Sunday, October 11, 2015

Yoga & Jesus

Yesterday we got my books and binder from "Blue-Eyes" as I will refer to her.

I'm starting Yoga Teacher Training.

Yoga and I have a complicated relationship. It's like me and Jesus; I love it, but I only seek it out when I'm really hurting.

I started doing yoga at home when I was in my late teens, just sporadically. I took a class in junior college and fell in love with it. I needed rest, and relaxation, and permission to forgive my imperfections, and yoga was my sweet spot. I also felt fit, and lean, and it seemed to coincide well with my vegetarian lifestyle.

Yet, the complications are many.

I'm a perfectionist. I have a personality that tends to lean towards the extreme. I get stressed easily. I have anxiety. I have a history of depression. I have a history of an eating disorder. I am competitive.

Yoga is freeing, it tells you to love yourself, to not expect perfection, because perfection is an illusion. You listen to your body, and you forgive it, and you accept it's limitations. You relax.

Competition in yoga is nonexistent. You have goals, perhaps, but those goals are only for you. They are never in comparison to another.

And here's me: comparison, judgement, must be the best and always do it right.

But that's why I always come back to yoga.

It heals me. It helps to remind me that I'm okay; I have permission to fail, to falter, to sway when I attempt to balance.

Yoga is the physical place where I find spiritual awareness. Maybe the practice originated in Eastern religion, but I follow Christ, and so always come back to God, Yaweh. He can only speak when I am still. When I stop comparing. When I forgive myself and others of imperfection. He finds me when I lay in the dark during Shavasana, and I'm open to His voice, and He reminds me to come as I am.

As I lay with my hands open to the sky, and my eyes closed, and nowhere else to be; He reminds me I am loved, with no expectation.

Perfection is an illusion, and the happiness that I seem to think I will find once I reach it, a terrible lie.

This should be an interesting journey. I'm trying to remind myself why I began loving yoga in the first place, because the path ahead feels a little daunting. And it's scary to do something new, and venture into the unknown.


October Stitch Fix: Grunge Love

You know what makes me happy? Oversized sweaters with long arms. This is not sarcasm. I have emotional warm fuzzies as I reminisce of Sandra Bullock in While You Were Sleeping and the 90's grunge of my youth.

I got some goodies in this fix. It was like a hug in a box. It was like my stylist, Jaclyn, was saying "I get you, girl, and your need for rainy day reading clothes; I don't judge your love for "sloppy" as a fashion statement. I love the Sandra Bullock in you."

So here it is, guys. October fashion show.

I recieved 2 sweaters, a top, a pair of jeans, and earrings. Pretty packaging.

Once again, please forgive me my phone-photography and haphazard editing skills. Also, my room is a mess. And that's ok. I'm not ashamed. I'm sure your room is a mess sometimes too. The unmade bed is the great equalizer. 

So on to the clothes. First I got a top by Skies are Blue, called the Jacklin Mixed Print Knit Top, $48. I made happy sounds when I took this out of the box. I like the black and cream stripes, and it has a nice feel to it. I love the idea of throw-on tops for fall. This one was just not super flattering. If I was going to keep the whole box I would have worn it happily, but I was on a strict budget so choices had to be made.

With the top I tried on the Just Black Jimmy Skinny Jeans, $88. Of course, they fit perfectly. Perfect length, perfect fit through my hips, and flattering. Also, made in the USA. They are a really really dark denim, though. Considering I kept the black skinny jeans in my last fix, I had to think about it. 

So then, this happened. The En Crème Pippa Open Cardigan, $58 in a marled gray. It's a size small, but really big. I liked it. It was like wearing a blanket. I could see myself puttering around in this with leggings and slippers, or throwing on with yoga wear on my way to the studio. 

Look, I'm in heaven. It covers my hands!!

Then I pulled out this sweater, also oversized, and I loved the look of it. This is the Market & Spruce Bonno Mixed Material Pullover Sweater, $68.

Its roomy, great fit rough the shoulders but still sloppy-chic, just how I like my sweaters. The "mixed material" part was the attatched peek-a-boo "shirt" fabric under the hem. Normally faux layers bug me, but I liked this one. The only downside to this sweater was that it was a really scratchy wool. I knit using wool all the time, and I can attest to the fact that not all wool is scratchy. Some wool is soft and totally wearable. Cheap wool is scratchy, and this one had me so itchy I was dying to take it off. Not a winner, unfortunately. It would probably be fine layered over a long sleeve top, but I don't do that.

I didn't even try the earrings, even though I liked them. They are the Bancroft Jayda Twisted Loop Earrings, $28. You can sort of see them below. They are my style, but not unique enough to pay almost $30 for, and after this box I decided to take jewelry off of my style profile for a while.

The total for this box was $290; but with my $20 styling credit, extra credit from a referral (thanks, Aunt Jeanine!!), and 25% off keeping the whole box, the total would have come to $192.50. When I'm being good and saving my "free money," I usually have around $200 to spend, but, 1. I have not been good, and 2. I wouldn't have wanted this whole box, mostly because of the scratchy sweater. 

So I kept the jeans. It was kind of an easy decision (although it was hard to send that oversized cardigan back), because I literally don't have any regular blue denim jeans in my closet. I was gong out the night I got this box, and needed jeans to wear, so I pulled the tags off and kept those beauties. With my credit they were $63 plus tax. Really, not too bad for a high quality pair of jeans that happen to fit like they were made for you. I've been trying to find nice jeans off and on when I go to the mall or TJMaxx with my 19-month-old, and it's been a nightmare. I don't usually have a lot of time to try on, and my kid HATES shopping, so I end up leaving frustrated and empty-handed.

Worth. Every. Penny.

If you want to try out Stitch Fix, feel free to use my referral link and I will get a little credit when your first box ships!  The style profile will ask a few questions about your style preferences and sizes, and I would also suggest linking them to a style Pinterest board that shows who you are and what you like. You can also pin anything you see on this or any other blog, and they will do their best to send you what you request!

Thanks for reading, and happy October!
~ Char