Rachelle is one the sweetest people I’ve met since I started attending Yoga Public in the late summer of 2015. It’s kinda funny– I’ve made more meaningful relationships with yoga instructors than other students I attend class with. I guess after seeing faces again and again, and after the easy conversation starter of ‘hey, you work at Jenna Rae Cakes‘, it’s easier to connect with teachers than students.

Rachelle is the inventor of Prairie Yogi. As defined on their website:

We are inspired by the big skies of our geography and the big hearts of our people, and believe that by sharing the stories of our community and bringing together that community by creating inspiring experiences, we are making the prairies a bit brighter of a place.

I resonate with this.

The longing for community, of people to truly share life with, is something I find woven into my being. It’s beautiful to find a place to fit, a group that understands you, a people who bring out the best you have to offer, individuals that see you for who you want to be instead of who you have been. God offers all these to me in such tangible ways and has created a spark in all of us that He can truly fill. But we are created to share this spark with those around us, too.

That’s the beauty of my tiny yoga community– people seeing me for who I aspire to be, seeing me for who I am becoming, and acknowledging the constant state of growth and evolving we are continually immersed in. It’s truly magnificent.

Prairie Yogi, aside from creating wonderful content online, creates even more amazing events that connectΒ other Prairie Yogi’s with makers,

I first met Geri almost 10 years ago. I re-joined a dance group after my brother informed me they were looking for a few more members for an upcoming trip to Costa Rica (obviously, a hot seller, resulting in my speedy attendance to class the following week). Geri was friendly and talented, and we gravitated towards each other with our matching backcombed hair and pasty white skin.

Amidst all the adventures life has thrown our way, Geri and I remained close. She was there the day I married my wonderful husband, and we always carve out time to get together after prolonged time apart. We attend the same church now and are closer than ever since we get to see each other regularly (PTL for Church on Sunday!). Geri has always been there for me and has shown her commitment to our friendship in so many beautiful ways– from endearing Instagram posts, to bundling up and joining me for the Walk To End Human Trafficking.

When Geri (finally) got engaged to her boyfriend of forever, I announced I’d bake her cake! It was honestly the least I could do for someone who has been such a good friend over the years! After a Pinterest board was created, and we decided how many guests the cake needed to feed, it was time to pick the flavours!

Geri LOVED the idea of London Fog buttercream paired with a chocolate cake! Since London Fog buttercream could be pretty hit or miss for some folks, we decided to do the smaller top tier as the delicious chocolate-cake-London-fog buttercream combo, while the bottom tier was a more crowd-pleasing combination of chocolate cake and vanilla bean buttercream.

The cake was an almost naked cake,

My favourite time of day is the early morning.

Not 8 am early morning,
Not 6 am early morning,
4 am early morning.

When I happen to wake up around this time of the morning, I relish in the quiet joy of stillness that surrounds me. A sleeping husband to my left, a sleeping cat to my right. The freshly fallen snow or leaves, the freshly sprouted grass or flowers, all untouched but ready for the natural sun stage-light to cast its beams for their stage call so they can show off their beauty, stillness & overnight transformation.

In scripture, we read about how tomorrow is a new day. Sorrows may come, hardships, moments of weakness; but the light and love of a new day will come. Each morning, beginning in the night we are too asleep to see, is transformation, growth, healing. Things always seem different in the morning. And in those small moments, before the sun shows off the glory of what a night can do, I love witnessing the magic before the rest of the world gets a chance. Seeing the busy working hands of moonbeams and starlight as God puts the finishing touches on a night of work before the sun can highlight the beauty we only appreciate if we sit in the stillness and reflect on how grateful we are for both night and day.

Balance

Thursday, December 29 2016

At the beginning of each year I choose a ‘word’ as my intention for the 365 days ahead. Sometimes it is a phrase, sometimes nothing more than a simple word that may receive nothing more than a passing glance to some, but for me it holds significance. My word for 2016 was Brave.

 

My life centred around the theme of stepping out, trying new things, finding my voice, and really embodying what it means to find strength and not be afraid to shine. Brave was what this past year needed. But being brave; with all its positives leaving me feeling accomplished, like I achieved personal growth and like I truly pushed my own limitations, often left me exhausted.

 

When I look back at all the things I wanted to accomplish this year, I am left with lists written in beautiful gold ink with barely any stroke marks of a job done passed through them… Goals of writing more, submitting pieces to be published, and more, are nothing but empty words on pages of 2016 hopes and dreams. I love to write. I want to do it more, always. But life gets in the way…

This past year my bravery was most strong during the days I struggled with trying my best and feeling like it’s never good enough for anyone, yet still showing up the next day and doing it all over again. My bravery was evident each day I took work home when days were drawn out and exhausting. Being brave had highlights- like finally becoming comfortable in the skin I’m in, being proud of what my body can do instead of disliking my non-modelesque proportions and tone. Bravery was in facing each day with a choice to be love instead of hate,