The Ultimate Swag for Yoga DogsWhat’s the ultimate swag for your downward facing dog?

Custom-made Yoga-themed dog collars! These aren’t just rad. They aren’t just colourful. These yoga-themed dog collars are not just awesome looking, great quality, cute and unique to your pooch… The ultimate swag for your doggy is also a statement of kindness. In getting some awesome stylings for your pup, you’ll also be helping to save others.

Together with hotdogsalldressed, Tanto (my pooch) and I have created something special for all of the downward facing dogs in the world! ❤️✌🏻
These custom-made dog collars are tried and tested. They are virtually indestructible and great for any weather conditions. Tanto wears his in the ocean, rolling through sand and mud and it still looks pristine.

yoga dog lotus collarTanto-Dog-Yoga-SwagEarn karma points with your purchase because all profits are going to rescuing puppies in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica! (Where Tanto is from)
I’m so stoked with how these came out and even more excited to start supporting the dog rescue initiatives in the little beach town I love.  Get one today for your yoga buddy!! They come in all different colours and sizes!! Click here to check them out!!

 

AND… in case you’re still scrolling, here are some incredible cute pictures of Tanto. He’s my best friend. He loves yoga. He’s the ultimate yoga dog- but your dog can be too, with the ultimate yoga dog swag. They can wag their tales in their new yoga swag. Swag wags. Lauren Rudick & Dog Tanto december-11-2016-19-of-49 maine-2016-5-of-25 STCR June 2016 (36 of 43)

Dream Tiny Home Live Simply

santa-teresa-3-of-8Every day  purple flowers.

As a child I was enamoured with magical places to be found in the natural world. Imagination was never a favourite game, I was always seeking exquisite landscape. My dreams were of oceans and mountains and floating on top of the clouds amongst rainbows. Escapism was the forest. My earliest memory of being truly happy and at peace was laying in a field of daisies by myself in Maine.

Offering an opportunity to have my own sacred space, my parents let me create a “secret garden” behind a playhouse in our backyard. Supporting my efforts my mom called some of her friends who allowed me to trim cuttings from their gardens to take to mine. The secret garden started off being all purple, I wanted to have a special purple place to feel magic every summer day. My mom surprised me one day with a concrete bench to lay on in this place. For my 11th birthday, years after the garden was blooming, my father crafted me an arched wooden gate to enter my magic land. By that time, the garden had cycles: in early June it would be yellow, by late June the pink flowers; foxglove, mini roses, would come up and by July, full bloom, everything was purple.

Now I spend much of the year in Costa Rica and I hadn’t gardened since my secret garden. But on the property I rent I was given permission to. So I planted trees, birds of paradise, coconut palms, red leafy things, all scavenged and clipped from the jungle. Everything comes from something and somewhere else, a sort of symbiotic honor system. When I first arrived on this property, it was practically a desert. 1 year later, I live in an enchanting jungle land.

I grew up in the city. I never expected to move to a town with just 1 dirt road. I never thought I’d leave a beautiful apartment in Montreal with a view of the city and expansive closet space for a shipping container on a small mound of dirt. It happened organically, naturally. Slowly and perfectly and I have found home. It has been a year since moving to this space. I’ve drawn pathways and moved rocks, shovelled dirt and planted trees. My blood and sweat have literally poured into this space and sometimes I even cry tears of joy that today, this is my reality.

Inside, I decided I wanted the place to feel light, airy, cozy, almost ethereal. It has little bits of me and love from friends and reminders to stay joyful. The indoor colour scheme would be white and gold. I  painted the “live simply” sign to remind myself every day to keep it simple: say less. Be kind. Seek happiness. Look for the good. Have less stuff.

I painted the moon phases because my body here is so in sync with the moon. It was in this place that I truly discovered my connection to femininity, to my sense of being a woman and to how it truly feels to share sacred spaces with other divine ladies. It was here that I also discovered how connected we each are to the natural world and how our bodies ebb and flow with our outside environment.

The big dream catcher was a stunning gift from my friend Madi. She always reminds me to relax, to keep chasing dreams and not to let emotions get the better of me. The little one, from Canada an ode to where I come from. Add some favourite books, twinkly lights, travel scrabble and truly I’ve created my own little haven.

If any of you are planning a trip out here, there’s a similar container on Airbnb that I manage.

I have embraced a far simpler life with many less things but way more nature. I walk on the beach every day as part of my morning ritual. I meditate on rocks and snuggle my dog in the hammock on the porch. I eat beans and rice more days than not.

I never planned for it but I guess I have been moving toward this life all my life. It feels expansive. It feels like evolution of my spirit and mostly, it feels like home.
I realized, there are some easy ways to make any place feel like home.
how to create a dream home even in a tiny homeHow to create a dream home even in a tiny home
  1. Keep it simple: It doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated. A few choice items that are special or meaningful to you in some way will make you feel more at home. They will remind you of why the space is so cozy
  2. Less is more: Didn’t I just say keep it simple? It goes beyond just stuff. Have less, keep un uncluttered space. You don’t need to be a minimalist but please, don’t be a maximalist either.
  3. Make the outside as beautiful as the inside. If you have an outdoor space, take care of it. It is an extension of your home. Make the outside part of the inner workings of the space. If you don’t have an outdoor area, jazz up your front door or welcome mat. Something as simple as a wreath or a nice mat will make your place really feel like your own
  4. Invest in GOOD sheets. We sleep every night on our sheets. EVERY NIGHT. If you’re going to invest anywhere, invest in a peaceful night’s rest. Your bed should be an inviting, comfy and happy space. Choose pillows and a duvet you love. This is the place to splurge. Make sure to get quality sheets that make you feel happy and safe every time you tuck yourself in.
  5. Create rituals and special spaces. Creating special habits or specific places for specific activities will help you really make use of your space, however big or small it might be. One thing that helps me feel at home in 200sq feet is having designated spaces. For example, a daybed to watch movies, I made it out of palettes! I ONLY eat in the kitchen (also because of bug factor). The bed is ONLY for sleeping and loving. No food, no work, no phones in bed. I keep flowers on my desk at all times.

It’s these little bits that make my space really feel like my home. It didn’t take much, just love and some thought. One thing hasn’t changed though since I was that hopeful 8-year-old, purple is still my favourite.  So I planted forget-me-nots all along the path to my house. Every morning they bloom so saturated that it is almost hard to look at them and by afternoon the colour fades slightly and they fall.

The flowers, like so much about life down here,  are a reminder of impermanence, an ode to appreciating the here and now. But most importantly, they feel to me like magic because now at home, every day, there are purple flowers.

 

Lauren Rudick Yoga in Portugal, European Yoga Tour
Portugal, what a place! For some reason visiting Portugal never made it to my travel wish list. Maybe because it’s not the most popular stop on the classic western Europe pub/bar crawl many Canadians take in their 20’s. Or maybe because when I is take my very first backpacking trip in Europe I wasn’t surfing back then. In any case, it is now a location that I cannot wait to return to!

Nature, history, architecture, culture and incredible food are just the shortlist of why Portugal is awesome. In one day you can surf in the morning then visit castles and palaces with pause for espresso and custard pastries. Afterward, stroll through perfectly kept gardens and have a wine and cheese aperitif. You can cap off the night by listening to traditional melancholic music, called Fado, live, while sipping cherry liquor out of chocolate cups in a spot that is just off of a cobblestone street and most likely the converted estate of a nobleman.

I was blown away.

Lauren Rudick Portugal Pasteis Belem PastriesI arrived in Lisbon to a warm welcome from my hosts, Marina and Reyes, founders of Yoga Fool. Super jetlagged and totally out of it, I decided to stroll through the neighborhood of Belem. Marina told me I had to try the famous Portugese pastries called Pasteis de Nata and that the spot to get them was called Pasteis de Belem. The spot was packed. I was a little overwhelmed.

In front of me a girl walked in and asked a table. Hearing her speak English, I asked if I could join her. As karma would have it, she was a bright down-to-earth yoga teacher from Ireland. We sipped our coffees and shared stories into the evening. By nightfall we visited the Monastery a few meters away. I liked Portugal already.

The weekend started and it was a busy one of yoga workshops. The location that Marina and Reyes chose was an historic building and climbing to the studio area we passed tiled walls with the history of the structure painted right on them. The yoga community who attended were warm, welcoming and full of life. Of course, after the workshops we had some wine and dinner at a local restaurant. It looked like an old wine cellar from the baroque era and adorning the walls were eclectic portraits of random men. It was such a gem!

The workshop weekend ended and as per usual I had no plan. I google image searched “Portugal” and a photo of some kind of medieval round structure came up. That was inspiration enough and I decided to follow the photo. It led me to the town of Sintra and the Quinta da Regaleira. The photo I had seen was of the intrinsic well designed to represent an assent to heaven. I explored the well and the whole of Quinta da Regaleira.  The place was absolutely magical. Underground tunnels to get lost in, green lakes, frescos, grottos, gardens, palaces and structures the likes of which I had never seen.

Sintra is a historic town with a microclimate that makes it a touch more humid than the rest of the country and a whole lot more magical. Moss and vines grow everywhere. When the sunlight hits a building or tree, golden sparkles glisten in it’s moisture. In Sintra I had the pleasure of staying at Quinta das Murtas. Originally a wedding present to a young couple of nobility, it was acquired from the great great grandchildren of that same couple and converted into a family run bed & breakfast years later. The family members who tend the home are kind and passionate about the place. It is clear that they care deeply for the town of Sintra and the bed & breakfast they up keep.  Speaking of breakfast, the Portuguese love their sweets, so Quinta das Murtas did not disappoint. Along with fruit, cereal and cheeses, there was fresh baked cakes every day starting from 8am.

Sintra was all my little girl fairy tale dreams come true. I visited the Quinta de Peña, my first castle visit ever! I watched the sunset from the turrets and fall to the ocean in the distance. My favorite place of all though was the Monserrate palace. For almost an entire day I had all of the grounds to myself. Gardens featuring flora from all over the world, an old chapel in ruins reminiscent of a gothic Angor Wat, and an inspiring palace with a view. I expected tiny pixie peoples to buzz around me at any moment. The energy of Monserrate was really special. There was a joyful energy in the air. It was so obvious that the whole estate was built simply for enjoyment and to encourage relaxation, happiness and inspiration. For me, it did just that.

What’s more to love about Portugal? It was so safe. As a woman who has traveled to over 40 countries alone, I don’t often feel as easy and free as I did in Portugal. It was freeing to walk alone at night through lamp lit alleyways and not have any weird scenarios running through my head that might make a good episode of Law & Order. The people are friendly, kind, polite, welcoming and harmless in the best ways possible. The food was fabulous, the climate was comfortable. I am so grateful to have gotten the opportunity to explore such an enchanted land. I will definitely be heading back before too long!

Yoga workshops hosted by: Yoga Fool
Stay in Sintra provided by: Quinta das Murtas

November 5-6, 2016
Yoga Fool Portugal

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namste don jon'sNovember 25-30, 2016

JOIN LAUREN & THE DON JON’S FAMILY FOR AN UNFORGETTABLE TRIP!

PRICE STARTS AT $475USD

HOSTED AT THE SUPER FUN DON JON’S LODGE IN SANTA TERESA, COSTA RICA, THIS RETREAT IS A RUSTIC, FUN-FILLED EXPERIENCE!

YOUR RETREAT INCLUDES:

  • YOGA EVERY DAY IN THE TREEHOUSE
  • 5 NIGHTS AT DON JON’S LODGE
  • BREAKFAST DAILY
  • MONTEZUMA WATERFALL HIKE
  • 1 GROUP SURF LESSON

OPTIONAL ADD-ONS INCLUDE BICYCLE RENTALS, HORSEBACK RIDING, MASSAGE AND OTHER SPA TREATMENTS, FISHING EXCURSIONS, ZIP LINING, HIKING TRIPS ALL TO BE ARRANGED AT DON JON’S LODGE.

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP! 

ABOUT SANTA TERESA
Located on the Nicoya Peninsula, Santa Theresa is a surfer’s and beach seeker’s paradise. Endless miles of coastline for walking and some world-class surfing to catch the waves. With the jungle bordering the beach, hiking is certainly an option for the more intrepid yogi.


GETTING TO SANTA TERESA

There are several ways to get to Santa Teresa. Flying in to San Jose is easiest. From San Jose, getting to Santa Teresa is simple: either take the local bus ($15 from 7-10 bus station, leaving at 6am and 2pm daily) which includes a stunning ferry ride to the Nicola Peninsula. It is also very easy to arrange shuttle buses via zumatours.net, montezumaexpeditions.com or costaricashuttle.com. Shuttles cost $50 each way and will pick you up from your preferred destination and drop you off right at don Jon’s. Alternatively, fly Natureair or Sansa Airlines to Tambor (30-minute flight $50-$150) and take a taxi to Don Jon’s.  Please note that if your flight arrives in or leaves out of San Jose after 2pm before or after the retreat, you will need to stay overnight in San Jose.

  • NOT INCLUDED:
    • FLIGHT
    • TRAVEL INSURANCE (RECOMMENDED)
    • TRANSFERS TO SANTA TERESA & DON JON’S
    • ALCOHOL AND ITEMS OF A PERSONAL
      NATURE/SOUVENIRS
    • GRATUITIES
    • POSSIBLE OVERNIGHT IN SAN JOSE BEFORE OR AFTER THE RETREAT

ARE YOU READY? JOIN US!!! November 25-30, 2016
CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP! 

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