20 August 2015

A Day of Our Sabbatical

Many people ask me...What are your days like? Here you go. Only variances would be errands, lunch dates, and nooners.  :)

8:00 am - Sila wakes us up and wants to go outside. Danny usually lets her out. (so nice of Danny! I get to stay warm in bed.)

8:20 am - Sila rejoins me in bed and snuggles like crazy. Danny heads downstairs to read.

9:00 am - I lay in bed and read a chapter or so on Kindle. (Currently reading Authentic Happiness by Martin Seligman, founder of Positive Psychology.)

9:30 am - Sila licks me and stands over my head to say, "Get up. Get up. Let's play." She is very ready for me to start the day. We both do our stretching rituals.

9:45 am - I do my bathroom routine. Sila patiently waits.

10:00 am  - Sila is ready to PLAY. So that means playing tug-of-war and "chase" with her three adored stuffed animals: Piggy, Panda, and Puppy. Danny makes green juice (thank you, Danny!!!)

10:30 am - We all head out to the porch to sit in the sun (in bathing suits) for 15 minutes to get some Vitamin D. I drink a second glass of green juice and read another chapter on Kindle. I wear a huge straw hat to protect my face. I'm sure our neighbor must wonder what in the heck we are doing.

11:00 am - Sila is extremely ready for her walk to the park. It's her favorite thing on earth. We all go as a family.

11:45 am - Work begins. I write something new. Or take a look at old posts I'm working on. I tackle my to do list (on TeuxDeux). I play meditative music. I plan out what our next steps are going to be.

12:30 am - Lunch prep begins. Usually Danny makes lunch and I continue to work.

1:00 pm - Eat lunch (on this day it was red pepper / tomato soup.)

1:30 until 6:00 pm - I work on the blog, research upcoming travel, work on planning the next retreat possibilities, and...work on launching our next venture: Skype/phone mentoring. Stay tuned. It should launch next week.  :) :)

6:00 pm - We do a yoga class from Youtube and project it on our big screen. It always kicks our butts, but we never regret doing it and feel so good after.

7:00 pm - Make dinner. Most recently I made a homemade gluten free pizza crust. Danny made homemade sauce and sautéed vegetables for toppings. Though Danny usually makes all of our meals. Sometimes I help or continue to work. Sometimes we play a podcast during dinner prep. And on a good day (which happens maybe 3 times a week), I will work on a Spanish lesson (I'm using Fluenz and I've been happy with it.)

8:00 pm - Eat dinner completely smiling and amazed by the flavors (Danny is seriously a good cook!)

9:00 pm - We continue to work on our blog or retreats or emails. Sometimes Danny starts up a movie or documentary to watch. Sometimes we light a fire. Latest movie we watched (& loved): Tig. Tig is a stand-up comedian who got cancer. She nails authenticity and it's so very raw and inspiring.

11:00 pm - We prepare for bed.
Danny + Mara time = Shower time. Sexy time. Meditation time. Snuggle time. Love & Gratitude time.


Do you ever think about how you could improve your day? I'm thinking of it all the time. Some of my recent improvements over the last year: Reading! Spanish! Green juice! Yoga! If I could add some extra things, it would be a more dedicated time for meditation and a second walk with Sila.

What things have you succeeded at accomplishing lately in your day? And what things do you want to add to your day? 

P.S. That's our house here in Cuenca!

-The bed was handmade with Laurel wood by our neighbor across the street. 
-Striped blanket purchased in Agato, Ecuador at Miguel Andrango's weaving studio. It's made of Alpaca & Llama wool.
-Bed side tables and couch side table handmade by another neighbor, a metalsmith. We purchased the  tiles from a man in Cuenca who hand paints them for $1.00 each!
-Couch is Italian, but purchased in Cuenca at Colineal. I blog right there on that couch!
-Artwork of the Cajas Mountains by Gustavo Moreno Lopez, an artist in Cuenca.
-Yellow chair, vintage (32 years old). We saw it at a real estate listing and asked if we could buy it. 
-Black and white alpaca blanket from the Otavalo Market.
-Lamps are from Ikea ($11, I think). We brought them in our luggage.
-Couch pillows from Ikea.


  1. Such a productive day! I am currently working on getting back into my routine from being on vacation. First thing to tackle: Getting out of bed before 9am.. :)


    1. ahhhh.... I hear you. I love my sleep, as you can see! Hope you've had a great week.

  2. Its wonderful to get a view in the life of Mara and Danny! I love that you guys brought your Ikea pillows and lamps to Ecuador! I would do the same thing!
    The Pepper Express

    1. Yes, when it comes to soft goods and lights, the selection here is really poor. Lights are also usually on the pricey side here - I think because they're considered more luxury items or perhaps because many of them are imported. As for soft goods, just about everything in sight is RUST ORANGE. And that is no exaggeration. It is nearly impossible to find furniture or fabric that is not that color. You maybe could find brown or beige and more and more rust orange. :)

  3. Do you pray? I remember reading a post your wrote about praying with Danny once, I was just surprised you didn't mention it because that post made it seem like a big part of your day. Have you stopped that? I have thought that maybe you were not wanting to be as associated with your Mormon faith lately and would be curious to know if you have decided to leave that church and why.

    1. Hello! You are a very in tune reader. :) Good catch on the prayer part. SO...we DO pray each night. However, we've practiced some meditation in the last year and in many ways, the way I pray and the way I meditate are similar...it's just a moment to re-center and to try and align with the virtues of love, gratitude, compassion, and peace.

      And, I could probably write a post on the second part of your question. ha! But the short answer is that as my spiritual path continues on and the path of the Mormon church continues on, there are ways in which our journeys do not always overlap. So that's ok. In fact, I think it's healthy and wonderful to be authentic and true to who you are - and to have a voice or a spiritual foundation separate from your religion (no matter what religion). I feel very, very lucky to say that since I've been involved in the Mormon church as an adult, I've always owned my own spirituality (my spiritual awakening occurred completely outside of the church). So really, not much has changed on my spiritual path. While I may not align fully with some parts of Mormonism, I continue to seek for new and greater ways to develop (we hope to go on a spiritual journey in India in 2016!). I consider my relationship with the Mormon church to be a great experience and a great opportunity to practice who I want to be - even when I disagree greatly with many people around me.

  4. Well that is it ... I'm moving to Ecuador!

    Here is my current day:
    6:15 - wake up
    6-15 to 6:30 - cuddle with my wife
    6:30 to 7 - get ready
    7 to 7:40 - commute to work
    8 to 12 - work (I work for CHG)
    12 to 1 - lunch (vegan meal that my wife prepares)
    2 to 5 - Work
    5 to 6:15 - traffic (driving home)
    6:30 to 7:30 - dinner prep/eating

    The rest of the night is spent with my wife; watching 'our tv shows' or just cuddling. I'm usually asleep by 10:15 to 10:45.

    Rinse, repeat, Monday-Friday.

    My envy is through the roof! (Is that a sin? Haha)

    1. I feel for you. I really do. I remember so clearly the Rinse, Repeat, Mon-Fri routine. In fact, it's only because of YEARS of that routine that we are able to do this at all. I say keep your eye on the goal. If you want to make something happen, you absolutely can. Some American friends just moved here 6 months ago with their three kids. They pay an extremely low rent and live in a massive 2-story furnished hacienda on a ranch, basically. When we visit we stay in the guest house. From their porch, they have views that calendars are made of. They have an orchard, chickens, organic veggies, a driver, a housekeeper. It's really amazing. And they're exploring meditation, education, writing, reading, raw juicing, and entrepreneurial endeavors. And the kids are learning Spanish and playing their hearts out.

  5. Thanks for this post, I quit my 9-5 job in February to freelance and pursue my interests and talents. Since then I've found keeping a schedule is so important to structuring the day.

    I'm inspired by the way you make time for both rest and work. I too would like to add more healthy routines to my day. I recently started jogging with my dog Miko. I also am making fruit and veggie smoothies.


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