Meditation Tips for Busy Parents

A few years ago while teaching on retreat in Greece I downloaded a book which came highly recommended by my favourite online teacher, Jo Tastula, the book is called ‘Make Me One with Everything’ by Lama Surya Das. Everything in the book spoke to me but there was one section about how we can create a sense of calm and connection within our everyday family lives and not only on retreats or our yoga mats that particularly grabbed my attention.

Mummy Baby Meditation

Lama Surya Das, a great Buddhist meditation teacher, recommends a practice called 'Inter-Meditation' which kinda means instead of thinking that we can only find peace when we are away from the world or when we are alone (of course we do still need this precious time to ourselves), that we can also find this sense of tranquility when we are in the midst of our busy, hectic and sometimes challenging family and working life.

At the time when I read the book life was pretty darn sweet, Bella our daughter was 4 and was just so easy and good, Ru and I had just decided to get married and everything was flowing like a breeze - and then our new beautiful baby boy came along. Jacob sure was a gift from God, one that lovingly and naturally took all of our spare time. If I wasn't soothing Jacob to sleep or feeding there seemed to be a 100 million other things to do with the yoga studio and our daughter. Slowly but surely I went from feeling like Mother Earth to a new Mum with seriously erratic energy and then I remembered the advice from Lama Surya Das. 

Now I try to make snippets of time with the kids into my practice. For example, when I put Jacob in the bath and he's entertained with his rubber ducks I sit crossed legged on the floor watching him and Inter-meditating with him. When he's asleep I spend 10 minutes watching him and inter-meditate with him. I can honestly say it has turned mummy related chores into moments of immense love and gratitude, moments that light up my day. Of course I don’t manage to do this all the time and I accept that at times I am eractic and grumpy but it feels so good to have another path to walk along when I feel things getting on top of me.

If you fancy a go, here’s the technique:

. Inter-meditate by sitting in your kids room at night after they go to sleep. 

. Let a feeling of absolute love and appreciation wash over you. 

. Let go of all the things you need to do just and allow the tension to melt away. 

. Bring your attention to the breath and the sensations in your body. 

. Let the breath become very gentle and relaxed, maybe focusing on lengthening the exhale, keep looking at your gorgeous baby/child and allow your heart to keep feeling a wave of unconditional love. 

. Watch your children’s chest rise and fall with every breath and begin to breathe with them. 

. As you breathe with your child notice how everything feels calm, like there's nothing in the world as important as this very moment. 

. Take this feeling into the challenges and the noise and remember to breathe through it all. 

Blessings to all you gorgeous parents.



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Effortless Detox

Throughout December it seems we all resign ourselves to feeling better in January and words such as ‘detox’ float around in future context, but the truth is you are always naturally detoxing - naturally and more effortlessly than we may have previously believed.

Kat Detox smoothie

If there’s one thing I think it’s absolutely vital to understand when it comes to health it’s that your wonderful amazing body is the very best, most intelligent machine that ever has or ever will exist; it loves you unconditionally and is continuously working so hard to naturally detoxify and heal your system keeping you radiant, efficient and strong. When it comes to detoxification your body has your back and during the festive season it seems so fitting and wonderful to take a moment to support the body on its quest for health by following a few simple and free techniques (I’ve written my favourites below) or perhaps scheduling a Detox Date which is pretty much like reaching your arms out wide in gratitude to the spring of wellbeing that always flows within you.

Ways to support the natural intelligence of the body

  1. Intermittent Fasting (while you sleep). No, you don’t have to go without food for a week, you basically just need to NOT eat when you sleep - easy right? Nature is so clever you see, at night time she intended for you to fast and that’s why she blesses you with sleep. By giving your body a chance to do its job by not overloading it with food and drink late at night it cleans itself just like you might need to stop cooking in order to clean the kitchen, it’s the same theory. If you eat your evening meal at 20.30 just make a commitment to not eat again for 12-13 hours, until around 09.00 the next morning. It might mean cutting out the before bed snack but when that means more radiance - who needs that unnecessary snack all the time?

  2. Water. It’s easy, nobody ever said you couldn’t enjoy a glass of wine or cup of coffee but make water your favourite drink and help the natural filtering systems of your body. I am trying to drink 2 ltr of water every day at the moment, some days I do and others I don’t but I feel so happy knowing that something so simple and FREE like water is helping me to glow.

  3. Move. Your body is alive: the breath, the blood, the organs, your thoughts - they are all moving around doing their job, not one single part of your internal being is lazy and when we join them in this dance of health we support harmony.

Detox Yoga Dates with me: 

Through yoga, as we move, breath and affirm we allow oxygenated and nutrient-rich blood to flow to the organs and positive thoughts and feeling to flood the mind, we also enjoy the added benefits of detoxing from over-thinking, stressing, planning, using technology, talking and noise. When you leave a yoga class you have a special feeling that other activities don’t quite match (for me anyway) - not only do you feel like you've worked your entire body you also feel lighter, happier, calmer, it's like you're just being the best version of YOU.

I have designed a few yoga options to choose from including a 2 hour workshop and a weekend retreat:

  1. December Detox. Sunday 30th December 10.00-12.00 at La Casa del Yoga.  
    2. January Detox Retreat. One weekend on Bilbao Yoga Retreats from January 10th-13th, please note the program run over Friday, Saturday and Sunday morning. Thursday is a travel and settle day.


I hope this blog post reminds you how AMAZING you are and inspires you to support the temple of your being this christmas and forever.

If you would like to book the above events please go to the contact page.






GLOW Granola Balls and an important life lesson

At long last, here is the recipe that so many of you have been asking for. Aira, the amazing chef who has been rustling up GLOW worthy goodies for our yoga retreats, weekly classes, and workshops for several years now, has just TODAY revealed her secret recipe to me.

GLOW Granola Ball

We serve lots of yoga snacks from peanut butter energy balls, to raspberry cookies, apricot granola bars, avocado brownie, sweet potato brownies but these little Glow Granola Balls are all her own creation and therein lies a very important life lesson: have you ever noticed that it's truly the things that come from your own creative heart that are the most successful in your beautiful life?

Follow your own sweet song and keep supporting your beautiful inner journey with healthy, glow worthy snacks such as these…

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup of almonds

1 cup of walnuts

Half cup of pumpkin seeds

Half a cup of sunflower seeds

Half a cup of Goji berries

Half a cup of raisins and sultanas

4 tbsp of almond butter

2 tbsp of honey

2 tbsp of corn flour

2 tsp of coconut oil


METHOD:

Pre-heat the oven to 200c and add 2 tsp of coconut oil to a non-stick oven dish.

Now place the almonds and walnuts into a strong food processor and grind into tiny pieces. Add the grounded nuts and other ingredients into a big bowl and mix together. Using your hands roll into balls that can fit in the palm of your hand. Place the balls on to the oven dish and cook until brown.