Marc and Heather Pondering

That’s us… Pondering… Well, I am Pondering, Heather is looking cool. On our way to another EPICasana experience at SYF2016!

Every year, as we deepen the experience of the Sedona Yoga Festival, there comes that time when we sit and ponder how it all began and where we are today.  SYF has become an event not to miss; it has marked the transformation of many a yogi these past 3 years.  In the beginning we saw an epic experience, situated in the Heart of Sedona, AZ that cradled the participant in the healing energetics and allowed for a truly transformative experience. Well, the Sedona Yoga Festival has become that and much, much more. 

The 2016 Sedona Yoga Festival is rapidly becoming THE yoga festival to attend next year. Whether you have never done yoga or you have practiced meditation and asana your whole life, there will be something for YOU!  Save the Dates and/or get your tickets at Early-Bird Pricing now because you will not want to miss out on this. Some big announcements are coming shortly, but for now, just cruise through the website to see what is coming so far… We have added little bits and pieces, so you yogi sleuths out there can start to imagine just how awesomenasana SYF2016 is shaping up to be.

We’ll leave you with a big blast from the past; Yogini Silvia Mordini honors us with her experience of the inaugural SYF2013.  See ya in the ethers, dear friends.

Marc & Heather

First Penguins at Sedona Yoga Festival

February 8, 2013. Feels a little bit like the first day at a brand new school. Starting today, I am presenting at the Sedona Yoga Festival to a whole new group of yogis. It is my first time teaching in Arizona (although I’ve taken many a workshop/training here in my Anusara days).

As always before teaching, my thoughts turn to how will I best touch the hearts and minds of my students.  What will they think? Will they understand me? Regardless of your experience, Yoga Teachers still get nervous. I may have over 11,000 hours of teaching experience but today will be my first hour in the teacher’s seat at this first ever Festival!

One of my biggest strengths is my humanness. After leading 15 RYT200 Teacher Trainings, I work hard to keep myself off the pedestal and keep things real. I am imperfect, fallible, sometimes quirky, certainly silly, and a bit earnest when it comes to manifesting happiness. Being born in Ecuador to an Italian father and Ecuadorian mother only adds to my uniqueness.

yoga2If you know anyone in Sedona coming to the festival, applaud them! They—like me—are First Penguins. The first penguin is a term coined by the late Carnegie Mellon Professor Randy Pausch who offered his last lecture there when he was dying of cancer. Here is one of his key pieces of advice: Be the first penguin.  “I encouraged students to attempt hard things and not to worry about failing…failure is not just acceptable, it’s often essential.”

Pausch rewarded his students who took the biggest risk with a stuffed penguin representing how when a group of penguins takes to the water, one of them has to take the FIRST plunge.  If that penguin survives in the potentially predator filled, dangerous water, then the other penguins follow.

I am grateful to everyone involved with Sedona Yoga Festival. It is heroic to manifest—from nothing—an entire yoga festival, replete with teachers, searchers and healers from all over the world. To every single attendee, presenter, volunteer, and staff, I present you the First Penguin Award!  Thank You Silvia!!!

You are magnificent and your courage to jump into the water not knowing what will happen is inspiring. And that is why I am proud to be involved—even if I am also a bit nervous.

To those who are considering doing something that really scares you this year, be encouraged.  Manifest your biggest dream! The world needs more First Penguins in yoga, in art, in science, in relationships, in life.  Love yourself, love your day, love your life! Silvia


ABOUT SILVIA MORDINI, Happiness Coach, Yogipreneur, lululemon ambassador, manduka ambassador

Enthusiasm to love your life is contagious around Silvia.  Her expert passion connects people to their own joyful potential.  Silvia lives her happiness in such a big way that you can’t help but leave her classes, workshops, trainings and retreats spiritually uplifted!  Born in Ecuador, raised traveling around the globe she is an enthusiastic citizen of the world and spiritual adventurer. She is a long-time Experienced Yoga Teacher (E-RYT) with over 10,000 hours of teaching experience, owned a yoga studio for 9 years and has been teaching and practicing yoga over the last 15 years after being run over by a car and using it to recover physically and emotionally. Silvia will be leading a Tuscan Adventure in Happiness week long retreat in June 2013 and an Amalfi Coast Wellness Adventure in July 2013 as well as offering her Alchemy of Yoga RYT200 Yoga Teacher Training in Costa Rica this August 2013. Silvia is currently writing a book about Prescriptions for Happiness and has a popular blog called Loving Your Life, along with producing her “Loving Your Day” videos. 

Connect with Silvia Mordini:

Web: or

Email at

Twitter @alchemytours @inspiredyogagal

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