Monday, February 25, 2013

The Urban Ashram Manila (High Street)

Hello! It's been a while...is anyone still out there?

I had such a busy week. We had relatives who were visiting from abroad who we were attending to. In addition to that, I've also been juggling appointments, running errands and driving around the metro. My schedule suddenly went haywire.

It's a good thing I've got yoga in my life to keep me sane and centered. Today's the last day of my 15-day unlimited pass at Urban Ashram Manila and I was able to practice on almost a daily basis. Whew!

     
I'm sooo purchasing their Flexi-Pass or if my future schedule permits, their Unlimited Pass.

Proximity/Accessibility is one of the most important factors I consider in choosing a yoga studio as I've said in previous post.

Urban Ashram Manila bags the number one spot for the time being. May I also add that it is one of the most beautiful and creative yoga spaces I've ever seen! I loved the major colors used! Purple, gray and apple green to be specific. Currently, they have two studios: one is located in Brixton and the newest one is at the 3rd floor of Active Fun, Bonifacio High Street.Both studios were designed by Kenneth Cobonpue.


Here's a mini tour of the Urban Ashram Manila's High Street studio:

The reception area exudes a Zen-like atmosphere.
Yoga Boutique
This is a really comfy seating area. The kid on the right is playing with his Ipad while waiting for his mom to finish her practice. The studio has WiFi access.
A lot of good reads!
Clean, Well-maintained, Spacious Shower/Locker Rooms

The West Studio
The East Studio
A few note-worthy things about Urban Ashram Manila:
  • They make a conscious effort in preserving our environment by using recycled bottles for their organic lemongrass-scented shampoo/liquid soap. 
  • They have high ceilings, skylights, windows to allow natural lighting hence minimizing energy consumption. 
  • They are committed to Earth-friendly and responsible practices.
  • They are the first Green Yoga Association certified yoga studio in the Philippines
  • They have inspiring, highly-qualified, Yoga Alliance-registered teachers.
  • The community has a friendly vibe.
  • It is definitely an urban sanctuary in the heart of the metro.
  • I can't get over the Jivamukti Gel experience I had in some of the classes I have participated. LOL. (Note to Self: I should purchase a jar of Jivamukti Gel soon!)

By the way, I was also able to participate in a donation-based community class led by James Brown for the benefit of Mano Amiga Academy. Being able to help someone reach for their dreams feels really good!




I'm looking forward to my next practice already!

Namaste!

{Last Image from Urban Ashram Manila's Facebook Page}

Monday, February 18, 2013

The Happiness Project

Last Saturday afternoon, I spent some time indulging in a few chapters of my new great read: The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. Like the author, I'm quite a happy person with many blessings to be grateful for but who wouldn't want to be happier?

I'm currently on Chapter 3: March - Aim Higher. Even by just reading the first few pages, I can tell that the content of the book is well-researched and intelligently written without sounding to preachy.


By the way, home-made iced green tea and pistachios made my reading time even better.

I think I should start my own happiness project. =) I highly recommend this book!

Let's Live Positively!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

My Early Valentine's Day Treat

We're not a very big fan of crowds aka "Mordor" (go figure) so we opted to celebrate Valentine's day two days earlier. We had our dinner date at Chuck's Deli, Home of the Slabwich.

We decided to be a bit more low key and practical on dates and save the fancy ones during each other's birthdays and our wedding anniversary. ;)


I've been craving for roast beef sandwiches for quite some time now and there it was with all its beefy goodness plus oozing with spicy garlic sauce that also comes with onion rings on the side.

Just generous layers of good, juicy Angus roast beef and spicy garlic sauce or garlic sauce.
Mike ordered 1/2 of their Footlong Chili Dog. He's been on the search for the perfect chili dog. 

Classic footlong, condiments, grated cheddar cheese, no-bean chili (ground beef cooked in tomato sauce with herbs and spices) plus diced jalapeƱos
We are dying to go back and try their other stuff or join the Chuck's Challenge!


And we capped the night off with Ice-blended drinks from no other than The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf. <3

Have a Happy Heart's Day Everyone!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Life Lately...

And so my yoga journey continues...

I signed up for a 15-day unlimited pass at Urban Ashram Manila High Street branch. This offer is valid for people who will be practicing for the first time in their studio.

It's been my second day here. I was able to take a Vinyasa class yesterday and a Hatha class earlier today. Wohoo! I'm really glad that I have found another studio that is accessible to me for the time being.


This year I have set a goal to live and eat healthy. I'm backing up this commitment by practicing yoga regularly, having adequate sleep, choosing what I eat and redirecting my thoughts into things that I am optimistic about.

More deets about the studio soon!

Namaste!

Oh, and I'd like to greet everyone a belated Happy Chinese New Year!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Choose Happiness

I worry about life a lot lately, but in the midst of frustrations and hardships it is possible to experience life's simple pleasures.

Sometimes when the hormones start kicking in probably due to PMS, I try to distract myself from feeling blue by watching a favorite TV series episode, a walk in the park, quality time with our family dog, reading a really good book, an ice-blended beverage shared with a friend, yoga practice, a foot massage and many many more.

I guess it's how you take control of your mindset. Even the little things in life can make a big difference to your day or week.



In the end, happiness is a choice.

May you be happy for the rest of your lives. =) TGIF!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Stuffed Green Bell Peppers

I've been meaning to make this dish ever since I stumbled upon the old blog of Ms. Jenni Epperson. I finally had the opportunity to make it but made my version a bit simpler.




Ingredients:
  • 1 can Palm Corned Beef Chili flavored (Yes, we like ours spicy!)
  • 2 pcs small potatoes
  • 2 Tbsps extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 medium sized green bell peppers

Directions:
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees
  2. Cut the top part of the bell peppers and remove the portion where all the seeds are attached. 
  3. Slice the top part that was left of the bell peppers into cubes so it can be mixed with the corned beef hash and nothing goes to waste.
  4. Slice the potatoes into cubes, leave the skin on and fry them in extra virgin olive oil. Wait for the potatoes to get a bit browned.
  5. Add the corned beef.
  6. Add the cubed bell peppers.
  7. Saute for about 7 minutes.
  8. Stuff the bell peppers with the corned beef hash
  9. Bake for 15 - 20 minutes.


I only made two and saved the other two bell peppers for tomorrow.
 It's a great way to spruce up a corned beef hash recipe.

Makes 4 servings.


Monday, February 4, 2013

Rivon Cookies

Got this from relatives who just came home here in Manila...


This has got to be the prettiest cookie box I've ever seen. I did a little research about this. Rivon Cookies are from Taiwan. Unfortunately, I am unable to translate everything in their website. 


They call this the Ours Rococo


Everything is beautifully crafted. The box comes with 2 layers of cookies, candies and tea.

First Layer
Second Layer
Take a closer look at these candies shaped like a Lego, and they fit each other! I've tried the yellow one. It tasted like a banana.

What a pretty treat and a good way to start the week! =)

Thanks Carlo and Abigail!

Friday, February 1, 2013

YogaWorks Teacher Training

I've been frequenting "The Fort" area lately. Despite numerous errands, I was able to make time and visit Urban Ashram Manila.  It's a yoga studio that opened last year in Bonifacio High Street. It's their second branch. Their first one is located in Brixton.

I was greeted with a smile by the receptionist. I forgot her name (Ooops!), but she was very friendly, informative and helpful. She gave me a tour of the studio. I loved the major colors used! Purple, gray and apple green to be specific. Those were the exact colors of my old bedroom in the home where I grew up. Both of their studios were designed by Kenneth Cobonpue.

I also noticed how they make a conscious effort in preserving our environment by using recycled bottles for their organic shampoo/body wash and having high ceilings, skylights, windows to allow natural lighting hence minimizing energy consumption

After inquiring about the classes offered in Urban Ashram High Street branch, she handed me a flyer and this booklet:


So, is this a sign?

To undergo Yoga Teacher Training is one of my ultimate goals. I've only been practicing Vinyasa Flow Yoga for 6 months and I don't think I'm ready yet, physically and mentally, so to speak. I'm giving myself another 6 months of practice before I start taking the journey to "teacherhood".

Urban Ashram Manila is currently offering a 200-Hour YogaWorks Teacher Training which is a Yoga Alliance Registered Program on February 25 - March 22, 2013. It is a foundational training for aspiring teachers and serious students. The trainer will be James Brown. He is currently the Director for Yoga Content of YogaWorks. It would be of great privilege to train with him.

Urban Ashram Manila
3rd Floor, Active Fun Building, 9th corner 28th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City
+63 2 869YOGA / +63 917 718 YOGA
highstreet@urbanashrammanila.com

Namaste!

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