Monday, February 28, 2011

NOOK-ing For Love...

Did I mention that I downloaded the Nook app for my iPad? I've found some $0.99 books and there are a lot under $5.00. I spent a little bit more this weekend and will be perusing the following books over the next few weeks:

I'm just trying to get a better understanding of what I'm doing every morning. ANd I want to start learning the Sanskrit names of the poses we're doing. Yoga fascinates me...I love the challenge of it. Might as well stimulate my mind while I'm getting my body in better shape.

What are you reading?

Friday, February 25, 2011

Revolution EGO, baby!

If you're not in the Charlotte area, and/or you don't have natural hair, you're probably wondering, what the heck is she talking about?

I'm talking about none other than Revolution EGO, a new salon that just opened this month, catering to ladies with natural hair. Owned/operated by three beautiful and talented stylists: Tinesha, Kelley and Jessica. I'm not a professional writer, but bear with me as I write up this review. (At least I knew the difference between "bear" and "bare," right?)

LOCATION:The salon is actually located inside of Sola Salons - an old mill building that has been separated into different "suites." Their suite is big enough for the stylists' chairs, the hair dryers, a table and chairs for waiting, and also the sinks and supplies. It's just the right size. I can see why they say, don't roll up in there with your chaps unless they're getting their hair done. There is not room for little Johnny to be acting a fool. And let's face it - sometimes, y'alls kids are only cute to YOU - especially when they get to cutting a fool. Anywho...

Upon my arrival, the salon was full of beautiful ladies getting their hair done. Ladies under the dryer, at the sink, in the chair...but not that "overcrowded-my-stylist-is-2-hours-behind" feeling. And the heat was on! (LOL! That's an inside joke for the ladies.) R & B was being played from one of the iPads and everyone was hard at work. I was offered a glass of wine, and I happily indulged. What claim rep wouldn't take a glass of wine, after dealing with foolery all day at work? Note that there is no outside food or drink allowed in the salon. Some of y'all are just Messy Marvins and they don't have time for critters and what not. Eat before you arrive.

TECHNOLOGY: Speaking of the iPads - as you know, I just purchased one, which I LOVE. Revolution EGO is an Apple Concept salon. They do everything with their iPads and iPhones. I love gadgets, so this is right up my alley. Never used an iPad before? While you're sitting under the dryer, you are free to use one of theirs to browse the net, play games, etc. When it's time to pay, if you pay by debit/credit card, your card will be run through an attachment to the iPad! You sign your signature with your finger (well, as best you can - I'm sure mine looked alien) and it doesn't print a receipt. You can choose to have the receipt emailed to you or sent via text message. Innovating and saving the environment, because they don't have to purchase/use paper. LOVES IT!

Another thing I love is that you can make your reservations online. The link is on their website. I am on the phone all day at my job...I'm all about anything I can do on the computer vs. having to pick up the phone and call. Lazy. I know. Whatever! I made my appointment online and received appointment reminders via email.

THE APPOINTMENT: Back to the salon. I made my appointment with Tinesha to get my locs groomed. Why did I pick her? Well, long ago, in a far, far away land, I used to, uh, fraternize with this dude. He wore coils in his hair and Tinesha used to do them. In fact, once he offered to pay for me to have a visit with her. Still new to the natural game, I didn't have a clue and I never did take him up on that offer. My loss! You'll be ok with any of the ladies taking care of your 'do, though.

Tinesha shampooed my hair with a sulfate-free shampoo from the Jane Carter line. I know this because she took the time to explain everything to me, and showed me the products before she put them in my hair/on my scalp. I love that. Some salons just put you in the chair, spin you away from the mirror, and go to town. At the end you feel like, what just happened? Not the case at RevolutionEGO.

I don't know what kind of super-bionic fingers/hands she has, but it seemed like she was finished with my re-twist in no time! I was under the dryer with my iPad, surfing the net, and thoroughly entertained by the musical stylings of Kelley. Service AND entertainment, man.


(Photos courtesy of RevolutionEGO)

And there you have it, sports fans! There's my hair. Check out their fan page on Facebook if you want to see more client photos. Also, you should "like" their page for yummy surprises like, 5% off your service of $40 or more if you "check in" to the salon on Facebook. I'm all about FourSquare, but specials like this will entice me to check in on Facebook from now on.

I give the salon 5 out of 5 stars. And really, I expected nothing less. The appointment met, and sometimes exceeded, my expectations. Last night, my brother posted on my Facebook wall: "Looking good sis. I see you got blessed hands in your head."

He's right!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Three Things Thursday

And three REALLY RANDOM things, at that. LOL!

  1. This morning, I officially kicked TWC to the curb, and ordered ATT's U-Verse. Anyone out there in blog land have their service? I figure it can't be worse than TWC. We'll have to see how the internet stacks up. Road Runner is mighty fast. Of course, when I called to cancel, the rep went into her "we're trying to keep you" speech about how, if I'm further away from ATT's servers, my internet will be slower. OK. Listen. If I wanted to stay, I'd stay. And if you can lower my bill now, why don't you just do that through the year? Jackwagons.

  2. This evening at 5:30, I get to have my locs groomed by the beautiful and talented Tinesha at RevolutionEGO! I can't tell you how happy I have for the three ladies who opened this shop. It's new to the QC, but the ladies are not. I'll have photos and a review for you tomorrow.

  3. Still loving my iPad! Been playing "Words With Friends" like it's going out of style. And how about Barista scored 90 points on me with ONE WORD this morning? Da heezy? Clearly, I need to step up my game. LOL!

And those are my randomly random Three Things. :)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Toe-tally Awesome!

Today's installment of the Broke Toe Chronicles:

Today, I decided to try out the elliptical. I need some more cardio in my life. I love yoga, but I need some extra stuff, too. Instead of wearing my sneakers, I wore my sport flops. Like those ones that all the soccer players where. I wore them with socks. It was looking maaaaad country. But, it worked! Right now the broken toe is NOT liking sneakers or any other shoe that is too snug in the toe area.

Now that I know I CAN elliptical with minimal impact on my toe, I plan to add that three times a week, for now. I know I'm supposed to be making sure to pay attention to every day and enjoying the transition, but I really want to get to week six and be able to move the toe without pain.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Yoga: Off The Mat

When I'm in class, Stacy often talks about taking our yoga practice "off the mat" - using what you learn in yoga and applying it to life. That is something I'm really trying to do. I went into this thinking that the yoga would just be physical - a good way to get my muscles in shape, and improve my flexibility, and work on deeper breathing. It's all that, but it's a bit more as well.

Sometimes, it just takes hearing an encouraging word or thought during class, and then I try to take that with me throughout the day. Last Wednesday, Stacy asked me how I was feeling. Usually the answer is "good" or "fine," whenever anyone asks me that. But that day, I just launched into my frustrations about gaining weight since I stopped running, despite my attempts at dietary changes. I was being extra hard on myself, 'cause...that's what we do! It's human nature. She told me I should treat myself as I would a best friend. I thought, hmmm. If Snoop came to me and she was beating herself up about weight gain, what would I say to her? Probably not, "well you shouldn't have ate those Late July cookies" or "you need to get your broken toe healed ASAP so you can get back to running." LOL!

So then, I did take a moment to reflect on the good that has come out of not running:

  1. My left knee (well, both my knees) feels better already, from the therapy/reinjury in January. I had gone to therapy for the tendonitis and was doing well. All it took was ONE cardio funk class to take my left knee back to where it was before I started therapy (well, pretty close, anyway). I was kicking myself for taking that class. Since I started concentrating on yoga, I don't have any problems with my knees. Child's Pose used to be a stress on my knee. I don't even feel it now.

  2. I can tell that my strength/flexibility has most definitely increased. And that's a good thing! It will help whenever I do start running again.

My take away from that class, which I posted on my FB status, was that it is what it is, things aren't going to change overnight, and I have to be more forgiving of myself. I've been doing that and I feel better.

Today's class was all about transitions. Merriam-Webster defines "transition" as the following:

a : passage from one state, stage, subject, or place to another : change
b : a movement, development, or evolution from one form, stage, or style to another

With respect to our yoga practice that day, it was all about using your core muscles to help you move from one yoga position to the next. Stacy had taken a workshop over the weekend that focused on that, and she was eager to torture me share her new knowledge with me. Yay!

With every move, we focused on our core; squeezing pelvic muscles and breathing. She told me to pretend like I was holding onto an egg with my muscles, and that I didn't want to drop it. At one point during class, I told her that egg was cracked on the ground. LOL! We do a lot of laughing in class.

Anywho, focusing on the core brought new meaning, focus, and muscle tension to moves I had done several times before. It changes things up. As LDR would say, I was sweating like a sistah in a klan meeting, by the time we went to the mat! Whew! :::wipes brow:::

At the beginning of class we talked about how we go through life without paying attention to the transition. In yoga, if you don't engage your core and pay attention to the transition from one move to another, you don't get the full benefit of the movement. You have to use your inner core to get those arms and legs where you want them to go.

That's the same thing with life. Sometimes we need to slow down and pay attention to the transition. I KNOW I need to. My mind is constantly racing about what is the next thing I have to accomplish. What's my next financial goal, when's my next trip, what do I need to get done at work, when do I see LDR/my family again...meanwhile, back at the ranch, days are floating by and I haven't paid a bit of attention. Sigh.

Like I said on the book of faces this morning: It's good to move from A to B, but did you think about how you got there, or did you just move?

It's time that I start focusing on my inner strengths while I'm "making moves" out here in the world. :)

Blog Hibernation

::::yawn:::: ::::stretch::::

I feel like I've been in blog hibernation! I'm waking up now, I promise. I've just been dealing with and living life...and I wasn't much inclined to blog about any of it. Sometimes you just need to take a break!

Anywho, I'm going to try and catch you up really fast because I have a lot of work to do today. That was a #FAIL on my part, as to how I planned my "to do" list today. *facepalm*


  • LDR and I are still together. His company still hasn't opened up any comparable positions down here. Grrrrrr. We are dealing with it and taking it one month at a time. He came down to celebrate my birthday and we had a great time. We ate like we were going into hibernation, and that just won't do. I know they say being happy, you tend to gain weight. We've got to STOP THE INSANITY! <--in my Su.san Pow.ter voice.

  • At the end of said birthday celebration, LDR was to head home on 2/1. The northeast weather had other plans, so he got to stay for an extra day. And on that day I broke the middle toe on my right foot. Ugh! If it's not one thing, it's another. That slowed down my cardio progress. Well - let's be real. It stopped it completely. Which leads to my next update.

  • I've started taking yoga! Yay! Always something I wanted to try. Then my lovely friend Stacy invited me to try out one of her classes. I love it! I now get up with the roosters, and take her 5:45am flow class on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. I learn something new each class, and I learn things that can be applied to life, and not just class. If you've never done yoga, you should try it. Find a beginners course in your area. I took LDR to a Twilight Yoga class when he came down for my birthday. Pretty much a flow class, but all done by candle light. I don't think he realized how much work it is. At the end of our sun salutations, it went something like this:

    LDR: Am I supposed to be sweating in yoga? (at this point we're all down in Child's Pose)

    Stacy: Yes...we're getting your blood flowing, building heat.

    LDR: Oh. OK. 'Cause I'm over here sweatin' like a brotha at a Klan meeting!

    Me: *facepalm* *slayed*

    Can't do nothin' but love him! LOL!

  • The job transition with my company is flowing smoothly. We officially become part of the new entity on 3/1. It should actually create more opportunities in management, etc. I'm excited about it.

  • I got an iPad! Yay! I love this thing. I got the 3G 64GB version. The other day, I took my car to Aut.oBe.ll to take advantage of the beautiful weather. Thanks to the 3G I was able to sit there and post while waiting for my car. Did I mention that I love this thing? 'Cause...yeah.

  • Still moving forward on my plans to pay down debt, increase savings and life insurance. I should be able to pay off another lump sum in a few weeks, and then after that it's slow and steady to pay off the remaining balances. Definitely a work in progress! But I've noticed I've been more conscious about my spending. Like, I only got that iPad because I'm getting a bonus at work, and as soon as the bonus $ is deposited, the iPad will be PIF'd!

  • What's new with y'all?