Happy Haul-idays Giveaway from Chronicle Books

Dear TGBTS friends,

I love books.

You love books.

We love charities and they love books.

So let’s try to win this thing, shall we?

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Here’s how it works.

I post my my whole list favorite Chronicle Books here.

I tell you about the charity I’d like to donate to and why.

You comment, we tweet, we (hopefully) win.

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My charity is my favorite branch of the Sacramento Public Library – Ella K. McClatchy.

I choose this branch because it is my home away from home and could always use more new books. McClatchy truly serves as a community meeting place and I hope to help it grow its collection.

Is this a good time to tell you ONE LUCKY COMMENTER also wins my book list?

Say whaa?

Yep, one of YOU wins the whole lot.

Plus my charity wins $500 in books of their choice.

Sounds good, huh?

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A select few BOOKS!

The complete list is HERE.

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In order to be eligible to win my haul of books, please click on the whole list above and leave a comment about which book is your favorite and why.

Are you on Twitter? Please tweet about my our list using the hashtag #happyhaulidays and we get an extra entry per day. So be sure to tweet away every day!

Good luck to all of us!

And the Winner Is….

Thank you to all of you who entered to win the beautiful silk scarf from Spirit House Designs and shopped at the presale yesterday.

The winner is…..

Jenna!

She writes This Is My Happiness - one of my favorite travel blogs.

We’ll be sending out your warm tone scarf.

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Still want a scarf to call your own?

Alicia will be selling her work at the Davis Art Center Holiday Sale this first weekend in December.

Be sure to “like” Spirit House Designs on Facebook to keep up with Alicia’s work.

Catching Up with Alicia Herrera of Spirit House Designs + a GIVEAWAY!

Last November I interviewed my fellow public school teacher, adoptive mom (to be), and owner of Spirit House Designs, Alicia Herreraas part of my Featured Teacher Series.

Here’s a snap shot of our conversation recently.

What is happening in your adoption?

We are now 27 months into our adoption pregnancy.  After the initial flurry of paperwork, classes, and home study, we have been more or less waiting.  And, because all of the legal documents tent to be valid only for a year, we have renewed all of our paperwork once, too.

We are pretty much at the “top” of the list for getting an important phone call- the one where we are matched with our child.  After we are matched, it will be another 4-8 months while we go through the court system. We hope to have a toddler at home this time next year!

What’s changed since last year?

One big change has happened since this time last year.

The program that we were in (Thailand) basically slowed to a stop. International adoption is dicey in that the process can take so long that policy changes happen mid-process.  We were advised by our adoption agency to switch countries if we were wishing to complete an adoption in the next couple of years (yes!).

Adoptive parent requirements vary from country to country and, initially, we had not been married long enough to consider a few other options.  Those options were suddenly open to us, including a very good program with a small children’s home in Taiwan.

Having to change countries is a big fear for adoptive parents because of time and money lost. It can be heartbreaking to essentially “start over”.   We had to face that fear this year and it was hard for us.   More waiting, more money, still no guarantees.  We took a deep breath, crossed our fingers, and reapplied in Taiwan.

Are are you still raising money to fund your adoption through Spirit House Designs? 

 Reapplying meant redoing a lot of paperwork (again!) and repaying fees.  In addition, the program in Taiwan is also about $7,000 more, by design, than Thailand. We expect to spend about $35,000 by the time we are finished, which is roughly a teacher’s take-home salary for one year.  It is amazing to consider!

What’s new at Spirit House Designs?

Oooh. The thing that I am loving the most this year are the silk art scarves.  They have been individually painted, dyed, and then shaped by hand.  I added little specks of light and color to make each one unique.  They look great and feel luxurious.  I put up a tutorial on the blog that shows my favorite way to wear them as scarves, but they are versatile enough to be worn as a shawl, too.

They are such a pleasure to make. Working with silk is filled with meditative moments.  Mixing color, paying attention to the fiber’s response, moving slowly, being open to what each piece wants to become… all of these things are done with intention and love.  I believe that this attitude is what makes each item beautiful and what pleases the wearer. There is no substitution for heart.

I also have the next batch of nuno felted scarves, flowers, huipil cushions, as well as some gifty felted soap, all of which can be seen first at the open studio at the house on November 19th.

Where is your work available?

I will be showing at the Davis Art Center Holiday Sale and the Davis Gift Mart the first weekend in December.  This should be a fun holiday season of sharing both textiles and adoption excitement updates with everybody.

I will also be having a Spirit House studio presale on November 19th, for those who are unable to make the Davis Art Center Sale.  From 10 AM-2 PM, the studio will be open and items will be available for purchase.

The studio sale is by invitation only, but all are very welcome.

{For an invitation, simply submit a comment of interest}.

All of the profits from the presale go directly toward our adoption fund.

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Alicia has generously donated a silk scarf to the readers of Teacher Goes Back To School.

To enter to win – please leave a comment about what color palette interests you most: warm tones or cool tones.

 Options for Extra Entries:

Subscribe to Teacher Goes Back to School via Email & Confirm Subscription (upper right hand corner) and then leave a blog comment telling me you subscribed. If you already are a subscriber, leave a comment letting us know.

Subscribe to Spirit House Designs via Email & Confirm Subscription (upper right hand corner) and then leave a blog comment telling Alicia you subscribed. If you already are a subscriber, leave a comment letting us know.

“Like” Teacher Goes Back to School on Facebook and then leave a blog comment to confirm. If you already like TGBTS, leave a comment letting us know.

“Like” Spirit House Designs on Facebook and then leave a blog comment to confirm.If you already like Spirit House Designs, leave a comment letting us know.

Tweet this post or share it on Facebook and then leave a blog comment to confirm.

Who is eligible to win?

Anyone with a valid e-mail and a U.S. mailing address is eligible.

When do I find out if I am the winner?

The contest is open from November 13, 2011 until midnight PST on Friday, November 18, 2011. The winner will be announced on November 19th at the Presale. {Need not be present to win.}

You will have 2 weeks to e-mail us back with your home address so we can mail the prize.

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THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED.

Thank you to all who entered.

Free Yoga In Sacramento During November

Interested?

All you have to do is ask me for a complimentary class card *** and promise to USE IT during November 2011. It is good for any class at It’s All Yoga, not just mine.

Why am I doing this?

A) Free yoga is good for everyone.

B) The teacher with the most new people coming in to the studio with their cards wins a massage with Kate Sullivan at Anatomy of Massage.

Win, win!

*** – cards are for new people only (or people who haven’t been to the studio in a year or more)

Sorry for those friends and students who already go to the studio. I’ll come up with some other giveaway or contest later.

Promise.

Celebrate National Library Week! Books I Love: Tales from the Yoga Studio {A Giveaway!}

It’s National Library Week and as part of that I’ve committed to sharing my favorite book, album and movie titles with my readers this week.

What a better way to start off the week than with a giveaway?

{Now you will have a chance to WIN THIS BOOK!}


{click the book to read about the book and more importantly to learn more about the author}

Title:  Tales from the Yoga Studio

Author: Rain Mitchell

Genre: Novel

Synopsis: A low-key local yoga teacher with a special gift for reaching people is targeted as the “Next Big Thing” by a high-powered company.

My thoughts: I made a connection right away. It reminded me of some of my gifted yoga teacher friends and what might happen if suddenly someone wanted to pay them a lot of money and make them famous. Would they sell out and become part of the yoga machine or would they stay true to themselves?

Being a part of a small studio that flies under the radar for most people, but totally changes lives, I identified with this story. How would I react if suddenly our studio became overrun with the rich and famous?  Or worse, if the teachers suddenly became like unattainable rock stars?

So are you ready to read this book yet?

A super quick read with some very likeable characters that clearly struck a nerve for me. I recommend reading it especially if you have a beloved teacher who (you hope) isn’t ever going to be on the cover of a yoga magazine.

Want to win my (advanced readers) copy of this book ?

Mandatory Entry is:

1. Leave a comment and tell me what you think makes a great yoga teacher.
Options for Extra Entries:
  • Subscribe to My Blog Via Email & Confirm Subscription (upper right hand corner)
  • Tweet this post or share it on Facebook.
  • In order to ensure I see all your entries – please leave a separate comment for each entry.
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Am I eligible to win?
Anyone with a valid e-mail and a U.S. mailing address is eligible.

When do I find out if I am the winner?

Contest is open from Sunday, April 1o, 2011 – noon (PST), Sunday, April 17th.

The winner will be chosen the old-fashioned way: names in a hat.

The winner will be announced on Monday, April 18th. You will have 1 week to e-mail us back with your home address so we can mail the prize.

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This giveaway is now CLOSED.

And the winner is… Elizabeth!

In Case You Missed It Edition, Volume 20

{via}

Each week I’ll give you links to posts that made me laugh, cry, think or at least raise an eyebrow. Please click the links and check out the posts. You may find something that rocks your world too.

Leave me some feedback in the form of comments below on what you liked, what you hated and what you’d like to see more of. I’m here to help you find the best of what is online.

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My Best Of…

What makes a great teacher? Hint, it’s not the cute pants. A seriously great post about what makes a great yoga teacher, but really the qualities apply to all kinds of teachers.

How NOT to teach a beginning level class. Again, it applies to all kinds of teaching, not just the yoga kind.

Remember how much you wanted to win a scarf from November’s Featured Teacher –  Alicia at Spirit House Designs? Well, she’s doing a purse GIVE AWAY. Go enter friends! You’ve got until March 12th.

EXCITING NEW ALERT!

Teacher Goes Back to School is growing up! In addition to our regularly scheduled fully restorative yoga class at It’s All Yoga, we are in search of a designer to make TGBTS as pretty as she is useful.

If you know someone or are someone who would like to work on this small-budget project, please send them my way via comment or email TGBTSblog (at) gmail dot com.

Speaking of pretty and useful blogs – have you checked out Charlotte’s Fancy? Love this victory garden post.

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Curvy Yogis update – save the date for the last weekend of March for photo shoot. Details to follow. Our photographer is traveling and we’re coordinating schedules the best we can.

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That is the In Case You Missed It Edition for this week, folks.

Remember to click the links and leave some comments. This is a conversation, you know.

In Case You Missed Edition Archives -click it to see them all.


Books I Love: The Geography of Bliss {a GIVEAWAY!}

It’s Thanksgiving and time to tell you all how much I appreciate you spending time here with me. The comments and conversations have really made my year pretty damn wonderful despite my occasional complaining about how things can totally suck sometimes.

You all know how much I love reading. In fact, I spend most of my time reading: non-fiction or yoga-related mostly.

And blogs.

Lots and lots of blogs.

{Don’t be shy about clicking, people. Good stuff hidden behind those links.}

To be perfectly honest, part of the reason I became a teacher is so I could get paid to read. My daily read aloud is the absolute best part of my day.

Seriously, I don’t get people who don’t read. It’s weird.

Anyway, I’ve decided that since I love reading and books, I’m going to assume my readers have a bit of love for the written word as well. Many of you also know I mostly get my books from the library otherwise I’d end up living in the poor house. So every once in a while when I get my hands on a book, I’ll want to share it with you.

{Now you will have a chance to WIN THIS BOOK!}

{click the book to read about the book and more importantly to learn more about the author}

Title:  The Geography of Bliss: One Grump’s Search for the Happiest Places in the World

Author: Eric Weiner

Genre: Non-Fiction/Travel Memoir

Synopsis: A longtime NPR Correspondent travels the globe to the happiest places to gain some insight on happiness.

My thoughts: Where do I start? Ok, let’s start with the title.

May be the best.title.ever.

Contains: geography (which I am notorious crap at, but totally interested in), bliss (which I would perhaps do despicable deeds in order to achieve), and grump (I have been known to be a world-class one) – all in one place? SHUT UP!

Plus arm-chair travel with a dry-witted travel companion? Sign me up!

Eric Weiner (pronounced whiner – I LOVE that by the way) is also a dad via international adoption.

Are you dying to read this book yet?

Chapters are the countries he traveled to and include: The Netherlands, Bhutan, Thailand and America. Some places I’ve already traveled to and some completely new to me.

I now want to visit Iceland. Who knew?

This book made me laugh pretty damn hard in some places, made me want to travel and gave me more information for my happiness arsenal. I highly recommend reading it.

Want to win this book?

Mandatory Entry is:

1. Leave a comment and tell me something you are grateful for. {It is a Thanksgiving giveaway afterall}
Options for Extra Entries:
  • Subscribe to My Blog Via Email & Confirm Subscription (upper right hand corner)
  • Tweet this post or share it on Facebook.
  • In order to ensure I see all your entries – please leave a separate comment for each entry.
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Am I eligible to win?
Anyone with a valid e-mail and a U.S. mailing address is eligible.

When do I find out if I am the winner?
Contest is open from Thursday, November 25th – 8 pm (PST), Sunday November 28th.

The winner will be chosen the old-fashioned way: names in a hat.

The winner will be announced on Monday, November 29, 2010. You will have 1 week to e-mail us back with your home address so we can mail the prize.