Friday, February 27, 2009
Mine has been up and down! My back up at work has been out for 2 weeks due to a family emergency. She and I are a team and when one person it out the other one feels the pressure. So work has been very stressful because I DO NOT know her job but did the best I could.
The main concern is that her family gets healthy and that she is okay.
Monday night Denver & I went to Zenspace for Mediation. We did the seated meditation and walking meditation. It was calming.
Denver & I also Caught a stomach bug on Wednesday. It was really horrible. I had to tough it out for work (due to being shor staffed)
Luckily it passed in 24 hours and I was better by Mid-Day Thursday.
Thursday I went to check out Nirvana Yoga. A few reasons I am interested in this studio: The teacher was so nice on the phone, they offer a 200 hour Hatha Teacher training that is pay as you go; so not too intimidating with the amount you have to cough up, they are not affiliated with one particular style of yoga, they offer meditation and pranayam in their classes.
So I went on Thursday night to the Level 2 class (I had planned to go Wed to the All Levels class but was wayyy to sick to go)
So the class was...absolutly perfect!
There were many levels in the class and the focus of this class was on backbending. I even got in one dropback with assistance.
The studio was small but so comfortable eventhough it was PACKED.
I really (I mean REALLY) liked the teacher and her approach. She incorporated Vinyasa, Pranayama, Meditation, good tunes and eye pillows at the end. It was wonderful.
So I am IN! I am pretty certain this is the place I want to do my 200 hour teacher training.
I sent her my application and she emailed back with some really kinds words about my writing style. I am also filling out an application for the Scholarship (crosses fingers)
If I don't get the scholarship I will do all that I can to save the money I need to go. It is pay as you go so I can work my butt off and hope for good bonuses. But I made up my mind!! :)
Even after one class!!! It was that great people!
Today was also really nice. My co-workers brought me on a birthday shopping spree at NY&Co becuase they know I NEVER buy clothes. So it was a really nice treat for all of them to pitch in and take me shopping. I got a lot of nice work pieces!
So this weekend will be laid back. How about you???
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Friday night I headed home to make my husbands birthday special. I got all the goodies to make his favorite Chinese Dish a vegetarian version of Ma Po Tofu. It was yummy but a little too hot for me...which means it was really hot!
Then I got Red Velvet Cake for him with a 3 7 to put on it.
He loved it. I also got him Saki, he loves that stuff...I do not.
It was nice evening!
Saturday I had to work at the Real Estate Auction. I wasn't thrilled to work on Saturday. But it was a very interesting experience! I enjoyed myself more than I thought I would. There was a lot of energy there.
Then we met up friends for another birthday event. Denver & I split a pizza. There was a lot of conversations. Then we headed home around 10:00.
Today was...just great. We woke up at 7:00 headed to meditation. We did the public sitting and then met with a meditation instructor. We then went back in for seated meditation and walking meditation. It was nice.
After we met up with Jenn (my sister-in-law) we ate at this really yummy Indian Buffet and I found the dish Ioved so much when we visited Philly. I found out the name is mutter paneer. I must find a recipe!
It was sooo good! We all ate a lot of food (Denver loves Indian food now, that rocks!)
Then we went to a sari shop. Denver got me a very pretty bracelet, earrings and a very pretty Tunic sorta like this one. But the one I have is prettier :)
We also went by the Farmers Market. I purchased more dried Lavender for eye pillows, we got lots of fruits and veggies to juice and some other goodies for the week.
It was a nice day!
After we got in we played with Chai and put groceries away.
I did get on my mat...finally!
I did 5 A & B Sun Salutations, a few standing, some twists because my back is stiff. I warmed it up a bit and did 3 backbends, Shoulder Stand, headstand and Savasana.
I did a 10 min meditation to close it all up.
Now we are hanging out with a snoring Chai Pungus and about to watch a movie.
Oh yes. I finished another book on CD this week. It is by Pema Chodron "When things Fall apart"
I really enjoyed this and highly recommend it!!
I am now downloading another book (I get a lot of "reading" done on my 2 hourly daily commute!)
I am starting The Way of the Bodhisattv.
Tomorrow night is Meditation at Zenspace so I plan to get my asana practice in before work.
I am also going to drop into a new studio this week!! Wednesday night Nirvana yoga offers a 7:00 all levels class.
I am going to check it out. I am debating on there teacher training later this year. All depends I suppose.
Okay off to watch a movie.
Enjoy the rest of your Sunday
Thursday, February 19, 2009
I am already burnt out and a LOT of work still to be done.....and.....I am working on Saturday!
We did go toShambhala on Tuesday night. It was a really nice time. We missed the meditation but stayed for the Discussion, snacks and talking. We plan to go back on Sunday for the newcomer meditation. However, we keep gravitating towards Zenspace.
Anyway, the little time I've spent on my mat this week has been light. I am ready to dive in this weekend.
However, I am missing something from my ashtanga practice. I feel that incorporating some meditation, pranayama and some more hip openers feel really nice and compliment my practice.
Speaking of practice, I haven't been up to Balance since last week. I am not keeping with the cleaning schedule and not sure I can keep up with it. I am thinking about it and will be sad if I am stepping away from it...again. But I have to balance everything. And the commute and coming home so late gets a little rough for my schedule. I have to be honest with myself. So I am thinking about it all.
I do plan to stop by Nirvana Yoga on Wednesday. It is pretty close to work and they have a very open format for their classes and offer an upcoming teacher training that really sounds interesting to me.
I talked to the director and she was so kind. I am going with no expectations and see how I feel about the class, atmoshpere and such.
I am still excited for Stephnie Keah's training in April. It is a week workshop. What else could be better...Yoga, yoga, yoga. Friends, food and meditation. I plan to fill that week up with good memories.
So, not much else.
Denver's birthday is tomorrow. I have some nice little things plan. I will share details after (just in case h e reads this) :)
Okay, off to bed.
Have a great weekend!!!!
Saturday, February 14, 2009
I texted my teacher to let her know I was stuck in traffic.
I showed up 15 min. late but she left the back door open. Apparently it was a very small group of us so my teacher was practicing with us. Only 5 of us total. I unrolled my mat in the middle of the room; took some deep breaths to remove the 1.5 hour commute and began Primary Series.
I had a decent practice my lower back was stiff so I only got in 3 full backbends before calling it quits and modifying with bridge.
I did finish the entire series and had a really long Sivasana.
After practice I noticed I bruised my left pinkie toe pretty bad. I landed on it wrong in a jump through if I remember right.
Today it is better.
Speaking of today; Denver & I exchanged cards, showered and headed to our V-day Lunch at Green Sprout
Then we went to a few shops; tried out a few Zafus but didn't purchase anything. We also stopped by the Buddhist Center to take a tour and talk to their resident teachers and 2 buddhist nuns were there. They were so nice.
Then we picked up some groceries and headed home.
We made dinner together and are now relaxing.
Tomorrow I plan to practice, read and relax (and clean the house too)
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Very interesting. It seems that both the paths in which I am enjoying; yoga and Buddhism; both share this same philosophy. Start where you are, begin it today, don't wait.
Last night Denver & I decided to go to Zenspace. I usually go to mysore class on Mondays; but I forgot my clothes and so we decided to go to the newcomers meditation.
We met with a very nice person who went over the basics of zen meditation and had a nice hour discussion.
Some college kids came by too because they are studying religion in college.
It was a very informal group and very different from the Tibetan Buddhism center we visit at Rameshori
Denver & I keep talking and we like the informal approach and the fact that Zenspace is non-temple affiliated and just a group of practitioners learning on their own is non-intimidating.
So last night after our discussion and instruction we entered into meditation room. Denver was a trooper and did the sitting meditation. Mind you the meditation is from 7:30-9:00; broken into 30 min sections.
After the fist 30 min. I had to move a bit because my legs fell asleep. Typical.
I found Denver in the lobby area. His hips were bothering him. So we decided to sit with the instructor for the next 30 min. sitting in the lobby area. After the 2nd 30 min sit Denver's legs were killing him; and my leg fell asleep.
We talked for a bit to the instructor and we will work our way up to the full meditation time.
However, Denver will use the flat back chair for his hip issue. That way he can truly focus on what he is there for; not the pain.
I need my right leg to not fall asleep! :)
So it was interesting and we are enjoying what we are gaining along the way.
However, we do enjoy the discussion at Food For Thought on Thursdays hosted by Rameshori Center.
So we are still feeling things out. Rameshori is hosting a day course on Valentine's Day: No More Broken Hearts: A New Model for Harmonious and Liberating Relationships.
Denver & I are debating on attending this.
After meditation we stopped at whole foods for dinner from the hot bar. Yummy!
This morning I woke up and juiced, made breakfast, packed our lunches and Denver made Tea.
I am sleepy.
I hope everyone has a great day!
Sunday, February 8, 2009
So how was your weekend?
Mine was pretty relaxing. We are on a budget due to the septic tank issue we faced last week. So we did a lot of hanging out around the house.
Saturday I cooked Lentiles and rice, we read, goofed around online, gave Chai a bath and just had some time together.
Today I cleaned the house, made 15 bean soup, we watched Milarepa the movie.
Then we watched the Teachings on Milarepa and I really enjoyed Jestun Khondro Rinpoche
And Pema Chodron. Both of their discussions were ineresting to me. Speaking of Pema; Denver picked up "Don't bite the hook" so I downloaded it onto my MP3 player to listen to on my commute during the week.
I am still getting some of my texts read for the workshop in April. I need to finish The Heart of Yoga soon...it just keeps staring at me.
When I am done I am going to finish Yoga Body Buddha Mind...I REALLY liked the little bit I did read.
So a lot of self study at the house lately. I believe we are going to head to a beginners meditation meet up at ZenSpace this week. It is 30 min. to meet the instructors and see the space. Still learning the differences between Zen Buddhism and Tibetan Buddhism.
So, what else....
Oh yes yoga! Today they annouced the winners for January WoYoPracMo. The winners were individuals that kept a daily yoga practice, if only for 10 min.
I donated the yoga mat bag and eye pillows I posted last month. And apparently I won a Nirvana candle too! :)
Yesterday I took off of yoga besides some stretches for my hamstrings and some work on my headstand. I think I jacked up my left hamstring again. It is pulling my lower back a lot. I spent a lot of time downloading stuff on my MP3 player. I pulled out some CDs that I've had around and never really used. So I downloaded OM Yoga's music for practice and downloaded the Yoga Bootcamp Box by Baron Baptiste
It has 3: 20 Min guided practices: Vinyasa Flow, Hip Openers, Core
A 10 min guided meditation
A full 75 Vinyasa flow class.
So since I was very sore from Friday's Mysore practice and needed some inspiration; I thought..."Hey I can do 20 min"
So I did the 20 Min Vinyasa Flow followed by Sivasana and meditation.
It was a nice light practice.
I plan to get up in the AM and do another 20 min practice before work. I think it might help my mood.
Oh yes..yoga related. So I emailed my teacher to tell her I am not sure I can still clean on Mondays. I am not making it home until 11:30 most Monday's, showering and hitting the bed at 12:00...up again at 5:00/5:30...It is making for a long day and more stress. The Basics class doesn't clear out until 9:00 so I am finished up by 10:30...just very tiring.
So I asked if I can clean on Friday's after mysore in exchange for just one class a week.
I hope it isn't a bother for her.
This leaves only one option for me; really truly sticking to my daily home practice. So I am embracing it; just as it is.
Enjoy your week!
Friday, February 6, 2009
I headed to Mysore class with Manju Jois. It was a small class; only 6-7 of us. It was a really nice practice.
Sweaty and good. Manju did a lot of assists this time.
He even got my chin to my knee in Ardha Baddha Padma Paschimottanasana
And in Triang Mukha Eka Pada Paschimottanasana
I was pretty impressed. But no way could I have done that on my own. But with his help my hamstrings gave-way.
Practice was fun and Manju was so kind. After Practice I got a Hug too before he went on his way.
Some days I wonder if Ashtanga is for me, wonder if there is another sytle out there....but As long as I offer up my practice it is the same in the end. :) (just like a friend reminded me)
Well, off to finish my red beans and rice.
Have a wonderful weekend.
I plan to with lots of reading and yoga t h
Thought I would share what I read this morning from The Pocket by Pema Chodron:
Wherever we are, we can train as a warrior. The practices of meditation, loving-kindness, compassion, joy and equanimity are our tools. With the helps of these practices, we can uncover the soft spot of bodhichitta, the tenderness of awakened heart. We will find that tenderness in sorrow and in gratitude. We will find it behind the hardness of rage and in the shakiness of fear. It is available in loneliness as well as in kindness.
Many of us prefer practices that will not cause discomfort, yet the same time we want to be healed. But bodhichitta training doesn't work that way. A warrior accepts that we can never know what will happen to us next. We can try to control the uncontrollable by looking for security and predictability, always hoping to be comfortable and safe. But the truth is that we can never avoid uncertainty. This not knowing is part of the adventure, and it's also what makes us afraid.
Bodhichitta training offers no promise of happy endings. Rather, this "i" who wants to find security--who wants something to hold on to--can finally learn to grown up. The central question of a warrior's training is not how we avoid uncertainty and fear but how we relate to discomfort. How do we practice with difficulty , with our emotions, with the unpredictable encounters of an ordinary day?--Pema Chodron, The Pocket
In between reading the texts I have to finish by April for the teacher training/workshop; I am fitting in some Dharma books. (And I am fitting in bits and pieces of Yoga Body, Buddha Mind...which I really like)
Learning about Buddhism; currently listening and reading Dharma books in relation to Tibetan Buddhism; it can be overwhelming. There is a lot that details the belief system of the Tibetan Buddhist. I believe next on my list is Being Peace by Thich Nhat Hanh. Denver is reading a different book by him currently and really enjoys his teachings. So we are just dipping our big toe in to see how it resonates with us. But there are some texts that you read an your like “yeah…that makes total sense to me.”
The excerpt above is one of those texts.
Tonight is Mysore with Manju! I am excited and nervous. But I will take whatever body shows up on my mat tonight…stiff, open, tired or irritated. I will work with what I bring to the mat.
I am also going to dedicate my practice to my dear friends sister Carrie who has been fighting cancer and had some irregularity show up on an MRI.
I am also going to dedicate my practice to my husband in hopes that we somehow figure out what is his body is doing. They keep running tests to see why his legs and joints are loosing their mobility.
Please keep them both in your thoughts and prayers.
Thursday, February 5, 2009
I try to do research online and to determine if I should create my on 2-3 day plan to just cleanse. My main focus of a cleanse is clarity and just to clean the slate. I feel heavy lately and have been eating to much over processed foods. I always find that going with a set plan that is out there never works for me…so coming up with my own seems to be the best route, but I get confused. Do you eat just veggies, do you only drink fresh homemade juice, do you fast for an entire day.
I sometimes wish I would have studied nutrition…
Anyone out there an expert or experience in this area and could give me a little insight on a 2-3 day cleanse I could easily incorporate into a busy life that requires me being at a desk for over 8 hours a day?
So on the yoga front: I did a small restorative practice last night. I was not in the mood; something is all mixed up the last few days. Can’t put my finger on it, but I just feel very down or something. But it will pass.
We also have a call in to get someone out to the house to look at the septic tank and get it pumped. It seems like every 2-3 years that septic tank likes to rear its ugly little head and erupt literally and figuratively. Because financially it is the worst time. Taxes, Denver’s birthday & my birthday is one week apart at the end of this month and we have to pay for our car tags…but hey, all we can do is practice patience (as my husband is teaching me with his calm attitude…I hope to achieve that) I get very irritated and freaked out when surprise things like this pop up.
Okay…much to do!!
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
I will get a new picture on Friday!
Practice last night was....difficult.
I don't know how else to explain what happened on my mat for those 2 hours.
I walked in and the newbie that has been practicing weekly at the studio was nervous. It reminded me of my first yoga trip with Nicole to Kripalu to practice with Manju. My first "big" yoga trip and first time practicing with a "true teacher" I was so nervous.
I told her no need, she would be find. She said "Everyone in here is better then me." I responded (Just like Nicole did 2 years ago) There is no "better" in yoga. Her reply was yes there is.
I left it at that.
Manju walks in and the 15 of us set in on our journey through the primary series. I was in the 2nd row right behind my teacher Marsha and 2 other teacher at the studio that I admire very much.
When he started his typical Sanskrit count (which felt so familiar and claming) up my arms went and the ignition on my brain started as well. The ENTIRE practice...I mean the ENTIRE time my mind would NOT shut up. Not even once. Well there was on minute where I found myself drifting with the class by listening to the deep breathing that vibrated the room. But my brain butted in and quickly resumed its internal conversation, completing pushing me out of the way.
It was rude and had no respect for me or my practice. It was very annoying and I found myself trying to put a lid on all this chatter but it boiled over and was uncontainable.
Back to the Asanas...I drifted in and out of each posture, noticing his little changes with the breath count and that he didn't do a lot of adjusting this practice. Maybe just watching everyones practice to see where we are as a collective?
After 4 Navasanas (which were held very long) he went into Second Series which threw me. Several of us Primary Series students went straight into setting up for Kurmasana. He kept repeating a posture in sanskrit (mind you he was right next to my mat) he repeated it 2 more times and gigled. He said "SUPRISE Second series"
THe ladies in front easily rolled up their mat and started Pasasana. We went through the Second Series up to Supta Vajrasana (with a partner) then onto closing.
Sivasana was a disaster yesterday. But hey..it is all just practice.
After class he hung out with the teachers and I was around because I swept the floors and was heading out. He chatted a bit about his father and about his teaching style.
Then off I went. I will be back on Friday for Mysore with Manju. I haven't done Mysore with him before, only led class. So this will be a treat.
Once I got home we ate dinner and hung out. I showered and then we came across some issues with our pipes at the house. We hope to get it resolved. Long story..and I really need to finish my to do list for work.
So that is all for now.
Have a wonderful day!!
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
I made it through the full primary series which feels like an accomplishment. I hung out in the lobby during basics class. I read some of the texts needed for that workshop/training in April. I ate chips, hummus and drank green tea.
Then I cleaned the studio, came home and slipped on my back deck while unlocking my door. The entire back deck froze over.
Today is Manju! From 5:30-7:30 is primary led class and on Friday night is Mysore. I haven't done mysore with Manju yet.
So it will be nice to see him again and practice with him. I need to remember to bring my camera on Friday.
Here is a flyer that Stephanie just emailed out for the Training in April.
Sunday, February 1, 2009
The weekend has been exactly what I needed.
Friday night was fun. Headed to mysore class. Worked up a great sweat! I was placed in the middle of the room which means I was away from my comfort zone with a wall.
I went with it. I had a really great practice, nothing spectacular asana wise. Just a nice practice and the energy was great.
I made my personal goal of remembering all the asanas in the primary series and even had assistance with a dropback. I did however fall out of headstead (remember I didn't have a wall) I fell over and the face I saw was my teacher (helping the student in front of me) she was smiling ear to ear saying good job. It was so funny I had to laugh..and it was really loud. The poor guy in front of me was probably freaked out since he was in backbends. Whops!
After class I cleaned the studio and headed home.
Saturday we ran some errands & ended up being gone all day long. :(
I did find a nice small/tiny chest for my simple meditation alter.Denver helped me clean the house and fold laundry. We made tacos and nachos at home and watched TV and read.
Today was so nice. Denver decided not to go to Sunday Service; said we should try next weekend.
So today we made juice, and read on the sofa together for 3-4 hours. It was great. We made tea, then I made a pitcher of Red Tea with Chamomile and raw honey (yes I am still on the vegetarian route these days. Not so much vegan)
I did fit in a 30 minute short form out of my Davd Swenson manuel.
I have so many books I am reading. I am almost done with What Make you not a Buddhist, I am also reading Yoga Body, Buddha Mind. Personally I LOVE this book so far. Mixing Buddhism and Asana. Just the right book for me to reading right now.
It is keeping me from my texts that are required for the workshop in April. So I am going to get a little reading in with those tonight.
So, it was a nice weekend.
Tomorrow is Mysore class at 5:30. Tuesday & Friday is Manju! Tuesday=Primary Led Class & Friday is Mysore!
Here are some photos from today!
Juice!! Watermelon, Cucumber & Limes
My beloved juicer--cleaned up
Leftovers for the composte
My small meditation alter.
Yoga Space at home
The two reads I couldn't put down today
I really like Yoga Body, Buddha Mind
Home Practice out of David Swenson's book
30 Min Short Form