Let the >> Fire Burn Bright

I've had a little list of things collecting that I've meaning to share, and it seems they've hit critical mass.

Reading (1) > I recently finished Misadventures of a Garden State Yogi by Brian Leaf. It’s a humorous look at one guy’s journey from regular dude, to an ashram-living yogi at large. I really enjoyed the first half of the book, where he sort of bumbles around making discoveries about how transformative yoga truly can be. He ultimately uses it to manage his colitis and ADD symptoms. While I identified a lot with Brian in the first half of the book, the second half of the book has him going from ashram to ashram over a period of about 10 years, pursuing various healing modalities. It was a little bit harder to identify with him at that point; I’d rather read and learn from someone who is able integrate yoga into their everyday life. That said, if you are new to yoga and want to learn more about what it can maybe do for you, I definitely recommend this book to shed some light, with a dose of humor along the way. Ever since I finished this book, I’ve been bumbling a bit; starting books but not getting into them too much. Have you read any good books lately that you can recommend?

Coveting (2) > Trisha of Veranellies has a new line of homemade body products that look –and smell!- amazing called The Hive Botanicals. I’m thinking of putting an order in for the holidays, and sneaking in a thing or two for myself. Isn’t that always how holiday shopping goes? It does for me, anyway. I am loving the activated charcoal soap, and the peach lip balm sounds so amazing. I am so excited to support a fellow blogger trying to get her business going, while at the same time getting products I know my friends and family will love…what a good feeling!

Wearing (3) > I’ve kind of been digging velvet lately. I’m not sure why, but it looks and feels so luxurious, so why fight it? I recently picked up this scarf from LuLu’s, and have been trying to figure out how to wear it. The fabric is so fancy looking, everything I pair with it seems almost too casual! I also found a navy blue velvet blazer at a thrift store, which I’m thinking about busting out for Thanksgiving. The possibilities!

Feeling (4) > the Christmas spirit. Every year, from Dec. 26th until sometime in mid-November, the thought of Christmas seems overwhelming and gross. But somehow, every year, there is a day when all that changes and all of the sudden I can’t wait to start spinning some Bing Crosby records, watching Elf, and baking a treat or two. Living on the West Coast the last few years, I always miss the cold and snow during the holiday lead-up. I try and make up for it by burning lots of cedar and pine scented candles (wouldn't those cedar tealight holders be perfect for holding cedar scented candles?!), and wearing snuggly sweaters and slippers around, but I’m so grateful I get to go home to Minnesota for a (hopefully) white Christmas.

Watching > Downton Abbey season 3. Yeah, we downloaded it (it aired in the UK already). No, I won’t spoil it for you. I will say though, that ever since I watched The Forsyte Saga, I have been less entranced with DA. That said, it’s still a great watch.

Anticipating > Eating, drinking, and lots of laughs on Thanksgiving, which we are spending with new friends from work. I'm also looking forward to reading Rebecca's 5 Ways to Put the H.A.P.P.Y. Back Into Your Holidays guide. This year, I'm really trying to focus more on the joyful parts of the holidays, and less on the gift aspect. I want to be thoughtful and intentional as I move into the holiday season, and it seems like Rebecca has nailed it right on the head with her guide!

So, there’s a peek into what’s been yanking my crank lately! How about you? Excited for Christmas yet? Dreading it?

shanti >> sondra



  1. Ian doesn't celebrate Christmas. If you asked him why, he would say something along the lines of "I'm not into the Jesus and I don't need an excuse to hang out with my family... oh! and I hate consumerism." So, he is a bit of a downer on the whole Christmas season. BUT! Ian's best friend and I are going to have a wee Christmas celebration of our own. We're going to go cut down a tree and decorate it and do a small gift swap, so I'm excited. Ian will join in on the tree cutting (because he likes to do manly things) and the turkey cooking/eating, but the rest is up to us.

    I can attest to the fact that Trisha's peach lip balm is AMAZING. It's my second favourite behind the black forest cake. She also just posted two new soap smells, a minty one and a cinnamon one. I need to get my hands on those!

  2. aww thanks for posting a bit about my shop. the peach is tied for my favorite along with the grape. and i use the activated charcoal soap daily =)

    i still havent watched forstye saga, maybe i'll start i see it on netflix all the time and hmm and haw about putting it on. i really like da - but the 2nd season was definitely not as good as the first - isn't that how it always seems to go?!

  3. abhaya_sondra11/19/12, 9:46 PM

    YES, watch Forsyte Saga!!! Aaaand, yeah, s3 of DA sort of follows the trend as well...unfortunately

  4. abhaya_sondra11/19/12, 9:47 PM

    Ian sounds EXACTLY like Andy! That's awesome that you are going to cut your own tree, I've always wanted to do that.

  5. Salvaged Strawberry11/20/12, 7:42 AM

    I love love love those candle holders! And I too wanted to support Trisha so I just ordered a soap and a lip balm! :) They both smell wonderful!

  6. abhaya_sondra11/20/12, 1:33 PM

    yay! I put my order in last night, too. :)