Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Window

First, I would like to take a couple of moments to wish my little sister a very happy 23 birthday! Can't believe she is already mid-20's... we won't talk about how I just turned 27.

The window... a small bit of saving grace. Alroy, my little red monster, is a little more energy than I can take care of some days. Walks, ball, trips to the park... sometimes just doesn't quite cut it. The other day, I decided to open a window in the dinning room to see what he thought. He LOVES it. He will stand at the window for hours just looking. He doesn't bark at it much... I turned around yesterday and found him in this position, quite as a mouse... but very alert. Such a busy boy.

My window
He has been a bit of a handful the past month or so. He got pneumonia around the middle of March. Yes, it can happen to dogs... who knew?! It is rare and can be serious pretty fast. We caught it early, so we were able to get him treated. But, it was really scary. Four days in the hospital, two weeks of low activity, and two rounds of antibiotics later...we are recovered. We are still working to put back on some of the weight, but are slowly getting there.

Feeling puny on the way home from the hospital
Taking an afternoon snooze during recovery... see my little IV spot. 
Alroy is still attending his obedience class. He got promoted to intermediate!! haha. I really never thought the day would come. We are doing pretty good with sit, stay, come, down. He even won an award in class a few weeks ago...then he tried to eat it. We are doing OK with jumping on people... but, if he gets too excited that's out of the window. Table manners we are STRUGGLING at. He has figured out that is tall enough to put his head on the table and then his tongue can reach the plate...ugh. Any suggestions??

I won an award... then I ate it. 

Molly is still a little diva princess!! She sleeps late, eats when she wants, and doesn't really do anything she doesn't want to!!

I didn't want to move... so the pillows and blanket got put up around me. 
And... that's an update on my precious little babies!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Out of Balance

Who would have thought that beginning yoga teacher training would throw me completely out of balance? If I am adding more yoga in to my life, shouldn't the stress just fall off, my hamstrings just loosen up, and my life become this center of happiness and bliss. Well... that hasn't been my experience.

My teacher training began in the middle of February (right about the same time as my last post...), I was so excited. I was ready to learn some yoga stuff and be able to do all of this cool upside down, twisty stuff. Well... I found myself exhausted, frustrated, and overwhelmed.

This is one of those upside down things...that I can't do. But...one day!

Exhausted... I went from an ideal workout week of 3-4 runs, 3-4 yoga classes, and 2 strength sessions. Yes, this is a lot, but, I had a little balance and structure that worked for me....and I said this was an ideal week...  But, once I entered my teacher training, I started to approach my yoga classes with a different frame of mind. And, I realized that I was doing everything with about 70% effort. I could be a much better runner and yogi if I slowed down and really focused on one thing at a time. So... I have dramatically cut back on my running. Yes, it is hard and I am not loving the fact that I am not running as much. But, I have seen huge changes in my yoga practice over the past few weeks which really make it worth it.

Frustrated... I still can't do a forearm balance, chin stand, drop back... I don't know what my expectations were... but I really thought I was going to come out of teacher training being able to do all of this cool bending, upside down stuff. But, when I sat down and thought about it. I don't know why I thought I would be able to learn in 12 weeks what people spend a lifetime working towards. So, I have accepted where I am and know that being able to do a "cool" pose doesn't make me any more or less of a yogi. Being a yogi is accepting where you are today and loving yourself for that.

Overwhelmed: Adding 20 hours of stuff to a week is a lot. Thursday night, Saturday, and Sunday are suddenly filled with physical practice and learning (something you get rusty at...). The bed went unmade a little more than usual, the laundry got done less frequently, and the floors weren't always vacuumed... it was a lesson in prioritizing. I feel like I have just now found my balance and training is almost over. haha. I suppose that is how it works sometimes.

So, to sum up this random stream of thoughts that have had me running in circles for the past 10 weeks...

- It is OK to reevaluate your priorities when you are working towards a goal.
- Yoga is a practice that you spend your whole life working towards. There isn't one pose that makes you a yogi.
- The crockpot is my best friend.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Two Bean Soup with Kielbasa and Kale

Cold wintry days call for warm yummy soup. And, yes... we do have some wintry days in Dallas. They may not be cold and wintry by your standards... but this southern girl doesn't appreciate any temperatures less than 45... 

I found this soup recipe on Cooking Light's website. I did a few tweaks and voila... a yummy, heart soup! Caleb and I both really enjoyed it. I think it tasted better the next day after the flavors had all mixed. I ended up freezing half of the soup as we weren't able to eat the whole pot... I will post back and let you know how it froze! 

  • Two Bean Soup with Sausage and Kale 

  • Ingredients

  • Kielbasa sausage, diced (I used 1/2)
  • 3 tablespoons  olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrot
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 cups organic vegetable broth, divided
  • 7 cups stemmed, chopped kale (I used just a bag of prewashed/precut kale from Trader Joe's) 
  • 2  (15-ounce) cans no-salt-added cannellini beans, rinsed, drained, and divided
  • (15-ounce) can no-salt-added black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • Directions
  • 1. Heat a small skillet over medium-high heat. Cook kielbasa until browned. Put to the side. 
  • 2. Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add olive oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion, carrot,  and sauté 6 minutes or until tender. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon salt and garlic; cook 1 minute. Stir in 3 cups vegetable broth and kale. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer until kale is crisp-tender. This took about 10 minutes for me. 
  • 3. Place half of cannellini beans and remaining 1 cup vegetable broth in a blender or food processor; process until smooth. Add pureed bean mixture, remaining cannellini beans, black beans, and pepper to soup. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes. Stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, vinegar, and rosemary.
Can you believe my baby is 52 lbs?

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