A few years ago I discovered the amazing talent of Dice Iida-Klein and Briohny Smyth. They are both such incredible yogis and I began to follow their work. They’re from LA, but travel around the world teaching workshops and giving teacher trainings. (They also teach online classes at http://www.yogaglo.com and http://yoganonymous.com). I never imagined that they would ever come to Montreal, but they did! When I found out, I was so shocked that I went a little crazy. My friends thought I was nuts! The thing is I had seen pictures and videos of them practicing yoga, but I didn’t know how they would be as teachers. I soon found out that not only are they “good” at yoga, but they can teach! I know that sounds weird, but I truly believe that there are some people that are just meant to teach, whether it be yoga or something else. Dice and Briohny known as Bryce, definitely have the gift! It was the first time that I took a workshop and felt like I actually learnt something. I have incorporated what I learnt that weekend in my daily practice and it feels so good 🙂
A while ago I went to visit Lufa Farms Headquarters in Montreal, Quebec. In 2011, Lufa Farms built the world’s first commercial rooftop greenhouse. They now have two rooftop locations in Montreal and are looking to build a third. It was really awesome to go visit the greenhouse and hear how everything works. First off, they don’t use soil to grow their fruits and vegetables. They use coconut fibre! Due to the fact that they don’t use soil, their products are not considered organic in Canada, because the mined nutrient salts used in hydroponics are nonrenewable. Secondly, they recirculate 100% of their water as well as use rain and storm water. Thirdly, instead of using pesticides to take care of pests, they use biological controls. This method works by having living organisms throughout the greenhouse. For example, they use ladybugs to control aphids that damage plants. Lufa Farms also saves energy, reduces fossil fuel consumption, and composts to prevent waste from ending up in landfills.
What I love about Lufa Farms, is that everything is fresh and local. You order all your fruits and vegetables online and they will pack it at 5:00am the same morning that you receive your basket. They do not deliver directly to your home, but there are hundreds of pick up points all over Montreal. I’m lucky enough to have the greenhouse 10 minutes away from my home, so I can pick it up there!
Last month I walked 5k to raise money and awareness for bladder cancer. Bladder Cancer Canada is a charitable non-profit corporation that raises funds for research and plans fundraising events across Canada. This year I attended the 5k walk in Montreal, Quebec. This was the second year that Montreal took part in this walk and I am so happy they did. As a Montrealer and bladder cancer survivor, I was really proud of my city for taking part in the fight to raise money and awareness for this disease. At the opening ceremony of the walk I learnt that bladder cancer is the 5th most killing cancer in Canada, but only 17th when it comes to fundraising. Lets try and change that!! As with all cancers early detection is so important and I am an example of just how important it is. Had I been diagnosed earlier, I wouldn’t have had to have my bladder completely removed. That may not be the case for everyone, but it is just an example of how crucial time can be when it comes to a diagnosis. If you have any symptoms, do not hesitate, go see your doctor. My hope is that the word will spread about bladder cancer, not just in Canada, but around the world and that we will one day find a cure! If you would like to help me on my journey or just raise awareness about bladder cancer, please join me my next walk or visit Bladder Cancer Canada to find a city that is hosting a fundraising event near you! I’m always open for questions should you have any 🙂
Yesterday I experienced something so magical. I volunteered at the Lolë White Yoga event in Montreal. I participated in the yoga session last year and thought that this year, it would be fun to help out and learn more about my community. It was a lot of work but it was all worth it. I met so many great people that shared the same passion as me! From all the other volunteers, yoga teachers to the participants, there was just such a great energy! As a volunteer, some of us were able to join in on the 90 minute yoga session. Since I had participated last year, I just wanted to sit back and watch as everyone entered their state of bliss. Let me tell you, it was one of the most incredible things I have ever experienced. I had seen pictures of thousands of people practicing yoga together, and I have been in groups of thousands of people practicing together, but it is such a different experience when watching from the side lines. It was beautiful. This event was for everyone. Whether it was your first time doing yoga or whether you’ve been doing it for years, they were all doing it together. That is what made it so beautiful and that is what I love most about the practice. It reminded me of this quote, “Yoga is like walking down a city street. We’re all going different places, but we’re doing it together.” Seeing all of those people together made me realize even more how much I want to teach and pass my knowledge onto others. I really can’t wait to get my training and who knows maybe one day I’ll be helping out at the Lolë White Yoga session as a teacher!