Happy Holidays to YOU!

Tis the season to be running around busy, trying to get it all done. I mentioned in my last post that I am trying to enjoy the season, relax and take it all in. One of the things I do enjoy about the holidays is giving. While I might pack my schedule shopping and cooking, I try and remember that the end result is something that does bring me joy and honestly, the cooking and wandering the stores for that something special is also enjoyable, if I can do it on my own schedule. The main thing I am trying to remember is to take care of myself, if one day I feel busy, overwhelmed and in constant motion, I am learning to plan the next day at home, with less to do. This is how I make it through the holidays.

And in an act of self-care, I am posting today to say Happy Holidays and see you in the New Year. I haven’t been posting as consistently as I’d planned, but I hope to add a weekly post once we arrive in the New Year and the holidays have settled. For now, I am taking the rest of the month off and will start back fresh in 2022.

I hope you all have a wonderful season, however you celebrate, making sure to find joy in the simple moments and taking care of yourself!

Beat the Blues this Holiday Season

*Photo Credit: Real Simple – another great article re: holiday stress

I was browsing through some of my ​older blogs today and came across an article I wrote for my blog and Red Tricycle a few years ago. The concept was a letter to myself over the holidays, a reminder that I actually do enjoy the holidays as long as I don’t over do it. While I am not planning on doing another Whole 30 at the new year and our dog is much more mellow now, I thought I would repost it here because most of it is a great reminder as Thanksgiving and the holiday season approaches… 

Around mid-November every year I start to get a little anxious about the holiday season. Maybe it is the massive amount of family birthdays that fall during the Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s holidays, possibly it is the consumerism that is blown overboard in the world around us and likely it could be due to the overscheduling that comes in the upcoming two months. But this year I am vowing to take a different approach to the holidays and for Red Tricycle this week I have written myself a letter to remind myself of how I would like to participate and enjoy the holiday festivities this year.

Letter to myself over the holidays: (November 16th, 2016)

Dear Self,

I know this is a crazy time of year for you, but I want you to remember a few important things as this holiday season approaches. Even though this time of year between Thanksgiving and Christmas can be very busy and you have eight family birthdays (including your own) starting before Thanksgiving and ending mid-January, try and remember why we celebrate – you are grateful for your amazing family, you feel blessed to have so many people around you to celebrate with and don’t forget that every day with these people is a blessing.

Yes, the kids are constantly asking for the new toy or drone or giga ball, but instead of getting frustrated with their desire for more things, find the joy in your children’s excitement and love for celebrating the holidays.

Even when you get tired and worn out, don’t forget traditions, (cutting down the tree, Advent calendar, Santa Brunch, making holiday candy and gifts), remind the kids of what you did when you were young and remember that these are going to be their memories, make them happy ones. You don’t want their memories to be of a burnt out, cranky, stressed mom.

I know you spent a year trying to downsize and minimize your belongings – but this year the girls are excited to get toys and presents without size restrictions – embrace this excitement and try to purchase gifts within reason.

Enjoy the first Christmas with your crazy puppy, get a new stocking for him, find fun gifts for the furry monster – he can’t have too many toys and he will love it. Managing the Christmas tree will be a challenge but he’ll love it too and it’s worth it. It will be a different year for sure, but it will also be a fun one and one you will remember forever.

Take time to get out of the city and into nature. Nature fills your cup, even if it’s just to the local park for an hour or 2 get out, recharge and remember what you are grateful for. Along with getting outside, plan your activities ahead of time, mark the calendar for down days and family only days. These are the days that bring you joy and will make you happy.

Take care of yourself. Take a hot bath every so often, go to bed early and watch bad TV (i.e. RELAX).  Make time to exercise, try and eat right and not splurge on EVERY special occasion. Plan on restarting the Whole 30 the first week of January to renew – don’t forget how great you felt the last time you had focus and really stuck to the program.

Give back. You are so fortunate to have family and friends that love you, don’t forget about the people that have less than you. Even though this can be a hectic time of year, make time to give back to others. Helping at Solid Ground has made you feel so inspired and proud, continue to work with people in need and get the kids involved too so they remember it’s not just about them. Comfort packs are always a great way to give to those in need and find other activities that will remind you all about how fortunate you are, while helping others at the same time.

Last thing to remember, the holidays are at time for joy and cheer, there is no need to stress about gifts and social engagements. Do things that bring you joy, don’t do things that drain you. The girls will get all the gifts they need and whatever they get will be enough. As long as you are relaxed and enjoying the season and the people around you, you will have a wonderful holiday season!

Enjoy and Happy Holidays!

Love, Yourself

In Real Life

*Photo Credit: My daughter Nadia, captured the photo of Harry blowing kisses to the crowd while he sang Adore You

Zoom fatigue is real. Events moving to online or just cancelled. Happy hour over zoom, birthdays on the computer, playing random trivia with everyone in their own homes. The past two years have been exhausting. While there was some sense of relaxation realizing you never really had to leave the house, it got a bit lonely, we weren’t meant to live in tiny groups or alone.

Recently, it feels like life is coming back to a bit of normalcy. Because we have spent so much time online staring at our screens the activities that have returned have become more special. Over the fall, I was able to experience the joy of watching my freshman daughter, Nadia, become a cheerleader, cheering for her high school football team. The excitement of the team sport, watching the students cheer for the team and yelling from the stands when they scored was a fun I haven’t experienced since I was in high school. I was also able to attend a handful of varsity volleyball games watching my niece play. Again, bringing me back to my high school volleyball days, although the rules have completely changed, once I figured out what was going on, I loved cheering her on and watching the teams volley the ball back and forth. Screaming and yelling behind my mask.

I am also happy to have my quieter experiences back as well, including yoga at my favorite studio. While masks are not my favorite and make deep breath practices a bit challenging, coming together in a collective space, sharing the sound of Om with people that share common views and values, is a wonderful connection I have missed.

Most recently, after almost two years of waiting and rescheduling, my sister, my daughter, my niece and I all got to enjoy the amazing Harry Styles in concert. The girls have been fans since the One Direction days, the show was first scheduled for July of 2020, cancelled, then planned for August 2021, cancelled, then finally back on last week.

Along with thousands of other screaming girls, we shared an incredible night. Dancing, singing and watching the adorable Harry, skip and dance around the stage in his mint green pants, lavender sparkle top and suspenders. He was sweet and charming and played all the songs we know and love. The best set was when he sang, Canyon Moon, Treat People with Kindness and then One D’s What Makes You Beautiful. He warned us ahead of time, there was no time to get a drink or go the bathroom, we had about 15 minutes of non stop dancing and the crowd went wild. Harry was the soundtrack to our quarantine, any time I got in the car with Nadia, Harry Styles was cued up.

I know the threat of Covid is still out there and I will continue to wear my mask to all the events. But my thoughts today are of gratitude for being able to experience these activities, with some adjustments, in real life, in actual spaces with people that are enjoying the experience as well.

Simple Art

I love my writing group. We meet twice a month, we chat about all things. Today we talked about our writing, the world around us, our lives, our privilege, our stories, our families. As a writer you put it all out there and when you meet up with other writers there is not much that’s off limits.

We also try and do some writing during our time together. Generally, we have a prompt or a topic someone brings up. I have been collecting prompts lately. Hoping they will inspire creativity and if nothing else, so I have something to bring to the group.

Today’s prompt came from a weekly newsletter I have been getting from Solekia Jaouad. I signed up for her newsletter after finishing her book Between Two Kingdoms, I loved her story and her style and I didn’t want the book to end, I felt like I became her friend.

This was the prompt (and my response below): Choose a piece of art—a favorite painting, a sculpture, a movie, a photograph, a song. Study it, noting the details and what they evoke. Then write about it—what you saw or heard, what you felt, what it meant to you.

The collection of postcards on the wall, mounted and framed. It’s not the best piece of art work, but we have never been the type to have fancy art. It was gift for Andrew after our trip. I had high hopes of making two pieces, we bought two packs of National Park Postcards, because I was planning on making one piece for home and one for his office. After looking at the two packs of postcards for over a year, I finally got my act together, pulled out the cards from the parks we had been to and took the pile to the frame shop. Sorted them in alphabetical order and trusted they would make it look how I imagine my art piece for the past two years. He was surprised when I wrapped it and gave it to him for a birthday present. There would be only one, it would stay at home.

It’s a reminder of our travels, of the places we have been. Of the experiences, the hikes, the sunset and the sunrises we have shared as a family. Each card has a story, even if that story is, we just drove through, but I need another card so that the print was balanced. The others are stories that recapture the moments of time. When we hiked into the Grand Canyon and were so proud of our little girls. Or the time I gave our family a double dose of Dramamine and nearly ruined our visit to Dry Tortugas. There are other memories of fear and anxiety climbing into Wind Caves or the realization that mom isn’t perfect, when the girls caught me smoking pot in Zion. They are all stories, good, bad, minimal or extra.

The art isn’t amazing. The photos are colorful, nostalgic and simple. And while there is plenty of art out in the world that might blow your mind with details and abstraction, what makes this piece noteworthy is that it represents our life, which is also colorful, nostalgic and simple.


I listen to Glennon Doyle’s; We Can Do Hard Things podcast often when I walk. Today I tuned into episode #36 Writing & Art. One of the things I loved hearing about is her early writing process and the idea of just writing what you write, not editing and then just posting. Once again going back to my focus on accountability, getting your voice heard and out into the public no matter what. Today, I am sharing something I wrote, honestly I am not that fond of it, but yesterday I made myself sit down and write, even though I didn’t want to. I used this list of prompts from The Good Trade and wrote two poems (or maybe they can be one) from the first October prompt: Write a Poem about Shadows… here goes…

Standing under a light I see it behind me

Always following me

Something I can never let go of

Until the time comes when I am enclosed, covered or hidden

It follows me everywhere I go

Like the thoughts in my head it

Looming, sometimes overpowering

How to avoid it

Shadows of me

I don’t always see

Shadows of trees

Stand tall and offer shade

Behind the mystery

Always there


My shadow follows me wherever I go

Like my thoughts I can’t escape it

Unless I cover up or hide

The shadows of trees are welcome

Offering shade, refuge from a blistering sun

Standing in the shadows of someone else

I feel safe, supported, seen

My shadow is looming

Why so dark – the thoughts that come with shadows?

Is it the mystery or the fear of something following?

What is seen in the shadows, behind the corner

Makes me nervous, the unknown

The story of what it might be

When in reality its not quite as big as imagined

Finding JOY in Fall

As the weather shifts so do our moods. I imagine I am not alone when I feel at a loss during these darker, wetter, windier months. While I might struggle to find joy in my day to day life, I am sitting down to remember things that bring me happiness and a sense of peace, which is often hard to access.

The colors of changing leaves 
The smell of cinnamon on the stove while apples cook
Baking cupcakes and the joy it brings my girls, as they arrive home to a warm treat after school
Holding a cup of hot tea, letting my hands warm up around it and taking in the scent of chai and turmeric
A cold run with rosy cheeks and sweat everywhere else
A hot shower
Baking bread

Cozy sweaters
My sweet puppy and his wiggle bottom
Dinner with my family
Wrapping up in a blanket, cuddled on the couch with a book

This is the start of my list. I will come back to it and bring in other simple pleasures when I start to feel that sense of joy being depleted.

One thing that always brings joy, takes me out of my head and into the current moment is cooking. I love the scents and tastes associated with different spices and it brings me comfort to share food with others. So, I am sharing with you, a couple recipes I find nourishing during these cold months.

The first is a delicious pound cake/bread I found on New York Times. The recipe sounded interesting to me and I was curious to try it, Miso Maple Loaf Cake. When I made it I used Bob’s One-to-One Gluten Free flour (I knew I would likely be eating this for a few days in a row, and my body would appreciate the GF flour). It turned out a little crumbly right out of the oven and when I tried to toast it but otherwise it was delicious. It can be enjoyed warm or room temperature, delicious snack with a cup of tea. I also omitted the glaze on top, I didn’t have orange marmalade and I didn’t want to make it super sweet. I have eaten it plain, with jam or with an egg on the side.

Another staple in my house during the fall is cooked apples. I often steer away from raw veggies and fruits in the fall because I am always cold and most cold foods don’t appeal to me. But still I want to make sure I get these healthy foods into my meals each day, also my veggie bin is usually overflowing with apples and pears this time of year.

My cooked apple recipe goes something like this:

Cut up apples and pears (I leave the skins on) 4-5 apples will make about 4-5 servings.

Drop them in a pan with water and a bunch of spices. I generally add what I have on hand: cinnamon, cinnamon sticks, pumpkin spice, ginger, nutmeg, and anything else that tastes like fall and a dash of salt. This time I found some cardamom seeds so I threw those in and a few pours of maple syrup (honey would work too). Then I let the water boil, turn down the heat and let it fill my house with sweet smells, stir it occasionally and then when the fruit is soft and the water is cooked down its ready.

No measuring, no real timing, just letting the apples stew until they are nice and soft is best. If you have a hard time just winging it, this recipe is pretty close to my method, although it uses an Instant Pot or you could use a Crock Pot, putting it in the Crock Pot would have the house smelling delicious all day, but I didn’t want to wait 4 hours.

Let me know if you try either of these recipes or share YOUR fall favorites in the comments!

Blowing In The Wind

The windy fall days leave me untethered, longing for something to sink my teeth into. Longing for meaningful projects. I assumed removing myself from the noise of social media would give me levity and a sense of freedom. Do I feel a sense of relief? No. Am I still bombarded with news? Yes. Does the news about the Facebook whistler blower and seeing Facebook sites go down earlier this week, make me feel confident in my choice? Yes. But I still have that feeling of missing out. The moments of downtime leave me wondering what to do. I would love to say that I have been super productive and reading and writing so much more. That is not the case. I am still feeling my sense of purpose flailing in the wind.

As a new writer, focusing on my memoir of our year on the road, I tell myself that my day should be focused on writing, editing, drafting my proposal. But some days I just can’t look at the words anymore. Some days its too painful to look back on those days on the road and know that my girls are growing up and will be moving on soon. Other days I love looking back at the story, nurturing it and making it better, but every day is different. Today is one of the days I wasn’t ready to dive in to editing a new chapter, instead I write here. Remembering my goal for this blog. Accountability.

Social Media Detox

Scrolling, scrolling, losing track of time. What is everyone up to? Where are the cute dogs? Maybe I will find some yoga inspiration. Down time, pick up my phone and find the social media. Mainly Facebook and Instagram. I find myself sitting in the same place after twenty minutes, maybe even an hour. Where has the time gone? Here comes the the guilt, what else could I have been doing? For sure something more productive.

I need to get off I tell myself. Delete the apps. Make it harder than just picking up the phone to see the outside world. “But I can’t” I tell myself, “I use social media to share my writing and my yoga classes” and really, that is what I use it for, but I also TAKE IN so much more.

The time has come that I need a social media detox. I am removing the apps from my phone and my iPad for the month of October. Possibly longer. Lately, I have feeling down, my sense of purpose is waning, I need something to look forward to and I am realizing I need a break from outside influences. It is no surprise that these platforms cause anxiety and depressions in teens, and it does the same for adults mental health as well. When we are constantly looking outside ourselves for something to fill us, it actually makes us feel worse.

I admire those people that have a healthy relationship with social media, they don’t look at it, not interested in it, can pop in from time to time and not get attached. I am not those people. I do get FOMO and in order to recenter myself, I need to go cold turkey.

My goal is to fill my cup with more nature, reading, arts and crafts and get back to writing my memoir. I am sure I will have moments that I am sitting in a waiting room or waiting for the girls in the car and I will be drawn to pull out my phone, but I will still have Duolingo, so I will brush up on my Italian. Or maybe I will just enjoy the simple stillness.

I do still have the concern of publishing my blog and promoting my yoga classes. I was hoping to find a way to easily push my blog posts to my Facebook and Instagram. Without going into too many boring details, it is not as easy or cheap as I was hoping and in the end it was making me more frustrated. I may not have all the right tools or know all the ins and outs of it, but in the end, I was spending more time in front of my computer trying to figure it out, which is what I am trying to avoid.

So for now, when I write a blog post I will only share it on my Kathy Gorohoff Yoga Facebook page and my Twitter page, I can’t post it to my personal page, without going on to Facebook. If you feel inspired by what you have read, please leave a comment on the blog or share it to your network. I would love that!

If you would like to stay connected to my blog, you can either:

1. Sign up to follow the blog: scroll to the bottom of this page, add your email and get the posts right into your inbox.


2. Like my Kathy Gorohoff Yoga page.

I will still be teaching yoga on Monday mornings. All the details for the class can be found here, send me a note if you want the link for Monday’s classes.

Starting on Friday, October 1st, I will miss seeing all your kids, I will likely miss your birthday. I will miss seeing your vacations and weekend activities. I will miss my Australian Shepherd Group and reading about all the angry people in the neighborhood. Hopefully someone will call or text me if there is something important I need to know about school or if there are friends in need. But otherwise, I will be heading out of social media world in hopes to find a bit more peace within myself.

Full Moon Intentions

The arrival of the full moon is an opportunity to check in with ourselves. We might not always align with what mystics and shamans have to say about the moon and its meaning for the various phase it is in, but sometimes we do. This week I have been buying into the Power Path’s update on the Harvest Moon:

This full moon is an excellent time to expand your inspiration of what is possible and to set some good intentions for attracting good luck, good news and good community.” (From The Power Path

I have been diving in and focusing on this idea of setting intentions and attracting good luck, good news and good community. While the full moon in Pisces was on Monday the 20th at 5:54 MDT, I am letting it be a guide for the entire week.

Over the last couple days, I have received some good news, news that also means a big investment and a lot of work. I am still waiting on other news that would offer me the opportunity to give back to people that would benefit from something I am passionate about. I have set my intentions and realize that whatever happens, happens for a reason.

I won’t blame the moon and its fullness if things don’t go according to the plan I am hopeful for. But I will look at the moon in the morning and in the evening and remind myself of my intentions. I am enough, there is a power greater than me and I am not in charge. When I give in and surrender I can move through my life without holding my breath.

Being Content With Letting Go

Last Thursday, I attended my regular Bhakti yoga class, masked up and in person, the theme for the class was Santosha or contentment. Santosha is part of the eight limbs of yoga. The first two limbs are The Yamas (restraints, moral disciplines or moral vows, how we show up in the world) and The Niyamas (positive duties or observances, how we treat ourselves). Santosha, is the second Niyama and is the idea of being content. Content where you are internally, not grasping externally for more. I felt this was a good message with my meditation mantra this week of Letting Go or Surrender, which is the last Niyama, Isvara Pranidhana, which is about letting go and surrendering to a higher power, realizing that we are not in control of anything.

As the mother of two teenage daughters I am reminded that these girls are starting to move into the driver’s seats of their lives, I am no longer in control. Right now, I need to be the potted plant in the corner, a term I learned from a New York Times article a few years back, and was recently reminded of in a podcast I was listening to this week. The best thing my kids need right now is to know my husband and I are there for them, even though they don’t always want to engage or talk with us. Instead, I need to sit back watch, observe and let go of offering feedback of what I think they need to do. It is not my job to relive my high school years through them, fixing my mistakes, or encouraging new ideas in hopes they will get better results. I graduated almost 30 years ago, times have changed. Yes, we still have rules and curfews. I will still create boundaries to make sure my kids are healthy and safe. Yes, I will make dinner most nights, even though most nights no one is home to eat it. I will continue to drive them and their friends around and quietly listen, while soaking it all in. My main job right now is letting go of all the control.

I definitely have a lot of thoughts and feelings that come along with letting go. I am trying to settle into where we are, realizing that each day may not be great, I might feel feel down or depressed missing my kids. I may feel feel overjoyed for their successes or overwhelmed watching their stress. Acknowledging that all these different feelings can happen at the same time is the healthiest way to move through them. I will notice them, honor them and then let them go. My goal is to let go of the judgment and worry that comes with these different feelings, and instead be curious about them and carry on with them in the best way that works in the moment.

For me, that might look like a long walk with music to drown out my thoughts, or maybe with an audio book to distract me. Other days it might be walking or lunch with a friend to vent about it all. The next day it might be yoga and going to bed early. The idea is that each day, each feeling, each moment (like we talked about in the last blog) is a new opportunity and accepting it and then letting go of all the other stuff we attach to it is the only way to get through it. In the end, I will have my feelings, I won’t put them on my girls and I will sit patiently in the corner, making sure to be there when they need me.