Doing Bikram Yoga Again because I’m Vane and Need Some Pain

We started going to Bikram yoga again.

I went to maybe four or five Bikram yoga classes in total over this last 9-12 month period.  One of them was accidental (ie I walked into the wrong room and sat there not realising, long enough to be too late for the class I was supposed to be in) and the other was forced (ie I couldn’t get into the class I wanted because it was full / booked out so went to Bikram instead).

The last 2 classes however were voluntary.  We went because we felt we needed it.  It only took a year to miss it 😉

The strange thing is, it’s not as bad as I expect it to be while I’m in there but by gosh I feel horrible afterwards.  My body aches and I’m always tired and I seem to be straining my neck a lot because I feel my shoulders and neck are so tense they cause me headaches for the next 2 days after class.

I’m also still losing large chunks of hair afterwards because my head drops hair when my body is hot and/or stressed.

Surprised I can still do the postures even though I hadn’t done them in ages.  Though my eagle is looking crooked these days and my initial back bends are more or less upright.

The rest of my postures are probably the same standard as they were before we stopped.  That is impressive.  It means vinyasa and yin have maintained our strength and flexibility overall so we can still do the movements we hadn’t done in ages.

So why did we feel we needed to do Bikram yoga again if the other yoga styles were maintaining/improving strength and flexibility already?  Vanity.

Bikram yoga is the only yoga that gets our skin soft and supple.  It gets rid of any lumps and bumps.  All the pimples and blackheads disappear because your pores open up and you just sweat it all out.

Bikram yoga is also the only yoga that’s gotten rid of my bingo wings, which have returned regardless of all the damned chaturangas I do and it’s not got to do with the postures but our diet.

You see, the only yoga that makes me change the way I eat is Bikram yoga.  That is because when you don’t eat well, you will feel it in that room or afterwards and after a while, you just get sick of feeling like sh*t all the time and so you either stop the Bikram or you change your diet.

Evidently I’m vane enough to go back just because I don’t like all my blocked pores or my wobbly arms and it’s the only way I know how to fix both.

Tony doesn’t like feeling “toxic” and according to him, Bikram yoga is the only thing that makes him feel like he’s eliminated all the toxins from his body.  He is convinced he’s wrung all the toxins out of his body through his sweat.

He is always the one moaning about not having enough vegetables and “eating too much junk”.  Those words are in inverted commas because he uses them every time he complains about the food we’ve eaten.  At the same time, he’s the one that’s always buying said junk and brings some home with him every day.

We now eat biscuits, cakes, crisps, crackers, chips, takeaway multiple times a day, every day and the only thing that’s going to stop us from continuing to do it is if we feel horrible afterwards.

Except, if you take the Bikram Yoga out of the following equations, we don’t feel anything but satisfied and full!

Eating Junk +  Bikram  Yoga = Feel Horrible / In Pain

Eat Well + Bikram  Yoga = Feel High as a kite

Whether you’re motivated by pain or gain, when it comes to diet, Tony and I have both found that Bikram Yoga is what is needed to make us change it.  So, we’re back.

Well, we all need something to motivate us to make changes / get in that room right?

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The Boys Turned One!!

It wasn’t much of a hooha, I didn’t even take pictures of them.  What kind of a furbaby parent am I?

It’s because Rome’s birthday coincided with the boiler maintenance and I had to clean the house and keep the boys in the hutch for most of the day.

Paris’ birthday was a couple of days later but he was in a mood.  He kept getting scared, ran away from any inkling of a pat and wanted to be left alone ALL DAY!!

I did give them a tonne of treats though, enough to make them super fat, obese even, if it weren’t just for a day.  I think they must’ve thought they won the jackpot when it happened.

I really thought rabbits would stop eating when they got full but these boys scoffed down those treats like it was nobody’s  business.

I also introduced them to new things like apple snacks (dried apple sprinkled with thyme according to the ingredients) and I accidentally bought and gave them some snacks which I thought were Alfalfa because they were called Alfalfa snacks but when I looked at the ingredients (after I gave it to them whoops!) it was mostly wheat and sugar!!! argh!!!

Needless to say, they LOVED it but I’m going to consider those snacks, the equivalent of a birthday cake and won’t give it to them ever again, well, maybe next birthday unless I find something healthier or make my own!

Rome was just like a kid.  He couldn’t decide if he wanted to run around or eat so, he’d run around as fast as he could, come back, take a bite of his treat and then run off again.  When I say as fast as he could, I mean FAST with skids, dodges, high jumps and everything.  He was happier than happy and really loving life on his birthday.  It’s as if he knew and was celebrating being alive!  Either that or the treats made him hyperactive 😉

Paris wasn’t the same.  He was more shy than ever which makes me think he must have had a traumatic birth OR it wasn’t actually his birthday when we thought.  He actually withdrew so much I felt really rejected because all my attempts at giving him affection were flipped off.

He’d take his treats and run away with them, to eat them in private, or wait until I wasn’t around before he’d come out to eat them.  He was so disconnected, neither Tony nor I were able to pat him for the entire day and so, he spent his birthday alone.

Although that makes me sad because I never think one should spend their birthday alone, if he got to spend the day how he wanted, then that’s what mattered.

He seemed pretty happy the next day and he’s been really  happy with being petted every day since.  Maybe the sugar in the treats made him tired and grumpy?  Go figure.

I’m just happy that they’ve learned to eat fruit!!  They’re now eating dried pineapple and papaya too!

Anyway, they are now 1 year old, fully grown adult bunnies with funny and uncannily opposite personalities.

Ah the dichotomy.

I can tell you that we love them both just as much as they hate each other!  (in other words, for life!) ❤

Why do we have so many things?

Things.  We have way too many.

I have things in Australia and things in the UK.

When Tony and I moved in together, he had all his things and I had all of mine, doubling our “thing” count.  I also found out that he too had some things in Australia as well as in the UK (quadrupling our thing count).

In order to fit all our things into a small 1 br flat, we threw away a lot, gave a lot to charity, gave some away to friends and still to this day, we are inundated with an abundance of things.

Just by receiving gifts or purchasing them and living in 2 different countries, I now have a minimum of 2 of everything.

I’ve sent bags and bags of clothes to the charity bins myself in London and I did the same in Australia.

There were things I gave away through PIFfing (Pay It Forward), some I got charities to come and pick up from me and some individuals came to pick things up for free.  It included large furniture, near-new mattresses, kitchen items, books, electronics and all sorts.  Some I sold.

I actually did this in Australia as well as in the UK!!

But it seems no matter how much I let go of, I didn’t make a dent in my overcrowded cupboard and drawer space.

konmariallthethings

You know I read her book a couple of years ago?

I only managed to do it with clothes, shoes, bags and jewellery and you know what happened?  I GOT MORE!!!!!!  I didn’t even buy them.  It was all given to me.

The universe abhors a vacuum.

I learned that if you want anything, you must first create a vacuum / a space for it and because the universe abhors a vacuum, that thing you want and created space for, will fill that space.

This belief has worked so much for me that cleaning out my cupboards created a vacuum.  The problem is, I  never thought of what I wanted to fill the space so now, I just have more of what I got rid of, sitting where the old things used to be.

The cupboards I Konmaried (I can’t believe I used that as a verb) are still neat, just really, REALLY squishy.

I had a dream a couple of nights ago where I visited a neighbourhood where people hung all their unused jackets, bags and toys outside of their house like decoration (imagine a 3D version of a ginger bread house).  I wondered why when people had 2-3 story houses, they hung things outside and was told that they did this because their houses were too small to store all their things.

It made sense to them but with each house I went past, I just repeated the same questions, “Why do they have so much stuff?  Do they even need it all?”

And so now I ask myself, why do we have so many things?

I’ve recently just taken another bag of clothes to charity and some plant pots but our home is still full.

It seems, it is time for me to do some Konmari-ing once again and this time, I think I should do it properly.  ie just like the  poster says, KONMARI ALL THE THINGS.

Now THIS is going to be interesting!!

Why Bunnies? Why Two?

When we tell people we have bunnies for pets, we actually get asked, “Why bunnies?” and when they hear about the crazy things we have to deal with, they will ask “Why did you get two boys?!”

I’m going to explain here so I don’t have to repeat myself over and over.

I had rabbits as pets when I was younger, I found them to be super intelligent, very loving and quite cheeky.  Other than the chewing and the occasional digging, they are quiet.  They can also be litter trained and they clean themselves so you don’t have to wash them, they run around themselves so you don’t have to walk them and the extra bonus is that THEY ARE SO CUTE AND FLUFFY!

Why boys?  Because boys in my experience were always nicer and more accommodating.  The girls were fiercely territorial and quite violent (lunging at and biting you and other rabbits) in comparison.

What I didn’t remember was that my experience was only of what bucks (male rabbits) were like with the does (female rabbits) and humans, not with each other – I’d never had 2 boys!!

Tony has never had pets in his life and wanted a dog so we went to Battersea Cats and Dogs Home to see if there were any suitable companions.  All the dogs were HUGE and the little ones were so energetic they might as well take up the space of a big dog.

Also the little one that was there kept pissing everywhere in its excitement and I wasn’t really looking forward to having to clean up piss from all over the floor constantly.  Little did I know I’d end up with that situation anyway with 2 boy rabbits!

Our place isn’t that big so we knew it just wouldn’t suit to have a dog cooped up inside.  I hate going outside in the freezing cold but I know if there was a dog, I’d be the one to have to walk it outside every single day for a couple of hours of play.  I’m alright for this in the summer but definitely not in the winter.  No yard means compulsory and multiple outdoors visits in the cold for me too and I wasn’t keen on that at all!

I’d settle for a cat.  Except, well, I’m allergic to cats.  On a good day, I’d get the sniffles after many hours with them.  On a bad day, I find it hard to breathe with only a tiny bit of fur (not even the cat) present.

So rabbits it was.

We picked them up and they arrived in our home on 31st December 2016.  They were 3.5 month old boys.  They are not brothers but they were kept in the same play area together and looked like they got on.  They were the only two in their play area and were snuggled up to each other.

Thinking of getting only one, we decided that 2 were better together so they could play and keep each other company and snuggle together when they needed more warmth.  We also didn’t want to split up their friendship if they’d already made one.  So, we got them both.

The advantage of having one bunny is that because they are social animals, the one bunny will want to interact and so the bond between you and the bunny will grow quite quickly.   You can then dedicate all your time to this one bunny and train them to do little tricks.  Rabbits learn very quickly!

The disadvantage is that if you are not around to give it the time and interaction and affection it needs, the bunny will get quite lonely, bored and depressed.

Rabbits are very social beings, if you think about how they live, they live in warrens of large groups.  They are used to having company.

If you keep a rabbit by itself, you have everything else in your life including it but… all it has in its life is you and you don’t even speak its’ language!

As much as we think we’ll be enough, I don’t think we are ever going to be the same as another bunny friend.

When there are two bunnies, they are great emotional support for each other and can encourage play and confidence in each other plus they get to display normal bunny behaviour with someone who understands their language perfectly.

They have each other as well as you, so psychologically and emotionally, it is much better for them.  Though, bonding and interacting between you and them can be slower.

What I didn’t factor in however, was that having two also means the possibility of them fighting and not getting on at all, as they got older,  which is what happened to us.

This is more painful than having one, on any given day.  Now you have 2 individual rabbits that need your time separately!  So, this is when the whinging and all my stories of fisty-cuffs comes in.

We’ve managed quite well living with them for 8+ months now.  The fights started in the beginning when their hormones kicked in so we separated them.

They fought again when we tried to make them friends (after neutering) and put them together (forced bonding) but when we realised it wasn’t going to happen and they’d rather kill each other than live together, we’ve kept them apart and it’s all been very calm and peaceful.  They’ve been quite happy binkying about in their own respective areas.

That is, until the other day when Rome got through the fence, intruded on Paris’ area and they fought, unsupervised because we were out of the house at the time.  We came home to a lounge room full of clumps of fur everywhere and drops of blood.

I think it’s fair to say, ours our now enemies for life and will fight to the death if they ever get together for long enough and especially when we’re not around.

Needless to say, we’ve been extra cautious with the fencing and have been watching them when we see them both on either side of the same fence.  They’ve still managed to inflict injury on each other that way.

SO…. if there was any advice I’d give to anyone considering getting a rabbit, I would still recommend getting 2 but I would suggest that when you get them:
a) they are already neutered
b) they are already bonded (after neutering)

I must stress that you choose bunnies who have been neutered FIRST before being bonded.  We chose rabbits that bonded before being neutered and there is a risk that the bond breaks once the hormones kick in and they start fighting for territory or dominance.

It turns out that fighting happens with any sex combination so it doesn’t matter if you get girl-girl, boy-boy or girl-boy combos, when the hormones kick in, anything can happen.  You could be lucky and they remain bonded but it’s hard to tell beforehand what will happen.

If you’re getting them young, choose siblings from the same litter otherwise, just get one rabbit, get it neutered THEN take it to a shelter to go bunny dating, so it can find its own friend/partner for life (preferably one that is already neutered as well).

If I could do it all again, that’s what I would do.

As mentioned, rabbits are quite territorial but females tend to be very protective of their territory (must be the instinct to protect their nest) so I would get a male first, get it neutered, then take it to a rabbit shelter to get a female companion.

When they meet, it will be in neutral territory at the shelter.  They’ll be introduced to several different bunnies but one at a time, to see which is the best match.  When a match is found, they usually stay overnight at the shelter together for a couple of days just to make sure that they really do get on with each other, before you bring them both home.

When you bring them home, the male will be more easy going with welcoming the female into its home territory than the other way around which is why I suggest getting the male first.

We don’t regret getting the two we have though.  Even though they’ve turned out to be more work having to do everything twice and buying 2 of everything and spending time separately with them, they are beautiful boys and it’s been a real pleasure getting to know them.

Paris is lovely and well behaved.  He doesn’t bite anything or go anywhere unless he has permission (except when he’s planning his revenge on Rome).  He will sit for ages and bunny purr when you pat him.  Sometimes however, he’s so shy he won’t let you touch him at all so he rejects all your attention and spends a lot of time by himself just lying around in his hutch.  He takes a lot of coaxing to stick around and would rather hide than play.

Rome is more outgoing so will always greet us for pats but with that personality also comes the need for a lot of attention.  He is ultra curious and will test all boundaries by chewing, pushing, biting, scratching at, jumping over, through, under anything and everything.  It is very entertaining but it also tests our boundaries and sometimes, we end up wanting to strangle him.

They are polar opposites of each other which is why it’s so hard for them to get along but how are you to know this just by seeing them at the pet store cuddling side by side?

Now that we know their personalities, we’ve pretty much realised that you can’t force them to be together if they don’t like each other.

We’re also struggling with the decision to let one go and replace him with a female.  How do you choose?  They’re pretty much family now and both have good and bad qualities about them.

So instead of choosing between them, I dream that one day they can meet their life partners and I daydream that maybe if they had partners, they’d be kinder to each other and their partners would help dissipate any bad blood between them and they could all actually get along together.

That would however, mean having 4 rabbits… like I didn’t have enough work as it is!!  For that we need a bigger place.  Ahhh… nothing like kids/furbabies to get you taking on a larger mortgage hey?   It’s either that or choosing between them!

Have you seen that clip where someone offers $100K for people’s dogs?  Every single person said no.  I feel like this is one of those decisions… hmmm I say I love them but how much do I really love them?  LOL