Yogi I Am Not

It's been two years since my last yoga class. Actually, it feels like yesterday, but that's how things go with little people running your life - time flies at warp speed while oddly moving at a sluggish pace too. Irony.

Anyways, I marched myself to Happy Hour yoga last Friday expecting a little stretch, relaxation and some of that good ol' namaste. What I left you, you ask ... a really sweaty sports bra (although I still love and highly recommend it) and a need for stock in Deep Blue.

Here's the breakdown ...

Yoga Instructor: Would you like a new student discount card?
Me: Totally! Such a great deal! This is the perfect time because my mom can watch my kids. I can't wait to get back into yoga since I had my baby. I did leave out that part that my "baby" is almost two. 

She peacefully, in a yoga style, nods and looks at me like I'm on speed. Which I'm not. I only drink decaf. And eat these like they're going out of style. Which, PSA, if you still have these at your Costco, BUY THEM ALL. Ours is out and I fear they're not coming back.

Yoga Instructor: (paraphrased) Let's begin a vinyasa (is that how you spell it?) flow - downward dog, lunge to high plank, low plank, cooooooobra, warrior, warrior 2, warrior 4, warrior 9, reach to the sun ... breathe in, breathe out ... and FLOW AGAIN!
Me: WTF, flow! I'm out of breathe and this is supposed to be my hour of peace for the week! Again? High plank, low plank sounds awfully like a push up and Gretchen does not do those. By now I'm sure I look like a dead cobra even though I'm somehow hoping I look more like this ...

My hair was in a bun and I was wearing a tank ... so, kinda maybe? Perhaps after a few weeks.

Yoga Instructor: Great work, great effort, with a sneaky nod towards me as she says "effort". Now, let's all move our mats to the wall to practice headstands.
Me: Oh. My. Goodness. Did I fall down a rabbit hole into some advanced yoga class??? HEADSTAND?!?!?!

I moved my mat to the wall. Because what else was I supposed to do? Sit in the middle of the studio and stare in awe as everyone else hoisted their booties into the air? I was hoping and praying for the little beginner disclaimer or modification instructions - no such thing came. 

She talked us through a sturdy base as I willed myself to be absorbed into the brick wall. I closed my eyes like I was hard-core meditating and just focused on perfecting a strong base. While 5+ people popped into beautiful headstands, me and one other gal and an older dude sat criss-cross with smiles and dropping jaws. Praise the Lord I wasn't the only non-headstander in our bunch.

Thankfully, we moved into child pose and then the rest-on-your-back-and-relax/almost-fall-asleep pose shortly after the headstand saga and I finally stopped sweating from flows and headstand stress.

Yep, yoga was a real treat this week. And if I ever stop feeling sore, I might even try to a practice run before next Friday's class with my BEGINNER'S DVD that I snagged for $8 at Costco. Practice makes perfect, right?

Last, but not least ...
My yoga must have - one + two
My yoga question - Necessary? Cute?
My yoga dream

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When Sister Meets Sibling

Yesterday I was over at The Pierogie Mama sharing about my transition from one child to two. Here's a little snippet:
No doubt, going from one on one to being outnumbered is hard. I have shed tears, felt overwhelmed, used harsh words and collapsed at the end of the day with pure exhaustion. But over the last 18 months our daily trio has become the most wonderful thing. All the ups and downs, the "getting into a routine" and forging strong relationships have paid off. So much so that I find myself thinking, "What would it be like with three little ones ...".

And yes, yes I am dying over this photo. Let's recap while I drown in a puddle of happy tears ...
1) Jem's hair is so short! She looks like such a baby here - just 22 months!
2) Max is so freakin' darling! AND HE WEIGHED 10 POUNDS! I would have never guessed.
3) This was such an awesome day! I just <3 birth stories.

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If You Love Deals ...


They make my heart beat faster. They make me smile. I just love them. Love them! It must be the thrift junkie in me. Things are more enjoyable, more appreciated when I know I got the best bang for my buck.

So, with a hefty dose of frugality running through my veins I couldn't wait to try out ScoreBig - a website for sports, concerts and theater tickets. It's not just any deal website though. On ScoreBig you name your price and can save up to 60% off ticket prices. Nothing like a little negotiation to make finding a deal extra exciting!
You heard me right, friends, there are deals to be had on your next date night! 

I used ScoreBig to order tickets for a Mariner's game in preparation for the hubs birthday weekend. The tickets retailed for $77 and through ScoreBig I landed 2 tickets for $100! Best of all, there are no extra fees, postage or hidden anything. $100 flat and we're off to the ball game come May!

Here's how it works ...
  • Choose your event - there are tons of options ranging from sports games to popular concerts to theater shows (even Wicked, my most favorite musical of all!)
  • ScoreBig doesn't tell you what to pay - you decide and submit an offer
  • By choosing a seating area rather than an exact seat, you give the ticket provider the flexibility they need to offer you a significant savings
  • Get an instant answer on your offer and complete your order
Last, but not least, anticipate the fun! That's the best part ... because, like I mentioned there is nothing more enjoyable than knowing you got a deal on something fabulous!

And, this post wouldn't be complete without a flashback to our last Mariner's game - April 2007. Such a long, long time ago ... before we were even married! Our Mariner's game date was the last "big" one before Dominic proposed that May :)

I received a credit towards my purchase through ScoreBig. No other compensation was received.

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We Ate, We Shopped, We Adventured

Every night Jemma prays for three people --- "Uncle Anton, Tasha annnnnd Cuzzin Karrington". They're our Texas people and thankfully, we got to spend a good portion of March with them! Our days were packed and the kids so enjoyed our adventures between Seattle and Portland. I finally uploaded photos and can't wait to share the highlights!

As tour guides we spearheaded the best and brightest of the Northwest - Salt + Straw (pear and blue cheese ice cream!), Molly Moon, Ruby Jewel, two children's museums (Olympia wins big time!), outlet shopping, Oba Happy Hour (burgers! queso!), Pike's Place Market, Grilled Cheese Grill, and the first ever Starbucks. Our travels crossed over the Frozen release, so we celebrated with lots of singing, Princess Anna pajamas and Queen Elsa dresses :) Evens the Dads have admitted to enjoying Frozen. Oh, and #tulawin times two - friends with big babies toddler Tulas are the grandest thing eva!

It may sound like all we did was eat. I promise we walked lots too. You know, to even out all the scrumptiousness. Best seriously, if you're visiting the Northwest get all those restaurants I linked on your must visit list!

We wrapped up our family time with ... dun dun da da ... family photos! This crew is the best! Love each and every one of them!

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Smoothie Packs

I'm the kind of cook who has grand aspirations and fails about half the time. Especially when it comes to a healthy and filling breakfast. Those cookies from the previous night are just so tempting some times, but definitely not an appropriate breakfast! I've learned my lesson with this recently while trying to explain to my 3 year old why mommy is eating a cookies at 8am, ha! No good reason there! So, a few weeks ago I decided to start prepping smoothie packs to eliminate the "what can I grab quick for breakfast?" conundrum. 

It took me all of 10 minutes to fill a handful of bowls with a variety of my favorite smoothie ingredients. Here's my top 5: 

smoothie packs

Hidden Greens - bunch of spinach, cup of frozen blueberries, slice or two of frozen mango, heaping tablespoon of coconut oil, half a frozen banana.

Protein Pumpkin Pie - 2 frozen muffin tin scoops of pumpkin pie mix (this is a perfect way to save that 1/2 a can that always seems to be leftover from various recipes), scoop of protein powder <--- my favorite.

Berry Blast - 2 big scoops of frozen blackberry and raspberry (marionberries if you have them!), 2 teaspoons chia seeds and 1 frozen banana.

Pine-Straw-Banana - 2 spears of frozen pineapple, 1 big scoop of strawberries, 1 frozen banana and a heaping tablespon of coconut oil.

Peachy Green - 10 slices of frozen peaches, 1 big handful of spinach, a few chunks of frozen mango, 1/2 a frozen banana, dash of chia seeds and scoop of almond butter. 
From here, I dumped each bowl into a freezer baggie and placed them in the freezer. Done! Now, with one quick dump I have all my ingredients in the blender and add just enough liquid to get it spinning well. My liquid choice alternates between almond milk, whatever juice we have on hand or my favorite, Naked Juice Mighty Mango ... whatever seems to match the best. It's that easy to have quick smoothies ready to go! 

A side note on ingredient sources - I pick and prep like crazy during the summer months to stock up on fresh, local produce. For things like mango and pineapple (not even close to being available locally) I'll watch for a good sale on and then stock up and freeze. Organic spinach, coconut oil, almond butter and bananas all come from Costco. Because, well, Costco pretty much owns me :) 

And, I can't say enough good things about our Vitamix. It's a billion years old (bought it at a garage sale and the label definitely looks like it's from the 80's) and it still works amazingly well. Then again, if the price point of the Vitamix isn't up your alley, I can vouch (via my sister) that the Ninja does a good job too. 

This post was originally published on the Baby Gizmo Blog.
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