Bathing Suit Trauma No More

Melanie Buffett
Photo By Christy Mouery Haynes ©BeachChicPhotography
Photo By Christy Mouery Haynes ©BeachChicPhotography

For almost ever, there has been nothing that paralyzes me with anxiety more than wearing a bathing suit in front of people. This was highly inconvenient growing up on waterfront property and living in a town where life happens on The Bay.  Not to mention that Summer is about 8 months long.  A crippling negative body image settled in to my psyche around five years old. And has pretty much held a grip on me (manifesting into a rock hard ball of tension in the core of my belly) until very recently.

Last year when I turned 40 I ‘gave’ myself Restorative Yoga for my birthday. Basically I allowed myself to use more of my mat time in less vigorous practices.

A couple of funny and wonderful things have happened.  My active practice has evolved into a few times a week doing the traditional Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga Primary Series (which has always seemed ‘out of reach’ physically but is now quite joyful).  I do restorative poses daily…sometimes as a full practice, sometimes just one or two poses. Really whatever time and schedule allows.  Everyday I take my restorative medicine. Everyday I allow myself to meet my inner state. It, like daily meds tend to do, has profoundly affected my overall mental state in a most positive fashion.

When the editor of Access Magazine called and said she wanted to feature me in the April issue I was flattered and grateful. But then the ‘dreaded’ details emerged…”Oh, I have to wear a bathing suit?”  My auto-pilot defense mechanisms immediately surfaced and I almost declined, as it would be unfathomable for me to pose in front of a camera in my most vulnerable state. But as if someone else was speaking I heard my voice say, “Yes. Where do I show up?”

I’m not sure what force intervened that day and helped me accept this great honor and offer by the magazine.  But I do know that as shoot day approached, with nervousness rising,  I just–did what I do-  pause, turn in, focus on breathing, calm again. Repeat.  My daily practices of yoga and meditation continue without fail no matter what is happening, so I always have the support of my ‘meds’.

I carried my yoga practice with me to the shoot and throughout the whole day. The most liberating part about the whole experience was that I felt comfortable and confident in my skin. I had a blast trying on as many bathing suits as time would allow. Who is this person?!?!?  It was fun. I felt great. And I am not only still breathing, but excited to get out on the beach in a bathing suit this Summer!

Thirty-five years of the shackles of severe self-consciousness issues…gone bye-bye! Bathing suit shopping here I come!  I could not have arrived at this victorious moment without my yoga. I bow to it and to a new found 40 year old inner peace and calm…the depths of which are apparently endless.

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WORKSHOPS at Yoga Birds

Saturday, March 13 with Melanie Buffett, RYT

Inversions & Backbends
1-3pm $20/$25 day-of

Slow Flow to Pratyahara
3:30-5:30 $20/$25 day-of

Workshops are a great format to take your practice to new heights while delving deep within. Join us!

Love This Life T-Shirts

Love This Life Peace T-Shirt
Love This Life Peace T-Shirt

Colorful Peace Sign T-Shirts


A statement about peace and loving your life.  Limited availability so get yours now.

Click Here to Buy Now Online

We now have Love This Life Peace Manifesto t-shirts in the boutique and on the  Yoga Birds online store.  The black T’s have a shiny colorful peace sign on the front and the Love This Life manifesto on the back:




is about celebrating the moment

and that we’re not guaranteed or owed another day

and how cool it is that what we hide

can actually be the fuel towards our glory

and that it’s not so bad being proven wrong


is about welcoming the blind turn

and the possibility that

there’s no such thing as coincidence

and that empathy is incredibly sexy

and that it’s never too late to

pick up a quitar or a paintbrush

or to make an amend or to make a new friend


could be about rekindling a past flame

or igniting a new one

or shape shifting from a dreamer into a doer

or savoring the caress of a love long gone


means whatever it is

you want it to mean because


is a celebration of you and your path


‘cuz it could go at any second

you rock

Copyright 2002, David Culiner

Om Symbol Burnout Cotton T-Shirts

Om Symbol
Om Symbol

The OM symbol (pictured left) represents a sound that has been chanted by ancient cultures for thousands of years. It is generally pronounced “AUM” with each letter being distinctly drawn out (Aaaaa-Uuuuu-Mmmmm). The sound is used as a powerful tool that revitalizes the body, soothes the mind and nourishes the soul.

We recently received a small shipment of burnout cotton t-shirts stylishly displaying the OM symbol.  The t-shirts come in white, black, cherry, and yellow. Price $39.

OM T-Shirt in Cherry
OM T-Shirt in Cherry

These t-shirts are comfortable enough to practice yoga in and also cute enough to wear around town. 

You can come into the store or you can buy them online by CLICKING HERE

Poppy Babydoll T-Shirt (O.S.F.M.)

Poppy Babydoll T-Shirt
Poppy Babydoll T-Shirt

Get yours while it’s HOT! The Limited Edition Yoga Birds Summer ’09 T-shirt is in. Some folks call it a babydoll, I call it :


Its fitted at the bust and lose through the body. One Color Poppy. OSFM. And one size really does fit most! This softie looks perfect with jeans, a pencil skirt, or works great as a bathing suit cover-up. Seriously, they’re going to go FAST since there are only a limited number to be had. Don’t miss out. Get yours (and your sister’s) today!


Buy Online Now!

Ahimsa T-Shirts Now Online

Ahimsa - Do No Harm T-Shirt
Ahimsa - Do No Harm T-Shirt

On the path of yoga there are five universal moral and ethical disciplines transcending creeds, countries, age, and time. The first of these is Ahimsa which expresses the sacredness of all living creatures and urging the avoidance of harm and violence.

Buy the new ‘Ahimsa / do no harm’ t-shirt at Yoga Birds. The shirt is manufactured by the socially conscious company EdunLive founded by Bono of U2 to help increase trade and long-term employment in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The Ahimsa shirt is 100% organic cotton and the design is of a water based ink. From start to finish the production of this shirt embodies the message of doing no harm, practicing Ahimsa. Show the world that you are a conscious human and encourage others to learn and practice this great discipline…Ahimsa. Do no harm.

Comes in Black and White. Available on the on-line store.

Click Here to Purchase

Yoga Birds Camisole Available Online

Yoga CamisoleNow available on the Yoga Birds online store is the Yoga Birds Logo Camisole.  This really cute sleeveless top is perfect for practicing yoga or as a casual garment.  It even makes a nice undergarment for a layered look.

The camisole comes in three different colors:

Black with white logo (pictured)   

White with full-color logo

Natural with full-color logo

Only $18 + s&h

Order yours online now!

This is the first of what will be many quality garments for sale by Yoga Birds online.  If you live in the Mobile Bay area, please come by the studio/boutique to see the full line of cute yoga clothes we sell.

To buy this shirt online, you should CLICK HERE , and if you have not already set up an online account with Yoga Birds, you will be prompted to do so.

We hope to see you soon!

Cute Yoga Clothes

There are some new arrivals in the boutique.  Yoga Birds has some clothing brands that are hard to find or nowhere else to be found in Fairhope or Daphne, AL.

Hardtail Fortever

Super cute, flattering yoga pants. Boot cut flare & knee length styles with tie-dye roll down waistband.   TOO COOL 4 SCHOOL!


Be PresentPractical, stylish, durable, and slimming bottoms in three lengths and a rainbow of jewel tone colors. The fabric is a quick-dry, breathe weave. You can go straight from yoga to run errands all over town.


Come by the boutique / yoga studio Monday through Saturday from Noon – 6pm to see our full selection.  For directions, please visit the Contact / Map page.