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Philo Tears It Up!

30 Oct

If you’re a hooper, it’s almost certain that you spend time on the fabulous website that is All of the fabulousness happens because of the hard work of one man…Mr. Philo Hagen. Don’t miss this great interview if you want to know more about the beginnings of the website and how this hooping community began.

Baxter and Philo // 2010

I had the chance to chit chat with him a bit at Hoopcamp and I can tell you…he’s wonderful. Warm and funny…and loved by all. And what’s more? He can TEAR IT UP with a hoop too. He took a break from his emcee duties at the Hooper’s Showcase to entertain us with his sweet moves (his very FIRST time performing on the Hoopcamp stage!). I can’t watch this without having a perma-smile on my face!

Philo…I appreciate all you do within our hooping community. THANK YOU!!

Brecken // Hoopcamp 2010

26 Oct

Brecken performed at Hoopcamp in a super casual “dinner theater” setting…just doin’ her thing. As you can see (and hear) in the video, she is well-loved within the hoop community. From what I can tell, everyone adores her.  She is humble, approachable, and has a hoop style that is completely unique.

We can all try to emulate her…but in the end, there is only ONE Brecken!! 🙂 And I could watch her

Want more?
Check out Brecken’s YouTube channel here.
See my favorite Brecken videos on my video page.

Hoopcamp Music Mix

21 Oct

New music will ignite your hooping practice! If you’re bored and haven’t been hooping as much…change up that same old music you always listen to and press play on these gems.

I’ve even taken the work out of it for you. This is a short playlist of songs that I gathered from people at Hoopcamp. Big thanks to Rich, Spiral, Baxter, Miss Rosie, and Nick Guzzardo for the inspiration!

These are songs that would never have found on my own, but I LOVE hooping to them. So fun. I made it into an iMix if you want to buy the songs on iTunes. Here it is…enjoy!

Hoopcamp Top Ten + Highlight Video

11 Oct

My Top 10 Favorite Things About Hoopcamp 2010:

The Inspiration
It’s one thing to watch a video of Spiral or Brecken online, but to see it up close and personal is something completely different. To watch the playa dust fly off of Spiral’s coat as she performs just a few feet in front of you…to hear Brecken laugh as she effortlessly throws around her hoop in ways unlike any other…well, it’s pure magic.

The Love
At Hoopcamp…EVERYONE is equally in love with this round plastic circle. At home, we might be the only one who geeks out about hooping on a daily basis.  It gets lonely sometimes. But when we come together, it’s sort of like we’re on another planet for 4 days. And for a moment, we all feel “normal”.

The People
Hoopcamp is a gathering of happy, creative, unique, blissed out souls…all coming together for a common purpose. Now seriously, who wouldn’t want to be a part of that?! These are people who have found something. Something that makes them insanely happy. Something that has become very spiritual and can bring them out of the deepest funk. I love being with others who know themselves and know what brings them joy.

The Food
The first night, we all walked up to the dining hall and waited in line. When I got up to the front, I saw one word on the menu board and I knew it would be a great weekend. CURRY. Ummm….yes please. 🙂 The meals were lovingly prepared…always with vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options. Sprouted breads, rice and hemp milks…you name your kind of crazy and it was there. I’m sort of nuts about good food and Pema Osel Ling made me very happy. Yay!

The Redwoods & Retreat Center
Let’s talk about the drive through the Redwoods! Gorgeous. I am still nursing Lucy at night, so I didn’t stay overnight at camp. We camped at an RV park about 7 miles away, and it took me about 30 minutes one way to get there each day. Even though it was a long drive after very long days, I actually enjoyed every minute of it!

We rented another car for me to take so that Matt could keep the truck to get around with the girls…and Enterprise upgraded me to a sweet red “race car”.  At least that’s what it felt like to me! All is know is I could drive really fast uphill. Every morning I would crank up the music with my mate latte in hand, and wind my way up the mountain.  After leaving the car in the parking lot, I would begin the VERY uphill trek to camp. I loved listening to the birds and other critters scurrying around as I walked through the mist of the early morning. Although, at night, it would be completely dark as I made my way back down all alone and those same critters would scare me like crazy.

The grounds of the retreat center were amazing. Spectacular views, cute cabins, yurts, and secluded tent sites. Even though I wasn’t staying overnight, I still had a tent so I could relax & recharge. I loved my tent site…tucked up on a little hill with a great view of the path for people watching. 🙂

The Diversity
And believe me, there was some gooooood people watchin’! There was such a beautiful mixture of people at Hoopcamp. Kristin “Tink” McQuillin explained it so well in a recent blog post:

We were a diverse crowd. Our ages skewed towards the middle thirties judging from visible crows’ feet. I expected the crowd to be more youthful and was delighted to learn that Marjorie, one of the instructors, celebrated her 60th birthday during camp. Most of the hoopers were women, but there was a good handful of men, too. Sexual, political, and religious preferences covered the spectrum, as did skin tone.

Hair color, too, was widely varied. Natural and bleached ponytails, chocolate hued dreadlocks, black pixie cuts, and more than one brightly colored head. Let’s not even start talking about the hoop fashions…frock watching galore!

Our skills and experience dotted the map. Mixed together were A-list hoopers, second tier spinners, hobbyists, the foreign component, people who came alone and unknown, those who arrived with a posse. There were buskers, go-go hoopers, circus trained spinners, festival hoopers, hoopdance legends, innovators, theorists, and at least one person who wasn’t a hooper at all.

The Teachers
There were a lot of amazing things to see at camp, but let’s face it…we were all there to LEARN! To expand our knowledge of all things hoop. To find new ways to move and flow. There were so many opportunities for growth, it was hard to decide what workshops to go to! My favorite workshops of the weekend were:

Rich and Spiral // Hoop Technique
After attending their Hoop Technique workshop in Boulder, I knew that their workshop here would be amazing and I wasn’t disappointed. They are both extremely gifted teachers and it’s easy to retain the information they share. I am SO thilled about their new DVD that is slated to come out in the next couple of months. They were doing pre-orders at camp and we were able to see the trailer. It is completely unlike any DVD out there and the artistry is unbelievable. Yes, I’m a little excited.

Baxter // The Hoop Path
Baxter led the opening session and it was such a powerful way to begin our weekend! With 250+ hoopers all jamming to awesome hip hop music under the redwood…how could it not be? I never knew I liked hip hop so much! 😉 I’ve never been to a Hoop Path workshop, but I am going to seek one out!! Baxter is incredibly inspirational, not only in his hooping, but in his words. Oh, and he’s pretty darn funny too. Just a great guy all around.

Ann Humphreys //  The Hoop Path
I learned about “spiraling” and moving in completely different ways in the hoop than I was used to. During her workshop, I felt like I was in a completely different world. So blissful. It was also the first time I hooped blindfolded. An interesting experience that I will be doing more of!

Jennifer a.k.a. Hoop Charmer
This girl has got some serious energy! Her workshop was focused on “transitions”…but it should have been called “Hoop for an hour straight to super fast awesome dance music”. Loved it.

Brecken Rivera
This workshop was basically Brecken telling us all she knows in a way that only Brecken can. It was sweet. Unfortunately, it was held in a poorly lit space in the dark and we couldn’t see her and there wasn’t enough space to really spread out and experiment with what she was sharing. This was definitely not the fault of Brecken, but it was one of my only disappointments of the weekend. I was so looking forward to it! Next year, she needs more space, more time, and more LIGHT! Even with those setbacks, she rocked it. I would have gone to 5 of Brecken’s workshops if they were offered! More Brecken I say!!

Malcolm Stuart
If you’ve never seen Malcom hoop before, you’re in for a treat. He can move in ways that boggle the mind. Towards the end of his workshop, he held a “hoop off”, where people could show off their stuff in the middle of a big circle. I wish we could have done this DAILY! So fun to watch everyone playing off of each other’s energy. Here is a clip for you to enjoy:

The Clothes
Hoopers love their fancy clothes! It was such a treat to see all of the unique outfits throughout the weekend. Even more fun was to peruse the “Hoopcamp Mall” and check out all of the vendors and their goodies. Everything from feather earrings to bloomers to fire gear…it was all there.

The Life Lessons
I learned a lot more than just some new hooping skills at camp.

  • I learned that I need to love myself more and stop striving for perfection in everything. I need to be satisfied with PROGRESS! 🙂
  • I learned that I don’t like attending things like Hoopcamp alone. It’s way more fun with a besty or two on your arm.
  • I learned the importance of taking time away from being a mommy 24/7…and recharging my creative spirit.
  • I learned that I like to drive fast and listen to loud bass-thumping music (who knew!?)

Hooping hooping hooping…all weekend long. Big hoops, little hoops, light hoops, heavy hoops, hoops that light up, hoops that are on fire…it was a hoop geek fest. I got really used to talking hooping all the time…every meal, every workshop, etc. So when I came back home after 4 days of that…I had to remind myself that Matt probably didn’t want to hear about it 24/7 (although he will gladly listen to my rantings…thanks hon!). I did experience a bit of “post Hoopcamp” sadness. But now I get to look forward to next year! And will hopefully be bringing at least 2 of my hoopy girlfriends with me. Woooo!

The entire Hoopcamp photo album is here. Enjoy!

Hoopcamp website:

Speed and Grace

7 Oct

I’m still working through my video footage, but I just found this clip from my friend Beth (check her out at Kitchen Courage). Spiral and Rich’s Hoop Technique workshop blew my mind. I was wondering going into it if it would be different from their workshop I attended in Boulder and I was happy to find that they had mostly new content…yay! They were my favorite of the entire weekend.

Here is a little footage from the festivities:

Remember that one time at Hoopcamp?

5 Oct

Hoopcamp is over…but I’m still reeling from all of the new inspiration! I will be writing a longer post about my experience there, but I do have all the photos edited (links below) and wanted to share them with you. I will also be making a highlight video, but that is going to take a bit more time 🙂

It was a truly magical weekend and I have been completely transformed as a hooper. Here are some highlights:

See the full album:
On Facebook
On Flickr

On the brink of Hoopcamp bliss…

29 Sep

In 24 hours, I will be driving from our campground near Santa Cruz through the redwood forests…where I will arrive at the entrance of HOOPCAMP! I am so excited and so full of anticipation. I feel a bit like a freshman on the first day of high school. Can’t wait to soak up all the knowledge and creative energy…and of course, take a few photos of the hoop excitement.

The schedule of workshops is amazing and packed to the brim each day. Workshops with Brecken, Rich, Spiral, Baxter, Christabel, Malcolm, Megzz, and SO many more! Not to mention hoop vendors, delicious food and drink, and fire and LED hoop jams…all under the canopy of the redwoods. Can life be any sweeter?

Wondering what Hoopcamp is all about? Carla “Snowzilla” Snow created an awesome “Hoopcamp Survival Guide“… check it out!

I expect to see YOU there next year!!

Hoopcamp or Bust!

20 May

It’s official…I am registered for Hoopcamp Retreat 2010! From September 30 – October 3, I will hoop hoop hoop, be inspired, meet new friends, and bask in the shadow of the redwoods. This will be the first “big thing” I’ve done for myself in the 6 years since Bella was born and I am beyond thrilled. We will be camping just down the road (our RV was too big to fit at the retreat center)…so I will be able to nurse Lucy and be home every night. Oh the joy!

Here is a little taste of what Hoopcamp is all about:

Does anyone want to meet me there? 🙂