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Archive for the ‘yoga’ Category

Do you find it difficult to settle down to just one project? Even when I have launched myself into a project, I sometimes find it hard to make decisions. If you’ve ever delved into the world of half-square triangles, you might have an inkling of what I mean.

There are countless ways of arranging them! Check out this flickr group .

I rarely buy charm packs, but fell in love with the Simple Marks line by Malka Dubrowsky (for Moda) when I discovered it. Half-square triangles seemed to be the perfect way to use the 42 five-inch squares in the pack. In my stash, I found that I had a sizable piece of a neutral fabric (Countertop Texture –  Michael Miller Fabrics) that coordinated perfectly as the light half of the triangles.IMG_5083

Making the HSTs was easy, and playing with the infinite possibilities of the arrangements on my design wall was so much fun!

Instead of trying to decide which pattern was “the best” I finally ended up, after a few weeks of play, just deciding which appealed to my sense of having a little extra “oomph”. Then I settled down to sewing them together.IMG_8456

Here’s the WIP (work in progress). I am still contemplating whether to add a border (comments welcome!)

Over the same few months, I have also been distracted by this year’s guild challenge “Making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear”. The entries aren’t due until May, but I would rather avoid entering “panic mode” so I spent some time figuring out a way of using all six of the required ugly fabrics in an original design, and it’s partially done.

Next I was lead astray by a casual conversation with a bunch of quilting friends, reminiscing about corking when we were kids. Corking, you say? It’s also known as spool knitting or French knitting. I had purchased a wooden corking “device” a while back at a craft fair, so I hauled it out and, after a brief consultation on the Internet on how to get started, I was off and running! It’s quite addictive.

Other distractions have included jaunts in local ravines and fields hunting for snowy owls (they’ve been sighted quite often this winter), a lengthy search for a new yoga studio (which was finally successful) and the black hole that is Pinterest. It sucks you in and the next thing you know, several hours have passed!

My conclusion is: distractions can be fun AND frustrating. They’re part of being human.

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A week ago, I was in sunny Mexico for a yoga retreat at a remote eco-lodge in the jungle, north of Puerto Vallarta.

sunshine in Mexico

This was my first visit to Mexico, and it did not disappoint. My yoga teacher here in Toronto, Catherine McFadden, organized this retreat as her first foray into “destination” yoga. What a success! Tailwind Jungle Lodge is a 5-acre treasure nestled into the lush countryside overlooking the Pacific Ocean.  A great bunch of 11 yoginis (including me and one of my sisters) stayed in a range of accommodations on the property – ranging from a rather luxurious “casita” with a four-poster bed to a rustic, canvas-sided “bungalow” on a wooden platform. Check out my photo album.

There was lots of creative inspiration to be had on this trip, as well as a healthy dose of introspection and exquisite Mexican food prepared by a local gastronomic genius, the talented Abigail.

mural - San Pancho

mural - San Pancho, Mexico

I loved the “public art” in San Pancho: kaleidoscopic mosaics and celebratory murals. There’s an awesome non-profit organization we were introduced to in San Pancho (aka San Fransisco), called Entre Amigos, focused on creating educational opportunities for families. Check out their website … what they are doing is truly inspiring.

Moasic reptile created by San Pancho kids

Wouldn’t this make a great quilt design?

I had to snap a photo of a dusty old sewing machine, found on the main street. I’m not sure whether it is intended as “street art”

an old workhorse

or whether is was just abandoned (cast iron sewing machines ARE awfully heavy!

broken dishes mosaic

So today, I am dreaming about sunny Mexico … the hikes in the jungle, the swims in the ocean, the naps on the beach, the colourful + noisy birds, the warm spirits of my companions, the enlightening yoga, the stimulating contrast from city life, the gastronomic delights and even the cheery all-night chirp-0rchestra of the tree frogs. There’s way too much to cram into one post, so you can expect more highlights in future posts.  Today, a week after returning from Mexico,

winter in Toronto

I awoke to a winter wonderland. There are just a couple more days left in February, so today I’ll be going for one of the last skates for the season.

Parting advice: celebrate each season, wherever you are!

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