Sunday, December 14, 2008

9 cupcakes from Nine Cakes

I went to a craft fair today and came home with some cupcakes. Don't they look yummy?

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Gingerbread Yogis


Poor gingerbread men, they always seem so....stiff! They need to loosen up a little like these guys from Patti Paige Baked Ideas Custom Baking.  How wonderful!   The alignment is not too shabby either, always with a smile on their face. Now THIS is someone who has found enlightenment!   Nice considering they will eventually end up in someone's belly, OM.....

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Owl-O-Ween Cupcakes



Chocolate! Lots and lots of chocolate! Visit this how to on Ezra Pound Cake to make these cute cuppies! Whoo! Whoo!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Top 100!

I received some wonderful news today.  C&Y was included in a Top 100 Yoga and Meditation Blogs.  If you check it out, you'll see some other familiar names on there.  Very pleased for the recognition, thank you very much! 


Oh! I also wanted to share a necklace that I made for my Etsy shop. I usually wouldn't do something like this on here but I have to make an exception..


In case you're curious, you can see more details about it here.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Surya Yoga cupcakes

I absolutely love Flickr, anything you want to find, you will find it here. Sometimes finding something related to both yoga and cupcakes can be a challenge but every now and then something pops up.


Here is the link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/26458168@N08/2885036394/?addedcomment=1#comment72157608089316947

I am just impressed with the grass, sand, shells and eventually the yummy looking ocean, I'll have one of those!



Monday, October 6, 2008

You have got to be kidding...



I just came across this listing on Etsy from the shop Pamper Me Please. They're not cupcakes, they're bath bombs! How amazing is that?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Halloween Cupcakes


Halloween Cupcakes
Originally uploaded by mysweetandsaucy
My favorite time of the year is upon us. What better way to enjoy it than seeing some spooky cupcakes? Check out this great post from My Sweet and Saucy. Its all pumpkins and Fall leaves!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Jivamukti At Home


In finding more ways to develop a stronger home practice, I haven't ruled out yoga dvd's. It has been maybe a year since I practiced with a dvd (thanks Netflix!). I was very fortunate to have received some from the wonderful folks at Acacia. A dvd I had wanted to get for a while now was Transform Yourself with Jivamukti Yoga. I remember first hearing about a Jivamukti dvd coming out and not only was excited, I was curious to see how they were going to capture the vibe you get in a classroom setting and bring it into your home. The truth is they didn't, but that's ok and I'll explain in a bit.

The cover of the case says "Experienced beginners & beyond" so this is not exactly a dvd for brand spanking new yoga. But I guess you can see that just judging by the twist/balance pose on the cover. There is an introduction by David Life & Sharon Gannon, the founders of Jivamukti Yoga. They share their passion for yoga and the benefits this practice can bring to a more fruitful and happier existence. The session itself is only 60 minutes (a studio class is 1 hr 35 mins) and you can choose between instruction from David or Sharon. First I sat down and watched it, then I followed along.

Unlike other dvd's, but in Jivamukti fashion, they include chanting in the session but only briefly. The flow of the practice is fast paced where the longest you're holding a pose may be for only five breaths. They even instruct to not worry about the pace of the practice so much. If you do fall behind, you can catch up in Downward Dog. The practice includes standing, balance, twisting, backbends, forwardbends, and inversions providing modifications if you are not quite ready for the full pose. Another reason why this is for "experienced" beginners is the instruction isn't quite for newbies and at some points I noticed it was a little off but I was familiar enough with the sequencing to continue. It may not be the same for others. I think you have to be familiar with the asanas already as there is little instruction on the poses themselves. Come to think of it, they should just remove "beginner" from the title.

I know music is very important to the Jivamukti practice and the instrumental Raga music played thoughout the practice was wonderful. They had a Kirtan group playing their instruments in the room as they practiced. However, for some reason during Savasana they switch to a folky lyrical song which didn't fit at all and I ended up muting the television. Overall, it is a wonderful dvd to have to your collection.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Meet Even Keel

Elizabeth Matthews discovered the benefits of yoga during her freshman year of college and instantly became an avid yoga student. Throughout her growth, she continued to work in the profit and non-profit sector hoping to one day have her own business. Finally, Liz decided to pursue this desire and incorporate her passion for yoga and create something wonderful out of it.


Part hipster, hippie, athlete, do-gooder, and cynic, she wanted yoga gear that fit her personality and lifestyle. Liz recognized the need for unique, functional, and sustainable yoga apparel. "I've been practicing yoga for years and didn't adore any of the pants that I had in my closet", so with no background in fashion, Liz started Even Keel in December 2007 based on the philosophy of maintaining balance in our personal and professional life and all of the activities big and small that it entails.

The Even Keel’s styles are made with a sustainable blend of bamboo and organic cotton fabric which means it's produced without the harshness of chemicals and earth-friendly! This fabric blend is incredibly soft, lightweight and breathable. The bamboo has natural anti-bacterial and wicking abilities - important qualities in yoga and exercise apparel.

Now I can speak from personal experience, I received a pair of the Luscious Leggings to try out. Normally, I would prefer to wear something a little looser. Sometimes us curvy girls may not want to show off the curves but in the fairness of yoga journalism, I took one for the team. I put them to the ultimate test. I wore them to a sweat inducing Open Level class at Jivamukti in NYC, Russell Simmons was there ok??? I went with the lovely Mary from Om Bites. I was already sweating the first five minutes into the asana but my legs were feeling pretty good. The looseness at the bottom of the leggings enable me to fold them up to my knee without any tightness around the leg. The high waist is a definite plus as I'm always fidgeting with the back to make sure my underwear isn't showing. No worries with these leggings and the truth is, I didn't look bad in them at all! I'm a size 12, sometimes 14 depending on the store and a size L almost felt a little TOO big on me but I didn't want to chance it with a Medium. I would have taken a photo of myself modelling them but I sweated in them way too much to post on the internet but trust me, I was very happy with them and would gladly wear them again, curves and all!

As part of celebrating Yoga Month, all Even Keel products are 20% off from Sept 1-30, 2008. Use promotion code "NYM2008" at checkout. Offer valid only through EvenKeelYoga.com. Even Keel is also available at Jivamukti Yoga studios.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Iron Cupcake



Did you know that there was an Iron Cupcake challenge going on in the cyber world? If you are familiar with the show Iron Chef then you know the jist of what this is about, if not, a secret ingredient is announced..well it's not so secret I guess, but once announced you have 4 weeks to prepare a cupcake using this ingredient and post it on your blog. Of course there are some serious cupcake prizes involved!

The current ingredient: BASIL!

Its not too late to join in on the fun, visit Iron Cupcake!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Yoga in Pink Heels

Are you familiar with Pink Heels? It is an online social networking group set out to help empower women through their personal and professional endeavors. I can't exactly remember how I had learned about them, but I get their e-newsletters and this month especially caught my eye as it mentioned a recent blog entry, Through Yoga, Pink Heels Was Born. It is a wonderful entry which can tell the story of many, myself included. The notion of achieving success on your own terms is especially encouraging.

The home practice is going well, slow and steady. I am enjoying the calm I feel afterward, even if it's temporary until I go back to my frazzled state again, all the more reason to practice more. Mary from Om Bites is in New York and we are trying to arrange a yoga date while she's here.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Home Practice #3

Ok so I skipped a day, I'm entitled! :) I don't expect to practice every single day for the rest of my life. Baby steps. Today I got on the mat again and followed another YJ Home Practice which turns out, I didn't follow much at all. I went off the page in a completely different direction and that's ok. The practice was Iyengar based which consisted the use to props, blankets, chairs and I didn't want to go there so I did variations of the poses. I was feeling pretty solid so I did a series of inversions and standing poses like Warrior 3 and Standing Split. It felt wonderful and I was so refreshed after my meditation.

As great it is developing a home practicing and kind of finding my way, I do miss the community feeling a classroom environment. There is a YogaWorks one town over that I think I will go check out next week. I would love to at least go to one or two classes a week for the instruction and then practice at home and work on my meditation more.

On the subject of home practices, Gaiam has a Yoga Club 12 Week Home Practice.

Cupcake Flickr Finds #5

I think I'm up to number 5, we'll just leave it at 5.....

Cupcake Flickr Finds #5

1. top cake lovesand, 2. cupcake tower lovesand, 3. Various Deco Tapes, 4. Cupcakes, 5. Val-cakes, 6. among "good friend", 7. A Sweet Giveaway!!, 8. Buttercream Frosting, 9. Chocolate Ganache, 10. Figurines Cupcakes, 11. Green Tree Frog Cupcake, 12. who knew bats could be cute, 13. Bobo Brothers Monkey Cupcakes, 14. Rescue Pack Cupcake, 15. Iguana Cupcake and Tail, 16. Go, Diego, Go Inspired Cupcake Cake

Created with fd's Flickr Toys.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Home Practice # 2

This morning was already busy with some errands I needed to run. By the time I was finished, I questioned if I wanted to still practice today. Then I figured I was already sweaty from the cleaning I just finished doing so sure why not? Doing the same thing I did yesterday, this time I went back and grabbed the August 2008 Yoga Journal and opened to the Home Practice.


Warm Up: Other than cleaning the bathroom? 5 rounds of Sun Salutations and my Tree Pose to regain focus.

YJ Practice: I did follow step by step this time and not skip anything. For the lunges I held for five breaths, forward bends eight. As you can see it all led up to Hanumanasana which was difficult since I only have one block and for this pose I usually use two.

Fun Time: I kept it simple today with a couple of forearm stands against the wall. Once down, did a Full Wheel for backbend and Savasana. After Savasana I sat for about a minute which felt like the cherry on top of a sundae.

Total practice time today was 20 minutes. I'm glad I went ahead and squeezed this in. The time certainly goes fast once you get going. Cindy from Yoga and a Latte wrote a great entry, Why a Home Practice? that is definitely worth reading.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Home Practice Day 1

Alright, so I have struggled with having and maintaining a home practice since I first started doing Yoga. It has been two weeks since I've been home and away from a studio so I decided that today is THE day to get my butt in gear and do something about that. As an added incentive, I will chronicle my progress here for anyone who might be interested.

One of the problems I've had practicing at home, besides actually doing it, is what to do? I acknowledge now that I have thought about this a little too much which is no fun, thinking sucks. At my finger tips I have a couple of years worth of Yoga Journal issues and every issue has a "Home Practice" section, duh! I need to take advantage of this. I began with the most recent issue #213 (September 2008) which I will tell you what it entails in case you don't have it in just a moment. Let's see if I can remember what I did.

Warm up: 2 variations of Sun Salutations
-Downward Dog, plank, Chattarunga, Upward Dog, Downward Dog (5x)
-Standing Sun Salutation (5x)
-I like starting in Tree Pose because I really feel like it helps center my mind. Both sides for eight breaths.

YJ Practice: I didn't follow to the T, they were more like guidelines
-Baddha Konasana - YJ said hold for five minutes, I think I only did 1 minute
-Cowboy Negotiation Pose - I have never done this before but it feels wonderful if you have open hips. Five breaths on each side.
-Hammock Pose for eight breaths
-I skipped Horse Stance w/ Uddiyana Bandha, I just wasn't feeling an intense breathing exercise today.
-Virabhadrasana II on both sides for 10 breaths
-Transition into forward lunge externally rotating the arms behind you to open the chest. Five breaths on each side.
-A very awkward Rounded Plank Pose into Cobra for 10 breaths. For plank it says to "Draw your tailbone under and round your back as you bring your shoulders over your wrists". I think I was tucking my chin which made it feel funny.
-After Cobra is instructs to do "Rocket Cat" - what's with these names? Were there "Rockets" in India 5,000 years ago??? I digress.
-Finally came the "Slumpy Swami Twist" which is just that, a seat twist hunched over. Not recommended for people with lower back problems.

Fun Time: Now is where I get to play around with a couple of random poses
-Arm balance: Crow Pose
-Inversions: I tried a couple of times to kick up into Handstand but it wasn't happening today. It's been a while since I have done it. So instead I did a Headstand for 1 minute
-After I came down, I did only one Full Wheel just because I hate this pose and the way it makes my wrist feel but I still feel like I should do one pose I don't like.
-Finally Savasana for 5 minutes.

In total this turned into a 30 minute practice and I am feeling pretty good and accomplished. See you tomorrow!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Cupcakes in Ice Cream

Courtesy of Blondie & Brownie. Last month they posted about a Conecake sighting in midtown.



Now my question to you is: Where the heck are the Treat Trucks when I'm in town??????

  • Treats Truck
  • Dessert Truck

    Do you have anything like this where you live?


  • Tuesday, August 5, 2008

    Cupcakes from Juniors

    Think Juniors is famous just for their cheesecake? Check out these cupcakes on display at their Grand Central Station location. I confess that there have been days when I tried oh so very hard to walk past and not make a sharp u-turn to pick one up....and fail. The frosting is so overwhelming, the ratio is 80/20 frosting to cake!

    Monday, August 4, 2008

    Tip Jar????

    WHAT IS THIS FOR?









    In the beginning of 2008, I accept a buyout from my 9 to 5 employer (sign of the times) and my last day was Friday, August 1st. Instead of being a Gloom & Doom Nelly, I'm using this time to pursue the things I enjoy the most and see where it takes me; making jewelry and blogging. Because this isn't the type of blog that has many flashy, animated advertisements (and I wish to keep it that way), I'm leaving a little tip jar for anyone who wishes to donate. No minimum has been set, 1 cent will make my day! Consider it a Cupcake Finding Fund, or a Caring Karma Kudos to the site. I would love to keep this blog going. I continue to be contacted by folks hoping to get a plug for a book, cd and I want to help as much as I can.

    So today is my first day of unemployment in over six years and right now I'm feeling pretty ok with it. I started the morning with a couple of Sun Salutations and standing poses just to get my joints to wake up a little. Then I went out for a little walk and enjoy the morning weather. I prefer the mornings when it is still quiet and cool out, not as crazy.

    Friday, August 1, 2008

    Flip Flops from a yoga mat

    From Threadbanger.com, it is a tutorial on How to make Flip Flops from an old Yoga Mat. The video is about 3 minutes long but it looks SO easy, that's about all the time you need really. Great idea! All you need is an old mat, a pair of scissors, and a glue gun. You can also find the clip on YouTube

    Wednesday, July 23, 2008

    Milk Chocolatey Meditation




    There's a brand new CD out entitled “The Chocolate Meditation.”


    It is our bhakti yoga offering to the world…..chocolate and consciousness! As passionate chocolate-lovers, and inspirational teachers, we created “The Chocolate Meditation” to use the imagery of chocolate as a multi-sensory spa-like experience to provide balance and harmony in today’s fast-paced world.


    The CD is endorsed by one of the most recognized and honored yoga instructors in the U.S., Shiva Rea, and by an award-winning Food Network Challenge chef. The use of chocolate evokes a sense of playfulness and child-like joy, and, when combined with the ambient music and relaxing voice, creates a luxurious vacation from the frenetic pace of life.

    Even better, proceeds from the sales of The Chocolate Meditation, go toward a monumental peace project that is taking the makers across the country to offer satsang and healing meditation events to yoga studios, universities, churches, shelters, hospitals, and even prisons.

    The CD is in pre-sales right now, as the press release goes out next week, and it’s available on our web site: http://www.truedivinenature.com/, and digitally at: CD Baby, Amazon.com, and itunes.

    Thursday, July 10, 2008

    Flower Cupcake


    There is a great tutorial on how to perfect this lovely flower pedal look for your cupcake over at My Sweet and Saucy There are some GREAT photos too!

    Wednesday, July 9, 2008

    Darn those Weeds!

    I love to share the little stories that my teacher gives during class. Recently she compared yoga to weeding. Weeding, as in going through your garden and pulling out those pesky weeds. I don't know how many of you are gardeners, but this isn't something that gets taken cared of one time and you don't have to worry about weeds growing ever again. Once you pull the weeds from one spot, the next day you'll see them appear some place else, so you pull those out, the next day they're over here, now they're over there!! Ugh!!! How does this compare to yoga? It's very easy. One day we struggle doing a pose, the next it may come easy but we find another challenge instead. We feel something here, then we feel a pull there, or a cramp here. It's different every day.

    So don't be too hard on yourself when you can't do a handstand today (but I was able to do it yesterday!!) Every time we come to our mats is an opportunity to witness what is going on in our bodies and in our minds, sometimes we're not even aware of it until we're doing something like a Revolved Triangle. It's not something we plan or can anticipate. We may go to class feeling tired but all of the sudden perk up after a few Sun Salutations. So what if you're having a rough day, there's always tomorrow...or even better, there's always that next breath.

    Wednesday, July 2, 2008

    Special offer from Gaiam

    I am really excited to annouce that Gaiam is offering a special promotion set up for just C&Y readers that will be valid until July 31st, 2008. 15% off any purchase $50 or more by entering code SSYB.

    Restrictions/Disclaimer
    Enter offer code at checkout Step 1: Billing in the Catalog Key Code / Web Code box located to the right side of the page. Not valid on previous orders, Go Zero tree donations, eGift certificates, select renewable energy items or combinable with other offers. Other restrictions may apply.

    They also just launched an innovative online yoga program, Gaiam Yoga Club with world-renowned instructors Rodney Yee and Colleen Saidman. This twelve-week program enables you to take a self-paced online class with these amazing teachers right in the comfort of your own home! The program features 9 online videos, and over 60 yoga and meditation podcasts, along with a community that members can share their experiences with. So there you have it, another option for practicing at home!

    Monday, June 9, 2008

    Ice Cream Cupcake

    I am stuck right in the middle of a heatwave as I write this. It is time to think of ways to keep cool but kind of spoil yourself at the same time. Lo and behold!



    I just discovered this today, but a couple of weeks back, Joy The Baker posted a great recipe for Ice Cream Cupcakes but remember, it's Summer so they're melt quick, eat up!

    Friday, June 6, 2008

    Tea Cup as a Cakestand

    Just wanted to pop in and say hello and say that I'm thinking of you. I still read all the comments and try to respond to everyone individually, especially with the lower back issues.

    I'm so glad people still come and visit so here's a little cupcake for you lovingly presented on a tea cup.

    Friday, May 23, 2008

    I'm stuck...

    I feel like this is a letter I should be writing to a yoga magazine but I might get more immediate (and better) results posting here. In the past I have been vocal about lower back pain and my heart issues. The lower back issues didn't start until a couple of years ago but it is not chronic so I don't talk about it THAT much but as you might know when your back hurts it pretty much disrupts your whole being of existence.

    I've written about my wrist problems doing a Wheel. Backbends in general have been freaking me out more and more. Back bending involves chest opening correct? Chest openings can draw a lot of energy. I don't want to crunch my lower back in a back bend but if I focus more on my chest and open up, my heart starts to beat FAST and sometimes even get light-headed. When you have Thoracic Aortic Aneurysm, I guess I can't take this lightly. So I don't want to hurt my back but I don't want to cause my heart stress either.

    So what do I do? Where should I focus my attention? I worry that I am becoming more and more limited in my physical practice.

    Saturday, May 17, 2008

    Enlightenment For Idiots

    Did you know that I am a Chick-Lit Expert Blackbelt to the 3rd degree? I am. I love my fluff reads when I'm not reading a yoga/Buddhist book. So when I read a recent review in yoga Journal for Enlightenment For Idiots by Anne Cushman, I was super excited! Another review said this book was Sex In The City meets Eat, Pray, Love. I don't know about you but I have never seen an episode of Sex In The City but Eat, Pray, Love is one of my FAVORITE books. Immediately I added it to my Amazon Wishlist.

    Long story short, I scored a copy and loved it. The story involves Amanda, a 29 year old would-be yoga teacher and writer travelling through India for her publisher to write a guidebook for enlightenment - because it's the latest craze and all. In the midst of that, she deals with heartache, homesickness, cultureshock, and a travel companion who refers to himself in the plural sense. She struggles to find enlightment when life keeps throwing CRAZY curveballs at her. How will she handle it? I wholeheartedly recommend you read it and find out!


    Anne co-directs the Mindfulness Yoga and Meditation Training Program at Spirit Rock Meditation Center in California. She has also been published in Yoga Journal, Tricycle: The Buddhist Review, New York Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, O: The Oprah Magazine and more. She was kind enough to stop by C&Y and answer a couple of questions I had for her...

    How did you end up at Spirit Rock?

    Almost 20 years ago I began attending a weekly sitting group and talk led by Buddhist teacher Jack Kornfield in Fairfax, California. Jack then became one of the founders of Spirit Rock in nearby Woodacre, and his class moved there in the early 90s. I’ve been practicing there ever since—I think of it as my primary spiritual community. About eight years ago I began teaching yoga there, and about four years ago I taught on their first “yoga and meditation” retreat.

    How does your yoga practice come to play when you are tapping into your creativity?
    I couldn’t write if I didn’t do yoga. Yoga gets my creative juices flowing, and acts as a potent counterpose to the writer’s tendency to live in the head. And both yoga and writing are powerful practices that focus the lens of my awareness on the details of my embodied life, revealing its magic and mystery.

    What in your life do you consider bliss?
    Meditating and doing yoga outside on my deck under the oak branches, looking out at Mt. Tamalpais. Snuggling up in a hammock with my son and reading “The Borrowers” aloud. Dancing with friends in my living room. Curling up on my soft golden sofa with someone I love. Hiking through the spring wildflowers along the bluffs at Pt. Reyes.

    Do you feel there is a lack of education in the West on the true meaning of Yoga?
    I think the teachings are always available for those who are looking for them. If you’re not ready, it doesn’t matter how many times you’re instructed in the true dharma. If you are ready, you can hear it in the rustling of the wind in the trees.

    I know the book is all fictional characters but who in the book can you relate to the most?
    One of the things I discovered about writing fiction is that I really fall in love with all of my characters, even the difficult ones. For instance, in order to write the scenes with the impossible boyfriend, Matt, I had to really get inside his head and understand who he was, where he was coming from, and why he was acting the way he was. If I didn’t do that, the scenes were flat and didn’t ring true—and once I understood him on a deeper level, I couldn’t dismiss him as the jerk I initially wanted him to be.

    That said, of course Devi Das and Amanda are the dearest to my heart, with all their quirks and vulnerabilities. Amanda touches me with her courage to plunge forward with her adventure, despite her tremendous insecurities and fears—I was rooting for her all the way!

    What is your favorite dessert?
    My most blissful dessert memory is of a crème brulee I ate in France, years ago, shortly after leaving a three-week meditation retreat at Plum Village, the monastery of Vietnamese Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh. The hot, crunchy burnt-sugar top...the cool sweetness of the custard...it took me straight to samadhi!

    These days, I’m not so into sweets...my decadent dessert of choice is more along the lines of a soft, stinky cheese (like Stilton or Brie) paired with a juicy pear from the farmer’s market. But I often accompany my seven-year-old son to the Scoop, the icecream store in downtown Fairfax, which offers the world’s best icecream made on the premises from local, organic ingredients (and served up in homemade sugar cones)--and every now and then I’ll enjoy a cone of one of their most exotic flavors myself (cardamom is my current favorite).

    Wednesday, May 14, 2008

    The Zen Art of Baking

    I'm sure there is a trademark infringement on this entry title but I don't care! I wanted to pop-in and direct you over to Bake & Destroy. Natalie had a yoga final for school and she wanted to tie in something she loves (baking) with yoga. She came to me for some advise which she shares so make sure you check it out.

    Oh yeah, the final result turned out to be "Vegan Carrot Raisin Muffins"! not quite cupcakes but close enough

    Thursday, May 8, 2008

    Neat finds

    It is not often I can tie in a cupcake AND yoga entry together but today I can! Sometimes Craftzine.com shows us the neatest things, for starters...


    Courtesy of Bakerella


    Up next, how to make a Yoga Mat Bag


    From Bored & Crafty

    And what did I do? I messed up my lower back....AGAIN! When will I ever learn. Can I go the rest of my life not doing backbends? I mean seriously, we don't need to do those do we?

    Tuesday, May 6, 2008

    Empathy

    Here is something I've been wanting to share since last week when I started up my practice again. I went to my regular advanced class and it was like I didn't miss a beat so I was feeling good. But that's not what I want to write about. There was a woman in the class who was visiting the studio for the first time. I noticed her right away because she was heavy set. Since I usually feel like I'm the biggest gal in the room, I always notice these things, I hate it but it's a hard habit to break. Not that I prejudge, I've seen big women with beautiful yoga practices so I didn't think too much about it until class started. She was having a hard time with some of the things we were doing and in my mind, I was feeling self-conscious for her!

    I see this a lot, especially in this particular class. New people come in not realizing the level of the class is more than the website description leads on. I have been vocal about this a few times already but no change. Anyway, back to class, here comes Headstand time and she couldn't do it. The teacher just told her to rest her legs up against the wall and told her "When you take this class you're suppose to know how to do headstand already." It wasn't harsh in tone but not very gentle either. I felt worse for her. I don't know why I was feeling for this woman so much!

    Afterward as we were all packing up, she spills her water on one of the bench cushions and she frantically tries to clean it up. I tell her not to worry, they'll just flip the cushion upsidedown, no one will notice. She looked at me and said "Thank you so much!" like I just helped her carry her bags up 5 flights of stairs. I just gave her a smile and left. I had a train to catch, but I wanted to stay and talk to her some more. Maybe she didn't care that she was out of her league, maybe she still enjoyed class and I'm making it a bigger deal than it was. Whatever the case, I doubt I will see her again when I take class tonight but I'll be sure to dedicate my practice to her.

    Monday, May 5, 2008

    Vegan Iced Tea Cupcakes


    Vegan Iced Tea Cupcakes
    Originally uploaded by Bake & Destroy!
    YUM!!

    Pay Natalie a visit over at Bake & Destroy where she shares a recipe for Vegan Iced Tea Cupcakes. Lemon buttercream? You're killing me!!

    Friday, May 2, 2008

    Meet "The Love Guru"

    This summer blockbusters are going to be full of geekery and oozing testosterone. Don't get me wrong, I will get my geek on (Iron Man, Batman, Indiana Jones-man) but movies like that may not cater to everyone. Maybe something for the soul? How about spending some time with The Guru Pitka. It's the latest Mike Myers film where he is a spiritual teacher and enlighten yogi (see the trailer below). I'm definitely gonna check this out!




    And who DOESN'T have a Myspace? www.myspace.com/theloveguru with a very amusing blog to boot. I wonder what kind of cupcake the Guru would enjoy?

    Wednesday, April 30, 2008

    Twisting The Night Away...

    Because that is all class turned out to be last night and it was PERFECT! Just what I needed to get back into the Asana groove. They say twisting helps to release bad toxins in our system. I don't know about that but I was definitely feeling sluggish and ick and twist did relieve that. It just wakes up your system and mind overall. Surprisingly enough, I felt rather strong and solid. I was worried about weakness and tiring out too soon but that was not the case. I'm taking another class tomorrow because I do not want to lose my momentum. I just feel so great right now!

    Here's some fun cupcake news...

    Tokyo on a Cupcake Craze!

    Tuesday, April 29, 2008

    Back to the mat!!!

    This evening I am doing something I haven't done in over a month. TAKE A YOGA CLASS!! I am ashamed to admit it but money has been very tight and my shop and other blog have been taking up more and more of my time. While I do greatly appreciate the tips for a home practice, I just can't get my head to that space! When I do manage to practice at home, it just feels like stretching, it doesn't feel like yoga to me. I just love being in a classroom setting and sharing a practice even if it's in a room full of strangers. I know there are some of you who feel the complete opposite and that's cool too. Everyone receives yoga differently.

    So thanks to Uncle Sam and this tax rebate many of us Americans are getting this week, I am off to take a class tonight, I'm not sure where yet. I have three yoga studios that I consider my hOMe space. Of course I'm worried that my body will be too rusty. I'm a little self-conscious because even though the scale says I've lost a couple of pounds, I still feel a little sloppy. Regardless, I am very excited!

    What is the longest you have gone without a practice?

    I also started reading a lovely novel about a yoga instructor that I plan to write about once I finish. I can't wait to see how it ends!

    Oh! And while I'm here, I wanted to share a blog entry posted on Yoga Journal, it made me smile: Yoga Teachers Eat Cupcakes, Too.

    Wednesday, April 23, 2008

    Karma In A Can

    This is too cute to not share...



    Karma In A Can. Ok it might be a little hokey but sometimes the act of actually spraying can help feel like the start of a new slate.

    Thursday, April 17, 2008

    Cupcake Dance

    It has been TOO long since my last post. I haven't neglected this site, there are just periods where it takes a backseat to other things going on but I thought I would pop in and say a quick hello and share a video someone sent me, it's called the Cupcake Waltz...



    How sweet?

    Monday, March 31, 2008

    On the flip side

    I don't agree with this either...

    Hindu leaders slam yoga for Christians.

    I know what I wrote last year but now it seems the shoe is on the other foot.

    Here's my philosphy.....Whatever works! It's ok to acknowledge Yoga's eastern history and foundation but if you don't choose to believe in it, what is the problem? I am more offended if I see my yoga teacher at a bar drunk out of her mind flirting with a bunch of guys and acting like a complete ass. That offends me more than what religion she chooses to follow. Enough already.

    Friday, March 21, 2008

    Bathe in cupcake suds

    Just what in the heck am I talking about? Well not too long ago on my other blog I featured the Etsy seller Danae's Bath & Body who makes, you guessed it, bath stuff. I write these just for the love of it and finding new Etsy folks that I like to share with others and I do not expect anything in return. So how lovely was it to come home yesterday and find this in the mail....



    Oh? What's this now? It smells goooooooooooooooooood!!!!!



    Oh wonderful!!!! And I am ever so hungry!!!!



    Oh no!!! Not even a lick? Ok then, I will be sure to use this the next time I take a bath, which isn't often as I'm a shower person but I should treat myself to a nice soak, especially if it means smelling like this. Please pay her a visit and treat your skin to something yummy.

    Thursday, March 20, 2008

    Hanumanasana

    Lately my teacher has been kicking it up a notch or two or ten. We recently had a request to work on this pose, everyone jokingly grumbled but we pulled through....barely. The first pose we did was Hanumanasana, my body wasn't warmed up but you know what? An hour later after doing it again for what felt like the 50th time, there was no change. Bummer. I continue to do my stretches for my Quadriceps muscles and while it is helping in Supta Virasana, it's gonna take a longer in this case. How's your Hanumanasana?

    Monday, March 17, 2008

    Happy St. Patrick's Day

    It's time to lick some GREEN frosting!!!!



    Wednesday, March 5, 2008

    Practicing Asteya


    Lotus
    Originally uploaded by Marilyn P. Sushi
    Asteya is one of the yamas in the first limb of Yoga. I was reading about this last night and it really struck a cord. Although it literally means "nonstealing" it also means not taking on more than we can handle, whether it's material consumption or time and energy consumption.

    For the last couple of weeks, my right eye has been twitching non-stop, surely a sign of stress. So I am reading about Asteya with my tweaky eye and a mental picture in my mind appeared of a sign that said "YOU!" with a big arrow with flashing lights pointing right at me. In the traditional sense, I don't horde things or have collections of things where I can barely move around my home, I love cupcakes but I know my limit! At first think I don't have a problem with this but then I went deeper.

    On average I get 5-6 hours of sleep a night. I often find myself saying "There's just not enough time during the day." While at work, I've been spending time wondering what I'm going to do when I leave in a few months, leaving tomorrow's "To Do" list grow. A lot of us put more on our 'mental plate' than we realize. With me, it's my 9 to 5 job, my Etsy shop, two blogs, keeping my yoga practice alive, and whatever other things the day may decide to throw at me.

    My right eye tells me "Stay off the internet for the rest day!" and this can be quite a challenge for me! It's funny how I consider myself to be such an organized, time-management perfectionist when it comes to work but in my personal life I'm a mess. I have THREE calendars to refer to. But seriously, the internet is not going anywhere, I can lay off and do something else more beneficial to my mind and soul, maybe even go to bed at least 30 minutes earlier.

    Monday, March 3, 2008

    PSA: Sponsorships

    I am trying to find new ways to support myself while I figure which direction I wish to take on this journey called 'life'. I decided to offer ad space using Project Wonderful. It works like an auction. You set up an account and you can bid on an advertisement space. The beauty of this is you pay only what you wish to pay. I have the opening bid set up at zero so you can bid as low as 1 cent!!!!Your ad will be up as long as you're the highest bidder.

    The great thing is I control what ads are placed and I want to keep it Yoga and Cupcake (Bakery) related. So if you are a small business, yoga studio, yoga teacher with a retreat coming up, fellow blogger looking for more visits, etc., this is for you! Maybe you'll even get featured! Face it, buying advertising on the internet can be pretty expensive.

    This is coming at a time where I find myself having to cancel my monthly membership to the yoga studio I belong to because the cost is just getting to be too much for me. I am going to take a stab at developing a home practice. I practiced yesterday morning but it was pretty discombobulated.

    Anyone with a regular home have some tips to share please do! How long do you practice for? Do you use a DVD? Yoga Today? A book/magazine?

    Cupcake Bling!

    Oh no she didn't!



    She being Melissa Cohen of Metal Sugar. She also has an Etsy shop you can purchase from. Love this!!

    Sunday, March 2, 2008

    New Look!

    I know it was not too long ago that I made over C&Y but I really really really wanted a layout with three columns. However, in the process, I lost ALL of my links, so from memory I am trying to restore all of them one at a time. If you were previously linked and you are not listed now, please let me know. It's not that I don't love you anymore, my memory just isn't what it use to be.

    Friday, February 29, 2008

    Itsy Bitsy Yoga for Toddlers and Preschoolers


    I was very flattered when the folks at Da Capo Lifelong Books contacted me to see if I could help promote their new release, Itsy Bitsy Yoga for Toddlers and Preschoolers. I'm all for people starting yoga even at a very young age, the younger the better! I wish I discovered yoga much earlier in life.

    Named the “Baby Yoga Expert” by Newsweek, Helen Garabedian, a certified yoga instructor and founder of Itsy Bitsy Yoga, offers an illustrated guide to simple, health-enhancing yoga sequences for 2- to 5- year olds.

    Yoga can help your child have:
    ● Fewer tantrums
    ● Better and longer sleep
    ● Increased motor coordination
    ● Improved listening and ability to follow directions
    ● Better self-expression
    ● Higher self-esteem
    ● Easier relaxation
    ● A healthy and physically fit lifestyle

    Praise for Itsy Bitsy Yoga:
    “Many adorable and loving ways for parents and young children to spend quality time—interacting and learning—together. Fun, creative yoga movements coupled with songs, games and say n’ play encourage healthy times for moms and tots!”—Marsha Wenig, Founder, YogaKids®

    To learn more about the book and its author visit:
    www.itsybitsyyoga.com.

    Wednesday, February 27, 2008

    Mindful Yoga, Mindful Life, Fat Lip

    I just started reading Mindful Yoga Mindful Life by Charlotte Bell. I'm still pretty early in the book but I am enjoying it so far and feel like she is speaking to ME. Don't you love when that happens? I'll write a real book report once I'm finished.

    My face met the floor last night in what seemed like one of the most challenging classes I have ever taken. The theme seemed to have been "What can't Marilyn do?" and I walked out with a fat lip, nothing too crazy, my face was closer to the floor than I thought at one point. I wish I can tell you the name of the pose I was working on when it occurred but I can't. It was an arm balance that didn't quite happen. But it's all good. Happy Wednesday!

    Saturday, February 23, 2008

    The Wild...


    The Wild...
    Originally uploaded by Anita Jamal
    There is a cupcake in there, I promise!

    Have a good weekend!

    Tuesday, February 19, 2008

    Moo???

    Savasana in class today was so nice but the weirdest thing happened. While I laid there, I had an image, and it was an image of two cows getting married. It was very cute, it was a cartoon, in the style of the cartoons I watched when I was little like Woody Woodpecker and Bugs Bunny. It was very bizarre! While usually in Savansana I try to use it a chance to clear my thoughts and meditate, I decided this time to not push this cute imagery aside and just let it ride out. I mean of all things, why this???? This must be a what "trip" feels like.

    Anyone ever had weird visions or thoughts while laying in Savasana? Share your experience and please tell me I'm not the only wacko.

    Wednesday, February 13, 2008

    Cozy Winter Yoga

    The other night the city was cold, wet, snowy, and pretty messy. I was certain it was going to be a small class but it turned out a lot of folks showed up. I was glad. It was a wonderful, winter night's class. To see the snow falling outside was so calming, even in a revolved Triangle.

    One of the things we worked on, which I have not done in a while, was Tripod Headstand. I can't remember if I have posted about this pose before, I am sure I have but I can't seem to find it. I'm not very good at tagging my entries. Anyway, I love going upside down but I was not distributing my weight properly in this pose. My neck was really hurting afterward. Unlike regular Sirsasana A, in Sirsasana B your head IS feeling some of the weight but it shouldn't feel all of it. Anyone have any insight to share? Where can I find a good balance in this pose?

    The best part of the class was Savasana, I know that's the best part of every class, but in this case, the snow and frozen was tapping on the window and to me it sounded like the crackle of a fireplace. I laid there with my blanket over me and enjoyed every moment, it made it much easier to be present.

    Monday, February 11, 2008

    Transition


    Chinese New Year 2008
    Originally uploaded by Trish CupcakeMomma
    The latest Yoga Journal has an article about how to make transitions gracefully and how to handle change when it is not so graceful. This was comforting to read. I mentioned in my previous entry about looking to leave my job this summer and not knowing what lies ahead. Of course I'm a little nervous about my decision, cold feet if you will, but I'm sticking to it.

    In case you are not aware, Chinese New Year just passed and it is the year of the Rat. Daily Om had an entry about this, Promise Of Prosperity. Do you see a pattern?

    Looking beyond Western culture’s distaste for rats, we may be able to appreciate their ability to thrive in less than ideal conditions. This quality might offer us hope that whatever challenges we may face will only serve to make us stronger and more able. The rat’s ability to solve problems is well-known, so we can choose to enjoy any challenge that helps us keep our minds sharp while also making life more of a game.

    Going back to the YJ article, it also mentions that choosing to change should not be taken lightly. Yes it is wonderful to hear stories of people who took that risk and prospered but there is more to the fairy tale than that. I honestly don't know what I am going to do. I have a history of making rash decisions I end up regretting. I need to, must find time to meditate on this. I want a new start, to go on a new path, but I'm not sure what path to take. I am at the point where I feel like I have struggled so much I just don't want to anymore. Yes, I want the easy path but I know that doesn't exist. The easy path is to just stay where I am and continue to drown.

    Wednesday, February 6, 2008

    Rusty Dusty

    I practiced last night for the first time in about two weeks and boy did it feel like it. This is why I could never do those 21 day in a row commitments, I can't commit. My legs just felt incredibly tired where even the Warrior poses were a challenge. I know it's my own fault for lacking discipline and making up excuses. Early on in my practice I use to go to class a lot more and then once I moved further away from work my priority became "Get home at a decent time!!!!" My priorities are just stupid I tell ya. I tried looking for studios closer to home and the pickings are slim. It doesn't help that I do not drive (another excuse). One of my goals this year is to finally get my drivers license.

    My head is just in a very weird space right now. There are things going on at work (I'll spare you the details) and I know I am not going to be here for much longer, maybe by the summer I'm out. It is kind of voluntary but it's also not because I can kind of see the direction my job is going and I don't see myself a part of it. I am actually excited as I am seeing this as a positive change but I'm also scared of what lies ahead. *breathe*

    Monday, February 4, 2008

    Giants Cupcakes!


    Giants Cupcakes!
    Originally uploaded by Roxie's Cupcakes
    WOOHOO!

    I'm not a football fan but I know what's going on. :)

    I'm having a giveaway soon so stay tuned! I hope all of you are well!

    Wednesday, January 23, 2008

    Cupcake Flickr Finds #3

    Don't fret the weekend is almost here!

    Click me for a larger, yummy view!

    1. Cupcakes and Ice Cream Charm Necklace, 2. Cupcake Felt Brooch, 3. Cupcakes Charm Necklace, 4. Cupcake Hama Bead Brooch, 5. Cupcake and Icecream Charm Necklace, 6. Little Cousin with Cupcakes, 7. Second Tier of Cupcake Stand, 8. Cupcake Stand, 9. Crabapple Cupcakes - Musk, 10. Bottom Tier of Cupcake Stand, 11. Top Tier of Cupcake Stand, 12. Finland - Turku!, 13. Chocolate cupcakes + bright icing - up close, 14. Chocolate cupcakes + bright icing, 15. Fifties swap, 16. carrot cupcakes, 17. It's Springtime!, 18. Jan 2008 271, 19. Coconut Lime Cupcakes, 20. Coconut Lime Cupcakes, 21. majic wands, 22. Coconut Lime Cupcakes, 23. Valentine's day cupcakes, 24. Valentine's day cupcakes, 25. Pink and Turquoise

    Created with fd's Flickr Toys.

    Class Recap

    Class last night was just what I needed to end my incredibly annoying day. It was bad folks. I was really down in the dumps, I think PMS may have had something to do with it. Of course before class started everyone was talking about Heath Ledger. It was around 5:45 so we didn't hear all the news that came out later on saying that it might have been accidental. At the time though, we all though suicide and how sad and stupid it is suicide is.

    It is kind of a downer subject to think about before practicing but our teacher helped us set our intentions to our mental health and to remember that on days where we may feel like our mental health may be weakening, yoga always brings us back to where we need to be and that is the truth! We proceeded in what I like to call a "Chex Mix Yoga" class where we did a little bit of everything. By the end of class my mind felt sharp again and the worries that were pushing their way to the front of my brain throughout the day were gone.

    It is results like this that make me think that the whole "westernization" of yoga may not be such a bad thing. It may seem superficial on the surface, the fancy clothes and the spa like studios, but at the end of the day, it does what it needs to do whether we realize it or not. Yoga brings calm and peace of mind, even if temporarily, it is there and we can only benefit from that.

    Monday, January 21, 2008

    1 Year!!!



    It was one year ago today that I posted my first entry at Cupcakes & Yoga. It has been a blast! Surely I did not anticipate anyone reading this blog, maybe a random lurker passing through but nothing like the response I have received and the lovely people who come and help make this blog what it is. I will not take all of the credit. The comments left by many of you have been wonderful and insightful that I am sure anyone can benefit and learn from. I know I have!

    So let's all make a wish!!!

    Wednesday, January 16, 2008

    Ongoing Wrist Problem

    I have been practicing Yoga for about five years now. One thing that has not changed since day 1 is the feeling my wrists feel in Full Wheel. I have tried every trick in the book: parallel your feet, don't let your knees splay outward, draw your chest forward, shoulders above the wrist. I can almost dare say that I do a PERFECT WHEEL! But man my wrist continue to hurt. In most classes, you can't do just one, instructor will ask for three. My wrist are done after the first but of course, Miss Pushy Pushy has to keep going and suffer.

    I think my wrists are pretty small and not in scale with the rest of my frame, could that be it? I have tried other alternatives like grabbing my instructor's ankles while they stand over me or setting up blocks against the wall and place my hands on them instead of the floor but that just seems like too much work for me to do at the end of class. I think I may have to just do one wheel and the rest bridge poses. I hope I am not causing long-term damage to my wrist bones.

    Tuesday, January 8, 2008

    You don't have to love it.

    THANK YOU for the comments in my last entry. It seems like most people I encounter online and offline are in agreement with me on the Partner issue. So who exactly likes Partner Yoga??? I guess that will be an ongoing issue. I absolutely love getting comments and hearing from others.

    Class last night was so nice. Most of the focus was on the shoulder blades (or the Pork Chops as my teacher likes to call them). My back is going to be sore tomorrow I just know it. Maybe not tomorrow, in two days my back will be sore. We were in headstand for a while too. I think at this point I can do a 3 minute headstand. It may not sound long, but time slows down when you're upside down. =P

    I will say this, in 2008 I will OWN Supta Virasana. Unlike "Partner Yoga" which I would be totally ok with never doing again, Supta Virasana is the pose I have been working on. I have been doing a series of stretches before class and I have to say I am starting to notice a difference, especially today.

    I still use five props for this pose, I don't think I will ever get to the point where I lay completely flat on my back but I do find it easier to let go and not cling to anything. There are poses I have difficulty doing, but instead of just saying "I don't like that pose! I'm not gonna do it anymore!" I rather understand why I don't like it, and how can I make it so I can be civil with it, I don't have to love it.

    Friday, January 4, 2008

    Another Partner Yoga Rant

    Ok maybe not a "rant" per se. I went to class last night and a good portion of it was partner work *cringe!!* Actually it was not that bad but there were some things I opted out of doing (ie: dropbacks). I have mentioned in the past that I don't care for partner yoga and this class has not changed the way I feel. I was a good sport about it but I would have preferred a regular practice. In fact, I am liking partner yoga less and less.

    I am not squeamish about others touching me or worried about hurting anyone, I am very strong and careful with others, but I feel like I don't get that in return. I don't have confidence in my yogi classmates, there I said it! I'm sure they mean well. Basically, I handle others the way my instructors handle me in adjustments. Why can't everyone else be that way? C'mon! Get rough with me alittle!

    It sucks because what can you do? If the instructors annouces at the beginning of class that you're going to be doing partner stuff, do you get up leave? I didn't want to leave, I wanted to practice! And I like the teacher! I don't want to be a sourpuss either and not participate. I guess this was just another example of putting my pride asside and helping out a fellow-yogi, which I think I did. There were some things I helped them do that they never did before like coming out of Crow into a Handstand so I guess that my lesson in for the evening.