Firefly of the Month January 2021

Meet Stephanie! Our Firefly of the month for January ’21. And what a great way to start the New Year. Stephanie is always a joy to have in class. We love having her as a part of our Firefly community.

1. What was life like before you joined Firefly, what made you reach out?

I participated in yoga at other local yoga studios since moving to Texas 5 years ago, but both yoga studios had closed. I attended the other yoga studios intermittently as their classes were typically only during the day, which I could not attend because of work, and the instructors frequently changed. After the other studios closed, I was on the lookout for a new studio, as I prefer yoga in a yoga studio with an instructor. After several months, I saw Firefly’s ad in the local newspaper and decided to try Firefly because of the variety of classes and the times of the classes. I started with introductory package and was hooked. The instructors are welcoming and personable. The schedule allows me to practice a variety of yoga styles, which allows me to individualize my yoga schedule to work on anything I need to: increase flexibility, reduce stress, increase strength, rehabilitate limitations from old injuries, and quiet a busy mind are the main benefits I experience through yoga practice.

2. Did you have any hesitations?

I was hesitant to join another yoga studio after prior yoga studio experiences, where some of the instructors were aloof and judgmental of anyone who is not doing yoga multiple times a day every day and following strict diets. Firefly, thankfully, had none of that. Firefly is genuinely community-minded and a supportive studio with wonderful instructors who accept and meet students as they are and adjust their instruction to support the students. 

3. What has been your biggest breakthrough?

By participating in various yoga programs, and particularly since joining the F.I.R.E. program, I have significantly improved my strength, my flexibility, and my endurance. I have more upper body strength now than I have ever had in my 48 years. I joined the F.I.R.E. program after I was diagnosed with a medical condition, in which fatigue is one of the most problematic symptoms. Through F.I.R.E. my endurance has grown, and I am able to effectively manage the fatigue, allowing me to be more active with my family.

4. What have been some specific results you’ve had since joining?

Since joining Firefly, my F.I.R.E. program allowed me to regain range of motion in a shoulder I previously injured. I more than doubled the amount of time I can hold a forearm plank and can now do a proper chaturanga because of increased upper body and core strength. My endurance has also increased as I can now do 3 hours of yoga in 1 day and still have energy to do anything else I want during the day.

5. Who would you recommend Firefly to?

I strongly recommend Firefly to anyone wanting to try yoga for the first time or experienced yogis looking for a nonjudgmental, supportive studio; anyone wanting to work on any aspect of themselves, with supportive instructors and fellow students; or, anyone looking for an alternative way to manage a physical challenges such a old injuries or medical conditions. Firefly really is a community of diverse people sharing light and life through yoga. Firefly is a haven of positivity in a challenging world.

Holiday Survival Guide

As we roll into the holidays it’s easy to give our wellness goals the back seat. And while connecting with family and friends is as much a part of our collective wellness as anything, we don’t necessarily have to compromise our individual wellness to make those things happen.

This time of year has a tendency to get really busy, even with less events happening this year, we’ll still start to feel an overwhelm. And our typical response is to cancel the things that only affect us individually. Our self care routines, our physical wellness activities and anything else that we might label as “indulgent”.

But did you know that post holiday depression is a real thing? Due partly to the high emotions of Christmas and the inevitable fall back to normalcy, as well as the financial burden most Americans take on to make the Holidays “memorable”…neglecting your self and your own wellness can also contribute to this phenomenon.

But what can you do? It’s crazy, overwhelming, and stressful. Is there an answer? Here’s a few tips that will help you find yourself a little more balanced come January.

  1. Schedule your self maintenance on a recurring basis and treat it like you’re meeting the most important person you know for lunch. Seriously. Sit down right now and plan out which days you’ll be going to yoga, getting your nails done, having a massage, reading a book at a coffee shop by yourself…. set it to recurring in your phone and if where you are going takes appointments, schedule them out with them for as long as you can through the end of the year.
  2. If a friend or a loved one wants to meet, or cookies need to be baked for a party or your 7 year old needs to disguise his turkey… it doesn’t HAVE to take the place of your appointment for yourself. Before saying yes (and you should say yes if you want to) take a minute to look at your calendar and make sure it doesn’t interfere with your appointment for yourself. That hour for your wellness maintenance isn’t your whole day. You can squeeze in the other activity somewhere else. I promise you will find the space.
  3. If an appointment comes up that can’t be moved, a work Christmas party, family dinner or school recital, make sure you reschedule your self maintenance. Don’t just cancel – reschedule. It takes a minute or two, and there’s most likely another spot you can squeeze it into. Again, this is the most important person you know that you’re making an appointment with.
  4. Find a friend to commit with, at least through the holidays. Who knows, maybe you’ll be able to keep the routine going into the New Year together and hit the ground running.
  5. As always, if you mess up, if you miss an appointment with yourself, if you make it through the end of December without attending one thing for you… it is OK. You did not fail and you do not need to heap guilt on yourself. You enjoyed your holidays and made memories and that is the most important thing of all.

If there’s anything else that you’ve found that helps with keeping your sanity during the holidays, feel free to comment below or on our social media posts. We’re always happy to hear other perspectives.

But whatever you choose to do, remember to be kind to yourself, to be kind to others and to shine bright this holiday season. Because Lord knows we need a little extra light this year.

Shine Bright Fireflies!


How To Have The Best At Home Yoga Practice

So, for one reason or another, you’ve decided not to go to your local studio to practice yoga. Maybe because you’re right in the middle of a global pandemic and well, your yoga studio has been closed indefinitely. Or maybe you’ve found this article after Coronapocolypse, but you still want an at home practice. Here are a few thoughts I have on the subject.

First of all, I will always and forever be a believer that in person interaction is superior. This is not to say that virtual interaction is a negative, it’s just not AS good as in person. Getting yourself in the car to get to the super zen studio, to work with your teacher who knows you and acknowledges you creates relational strength in your practice. As well as connecting with the same group of people, like a group of yoga hostages that have a shared experience of growth, creates accountability, encouragement and comfort. Spaces, people and experiences help build a beautiful and healthy yoga practice. Taking any or all of those out, creates something a little bit different. But that’s ok, you can take a few steps to come close to gaining the same studio benefits.

Here are a few ways you can get your home practice to feel like a studio practice.

  • Create a sacred space – It’s easy when you’re at home to just throw your yoga mat on the ground in front of your computer anywhere. But take a moment to be intentional with your space. Even if it’s just a corner of a room, a closet area or maybe you do have a dedicated work out space, use decorations and props to make it special to you. I have a plant, my yoga mat and my favorite picture in my space. I also like to diffuse some lavender as I practice. Keep it simple, but intentional. Clutter creates stress, but a complete lack of anything leads to a dismal feeling in your space.
  • Create a sacred time – Listen. I’m a mom of three boys, that runs a business with a home office and a full schedule of extracurriculars. I fully understand the challenges of finding time. But just like you would drive to the studio and create a physical time barrier to other happenings, set the same boundaries with yourself and your family.
    • Put a “do not enter” sign on your door, turn your phone to do not disturb and act as if you were going to the studio.
    • If you have kids, remind them how important your practice is, maybe ask how they like being disturbed during their Fortnite game and let them know this is your Fortnite time. (I learned this tip from my grandma – who used to tell me her soaps were her cartoon time – anyone else?) Ask your spouse to help keep kids away so you can be a better person when you’re done.
    • No kids, no spouse? Sometimes that’s just as hard, because it’s easiest to cancel plans with yourself. You’re not going to get mad at you, so why not watch the 5th season of Friends one more time instead? Treat your at home practice with as much importance as any other appointment.
  • Find an online studio that works for you – There’s really three major categories here with the level of commitment and engagement for you.
    • YouTube, Vimeo or other streaming services. There are some AMAZING teachers on these services. BeachBody on Demand (no I’m not a coach) is where I really dug in to yoga first. It was safe, I could mess up, I learned the lingo and the instructors were amazing. These are all great options, but your streaming teacher doesn’t know your name, they don’t know your injuries and they can’t cheer you on as you finally nail that crow pose. They also don’t miss you when you don’t show up. Nor do your other class mates. There can be a bit of “community” around the streaming option. But it is typically relatively one sided and easy to not participate in.
    • Facebook Live groups with streaming. This platform is a little better if you catch the classes live. You can interact with the teacher somewhat in real time and still feel like everyone in your group is there. You can set up times to take classes together or watch later. This is a fun alternative to just watching a playback of any teacher somewhere, because you probably know the teacher or can see more of their personality in this setting.
    • Virtual classroom setting. This is by far my favorite option to a real life studio. Which is why we chose this as our platform during the stay home period. You can check in with your teacher before class by having an actual conversation with them. The teacher can still “teach to the class” and have some follow up time afterwards. You can usually still get the benefits of watching class afterwards if you don’t make it to class. I hope that we see this platform expand over the next few years. I really think it has some promise.
  • Just Do It – Sort of like the Nike slogan, the best way to make a yoga practice happen at home is to get started. Just take your next step forward. Starting the process is going to create a momentum that will eventually be harder to not do, so just start. Start without a sacred space, without the perfect time and on whatever platform is easiest. Doing something, in this case, is better than doing nothing. Integrate the other pieces as you keep moving forward, one thing at a time.

You’ve got this. You know it’s important. You know it feels better when you practice. And you know you won’t regret it. So, with those four key points in mind, are you ready to have a killer at home practice? Let us know in the comments if there is anything else that you recommend for your at home practice.

And as always, Shine Bright my friends.


Firefly of the Month February

Meet Sally! She is so much fun to have in the studio and is a bright light in our community. If you’ve been in classes with her you know that she is constantly encouraging and kind! Here’s a little about Sally in her own words:

“I’m Sally Phillips.  I have been married to Damon for more than 27 years.  We live in Temple, but have lived in Central Texas all our lives.   We are newly retired.   We love to travel and enjoy all sorts of fitness.   We also have two grown adult children.  

The first time I attended a yoga class was the first time I had ever experienced a quietness in my mind.   I have been hooked to practicing stillness ever since then.  I am a regular attendee of Holy Yoga and trapeze yoga.   I love learning new things and enjoy the challenges of balance and acquiring new skills.   I leave Firefly refreshed and stretched, both physically and mentally.

I love the friendliness of my classmates and the care and knowledge of Kelly/instructors.   I love being a part of those who shine bright at Firefly.”

If you see Sally around, give her a hug or a high five for being an awesome part of this community. 

Veteren Uses Yoga to Heal

We are so proud of our teacher Amanda who was recently interviewed by local Channel 6 News Anchor, Leslie Draffin. She shares her stories of being deployed and beyond, and how yoga has helped her through some stressful times.


Shine Bright

At what lumen do you appear to others?

What light do you shine?

Light can be broken down into three parts – voltage, watts and lumens.
And so can you.

Let’s break down light and how it uses energy. (I know that’s not what you wanted to do today, but bear with me a second.)

Voltage is what makes electric charges move. It is the ‘push’ that causes charges to move in a wire or other electrical conductor. … Voltage is also called, in certain circumstances, electromotive force (EMF). Voltage is an electrical potential difference, the difference in electric potential between two places.

The watt is a unit of power. In the International System of Units (SI) it is defined as a derived unit of 1 joule per second, and is used to quantify the rate of energy transfer.

The lumen is a unit of measurement for the brightness of light. … The lumen is a basic unit for measuring brightness, just as the gram is a basic unit for measuring mass. A typical light bulb in your home might produce about 1000 lumens. Lumen is related to the word luminous, which means “bright” or “radiant.”

So then the question is, at what voltage is your light? At what watt is your energy and how is your lumen received?

Your voltage – how are you getting your power. Where is it coming from and at what power?
Your watt – how do you transfer the voltage you receive in life and transfer that power to what energy you are producing.
Your lumen – how your energy is received by others.

Look at how light can make so many things appear different in your mind.

So when we talk about light and compare it to our life we really want to know at what lumen are we producing. A soft light, a dull brightness, or a clear and clean light that offers clarity in what is seen?

The best light is one that shines bright enough to illuminate what is needed at a certain time in a certain place.

Have you found that the brightest light is the best in all situations?

An example would be, have you ever found yourself in a dark, scary room, not knowing what’s around the corner or behind that box? You really want, at that time, a very bright light to shine its energy into every corner of that room so nothing is dark and you have comfort being in that room.

What if, in someone’s life, you are that light in that room?

Think about that for a moment……

You are the one that is helping them see into that dark corner. You are that person that is helping them navigate through their dark space. Or you are a light for them to draw near to for comfort.

And how about for yourself? Are you consuming more energy than you are producing? Is your light fading because you don’t have the voltage right? You have the ability to change all that. You do, I promise.

At what volt, watt and lumen do you operate in?

Can you provide the necessary light for someone else’s life?
What about the watt you need to continue on a day to day basis without running out of energy?

Here at Firefly Yoga and Movement Studio we want to be the voltage you receive to shine as bright as possible to those around you.

Our motto “Helping You Thrive, So You Can Shine” is our belief that when you receive the greatest possible care and community through yoga, you go out into this world shining your brightest causing an infectious light in others that they to begin to shine bright as well.

Allow us to increase your voltage and walk with you on how to transfer your watts into incredible lumens that others will look towards.

Shine bright today Fireflies and we look forward to seeing you tomorrow!

This post was written by Jeremiah Partyke. Co-owner of Firefly Yoga & Movement Studio and husband and father extraordinaire. Jeremiah loves his family, football and fishing.

Yoga is not good for you…

Is yoga good for you? NO!

Not at all…..It is actually great for you.

Who told you yoga would be good for you? 

‘Cause it wasn’t me.

Who would have to tell you to do yoga for you to listen?

Your mom?

Probably not. I never really listened to mine either.

Your best friend? 

Maybe, but only if they’d go with you, right?

What if your doctor prescribed it for you? Would you go then?

What if your hero or who inspires you the most, told you that what makes them able to be who they are is partly because they participate in a yoga practice regularly?

I am always inspired by the top athletes in the world and how they are able to continually stick to a routine that allows their bodies to perform at a high level. When I began to discover that most of the greatest athletes that have had longevity in their careers take part in yoga, I was inspired. 

Out of all the things available to multi-millionaire athletes, they keep it simple and find health, wellness, recovery, spirituality and peace in their yoga routines. Many have said that yoga has been that one thing that has taken them and their abilities to the next level. And it is something that we all can take part in.

This is a great article done by the Sportster a couple of years ago that features athletes that do yoga regularly – https://www.thesportster.com/entertainment/top-15-athletes-who-do-yoga/

If the likes of Lebron James, Tom Brady, Russell Wilson and many others in sports attribute part of their success to yoga, why wouldn’t we listen to them?

There are college and professional programs that are now discovering the benefits of yoga for their athletes. Some are offering classes regularly and others are making it a mandatory part of their team’s routine.

You may not be a professional athlete, but you can make the choice to do yoga for yourself and see what the benefits are for you. We have the choice to take part in something that is so simple yet so great for us.

At Firefly we offer the same style of classes that many of these athletes do daily. We want to meet your needs and help you take your life to the next level. Whether it’s stress, pain, lack of energy or desire that runs your life, we promise our instructors can help. We strive to ignite a fire in you. 

Our motto “Helping You Thrive, So You Can Shine” is our belief that through practicing yoga you will mentally and physically thrive, allowing you to shine brightly to those around you and in turn inspiring them to thrive and shine as well. 

Join the Firefly Movement and help light up the World.

If this is the first time you heard that yoga would be good for you……I can now say it was me that told you. YES!

Thanks for taking the time to read this and be blessed today. You’re amazing!

This post was written by Jeremiah Partyke. Co-owner of Firefly Yoga & Movement Studio and husband and father extraordinaire. Jeremiah loves his family, football and fishing.