quest for the perfect smoothie

smoothie_blend

while pregnant with little maus, every morning i would waddle myself over to the loop juice counter in the french market. craving everything fresh and healthy, one day the owner asked me if i wanted to dip my toes into the green smoothie waters. i hesitated at first, but he assured me it wasn’t too earthy and suggested a couple chunks of mango to sweeten the deal. slowly drawing the straw to my lips, i was pleasantly surprised this crazy concoction did not taste like grass. in fact, it was quite delicious! my trips to loop juice became a morning ritual until 2 weeks before my due date i was told by my doctor that she was putting me on bedrest.

i returned to work after almost 4 months of maternity leave and immediately started to feel overwhelmed with work life and daily life. trying to find balance after baby, i became run down, tired, cranky, forgetful and stressed to the max. my weight loss had plateaued, and i was down right frustrated with everything and everyone, including myself. a complete lifestyle change needed to be made and the only person that could make that change was me. not knowing where to start, i thought back to my morning walk to the french market. i needed to put breakfast back into my life. little did i know, this would be the (small) first step of many to my new healthier self.

i dug through the cabinets, pulled out our old blender and added ingredients i thought would be yummy. plop, plop, plop into the cup it went…hmmm, this was a lot chunkier then expected. first sip was spit out immediately…yuckers! dear lord what was this garbage? it was completely awful! ok, family adventure to abt was in order! look out visa card, here comes a big fat charge for the fancy pants vitamix blender! let me tell ya folks, this thing churns out a chunk free smoothies like nobody’s business! seriously, this thing is amazing and super easy to clean. i was a bit reluctant since you cannot wash the vitamix in the dishwasher, but the sales woman taught me THE secret. rinse it out, fill with hot water, add a drop of dawn and blend. shiny and new in under 2 minutes! now you are in the know as well.

green_monster

i’ve blended many different versions of the morning smoothie. the green monster seems to be the one i always come back to. even the boy has been requesting them…woah, that is a feat! i’ve found it beneficial to add lemon juice to all of my green drinks, and always remove the stems from your kale…it will help with the bitterness. i’m not a big fan of banana but have managed just fine without them. recently i was told by my acupuncturist to add protein to my morning smoothies to cut down on 10am hunger attacks. i never have an exact recipe…i just eyeball it. here are some of my morning favorites.

THE GREEN MONSTER
kale (stems removed)
blueberries
mango
orange
coconut water
little bit of honey
nice squirt of lemon juice

BERRY COCONUT SMOOTHIE
strawberries
blueberries
raspberries
coconut water
egg white protein powder
honey

PINEAPPLE GINGER SMOOTHIE
pineapple
orange
ginger (a little goes a long way)
vanilla almond milk
chia seeds
egg white protein powder
honey

bookie?

read

the little maus has recently discovered books, and she has a favorite that she always seems returns to. baby sees colors by karen katz seems to be one that intrigues her the most these days. she hands it (tosses it…watch your face!) at you and says, “bookie?” it’s incredibly adorable.

initially, the first page — red — was her favorite; she always pointed at the strawberry. after a few days she figured out how to turn the page to yellow and was fascinated by the duck. her little plump finger pointing to it over and over again, tap, tap, tap on the page. grandma showed her the green dinosaur on the last page and roared a bit, but little maus was scared, so we covered him up. although she soon warmed up to the dino and now likes to find him and roar too, just like grandma.

we have some other favorites in our household as well. the dude likes goodnight goodnight construction site, click clack moo: cows that type, little blue truck, and i love you stinky face. it makes me so happy to see the children discover reading. little maus can be entertained all afternoon with just her one favorite book, while the dude will chose book after book after book, completely enthralled. he loves the adventure and the excitement each story brings to his small world. and i must admit, it is one of my favorite times of the day…spending that quiet cuddle time with them, discovering by their sides.

feeling a bit off

feeling

ever have one of those days where you feel just a bit off? normally we have a pretty steady routine…wake up, get ready for work, get the kids ready, off to daycare, off to the city, work so hard your computer needs a cocktail, back home, and off to bed. sounds about right. this week my husband has been out of town on business so my routine has been out of whack. i think tonight some hot yoga and focused breathing is in order to calm my mind. but in the meantime, i may have to stop at j.crew for a little pick me up during lunch. this vintage style baseball sweater or this horse sweatshirt might accidentally fall into a shopping bag on my way out of the store.

hot yoga

yoga1

hot yoga — i’m completely addicted! if i could go every night i would. i’ve been attending classes a couple times a week for the past couple months, and it all started with a random conversation on the train. the girl i commute with on the train with said she wanted to go to a hot yoga class and i thought, “well that sounds like it could be fun.” tribalance yoga is close to my home and they offer late classes after the kids go to bed so i don’t miss my momma time.

hours before class i started to get nervous. what if i wasn’t good enough? i had been to a studio once before years ago and felt like a pterodactyl. right now i do yoga in my basement with a DVD, but this was different. this was yoga, in a studio, with other yogis, with an instructor…hmmmm. would they be silently judging me? what do i need to bring? what if i passed out? worse then that, what if i barf? panic started to set in. i began to google hot yoga…which came up with a few “interesting” sites with scantily clad women. but after more searching, i started to get some insight on what exactly i was in for. i looked again at the studio’s schedule and noticed i wasn’t going to hot yoga, but rather om zone conditioning…how different could that be, right? i went to the class description page, but that particular class must have been new, so nothing had been written….hmmmm.

i meet my girlfriend in the tribalance parking lot. we bravely walked through the door and signed in — i’m excited and nervous all at the same time. we receive a tour of the studio from a nice gentleman named tim and are shown to the locker room. i put my gym bag and glasses away (google told me not to wear them even though i could no longer see where i was going), grab my mat and smart water, and i walk towards the room. upon opening the door, we are immediately hit with the hot humid air…and man is it hot! the air hangs with the smell of sweat and incense. the room is dimly lit and we make our way to the back corner to set up. i suddenly feel like the poster child for lululemon…i’ve got my tank, shorts, mat, towel, headband and top knot…all the essentials to help you look like you know what you’re doing, right? i lay down in savasana and notice that even the floors are heated. i start to sweat and think to myself, “girl, what were you thinking.”

suddenly there’s the booming voice of a male in the room. he tells me to stand up, mountain pose, hands to the heart, sun salutations…ok, i can do this! music starts to kick in (seriously, this studio rocks it out) jump back to plank, chaturanga, into cobra, downward dog. right leg up. i’m upside down and the sweat starts to run down my cheeks, into my eyes. i glance at my glistening arms and think to myself, “i’ve never sweat like this before in my life and i’m only 5 mins in, crap.” i’m told to stand up and run in place, faster, run it out. i feel like i’m playing a deranged version of simon says. no wonder there was no description of om zone conditioning. the devil himself has set his ass crack down on my yoga mat and is telling me to now do 20 push ups, 20 sit ups and 20 lunges. someone, please, make the bad man stop. he continues with his up, down, up, down instructions and i can feel tunnel vision beginning to kick in. the reality of why they asked for an emergency contact upon signing in is dawning on me. i’m going to be the one they haul out of here on a stretcher.

i curl up on my mat in the fetal position and hear the man say, “whatever feels good for you” from the far side of the room…dude, this feels good, this feels really, really, good right now. up, down, up, down, his voice is getting closer, i quickly get back into the groove and think, ya, i’ve got this. the booming voice says, “this is just the warm up, and then the real workout begins! getting stronger together”…hmmmm, ya, maybe not. i look at my girlfriend, and she looks at me. I just shake my head and tell her i’ve gotta get out of here. i hang my head in shame and start to roll up my mat when suddenly, that booming male voice it right above me. shit. this is the first time i’ve gotten a clear look at him…you’ll remember i said i put my glasses away…without them i’m blind as a bat. i meekly look up at this bare chested tattooed man and whisper the words, “i can’t” as i stand up. he looks me in the eyes and says, “yes you can, don’t give up now, you’re almost there! you only have 8 mins left.”

somehow he has given me the strength to unroll my mat. i start to run in place, tattooed simon says stop running, tattooed simon says get into a big circle and hold hands, tattooed simon says do squats, tattooed simon says do lunges, tattooed simon says sit on your butts with your feet in the air, tattooed simon says flutter kick your legs, tattooed simon says get up and do more squats, tattooed simon says go find your mats bravo you’ve completed the workout, smile and honor yourself just for being here. thank you sweet baby jesus! i lay down on my mat and start the cool down. I find my breathe and smile. i just made it through something i thought i couldn’t. i lay in savasana and relax, my whole body flush; hotter then its even been before. i did it!

when we walk out to the lobby, the booming voice tells me he is proud i stuck it out and introduces himself to us as corey. he tells us after the 6th class it will get better and he hopes to see us again next week. i don’t know if it was the endorphins, but to be truthful, i couldn’t wait.

2 days later i was jonesing to go back. this time for hot yoga with a lovely girl named becki. i was somewhat sore from the previous evening. she stretched me out and helped me work on flexibility, strength and balance. at tribalance, i don’t feel pressured into doing the perfect pose although she did reposition me a few times, but i never felt like i was “doing it wrong”. nor did i fell like a pterodactyl. i feel really blessed to have found these people. i’ve embraced yoga and found something within myself  i never knew i had. it is such a chill and relaxed environment that i’ve come to love. namaste.

 

for you

Dec

 

 

Lighting Rejuvination

 

TARGET

 

TED BAKER

LORD N TAYLOR

GUCCI SHOES

Net A Porter

Lanvin

 

DRAPER JAMES

 

ALL MODERN
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