Shopping for Vegan Yogis on Your List

So, you are shopping for a vegan, or a yogi, or a vegan yogi, and you are at a loss. I’ve got a few ideas that might help. I tried to list things from various price ranges, and only listed things that I personally own. I’ll attempt to pop back in and add more as I think of them. Items that were sent to me to review are so noted, but most of these were purchased at list price.

Yogi Surprise Boxes

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This company sent me their surprise boxes to review and I was impressed with how adorable they are, and what good selections were included. There are two options for the box. One contains more beauty, food, wellness, and yoga items. The other is jewelry. These would be great for someone you had no idea how to pick a gift for, but would likely not be appropriate for the male yogi in your life, as some of the beauty items seem to be slanted to women.

Right now, the Yogi Surprise boxes are 10% off. This makes the lifestyle box $39.46 and the jewelry box $22.49. The plan is monthly, but you can cancel at any time.

My Best Friend is a Bag Lindsey Bag

IMG_4005a IMG_4006a IMG_4011aIn the fall, I realized that I needed a black briefcase that was vegan friendly, laptop compatible, and looked professional. That’s not as easy as it sounds. Of course, I also wanted it to be pretty. After quite a bit of searching, I came across a company called My Best Friend is a Bag. While they are located in Australia, one of their bags, in two colors, is available on Amazon.com. So, I thought I should try it out!

The Lindsay bag is very pretty, easy to use, spacious enough for every day, and feels like a bag that will last. I took the tassel off of mine because the cats kept pulling over the bag and it was a little big for me. Upon first use, the side magnets didn’t want to hold things closed with the pockets full, but as I’ve used it more and the magnet flaps have loosened, it’s all good!

Not only is the bag pretty and functional, the customer service of MBFiaB is wonderful! I contacted the company because I lost the snap on key fob on my first business trip after receipt (I turned it in with my rental car, DOH!), to see if I could purchase another one. While they didn’t have any to sell, the owner assured me that, when they had a bag return, she would have the key fob sent to me for now charge. Sure enough, she did, and I got it just this week. Very nice! I’m thinking I may also need the red one!

Borsa Bella Bags

I have told you about Borsa Bella Bags before, but let me do it again! This company makes the most adorable fabric bags of all sizes and types. I have a particular weakness for the phone bags and the Catch All bags. If you look at the image taken above of the Lindsay bag, you will see a long zip phone bag and a catch all bag tucked inside!

At the moment, there is even a special going on for the Catch All bags. You need to get some for you and your friends and family for makeup, gadgets, and general stuff!

 

 

 

 

 

Crazy Rumors Lip Balm

It can be a little challenging to find vegan lip balm, but Crazy Rumors has you covered, even for funky flavors and tinted balms. They have some fun flavors/scents for the holidays, as well.

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Thug Kitchen

Like food? Like the earth? Like your health? Like funny? Not afraid of a little (or a bunch of) profanity? This might be the cookbook for you!

Thug Kitchen is one of the few cookbooks that have ever made me laugh out loud, and I spent an afternoon following my spouse around the house reading him selections. He was thrilled, or… something. The recipes aren’t all super simple, but they don’t involve particularly weird ingredients and those I have tried have been quite good.

Woodstock Farm Sanctuary

No,  you can’t buy the farm as a gift, but you could give a donation in someone’s name and help support the really important work that gets done at the farm. From now until the end of the month, all donations are matched dollar for dollar! Just head over to the Woodstock Farm Sanctuary website and make a donation. You should also look at all the pictures, while you are there, because pigs!

Queen Helene Bath Salts

Who doesn’t like a nice relaxing bath? Some lavender and patchouli bath salts add to the relaxation potential. These Queen Helene salts are vegan friendly and inexpensive. They would make a very nice little stocking stuffer gift!

Delicious Peanut Butters!!!

Peanut Butter & Company has some really delicious peanut butters that any peanut loving vegan would snarf right up. The Dark Chocolate Dreams version is so crazy good that I may (did) eat it with a spoon right out of the container. Oh my! You can check out all of their options at ilovepeanutbutter.com. Not all of the version are totally vegan (some have honey), so do read ingredients before purchasing.

 

Misadventures of a Parenting Yogi – Review and Giveaway

Recently, I was asked to review the newest book by Brian Leaf, Misadventures of a Parenting YogiI have previously reviewed his other book, Misadventures of a Garden State Yogi, on this site. Brian nicely sent me a copy to review. It took only one afternoon to read and was an enjoyable, light, summer read. My review, and a chance to own this copy follow the break.

If you are looking for a book that takes a theoretical approach to examining how yoga impacts parenting, this is not it. There are mentions of meditation, yoga practice, and the occasional connection made between parenting and yoga, but they are particularly brief.

If you are looking for a book that will help you to parent across the span of childhood (including preteen and teen years), this is not it. While it does include some parenting advice, it’s fairly restricted to a certain stance and is limited in scope, due to the young ages of the author’s children. For a parent with older children or one who has not always chosen the paths suggested here (or someone with training in family research), this could be sometimes frustrating.

If you are looking for light, easy, funny reading to do in small bits (some chapters are 2 pages), this could be the perfect thing. While there isn’t really anything in the intro to tell you that the book is somewhat tongue in cheek, and I think there should have been, it is. It’s an enjoyable read on one dad’s experience with pregnancy and early childhood.

The book is available on Amazon.com (see link above) for a reasonable price, but you could get it free! While I enjoyed reading the book, I don’t anticipate reading it again and like to pass on my free for review items to readers. So, I shall!

Enter the giveaway by posting 1 comment below regarding connections you see between yoga and parenting. A winner will be drawn on June 15th. Please be sure to either be sure you commenting profile is linked to an email address or check back after that date to see if you won and get me a mailing address.

Even Yogis Get Nervous

The last few weeks, I’ve been preparing – like mad – for my final teach in a 200 hour teaching training program.  Despite the usual demands of a very time consuming job and a large family, I’ve  kept up with the work in the program fairly well.  But, I have to say, coming down the home stretch is donkey-kicking my rear.  I am, to be blunt, freaked out and really nervous.  Other people in the program certainly get what I’m experiencing, as we are all together in this place.  However, those friends and acquaintances who aren’t  seem to be a little baffled about why it’s a big deal.

Recently, I’ve heard: “You are a teacher. How hard can it be to teach yoga?”  “You do yoga every day.  It can’t be that hard to just tell other people what to do.”  “Aren’t you yoga people supposed to be really calm all the time?”  hmmm   I’m pretty sure the answers are: hard, yes it can, and supposed-to-be isn’t the same as are.  It’s interesting how we assume that some level of expertise in an area means that all of the characteristics associated with that area will be firmly in one’s grasp all the time.  Doctors should never be sick.  Psychiatrists should never be depressed.  Teachers should have children who get all As.  Yogis should be supernaturally calm and composed every minute.  It’s a lovely idea, but I don’t think it works that way and it’s an important message for both the yoga teacher and yoga students.

Doing yoga can help one achieve a greater state of equanimity and calm.  That’s been one of the major benefits for me in my practice.  And, as a teacher trainee, I also know the philosophical part of this.  I know about aparigraha.  I understand that I should let go of what I’m clinging to (whether that is desire or aversion) and not attach to the fruits of my actions.  Yep, I got it.  But, knowing something and being able to enact it all the time are two different things.

Yoga students and teachers are just people.  They are regular people.  And, when you think about it, the yamas and niyamas wouldn’t be necessary if these traits and habits weren’t pretty natural/normal/usual parts of our human animal-ness.  Yoga teachers and students worry, get mad, have a beer, eat french fries, watch bad TV, read pulp fiction, and so on.  So, if you are a yogi, don’t be too hard on yourself or your peers for being the human blessings that you are.

Namaste,

L