Friday, February 24, 2012

Yoga Class and New Window Treatment

Yoga Class and New Window Treatment:

I know this title sounds rather strange; Yoga Class and New Window Treatment. Well, the truth of the matter is after taking a yin yoga class this morning, a type of yoga class I never usually take, I came back to my home office and was planning on doing some work. Instead, I found myself starring at the window treatment while sitting at my computer. I thought to myself, "forget it and get back to your work." But for some reason the ever so chatty conscious mind was shuffling through different types of fabric, color, curtain rods, and the list goes on. Alright I thought to myself, I will feed this urge. So off I went shopping. As luck would have it, the first store I went into I found the perfect curtain and rod, and both on sale. Okay I thought, the universe is really working with me now.

Hauling the bags inside and up to my office, I thought once again,"Why am I doing this? The curtains presently dressing the window look just fine."  Down the steps I went and into the garage to grab some tools and the BIG ladder. I realized the new curtains were marked down because they were 95 inches in length. Yikes, the curtains hanging on the window now were 84 inches. Okay, no big deal. I'll just create a more dramatic look and raise the new rod closer to the ceiling. This will give the impression of a higher ceiling and bigger room. Perfect I thought.

Patience Being Tested:

I'm struggling now to open the encased rod. It's as if this thing was made of gold the way the factory packaged it. Take a breath I thought, just a few more cuts with the scissors and I'm in. The sweat is now starting to drip from my brow.  For a moment I thought this was more of a work out then my yoga class this morning.

At this point, I decided to stop arm wresting with the curtain rod package and remove the old rod and brackets. Now the can of worms really opens. So, did I forget to mention that I had painted my office at least three different colors over the years, and you guessed it, I painted around these brackets to save time and now they are stuck to the wall like feathers to tar. Time for the hammer I thought. Oh yes, things are getting ugly now. I step back and again think to myself..."Why and I doing this?" Several bangs later and off pops the old wooden brackets only to find they were anchored in with screws that looked like they could hold up the Brooklyn bridge. Where's a power screw driver when you need one? Needless to say, those screws were not coming out. I thought, no problem I'll paint over them and the new curtains will cover them up.

Ujayii Breath:

As all yogis know the ujayii breath is the breath to calm the mind during yoga. Well, it was time to engage in this pranayama off the mat and onto my ladder. It was time to screw in the new brackets. Using the eyeball measuring method, I proceed to mark off where "bracket number one" will go." I'm on a roll now I thought. As I proceed to tap in the nail to prepare for the molly bolt, the nail comes to an abrupt halt. Low and behold I hit a stud or something that feels like the Great Wall of China. Okay, option two. Let's forego the molly bolt and just sink the screw. Unfortunately, to no avail. The screw will not budge through that cement brick or whatever it was. Without a handy drill I'm pretty much up the creek without the proverbial paddle. Now I find myself banging and tapping the wall to see where it is hollow. Four more inches over to the left and I find myself making new holes for the bracket. This time its going in. Not a chance. Off my ladder I go to dig deep into my toolbox for shorter screws. I come back into my office and shocked to see all the holes I have created around the window frame. Looks like I am going to be doing some painting as well.

I manage to get all three brackets in place and in alignment. Next, find the original paint. Digging through my garage storage tubs, I find it. Running up the steps with paint and brush in hand, I take a small stumble and spill a tiny bit of paint on one of the new curtains. I draw the breath in slowly, find a towel, moisten it, and blot away. Not bad I think to myself. I touch up all the nail holes with a little spackle, paint over them, and like magic the wall looks reborn. Up go the curtains and here I am writing this blog, green tea to my right, and a smile on my face.

It's amazing how the conscious mind pulled me from my desk today to this window adventure. It is also amazing how patient and calm I remained during the "not so easy project." Without the breath and yogic mind this could have been a different blog.

May you enjoy patience today.

Mary Jane Kasliner - Feng Shui Master & Yogi
President - Body Space Alignment
Aligning Your Inner & Outer Landscape Blog:


Friday, February 17, 2012

Building Self Confidence Through Body & Space

Washington State - 2011

The body and space is constantly interacting and formulating our life experience. Therefore, if we manipulate one aspect the other should follow. So how can we manipulate both body and space and build self confidence? Well, the first thing we need to do is identify what part of the body and space is directly associated with self esteem.

Manipura - Solar Plexus Chakra:

There are 7 primary energy centers (chakras) in the body that lie deep inside near the spine. The solar plexus or third chakra known as manipura is the fire chakra and responsible for the birth of prana or life force energy. This chakra is directly associated with self-confidence, self -esteem and our ability to be assertive when we need to be. Getting this chakra into balance is important when it comes to feeling self assured. Here are a few ways to strengthen this chakra and keep it balanced.

1. Yoga poses such as cobra, bow, boat or any abdominal focus exercise is perfect to wake up this chakra. Diaphragm breathing techniques are also very beneficial.

2. Color infusion meditation to this chakra point is also effective. Visualizing a source of bright yellow energy and allowing it to wash over the solar plexus area will effectively re-energize this chakra.

3. Chanting the sound of "Rum" will balance this chakra through the vibration of sound.

Home Points to Wake up Self-Confidence:

The points we look to in the home are fire related and the overall qi flow. Therefore, the south portent, main floor, and evaluation of qi flow within the space are all areas to focus on for self- confidence. Here are a few suggestions.

1. Locate the southern portent in your space and make sure it is in a sheng cycle (harmonious) with the elements and design. In other words, you mostly want to see wood and fire design qualities in this area. Too much earth, metal or water will challenge this area and squelch the energy. As a result it will restrict the qi within your own body that relates to fire in the body. This includes the heart, eyes, small intestines and the manipura chakra.

2. Make sure energy is able to flow easily and uninterrupted in your space. Especially when it comes to the southern portent. Since the chakra manipura is the birth of life force qi or energy, then qi must be able to flow freely in your space and body. Therefore, the easiest thing to do is remove any clutter or excessive furnishings. This will effectively restore normal qi flow.

3. Make sure your main level is addressed first, as this area corresponds to the solar plexus in the human body. So check the south portent and make sure your clutter in under control. Since the front door most likely is on this level, then make sure it is functioning properly and open to receive beneficial outdoor qi to grace the indoor space.

Here's to a boost in self-confidence!

In prosperity,
Mary Jane Kasliner - Feng Shui Master & Yogi
President Body Space Alignment

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Recipes for Feng Shui Kitchen Success

Orcas Island ~ San Juan Islands 2011

The kitchen tends to be a focal point where family and friends gather. Ever wonder why? Simple, the kitchen is the stomach and the stomach likes to be fed. The kitchen also represents the family's wealth, health and prosperity so it should be treated with utmost reverence.

There are many simple things you can do to create a successful feng shui kitchen. But before doing anything make sure you clear out any clutter. Yes, that means the refrigerator, pantry, cabinets and drawers. Get rid of any broken utensils, pots, dishes, tupperware and food that is no longer identifiable.

Design & More:

1. Incorporate as many natural elements as possible. Real wood, granite, slate and bamboo are just a few examples.

2. Make sure there is healthy symbolism depicted in artwork, plaques or bowls. Fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs speak volumes when it comes to healthy imagery.

3. The stove/cook-top should be positioned so the chef has command of the space. 

4. During the design process avoid placing sink and refrigeration along side the cook-top. The water and fire elements will clash and upset the delicate balance between these elements.

5. Avoid placing the cook-top in front of a window as it reduces the airiness and openness of the design.

6. Avoid placing too much furniture in this space. Open up the room by moving out pieces you don't absolutely need.

7. Optimize light and color. These are important dynamics when it comes to the development of a healthy kitchen. You should always have plenty of overhead lighting in your cooking and eating areas, and it is best if this is full spectrum lighting.

8. Do a quick meditation before you start to prepare food. There is nothing like good energy being passed into the food for you and family to ingest.

9. Create a sensory experience in the kitchen with soft cushions for chairs, a tablecloth and soothing sounds of either a water fountain in a nearby room or classical music in the background.

10. Remember family in this space by grouping a few photos together in the eastern quadrant of the kitchen. You can also place a recipe box filled with old family cooking secrets and store it in the same direction.

So there you have it. Ten simple feng shui kitchen tips to make your dining experience a peaceful one. Don't forget to give thanks for every meal you make and enjoy with family and friends.

Happy Cooking!

Mary Jane Kasliner - Feng Shui Master & Yoga Teacher
Body Space Alignment

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Feng Shui Bathrooms

This is one of the most active rooms in a home and a place where we literally begin and end our day. Now I know many of you are cringing just thinking about this room…And it is a room. There are many things we can do to make this space look and feel like a spa where you can go to melt away the stresses of the day.Below are some simple tips to feng shui your bathroom.


This is an area where all things end up. And I mean ALL things. This tends to overwhelm the body and place the mind in a state of chaos;the opposite of what this space should do for us. Here are a few simple tips to clear the clutter from surfaces in the bathroom.

1. Purchase some natural baskets from your local home store. Place the baskets beneath the sink cabinet and use them as storage containers. You can store everything from your blow dryer, brushes, make-up, shaving equipment, etc. Basically anything you use in a bathroom can be stored in these baskets.

2. Go through your medicine chest and throw out anything that is expired.

3. Throw out old toothbrushes.

4. Discard expired creams or empty bottles of shampoo.

5. Get rid of old tatter towels or rugs and replace them with a fresh comfortable look.

6. Purchase some pure essential oils and soaps and display them on counter or bathtub.

7. Don’t forget to add some fluffy white towels on towel rack or simply roll them and place them in a basket.

8. Add a few natural soy or palm candles.

Feng Shui:

The application of the feng shui ba-gua to the floor plan will indicate what direction your bathroom (s) are located in. Know that bathrooms have a draining energy, as there is constant flushing of waste water. The key then is to know the directional portent the bathroom (s) reside in and work to incorporate proper imagery, elements and color to activate the life aspiration yet hold back the draining aspect.

Bathroom Directions:

East or Southeast: Think lots of wood energy here to assist the portent yet hold back the draining water. Plants and green colors will do the trick.

South – Southwest or Northeast: Get the earth going here. You can use fire colors, earth colors and think lots of tile or granite. This will work a sheng cycle with direction yet dam the water of the bathroom.

Center of structure: This is the most unfavorable area for  waste water. Add as much earth element as possible to a  bathroom or even a laundry room located here.

West or Northwest: Add wood. The direction is naturally fueling the water energy of the bathroom by adding wood elements you will effectively drain all that water.

Repair all leaks in a bathroom and make sure your toilet and sink fixtures are in good working order and luxurious looking. Following these simple guidelines and you will create a healthier and attractive looking bathroom. Every time you enter this room you will feel great!

For more information on how to feng shui  bathrooms order my Feng Shui Designs in a Flash CD by visiting:

Have a great Day!
Mary Jane Kasliner - Feng Shui Master & Yoga Teacher