Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Countdown to Hell

It's so freaking hot and humid here in the mid-atlantic region... 96 degrees to be exact and it's not, I repeat, NOT a dry heat.

So of course the one thing that keeps spinning around in my head each time I step outside is the following:

Bikram Yoga: Bikram Yoga is ideally practiced in a room heated to 105°F (40.5°C) with a humidity of 50%. Classes are guided by specific dialogue including 26 postures and two breathing exercises. Classes last approximately 90-minutes. People of all levels, ages and body types practice together.

This is one body that is not looking forward to 'the practice'... God help me, there's only 13 more days before Bikram.


Monday, June 25, 2007

Word of the Day


For some reason this word has been swirling around in my head all morning. I love the way it sounds and what it means... A window or panel of light directly above a doorway. It's not only beautiful architecturally but also in a figurative sense.

So put that in your pocket and pull it out sometime when you're grasping for something to think about.


Sunday, June 24, 2007

Holding back the Dam

I haven't posted much lately... Not because it's been boring, quite the opposite!

My life as of late has been filled with some highly emotionally charged events. Some of which have challenged me personally, by making me question my capabilities... And no, they don't have any connection to yoga (I haven't started classes yet, but you can bet I'll be posting complaints once I do.) What I HAVE been doing is working on a decorating project that's been met with some kinks along the way. I'm learning a lot of valuable lessons and I'm also learning to tune out the negative voices in my head that tell me on a regular basis, "You WILL fail." The thing that's kept me going is at this point there's no turning back! I've never been one to make promises and not follow through. So with each set back I'll admit there's a period of time I like to refer to as the 'Oh Shit factor'... Which is immediately followed with the 'See, I knew you couldn't do this' spell... Then I pull myself together and manage the situation until it's solved. I'm sure we all go through these experiences and it would be stupid of me to think I'm unique. It's just I've had to put up with more of the negative emotional crap in my youth than most people I know. For isntance, there may not be many out there who at 13, after being hurt by a boy said, "I wish I could die." And had their step-mother reply with, "Well go ahead, why don't you kill yourself then?" And then list several methods for doing so... Most of which involved ingesting cleaning supplies found under our kitchen sink.

I thought I had found my emotional stable ground until Thursday. That's when an event occurred which served to rock me to the core. When someone I barely know verbally blasted me and called my character into question. The situation was extremely tense and fortunately there were people around at the time to stand up for me and call the woman out on the accusations she made. My co-workers/friends were fantastic and told me not to let it get to me... That what she said simply wasn't true. But you know, with all of the fighting I've done in my head the last few weeks over considering whether I'm smart enough, bold enough or quite simply 'Good Enough' the words this woman spewed at me were enough to spring a leak in that dam I'd built up to block out all the negative voices in my head.

(As I write this I'm hoping I'm not coming off as some sort of schizophrenic. I mean these voices are simply ghosts. They're memories of hurtful things that were said to me when I was young. So in case anyone was worried it's not like I'm going to start writing letters to Jodi Foster.)

Anyway, so being in a tenuous place emotionally when this lady went off on me, seriously rocked me for a day or two. It takes a lot of affirmations to plug up even a small hole. My friends have been wonderfully supportive. My family, right there of course... And it didn't hurt to find out later that the person who attacked me is "Freaking Nuts!"

On Friday I used clay therapy to help purge my demons. I created a sculpture which I titled 'The bad stuff is always easier to believe.' It's my first time sculpting and I'm incredibly proud of the piece. The sculpture has gone so far in making me feel proud, strong, creative and capable again. That dam in my mind incurred a bit of damage and some of the negative was able to seep through. But right now it feels as though a masonry crew came through, in the form of friends, loved ones and my own creativity... And where the unstable dam once was a resilient wall now stands.

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Monday, June 18, 2007

No Particular Place To Go...

Our family has a problem...

I'm guessing it's not a unique problem... I mean, we can't be the only 4 people living under the same roof that just can't come to an agreement as to where they'd like to go or what they'd like to do for a summer vacation, can we?

Let's see if I can paint a picture for you...

There's my husband... His ideal vacation would include 18 holes of golf, if not each day of vacation, at least every other day. I should mention that he's the only one out of the 4 of us who golfs. I would be remiss to say that's all he enjoys doing with his vacation time. He loves the beach and the chance to engage in outside activities with our daughter. Unlike myself, who much prefers air conditioned accomodations, air conditioned gift shops and did I mention air conditioners?

Then there's my son... He's happiest when he's sitting in front of his computer programming his little heart out. I probably don't need to tell you that he's the member of the family that requires the least amount of sunblock.

My daughter is a nature lover... Give her the mountains, give her the beach, give her a big meadow filled with bugs, toads, lizards or snakes and she's content to while away the hours, regardless of the heat and humidity... Just don't make her sit in a car or a plane too long to get there.

Finally, there's Me... I like to stay in a nice hotel, but I miss the comforts of home. I love to vacation with a group of friends or family, but eventually these people will get on my nerves. I love to travel to exotic locations, but I tend to end up disappointed because said location doesn't meet my expectations. Oh and did I mention that I hate being hot and miserable? So I'd really like for any place I visit to be of a temperate climate. There is however one constant about vacation that I always look forward to and that's
a) Going out to eat! AND
a) Not having to cook!

We've had several discussions in the past few weeks about what we might like to DO for our vacation this year and 2 possibilities have been debated. The first (and my personal favorite, I think?) is to take a trip out to California, like my son and I did last year... But this time with my husband and daughter in tow. My son is backing this proposal 100% as he enjoyed our visit with my sister and her family last year so much... Not to mention the time he got to spend working with my brother-in-law on the Foley Stage at Fox Studios. As for me, I LOVED the visit... It's that nearly unbearble 6 hrs. of sitting on my backside for the flight out there and then back again, I find so dismal... Not to mention the horrors of airport terminal time (I'd swear airports are encased in another dimension where clocks slow to a bitter crawl), therefore I'm not terribly keen on the idea of cross-country travel.

My husband? Well, he's not too thrilled with the idea of California for some of the same reasons I've pointed out as negatives but mostly because of the cost involved, which I forgot to add to my list. So at one point he made the suggestion of Florida. Florida? Well, my daughter is all for Florida because that's where Cousin Linda lives and she's got lizards and toads and lots of creepy crawly things nearly drowning themselves every single day all around the outside of her house. For my daughter this means a veritable plethora of joy filled activities, no matter the blazing heat and withering humidity... AND Cousin Linda even has a pool!

But, what does this mean for my son and I __________________________________? Exactly! It's not that I don't enjoy Linda... I really, really, do! What I don't enjoy, quite literally, is Florida in the summer. As for my son, he wonders what's in it for him? Well, we have talked about going to Orlando to visit Full Sail a media arts college that he's interested in looking into for future studies. I'm all for that but can't we do it in the winter? Like maybe around the time of year that it's 20 degrees here and a mild 70 degrees in Florida?

Anyway... You see what we're up against? We're a house divided... We can't come to any agreement. What we did determine though was best said by my daughter before we left our house to enjoy yet another dinner at sunset on the deck at our friends house on the Elk Neck River... "We don't need to worry about vacation because our life IS a Vacation!"

Well said, I can't agree more!

Sunset on the Elk Neck River

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Monday, June 11, 2007

What's on the Menu?

What to do with the kids over the summer?

How can I keep them busy?

What sort of lesson can they learn while not in school?

What should I make for dinner tonight?

I know... One night out of the week each kid will prepare dinner for the family. Of course a bit of planning needs to be involved... Like, what to make. What to shop for... And when to stop what you're doing and start preparing it all.

Each kid making a meal one night a week gives Mom 2 nights off!

However, I had to tell my son that NO, he was going to have to be more creative than tacos one night a week all summer long.

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Saturday, June 09, 2007

HOT Yoga!

My friend Heather signed me up for yoga classes... Heather LOVES yoga! Heather LIVES yoga! Heather IS yoga!... Oh, did I mention that Heather is like a size 2, was a dancer, studied gymnastics and can probably wrap both legs around her head without a second thought? Then there's me, I'm like a size 18, working my way up to a 20, though I'm still squishing myself into those size 16 jeans (ouch!) I've never danced. Well, I've danced but you know, never took lessons... So I just kinda let the music move me, however lame that must look. As for gymnastics? Well, in high school I almost achieved what might be considered a cartwheel... Yeah Me! But I never did acquire enough balance to stand on my head. So NOW I'm gonna try Yoga? And not just ANY yoga... HOT Yoga!... And by HOT Yoga, I don't mean the kind of Yoga that ends up making you look HOT in a sexy way... I mean Bikram style Yoga... Yoga that's done in a 90-100 degree room! And Heather decided we should do this 2 nights a week in JULY for 4 weeks because it just might not be uncomfortable enough for me this summer, you know, with the heat and all?

I can't even TELL you how excited Heather is about this whole thing... So excited that she's got her husband signed up for the class WITH US!?! So now I don't have to worry about humiliating myself in front of just Heather... Oh, and the instructor... And the other people in the class... But ALSO Heather's husband, who I currently happen to be working on an interior design project for. I like Heather's husband and I have a great deal of respect for him so I hope he won't mind when I set up my yoga mat on the very far corner of the room from where he'll be Yoga'ing.

Heather isn't letting me go into this without some form of preparation though... She generously gifted me with the dvd 'Yoga for Dummies'... This after she heard the story of my trial with the 'Rodney Yee Yoga' dvd collection that was given to me about 5 yrs. ago for Christmas. I held out for a couple of years before I broke the seal on the package... Then it took me a week more before I actually popped the disc into the machine and took the mat I also received out of its package. Then I sat on my mat all yoga style... Ah, who am I kidding, I couldn't sit even kindegarten indian style for more than 15 seconds without my legs seizing up! So I simply sat on the mat and watched this asian man with an awesomely toned body and an equally awesome braid down his back, perform stances that quite literally made my jaw drop. There was NO WAY in hell I was going to keep up with Rodney Yee! I did however give the 'lay flat on your back, relax and sink into the floor pose my best attempt... That's when I saw the discolored mark on my bedroom ceiling and realized our 4 yr. old house had a water leak... That was the end of the relaxation portion of my Yoga with Rodney Yee... And I never did Yoga again.

So, if you will... Think of me on July 9th as I drag my butt with perky Heather and *groan* her poor husband over to my first Bikram Yoga class... Where I'll be sweatin' my ass off and trying to perform something that might look like this...

Or This...

Or God forbid This...

You know, it would really help if I looked more like this...

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Saturday, June 02, 2007

Mistaken Identity

Not long ago I posted a comment on Whiskey Marie's site regarding this post. In case you haven't read anything by Whiskey Marie prepare to be entertained... She's brash, she's bawdy and she's a heck of a lot of fun!

Anyway, back to the story... After reading 'Random Acts of Randomness' I decided she needed to hear the story that I'd recently received via e-mail from my friend Linda (which I've posted below.) Sorry to disappoint WhiskeyMarie and her fellow commentators but I'm not that clever and frankly, I can't verify if the story is indeed even true. However, I'm pleased you enjoyed it and I hope my regular readers will enjoy it also... So read on:

Anger Management

When you occasionally have a really bad day, and you just need to take it out on someone, don't take it out on someone you know, take it out on someone you don't know.

I was sitting at my desk when I remembered a phone call I'd forgotten to make. I found the number and dialed it. A man answered, saying "Hello." I politely said, "This is Chris. Could I please speak with Robyn Carter?"

Suddenly a manic voice yelled out in my ear "Get the right f***ing number!" and the phone was slammed down on me. I couldn't believe that anyone could be so rude.

When I tracked down Robyn's correct number to call her, I found that I had accidentally transposed the last two digits. After hanging up with her, I decided to call the 'wrong' number again.When the same guy answered the phone, I yelled, "You're an asshole!" and hung up. I wrote his number down with the word 'asshole' next to it, and put it in my desk drawer.

Every couple of weeks, when I was paying bills or had a really bad day, I'd call him up and yell, "You're an asshole!" It always cheered me up.

When Caller ID was introduced, I thought my therapeutic 'asshole' calling would have to stop. So, I called his number and said, "Hi, this is John Smith from the telephone company. I'm calling to see if you're familiar with our Caller ID Program?" He yelled "NO!" and slammed down the phone. I quickly called him back and said, "That's because you're an asshole!" and hung up.

One day I was at the store, getting ready to pull into a parking Spot. Some guy in a black BMW cut me off and pulled into the spot I had patiently waited for. I hit the horn and yelled that I'd been waiting for that spot, but the idiot ignored me.

I noticed a "For Sale" sign in his back window, so I wrote down his number. A couple of days later, right after calling the first asshole (I had his number on speed dial,) I thought that I'd better call the BMW asshole, too.

I said, "Is this the man with the black BMW for sale?" He said, "Yes, it is."

I asked, "Can you tell me where I can see it?"

He said, "Yes, I live at 34 Oaktree Blvd, in Fairfax. It's a yellow rambler, and the car's parked right out in front."

I asked, "What's your name?"

He said, "My name is Don Hansen,"

I asked, "When's a good time to catch you, Don?"

He said, "I'm home every evening after five."

I said, "Listen, Don, can I tell you something?"

He said, "Yes?"

I said, "Don, you're an asshole!"

Then I hung up , and added his number to my speed dial, too. Now, when I had a problem, I had two assholes to call.

Then I came up with an idea. I called asshole #1. He said, "Hello."I said, "You're an asshole!" (But I didn't hang up.)

He asked, "Are you still there?"

I said, "Yeah,"

He screamed, "Stop calling me,"

I said, "Make me,"

He asked, "Who are you?"

I said, "My name is Don Hansen."

He said, "Yeah? Where do you live?"

I said, "Asshole, I live at 34 Oaktree Blvd, in Fairfax, a yellow rambler, I have a black Beamer parked in front."

He said, "I'm coming over right now, Don. And you had better start saying your prayers."

I said, "Yeah, like I'm really scared, asshole," and hung up.

Then I called Asshole #2.

He said, "Hello?"

I said, "Hello, asshole,"

He yelled, "If I ever find out who you are..."

I said, "You'll what?"

He exclaimed, "I'll kick your ass,"

I answered, "Well, asshole, here's your chance. I'm coming over right now."

Then I hung up and immediately called the police, saying that I lived at 34 Oaktree Blvd, in Fairfax, and that I was on my way over there to kill my gay lover.

Then I called Channel 9 News about the gang war going down on Oaktree Blvd. in Fairfax.

I quickly got into my car and headed over to Fairfax. I got there just in time to watch two assholes beating the crap out of each other in front of six cop cars, an overhead news helicopter and surrounded by a news crew.

NOW I feel much better.

Anger management really does work.