Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Arrivals or Month-End Review, January

I've been doing much better with water intake. If I can just get a solid night's sleep and shake this uncommon cold, I'll be in great shape.

Since I've been drinking more water and also trying to get in more steps per day, I've lost two pounds which seems like a drop in a bucket but it's amazing how a few pounds will give you breathing space -- clothes-wise...

During the chair yoga workshop, the woman across from me was taking many pictures and I hoped that they were at an angle that didn't include me. Imagine my surprise as I scrolled through social media and saw myself. I love taking pictures but I don't like to be in them but you really don't have a choice these days...

Here's how I moved my DNA this month:

Climbing, 1 x

Country Line Dance Party!
*Scoot Those Boots, 2 x's

Dance It Off & Firm Up!
*Rock It!, 1 x

Just Walk: 5 Mega Miles
*Mile 1, 2 x's
*Mile 5: Ab Walk, 3 x's

Latin Cardio Party

Pound Class, 1 x

Swimming, 3 x's

Walking, 12 x's

Weight Watchers: 7 Day Tone & Burn
*Tone, 1 x

Yoga, 11 x's

Zumba, 7 x's

Here are a couple of 'grams from the chair yoga class. I told Alison that we look like gangsters or nasty women in the one picture.

Sunday, January 29, 2017


Went to yoga on Monday* night even though I have large crowd fatigue right now. Four of the people that I know and who are in teacher training were sitting front and center. As I went to the lobby to put away my iPod, Joy said that she felt like a piece of the puzzle was missing and she just feels like I should be in teacher training.

Yes, there is a part of me that would like to do teacher training but...

Hell, what I would really like to do is get a Master of Arts in Yoga Studies. I've been listening to yoga podcasts which is how I even knew that there was an M.A. in that area. The person who talked about getting a yoga degree is actually my first teacher in some ways. When I ordered a DVD from Netflix, it was Sara Ivanhoe's Crunch: Candlelight Yoga so it was nice to hear the story of how she arrived at making her first DVD before yoga became so popular in the U.S...

Loved what Gina Murdock had to say during a Yoga Revealed podcast:
If you don't do the work, you're like a puppet; it's like what you say sounds like bullshit.
After Monday's class I went to visit with one of my colleague's new kitty. He is so freaking cute, well, until the moment when he went behind my back and starting scratching on my yoga mat. Luckily, my colleague knows more about kitties than I do and caught him in time...

I signed up for a yoga workshop in December and I made myself sign up then because I didn't want to miss out on visiting yoga teacher because of apprehension that I had over the level that a chair yoga class can be taken to.

Even though I felt that I was out of my lane and out of my league because the class had so many yoga teachers in it, including one that was super bendy, I just tried to remind myself that yoga is all about what happens on your mat. As Annie likes to say, have the courage to do XYZ -- if that's what you need during a yoga practice.

At any rate,  I survived -- despite toppling out of  my chair once. Sean Haleen, who led the workshop, is extremely knowledgeable about yoga. One of my favorite moments happened soon after the class when he splayed out on the floor. Sean had taught and demonstrated yoga for five plus ours that day. Sharon met him where he'd dropped and she moved his legs to one side and did other stretches and Sean said that no one ever touches him -- because they're afraid and I could see how that can happen because of his level of expertise but, of course, everyone likes appropriate touch.

Yoga Class!

Seven-ish hours down, two more to go...

Tweet of the week:

*Lots of distractions, including being TKO'd by the common cold.

Saturday, January 21, 2017


Had to remind myself to unclench my jaws on Friday. I cannot possibly have clenched jaws for the next four years. Also reminded someone else of this but she said that if she unclenched, bawling would follow. Sometimes you just need to bawl.

Least favorite sentence right now about DJT -- I didn't want him to be president but I want him to succeed.

Seriously, succeed at what?...

Wanted to go swimming on Friday -- my new swimming day until January yoga immersion is complete but the founder of Humans of St. Louis, Lindy Drewwas giving a talk at the Regional Arts Commission and I reasoned that the Humans talk would not happen again anytime soon but that I could go to the pool another day.

There was a lot to admire and enjoy about Drew's talk, including listening to her story about pursuing a career in photography. She went to school to be a doctor but enjoyed photography much more.

I really liked something that the new parent/human in the picture below said about sleepless nights, crabbiness and not getting caught up in little, frustrating moments but zooming out to look at the bigger picture.

Wasn't sure if I'd have time to go swimming today but I managed to squeeze it in and, of course, the first thing that I thought about was The Moth story about Black people swimming in a hotel pool and the staff responding by pouring acid into the pool.

I finished swimming and walked into the locker room and the main lifeguard got this mischievous look on her face then wiped her hands on the beach towel that I had around my next. She usually sneaks into her kids lockers to do that. It's hard to explain but that little moment made me laugh and relax..

Oh yeah, did you hear the one about the St. Louis Public Library?  The city library, for real?

Here's one of my favorite Instagram's right now:

Sunday, January 15, 2017

A Cue

Feeling in a bit of a daze but I'm sure that a lot of that has to do with the weather. 

Over the last six weeks, I feel like I've had to get my act together in a hurry because of the holidays falling on the weekend or bad weather. I think that I've done a pretty good job of figuring out what to cook but I'm running out of ideas. Made Cheesy Chicken Fajitas and used the remainder to make a salad yesterday.

All of this cooking is wearing me out but also makes me think of this poet whose book centered around her brother's death. She wrote: He had washed his last dish.

I'm still here so I guess there are more dishes to wash etc...

Went to 11:00 a.m. yoga and saw one of the women who went on the yoga retreat. It was such a moment of delight because she's a nice person and because it brought up such nice memories...

The teacher at the helm of today's class is new and I totally liked it when she (Tracy) said No one needs anything from you for the next hour. You don't need permission to relax but it's nice to have a cue. 

Also liked it when she had us do bee breath (minus the fingers in the ear)...

Wish that I could remember the name of the woman who wrote the poems about her brother's death. Recently someone announced, indirectly, a death in the family on social media and I wanted to leaving a comforting remark. Later on I pulled out You Don't Miss Your Water, a book of poetry by Cornelius Eady. Most of Eady's poems in You Don't... deal with the death of his father. 

Fetchin' Bones

My father's a sealed tin of dust, riding in the trunk of
my rental car.

My sister and niece are in the back seat, and I 
choose not to inform them of this.

Later, I will meet with my cousin at the church
where the memorial service was held.

I will set the box on the curb while we talk.

I am carting around the rubble of the man who
loved to call me stupid, who made my sister feel like
nothing, who drove my mother nuts.

I have done this in order to shave a few dollars off
the funeral costs, I tell myself, as a small part of me
gives in, fans the smoldering pleasure.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Things I Know For Sure

Went to a new class, Pound, yesterday and after class went to a grocery store next to the gym.  I don't normally go to Lucky's but it was definitely convenient. Unfortunately, they didn't have a couple of items on my list so I moved on to the next store which also didn't have ground turkey and I ended up going to Trader Joe's anyway...

Bread Choices at Trader Jacques

"Eggs, Bread and Milk"
Agencies were calling "it" early last night -- schools, libraries, yoga studios, recreation centers etc. A state of emergency was also declared but I knew that my place of employment would not close even if Icepocalypse was on the horizon.

By the time I got home, I didn't feel like taking a bath so I didn't. Even though I knew my job wouldn't be closed, I felt like there would be an early dismissal. I also reminded myself not to grouse about having to report to work. The parking lot had a modest amount of cars -- all the peeps who didn't want to surrender a PTO day to dangerous weather. Of course, we groused and then we got a message that we could leave right before 10:00 a.m...

I cleaned up a bit, took a bath, practiced yoga and cooked and, now, I feel like I'm in a time warp. More ice tomorrow and I'm still sore from the Pound class -- even my inner thighs.

As I pulled sweet potato fries out of the oven, the cookie sheet connected with my upper arm a little and it made me think about Turia Pitt -- cannot even imagine...

One more -- a school district responding to a comment:

Weather forecasting is not an exact science but considering all the environmental factors the meteorologists are right far more often than they are wrong. And in this case....ice...we won't take any chances.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017


Made it to yoga on Monday and Tuesday without incident and I feel so accomplished.

Jill, this woman I met in January of 2015 at our friendly neighborhood yoga studio, messaged me to see if I was going on Tuesday then she messaged me again to say that she'd managed to get to the studio early and that she was going to do a double-header.

When I got in line to sign in, I saw Jill behind the curtain which made me smile.

Did I tell you that I love what one photographer calls the side-story? One of the things that I remember about Jill from 2015 is that she brought a book and she is still bringing books. I don't think she ever gets much reading done because people usually inquire about what she's reading.

I was literally leaping after Monday's yoga class and was also in a good mood after Tuesday's practice and, yet, I was on edge this morning and somebody that I work with doesn't help my mood. The two words that pop into my mind when I think about this person are acerbic and loud-mouthed, ugh...

I don't normally watch the Golden Globes but two of my aunts were watching on Sunday and, therefore, I watched. Was not expecting Meryl Streep's impassioned speech about what's-his-face and it is still hard to fathom how this person is president-elect -- what a nightmare.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

What I Hadn't Considered

Nature is resting according to the Chin Twins and I must be resting too because I couldn't convince myself to roll out of bed this morning -- not for yoga or Zumba.

Think that I finally ate breakfast around 10:00 a.m. and I was so out of it that I forgot to use a very ripe avocado to make the much talked about avocado toast to accompany my omelet.

Decided to go swimming and thought about going for a mile but what I hadn't considered was that it was the first time back at the pool and the lifeguard was chatty then I spotted Chatty Kathleen and I spent half an hour, well, chatting.

A mile was an ambitious goal anyway since I hadn't been swimming in weeks. I got in 22 laps so I'll count it as a victory.

Went to Target afterward and thought that I'd finally cash in on my Cartwheel perk. I wanted to get Champion apparel but was so frustrated by all of the tight options. I ended up getting a water bottle that makes me smile when I look at it. I also like the Peaceful Warrior tanks that Target carries.

Thumps Up

Thumbs Down

Thumbs Up

Oh yeah, my favorite tweet from yesterday:

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

That Extra Step

The Not-Frosted Windows
As far as resolutions go, I have my default ones of being more compassionate to myself and to also get my health regimen in order.

This year there's a third element. Instead of fully saying what I mean, there are often times when I say something a notch below what I really feel. I'm going to work on that this year -- taking that extra step. Here's the perfect example. I went to my first January yoga class yesterday.

I put my mat in the back where I tend to like to practice. I saw Jill, who I hadn't seen since October, and she was up front. She told me that she doesn't mind being up front and she knows how it feels to be new and unsure etc. Then she said And it's cooler up front by the door. Sold! I moved my mat and Jill helped me to bring my other yoga props to the front of the class. It was a full house. My first thought was "F... this; I'm not doing yoga in January." Instead of saying what I was thinking, Jill was the one who said I hate yoga in January. Why didn't I just come out and say that?

Of course, we talked it out and discussed how we both came to be at that studio because of a January special and that we know that it will thin out etc.

I also thought to myself how this is the perfect opportunity to practice "real" yoga -- the yoga of patience, the yoga of finding calm in the center of a storm. The yoga of focus. Of sharing. Of forgetting about personal space. Of being a better person in less than ideal circumstances.

If you attend 25 yoga classes this month, you're entered into a drawing to possibly win a year of yoga. I'll come close but not close enough as I don't have the stamina for 25 January classes...

Here are a couple of cute articles about yoga:

A Skeptic Fact Checks...

Yoga for Beginners...