Monday, July 27, 2020

Awakening the Inner Goddess

How do we connect with the divine feminine energy of the goddess? First let me say, everyone - both males and females, have masculine and feminine energy within themselves. Yang energy is masculine, Yin energy is feminine. Sun energy is masculine, Moon energy is feminine. Masculine energy give us ambition, focus, and confidence. Feminine energy give us connection, compassion, and the ability to nurture. We want a balance of all of these energies, however in today's world most of us have more masculine energy than feminine energy. 


Yoga teaches that the energy of the Universe is a power called Shakti. Shakti is both manifest power and unmanifest power - the power within all experiences. It is the power to create and the power to transform. The divine feminine at its very essence is shakti energy. It's time to reclaim the shakti that lies within each of us! 


As we begin to awaken our inner goddess her energy can demand our full attention, she wants to show us what we can be. Getting to know the goddess is like getting to know the different parts of ourselves. She is creative and destructive, light and dark, capable of giving and taking. Her powers are endless and her forms are infinite. In her fierce form she uses whatever weapons are necessary to slay jealousy, ignorance, greed, anger, and the like - you get the drift, yet behind her fierceness is love...endless love. When we embrace her totally without aversion, we can then relax into that blissful state that is our true nature. 


This month I'd like to share a breathwork practice dedicated to the divine feminine, may it awaken your inner goddess, may you receive her shakti, may wisdom, power, and love flow from your heart, and may her energy bring balance into your life. 


Our story this month; I am divine energy


                                                Goddess Pose

Begin standing in Mountain Pose with hands on hips. Inhale and step out wide and turn your feet out to 45 degrees. Exhale and bend the knees coming into a squat, the knees track over the toes. Extend the arms out at shoulder height, lift the forearms and turn the palms to face forward (cactus arms), fingers spread, keep the elbows level with the shoulders. Lengthen the spine and tuck the pelvis slightly as you pull the belly in and hold the pose for several breaths. To release the pose return the hands to the hips and inhale as you press into the feet straightening the legs, then step the feet together. 


In the benevolent form press the palms together at the heart, elbows out wide. Smile. 


Goddess Pranayama 


Straighten the legs on the inhale, squat on the exhale.


Begin in Goddess squat, knees tracking over the toes, hands at the heart. 

Inhale; hands in prayer at the heart lift and reach overhead

Exhale; round the arms down gathering energy, fingertips touch below the belly palms face upward

Inhale; with the fingertips touching lift the palms upward bringing the energy toward the heart

Exhale; turn the palms to face down and float the palms downward giving the energy back to the earth

Inhale; round the arms overhead bring the palms to touch

Exhale; round the arms down bring the energy back behind the body, fingertips touch, draw the shoulders back and lift the heart

Inhale; bend the elbows and bring the hands up towards the shoulders leading with the back of the wrists, hands are soft

Exhale; press hands out in front of the body with straight arms, palms face away 

Inhale; fold the wrists and bring the fingers to the thumbs as you open the arms out wide to the side

Exhale; float the arms back to center, prayer position at the heart, grateful for the grace of the goddess

Repeat for 3 rounds


Hari Om

Kathe



 



         



Thursday, May 14, 2020

Practicing Patience during a Pandemic




Wowzer!! Who would have thought we'd ever experience a pandemic, the whole world in semi-shutdown mode? Coronavirus, aka Covid-19 showed its scary face and we shuddered in fear and disbelief. 

Many of us have learned a thing or two about ourselves, as well as others, during this once in a lifetime experience. One of the things I've learned is that I need to relearn and practice PATIENCE! Patience with the news media, the government, the manufacturers and distributors of products, and most importantly patience in personal relationships. My  energetic 7-year-old twin grandchildren moved in 2 weeks before the pandemic shut down schools ... one boy, one girl, complete opposites, YIKES!

I did the homeschooling thing back in the day with several of my boys, and as a former children's librarian I figured I could manage schooling the twinsies easy peasy. Boy oh boy, what an adventure. When my sons were young patience stayed at the top of my prayer list and I learned a few things but I realize I still have much to learn. Just like yoga, after years of practicing I still have much to learn. Yoga is considered a practice, practice is something we do over and over again to get better at it. So...I am practicing patience, not only with others but also with myself.

These are some things I've come to understand about patience. Patience creates feelings of peace and calm, as opposed to the anger and frustration that often arises with impatience. Patience has three aspects; like a story it has a beginning, a middle and an end. First there's acceptance, realizing that what's happening now is what is happening now. Next there's persistence, we must be determined to keep on keeping on, knowing life is a journey. Finally we take a few deep breaths and settle into a place of peace and calm in the face of what is. 

Patience allows us to respond instead of react to what is. When we take a breath we create a space where we often are able to act more mindfully. This is really important when things get challenging. We won't always get things right, therefore we must practice patience with ourselves. Others won't always do the right things, practice patience with them. And remember, its always alright to take a few deep breaths. Practicing patience leads to peace where we realize all shall be well...eventually. 😉

Om shanti, shanti, shanti
Peace for me, peace for my family, peace for the world. 

Kathe







Saturday, April 4, 2020

A spark of joy during this time of challenge

Our book, A Yoga Storytelling Adventure; Forever Friends has been given a wonderful review by Kirkus! Libraries and bookstore mainly trust four companies for reliable book reviews; Publisher's Weekly, Library Journal, Booklist and Kirkus! Kirkus, a big player in the book world, has been in business since 1933. They are a respected name in the publishing business. They also have a reputation for unpredictable reviews that are sometimes outlandishly harsh; which means to be given a good review by them is amazing!! It is somewhat daunting that this review would come out at a very strange point in time when bookstores and libraries throughout the country, and a good portion of the world are closed. Still...it is available on Amazon!😊

Reading and practicing yoga is a perfect way to keep your kids educated and entertained while they are home from school. Forever Friends is a story that teaches kindness, compassion and cooperation, the very same values that we all need during this difficult time in history. The book includes a set of yoga poses that follow the story-line. Yoga and story, connecting left brain and right brain, enhances learning and memory. When you practice the poses with your children it can also provide a little bit of fun and stress relief for both of you during this time of challenge. 

Stay well out there folks! We are sending out healing thoughts and prayers to All!

Mel and Kat


 Kirkus Review

FOREVER FRIENDS
Melanie Moyer and Kathe Hudson Illus. by Maileys Pitcher
ISBN: 978-1-73409-840-2



Two animals form an unbreakable friendship in this cheerful, yoga-inclusive picture-book sequel.
A gray and purple royal elephant has everything he could wish for—except a friend. Then a stray dog enters the palace grounds and asks to share the elephant’s food, and the two form a bond. Later, a merchant visiting the palace takes the canine away, which leaves the elephant bereft. It’s only after the palace adviser explains the elephant’s heartbreak to the king that the two animals are reunited once again. Moyer and Hudson, the authors of the previous Yoga Storytelling Adventure; The Impossible Dream (2017), offer a simply told story in accessible English with a few Hindi words, defined in an introductory glossary. All of the human characters refreshingly try to do their best; they realize their error in separating the animals and react with kindness. Pitcher’s playful illustrations beautifully show the elephant’s emotions; when she and the dog meet again, the elephant’s coloring changes to a joyful purple-pink. At the end of the book, Moyer and Hudson, both yoga teachers, clearly encourage young readers to do yoga poses named after the story’s characters, including the elephant, the king, and the dog.
A pleasant tale of friendship with a happy ending—and extra yoga inspiration.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Now available at Ingram!


A Yoga Storytelling Adventure; Forever Friends, our second in the series of kid's yoga story books has successfully launched!

It can be found worldwide as it will be printed and distributed around the globe through these amazing countries; Brazil, Germany, Russia, S Korea, Poland, China, India, Italy, Australia, the European Union, Canada, the United Kingdom, Spain, and the United States. 

May Forever Friends travel far and wide and may children everywhere learn about the power of friendship! 




You may ask, why story and yoga? Story and yoga together can enhance literacy skills. Stories develop language, listening, and critical thinking skills, and yoga increases mind-body awareness. These twin arts give rise to balance, strength, and flexibility in both body and mind. Children develop not only language but also emotional and physical literacy as well. As former librarians  passionate about promoting literacy and as yoga teachers passionate about sharing health and well-being we decided to bring these twin arts together.

Stories, especially wisdom tales, are extremely valuable in developing young listener's imagination, and yoga brings the story alive; it is both interactive and theatrical. Combining yoga and story unite the logical and creative sides of the brain, stimulating the imagination. By visually acting out the story with yoga postures children become a part of the story, and are able to recall the story in detail, aha, complete comprehension.

Last but certainly not least...its just plain FUN!

If you'd like to introduce a child to yoga through story, and we certainly hope you do, please purchase a copy! SEE THE LINK ON THE SIDEBAR →

Furthermore, we'd be ever so grateful if you'd leave an Amazon review.

Mahalo, we serve,
Kathe and Mel










Thursday, January 23, 2020

Boost your confidence with practice...a yoga practice

Lack of self-confidence affects most of us, if not all of us, at some point in our lives. Self-confidence issues come in all shapes and sizes; we are unsure of many things, unsure of ourselves, unsure about where our life is going, and we often feel we are not enough. Without self-confidence we let fear take control and can end up in unpleasant situations. True confidence comes from an authentic connection to our true self. A yoga practice can provide a pathway towards this self-realization, improving well-being and boosting self-confidence. 

Yoga teaches us to self-soothe. In the quiet stillness of a posture the mind slowly relaxes. We concentrate on the breath and notice the effects on the body. The body then naturally follows the mind into relaxation. We come to realize we can breathe through tough situations and the quiet stillness that follows allows us to reassess. This ability to self-soothe restores our self-confidence. 

Yoga allows us to be at ease in our body and mind. As we practice we become aware of our limitations, as we as our potential and as we become aware of our potential we become aware of the limiting thoughts that get in our way. We learn to appreciate the amazing things we can do rather than focus on what we can't do. This helps to re-focus the mind and confidence grows. 

A lack of self-confidence often manifests as poor posture, our shoulders become rounded and our gaze shifts downward. Our body language governs how others perceive us. However, it also defines how we perceive our self, if you stand tall you send a message of confidence to your mind. BKS Iyengar once said, "Yoga does not change the way we see things, it changes the person who sees." A yoga practice can transform you, boosting your self-confidence. 

This month we practiced Camel Pose. Camel pose opens the shoulders and lifts the heart. It is an intermediate back-bend that stretches the front of the body, particularly the chest, abdomen, quadriceps, and hip flexors. It improves spinal flexibility and stimulates the kidneys. Take caution if you have a low back or neck injury otherwise give it a try, it's quite empowering!

Our story this month; I am confident. 


Camel prep; Kneel on the floor, knees hip width apart, toes curled under, thighs pressing forward, chest lifted, place the hands on the lower back, fingers pointing downward, lean back slightly letting the head fall gently back. 

Camel Pose; begin kneeling, knees slightly apart, tops of the feet flat on the floor or toes curled under, inhale as you lengthen the spine and circle the left arm overhead reaching for the left heel, exhale as the hand touches down, inhale and circle the right arm overhead reaching for the right heel, exhale as the hand touches down, press the thighs forward while lifting the chest and lift the chin. Release on arm at a time and sit back for a complete breath. Repeat the pose and lift the right arm first, then sit back and feel the powerful energy of confidence flowing through you. 

Option; Toes curled under makes it easier to reach the heels, you can also use two blocks alongside the feet to place the palms of the hands on. 

Be confident, 
Kathe










Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Forever Friends


A Yoga Storytelling Adventure
Forever Friends
by Melanie Moyer and Kathe Hudson
illustrated by Maïlys Pitcher

The second book in the Yoga Storytelling Adventure series is coming soon!


Here is a sneak peak at the cover illustration, Maïlys Pitcher is our talented young illustrator. She is from France and presently lives in Sweden. It was a pleasure to have her as a part of the team. 😊

This Yoga Storytelling Adventure takes us on a delightful journey to India, the birthplace of yoga. Although intended for ages 3-8, all ages will revel in this story where an unlikely friendship develops between a royal elephant and a homeless dog. In this timeless tale that illuminates kindness, honesty and friendship, kids will learn about the power of love. The authors include a Hindi word guide to help develop an appreciation of a different language. Best of all, both parents and kids can take advantage of the full description of yoga poses which encourages interaction within this adventurous tale. 

Many thanks and much gratitude to our prepublication reviewers, here's what they have to say:

Forever Friends is sure to become one of your child's favorite books with lessons that will follow into adulthood and beyond. The subtle integration of Sanskrit words honors the Indian origin of yoga, while expanding awareness of a different language and alphabet. The posture selection that accompanies the story adds a special dimension that children will enjoy. Instead of just listening to the story, the can become the story. My four-year-old grandchild loves it!

Lanier Cordell, Yoga Therapist Certified IAYT, 500 hour E-RYT, Certified Chair Yoga and Children's yoga teacher, writer and more...

As a yogi and a mother, I am always looking for better ways to keep my littles engaged in our practice. We love The Impossible Dream and were excited to read Forever Friends. The authors have the uncanny ability to reach children without dumbing down the text. The language drives my kids' curiosity while the story's relatability keeps them engaged and prevents distraction. The wholistic message keeps them talking about the lesson for days and asking to repeat the practice over and over. I couldn't ask for a more beautiful experience. 

Lori Lawson, Mother of 9

Forever Friends is an adaptation of an Indian folktale about love and friendship. This lovely tale features an unusual friendship between an elephant and a dog. As children experience the story through words, pictures, and yoga, they learn that friendships with those unlike ourselves are not only possible, but fulfilling. What a nice way to teach about friendship and diversity!

Peggy Thibodeaux, retired librarian

A delightful tale of an elephant and dog who form an unlikely friendship and become inseparable friends. The authors successfully combine storytelling and yoga to enhance children's language and mind awareness. Complete with glossary, Hindi pronunciation guide and yoga pose illustrations this book teaches children about kindness, honesty and trust. 

Kat Pigott, author of I See You, Green Dinosaur

The flow of yoga is matched by the beautiful words of this classic story. The bright pictures infuse a fresh Prana (breath) into this instructional, and delightful tale of friendship and loyalty. 

Alexis Braud, Children's Author and Illustrator

The concept of storytelling and yoga makes Forever Friends a unique reading experience not only for children but adults as well. After reading Forever Friends and The Impossible Dream, I have a great appreciation of the teaching tools the authors incorporate through languages, cultures, and folklore. Their books are such fun reads with charming illustrations. 

Patricia Maness, retired Instrumental Music Educator and author of Jerome Roams from Home and Jerome Roams Back Home.

What a wonderful story with many lessons learned introducing yoga to children. Forever Friends is a wonderful tale of friendship. The illustrations, definitions of Indian words, and the brief explanation of yoga are brought to life in the mind of a child. 

"Ms Cel" Boudreaux, Retired, Carencro Branch Library

I love the story which has the right amount of yoga for a child, and the introduction to the Hindi language is a plus. 

Kristen Knight, yoga instructor

For more information visit us at www.moving-tale.com 

Please "like" and "share"!
Mahalo, we serve. 





















Friday, June 21, 2019

Risk and Commitment



"Life is a journey, not a destination." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

I'm sure you've heard this quote before. It is often considered a misconception that encourages us to lack direction and wander about aimlessly, though perhaps we might consider it another way. 

Destinations motivate us, but it's the journey that expands our possibilities and potential. So...what if we see the experience we have along the way to be equally important as the goal - the destination we head towards?

We'd all like a guarantee before heading in a certain direction, making a decision or taking a risk, but the irony is that in taking a risk we are already committing to the outcome. Real commitment comes before knowing where anything is going. 

Most people come to yoga with some sort of goal; to reduce stress, gain strength and stamina, improve balance and stability, or to relieve chronic pain. We commit to the practice and soon realize there is much more to it. The practice is not about getting anywhere. It's about observing yourself and accepting the experience of the moment. 

In yoga we take a risk when we reach out in a pose not knowing where it will lead us, and then we commit to being where we are as we take a moment to pause. Accepting where we are, and that where we are is where we need to be leads us to realize that there is no destination, it's all about the journey! 

This month we practiced a walking meditation, perhaps you'd like to give it a try. Walk slowly around the room with eyes gazing downward and with each step feel the risk in the lifting and the commitment in the landing. Repeat silently, "There is no destination, it's all about the journey." 

Trust the journey, 
Kathe