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OK, first of all, fivenineteen is officially THREE!  Three years old!!  The (my?) official birthday was Saturday September 15.  9/15.  WOW…I never realized how that’s an exact mirror image of 5/19.  Where is that Twilight Zone music?  Honestly, that’s just a beautiful accident (or was it?). Absolutely was not intended….but I love it and I laugh how I just noticed that this year.  Thank you to my followers – old and new – and to everyone out there who stumbled in here by accident!  Welcome to my big ol’ ball of random!

This weekend reminded me how blessed I am to have incredible women in my life.  Great friends – old and new – and my Mom. 

Yesterday was all about getting the girls together and playing in jewelry!  Many of you know that I am a Silpada Designs representative, representing an incredible line of .925 sterling silver jewelry, handcrafted with semi-precious stones.  I’ve been a fan of the jewelry for around 6-7 years – I’d purchased pieces at home shopping parties or for fundraisers – and never thought I’d give direct selling on my own a try…but I started doing this nearly two years ago and I love it!  It’s easy to share what you love when you love what you represent!  I love sharing how .925 sterling (92.5% silver + 7.5% copper & zinc for strength – pure silver is too soft on its own for jewelry) is the highest grade of sterling silver there is.  It’s the same grade that Tiffany’s uses in their jewelry, and believe me Silpada’s price points are nowhere near Tiffany’s!

I tried something totally different and fun, for I had my jewelry on display at a restaurant inside a hotel where my team meets monthly…a combination of current pieces plus a lot of retired pieces marked down, gift boxed and priced to move!  In the process I had a lot of people stop by while I was setting up – even the executive chef stopped by to introduce himself and snap a pic of a necklace to see if his wife wanted one for herself!  It just ‘feels’ good in there – the restaurant staff is so gracious and accommodating…believe me when you get 20 of us jewelry reps together at a big table for meetings and throw in wine and munchies we can get a little rowdy!  Those meetings are a fun way to blow off steam from the workday, or for those who are stay at home Moms to get out of the house for a few hours for some adult time with girlfriends!

It was fun seeing friends of mine meet one another for the first time, plus having everyone meet my Mom!  Heck, even my Mom – who has the most exquisite taste in fine gold jewelry – is starting to take a shine (no pun intended) to sterling silver! Plus the mixed metal look (combining gold and silver) is super hot right now and I think it’s a trend that will continue far into the future.

So we had fun playing with jewelry, and it was both fun and nice to have a lot of my retired, discounted pieces find new homes.  I never thought I’d have “too much jewelry,” but after doing this for a couple of years my jewelry box has really grown, enough to where it was time to scale back and streamline.

And this morning…drum roll…Yours Truly got her butt out of bed early!  Meaning, an 8am meetup!  For carpooling to yoga!  Now, I’ve probably posted way too much in here about how I’m not a morning person, especially on the weekends.  While I feel I’m wasting the day when I sleep in until 10:30 or so on a Saturday or Sunday, I listen to my body’s rhythms.  It needs it and I’m not going to fight it off.

When I knew I was going to take a sabbatical from hockey (starting this fall season – and wow, looks like the NHL is doing the same with the lockout – ugh) I entertained ideas of what I’d do with this new, freed up spare time (and money).  Try yoga again – or try working out with a trainer? Revisit trying to learn Norwegian again for a someday-someday trip to the arctic?  So far the personal training is underway – 5 sessions done so far with B’s weekly ass kickings and I’m slowly rediscovering muscles that were long dormant.  My hamstrings and triceps are still on fire from last Thursday’s workout!

So to add fuel to that fire, I joined my dear friend D and her friend K for what I like to call “drop in yoga.”  [kinda like drop in / pickup hockey, ha ha.]   D recently moved to Austin, TX for a wonderful job opportunity, and her amazing energy just seems to swoop in whenever it’s needed.  Here she was in town for a few days, with a spontaneous invitation for me to join her and K for a free, open house yoga session at Lila.  D is probably one of the few (well, more than a few) who can motivate me to wake up, meet at a Starbucks and whisk me away in the morning for something beautiful, new and fun.  That and the 5Ks that P inspired me to start doing a few years ago with her.  Yep, those two take the prize.

So before I could walk into the Starbucks at Carillon Point to grab a double-tall nonfat latte, D and K arrived to scoop me up and take me to yoga!  Which I have not done in nearly 9 years!  In fact, I tried yoga for the first time the same weekend I started learning to play hockey.  What an intense Saturday-Sunday that was, pushing myself physically in two different ways I’d never tried before.  In fact, I had a third opportunity that fall in 2003 to join a friend for belly dancing lessons but my dance card was full.  I like to joke with people that I had a choice between belly dancing and hockey, and hockey won out.

So here we were at Lila (LEE la), which means Divine Play (I learned that from their website).  I was so grateful that K had an extra yoga mat for me to borrow – mine is buried deep somewhere in my garage.  I was impressed with the studio layout, how friendly everyone was, the beautiful light streaming through the studio – I love the beautiful Madison Park neighborhood in Seattle – and how the instructor took the time to greet each of us newcomers with a handshake, smile and personal welcome before we got started.

Oh man, what a wake up call!  The yoga memories of that introductory course nearly nine years ago came flooding back to me.  How inflexible I am…or where I actually am somewhat.  The poses – so hard to hold after a few cycles of repetition…if you have not tried yoga it is not just sitting and meditating – you work up a sweat!  But at the same time re-centering with your inner calm and confidence.  Inner glow.  And I remember the wise words of my instructor from 9 years ago when I would get frustrated at my lack of flexibility or difficulty holding a pose.  “Just give it 10 years,” she said in a soothing voice.  Aha!  That’s when I learned that yoga really and truly is NOT a quick fix.  Rather, it’s a lifelong practice and lifestyle.

It was a wonderful re-centering experience – just what I needed.  D and I headed back to the suburbs afterwards and grabbed a late breakfast at The Brief Encounter Cafe in Bellevue – a perfect place for hearty food, nice service and post-yoga sweats and leggings. 

And then I went home and took a two-hour nap.  I was stunned at how I was back home before noon.  So much of the day ahead…with a much-needed nap to celebrate Sunday.  And I smile, relishing the amazing friendships I have in my life.  Ahhhh, bliss.