Monday, February 2, 2015

Yoga Monday- Yoga Tips for Beginners

1. Just start! Find a pose you think looks cool, or one of the free videos on Youtube, and just do it! If you fall on your face, know that every yogi has done the exact same thing. If you can't quite do the pose, know that there are modifications for pretty much every single pose ever. Maybe you need a strap or a block to get the correct form. That's okay! I still use a block in forward bend to feel the full extension of the spine.

2. You don't need fancy equipment. Would I love a $100 Manduka mat? You betcha! Does my $20 Gaiam mat get the job done? It sure does. It's nice and grippy, I don't slip around if I get sweaty, it does everything I need it to do. Pro tip- you can get obscenely cheap LuluLemon clothes on Ebay, just beware of fakes.

3. Classes aren't so scary. Beginners end up attending pretty much every level of class, even the advanced ones, so you will not be alone. Most people are so focused on their breath and movement that they aren't looking around much, so there is no reason to feel self conscious. Sometimes people fart, sometimes people cry. All totally normal and no one will blink an eye.

4. Focus on your alignment. One of my yoga teachers really emphasized a focus on the breath. For me, I felt like this caused me to hold my breath while getting into certain poses. When I turned my focus to my body alignment and let myself breathe naturally, my practice improved.

5. It's okay to spend your entire home practice in Savasana. Sometimes it takes major effort just to get on the mat. Sometimes I'm so emotionally exhausted that I can barely get through a sun salutation before I decide it sounds better to lay in corpse pose for a while. Taking the effort to consciously relax your body for 5-20 minutes can totally recharge your mind and body.

If you practice yoga, what are some tips you would give newbies? I'd love to hear them!

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a teeny tiny compensation if you make a purchase using these links.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Morning Routine

My morning time is so precious to me. It's typically the biggest chunk of time I have to myself the entire day. The day feels completely off when I don't get this time in the mornings. I generally get up at 6 to have an hour or two to myself before Spencer wakes up. I fix myself a cup of tea, usually an herbal chai with almond milk if you were wondering, and then I get cozy with my laptop. I love to read blogs in the morning, maybe watch a Ted talk or read the news, but the morning is also when I do the most writing. My thoughts are more clear and I'm more focused in the mornings. After I get some writing done, I do a little yoga to get my blood pumping. From there I figure out my to-do list and plan for the rest of the day. Spencer generally gets up between 7 and 8 and then I fix a yummy breakfast for the two of us and we start our day. 

What does your morning routine consist of? I'd love to hear about it!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Taking Stock

Making : time to relax, slow down, and take life one moment at a time
Cooking : vegan baked goods (it's not going so well)
Drinking : chai lattes morning, noon, and night
Reading: The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake (so good!)
Wanting: the weather to warm up!  
Playing: outside with Spencer
Deciding: on what home projects to tackle with our tax return
Enjoying: my second trimester
Waiting: for February, to start planting seeds for our garden!
Wondering: what kind of adventures this year will bring.
Loving: trips to the Goodwill bookstore. 20 books for $20!
Considering: cutting my hair. It's a vicious cycle of cut short, grow long, and repeat.
Watching: nothing now, but DYING to watch the new Scandal episode on Thursday!!
Hoping: for new dinner ideas to pop into my head. I'm in a rut.
Marvelling: at how my daughter sees the world
Needing: some maternity clothes. My stomach is growing WAY faster than with Spencer
Smelling: my new orange clove candle from Target
Wearing: loooots of yoga pants 
Noticing: that my carpet REALLY needs to be cleaned.
Knowing: that no matter how 
Admiring: my husband's strong work ethic
Sorting: through boxes that have been sitting in our garage since we moved in 6 months ago
Getting: antsy about big goals for the future!
Buying: the absolute best Cara Cara oranges from the farmer's market
Bookmarking: lots of Ted talks.
Opening: too many packages from Amazon. I may have an addiction.
Giggling: with my sweet daughter while we play together.
Feeling: excited about finding out the gender of baby #2 next week!

Props to for coming up with this fun post idea!

Monday, January 26, 2015

Yoga Monday- How I fell in love with yoga

Let me start by saying I am a complete and total beginner when it comes to yoga. I love to practice and the way it makes me feel, but I have much to learn.

Until I found yoga, I never really enjoyed exercising. Running was annoying, and I've always hated team sports. I pole vaulted in high school because it was fun and most practices we just lounged on the mats. After I had Spencer, I began looking for ways to get more healthy, physically and mentally. I followed a couple yogis on instagram and joined a month long challenge where you post a photo of a different pose every day. That is where I fell down the rabbit hole. I loved trying different poses and seeing what my body could do. The first time I nailed crow pose? I felt like I was flying.

After that challenge was over, I started looking at yoga studios in town. I don't know about the studios where you live, but around here they are EXPENSIVE! When I found a 30 day introductory pass for $40 I quickly nabbed that up and nervously headed to my first class the next morning. Yoga classes are a whole different ball game than practicing at home. It was so nice to be able to receive feedback on my alignment and observe what more experienced people were able to do. I think I went to class almost every single day during my 30 day pass. It was addicting!

Nowadays I practice at home almost daily and get to a class when I can. A couple sun salutations in the morning are the equivalent of a triple espresso to me!

Friday, January 23, 2015

On becoming a mother of two

Sometimes it blows my mind when I think about the fact that I'm Spencer's mother. This beautiful, smart, funny little girl with the most amazing personality is all mine. I made her and she is a part of me. Babies don't always come easy and that makes me feel so lucky to have her to be a part of this family. Now that I am pregnant again, I often imagine what life with be like with two kids. Will the baby be as goofy as Spencer or more serious and laid back? Will Spencer be loving and accepting of a new baby in our lives or will she get possessive of her dad and me? How much will our lives change as we become the parents of two children? Questions like these run through my head constantly. 

The first 9 months of Spencer's life were hard for me. Postpartum depression gave me a pretty good butt-kickin'. I had a very hard time adjusting and I felt like it took a very long time to hit a good stride. Top it all off with a weird condition called D-MER that made me feel even more depressed every time I nursed Spencer and you've got the recipe for one worn-out mama. Once she turned 9 months old, it felt like everything fell into place. My hormones finally got their crap together and parenting a toddler just came much more naturally to me than parenting an infant. I started to feel like a good mother, more often than not, which was a new for me. Since that 9 month mark, our life has been complete bliss. We all have our rough spots like anyone else, but we're all happy with where our family is right now. 

This makes me so, so worried about the adjustment of bringing another child into the family. I'm excited, of course, and I already love this baby more than words can explain, but the adjustment period scares me. I don't want to feel depressed. I don't want life to get as hard as it was those first 9 months with Spencer. We eventually we will hit our stride again, but I just know that this two-under-two thing is going to be rough at first! So for now, I'm soaking up all the time I have as the mama of an only child and giving her all my attention while I can. 

Any "been there, done that" moms out there that have advice on adjusting to life with two-under-two? Any tips are much appreciated!

xo, Emilee

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Our wedding!

Is there anything as magical as your wedding day?! We were married August 16, 2014 in Pismo Beach, California. The wedding was very small and intimate, just our immediate family and a couple close friends. It was so special having the people that knew us best and watched us fall in love and create our family be there to watch us vow our love and commitment to each other. My dad was our officiant and my best friend walked Spencer down the aisle (even though that stubborn girl decided to learn to walk later that night!). After the ceremony, we went out for pizza in our wedding attire at this amazing place in San Luis Obispo. It was the perfect laid-back ending to the perfect day.

Photos by Yadira Plascencia at Ninety Nine Photo

Monday, January 19, 2015

Hello there! I'm Emilee, husband is Kyle, daughter is Spencer, and we're the Land family. I'm so excited to use this space as a family journal of sorts. I'll will try to update regularly with whatever is going on in our lives. As an avid blog reader, I am so excited to be joining the ranks and can't wait to see what new experiences this little blog will bring our way!

xo Emilee