VERY COOL to see my friends at Yerba Buena Farms getting some press for their beautiful products. What a sweet joy to support the movement of natural makers. It was so amazing to be learning about oil making as well. check out the Jamaica Essential Oil Distillation Project. Read the full article here.
I am stoked to have Dia Penning has a guest blogger here. She will be joining LLY for another edition of Yin and Justice in Vancouver, a 30 Hour Yin Teacher Training. More info here. You can also have a listen to your podcast interview here, Dia and I were interviewed by Jesi Carson during our training in Jamaica. Music by the talented singer and yin yoga student, Aljah Mystic
Habits and Change by Dia Penning.
My work in social justice and yoga has dovetailed a number of occasions over the last 5 years. More often, I find myself in spaces where we talk about spirit and demonstrate our long held physical tensions as parallels for the tensions in the world. How can one do effective public work if their internal landscape is a mess?
Justice is not, strictly, an external concept. As we continue to examine normalized violence and our collective capacity for self-harm and dishonesty, the sickness in our world becomes much more sharp.
What could happen if we stopped lying and saw the world as a collective representation of history and policy that places profit over human dignity?
What would happen if we individually and collectively made choices that supported, embraced, or encouraged growth instead of minimizing, silencing, and erasing?
How much more responsibility would each of us have to take?
For me, the meeting of justice and yin yoga are natural. One asks questions of a cultural and society, the other asks questions of a spirit and a body. We move into areas of discomfort rather than avoiding or working around them. We ask the hard questions, sit with the things we would rather avoid and investigate what might be on the other side.
For years, I searched for the thing that would fill me –a number of high profile jobs, repeatedly a gained and lost 40lbs, I moved across country and back, drank too much. I did all the things one does when trying to work around discomfort. Prolonged attention is what gave rise to a feeling of security inside of me, prolonged attention and importantly attention to my discomfort.
We avoid the spaces that cause the most distress—fear of being wrong, personal ignorance, lack of historical context, difference of life experience—we cling to the things that make us feel confortable, even if it is making our communities more unbearable. Change on any level requires commitment and attention. It requires vigilance, honesty and being able to laugh at ones self.
When we are less self-absorbed, we are much more able to be present in our own lives, show up for those that need it and attend to the things that need attending to. When we are able to meet our minds or our world where it is at, we have a greater capacity for making change.
Practice is practice is practice, whether you are seeking to do a handstand in the middle of a room, open up years of tension in your hips, or develop new pathways for inclusion and understanding, the process is practice. We develop a muscle for change by working it.
If you commit to the process, you find the way to make that change, albeit slowly and with discomfort. I challenge anyone who has considered that the world might be more holistic and inclusive to examine their behavior off the mat and see what habits might be keeping them back.
Dia Penning is co-teacher for Love Light Yoga’s Yoga and Social Justice Curriculum. She is founder of The Equity Collective, a social justice experiment in radical honesty and inclusion, and has written three volumes of curriculum for World Trust Educational Services.
Dia lives in Oakland California with her wife, son, mother, dog, cat and invisible pony, Sparkle.
Chastity Davis is a mixed heritage woman of First Nations and European descent. She is a proud member of the Tla’amin Nation, located in Powell River just off the beautiful Sunshine Coast of BC. Chastity strives to keep her sacred First Nations culture, traditions, and values incorporated into her modern day life. She feels it is her life purpose to facilitate the building of bridges between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people and has dedicated her professional and personal life to do so.
Chastity is sole proprietor to her own consulting business, Chastity Davis Consulting and has been a successful entrepreneur for 6+ years. She is a board member at the Minerva Foundation and Chair of the Ministers Advisory Council on Aboriginal Women. Chastity co-founded the Professional Aboriginal Women’s Network and is currently serving as Co-Chair for this important network that creates a shared space for Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal women to support each other in their respective careers. Chastity will be completing her MA in International and Intercultural Communications in Spring 2017, has a BA in Professional Communications and a Diploma in Marketing Management and Professional Sales. Chastity has spoken at several international, national, and local events on the importance of building bridges between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. She dedicates her work to her 2 nephews, niece, and 10 year-old brother, as they are the future generations.
Have a visual delight in this video from last year and come and check a vibe on June 13 at Fortune Sound Club. Grab tickets for this years yoga offering and we new VIP lounge, expanded market and of course the DANCE PARTY after. Come early, stay late. Tickets.
So its long believed by so many that Reggae Music is dominated by men. I would say you are listening NUFF to the current situation in sound....nor are you looking back at your elder sisters of sound. Here is a collection of my favourite female reggae artists.
You can accept to hear a lot of these Empresses at the Omega Dancehall, featuring some of the Vancouver's finest feminine DJ's and Mic Madams! Join us for Yoga on Dub on June 13th at Fortune Sound Club with Jah9 and The Dub Treatment. Yoga is at 7:30pm, dancing and holding medz at 10pm.
Get your sweet self moving with these sisters empowering sisters. Bless up the feminine voice and experience, cultivating real stories about real experiences, keeping it real, raw and filled with truth. Sending strong to all the songstresses out there that are ready and waiting to step up to the mic. SO TO YOU SISTERS, STEP UP AND SPEAK UP! In where, in no special order... a handful of my favourite contemporary female reggae artists. Check it, and how is your playlist? In no special order, get these tunes in your head.
8. Marla Brown
9. Nattali Rize
11. Tuff like Iron
Looking WELL forward to teaching a special edition of Sound Salutation in Vancouver.
WE are presenting Yoga on Dub with Jah9 and The Dub Treatment again at Fortune Sound Club on June 13th in Vancouver
Experience the Kemetic Yoga with Jah9 and her return offering of Yoga on Dub with The Dub Treatment playing live. Unroll your mats and unite through slow-tempo dub in this class with asana, song, meditation and reasoning in the modified Fortune Sound studio with Jah9 and local teacher Danielle Hoogenboom. This intimate evening offers vegan food, special surprises and a conscious marketplace. Come for the class and close the night down with an Omega Dancehall featuring Tank Gyal and Mandai and mic guests including Raw Speakhers. Yoga on Dub is an holistic festival experience bringing reggae, yoga and the revolution to mats, dance floors and hearts. Part class, part concert, part party, all irie. Come along.
How do we become our highest and most inspired self?
Inner greatness is embedded within us. It is most is inspired and revealed in the great work of hunting out places that hold patterns and tensions that hold our potential for greatness. We need to spend time in places we are inspired, nurtured and seen. We need to spend time in ourselves and with ourselves to call up and back the selves we have lost over the years.
Inner Education: Yin in action.
I am so stoked about the international group of yinnies joining us for a Yin Studies experience. This virtual offering was a mentorship component, and online teacher training as well as continuing education items. I am very excited to be developing this creative education with my team making it an accessible and individualized education and personal growth program. This yin offering is my newest edition of the Love Light Yoga offerings. It’s a way to fulfill the needs and requests to make continuing education more accessible, more potent and to inspire collaborative efforts with those I have worked with for many years.
It’s a joy to continue the work with students and witness their changes. We share our stories and our collaborations within the yin movement. I LOVE the interactive qualities of this program: a part of continuing education, a part mentorship with a side of coaching, and lots of teacher training modules.
Did I mention that I am a total education nerd?
After I completed my university studies, I spent two years teaching high school in France. I have always loved school and learning. The transmission of knowledge is so exciting. Teaching yoga for nearly a decade has really sparked my deep love for evolution of education and continuing to expand and layer knowledge. The newest offering in the LLY world is a combined offering of my favourite things: Yoga, Education and Creative Expression. I have spent a lot of my creative contemplation time in discovering what does it mean to really good at great education.
Thank for you all for the support and sweet words over the hours to continue, within the insanity of the growing yoga world, and the challenge of running a solo business for 8 years. I give endless thanks to all the angels of support that make these things possible.
It’s a joy and a blessing to be living this dream with you—always dreaming bigger—and calling out to see how I can serve effectively. I look forward to hearing from you. The application and information for the online training is here
I am so excited to be dreaming up the next few pieces, and a couple of special co-labs. I never thought I would have a clothing line, or have taken myself thru self-education of the textiles industry. Oh GEMINI. You are always swimming in the need and want to create.
I started the LLY clothing line as a fundraiser. I had been working with Off the Mat into the World (OTM) in 2010, super involved in their SEVA challenge for South Africa and Haiti, and I was also OTM’s, Vancouver Community Leader. The clothing line was a way to raise money, a product with a solo purpose to fundraise for non-profit organizations.
We designed a South African Blue Crane, Canadian sourced t-shirt, and sold a bunch. Later, I was approached about other pieces of clothing, so I thought, why not?
As an art school kid I was capable of anything really! I dreamed as a full time yoga teacher who was living in athletic wear. I wanted something better made and Vancouver made, with natural ethical fabrics and made for all body types. Teaching for years, I saw an array of poorly fitted, poorly designed clothes made of unsustainable, synthetic material.
I began to think a conspiracy exisited to make women feel awkward in their clothes. I wanted to rock out pieces that made my global sisters look and feel empowered and positive. I wanted the impact to be light on the earth and inspiring to future makers. I wanted to dream a way to really take our yoga off the mat and into the world.
The vision sent me on a journey of fabrics and sourcing fabrics, inspired by local ethics to find a sewing team that could make athletic wear, silk screeners that use natural processes, designers, web people, labels, tags, shipping, e-commence and pop-up all around Vancouver. I am honoured to create layers and cycles of creation, and employment.
You may know the crane on so many pieces now, all over the world. My friend rocks out in her Japanese Yin Yoga video. (LINKS?) Seane Corn supports my tanks and pants on the street and social media. Dharma Mittra loves his drop bottoms and they toured Asia with him. Not to mention, all the super excellent yoga teachers all over the world, sporting and telling a new textile story for real bodies doing badass things. All bodies, gender neutral and lady boss run. YES.
STAY TUNED. A few years back we started to add yin props and plastic free yogi bulk bags. The foodies sold out so quickly, and planning on another pre sold run of these soon. We have recently been testing the most beautiful indigo tights. Oh my fabric! One thing for sure, I am committed to clothing that lives with you in this world, adapts to you to fit you just right and makes you free enough to rock your visions and dreams.
What do you want to see?
Stay tuned for more on the clothing line and thoughts. The last few years we participated in a #whomademyclothes Fashion Revolution program. Check it out. And hey, I challenge in this moment…look at all the pieces of everything you are wearing right now. Where was it made? What is made of? Where does it go when you are down with it?
There is a sale right now for 50% if you want to get on that! SpringLovers is the code and I want you to use and share it up. Clearing up the space and making room for the new. Let me know what you think and what you want in this world.
CURRENT SALE 50%
Sending you love as you question and create, both the world in, on and around you!
I love you friend!! ONE IT!
Love Light Yoga brings to you yoga retreats, yoga teacher trainings and wellness adventures. Come and join us for an on offering soon.
Another epic week of yin and justice vibes at Strawberry Fields Together in St Mary Jamaica! This week we dove deep into the meridians and emotions associated with yin, and developed our teaching practice with support from this now tight family of yinnies! It’s hard to believe that it has ended and we have all gone our separate ways to bring yin and justice to our communities and the world.
Check out this Facebook photo album for some highlights from our last week together!
Stay tuned as well for a podcast series coming up! Spoiler alert! We started recording in Jamaica at this retreat, and the session on Yin + Social Justice with Dia Penning is EPIC! Plus more!!
After spending another 3 weeks out here in St. Mary, Jamaica, Aunty Aya, founder of Aya Wear, took shoe sizes for the community kids. She does this all over Jamaica, her home and land. Bless up the school shoes and the eyes that see the need.
But since the initial shoe mission, more kids have come around and now we need more shoes!
Want to help ship donations of lightly used kids wear? Or want to send funds? The cash donations we collected while on the Yin + Social Justice retreat went right to school shoes.
Aya! Bless up the sisters that trod and live all heart endlessly. All kids should have good shoes for long walks to school. Each one teach one!
Link me if you can contribute: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Week one of Yin + Social Justice in Jamaica has been full and blessed!
Our training begins each morning with Yin yoga on the beach: Long holds and floating Shavasana in the turquoise blue sea. Taking the time out of our daily lives (super Yang - running, working, busy) to slow down and settle into a Yin state has been healing and opening, allowing deep reflection on what is truly important.
We have also been blessed with the presence of many honoured visitors, team members, co-teachers and guests!
Dia Penning of World Trust who is walking us gently through an important social justice leadership training. Her workshop entitled “Cracking the Codes: The System of Racial Inequality” is just two days in and already we can feel our hearts and minds opening wider, tapping into a collective consciousness around these critical issues. We are learning how to both recognize and respond to racial inequity and privilege in our daily lives, and how to sit with and move through these challenges.
To fit in with our Yin + Social Justice theme, Shane (aka Eyeball) and Sabuki, founders of Life Yard - Jamaica’s first eco village, presented their work and mission to improve the lives of children and youth in Kingston through hands on making and the blessed art of growing food. Inspired by backyard farms, these two young men acquired a space on Fleet Street and built a network of believers and artists to rejuvenate the community through art and nature. Shane and Sabuki are also attending the teacher training sessions, with the goal of setting up a yoga program in the Life Yard space. Full circle of sharing and inspiration!
On the topic of food justice, our friend Kukua Abba, author of JA Herbs, led us on a blissful walk through the jungle, identifying, harvesting and sampling the many medicinal and edible treasures of bountiful mother Earth. Daily Ital meals, meaning vegan, organic and from the Earth, are prepared lovingly by chef and fashion designer Iya, owner of Iya Wear. Meals fall silent as we are in awe of the flavours nourishing our bodies from the inside out. We have tea queen Nadya Dee of Iyashi Herbs also visiting, sharing her herbal teas with us. Relying on Earth provisions for our daily nutrition has been a blessed experience and we can all feel our bodies saying THANK YOU!!
We’ve also got Jesi Carson Designs on site documenting in film, photo, audio and 360!! Check out this Facebook album for more photos of week 1, and stay tuned for some epic 360 production and reasoning podcasts!
Plus, yoga teacher and musician Jason Worton is here and offering teachings and music to accompany our yin training experience. Jason will also be joining us for the Yin Rest + Reset retreat coming up March 3-5th - bookings available, get in touch for details!
Can’t wait for week two!
SO STOKED that my long time friend, yogi and super musician will be joining us for the Yin and Justice Teacher Training AND the Yin Rest + Reset retreat in Jamaica. Jason is also a yoga teacher in Kingston and plays a whole variety of instruments and sings.....are you ready for musical medicine mixed with yin yoga on the sea? We give thanks for the musical healing powers and insights that is music and yoga mixed today. Have a peep at this bio below and have a listen to this soundcloud here.
Jason Lee Worton, a singer/musician, grew up moving around the island of Jamaica, and spending several years overseas. Coming from a racially diverse background, surrounded by music, the ocean and rural Jamaica, this shaped him and his music, one of his muses being "the common bonds that complement the very distinctions that make us all beautiful individuals".
Switching between instruments and styles, he has established himself as a solid sideman multi-instrumentalist, working mainly on the guitar. Often described as a Jamaican Jimi Hendrix, but also having acoustic material compared to Jack Johnson, Jason spent years performing with numerous Reggae Artistes, ranging from veterans such as John Holt and Kymani Marley, to the leading figures of what is being referred to as the “Reggae Revival Movement”. This includes young rising stars such as Jah9, Chronixx, and most significantly Protoje in his backing band “The Indiggnation”, who he toured with throughout Europe and the USA.
Building his reputation as a guitarist in the Reggae scene, Jason has also earned a name as a Singer/Songwriter in his own right, both within the Reggae fraternity and in thesmall developing Yoga community in Jamaica. He has been a mainstay at small local venues like Jamnesia, RedBones and the local jam scene. As a yogi-musician, he has been accompanying yoga classes and leading the occassional kirtan session, bringing his blend of Jamaican and World Music influences to studios and retreats around the island. During the Caribbean Yoga Conferences of 2012 and 2013 he played with MC Yogi, then with Dave Stringer. In 2015 during the first ever International Day of Yoga, he played for the largest recorded gathering of yoga practitioners in Jamaica at the National Indoor Sports Arena, attended by local dignitaries such as the Indian Ambassador to Jamaica.
Now Jason aims to continue sharing his music, releasing original material and a project of Jamaican influenced yoga/meditational music. His greatest joy is spreading love in the collective consciousness through irie music. When he doesn’t have an instrument in his hands, he thrives on being in the sea and in the bush, and is an avid surfer, yogi, and aspiring farmer/beekeeper.
Jason Lee Worton is the talented music maker to this new LLY promo video shot in Jamaica last year with Neisha Brown. Giving thanks for yoga moments all over the world, creative co-labs and bigger visions for this 2017!
The Web is full of information about yoga and wellness; however, it can be challenging to find the real jewels that provide abundance of relevant and useful information on the topic. To help yoga lovers to separate the wheat from the chaff BookYogaRetreats.com has handpicked Top 50 Best Yoga and Wellness Blogs to Follow in 2017. The blogs that we selected enjoy not only broad readership but also engagement of the audience and collaborators. Their frequently updated and well-written content provides a great value to the yoga and wellness community.
BookYogaRetreats.com is proud to announce that Love Light Yoga has been included in the Top 50 Favorite Yoga & Wellness Blogs to Follow in 2017
Danielle Hoogenboom is the owner of the fantastic website Love Light Yoga on which she shares her passion for Yin yoga and uses it as a platform to talk about her creative interests on and off the mat. She believes that Yin Yoga and a mindful lifestyle have the ability to heal, change and transform the world around us. And if you’d like to expand your yoga apparel, she has a very nice shop too where you can get clothing and props.
BookYogaRetreats.com certifies that Love Light Yoga is a high quality source of yoga and wellness information to keep on following in 2017!
Super Excited to be adding and announcing some super excellent ital events while I am in Jamaica. The weekends around the Yin and Social Justice Yoga and Leadership Training, I will be hosting a mellow Yin Rest and Rest Weekend. Come and enjoy a vegan diet with us, yin yoga and healing teas on the seat. Two special weekends: February 10th to 12th and March 2nd to 5th. Come for one or both. Simple and deluxe rooms, as well as shared, couples and solo. Please write Danielle for availability and cost. Danielle@lovelightyoga.com
Friday: Beach available at 10am for day use. 2pm Room Check for weekend guest. 4-6pm Yin Yoga. 6:30pm Vegan Dinner. 8pm Fire and Tea.
Saturday: 8am-10am: Yin Yoga and Tea. 10am Breakfast. Free time or additional booked healing sessions. Yin Yoga 4-6pm. Dinner 6:30pm. Evening for personal reflection, rest and digest. Flow away to the sides of the ocean.
Sunday: 9am-11am Yin Yoga and Tea. Vegan Brunch 11am with Healing Teas. Day Beach use until 5pm.
Daily Rates available if space availability: Danielle@lovelightyoga.com
SUPER stoked to be co-labing with the inspiring Kimani McDonald (@kimanimcdonald) for a special new moon yin offering, closing one year and opening another with intentions and reflections. What better medicine in these hours than stillness mixed with consciousness! I am rocking along the poses at @lovelightyoga. Join us for #yinandjustice. Some real talk, mixed with real poses.
Last year on the last new moon of 2015, I rocked out a series of 15 yin poses til the full moon, it was the first LLY offering like that and also a series of Jamaica. You can peep it here! Kimani rocked everyday of the #newtofullmoon yin series virtually with us, a Jamaican mama in Seattle studying to be a DR, me writing posts in Vancouver rocking events and education, the LLY images taken in Jamaica ....yoga in direct international action. Linking the community! It was SO RAD to have a cyber style sister circle in the yinning realm. It was such a joy to journey and be reflection while in collaboration. We thought what better thing to the create an offering together to UP the potency of this yin practice, than to mix it with meaningful and impactful themes to meditate upon! Kimani and I reason often about our interests and actions in natural wellness and diverse communities. What is the greater scope of yoga and its impacts on the world? What does justice look like in action? How are we participating in our daily lives and working to cultivate communities that reflect our knowings and gifts? How do we act and what are our reactions? Looking at all the connections between the large, the small and all the spaces in between and sitting with it....yin medicines! Together we are planting a pose with a topic to contemplate, to reflect, to sit intentions and actively direct change with these offerings.
Kimani is studying to be Naturopathic Medicine Doctor and has as been teaching yoga for many years. Kemetic Yoga and her vegan lifestyle informs her work, as well as her years of living in Jamaica and Africa with her family. Her commitment to natural livity is her life. She is currently studying in Seattle, WA at Bastyr University and if you feel called to support her work you can contribute to her campaign here, as she waits for her loans. As an international student, she does not qualify for student aid and needs to raise $5000 by next week. She can not currently register in her final year, as she awaits her Jamaican loans. #schoolrebel she will attend and do her work. You can check out her original video for her call to support her commitment to health and wellness.
from Kimani's last newsletter: "The picture above is the Ancient Egyptian yoga pose, Sobek. Sobek (the crocodile) embodies the qualities of chaos and fierceness that can either be totally destructive or harnessed to be incredibly powerful and protective.
My personal "chaos" right now is that a hold has been placed on my registration at Bastyr until a payment is made toward my fall tuition (!).
All last quarter I have been in the process of applying for a student loan in Jamaica and.. GROOOAANN...lets just say this process has been... slow. This means that I cannot register for classes or clinic for winter quarter (which begins next week!) until I find another way to pay while we wait.
Of course, I will still show up for classes next week with entitlement and confidence that it will all work out, but I really am in a sticky position... until a payment is made I won't be able to access my online class portal, receive credit, do my clinic shifts etc. Ish just got real...!I need your help for another big fundraising push! My goal is to raise $5000 in the next 2 weeks. Can you help me? "
Join us, in the #yinandjustice journey and see how it extends out into the world. Investing in the leadership and education makes a massive impact on many people and this sister's work will reach far! Kimani's experience and interests in culturally appropriate healthcare and accessibility will be revolutionary. If you love these offerings, you can make a donation here.
The theme of the annual LLY Yin Yoga Training in Jamaica for 2017 is Yin and Social Justice, Feb 16th to March 2nd. You can apply here. We have scholarships opportunities and we are also accepting donations towards the scholarship fund if you want to support teachers. One of our co-teachers is Dia Penning, who joins us from World Trust, an Oakland based organization that uses media for race, gender and equality work. We also have a local teachers and elders sharing about history, culture, the art and local medicines. The event meals are vegan, we have natural adventures to take you on and reals talk to have, with a mix of sacred, silent and social times. Come and met and make new soul family. Yin Yoga twice daily and reflection, this training is both a yoga and leadership training and is for all levels. Link up.
Each day from Dec 29, the last new moon of 2016, I will offer up a yin yoga shape, some thoughts on variations and some benefits of the shapes. The images are all from a series that our friend Niesha Brown and I did in Jamaica last year. The images are are from the stunning botanical gardens in Kingston and at Bob Marley Beach. What a blessed photo journey, I spent 4 non stop months in JA and ended it with this photo art adventure. Giving thanks for reflections, memories, friendship and artists on the path! Kimani will be adding a theme and reflection each day that will go with the pose, on themes of social justice, or 'inner justice' You can pair these together and share up your thoughts. #yinandjustice is the hashtag. We will run from the new moon to full moon. Yin Love and blessings. Don't forget to support Kimani @kimanimcdonald #schoolrebel
GOING PLASTIC FREE
Carry a big bag/purse/backpack! I always have a huge purse so that I am always ready for any surprise find, or a sudden grocery stop, a markets farmer or a wild forage find. Check out the mushroom section for paper bags in grocery stores, I use these for bulk foods as well if I forget or run out of my own. Encourage your grocer to stock more paper products.
Always carry a mason jar, or TWO! Its great for water, tea, left overs, take out and bulk shopping.
Carry your own cutlery and say NO to straws ALL the time. Tell your friends to say no to straws. Even write your fav restaurant and encourage them to stop using straws. Really, ask questions...like why does know need a straw? Love them? Get a metal or glass one at Soap Dispensary and carry it around. All cool like.
Have a new mantra/chant: No CUP, NO drink. Its EASY...if you love your cafe drinks and stick to this mantra, you eventually ALWAYS remember. SEE. Yoga in Practice. Practice makes perfect when you stick to NO CUP, NO DRINK. If you can train a puppy to do cute tricks you can retrain your habits too.
Eat in season, shop at the farmers market and buy local. Stock up on squash, carrots, potatoes and things to roast, fry or soup. Eat natural foods and cook at home. All of the convience of packaged food and take out is only easy for YOU...its SUPER hard on the plant.
BULK! We refill our dish soap, laundry soap, cleaning supplies and buy jumbo boxes of TP that have no plastic! YEAH. Its money up front, but its actually cheaper and super cool to only think about it about every 3 months. We rock this at Soap Dispensary in Vancouver mostly.
SAY NO! I want those organic potatoes...but they are in a plastic bag...hmm, walk 8 blocks to the organic bulk place! Want something, but keep seeing and then buying the opposite? Don’t support it! Your dollars vote. Make requests at your local market to shift their waste practices and buy things as plastic free as possible..or GASSPP, go WITHOUT!
Bulk beauty! Soap Dispensary in Vancouver has bulk natural toothpaste. I use coconut oil as an everything moisturizer, I don’t wear deorants, but sometimes essential oils in my pits. I am realllly into clay masks, you can give that in block both at SP and Quiddittas on the Drive. I use either bulk Dr. Bronners or I have many friends that make amazing bar soap at home. YEAH. The bulk toothpaste there is so so good.
MAKE IT! Want hummous? Buy dried chick peas, soak over night and then crockpot. Add fresh lemons, loose garlic and some bulk refilled oil and BOOM. Hummous in bulk...waste free and cheaper! LOVE Kombucha...make it! Like peanut butter...invest in a blender and bulk buy those nuts. Stop making excuses and get creative. I know you can. You really CAN.
DIVA CUP and Lunapads, so excellent and a life changer...so epic….shy? CHAT with me. I am such an adovacte for these things and really believe your moon should be as natural as possible and def not making waste in the world. Pretty much all my sisterfriends use these products and all of them say they will never go back. TRY. Small steps, new spaces and places.
Change your habits...love chips? You gotta get into bulk popcorn that you pop and add lots of salt! Yum, I love a triple dose of nutritional yeast on there too. BOOM. Pretty close to the chip family and way cheaper! I get mine at Eternal Abundance or so many bulk food places love the corn. LOVE a certain candy in a wrapper...learn to shift your snack needs and love another food. Love a certain tea...see if they have it in bulk in another place or better yet. GROW it. I grow enough mint for the year.
RELAX. It’s IMPOSSIBLE to be totally plastic free, so relax the stress and do your best. This is a world that is build on waste and we need to shift those patterns and make new plans, products and get creative.. Start to see it and make it happen as you can. Any effort and attempt will make an impact...and once you start, the easier it can get. Martin Luther King said you have to take the first step before you even see the whole staircase.
I REALLLLY don’t like shopping.
I don’t need things. I HAVE so so many things, things that have been gifted to me, left in our community home, found in free boxes, rescued from thrift stores that have simply appeared in our temple home. But really tho, do you think about your stuff, who made it, where did it come from? If you have ever spend time in my home I know your eye wanders around all the garage finds and many alters, gifted crystals, found beads, textiles from around the world, worldly travels in small objects Mason jars filled with home grown herbs, art supplies bulk donated from old art school friends. STUFFF. I love the stuff, I love...but it’s not necessary. And in this time of year, all I think about is the source of the things, the places of consumption. The powers that make the stuff! The businesses that benefit from the stuff and what they do with their funds and how it affects this world. I think we are so disconnected to the process of things that we forget only where they come from…. but also where they will end up!
This time of year, peeps are alllllways feeling the need to get things for people. Why? When do we say enough is enough? I encourage you to YIN this season and mellow on the consumption in all forms and simplify presents, diets and output. IF you feel the need to out, let me suggest a few of my favourite Vancouver offerings. Don’t be afraid to say, lets not buy things! Or just don’t...cause any great cause or shift in the world has a fearless and bold leader that took a step or made a sound that was different. BE this. Its worth it, in fact...if there is a call for change deep in you...its the gift you have to dig out and offer up to the WHOLE world. You can. Start now and vote with your dollars in conscious ways if you must!
I encourage you to support the veggie restaurants, they all have gift certificates and food is an excellent gift to give. If you know me you know I LOVE, like LOVE Bandidas. Oh swoon, the menu is perfect (you can vegan ALL OF IT), the business ethics are RAD and the radical women that run this are some ladyboss idols of mine with great vision and excellent community building. Thank YOU. I serious would not have suffered many years of full time teaching all over this city without that Ronny Russell burrito.
And hey, LADY BOSSES, another powerful sister in the world, Madeleine Shaw is one of the super shero behind Lunapads. Her business, worldly efforts and big dreams are all female power centered with a perfect dash of revolution for dessert. LOOK out, so many great things brewing with her and the teams behind Lunapads and G day for Girls. I am a SUPER fan of Lunapads and Diva Cups. I have been waste free period goddess for about seven years and I would never look back. I can’t believe there is even a disposable industry in relationship to menstruation. Interested in learning about cups? I have wanted to run a workshop on this for so many years….would you come to this?
For many years I have been an ambassador for the ever epic Shanti Uganda. I love this vision and dream and I LOVE the textiles that are created in their women’s generating income project. Yoga mat bags, sling bags, totes, laptop bags and beads. I have a handful of colours right now and there is a selection of them at Stretch in Vancouver right now with my LLY yoga line.
Have a peep at my clothing line here. Love Light Yoga. Made in East Van, bamboo and organic cotton and made for so many different body types. YEAH to baggy and comfy clothes. I have been making these for the last seven years and started as just a dream to have cool, comfy and ethical clothes, both to teach, dance and hustle in. Patterns for real bodies, the best fabrics you will ever feel and all cycles and parts from small local East Van businesses. You can peep my props and some of the calabash I brought back from Jamaica at Dharma Temple on Main Street, and also my clothing is on display at Stretch in Chinatown. Peak and let me know what you think!
East Van Roasters! I LOVEEE this cafe and chocolate making place. They have sipping coco, the best ethical bars, coffee gifts for your friends and are amazing business model that supports the community and creates low barrier jobs. The selection of chocolate is divine and you can peak into the bar and bean rooms. What sweet joys. Stay tuned for our co-labs brewing up.
Eternal Abundance! One of my FAV places on The Drive. It’s a vegan deli and grocer, its plastic free and so RAD. My friend Alex’s store is so great, please check it out especially for the super foods, powders and spices in glass jars. OH the SIGH, I love anything natural in a glass jars all lined up. It’s important to rock out added super foods and spices in these times. Think useful and regular if you have to get a gift...I would drool over jars of excellence, as my future healthy self would be so stoked.
Soap Dispensary!! I can’t highly enough of this super shop and so stoked that have continued to grow and expand. IF you know you me, you know I am big advocate of waste free living and this shop makes it so possible. We group buy as a house here and they carry every single size container, jar and tin you can think of….these kinds of stores are my dream spaces and places. Thank you for the visionaries that make them! HEY, get aboard our Plastic Free Yogi efforts this year. Share up your thoughts and tricks for the radness of making a waste free efforts in your life and world.
Sponsor something/someone badass. WE have a scholarship fund for support Jamaican yoga teachers to take our Social Justice training, we have SO many applications this year, your donation would make a big difference You can donate to any chose cause that fills your heart. I would suggest reading about Sacred Trust here or buy from a local makers like my friend Andi.
I know loads of my friends do really bad ass things...in fact, we are hosting a pop up shop in Vancouver to host some local makers.....would you be down? I think as a community we can re imagine what it means to make, gift and gather. Love to hear about your favourite places and things that are important to you in these times. You don’t need to shop or create waste getting wasteful things. Think creatively and community based. BLESSINGS