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  • Writer's pictureStalf

The Love List - May 17th, 2022

1. Wearing

Pink Stalf, all the shades!

2. Soundtrack

Opals by Catching Flies

Whenever you need to soak up some relaxed vibes, turn this one up.

3. Motivator

When I was 15 I started to practice yoga. I was lucky to have the most wonderful yoga teacher on my doorstep, who fully embraced yoga in its entirety- a practice of body, breath and mind, ancient wisdom sacred to South Asian culture. For her, the prana (life force/breath) and yoga philosophy was as important as the asana (poses) and this was central to how she taught us.

When I moved to London for uni, I moved away from my teacher and consequently, my yoga practice. I went to the odd "yoga" class (inverted commas here because what I was actually attending were exercise classes led by teachers who appropriated the word "yoga" and the asanas ignoring many core elements of yoga.) None of the classes worked for me and I didn't find a way to practice consistent yoga for years.

Since having children, I've slowly leant more and more on my daily meditation, connection to self and stretches. I've consciously not called my practice a "yoga" practice.

Then I discovered Angie Tiwari and fell back in love with this rich, nourishing practice. Angie is the most wonderful yoga teacher. Her work focuses on inclusivity in the yoga and wellness world, and she particularly celebrates South Asian teachers within that. I have a subscription to her online videos.

It feels wonderful to be learning from someone I really trust to communicate and teach the fullness of yoga. Her platform celebrates and teaches all aspects of yoga from Dhyana and Pranayama (meditations and breath work) to Asana (postures) and Philosophy and Ayurveda. She also has videos on how to pronounce Sanskrit words correctly. I can't wait to continue my yoga learning with Angie, and hopefully attend some in-person classes in the not-too-distant future.

Here is Angie's website, and instagram (I love following Angie on instagram) image below is taken from her website.

(Note- I pay for my subscription, this post is in no way affiliated or an advert, I just really love what Angie has created.)

4. Comfort

Following on from my musing last month on "exercise to suit your energy" I want to tell you about a moment from a couple of days ago.

The boys had just fallen asleep, I was down in the kitchen waiting for the kettle to boil. Sam (my partner) came in to the room and I started complaining about how I just didn't have the energy to do anything other than doze and read in bed (I was trying to hype myself up to go do my practice and meditation.)

Sam looked at me, clearly working something out in his head. "Aren't you due on your period this week?"

A switch flicked in my head. It's not often that I forget that I'm due on my period nowadays. Usually the build up makes itself more than evident! Perhaps having been on holiday and out of usual routine, it had slipped my mind. Anyway, my point is, in remembering that I was building up to this week of the month (for me, around three days before, and the first two days of my period are the most intense) I remembered to cut myself some slack. I immediately gave up the idea of fighting with myself to go practice, let Sam finish making my tea, pulled on my pyjamas, climbed into bed and spent the next two hours drifting between reading and dozing in my cosy bed. It felt really good.

I'm absolutely not saying that you need a reason to allow yourself softness, but for me this is a process of unlearning, having been harsh on myself for a long time- I spent years talking myself into doing exercise when I perhaps just needed rest. Having a prompt to let that go in the moment really served as a powerful reminder to STOP FIGHTING WITH MYSELF. I find it all-too-easy to revert.

5. View

Family time in the sunshine last month was bliss!

6. Indulgence

I had a little shopping spree in our Pink Studio shop last week. These are my absolute faves and I use them all every day.

Rose Water by Gene in a Bottle. This Rose Water is something else. I adore it and use it at least twice a day. I saturate my face with it post cleansing and pre-hyaluronic serum. I spray my face during the day if I'm hot or want to take a moment. I use it to set make-up or add a dewy look back to my skin.

Perfume Oil by Homebody. I wear Sunday Morning, my partner Sam wears Hazy Sunday.

Lip Balm in Blush by Homebody. I love a lip balm, and this brand is one of the best I've used. It's super moisturising and lasts a while on the lips.

Linen Spray in Sunday Morning by Homebody. A linen spray in the same scent as perfume- genius! I spray this on my clothing to add layers to my scent.

All products are available to purchase at The Pink Studio. If you're not local to us, send us over an email and we'll arrange a sale for you.

7. Wisdom

Peace post 8pm.

I recently returned from 10 days abroad. The first trip overseas we've had in 3 years, thanks to the pandemic. I enjoyed the holiday, basked in the heat and swam in the sea, loved every minute. But it wasn't until I'd had my first day back at work, sat in bed that night reflecting on the day that it hit me- I had truly relaxed.

I mean, truly relaxed.

I've been pondering on why exactly it was that this time was so restorative for me. There are a few reasons.

  1. The sunshine. I bask in the heat, and this holiday was no exception. Lying on my lounger, book after book passing before my eyes, I could almost feel my batteries recharging.

  2. My team are wonderful. They support me and they support each other. The vibe here at work is positive, happy and calm- no one person overpowers others, and therefore I was able to leave work behind for 10 days without worry.

  3. Distance. Last Summer I took 2 weeks off work, but thanks to travel restrictions, we just stayed at home. Everything was still at my fingertips. This time around, being physically removed from the place I work, live and all the people and predicaments that fill my days gave me no choice in the matter- I was removed. The situations, people, problems that are present at home, just weren't there. Peace.

I know the above points seem obvious, but thanks to NOT travelling away from my immediate situation for the last 3 years, I have had an opportunity to really appreciate the value in each point. These are the elements which enabled me to recharge and switch off.

Now, point number one is hit and miss at best here in Lincolnshire- the sun shining consistently is way beyond my control. Point two is something I've felt for a long while- the team here at The Pink Studio are gold dust and we're at a really happy place in Stalf's journey. Point three though... here is where I can take some control and take note of these lessons learnt.

How can I create this "distance" without vacating my postcode? The aim is to recreate the peace that the distance enabled- step in a new boundary I'm calling "Peace Post 8pm." The idea that no job is important enough to encroach on the peace that I create for myself at this time.

I found myself sat on my mat last night, during my meditation, contemplating... the product descriptions that needed checking on my computer, the new items that needed pricing, the freshly drawn pattern pieces that needed grading, the outstanding invoice that needed paying, the niggling email that needed replying to. And at home, the clothes that needed folding, the carpets that needed hoovering, the the chaos that needed tidying before the electrician started the next day (I can't be the only one that does this.) A never ending list that I stacked up just for myself.

Peace post 8pm means no jobs. None. Not even a quick wash load. Not even emptying the dishwasher. I get myself organised so that 8pm onward is my time to indulge myself. If I still have jobs hanging over me- they wait until tomorrow. This will need practice, I know. The decision is made though and that's half the battle won.

8. Self Care

Hair Care... The Ouai

Another holiday lesson learnt. I refrained from taking any hair styling equipment- my straighteners/ dryer/ curlers all left at home. For the first time in a while, I embraced my hair airdried- liked it, even!

On landing back in the UK, I vowed to keep the heated-tools at arms length, and invested in some gorgeous products-

The Ouai, Air Dry Mousse- lightweight and moisturising, no crunchy feeling to hair once dry (which I hate!) really encourages the mermaid vibes and helps my wavy hair clump.

The Ouai Hair Oil- lightweight and sinks into my hair fast, so i really feel like I can layer it up in between washes. Smells high end (IMO).

All products available here.

Image taken from The Ouai website.

9. Lusting After

I have some new, gorgeous fabric ordered and I CANNOT WAIT to get my hands on what's coming.

10. Grateful for

Time away from work. I head away tomorrow with my extended family on a trip that's been postponed for two years, cannot WAIT!

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