Rox Does Yoga

Yoga, Wellness, and Life

The Yoga of Parenthood, Part 1: Malasana October 26, 2012

Filed under: yoga,yoga lifestyle — R. H. Ward @ 3:37 pm
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Malasana, at the beach, with angry baby

This will, I think, be the start of a new series here at the yoga blog. I may not have as much time to write as I used to, but we do take a ton of pictures of our kid, and many of those pictures are tangentially related to yoga in some way. Today I bring you malasana, or the yoga squat, shown here on the beach at Cape May, on a windy September day when the water of the Atlantic Ocean was pretty darn cold and YogaBaby didn’t care who knew it.

To learn more about malasana, check out my much more detailed Pose of the Month post!

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Balancing Acts October 18, 2012

Filed under: reflections,yoga lifestyle — R. H. Ward @ 2:16 pm
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It’s been two weeks since I posted here. Um. Coincidentally, two weeks ago my husband F started back to work and YogaBaby headed to daycare. Until you have had such things happen in your life, you would not believe how complicated this gets. When I was at home on leave, F hung out with YogaBaby in the early mornings while I caught a little sleep, then got himself out the door to work; when F was at home on leave (and YB started sleeping more), he usually got up early with me and then waved goodbye as I got myself out the door to work. Point being, in both cases there was one person who wasn’t trying to get out the door to work and who could reliably have a baby placed on them while the other showered. Now I, F, and YogaBaby all need to get out the door in the mornings. Admittedly, YB is a pretty easy character in the morning – she often sleeps until or past 7 o’clock, so the grown-ups can get fed and showered in the 6 o’clock hour before she needs attending to. But it’s still a lot of stuff and humans to coordinate. And some combination of sleeping unswaddled, being at exciting daycare, and having a constant low-level daycare cold, has been affecting YB’s sleep schedule such that she was waking up 3+ times per night, so F and I were coordinating all of these morning things while barely conscious. (I think we’ve got that figured out now – the new plan involves feeding her more, and more often – but don’t quote me on that.) And don’t get me started on the craziness of the evenings, or how being a one-car household affects the new babyful commute.  Suffice to say, we are tired, and still seeking the new normal.

Besides the busyness of family life with two working parents and a small hungry hungry hippo, I think there’s been another reason why I haven’t been posting. It feels somehow wrong to write in a yoga blog when I’m not doing any yoga. Lately I’ve been thinking back nostalgically to the days of my teacher training, just last year, when I practiced my yoga every day – every day! – and even meditated on a regular basis. I felt so centered back then! I had so many good yogic things to write about, asanas to discuss and tips to share. And now, even if I found the time, what would I have to say about yoga? If I want to write about yoga postures, I ought to be actually doing them; if I’m going to write about teaching, I should be teaching some classes that I can then write about. How can I write about a yoga practice when I have no practice?

My practice, right now, is different from what it was. Instead of rolling out my mat, I lay a blanket on the floor and play with my baby. Instead of luxuriating in asanas, I remind myself to pee. I sleep when I can, and I don’t guilt myself for not getting up extra early to do yoga, because sleep is just as necessary as downward dog. Two weeks ago, a friend watched the baby so F and I could have dinner and go see my favorite band play a concert, and that was yoga. Last week I got a massage, a whole hour just to relax and not worry about getting anything done, and that was yoga. I ride my bike to the train station and that’s yoga too. There will be asanas again at some point, and even meditation, but right now my balancing act has nothing to do with tree pose and everything to do with responsibility and family and time. My yoga practice, right now, is to do the best I can with what I’ve got.

 

Etsy: home to all kinds of handmade yoga stuff October 3, 2012

Filed under: Miscellaneous — R. H. Ward @ 1:30 pm
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If you’re a yoga fan, you probably need a bag to tote your mat to class. You can get pretty decent yoga mat bags at stores like Target, but you can also find some really fun, handmade bags on Etsy.com. My current yoga mat bag was made by Jackie, whose shop XcessRize has bags made from a variety of fabrics and cool prints. I love my bag – it not only holds my mat, but also has enough room for a change of clothes, and it has several pockets to store small items like jewelry (great for ID, keys, or when my necklace keeps smacking me in the face during downward dog). There are tons and tons of Etsy sellers who offer similar bags in different styles and patterns – just search for “yoga mat bag” and see all the fun stuff that comes up!

Another shop I love on Etsy is Yogaworks. Sarah makes lots of different things, including yoga mat bags, but I love her scented savasana eye pillows. Really relaxing!

My husband has found lots of fun yoga-related jewelry pieces on Etsy that have made great gifts. I have a small collection of pendants made from Scrabble tiles: the side facing out is painted with art, and you can flip it over to see that it was originally an E. I have one that looks like this and another like this (not sure if those are the sellers who made my pendants, but these pieces are just as pretty). I’ve seen some really cool jewelry designed around yoga poses, the Om symbol, you name it. Etsy is a great place to find pretty things that display your yoga love (and a great resource for spouses on holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries!).