...mmmmygosh, I've been going to yoga classes for two weeks and let me tell you, they are waaaaaaay better than trying to do your own thing at home. Even with a phone app/DVD/whatever, it is really quite hard to be sure you're doing it right. I found out about an awesome deal at the Auckland Yoga Academy for beginners or people new to the Academy, where you can attend unlimited beginner yoga classes for 30 days for $49. They also have a follow-up deal of unlimited classes (any type/level) for $99. After that, monthly membership is $139 (or $710 for six months, or $1,099 a year - cheaper than a gym membership). Yes please! They have a great timetable choc-full of classes, so there's bound to be one at a time suitable for you, and the teachers are lovely. I've been in classes with six different teachers, and they've all been great. After a week of switching between Hatha and Ashtanga, I've decided to stick with Ashtanga. Each class is the same, so you can practice and perfect your asanas and breathing through the vinyasas. Being a runner, I wasn't surprised to find that my hips are really inflexible, and my shoulders have always been quite tight - they're getting less flexible as I get older. Hopefully I'll be able to remedy that with regular practice. I've been every day so far, except for last Friday.
Last Friday I got to check out the Auckland Food Show, thanks to Green Meadows Beef. They ran a competition where you sent in a question you would like to ask them, and the best questions won two tickets to the show so you could ask them in person. My questions (I was sneaky and had two) were 'how long do your cows live on your farm before they go on to 'greener pastures', and are they 100% grass fed before they come to you?'. It was great seeing the Carey boys again (they're good people, I like them), get my answers (coincidentally, I had been wondering these things already so the competition was serendipitous) and we got some free eye fillet steak for Deane and X at the same time. Apparently that was also part of the prize, but I guess being vegan, I didn't notice that bit ;)
While we were at the Food Show, I came across a product that I think is really quite cool - eco-friendly food wraps! Bee Wrapt food wraps are made with funky fabrics and beeswax from the company owner's own bees. Despite my little internal battle over whether honey and other bee products are okay to use - it can be a bit of a vegan 'grey area' (I have the same internal battle over wool - there are arguments on both sides for each), I'm currently of the mind that by choosing to buy products, clothing or foods that have been ethically sourced/produced, are environmentally friendly, and for the most part cruelty free, I'm doing the best I can. Everyone should be free to make their own decisions about what they buy and use, and there doesn't have to be any hard-line rules. But I digress... I didn't end up buying any food wraps on the day, but discovered another company that does much the same thing. Honey Wraps are sold at the eco store and are made with 100% organic cotton, infused with a blend of beeswax, jojoba oil and tree resin. But what won me over was the little piece of seed paper in each wrap - you soak it in water overnight, plant it the next day, and in a couple of weeks you have some wildflowers in your garden - a perfect stopover for bees :) Provided, of course, that you can get them to grow without accidentally killing them... I'm hoping for the best, and am even considering attempting to grow some vegetables out on the deck this summer. The house plant my sister gave me two Christmases ago is still alive, so you never know :) I'm planning on getting some more wraps (from both companies) so we can ditch the plastic wrap and cut down on waste.
Other goings-on include studying two Level 7 papers this trimester - Project Management, and Policy and Planning for Library Services (only two more to go after that!); running five days a week for pre-marathon-training training (does that make sense? It does in my head...); trying to stick to a housework schedule; and eating my way through Thug Kitchen (hilarious if you don't mind bad language) and Isa Does It. I seriously need to buy that book, I've had it out from the library about five times now. And Veganomicon. And The Vegan Table. And maybe also The Unbakery Book... ALL THE VEGAN COOKBOOKS!!! I love food...
I hope y'all are having a great week. Can you believe it's August already?!? Where did the time go? Next post will be knitting-related, just a heads-up. I have a finished cardigan to show off, among other things. See you then!