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"Where Have You Been & What Are You Doing Now?"

Hi, friends! Long time no chat.

The last time I wrote I was about a month into my 200 hour yoga teacher training and I had every intention of keeping you updated on that journey, but as I dove deeper into that adventure two things became clear: 1) I was not willing to sacrifice anymore time with my family (and daughter who was too quickly for my liking about to turn one) and 2) it wasn't an experience that could easily be put into words or shared.

Many people say teacher training is life changing, but I would actually say it was life enhancing.  I went to training hoping to be able to teach a different kind of class and came out with so much more, including a better sense of who I am as a trainer and where I want to focus my time.

YTT Grad

Coming into the final stretch of yoga teacher training AND my daughter's first year at the same time made it perfectly clear what my next move would be... prenatal yoga teacher training.  So I signed up for an intensive two and a half week training in NYC where I commuted from NJ into the city.  Monday through Friday.  7am to 7pm.  I said it before and I'll say it again... the right trainings are life changing.  To be surrounded and supported by such strong and wonderful women while LEARNING about how strong and wonderful women are was magical.  Made all the more magical by actually being pregnant during the training.

That's right!  Seven to nine weeks pregnant, height of nausea, exhaustion, and all the other first trimester goodness right in the middle of 12 hour days.  (Shout out to all the working mamas who do that for nine months.  Hats off to you ladies!)

So for the last few months I've been home, working on my site behind the scenes, and getting ready to take on new clients all while growing a tiny human on the side.  (No biggie.)

Big Sister thinks Little Sister is in my belly button.

I'm now 21 weeks pregnant with Baby Girl Number 2 and I'd love to have you follow along on this pregnancy journey (and share your own stories with me as well!) and stay tuned for more healthy tips, tricks, meditations, and maybe even some recipes (though full disclosure the only thing I've wanted to eat for five months now are potatoes).

Go ahead and click around the updated website to see what else is new and consider signing up for the Happy Healthy Holidays challenge!  We started on Sunday, but it's never too late to join!

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Travel Tips From My Dad

I’ve been making road trips since I was only months old. As a baby my parents would pack me up and drive the hour or so to New York to make sure I saw family who didn’t live in the same town. Sometimes we stayed the whole weekend. Sometimes it was just for Sunday dinner. Every Palm Sunday. Every Christmas Eve. For years I’d be willing to bet I was in the car more often than I was home.

Then I got older, went to college (in New York only minutes from the family I was always traveling to see), met a boy… and spent every other weekend traveling to West Virginia. Doh!

Seriously... always in the car.

After we moved to Richmond together those road trips turned into 4-6 hour drives (one lucky time it was 10, but that’s a story for another day) each way just to visit family. Seven years of that and I’m pretty sure you can call me a pro now.

So today I am going to share my absolute favorite road trip tips with you! But before I do, I’d like you to know that these all came from years of traveling with my dad whose birthday is today.

Happy Birthday, Dad! I learned everything I know from you.

“Did you grab enough water?”

Unless you packed the entire case – or at least half – of water bottles, the answer is no. OK that’s an exaggeration, but my dad always grabs one for the way there and one for the way home… for each person in the car. For a one hour trip.

I used to think this was overkill until I realized that aiming to drink both bottles of water before getting home helped me to feel so much better! Dehydration can cause fatigue, headaches, and digestive problems to name a few. Not exactly how you want to feel while stuck in a car. And bonus: properly hydrating before meals can help you feel fuller longer so you might not overeat all the amazing food that’s waiting for you. How often do you forget to hydrate while you’re traveling or even just busy? Just pack the whole damn case and drink the water.

“What snacks did you pack?”

I know everyone thinks the word “hangry” was invented because of him or her, but it wasn’t. It was created after my father and me. Have you ever been hungry, stuck in the middle of the Verrazano Bridge on the way to dinner, in sideways rain, in standstill traffic, at least an hour from food? We have. It wasn’t pretty.

Now we bring snacks. Protein bars. Apples. Bananas. Nuts. Pack light and nutritious snacks that won’t keep you from enjoying all the amazing food that’s waiting for you, but will keep you from yelling like lunatics at each other because you’re hungry.

“I want to listen to The Little Mermaid!”

Remember this bad boy?

Way before cars had TVs built into the backs of headrests, I was a little girl who loved The Little Mermaid. I LOVED The Little Mermaid. Like, watch it on a loop all day long, loved The Little Mermaid. So before we took a trip from New Jersey to North Carolina, my father wired the VHS to the stereo to make a cassette tape (do people even know what these things are anymore?) so that I could LISTEN to my movie while we drove. It worked so well he did that for all my Disney movies.

Life is SO much easier for you now. Grab a book on tape (Audible is awesome) or make a rockin’ playlist so you don’t have to talk to anyone else in the car. (I’m kidding! But really… if you’re driving and you want everyone else to fall asleep put an AM radio broadcast of a baseball game on. ZzZzZzZz)

 

“What’s Up?”

Sometimes traffic sucks. Sometimes the trips are longer than you want them to be. Sometimes you’re tired. Sometimes you’re mad. Sometimes in the middle of it all you wish you had just stayed home. But there’s never a better time to just catch up and chat with the people you love (or are stuck in the car with). So ask them how it’s going. Sing. Laugh. Be. And hope that when you get where you’re going there’s good food and good company.

Happy birthday, Daddy!

© Amanda Reed Photography

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Nani

NaniMilk was my Nani’s – my great grandmother’s – drink of choice. I don’t know why that’s the first thing that comes to mind when I think about her. Maybe it’s because when she fell a few years ago and broke her leg at 102, she was so healthy and strong they did the surgery anyway. She even walked again after that, though not often and only with help. But her defiance and determination were unmistakable as I watched her stand up from her chair and make her way to where she wanted to go (much to the chagrin of my grandmother… her only daughter).

The life she lived and the stories she could tell were incredible. She came to America through Ellis Island at 6 years old, she grew up in a whole new world, she got married and raised a family. She was the sweetest woman you had ever met and she was a world-class ball breaker. She was alive when the titanic sank. She remembered the great depression and when telephones and TVs in the house were a rarity. And these are just the stories we had talked about! Can you imagine all of the experiences and memories she had racked up in almost 105 years?

I will never forget her forceful determination to keep moving. To never give up.

So in her honor... I will keep moving. I will never give up. And I will have a glass of milk.

Rest in peace, Kate.

1910-2015

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