Wednesday, February 25, 2009

yoga - ergized

It was a beautiful sunrise today.

Last Friday I went to the early - read 6 AM - Bikram hot yoga class. I came out feeling alive and ready to face the day.

I went again on Monday, but the instructor never showed up (something about miscommunication amongst the staff). I woke up at 4:14am this morning unable to fall back asleep, waiting for my alarm to go off at 5:15 so i could get up and go to yoga again.

I'm hooked. It's addictive and the feeling of euphoria lasts all day.

Right now I'm in my office watching golfball-size hail pour from the skies. They glimmer like pure white marbles; what an incredible sound they make!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

The sort of Vday weekend i would've asked for

Yesterday we celebrated Valentine's Day with a session of Ashtanga partners Yoga.

It was based loosely on the yoga that i normally do, but with a partner.

It actually requires a lot of balance and communication and TRUST, and it gave us some good ideas for stretching exercises too.

We even managed to successfully complete "The Airplane" move, where one person lies on the floor with his/her legs up in the air holding up the other person by the hips.

Matt held me first and we even managed to let go of our hands so it was just him holding me up with his legs... !

Then it was my turn and if i wasn't actually holding his entire weight with my legs/feet, i would've burst out laughing - it was easier than i thought!

After connecting spiritually, we had to counter that balance and headed over to Walmart to satisfy our McDonald's craving. We spent the rest of the night assembling a 500 piece puzzle of a tiger.

It was good brain-training work and after a few hours, we both remarked that doing a puzzle together is probably the one time where we've spent a single extended period of time together where we didn't speak because we were so engrossed in what we were doing.

Today we were going to head up to Mount Washington to do some snowboarding but woke up too late to go up and make it worthwhile.

So instead we took a hike to Ammonite Falls, just a 10 minute drive from home.

We hiked through the new forest and then lowered ourselves down on ropes to the bottom of the falls. Very pretty and very muddy!

We then took our picnic lunch to Westwood Lake and watched as kids slid around on the not-so-frozen ice... it's a beautiful 6km walk around the lake and a great swimming place in the summer.

To top off our Valentine's weekend, last week we bought our selves a second-hand 2000 Nissan Xterra.

The previous owner kept it in such good condition it looks brand new. Roof rack, tow bar, 4 wheel drive, snowtires (and it also comes with a set of all-season tires!), ELECTRIC windows and locking system!!

I have to admit I love driving it, despite the gas-guzzling beast it is and the fact that my hubby is a student on the "Green Building and Renewable Energy" course; my dream of owning a big red honking truck is now fulfilled.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

happy engagement to us!

Today we celebrated our 4th engagement anniversary at the local Thai restaurant in Nanaimo, The Amazing Thai.
Every year we try to have Thai food in honour of getting engaged on the beautiful shores of Koh Yao Noi. Has it only been four years? Wow.

I presented Matt with his surprise weekend getaway to Ucluelet (on the west coast of island).

We'll be there from Feb26 - March1. Luckily there were vacancies during his University reading break and i'm taking one day off work.

My parents had some extra RCI Points (vacation time-share plan) so I took the opportunity to snatch them up - thanks mom and dad!

Apparently it's storm watching season on the west coast and the waves and wind are legendary, oooh!

Sunday, February 08, 2009

"O Canada, our home and native land..."

It's early February and it seems like spring is already upon us!

How strange it feels to be in Canada and yet so far away from what i know as 'Canada'.

It is a bit confusing and lonely at times but the natural beauty and easy lifestyle is hard to beat.

My heart is restless and perhaps what i need is just a big hug.

I'm feeling well challenged and immersed at work, indulging in the many smiles and energy that transmit through those darling children.

I will make a more conscious effort to be more present here on this space. Promise.

* picture of a lovely our lovely walk on Jan 18th at Westwood Lake in Nanaimo - a short 5 minute drive from our home!

sweet 'n sour road tripping

Today we ventured further north than we ever have on Vancouver Island - Gold River and then north/west to Thasis.

We almost made it there (Thasis) but had to turn back because we had tickets to a Chinese New Year dinner and music performance in Cumberland, a little town of 2,100 just north of Nanaimo.

It's been a while since we've been driving all day for 8 hours and we both got a bit nostalgic for long road trips....

Gold River we spoke to the guy who runs the sea float planes, Nootka Air.
He runs a tour which basically allows you to follow him on his 'mail route', stopping in different fly-in villages and harbours. Definitely on our to-do list!

We made it to Cumberland just in time.

Although the Lunar New Year was a couple of weeks ago, this event was advertised online and we thought it would be fun to attend, given we didn't really do anything special to celebrate.

Apparently Cumberland was a huge mining town with a lot of Japanese and Chinese immigrants and many here are 3rd or 4th generation.

There was a guest band called Silk Road
, a husband (from Montreal) and wife (from China) team who tour the world, giving concerts and educational seminars to school-children.

We didn't know anyone there but met quite a few nice folk from around the area. The local chinese restaurant, Panda Gardens, catered the event.. it's been a while since we've eaten sweet and sour pork and fried rice and deep-fried jumbo shrimp!! Once in a while, it doesn't hurt to have a heavy dose of MGS eh?

The duo even did a piece from Xinjiang province, although neither of them have been there before (we went up to talk to them afterwards), and she showed us some 'uygher dancing' which involved some neck twitches and chicken flapping... either they've drastically changed their dancing style or we totally missed out when we were living there.

Overall, it was a really interesting evening and we even bid and won a silent auction item - two bamboo mats for beach use! $5 for both, well we were the only bidders, but all the funds raised are going towards a big Chinese pavillion that they're building for the community.

Ok, bed now. I've got to work tomorrow afternoon. There's a special community info event happening in the Qualicum Beach Civic Centre where our organization is putting up a booth to attract interest in our programs and to get volunteers in to come and help us get our new centre opening up in March..... and anyways, it means we're all working a half-day.