Wheee what a whirlwind day! Eugene got snow yesterday, and not really watery snow, snow that crunched and crackeled when you walked on it. Snow that sucked the moisture from your eye-lashes. Mind boggeling "I thought it didn't snow here" snow. weird..
Snow aside, it's mostly melted now anyway...mostly, I've started cooking for Thanksgiving today. I'm making vegan creamy mashed potatoes today (heating in the oven tomorrow), burnt sugar almonds, and pear raspberry crisp before I good to bed tonight. So far I have completed the potatoes and the pears are creating their own syrup as we speak. I'm trying to remember that this is fun, that I offered to make a bunch of food for my friends, that I'm making more than I offered to because I wanted to, and that Thanksgiving is my favorite Holiday..next to my birthday. So here are my tips to hold on to that thankful attitude.
1. Stand in Tadasana - Tadasana or Mountain Pose is the basic standing asana and is the first building block in proper alignment. I notcied while mixing, peeling, chopping, stiring, and shaking that I had a tendancy to shift from hip to hip, feet to feet, round my shoulders forward, and just all around bad posture. By standing in tadasana while you cook you will reduce feelings of leg fatigue, won't strain your shoulders and upper back, and will encourage proper blood flow. That means your body will be happier while preparing for Thanksgiving, which means you'll be happier enjoying Thanksgiving, which means you'll be happier cleaning up your Thanksgiving! It's a snow ball effect you see.
~Feet are parallel under your hip bones
~ Each foot has 4 points, 2 in front 2 in back, stand evenly on all 8 points
~ lift your inner arches, shins, and knee-caps
~ Tail-bone relaxes down
~ Ribcage is stacked on top of your hips
~ gently roll the shoulders up, back, and then relax them down
~ lift out of your shoulders through your neck and out the crown of your head
~ jaw is relaxed and tongue is flat on the floor of your mouth
~ breathe deep
2. Use your Mantras - Using mantras is a great way to remain focused and a good way to pass the time when you have to stir constantly or are peeling you 8th pound of potatoes. And is also a great way to infuse your food and yourself full of positive energy. It's a very special seasoning, you can never use too much. Here are some good examples
~ Om Shanti Namaha (Invoke Peace)
~ Om Shradha Namaha (Invoke Faith)
~ Om Anahata Namaha (Invoke Love)
~ Om Samadhi Namaha (Invoke Joy/Bliss)
Or you can use whatever English words you like
3. Schedule You Time - If you have been running around all day, before guests arrive or before you leave to go to some place else, take at least 5 mins to relax. I know this may sound crazy..I can hear ya all the way over here, "Who does Christiana think she is? Mistress de Time?!" But really go some place where you can close the door, sit comfortably (even on the floor), take a deep breath in through your nose and slowly release out your mouth, and allow your self to just sit with your eyes closed for a few minutes. Your frazzeled nerves, hard working brain, and family will thank you for it. And while I said before guests arrive earlier, really this is available for you any time you need it...If anyone asks why you're sitting on the bathroom floor just tell them your yoga teacher gave you permission.
4. There is always next year - This isn't the end all, be all Thanksgiving. Ya know that dessert you really wanted to make but ran out of time? Make it tomorrow or next week or next year! So the turkey was a little dry, you know more now than you did earlier today, chaulk it up on the "lesson learned" bored and try again another day. I often here people remark that they don't really enjoy Thanksgiving because they spend so much time fretting and laboring over the food that they don't really enjoy the meal or spending time with the family. People, your friends and family love you not your creamy vegan mashed potatoes...well they probably love the mashed potatoes too but not so much that they want you to suffer for it! Just try to remember that the world will go on even if Aunt Martha's Sage gravy is a little too salty and enjoy the company of your family and friends.
I hope these few tips help your day to be something your thankful for!