Monthly Archives: August 2011

Dear Irene–A Love Letter

Dear Irene,

I adored you. I believed in you. I welcomed you with excitement and fear.  But now you’ve moved on and I don’t know what to do in your absence.

I had secret hopes for us. I imagined you’d sweep through my windows and clean me off. You’d keep me safe, of course, but you’d destroy everything unneccessary in my apartment. Irene, couldn’t you kindly mop the floors, undust my dusty surfaces? Couldn’t you just send me to live with my boyfriend in domestic bliss, so he can stock the fridge and pick up the laundry?

I was really hoping we could re-work my closet together. I could have used your impeccable editing skills to pare down to the absolute essentials. Designer vintage dresses? Gone. Galoshes? They can stay.

Irene, I fantasized you’d force me to rough it. Thanks to you, I would finally have a camping story. I would have survived the unthinkable, battled nature and won! And lived to blog about it.

I wanted this storm. I wanted you, Irene. But it wasn’t meant to be.

Forever Yours,

Daniella

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Filed under Inside Your City, Inside Your Closet, Inside Your Love Life

Just Show Up

You’ve heard it before: Just Show Up. 

Showing up is the first, and most challenging part of any project. Once you’re where you need to be, you can relax in the confidence that you’ll know what to do when you get there.

When emails, voicemails, facebook posts and blogs are the norm, it’s more valuable than ever to bring your full self–mind, spirit and body to your work and play. Your time is limited, and you can only be in one place at a time.

That’s why I’m so impressed when a yoga class is packed with eager faces and ready bodies. I know you all have extensive to-do lists. There are other people to show up for, calls to make, and emails that are waiting for rapid responses. 

It’s your life, your body, and your time. Where are you placing yourself throughout the course of the day? Does it match up with the most important people in your life? Does it jive with where you want to be, and what you want to be doing even if you weren’t getting paid? Are you having enough FUN?

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Filed under Inside the Yoga Studio, Inside Your Career, Inside Your Family, Inside Your Friendships

Color of the Week and Mala Practice Camp THANK YOU!

This week’s nail color is brought to you by the cuties at Mala Yoga, the newly discovered Butter London brand of polish, and the need for some pre-autumn drama.

After I taught yesterday’s 8am Int/Adv class at Mala, Steph came in to teach her regular 10am and 12pm slots. Looking awesome, she kissed me on the forehead and placed a card and a little tissue-papered box in my hand. In the card was the sweetest hand writted message from Angela Clark and Stephanie Creaturo, acknowledging and thanking me for being part of Mala Practice Camp for the past two weeks.

For the record, the Mala Practice Camp was aMAzing! The students rocked the house. They baffled me with their dedication, and worked harder than anyone should at 6:45am. Angela and Steph were thoughtful and brilliant, and always hilarious. I’m so gushingly thankful to be part of the Mala community.

But wait, wondering what was inside the tissue-papered box? The most fabulous nail color: Branwen’s Feather by Butter London. Who knew there’s life after OPI?!

Color of the Week - Branwen's Feather by Butter London

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Filed under Inside the Yoga Studio, Inside Your Career, Inside Your Friendships, Inside Your Make-up Bag

Parents in the City

I am a lucky girl. I have a mother and a father who are alive and healthy, vibrant and independent, and relate to me as an evolving individual. They live in Brooklyn, in the same house where I spent much of my childhood. They are New Yorkers, and so am I.

I’m also an anomaly.  Most of my friends and colleagues are not from here. They’ve come to New York City to follow their dreams, create opportunities, or a fresh start. New York is their chosen home, but not their hometown. Therefore their day-to-day, proximity-filled parent-child relationship stopped as soon as they boarded the plane to JFK Airport over 10 or 20 years ago.

It’s a shame.

Believe me, I fully support building a family in New York City. Some of the most interesting, sane, and grounded folks I know grew up in the city (wink, wink). Still, something is lost by building your family here, a car (or plane) ride away from your parents and your hometown. The adult parent-child relationship can become strained, spotty or lost altogether.

How can we understand ourselves, our ability to be compassionate, or be flawed if we don’t see ourselves reflected in our own parents? Sure, they make you nuts. They just don’t understand. But they are most likely the root causes for all of your learned reactions in this world. You grow up, and so do they. As your life becomes more complex, rich and vulnerable all at the same time, they in turn remember their strength. Adulthood is no easier than childhood, and every adult can use an extra parent around.

What do you do if your parents live far, far away? Try the next best thing: pick up the phone on a day when it’s not one of their birthdays, not Mother’s or Father’s Day, nor a national holiday. Instead, call on a Tuesday evening for the only purpose of sharing a few moments together. But if you’re really jonesing for some in-person parent time, you can borrow mine.  They’re always free for parenting duties.

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Filed under Inside Your City, Inside Your Family

What’s Dripping Down My Arm?

ICES, that’s what!

If you know me at all, you know I like ices. A lot. In the summertime, ices are practically a food group. And until now, I have never outed myself and my ices obsession to you. But like all information of value, this too must be shared.

I’m big fan of uncle Louie G’s, a Staten Island based franchise that expanded into numerous locations throughout Brooklyn this summer. My favorite locations are Smith Street between Butler and Douglas Street (2 doors down from the American Apparel) in Carroll Gardens, and Union Street (at 5th ave) in the Park Slopes. They have all the normal fruit flavors, like mango, blackberry, cherry and lemon. You could spend the summer tasting every fruit flavor in the world.

OR you could take the plunge into the ridiculous and delicious. Uncle Louie G’s has a signature Rainbow Cookie flavor with real cookie bits. Also, Canoli flavor, which could only be found in an authentic Italian Staten Island business. Real canoli chunks!  The Pistachio variety has tons of pistachios to crunch on, and the Mint Chocolate Chip is chocolate-chunky.

But my personal favorite, the flavor the kindly scooper hands me without even asking: Vanilla Peanut Butter Chocolate Covered Pretzel. It’s like a naughty candy bar smushed into pure and simple vanilla ices. And it’s divine. There are whole mini chocolate-covered pretzels in every scoop, and real peanut butter globs to surprise your palate. It’s sweet and salty and refreshing.

So if you catch me roaming the streets licking a squeezy cup piled high with ices, please say hello. I’d be happy to join you for a second helping!

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Filed under Inside Your City, Inside Your Lunch Pail

Your Hot Bod

It’s the first day of August, it’s scorching outside, and the perfect time to discuss your Hot Bod. No really, let’s be honest about this.

What was your original motivation for going to a yoga class?  If you’re like me, it was weight loss. At the time, in my early 20’s, anything active was associated with losing weight and looking better. All exercise and movement was understood as first and foremost, a weight loss tool. Any other positive or pleasurable results (better mood, more energy, deeper sleep, to name a few) were just incidental bonuses.

It worked simply–when I felt good about how I looked, I was calm, even, and normal. When I felt overweight, fat or bloated, I’d overly obsess about my body, the way clothing fit, and the way I looked in pictures. Dissatisfaction with my body overpowered almost every other rational concern.

And then I found yoga, the best “weight loss” tool of my life. How? Yoga allows me to relax and trust that my weight won’t yo-yo. I no longer obsess about gaining weight after a long weekend of eating. I trust that I will stay at equilibrium, and I trust my body to find it quickly and efficiently. The desire to stay thin has far less of a hold on me. I’ve been more or less the same size for the past 5 or 6 years.

Don’t get me wrong, vanity is still present in my practice (please note the weekly nail polish updates on facebook and twitter!) But it’s not the only reason I practice. When vanity stops being a part of my practice altogether, I’ll let you know. Until then, I will enjoy all of the benefits of the yoga practice. Including my Hot Bod.

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Filed under Inside the Yoga Studio, Inside Your Lunch Pail