Tuesday, April 21, 2015

IG Yoga Love

It's amazing what internet can do.

When I decided to join IG Yoga Community, all I wanted to do was to learn yoga from/together with people around the world in a fun way. It goes way more than I expected. Not only I 'meet' wonderful people who help me improving my yoga practice, we also build beautiful friendship.

I received this card from Kate (@dennis_and_thewilsons) around January, she lives in US. She promised to let me put my feet on her car window, if one day I visit her.

And this souvenirs are from Kak Yzma (@yzmaiz), she lives in Malaysia. We, and Less (@lessxes) will have a cartwheel race. The race could be here in Semarang. Or in Australia where Less lives, because I want to see small kangaroos called wallaby.

And last month I had a wonderful evening with this warm loving lady Sher (@sheryljou), she lives in Bali but we first met in Instagram. It was so exciting to be able to meet a new friend we knew 'in the cloud', on the ground...

And this beautiful bracellet I'm wearing is from Sonia (@lilsonia_1), she also lives in US. I and her, oh and Steve (@angwin_yoga) is preparing for a practice together there at her house, and a party with beers and soda after that. Steve is still swimming and I am sailing, on our way there.

Love knows no language nor origin. It speaks in a universal way.

Receiving those gift from friends across continent, I remember when I was started blogging around 2008, I made friends with people around the world. Not only we communicate through each's blog, we swap gift one another and it was wonderful. Some of them are still blogging now some are not. Most have moved to FB and there we're connected and share about daily things we used to share on our blogs.

It just feels the same. It's beautiful to share love with people we never met before, far away yet feels so close. And I want to thank you, all beautiful souls for befriending me. Meeting you is a bless. 

I have a dream to meet them all. Don't say it will remain a dream. We never know which dream will come true.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Jarik Skirt Tutorial

When I have to wear kebaya, I usually wear my jarik in a certain way, a modified way and not the traditional one, so I can still walk in wide steps. That way I can keep my jarik original, no cut and sewing. I've made a quick tutorial about it couple months ago at Instagram.

Now as I have to wear kebaya (and that means also the jarik) to work every month on 15, that would be inconvenience. So I have done some experiments sewing jarik into skirt.

This is my first jarik skirt for work I wore last month.

Some friends have requested a tutorial of how to make the skirt. I wanted to record a video and me speaking but I don't understand how to edit a video and I didn't want to bother my daughter to do it, so here I tried to capture some pictures in my second experiment. It's a little bit different with the first one but, ya only a little bit.

First of all, what you need, and sorry I didn't take the picture of the materials:
- a piece of jarik
- elastic (2 cm width, your waist line length)
- thread
- scissors, sewing machine, measuring tape, straight needles.

Step 1.  
Fold your jarik in two. Cut a curve of quarter circle at the folded corner. You can see the measuring tape, there is your skirt length. Do't forget to add 1/2 inch for sewing space. Let's call this part 'side A' and the perpendicular side to it where we cut the curve  is the 'side B'. The curve will make your skirt's waist. Because I am going to put elastic here, it should be the hips line. The radius of the circle is = jarik width - skirt length. 
That usually will leave less then skirt length at side B, that's fine. For you with larger  hips, keep the skirt length at side A, and sacrifice few inches at side B.
I cut 4 cm of the edge line for the waist band (I marked it with the scissors). 

Step 2.
Put the two pieces of cut edges together inside out for the waist band. Jarik's width is usually 100 cm. Should you need more than it for larger hips (I hope you're not that large) you can get additional fabric with appropriate color.

Step 3.
Put the waist band together with the waist line curve inside out. We cut it in quarter circle when the jarik was folded. When we open it, the curve is actually half a circle.

Step 4. 
Put the elastic inside the waist band. The elastic length is your waist line, plus 1/2 inch  lid for sewing. Use some help of straight pins at both ends of the curve, also at the middle and at the quarters. This will help to spread the elastic evenly.

Now sew it. Hold tight two straight pins and pull, and sew between. Go on until we're done. Make sure you sew at the middle of the elastic width, and also at the inner edge along the waist band.

Step 5.
Put both sides of 'side B' together and sew it inside out.

Step 6.
Your skirt is ready here. It will fall elegantly on the floor and would be nice to go to party with.

But I am  making this one for work. I don't think walking around office sweeping the floor with your skirt is a brilliant idea so I will do a few more steps.

Step 7. 
Cut the jarik in skirt length, radiant to the center of the quarter circle curve we made before. You can't keep the length at the side B so you must stop somewhere at a certain point (mine is there marked with the measuring tape). Leave the rest to side B's end. Sorry for the photo bomber.

Step 8.
Here I will show you the difference I talked about at the beginning of this post.
In my first experiment with my white jarik, I didn't make a quarter circle for the waist line, but I cut it just a little bit arching line. I kept the skirt length at the side A side and sacrifice more at side B.

Both ways provide a big difference in the way of the skirts fall. My first skirt falls less in the front and much more in the back and creates beautiful drapery there. The half circled waist I made in my second experiment spreads the jarik evenly around the hips. The drapery I wanted doesn't come, and it makes the skirt a little bit weird. So I have to make it fall the way I wanted. Not as beautifully as the white one but it helps. I sew a line starting from the end of the waist line (where we put side Bs together in Step 5) to the certain point I mentioned in Step 7. Take a look again at the picture in Step 7, I sew right there where the measuring tape lies.

Step 9.
Sew the bottom edge of the skirt. I forgot to take a picture but you know where it is...

Step 10.
Oh. No more steps. We're done. It's ready to wear.

There you go. Not a pretty good tutorial but I hope it helps... Let me know if you're done with yours, by leaving a comment with a link to your picture. Or just send the picture me through email. Or BBM. Or whatsapp. Or Facebook. Or any other ways you like. Selamat mencoba!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Love You More.

We have two guitars at home. I named my own 'David' and the other one that I've handed over to Ibit is 'Jasmine'. I let Ibit to play with either one, at home. Every one can feel that David is more comfortable to hold and play with. But any time Ibit needed to bring a guitar to school, I told her to just bring Jasmine. David has far better quality, and is much (yes much) more expensive than Jasmine. 

This morning she said she needed to bring her guitar.

"Use the bag," I said.
"Wich bag?"
We only have one guitar bag, and I usually use it to cover David.

"That, bag."
"David's inside. I'll just carry Jasmine."
"Get David out. Or... Just bring David."
"Really? I can bring David?"

Her eyes was shining bright, she looked so happy to be allowed to.

"Don't leave him at school.."
"No I won't. I promise! I will never leave David at school!"

I love David much. I take care of him as how any musician takes care of their instrument. I do my best to protect him from scratch, bump, water, humidity. I have protected him from my worries of all those harms by not letting Ibit bring him to school. Not because I don't trust Ibit. But because I don't know how her friends would treat him, they might not understand the bond I and David have.

Ibit understands this. And she was okay with that.

But I love Ibit more. It felt so good, so great, to see her all cheered up.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Yoga Doesn't Care...

Being a newbie in yoga has made me curious about any-yoga-thing. Among those browse and surfing, I like IG-yoga because there are interactions between yogis/yoginis. I realize some are just a passing by through, but I know I can always find ones who really care and see how we all make progression.

I can see the difference between how yogis or yoga teachers from India and west express themselves. The first are more calm and slow, while the others are more expressive and fun. Both are interesting to me, that's why I follow them in parallel.

A question has come to my mind, why doing yoga has to be in certain wears define as yoga-wear. Then yoga related to what so called healthy diet and certain accessories. I can understand the yoga mat. But why there should be yoga legging, yoga pants, yoga bra, etc? I, myself, feel comfortable doing yoga in any sport wear, mostly fitness wear. I can even do it in any daily shorts and shirts. And I found wearing accessories during practicing yoga is an inconvenience...

I enjoy participating in any challenges on IG. I understand how challenges has become an advertising tools. Daily give-aways have made it more interesting. But that is not my main goal. I only like it because it motivates me to do more daily practice and learn new asanas. It's like being in a yoga class and grow together with the various students from around the world. For a while I was distracted, focused on likes I received in every post. Then an IG-yogi posted a picture with caption that she decided to quit doing challenges for feeling so. She chose to just be present and interact with 'real people' in class.

I wouldn't say ig-yogis aren't real people. You can find robots but let's just ignore those ones. I respect the decision to stop yogaing on Instagram. This has reminded me to my real goal learning yoga. I can still have fun, but not to forget that I'm doing it for health, fitness, and peace of mind. I forgive myself for having fun by doing challenges or just any #stopdropandyoga. I like to have many likes and thank anyone who double click my post. And I will gladly double click any post I like. But I won't do random double click around hashtags just to get double click back...

One of my favorite yogi is Abdul Khanan Khan from India. He is soooo humble and always shares meaningful posts. What he does is way a lot more than showing his capability. He wouldn't keep his account private if he does, would he? 

Today he is posting some quotes I really-really love about yoga. Yoga is to free your self, and never feel tied to any unimportant things. Because, as my teacher says, nothing's absolute.

This is what he said: 
Yoga doesn’t care what your hair looks like.
Yoga doesn’t care if you wear Lululemon or Spiritual Gangster.
Yoga doesn’t care if you are vegetarian, if you eat meat or know what Kombucha is.
Yoga doesn’t care when the last time you practiced was—yesterday, six months ago, never.
Yoga doesn’t care what kind of mat you have, brand new or eating away at itself.
Yoga doesn’t care what color your skin is or what gender you choose to love.
Yoga doesn’t care if you wear mala beads.
Yoga doesn’t care how much money you have or what car you drive.
Yoga doesn’t care if you fart during practice.
Yoga doesn’t care if you drink super food smoothies or coconut water.
Yoga doesn’t care if you can put your leg behind your head, or lick your own ass.
Yoga doesn’t care if you know what Ujjayi breath is.
Yoga doesn’t care if you have a man bun.
Yoga doesn’t care if you juice or cleanse.
Yoga doesn’t care if you complete a 30 day challenge.
Yoga doesn’t care if you shop at whole foods.
Yoga doesn’t care if you remember to shave your armpits.
#Yoga is just #happy you show up.
So I wouldn't care about my hair, my wear, my mat, my bracellet, my diet... I will just be happy practicing...

Friday, December 5, 2014

Paper Snowflake Tutorial

I am always amazed with snow. May be because until now I can only see it thru pictures. Snowflakes are visualized so beautiful. Many artworks and craft based on this microscopic look of frozen water molecules, and they are all amazing.

I've tried to make a simple paper snow flake, that can be used as a decoration or as accessories in greeting cards. You just need to customize the size.

So this is how we do it. First, take a square paper.

Then fold it in two.

Then fold it back and forward in three, with the help of an arch to define 60 degrees.

Cut the edge.

Then draw a pattern.

Cut carefully. You might need to fold the middle part, depends on your pattern.

Open carefully, and taaadaaaa...!
We have a paper snow flake.

I've made a smaller size, that would be nice to be applied in cards. Try make yours and share how you do!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Motivation, Persistence, Achievement.

My father has raised me as a sport lover. He taught me badminton, pingpong. He brought me to a habit of ‘no day without working out’. He played tennis three times a week. We had jump rope and dumbbells. Simple useful things.
As I grew up, moved to other city and built a family, I started to do aerobic exercises as a routine. It is fun and full of benefits, for my cardio, for my fitness. Now as I am aging, I need to lower the intensity of jumping. So I turned to yoga.
Being a yoga beginner, I don’t only come to classes. I open my eyes wider through internet. I search webs. And one interesting thing I found is the yoga community on Instagram.
There I found, and then follow, many yoga experts and beginners. There are so many things to share and learn.
One interesting thing I noticed is that most of the ig-yogis/yoginis post their best pictures in best pose. Including me (though I know my best is still not good enough). I think that is normal. We always want people to see good sides of us, and tend to hide the bad parts. Sometimes we just don’t realize that we don’t only learn from good things, but bad things as well.
I see that in yoga teachers instagram accounts, they post best pose, acrobatic, and often beyond my imagination. How could they have such strength and flexibility? They always come with motivating words. One said it took years before she came to her ability now, to do incredible folds and handstands and twists and more. But I only see the best part where they do things perfectly. They share tips but even tips look too complex to do.
Then I found Doodi @sister_yoga, a yoga teacher from Abu Dhabi, who continuously shares her daily practice. She is different. When other experts choose to appear elegant and classy, she comes in a casual and often naughty way. I believe some people will think she is also bitchy. But it is fine with me. She is beautiful, she is funny, she is crazy. And with her craziness she made doing yoga really fun and less depressing. Even when she says it is depressing.

She doesn't only show perfect beautiful poses. She sometimes breaks the silence with humorous costumes and captions. And the best part is, she also shares her failures in her daily practices.
Some people may think it is a shame. Or at least funny. Yes, at first I also laughed and thought, ‘this woman is crazy.’ But seriously I think it is more encouraging and motivating than only seeing perfect poses with written tips below. Beginners like me need to see the falls and ups during exercises. I see how Doodi never gives up on the way to succeed doing new difficult asanas, showing persistence, and results don’t come in an abrakadabra. For real. I’m not saying other yogi/yoginis didn't do so. I just couldn't see it. It is easier for me to absorb what I see, than if I have to take time to imagine the hard work they do. Motivations don’t come only in words but also in actions.

Showing people your failures isn't a shame. It is a brave thing to do. This is one of her falls and ups on the way to a jump handstand. I couldn't save the video to post it here so please just check out on her site.
So will I give up and say, ‘This is difficult. I will never be able to do this’ when I have to learn a new higher level asana? No way. Everyone has their own limits. I know I have mine. My biggest struggle  is to keep my spine lengthen and straight (as it is a little rounded). And off course my poor flexibility. Still I have to learn a lot. That yoga is more than body exercises; it is also for soul and mine.
As my teacher said, to always be positive, we are warriors who struggle fighting our own ego. To remind ourselves that yoga isn't a competition with people around us. It is about building our own strength and abilities. It is for own health. For our own goodness.

I am still far behind, I still have a lot more to learn. And I will try to have that motivation and persistence to get to achievements.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Puncak Tema di Sekolah

Setiap tiga bulan, di sekolah Aik ada acara pentas puncak tema. Semua anak dari kelas kelompok bermain (playgroup) dan kelompok belajar (taman kanak-kanak) ikut ambil bagian tanpa kecuali. Puncak tema kali ini, setiap kelas menampilkan gerak dan lagu. Sebenarnya lebih tepat disebut bergerak mengikuti lagu. Menari dengan iringan lagu anak-anak. 

Tahun lalu, Dek Aik masih belum mau ikut menari. Naik ke panggung harus dituntun, di atas panggung pun duduk, minggir di pojokan. Kali ini pun awalnya dia terlihat malu. Ketika duduk menunggu giliran, dia terus-terusan menutup muka. Namun akhirnya dia maju sendiri ketika tiba giliran kelasnya beraksi di panggung. Dan setelah itu sikap malu-malunya lenyap tak bersisa....

Gerakan tarinya cukup sederhana, sebenarnya. Tapi bagi Aik tetap saja masih sulit untuk diikuti. Jadilah dia lebih banyak diam, hanya sesekali goyang ke sana kemari sebisanya. Lucunya, seusai acara, dia dengan dua orang kakak kelompok belajar banyak bergerak nari-nari sendiri. Kurasa ini tetap ada kaitannya dengan jumlah audiens. Yang terakhir ini penontonnya memang tinggal tiga emaknya yang menunggui tiga anak ini sebosannya :D

Bagaimana pun, buat aku ini istimewa. Mengingat bagaimana sulitnya dia merasa nyaman di tengah kerumunan. Apalagi jadi perhatian. Ada teman Aik yang sama sekali tidak mau ikut menari, bahkan menangis dan nyungsep aja di pangkuan ibunya....

Well done, Dear. Mami love you ��