I do: I Light a candle, place my amethyst stone on my alter, and put frankincense oil on my wrists. I then set my timer for 12 minutes. I take a comfortable seat on my pillow, sit up nice and tall pressing the shoulder blades down the spine and close my eyes. I take 5 deep breaths and start chanting the affirmation “ I trust my intuition” in my head. There are many different affirmations you can chant but this is my favorite one.

Stay tuned for next week moving on to the Crown Chakra!

XOXO

CC

Throat Chakra

Throat Chakra (Vishuddhi): 

This is an important Chakra since it is responsible for your willpower, communication, decision making and your faith. When the chakra is closed we will feel anxious about how others react to our views. When the chakra is too open one will be too opinionated. When the chakra is healthy you’ll be able to express your truth and will become a good listener, something that can be challenging at times.

Located: In throat, parallel to the thyroid.

Means: Literally means purification.

Organs/Area: Mouth, gums, teeth, trachea, thyroid, vertebrae, neck, throat, oesophagus.

Influence on the Body: Sense of security, independence, self expression, loyalty, communication, planning and organization.

Color: Blue.

Symbol: Circle with descending triangle.

If Imbalanced: Flu, fever, sore throat, swollen glands, thyroid imbalance, laryngitis, scoliosis, gum problems, poor decision making, lies, criticism and addiction.

Cures and how to balance: 

  • Wear blue clothing or jewelry
  • Meditate/touch/carry sapphire, blue agate or turquoise stone
  • Light frankincense incense
  • Sound: Ham
  • Repeat the affirmation in your head “I live an authentic life” during meditation
  • Eat tare and tangy fruits such as lemons, limes, and grapefruit
  • Diffuse or wear eucalyptus oil

What I do: I Light a candle, place my blue agate stone on my alter, and put eucalyptus oil on my wrists. I then set my timer for 12 minutes. I take a comfortable seat on my pillow, sit up nice and tall pressing the shoulder blades down the spine and close my eyes. I take 5 deep breaths and start chanting the affirmation “ I live an authentic life” in my head. There are many different affirmations you can chant but this is my favorite one.

Stay tuned for next week moving on to the Third Eye Chakra!

XOXO

CC

The Heart Chakra

Heart Chakra (Anahata): 

This is an important Chakra since it is responsible not only for the love you have for yourself but for the love you have for others as well. It helps you feel “unstuck” in this world.

Located: Near the center of the chest.

Means: Literally means unstuck. Moves love through life. Storehouse of your energy system and the center for healing and love.

Organs/Area: Lungs, blood, diaphragm, heart, shoulders, arms, legs, breasts and hands .

Influence on the Body: Compassion, forgiveness, passion, devotion, love for self, love for others, and circulatory system.

Color: Green.

Symbol: Crescent moon.

If Imbalanced:  Lung cancer, pneumonia, breast cancer, shoulder problems, confidence problems, envy, fear, hate, despair, and jealousy.

Cures and how to balance: 

  • Wear green clothing or jewelry
  • Meditate/touch/carry emerald or jade stone
  • Light jasmine, rose or lavender incense
  • Yam chant- sound
  • Repeat the affirmation in your head “I am open to love” during meditation
  • Eat broccoli, spinach, parsley, green tea, basil and thyme
  • Diffuse or wear tea tree, eucalyptus, pine or rose oil

What I do: I Light a candle, place my emerald stone on my alter, and put rose oil on my wrists. I then set my timer for 12 minutes. I take a comfortable seat on my pillow, sit up nice and tall pressing the shoulder blades down the spine and close my eyes. I then place my hands in Abhaya Hridaya Mudra. I take 5 deep breaths and start chanting the affirmation “ I am loved, and I am open to love” in my head. There are many different affirmations you can chant but this is my favorite one.

Stay tuned for next week moving on to the Throat Chakra!

XOXO

CC

Gimme all the muffins

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Looking for a quick easy satisfying snack with no added sugar? These mini banana chocolate muffins are to die for and they are super simple to make. Anytime I have to bake it usually turns out being a horrible mess but I think I mastered these! They were so good in fact I had to make another batch for my niece!

What you’ll need:

  • 1  1/2 cups of flour
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1/3 cups of melted butter
  • 3/4 cups of semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 3 ripe bananas
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Mash bananasIMG_0211.jpg
  3. Combine all the ingredients in the bowl. If you can find this vanilla on Amazon I suggest getting it…it’s from Mexico and the bomb.comIMG_0213.jpg
  4. When your done mixing use a teaspoon to spoon mixture in mini cupcake pan
  5. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until tops of muffins are lightly browned
  6. Shove

XOXO

CC

Solar Plexus Chakra

Solar Plexus Chakra (Manipura): 

This is an important Chakra since it provides pranic energy to the human body. Think of it this way, There is no life on earth without sun; it provides energy to this planet.

Located: Stomach area just above the navel.

Means: City of jewels, it’s the chakra of will power and assertiveness, deals with ego and identity.

Organs/Area: Digestive system, muscles, liver, pancreas, gall bladder, kidney and spleen.

Influence on the Body: Self confidence, growth, self-control, digestion, ego, self love.

Color: Yellow.

Symbol: Descending triangle.

If Imbalanced:  Diabetes, constipation, digestive problems, ulcers, oversensitivity to criticism, self-esteem issues, self image, fear, nervousness, poor memory, anger and shame.

Cures and how to balance: 

  • Wear yellow clothing or jewelry
  • Meditate/touch/carry a sun stone, tiger’s eye or topaz
  • Light cinnamon or ylang ylang incense
  • Repeat the affirmation in your head “I love and accept myself” during meditation
  • Sunflower seeds, milk, yogurt, cheese
  • Diffuse or wear cinnamon or peppermint oil

What I do: I Light a candle, place my topaz stone on my alter, and put peppermint oil on my forehead and temples. I then set my timer for 12 minutes. I take a comfortable seat on my pillow, sit up nice and tall pressing the shoulder blades down the spine and close my eyes. I then place my hands in Mantangi Mudra.  Place the hands in front of the stomach area, and raise both middle fingers to touch. Women cross the left thumb on the right thumb, and vice versa for men. I take 5 deep breaths and start chanting the affirmation “I love and accept myself” in my head. There are many different affirmations you can chant but this is my favorite one.

Stay tuned for next week moving on to my favorite Chakra, the Heart Chakra!

XOXO

CC

 

Elderberry Syrup

I am constantly fighting the fight with my immune system since I am a student surrounded by germs at school and a nanny usually around two sick kids all day long. This means any natural immune system booster I can take is being taken daily. Recently, I have been seeing Elderberry in every form; cough drop, gummy vitamins, tea, syrup etc. Since Elderberries are know to fight the flu and cold viruses, I wanted to introduce them to my diet, so I decided to make my own syrup. A friend shared a recipe with me to make my own.  Its super simple, less expensive than buying it at the store, and takes only a half an hour to make!

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What you will need:

  • 4oz of dried elderberries
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 5 cloves
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh grated ginger
  • 2 cups of water
  • 2 cups of honey

In one medium size pot add elderberries, cinnamon stick, 5 cloves, grated ginger, and two cups of water. Cover and bring to a boil. (takes about 4 minutes) Turn down heat to a simmer and leave covered for another 25 minutes. Strain everything in a bowl and mash with spoon to get extra juice out of the berries. Add your honey. Let cool for 10 minutes and store in a mason jar in the refrigerator. The syrup lasts for up to a month!

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XOXO

CC

Sacral Chakra

Sacral Chakra (Svadisthana): 

This is an important Chakra since it is the storage of karma, and is all about change and how you deal with it. Relationships, creativity, finances, personal power and sexuality are effected. Remember passion is fuel to creativity, so if your feeling stuck in your personal or work life, coming up with new ideas, and being motivated you may want to pay attention to this Chakra.

Located: In sacrum, below navel and in your lower abdomen.

Means: Sweetness. Emotional identity, directed towards self gratification, pleasure, sexuality, procreation.

Organs/Area: Sex organs, liver, stomach, kidney, gallbladder, spleen, middle of spine, womb, and bladder.

Influence on the Body: Joyfulness, enthusiasm, reproduction, creativity, kidney problems, stiff lower back, menstruation.

Color: Orange.

Symbol: Up-turned crescent.

If Imbalanced:  Anger, greed, guilt, control, power, pelvic pain, urinary problems, libido issues and impotence.

Cures and how to balance: 

  • Wear orange clothing or jewelry
  • Meditate/touch/carry a golden topaz stone
  • Light sandalwood, vanilla or almond incense
  • Listen to sounds of nature
  • Repeat the affirmation in your head “I respect my needs and the needs of others” during meditation
  • Eat oranges, mangos, passion fruit, carrots and cinnamon
  • Diffuse or wear sandalwood, rose, clove,orange or patchouli oil

What I do: I Light a candle, place my golden topaz stone on my alter, and put orange or clove oil on my wrists. I then set my timer for 12 minutes. I take a comfortable seat on my pillow, sit up nice and tall pressing the shoulder blades down the spine and close my eyes. I then place my hands in Dhyana Mudra, hands resting on your lap, palms facing upwards, on top of one another. I take 5 deep breaths and start chanting the affirmation “I respect my needs, and the needs of others” in my head. There are many different affirmations you can chant but this is my favorite one.

Stay tuned for next week moving on to the Solar Plexus Chakra!

XOXO

CC

 

Balance with Me: Root Chakra

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I am a firm believer in the chakra system and how it works.  The short version- Chakras are spinning wheels of energy in our bodies which are all linked together. When one of these main chakras goes out of balance; is underworked or overworked, it has a physical, emotional and mental impact on your body.

I meditate on chakras all the time especially the Heart Chakra during my yoga practice. It is super important to be in tune with your body and clean up shop once in a while as well. Once a year I usually cleans all seven of my chakras making sure all are balanced starting from the ground up focusing on the Root Chakra first. I meditate on that specific chakra for a week, then move on to the next.

I thought it would be postive to share with you guys how I do my cleanse and hopefully inspire someone out there to do something so small to improve their spiritual life significantly. Below are a few tips that I use and some information regarding the Chakra. Feel free to reach out to me! I would love love love feedback on your amazing journey whether your new to this or do this all the time.

Tips: This involves meditation so I suggest setting up your “shop” in a peaceful, no interruption zone spot in your home.

  1. Have a comfortable pillow to sit on while meditating. You do not need to spend $70.00 on a “Meditation Pillow”.  A throw pillow from your bed will be just fine or you can stop in my favorite store HomeGoods and pick a cute decorative pillow for like $10 dollars. Make sure its wide enough to sit on.
  2. Have you alter or whatever you want to use set up already. When it is in your face ready to roll with zero clean up or set up we are most likely going to follow through with our meditation schedule. I like to call it “A Date with Oneself”.
  3. You do not need oils and crystals to balance your chakras, use what you have, use what you want that makes you comfortable. Your alter is YOUR home, YOUR spiritual space. You can have 1 thing or 80 things on it. The more you have on it does not make you any more spiritually inclined then next.
  4. Make sure your timer has a peaceful sound when it goes off. While your deep in your meditation you do not want to be frightened at the end with an alarming sound blurting in your ears. I set mine to a ring of a soft bell or sounds from nature.
  5. Be patient with yourself.  You do not need to sit there for 60 minutes everyday. Do what you can. Maybe somedays are longer than others. Start with 5 minutes and work your way up.

Root Chakra (Muladhara): 

Located: Faces downward towards your feet towards the base of your spine in the reign of your pubic bone.

Means: It is the chakra of survival and grounding, root-support.

Organs/Area: Reproductive organs, spinal cord, immune system, large intestine, legs and feet.

Influence on the Body: Mental stability, sense of security, sensuality, sexuality.

Color: Red.

Symbol: Square.

If Imbalanced:  Varicose veins, lower back pain, depression, low self-esteem, security issues, constipation, knee problems.

Cures and how to balance: 

  • Wear red clothing
  • Meditate/touch/carry a Jasper stone
  • Light lavender incense
  • Listen to sounds of nature, drumming
  • Repeat the affirmation in your head “I am here, I exist” during meditation
  • Eat red foods such as radish, beetroot, onion and red pepper
  • Diffuse or wear Patchouli oil

When the Chakra is closed we may feel fearful, like a victim, blame others, and have low self esteem. When the chakra is healthy we take care of needs, we are self sufficient and have a sense of identity. When the Chakra is too open we may feel excessive with things such as being a workaholic and not letting things go.

What I do: I Light a candle, place my jasper stone on my alter, and put Patchouli Oil on my wrists. I then set my timer for 12 minutes. I take a comfortable seat on my pillow, sit up nice and tall pressing the shoulder blades down the spine and close my eyes. I then place my hands in Muladhara Mudra. I take 5 deep breaths and start chanting the affirmation “I am here, I exist” in my head. Before you know it your buzzer is going off. There are many different affirmations you can chant but this is my favorite one.  See? Super simple.

Stay tuned for next week moving on to the Sacral Chakra!

 

XOXO

CC

 

 

Drop and give me YIN! Yoga that is…

Hello my loves and Happy New Year! Since the holiday season, I have been majorly MIA, and took a much needed break from being social on social media. This allowed me to unplug, unwind, and enjoy little moments with my loved ones. BUT I am happy to say I am back, with good news! I am happy to announce, that after a brief brake from teaching yoga, I have secured a spot to teach my relaxing yin class at a fabulous space called Lala Land, … a mindful place to find your happy place! The owner and space are beyond amazing. They offer yoga for both adults and kids. Check out their website for their schedule!

For those of you who are wondering what the heck “Yin Yoga” is and if it is for you… YES! YIN YOGA IS FOR EVERYONE AND EVERYONE SHOULD DO IT. The main focus of Yin Yoga is too strengthen and stretch the connective tissue while we work on the meridian channels in the body, which help promote healthy organ function. You will learn to be kind to yourself by recharging mentally, spirituality and physically. Below are just a few benefits from the practice:

  • Regulates energy in the body
  • Lowers stress levels
  • Increases mobility
  • Protects our joints from wear and tear on our bodies and as we age
  • Provides a better yang practice such as vinyasa flow ,kickboxing, running etc
  • Teaches us how to meditate and quiet the mind

Two of my biggest benefits I have found in my personal yin practice have been mobility and patience.  I tell this story all the time to my new students. When I was younger I was kicked off the gymnastics team. I just was not flexible like the other kids and couldn’t do a split for the life of me. Fast forward 23 years later and thanks to my flexibility I obtained through my yin practice, I can now say I can do a split without feeling like my leg is going to rip off. I wake up with a pep in my step. I can sit up straight for long periods of time in a seat. I am less stiff. I crave Yin, I need Yin. If life gets in the way and I don’t get to practice, I pay for it in the end and usually feel achey.

Secondly, this practice teaches us patience. You will get to know yourself inside and out. One day we may be able to hold butterfly and another day we may find that we can not get as deep in the pose. Accept it and accept what your body needs. Be patient with yourself. It’s not about how far down we can get in a pose. Its not about “How good one is”.  Never start at your max. Work at slowly achieving results. In the world we live in today, there is a quick fix to everything. There is a pill to loose weight, a dry cleaners who will wash, dry, fold, and deliver it to you all in the same day. Want to have a home cooked meal but not prepare for it? There is a service for that. Living in such a fast paced world we can forget that sometimes things take time. Yin gives you the opportunity to slow down and listen to what your body needs. If we are not 100% how are we suppose to take care of others and give them 100%?

Yin is not just a physical sensation. While holding these poses one might experience strong emotions.  Yin is a form of meditation and quiting the mind which is one of the hardest things ever…hence why it is important to practice. It can bring up and out some heavy stuff but it helps us work through our emotions.

So with this said, What to expect in my class and what exactly do you do? You will hold poses for 3-5 minutes. Don’t fret, your not holding a physically exhausting pose. You will step into a semi dark, inviting, room to practice in that is a judgement free zone. I will guide you through a simple mini meditation. I will use oils and lotions to massage pressure points aiding in your relaxation. (If you wish not to be touched thats OK too!) I will explain the poses, why and what we are working on. If something does not feel good I will give you an alternative pose. I am here to help you relax and renew. I will hug you if you need a hug and laugh with you if you need a laugh and I will always greet you with a smile.

You do not need to be a size 0, you do not need to be flexible, you do not need to be a hardcore yogi, you do not need to be spiritual or believe in a certain religion, you do not need to show up in a cute expensive yoga outfit with essential oils and carrying crystals. You do not even need to know what a chakra is or how you balance it. What you do need is an open mind to want to do something positive for yourself. I guarantee Yin Yoga will change your life.

Wear comfortable clothing, loose sweats is my favorite thing to practice in. The studio has everything you need for your practice: Mat, props, water etc. Can’t wait to see your smiling faces on the mat! And if your reading this and not in the area I hope you will look up yin classes in your area 🙂

I teach Monday nights 7:15-8:15 PM.

Lala Land: 

681 Franklin Ave, Nutley, NJ

973-320-2091

XOXO

CC

YOGA I missed you.

This fall has been amazing but also has been super busy and somewhat stressful due to a few new changes in the last two months.  I had three amazing trips pretty much back to back- Italy, Cuba and Disney. Talk about a good time, but with that comes packing and un-packing, a slowly draining bank account, stressing about making up missed school work, and pretty much, two weeks worth of colds which made me lazy and lethargic.

With all that is going on I have had very little Yoga time, and have been eating on the go mostly. My body is begging me to follow my normal eating habits! This is probably the first time I have not practiced yoga for three weeks straight in over 4 years so this feels super foreign to my body. I feel like I have aged 40 years.  It hurts to do a forward fold.  I am stiff, notice lower back pain, constipated, irritable, less balanced and feel heavy. Heavy in step, my balance is off, heavy with stress and my upcoming tuition/credit Jesus Christ Christmas is coming bill. My digestive system is NOT happy with me at all. Too much candy and wine… not enough nutrients. The last two weeks I have been crazy with sugar and dairy…two things I have reduced in my diet significantly because it makes me feel better!

I finally started back up with a new job I love that pays well. ( phew ) My days are long again but I don’t mind. Last night I was so tired (and lazy) by the time I got home from work I literally just crawled into bed with a huge glass of wine, one Reese’s Pieces cup, a few “fun sized” twix bars ( I may or may not have stolen from a kids Halloween bucket…who have I become) two kit-kat bars and eight Hershey kisses later, that was my dinner.

When I awoke at 5AM thanks to all the sugar with a headache from the wine, and severe heartburn from both the sugar and the wine I decided I have had enough.  I am done with feeling shitty. I went to my math class, and came straight home to clean my yoga space (my porch) so that my DAILY practice can begin again. I stepped on my mat this afternoon and smiled. Oh Yoga I have missed you and all you do for me mentally and physically. Please make all the aches and pains go away.  I thank you, I am forever grateful for you, and I will never leave you Yoga, I promise, never again! BYE BYE stress! BYE BYE heartburn BYE BYE stiffness! (can’t touch this)

Note: I hope this little minor rant inspired anyone who has fallen off track in their life, whether it be diet, goals, routines, hobbies, relationships etc. I say minor because this is such a little problem to have in the world we live in today. I am grateful for all that I have and know how blessed I am. I have a roof over my head, I have my loved ones, I have my health. I’m not complaining I am simply just showing an example that I think everyone of us faces. It’s ok to self sabotage. You can always start over, you can always start new. By falling off the ban wagon with my diet and yoga routine I realized HOW important it really is to practice every single day, to move and stretch my body, to meditate and quite my mind, to observe what I put in my body, how is it making me feel, and what is it doing for me. Remember there is always a positive in a negative.

Hope you all have a great weekend!

XOXO

CC

 

Sicily and Amalfi Coast 9.17

Some of you may be tired of hearing me always talk about Italy BUT it is the best place on earth and words cannot even begin to explain the amazingness of this last trip. For the past few years my friend Chrissy and I usually go to Southern Italy in September for a little weekend getaway.  This year instead of doing a one on one trip we went with a group of girls (some I didn’t know some I’m already friends with) and my boyfriend. This trip was extra special because I finally got to show Steve why I am OBSESSED with Italy. (he’s now obsessed too)

First stop was Cefalu in Sicily. The first day we explored the small charming town. While enjoying an aperitivo in the square we were able to witness the most beautiful wedding ceremony! We then checked out the seaport and had a late dinner. Obviously we ended the night with some gelato.

The next day we hiked La Rocca, a historic site, to view ancient ruins. The hike was intense but worth it. The views at the top were beautiful. If your interested in doing the hike I suggest you wear sneakers, go in the early morning to avoid the heat and bring water!

After trekking we were rewarded with a little R&R on the beach before heading to Amalfi.

Cefalu, Sicily

In Amalfi, we stayed in a villa in Praiano. The views of the sea were through-out the whole house. Our room had the cutest decor, amazing bath tub and outdoor veranda.  This was a great option for us rather than staying in a hotel since we were a group of seven people.

We had a magical day which consisted of a wonderful boat ride along the coast exploring grottos. The boat ride is always my favorite part of Amalfi!  We were dropped off in Positano for lunch and a little shopping.  After lunch we were picked up by our boat driver and taken over to One Fire Beach, a beach club on the coast. We had so much fun and the people treated us like royalty. At happy hour every day around 4 o’clock, they come out with a huge watermelon. Everyone has to get out of their chair and dance around the watermelon for them to cut it. (they literally make everyone participate in it) Lets just say the watermelon dance will forever be in my memory, and cutting a watermelon is just not the same these days. I highly suggest going to One fire Beach, the views are stunning, the atmosphere is fun and the staff is amazing, you will leave there with a few more friends then when you arrived.

After trekking up 380 stairs and two huge hills we hung out at our Villa and watched the sunset.

At night we went to the most amazing place to eat, Vivaro Wine Bar, a restaurant with no menu. Gennaro, the owner, runs the show entirely by himself. He is the host, the chef, the server and the sommelier! Talk about an authentic experience. The food, wine and atmosphere was PHENOMENAL. If you are looking for a once in a lifetime experience try and book your reservation here ahead of time, its hard to get in!

As we were walking back to our Villa we ran into our friends from One Fire Beach, talk about a small world! They invited us to join them and have a bottle of wine. The people are the best part of Italy. They really embrace people who love their culture and make you feel right at home. We left this trip with forever friends for sure!

As per usually, a special thank you to my friend Chrissy who always organizes these trips. Thank you for all the hard work you put into this trip by making sure we saw and did the best of the best, but most importantly thank you for bringing this group of seven together. All of you will be in my heart and memories forever.

Cost:

Airfare (including flight to Amalfi from Sicily): $600.00

Hotel/Transportation: $350.00

Spending Money: $150.00

Total: $1,100. 

As you can tell from the pictures, it looks like we would have spent more BUT because we got the flight for so cheap we were able to splurge on spending. Most people spend $1,100 on their flight alone. I can not express the importance of setting price notifications!

Italy is a must see in your lifetime. Between the atmosphere, history, culture and food it will for sure be an experience of a lifetime. The Italians are truly beautiful people. Thank you always for your hospitality.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxQXk9vnme0&t=1s

XOXO

CC

 

 

 

 

 

Must READS

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Those of you who follow me know about my obsession with books, so I thought I would share with you some of my favorites that I have read this summer. Below is a list of just a few, everything from inspiration, self-help, romance, too spooky real life stories, history and drama.  Happy reading!

The Energy Bus, Jon Gordon

The Seed, Jon Gordon

Who Moved My Cheese, Spencer Johnson M.D

Lies She Told, Cate Holahan 

The Glass Castle, Jeannette Walls

Half Broke HorsesJeannette Walls

The Book of Joy, Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu, Douglas Abrams 

The Ghost of Cape May, Craig McManus 

The Hurricane Sisters, Dorothea Benton Frank 

I Have Lived a Thousand Years, Livia Bitton-Jackson

XOXO

CC

Be BRAVE with your life…

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Today was the start to one of my many “new beginnings”.

Funny how the universe works.  Recently I was down and out looking for a career that is stable which can supply benefits. Well without a degree it’s slim to none. The only degree I have is in fashion and I am NOT going back to that!

My boyfriend and I were out on the boat recently and I received a spontaneous phone call from my friend to meet up with them at Tices, a place on the bay where boats tie up and hang. While there, my one friend asked “so what is it that you want to do.” I stated that I would love to just teach yoga because I love to help people but it does not pay enough and there are no benefits. She suggested the field of Physical Therapy, helping those recover from injuries. Ding Ding Ding! A light went off.  Why have I not thought of this before? I get to help people and the pay/benefits are great! Perfect, I am going to be a Physical Therapy Assistant. So, two weeks and a placement test later (yes I literally did this last minute) my 30 year butt walked into my first round of classes.

I must say this was exciting yet scary at the same time. First off, I have not been to school in forever. The college I went to out of high school was a fashion school. Obviously none of my previous credits consisting of “history of polka dots” transferred so I am literally starting from scratch.

I had a few mental breakdowns not going to lie. Long talks with family, friends, students, and my man…gave me the courage to put one foot in front of the other and just do it. The last week, I put my self through torture with the stupidest fears that I created in my own head.

Can I do it? OMG Im going to be the oldest person in class. Im totally going to look like a loser. Ugh people at 34 have babies and homes and ill be sitting here broke and just getting out of school. God this shit is expensive…bye bye savings. I always was the worst in math there is no way I am going to be able to do COLLEGE LEVEL MATH. OMG I forget how to do fractions?! Shit. What if I can’t pass? WHAT AM I GOING TO DO WITH MY LIFE. People take notes with their laptops? OMG Do I have to bring mine? Can’t I just use a good old fashion notebook? I can’t take notes on my laptop ill be too distracted! Will I be labeled the oldie by taking notes in a notebook? Since when were laptops allowed in classrooms. Am I going to be able to understand? Ugh my spelling is horrible. Will I be able to find the class room? I missed the target sale on school supplies.  JESUS CHRIST. 

I am a firm believer of positive thoughts and the power of intentions. I always practice what I preach, but for some reason I could not help myself and let my fears that I created get the best of me with these super silly thoughts.

AGAIN, Funny how the universe works.  In my first class today I met my English Teacher who I am now obsessed with. She shared her inspiring story with us on how she went to college late in life worked hard and is now a professor. She reiterated to me that ” you’re never too old to start”. Duh! Thats my life motto! All fears aside now, and a laugh or too later I am super excited for this journey and all that is to come 🙂

Thank you to my support group for always cheering me on during all of my “new” endeavors and being the voice of reason. Sometimes y’all talk me off a ledge. Love ya long time.

Always remember you’re not a mess, you’re brave for trying. Even though you may not be quite ready for change be brave. The universe always rewards the brave. Never let your fear decide your future. If I were to listen to my fears I would have never started this journey or have all the amazing experiences I have been able to have in my life so far.

P.S no one was taking notes with a laptop.

XOXO

CC

My MUST Have Essential Oils…and how I use them.

PicMonkey Collage

Essential Oils have been used for centuries to help cure illnesses, spiritually ground, and often used for beauty purposes. When I first became interested in using them, I was blown away by all the different brands, and was unsure of where to start. Through trial and error I have finally found oils, blends, and a brand I prefer. I personally like Young Living because they are convenient, they are all natural, and you can ingest them, literally “Seed to Seal.”  Keep in mind though, it is a personal choice!

Peppermint: This is probably my MOST used oil. I use this along with lemon and lavender to help relieve my allergy symptoms. If I am sore from a workout, or am sick and have body aches, I will add two drops to my bath. I also can not get on a plane without it. I usually put a tad bit under my nose, since airplanes tend to have an unpleasant smell to me. Also I am huge on peppermint tea, so if I run out of tea bags or a place does not have peppermint tea I can place a drop in hot water.

Lemon: I use this along with peppermint and lavender to help relieve my allergy symptoms.  I also like to diffuse this oil by itself because it leaves a room feeling fresh and clean.

Lavender: Again, I use this along with peppermint and lemon to help relieve my allergy symptoms.

Tea Tree:  I defuse this a lot in the wintertime to help fight off any viral infections. If I do catch a cold I rub this oil on the bottom of my feet at bedtime each night. It is also used to treat skin issues, and is the best for taking the itch out of a bug bite. I’m not a huge fan of the smell so I only use it when I need it.

White Angelica: I use this oil every time I teach, so basically I use this oil almost everyday.  As a teacher you are subjected to everyone’s emotions in a room. This oil is a blend of essential oils that calm and soothe, promote feelings of strength and protection, and blocks against any negative energy. As teachers we are healers. People come to yoga for many different reasons but they all have one thing in common…they are looking for a release, looking for some comfort and looking at you for some guidance. I have had students who suffer from severe depression, anxiety, going through divorces, death, sickness, etc. I am an emotionally sensitive person, and because I touch each and every one of my students, their energy definitely radiates through me. Sometimes energies can be overbearing and sometimes these energies have nothing to do with my personal feelings. By applying this oil topically, it helps to keep my aura in check, so that I have nothing but positive vibes to exchange with my students to help them through any tough time they may be going through or feeling.

Myrrh: This oil is a pricey, but it’s my favorite to use for meditation.  I also like to put a few drops when I draw a bath. I love to defuse this scent since it reminds me of Christmas, so obviously it makes me smile.

Thieves: This oil is a must for me because it is specifically designed to support the body’s natural defenses supporting a healthy immune system and energizing the body. I also combine Thieves and RC after any traveling to cleanse the lungs to prevent any respiratory sicknesses.

RC: This oil helps energize before a busy day or workout, so I usually will rub some on my chest when I am lacking energy. Again, after any kind of travel, I combine Thieves and RC  to cleanse the lungs to prevent any respiratory sicknesses.

Frankincense:  This oil is a little pricy so I use it sparingly. I like to diffuse this if I have a stressful day, the scent is calming. This scent also reminds me of Christmas, so smiles are present where this scent is smelled! I also use this on my face if I have a blemish, and have used this on my scars – it works wonders! I like to diffuse this while practicing or teaching yoga since it grounds you spirituality. Frankincense acts as an anti-inflammatory in the nasal passages, making breathing easier, so I diffuse this when I have a cough or cold.

XOXO

CC

 

 

Scotland 6.17

As per usual my friend Chrissy called me back in December advising there is a cheap nonstop flight through Delta going to Scotland, $457.26 to be exact. As per usual tickets were immediately booked, Scotland has always been on my bucket list!

Last month five girlfriends and I left for JFK on a Thursday night, and 6 hours later (mixed with insane turbulence) we awoke in Scotland thank god! We picked up our sweet ride at Enterprise and were off to see the Castles. FYI in Scotland they drive on the other side of the road. There were some close calls but I must say Chrissy did a great job navigating.

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First stop was Stirling Castle:

Second stop Edinburgh Castle:

We then drove to our B&B in the country side in Stirling and literally stayed in a stable. The outside was a dream…inside not so much. It was funny after the fact but note to self, never book an Airbnb that shows only one image of the inside.

The next morning we awoke early and set out for our top secret excursion. Every trip we take, my friend Chrissy always tests our limits and books some kind of adventure never telling us what or where we are going and doing until we get there. Talk about nerves! We always harass Chrissy to give us clues but she never budges.

 On our way to our “Secret Excursion” we stopped a few times over by the Highlands to explore the beautiful scenery. I must say the drive was stunning. The green rolling hills looked like something out of a movie…totally breathtakingly beautiful. I was completely obsessed and in love with all the little lambs.

We finally arrived in Glencoe and came to this little beach town called Oban which was super cute. We were told to strip in our mini van and get in our bikinis. Next thing I know another mini van pulls up and starts unloading all this equipment including helmets and wetsuits…panic sets in. 

I am informed I am going “Coasteering“. Coasteering is basically rock climbing on the side of the cliff with the ocean underneath you. We had an amazing instructor who put all our fears to rest. It was super fun and talk about a work out! It truly was a one of a kind of experience. I never heard of Coasteering before and I am pretty sure you can only do it there. At the end we all faced our fears and jumped off one of the high cliffs. ( I swear it looked higher in person then it appears on my video! ) 

For those looking for something different to do in Scotland you MUST reach out to Hebridean Pursuits to book your perfect adventure!

After a fun filled day in the ocean risking our lives we headed to our second B&B in Lochearnhead. IT. WAS. STUNNING. The charming Victorian cottage was built in the 1800’s. This place was full of history even still having the servant’s bells. The grounds were full of the most beautiful flowers I have ever seen and the cottage over-looked the river. The inside had the cutest bedrooms equipped with vanities and floral decor, bathrooms with clawfoot tubs which I obviously loved, gorgeous dining room overlooking the river, sitting room etc. The hosts were incredibly nice and welcoming. This was literally one of the best places I have ever stayed at. 

That night we went to a local pub overlooking the river.  I tried the Cullen Skink soup, a thick Scottish soup made of smoked haddock, potatoes and onions which was amazing.

The view at 10pm:

Before leaving for the airport to head home we were treated to an amazing breakfast in the formal dining room overlooking the river with all the bells and whistles. Scotland was amazing, the sights were unforgettable and the company couldn’t have been better. To see our full adventure check out my video! Cant wait for out next adventure together ❤

                          

A few tips:

  • Kitchens close usually by 9PM so if your looking to eat out go before then 
  • Driving is on the opposite side of the road
  • Bring an eye mask if your sensitive to falling asleep with light…depending on the time of year it stays light until 10PM and the sun rises at 4AM
  • It’s a constant mix of rain and sunshine so proper footwear is a must 

Airline Ticket $457.26
Airport Parking $20.00 

B&B’s/Car Rental/Coasteering:  $285.00

Food and shopping $100.00

Total: $862.26

XOXO

CC