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Posts from the ‘INSPIRATION’ Category

Daily Meditation for Stress Relief

“A calm mind brings inner strength and self confidence, so that’s very important for good health.” – Dalai Lama

Although I was raised in the Jewish culture I have always been drawn to eastern philosophy, and the practice of meditation. Scientific studies have shown meditation to have so many benefits for your mental and emotional health. Especially these days with the nonstop bombardment of news, texts and tweets.. it’s so important take a minute to clear your head and get some peace of mind.

Here is a simple meditation exercise that I love and really helps with anxiety and stress. Find a quiet place, set a timer for 2 mins (or longer). Sit comfortably and close your eyes. Relax your body and take a few deep breaths. Think of a person or a place that you love, and smile.. Repeat daily!

For more simple meditation exercises check out Pocket Mindfulness

The Incomparable RIE Approach

When I became a new mom, I felt lost and insecure.. bombarded with so many different opinions, parenting books and methods. Then I discovered RIE (Resources for Infant Educarers) and it was the best thing I ever did!

My good friend invited me and my son to join her RIE class in LA and I was so relieved that RIE was not just another idea to read about. For two years, we took our 6 month old to weekly 90 min classes with a group of about 5 kids around the same age. Our insightful teacher Jill Getto Lee, became our RIE parenting coach as we gained a new awareness of our kids and a deeper understanding of the amazing first two years of life.

Magda Gerber’s philosophy on respectful parenting has been invaluable to me as I navigate through parenthood.  Here are my favorite RIE basics that I still practice everyday with my kids (now ages 2 and 5).

Respect your kids, see them as intelligent, enlightened beings.. not objects.

Be present. Especially during feeding, bathing and bed times.

Be patient, slow down to their pace.

Communicate your actions beforehand and encourage their involvement in everything.

Inspire active play with passive toys. Avoid passive play with active toys or screens.

Trust their own ability to learn, develop and problem solve.

Have clear boundaries, offer clear choices.

For all things RIE, one of the best bloggers and writers is Janet Lansbury , she has an abundance of knowledge and information.

If you are a new or soon to be parent and want to find classes in your area click HERE  Also, the annual RIE conference is coming up at the end of the month. For more info click HERE


Hello Parenthood!

Hello world! I’m back from my long hiatus..

Over one year ago on March 20th, 2013 I gave birth to a perfect, beautiful baby boy named Leo and it was the most epic, emotional and incredible experience of my life. Even though I was technically ready, I had no idea what to expect.. it almost felt like looking toward a blank slate, that our lives as we knew it was ending and would never be the same again..

Leo is 15 months old today and we feel as though he has been in our lives forever. Parenthood has taught me how to be selfless, how to be a better partner, how to overcome challenges and how to live a more simple, balanced life.  How beautiful to feel yourself evolve as a human being and to witness creation in it’s most purist form.. AMAZING!

After many months away I have so much to share.. so stay tuned as I hope to have new posts coming regularly!



Guruji ~ In Memoriam April 7th,1920 – December 11th, 2012

“Age is a cage where I sit and watch my youth pass by, Though I cannot run as fast as I did before, musically I think I am better than ever for sure. Should I be missing my youth, or thank the Lord and rejoice in the everlasting magic of the music. ” Ravi Shankar 2010

Last month I was struck with grief after hearing about the death of our beloved Guruji, Pandit Ravi Shankar. Raviji had suffered from upper respiratory and heart issues over the past year and underwent heart-valve replacement surgery last month at a hospital in San Diego. Although the surgery went well, he was not able to recover and transcended back to the heavens at the age of 92 on Dec 11, 2012.

I feel so blessed to have had the amazing opportunity to know him and his family personally since 2007. As a sitar player and student of Indian Classical music, I was fortunate to be able to play tanboura for him on three concert occasions in Modesto CA, Dallas TX and Los Angeles CA. Over the past few years in addition to the music, I was able to help him relieve his pain through bodywork. He was my oldest client! During the sessions he would make me laugh telling amazing stories about his life and would ask about my husband Andrew and how my sitar practice was going. His amazing energy and light that always shined through his eyes no matter how lousy he felt was true evidence of the soul’s presence and agelessness. To me, he was the closest I ever felt to being in the presence of an enlightened being. I will always remember and cherish those quiet moments I shared with him.

His memorial was held on Thursday, Dec 20th 2012 in Encinitas and was beautiful, but bitter sweet. The legendary musician was remembered as an unfailingly generous teacher with a gentle spirit and sense of humor whose music fostered understanding between East and West. Different family members spoke as well as  Isreali conductor Zubin Mehta who said he felt like a ‘little crumb’ listening to him play. Olivia Harrison also eloquently spoke saying Raviji helped a young George Harrison achieve a more meaningful life. She said, “They were like father and son as well as brothers and he completely transformed (George’s) musical sensibilities. They exchanged ideas and melodies until their hearts and minds were intertwined like a double helix.”

As a performer, composer, teacher and writer over an 80+ year career, he has done more for Indian music than any other musician. Like Mozart or Beethoven, Raviji’s music and legacy will never be forgotten. May he continue to inspire and influence many generations to come.

BE the Change

Every now and then you come across a cause or movement that really inspires you. Last weekend, 60 Minutes on CBS aired an amazing story titled ‘Children Helping Children’ about the success of the non-profit organization called  ‘Free the Children’ and I was so moved that I had to share.

Free The Children’s mission is to create a world where all young people are free to achieve their fullest potential as agents of social change. Founded by Craig Kielburger in 1995 when he gathered 11 school friends to begin fighting child labor. He was only 12. Today, Free The Children is an international charity and educational partner, with more than 1.7 million youth involved in innovative education and development programs in 45 countries.

Every year Free The Children host’s ‘We Day’ to inspire youth to take action and get involved. The event brings together a stadium full of elementary and secondary students who have committed to a minimum of one local and one global action. It’s a day of celebration, with live music performances and inspirational speakers, (now in eight cities across Canada, and growing).

We Day is mainly an educational event, but it’s impact has sparked a movement of young people leading local and global change. We Day is tied to the yearlong We Act program, which offers curricular resources, campaigns and materials to help turn the day’s inspiration into sustained activation.

To learn more or if you missed the 60 Minutes broadcast click HERE.

Find Your Passion and Do what you Love!

Throughout the ages, many wise people have said that to find true joy and happiness, you have to fulfill your passion, love your life and continue to be inspired by your work. I believe this to be so true today as ever before!

In his 2005 Stanford commencement address, Steve Jobs said, “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on.”

The Holstee Manifesto is one of my favorite manifestos for the creative life, for the life of purpose and a daily reminder of what matters most. The first part states, “This is your life. Do what you love, and do it often. If you don’t like something, change it. If you don’t like your job, quit. If you don’t have enough time, stop watching TV. If you are looking for the love of your life, stop; they will be waiting for you when you start doing things you love.”

For soul searchers and parents of kids whose direction is unclear here is a breakthrough book about talent, passion, and achievement from one of the world’s leading thinkers on creativity and self-fulfillment, Ken Robinson Ph.D. The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything is the point at which natural talent meets personal passion. When people arrive at the Element, they feel most themselves and most inspired and achieve at their highest levels.

BACK TO LIFE ~ The inspiring true story of courage and the will to survive.

“We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face… we must do that which we think we cannot.”  Eleanor Roosevelt

In life we all will experience hardship and triumph, suffer through illness and celebrate another year of good health. Although, we all go through the ups and downs life brings, we never expect things to change so fast or to overnight lose control over it all.  Almost four years ago, I got a call from my mom that my beautiful, healthy, amazing cousin Penny was holding on to her life by a thread. I almost fell off my chair in shock and couldn’t believe it.

Penny was happily vacationing with her family in Palm Springs when she fell gravely ill. Her husband took her to the local hospital to get checked out and the doctor told her to take a few over the counter pills and sent her home. About six hours later, she returned back to the hospital barely able to walk and after they finally admitted her, she fell into a coma diagnosed with TSS, (Toxic Shock Syndrome) and was teetering on the brink of life and death.

Miraculously Penny survived and came back to life after 3 months of being in a coma. After overcoming many obstacles, years of pain and grueling rehabilitation she is thriving again.  A few months ago she wrote about her experience for the first time and it is such an unbelievable account of strength, courage and the will to survive. I hope that her story will inspire you as it continues to inspire me and will remind you not to sweat the small stuff in life.

Here is the link to Penny Fisher’s Story: Surviving a Coma AND Staying Fun Mommy

The Book of Rose – Stories, Wisdom & Bubby-ism’s

After 3 years and countless interviews I have finally finished and self published ‘The Book of Rose’, a memoir about the life and legacy of my amazing ‘Bubby’,(Yiddish for Grandmother) Rose DuCaine.

The intention of this book was to capture her life story as well as her amazing wisdom and insights for our extended family and future generations to come. After our grandfather Abe ‘Zeyda’ passed away 5 years ago, I felt as though I still had so many questions and had missed an opportunity to document his life story.

Bubby Rose is a big inspiration in my life, I quote her all the time and still learn from her every day. I have always jokingly call her ‘para-normal’ because of her incredible health, stamina and longevity. Today, at the age of 94 she lives alone, maintains her home and is completely independent. She is in perfect health and takes hardly any medication. She doesn’t need or wear glasses, has all her own teeth and still goes out in heels! Inspirational, or what?

I admire, adore and appreciate her more than she knows and hope that this book will (in her own words) tell her story, share her wisdom and continue to pass on her legacy.

To preview or if you would to purchase – soft cover starting at $42 or download as a ebook for $6.99 – click HERE!


Created and curated by the visionary Mijanou Montealegre, MYSTIC MAMMA will delight, inspire and uplift you! A daily fount of wisdom, vision and beauty weaving a web of consciousness and connectivity.  Reflecting the creative and intuitive aspects of reality and the wisdom of the Divine Feminine. Updated daily, it’s an ever flowing resource of inspiration, and a craft fully woven web of spiritual memory gems.

For women, mammas and soul searchers this site will blow you away and is such a gift to us all!  Click HERE and Enjoy.

Hello world!

I started this blog as a creative outlet and to share the people, places and things that inspire me. My entire life I have traveled around the world, studied music, art, photography and dance. I am a student of of Indian Classical music, a performer of African Dance and a 12 year practitioner of the healing arts. In addition, I have a global community of the most interesting, diverse and talented people.

With this blog, my vision is to inspire and promote awareness in global causes, holistic health and wellness, hip and exotic escapes, great music, inspirational  wisdom, and eclectic brands in fashions, jewelry and beauty.  I invite you join me on this journey and receive!