Recycled Soothing Eye Pillow

Why not have a go at making this eye pillow and including it in your yoga bag? The halls I teach in (Preston Village Hall in Rutland and Ryhall Village just outside Stamford, Lincolnshire) offer variable lighting so I always adjust it when we come to relax.  However, an eye pillow – particularly with a fragrance – can add another dimension and aid your relaxation even further.

You can recycle an old t-shirt into a this useful item or use some soft fabric you have available – remember to use double thickness. This is ideal for your yoga practice or keep it under your pillow and use as general sleeping aid.

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This eye pillow is very simple to make and uses stuff that you are most likely to have around the home.

Using an eye pillow has a very calming effect on the nervous system – just the weight over the eye lids and forehead can work wonders. If you add a soothing aroma such as lavender or chamomile you will also be tapping into the benefits of aromatherapy. Be sure not to use essential oils or other perfume as this may affect your skin and eyes – I used dried lavender flowers from my garden but you can use the leaves from a chamomile tea bag if you don’t have any.

Perhaps you can dry some of your favourite flowers this summer and save them for making a pillow??? You do need to make new eye pillows regularly as they can harbour dirt and grime and the eye area is delicate so never share or use dirty eye pillows.

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First find a t-shirt that you no longer want.  If it has been washed lots of times, that’s great, it will be nice and soft.

Cut the t-shirt horizontally across just under the sleeves.

 

 

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Fold the double layers over and measure 9cm up from the fold.  Pin a line 20cm parallel to the fold. Sew your oblong shape now, either by hand with small, tight, stitches or by machine. Up one side (9cm) – turn, along the long edge (20cm) – turn and then half way down the other side (about 5cm).

 

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Cut around the oblong stitching leaving a seam of 0.5cm

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Turn the oblong inside out through the gap you left down one side.

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Prepare your filling – I used some lavender that I dried last year – you just need the flower heads not the stalks. You can buy dried flowers – chamomile might be nice – or you can use the contents of a tea bag.  I mixed the lavender with pearl barley otherwise it would have been too strong.  You only need to fill it up a bit – it’s not like a stuffed toy – just so that there is some weight over your eyes and forehead which helps to calm the mind.

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Now take a rolled up piece of paper to make funnel and insert it into your sewn oblong shape.

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When full to your own liking, turn in the seam allowance and sew up by hand with tiny, tight stitches.

Hey presto – a useful item out of stuff you would probably throw away.

The life of an eye pillow is fairly short. I would suggest making a new one every 6 months or so. Your eyes are delicate and the pillow, like it or not, will collect germs and bacteria. It can’t be washed so – do yourself a favour and put it on the compost bin after 6 months and make yourself a fresh one.

A Moment of Meditation

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Give me gentle waves of breath to sooth my beating heart

Let my ears have the patience to listen

Let my eyes have softness to accept

Let my mouth have words of encouragement

Let my hands and heart be open

Breathing in, I live in this very moment

Breathing out, I know this is the only moment

Over the summer I took advantage of the fabulous weather and did a photo shoot with the fantastic Lizzie Adams (‘blooming’ photographer of Uppingham).  The results were out of this world – such fabulous scenery, sun light and clicking of the shutter!!

Huge big thanks go out to Lizzie – I’ll be working with the images over the coming weeks to update my website and replenish my post cards stocks.

 

 

Introduction to Yoga – Course Begins 10th September

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Ever wanted to try Yoga but thought you weren’t flexible enough?

Tried a Yoga class but couldn’t tell your Dandasana from your Tadasana?

Been going to Yoga for years but want to know more about Patanjali?

My ‘Introduction To Yoga’ course begins on September 10th and runs each Wednesday 6 -7 at Ryhall Village Hall.  Each week we will do physical and relaxing exercises to experience the benefits of yoga and see why it has been practiced by so many people over so long a period. We will cover the basic postures with plenty of personal guidance and attention to modify postures for your specific needs.

 

Yoga has many benefits and is suitable for all levels of fitness.  In this class, gentle posture work will increase gradually over the weeks developing students flexibility and joint mobility.  Over time muscles strengthen, lengthen and tone. The circulation improves and physical balance is brought about – all with gentle, moderate and regular practice. Each session ends with a guided relaxation practice and students generally find that by helping the body to relax it improves and enhances their sleep pattern, relieves stress and dissolves muscle tension that may have been built up over many years.

Breathing exercises form an essential part of yoga and we begin these from the first class. As part of each class we will learn about the history and philosophy of yoga this helps us to develop our minds as well as our physical body.  Each student will receive a handy file to keep the yoga notes given out each week that will build up to a useful reference.

Please book early as places are limited.

See Beauty in Every Posture

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It’s what is going on inside that really matters – with each and every posture keep the awareness on that important fact – in the words of Donna Farhi –

“When we realise that what we are advancing towards is not some physical form but an inward recognition of the truth of who we are, then we will not feel ourselves to be failing if we cannot obtain difficult postures.”

Even simple postures are not achievable on some days – so watch out for the negative thoughts that come along. It’s what happens on the inside that really matters.

New Class for September – Stretch & Relax Tuesdays 8 – 9pm

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Stretch & Relax is for all those stressed out folks running a busy family or business that simply can’t get away for a 6 o’clock start.  This class is especially designed for you – no we won’t be bothering with toning, work or energetic moves – just some simple stretching to ease out those tense shoulders and knots in the back. The central part of the class will be dedicated to deep relaxation and ending up with restorative postures to ensure we are all awake to get home safely.  Come prepared to unwind – watch the years fall off your face and the sparkle return to your eyes! Places are limited – please book as soon as possible.

SHAPE UP WITH YOGA

Regretting all those mince pies?  Why not try yoga classes to help shift some of the festive excesses?  Yoga is a 5000 year old tradition used to strengthen the body and calm the mind.  My beginners classes this term focus on a short routine called SALUTE TO THE SUN that will help you to build up the abdominal, back muscles and strengthen the arms and legs.  My classes are based in warm, airy halls a within a short drive from Stamford, Oakham and Uppingham.  Why not come along and give it a try…

Either Mondays at Manton Inspire2tri Studio 10 – 11 am

or Wednesdays at Ryhall Village Hall 6 – 7 pm

Booking is essential please contact me to book your place

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New Venue for Yoga in Manton

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Don’t forget that the Manton classes will be at the new Inspire2Tri Studio as of next week.  We have been asked to park in the pub car park and walk up to the gate on St Mary’s Road.  Please respect the residents wishes.

The address is;

Inspire2Tri Studio, St Mary’s Road, Manton LE15 8SU

See a map for directions here

I very much look forward to welcoming you to the new venue and working in the warm, light and airy space.