Monday, December 09, 2013
Well, it seems that I'm starting to outgrow my Yoga Conditioning For Weightloss video. Do I look EXACTLY like the instructor when doing the poses? Nope, because I weigh twice as much as she does and have boobs and a gut that habitually get in the way. BUT!!! I can do almost all the poses without props or modifications. I just finished up this fifty minute video, and, while it was beneficial to stretch, I just felt kind of "meh" about it.
So! What should be my next yoga video? I need something more challenging, but I can't do headstands (I'm too heavy) or plow pose (my boobs will suffocate me!!!). Anybody have any suggestions?
I do have the Flowetry yoga video, but that's more hardcore and I'll have to work up to that. I need something that is in between my current video and that one.
I must say it is pretty cool to be able to move through all that with minimal difficulty (unless the cats are involved, and then all bets are off).
Saturday, December 07, 2013
I've been futzing around this morning covered in a pile of cats (whose fur seems to be strictly ornamental) and reading SparkPeople blogs. Dozens of blogs about the holidays and family and all that rot. After spending a good half hour doing this, I have come to a conclusion.
I am SO glad I live far away from all my family and my husband's family. I mean, yeah, when things go wrong, we only have ourselves to get the job done, but I think the lack of family drama the rest of the time far outweighs any help our families might be able to give (or pretend to give). My husband agrees with me totally on this, and not just because of MY family, but his as well.
See, my remaining family lives 880 miles away. It's too far to drive, they can't afford plane tickets, and can't get off work. My husband's family lives in Sweden. So our Christmas holiday consists of "what do you want to do? I dunno. What do YOU want to do?" like everything else. It's kind of annoying, but I'm telling you, after reading all the blogs about in-law problems and parental disapproval and gift exchanges gone horribly wrong and nobody respecting your food choices, I am GLAD that it's just me, my husband, and my cats.
In short, I feel blessed to be alone, and REALLY blessed to live in a country that is so big and yet has no reliable public mass long-distance ground transit.
In other news, I found out last night that they cancelled the Christmas craft fair I wanted to go to, so I won't be missing anything anyway. I also hope that they cancelled all the regional band tryouts today, because the kids and parents don't need to be driving on these roads. It is a madhouse out there, mostly because nobody knows how to drive safely on ice. I know I don't, which is why I'm staying home. My husband does, being from the great white frozen north and all, but he has no desire to match driving skills with the average Texan, nor does he think that his little Nissan Versa is any match for an oncoming Ford F-450 (which I believe needs it's own ZIP code). This is why I shopped for the upcoming ice festivities while it was 80 degrees on Wednesday and the stores were devoid of people. I heard from some of my friends who waited until Thursday that by Thursday afternoon when the sleet started, there was no bread or milk to be had. Neener neener. She who plans ahead gets to stay home and sip hot tea instead of attempt to drive on three inches of solid ice in 19 degree weather with a 1 degree wind chill.
Yes. You did read that right. It was 80 degrees here Wednesday and people were wearing shorts. Today it is 19 degrees with a windchill that makes it feel like ONE DEGREE FAHRENHEIT. I love Texas weather. I'm still on the fence on whether or not I like the cold or the heat better. My husband prefers it to be 100 degrees. I prefer it to be 40. But, I am better insulated. Don't even get me started. This Swede will refuse to leave the house on weekends if the temperature dips below fifty. This from a man who used to walk a mile through four feet of snow to get from his farm house to the main road so he could catch the bus to school in Skanninge! This from a man who used to go ice fishing for pike in January! It is to laugh. I tease him and tell him he's disappointing his mighty Viking ancestors, but he is quick to point out that the Vikings all lived on the coast and HIS mighty ancestors farmed goats and occasionally taunted Norwegians.
In other, other news, my cat Kaycee turned 10 yesterday! She is currently snuggled up against my hip and trying to push me off the couch and steal my sweater. She is also snoring very loudly. Old woman! I can't believe she is ten years old. I hope she lives for another ten years. She is still sprightly, even though she can't take the bathroom sink in one leap any more (although I attribute that to a bit of laziness. She can take the back of the chair when she's chasing Tosca, and that is much higher than the sink!). She also does not like the Bb scale on the piano, nor the Hanon exercises, nor Rachmaninoff. She prefers Beethoven, and you all know how I feel about Beethoven.
Ooh, speaking of piano, and since I am rambling today because I've had too much coffee and my husband is still in bed and I have nobody to bother, we didn't have piano lessons over Thanksgiving break, so I had an extra week to practice. But DID I? Not as much as I would have liked, because work got in the way (and I'm feeling lazy). I hacked at the Rachmaninoff as best I could and went in to my lesson this past Wednesday (when it was 80 degrees) without much hope. Well, I'm not sure what happened, but I made it all the way through (although I did shout "Start Praying!" before the grand finale and she shot me a dirty look in return, hee hee!) and got a "WOW".
I don't think it deserved a "WOW", but then I want to sound like Vladimir Horowitz after only 11 months. She said to start thinking about another piece to work on which means either A) she's getting sick of hearing me play this or B) maybe I am making progress after all. I don't think I will ever get it as clean as I want it, mostly because I just don't have the technique and my hands are stiff, but there we are. So what should I do next? Hmmm. I want to do Rachmaninoff Prelude in g minor, but I don't know if I want to torture my piano teacher with another long process. I would also like to do some Joplin, but compared to Rachmaninoff, that is cheesy and boring, but would go better at parties. Hmm. I would also like to do some Chopin, because, you know, it's Chopin and that's what you do on piano. Or some Bach. Or maybe give Beethoven another shot. I'd like to do some of the Gershwin preludes, but my left hand can't make some of the intervals. Darn these composers and their big hands!!! How do these tiny Chinese ladies play Gershwin?!?!?!? I must know!!!! So much music, so little time.
Okay, I know you all have lives of your own, so I'm going to cut this off.
Have a great Saturday!
Friday, December 06, 2013
Well, the power went out at 4:30 this morning, which wouldn't be so bad except for A) it was 20 degrees outside and sleeting like the end of the world, and B) I can't sleep when it is dead quiet. I hear every little noise in the tri-county area and it keeps me away. Also, the carbon monoxide alarm went off, but it turned out to be a low battery, and fortunately I had a battery. Unfortunately, it is difficult to change a battery at 4:30 in the morning when you are half coherent, so it took about fifteen minutes longer than it should have, the low battery warning blaring the whole time and my cats trying to "help" while my husband lay in bed pretending he could sleep through it.
I got up again at 7:30 because my husband forgot to take his meds and really did sleep through his alarm, and also because I had a very vivid dream that I was back in Beijing on a contract and I had gotten up to boil water for tea and couldn't figure out why I couldn't find my electric kettle. Yes.
I got up again at 8:00 out of sheer hunger and desperation because my cats were both at the door screaming bloody murder because they wanted to be in the bed with us. Only when we do that, they don't sleep. They fight like siblings. I had also had another vivid dream about delicious ham and how I wanted a sandwich, but things kept preventing me from achieving my objective. People, when you dream about being thwarted in sandwich making, it's time to get up and get on with your life, because the day is going to be ridiculous.
My husband did not go into work today. His office closed due to the inclement weather, and also because our car tires are frozen to the driveway. Solid. There is an inch of ice holding our cars in place. This explains why I saw my neighbor out in the back yard with a tea kettle. He has places to go, I guess, or his wife is driving him crazy (which gets my vote). I took it upon myself to empty the trash, but when I went out, the trash can lids were frozen shut, so I got a hammer and had some fun making a racket, which got the neighbors interested, which was unfortunate, because I was out in my pajamas. Hey, I am well insulated. It's one of the few advantages of being fat. When the next ice age comes around, I'll be ready for it. I eventually got all the ice off, and covered in it in the process.
The bad news is, it looks like I won't be making it to the craft fair tomorrow to reward myself for all my fitness minutes last month. This is precisely why I don't try to reward myself. All my life, when I try to reward myself, things come up to get in the way. It's like the universe is against me trying to reward myself. I am not kidding. I am not being negative here. This is the absolute truth! Our honeymoon that we saved for a year for? Ruined because my dad died flat broke and mom couldn't afford to even have him cremated. Our second attempt at a honeymoon a few years later? Ruined because my husband was in end stage liver failure and we didn't know it. He was too tired and grumpy to do anything so all we did was fight. And don't get me started on all the times my mom promised me something and then took it away because "oh, well you did this ONE LITTLE THING, so that negates anything I promised" or "I'm too tired" or "I don't want to. I've changed my mind. You don't deserve it."
Okay, deep breath. Deep breath. Serenity now....
I'm hoping they reschedule it, but if they don't, well, I have a hundred bucks. There is such a thing as Etsy, and on the bright side, I won't have to fight crowds of people with snotty noses and walking pneumonia to shop there. Hmmmm... maybe this is working out for the best after all...
Wednesday, December 04, 2013
I suppose you're wondering about the title of my blog. Let's just say that self-awareness can be pretty darn scary.
So, I've been feeling pretty stiff from the official House of Karlsson five mile hike on Sunday, followed by biking and more biking (nothing terribly strenuous, just recumbent exercise bike use while working on my book), and a fairly intense bout of strength training so far this week. Today I declared it "Restorative Yoga Day" mostly because I am so stiff and sore that it needs to be done. It's also a day of glorious female problems. I'll just leave it at that.
There is a video on YouTube that I found of this lady in British Columbia leading an hour-long practice, and I did it. I did a few more long stretches, then stood up and looked around the room, feeling pretty good. Then I put my hands on my hips. 'Wow,' I thought. 'She wasn't kidding when she said this practice would help open up the hips. My hips feel twenty feet wide! Heh heh...' I stood there, keeping my hands on my hips, being fully aware of the VASTNESS of space between my hands, and it suddenly dawned on me. 'HOLY ****!!! MY HIPS ARE TWENTY FEET WIDE!!! HOW IN **** DO I EVEN FIT THROUGH DOORS?!?!?' I thought.
I had to sit down. It was an absolutely horrifying realization.
You know that movie called "Shallow Hal"? The one where the guy gets some sort of curse or whatever put on him and he thinks this enormous woman is a major babe? I've never actually seen it, just the trailers, but I know what's going on. I have the whole "Shallow Hal" mindset about myself. I look at myself in the mirror and somehow manage to fool myself into thinking it's not so bad.
Yeah, well, it IS so bad. Holy loving lord. I am a monster. A freak. No wonder people are scared of me in the grocery store. I make a linebacker for Green Bay look dainty.
There goes my peace of mind. I had worked so hard to be able to go out of the house and run errands without feeling self-conscious for all these years, and now I just want to go hide in my room and not come out again.
That's how I FEEL. That is not what I'm actually going to DO, because it's not constructive or helpful. But JEEZ!!! I thought yoga was supposed to be relaxing!
Saturday, November 30, 2013
... the tough resort to the MacGyver School of Engineering and rig up an ironing board! Whee!
Well, today was an epic fail in the nutrition department, and I am solely to blame. I have not eaten enough food "to keep a bird alive", as grandma used to say. Consequently I was tired all day, especially after working without eating breakfast or lunch. Not a good idea. So, dinner time rolls around and my husband and I decided to complete the hillbilly trifecta. Namely, a visit to Wal-Mart, Cracker Barrel, and Cabela's. A good time was had by all, miraculously, especially since our trip to Wal-Mart consisted of a cruise through the parking lot and then deciding we didn't really need anything after all. Also, a lot of fried food was had by all. Granted, I only hate four out of the six fried chicken tenderloins, two steak fries, half my mac and cheese and most of my fried apples, still, it was not the wisest nutritional (or culinary) decision. Oh, well.
By the way, because I haven't eaten, I've been too tired to exercise. DUH. I also found out that I REALLY need to finish the second edition of my book, because a major bookseller contacted me with a purchase order and I had bupkus to give him. Well done. So, it looks like hours and hours on the couch each night hacking away at my book, right?
I googled "recumbent bike desk" and found that there was such an animal, but rigging something would be easier and cheaper. Enter the ironing board, bass clarinet case, and saxophone case. I put the ironing board on top of both case, and VIOLA! Instant bike desk, which cost me zero dollars. The only down side is that I have to hold my arms up a bit to type, but hey! It works my shoulders, too! So I'm trying it out by typing this blog. I realize I won't be able to bike hard core using this thing because I am not that coordinated, but it will be better than sitting on the couch and completely neglecting my exercise. Now, it's off to saw away at the second edition of my book.
Hopefully I'll finish it by New Year's.
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