January has this Weird Way of Making You Reflect...
Top 10 of 2016!
1. In the beginning, my plan was to travel the world for a year. I set out to South East Asia in December of 2015. It took me three years to save up for this trip and by the time I boarded the airplane to leave LAX, my mind was far ahead of my body! I was so ready to be there already!
2. Half way through the trip I landed in Bali and absolutely fell in love with the culture, the people, the fashion, and the diving!
I ended up living there for two months absorbing all the creative energy and became a certified Advanced Diver, diving up to depths of 100 feet underwater!
3. I did as much as I could overseas to start PIYOGA but with terrible wifi you can only do so much! I decided to come back to San Diego and get serious. I hit the ground running and by June PIYOGA was OFFICIALLY launched online!
4. San Diego International Day of Yoga Festival was our very first event! My dear friend, Tiffany Vorndran, put in countless hours helping, and I was honored to have this be my first event selling PIYOGA! What better way to introduce PIYOGA to the world than on International Day of Yoga!
I was so thankful to have so much support from all my friends who attended, and to feel so well received from the public! By the end of the day I had tears in my eyes and the grass truly seemed greener!
5. Tula Fest, a Yoga and Music Festival in Seattle, was our second event and also a big turning point for PIYOGA. Earlier in the year while I was traveling in the Philippines I met Alondra Meraz. We hit it off right away talking about our crazy ideas.
She wanted to start a yoga festival and I wanted to start a clothing company. Both of which we had never done before! We day dreamed about what we would do, how amazing it would be, and then set our day dreams into plans of action.
We promised each other that if Alondra followed through and created Tula Fest and I actually started PIYOGA, then I would help market her event and drive up to Seattle to sell at her event. We sparked each other’s motivation and 4 months later I was in the car driving for 26 hours to get from San Diego to Seattle in two days! It was a breath taking event and it felt so rewarding to see all her hard work come to life! I am so proud of her organizing Tula Fest, and for 2017 she already has 2 more yoga festivals on the books for Seattle and San Francisco! I am so happy to have met a friend to inspire, motivate, and get me amped on trying something new and to establish PIYOGA in Seattle!
6. Keeping our Instagram game strong, the stars aligned and Maui Yoga Shala and Dance in Maui, Hawaii found us on Instagram! They quickly became our very first retail location to place a wholesale order for PIYOGA. As of now we are in 9 different yoga studios across the United States and we are so proud; from Seattle, to Santa Rosa, Maui, and San Diego! We are continuing to grow and our goal for 2017 is to be in 100 retail locations worldwide!
7. They say when you throw something out into the universe, the universe has a way of understanding and throwing opportunities your way. One of my friends from my past, Chloe Banales, came knocking with opportunity in the form of The Pineapple Project. The Pineapple Project is a collective of collaborative entrepreneurs. They are a startup organization and they host workshops, expos, and host events that are perfect networking opportunities for those looking to grow within their industry and to succeed with their business ideas. Chloe and I worked closely together to create “the Pineapple Party”, a limited edition version of PIYOGA specifically designed for the Pineapple Project! Collaborating with the Pineapple project provided me with a new perspective and an alternate approach on how to work with businesses in the future!
8. After attending over 10 events by September 2016, orders started coming in fast! I didn’t anticipate things to launch so quickly. Before I knew it, it was time to make the next trip to Bali to pick up the next order. Heather and I jetted across the Pacific Ocean to meet my seamstress and learn more about sea turtle conservation. We met with my seamstress, Wiwin, who became my friend while I was living in Bali earlier this year.
We also stopped by Gili Trawangan off the shore of Bali where we went diving with the sea turtles. We had the unique opportunity to interview dive masters across the island about sea turtle conservation, what they’ve experienced that works, and what doesn’t work when it comes to conservation. We stopped by the local sea turtle conservation center on the island and collaborated with them in regards to what we can do to make a real difference. We learned that the biggest threat to sea turtle conservation is humans. Litter, specifically plastic, is a constant threat to sea turtles and all marine life.
9. During our stay in Bali we also recorded video content of the interviews we had with sea turtle conservation experts, because we are planning to officially launch our Kickstarter this year! With such great dreams for growth and expansion we have a vision and a plan to execute. …More details coming soon!
10. Last but not least… YOU! Yes, you happened. Without you we would be nothing. For that, we would like to take this opportunity to recognize you in this moment. In this space in time, to thank you for everything that you do. For having an open mind, for being a moment of inspiration, for being a support system, and most importantly for being a friend. Thank you, you are appreciated.