Thursday, January 22, 2009

Together We Made History

YES WE CAN share our anniversary with Mr. President and First Lady (and apparently a few others around the world)

Wow, we were on CNN the day after.  They used our Anniversinauguration party video as an example of people who like the affection displayed between the President and the First Lady.  We certainly were swept up in the moment of love, hope, and the endless possibilities that change brings.  Within 5 minutes, our views jumped from a few to over a hundred.  We've always loved Dancing with the Stars.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Kim and Eric's AnniversInauguration

CNN showed this movie tonight around 6:50p.m.! We noticed about 15 emails from people who saw us on YouTube. One was from Sweden.

Barack and Michelle, Kimberly and Eric, and a few close friends celebrate Kimberly and Eric's 2 year anniversary and national history in the making. It was so much fun, getting together with friends. We all watched Obama and Michelle do their dance-with-a-turn.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Life's a Beach

Five Things I am Grateful For

An aquaintance of mine suggested the other day that I write a gratitude list regularly in order to strengthen my positive mind. I was open and ready to commit to be more positive, so I started last week. It has helped. It seems to be working and my wife is also doing it with me on her blog. I recommend you try it to see how it works for you. Can't hurt, right?
If you need some inspiration, please see my grateful blog, updated daily, at You can also see Kim's grateful updates at Subscribe if you wish.
I am grateful to Heather, who suggested this. Thanks!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Missy's Kitties

I made this movie of our friend, Missy's, kitties as a gift for helping us out so much with our business.  Thanks, Missy.  Enjoy...

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Sunrise Hiking Mt Batur, Bali, Indonesia, the Island of the Gods

We hiked up Mt. Batur in Bali with the students from our yoga retreat. It was the last day of retreat and after dinner, we slept for a few hours before we got up at 3a.m. to hike to the summit by sunrise. We had guides or we would have lost our way. It was so beautiful there. There was a make-shift kitchen at the top, monkeys, a bat cave, and we descended through the lava flows from the last eruption. We are going again in June, 2009, to teach another yoga retreat - Find Your Inner Guru. Thanks, Eric and Kimberly (

Monday, January 5, 2009

Surfing Lessons in Seminyak, Bali, the Island of the Gods

Our yoga retreat students took surf lessons in Seminyak, Bali. It was so much fun! First were the land lessons, then the issuing of boards, followed by last minute drills, and then their shining moment standing on the water. Thanks for watching and Namaste, Eric and Kimberly.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

My Own Perfect Teacher

Pride (Ego's glow) came by this weekend to say, "HELLO!"  Here's how it transpired:  

January is the fourth month of my training to become a yoga teacher.  I am taking this certification so I will be able to assist my wife, Kimberly - one of my greatest teachers and an awesome yoga instructor - in our annual yoga retreats in Bali, Indonesia.  Teaching yoga is similar to teaching my clients about other forms of physical exercise.  The authority aspect is there. Identifying the level of each individual is beneficial and necessary in both.  So one could say that I would have an easy transition and pick it up quickly.  People did say it,  and I even said it to myself.  There was Ego's seed-planting.  It just needed fertilizer from then on.

Weekend training classes are going fine and the material is easily soaking in.  I've even had the chance to casually instruct my fellow students for 10 minutes once.  It was silly and goofy but no-one seemed to care.  I was pretty confident for months, until my first teaching experience to the public started to draw near.  It was last night and the only three people there were a fellow student, my wife, and the instructor.  I knew everyone there - even one intimately - and I was sweating bullets, trying not to curse myself for making a fool of myself.  One would think that was the perfect time and place to be "human."

I was as human as I could be - with smashed pride on the floor wondering why my 'excellent and effective teaching skills' didn't shine through.  I was aware of every moment that Ego got wounded, and came home afterwards to ponder and prepare for my next class, which was this morning.  I woke up and walked the dogs, ate breakfast, made a smoothie, and hurried to my yoga flow sheet for the class.  "How can I make my notes better so that I don't get so nervous," I asked myself as I sat with the laptop glaring at me (my mind gets so left-brained sometimes).  

As I typed each pose and transition, my nervousness seemed to ease somewhat because my notes seemed "easier to read" this time and I would be smoother today.  I showed my routine to Kimberly and she practically told me that I didn't need notes.  They would only interrupt my flow.  She said that the material was already in me.  I laughed at first, then panic set in, realizing I had only 15 minutes before I had to leave for class.  I had 2 choices then:  to keep freaking out or to "let go" of my pre-conceived ideas and let my inner teacher come out to teach.  I chose to let go, and something amazing happened.  I knew what to do.  I barely looked at my notes during the class and, if I gauged the contrast between yesterday's performance and today's, I would say I went from a 3 to a 7 out of 10.  

The reason?  Very simple.  I let go of part of my Ego, which said that I was going to be the next yoga prodigy, and allowed myself to be a normal student that is still learning the ropes (or asanas, to be clever).  I came home, grateful to my wife and my yoga training instructor for helping me realize that my success is not guaranteed by my past experience.  Success, in any case, is guaranteed when I am putting Ego down and placing my trust in my own perfect teacher.


Whoops!  I must correct what I wrote on January 1.
I wrote that post from the top of my head and just stumbled across Buddha's quote like this:

The thought manifests the word.
The word manifests the deed.
The deed develops into habit.
The habit hardens into character. 
So watch the thought and its ways with care,
and let it spring from love born out of concern for all beings.

I like this way better.  Especially the last line which basically is speaking about bodhicitta.
Bodhicitta has many meanings but simply put it is about having an awakened heart.   The motivation to watch our thoughts with care, love and concern for all beings is the practice.  It is the aspiration to care for oneself and others unconditionally.  Much like a mother's love.   There are two types of bodhicitta according to the Mahayana tradition of Buddhism.
Relative bodhicitta is where the practitioner works for the good of all beings as if it where his/her own.  Absolute bodhicitta relates to wisdom, openess and spaciousness.  The aspiration is loosening the ego and becoming free from attachments of self and the acceptance of life as it is.   So according to Wikipedia, the term bodhicitta, in its most complete sense, would combine both:  
*The arising of spontaneous and limitless compassion for all sentient beings and
*The falling away of the attachment to the illusion of an inheirently existant self. 

What an aspiration!  This could take years or many lifetimes.  One thing I know is that if you start right now, little by little, love drop by love drop, practice in this moment, moment by moment, breath by breath, relaxing with life as it is, be in your own naked awareness, you will connect deeply with your own intrinsic nature.  It is your true nature to love and be loving.  All else is an illusion.  So go ahead notice your thoughts, connect with your heart and Make Love Big.  

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Pure Potentiality

Veiw from Mount Batur, Bali

I love New Years Day. It is most likely one of my favorite days in the year. It reminds me of what happens after a hurricane here in Florida. Hurricane holiday comes blowing through then the calm of New Years Day brings an opportunity for a fresh new start. New Years resolutions can be a great time to change habit patterns and create new ones. But why do so many of us struggle with this? I feel compelled to share Buddha's words of wisdom:

The thought turns into the word,
The speech turns into action,
The action turns into to habit,
The habit hardens into character,
So watch your thoughts for the good of all beings.

Sounds simple right?  It is, if we are gentle with ourselves and bring awareness one breath at a time, one moment at a time, one day at a time refocusing again and again.  Gentle persistence. This becomes the path, the journey of shape-shifting your ordinary life into an extraordinary life,  just by shining the light of awareness here, now, in this moment, pregnant with infinite possibility.  Which thoughts do you want to nourish?