Sunday, August 31, 2014

A Few Sun Salutations or Month-End Review August

In some ways, I still feel stuck even though I've been exercising regularly. I've been yoga needy but hadn't been in almost two weeks. Yesterday, I had to make myself go for a short bike ride since I was on the verge of the so-called Netflix binge. I really didn't feel like doing anything.

Gloria is back after a 17 day hiatus and she "confessed" to us about her vacation decadence and her approach to yoga as her body dealt with food she wasn't accustomed to eating. What I heard over most things she said My body feels different each day and Gloria's yoga routine reflects how she feels on any given day. I also remember her talking about clearing energy and I hope that today's time on the mat took care of some of the stuck stuff. Plus, I'll have to remember to do what I'm able to, like Gloria, if it's only doing cat/cow or a few sun salutations.

Bicycling, 4 x's

Climbing, 2 x's

Just Walk: 5 Mega Miles
*Mile 2: Walk and Tone, 1 x
*Mile 5: Ab Walk, 4 x's

Just Walk: Walk to the Hits, Party Songs
*Mile 1, 2 x's

Kettlebell (Beginner's Routine), 1 x

*Kenpo X, 3 x's

Swimming, 4 x's

Walking, 10 x's

Yoga, 6 x's

Zumba, 4 x's

Zumba Fitness: Complete Total-Body Transformation System
*Merengue, 4 x's
*Salsa, 3 x's
*Reggaeton, 3 x's

Since I mentioned the sun, check out this theater that I witnessed crossing the river from Illinois into Missouri last night. FYI, I was the not the driver.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

How I Look

Two weeks ago, my Aunt Al said that my hair was cute.

I have more hair on top of my head than I've had in the last ten years and not because I wanted a change; I struggled to make it to the barber. Friday's really the best day but after working all week I fell knackered and don't feel like waiting around for a haircut.

Saturday's been all about bicycling. Guess I could go on Saturday evening but I figured that the world wouldn't come to an end if my lining wasn't precise and my hair was a little shabby and the funny thing about growing my hair is that it now takes twice as long for a haircut.

Two days ago, my Aunt Al asked me how long I was going to let my grow then You look like a totally different person which is totally appropriate because I feel like a different person. I'm occupying some weird space -- almost in some kind of hyper observant mode. I'm still having weird dreams too.

Last night, I had a camera that worked and stored pictures but I couldn't access them. Billie Holiday sculptures also made it into my dream and I haven't listened to any Holiday in a very long time.

Friday, August 22, 2014

And, Finally...

Another bad dream:

I'm in a school setting and there's a child that's in my care and the child stabs someone with an ink pen. I remove the child from the situation and take them to another adult and I warn the adult about the child's behavior. Again, the child stabs with a writing utensil. The ritual of taking the child is repeated again.

Bizarre and disturbing but here are some things that have moved me lately.

  • I like the "Mike Brown" card that Mary Engelbreit created. 

  • Engelbreit said When situations turn horrible and I find it hard to move on, I usually draw my way through it....

  • Enjoyed Drugs, a Daughter, and Death: Mark Twain's Final Years, an Aloud podcast.

  • Favorite line: She (Isabel Lyon) would fluff his (Mark Twain's) hair.

  • Also enjoyed Yoga, Meditation in Action -- Krista Tippett's conversation with Seane Corn.

  • Corn says:

    In the practice of yoga when you're releasing the tension organically through the practice of asana day in and day out, the emotions that are embedded in our cellular tissue begin to arise.

    Corn also said something intriguing about manifestations of our collective thoughts.

  • Line that stuck with me from Luis Alberto Urrea's book: "To your right, the fabled American border."

  • And, finally, found this gesture very touching.

  • Wednesday, August 20, 2014

    Not A Good Thing

    Had a dream that my car was acting up and when I pulled over and looked under the hood, everything was elevated and there was a water faucet with a thick stream of water coming out. The car hadn't stopped running yet but I knew that the whole water coming out was not a good thing.

    Another no-brainer dream... I'm worried about my car and wonder how much more mileage I'll get out of it.

    Before I went to bed last night, the protest in Ferguson was described as, largely, peaceful and it's still being described that way but imagine my surprise when I woke up and checked out the Twitterverse and learned that 47 people had been arrested.

    The most disturbing news, recently, is about the St. Ann, MO cop who pointed his assault rifle at a protester and said I will fucking kill you. Get back.

    Monday, August 18, 2014

    An Odd Thing

    I've been so quiet that I remembered something that I haven't thought about in a long time.

    A former colleague lost her child and a carload of us went to the funeral and I had forgotten my music (nothing jarring) which I wanted to play and Sharon, an art therapist and Healing Touch practitioner, said something like There's a time to be reflective...

    And reflective is what I've been since Mike Brown's August 8th death. Reflective and tense especially last night as I watched the news while scrolling through my Twitter feed and seeing breaking news from the New York Times that the autopsy results had been released and that Brown had been shot at least six times...

    I hadn't planned on being reflective but Alison asked me if I would dog-sit. Because of clutter, my environment is not suitable for a dog so Alison said that I could do the sitting at her house. Of course, it would have been easier for me if I had chosen my crib but, yeah, clutter so I packed up and stayed at Alison's over the weekend.

    I was without a computer although I did have my iPod.

    Read nonfiction, watched out for the hummingbird, looked through cookbooks, observed Marge in savasana. A lot.

    The Elusive One
    Realized that I drink water much better if it's super cold.

    Realized that I've been overeating, big time, but did not overeat at Alison's as I took only a few snacks. Although I had permission to glean from the pantry, freezer and tomato patch, I was just satisfied and didn't keep shoveling food into my mouth. Not sure what made me start shoveling again...

    Realized how smart Alison is for setting up her house to be super comfortable. And Alison? She's hospitable even when she's not at home. When I told Hazira about Alison's hospitality. She said, Of course, she's European.

    Marge Perfecting Savasana

    Female Woodpecker
    Sharon Salzberg was featured in the Prevention that I packed in my weekend bag. Salzberg says Even in the midst of chaos, the breath is one of our most dependable resources for staying centered. Not sure about the whole centered thing right now but remembering to breathe keeps my neck and jaw from being so tight and keeps me from feeling like my heart is in my throat which is an odd thing to choke on...

    Tuesday, August 12, 2014

    The Obvious Dream

    Had a terrifying dream Sunday that I was being chased by the FBI and every time I tried to hide, the object that I needed to hide behind was either too small or it disappeared.

    There was also a dead white dog in my dream. It all felt frightening enough that I woke up and my heart felt like it was going to pound itself out into the open.

    Last night I dreamed that someone that I know died. Didn't really feel the need to look up anything in the dream dictionary. Current events are seeping into my dreams.

    Went to the pool and the lifeguard did not give me a chance to loiter. Go get your spot before they (the wild boys) get in it.

    I have to strategize when I'm next to the wild boys a.k.a. I cannot really do the backstroke until they rest. Otherwise, I end up coughing up water.

    Exited around 8:15 p.m. and noticed that it wasn't so light outside anymore and, as I walked toward my car, saw the football team running up and down a hill; that's what they were doing last week too.

    Sunday, August 10, 2014

    Turn On The Flashlight

    Red-Winged Black Bird, Addition to Mural
    Saturday, how do I love thee?

    Stayed in bed until 8:30 then made preparations to depart for the Riverfront Trail. Not too many people on the trail -- probably because it was so dang muggy and cloudy.

    Alison and I had a "short" outing of 16 miles, parted then met back up for Yoga Rocks The Park. And the park was rocking with live music and Katie Brauer, director of yoga programming at Yoga Six.

    What did Brauer have us do for six minutes? Get to know a stranger. She likes to play games especially on, say, a delayed plane. You tell someone in three minutes what's important to you, how many siblings you have etc.

    Um, yeah, I don't play games like that and neither does Rosie. April, who came with Rosie, said that we were cheating but Donna, my Monday night yoga teacher, assured us that it was okay for us to sit together and that's one of the things that I like about Donna; she very reassuring.

    Alison, Pre-Practice Knitting (Donna in Corner)
    April and Rosie

    Next, we jumped as if we were the rap duo Kriss Kross. I got all kinds of tired even though I'm supposed to be in shape. After we jumped, we put our hands over our hearts and stomachs and it was so cool to take the time to stop and feel my heart beating so energetically.

    Brauer encouraged us to Turn on the flashlight in our lives to see what isn't glowing. 

    Very early in the practice Brauer also told us that she believes in fun and it showed because we had a very fun practice as we put our mats to the side and used the grass. Actually, I was able to get way more traction with the grass than I've been able to do with some yoga mats including my outdoor one.

    It was a magical day from the beginning when I spotted the fast yellow birds again on the Riverfront Trail and when I spotted a subtle rainbow in the park at the end of savasana. Seeing the rainbow made me think even more about what Katie said about owning your life and showing up for it and how we have support -- they way we held hands and supported each other while doing balance poses.

    Subtle Rainbow
    New Wildflowers on Riverfront Trail
    He Loves Music. Had Some Kind of Boombox.

    On the verge of a collective bow to celebrate showing up on the stage.

    Friday, August 8, 2014

    Frosting-Covered Memories

    I was happy to see Shawny who was back after a three week hiatus. Shawny's the one who picks the Zumba routines that make my Fitbit go wild. Plus, she's just a fun teacher.

    Shawny handed down the rules to the new people -- something about shaking one's booty and smiling and, early in the class, she mentioned chili cheese fries as a reason that she's been unable to lose weight despite exercising. But I'm a work in progress, she added.

    I was in such a good mood after class. Thank you Shawny and classmates including the woman to my left who kept smiling as we both botched several routines...

    I've been catching up on Last Comic Standing and Rocky Laporte made me chuckle:
    What's sad is that I workout and weigh this much. I gotta workout just to stay kind of fat.
    We talk about muscle memory a lot when we climb. Unfortunately, I have cupcake memory too. Didn't eat any but it was hard to walk away. Memories...

    Two Trays of "Thank You" @ Work

    The Friday Donut Dealer Strikes Again

    Wednesday, August 6, 2014

    More Energy

    When I spotted three of the wild boys, I groaned inwardly which was quickly followed by
    They have a right to be here and They could be doing something less productive.

    The wild boys make earthquake after earthquake until there's a tsunami. Two older swimmers made the mistake of getting in the lane with them but they quickly got out.

    The wild boys swim hard and if you get next to them, you just might drown.

    I resorted to the front crawl because, with my head underwater, I didn't have to worry about swallowing water displaced by the seven of them.

    With my shoulders so tense, I wondered if it was a good idea to swim but I also knew that there was nothing, mechanically, wrong with my shoulders and, even with the wild boys in the pool, swimming was extremely beneficial. Some of the weight has been lifted off my shoulders and, today, I feel lighter and more energetic.

    Monday, August 4, 2014

    Often Used With Up

    Dreamed that I went shopping with an unidentified person and, together, we found a plaid, blue hoodie at an unbeatable price. Plus, it was nicely made and fit really well.

    I like blue but I'm not a plaid person so I'm not sure why it seemed like the perfect article of clothing.

    Dream Moods says:
    To dream that you are shopping symbolizes your needs and desires. It also represents opportunities and options that you come across in life. Consider what you are shopping for and what needs you are trying to fulfill...If you are shopping for clothes, then it suggests that you are trying to put forth a new image.
    A few weeks ago, dreamed that I misplaced my credit card -- the one that I use for almost everything. Startling...

    Someone rocked my nerves at work even though I often try to prepare myself for the Monday onslaught. Saw the tweet below and tried to put things in perspective.

    Still felt as if I'd been put through a wringer by the time that I got home. Had thought about doing Kenpo X but went for a walk instead even though it was toasty. There's something about walking.

    Couldn't really find a podcast that moved me but I listened to the noise anyway and thought about the woman who's been known to walk for months at a time.

    As I neared the end of the walk, felt tension in my right shoulder and it reminded me of when my shoulder was so tight that I could barely put a jacket on. It's time to amp up the self-care tactics.

    Saturday, August 2, 2014


    When I set out this morning on the Riverfront Trail, didn't know how much stamina I'd have but took a wait-and-see approach.

    One thing's for sure -- if I make it to North Riverfront Park at about the 7.5 mile mark, it's hard to turn around because the finish line is visually close. Got to North Riverfront and kept on trucking. Also bicycled over the Chain of Rocks Bridge which added another mile so I ended up bicycling 23.6 miles. I was inspired by one of my colleagues who also adores the Riverfront Trail. She usually goes over the Chain or Rocks Bridge and into Illinois for another three miles or so.

    Right before I started my ascent up the sizable hill before crossing over to the bridge, saw these two yellow birds flying side by side. It was such a pleasant surprise. On my way back, I saw two of the turkeys that hang out around mile six. Hadn't seen them in weeks...

    Get Your Kicks On...

    Lori joined the 'Fugee and me for Friday night at the movies and we all managed to stay away for Like Father, Like Son, an excellent Japanese film which is still with me. I definitely wouldn't mind watching it again.

    As we viewed Like Father, Like Son, I thought about Anthony Bourdain's Parts Unknown which I like more than No Reservations. One of the episodes of Parts Unknown focuses on Japan's nightlife when the usually reserved Japanese or not so reserved.

    As I bicycled, listened to my workout playlists and podcasts. Help, Thanks, Wow: The Three Essential Prayers is a conversation with Anne Lamott and is a part of the Los Angeles Public Library's Aloud* series.

    Haven't listened to the entire podcast but here are the three essential truths according to Lamott:

    We are all ruined. We're so loved. We're in control of so little.

    I've been hearing messages about "control" lately and I'm fascinated...

    *Thanks Gingerzingi for recommending Aloud.