Category Archives: Yoga

All things yoga because we love it.

2018 Week 17 Summary

Blog for week ending 26th April 2018

This is the week that Tony’s cousin arrived from LA.  He’s here for work but has mentioned that the work pace is so slow here compared to how they operate in the US of A, he almost feels like he’s on a holiday.

It seems the concept of work-life balance, looks like “lazy” to him.  Whereas we see that gung ho American attitude as OTT, unnecessary stress.

I must admit, coming from Sydney to here, I noticed the difference in pace too. Things that would take 1 day in Sydney, took about a week to get done here.  Things that would take 10 mins in Sydney, I would have to wait 3 days for and it used to drive me nuts but after 13 years of being here, I’ve finally become accustomed to it.  Sh*t just doesn’t work here, that’s why people complain… they’re not called whinging poms for nothing.  If things worked, what would they do with themselves?

Still, our time is so limited on this planet, why spend it all at work?  Especially if people don’t like their jobs… the beautiful, wonderful, idea of the work-life balance allows you some time out from the daily grind.  Work some, rest some, play some… I much prefer this way of living, any given day.

Paris & Rome
After searching quite a bit for organic hay for the boys, it’s come to my attention that no Timothy Hay growers have labelled their hay “organic” in the UK.  Well, none that I could find anyway.  The reason for that is because they use herbicides around the crop at the early stages of growing.  Argh!!!

It pains me to know that I’m feeding my bunnies herbicidal hay.  I found organically grown hay but it wasn’t Timothy Hay.  It was another form which I got a sample of and the bunnies absolutely LOVED.  Sounds great right? Well no, the hay is too soft so as much as it helps bunnies’ digestive tracts and is chemical free, it does nothing to help them keep their teeth ground down which will mean having to take them to the vet just to get their teeth burred.

Which is worse?  Cancer from eating too much herbicide or constant trips to the vet so they can open your mouth and grind down your teeth with a machine?  The crap we do to animals seriously…  where is the choice for NEITHER?!!

So until I find an organic form of Timothy Hay which I’m still on the lookout for, I bought for them a bag of a mix of oat and Timothy Hay.  Unfortunately, the smallest bag I could get from this new supplier (who also make that organic soft hay) was a giant 9.5kg bag which is the size of our dining table.  It’s taken up the entire lounge.  It’s one of those giant bales that belong in a stable to feed horses.

The best part is that it turns out that I am allergic to it.  Yes, that was sarcasm.  Every day since bringing this hay into the house, each time I open the bag to feed them, my eyes and the back of my nose and throat get really itchy.

Now I have a giant bag of hay that I’m allergic to sitting in the lounge that I am in contact with every day.  It will take them several months (or more) to finish this bag which means I’m going to be like this for several months.  FML.  Me and my bright ideas!!

I also bought the bunnies some hay toppers and all natural pellets.  I bought from a company that sources all their products from Europe and so all the labels are in German.  However, I love the choice, there was so much product to choose from, that had ZERO wheat, ZERO rice, ZERO corn, ZERO soy and ZERO sugar (apart from any naturally occurring in the plant), ZERO fruit!!! So I can feed them now lots of leaves and flowers ORGANIC too.  God bless the EU.  None of that stuff exists in the UK without importing, so will become very expensive soon enough 😦

The boys didn’t receive simple organic leaves and flowers very well.  It’s like trying to feed vegetables (not even fruit) to kids who have only known donuts and biscuits but they’re becoming better with it as each day progresses.

Home, House and Completions
Since Tones’ cousin is here, we are not doing any works to fix the flat.  He has seen it as it is and pretty much told us that our entire flat is the size of his bedroom.

People always think I’m over exaggerating when I tell them our place is small.  It’s been likened to living on a boat.  Some “Tiny Homes” that people build are BIGGER than our place.

It sounds like I’m making it up but when he saw our place he actually laughed sheepishly when I said “and you thought I was lying….”

I know it’s hard to imagine but it’s true.  Our place, the lounge, dining, kitchen, bedroom AND bathroom altogether were smaller than his cousin’s bedroom in the USA.

Yes, 4 of us (Tony, myself, Paris & Rome) live in a shoebox that needs constant repair!!  Do I sound like a whinging pom yet?  This is why you can’t work all day because there are things in the house that constantly need fixing!!

Tones and Joy

Mental Health
This week I continued to clear the inbox and managed to get it down to 125 emails.  PHEW!  Progress feels great.
Got a little behind on my French Lessons though so a catch up is needed.

Physical Health
We found out this week that our favourite yoga class, the only class we actually go to at the studio and my only form of exercise for the last few months, has been cancelled due to lack of interest.  It was there as a trial and not enough people turned up for it to warrant continuing, or so, that’s what they told us.

Huge disappointment.  Although I cancelled my yearly yoga subscription to the studio, I am attached to them via a min. 4 month contract paying £65 per month for 5 class passes per month and it only just started which means I have to find alternative classes to what I really want, so I can use up my class passes, until August.

If they’d told me BEFORE I signed up to the 4 month, 5 class pass that they were going to cancel the only class I attend, I might have made a different decision.   Now I’m totally demotivated to do any exercise at all because whichever class I do, it’s not really the one I want.

On the up side, I went to the dental hygienist this week, after 8 months of zero checks (big deal given my dental history) and she said I was all good.  When I asked her when I had to see her next she said, “Well, normally 6 months but….just see how you go… I mean, it’s been 8 months and everything’s fine!!! So yeah, 6…… or so….just see how you go.”  I understood that was her way of saying “I’m supposed to tell you 6…. you read between the lines.”  I’m happy with that.

She also said that my gums show that I am stress free.  Did you know that the amount of stress you are under shows on your gums?  I asked her to explain and she said that you can tell just how stressed a person is by how inflamed their gums are.  Usually stressed people are tenser so they brush their gums harder which can cause inflammation and generally, their gums become inflamed anyway when stressed.  Interesting right?

I thought back to when I had the worst of my gum problems and what job I was doing and what was going on in my life at the time and I’d have to agree.  I was REALLY stressed.  These days…. I’ve gotten rid of the crappy jobs that work me to the bone and pay me nothing, I’ve gotten rid of the bosses that expect way more than they’re paying for, I’ve cleared a lot of emotional issues and worked through grief, and I meditate and low and behold, my gums are good ie strong and resilient so they recover faster even if I’m not being strict with my oral hygiene routine!!

Spiritual Health
Still meditating every day though sometimes I do it so late that my app misses recording it for certain dates.  My consecutive day tally is now only ever between 1 and 4.

Emotional Health
Emotionally, I think I’m alright this week.  A bit whingey, so not as clear as last week after the Kinesiologist visit but alright and as my gums are showing, compared to the past, I am brilliant.

Financial Health
Due to not being able to enter over a certain number of transactions on the Mobills app in any given month, I stopped using it, in order to work out what would be the next best approach.  The result?  I’m continuing to use the app but not breaking the receipts down into so much detail.  So far so good.  Also I am considering paying for the premium service but won’t do it unless I really need it.

Social Health
After his arrival, we’ve spent a lot of time with Tones’ cousin and our going out / eating out began.  We started him off gently, to allow him to settle into the country and recover from any jetlag he may have been feeling but it turns out he didn’t have any jetlag at all!

He arrived on the Saturday.  We went here as our first port of call because it was close to where he was staying, it was dinner time, I was hungry and we were getting really lost in that building.  It was expensive for Middle Eastern food but what do you expect for a restaurant in Harrod’s?  I’m not sure why but my guess is that Tony decided not to take pictures that day and I have no photos of the food at all 😦

The  next day, Sunday, we were invited over for a BBQ at our friends’ place who live in the same neighbourhood as us, so we all went there for the day.  Again, no photos… sorry.  It gets better next week, I promise!

So as not to disappoint with zero pictures, let me do a throw back to circa June 2015.  Yup… 3 years ago when we visited STAX Diner at Kingly Court.  This is back when we did a LOT of yoga (sometimes over 7 times per week) and so we just ate anything and everything… Tony was even considering doing their ultimate burger eating challenge… to eat 5 x patty and 5 x cheese burger, fries and supersized milkshake in under 15 mins.  I think he’d be avoiding that right now.  I tell you, we are missing the days when we could eat everything AND stay skinny.  Oh how things change in 3 years!!!

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2018 Week 14 Summary

Blog for week ending April 05 2018.

I’ve read some things on addiction this week and have opened my mind to understanding that addictions aren’t just of substances but can be of anything in life (shopping, eating, gambling, sex etc).

Basically, anything that you do incessantly because it satisfies a deep craving or gives temporary relief (usually from pain).  Addictions are only a problem when they have negative consequences associated with them.

On reflecting on my activities during the day and night, there are 3 things that would fall into the addiction category:
1.  Browsing Facebook feed / the web
2.  Playing “Township”
3.  Watching series / movies

There are positives to each of those activities but the negative consequences far outweigh those positives.  That negative is time spent.  Time that I will never get back.  Time that I cannot spend doing something else.  Time is worth more than money.  If you lose money, you can get it back but once time has passed, it’s gone.

The other negative is sleep.  Most of the time when I go to bed at 3am, it’s because I’m doing one of the above.  The bags under my eyes exist and I’m tired from lack of sleep every morning because of one of those 3 things.  When I think about it like that, those 3 things are so not worth it!

All of it is screen time and so my eyes remain focused on one distance for extended periods of time and I wonder why my eyesight isn’t as good as it used to be or why my eyes are dry!!  Methinks it’s time to dramatically reduce my screen time and curb those addictions!

Paris & Rome
The boys have been happy and quite surprisingly well behaved, especially after last week’s adventures with multiple chewed up cords.

Tony spent 4 full days at home over the Easter long weekend and this influenced the boys’ behaviour.  They’re both cautious around Tony.  It’s because Tones is heavy footed and tends to move loudly and suddenly.  For example, he sits very still when reading or working.  He can do this for hours at a time but then when he moves to get up, he’ll jerk the seat back, drop the phone, move things around the table and then thud the floor with his foot while attempting to put his slippers on.  The sudden kerfuffle scares both bunnies.

The difference is, Rome will stop to listen and watch out for anything peculiar before deciding to run, Paris will just bolt straight into his hutch, even if he’s in the middle of eating or toileting.

During the 4 day long weekend, after multiple times bolting back into his hutch, Paris eventually spent all day every day in there, hardly ever coming out.  He even bit Tony when Tones attempted to move his pellets closer to him.  We reckon he was having an issue with Tony cleaning around his hutch and play area as he’s used to only me doing that.

As soon as Tuesday hit and Tones went back to work, Paris was out and about, running, jumping and binkying, as usual again.

His current “thing to do today” (he’s been doing it every day for the last 3 days) is to pull out the newspaper from his litter tray.  It’s a miracle.  The newspaper sits underneath some absorbent wood pulp and hay which he’s supposed to wee and poo on.  He actually manages to pull out the newspaper without spilling any wood pulp or hay outside of the litter tray.  Unbelievable.  I don’t know how he does it and I don’t know why he does it but  “Look Ma!  No hands!”

Home, House and Completions
I finally got my act together and sorted out my hair.  I usually grow my hair to really long and then chop it to a bob and then wait until it grows really long again before I go for another hair cut.

Usually I just have the hairdresser sweep it up off the floor and throw it into the bin but this time my hairdresser suggested I cut it off in a ponytail and send it off to The Princess Trust so they could make a little wig using it.  I thought this was a much better use of hair and so I’ve now finally sent it off.  It’s been sitting in an envelope, on the table for months!  Hopefully they can do something with it.

My hair that I sent to Princess Trust

I also collected a bag of unwanted, unworn, no longer used items of clothing from the cupboard and dropped them off to the clothes charity bin.

Another completion which is quite a relief is that I sent a very late birthday card.  I’m talking 10+ YEARS late. I bought the card 10 years ago and kept forgetting to send it.  Well it’s done now!  I never have to “remember” to do it, ever again!

I packed and sent a thank you gift – one that I really should have sent back in January but hey ho.  This is what completions are about.  Just getting stuff that’s been hanging over your head for ages, finally completed.

Lastly, I’m reactivating my kefir grains.  Someone at the yoga studio asked for some so I promised her I’d give her active ones instead of the stored ones we had in the fridge.  It’s going to take a few cycles and I’m up to the 2nd one but it’s getting there.

With those things sorted and wanting to surprise Tony with a treat, I made a  cinnamon bun cake using almond flour.

Cinnamon Bun Cake

Given the name, I thought it would taste like Cinnabon which I know he likes, but it didn’t.  Still, Tony really liked it and asked if I could make it again.

It seems I’m becoming OK with this baking thing.  I always think that it’s not good enough and Tony is just very encouraging or forgiving of me.  Being very critical of my results, I haven’t yet found the confidence to let others beyond Tony, tell me what they think.

Tones and Joy

Mental Health
Considering addictions are things we do to find relief from pain, I pondered on my reasons for movie watching, game playing and Facebook browsing and it’s pretty simple.  I’m procrastinating and therefore using screen time and looking like I’m doing work, to avoid actually doing work.  It’s as simple as that.

I would rather do any of those 3 things than clean the bunny hutch and vacuum every nook and cranny that has bunny fur, do the finance admin, clean the toilet or clear the clutter and list things for sale online.

This is why I take years to get anything done.  Those completions I listed above were just put off for months and years!  Except when I actually just got it all sorted, it was done in a couple of hours.  WTF?  Definitely a wake up call.

Meanwhile, Tones has been watching various videos on Quantum Mechanics with his eyes closed.  Haha.  I love it.  Every time he has a hard time understanding something, he closes his eyes.  That’s when you know he’s REALLY concentrating.

Physical Health
Declaring that I will sleep earlier hasn’t worked.  We’re still getting to bed at 1.30am and the long weekend made it worse.  It seems with nothing to do the next day, Tony and I don’t care if we’re up until 4am surfing the net or playing games.  We’ve been doing this for years and have proven that old habits die hard.

Rome hasn’t helped either.  I suppose he’s used to sleeping late too.  Last night we attempted to get to bed early but he refused to get with the program and wouldn’t go into his litter to be carried into his hutch to go to bed.  The result was, instead of getting to bed at 11pm, we got to bed at 12.30am.

My yearly yoga membership has expired too and after collating feedback from people on FB, the consensus was to “Use a Class Pass”.  So that’s what I’m going to do.  I also managed to do a tripod headstand in my one yoga class a week, this week and lifted my knees off of my arms!  I never managed to straighten my legs or body and collapsed shortly after lifting my legs but it was progress!

Having failed on my sleeping goals, I immersed myself in watching health and nutrition documentaries to remind myself to stay healthy and the result from that is that I am on smoothies for 2 meals a day, since Tuesday.

We’ve had smoothies for breakfast every single day for the last 4-5 years now, can’t remember when it started but it’s about that.  Now I’m going to have smoothies for lunch too.  It’s not for weightloss.  God knows I’ve lost no weight by drinking smoothies every morning.

Besides, I leave the morning smoothies to Tones to make and all he puts in there is 1 banana each plus superfoods and that’s it.  Sometimes an avocado, sometimes berries.

Starting today I’m making my own breakfast smoothies and having lunch time smoothies specifically to ensure I eat more fruit and vegetables, equivalent of the min 5-a-day (or  more) requirement.

Getting to sleep early is still on the cards.  Perhaps reducing my screen time activities, increasing physical work via cleaning and eating more vegetables will actually help.  We have yet to see the results of this new experiment.

Spiritual Health
Apart from life chugging along like it ain’t no thang and all the tweaks I’ve been able to make as each week goes by, there isn’t anything to report in this arena this week.  We continue to meditate every day.

Emotional Health
I’ve noticed that nothing has sent me off the rails in either positive or negative directions lately.  I’ve been pretty even keel for a while which is amazing!

Even my annoyance at Rome chewing wires last week was nothing more than wanting to whinge which was gone as soon as I found a replacement wire the next day.  So emotionally, I think it’s very safe to say I’ve made a massive improvement from times gone by!

Financial Health
I sought and I found.  After what felt like hours and hours of research, I managed to find an app I could use for managing our finances.

Coincidentally (or is it..?) I found it just in time for the start of the new Financial Year, UK.  We’re now using Mobills for our personal expense recording and budgeting.  Can’t say much about it because I only just downloaded it 2 nights ago but so far so good.  All of April’s expenses have now been recorded on it.  This new financial year is looking more organised!

That’s the “summary”.  Tones suggested last week I split this into 2 blogs.  If my blogs continue to be this long, it’s looking more and more like that’s what I need to do!

See you next week x

Bikram Yoga: My body says No!

So, it’s been a while since I said we were returning to Bikram Yoga.

We went to one class which I felt absolutely fine in, as if I’d never left.

Soon after however, I caught a cold/cough and spent a week recovering.  I haven’t been sick like that in over a year.

Then just as I was recovering from that, my grandma passed away so I spent a week hiding away dealing with my grief.

I thought that was enough and I was better.

Committed to what I said about returning to Bikram yoga, I just went for my first class in 2-3 weeks on Tuesday.  This time, I couldn’t hack it.  I sat down a lot.  I felt emotional, my back was tight, I felt dizzy.

After class Tony just said “You looked weak.”

We had to go grocery shopping afterwards and I didn’t have the energy.  My back wouldn’t let up, it was like muscles tightening in my back more and more but stopping just before a cramp.

I started to feel anxious and the tension crept up to my neck causing a long and intense aching like my head was in a vice.  I wished right there and then I could just curl up into a ball and go to sleep but I had to walk home carrying heavy groceries.

Tony carried most of it but there was too much for him to be able to carry it all himself.  For the first time in over 10 years, I really wished we had a car.

After we got home, I just lay down and didn’t want to do anything.  I felt like I had my period and even started bleeding just like I had it.

My eyes were bloodshot.  I was not in a good way.

Before I went to bed I noticed a red mark on my hand.  It looked like an insect bite.  I ignored it and by the time I woke up, I had about 3 more insect bites on my palm and a couple on the back of my hand.  They were really itchy so naturally, I scratched them and the ones on my palm blew up into a full blown blistery rash that both hurt and itched horribly, by the end of the day.

Of course I consulted Dr Google about it.  It seems I’ve developed some kind of eczema caused by stress (and humid conditions) or I’m having an allergic reaction to whatever insect has bitten me.  If it’s  neither of those, I’ve contracted yet another disgusting skin disease from a sweaty mat.

As for the bleeding after exercise, it can be caused by stress.  Sometimes the stress on the body due to the intensity of the exercise can change the hormone balance, causing the body to act like it’s time to menstruate.  It’s either that or, it’s something a woman goes through before she gets to menopause (bleed between periods).

I have noticed however, bleeding only happens after exercise and the amount of bleeding correlates with how spent I feel after the exercise.   No bleeding happened during the time I didn’t exercise at all so it’s more likely caused by physical stress rather than menopausal.

Great.  (Read in the most sarcastic way you can hear it.)

Either way, it’s scary and all been triggered with Bikram and all those symptoms listed are a sign that my immune system is not coping well with stress.

It’s not like I pushed myself that much.  I sat out half of almost every standing posture after eagle but my body is telling me that even that was way too much for it to deal with!

I said I was going back to Bikram because I was in need of pain but this is not what I meant.

The good news?  My plan worked.  I went back to Bikram to help  me change my diet.  If I hurt enough, I’d learn to eat better.

Well, in the last 2 days we’ve eaten much better (no chips or cookies)and are more determined and motivated than ever to continue it.

 

All in order to help me recover quickly from these horrible ailments and so Tony doesn’t feel so “toxic” anymore.

Side note – we are still eating out occasionally and put no restrictions on what we eat when we eat out.

My bleeding stopped the next day.  The eczema is still there.  It’s only been a day so I’ll give it a week or so, to clear completely.

Since illness is a symptom of immune deficiency and we haven’t had kefir for a couple of months, I’ve started us drinking that again too.  Improved gut health through increased probiotics means an improved immune system and improved immunity means quick recovery and less sickness!

As for increasing the number of Bikram classes I attend, for now, for this body, it’s a complete no go.

Until my body starts dealing with physical stress a bit better and my immune system has improved, I am going to Bikram minimally.  I think once a week, if that, will do just fine and even then, unless I’m feeling super strong, I’ll probably spend most of my time sitting.

That will be interesting!  I have never walked out of a Bikram class and for the most part, until I got injured (pain in my butt), I never sat out any postures either.  Now I’m sitting out quite a bit.  To me this is already taking it easy.

It seems, I’m still learning what “take it easy” means.  So many times I think I’m taking it easy, that I’m pretty much lazing about and then I get sick, I get injured or I  post exercise bleed and get eczema – all indications of what my body really thinks of my version of taking it easy.

Besides, I achieved my purpose of going back, which was to eat better.  If I’m doing that, there’s no point overdoing it just ’cause.

As the teachers always say, you only do as much as you can, with the body that you have, that day.  My body right now, is saying “No way Jose!  Not today.  I do not want to play!”

If only I knew how to listen to it before it has to scream like this.  So much changes inside, you never see it until these symptoms come up and usually by then, it’s been festering for a while.  I wonder how you recognise it before it does this because that would be way more useful.

Isn’t it interesting though, that none of these symptoms came up until I did Bikram again?!  I guess that room is a pressure test, a great way to find your breaking point and bring symptoms up to the surface so you can resolve the issues!!

Well, we obviously could feel something was off, otherwise we wouldn’t have felt the need to go back.

The good thing is, at least I’ve started the process for change and healing now.  As with many healing crises, it always feels worse before it gets better.

I’m really hoping now that this is the worst and soon it will get better.  For now, I think it’s time to learn how to chill out even more and monitor my symptoms for improvement.

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?

Avoiding Bikram Yoga and now Starting to miss it

It’s a short one today just to say that I’ve been avoiding Bikram Yoga and people are noticing.

“We don’t see you in the classes anymore!”

Well, it’s simple, I’ve probably done all of 3 Bikram classes in the last 5 months.

I actually lose less hair by staying away.  That is, I now have much more hair remaining on my head because I’m not exposing myself to the heat – I drop hair like crazy in the hot room.

But there are disadvantages like I don’t get to do toe stand anymore and camels are just as non-existent.  Not that I liked camels, I hated them.  And, I’m getting fat around my belly again.  Hey ho.  You win some you lose some.

So what am I doing instead?  Yin and the occasional Vinyasa.  On the upside my hips are opening up and my crow is getting better.  I’m hating the chaturanga dandasanas but hey… you win some, you lose some!

I’m loving the yin though.  Yesterday I fell asleep and only woke up to switch postures.  Ahhhh my life feels so much more balanced when I do yin.  Being a very yang person within my entire being, the yin actually helps a lot.

So yes, I’m starting to miss Bikram yoga.  I don’t miss the heat, I miss the postures and feel like I’ve forgotten how to move my body in those ways (eg holding awkward pose).  I probably won’t be able to do any of the postures when I go to a class.

Methinks it’s time to start looking at my posture progress again to see if having spent time away has made a difference.  Curious to find out.

Has it been a week already?

When you’re young, a day feels like eternity but it seems the older you get, 1 week goes by in a blink of an eye.

Highlights of the week:

Ada’s Visit
A friend from Australia that I hadn’t seen for over a decade visited.  She was in London for less than 24 hours but still managed to squeeze me in for a catch up.

I chose a restaurant near where she was staying.  It was the German Gymnasium at Kings Cross.  They serve… German food.  Ha!

Anyway, it’s in a Grade II listed building and named German Gymnasium because the building was the first, purpose built Gymnasium in England with funding coming solely from London’s German community.

The building was built in 1865 so we ate dinner (I had a German afternoon tea) inside a 150 year old building.

Yin with Sharky
Yoga which has been my life for so long, was pretty non-existent because – January.

You have to book ALL your classes in otherwise they’re all full due to all those well-intentioned New Years Resolutions people who disappear by Feb.

I managed to book classes from mid Jan through to Feb and thought by February for sure, the classes would start being freer but it wasn’t to be.

So I have spent many days not going to yoga because the classes have been booked out and I hadn’t booked myself in, in time.

Can you imagine?  Attempting to book yourself in 2 days in advance is still not long enough.  FARK!

I did manage to get to one of Sharky’s first Yin classes and I loved it.  She did a different method to the other teachers and allowed time for “rebound” between each posture.

Rebound is a savasana in between every posture to allow whatever released in each posture, to move through and exit or integrate into, the body.

The result?  I ended up getting really teary and emotional.  I actually felt emotions releasing from my body and I was so grateful to be able to feel them so I could let them go.

It only lasted a few seconds though because as soon as Tony saw me looking teary, “WHY ARE YOU CRYING?” came out of his mouth and it was so abrupt and harsh, I immediately cut off all emotions and went back to thinking mode.

I got skillz like that.

Actually, he managed to say it just like my mother used to.  I know he said it out of concern but I heard it the way my mum said it which meant “Stop being a pussy, you have no reason to cry and if you don’t stop I’ll fucking give you a reason to cry.”  That’s the mild version. 😉

So I stopped.  IMMEDIATELY.  I’ll just have to find a way to cry at times he’s not around so I can release emotions in peace.

Paris & Rome
Another week in peace.  Both boys are really happy and binky every day.

Paris does the cutest binkies ’cause he’s so chunky like a bulldog and bottom heavy.  So he looks more like a jumping goat or ram when he binkies.

Rome has started to jump on my arm and shoulder.  Last night he sat on my shoulder and every so often would turn to lick my face – cheek, eyelid, eyebrows, temple, forehead.  Then he’d jump down and jump up onto my other shoulder and tug at my hair.

I know he’s just looking for a way over the fence and using me as a viewing platform but I like to think we’ve developed a good bond plus I’m loving all my bunny kisses!  He loves kissing my nose.

He’s still incredibly mischievous, spends a lot of his time in meerkat position, listening out for what Paris might be doing and he’s completely chewed up the skirting board instead of the chew mat we gave him because he thinks breaking the skirting board will help him escape the fence.

We keep him fenced because although the more loving of the two, he’s also the trouble maker.

He is so curious he gets himself into all sorts of trouble – biting things he shouldn’t, falling off things he shouldn’t have jumped on in the first place and starting fights by annoying the crap out of Paris by not letting him have space.

The other day he fell down the stairs 3 times in one day (that I saw)all because he kept standing on 2 feet on the edge of the step and then leaning backwards.  Don’t ask.

He’s been contained in the hallway with plenty of run space including the stairs and the bathroom but it doesn’t stop him from attempting to  break the fence and looking for FREEDOM!!!

I’m also having a battle of the bathroom with him.

After a week of watching Tony and I go toilet (he’s in the hallway so we have to pass him every single time and sometimes he follows us into the bathroom), he stopped pissing and pooing anywhere but the bathroom!

He just chose to go in the shower because he can’t reach the toilet.

Unfortunately, we have to keep clearing his poo and pee before we have a shower and he gets very frustrated with us because every time we clean it, we’re effectively saying he’s not allowed to pee and poo there, and therefore he has nowhere to go toilet.

So then of course he’ll poo and pee outside of the shower as well as in the shower, using the entire bathroom floor as his toilet which makes it difficult for us to go in there and use the toilet ourselves.

I put a litter in the bathroom for him and it’s taken a couple of days but I think he’s coming around to the idea that this is his new place to go toilet because there is much less poo anywhere but the litter.

Although the chew mat I bought is completely intact for Rome, Paris’ is almost completely torn apart and non-existent.

Paris actually only chews the things we give him to chew and he knows EXACTLY which is for him and which is not.

A perfect example is that he has a cardboard box he chews on, we give them cardboard boxes a lot.  Yet, I’ve left cardboard boxes full of my eBay stock out right next to his play area without any fences.

He can walk right up to them and start chewing on them, pissing on them, whatever he likes really and he leaves them untouched!

He has identified what is ok for him and what will get him into trouble and he really has behaved himself so we’ve removed the fence and he’s running “free range”.

He actually just stays in his area!!  He’s recently started to explore under the couch but he has steered clear of the hallway and gone nowhere near the only fence that keeps him apart from Rome.

So far so good.  Unsure how long this will last but we’ll see.

Paris has also started to approach us more and nudges us for treats which is much better than running away!

Still hates getting patted but he tolerates it a bit more before running away.  He also has no problems standing on our feet when he’s begging and asking us for treats.  We didn’t teach him, he just does it.

Overall we have 2 very happy bunnies and we’re finally starting to understand their personalities.

Because only their scent is on their stuff, they’re not marking territory as much as they used to.

That means there’s barely any poo outside of their litter and hutch and they’re not pissing outside of their designated litters at all.  I knew they were supposed to be easy to toilet train!!

All they needed was to be separated and feel safe about what is THEIR space.

Our house no longer smells as bad (either that or I’m used to it) and I’m back to normal amounts of laundry.

That makes 2 good weeks in a row with them out of 5.5 weeks together.  It was a hectic start but we’re getting there!! YES!!

Last thing… last night I attempted to feed them rocket (again, I think it was my 3rd attempt at feeding them rocket, probably the 15th time to attempt to feed them some sort of fresh veg) and THEY ATE IT!!!!  That was their first ever fresh vegetable they’ve eaten.

And to test trust, I held the rocket with my mouth and had them eat it from me.  BOTH of them did it which means they’re both cool with sharing food with me.

YES!  After many weeks of rejection, I finally got acceptance.

I can’t have asked for more.  Patience, persistence, trust and love. That’s what these boys are teaching me.

And restraint… I’m learning restraint.  Sometimes I wish I could just SQUEEZE them and smother them with kisses because they’re so damned CUTE but that’s probably why they don’t let me hold them!

Here is a picture of them when they used to get along:

Paris & Rome

 

 

This is them in rapport even when separated.

sleepy-paris
Sleepy baby Paris
Sleepy Rome
Sleepy baby Rome. Notice the completely intact chew mat next to him (on the right) and our chewed up door frame (on the left). That’s just paint on the door snake.

 

Seriously, Tony skyped me one pic while he was with Paris in the lounge and Rome was doing the exact same thing while with me in the hallway!  In rapport, even when apart – there is hope for them yet!

Handstand – It’s the little things!

Yesterday I did my first ever handstand without a wall!

Can you believe it?  I’m so excited about it I was beaming from ear to ear after class.

So first of all, I have to clarify, I did my first ever handstand about 2 years ago.  It was against a wall where I faced the wall and I got there by doing almost a cartwheel with the wall preventing me from flipping backwards.

That is, I used momentum to get myself up, the wall as a break and held myself up by sheer will, using my heels to grip the wall so I wouldn’t fall side ways.

I have done handstands since but very rarely because I’ve been such a scaredy-cat about them.  I always think I might bust a hole in the wall from kicking too hard so every time I did a handstand against a wall, I’d climb my feet up slowly.

So, I faced away from the wall, touched my toes, put my hands on the ground, then walked my feet up the wall.  This too was a rare event because I’d only be confident doing this with someone around, in case I fell.

Also, I’d keep my toes on the wall and never take them off so I was never actually upright, always on an angle.

Yesterday however,  we were asked to do handstands with a partner.  The partner’s role was simply to touch your legs when you kicked up so you could gauge how far you had to kick to be upright.  Once you were up, your partner just had to keep your legs in place (not by holding you but by keeping their hands near your legs,  just to give you confidence that they will catch you or stop you from falling over).

I have no idea what happened.  I kicked up once, twice and then on the third time, my leg tapped my partner’s hand and the next thing I know, both legs were up and I felt like I was flying.

“You did it!” she said.

“I did it??” I screamed back.

Partner:  “Yes, this is all you!  You’re doing it!”

Me while upside down in a handstand, getting really excited:  “I AM???!!!”

Partner:  “Yes!  You’re doing great!  Are you getting tired?  Do you want to come down?”

Me:  “Um… no, but yeah, oh… yeah OK I’ll come down.”

It was the strangest thing, when I was back on my feet, my partner told me that she didn’t hold me up, that I was doing it all on my own.  It was hard for me to understand.

Here’s the thing.  When I’ve done handstands against a wall, it’s HEAVY.  My arms and shoulders hurt and tire easily.  I feel my entire weight of my body and legs all on my arms, wrists and shoulders.

However, without a wall, I felt no weight… that’s what I  meant by I felt like I was flying.  I don’t know what happened or how I did it.  I can only guess that I stacked my bones up to get the right balance.

I attempted kicking up with the opposite leg.  I was having a really hard time with it.  The worst part was that the rest of the class has finished theirs and so were watching me and cheering me on.

I think my partner had to collect the kicking leg (ie catch it and pull it up) and put my legs in line with each other.  Not as great as my first leg but I still managed to hold myself up there.

I tell you what, I’ve never in my life EVER done a handstand by myself.  Not as a kid, not as an adult.  But now, for the first time ever, I can see it as a possibility for me.

You know, it’s not the full posture and I didn’t do it by myself but it made my week.  I think that’s all you need to be happy in life.  Progress, possibility, learning new things and little wins!!