Welcome to Day 1 of Amber’s 30 days of yoga support – Riding the precious waves of gratitude

Welcome to the beginning of our 30 day journey together.

Thank you for accepting my invitation – this is truly an invitation for you to become better acquainted with yourself and with the gifts of a practice infused with gratitude, as we explore our breath, movement, traditional and exploratory postures as well as some beautiful meditation practices.
Beginning on Thanksgiving Monday is no coincidence, as this 30 day challenge is anchored around the vibration of deep appreciation and the pure exchange of kindness in our experience of life.
We are living in wild times, but one thing that remains certain and can give us stability is our daily practice and the daily acknowledgement of gratitude.  
Gratitude can help us to understand the light at the center of the darkness – and to appreciate the darkness around the light.  Consciously exploring gratitude reminds us to celebrate the small miracles of our moment to moment life, and helps us to not take the gifts in our life for granted –  food, nourishment, friendship, family, a roof over our heads, the sun shining, a simple breath, the moonlight, the fire that warms your hearth – we have much to be thankful for, and it can be all to easy to forget.
For these next 30 days we’re going to cultivate and nurture an attitude of appreciation, remembering the importance of gratitude.  Often our biggest challenges can hold within them amazing gifts and growth.  The more we attune to what we feel gratitude towards, the easier it is to recognize these gifts, and the more it would seem we have to feel grateful for.   As we build on this practice, we attract more of what we need to feel supported in our heart of hearts, and we begin to notice we feel happier, more open to life,  and more connected to the people and the earth surrounding us.  
“Enough.  These few words are enough.  If not these words, this breath.  If not this breath, this sitting here.  This opening to the life we have refused again and again until now.  Until now.”
                                                                        David Whyte
Today we begin with setting intentions and connecting with our breath. I encourage you to grab a journal, take a few deep breaths, acknowledge and embrace the life in front of you – even if just one tiny element of your life, and let us begin.  Click here to view today’s practice video.  
If you want to follow along with the whole 30 day challenge, daily practices will be posted on my patreon page
(as above)
If you’d like to just check in throughout the 30 days; Day 1, Day 10, Day 15, Day 20 and Day 30 will be posted additionally here on our Surya Daya blog, as check in points.  Even if you just join me for today I AM SUPER GRATEFUL!
May these practices nourish you, bring you balance, and help you to feel more at home in yourself.
With so much love
Amber

Under The Oak Yoga

20200805_162819We have been feeling so grateful for our time spent under this most magical oak tree with YOU.  Our Outdoor Yoga sessions have been a highlight for us this summer.

This all-level class, from beginners to advanced students, consists of a gentler, flow combination of simple accessible poses to stretch and strengthen your body, mind & spirit as well as a soul nourishing relaxation supported by the birds, crickets and the winds softly flowing over us. Practicing with our feet on the earth and the trees as our practice companions gives us an extra boost in our mental emotional state, and a lift for our immune system.  There is no greater medicine than nature.

All you need is a water bottle, your own practice mat/blanket, and a willingness to release stress!

Our lead teacher for this class will be rotating weekly, you can check our  schedule to see whose teaching each week

WHEN: Wednesdays from 5:00 – 6:00 pm

September 2, September 9th ( we will be continuing into the fall – stay tuned for more dates)

WHERE: A private outdoor space close to downtown Almonte,
Exact Location will be disclosed to registrants through email 24 hours before scheduled class.

COST: $12 (HST Inclusive)

Maximum of 16 participants, with social distancing measures in place.

** pre-registration and payment are required due to maximum number (based on health regulations) 💚  Book soon as spaces will fill fast

20200805_162641Please click here to look at our calender and decide when you’d like to join us.

Search for the dates you’d like to attend and our handy system will walk you through the registration process.  Please double check the date before you complete your registration.  If you don’t receive a confirmation email, just send us an email and we’ll make sure you’re registered for the night’s you’d like to attend.

If you have any problems, or would prefer to pay through e-transfer, just send us an email at info@suryadaya.ca and we can answer any questions and help you with the process.

 

These classes are weather dependent, if there is rain or inclement weather you will be notified by email (a minimum of one hour before the class start time) if the class needs to be cancelled, in which case we’ll transfer your credit to another outdoor yoga session of your choice, we can offer you a refund, or it will be available on your account for an in studio class when we can safely practice indoors again.

We require a minimum of 48 hours cancellation notice, and no shows will still be charged for the class registered for, due to limited space.

Just a reminder: Mats and supports will not be available, you will need to bring your own mat or practice blanket

Bringing People Together Through Yoga

Thanks to our community partners, we have FREE yoga this afternoon, Wednesday, August 26th,  from 2:00 – 3:00 pm at Gemmill Park (by the baseball diamond), brought to you by Carebridge Community Support and The Mississippi Mills Youth Centre, we are so honoured to be partnering up with these incredible and invaluable organizations in our community.

This program is supported by the Forever Young Foundation, and it is our hopes programs such as this one will help to bridge the gap between generations, working to build stronger communities.  These classes are intended to bring people of all ages together through an accessible yoga based movement practice; connecting, cultivating understanding and building resilience together.

Amber will be leading this all levels yoga class, to support you to invite a sense of calm into your body, and release any stress and tension as we prepare for the upcoming fall.

We hope to see you there!!

For The Love Of Water

We live in an amazing town, with The Mississippi River running through the heart of our community.  It’s important to take some time to reflect on our relationship with this essential element; essential to our survival, the survival of our planet, and the survival of all living species we share our home, the Earth, with.

We are so honoured to partner with Ocean Bridge to offer you this all levels 2 part yoga series dedicating our practice to water conservation and education on how we can all do our part to protect our waters.  Join us tomorrow morning from 8:30 – 9:30 am (Tuesday, August 25th) for a beautiful and accessible yoga set honouring the rhythms of the water.

Ocean Bridge connects Canadian youth from coast to coast to coast empowering them to make a difference towards ocean and water conservation. Each year 160 youth (ages 18-30) form a national team engaged in co-creating and delivering service projects for their home communities and two immersive expeditions addressing Ocean Health and Ocean Literacy in Canada.

We have so many amazing designated natural conservation areas within, as well as just outside of our town.  The Mill of Kintail is but one example of our many resources here in the Ottawa Valley, they have some wonderful initiatives and are a great  connection for learning more about the importance of our actions in light of water conservation.  Please take the time to increase your own understanding so we can all be an active participant in protecting our waters.

The classes in this mini series are free to the public and an amazing opportunity to learn more about water conservation, to move your body and explore postures that will deepen your connection with the water that flows through you, to connect with community in a meaningful way, and to reconnect with the water we are all a part of. We’ll be meeting at our own local waters,  at  Metcalfe Geoheritage Park

We hope you can join us, as Ali from Ocean Bridge and Amber from our studio, lead you through these classes!  Please bring your own mat, whatever supports you will need, and your own water bottle.

We’ll practice with a socially responsible distance between all participants, and masks are optional.  These classes are weather dependent, although if a little rain is falling it will simply support our practice!

 

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Under The Oak Yoga

We are so excited to share some Outdoor Yoga time with YOU, under the most magical oak tree

This all-level class, from beginners to advanced students, will be a gentler, flow combination of simple accessible poses to stretch and strengthen your body, mind & spirit. Practicing with our feet on the earth and the trees as our practice companions gives us an extra boost in our mental emotional state, and a lift for our immune system.  There is no greater medicine than nature.

All you need is a water bottle, your own practice mat/blanket, and a willingness to release stress!

Our lead teacher for this class will be rotating weekly, you can check our  schedule to see whose teaching each week

WHEN: Wednesdays from 5:00 – 6:00 pm

August 26, September 2 ( we will be continuing into the fall – stay tuned for more dates)

WHERE: A private outdoor space close to downtown Almonte,
Exact Location will be disclosed to registrants through email 24 hours before scheduled class.

COST: $12 (HST Inclusive)

Maximum of 16 participants, with social distancing measures in place.

** pre-registration and payment are required due to maximum number (based on health regulations) 💚  Book soon as spaces will fill fast

Please click here to look at our calender and decide when you’d like to join us.

Search for the dates you’d like to attend and our handy system will walk you through the registration process.  Please double check the date before you complete your registration.  If you don’t receive a confirmation email, just send us an email and we’ll make sure you’re registered for the night’s you’d like to attend.

If you have any problems, or would prefer to pay through e-transfer, just send us an email at info@suryadaya.ca and we can answer any questions and help you with the process.

typorama

These classes are weather dependent, if there is rain or inclement weather you will be notified by email (a minimum of one hour before the class start time) if the class needs to be cancelled, in which case we’ll transfer your credit to another outdoor yoga session of your choice, we can offer you a refund, or it will be available on your account for an in studio class when we can safely practice indoors again.

We require a minimum of 48 hours cancellation notice, and no shows will still be charged for the class registered for, due to limited space.

Just a reminder: Mats and supports will not be available, you will need to bring your own mat or practice blanket

Did someone say SELF CARE???

I am so grateful you are here, honouring the journey and savouring every step along the way (yes, even the uncomfortable steps – it’s often when we learn the most).

Today I share with you a sweet little practice, the last recording from our cozy home in Almonte.  I have so much gratitude for this space that has nourished and nurtured my family, and has supported all the  live online classes and community yoga projects over the past few months.  So much gratitude.

Please join me for this precious little window of self care, and time together,  (to join in the practice click here)

A new chapter begins, and an opportunity to deepen my own practice, surrounded by the healing medicine of nature.   So much of my inspiration as a lifelong student, a teacher and as a massage therapist, comes from the lessons I learn from connecting with the collective energy found in the elements we are all a part of; the earth, the sacred forests, our precious waters, the air, the rhythms of the moon.

Taking time to simply sit, in awe of the miracles of life that surround us.

Our journey is many journeys, because everything we do affects something or someone else.  Learning to travel with dignity, with humility, and with respect for the creative energy in all things………..

There is life force in everything.  Everything is alive, animate, moving and, even if we can’t see that, we can learn to feel it.  When we do, we come to true awareness of our ongoing state of relationship.  That awareness lies beyond the brain.  We feel it in our spirits, our hearts.  It is there that the teachings live and learning occurs.

– Richard Wagamese (from One Native Life)

As we ponder our next steps as a studio and centre for well living in our community, we know in our hearts this next iteration will include a beautiful breadth of practices that reconnect us with our natural world and support us to simply sit, listen, and feel inwards.

A gentle reminder that I will be taking a 2 week break from my live online zoom classes from August 15th – August 28th while we transition, integrate and settle into our new nest.  I will be back offering live online classes August 29th (and into the fall), you can check our studio schedule here

We also have a few outdoor yoga offerings on Wednesdays through the summer!  Thank you to our community partners, we have FREE yoga on Wednesday afternoons from 2:00 – 3:00 pm at Gemmill Park (by the baseball diamond), brought to you by Carebridge Community Support and The Mississippi Mills Youth Centre, we are so honoured to be partnering up with these incredible and invaluable organizations in our community.  This program is supported by the Forever Young Foundation, and it is our hopes programs such as this one will help to bridge the gap between generations, working to build stronger communities.  These classes are intended to bring people of all ages together through an accessible yoga based movement practice; connecting, cultivating understanding and building resilience together.

As well we have our Under The Oak Yoga  back Wednesday August 26th (Please note there is no class this week Wed. Aug 19th).  A magical practice set on a private residence under the most majestic oak tree.  Join us for this opportunity to practice in community, come back home to your breath, and release stress and tension.  We will be offering these classes into the fall, weather dependent.  We limit our numbers for these sessions to offer them in a responsible way, and to help deepen the experience for you. preregistration is necessary.

Jenny and Simonne also continue to offer their amazing teachings through our adapted online live platform, you can register for their classes here.

If you have any questions, concerns,thoughts or feedback, we are always here, holding you in our hearts.

Everyday take some time to honour and give thanks to our true home – the earth, take time to nourish and nurture yourself – there is only one of you and you are pretty amazing, treat others with kindness – and remember to start with yourself.

Commit to your self care and see your light ripple out into the world.

So much love Amber, and all of us at Surya Daya

under the oak

Non – Negotiable Time For YOU

Sat Naam and Namaste Beautiful You

Happiness is a state of mind, so the real source of happiness must lie within the mind, not in external conditions.

– Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatoso

This is not always that easy to attain.  We all have a history and our own unique story that brought us here, to this moment in time.  I want to offer you a very gentle reminder to take some time for YOU.  We need to carve out windows for our self care, to access that state of happiness that lives inside of each of us, it just gets lost sometimes.  Did you know that your nervous system gets overwhelmed by the constant stimulation of our present day world; we start to break down if we don’t take time to restore equilibrium.  It is vital to our health to take the needed breaks in our day to re-calibrate, reconnect with our breath, and give ourselves space to let go of the stress we accumulate over time.  This can be as short as a 3 minute breath practice.

To join Amber for a simple little practice and a check in click here

The majority of individuals use only 1/3 of their lung capacity; we have forgotten how to breathe fully.  People are often unconscious to their breath, letting the chaotic external rhythm of life dictate their internal rhythm.  When our bodies are under a lot of stress, or we’re deeply concentrating we often hold our breath, or revert to rapid shallow breathing, which in turn creates more internal stress on the body and the mind.  Only when you’re breathing fully is your body actually capable of responding positively to stress.  Taking a simple full deep breath helps a person to relax, decrease their stress, and calm their mind.

HOW TO BREATHE FOR RELAXATION:  THE FULL RESTING BREATH – TECHNIQUE

  1. Sit in a comfortable position, with your back as straight as supports you (using support if needed) – this allows for a greater ease in your breathing.
  2. Inhale slowly, through your nose – breathing deeply and consciously
  3. Take 5 seconds  – first fill the lower part of your lungs, feeling your abdomen push out as you inhale making space for your diaphragm, bring the breath to the middle of your lungs feeling your ribs expanding, now into your upper chest – the upper part of your lungs
  4. Slowly begin your exhale to a count of 5, allowing the air to leave from your upper chest, your rib cage, and now slowly pulling your abdomen back and in towards your spine – allowing your body to rid itself of any stale O2 and stagnation in the bottom of your lungs
  5. Briefly pause after the exhale, and allow the next inhalation to begin
  6. Repeat steps A to E at least 5 times in repetition, 3 times a day
  7. If it helps, while introducing this breath into your body, do so with your eyes closed and simply concentrate and feel the inflow and outflow of your breath, if your mind wanders, gently bring your focus back to your breath.

Did you know that a seemingly simple resting breath, as described above, provides your body with the following benefits:

  • Purification of the blood stream
  • Relaxes the chest and diaphragm
  • Allows a more relaxed state in the muscles of the chest wall
  • Strengthens the lungs, thorax and abdomen
  • Increases resistance to colds
  • Calms the nervous system, calms the mind
  • Aids digestion, massages your internal organs
  • Increases confidence
  • Clears phlegm
  • Helps to lift depression

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With so much love

Amber

 

Introducing Alexandra Grace

We are so incredibly excited to introduce Alexandra Grace to our community at Surya Daya.  Alexandra is one of the kindest, warmest and most compassionate humans you will meet.  You may have found yourself in her company at some of our classes and celebrations over the past year.  We are honoured to have her joining us as part of our teaching tribe, and with her growing involvement with our studio.

Alexandra is a passionate yogi, following her joy-filled personal practice for over 15 years. She shares her experience from practicing in studios, ashrams, and on retreats around the world.

IMG_9429In 2017 she received her Yoga Teacher Training Certificate in Hatha and Vinyasa Lineage at Union Yoga in Toronto lead by an esteemed faculty.

Grateful for her practice and teachers that have inspired and shaped her as a practitioner and teacher.

She aspires to follow in their teachings and inspire her students to connect within and feel empowered, with the beauty of Yoga’s benefits; strengthening mind- body, through breath and movement.

In addition to her passion for Yoga, Alexandra is surrounded by her two young boys, loving husband, family and friends.

Spending her time outdoors, and enjoying the special community of Almonte.

She will be leading our outdoor yoga session this coming week, Wednesday, July 29th, from 5:00 – 6:00 pm.  Collaborating with Surya Daya’s outdoor yoga series, “Under the Oak Yoga” combines two of Alex’s greatest loves: being in nature, and mindful movement.

We hope you’ll join us in giving her a warm loving welcome to our yoga family.

If you’d like to find out more information, and join us at our special summer series “Under the Oak Yoga”, please click here

Welcoming Back Jessie Carson

Jessie Carson 002 (1)We are so excited to welcome Jessie Carson back to our teaching team. Jessie has been teaching yoga for close to 20 years, and she brings a wealth of wisdom, experience, and compassion to her teaching.  She is an amazing writer and has  facilitated writing and yoga workshops (which we hope she’ll be offering more of in the future, definitely planting seeds), as well as sessions on yoga philosophy with us in previous years.  Jessie is also on the teaching team at Prana Shanti in Ottawa, and helps to support the teacher training programs.

Along with being a yoga teacher, Jessie is a mother, a reader, a writer, and a wonderer.

She spends much of her free time walking (it’s likely you have seen her with her family and dog Charlie roaming the local streets and forests).

Her steady and clear guidance encourages practitioners to both challenge themselves and release the tension to create ease in the body and mind. Having taught since 2002, she is adept at working with students of all levels and can support practitioners in establishing and growing their practice based on the needs of their own bodies.

Jessie will be guiding you at our first Yoga Under The Oak Session, on Wednesday July 15th.  We look forward to her continued and growing involvement with our studio. Please join us to give her a warm and loving welcome, she is an amazing part of our community at Surya Daya and in Almonte on a whole.

We’re feeling very blessed.

Studio Updates

“In the end though, maybe we must all give up trying to pay back the people in this world who sustain our lives.  In the end, maybe it’s wiser to surrender before the miraculous scope of human generosity and just keep saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as we have voices”
Elizabeth Gilbert
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Thank you to one of our many angels, Chris Hume, who created this amazing piece.  It was born from the wisdom of her heart, as a symbol of hope.  Chris very generously donated 50% of the sale of this beautiful work of art to our studio to help to support our operating costs and start up for when we find our new space.  Thank you so much Chris, you are such an integral part of our community.
We are so grateful for all the love and support we have received from all of you during this time.  There are so many of you to thank, and we can’t wait to celebrate each and everyone of you when we can come together in community again.
Please feel in your heart all the love and appreciation in our hearts.
We are excited to officially announce we will be having some outdoor yoga sessions this summer!
Space will be limited to the first 10 people who register to offer these classes responsibly with our current climate.
The lead teacher will be rotating each week and we’re so excited to welcome some new energy to our teaching team as well as welcome back some amazing guides who will be rejoining our teaching tribe, stay tuned for more details.
Did I mention how excited we are…….
The cost for these sessions will be $10/person (HST inclusive) and prepayment is necessary to reserve your spot.  We are so grateful to Christa Lowry for giving us her blessing offering these community classes.
I would like to share a sweet and simple pranayama practice with you,  a lovely breath exercise, known as bumblebee breath (or Brahmari) to help to nurture your nervous system and calm your mind.
To view the practice click here
I also wanted to share a gentle mindfulness class with you, culminating with a guided relaxation, from Amber’s living room sessions.  It’s a beautiful and very accessible practice to help calm the mind and prepare you for a restorative sleep.
To Join Amber click here
We continue to offer our online live zoom classes through the summer, and possibly into the fall (we would love to hear your feedback, and if this is something you’d like to see continue even once we can hold studio classes again)
Our live online class schedule will be updated weekly, please bookmark our schedule for easy reference, and note you do need to register for all classes a minimum of 6 hours before.
To review:
a little more information about our zoom classes

It is important to for us to continue to make our support and our yoga resources accessible and available to YOU, regardless of your present situation.  This is a time like no other where we need these tools and techniques, and the healing that happens when we dive a little deeper into our practice.

 

If you have been affected financially by COVID-19, and if it would be uncomfortable for you to have to start paying for our live classes, then we want you to simply register and show up  – there is no pressure of payment.

 

We invite you to sign up for the classes you’d like to attend in the following way.

  • To sign up for the Live Stream Class first go to our class schedule
  • Second, just click on the class (es) you’d like to attend that week (or the weeks ahead) and the system will walk you through the registration process.  Please note you do need to reserve your spot a minimum of 6 hours before the class start time.   It’s easy, and only requires your name and email address to reserve your spot.
  • Once you have signed up for, and reserved your spot for any of our  classes, you will receive a confirmation email stating the Class Name, Date and Time you are signed up for.
  • 20 minutes before the classes you have registered for,  you will receive a second email with the Zoom access link and password for the class.  Click on the link to join the class via Zoom.

 

Payment options

 

We do have several different tiers of consideration for payment that we are offering.  If you are able to contribute a little, we would ask you to consider our pay what you can model – where you can simply send us an etransfer in the amount that you’re able, either class by class, or as a lump sum amount.  As I mentioned, our primary intent is to help support you right now, whatever that needs to look like with your present situation.

  • If you have an existing Class Pass in our system, we will be using those passes automatically (apart from the monthly unlimited passes unless you have directed us otherwise). Once you’re registered we can better keep track of your attendance and more efficiently use your pass.  However, if you would prefer to NOT use your studio passes until we can do in person community classes, then please send us an email at info@suryadaya.ca and we will continue to keep  your pass on hold during this time, but you still need to register. 
  • We have created a new Online live class option – with a drop – in fee of $7.00 to purchase click here or a 10 class live on-line pass package for $70 to purchase click here.  These new online passes can be purchased through our website or you can send an e-transfer to info@suryadaya.ca.  These passes do not expire and will extend  beyond the closure to once we’re able to practice together again for our continued online options.
  • If you don’t have a studio pass, no worries and no stress – remember we’re a yoga studio, the last thing we want to create for you is stress.  We have our pay what you can option  (these payments can be sent via e-transfer to info@suryadaya.ca or you can mail cheques made out to Surya Daya, PO Box 867, Almonte, ON, K0A 1A0.  Just send us an email to let us know, no amount is to small, here you get to choose.

AGAIN:

  • Once you have signed up for, and reserved your spot for any of our  classes, you will receive a confirmation email stating the Class Name, Date and Time you are signed up for.
  • 20 minutes before the classes you have registered for,  you will receive a second email with the Zoom access link and password for the class.  Click on the link to join the class via Zoom.
  • You will not be prompted to make a payment in the registration process, that is done either by etransfer, sending an email if you are mailing us a cheque, or by credit card on our website
  • If you register for any of Amber’s classes (Tuesday afternoon or Saturday morning), even if you’re not able to attend, she is now sending out a link to a recorded version of the class for you to practice along with her at any time.  These will be for personal practice only, but you are required to register to receive the recorded session.

If ANY of this is confusing, then please take a deep breath and take your time reading over all this information a second time. If it is still confusing, then please give me us a call at 613-451-2891 or send us an email at info@suryadaya.ca

We are here to support you, through this time and beyond.  We are excited at what the future holds for all of us.  It will look different, but hopefully we are all being given this time of uncertainty to clarify what is truly important as we move forward in our lives.

Stay tuned……..

Take good care, always,

With so much love, Amber, and all of us at Surya Daya.