For today’s blog, we spoke to Cherie Marquez, founder of Found + Gathered (@foundandgathered) and La Fleur Kitchen (@lafleurkitchen). Cherie is a curator of creative ideas and makes the most be nicest arrangements with nature!
Cherie wears many hats and is the Founder and Creative Director of Found + Gathered, a creative community focusing on practicing balance in lives so that the inner creative energy continues every day.
We have a great interview for you! Read on for more with Cherie Marquez!
(SE) What does Mindfulness mean to you?
(CM) To me, Mindfulness is focusing on the present moment. Keeping an open mind, heart and soul is important in practicing mindfulness.
(SE) What tools do you think are essential for living mindfully?
(CM) Tools can vary from people to people and how we use them. For me, the tools that I think are essential are my family, friends, colleagues and whatever Mother Nature has to offer at the moment.
(SE) Do you have a mindfulness practice, if so, what does it look like?
(CM) I do practice it at least a little each day. Some days I can do more, others are hard to find. However, I practice in a way that keeps me present and not focusing on the past or tomorrow. I start each morning by waking up at least 1 hour before I need to do anything. It’s my personal time. There is something about the morning stillness for me that keep me grounded and focused. I start off with either meditation or yoga and if not, a cup of tea or coffee listening to the quietness of the morning. I think starting the day with mindfulness practice will help to shape the day.
(SE) When did this practice begin?
(CM) I would say maybe 7 years ago. The intent was always there, but it wasn’t something I really considered to be part of my daily routine. Throughout the years, I’ve learned to allow forgiveness into my life and that even included forgiving myself when things weren’t going according to plan. So part of the practice of mindfulness is to allow time for me, even if it ended up being 5 minutes in the day.
(SE) How did you get started?
(CM) I got started when I was going through a difficult time in my life and went to yoga to release some of the tension and stress. As I went each day, I realized how much it helped me in ways I couldn’t have imagined. One of my yoga instructors, now one of my dearest friends had an incredible impact on why I still do it today. Just like life, mindfulness is always a practice. We embrace today, look forward to tomorrow and know that we are all works in progress.
(SE) What has this practice done for you as a person?
(CM) Mindfulness has taught me to be a better parent as well as be a better person by being authentic. I think as we initially focus on trying to figure out who we are as years go by, that we forget to be authentic. Appreciating the present allows us fully live that moment.
(SE) What advice would you give to someone who would like to incorporate a mindfulness practice into their daily routine but cannot find the time or the headspace?
(CM) You can ALWAYS find the time. Sometimes mindfulness practice can happen for 5 minutes, sometimes for an hour. Find what works best for you, maybe it’s the wee morning hours or maybe it’s to close the day before bed. But finding it that best fits you will help you incorporate that into your day naturally.
(SE) Is there a particular practice you would recommend to cultivate mindfulness?
(CM) First off, find an area that is quiet with no distractions. Slight natural light and a light smell of anything like candles, oils or flowers. If it rains in your area, maybe crack the window open for a nice smell from the rain. Sit straight and breathe. If your mind drifts, come back to being present. Remember it’s a practice not a perfection.
(SE) Can you list three, everyday things that we can do to stay in the present and live a mindful life?
(CM) Listening, observing and forgiving.
(SE) Do you offer any type of mindfulness training? If so, can you provide details?
(CM) No, I do not offer formal mindfulness training, however I do offer a variety of creative workshops.
(SE) Are you currently working on anything you would like to share with the Soulful Essence community?
(CM) Oh I’m always working on something, for a list of events and workshops you can visit either lafleurkitchen.com or foundandgathered.com
(SE) Is there anything else you would like to share?
(CM) When you learn to incorporate mindfulness in your life instead of saying you never have time for, you’ll soon find out how much it will help with almost everything you do or come across.
Thank you Cherie! We loved learning from you! Do you have any questions for Cherie? Anything you would like to add? We’re anxious to hear! Drop a comment below!
Be sure to follow @foundandgathered and @lafleurkitchen to keep up with Cherie and her creative workshops!