Friday, December 30, 2011

FLV Presents: Handling Children’s Emotional Moments and Aggression

Hi FLVillagers! FLV is excited to welcome the new year by learning more tools to help us communicate consciously with our children. Our vision is to create a conscious parenting movement where our children evolve into unconditionally loving citizens of the Earth! If we take the time to nurture and cultivate this connection with our children now, we are instilling in them not only how they are to themselves but how they interact with others and the planet. If you think about it, we’re not raising children here,we’re raising adults. Please join us for our very first workshop in 2012. Happy New Year to our beautiful, ever-evolving village!

When children’s tensions result in big feelings and aggression—biting, hitting, pushing, kicking—both parent and child need tools. We’ll talk about the root causes of children’s emotional outbursts, how parents and caregivers can help the aggressive child, and how parents and caregivers can address their own tension as they handle difficult situations.

Presented by Sadie Van Gelder & Heidrun Matthies, Hand in Hand Parenting
Saturday, January 14, 2012 @ 6:00 - 7:45 p.m.

Sadie Van Gelder is a Los Angeles–based certified Parenting By Connection instructor for Hand in Hand, a nonprofit organization devoted to nurturing parent-child connection and offering resources, training, and lots of support to parents of young children. A mother of two girls, ages 9 and 5, she is also an editor specializing in articles on psychology and health. As both an editor and a parent, she is constantly on the lookout for trustworthy information, and she says Hand in Hand is the best parenting resource she has come across. “When you're noticing a pattern that isn't ideal, or going through a challenging transition, Hand in Hand offers a different way of looking at all sorts of issues and helping both you and your child,” she says. “Seeing so many benefits for my own family and others makes me want to spread the word.”

Born and raised in Germany, Heidrun Matthies moved to Los Angeles in 2001. After an extensive career in human resources, she was looking forward to changing her life journey by becoming a stay-at-home mother to her now 3.5-year old son. Not ever having been much around babies and children before giving birth herself, Heidrun was in awe and in shock about the complexity of raising children, which seems not to be on the forefront of public concern. Discovering the Parenting by Connection approach put Heidrun at ease and gave her lots of hope that our generation and the one growing up can be capable of tackling the challenges that our times present. By using the various Parenting by Connection listening tools, Heidrun was able to assist her son with his healing journey of several traumatic events as well as overcoming a diagnosed speech disorder. In addition, using this approach has helped her develop closer relationships with her family, friends, other parents and people in general. The successes Heidrun has yielded by using the Parenting by Connection approach inspired her to enroll in the Hand in Hand Instructor Certification Program with the goal to help getting the word out, both in the US and in Germany. Heidrun enjoys facilitating Parenting by Connection Study Groups in Los Angeles and has assisted as a teacher in a toddler drop-off program.

WHEN: Saturday 1/14/2012 @ 6-7:45pm with Potluck to follow

WHERE: The Yogi Tree ~ 4475 Vineland Avenue ~ Toluca Lake, CA 91602


$15 per family for the presentation

$8 per family if you plan to use the conscious childcare in the Sprout Lounge. Please RSVP at 2 days BEFORE the workshop

For Dinner, bring: Your own dishware to stay green and a healthy main or side dish for the potluck

As a side note, there will be a booklet "Listening to Children" Set for sale at $25 for those interested. Patty Wipfler warmly and sensibly walks you through the challenges of parenting and explains how children’s emotions work. The booklets cover the tools and opportunities for each of us to do the best possible job of raising children. The booklets that comprise the set are: How Children's Emotions Work, Special Time, Playlistening, Crying, Tantrums and Indignation, Healing Children's Fears, Reaching For Your Angry Child, Setting Limits, and Listening Partnerships for Parents.

Please know that when there is something of value that FLV feels families can benefit from, we will allow the opportunity to purchase items after the workshop. Since conscious parenting is FLV’s primary goal in helping to co-create a conscious parenting movement, having easy access to these resources on hand is important to give these options for families that are interested. Please know you are not obligated to purchase any of these resources unless desired. Thank you.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The FLV Experience at Dance to Freedom - Sat 12/22/11

We are also excited to announce that the FLV Experience will be participating in a life-expanding immersion event for families called Dance to Freedom. It is located at a breathtaking location called the Hummingbird Nest Ranch.

FLV will be providing some fun and educational workshops and presentations based on FLV's heart principles of conscious parenting and eco-holistic living. And of course the EAKK! (EcoArt Kidz Kollectiv!) program will be there to provide fun activities for the kids.

Not only will we be providing some of the eco-educational fun but our very own FLVillage DJ, FatFinger will be bringing out the beats for us to dance to (among other amazing djs and musicians).

Dance to Freedom :: December 22 Ceremony & Winter Solstice Celebration


Dance & create with me 12/22 all night in Simi/LA area for passes, kids free!


  • 21 hours of extraordinary experiences designed to empower transformational families

  • Workshops in movement, music, monkey chant, arts, creative expression, communication

  • Family ceremony and arts event for the start of winter on December 22nd, ceremony at 6PM

  • Private all night celebration includes live and DJ music, performance and movement arts

  • Create new rituals with your family with remarkable workshop leaders for music, healthy living, embodied care

Hosted by Be Embodied, a women-led startup creating safe, healthy space for families to communicate and connect

BYOB - No alcohol will be served at this event and we aim to Leave No Trace - pack all items in and out to camp

Find freedom in your body. Be present and joyful with your extended family. Encourage transformational expression

This is a private event and no tickets will be sold at the gate - passes are limited and some will sell out

Doors open for the celebration at 9pm with featured DJs including Treavor Moontribe, Jesse Wright, DJ Fatfinger, Hooni and more to be announced as Project Alma hosts the lawn stage. The Be Embodied Adornment Gallery will feature an indoor unplugged lounge, maker galleries, gifts and surprises all night. Enjoy conscious vending and the palatial patio at the Hummingbird Nest Ranch with hot tub, fire area, healthy food, amazing music and art throughout this expansive ranch.

Stretch yourself in new ways, weave a net of gems for your life and prepare to be your most brilliant on 12/22 with friends and family!


Hummingbird Nest Ranch

Simi Valley, CA

North of the 118/Kuehner Road


Thursday December 22nd - Friday December 23rd

3PM: Gates Open

4PM: Workshops and Adornment Gallery Features

6PM: Ceremony Gathering Circle

7-9PM: Winter Solstice Ceremony: Weaving Indra's Net

9PM: Gates Re-open for Celebration

Gallery closes late, music all night

Noon on 12/23: Leave No Trace


Ceremony & Celebration: $50 in Advance by 12/21

Ceremony & Celebration: $30 for Youth 16-20

Ceremony & Celebration: Free for Kids

Celebration: $30 for Adults by 12/22

Celebration: $15 for Youth 16-20

Celebration: Free for Kids

Maker/Vending/Artist Space: $60-$100 for space to sell your works

Angel and Sponsorships Available for Your Installation Experience (house rentals also available)


Facebook: Join/Attend the event, invite your friends:

FLV's Winter Solstice Celebration on Sat 12/17/11

I wanted to share something with all of you. This past weekend I was part of an amazing Goddess Ceremony where we released old thoughts/patterns that no longer served us and proclaimed new ones that we wanted to manifest for the new year. This reminded me of a very similar ritual FLV did last year.

So I wanted to add one more thing that we will be doing for Dec. 17th's gathering. Not only will we be having an awesome workshop with Jessica Deltac but it will also be FLV's Winter Solstice Celebration that evening. And to continue in FLV's tradition, we will be doing a ceremony called "Releasing of the Old and Igniting of the New".

How this ritual works:

1. At the end of the workshop, each person will be handed 2 pieces of paper.

2. On one piece of paper, you will be asked to write down an old pattern/old behavior that no longer serves who you are or want to be as a parent/spouse/individual.

3. On the 2nd piece of paper, you will be asked to write down a conscious behavior/pattern or way of being that you would like to manifest as a conscious parent/spouse/individual for the new year.

4. The first piece of paper will be immersed in water. Last year, we burned the pieces of paper but since we will be inside the Yogi Tree, we will put the pieces of paper in water. 

**Since we are not able to burn the pieces of paper in the yoga studio, another way to release them is into water.

5. The 2nd pieces of paper you get to keep as a reminder. I would suggest keeping it somewhere that you have easy access to reading it as a reminder of what you want to shift in your lives. A good suggestion: on your refrigerator so that you can see it every day.

We are excited to be sharing this Winter Solstice ritual with all of you this year and hope that all of you can join us for FLV's Winter Solstice Celebration and a very informative workshop with Jessica Deltac on How Parental Fear Gets In the Way of Our Children Finding Their Passion!

And if you'd like to also join us, we will be having a Playdate For A Cause (PFAC) the day after on Sunday 12/18/11 "Wrapping From the Heart".

To get more details, please contact us at  Thank you.

Peace & Ignition,

Your FLVillage Tribe

FLV's Playdate For a Cause (PFAC): Wrapping From the Heart

Greetings FLVillagers!

As we enjoy this special time of year and take note of our incredible lives with gratitude in our hearts, let us look at how we can spread this abundance to our community, city, and planet.

One way is by donating and volunteering your time. Here is a fantastic website listing a number of well-established charities that makes it easy to do the research on what organizations might interest you: Charity Navigator.
How Our Village Can Be of Service -
Upcoming Playdates for a Cause (PFAC):

There are a few great organizations in need of our help and we are definitely open to suggestions.

I am in touch with a couple of local shelters that work with homeless women, teens, and children, (Good Shepard Shelter), as well as one for domestic violence survivors.

FLV is planning to gather gifts for all the mothers and children and would like to invite you and your families to be a part of this PFAC with us.

To stay within the spirit of our EAKK! (EcoArt Kidz Kollectiv!) Program, we are asking families to bring gently used items from your home. If you don't have anything gently used, we are requesting if you could please purchase something new that isn't wrapped in plastic. The items could be in the form of adult and children's clothes, toys, books, baby items, such as blankets, baby bottles, etc. It is our intention to provide 30 gifts for 11 mothers and 20 male and female children, ages 1-15.

We will be utilizing the philosophy of our EAKK! program by using recycled shopping paper bags, re-usable gift bags, newspapers, and any other recycled wrapping materials (i.e. burlap bags, etc) that you may have in your home to wrap the gifts instead of going out and buying wrapping paper. This PFAC also gives us an opportunity as creative inspiration for our sprouts to draw pictures on the "wrapping paper" to give their own personalized touch.

We will be providing some wrapping materials, such as shopping bags, scissors (including some kid-safe scissors), tape, glue, and crayons but if you have some recyclable materials that you would like to bring to create more pizzazz for the sprouts to use, we would greatly appreciate it.

We will meet at The Yogi Tree for our "Wrapping From the Heart"event on Sun Dec 18th between 2 -4pm. Please bring your donated items and/or recycled wrapping materials. Holiday snacks to share are welcome, but optional.

We're excited that we will be able to help out several families in need and hope that you can join us for this PFAC!

Sincere Gratitude and Holiday Hugs!
From the FLVillage Team

FLV Presents: How Parental Fear Gets in the Way of Children Finding their Passion

Jessica Deltac with her 2 adorable daughters taken 3 years ago.  Her 2 daughters are now 7 and 4.
Join us for a very informative workshop facilitated by guest speaker, Jessica Deltac - author of the blog Mudpies & Butterflies: Where Families Learn Alongside Each Other ( and founder of educational parkday of the same name.

It is natural to protect our children from emotional harm and physical injury, but at times this protection prevents children from engaging in their world. Due to inbred fear, a child may not even view it as their world. By experiencing new stimulus and risks, children and adults are free to discover the genesis of their calling. Jessica Deltac believes that passions are the most positive form of motivation for all people. Most parents want their children to be led by their passions, but have difficulty with loosening the reigns enough to allow the freedom to discover them on their own. In order to connect to our passions – we must be brave, supported and open-minded. A legacy that all FLV parents strive to endow.

Come experience a shift in perspective about time, safety and communication to best empower your child on their path of connecting to their passions (from infancy – teendom).


- What if I could have prevented the ow-ee? Embracing natural harm – a wise teacher.

- How do you avoid the tick-tock? Unnecessary stressors in punctuality

- What lies between words and furrowed brows? Unraveling our meta messages as parents

- Will she/he ever be old enough to hold a saw? Understanding and encouraging successful risk-taking

- What if I know nothing about what they love? Allowing mentors into your child's life

To get a jumpstart on the workshop read Jessica's blog The Safe Way to Saw.
As well as the 2 links in the first paragraph: Ted Talk on 5 Dangerous things we should allow our kids to experience and NYTimes article – Are Playgrounds too Safe?

Jessica Deltac has a Masters in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University here in Los Angeles, as well as, an undergraduate degree from the University of NC in Chapel Hill in Religious Studies. Her path of attachment parenting began on her first date with her husband who shared that he wanted all of his children to be homebirthed. Her bumper sticker on the family car now reads: Happy Family Onboard! We homebirth, co-sleep, breastfeed, homeschool and enjoy each other's company daily. Are you this Happy?

WHEN: Saturday 12/17/2011

WHERE: The Yogi Tree ~ 4475 Vineland Avenue ~ Toluca Lake, CA 91602


$15 per family for the presentation

$8 per family if you plan to use the conscious childcare in the Sprout Lounge. Please RSVP at 2 days BEFORE the workshop

For Dinner, bring: Your own dishware to stay green and a healthy main or side dish for the potluck

And please join us for our holiday PFAC: Wrapping From the Heart the following Sunday 12/18/11 from 2-4pm.

 We will also be celebrating the Winter Solstice this evening by joining in FLV's tradition "Releasing of the Old and Igniting of the New".

For further details and/or questions about either event, please email Thank you.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils and Its Medicinal Uses for the Whole Family

This educational, insightful, hands-on workshop will explore the medicinal uses for therapeutic grade essential oils. Jennifer Kelly will cover history of oils, medicinal uses for common ailments, why therapeutic grade versus aromatherapy quality and how you can rid your cabinet of harmful drugs.

As conscious parents, we want the best for our children. We want to keep them healthy and vibrant. Knowledge of therapeutic grade essential oils and their use gives us the power to take control of our health and teach our children to do the same. Her family has never used over the counter or prescription medications. They have always used essential oils for the care and well-being for themselves. We will explore how to rid our homes of toxic chemicals and replace them with clean vibrant essential oils. There will be a hands-on demonstration and a Q & A session.


•  Boost You and Your Child's Immune System
•  Relieve Stress and Tension for You and Your Baby
•  Get your Digestive System into Peak of Efficiency, Help With Colic or Gassy Babies
•  How to Reduce Fevers, Clear Ear Infections, and Other Common Childhood Issues
•  Replace Damaging Toxins in your Personal Care Products
•  Learn Anti-Aging Properties of Essential Oils

Jennifer Kelly, CPT, KRI Instructor, Postpartum Doula, Nutritionist - She started her journey towards health and alternative healing in 1998 when after becoming pregnant with her son. She chose to have a homebirth not knowing where it would lead. Thankfully, it has lead to a beautiful journey working with amazing people and sharing the information she has learned to facilitate healing and transformation.

Jennifer went on to study nutrition and therapeutic grade essential oils and received a CARE certification in Raindrop and Vita flex Techniques with therapeutic grade essential oils. She was starting to see amazing results for people, but knew there was more to learn. In 2004 Jennifer completed Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training and in 2006 Completed Post Partum Doula Training. She felt that she was getting closer to the right combination of body, mind, & spirit tools to really make a difference for her clients. It wasn't until she found and trained in FNRA, Functional Nutrition Reflex Analysis that she knew the journey to truth, health and joy was complete.

Jennifer is a Certified Personal Trainer and Kundalini Yoga Instructor trained in the Khalsa Way, a Certified Post Partum Doula and Nutritionist, and has been teaching, training, and working with private clients in the Los Angeles area for the last 8 years. The Khalsa Way emphasizes healthy birthing and child rearing using the ancient principals of Kundalini Yoga and combines well with her Postpartum Doula practice. She has studied FNRA and is extremely knowledgeable in nutrition as well as creating a healthy non-toxic environment for families. She has one birth child and has fostered 8 children over the past 10 years ages 13 weeks to 18.

WHEN: Saturday 11/19/2011

WHERE: The Yogi Tree ~ 4475 Vineland Avenue ~ Toluca Lake, CA 91602


1.$15 per family for the presentation

2.$8 per family if you plan to use the conscious childcare in the Sprout Lounge. Please RSVP at 2 days BEFORE the workshop

For Dinner, bring: Your own dishware to stay green and a healthy main or side dish for the potluck

For further details and/or questions, please email Thank you.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

What We've Got In Store For You in October

Hi everyone. FLV has several fun events happening this month! We have definitely been keeping ourselves busy to create fun and educational events for all of you to enjoy.

SATURDAY 10/1/11

This upcoming weekend on Saturday 10/1/11, FLV will be having the EAKK! Lounge at an event called Los Angeles Decompression. We will be creating eco-friendly art projects for all the kids including Family Love Yoga, World Music for all the kids and a fun parade for all to join.

We are excited to bring a more kid-friendly environment to an already fun event! Not only will FLV be there but there will be music, art installations, performances, circus acts and much, much more! If you have ever heard of Burning Man and always wanted to experience a piece of it, then this is the event to go to!

Doors open at 1pm. To get further details, go to LA Burning Man.

SATURDAY 10/8/211

We are excited to announce that we have a special guest speaker, Glenna Rice, joining us on October 8th.  Normally we hold our gatherings on the 3rd Saturday but since Glenna will be in town facilitating another workshop, she was open to holding a special introductory workshop just for us.

Below are the details:

SUNDAY, OCT 16, 2011

Family Love Village is proud to be a part of the 2011 Aids Walk on October 16!! We would like to invite you to join us for this important Playdate for a Cause! Please take a minute to read what Family Love Village is about and why we chose to be a part of Aids Walk LA 2011!

Family Love Village's mission is to connect and support families and caregivers locally to practice and learn more about conscious parenting. Information, resources and support allow families to develop their main focus on a gently guided approach to communicating with their children, as well as the ability to make natural, holistic and eco-friendly decisions. Our community consists of FLVillagers of all backgrounds, race, religion/spirituality and socio-economics. Our ultimate vision is to birth a conscious movement by co-creating villages globally in order to build a sustainable world that not only our families, children and caregivers can presently benefit from but for future generations to come.

Playdates For a Cause Program

Family Love Village coordinates outings where we serve the bigger community with our children. This allows us to not only give back to the community but we give back to our children, as well because they in return receive the experience of conscious living and compassion.

We want YOU to join Family Love Village for this year's AIDS Walk Los Angeles!

AIDS Walk Los Angeles is a 10-kilometer (6.2 mile) fundraising walkathon benefiting APLA and other AIDS service organizations throughout Los Angeles County. This is an inspirational day filled with energy, excitement, hope, and even celebrities!

To learn more about our team's involvement or to register through me, please email me at I can tell you all about our team recruitment and fundraising events and answer questions.

Register online: Visit the AIDS Walk Los Angeles website at and click on "Register to Walk" and then "Join a Team." Simply select our team name from the pull-down menu!

Register by phone: Call the AIDS Walk office at (213) 201-WALK (9255). Be sure to give our team name when you register!

Don't forget to select the option to be part of the Star Walkers Club at the time you register! Star Walkers are participants who set a goal to raise $1,000 or more for AIDS Walk Los Angeles. You can also become a member of the Star Walkers Club by setting your fundraising goal to $1,000 from your Fundraising HQ after you register.

Once you register, you can download a Sponsor Form from to keep track of cash and checks that you collect. You will also be set up with a personal fundraising Web page to collect online credit card donations. You will receive an e-mail confirmation with your login information to access your Fundraising HQ. Visit for more information to help you get started. Encourage your family members and friends to register online to walk with our team - the more the better!

We hope to see you on Sunday, October 16!

With Love,

Sonia, Tangee, and Crystal

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Documentary & Dinner Night Featuring "Bag It"

On Saturday July 17th, FLV had our first Documentary & Dinner Night.  The featured film was called "Bag It".  And let me tell you, it was definitely an eye opener!  I mean I already knew the detrimental effects of plastic bags and plastic in general (thus the reason why I stopped receiving plastic bags when shopping and the reason why Andrik's toys consist mainly of wood) but watching this movie solidifies my support in doing my best not to buy plastic items.  But what do you do when EVERYTHING is practically made, wrapped and sealed in plastic?  Just witness this, the next time you step foot in a grocery store, try to find how many items that do not consist of plastic - it will be very slim, trust me.  It is literally discouraging seeing every aisle plastered in this stuff.  But I do my best to buy as many items as I can that don't consist of plastic (which at times can be challenging) but like I said I do my best and I do my part to stay committed to being more sustainable and health conscious.

Here's the trailer to the movie that has inspired me to be an even more eco-friendly geek!

I was truly inspired by this documentary's message (as everyone else was that evening) and want to share it with the world!  But for now I'll share some interesting and appalling facts that I derived from the Bag It website and notes I wrote that evening:

  1. In the United States alone, an estimated 12 million barrels of oil is used annually to make the plastic bags that Americans consume. The United States International Trade Commission reported that 102 billion plastic bags were used in the U.S. in 2009. These bags often wind up in waterways or on the landscape, becoming eyesores and degrading water and soil as they break down into toxic bits. Their manufacture, transportation and disposal use large quantities of non-renewable resources and release equally large amounts of global-warming gases. Ecologically, hundreds of thousands of marine animals die every year when they eat plastic bags mistaken for food. 
  2.  Governments around the world have taken action to ban or restrict the use of plastic bags. In 2008, China banned the use of ultra-thin plastic bags, and it is estimated to have eliminated 40 billion bags in the first year. Ireland placed a fee on plastic bags and reportedly reduced consumption by 90%. 
  3.  Towns all over the United States are rising to the challenge and standing up to the oil, gas and plastic
    industries. San Francisco has banned plastic bags. Seattle has fought a hard fight to place a fee on single-use disposable plastic AND paper bags, only to be shut down by the American Chemistry Council, a group that profits greatly from the production of plastic bags. The ACC spends millions to combat anti-plastic bag campaigns.  In spite of this challenge, U.S. cities including Austin, Boston, New Haven, Portland, Phoenix and Annapolis are considering bag bans or fees.
  4. The production of plastic bags requires petroleum and often natural gas, both non-renewable resources that increase our dependency on foreign suppliers. Additionally, prospecting and drilling for these resources contributes to the destruction of fragile habitats and ecosystems around the world.
  5. Annual cost to US retailers alone is estimated at $4 billion.
  6. In a landfill, plastic bags take up to 1,000 years to degrade. As litter, they breakdown into tiny bits, contaminating our soil and water.
  7. When plastic bags break down, small plastic particles can pose threats to marine life and contaminate the food web. A 2001 paper by Japanese researchers reported that plastic debris acts like a sponge for toxic chemicals, soaking up a million fold greater concentration of such deadly compounds as PCBs and DDE (a breakdown product of the notorious insecticide DDT), than the surrounding seawater. These turn into toxic gut bombs for marine animals which frequently mistake these bits for food.  For more information and statistics, please visit Reuse It.
  8. Single-use disposables like water bottles, coffee cups, plastic utensils and take out containers make our lives more convenient. About 2,480,000 tons of plastic bottles and jars were disposed of in 2008 around the world.

    Unfortunately, plastic is not disposable and the use of these items leads to environmental degradation. After being disposed, plastic containers and water bottles get placed in overflowing landfills, clogged rivers, and our ocean. And when the plastics break down, they do not biodegrade. Instead they break down into fragments that contaminate our natural resources.
  9. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average American produces about 4.4 lbs. of garbage every day. That’s 29 lbs. per week or 1,600 lbs. per year. The United States produces approximately 220 million tons of garbage each year. This is equivalent to burying more than 82,000 football fields six feet deep in compacted garbage. This amount of trash could cover the state of Texas two and half times and also fills enough trucks to form a line to the moon.
  10. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is an area of the Pacific Ocean created by the currents of the North Pacific Gyre. It's a plastic soup that in some areas has concentrations of plastic 40 times greater than that of plankton. That means there is 40 times more plastic than food for the marine animals to eat. Scientists estimate its size to be at least twice the area of Texas.

    80% of the plastic and trash that finds its way into our oceans comes from the land. It takes about five years for garbage from the west coast of the United States to make it to the gyre and about one year from Asia. Plastic debris in the ocean doesn't biodegrade. It photodegrades, meaning sunlight and water break it down to smaller and smaller pieces that are mistaken for food by fish, sea birds and marine mammals.
  11. BPA has the characteristics of estrogen, a hormone that determines sexual traits and is key in the development of brain function and nerve cells. Recent studies have linked BPA to breast and prostate cancer, enlargement of the prostate, early onset of puberty, hyperactivity in children, obesity, heart disease and diabetes.
  12. Biologists studying BPA and phthalates are in agreement over the harmful effects of both chemicals. These chemicals are now proven to be toxic, endocrine-disrupting, hormone level-changing, and disease-causing. Do your best to avoid them by reading labels, using reusable containers and bottles, and seeking out BPA and phthalate-free products. 
  13. You can get further details on the above topics at Bag It Movie.
  14. Where does the plastic go beyond the blue bin?  And was the recycling logo created as a marketing strategy just so ACC (American Chemistry Council) can make more plastic products out of non-renewable resources?  Check out this link for further details.

    Here are a few more links to learn more about plastics and what others are doing to make a difference:
    1. The Story of Stuff
    2. B.E.A.C. H. (Beach Environmental Awareness Campaign Hawaii)
    3. Ecology Center
    4. Cradle to Cradle and here's a link from TED TV with William McDonough
    5. 365 Days of Trash - one man's goal to not throw away trash for a whole year
    6. How Do You Bag It? - Another great post about the documentary from a blog called Attainable Sustainable. 
 As Jeb Berrier (the film's main character) asks, "Why would you make something out of a material that is going to last forever, and you're just going to throw it away?"


1. Reduce single use items 
2. Bring your own cloth shopping bags 
3. Bring your own stainless steel water bottle
4. Bring your own coffee mug (have you ever noticed that when people go to a coffee chain, they order their coffee and receive them in those coffee cups (which are LINED in plastic) and end up drinking the coffee at the coffee shop??  Then 20 minutes later, they discard the coffee cup and once again is a single use item back into the landfills and oceans.
5. Buy it used
6. Buy less stuff
7. Buy less cans and more bottled goods - did you know that canned food is lined in BPA?? But there is hope and at least several that have made the transition to BPA-FREE cans.
8. Volunteer for community clean up 

So the facts are pretty crazy (and this is just a taste of what facts were given in the movie).  I highly recommend this movie to everyone!!!  I feel the desire to spread and share this movie with all willing to watch and especially share it within the school system.  Hey if the ACC is trying to brainwash our children by adding it in the textbooks for schools (read more here),  then why can't we educate them with the truth!  Hmmm....perhaps I should propose this to the producers of this movie if they haven't already started doing.

So yes our very first Documentary and Dinner night was very enlightening and has actually brought alot more awareness to those present that night.  One of our FLVillager mamas has even gone grocery shopping and forgot her bags at home and just like Jeb in the movie, put all the groceries in the car without bags and brought it home.  Even myself (the eco-friendly freak that I am), am even more aware and no longer buy almond milk because of the plastic tops that they come in (which was a good point in the movie - since when did they start using those and why?  They poured perfectly fine without those dang plastic tops!).  Now I make homemade almond milk at home and not only is it way less sugar than the store bought versions, I feel good about knowing exactly what is in the milk and feel good that one less plastic top will be found in the carcass of an Albatross bird.

What are ways YOU can make a difference and stop using plastic?  Check out these links:

1. Green Guides - How To Avoid Plastic 
2.  The Good Human - 10 Ways to Reduce Plastic Consumption
3. Eco Child's Play - 10 Ways to Avoid Toxic Plastic 

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Family Love Yoga with Crystal D'Angora

Crystal D'Angora and Baby Rane

FLVillagers joined together with their lil ones in tow on Saturday August 20th with FLV's very own Playdate For A Cause (PFAC) Leader, Crystal D'Angora.
This was our first workshop where the children were included in the class and it was definitely a nice change that I know all the families appreciated. I loved the way Crystal interacted with the kids along with the engaging activities that she provided for them.  She showed us a combination of movement, breath, and meditation methods to strengthen and lengthen our entire bodies that emphasized on balance, strength, and flexibility, as well as Kundalini techniques taught by Yogi Bhajan. Not only what is a fun physical workout but the inclusive exercises Crystal showed us are proven to improve children's proprioceptive and developmental awareness. 

Learning how to breathe with our children, get centered, stretch, play, rejuvenate ourselves, and allow the energy to flow was such a wonderful way to bond with our families!   It was definitely a fun way to spend a Saturday evening together!

Here's a little bit of history about our beautiful Crystal:

Crystal D'Angora combines nearly 10 years as a certified Kundalini and children's Yoga and Pilates instructor and an eclectic background in theater, dance, Kundalini and Hatha yoga to create a holistic fusion of physical expression and discovery.  After teaching theater to homeless and abused youth through Los Angeles Free clinic's "Project Able," she attained a Bachelor of Arts degree from UC, Los Angeles in Literature and Child Development.  Her own yoga experience, which began in 1995, re-ignited the same sense of playful freedom from her youth in theater and dance, but also offered additional methods to heal physically, mentally, and emotionally.  

Crystal's passion for conscious choices in both birthing and parenting is supported by years of nanny experience, her undergraduate degree, and her commitment to a yoga and wellness oriented life-style.  She continues to find new ways to create a safe and fun environment for students (ages 2 years and up) to explore and express their unique physical and mental gifts.  Crystal's current work as co-founder/instructor of the Light Leaders Yoga teachers training program for children's yoga teachers, in addition to teaching various yoga classes and workshops at Golden Bridge, The Yogi Tree (FLV's home), and in her home studio, are all great sources of joy and growth.

Crystal combines her many years as a Pilates and Kundalini, prenatal, and children's yoga teacher with her new mommy-hood and love of movement to help you find the joy of movement in your body. You will enjoy structural re-alignment, balance, flexibility, and strength in an easy-going environment that puts your role as "parent" first!  

Yoga and meditation are some of the best tools to model a playful sense of confidence, concentration, and self-discipline for our babies/toddlers.  We know that when parents feel calm, confident, and loved that our children can thrive.  The vigorous Kundalini yoga kriyas, coupled with meditation and deep relaxation, is a perfect fit for parents and the energetic and active young bodies and minds of our little ones.  

And here are a couple of samples from the class that Crystal sent me to share with you: 
  1. Hot air balloon -Tuning in
            A. Basket - Easy pose – -Sitting tall, with pretzel legs (child pretends to be in the basket of a        balloon).

            “First we want to make the riding basket”

            *Next, use your imagination to turn your body into a big bright balloon.  Can you find your balloon’s color and shape (third eye)?  Place your hands on your tummy and fill it with air, now let it all out”  (3x’s)

            B. Prayer Pose – Rub the hands for “Hot air”

            “The air in our balloons have to get hot to make it fly.  Can you pretend to make a fire by rubbing your hands together?”

            C. Mantra –“Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo (I bow to the teacher in my heart) or Ohm (the sound of the Universe).” This reminds you to listen to your body when it tells you how it feels (i.e. if it needs a break or an extra rest.

            “Wow!  You were really flying.”

2. Yoga Hokey Pokey - (Sun Salutation or Surya Namaskar)

Start slowly with basic steps only:

You bring your hands up high.  Bring your hands down low.  You jump right back and slither like a snake.  You bring your tail up high and wag it like a dog.  Start all over again!  Then begin to add parts such as warrior jumps, (...Bring your tail up high and jump it to and fro, etc.).  This is also a great opportunity to invite children's creative suggestions!

These were just a couple of examples of the family fun we all got to experience!  It was definitely an amazing way to share some quality time with our lil ones, as well as get some exercise (physically and spiritually).

The following are some pictures of this evening...


Look at that nice form!

Warrior Pose

Wow!  Look at that head stand!


Touch your toesies!

A message from Crystal:

"I founded Light Leaders Yoga after 8 years of developing my skills as a children's yoga instructor.  With concrete evidence that yoga and meditation help to improve children's overall performance in school and general well-being,  we know the need for yoga in young lives will only increase. We also know that for children living in the stress of today's world, yoga helps kick out any surplus of negativity, fear, anxiety, anger, depression and other undeserved pressures which trickle down onto their young spirits from society. Yoga and meditation are some of the best tools to instill confidence, concentration, and self-discipline. We know that when children feel calm, confident, and  loved they can succeed.

I have direct experience with the effects that this powerful yoga has on young students and have noted ongoing progress in their lives as a result of a weekly practice.  We, as parents, can share and spread these teachings and techniques with our children to connect more deeply every day.  Using this mindful and playful practice, let's help to create healing communities for the next generation across the world."  

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Are You As Prepared For The Next Natural Disaster As You'd Like To Think You Are?

Hi FLVillagers!  Some of you already know that I wrote an extensive post back in May about Emergency Preparedness.  I was so impressed by how thorough my friend Alegre's presentation was at another family group Dalmacio, Andrik and I are a part of that I just had to have Alegre share her wealth of knowledge to some of her fellow FLVillagers, as well.  

Since I had already written about it prior, I will not be writing a new version of it.  But I will share the post once again here.  Yes I admit, it is quite overwhelming to read through it BUT very informative and indeed very important! 

Since the text here is short and sweet, I thought I'd share some pics of that evening.  Enjoy!

And now for some videos that I would like to share with you in getting prepared before September 26, 2012.  This is not meant to scare you but make you become aware and do what you can to stock up on your emergency preparedness supplies.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The FLV Experience at Our Very 1st Festival!

It was May 2010 and I had a vision: to bring the Family Love Village Experience to an amazing and inspiring green music and arts festival called Lightning in a Bottle (LIB).  I wanted to organize speakers who would share their wisdom about conscious parenting, sustainable living and holistic wellness for families attending the festival.

Although it wasn't in the stars for my family to attend that year, the Universe was definitely aligning everything to ensure it would happen in 2011!  And I have my good friend Arpad's birthday celebration to thank for that one.  Thanks Arpad for your beautiful soul and for being born!  Woohoo!!  It was that very night that I saw Josh Fleming (one of the founders of The Do LaB and creators of LIB). 

When I saw him, something told me that this would be my only chance to share my vision and see if him and his brothers along with the rest of The Do LaB crew would be open to this vision.  He loved the idea and told me to get in touch with Marsi.  I was so ecstatic that I believe I emailed her that same night and well...the rest is history!  What was a mere dream a year ago was rapidly gushing forward into fruition!

Four months later, I had pulled together my resources and manifested a team of amazing speakers, leaders and volunteers excited to be on board with creating the ultimate FLV Experience!  From holistic wellness to conscious birthing and parenting to homeschooling to raw foods and eco-friendly skincare for the whole family to Baby and Me Yoga & Pilates to even sharing a sustainable way of communicating your babies elimination needs!  We had pretty much covered every aspect of parenting for families and curious bystanders to learn about what we had to offer them.  Including the most fun part, creating eco-friendly art projects and activities for children through FLV's EcoArt Kids Kollectiv (EAKK!) program!

Not only were we bringing the FLV Experience but we organized our very first FLV theme camp!!  Which I could seriously have never done without the amazing bad-ass organizer and DJ, Sammy Bliss!  (Oops did I just say ass?)... This whole experience at LIB got me all excited and well, my potty mouth can't help itself!    LOL Ok so it's a mild potty mouth - I remember the days (pre-Andrik) when a certain four letter word was considered my first language!  LOL Anyways, the word bad-ass best describes just how awesome Sammy Bliss is and how amazing he was with helping to coordinate our camp for us (of course with the amazing help of his beautiful wife, Rayna and all the families that camped with us)!  I was amazed at how many families joined us for our very first theme camp at LIB and that wasn't even all the families that were listed on our facebook group.  I'd say we had at least around 60+ members (including lil ones in tow) that were excited to be with other like-minded families!  Not bad for our first year!  And yes we had the dopest location, right next to the biggest sandbox I've ever seen!!  :o)

It was a lot of hard work to get everything organized within 4 months but we did it!  And to actually see our name and logo on the LIB website made all of those sleepless nights of working until 2am every night to get things done (not to mention my "Clark Kent" job, organizing our local monthly gatherings and being a mama to a very active 2 year old) made it all well worth it!   I couldn't believe it!  It was actually happening! 

To share in our rejoice, here is a link with the list of FLV speakers and workshops.   And here is the link to all the fun EAKK! activities that we prepared for the kids (thanks to our innovative and hard working EAKK! leader, Sonia Von Wike and all the volunteers that helped us prepare before and during the festival).  Sonia actually pre-made 50 green journals by herself for the kids to write about regarding their experience at LIB (as you could see with the picture in the beginning of the post)!  And wow!  Talk about mad props to the boy (I believe his name was Zack) with his art!

We were really excited to be a part of a bigger collective for the kids at the Kidz Village where we joined forces with Melissa Wynne-Jones from Mystic Family Circus and Audette Sophia from MagiKids.  

Upon arriving at LIB, everything was just so surreal.  My heart welled up with tears of pure bliss.  One of my goals was actually happening!  Even during one of our EAKK! activities at Kidz Village, Sonia came up to me with tears of joy.  I was (and still am) in such deep gratitude to everyone for believing in my vision and for happily taking this journey with me!  I'm especially thankful to Marsi (bless that woman's soul for having to put up with my slew of emails)!  Anyone that knows me, knows that I can tend to get a little carried away with, novels.  LOL

Speaking of novels, I think instead of writing another novel, I'd rather share the experience through the pictures and videos instead.  Oh wait - you thought what I wrote above was a novel...hahahahaha!  Ok continuuing on...Alot of the pictures that I took (and thankfully that my dear friend Regan took when I got too busy) were of all the kids and families during the EAKK! activities and art projects since I practically lived there the whole weekend.  LOL Note to self: must get to LIB earlier and stay later so I can actually enjoy perusing the rest of the festival!  :o)

So here ya go!  Enjoy!

These are pics of some of us prepping the EAKK! projects before LIB.  The whole concept behind the EAKK! Program is to recycle items from your home, restaurants, schools and businesses that would normally end up in the landfill and use them for art projects for the kids.

Ok I know this looks bad having beer bottle caps as part of the kids art projects but the kids actually painted over the beer symbols and used them to decorate their journals, drums and basically anything that could use a little pizzazz! 

Beans for the music shakers
Although these were plastic eggs, they were all recycled from Easter egg hunts the month prior to LIB.

A sample of a drum that Sonia, our EAKK! Leader made.

Stargazing anyone?  A bunch of us FLV families recycled empty toilet and paper rolls for crafting "telescopes".

Chimes or Noise clankers or even a bomb!? (as one older kid creatively made it into)!  Either way, curious to know what those plastic tubes are?  Well you know those rolls of paper that print out receipts at restaurants?  It's the holder for the receipt paper.  And there were tons and tons of them piling up waiting to go into the landfill until Sonia saved the day, took them from her work and found a very creative way to incorporate them into an art project!
Sample of the book designing for the kids to journal in about their LIB experiences.
Noise clankers, journals and guitars! Oh My!  The "guitar" Tangee is playing is a recycled almond milk container with rubber bands as strings


Our very 1st banner.  FLVillagers Ariel and Oti Vergez helped cut out the words and logo.  It took my hubby, Dalmacio 14 hours to hand sew most of the words and logo.  Damn, I love that man of mine!  Oops there I go swearing again!  ;o)

Our 1st EAKK! activity of the weekend: The Sensory Hike

On our hike, the kids touched ice

I bet this guy never thought his dreads would be a fun part of a sensory hike! 

The "tractor" was the only thing Andrik wanted to touch on our hike.  He loves his vehicles that's for sure!
Alas!  We made it to the Kidz Village!

Time to bust out those books to design and journal what you experienced at LIB!

An overjoyed Sonia!!  Our incredibly creative EAKK! Leader!

Here's Zack (I believe that's his name) with his awesome eco-friendly LIB journal!

Me and Sonia giddy as can be!

Lola and Ozmo with his glitter 'stache
Greg Larsen and his lil man

Lisa and her lil one

Me, Lauren, and Super Izzo!

Dana & Myles

Disco Nap!

Even us parents need a nap!

Alexandria and her lil one

FLV's very 1st art installation: The Nature Man Projekt!  We dedicated this to Marsi, the Do Lab boys and the LIB team!

FLVillage DJ's: Fatfinger and Sean Mace spinning the boombastic beatz for the kids!

Evita and Jonah

Story time or booby time?  How about both?

Travis and Sean with their  mini-me DJ's (Rylo and Sasha)


My beautiful Samurai!

Dr. Solar getting his groove on!

My 2 boys enjoying the balance of life!

Had enough with looking at the fun photos?  Well here's a few awesome videos that our dear homey, Smitty beautifully created that has a few snippets here and there of our FLV crew:

So there you have it!  FLV's first emergence of being a part of a bigger movement, a bigger collective that was beautifully celebrated with like-minded beings who were there to experience not only boombastic beats and awe-inspiring art but to embrace consciousness together...