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Nashville, TN
USA

True to the name 'Shivam' - consciousness, mindfulness, - we strive to make our items by re-using our existing resources, and natural, organic materials.

Our yoga mat bags are handmade using upcycled, vintage fabrics, while the aromatherapy eye pillows are filled with the healing goodness of organic lavender buds and organic flax seeds. 

We hope to extend and share the journey of these goods as they make their way around the world. From our house to yours.

Namaste.

Blog

Welcome to my blog at Shivam Creations.

Shivam means mindfulness in Sanskrit; this space is about trying to lead a mindful life and the elements that go with it: yoga, healthy living, nature, and the creative forces within each of us.

My Mothers Day Wish + 5 Unique Gift ideas for Mothers Day (p.s. They do NOT involve buying more Products!)

Shivangi Parikh

Forget Mothers Day brunches and flowers. Though they are thoughtful gifts, most moms will agree that if they could have anything in the world, they would choose to take a ‘personal’ day off from being a mommy. At least I wish for that on a daily basis. Imagine waking up when your eyes actually open on their own without the help of alarms or kids!

Don’t get me wrong..I am all for getting nice jewelry and all, but I don’t even remember to wear them most times. So that got me thinking that what I would REALLY like is something that is experience-based… something where I can feel carefree and irresponsible and do things without any schedule. Something like this picture below.

I started researching some options and came up with these non-product alternatives.

1. Weekend retreat

This one is first on my list for a reason: here is a vacation where I am not planning anything or packing anyone else's stuff. All I have to do is just show up and all else is taken care of. There are so many retreats to choose from depending on the kind of activity you like. Art, yoga, cooking, zip lining, hiking.. plenty of options out there. This site is a good place to start. http://www.retreatfinder.com/Directory/Retreats_by_Activities.aspx 

Ace Ritchie camps have been on my radar for a while and I hope to go travel with them once I save up enough, and when my kids are older. http://ritchieacecamps.com

2. Hire a Personalized Experience Planner

If you do not want to deal with any decision making then this is for you! Hubbies, and family members, take note. If you are not sure what you or the lady in question, want, then finding a local party planning service is a great option. This Pampered Life is one such company in Leeds, UK, that offers bespoke experience packages foreveryone. You just have to let them know your interests and hobbies. (Full disclosure here: It is run by my sister, Minoti Parikh, who is doing a fantastic job! I wish she could offer something like that here in the US). Clients can choose from horse riding lessons to sky diving sessions to spa treatments, you name it. 

3. Dance Classes

Sign up your mom (or yourself if you are one) for a dance class. Nothing can make you feel more rejuvenated and young that an hour of shaking your booty! Trust me, when my son and I get dancing to a Bollywood song, we are totally carefree and lose track of time. For those who feel intimidated, just remember you delivered your baby in front of complete strangers, so you can do this! Local community centers are good places to look up. Or find a bunch of girl friends to go with. But DO NOT WAIT on anybody.

4. One night at a local fancy hotel

Checking into a fancy hotel with room-service and super soft bedsheets just for the heck of it can be heaven! Again it involves minimal packing and travel arrangements on your end. You can go  window shopping in the neighborhood, get a drink at the hotel lounge, use the hotel spa, or just curl up in bed with a book. Enjoying the silence will be the ultimate relaxing experience, I guarantee ya! Don’t ruin it by calling up your girlfriends or checking on your family or watching TV. Truly shut off.

5. Massages

This is a no-fail gift. Who doesn't love a good massage and some pampering at the spa. Ladies, if your husbands dont get the hint, then use the credit card numbers and book yourself a session.. or two ;). Try to keep it solo. If you go with hubby then you might end up talking about grocery shopping or 401Ks inadvertently!

Mothers Day 2017

Hope these ideas help you, or your loved ones plan something special. I do believe that experiences create more lasting memories than just buying gifts. 

Much love, Shiv

(p.s. For those of you who still love gifts, take 10% off items in the shop with code MOTHERSDAY. Valid till May 8th)

 

 

Shivangi Parikh

Make any Mealtime Special with Just One Accessory

Shivangi Parikh

Hello Friends... Hope you are staying warm and safe in this yo-yo weather pattern. The warmer winter and colder spring has everyone confused and annoyed, so I am hoping to brighten our days with some happy colors :)

In my last post, I mentioned working on my new collection of khadi table napkins and I am so happy with this assortment of of blush pink, peach, and spring green. 

Full disclosure, I tend to pull out my paper napkins whenever we have guests over, especially if there are little ones involved, because its just easy to toss them away. But then there are times when you have a grown-up get together or a family brunch, and want to make it a special occasion. Just bring out these table linens and it will do the trick! The best part- you get to re-use them for ages, making them an ecofriendly choice.

Made from my favorite khadi fabric (handwoven cotton), the napkins are super absorbent and will hold up to many washes - precisely what you should look for in a table napkin.  The fabric also gets softer with every wash, so your hands will thank you as well. 

If you are like me, you might like the plain napkins that highlight the natural weave of the fabric. if you look closely, you can spot the two-tone color. For those of you who like prints, there is the option to pick the block printed ones. Here is one example, where I carved spring blossoms and hand printed each one over the course of 2 hours!

If flowers are not your thing, then feel free to customize your napkin with a block print of your choice from below. Or you can always send me a message with your design idea and I can work something out.

The napkins are available as a set of 4, 6 or 8. Click for more information and photos. The napkins are also listed on my Etsy shop if you prefer to get it from there.

After hibernating indoors during the colder months, I sure am ready to plan some backyard get togethers for the warmer months! We are heading next week to Dallas for spring break. I have never been there and am excited to meet some old friends. We haven't met in 7 years since we were taking turns to have kids, ha! 

Hope y'all get to do something fun for spring break, or have something fun lined up for the weekend :)

xoxo, Shiv

(p.s. thank you so much for your lovely messages and comments on my last post. I was hesitant to make it so personal, but I just had to share my experience.  )

 

Shivangi Parikh

The Second Time Around....

Shivangi Parikh

Abundant joy, post baby blues, gestational diabetes, moments of pure magic...Welcome to my story of Motherhood 2.0!! As my baby girl Divya turns eight months old next week, I think I am now in a better state of mind to write about my experience of being a mom, and learning about unconditional love, once again! I will not bore you with the obvious stuff, but I wanted to share with you some of the most important observations I noticed as a parent the second time around.

MY HUSBAND AND I ARE MORE PATIENT ... WITH EACH OTHER

You may have heard that the birth of a child brings the parents closer together, but that wasn't exactly the case when our son, Arjun was born seven years ago. Not that Abhay, my husband, and I would fight a lot, but I remember us being very annoyed and cranky most of the time. We were very short with each other back then, and most of it stemmed from the fact that as first-time parents we were putting too much pressure on ourselves, and each other. This time around, I didn't monitor Abhay about how he is holding Divya, or dealing with her fussiness.... he is much more patient with her and is doing a fabulous job, I must say! He is also more patient with me about my mood swings and outbursts (more on that below). He has never been one to use Hallmark worthy phrases, but when I am down, he steps in with chores, lets me take a nap, and most importantly, knows when to ignore me till I come around. And that means a whole lot more to me than sweet nothings.

DEALING WITH BODY IMAGE ISSUES

With both my kids, I gained more than 50 lbs during the pregnancy. No matter how much I watched what I ate, or exercised on a regular basis, I just piled on the pounds. That is when I realized how much our body shape and weight is controlled by hormones! Both times, I tested positive for gestational diabetes. With my son, my sugar levels were a lot higher and they had to put me on insulin. I remember being very shocked, because I was a typical yoga-loving, salad-eating California gal at the time, so how could I have sugar issues! With Divya, I was more careful and my levels weren't as bad. But the thing is even though gestational diabetes disappears after childbirth, losing that extra weight is a giant pain in the a**! It took me 18 months to lose the baby weight with Arjun, and it hurt my self esteem and confidence. 

Right now, I am still wearing my maternity clothes, and hate dressing up for an evening out. But then some days these horrible clouds of self doubt will disappear; when I remind myself that I did it once, and I can do it again. I have started my yoga practice, even if I get just 10 minutes every now and then. I have started doing intense workouts once or twice a week. I know its going to be a slow process. Some people drop their baby weight in just 6 weeks, some take 6 months, and for me it might be closer to a year, but working on that mental strength is my goal for now. (FYI, I tried my regular pair of jeans this morning and they fit, albeit a bit snug around the middle ;) 

POST BABY BLUES: Hit me after 3 months! Ha

I have never considered myself to be a depressed soul. Maybe moody, but depressed, never. But let me tell you that post partum depression is very real, and can sneak up on you at any stage after the baby. When both my kids were born, I was fortunate enough to have my mother around for an extended period of time. I never felt super exhausted during the initial months because while I was busy caring for my girl, my mom was busy caring for me. It was the most beautiful time I spent with my mom as an adult. With Abhay traveling for work, I am alone most weekdays, but I didn't feel lonely because of my mom. But soon after she left, I felt like I was in a vacuum. Most days I enjoyed being with my little one, especially as she got more interactive, but then there were days where I was just grumpy and sad. Not sure if this classifies as depression, but I know I didn't feel OK. It didn't help that I was reading about wars and mass shootings, not to forget our presidential election.  Thank goodness for NETFLIX!! I resumed watching The Gilmore Girls, and followed it with The Office. These shows saved my sanity! I am also fortunate enough to be surrounded with great friends and neighbors, and I can always count on my girlfriends to cheer me up. Being a new mom can sometimes be very isolating, but that feeling is short lived. Yes, seeing your baby will make you happy, but you need to make time for yourself, even if it means binge watching TV!

ON A HAPPIER NOTE: YOU ENJOY THE SECOND CHILD MORE. Even better, you enjoy watching the sibling love!

YES, what they say is true!! The second time around you are not as stressed about getting the basics of parenting right. You know you managed it the first time, and your child survived, so clearly you are a pro at this. We have enjoyed cuddling baby Divya (her name means bright light) and picking her up each time she cries, knowing fully well that we cannot spoil her at this stage. What has been a treasure to watch though, is how my son Arjun just dotes on his little sister. Many folks had told me about older siblings' love for the newborn baby, but it was just magical to actually witness it each time the kids look at each other! Those moments have made me cry more than anything. Of course, I am also aware that this 'magic' is short lived and soon they will be arguing or fighting or avoiding each other, but for now let me have my blissful image :)

So there you have it... my version of this emotional ride! Motherhood brings this enormous capacity for women to rip open their heart to make even more space for their growing tribe. It forces you to be more aware of your state of mind. I count my blessings every day, and hope to do my best as a responsible mom.

If you read the entire post, I thank you very much for bearing with me! If you are a new mom, I hope you can relate to my experience and know that this is a very normal circle of life. If you know of someone who might like this post, especially a new mom, please do share it with them.

Hope you have a lovely day!

(p.s. If you have been following me on my Facebook or Instagram, you've seen my shop updates.. I am working on some new product lines and will write about them soon!)

 

Shivangi Parikh

Having a Second Child + Mothers Day Coupon

Shivangi Parikh

With Mothers Day just around the corner, it seems fair enough to talk about motherhood and share some big news from my end. So after years of debating yay or nay, we finally decided to take the plunge into parenthood a second time around and...We are expecting our second child early July! So far, things are moving along fine, knock on wood. 

Having kids, and the number of kids is such a personal decision, that no one truly knows the magic answer. Even couples themselves don't know! For instance, I always thought I wanted at least two kids, but once our son, Arjun, was born, I had to step back and evaluate my thinking, no matter how much I love my child! I love being a mom to him, I love children, but when you throw in other aspects of your life such as career, health, marriage and other family commitments, and churn it altogether, the final equation can be quite unbalanced. My husband, Abhay, and I get very involved in whatever project we undertake. And we realized that we wanted to raise our son in the best way possible, giving him all our attention, which as you can imagine, just left us drained and stressed out the first few years. 

Once Arjun turned 4, we were finally feeling like a normal couple, and I felt we had a good family dynamic going. But slowly the questions started creeping up in our minds...Should we go for another one? Can we handle it? Do we need a second kid?  

But this time around, we really analyzed ourselves. Children don't really need much, but its the parents and the pressure we put on ourselves that really drives us to the edge! The most important thing is for you to know your true nature, without any bias or judgement. For instance, I learnt early on that I would not be good at managing another child till Arjun was at least 4 or 5 years old. You will not see me with two toddlers at the same time, for more than a few hours!LOL. I am not good with too much noise, or messes all over the house. Same goes for hubby... he is a neat freak, and suffice it to say we had to adjust our expectations a lot. Also lifestlye choices play an important role..for instance, how important is it for you to have some time for regular trips to the gym or social gatherings, or vacations, etc. Because you certainly will have to clip some outings if you want to live a balanced life.

Anyways, here we are excited about becoming parents once again, this time with a baby girl! I am looking forward to watching both boys run circles around her! I can see that they are going to be very protective and caring. Seeing the joy and happiness on Arjun's face has been the true icing on the cake! Watching him make plans for his 'baby sister' makes us feel like we are not alone this time. We did something right in raising him that he is all excited about changing diapers and washing milk bottles :)

So if you are a new mom, or have had your share of raising children, I hope you are taking time to enjoy your kids! Hope you can get out to celebrate being a mother, whether it is with your partner, or your kids, or loved ones....Here is wishing you a very Happy Mother's Day, in advance :)

Have a great weekend!

xo, Shiv

p.s. Are you subscribed to my email list? All subscribers receive 20% off for my Mothers Day special, which runs from now till April 28th. To get your coupon code, click here. I promise not to spam your inbox or share your information!

Shivangi Parikh

Shivam Yoga Bags In The News + Spring Clearance!

Shivangi Parikh

Happy Friday Y'All! Just wanted to share two exciting bits today, so I will keep this short!

First, I am so honored and happy to be featured among the best handmade yoga bags on the highly competitive Etsy marketplace! Yoga practitioner and popular blogger, Marco Pino, did this write up about Shivam Creations after testing several yoga bags made by Etsy sellers. Since I couldn't embed the link, I am attaching a screen shot here, but you can read the full article on his blog here.

The way this story came about is quite a story by itself. Marco, who quit his corporate job in Europe in 2010, has been studying and practicing yoga all across the world since then. He started his blog, Path to Yoga, to share his experiences and knowledge about the yoga world, most notably in India and its surrounding countries. In fact, he was in Nepal last year during the devastating earthquake, and was instrumental in carrying food and supplies to villages in the deep mountains. 

Marco reached out to me sometime early 2015 (Gosh, cant believe its been that long!) and talked about his story idea. He wanted to write an unbiased article about the best handmade yoga bags out there. I was excited to be part of the story and shipped him one of my top selling jute bags. But thats when the craziness began! First, he had given me his address in Nepal, but because his credit card still listed his Belgium address, Etsy's shipping software sent his bag to Belgium!! We realized it only while tracking the shipment. After many calls to the Belgium postal authorities, to no avail, we just hoped it would get sent back to me, or forwarded on to him in Nepal. And that is when the tragic earthquake struck and all mail was lost or delayed. In all the tragedy, my bag was the least of our worries, but after a month, we lost hope, AGAIN! Some time in early June, Marco made his way to Sri Lanka to learn and teach yoga. We still kept in touch in the hopes that the bag would turn up somewhere! And out of nowhere, six months after I shipped my bag, he received it in coastal Sri Lanka!! Wow..talk about luck!! And of course it took me another 6 months to share it here! Duh. So there you go..the journey of a yoga bag across three continents!

The second important news: I am having a massive Spring Clearance sale on ALL items over $39.99! Just use code CLEARANCE40 to get 40% off on my web shop or Etsy shop. The sale starts today and will run till March 26th. I have some exciting new products in the wings and want to clear out excess inventory before bringing them on board.

That is all the news from my end. Hope you have a wonderful weekend :)

xo, Shiv

 

 

 

Shivangi Parikh