Monday, October 10, 2011


This morning was a sleepy one.  I'm not quite used to the sun rising later and later -- it makes a 7am start time at work a bit of a challenge.  Which is laughable, since for years I used to get there at 4:30am and it didn't seem to phase me a bit.  Yes, I've gotten soft in the past couple years and a 7am start like today's was rough.

I rebounded well.  A mostly productive day ensued.  But after about six hours of sitting at the computer, the upper lid of my right eye began twitching like crazy.  I rubbed my eyes...still there.  I ran some errands to break the tedium...still there.  Nothing I did relieved it and by the time I left work two hours later, I was ready to scream.  Just.  Make.  It.  STOP.  It was annoying like an endless case of the hiccups.  I could feel the tension in my body, the earlier fatigue returned, the muscles in my neck and shoulders taut, my breathing tight and shallow.  I thought about taking a walk when I got home, any kind of physical activity would be better than sitting and feeling my eye continue its incessant staccato.  Instead, I chose yoga -- restorative yoga.  I would sit with the twitching and welcome, rather than resist it.  Breathe through the insanity.

A month or so ago, I found a website called Yogis Anonymous.  They stream a variety of live yoga classes each week for free, and have a library of videos from about forty teachers, all levels of class, that are accessible for only $15 per month.  When you figure a single class in a studio runs about $15, it is an economical way to build a home practice.  In fact, you can even sign up to try it for one month for free.  I assure you, it's worth it.

This afternoon, I searched the site for Restorative Yoga and found a class taught by Beth Pradini.  It was fantastic!  I can't recommend it enough.  If she were a teacher down the block at my local studio, you can bet I would be there in the front row each week.  With bells on.  Well, maybe not bells...they probably frown on that in a restorative class.

But, I digress...

My enthusiasm stems from the fact that I have clearly needed to make restorative yoga a key part of my yoga practice for quite some time (more on my yoga journey later...).  Today, I just locked in, remembered how deep, therapeutic breathing feels in my body, and felt all the tension and fatigue from earlier simply melt away.  Ten minutes into the practice, the twitch in my eye stopped.  Hallelujah!

Later, another surprise...just as we started Savasana (Corpse Pose, traditionally done to close every yoga asana practice), after weeks of above average temperatures and even more weeks of absolutely no rain (near drought conditions, folks!)...the sky cracked open and it began to pour!  As I write, the magnificent rain continues.

Did my yoga practice serve as the magical rain dance, to quench the thirst in my body for breath and in the earth for cooling, healing waters?  OK, probably not -- though I love the thought.  I do certainly feel restored...and I think I can hear the trees in the woods behind my house singing as they drink deeply, while the birds and squirrels do their grateful happy dance.//

What's For Dinner Tonight?
This week seems to be ushering in the change to Fall we've been anticipating, if not exactly looking forward to.  Cooler temperatures, a little rain.  In the spirit of eating up the leftovers, I'm in the mood to work through some of what's in the freezer, vacuum sealed from last fall's massive batches of homemade spaghetti sauce, chili and pureed butternut squash.  Tonight, it's spaghetti...

...with homemade Apple Crisp!

Apple Crisp
6-7 medium apples, peeled and sliced in a bowl.
Sprinkle with 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1/4 tsp. nutmeg, 1/2 cup of water.  Toss to spread the spices.
Place in a small baking dish or 8x8 pan.

In another bowl:
1/2 cup flour (white or whole wheat)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup rolled oats (not instant)
Cut in 1/3 cup butter until butter is the size of small peas.

Drop mixture over the apples.  Bake at 350 for 40 minutes or until topping is nicely browned.

I always have the best luck using a variety of apples.  Tonight's has Honeycrisp, Honeygold, Regent and SweeTango from our recent apple orchard adventure.  Can't wait to dig in!

Enjoy a sweet and restorative evening :)


  1. I love it! Found myself taking a few deeper breaths as I read. I want to find that class now! And isn't it amazing how simply moving our bodies in a slow, gentle, respectful way, we can relax into ourselves once again and let go of all kinds of tensions? love it! Thanks!

  2. Absolutely -- the breath is the key to life! And how often do we treat it with the respect it deserves? Thank you!