Curiosity GOT me to the MAT

“Do the one thing you think you cannot do. Fail at it. Try again. Do better the second time. The only people who never tumble are those who never mount the high wire. This is your moment. Own it.”

-Oprah Winfrey-I fucking Did It

 

Curiosity

What you might not know about me is that I was really scared of yoga when I was first introduced to it. Although, (and you might of already read this in one of my other blog posts) I have recognized that I have been a yogi since I was a little girl. The mindset to take care of myself, lighting the fire inside of me to my own spiritual path, and the ability to quite my emotions finding different ways to meditate. The active part of my yoga practice wasn’t something I really connected with until my late twenties when curiosity brought me to my first regular yoga classes. That same curiosity that made me the first one to learn to read in my school class, the dedicated curiosity that got me to put myself through college, and that risky curiosity that brought me from New York City to San Francisco. I was very much the girl who picked a 7mile run, a soccer game, or even pick to embarrass myself over a beginner’s hip hop class before picking a “boring ass yoga class.” New York city’s rat race finally brought my soul to the mat because I was stressed and I was hurting. I couldn’t find happiness or peace anywhere in that city until I started connecting with myself on my yoga mat.

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Interview with Geoff Robbins

Interview with Geoff Robbins

Interview with Geoff Robbins

Professional golfer, Geoff Robbins, 28, answers dreamsmadenewyorkcity’s interview questions while driving his fiancé, Kadie Chronister, Athleta Marketer/Yogi, and puppy Finley, savage and baby, to their new Northern California home. Our editor’s thought this would be a good time to interview Geoff since he will be focusing on his presence in the golf world in 2016. Before he settles down into his new workout plans, a new city (which happens to be on the other side of the country from where he grew up in Glen Ridge, New Jersey), and right after his first big tournament win in South Florida. We felt this would be the perfect time for us to get to know a little more about this newly engaged and fun-loving athlete. When Geoff was asked to participate in our website’s  first ever interview his reaction was nothing short of adorable. His entire torso straightened up as he pointed to himself smiling ear-to-ear saying, “Meeeeee?” His fiancé, the one who was asking the questions, confirmed with us later that one of Geoffrey’s (which she prefers to call him over Geoff) favorite games to play on the road is 20 questions. So, similar to his career- this was all just a game.

 

Kadie: “If you could only be remembered for one thing… What would you want it to be?”
Geoff: (Eyebrow’s focused in on the road with a very serious face) “Being a good person”.
Kadie: “What are you most grateful for?”
Geoff: “My family”
Kadie: “What are you the most afraid of?”
Geoff: “Failing at being a professional golfer”
Kadie: “If you could be doing anything right now, what would it be”?
Geoff: “I mean it would obviously be having sex with you, but, do you want me to say that?”
Kadie: “Moving on”
Geoff: “No, No, let me answer it for real. I would be sinking a birdie and winning a golf tournament- just put that.”
Kadie: “What three movies describe your life?”
Geoff: “Sandlot, Lord of the Rings, Life is Beautiful”
Kadie: “I knew you would say Life is Beautiful, I was waiting for you to say it.”
Kadie: If you could golf anywhere with one person (anywhere for fun with some beers) who would it be and where?
Geoff: “My Dad, Augusta Nationals.”
Kadie: “I hoped you would say your dad, I love that.”
Kadie: “Did you have a teen idol? Who was it? Why?
Geoff: “Teen idol? What do you mean?”
Kadie: “ Like, I would say Britney Spears…”
Geoff: “Oh, okay than, it would have to be Alex Lifeson because I love the band Rush, and all I wanted was to learn how to play the guitar. I had a lot of different soccer idols too like Eric Cantona.”
Kadie: “Have you ever had your heart-broken? Who was it and why?
Geoff: “Oh my god yeah! When my cat and dog died.”
Kadie: “Ugh, seriously though Geoffrey, who?”
Geoff: (Looks away from the road to look me dead into my eyes) “Yes, seriously Kadie, are you kidding me? I was so heartbroken on those days.”
Kadie: “Ok, sorry for your loss”.
Kadie: “What is the most special way someone has shown you they love you?”
Geoff: (took a few seconds to answer this one) “Your blog posts about me”
Kadie: “Love you baby”
Kadie: “What is your most memorable travel experience?”
Geoff: “This might be it baby, driving cross-country moving my wife and son to California.” (We like to pretend Finley our dog is human, and we also act like we are married already by referring to each other as husband and wife.)
Kadie: “If you had one super power, what would it be?”
Geoff: “Super speed! Like fast as just a flash, really super speed.”
Kadie: “If you could meet one historical person from the past who would it be? Why?”
Geoff: “There are so many, it will be hard to pick! George Washington or Alexander the Great”
Kadie: “Ok, last question.”
Geoff: (says with very whiney voice) “Oh come on no!!! Ask me more please!”
Kadie: (shakes head no) “Okay, What is your favorite thing about yourself?”
Geoff: “Probably my ability to make other people feel better about themselves.”

2015 Ass Kicking

2015

Write. No seriously, stop fucking around Kadie.
Yoga! ? Hello.
Bake, and cook for your friends, you got the know.
Travel more! And stop canceling it for more money to not travel.
Be a better friend. Do things for them that show them how you feel.
Stay present in good company. Snap chat later
Grow others, inspire and motivate good things from people
Be a rock for the family. Someone they can count on.
Give lots of love.
Stay true to yourself.

#MomChrongetshitched

Speech

Here is a little flashback to the toast I gave at my mother’s farm wedding last weekend in Brighton, Michigan. While surrounded by many friends and family from all over the country, I experienced one of the most beautiful and emotional weddings EVER. I miss this weekend already mostly due to all the wonderful moments that I was able to share with so many wonderful friends and family members. I want my mom to be able to look back at videos, pictures, and even my blog-posts to forever be connected with her special day. So if you missed the speech..here it is!

#momchrongothitched,

Kadie

When I was a little girl I used to have a reoccurring dream about the day my Mom got married. In my mind, I had missed something I knew I should have be a part of. I imagined it happening in a big back yard because that is where Julie and I practiced the “big day” many summer afternoons in Granny’s yard. But the truth is, most kids don’t get the opportunity to be a part of their Mother’s big day and as you all know, it is a true blessing because Melissa would not have it any other way. Thirteen years ago, the new girl in town had her life changed by so many of you sitting in this room and by year four she was finally ready to love herself again which opened her heart for her Prince Charming. Matt, the kindest man many of us have ever met, and Melissa, the owner of the biggest heart in the world were married today. So here I am, living my “baby dream” front and center, (I’M ON A FARM!) on my Mommy’s wedding day. So favorite friends, & best family ever, please raise your glass for a big cheers to my Mother, Melissa Chronister, and my new Dad, Matthew McDaniel.

*In the pic I be sporting a vintage crochet dress from Loose Threads Boutique, and a necklace from Nastygal.com

Namaste

Namaste
“Dizzy From all this spinning”
–Dave Matthews Band

I met yoga for the first time when I bought a restorative and breathing yoga DVD at Best Buy during Christmas break in my last year of college. I was stranded in Tallahassee during another semester/holiday break where the entirety of my classmates and friends headed to their hometowns. It always left the city feeling empty and ghostlike. I could not leave town because of bills I was responsible for and the obligations I had at all three of my jobs. One night while arriving home from work to an empty four-bedroom, roommate-less house, I started the usual “poor me” thoughts about not being able to run home to a family safety net. When I stepped into my room and set my belongings on my bed, I looked down at my flea-market zebra-print rug and something encouraged me to sit down in the middle and start to meditate. I don’t recall knowing anything about meditating or figuring out why I felt the need to sit cross-legged on my floor with my eyes closed and palms up. I think I was mimicking practices I had picked up as a child when I would hide in my closet and close my eyes for comfort. Or maybe I was seeking the calming effect I had learned about in my Buddhist religion class. I sat on the floor in my room for the rest of the evening, and the next morning I woke up with the idea of learning yoga. My campus gym was closed for school break, and I am not positive that a private yoga studio was even in my town at the time, so I headed to the closest store that sold DVD’s to get my first introduction to yoga through DVD.
Over the next couple of day’s I followed my “live” instructors’ direction in my living room and quickly decided that I was easily bored, frustrated and way to distracted to commit to any type of yoga practice at this point in my life. When everyone started trickling back into town, I put my DVD away on my bookshelf and did not pull it out again until a year later when I had graduated and was out of college. I was living in Delray Beach when a friend I had met at my serving job – Torreya Grill, one of the spots where I’d worked during school breaks – gave me my first yoga mat as a birthday gift. Similar to my history of meditation, I don’t recall ever talking about yoga or giving Jessica a reason to believe that I needed a yoga mat, but it is a gift that will forever be symbolic of my love of yoga. On receiving my new Gaiam mat, we quickly made plans to get together to practice yoga, and after dusting off my old yoga DVD we had a couple “home sessions” with our new mats. But again, I was quickly side-tracked from learning yoga and used my mat instead for other home fitness activities.
Throughout the next four years of all my different fitness endeavors, I picked up yoga maybe a handful of times. I lived with a yogi who was constantly on yoga challenges, and she had dragged me to hot yoga classes. She was always giving me reasons why I, too, should be practicing yoga. It definitely intrigued me, but I was bored during yoga and I was also very intimidated by it. At age 28, I cannot touch my toes, and unlike many of the people who were practicing yoga, I can’t even come close to a split. The back bends I watched my girlfriends perform while hanging out at the beach were positions I thought might literally bend/break mine. It just wasn’t for me yet, and so I continued to be active on my yoga mat but for Pilates and those occasional viewings of my yoga DVD.
Dave Matthews Band sings in “So Damn Lucky” about being dizzy from a whole lot of spinning, and I can say that in the last year of my life I have become extremely dizzy from it all. I also consider myself pretty damn lucky to be blessed with all of the different life experiences and have finally found a place for yoga in my life. I moved to New York City, broke up with my boyfriend staffed and trained a newly renovated retail store team in a city where I’d never lived, moved my belongings through Times Square twice, and unexpectedly lost my job. A lot of these life events that caused anxiety, worry, and stress were the result of my dreams finally coming true, but that doesn’t mean that these events weren’t difficult. This year was remarkably memorable and has been a defining year of my life. Although, I moved to Manhattan with a job, I did not move to the Big Apple with a big savings account or a clear financial plan. I kid you not: The 12-foot box truck that drove all my furniture and belongings from South Florida to Manhattan, the gas for my car to follow, the renter fees, apartment fees, lease-breaking fees, food and any miscellaneous moving supplies were all paid out of a $1,500 budget I had at my disposal. I’d be lying if I said my Nan didn’t stick a few bills in my pocket, and that my wonderful friends and family did not help me over this hump. I was showered with gifts, gift cards, and so many blessings and words of encouragement, but it still remains one of the most anxious, scary time in my life. I questioned myself daily on my decision to move when I was experiencing such financial burden and so many weeks I had to stretch thirty dollars to feed me and transport me through one of the most expensive cities in the world. I truly believe it was only possible for me to do because of the experience and learnings of my meager youth. Tuna fish, carrots, tomatoes, bananas, and mac & cheese, were my go-to budget food items, and with any leftover money I would buy myself a bottle of wine to keep me company as I wrote in my journal thoughts and goals to get out of this mess.
My first apartment at the Ritz was located in midtown and was SO BEAUTIFUL! From my bedroom you could walk out onto a balcony twenty-nine floors high that overlooked Times Square to the left and Hell’s Kitchen to the right. The one side of my room was pure window, and I had beautiful wood floors where I propped my Gaiam yoga mat in the corner next to a standing mirror. This yoga mat placement, although I was still not a yoga practitioner, was placed with intent for the sanctuary I was trying to create in this stressful, anxious time. I will never, EVER forget the beauty of the city lights from my room and how I could sit out on the balcony and, if only for a second, remember to be proud of myself. I started to have visions of doing yoga gracefully on my Gaiam mat outside my large glass windows, and these visions started to become reality when I took out my mat one afternoon and turned on my yoga DVD. What was different this time around is that, after the first week, I didn’t stop. In my free time, I started Googling and searching Youtube for different yoga tutorials that I hoped to practice on my own.
After the first three months, I started to get a little more financial security as well as more knowledge of ways to spread my money more evenly and even save money. The first thing I did when I had a couple extra dollars a month was research and purchase a gym membership that fit my budget. With all of my fitness classes, I always wanted parts to be like ballet or hip-hop, and then I started to mix in yoga classes. No matter how hard it was to convince myself to go to class and be the “beginner” that I was embarrassed to be, I cannot recall one time that I did not feel an amazing sense of anxiety relief. I am always very thankful that I made it to my classes, and I always remind myself how thankful I am each and every time I practice because it has NOT been easy to get to this point of my yoga career. The goal I set in August 2013 was to at least make it to one yoga class each week, and that goal has evolved into a habit of searching for a yoga class to attend almost every single day. With the loss of my job, I have incorporated the goal to make yoga class every day. With the extra time on my hands I have given myself my first and well-deserved yoga challenge. I have finally achieved control of my finances, and in the blink of an eye the universe switched the ocean tide and forced me to seek a new way to swim out. I need and connect to yoga more these past couple of days than ever before, and I am so committed to my relationship with yoga. Every day in class, I learn something new about my body and about the different ways I can get myself into different positions. It frees my mind in such healthy ways, and keeps me from all the drugs or booze I might have looked at to ease my mind in the past. It releases the hurt, the uncertainties, and gives me so much hope like nothing else in my life has been able to. Anytime anyone is going through anything difficult in life, I often think to myself, “they need yoga”, and it’s also a hobby of mine that I am hoping to bring into other people’s lives by becoming a certified yoga instructor.
Currently, I still can’t touch my toes for long, or do a split, but I did do my first sirsasana (headstand) in class the other night! I know that if I continue to stay true to my goals I will one day make it into the positions that I only aspire to now. I love watching and learning from other yogis in class as they get into their crow poses, and I stay patient with myself as I work up the strength to one day get there, too. That is why yoga is so awesome! Everyone is at their own pace with their bodies and it might all be different for everyone as far as how they feel after. I have cried, I have become overwhelmed with energy, I have become ready for a nap, and it really just depends on what kind of practice you put in and out of your mind and body. Inhale good shit, exhale Bullshit. I love the improved flexibility and balance I have noticed I have gained since I use to consider myself very clumsy. I love yoga clothing and how free and comfortable it fits, and I feel like the techniques I am learning in yoga has helped with my love for dancing, and running, too. I also love the natural, loose bun it gives my heavy, thick hair after a 55-minute Vinyassa flow class!
I hope that you can find yoga in your life, and when your life leaves you a little dizzy, you find peace in your practice. Message me if you have any questions regarding beginner’s yoga!

Namaste.

View from the LEFT of the Ritz, Timesquare

View from the LEFT of the Ritz, Timesquare

View facing the Hudson River from the Ritz Rooftop

View facing the Hudson River from the Ritz Rooftop

My Dog FInley, loved his new home in NYC.

My Dog FInley, loved his new home in NYC.

Finley became a "yogi" before me. Here he is practicing on the mat by the mirror!

Finley became a “yogi” before me. Here he is practicing on the mat by the mirror!

Philly

Philadelphia Museum of Art

South Philly

South Philly

Philly from the Rocky Steps

Philly from the Rocky Steps

philly 3

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10104083091344063&l=5286743625315813806

Last weekend, Matt and I went to Philly to see the Miami Heat vs. Philadelphia 76’ers at Wells Fargo Stadium to represent our home state, Florida! I wish we had more time in the city because we were only able to have one full day to explore. We chose to visit the famous Rocky Steps at the entrance to the Philadelphia Museum of Art after an amazing breakfast at Sabrina’s Cafe in south Philly. On that note, if you are looking for a charming brunch spot and don’t mind stuffed banana filled French toast, this is the place for you. I must also mention, it’s BYOB, so don’t expect a mimosa or a Baileys and coffee unless you bring it along with you! The place is homey and inviting, and it reminds me a little of Paula’s Cabana cafe in Tallahassee Florida where I worked in college (mostly because both are museum-style homes that were then re-opened for family style dining!)*

During our 45 minute wait for a table, we walked around the south Philly street market and were forced to step over a squashed avocado that had rolled off the crate at the fruit stand. This avocado right away reminded me of my grandmother and her green thumb. Granny was always able to feed my sister and I well, because of the fruits we had growing right in our back yard in South Florida. We had two orange trees, one grapefruit tree, a lime tree, mangos from the neighbor’s yard and one of my favorites, an avocado tree. The funny thing I remember about having an avocado tree is that it didn’t always provide us avocados. I remember the excitement Granny had in her voice when she would scream from peeking out her bedroom window, “Come, look Kadie! Some fresh avocados have dropped!” We would immediately run outside and collect the “good ones” to enjoy in our lunch as soon as possible. This was not the only example of how the city tied me back to family. When I looked back at the city from the top of the Rocky Steps, it felt like Chronister. My aunt went to college in Philly, my Nan’s boyfriend is a lawyer in Philly, I ate cheese steaks with my sister in Philly and my Uncle Tom and Aunt Andie took all the first cousins to the Franklin Institute one summer while we were growing up. This is a city a lot of my family members had been to and share memories together in.

Overall, we had a great trip and I am happy that Matt and I were able to get out of the city and spend time with family at the game and see another neighbor city in the Northeast while we have the chance. The Heat won the basketball game and it was a great memory made with everyone involved. I definitely suggest a quick trip if you live near the city.

Have you ever been to Philly? What did you do?

* Paula’s Cabana was located inside Goodwood Museum. However, the restaurant is no longer in this location. If you are interested in visiting Paula’s current kitchen, check out: http://blackfig.net/about.html. If you make it to Goodwood Museum you should know, the cabana and the pool house were repainted by me and Paula in 2007, one Sunday morning.