WE DID IT!! We made it through the Christmas season. I love the holiday season, and I have to confess that I fall into the holiday camp of more is more. Not necessarily more money spent or more materialism, but I do feel like this is the season for allowing myself and my kids some indulgence. We spend all year practicing moderation, so come Christmas, I am ready to put colored lights on anything that doesn't move, bake too many cookies, listen to Elvis sing Blue Christmas on a loop, watch every claymation special, just jump in whole hog.
However, sometimes that indulging gets the best of us all, and we need a little calm injected into our lives. Now that Christmas day has come and gone, I am ready to recalibrate my life - more salads, less fudge. And that holiday season chaos, as much as I sincerely love it, needs to step aside for another year. I need to use my hands for more yoga, less online shopping.
Here is a list of the best books to inspire the big and little yogis in your life. Yoga is a wonderful thing to learn no matter what time of year it is, no matter what age you are. It's so calming and restorative. Take a look.
I Am Yoga by Susan Verde and Peter H. Reynolds
The illustrator of the beloved Judy Moody series, Peter H. Reynolds, and yoga instructor and author Susan Verde team up to bring a kid's yoga guide that is calming, simplistic, and yet playful. The book includes 16 poses and words with contemplative images perfect for meditation time. This would be a great introduction for first-time-yoga-trying elementary school kids.
Little Yoga by Rebecca Whitford and Martina Selway
The preschooler's guide to yoga! Each page is bright and happy, showcasing a simple pose on one side with the other side illustrating the animal the pose is supposed to imitate. Toddlers can do a lion pose while growling like a lion or tweet like a bird while doing a tree pose. If your little one enjoys this book, you should check out Yogakids, a DVD by Marsha Wenig. My kids really liked it when they hit the toddler age. The video shows kids doing poses and is calm but also not too calm as to not be engaging for little ones.
You Are A Lion and Other Fun Yoga Poses by Taeeun Yoo
What makes this one different from the others is they uplifting illustrations and the way the artist Yoo connects our bodies with nature. Each page features a pose that sparks motion and playfulness.
Zen Socks by Jon J. Muth
Stillwater the panda is back! This one isn't specifically about yoga instruction, but I included it in this list for young yogis because of the way this very wise panda promotes the ideals of patience, understanding, and compassion all while maintaining a feeling of zen-like calm. This is one of those that teaches a message without being too heavy-handed. Also, just thumbing through the art work on each page is enough to set me into a zen state.