Tag Archives: research

Third-Wheeling is Fun!

How could it not be with these cuties?

Alex + Hannah = L<3VE

After our massively festive dinner, we took Alex with us on our Tuesday night ritual:  Trivia at Father Ted’s!  Though Alex claimed himself a “Division-1 Partier,” over 24 hours of travel, including time travel, and little sleep left him pretty much half dead before the quiz even started.   Our little trio (named “The Sleep Heads” tonight) came in last place, again, but it was still a super fun night.  We laughed a lot, learned a lot, and eagerly split the complimentary bowl of spring rolls between the three of us. 🙂

The real highlight of the night was that Alex bought me my Guinness!  A real gentlemen knows that you can’t just buy a drink for your girlfriend, you’ve gotta get one for her girlfriend, too 😉

Thanks so much, Alex!  Third-wheeling is FUN!

This morning after breakfast (coffee with soymilk, a mandarin, and a mini bowl of banana-cinnamon oats with p’nut butt-),

I made a very pathetic attempt at getting work done.  I did complete my final paper for my Reading course (woot woot!), but I am struggling with the other assignment I currently have on my plate. For the first time in a blissfully long time, I have to write a 1500 word essay on something other than education.  SHOCKER!!!!  For my Maori culture class, I need to write a research paper on the Treaty of Waitangi.  No me gusta.  Though I find the subject really interesting and I have loved the lectures on the topic, I am having a seriously hard time getting motivated to research.  It’s actually getting to be a pretty desperate situation.  It’s not due for two weeks, but I just wasted the entire morning not.accomplishing.a.thing.  uh-oh!

After a snack of vampire toast with 1/2 a banana,

I let myself go on a yoga break that I did not deserve.  The beginner Ashtanga class at Auckland Yoga Academy which I usually attend on Wednesdays was a bit different today.  I think there was some sort of teacher-training going on, because there was an extra instructor in the room giving assists.  The normal teacher didn’t explain anything, and the assistant (pun intended!) gave me quite a few adjustments.  In fact, she adjusted my downdog TWICE in a row!  ?  I’ve done hundreds of downdogs in my lifetime and this was the first time anyone adjusted me.  She wanted me to move my feet closer to my hands and farther apart from each other.  I love downdog assists (where they push you deeper into it), but I didn’t feel like it was a legitimate enough adjustment to make TWICE in a row.

Then in forward fold and two of my backbends, she told me that my feet weren’t correctly parallel, and she would barely adjust them, only about a millimeter.  ? again.  Of course I want to have the right alignment, but something about these assists irked me.  I think it’s because to me, she was some a random lady and I didn’t trust her to know what she was talking about.  Maybe I was easy to practice on or something, like I just needed minor adjustments?  I don’t know!

When I got home, I had to rush to get dressed and eat lunch to be on time for class.  I shoveled in a huge, healthy lunch:

On the plate there were carrot sticks, green pepper slices, wholemeal grain toast, an egg, Swiss chard, and pumpkin-kumara hummus.  It was a sandwich, it was a salad, it was a great meal!

After class (which was particularly boring and long today, may I add), I skipped my second class to meet Alex at Father Ted’s.  Guilty!  When else in my life am I going to be able to meet my bro for a happy hour (half) pint of Guinness, in New Zealand?  The answer is never, especially because I am a goody-two-shoes and it took enough courage for me to skip one class!

I was ravenous with hunger when I got there, so I also ordered potato wedges with sweet chili sauce and sour cream.  Hannah joined us soon after she left class so we shared them among the three of us.  The perfect snack!

For dinner, Alex wanted Chinese food, and Hannah found a superb Food Court devoted to Asian cuisine.

Thai, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Malaysian – SO many options to choose from!  It was even two floors!

We made sure to check out each place before we settled.  The best part was that any meal would be less than nz$13.  Sweet!  We finally chose a Chinese place, The Clay Pot, since that’s what we had initially set out for.

Everyone’s meal was AWESOME.  We were all really happy.  🙂

Especially ME!!!

For just nz$9, I got a JUMBO bowl of rice, vegetables, and tofu in a spicy sauce.  It was to so so so yummy.  I loved how spicy it was!

I couldn’t eat very much after the beer and fries, so naturally I brought the rest home.  I can’t wait for leftovers – I think I even have enough for two more meals!

Third-wheeling is SO much fun.

How do you feel about assists/adjustments in yoga?




Filed under Fitness, Food, Life, New Zealand, School, Travel, Yoga

Kick-Butt 20-Minute Yoga

Look at this cool thing I found at Harvest Wholefoods over the weekend:

A dairy-free cookie called “Emma’s Delight!” I knew I had to get it for myself so I could be delighted.  It’s made from brown rice flour, sugar, dairy-free chocolate chips, eggs, shortening, tapioca, and baking soda.  It boasts that it’s 90% organic!  Close enough for me! 😉

This morning, after breakfast (oatmeal with oatmilk, bananas, cinnamon, and a spoonful of crunchy peanut butter–YUM so filling) I skyped with my mom and dad for an hour and a half.  Phew!  I really needed a nice long chat with them.  While they had dinner, I was had morning tea:

The cookie wasn’t very delightful, I must admit.  It was hard, like all biscuits are here in New Zealand, and it was sort of flavorless.  It needed more chocolate flavor, the brown rice flour was pretty dominant.  It was made slightly more delightful when I dipped it in my tea!

Then it was work, work, work, work, and work some more on my literacy paper.

I only stopped to prepare a working lunch.  I quickly heated up leftovers from Sunday night by sauteeing it with chopped watercress.  I ate it on top of some cold lettuce for a warm fish salad.  That lettuce is seriously the most delicious lettuce I’ve ever had! I got it from the Framer’s Market, of course 🙂

Since the cookie was such a disappointment, I decided that I should probably have a brownie square.

Heated up and enjoyed with a fork.  Not THAT’S delightful!

Here’s a silly blogger thing I do:

For the best lighting, I often photograph my food while it’s on the windowsill in my room lol.  The sandals are there drying out (they got a bit wet over the rainy weekend) and to the right, there is some seaglass I found on the beach while kayaking!

Since I talked to my parents so long, I missed my morning run and, true to form, I didn’t feel like doing it later in the day.  I was feeling pretty anxious for some reason (probably all that researching!), so I did do an intense little yoga sesh.

It’s cramped in here, but I’m making it work!  Since most studios allow you to borrow one of their mats for class, I wasn’t planning on buying a yoga mat while I’m here in order to save a few bucks.  But I was noticing my home practice fall by the wayside, so I finally broke down and got one at the Warehouse for nz$19.99.  It’s a fine, standard Gaiam mat, but I always make sure that the side with the name, “The Firm” lol, is facing the ground.

I kicked my own butt during my home practice today. It only took 20 minutes, but I was shaking and sweating like a beast afterwords, which is a good workout in my book!  Here’s what I did:

5 Suryanamaskara A (Sun Salutation: A Form)

5 Suryanamaskara B (Sun Salutation: B Form)

5 Navasana (Boat Pose) with lifts in between (when you go back to seated, you push off the ground to lift your bum)

I spent the rest of the afternoon researching, finally stopping to make dinner: brown rice with sausage, sauteed chard, and mixed beans.  Plus salsa on the side 🙂

(Confession: I did have another small brownie square after dinner =D)

In true Tuesday night form, we headed down to Father Ted’s for Trivia Night after dinner.

lol, Hannah.  This week we came THIRD-to-last instead of the usual second-to-last!  We are moving up in the world!  But, we had a particularly good time at trivia because we met up with a lot more friends than usual!  It was good to spend some quality time with the friends we’ve made here.  We don’t know them very well, but we always have a good time when we run into each other!

In case you were curious, Hannah and I sang “Big Yellow Taxi” by Joni Mitchell at karaoke.  We laughed our badonkadonks off as two of our friends sang their very German hearts out to “Three Little Birds” by Bob Marley.  Some lady was bringing down the house with “Love Game” by Lady Gaga and apparently she heard us singing along like crazy, because she came over and gave us the mic to us for a verse!

Forget running, a fun night out with friends is the true cure to homesickness 🙂

What song would you sing for karaoke?



Filed under Fitness, Food, Life, New Zealand, Recipes, School, Yoga

Confession: I’m a Yoga Rule-Breaker

I woke up excited to try out my new friend:

Yesterday, I took a run to the closest whole foods store (3 kilometers away!) to check it out.  The organic section in Countodown is 😦  so I’ve been on withdrawal!  Plus, I really wanted to get some non-dairy milk so that I can still enjoy oatmeal and such, but cut down on my dairy intake.  The store was called Harvest Wholefoods and it was super cute and well-stocked!  I got some quinoa and lentils from the bulk section, plus this oat milk for just nz$3.95.  I was searching for almond milk, but my choices were soy milk, rice milk, and oat milk.  This O.M. was on sale, so I figured I’d try it out!

I made my oatmeal with it this morning.  It was very tasty! I noticed that the oats absorbed it faster than cow’s milk, so I needed to put more in.  But I loved the flavor!

Oatmeal with bananas, cinnamon, and shredded coconut.  The bananas were very under-ripe and sour.  Ick.

Then, I got down and dirty: I had a massive amount of lesson planning and research to do.  I basically made a rough outline of all the lessons I will be doing this semester and got other logistical stuff organized for my internship.

Plus, I have a paper on literacy due in three weeks that I decided I should start.  I need to research and discuss this quote:  “Reading is not a natural activity, but a set of gradually acquired component skills intitially learned independently, but later integrated and automated” (Owen & Pumfrey, 1995, p. 80).  It’s definitely an interesting topic (if you are a teacher, that is!) and there are so many aspects of it I can discuss!  My first priority is to research the topic, then form a thesis, but here are some of the roads I might go down:

  • “Competing” theories on literacies are really all correct
  • Reading is essential for learning: reading is understanding
  • Implications for struggling readers
  • Implications for a culturally diverse classroom

So many possibilities! Are you as excited as I am?!

I worked straight through until lunch.

Mondays are awesome because at Pita Pit, just around the corner from my apartment btw, the large ginormous falafel pitas are on special for nz$8.

It’s a beast.  I basically got all the (vegan) fixings: tomatoes, lettuce, cucumber, shredded carrots, jalapenos, black olives, sprouts, pickles, hot sauce, baba ganoush, and grilled falafel, onions, mushrooms, and green peppers.

I was a bit let down because they didn’t have wholemeal pitas!  I was stuck with white.  Also, I missed the feta cheese and tzatziki, but you know what?  I don’t need it.  But who am I kidding? That pita rocked my world!  (PS – I only need 6 more pitas until I get a one free!)

I needed something sweet after all that spiciness.

I enjoyed a small brownie square.  (The dye form the mini M&Ms is weirding me out.)

I like the nuke them in the microwave and eat them with a fork.  Heaven!

After my treat, it was back to work for me!  More reading about reading, tee-hee.

I was a very bad yoga girl today.  I had a snack a little over an hour before class.

4 big multigrain crackers (two with hummus, 2 with crunchy PB).  You are supposed to refrain from eating the two hours before a yoga class; it’s better for your practice.  But I would rather have a slightly full tummy than be hungry!  In my opinion, that’s one of the B.S. rules of yoga.  Sort of like the rule that women who are menstruating shouldn’t do inversions.  Load of crap.  That definitely sounds to me like something a man made up.

I had a great yoga class today, despite the crackers in my stomach 😉  I want to write about the great studios I’ve found, but it deserves its own special post!  Coming soon…

Are you a yoga rule-breaker?



Filed under Fitness, Food, New Zealand, School, Student Teaching