what a DAY …


I truly love my name as it signifies the start of a new day. Every day. Yeah, I’m a pretty big deal.

Every morning (lately anyway), I arise at 7am. Even though the sunshine streaming through my windows and my early-riser of a cat (Luna, my ass … that’s her name: Luna) tell me I should wake up even earlier. Then, as most of us do, I go pee. Then I return to my room and my piled-up-yoga-blanket meditation seat for a 10-15 minute meditation. RPM as they call it: Rise, Pee, Meditate. And at the end of every meditation, I give thanks for my beautiful body and the beautiful earth for supporting me in my practice. How beautiful (come on, it’s just such a great word!) to start every day giving gratitude, and especially to the new day (i.e. Dawn).

Giving thanks to me and acknowledging my body and what it does for me is also a pretty big deal. I spent many years – ok, basically my entire life – working on my body (through exercise and then many years eating healthy), yet rarely acknowledged what I was actually doing for myself. I didn’t admire my body. Or congratulate myself. Or embrace the positive feelings and energy associated with exercise and eating well. Often, I wanted more and so nothing was ever quite good enough. I would do it though, and I would do it a lot. And then, I would go on with the rest of my days. Like working out for hours didn’t mean anything. Though, deep deep down, at a subconscious level, I knew it did and I knew I needed it to feel confident in my skin. Mostly, working out and eating well was all I had to feel confident. Well shit, I should be grateful for that too then! Thanks again body for doing what you needed even though I didn’t yet understand – YOU ROCK!

Today, following RPM, I went for a hike. My body and the earth connecting at the deepest level (for me, anyway). Connected physically and spiritually and everything in between. Such gratitude for my overall health to be able to hike steep mountains (I made that possible! – remember, I’m a big deal) and to the exquisite nature that surrounds me where I live right now. Such a BEAUTIFUL combination.

ace of HEARTS …

I almost forgot to share these cards today! However, they would still apply to tomorrow and the next day and every day, forever. This is one of the many creative things I get to do at my awesome job. For those of you who don’t know, I work at lululemon and made these cards for our guests to attach to their Valentine’s gifts of fabulous workout gear. Now a couple of the sayings make waaaaaay more sense, right? ;)

Happy Day of Love, every day, forever.

the TRUTH is in the stillness …

The truth is in the stillness. When you can be quietly with yourself, all sorts of things will raise their tiny heads (I’m changing the expression to make it nicer). Good and not-so-good things. However, the “not-so-good” is necessary to lead you to the good, so embrace it all. I had a massage yesterday, which was one of my moments of quiet. An hour long moment with my body and mind (well, and a massage therapist). For example, I relearned that I like having my face touched, in a gentle way of course ;) and I realized that my body is so far along in its healing process that it almost feels “finished” and I realized that there are places of tension I didn’t know were there and I realized that I can relax and be still for an hour now! And other things that didn’t stick around for long but served their purpose in the moment. It’s not always easy to be silent, even for a few seconds for some people. Yet, that silence could open up so many pathways to healing. So try for just a few seconds. And then a few minutes. And then get an hour massage ;) And just notice. And listen.

SWEET kittea …

Curb that sweet craving with this tasty tea recipe (Disclaimer: adorable kitty will not appear if you make this). It’s sweet. It’s spicy. It’s creamy. It’s warming. It’s grounding. It’s delicious. 

  • 1/2 tsp licorice root (I bought mine here. You may be able to find in health food stores as well, in bulk herb/tea sections.)
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon (The company I linked to above also sells sweet cinnamon chips which could be substituted for ground.)
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (Depending on the size of your mug, you may have to fill the rest of the mug with water so the herbs can steep in the liquid.)

Warm up almond milk/water on stovetop or in microwave. Place licorice root and cinnamon into a single cup tea strainer and pour the almond milk over the herbs. Cover and let steep for at least 10 minutes. Most of the cinnamon will sink to the bottom which makes for a very tasty ending, oooorrrr you could stir as you sip. Enjoy!

Additions if you want to mix it up: sprinkle of nutmeg; 1/4 tsp ginger; 1/4 tsp of pure vanilla extract.

relief. breath. BEER. 

So this is what relief looks like to me. A tasty brew after completing my last test. I’m officially graduating on Wednesday as a certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach. Heads up, there will be another post when it’s official ;)

Lots of FABULOUS stuff happening in my life these days. Yesterday, I taught my first essential oils class which was very fun and exciting and only slightly scary. Had an amazing support group of amazing women there with me. Did I mention they were amazing? Look forward to many more classes to share the healing benefits of essential oils (I don’t have any planned yet though, so stay tuned!). Today, I took my last test for school. I did, well, not so great. However, I PASSED!!! And that’s all I needed. Wednesday, graduation commences. It’s an online program, so the only walking will be around my house in a gown of leggings and a hoodie. And then most likely followed by another beer, or 3. Yay! Pretty bad ass week if I say so myself. So much more fabulousness to come. I can feel it. And it feels pretty fucking good.

For the past couple of weeks, I’ve been very focused, and a bit stressed, about the oils class and my last test. They are both done, and it’s time to celebrate! Hence the beer in the middle of the afternoon on a Monday. Party animal here.

Feel free to drink one for me too … I’ll feel your celebratory vibes. And I’ll send you mine. Spiritual partying! Yay!

what is your VISION ?

I supported my beautiful coworker Courtney today in a Vision & Goals workshop for the new hires at work. It was such a great and rewarding experience for all involved! I so enjoyed hearing everyone’s amazing 10-year visions for their lives and the personal values that guide their visions. Each so different and magical and full of adventure. And scary. What’s that song lyric … “if your dreams don’t scare you, they ain’t big enough” … not quite the form of “English” I would have chosen, but you get what I’m sayin’. We should be nervous about the bad ass possibilities we can create in our lives. We can choose to be safe and comfortable and “normal,” but where’s the fun and excitement in that?

Create a wild and crazy spectacular vision for yourself in 10 years where money, time and experience don’t exist. Zero constraints. Trust me, you can do this. Close your eyes and visualize, then write it all down, every fabulous morsel. It’s a very exciting exercise that will change your mindset around what you truly truly want in your life!!!

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the CENTER of our world …

As my dear friend Nicole once said on one very memorable drunken ladies night, “it’s all about the heart.”

I dreamt about this image last night: my hand swirled around and around in circles, over and over again in my dream. Around a tiny heart. Sometimes the heart was red and sometimes black. The image stuck with me until I rose this morning and I knew that I had to draw it … or paint it, as I did here. I had a manageable list of things to get done today … none of which I could accomplish until I put this image on paper. Over a year ago, I bought myself 2 bamboo brushes and sumi ink in order to paint some things just like this. I had never used those brushes until today. My subconscious told me it was time.

To me, this image screams: heart center. You’re like duh, Dawn, of course it does. Shush and keep reading. Everything about our existence as humans starts (and ends, I suppose) at our heart center. So many of us have forgotten that. Forgotten what that feels like. Forgotten how to do that. Forgotten how damn important this is to every single aspect of our being. And I’m one of them. I needed my subconscious dream state to remind me of this. And my conscious awareness reminds me often as well … as long as I remember ;) Seriously, this shit is not easy. I have spent many years closing up and “protecting” (this idea many of us have created for ourselves is BS though, as the more we protect it, the more pain we experience) my heart to the point where I couldn’t even feel it’s beat anymore. Talk about building a wall.

So, now what? I want to open my heart. I want to love the shit out of myself. We all have our own ways of doing this (and a whole lot of ways to ignore doing this). Some of my ways  of opening are yoga and meditation and creating relationships with like-minded people and becoming a Health Coach and breathing into my heart space and trying to maintain good posture to shine my heart forward into the world (aside from right now as I type slumped over on my bed) and sharing my true self to the people around me (like writing this post, in case you hadn’t picked up on that).  My life experiences have made loving me harder and harder to do. However, those are all stories created by me … and edited by me … and re-written by me … many pages of fiction about what other people thought I should be, or what society deemed appropriate at any given time, or what my SAT scores meant for my future success, or that I had to look a certain way to get dates with guys or even to find friends. None of these things really have anything to do with me – with the heart and soul that lives inside this amazing body of mine (and by amazing, I mean fascinating, not sexy, but let’s be honest people, my body is pretty sexy too). I went along with it all because I knew no better. And thank goodness I did, cause it got me here. I am an amazing person capable of loving and feeling and being every bit the soul I was brought into this world to be. I’d say it’s about time I let that shit shine!!!

This is what Health Coaching is for me. It is my place to shine, to support people in their journey to this magical place within themselves. Cause we all have it. It may just need a little, or a lot, of massaging to release it. Remind yourself of how amazing you are and of the gifts you are here to offer the world. And then remind yourself again and again. Your heart will catch on. I promise. 

And, I heart you. <3