52 Week of Yes Month One! Meditation, Bottling My Own Wine & Tibetan Singing Bowls

I’m four weeks into my 52 Weeks of Yes! During my 50th year, I’m challenging myself to do something different, unique, fun, unusual, or out of my comfort zone every single week. This month, I (tried) to meditate, bottled my own wine and balanced my chakras with Tibetan singing bowls. Join me on my journey as I share with you 52 Weeks of Yes Month One!

52 Weeks of Yes Month One! Follow her along as she tries something new, fun, unique, unusual, different or scary! kellyelko.com #travel #travelbloggers #52weeksofyes #vacation #thisis50

Verdict: I’ll rate each activity on a scale of 1 to 10 wine glasses
(1 glass means please don’t ever make me do that again and 10 wine glasses means more please)!

My first week started with a bang as I celebrated my 50th birthday in Costa Rica. You can read all about the first week of my 52 Weeks of Yes! challenge here.

52 Week of Yes!

Week 1 – Costa Rica trip of zip lining, feeding wild monkeys & swimming under a waterfall

Week 2 – Meditation

52 Weeks of Yes! Follow along as she learns to meditate! kellyelko.com #52weeksofyes #meditation #buddhist

Om, Om.

I was determined to balance my chakras 🙂 and keep my mind in the present so learning to meditate sounded like just the thing I needed.

Little did I know when I walked through the doors of the meditation center with a few of my friends, I was actually walking into a Buddhist center! This hour and a half class was part meditation and part group discussion. Led by an instructor, the topic this week was compassion and the other attendees (most of whom were regulars) seemed to know all the chants and songs.

This week’s topic was compassion and we spoke about self cherishing. While I always thought that was a good thing, they said that self cherishing keeps us from thinking of others which in turn keeps us from reaching true happiness.

Then she led us in a meditation that lasted around 15 minutes. As my stomach chanted along (why hadn’t I eaten before I came?), my mind was filled with thoughts of piles of laundry to my grocery list to sinking my teeth into a juicy Five Guys hamburger (which coincidentally was just a few doors away in this suburban shopping center). Needless to say, it was very difficult to stay focused especially since I had no idea what I was doing.

Note: Inner zen was not achieved and while I didn’t love this class (I could have done without the self help aspect of the group discussion), I would love to really figure out how to meditate. Two of my friends LOVED it and plan to go back and another felt the same way I did (and she loves to meditate).

The biggest let down was that I didn’t even get a burger after class!

Verdict: 3 wine glasses 

52 Weeks of Yes - see how she liked learning to meditate kellyelko.com #52weeksofyes #meditation

Week 3 – Bottle My Own Wine

52 Weeks of Yes! Follow along as Kelly learns to bottle her own wine! kellyelko.com #52weeksofyes #wine #garagewine #winemaker #vino

I am part of a garage wine making group. Before you laugh, know that it was started by our friend who is a science geek and this is next level wine. While our “winery” may not be pretty and we don’t have our own vineyard (we had 2 tons of California grapes shipped to our humble garage last fall), we have fun and the wine tastes pretty damn good!

We have a few get togethers a year including a fall “crush” and a spring “bottling and racking.” While I am usually content to sit back and enjoy the party (and drink all the wine), I haven’t really gotten my hands dirty but all that changed when I dove head first into bottling the wine. I took some video of the wine bottling process and posted on my Instagram that you can see here. The wine was bottled, corked and sealed and then everyone got to take home the fruits of our labor!

I really threw myself into the spirit of the party and made these grape cluster cupcakes that were a huge hit!

Verdict: 10 wine bottles!

52 Weeks of Yes - follow along as Kelly learns to bottle her own wine! kellyelko.com #52weeksofyes #wine #winemaking

Make these fun grape cluster cupcakes for a wine theme party kellyelko.com #cupcakes #dessert #wine #wineparty #winecupcakes #grapes

Week 4 – Tibetan Singing Bowls

52 Weeks of Yes! Follow along as Kelly tries out Tibetan Singing Bowls kellyelko.com #52weeksofyes #tibetansingingbowls #singingbowls #meditation

Tibetan singing bowls, when struck with wooden mallets, create sounds and vibrations that are said to shift the body at a cellular level. The soothing tones of the singing bowls are supposed to open the flow of energy in our bodies.

My neighbor raved about doing this and said she was so relaxed, she fell asleep. She woke feeling refreshed, restored and fabulous. Sign me up!

I enlisted my experienced neighbor and another friend (promising that we would go out for a glass of wine after) to try this out so we packed up our yoga mats, blankets and pillows and off we went.

Our instructor told us that “while listening to this meditation, a healthy flow of positive energy will wash over your physical and etheric body allowing you to experience deep relaxation. Together, with intention, harmonic waves of sound are known to reduce stress, rebalance the chakras, boost the immune system, promote clarity, and lower blood pressure, among many other beneficial healing effects.”
A sore lower back and stuffy nose during the hour and a half class made it difficult for me to get comfortable and breathe deeply. My friend felt the same and said it was impossible to really get comfortable but my neighbor felt amazing after the class as did the other attendees (regulars except for one teen girl). They were gushing about their chakras being opened and how the different sounds really flowed through them!
All I could think about was the bottle of wine that awaited us after class and that there is something seriously wrong with me! I would definitely try this again when I am feeling better.
Verdict: 4 wine glasses 
52 Weeks of Yes - see how Kelly liked Tibetan Singing Bowls kellyelko.com #52weeksofyes #tibetansingingbowls

Stay tuned for next month’s 52 Weeks of Yes!

Tibetan Singing Bowls kellyelko.com #tibetansingingbowls #singingbowls

Learn more about my 52 Weeks of Yes! here.

Share this Post!


  1. Looks like you are off to a great start of your 52 Weeks of Yes, can’t wait to see what’s next for you! You’ve inspired me to look for new and exciting experiences myself!

    p.s. – Love the wine glass rating system!!

  2. I laughed so hard! My husband and I took a meditation class at a fitness center. We were to walk heel to toe around the room, clearing our minds, concentrating on each movement of our feet. Instead I got furious as I thought about our uncooked now late dinner, the laundry I needed to put away before bedtime, and at my very zen husband who bought into it all. I was an epic failure at zen. I realized later that my zen wasn’t his zen. He was going for peace, I was going for something that had visual results.

  3. Kelly, Happy belated 50th! I can’t wait to see what you do next in your 52 weeks challenge. Your trip sounded amazing. Pat S

  4. I’m loving this!!! Thank you for sharing and I”m going to look forward to reading about this all year. I want to do the same thing…I just turned 49.

  5. Loving the reviews! The meditation class had me laughing so hard. I read an essay by Amy Tan years ago, she was sharing her experience at the Zen Buddhist Center in Marin County. (A very serious place for hard core meditators 😂) she pretty much had the same experience and at one point everyone stood as part of the meditation, but she thought they all got up to look at something and she couldn’t figure out what the heck was going on.
    I have to report, I am a daily Ommer. I fell in love with Gabriel Bernstein and her miracle mind set and have become a daily meditator with the “Calm” app. It takes a lot of practice for the person with an overactive brain, but that’s exactly why I have found it so helpful.
    I am going to check out some Tibetan singing bowls and maybe even take a Gong Bath. Needing my chakras aligned and inner peace to wash over me. Either that, or I need to lay off the Nutella and Diet Pepsi.
    Can’t wait to see what you do next. 🧘‍♂️🧘‍♂️🧘‍♂️🧘‍♂️🧘‍♂️

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *