Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Yoga Shala

Hello and Happy Tuesday ;)

I'm exhausted and about to hit the sack, but wanted to Finally post a few 'before photos' of the shala that Jessica took for us the day we started painting the shala. I will try to remember to take some 'after photos' in the next day or two and post them for you to see!

Stoked - all painting is finally done! Bathroom, yoga room, baseboards, floors, doors, you name it. Fans have been installed, electrical issues resolved, fridge and water cooler brought in...Tomorrow is dedicated to the outside of the shala - painting the fences and hopefully gonna do some work on the lawn. It will be a true miracle If I can get everything done in time for the opening on Saturday!

Miss Connie Painting!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


As I did my practice this morning I was filled with overwhelming feelings of gratitude for Guruji and all that he gave to this world. I don't have the words to describe my appreciation for this man, this yoga, this life.

I know that the family is arranging for students to be able to come pay their last respects to Guruji on May 31st in Mysore...I'd give anything to be able to get out to India at the end of the Month to pay my respects to Guruji. As I was doing more painting at the Yoga Shala this morning I couldn't help but start to cry. The Grand Opening of the Yoga Shala falls on Saturday, May 30th...but I'd postpone the opening by a few weeks if I could afford to get out to India - but right now that is not a possibility for me. Makes me really sad to know that I just can't make it happen right now.

I am, however, very grateful that the space I'm creating will be a true dedication to Guruji and his teachings. I am honored that Sharath has blessed me to teach Ashtanga Yoga in the tradition of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. I am blessed to have been able to study with Guruji in his lifetime and to have such an amazing teacher in Sharath. And I am overwhelmed with emotion as I embark on the creation of this yoga space in Orlando, florida, on my own, in order to spread the traditional teachings of my beloved Guruji.

Monday, May 18, 2009


Shri. K. Pattabhi Jois passed away Sunday, May 17, 2009 in Mysore, India.

I celebrate Guruji, his life, his teachings, his spirit. His gift to the world, Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, has changed the lives of so many lost souls. When I found this practice, or should I say this practice found me, I knew this was the beginning for me - the beginning of my life's journey and work. It is the one thing that has helped me connect to my spirit.

Guruji's work is the greatest gift to this entire world. And his teaching does not end here. He spent his life spreading his love and passion for this practice - in order that it may benefit those who wish to embrace it. It is for us now to carry forth in our lives with even more passion and dedication than ever before so that his life's work will always live on in our hearts, our souls, and our spirts.
For the last six years I have done this yoga daily for the betterment of myself. Through the years I began to teach this yoga to others in order that it may touch a small few as it has touched me. It has always been a duty, in my eyes, to spread this tradition - for it is such a beautiful gift I have been blessed to receive. I feel honored to continue spreading this yoga to the world so that more people will be touched by the work of this beautiful man.

God is with Guruji, God is in Guruji, God and Guruji are within all of us. Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti


Guruji's Biography - taken from kpjayi.org
Sri Krishna Pattabhi Jois was born on the full moon day of July, 1915, Guru Purnima day. His ancestral village, Kowshika, near Hassan in Karnataka State, is inhabited by maybe 500 people and has one main street. At one end of the street is a Vishnu temple, just next to Pattabhi Jois' home. At the far end of the street, just 100 yards away, lies a small Ganapati temple, and just opposite, a Siva temple. Both are several hundreds years old, and are the focus of the village.
Pattabhi Jois's father was an astrologer and a priest, who acted as the pujari for many of the families in the village. From an early age, as most brahmin boys, Pattabhi Jois was taught the Vedas and Hindu rituals.

When Guruji was 12 years old, he attended a yoga demonstration at his middle school in Hassan. The next day he went to meet the great yogi who had given the demonstration, a man by the name of Sri T. Krishnamacharya, who had learned yoga for nearly eight years from his Guru, Rama Mohan Brahmachari in a cave in Tibet. For the next two years, Guruji learned from his Guru every day. When Guruji turned 14, he had his brahmin thread ceremony.

Krishnamacharya left Hassan to travel and teach, and Guruji left his village to go to Mysore.
Guruji wished to attend the Sanskrit University of Mysore. With two rupees in his pocket, he left with two friends. They traveled the 100 plus kilometers by bike, over dirt roads. For the first year or two, life was very difficult. With very little money, he begged for his food from some of the brahmin houses. Guruji attended classes and did his studies. Then, around 1930, he went to a yoga demonstration and saw that it was his Guru. He came forward and prostrated, and they recommenced their relationship, and Guruji his yoga studies.

The Maharaja of Mysore, Krishna Rajendra Wodeyar, had fallen ill. He learned that there was a great yogi who had come to Mysore. Krishnamacharya was called to him, and duly cured him. The Maharaja became a great patron of his and built him a yogashala (school of yoga) on the grounds of the Palace Art Gallery. Guruji was also beckoned to teach the Maharaja on occasion, and was called upon several times to give yoga demonstrations. The Maharaja, who had taken a liking for Guruji, told him, "I want you to teach yoga at the Sanskrit College. You teach. I will give you a scholarship to go to school, free food in my mess hall and a salary." Guruji, very happy, asked permission from his Guru. Krishnamacharya approved, and the Yoga Department of the Sanskrit College began on March 1, 1937. He continued as the head until his retirement in 1973.

From 1937 until 1973, Guruji earned his professorship at the University, granting him the title of Vidvan. He married, in a love marriage, Savitramma, who came from a long line of Sanskrit scholars. Her grandfather was the Sanskrit and philosophy teacher to the last Shankaracharya of Kanchi, Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswati. They had three children, Manju, Ramesh, and Saraswati. Saraswati is the mother of Sharath, born in 1971, who is now Guruji's co-director of their school in Mysore.

In 1964, Andre Van Lysbeth bacame the first Westener to study with Guruji. Soon after that, more Europeans came. Around 1972, the first Americans came, after meeting Manju at Swami Gitananda's ashram in Pondicherri. It was at that point that ashtanga yoga began spreading in America, starting in California, and then later emerging in Hawaii. In 1975, Guruji and Manju made their first trip to America. Over the next 25 years, the practice spread through the United States, France, Germany, Russia, Japan, Israel, Chile, England, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, etc. Guruji spent his life teaching this same method that he learned from Krishnamacharya in 1927.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Back Online :)

After several days without internet access ;0 - I am now back online :)

While there is something really nice about being away from the cyber world for a few days...not so much so when it is unexpected, out of your CONTROL, and due to a faulty router and crappy brighthouse service :( I'm not gonna wax happy about my encounter and delayed service with this company b/c it will do little good now...all that matters is that I have a new router, and I am back online!

It has been a long week otherwise...work has been busy and every free second has been consumed with running errands getting things for the yoga shala, going over to the shala to make sure things were being done right, or at all, etc.....When I stopped by this afternoon all the walls were finally stripped of the mirrors, and the fans were about to be installed. I am hoping the fans will be up tomorrow morning when I go in to paint...But before the paint can begin I'll need to srub down the place once or twice...and then can commence painting! I won't be alone though - my friends Connie and Linda are coming out to help and hopefully one more person will lend a good set of hands.

Hope all is well in your world - wish you a wonderful weekend ahead!

Saturday, May 09, 2009




I just got back from my day of errands and boy am I pooped! Finally checked out the huge Whole Foods off Sand Lake and ended up with a full tummy (from samples ;) and a basket full of goods...I then proceeded to make my way to IKEA, where I got loads of stuff for the Yoga Shala and walked out without breaking the bank! Do keep in mind that I made a rather large list of goods I still need to purchase as I was walking around the store - and with no pen and paper texting myself proved helpful! On my way home (well not really on my way) I stopped by the future Yoga Shala to see how progress was coming with getting the landowners things cleared out...Things are coming but not done - Tom told me he'd have everything out this week and have it cleaned and ready to be painted this weekend. I also discovered that the window I thought was broken isn't actually broken, which is a very good thing. The light I bought today will go in the space nicely and If I buy two ceiling fans Tom's handman will install them...Glad I didn't buy the orange shower curtain I almost purchased at IKEA b/c there is a shower door in there already... Still so much to do...so little time...it shall be done :)

Lazy Saturday

Hello and Happy Saturday ;)

I slept in til 8am! So sweet ;)

I sat in front of my computer reading emails trying to convince myself to do the laundry, dishes, and misc house cleaning for some time....couldn't seem to find the motivation...until...I compromised (with myself) that if I did my chores I could go to the Farmers Market in Winter Park and then to Ikea for lighting for the yoga shala! I am happy to announce chores are done and I'm about to take a shower and head out for a day of...chores??? I seem to now feel as though I didn't win much here ;) No, I am looking forward to the farmers market and Ikea, just not the weekend traffic in Orlando.

In other news, Kwang and I went on our first official date since I returned to America - we had dinner at my favorite resturant - Seasons 52! And while enjoying the lovely atmosphere, great company, and good flatbread, I discovered an amazing wine! Can anyone say, Woop Woop? Well, that is the name of my new found love - this little Shiraz is nearly PERFECT! Check out their website www.woopwoop.com.au.


Wednesday, May 06, 2009


Please send your love and prayers to Guruji and the family. Guruji has been admitted to ICU and Sharath has cancelled his world tour to return to Mysore to be with Guruji and the family at this time.

Sharath has asked that people do not call - updates will be posted on www.kpjayi.org so please be considerate and check the website for updates as they come.

The Yoga Shala

Classes will begin on June 1st at The Yoga Shala

Doors will open at 6am and adjustments will begin at 6:30am. Students can arrive anytime between 6:30am and 8:00am but need to complete their yoga practice by 8:45am.

New Students - please arrive at the shala at 7:00am

** I am working on The Yoga Shala's website and will announce when it is ready ;)

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

The Yoga Shala - Grand Opening May 30th

Grand Opening Celebration of The Yoga Shala!
Saturday, May 30th from 10am to 2pm. Come join me in our grand opening celebration event!

1255 Michigan Avenue, Winter Park, Florida 32789

Say Hello to Xander Jakob Klein!

My best friend Sasha gave birth to a healthy baby boy last week!

Xander Jakob Klein was born on Friday, May 1st. He came about a week early, and weighed in at 5 1/2 pounds. He is simply gorgeous!