In The Middle

Life, Family, Yoga, Stuff

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The Weight Of Water

I’m getting tired of winter.  It’s been quite some time since we’ve had as much snow, as often, as we have here lately.  I will say though I love the icycles when the sun is shining on them.  I took this shot through the sliding glass door.  There were a ton of icycles out back that day.  The snow has been falling heavy at times presenting nice, big, wet flakes.  Though it’s been dreary, it’s also been beautiful none the less.  But I’m ready for spring.  Enough already.  I’m sick of the mud, the saturated ground and dirty snow.  I’m ready to be in the outdoors without waterproof foot wear.

I’m still swimming and I still weigh the same.  I did buy a pair of Levi’s last night and they were a size smaller.  So I’m guessing some inches are melting away.  This last week, I swam Monday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings.  I swam for an entire hour Thursday night.  The Y wasn’t busy because it was sleeting so I took advantage of the pool.  Me and 4 other people that is.  I even started doing flip turns when I hit the deep end.  It has been a long time since I’ve done a flip turn and it wore me out, but I will do it again.  I’ve also met some interesting people at the pool.  I didn’t expect it to be a socialization type of thing, but I guess that’s not all bad.  And from now on, I will remember to remove my silver necklace and earrings that I rarely take off before I jump in.  Talk about tarnish central.

I taught a fun class last Sunday at the yoga education center.  I did an hour on the use of props in yoga and an hour on Sanskrit terminology with some chanting.  I really enjoy doing these classes, though I’m a nervous wreck a few days prior.  It’s always a good feeling to have the feedback when it’s over and done with.  I also like that feeling of accomplishment and of course, being able to share what I do know.  I am also freaking out a little as the news, KSFX , to be exact is coming this Tuesday, February 9th to film my free class.  They’re doing a stint on stress management.  My Tuesday morning class is a diverse group and a really cool crowd.  I never imagined when I started that class that it would grow to what it has today.  The episode will run on Wednesday, February 17 at 7:00 a.m. with Rob Evans, so if you want to see me gasping for a yogic breath, tune in.

Today the same yoga center I taught at last weekend, held their first kirtan.  It was amazing.  There was a decent crowd.  There were two guys on drums and Beth played the harmonium a little.  We did several chants and no one seemed shy to sing.  The whole deal lasted a little over two hours and I was not ready for it to be over with.  I will say though that now, I am a little tired in the lungs.  It’s wild how much breath it takes to sing and how much energy you use to chant something over and over again.  At the same time there’s a good, energetic feeling as well.  I know they will do this again and I feel that today is just the beginning of what will most likely be a regular kirtan get together.

I will be heading to St. Louis in a couple of weekends with a good yoga teacher friend for some more yoga training.  I do love these weekends when we go away.  We eat very healthy, we go to sleep early and do yoga all day long.  I wish I could spend more time in this type of environment, but it’s not possible at this time.  I’m also excited to drive my car on a road trip.  I’m loving the heated seats in this weather and I’m also digging that “W” button which puts the car in winter mode.  Instant traction on slush and snow, it’s really cool.

Bring on the warmer weather.  The days are getting longer and I’m totally liking that!

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What A Weekend

I know, I reeled you in with that title.  And guess what?  Nothing really happened this weekend. 

I did teach a yoga class Saturday morning and it was really fun.  I did hate having to miss all of the Yoga Day USA buzz because I was teaching though.  Word is the Meyer Center had 80 people for the Yoga Flow.  That is fantastic!  Meanwhile, Beth had 30 or so at her center, doing yoga, chanting and enjoying Eric on the drums as well.  Would’ve loved to have been there too!  I think any money they took in went to Haiti so that was totally awesome.

This morning was Sunday and I attended Beth’s class.  We did a Yin practice which I really enjoy, and hadn’t done in awhile.  Her studio is starting to feel really cozy with the hot tea, the bookshelves and the gong.  It’s all that.  I love it!  In a Yin practice, you hold a pose passively for a long time.  Long as in like two to five minutes.  Lots of people have a problem with this as in they get fidgety and can’t stand it.  Not me.  I can be there and then some.  I left there feeling quite good today even though I was super tired from some drama the evening before.  Nothing like a good yoga class to wake you up all over and make you realize there’s no need to sweat the small stuff. 

At noon today my good friend picked me up and we went to see Up In The Air.  Go see it.  I didn’t even know what it was about.  Only the fact that George Clooney spent a lot of time at airports.  I am so glad we saw that instead of It’s Complicated, which was her first choice.  It’s always good to check Rotten Tomatoes out before you head to the theater.

I’m still swimming.  I haven’t given up.  This last week I went twice at lunchtime.  This next week I cannot do that anymore as I’ll be teaching yoga every day at noon, so I’ll swim in the evening with the men.  I shall not complain.  I have to swim 72 laps to make a mile, or 36 laps back and forth.  I usually count by twos.  So, after swimming about 20 minutes, I usually hit 40 or more with ease.  I’ve been swimming for 35 or 40 minutes every time, so I’m thinking, I’m hitting close to two miles.  That doesn’t seem possible.  I’d better ask the lifeguard again to make sure that the count is right. 

The other day, I met a fellow yogini in the lane next to me.  She was a pretty tight swimmer.  She asked me if she could give me some advice.  I said of course.  She’d noticed I’d only been breathing to the right and she was correct.  I hate breathing on the left, I get a mouthful of water, it’s unnatural and I don’t like it.  I told her that I knew that and my neck was going to pay for it.  And someday my right side would look like I’d been injecting steroids on that side only.  She had a good point and that was balance.  She mentioned to me that I wouldn’t just do triangle on the right side would I?  Of course not.  I swam on Thursday and turned my head to the left several times.  Still can’t figure out why going to the right is so smooth.  I guess we go with what feels right or what we know.  I shall step out of this comfort zone more often.  Of course, I’ll be choking and spluttering away, but hey, there’s nothing like a good mouthful of chlorine now is there?  I’ll have to think of that as my germ killing breath to the left.

This week I start back with the yoga at MSU.  I’ve got 4-days with them in a row at lunchtime and I’m excited.  And I’ve got a decent crowd, which in turn means a decent paycheck at the end of the session.  Volvo fund, every penny I can spare. 

My daugher is turning 12 on Thursday.  It does not seem possible.  Can I really be that old?


Just Dive In

I’ve decided that I weigh too much, or maybe I’m just too short.  Yeah.  That’s it, I’m too short.  I love the warmer weather when I can ride my bike to work and get exercise in that way.  I do see lots of people riding bikes in this kind of weather, but I just can’t get into it.  Maybe that’s because I’ve never tried it, who knows.  I saw someone ride by when it was close to zero.  They were so bundled, I don’t know how they could ride.  His head was totally wrapped with a scarf, then covered by a ski mask.  Then he had a motorcycle helmet (complete with shield) over that.  I’m thinking that person didn’t have a choice.  I also love to walk in nature when the weather is good, or not so good.  I’ve been known to head to the nature center when it’s going to storm.  So far I haven’t been struck by lightning with my car keys in hand.

I work at the YMCA so I can go there for free.  But do I?  Nope.  Why?  I have no idea.  I think sometimes when you work someplace, you just want to leave there when you’re finished.  I love the water.  I love to swim and years ago, before I had children and I owned my own business, I would drive all they way across town to swim at the Y at six in the morning.  It was kind of intimidating.  Why you ask?  Because it was a bunch of athletic business guys and me.  I’d been reflecting on that time way back when during that one winter where I swam away and I really enjoyed it.  

The quest was on.   I had to get a one piece bathing suit because my flaw hiding, designer suits just weren’t going to cut it for lap swimming.  I don’t think anyone I know likes to go swimsuit shopping, especially in the wintertime.  Since we live where we do bathing suits aren’t readily available this time of year.  So I did what any computer geek would do.  I ordered three, online.  I scored as one fit.  I scored again because when I peeled it off (and was thinking that the pattern was too busy for me) I found out it reversed to black on the other side.  Awesome.  Black is good, especially when you only sport six inches from your navel to your pelvis.  Next up I had to find a pair of swim goggles.  MC Sports usually has this sort of thing.  Not this time of year.  They had plenty of flippers and masks but no Speedo goggles.  I was bummed, thinking this was yet another item I would have to order online.  Then I remembered Bass Pro!  Heck it’s right up the road from where we live.  They had a ton of Speedo goggles. And they had the junior size for people with smaller heads like myself.  I was ready to swim.

Our Y offers lap swimming early in the morning, during the lunch hour and right after work from five to six.  I didn’t feel like doing early morning again.  I wanted to do the lunch hour, it’s less crowded, but I will be teaching every single day at lunch with the exception of Friday.  No complaints there.  So the five to six time it would be.  I headed out on Monday night and got there ten minutes early.  People (men) were already swimming, so I chose a lane that was not roped off and hugged the wall.  I didn’t feel like getting trampled.  It had been a long time since I’d swam like this.  Would I last longer than five minutes?  Yes, yes I would.  I swam laps for thirty-five minutes with a few short breaks.  I did what most people do when they start out.  I swam too fast.   I was excited.  The water felt good and I was really happy to be there.  Even if it was just me, and a bunch of other guys, I got over it.  I’ll be going back and who knows, maybe I’ll continue through the nice weather.

Feeling stuck in your exercise routine?  Try something new or return to something you once loved.  I think that’s the key.

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Pottery Without The Wheel

We headed to Stockton Lake for a day of play on Sunday. 

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We also had to retrieve our daughter.  She was already down there camping with friends that we met years ago when I was teaching a Family Yoga class at the YMCA. 



The weather was looking creepy but we headed out none the less.  It continued to look creepy when we arrived for quite some time.   We didn’t care, it was still hot. 



We went ahead with our business of grilling hot dogs, riding the inner tube and making clay. 


Yep.  Clay.  The girls found a bunch of red clay in this one area and brought it to our hang out.  I couldn’t stand it.  I had to feel it, which led to crafting.  When the clay started to dry out we had an entire lake full of water to soften it up.  By the end of the day we’d made so much stuff we had to leave some it of there.



At one point, the girls covered their arms and legs in it.  I tried it on my arm, let it dry then jumped in the lake.  My skin came out feeling super smooth.  I was surprised by how easily it rinsed from our skin.  And just think, some people pay oodles of cash for this at a real “mud spa.” 

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Some of the thicker pieces were still a bit damp, but the thinner ones turned rock hard in the sunshine.  So yesterday after the cleaning cycle finished on my oven, we decided to put the clay in there.  The oven was still very hot from the cleaning cycle.  The clay came out dry and some of it turned out very smooth from being in the oven.  Who knew?  I know without these creative kids, it’s not something I would’ve picked up.  Thanks guys, for a great day!


Vacation Part II – Pine Island, Florida

Water Ride

Water Ride

Red Fish Pass
Red Fish Pass
Island House
My Sister’s Island House
To Upper Captiva
To Upper Captiva – Lauren & Ava
Stow Away Peace Frog
Stow Away Peace Frog
I flew Allegiant Air.  They’re cheap, they’re clean and they’ve been dependable.  I didn’t rent a car.  My folks have two vehicles.  A corvette and a ginormous, diesel pick up.  I didn’t want to drive either one of them the dreaded one and a half hours it takes to get to my sisters’ on Pine Island, but I had to.   In a series of short words and photos again, here goes.   Pine Island Sound.  Upper Captiva.  Boating.  Red Fish Pass.  Artsy Matlacha.  Ft. Myers Shopping.  Juno Soundtrack.  Homemade Pizzas.  Wine.  My niece.  My daughter.  My sister and brother-in-law.  The Sun.  The Sand.  The Surf.  Sand Dollars.  Canals.  Cat Stevens.  Brandy.  Frogs.  Flowers.  The Moment.  Dolphins.
Puzzle we worked, I penned our water route in

Puzzle we worked, I penned our water route in

My brother-in-law's beach ride

My brother-in-law's beach ride

My I-75 South Ride
My I-75 South Ride