Happy Happy Birthday to the Most Awesome Little Boy EVER

Today is my brother's birthday.

He is 6 years old!

Enjoying Pancakes Bigger Than His Face

He is the best little brother.  He is also the best big brother.  We have a sister (2) and he is so amazing with her. 

He is such a blessing to me!

I was an only child for most of my life. 

Every bedtime prayer, every birthday candle wish- was for a little brother or sister. 

I always figured God had other plans.  My parents divorced when I was 14.  I seemed destined to ride this out solo.

Then I moved away for college.  During my Christmas break freshman year my dad shares the news that he and his girlfriend were expecting!!

His estimated arrival was 8/22/2004.  I was home for Summer break but heading back to college very soon.  I waited and waited for his debut. 

He waited until I was back at school, an ocean away, to make his appearance.  I was able to meet him 3 months later during Thanksgiving break.

My brother is one of the sweetest kids I know.  He has always been there to make me smile and drive me crazy, usually all at the same time.

He has a love for Thomas the Tank Engine and his entourage, superheroes (especially Green Lantern, as of today), Transformers, and sweet surprises (ice cream, cookies, cake, etc...)

I thank God for answering my prayers and birthday wishes after all those years.  Seriously, 10+ years of the same request.  If there were any doubt that God answers prayers, I just remember this little guy and all the good times we have shared during his 6 years with us.  I can't wait to see what else God has in store for this little guy!!!

Happy happy birthday little brother!!!


Review: Prenatal Yoga with Desi Bartlett

A few months ago I decided to skip the studio and take prenatal yoga into my own hands, or living room.

I wouldn't recommend anyone do this, but I have practiced yoga before (yes, more than that one semester in college) and even "volunteered" in a yoga studio while working in professional butt-kissing accounting.  I worked the front desk and received free yoga sessions.  Pretty sweet! Plus I was able to interact with the instructors and learned a lot about technique and form.  Doesn't mean I was able to pull off a perfect Eagle Pose or Standing Bow but I did understand the technique, even if my body wasn't up to speed yet.

 So yes, I figured it was for the most part safe to pick out a yoga DVD and try at home.  Especially since the studio session was so freaking expensive!!!

How do you pick out workout DVDs?

Do you conduct extensive research and chart all the ratings and reviews and compare them in a nice colorful graph?

Do you get recommendations from your friends? Fellow bloggers?

Eenie Meenie Miny Mo? (I have no idea how to spell that- so just go with it)

Here's the secret I have to picking out workout DVDs:

Figure out which one is less annoying

Yup. I totally judge a workout DVD by its cover.

So standing in line at Border's awhile back, during their clearance/liquidation sale, the hubbs has a great idea that I should pick out a yoga DVD since I was complaining about not finding a suitable yoga practice for pregnancy (not his exact words, by the way).

Little did he realize that my complaining was just a rouse and that I didn't really want to have to work out in my living room.  But hey, it's good for me and it's good for the baby.

He holds our place in line and I got to the exercise DVD section.  I pick out 2 DVDs- one is a "gentle practice" and is the cheapest one on the shelf.  The other has a wide range of workouts that you can customize in various ways.  It was also about 30% more expensive.

So you can see my dilemma right?

The cheap one looked the most annoying! The more expensive one looked WAAAAAY cooler (which is why I suspect it was more expensive).

Husband's pick? The cheaper one.  Because he is a dude.

I don't know why I went with his idea.  Maybe because we just had a long serious talk about our finances and budgeting and saving for baby and blah blah blah.

I knew he was right about saving money. I gave in and chose the more annoying cover with the less expensive price.

I don't know what it is about Desi Bartlett that annoyed me.  Maybe I didn't believe the smile on her face? I know pregnancy is such a wonderful miracle but I think the fact that she was just holding her stomach and smiling, not even showing me a yoga pose, gave me the wrong vibe.

I'm all about vibes.

OK on to the DVD.

Here is a clip I found that is in the beginning of the workout.

Don't laugh.  Yes, I know the music sounds like the Lion King.  But the stretches really help! The first time my husband watched me workout to this DVD he had some choice comments.  He is no longer allowed in the living room while this DVD is on because I will cut. him.

On to the clip:

What I liked about this DVD:
- It really is a gentle yoga practice.
-I still break a sweat with this "gentle" practice.  I blame Hawaii's humidity and my apt. buildings lack of central AC.
- The music is different- some Spanish guitar music playing in the background is a really nice change up from the typical yogi soundtracks.

What I didn't like:
-Even though this is for beginners, she doesn't really explain the poses that well.  She transitions from Downward Dog to Warrior 2 pretty easily.  Luckily I've practiced yoga before so I was able to keep up, but she didn't make it a point to explain the proper form.  Proper form is crucial for beginners.  (She does dabble in some form/technique, but not much)

What I really didn't like:
- Toward the end of the workout, we transition from the standing poses to the floor/cool down.  Out of no-where she says to grab your blanket and use as a cushion for your knees. "What blanket?? I didn't know I needed a blanket! HUSBAAAAAAND! Grab a blanket quickly!!!". THEN she uses yoga blocks for a pose.  I have never used yoga blocks in my life! Granted, some practices use them, but I've never had to- I would just adjust the pose until I was able to hold it properly.

It was such a kink in my vibe.  After I waited for her to finish those poses we transition to savasana (dead corpse pose) and all I can think about is how annoyed I am that I didn't do those other poses!

After the workout/rest is over, I go back to the main menu and select "Before you Begin".  I read that thing twice and it doesn't say anywhere that a blanket and yoga blocks are needed.  I read the DVD cover, front and back and back and front.


So that's my biggest annoyance.

I bought the cheap DVD and can't complete the last two poses (before savasana of course).  I improvise and just slip into Child's Pose or practice deep breathing, but I shouldn't have to.

I should be able to complete the workout from beginning to end.

Final Point: If you are given this DVD as a gift, be sure that person included a blanket and yoga blocks.  If you're going to spend your money, I'd look into something else.

And yes, I kept the DVD and improvise my workout.  I am too cheap to buy another DVD and also too cheap to buy yoga blocks.  But after writing this out and seeing how silly it may seem, I might buy them eventually. 

Hopefully before the baby arrives.
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