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Inspiration

Inspiration

Superhighway Brief #005:
O’Keeffe style, shameless selfies & embracing fear

September 30, 2015

Georgia O'Keeffe Inspired

Inspiration Productivity

A Summer of Abundance and Growth

September 25, 2015

Paintings by Ursala Hudson

Waves of monsoons resulted in a lush, thriving summer that offered abundance in all areas of our family’s life. I like a state of constant movement — analyzing, brainstorming, and producing. I generally try not to think about how much is getting done because otherwise I get anxiety that I’m not creating enough. Therefore, it wasn’t immediately obvious if we’d even accomplished much over the past three months, but as I began listing the projects that Drie and I completed, I finally felt like I could take a deep breath and relax. Here is the recap of the projects we worked on this summer.

reflecting on the seasons for future growth

Paintings & Collages

I started the summer by returning to my oil painting, but oil painting requires patience and rotating through paintings while the others dry, and sometimes I just want instantaneous results! So I turned to painting in acrylics and making collages. It was so refreshing, and I just might keep it up until my little girls are bigger and I get larger chunks of time at my easel.

reflecting on the seasons for future growth

Ghost Rabbits dress-up 

Drie has collected quite the stockpile of amazing vintage garments over the last year, and it completely fills her entire guest room. One of our favorite past-times with two of our best friends, Betsy and Emilie, is over-dressing for parties and events. Emilie and Betsy (sisters) were both in town this summer, so Drie jumped at the opportunity to have a dress-up party, even though we had nowhere to go. The four of us rummaged through Drie’s racks and shelves and took photos for her blog that accompanies her vintage Etsy store, Ghost Rabbits. It was a little hard to part with the pieces I modeled, but I’ve scored some other beauties off of her in the months since. See the Ghost Rabbits blog post for more photos.

reflecting on the seasons for future growth

Charter school touring

I’ve been working on opening a K-12 charter school with a group of parents here in Pagosa, and this summer we were able to travel around Colorado and New Mexico, visiting innovative schools to gain inspiration before we wrote our own academic model into the charter application. The above photo is from a Montessori farm school in Española, New Mexico, that centers its curriculum around growing food.

Charter schools are public schools that do not discriminate nor charge tuition, and they are exempt from many of the state regulations that conventional public schools must follow. Our school won’t be opening until the fall of 2017, because the charter application takes about a year to write, and then the school takes about a year to open, but our group is right on track! Follow our adventures on the Pagosa Charter School Initiative’s blog by clicking here.

This charter school project has been one of the most rewarding projects I’ve experienced in my life, mostly because it’s showed me that the first step in a creative project is usually the toughest: committing. And then, as long as you have a work plan, you have a pretty strong chance of succeeding.

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Aerial

Drie has been doing aerial training for a few years now, picking it up at Cirque School LA. When she returned to Pagosa last winter she had assumed she’d be sacrificing certain luxuries by moving here, including an aerial community, but almost immediately found out that she wasn’t going to have to give up on the silks after all. Her friend Sariah, whom she took her yoga teacher training from, offers non-formal aerial training at her gym where Drie also takes yoga classes.

Aerial is a fun, unique, and graceful way to stay in shape, and I’m just a tad bit envious at Drie’s strength and commitment to it. Drie is innately dedicated to caring for her body and mind in ways that express her individuality and femininity, and this summer of rekindling her love for the silks is just the beginning of what’s to come.

reflecting on the seasons for future growth

Art with the daughter

One of my fondest memories growing up in this little town I [still] live in was submitting my artwork into the county fair each August. At our county fair you can enter one item in every category of their display competition, but since this was Amelie’s first year, we focused on making one quality piece of work. She carved an Easy-to-Cut “suicide” block print with my guidance, and I only directly helped with the printing. When we saw the blue ribbon hanging from the frame after judging, we were both pretty proud.

We also did quite a few other art projects this summer, mostly creating huge messes of tiny cut-up paper, and a couple collaborative paintings. Read more about painting in acrylics with children here.

reflecting on the seasons for future growth

Folk festival 

This year my long-time buddy and graphic design colleague, Jacque, invited me to take photos for Folk West at the Four Corners Folk Festival. I haven’t taken full advantage of this local music festival in the past, but this year I had a back-stage full-access pass, with late-night shows and all meals included, and I fell completely in love. I went wherever, whenever I pleased, and heard the bands play from as close to the stage as was possible. The late-night performances were my favorite because of the small audiences and less formal set lists. The above photo is the fiddle player from the Oh Hello’s, who had all the young girls in the crowd swooning. I sure hope I get invited back next year!

vintage dress restoration

Vintage restoration

On her road trips Drie finds all sorts of delectable treasures, but oftentimes they have been discarded due to damage. The price makes them hard to pass up, so Drie takes them home and works her magic, restoring them to their previous glory. Restoration is time and research intensive, but always a rewarding experience. The amazing dress above was completely tea-stained before Drie spent a couple days giving the dress tender-loving baths and drying it in the shade. Other restored items are mixed in with her other treasures in her vintage store.

reflecting on the seasons for future growth

Gardening

Growing food at 7,000 feet above sea level is really fucking hard. In some climates you can just throw seeds around and pretty soon there’s stuff growing everywhere, but there’s only about 3 months of a growing season here in Pagosa. We have all four seasons, drought, the intense sun, and the wildlife that all require extra measures to be taken. Last year I managed to get a pretty abundant garden going before the deer ate 2/3 of it by mid-July. It was pretty heart-breaking. So, this year my dad helped me build a hoop-house. We clamped plastic to the ends, and put a shade cloth over the top, and not only has it kept the animals out, but nothing got fried by the sun! The shade cloth lets in most of the rain too, so I really only watered while my seedlings were coming up. Next spring I’m going to put plastic over the top to prolong my growing season by a couple months, but I’m not quite ready to water through the winter yet, so the shade cloth will be coming down any day now.

Stone Currents projects

This blog has been one of our largest projects this summer, as anticipated at the start-up. Drie and I were experiencing a minor disconnect, with her living *gasp* eight minutes away, and the babies napping seemingly all day long. Our blog projects and adventures force us to stay in contact and encourage us to create cool stuff both together and individually. Here were the summer projects we previously blogged about:

With the goal of inspiring our readers to reflect on periods of creativity, I plan to do more seasonal project recaps in the future. This sort of compilation of achievements is a great method to bring awareness to areas you neglect while simultaneously honoring your accomplishments. It can be a motivating and a mindful way to enter new phases with updated goals and a clearer vision. What have you produced recently?

Body & Mind Inspiration

Yoga Teacher Training with Baby Wyatt

September 15, 2015

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Last month I was able to complete the extremely rewarding experience of becoming a certified yoga teacher, which I didn’t anticipate happening until my baby boy, Wyatt Grey, was much older and able to spend more time without me. However, by following my passions, and the fruition of a new friendship, I was able to finish my first yoga teacher training with Baby Wyatt on the yoga mat next to me. This is my story about the fostering of positive relationships and intentions, and how dreams can come true when you least expect it.

How I Fell In Love with Yoga

Ever since I was a little girl I’ve been active and into fitness, constantly exploring my outdoor environment, climbing trees, riding horses, skiing, and doing sit-ups and pull-ups just to test my strength. In junior high I went to a few yoga classes at a gym with my mom and I was immediately hooked; I loved the slow-paced workout that pushed me physically and challenged my balance and flexibility, all while clearing my head. I started working at that gym during the summers, making healthy food and drinks at the snack bar and signing people up for memberships, and I got free classes. I had just started running cross country, and doing yoga right after a run is the perfect paring. My tight runner legs stretched instantly, and I felt energized, beautiful and whole for the rest of the day. I felt the internal power, strength and light within. When I moved to L.A. I continued attending new and exciting yoga classes to relax from the hustle and bustle of the city and feel better about myself and the world.

I always thought I’d really love to teach yoga. During my cross country years in high school I was never an excellent runner because I didn’t have the passion to push myself to my full potential. However, my team loved me and I was always sent to the state finals, not for running, but for my positive energy. I was the motivational coach that massaged everyones calves on bus and cheered them on during their race. This positive energy has continued within me for the last decade, coaching others informally about positivity and gratitude. I knew that yoga would be a wonderful way I could continue to share and broaden my light with others, as well as share my passion for strength, flexibility, and balance.

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My Life and Teacher Training Aligning

While yoga teacher training was always something I really wanted to do, it seemed more like an idea for the future. The time and money never lined up, so I continued to take classes and grow my home practice. I kept doing yoga throughout my pregnancy and started back up as soon as I was physically able after Wyatt was born, sometimes incorporating him into my practice.

When I moved back to my hometown I met an incredible woman that made many of my dreams align. Sariah had moved to our small mountain town with her family while I was living in California, so when I returned home I was surprised to find and meet a soul that shared so many of the same passions. Sariah is a dancer, yoga teacher, a Crossfit coach, and she also happened to have silks in the Crossfit training gym. The minute I found out that she had silks to play on, I was there. I was so happy to have aerial back in my life.  I had been doing aerial training at Cirque School L.A., but when I moved back to Pagosa I thought that those aerial days where behind me until I could afford to get my own equipment and train at home.

I started going to Sariah’s yoga class on Sundays with Wyatt and then we would play on the silks after. I soon got to know Sariah even more and felt so blessed to have her in my life. At the start of summer she told me that she wanted to teach a yoga teacher training course. I immediately told her I was in. I was probably the first one to sign up, and a few months down the road, Sariah’s first yoga teacher training began. Class was held at her private yoga studio, SE School of Movement, nestled away in the mountains at her house.

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The Experience

There were four of us in the class, plus Wyatt.  I apprehensively asked Sariah if it was alright to bring Wyatt, since that would be the only way I’d be able to attend the training. Without hesitation she said yes, sure that it would benefit everyone.  So, Wyatt Grey and I spent a whole week together doing poses, meditating, studying, breathing, and playing. It was a wonderful adventure, both in the studio and at home doing “homework”. We all practiced teaching each other, studying anatomy, learning acro yoga, going on fun nature walks, and teaching yoga on the paddle boards.

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Yoga Teacher Training with a Baby

The whole class warmed up to Wyatt fast. The rest of our new little yogi community would take turns holding him and entertaining him when I wasn’t able to. When Wyatt had to sleep I put him down and he would sleep on the floor, cuddled up during class. I also got to practice teaching with Wyatt, showing the rest of the class how I incorporate him into my practice. Yoga teacher training was great with Wyatt and it will be cool to tell him later in life that he finished his first teacher training at 7 months!

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Whats next

My Love and I are on the road for a month collecting new vintage for Ghost Rabbits, tattooing, and seeing family and friends.  I plan to organize a few yoga flow classes that I want to teach and practice with everyone while we’re on the road. Eventually, I will do donation-based classes at home in Pagosa and on the road.  I also want to do a yoga-with-baby class and blog post series soon— stay tuned, it will be fun!

Inspiration

Superhighway Brief #004:
Morning routines & the moon

September 4, 2015

Becoming a Morning Person

Inspiration

Superhighway Brief #003:
Instagram, Success & Living Long

August 1, 2015

superhighway brief

The internet surprised me this month. It’s been 17 years since I first started scouring the web, and I’ve gone through countless phases where I find myself totally done with it. Over it. Find a cave in a mountain and live there without electricity pumping through my walls. But then I Instagrammed hard-core for the entire month of July, and although I’m exhausted and so relieved the month is over, I think I love the internet more.

If you’ve been following along then you know that July was #SCcreatejuly month, where I challenged everyone to make time to create every single day. I went the first 3 weeks Instagramming everything I made, stressing out, trying to get an image posted before morning… before I realized that Instagram wasn’t actually part of the challenge. All I had to do was create, and that was easy. So then I slowed down my Instagramming and had time to breathe again.  BUT, during that stressful period of worrying about how many people thought my latest collage was cool, I saw a lot of other people’s work. I got to know what Instagram hashtags linked me to photos that made me feel things (#vscoart, #namaste, #cutandpaste etc). And I would enter these worlds, far away where it was already morning, and see how other people saw the world. And that shit is cool. That’s why the internet is so f-ing cool these days. If you can keep yourself from comparing your life to those of others, then Instagram can be a sick-ass place to gather inspiration and be in awe of the planet we live on (and beyond, @nasa).

Before moving on I want to thank the five ladies who contributed photos to #SCcreatejuly — I loved your representation of the prompts and knowing that you were making cool stuff alongside me. The featured image above is a montage of several #SCcreatejuly posts, and these are the five lovely ladies who joined in: @just_drie @babydel @jacquebblackie @mountainmermaid58 @bandolina_ @roadkyl

Now, moving on, here are some of my favorite links from July.

Inspiration

Superhighway Brief #002:
Yoko Ono, bud accommodations & sexy swearing

July 4, 2015
Yoko Ono on Instagram

My mini list of cyber places I’ve enjoyed over the month, to inspire: