Jenn

Jul 182016
 
Photo Courtesy of DrPete (creative commons)

Photo Courtesy of DrPete (creative commons)

The other day a friend came over for a hug and a couple cheek-kisses as is customary in Montreal.

“You smell like toothpaste,” she said. She was right. It was another stinking hot day and I did one of the things that best helps me stay cooler in this hellish weather– doused myself in coconut and peppermint essential oil.

As I’ve said before on this blog, I’m a big believer in Ayurveda and its ability to heal us and allow us to live an optimally healthy life. My constitution is Pitta-Vata. We’re in Pitta season. Fire. Hot. Those of us with higher amounts of Pitta can easily become imbalanced in the heat of Montreal summer. Imbalanced Pitta means short temper, impatience, rage… All the things you don’t want from your yoga teacher or your mom.

There are many things we can do to cool the burn. Here are a few things that help me. If you think you might have Pitta in your constitution, or if you’re curious to know if you might be Vata or Kapha or a mixture of the two or three doshas (we are all to some degree) you can take this quiz.

1) Load on the coconut and peppermint essential oil
There are other oils that are cooling but these are two of my favourites. Peppermint oil needs to be diluted and coconut is not only a great carrier oil but it’s also very cooling (you might not use it to excess in winter months). I rub the mixture on my face, back, arms, chest and all over my head. My particular hairstyle isn’t bothered by the oil.

cucumber water

Photo credit: QuinnDombrowski / Foter / Creative Commons

2) Drink lots of water
Sometimes we hear it’s important to drink eight cups of water. Drink when you’re thirsty. I add fresh mint and or cucumber to my water to make it even more cooling and delicious. I also put a drop of high-quality therapeutic grade peppermint essential oil in my water. Like I said, call me Peppermint Patty.

3) Minimize heating food and drink
I really clued into how diet affects mood a year ago. I was eating burgers and drinking red wine and found myself incredibly angry and worked up. Impulsive and I totally lost it. I’m not much of a drinker anyway, but I certainly don’t drink red wine in the summer anymore. I also stopped eating meat. I don’t know if a vegetarian diet is best for everyone, but it keeps my Pitta temper under better control. Less kimchi and sriracha in the summer too. This is hard but I know it’s never worth it. Some foods seem like their cooling (yogurt) but are actually heating. There are many sites that will help you figure this out.

4) Do less
I’m go, go, go and can continue going until I burn out. Pitta people are very driven! It’s a good thing, but we need to remind ourselves to take it easy, especially when it’s hot out. I was proud of myself the other day for insisting we drive instead of ride our bikes to go to the Lasalle Bird Sanctuary. I was happy to walk around the park with my hat, water and coconut-peppermint oil. But the thought of biking there was too much!

5) Ayurvedic massage and yoga
So I do yoga and get massages through the year, but the style changes based on the season. In the cooler weather, I get a massage that is going to ground me, but in the summer my massage therapist extraordinaire, Dominic, uses oils that are cooling. And whatever other magic. I do not do hot yoga in the summer and I even stray away from dynamic flow hatha classes. I am happiest in a yin or restorative class. Most fiery people will probably feel the same.

 

Jul 102016
 

IMG_2743I’ve been decluttering lately. Something I sometimes find challenging. It goes in waves. I cling to a lot of things “Just in case,” and then all of a sudden I’m filling up garbage bags en route to the nearest friend or charity shop.

One of the most cluttered places chez nous is the kid’s room. My kids simply have too much stuff. Lots of things they don’t play with–they just sit there and take up space. The way I frame it to them is,

Let’s get rid of the toys and books you no longer use so that other children can enjoy them… Or if I’m feeling particularly proactive, If we don’t get rid of some old toys, there will be no room for new toys. Kind of the same but not really.

Most of us have too much stuff we don’t need and not enough space for what we do need. (And I don’t mean we all need a bigger house!) The less junk we have, the more we’re grateful for what we do have. My kids aren’t deprived– far from it. They do not, however, get everything they ask for. (Hells no Shopkins.)

some-people-are-so-poor-all-they-have-is-moneyThey have everything they need, and then some. They aren’t “spoiled,” but know they are abundant. They know we’re rich, because I tell them. We are RICH! With love and happiness! (Read: How we do so well with so Little) Although they also do know that money is important. We need it, and we don’t waste it. We also don’t waste food, electricity etc.

An interesting example of decluttering adults can relate to, is something my friend Dave reminded us of in his yoga class the other day. If you’re doing work you don’t really love, and you’re just waiting for that new thing to come along, it will probably be hard to get that gig, because there simply is no space in your life. I’ve seen it happen in my own life again and again. One door closes and another opens. We need to make space on the shelves, closets, calendars and wallet…

We need to make space.

To appreciate what we do have, and to make room for more of it. The sky is the limit. You are abundant. Yes, you.

This all ties in with Aparigraha and Santosha, two of the Yama and Niyamas (part of Yoga’s 8 Limbs). And of course, gratitude.

Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras have been interpreted many times, but the authors who I best relate to these days are Nischala Joy Devi and Donna Farhi. Farhi Translates Aparigraha as Not Grasping (other translations include: ‘non-greed’, ‘non-possessiveness’, and ‘non-attachment’.) and Santosha as Contentment.

What do you grasp or cling to? It can be material possessions, a job, or a relationship, and the reason so many of us think will be happy “If I could just…” Acknowledging abundance allows us to realize we don’t need anything more. You don’t need to be anything more. You are enough. Nothing is permanent. Things are constantly shifting.

Which brings my thoughts to Santosha (and really, all the Yamas and Niyamas are totally intertwined, it’s just these that are on the forefront of my mind this week). It is possible to be content, even if things aren’t actually “perfect” or ideal. It’s possible to be content if we’re not necessarily happy. And, as Donna Farhi writes, “Contentment also should not be confused with complacency, in which we allow ourselves to stagnate in out growth. Rather, it is a sign that we are at peace with whatever stage of growth that we are in and the circumstances we find ourselves in.” (P.13 Yoga Mind, Body and Spirit.) For example, I’d like more kids. I’d really, really like more kids. But I have two beautiful, amazing, hilarious, smart and healthy kids. I am content (I do happen to be happy) and I am so incredibly grateful.

And gratitude? It’s the best attitude.

My good friend Matt Stern says something really beautiful in the introduction to his song here. Watch and love, I promise.

There is something to be grateful for every single moment of our days. When a friend of a friend is diagnosed with cancer, we have a momentary kick in the butt to be grateful for our health, don’t we. But then it’s very, very easy to fall into complaining again. I had a seriously real moment in the shower the other day when I was overcome with emotion that my water was hot. Granted, I was PMSing, but when you really take a moment to think of all you have…

A pic I snapped of Babe being deeply grateful

A pic I snapped of Babe being deeply grateful

An exercise I wholeheartedly recommend: (Hey, if Oprah does it…) Perhaps you’ve heard of gratitude journals? Some people write five things they’re grateful for first thing in the morning, others do it at night. It changes your entire perception of the world and of yourself. Chez nous, we do it every night as a family, outloud. It is the most precious and amazing moment of my day. In bed, we take turns saying what we’re grateful for. Last night we were brushing our teeth and 3 year old Bug said, “Our gratefuls! We can’t forget our gratefuls!” And we didn’t. His is usually something like, “I’m grateful that I love my mom.” He, especially, insists we have our hands in namaste at the heart. It’s a pretty mushy moment. Some days Babe feels grumpy, stuck, and ungrateful and I remind her how cozy she is in her bed. The kids also get to see the simple, and not so simple things their parents are also grateful for. A cozy house with warm water, a car, being able to work jobs that fill us up, a well-stocked fridge, friends who love us and that we love, the woman who held the door open at the grocery store, our health, a day spent with the kids…

If you’d like to know more about how the Yamas and the rest of the 8 Limbs of Yoga can be applied to your child’s life, I’ll be presenting on the topic at the Montreal Expo Yoga in February 2017.

 

 

Jul 102016
 

DSC_0037“If it works, it works. If it doesn’t, change it.” Words of wisdom from my friend and colleague Sylvia Otvos.

Sylvia recently hired me on to work as a doula with Rock the Cradle. Once a month, along with our other doula, Yvonne, we host the Montreal Pregnancy and Birth Circle. It’s a place for parents to come meet and chat, in the company of three experienced doulas and often a guest speaker. These meet ups are themed, and we love when people come out multiple times.

Our last circle was about sleep! Our guest was Shawna Rose, of Destination Sleep. She’s a sleep consultant, which in my mind has always translated to “sleep trainer.” I was refreshed to hear her speak. She is someone you could hire to help with sleep training, but her hope seems to be that when we nurture good sleep habits from the get-go, sleep training doesn’t even become part of the conversation.

Between Shawna, Yvonne, Sylvia and myself, there are nine kids, all of whom were super different sleepers. As moms, we responded differently to the needs of those particular human beings

At the meetup and afterwards, I found myself with a lot of time to reflect on sleep and how it’s going at my place and how it went when Babe and Bug were littler. To be honest, much of that is now a blur.

Where the muck has my milk gone?

What is sleep for us now? We still stay with the kids until they fall asleep. In bed, we read them stories until they fall asleep. If we’re tired of reading, they get a heads up and then we lay there and listen to soft music. Babe stopped nursing ages ago. Big still nurses, but never long enough to fall asleep while doing it. They are so NOT dependent on me to fall asleep that I’m able to attend births again, and I even went away for four nights on a yoga retreat! The other magical thing is we have a good rotation of babysitters who can also get the stinkers to sleep. That’s something I never imagined. I don’t find it convenient to lay there with them until they fall asleep. No one did it for me. But I do it, and as Sylvia advises, if it becomes a problem, I’ll find a way to change it.

What I know through experience, is even if you “let” your baby fall asleep with a nipple in the mouth, one day, this will no longer be necessary. It doesn’t take training, manipulating or orchestrating to break this thing some people call a bad habit. It takes time, patience and acceptance.

So many moms I know, many postnatal yoga moms or postpartum doula clients, are worried about letting their baby fall asleep nursing. What I think is that it’s normal and natural. It’s comforting. Which means it will continue until the child is ready to stop of his own volition or the parent is willing to make a change. For the most part, a child isn’t going to wean or stop nursing to sleep until he or she is… Older. Different for everyone. Not everyone is okay with a baby nursing to sleep month after month and year after year! And that’s okay too.

Our new improved family bedGenerally speaking, I was more resistant with Babe and her sleep stuff. I fought it more because I thought I was supposed to. A seasoned second-time mom, I see how everything sorts itself out. I accept and surrender. But if something isn’t working for our family, I work toward change–we work toward change, being honest and open.

When I was in the thick of it, everything seemed hard. It was hard. Sleep deprivation is a form of torture. I tell stories of how nursing two kids all night long, lead me to crack (aka postpartum depression). Then I started to set boundaries. We easily “nightweaned” Babe for a second time. Eventually I did the same for Bug, though the whole thing was way less stressful or dramatic.

Now both my kids sleep through the night. They’re three and five. I don’t know when it happened. But it wasn’t when they were two months old. Or even a year old. I think we need to let go of the expectations our friends and society might set up. I believe in following my child’s rhythm, but after 5+ years of being some version of an attachment parent, I have more self-respect. I honour my needs more and make decisions based on love and wisdom, not fear or guilt.

No truer words have ever been spoken… Follow your own heart, do what’s right for your kids and for yourself.

 

 

Jul 052016
 

paolaFear is a subject that comes up a lot in a prenatal yoga class, birth workshop, or meeting with a doula client.

And with good reason! When we give birth for the first time, we are entering uncharted territory. Most of the time, when we do something for the first time we are at least a little scared–fear of the unknown. Add the unknown and countless unsolicited horror birth stories, plus all the unrealistic Hollywood movie scenes. Terrifying, right?

Fear can be a good thing. There is a fear that legitimately protects us from danger. It’s the reason we don’t run into the middle of the highway at night. But there’s another kind of fear that is not healthy. Our disconnect– which allows us to fear being judged, embarrassed, abandoned, neglected… So many of us spend our days walking around in the Stress Response (fight or flight) worried, paranoid, terrified something is out to get us. The same physical, emotional, psychological reaction we’d have if we were in actual danger. Our muscles tense (glutes, traps) jaw, fists clenched. We do not breathe properly. That’s to say all the way down into the belly. Most of us breathe only in the chest.

So first step, remember to breathe!

Fear can be a huge disservice in labour.

  • The aforementioned Stress Response, tense muscles = more pain
  • Adrenaline which naturally kicks in when we’re afraid, cancels out oxytocin (the LOVE hormone–you see, love really is the opposite of fear!) We need oxytocin to continue contractions and we need contractions to continue for the cervix to continue to dilate and for baby to come out
  • Adrenaline can increase blood pressure and heart rate (as well as breath– remember, breeeeeathhhhe)

Fear can slow or stop labour.

It can be easy to ignore our fears in pregnancy. I have prenatal students who will bluntly say they’re refusing to think about their fears. About labour, baby, becoming a parent… I gently encourage those women and anyone reading, to spend time with those fears. Acknowledge your fears. Validate them. Deal with them! They are real!

birthingWe go into greater detail in my Yoga Birth Workshop and prenatal yoga classes, but I wanted to leave you withhttp://mamanaturale.ca/wp-admin/post-new.php this amazingly helpful exercise by Pam England, author of Birthing from Within, for dealing with fear in pregnancy.

Taming Tigers

  1. Write down all the things you hope won’t happen.
  2. Look your tigers in the eye. (Let your imagination flow into your fear.)
  3. Ask yourself: What do I need to do to tame or escape each tiger? (i.e., what will make my birth place safe?)
  4. DO IT! (Even if you are afraid.) Get help if you need it.

 

 

Jul 012016
 

lightWe spontaneously found ourselves out for Chinese food the other day. The kids ate loads. I discovered General Tao tofu tastes just as good as the chicken. The highlight was fortune cookie time. We’d recently seen Freaky Friday and the kids were excited about the magic of the fortune. Bug’s read, “You will get new clothes.” Babes read,

“Happiness is directly related to your outlook on life.”

How perfect. I’d already been spending time thinking about how where we choose to focus our energy, or attention, shapes what our life looks like.

I do believe in the Law of Attraction (read about how I got a midwife). I read the Secret, and adore Louise Hay and Abraham Hicks. I believe we are co-creators in this thing called life. That means we put our energy into what it is we want, then things begin to unfold. It doesn’t mean we sit back and do nothing. We need to take steps, working with the Universe to create the life we want. As my teacher Melanie Richards, and her teacher Lisa Lajoie have said, “The Universe isn’t your bitch.” Sometimes some of these Spiritual/Self Help books leave out this detail. We need to actively participate in reaching our goals. Just wishing to be a millionaire won’t make you a millionaire. For example.

But I digress… It does all start with where we focus our energy (or attention, if that’s easier to pallet). And if we’re focussing on what we don’t want, that is what grows.

Do you remember my self fulfilling induction prophecy? Instead of focusing my attention on the birth I didn’t want, I’d have been wiser to focus on the one I did want. Which is what I did the second time around. More favourable outcome.

This doesn’t just play out in labour (and we know there are many factors in labour and pregnancy we cannot control). This affects every area of our life as a mom and also as a regular ol’ human being.

I’ve been talking about this in my yoga classes all week, and will leave you, dear reader, with the same story I told to my students. Of course in Yoga, we’re not really thinking in terms of “Good” and “Bad,” but this story illustrates exactly what I’m talking about.

Two Wolves
A Cherokee Legend

An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy.

“It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.” He continued, “The other is good – he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you – and inside every other person, too.”

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”

 

Jun 212016
 
Once in a pink moon?
bioHappy Solstice everyone! I’m going to admit, I was looking forward to the moon being pink tonight, but it seems the term Strawberry Moon refers to strawberry picking season and hasn’t conicided with Solstice since the 60s! What does it mean? 17 hours of daylight. Babies will be born. Toddlers will not sleep. And so it is.

Speaking of babies being born, I’m still on a bit of a high after doula-ing an amazing birth last night. One strong mama and one adorable baby girl. One pround Papa on Father’s Day!
Because it is officially summer, studios tend cut a few classes. It also means I start to get creative with my offerings. Below you’ll see what I’m up to over the next few months. I hope to see you very soon!

For new parents

I’ve opened up a few places for Postpartum Doula care and private Yoga Therapy. Write back for more details or call 514.318.4566.

If you’re eager to practice yoga with your new baby outside, please join me Tuesday 10am on the riverbank in Verdun for the entire month of July. I will need a few confirmations before we go ahead, so please let me know if you’re serious about coming. The Facebook event is here.

For those of you wanting to learn and practice Shantala Baby Massage, there are two spots left in the class I’ll be running at my house in Verdun.  12-1 pm Tuesdays in July. Come bond with your baby, help him with gas, sleep, pretty much everything! More details here.

I am also available for private baby massage lessons.

Happy Tree’s Postnatal classes are still in full swing over the summer. Join us Wednesdays 10:30!

We’ve also just opened up a new Mom & Baby yoga class at Breathepod in Ile des Soeures. There is room for another mat or two, Fridays 10am. You can sign up here.

In August, Espace Shanti’s outdoor classes in collaboration with Cardio-Fit will resume Tuesdays at 9:30. You can register right here. This class is so much fun–an amazing workout!

209Prenatal offerings

For the pregnant mamas out there, at the moment, the ONLY group prenatal yoga class I’m offering is Wednesday 7:30 pm at Happy Tree Yoga. It’s a beautiful group in a warm and inviting studio. NEW Series: Wednesdays June 29th 2016 – August 3rd 2016 – REGISTER NOW! (Drop-ins welcome)
Our next Couples Yoga Birthing Workshop is happening Sunday, July 17, and there are a few spots left. We learn ways to cope and enjoy labour in this fun and informative 3 hour workshop. No yoga experience necessary!

Call Happy Tree at or register for any of the family programs online.

 

For the BIG KIDS
And the moment you’ve all been waiting for… Family Yoga will be happening outside Saturday 10am in Verdun. Be in touch for more details!

For more information on the packages I’m offering, visit www.bonadeayoga.com or call 514.318.4566

May 302016
 

DSC_0261When I did my Birth Doula training in 2011, the word “doula,” didn’t seem to be quite common place. A few short years later, as we continue to go back to wanting less-medicalized births, women and their partners are cluing in to how crucial it is to have a doula by their sides in child birth.

Studies show that having a doula present at birth creates:

  • 50% reduction in the Cesarean rate
  • 25% shorter labour
  • 60% reduction in sythetic oxytocin use (used for induction)
  • 30% reduction in analgesia use
  • 40% reduction in forceps delivery

In a hospital birth, it is so important to have the constant support a doula will bring. She does not replace the partner by any means, he is also a crucial part of the birth team! But a doula has been there before. She has seen other women give birth and has likely given birth herself. Maybe even a couple of times! She is there to support you in whatever way you need. Maybe you need reassurance, and explanation, some water or a massage. As nurses change shifts, and the doctor appears only at the very end of the labour, your doula is your constant.

Read on for more reasons why having a doula is a great idea!

Postpartum Doula Services

Birth Doulas are becoming more and more common, and slowly but surely more women are realizing the benefits of having a doula in the postpartum period.

A Postpartum Doula truly is an angel. She is there to serve you in anyway you want/need. When my son was born, my mother lived 4,000 kilometers away and I was feeling very alone. I was fortunate to find a Postpartum Doula to be by my side when I needed her most. She came to take my older child to the park, did laundry, swept floors, did dishes and cooked. Once, she even brought be a Guinness because I asked for one. She was a shoulder to cry on, and a more experienced mom of two that I could ask for advice. Her name is Millie, and Millie is one Postpartum Doula that I absolutely model myself after.

I will be there for you, in my role as a postpartum doula, supporting you in each and every way that you need.

With love,

Jenny

 

May 242016
 
digs

Pretty cool place to sleep!

Recently, I did something that I was absolutely dreading. I went on a five day yoga retreat in Sutton, Quebec. Sounds brutal, right?

In it of itself, I wasn’t dreading the retreat. 5 days of yoga and workshops with a solid group of people I love. No need to cook, I’d be served glorious vegetarian food every meal. Fresh air, a cozy cabin to myself…

But I was not looking forward to leaving Babe and Bug. Some of you, whether you are parents or not, will understand this and some of you won’t. I had never, ever, spent a single night away from my Bug. No longer does he need me to fall asleep. Sometimes he still nurses to sleep, but those times are rarer and rarer. He can fall asleep with Papa or a babysitter. Babe also does not “need” me to function day to day. We invested, bug time, with this Attachment Parenting thing, and see how it’s paid off. Again, some of you will understand this and some won’t, and that’s okay. I had left Babe a couple of times as a doula, two nights for our “honeymoon,” when I was 6-months pregnant with Bug, and another time when my friend Rebecca convinced me to go with her to the Eastern Townships when Babe was nearly 2!

freetime

free time

Just now, I went back and read that post about the Eastern Townships, and it was a very similar thing, the feelings I was having as I was about to embark on my Happy Tree Yoga Hatha Teacher Training retreat at Au Tournant Du Coeur. But this time for 4 nights. The what if’s? What if they got sick? What if there was an emergency?

Just like the time Rebecca and I went to the blueberry gite, no emergency. No nothing. If they needed me, they could call. This was not a Vipassana retreat (although Au Tournant Du Coeur is at the old Sutton Vipassana centre and we did have one day of silence). The whole family made it through quite happily. Including me! When I voiced my concerns to friends, they mostly tried to assure me I’d be “fine,” once I got there. I didn’t think I would be. Especially on that day of silence. I’d be lost in my own thoughts and start to panic. The last time someone suggested something so preposterous, was the same Rebecca who tried to entice me to Strom for a day at the spa. Instead I went to a private clinic and insisted on a prescription for anti-anxiety meds. Truth. The idea of being left alone with our thoughts can be frightening.

This was one of the biggest realizations I had on my retreat. Kicked off by this funny and true clip by Louis CK, which we watched at the retreat. Feel free to watch it. It’s funny and relate-able. I doubt I’m the only one who sends a text when I’m sitting in a split-second of terrifying silence. And yes, I do do the yoga and meditation thing. That’s how real this is!

Especially the day of silence and juicing, I realized that I talk too much and eat too much. That I’ve been foolishly (humanly) looking for distractions instead of dealing with the real life things that need to be dealt with.  It’s the thing about texting or going on Facebook instead of sitting quietly. The thing about bolting when a relationship gets hard. About taking up something new instead of challenging yourself to get to the next level of difficulty. So often we look outside of ourselves for answers. for love. for acceptance. compassion. But we don’t need to look any further than our own heart. Truly. I know this in theory, but it was interesting to finally see how it has been playing out in my own life.

I don’t plan on taking another retreat anytime soon. Although I have a newfound confidence in my the birth doula-ing that I have been (re)committing to. As I mentioned in our closing circle in Sutton, I am so glad that this retreat was obligatory. Just like I say to the moms who come to my Mom and Baby Yoga classes, “This might be the only time you relax this week, so please, emprofite!”

Here’s to relaxing and self-care when no one is forcing us to do so…

May 062016
 

luzI promised myself to never apologize for the infrequent posts on this blog. I’m busy. Like you all are. I did, however, find time to get out on a kid-free night, to the new Cirque du Soleil show, Luzia that I mentioned in my last post. It was as amazing as I assumed it would be.

I was there with a musician friend, and we sat beside contest winners Jason and Elise– Jason is also a musician and Elise is a dancer. I best-identify as a yogi/ yoga teacher. We were a group of very inspired artsy kind of people (some of us fartsier than others). The beautiful music is one of the first things I noticed. Much of the time, the live musicians were off stage, but there were quite a few moments when they came up to play. In a culture where I feel  like many of us are lip-synching most of the time, it was amazing and even surprising to see this music being played live.

dancerAnd the colours. As vibrant as the posters promised. True to typical Cirque style, the costumes were phenomenal, albeit in some cases scary and disturbing, especially for those who don’t love cockroaches.

The show was a great mix of acrobatics, juggling, balancing and bending. There were moments when the performers were doing things I felt, as a mom, to be too dangerous. And I couldn’t help but jump or hang on to my seat, or friend, for dear life. And I’m going to admit, the contortionist, while very good at doing his thing, made me feel a little squeamish! But I’ve been taking aerial yoga classes these days and found myself inspired, while watching Luzia, to run away with the circus. Think I’ve got a chance?

I’ve since run into a few friends umming and awing about whether to go or not. If you can make it happen, I suggest you do. Pure magic and delight. I feel like going back a second time!

 

Apr 052016
 

luzWhen I was in my 20s  (as if I can just casually write that!) I lived with a group of amazing girls who loved me so much, that for my birthday they took me to see Cirque du Soleil in Ottawa. Wikipedia leads me to believe it was Saltimbanco, but I don’t remember details (it was almost a decade ago and we were kind of in perpetual party mode…!) I do, however, remember the FEELING. It was pure magic. Ethereal. Imaginative…. I have absolutely nothing to compare it to. But maybe after April 22, I will.

I’m so looking forward to seeing the newest Cirque de Soleil Big Top, LUZIA, which opens in Montreal April 21. It’s about Mexico. I’ve never been. But I’d love to go. Luzia at the Old Port might be as close as I get for the next little while.

And you can get close to Mexico too, if you like. I have a pair of Category 1 tickets (worth $125 each) to give away to a lucky reader.

How to enter:

“Like” the Mama Naturale Facebook page and leave a comment on this post either on Facebook or this blog, telling me why you want a night out at the Cirque.

Contest closes April 15 and the winner will be randomly drawn and announced the week of April 16.

Buena suerte!