WIAW: NOLA Edition

New Orleans saw a college senior roll in for Mardi Gras…and limp out. And we can say that my body and health are still recovering from those four days. Nonetheless, I came back to the scene of music, humidity, and food. I’d like to underscore food many many times. I did a lot of running (indoors I might add, in order to avoid heat stroke hospitalization) to counter the NOLA tastings over countless days.

There was a successful balance between cooking and eating out.

 

 

Breakfast:

Birthday buckwheat pancakes par moi. Banana, just like dad used to make (cough, cough)

image_5

image

image_4

image_1

image

 

Brunchers:

New Orleans must. Isn’t this what everyone eats post yoga class?

image_5

image_6

 

Lunch:

Hidden neighborhood juice bar. Is that not the most amazing menu design??

image_1

 

I’ll keep the lunch portion short and sweet. Let’s just say it involved starvation scavenging  a male fridge for something edible. Feat in itself, ladies and gentlemen.

image

 

Din:

Is there anything better than a peasant dinner? Bold red, hearty wheat bread, pungent cheese, guacamole (game time decision), and an amazeball greek salad. Can I get an amen?

image_3

image_2

 

And there were also restaurant tapas. Four times as expensive and not as delicious as our hodge podge snacks above. Some say I’m a cheap date when I’m not ordering lobster

image_3

 

The  denouement was the birthday dinner. Steak, mashed potatoes, and peas for the boy. Fish, peas, and a yellow heirlooms for me. Wine x5. Could you have guessed?

image_8

 

Oh, and let’s not forget dessert. Withold too much judgment please, as this baby was created in a kitchen sans pie pan, flour, sugar, butter, or anything relevant to baking.

image_9

 

I may have had my face buried in some goat cheese right before this was taken. Please forgive.

image_6

 

 

Any memorable meals in New Orleans?

WIAW: Birthday Edition

There’s one thing that’s synonymous with birthdays, and that’s food. Okay, there are a couple others balloons, presents, parties, candles too. But today we’re talking about  the food that helped to facilitate the work day and celebrations for my twenty-fourth.

 


Breakfast

Tea and parfait surprise 🙂 Brought by Richard after a birthday gym session

images

 

Lunch

Made a Whole Food’s hot bar stop the night before in anticipation of the big day. I wanted some garlicky kale salad  to look forward to after a long day in the office. I could put a candle on this and be happy.

IMG_2625

 

Dinner Feast

Birthday Sushi 101:

1) Pour a big glass of the wine that you smuggled back from your trip to France

IMG_2589

 

2) Monitor the special brown rice you requested in your sushi rolls

My rice

My rice

The boys' rice

The boys’ rice

 

3) Pour more wine…and champagne. Chat with your brother

 

4) Watch the sushi chef boyfriend work his magic

IMG_2616  IMG_2602   IMG_2599

 

5) Eat too much sushi. Good thing there’s no cake

IMG_2591

The spread

IMG_2594  IMG_2592

image

No words.

 

I have gained so many incredible and  integral people in my life over the past few years. I hope for big opportunities, big discoveries, and a big heart in the years to come. Thank you for all the birthday good wishes!

Big Things

Big things are happening over here.

I have waved a tearful goodbye to my early twenties. My youth. But those years treated me well. I rang in my twentieth birthday in Tampa at Gasparilla (our Mardi Gras but with pirates), my big twenty first in Copenhagen which my dad flew in for, my twenty second in NYC with some besties, my twenty third in DC with a night out on the town, and my twenty fourth again in DC with good friends, bf, and family. And in between those celebrations in my early twenties,  I lived in San Francisco with my grandmother, became a pescatarian (note the correlation), lived in NYC with some of my best friends, spent five life changing months living in Denmark, visited over eleven countries while living aborad, ran my first half marathon, impacted my health dramatically by partaking in Mardi Gras, graduated from four amazing years at UVa, traveled to South America, moved to a new city, lived within a block of my brother, started my first job, ran a marathon, sauntered around Paris, became a yoga teacher, and……taught my first paid yoga class.

I think that was a fortuitous note to begin my mid-twenties (shutter) on.

 

The other weekend, during my jaunt home to Florida and in between walks in 70 degree weather with my dog and visits to my favorite restaurants, I poured over my scrawled class notes and prepared my perfect playlist. I was nervous. Reading the cues aloud as I paced around the living room helped to mitigate my turning stomach. The range of students I was expecting to teach put me at nerve–it’s hard to deliver the kick-your-butt class I prepared when there were going to be little fledgling yogis in the room. I didn’t want to scare anyone off or injure them.

 

This past Sunday, I went for a long run to settle my nerves–by body relaxed, my breath calmed, and I was ready to teach. I taught in the Avant-Garden room at the Salvador Dali Museum with views of the waterfront framed by the geodesic glass. My students began to pour in, one by one setting up their mats and props, including the supportive, Vanaynay (Hiii Vanessa!!). In Sukhasana position looking across at my twenty-three students, with one breath we began.

imagephoto(2)

 

I adapted. Adapted my class, adapted to the environment, adapted to audio issues. I toned down the “Grace Under Fire” (which my instructors had referred to my teaching style as) and taught to what the class needed at that moment on that Sunday. I became more familiar with each student’s ability through every assist and cue I encouraged.

photo(6) photo111

 

Time was impalpable. And in an hour and a half rather than shaking with nerves, I was receiving hugs and sincere thank yous from the visitors that day. Very fitting to experience the surreal moment of the teacher becoming the student, while doing so at a surrealist museum. Thank you, Mom, Dad, Laura, Henri, Ma, Richard, Flow Yoga, dear friends, all my TTs, and roomies for being so patient and encouraging during my five months of dedicated weekends.

IMG_4845 IMG_4851

 

What was your first yoga class like?