Monthly Archives: January 2017

Inspire Your Heart with Art Day

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January 31 is Inspire Your Heart with Art Day, a day to think about how art inspires us, heals us, and brings joy to our lives.Whether through music, dance, visual arts, or writing, art tells our story. Creative expression helps us share our individual and shared history and keeps us connected.

Let today inspire you to be creative, go to a gallery or book reading, or maybe turn up your favorite song and dance your heart out. Also consider giving to local arts organizations and supporting local artists. Connect with your own heart.

In joy and love,

Debra

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School Day of Non-Violence and Peace/Fred Korematsu Day

img_20170130_143603_119.jpgJanuary 30 is a day calling attention to universal love and tolerance as promoted by two separate observances.

The International School Day for Non-Violence and Peace (or DENIP from Dia Escolar de la No-violència i la Pau) was founded in 1964 in Marjorca by poet Llorenç Vidal. DENIP is observed annually on or about January 30, the anniversary of the death of Mahatma Gandhi. The motto is: “Universal love, non-violence, and peace. Universal love is better than egoism, non-violence is better than violence, peace is better than war”. The day is meant to educate students in the ways of harmony, tolerance, respect for human rights, non-violence, and peace.

January 30 has also been established in several states as Fred Korematsu Day of Civil Liberties and the Constitution. In 1942, Mr. Korematsu defied the military order to report to a Japanese internment camp and was arrested. He later sued the government over his conviction in the Supreme Court and lost. That decision is, with a handful of other cases, “what legal scholars describe as the anti-canon of American constitutional law — a small group of Supreme Court rulings universally assailed as wrong, immoral, and unconstitutional” (via npr.org and The Atlantic). His conviction as formally vacated in 1983 and he was awarded a Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1998. In Korematsu’s own words, “If you have the feeling that something is wrong, don’t be afraid to speak up.” Always seek and speak truth.

In love and peace,

Debra

Welcome to the Year of the Fire Rooster!

265102_1908688881151_5985881_nToday marks the beginning of the Chinese New Year and it’s not just the year of the rooster, but it’s the year of the fire rooster!

Ways to celebrate include gathering with friends and family, wishing each other luck and prosperity, and performing acts of good deeds and charity.

May this year bring passion, luck and prosperity to us all — no exceptions.

Much love,

Debra

 

 

 

Toad Hollow Day of Encouragment

20170125_133647.pngToad Hollow Day of Encouragement is a day to give encouragement to others and make heartfelt connections. So get out there and reach out to someone with a positive message today. You never know who might need it!

Namaste,

Debra

 

A Room of One’s Own Day

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Note: This holiday is a copyrighted holiday that was created by Thomas and Ruth Roy of Wellcat Holidays.

A Room of One’s Own Day marks the anniversary of the birth of writer, feminist, and modernist Virginia Woolf. A Room of One’s Own makes the case for women to have equal access to education and the opportunity to write fiction — resulting in both a literal and a figurative space in a literary tradition long dominated by men.

To best honor and celebrate A Room of One’s Own Day, we can commit to self-study, seeking wisdom, finding our voice, and speaking the truth.

“The welfare of each of us is dependent fundamentally upon the welfare of all of us.” – President Theodore Roosevelt

In peace and unity,

Debra

National Compliment Day

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It’s National Compliment Day! So be kind, be sincere, and tell someone something nice today.

That is all,

Debra

Re-Post: Music for the Crown Chakra

I was going to post about National Pie Day but it really didn’t seem so important. Instead, I’m re-posting from my week of covering the crown chakra. We need to remember that even when we disagree, we are all one.

Original post:

This is another week of rather mellow songs. but that seems rather fitting. The crown chakra is all about recognizing a higher power, recognizing that we are all connected, and enjoying the beauty of peace and acceptance. So here we go, no further explanations this week (hope you like Keb’ Mo’).

Much love,

Debra

National Blonde Brownie Day

20170121_172527.jpgI used to love my grandmother’s blonde brownies (we called them blondies or butterscotch brownies). I don’t have her exact recipe, but the one I use is similar. It is, unfortunately, really, really unhealthy. Today seemed like a good day to look for a healthier alternative that didn’t totally ruin these wonderful treats. Here are the two recipes I worked with and the results.

Blonde Brownies (Original-to-Me Recipe)

  • 1/2 cup margarine, softened
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 cup chopped nuts
  1. Cream together margarine, sugar, eggs, and vanilla.
  2. In separate bowl, combine flour and baking powder. Combine with creamed butter-sugar mixture and mix well.
  3. Add nuts.
  4. Pour into greased and floured 7×11 inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes.
  5. Cut while slightly warm.

Healthier Blonde Brownies

*Based on the Best Healthier Blondie Recipe Ever.

  • 1 cup unbleached flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 4 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (I used walnuts)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix dry ingredients and set aside.
  3. In separate bowl, mix remaining ingredients except nuts.
  4. Combine dry and wet mixtures and mix well. Add nuts and mix in to incorporate.
  5. Spread into 8×8 greased pan. Bake 18 to 20 minutes.

The Results

Admittedly, I didn’t make the originals for this blog but I made it not too long ago. The result was rich and indulgent blondie. Definitely gooey, they’re much more sticky than but not quite as dense as a fudge brownie. I used to be able to eat a lot of these in one sitting but I find them so sweet now that a small serving will do. I still love them.

20170121_174419.jpgThe batter of the healthier version smelled surprisingly like the original when raw and while baking. The resulting blondie was much more light and crumbly. They were good. Definitely less buttery and less sweet than the original but a good alternative. I liked that these didn’t sit so heavily in my stomach. My vote is for the healthier version (but I’m not throwing out the original).

Peace,

Debra

If you’re looking for this week’s schedule, it’s now available here.

National Hugging Day

wp-1484851545883.pngIt’s National Hugging Day! The World needs more love, so seize the day and your friends, family, pets, or strangers (with their permission, of course) and hug it out!

Got no one to hug? Don’t be sad. You can hug yourself. Hugging yourself has been shown to reduce physical pain. I often include a gentle hug/spine freeing sequence when I teach chair yoga and yoga for cancer patients and survivors as part of the warm up. Check out the video below.

International Day of Acceptance

wp-1484801169472.jpgInternational Day of Acceptance is best summed up by the good people at the site Days of the Year:

“The (International) Day of Acceptance is a valuable social entrepreneurial awareness experiment with a heart-warming backstory.

Annie Hopkins founded 3E Love to make the world a better place, also creating the International Symbol of Acceptance, which shows a wheelchair in the shape of a heart. Together, the occasion and the symbol communicate the 3E Love ethos of devotion, equality, respect and understanding, to be adopted and appreciated by people of all abilities.

Disability owned and operated, 3E Love works to empower people through pride and passion, rather than charity. Taking control, following our dreams and being the best we can, regardless of physical factors, makes us what we are, and Annie’s goal to share this with as many people as possible has proved a source of inspiration all across the world.”

This day is especially resonant with me because I grew up with family members with disabilities. My maternal grandfather wore hearing aids but was so adept at reading lips that most people didn’t know he was effectively deaf. My uncle had polio as a child, which resulted in paralysis of his left side and left him with one lung. My grandparents had to fight for him to be accepted into college despite the fact that he was brilliant; he went on to become a well-respected educator. My cousin was paralyzed from the waist down in an accident with a drunk driver. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen people talk loud and slow to her just because she’s in a wheelchair.

People with disabilities are not to be pitied, ignored, treated as fragile, nor mocked. We are all human beings with strength and frailties, good days and bad.

Ways to Celebrate

  • Embrace who you are. Love yourself with total acceptance. Be grateful for what you can do. Encourage others to do the same.
  • Be empowered. Find your voice and use it to make a difference in the world. Equally important is to truly listen to the voice of others.
  • Educate yourself and others (these examples are primarily for my fellow yoga teachers and practitioners). How would you practice yoga without the use of your arms? Your legs? Your sight? How would you teach yoga to someone who is deaf? A great way to see what it’s like to have reduced lung capacity is to do a practice breathing only through a straw. Things we take for granted in our own practice can be viewed in a whole new light
  • Love life. If you don’t like something in your life, change it if you can, accept it if you can’t. Welcome the good and the bad. Let go of attachments. Be present.

In love and peace,

Debra

 

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