Saturday, December 20, 2008

Book Orgy

Quite spontaneously, I stopped at the book store last month and without really thinking about it, purchased 6 new books to read. They are:
90 Minutes in Heaven- Don Piper
Tuesday with Morrie- Mitch Albom
A Mercy - Toni Morrison
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle- Barbara Kingsolver
Stephen King- Just After Sunset
Reading Lolita inTehran- Azar Nafisi
At the time I swerved my car into the bookstore parking lot, I was listening to NPR to a critique of Stephen King's new collection of short stories. I confess I hate horror and rarely read it- especially Stephen King who I find particularly creepy. However I was so intrigued by the review, that I stopped my car as I just happened to be driving by a book store as the radio program played. I found the Stephen King book very quickly and then perused the sale table where I found the others. They are all books I've wanted to read for some time. I read "90 minutes" "Mercy" and "Tuesdays" right away within a day or two. I got bogged down in "Animal" when it became less discriptive and more preachy (I normally love Barbara Kingsolver's novels- but of course this book isn't a novel but a work of nonfiction based on her family's experiment of living for a year on food they produced themselves or purchased locally). I still intend to finish it but its been a few weeks since I picked it up. I haven't started "Lolita" yet but I look forward to reading it over Christmas break. The best surprise read hands down was- you guessed it- Stephan King. These scrumptious short stories are not skin crawling physical horror, but more psychological thrillers and very cerebrally satisfying. My impromptu trip to the bookstore (and my unplanned raiding of the family budget) proved to be a success. I should visit the library or my favorite half price bookstore more often to give my mind a more diverse and tantalizing diet.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

What I know for sure

For the second time now, I have pulled a ligament in my foot while exercising and find myself limping around unable to exercise much at all. The first time, I was on crutches for 3 days after attending an aerobics class. This time, I walked for seven miles (about 4 hours) and the next day I found myself limping and having pain. Fortunately I can continue my yoga routine (a 15 minute morning workout with Rodney Yee) for now. It's a little disheartening to be so fat, that you injure yourself exercising- but I press on- with an emphasis on LOW IMPACT.
On the food front- I purchased some vegan taco mix and veggie burger mix to try. I'm excited to give it a whirl. My 13 year old is doing the veggie/vegan experiment with me- so we are trying new recipes together. Tonight I want to try to find a vegetarian enchilada recipe that works for me. I'll combine the 'taco mix' with a recipe I found in Skinny Bitch in the Kitch and see how it works. I had lunch at my favorite vegan restaurant (SEED) yesterday and I still think their veggie burger is the best thing on dry land. Last night I splurged and made shrimp for dinner (I still eat fish and seafood) and it was a treat. We ate them steamed with cocktail sauce. Yesterday I made fish tacos with tilapia that I sauteed with mushrooms, onion, diced tomato, green chilis and corn. I'm always on the lookout for vegetarian meals I can make for my family that will fool them or make them forget they are not eating meat- they don't always eat fish and seafood very well either.
I'm reading Eckart Tolle's 'A New Earth.' I'm loving this book. I read it in no certain order starting in the middle and re-reading bits and pieces whenever I pick it up. I picked it up yesterday (I keep it in my purse so I can read at spare moments) and started reading near the beginning. It was like reading it for the first time again. I'm learning more than I can possible integrate. I like knowing that I can control my mind and it does not control me. Oprah always asks 'what do you know for sure?' I'm beginning to know that my life is whatever I believe it is- if I act on that belief. I know that life is good and that I embody life and that 'choosing the good' is my decision to make every day.
My daily quiet time is very enriching for me. I light candles, burn incence, read the Bible and meditate. It's a lovely way to start each day. I'm looking forward to going the the Holy Land (my friend's spiritual retreat center in central Missouri) this weekend for her annual Winter Solstice celebration- if the weather holds and driving conditions are good.

Saturday, December 6, 2008


My exercise regimen consists mainly of 15 minutes of yoga and 20 minutes of aerobics every weekday morning. I supplement this minimalist workout with stair walking. My office at the college is located on the second floor, so I have to walk up 23 stairs to reach it. My goal is to walk UP the stairs 10 times during the day. I'm trying to figure out a schedule for re-introducing my weights. I've now completed my first week full time at my new job and have a better understanding of how my time is organized. One unexpected consequence: I didn't see my husband AT ALL this week except when he was asleep. We didn't see one another awake not once this whole week. We did talk on the phone briefly everday, but I never got to touch him. That was strange and unexpected. I expect that to change when his schedule slows down- its the busy season for his job. Right now I'm focusing on how to revv up my exercise with the schedule I have. I'm sitting on my butt or standing in place lecturing most of my day. I need more movement incorporated in my day.