First Post of the Year


Peace.  It’s too late by some people’s standards to wish you a happy new year, but I’m gonna do it anyway.  Happy New Year!

Today is MLK Day.  Some people are off work today.  Not me. I’m an entrepreneur so I technically work everyday.  My work today consists of nothing major, just working on a couple custom jewelry orders and some general creativity.  I got my ass handed to me by my partner in life & business last night so I’m also brainstorming on ways to diversify and increase income.

And I’m asking myself what more I can let go that will make me lighter and not hold me back.  I have been afraid.  Afraid of not being able to be myself and still be successful.  Can I be my authentic self and reach the level of success that suits me? Is this something that can really be achieved on my terms or will I have to compromise my values, my sanity, my overall wellness?  Is it ok to put myself out there?

I am not sure if it’s possible but I am mentally and emotionally exhausted, I realized.  I am not content with my current situation and I am tired of second-guessing myself.  At my core, I know I am great.  And it is time to start really living into that.  So this blog is me putting myself out there.  This is my new, public journal.  It is my purpose to be as honest as I can.  In no way am I perfect and neither is my life. And I don’t have all the answers but I am actively working to be better daily.

At the end of yoga teacher training last April, I said that I was leaving fear behind.  At some point during 2016 I unknowingly picked it back up.  Well, I’m burying fear this time, and I am not going back to dig it up. Cheers to 2017.

Thanks for reading.



Birthday Reflections 2016: 3 Years After Mexico


Three years ago today

it happened…

a shift caused by

the night previous.

i had just celebrated

my 32nd solar return,

and under the lunar lamp

of my 32nd moon,

my small frame was jolted

as i was forced to the ground

an AK 47 shoved into my back

under a barrage of curses

& “Americano putas”…

That is an excerpt from one of the most memorable episodes of my life.  This morning I awakened very early and I know it was around that time 3 years ago we finally found ourselves in safety…not quite on U.S. soil yet, but close.  The sun had begun to come up and shine upon a new day.

Surviving that night with minor physical injuries meant something…it still means something.  And there was a notable shift in here, in me.  There was a clicking in place of puzzle pieces that had eluded me before August 2013.  To say that I am merely grateful for surviving does not do what I have felt since then any justice.  The feeling of gratitude only scratches the surface… I rode back over the Mexican border knowing everything I needed was within.  I am purposed for something more.



On A Break…


I finally feel as if I’m getting a handle on things.  I am on a break from the road currently and I can breathe deeply again for the first time in months. It’s crazy how stressful traveling can be, especially when you are traveling every week and the time between that traveling is filled with preparation for the next trip.

It feels good to breathe again, y’all. It feels good to plant my bare feet in sun-warmed grass for a little while and bust out a couple vinyasa’s in the yard just because I have the time to do so. This is a period of recharging, which is typical for me leading up to changing seasons. A couple weeks ago, I got rid of a lot of my clothing and personal belongings.  Although I donated quite a bit, I know that I am still holding on to a lot.  I am looking forward to the next big purge that will likely come at the end of this year.

In the midst of recharging and letting of what doesn’t serve, I am also gearing up for the next major wave of business activity as I know more opportunities will arise very soon.  Have I mentioned how good it feels to breathe??? And I have time to paint and create again! I can’t wait to get started on creative projects that are not solely for my brand, but for simple expression and the sake of creating so I can be happy.

Anywho… here I am again; trying to consistently share what I do via blog.  This is another attempt at discipline for me and I am determined to share with you all on a regular basis.  So in between consistent blogging, I will be here…or there…or somewhere in the world breathing deeply and doing my best to stay rooted while in almost constant motion.

I hope to share lots more in the upcoming weeks, months, and years. Thanks for reading.



By default, I spend a considerable amount of time alone.  This is a great thing as I am able to process my thoughts uninterrupted and focus on feeding my creativity and building up Jun E Caniel, Inc. as a brand.  I do socialize with my mom and my seven-year-old niece.  Mom and I attend yoga classes together about three times a week now, which makes for meaningful interactions as 1 (1)

I love yogis. Duh because I am one too.  We can come together and bend and contort our bodies into the most awkward postures without fear of judgement.  And everyone is so nice!  Mom and I were engaged in a conversation with a yoga instructor and a fellow student.  This was just after New Year’s and the two of them started talking about New Year’s resolutions.

The student said, “I don’t do resolutions. I make a covenant with myself.” How intriguing!  She made a covenant with herself not to work out everyday, but instead to move in ways that make her feel good.  Wow! How insightful!  I LOVE that concept.  I don’t do resolutions either and I love the way she put it.

In my mind, I’m thinking “THAT’S what I want to do!”  I don’t want to fake commit to going to the gym for an hour of cardio 3-4 days a week.  I only want to move in the ways that feel good to me and make me feel good about myself.  photo 2 (1)And sitting there listening to that beautiful woman, I made a covenant with myself to keep practicing yoga everyday, because I love the way it makes me feel above anything else.  Yes, it’s a spiritual thing for some. And yeah, it is a self-awareness thing.  And without a doubt, yoga is good for me physically.  But I do it mainly because it makes my body move in a way that is pleasing to my soul.

And I dance everyday, whether it’s in front of the mirror in my bedroom or in Zumba class on Mondays. Dancing has always felt good to me. 🙂

In every aspect of my life, I want only to move in the ways that feel good. At this point, I’ve spent enough time alone to know when my inner voice is saying, “Ok now, Tiya.  Stretch and test those limits. Breathe. Keep going.  Yeah, it’s a little scary and you may face plant but damn, this feels amazing!”

All of our movements should be those that bring life to our souls.

Peace, Jun E ones.


Hey, It’s Me…Tiya: Back In the Groove


Hey, beautiful people!  It’s me…Tiya. I’m back after a ridiculous and unplanned hiatus from blogging.  And it’s not as though I was very consistent in the first place lol.  Anyway, here I am!!! Yay! 10267772_998173585710_4505450226652069748_n

The year 2014 was a motherfucker for me, y’all.  There were all kinds of emotional roller-coasters with all kinds of peaks and valleys, BUT I’m still standing.  And I discovered that I’m much stronger, wiser, and patient than I ever knew.  It seems like everyone I come into contact with says they experienced a tremendous amount of personal growth last year.  I think that’s what some would call “collective consciousness”.

It was a beautiful and painful year in many different ways but I’m leaving all the negative (habits, thoughts, emotions) shit behind! None of it has been beneficial! My company would be a lot further had I learned to master myself sooner.  But it’s cool because I believe we learn what we need exactly when we are in the right mindset to receive and apply it.  That being said, 2015 will for sure be a year of manifestation and clarification.

I get excited just thinking about it!  And I’m throwing caution to the wind and living the way I want!  20140731_134920My partner in crime/husband is always telling me to just put myself “out there”.  He is always lecturing me about sharing my talents with the world… Welp, it’s finally sunk in.  Now I’m on fire with so many creative ideas for my business as well has my art (they really aren’t separate)!  I am making a promise to share what I have with the world from this day forward, whether it’s my Jun E Caniel designs, my art pieces, doodles, poetry, half-baked notions, observations…  Whatever it is, I promise to share.  I’ve held too much in for too long and that’s not even me.

It’s time I get back to being who I am.  I am expressive by nature.  Why else would I be bursting with creative ideas all the freaking time???  So there it is.  That’s my promise.  Thank you for taking the time to read this.  Stay tuned for more.10458317_10100128998797910_4273411315778122924_n

Peace, balance & Jun E love to you!

~Tiya Caniel~



It is nearly midnight and my eyes are showing no signs of feeling tired.  These days, I am feeling so inspired and motivated.  It seems I am finding the significance of every experience.  Every conversation and episode is a chance to learn something.  At this point of my life, I am convinced that there are no coincidences.

Since closing our store in Fayetteville, NC at the end of July of this year and moving from that city we are based out of Kansas City, MO and my hometown of Harmony, NC.  I was born outside of Washington, DC but I grew up in Harmony from the time I turned six until college.  Being home has been enlightening.  I am free to create and focus on our brand, Jun E Caniel a lot more without feeling bound to having a boutique in a city that I am not meant to be settled in.

I’ve been getting back to really remembering who I am.  Being around family will do that.  It’s been nice to be here in Harmony. It is as peaceful as it sounds. My mom is enjoying the company of myself and the cats…and my husband Jay whenever he’s in town.  She and I are spending time and basking in one another’s presence.  I cook almost every night for us and she cleans the kitchen after we are finished eating.

My mom is one of the most kind people I know.  She’s always giving to others.  And I am amused to realize that Mom is also an outcast.  She’s just never really fit in with her family, which I find so interesting.  We laugh about it and wonder at it.  Now I know that some of my weirdness doesn’t just come from my dad’s side (LOL) but also from my mom.  What I mean is that she’s different from a lot of people and is most comfortable in her skin.  I learned that from her.

Here I am babbling about nothing in particular.  It just feels good to write.  I’ve got to take the time to share my thoughts more often.

Bedtime Story: Basic Humanitarianism


Bedtime Story: Basic Humanitarianism

We were talking on the phone

Tonight, my King and I

He was venting, annoyed by


But then he saw a man

Who needed a ride

The man was a stranger with

3-4 kids in tow

They had been waiting for

Hours for the bus to come…

The man told his story to

King and I listened

The man told of his struggles

To get food for his family

And in his voice was a

Sincerity that I am rarely

Privileged  to hear

And he thanked King

Countless times

His four-year-old, who happens

To be the only girl

Chimed in to also give thanks

My heart hurt

And when King had dropped them

Off safely at home

We cried together

That man was us

King did not pay attention the

First time he looked in the

Man’s direction

But when he looked again, he

Saw the man with his third eye

And he said The Man was

Talking to him

And he had to pull over to pick him up

I said, “Was the man talking to you?”

Or was it King talking to himself?

He looked at the man who was stranded

With his kids

And saw his own reflection

And that is humanitarianism

In its purest form

The acknowledgement

That we are all connected

There stood this brown-faced king

With his legacy in tow

A reminder…

A call to action…

A catalyst…

There’s much work to be done.