Thursday, December 13, 2012

Yoga Home Practice

I am in the second week of a gentle, at-home yoga practice.

I like to think I look like this while practising:

Yeah, and I like to think my house looks like that too!
In reality I'm sure I look more like I've fallen and I can't get up. 

It doesn't really matter how I look. I practice alone. Besides, my goal isn't to look like the lovely woman pictured above. Good thing, as that boat sailed about 20 years ago. (OK, maybe 25 years ago. Whatever.)

I may share my goals at some point, if I ever figure out what they are well enough to put them into words. Right now the reasons behind why I started are less important than the fact that I have started. I've always wanted a morning practice, but I kept putting it off. I finally got tired of waiting for the right time.

Once I made up my mind getting started was easy. I have a friend who teaches yoga. (This is the same friend who suggested the Sketchbook Project. In retrospect, I wonder if that invitation was a ploy to get me so stressed that I needed the yoga.) I outlined what I wanted and emailed her a list of my ouchies. In exchange for lunch, some farmers market items and a reasonable fee I got a personalized plan, and she came to my home to help me get started. I've managed to practice EVERY DAY since we first met.

I've had some help getting to the mat each morning. Once I had an actual plan I put the word out on Facebook. I asked people to "like" my status when they noticed an update about a yoga session. Yep, there I was, once again making rash announcements on a social media site. A similar comment got me committed to following up on the sketchbook;I figured it had to help here too.

I am amazed and honoured by the support I've been getting. I'm "friends" with some incredibly busy people, yet many have managed to take a moment out of their day to "like" my activities. People I haven't seen in years are offering encouragement. On days when I've really needed it, a postive comment has appeared like magic. I can't tell you how much it has meant to me, and how much it has helped. There are varying opinions about how long it takes to form a new habit. Thanks to my virtual cheerleaders yoga is becoming part of my daily schedule much faster than I expected.

I meet with my yoga-teaching friend tomorrow to refine and update my plan. I can't wait.

Monday, December 10, 2012

One Terrifying Tome

I'm currently in possession of an utterly terrifying book. Those of you who are easily alarmed should turn away now. 

The odd, face-like shadows on the book are from condensation on the window. Spooky.
That's it. In spite of the sinister shadows on the cover, it doesn't look all that intimidating. Of course, you can't judge a book by the cover, and it's what's inside this one that makes it particularly frightening. 

Coloured pencil courtesy of my most supportive Hubby.
You're right. It's blank. Thirty-two blank pages of sheer terror. Those blank pages are meant to be filled by yours truly. Just looking at the damned thing gives me heart palpitations.

So what exactly is it?

This terrifying tome is my sketchbook. I am taking part in The Sketchbook Project. Problem is, I don't really draw. Or doodle. Or scribble. Or anything arty.

So why do I have it?

Partly due to peer pressure. A friend asked me more than once to take part. She was forming a local group to participate, and she assured me I could create something with words. I finally caved and said yes, though at the time I thought I would be responsible for one page in the group sketchbook. Only after making a public announcement did I realize that I would be responsible for an entire book. You'd think I was old enough to avoid making rash promises on social media sites. You'd be wrong.

One, entire, thirty-two page sketchbook. I don't know that I have that many words.

Did I mention there was a deadline? I have to have the thing done and in the mail by January 15th. Good thing I didn't have any holiday plans. Of course, I have had the thing for 12 days, and I haven't made a mark in it. Any last-minute scrambling will be my own fault. Like that makes it any less frightening.

So why bother?

Well, once completed and returned, this wee book will go on tour. It's going to go to some pretty cool cities. Some of them are cities we'd like to visit. Some are cities we've talked about visiting, but have never gotten around to. My shewd and cunning plan is to go visit my book in one of these cities. Hubby and I tend to travel to the same places again and again. I hope this project will nudge us out of our comfortable travel routine and encourage us to go somewhere new. 

Big plans for a small book. Wish me luck. 

Friday, December 7, 2012

Don't Should on Yourself

Back in the olden days, at a teachers' workshop, we were asked to share the best piece of advice we were ever given. I can't remember what I shared with the group. I probably invented something lame for the sake of the exercise. I do remember one of the other attendees sharing the the advice you see in the title. That's advice I can use.

My brain generally works like this: 

"In last piece I published I mentioned that I was unwell. I suppose I should have followed up sooner to let you all know I was all right. Though judging by the overwhelming non-response to my disappearance, I suppose I shouldn't be worried. In fact, maybe I should give up blogging altogether seeing as no one seemed to miss me. And there are so many things I should have shared here over the last several months. I should back up and cover those ideas before I write about anything new. But I can't remember what happened first, and I should post chronologically. And Blogger has changed considerably since I last posted. Maybe I should get to know the new format before I start. Should I give an explanation for my months of silence? Or should I skip the excuses and just get writing?" 

That last one might be the only "should" worth keeping. Time to let go of the rest. 

Write on.