Monday, July 9, 2012

Whistler, aka heaven

I had my first trip of the summer to the Whistler Bike Park! It always feels like going home every time I'm in Whistler - so many amazing memories there. I went after work with a couple buddies to camp overnight and then we biked all day. The bike park is so much fun because you ride the lift up the mountain and then bike down. You are able to get so many more runs in when you don't have to pedal up the mountain!

We were fortunate to catch a window of good weather. The forecast was an 80% chance of rain, but we had sunny skies the whole time we were biking. About 30 minutes after we finished it started dumping rain while we were out to dinner. Perfect timing!

Only half of the mountain was open because there was still a lot of snow up top, but the trails we rode were in great condition. Plus we saw 3 bears, 2 deer and 1 rabbit while we were riding. 

Here is our campsite - the ground was a little rocky but otherwise nice
 Amazing view from the campsite!
 Good morning sunshine!
 Today is looking up :)
 Aaron prepping the bikes - ready to ride!
 Hello mister bear...let me just back up now...
 beautiful views from the top of the mountain
 being a goof - this trail does not live up to its name unfortunately

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


Sunday was the Pride parade in Seattle so I made pride the theme of my yoga class for the day. Here are the quotes I read - a lot of people enjoyed, so I thought I would share them here: 1) There comes a time when you have to stand up and shout: This is me! I look the way I look, I think the way I think, I feel the way I feel, I love the way I love! Accept me or walk away. 2) When you are strong enough to love yourself 100% you will be amazed at the opportunities that life presents you.

A couple weeks I took a big group of my coworkers up to Rattlesnake Ridge for a hiking + yoga day (the same trip I did with Yogis at UW for Earth Day). Almost a third of our office came which was fantastic! Some even brought friends & family members which was an added bonus. Most people had not been to Rattlesnake Ridge before so they were amazed at the beautiful views! Well even those of us who have been there were still in awe of the view - it never gets old. A few people were afraid of heights so it took some convincing, but I finally got everyone onto the ledge for some photos. Jessica won the bravery award for being the only person to do a headstand - nice to know she trusts me enough to spot her!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Walla Walla

Last weekend I was in Walla Walla with Urban Yoga Spa at their second annual wine + yoga retreat...although I have to admit there was a whole lotta wine which made for an interesting challenge while trying to balance during yoga, ha ha! It was an amazing weekend and definitely a bonding experience. I took way too many pictures to post here, but these summarize the places we went.

We got to town on Friday afternoon and started the weekend with a yoga class. Then we had a private shopping event at a vintage store in town, followed by dinner at Brasserie Four.

Saturday we had yoga in the morning and then a bus picked us up to shuttle us around the wineries. First stop was lunch and wine at Sleight of Hands - I loved the old records and jukebox!

Waters Winery was next - beautiful space!

Then the owners of Mansion Creek Cellars invited us to their actual mansion for a private event - very sweet of them to allow us in their home!

The last stop of the afternoon was Seven Hills Winery - my favorite part was getting to see the room with all the wine barrels

Saturday night was dinner & dancing at Charles Smith Wines

Sunday we recovered with a morning yoga class and then drove out to Monteillet Fromagerie Farm where they hand-make cheese and prepared a farm-to-table lunch for us.

Overall it was an amazing weekend filled with friends, laughter and memories!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


Marc and I spent Memorial Day weekend in Chicago and had a great time! The last time I was in Chicago was 6 years ago, and unfortunately it was pouring rain. I ended up staying inside most of the trip (I even went to a movie which I would never normally do on vacation) so I didn't get to see much of the city. This trip was the opposite - 95 degrees and sunny all weekend!

We got to town Saturday afternoon and went to Millennium Park. There was a huge outdoor music pavilion but there wasn't a concert that day. It looks incredible though - next time I'll have to look at the schedule in advance.
Next we went to see Cloud Gate (aka "The Bean") which is a giant reflective sculpture in the middle of the park. There were hundreds of people gathered around taking pictures of themselves & the city in the reflection of The Bean.

Sunday we went on the Architecture Foundation boat tour. It was a 90 minute boat ride on the river with a guide who taught us about the history and building architecture of the city. It was fascinating! 

The new Trump Tower which is now the second tallest building in the city:
Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower) - the tallest building in the North America:
The locks - how boats get from the river into Lake Michigan:
View of the city from the boat:

After the boat tour, we walked to Lake Michigan to see the beach. There were a ton of boats on the water - we were jealous! Here is a pic with the Navy Pier Ferris Wheel in the background.
The beach was packed! Funny to see skyscrapers right across the street from the sand.

Monday we went to the Cubs vs. Padres game at Wrigley Field. The Cubs won 11-7!

All in all a great trip! Looking forward to going back again sometime.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

right here, right now

I feel like there is so much pressure in our society for us to look ahead to the future.
In school, it seems like every choice we make is in order to set us up for the future: What class is a pre-requisite for that major? What major do I need for that job? What internship will look good on my résumé? It's easy to get so caught up in preparing for the future that we miss out on the present.

Sometimes we plan things out perfectly, just to have everything fall apart. Now I'm not saying that we should go into situations blindly without preparation, but when we are attached to particular outcomes we often set ourselves up for disappointment. Not to mention the stress and worry that comes along with anticipation. Why spend needless hours/days/months freaking out about something that may never happen? When we are able to drop our story about needing to be in control life, we allow ourselves to live more fully in the present. 

In yoga, we have the opportunity to put that aside and take every pose one breath at a time. Try to embrace each posture without distracting yourself with thoughts like: How long are we going to hold this? What is coming next?

Here is the playlist for class today:

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

hike + yoga

In celebration of Earth Day I took 20 UW students to hike Rattlesnake Ridge followed by yoga at the lake. We had a blast!

Rattlesnake Ridge is one of my favorite hikes. There are a few different trail options - the one we did was 4 miles round-trip.

The trail winds through a forested area up to the top of a ridge where there is a gorgeous view of the lake!

We hung out at the top of the ridge for about a half hour to drink water, have snacks, and take yoga pictures. Gotta say that being on the edge of a cliff add a whole new element to balancing!
 When we finished hiking, we found a nice grassy area by the lake to do yoga.
 After class bliss :)
We had such a great time that I'm going to do the same thing in June for a group of my coworkers. Fingers crossed that we will get another perfect sunshine day!