When I was a kid I always had several art projects going at any given moment. And though my room was a mess, it was my mess. Rather than lots of toys, my Christmas list was filled with arts & crafts supplies to fuel my creative spirit. I can distinctly remember my overwhelming joy when presented with the opportunity to stay inside during recess to work with the art teacher on the bulletin board display outside his classroom. The freedom to create whatever I wanted with a never ending supply of construction paper, pipe cleaners, and colored pom-poms was amazing! So, I guess you could say that I've always been an artsy girl at heart.
In high school I got a sewing machine. It was love at first stitch! I spent hours at the local craft store combing through bolts of fabric and searching for patterns. In college I studied photography and interior design, which gave me the opportunity to explore art in many new and exciting forms like clay, paint, and glass. On a whim I decided to take a yoga class at a nearby studio and fell in love with the way it made me feel. For years I continued to paint and practice yoga while establishing my career as an interior designer. Now, as a full-time yoga teacher, I am absolutely thrilled to be able to share my two loves with the world!
In my opinion, everyone needs at least one thing they can be a total nerd about and for me it's art and yoga. Luckily, it turns out I'm not alone. The more people I talk with about the opportunity to relax and create art with others, the more everyone's excitement builds. Many people are browsing Pinterest, just waiting for the chance to try out a new project. These unique workshops begin with a yoga practice that allows students to let go of stress and tap into their inner creativity. Next, I'll provide step-by-step instructions and demonstrations for a yoga themed art or craft project that relates to the practice we just did. We'll all work together to create and explore the project. My hope is that people who attend these workshops will feel relaxed, welcomed into a community of like-minded individuals, and confident in their unique artistic abilities.
You can find more information about Hillary's Art + Yoga Workshops on the FreshJax Mindbody Website :)
What's an Eye Pillow?
An eye pillow is a small fabric bag filled with flax seeds, rice, dried beans, or a combination of these to provide a gentle weight over your closed eyes. They can be unscented or filled with dried lavender for added aromatherapy benefits. You'll often see these used during relaxation at the end of a yoga class. You can also gain the benefits of an eye pillow by using one to help you fall asleep.
Eye Pillow Benefits
Eye pillows provide gentle pressure around the eyes releasing tension, stress and fatigue. This causes the eyebrows, cheekbones, temples, neck and shoulders to relax. They also help you to focus inward by blocking out intrusive light and shadows. Some yoga scholars also claim that the light pressure on the eyes sends a neurological signal to the brain that facilitates whole body relaxation.
Lavender has been used throughout history as a remedy for a range of ailments from insomnia and anxiety to depression and fatigue. Research has confirmed that lavender produces slight calming, soothing, and sedative effects when its scent is inhaled. Scientific evidence suggests that aromatherapy with lavender may slow the activity of the nervous system, improve sleep quality, promote relaxation, and lift mood in people suffering from sleep disorders. Studies also suggest that massage with essential oils, particularly lavender, may result in improved sleep quality, more stable mood, better concentration, and reduced anxiety.
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