Friday, May 27, 2016

pep talk

I surrender
I trust God
I b-r-e-a-t-h-e
I create
I love
I care
I give
I am energized
I am abundant
I have love and faith in my heart
I shine
I share
I write
I strengthen my mind, body, and spirit
I will not give up
I will rise
I will speak the truth in love
I will listen more carefully
I will be kind and patient
I will smile

not perfectly, but I will try
and if you choose, you can too.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

A Tuesday in Merida

This morning I had an opportunity to get a free hair color as a model at a nice salon, by a student. What a treat, especially having my hair blown dry straight.

It's hot walking around but as long as I hydrate, walk in the shade, and catch an occasional breeze it's manageable. You just have to accept that being sweaty is 'normal' here!

Later I stopped to visit a friend. Conversations are fun and interesting with her.

Merida is a special place. I am grateful for the many opportunities here. However, it is not without some challenges. For both my husband and I, the heat is difficult. Getting along is challenging at times (but that can be true anywhere). Figuring out what we are going to do, and where, requires a lot of soul-searching and researching. Learning, and using more Spanish is a slow process for me. We just do the best we can each day.

Here are some photos from my wanderings this afternoon: 
I love it when I find Frida.
The trees are flowering everywhere.
I love colors.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Miscellaneous + Haiku

shoulder stand
Our private yoga classes have come to an end for now. I have enjoyed our small group practice with Susan our instructor, who has been able to facilitate our different levels of mobility. There are yoga studios around the city and some with English-speaking instructors. Even though I practice every morning, I really like the energy and instruction of being in a group or at a studio.
I was excited to try this restaurant and had a very good falafel plate at Pita, in Centro, with Martine a week or two ago. It seems more and more food choices are becoming available in Merida.

The trees are flowering and they are beautiful!

We are getting ready for a trip back to CA soon. I will miss my friends here. I will not miss the heat. Boy is it hot!

Home in Merida
 a spontaneous Haiku poem by Andrea

Paz y tranquilo
I love the community
 and cost of living

 I enjoy walking
discovering new places 
and finding good food

Tired of sweating
The heat and humidity
are a great challenge 

Then I remember
I meet amazing people
 who enrich Merida

I want to be an
amazing person to them
and contribute here

Monday, May 16, 2016

Creating in the Kitchen

Often I come across links to health tips and recipes on Facebook, and recently I tried a few that were pretty easy to make.

Coconut Avocado Ice Cream - I substituted the cashews for walnuts and I thought it came out pretty good. It can be a thick shake, or frozen. The first time it froze more icy than creamy, but I just made it again (using a paper carton this time), so we'll see. (Update on second batch: Still very icy texture when frozen.)

Link to recipe:

Protein Bites -  I love peanut butter, and already ate most of them. I couldn't get the oats to stick as well on top, probably because I used crunchy peanut butter instead of creamy.  This is a keeper. I am making these again.

Link to recipe:

I like soup but it's too hot here to cook soup. A few days ago I did a search for cold soups and tried this one, Spinach and Avocado Soup. It is different, I don't have Tabasco which the recipe calls for, so mine could use a little more zing. I doubt I will try this one again, but the color is pretty.

Link to recipe:,,50400000129270,00.html 

Sunday, May 15, 2016


Sisal Pier

Yesterday I took a day trip with my new friend Martine to Sisal. Now a small fishing village with a beautiful beach, the pier is a reminder of when it was the principal port in the late1800's - early 1900's. Henequen fiber (also known as Sisal) was exported and used around the world for rope and twine, creating great wealth in the Yucatan. That wealth is seen today in the in the architecture of the colonial city of Mérida, as well as in the many haciendas throughout the Yucatán Peninsula.

The beach was quiet and mellow, not crowded at all. We enjoyed walking along the shore, discovering unique shells, the breezes, and the water as warm as a bath. We had lunch at the restaurant, Muelle de sisal, which has a beachfront view.

An Andrea-Spontaneous-Haiku
Once a busy port
Quiet beach, green sea, big clouds
 Lovely afternoon

Some views from the day:

Sisal beach
Me and Martine

Palapas and Yucatecan clouds

Sisal pier

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Closing our Eyes

I remember my yoga instructor in San Francisco, Leila, having us close our eyes once in awhile, like in pigeon pose/Kapotasana, because our eyes take in a lot of information. Closing the eyes can help you notice how your body feels, and focus inward a little more.

Last week in my small group class, our instructor Susan had us close our eyes in a pose. I zoomed in on my balance, or lack thereof, and how my weight was being distributed. Closing our eyes also helps heighten other senses, especially hearing for me.

This morning in my home practice (with Adriene's videos), today's mantra and intention was to be present, and possibly open to new experiences and/or opportunities. So, later today in my weekly group practice, we did a shoulder stand supported on chairs and against a wall. I had never seen this demonstrated before, let alone tried. So here it was, a new experience.

After this practice I decided to set a yoga goal to work my way to headstand pose/Sirsasana. (Actually my longstanding goal is crow pose. I'm talking years and I still can't do it yet.) Yesterday I happened to watch the video of Gisele Bundchen on Jimmy Fallon where they both held plank pose. They also showed her perfect headstand on the beach photo. Something to aspire to.

However; the best part is closing our eyes at the end in Savasana where we rest, and let the nutrients of our practice settle in. And like Leila used to say, "May the yoga be with you."

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Craft Inspiration

On Friday I met my friend Katalina, and we took a bus to the Siglo XXI Convention Centre for the Manualides y Regalos event. (The Outlet Expo Vacaciones was there too.)

The Manualidades y Regalos is a craft fair. There were a variety of vendors from pottery painting, scrapbooking, sewing, chocolate, jewelry, even booths with kitchen gadgets. There were all sorts of handmade items including dresses and skirts, jewelry, some natural products, and desserts, and more. Some booths had tables to sit down and make a craft project as well.

All I bought was some avocado skin oil, but I feasted on the inspiration. I like the paper crafts and one vendor even had small rolls of washi tape. I find the displays inspiring. Even at the craft store in Centro, Fantasias Miguel, they often have lovely Parisian displays with silk flowers, bottles or jars, cute chalkboard signs in fancy script, and embellishments like a little Eiffel Tower or ribbon. I love that stuff.

Check out these fancy displays from the event: