un aguacate a la vez

crystals

GUEST POST | How to Spend 24 Hours in Miami

Guest Posts, TravelPaula LandrónComment
Pic via  @PaulaLandron

You can find a new yoga studio, café or club in Miami every weekend. There always seems to be something to do in this city. As long as you don’t mind the 70-80% humidity and 90+ degree weather, you’ll be bound to have some fun. 

Tip #1: Bring water with you at all times.

I lived in Miami for three years, therefore, I’m going to tell you what I would do in Miami on a Saturday on the regular:

9AM Panther Coffee

Amazing espresso and they have macadamia milk (if you haven’t tried it, it’s worth the try). They have various locations, but I recommend the one in Wynwood because post-coffee you will have some yoga to do! 

10:30AM Wynwood Yoga

A cool yoga studio with amazing vibes and awesome classes. The 10:30 AM Hot Power Vinyasa is my favorite! #BeThere

12PM Plant Miami

Post yoga you’re going to want to eat something since you only had an espresso and dropped all your worries (and calories) on your mat. If I were you I would go to Plant Miami for some vegan delights. They have a beautiful garden, with zen vibes.

2PM Perez Art Museum

After your lunch you’re going to want to chill and be indoors because it’s too hot to be outside during lunchtime in Miami.

Hit up the Pérez Art Museum. Their gift shop has items you won’t find anywhere else.  Chill out in their restaurant, Verde, while soaking up the view.

4PM Bike Ride

By the time you leave the museum, the sun has gone down (hopefully). Rent a CITI bike, cross the Venetian Causeway and you’re in South Beach. Admire the mansions and feel the ocean breeze while getting your second workout of the day in.

6PM LIDO Restaurant & Celestial Treasures

Post-workout you’re going to want to have a drink. On your way back to Downtown Miami on Venetian Causeway you can find LIDO, the restaurant at The Standard. Amazing oceanside views. The hotel is art deco inspired. Sangria, please. #Cheers.

If you want to get spiritual, go to Celestial Treasures in Coconut Grove. They sell stones, books, incense, candles, and tarot cards. Every souvenir you can imagine for your crystal collection or for your bruja girlfriends back home.

8PM Lagniappe

If you want a chill night out with friends in a place that’s not as pretentious as the rest of Miami, you can’t leave without drinking wine in Lagniappe. Buy a bottle (or two), sit down wherever you want, order a cheese platter and talk your night away. It closes at 2AM.

10PM Go Clubbing!

Luckily, you’re in Miami and you can go clubbing at LIV, MYNT, or STORY, dance house until sunrise at Trade or Space or grab late night munchies at La Moon in Brickell.

Enjoy, 

Paula

Paula Landrón

Meet our Guest Blogger

Paula Landron is a meditation, fitness instructor and blogger behind thedeeplifestyle.com. She enjoys exploring different ways to express her
true self through poetry, workouts on the beach, or dancing deep house late night in Miami. Born in Puerto Rico, she loves the simplicity of island life. She began her fitness journey at 17 by giving free Zumba classes in her high school. She continued her journey at the University of Miami where she created her signature workout class, DEEP®. Since then she has taught classes at Equinox and private events in Puerto Rico. She also hosts women empowerment circles and workouts at the beach. This website is an outlet for conscious creative
expression

5 Misconceptions About Wellness

Brujita Diaries, wellnessMaría Elena RodríguezComment
Pic via Urban Outfitters. Shop it   here . 

Pic via Urban Outfitters. Shop it here

I am by no means an expert in the topic of wellness. In fact, while I have always been interested in health and fitness, I'm a newbie. I can honestly say I started this "Wellness Journey" almost a year ago and it has been an amazing learning process. It started by running, which led to yoga it went on to a plant based lifestyle and now I even run a podcast about wellness (and sometimes withchy stuff) with one of my best friends, Silvia. I go a little more into depth here, here and here.

Getting into wellness wasn't a struggle, it just happened because of this simple mindset: I found a lifestyle that helps me maximize every aspect of my life. If I eat well, I have amazing runs, if I have amazing runs, I have an amazing day and if I have an amazing day, I sleep really, really well! It's a cycle and all you have to do is find the routines that adapt to your lifestyle. 

Nevertheless, over the course of this past year I have received many questions about this "living a healthy and well balanced lifestyle" which are hard to answer in one particular way. This is why I decided to break down the main misconceptions about wellness in this post: 

 

1.  "Wellness is how the cool kids are now calling Health and Fitness" 

While I find it hard to debate you on that since it seems like everyone and their mother's are calling everything health related "wellness", here's the definition according to dictionary.com:

"The quality or state of being healthy in body and mind, especially as the result of deliberate effort."

"An approach to healthcare that emphasizes preventing illness and prolonging life, as opposed to emphasizing treating diseases."

I define it as a way of finding what feels right to your mind, body and soul. 

 

Gabrielle Bernstein via  Harper's Bazaar

Gabrielle Bernstein via Harper's Bazaar

2. There is a right and wrong way of practicing spirituality. 

"How do I set an intention"

"How do you find the patience to meditate? I just can't."

"I can't practice yoga because I hate chanting"

"I hate religions"

"I'm afraid of witchy stuff" 

I have heard all of these before and if I didn't give you a clear answer or enough details and you felt lost, it's because I can't tell you what to do or think. Spirituality is NOT a trend, it is truly a personal journey. Each individual will find a way to connect and find a meaningful way to look at this world in their own time and place. For me, it was through yoga. Yoga created in me a craving to want to connect more with nature (hence my obsession with crystals and plants!) and specially, with myself. 

For some, spirituality may happen through Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism or believe it or not, being an agnostic or atheist. It's all about connecting with everything that surrounds you and it's a beautiful thing. So here's the one tip I can give you if you're craving spiritual growth: Learn to breath and stay still for at least 5 minutes a day. Follow your curiosity. Stay away from judgement and do good to others without expecting something in return. Take care of yourself and learn to crave experiences, not things. 

The book Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert is a read great for any person craving some spirtuality but is kind-of freaked out by the word.  

Shop similar amethyst crystal clusters   here  . 

Shop similar amethyst crystal clusters here

3. There is a formula to using crystals and connecting with the moon. 

"How do you cleanse crystals?"

"How do you choose crystals" 

"I used this crystal and it didn't work" 

"What's the deal with thee moon, teach me!" 

Sorry to break it to you, but if you think buying an amethyst and getting a moon bath will change your life, you're in for huge dissapointment. While these two things seem super trendy and new-agey and everyone wants to be part of it, the only way to actually "tap into its power", is by (you guessed it!) connecting with yourself first. 

Just because using crystals and connecting with the moon has worked for some, it doesn't mean you have to follow their exact formula. For me, it was a natural way of continuing my yoga practice off the mat. I did use some guidance from Google, read the book Moonologie by Yasmin Boland and even wrote a beginners guide to crystals, but this doesn't mean that you need to go ahead and buy this book or follow my exact instructions so you KNOW that you're doing things right. It means that if you have some curiosity about topics surrounding wellness and spirituality, go ahead and read about them, experiment with them! 

You need to understand that when it comes to this wellness journey, each experience is unique and it is much more about intuition and doing what feels right than you think.

PD: If you read this and felt it was complete bullshit, this is not your journey. But if you read this and are confused but curiouos, keep soul searching, you're getting there! 

 

spirituality astrologer cat

4. Now that you're a spiritual person, you need to be vegan, do yoga, follow astrology and buy an oracle deck. 

lol

No. 

For some people, the simple acts of gardening, being out in nature, following an ethical vegan lifestyle, going to church, spending time with animals or helping others is what helps them connect with their highest self or be a spiritual person. Don't get sucked in by all the social media frenzy about new-age spiritualy. I mean, it's awesome, I love it, but it doesn't mean that is what you need to be doing or what will work for you. 

I repeat, stay curious, keep soul searching and most importantly stop judging. Life is hard enough as it is. 

 

Image via  Pinterest

Image via Pinterest

5. Women who get into wellness and spirituality become witches. 

LOOOOL

I can't exactly deny this, but I will clear up the most common misconception: Is being a witch really a bad thing? In my short life I have seen that what the media calls a witch is a strong woman who is in tune with her intuition and in total control of her life. Do I think that is a bad thing? HELL NAH'! I want to be a witch. 

But now, seriously, stop with the judging. While there exists some weird dark magic out there, associated with witchcraft, most of it made famous by men scared of strong women, but that's for another day, remember this is all about wellness and feeling good with yourself. And if you really like these topics, I would really suggest you listen to our podcast Un aguacate a la vez available on iTunes and Stitcher

 

Conclusion:

In the end, it's all about you. Let go of the mindset we've all learned in school because there is no formula that helps you practice what makes you feel good. Wellness is all about taking care of your mind, body and soul in your own way. But if you're a Type A like me and can't finally seam to understand but really want to find your "wellness nirvana", here's a simple cheat sheet that may help you find it:

  • Mind: Keep a log of what helps you release stress that doesn't envolve shopping. For me this is being in or by the water, specially in Cabo Rojo, PR. 
  • Body: What workout or fitness routine makes you feel most alive or happy. For me this is running outside. 
  • Soul: What practice frees your mind and helps you be a better person. For me this is yoga and meditation with crystals. 
Quote via  Pinterest

Quote via Pinterest

Let me know how it goes. 

Until next time, 

María Elena

Crystals 101 | A Beginners Guide to Crystals

wellness, Brujita DiariesMaría Elena RodríguezComment
what is crystal healing

Ok. If you listen to our new podcast, Un aguacate a la vez, you probably saw this coming. If you haven't listened to the podcast, firstly, what are you waiting for?! Secondly, yes, I am into crystals and no, this doesn't mean I'm having a Spencer Pratt-like nervous breakdown. In fact, I am a new (and very proud) self-discovered brujita. But before you start judging, please continue reading. 👇

Apart from Spencer Pratt, the first time I heard about using crystals for wellness was from my friend and co-host at Un aguacate a la vez, Silvia Vallejo. But to be honest, when she told me about this, I immediately judged her (shame on me!) and dismissed the idea thinking it was "too new-age" for me. By the way, we talked about this on Episode #2 if you want to listen to it later!

Fast forward to September 2017: Hurricane María. I kept feeling like I needed some reconnecting with nature (aka "grounding" if you're into yoga/ wellness) after all the craziness going on in Puerto Rico. My life was almost literally turned upside down and for some reason I was craving nature. Long story short: Now I have more than 15 crystals scattered all over my home and here's what I have learned if you are considering entering this magical world:

The Basics

Don't freak out!

Crystals have been with us for millions of years. Why would you reject something that comes from nature? I like to give crystals a similar approach as I do to plants: They are beautiful and make me happy! 

Why are people using crystals?

In my opinion, people are sick and tired of the current state the world is in. We are tired of being hooked on technology 24/7 and having something tangible that comes from nature makes us feel grounded and like we belong to something more meaningful than Trump's Twitter wars and the latest influencer on Instagram.  

And of course, they are trendy! All you need to do is a quick "crystals" search on Instagram to know what I'm talking about. I have seen several bloggers sneaking crystals into their flat-lays for a while now! Yes, we are guilty too.

Crystals are all about you

They are all about you because YOU decide what they mean to you. Yes, you can read online what all these crystals mean, but at the end of the day, you need to use what works for you. Don't worry, I'll explain later how to use them. 

How do you use them?

I like to wear them as jewelry, keep them around me at home and try to leave the house with a small crystal in my bag or pocket every once in a while, specially when I'm anxious about something. 

My Favorite Crystals:

crystals 101 - beginners guide to crystals

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Choosing a crystal

1. Go to a crystal store. 

My favorite crystal stores are: 

  • Turquesa in Old San Juan - Prepare to stay hours browsing around!

  • Gaia in Baldrich - This is just a magical place. Go and let me know. 

  • Natural Style in San Patricio - It's a kiosk right between La Favorita and Men's Wearhouse. 

  • Etsy - Hundreds of stores to choose from here! Just write "crystals" in their search bar. 

  • Energy Muse - This is also a great place to research information about crystals. 

2. Browse around and grab the crystal that you're most attracted to. 

Instead of researching for the perfect crystal for your current situation or setting your mind into buying the most "Instagram worthy" one, try using your intuition. You will notice that even though you like a certain crystal better, you may be more attracted to another one. This happened to me when I first started. All I wanted was an amethyst because, come on, it's gorgeous! But I wasn't vibing with any of the ones I came across with AT ALL. I kept coming back to a big piece of black tourmaline, which I don't particularly love aesthetically, but when I did a little research I understood it was all I really needed: Grounding. #shocking (not!) 

Using your crystals

1. Cleanse

Yes you read that right. Specially if you are planning on using crystals for spirituality and mindfulness, you must cleanse them. Why? If you believe in vibes, then you will be getting rid of all the bad vibes it may have been exposed to. But if you are skeptical, like I was, cleansing them is the best way to set your mind and believe this crystal is truly yours. 

How do you cleanse them? We talked about this more deeply on the podcast, but my favorite way is smudging it with sage or palo santo. You can also leave it overnight in water with salt, in a bath salt or just setting an intention. The best way to cleanse it is to use your intuition and a little Google!

Warning: Some crystals may dissolve in water and or salt so make sure you Google this first. 

2. Set an intention

This is the most important part of owning a crystal. After all, this is a mindfulness tool! Here are some intentions you can set:

  • Work with ease

  • Attract abundance

  • Love without judgement

  • Loose weight

Whatever you need in your life can become your intention! Just make sure you believe you can achieve it.

3. Use

Once you set an intention, it's time to put it to good use. My favorite way to use my crystals is in the morning. I keep a shunguite in my running pants for protection and like to put a crystal at the top of my yoga mat before each yoga session. Helps me stay focus and connected to my practice!

Final thoughts

Using crystals is very personal. This is not a religion or an obscure practice, it's just a little piece of Mother Earth that can help you enhance your life, however you choose to. Don't be afraid to try this magical world. But if you're just getting started, allow me to introduce you to some books I read during my crystal journey:

  • Crystal Bliss - This is the first one I ever read. She can get a little woo-woo at times, but it's a great beginners guide!

  • The Crystal Bible - Once you get really into crystals, you will start craving more in depth descriptions and this book delivers! Since there are so many crystals on Earth is divided by 3 volumes. You can grab them here, here and here.

  • The Book of Chakra Healing - The moment I finally understood the chakra system is the moment I truly understood crystals. Needless to say, this is also a great book for beginners since it details the best crystals for each chakra imbalance.

BONUS: 

Here are some books on my crystal healing wish list:

crystals 101 - beginners guide to crystals - books

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