Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

  • I teach Nia, yoga and stretch! SIX group classes a week!

    Nia: Tues and Thurs at 9 am, Fri at 10:15 am

    Yoga: Tues at 10:30 am and Thurs at 6:00 pm

    Stretch: Thurs at 10:15 am

    Please see my website for details! I sub for the City of San Jose and the YMCA so check my website for dates and times!

    I am also available for private Nia / yoga / Personal Training!

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Archive for April, 2018

Christmas – ALL YEAR LONG

Posted by terrepruitt on April 30, 2018

Everyone is different, right? So, it might be too early for you to think about Christmas. But I am often thinking about Christmas. I am not a shopper. I do not like to GO shopping. I do most of my shopping online, so when I am out in a store, Christmas might come to mind if I see something cool. This month, April, I didn’t walk into the store specifically thinking about Christmas, but when I walked into the store and I saw something that reminded me of someone who is on my Christmas list THEN I start thinking about Christmas. On our recent trip to the ocean I found some items that I purchased with the intent of giving them as Christmas gifts.

I was talking to the store owner and I mentioned that most things in the pile of items she was holding at the register were going to be Christmas gifts. She mentioned that when she buys gifts so far in advance she forgets about them. Ha.Yes! I have had that happen too. I have forgotten that I have purchased gifts for someone and I ended up buying additional gifts for that person. I have also misplaced gifts that I have purchased throughout the year.

So a few years ago I started keeping a list on my computer. I have a “running” list of people who I buy for so after having given the gifts I just delete the items and save the list of names as “the next year of gift giving Christmas” (ex. 2018 Christmas). Sometimes I have room in one spot in a closet or on a shelf for all the gifts, but sometimes I don’t, so I also include a note on the list as to where the gift is being stored. That way I know where it is.

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Since I am an online shopper I also have a system for “ordered” and “received”. When I order something I type it on the list next to the person’s name in regular text and I highlight it. When I receive it, I remove the highlighting and make the text bold. Because sometimes I might have an IDEA of what I want to get someone and I might include that on the list . . . so if the item is just plain text that is the IDEA of the gift. Highlighted is WAITING FOR/ORDERED/IN THE PROCESS OF MAKING and BOLD is received/completed.

I also cross the items out and put “Done!” near the names when I am done with buying for that person, otherwise I will just keep reviewing the items and deciding whether to add more or not.

This could work for any gifts you might buy throughout the year.  You could have a Birthday Gift List or whatever occasion you purchase gifts for.

What about you?  Do you shop early for gifts?  Have you ever forgotten or misplaced a gift? 

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , | 4 Comments »

A Different Angle

Posted by terrepruitt on April 27, 2018

I was looking through some photos to try to find one to post for my Friday Photo today and I found this. It is a little confusing to me because I am not recognizing the view or the angle. But the picture next to it dated the same day is one I recognize so this one just must be an angle I have not taken before.

See the little black dots? Those are birds. I like this shot. I thought it was a good share for a Friday Photo.

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Essential Oil Itch Relief

Posted by terrepruitt on April 25, 2018

You may be aware of the fact that there are various uses for essential oil. I wrote a post about using Eucalyptus Oil on a bug bite back in May of 2013. I just used the oil straight from the bottle onto my arm where the bug had bit me. Well recently I had a bug bite and this time I decided to use a different oil. I decided to try Peppermint Oil to help relieve the itching. With Peppermint Oil the advice is to use a carry oil with it. A carry oil is just an oil you mix with the essential oil to help dilute the essential oil. Most often wherever you buy your essential oils from they will have a bottle of carry oil to purchase too. I just use olive oil from my kitchen. I think I have used coconut oil too. I always have both in my kitchen so I just use what I have.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitI got a little bowl . . . a pinch bowl and put a little olive oil in it. I tried to only do a drop or two of peppermint oil, but I think a few poured into the bowl. I mixed it together and applied it to the offending site. It worked very well. Since it is minty it caused my skin to tingle a little but the itch was gone. And since it is an oil it stayed on and soaked into the skin so the relief lasted some time.

There are other uses for peppermint oil. My bottle of peppermint oil says:

“Peppermint Essential Oil contains menthol, which is a proven aid to digestion. The familiar aroma of peppermint is known for both its warming and cooling properties. It is refreshing, energizing, and is a mental stimulant. Friendly to the sinuses, peppermint is also useful to the muscular system, especially for women during monthly cycles or menopause. It relieves bad breath and is a good nerve tonic that helps with mental fatigue and nervous stress.”

Peppermint oil for PMS or menopause symptoms can be used in different ways. For cramps you can diffuse the oil or you can add it to a warm bath. It also might be helpful to dilute it with a carrier oil and then just rub it on your belly or on any muscle that is cramping.

With a hot flash situation having a spritzing bottle with peppermint water in it might help. Just mist your face and/or body during a hot flash.

So if you have some peppermint oil around it can help relieve itching from bug bites, aid in digestion, give relief to cramps and hot flashes.

Do you use essential oils around your home?  What do you do with peppermint oil?

Posted in Essential Oils | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

Henna Cattoos

Posted by terrepruitt on April 23, 2018

You may know from reading my blog that my husband and I adopted two cats from a place called The Dancing Cat. It is a “cat lounge”. It is not a cat CAFE because they don’t sell food, or coffee, or tea, but it is like one, in that you can visit with cats. You can bring your own food and drink and pay a small fee to visit with the cats for an hour.  Also, unlike some cat cafes ALL of the cats are up for adoption.  The Dancing Cat also hosts events like Mewsic Nights, Learning How To Paint Your Cat or take pictures of your cat. They also have a Henna Cattoo Night. There is a local artist, Shannon Balco, who comes in and does henna tattoos.

They have been doing it for a while but I was always away when they did it, but this last time I was home. Yipeee! Shannon has a book of pictures of tattoos she can do. Not all of them are cats.  She is even so talented as to do one that someone showed her a picture of. The one that looks like Yin and Yang cats! She did that right there after just seeing it. Cool, huh?

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitHenna is drawn on like a thick paste. The recommendation is for you to leave it on AT LEAST 30 minutes then you can scratch it off (not wash it off). The longer you leave it on the better.  When I first got a henna tattoo I was told to leave it on AT LEAST 4 hours and no longer than 12 hours.

The pictures are pictures of the “Cattoos” she did when I was there.  The last two show my tattoo.  The first one is after I scraped all the dried paste off. Since it is on the back of my hand and very thin delicate lines a large portion of it had just flaked off. I was concerned with it flaking off and me not noticing and then one of my cats eating a henna flake. So I just scratched it all off. It had probably been about five or so hours. I did not wait 24 hours without water because it is on my hands. In the past I had the henna put on my feet. I could easily not wet my feet for 24 hours, but not my hands. I was at a cat place. I had to wash my hands when I came home. I HAVE cats, I am constantly washing my hands. It didn’t seem to affect it adversely.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitThe very last shot is the next day. Henna darkens at first then it starts to fade. The length of time the tattoo lasts depends on where it is and what it sustains. If it is on your hands and you wash your hands often, it will probably come off sooner. If it is on your leg and doesn’t come into contact with water that much it might last longer. It does help to put oil on it. When I first got a henna tattoo that artist recommended just tiger balm. The second time I put oil on it. I think the oil helps.

I can’t wait for The Dancing Cat to do this again. I am going to go again. I am going to ask her if she will do my foot instead of my hand. Since I dance Nia I like to have my feet decorated.

What do you think? Have you gotten a henna tattoo?

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Bird’s Nest

Posted by terrepruitt on April 20, 2018

My husband was doing some yard work recently and he found an abandoned old nest. I think he found it in the star jasmine. Our star jasmine had grown around the metal supports that were supposed to be holding it up. Twisted around them and pulled them out of the ground. I think that is what happened. He cut it all down very low and during that process found this. Those are nuts or seeds in the nest, not eggs. I should have taken the picture with something to show scale, but it was not tiny. It was the size of about a softball or a baseball.

A nest for today’s Friday Photo.

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Six Levels Or Divisions of Qi

Posted by terrepruitt on April 18, 2018

While I write about all this stuff I am learning  in the Yin Yoga Teacher Training, I would like to say that I need to reserve the right to amend or correct anything that I post about. I am typing off the top of my head as a learning tool. Then I review my notes and revise my writing. My notes are not complete as I cannot write everything down that is being said and sometimes someone will ask a question and the answer takes us WAY off the path that we were on but the information is interesting so the notes get jumbled when the person teaching us tries to get back onto the path they were going down. So much information! In conjunction with the Module regarding the Yang Leg Sinew Channels we reviewed the six divisions or levels of Qi.

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There are the levels of Yang Qi and Levels of Yin Qi. The Yang Levels are Tai Yang, Shao Yang, and Yang Ming. The Yin Levels are Tai Yin, Shao Yin, and Jue Yin. Each level has associated “organs” and associated meridians. The levels have two organ associations, the yang levels have yang organs and the yin levels have yin organs, and each level has a leg and an arm meridian associated with it and it’s corresponding organ.

The organs associated with Tai Yang are the bladder and the small intestine.
The organs associated with Shao Yang are the gall bladder and triple heater.
The organs associated with Yang Ming are the stomach and large intestine.
The organs associated with Tai Yin are the spleen and lungs.
The organs associated with Shao Yin are the kidneys and the heart.
The organs associated with Jue Yin are the liver and pericardium.

Since I have not yet posted about the hand jing well points and we have not even reviewed the arm meridians I did not include them on the attached chart. I probably should have since I will have to redo it to include them. I just wanted the organs that I have posted about on it so that there wasn’t too much information. There is so much information, I seem to do better having it in pieces.

As you can see from the chart and you can probably figure out the organs and meridians are the same. I’ve noted the jing well points of each meridian so that I can have that in my mind.

With each level there is associated issues when there is weakness in that level.

Weakness of the Tai Yang could show up as any pain, if moving causes pain.
Weakness of the Shao Yang – Pain or difficulty rotating the arms, legs, head, torso, hips. Also lateral flexion of the neck or torso.
Weakness of the Yang Ming – Pain or difficulty with flexion of the neck or torso. Pain when gripping with hands. Also if it is painful to stand.
Weakness of the Tai Yin – If pain when sitting or flexion of the front of the body.
Weakness of the Shao Yin – Pain or difficulty rotating the legs as when sitting in a cross legged position.
Weakness of the Jue Yin – Pain when lying down. Or if the body twitches.

One way to help with the weakness is to do Yin Yoga to help get the Qi flowing. Knowing which level is associated with which organ and meridian is how that can be addressed. But if you are practicing Yin Yoga the idea is to get the Qi flowing smoothly throughout the entire body so one doesn’t even have to focus too much on which level might need it. A well rounded class should get to all of it. These levels though, can give us, as teachers, a general map as to how to design a yoga class. A class in the morning might want to go from Jue Yin to Tai Yang as the types of poses affecting Tai Yang are more invigorating. But an evening class might do poses to affect the meridians and levels in reverse. From invigorating to more calming. It is all just tools to help us design classes that will have our students feeling fabulous when they are done.

It is all so interesting to me. I hope you are enjoying the little peak into Yin Yoga and what it entails.

PLEASE NOTE: Nothing you read here should be relied upon to determine a medical diagnosis or courses of treatment. The information on this blog is not intended to replace advice and instruction from a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

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Yang Leg Meridians

Posted by terrepruitt on April 16, 2018

This past weekend was the Yin Yoga Teacher Training. We went over the Yang Leg Meridians. Remember these are only the sinew meridians. Most information on the internet and in books deal with the primary meridians.  We are learning the sinew meridians. We want to do yoga to help people feel better or keep them feeling good. Applying the aspects of Qi and the meridians is the focus of Yin Yoga. Many Yin poses address more than one meridian so learning the sinew meridians is enough to enable us to create beneficial Yin Yoga classes. Knowledge of the other meridians can be used for acupressure and more specifically acupuncture. The sinew meridians are more of an area than a line and they can be accessed with movement. The Yang Leg Meridians we reviewed were the stomach meridian, the gall bladder, and bladder.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitI stated in my Jing Well Points Of The Feet the starting points of the Six Sinew Meridians. In my Yin Leg Meridians post I explain where the Yin Leg Meridians travel and end up. This post is about the Yang Leg Meridians. The stomach meridian starts on the lateral side of the second toe. Some information shows it encompassing the three middle toes, so the second, third, and fourth toe and that is why I have been saying that the sinew meridians are more of an area. The stomach meridian travels up the top of the foot, up the lateral side of the shin and knee. One branch travels up into the lower spine, and the other goes through the groin area up the front of the body all the way into the face, two points under the eye and one point in front of the ear.

A quick note here, “lateral” is an anatomical term and it generally relates to the side away from the middle. Median is an anatomical term relating to the middle of the body. I probably should have stated that in my other posts because sometimes we tend to think of the edges of the foot as the outside whereas one side is medial and one side is lateral. The legs seem to be thought of as only having one outside (lateral) and one inside (medial), but it seems the foot is sometimes thought of as having more than one outside.

Weakness of the stomach or a blocked stomach meridian might show up as spasms in the lower leg, sudden mouth dryness, eye issues – unable to close or open the eyes, or something related to digestion. There may be pain in the abdomen or constipation. Depending on how it presents it could be diarrhea. Other things related are halitosis, obsessive thinking, and GERD.

The gall bladder meridian is on the lateral side of the fourth toe, travels up the foot to the lateral (outside) of the ankle, up the lateral side of the leg branching off at the hip area to the sacrum. From the branch point it continues up the side of the body, a branch travels to the breast area then up to the clavicle area meeting up with the branch that continued up the side. When it joins up becoming one again it moves up the side of the neck behind the ear. Above the ear it branches again, one branch traveling to the side of the nose and up to the outer eye and the other branch travels up to the vertex (top of the head).

A blocked gall bladder meridian or a weak gall bladder could have symptoms such as knee issues – strain or sprain of the lateral aspect of the knee, inability to extend the knee, spasm of the area behind the knee. Pain in the sacral region or clavicle area. It could also be difficult to make decisions. Tight shoulders or inability to move shoulders may also present.

The bladder meridian is on the pinky toe and travels up the foot where at the crease it splits into two branches with one going up the lateral side of the calf and ending on the lateral side behind the knee. The other one going up the back side of the calf up the back of the leg over the buttock up the back. At the lower part of the scapula (shoulder blade) it branches off, and that branch becomes two branches one going around the body under the armpit to travel up the front to the clavicle. The other moving up over the shoulder blade to the top of the shoulder. The branch that goes under the shoulder blade to the clavicle branches at the clavicle with one branch going up the lateral part of the neck up behind the ear and the other part going up more the front of the neck over the jaw up under the cheek to meet up with one portion coming over the top of the head and also to continue on to the side of the nose where it meets up with another portion coming over the top of the head. The meridian continuing past the “shoulder blade branches” – branches again above the shoulder blade with that branch traveling up to the top of the shoulder near the neck and the rest of it going up the back of the neck, up the back of the head, over the top of the head and down the forehead. At the eyebrow is branches and one branch goes along the eyebrow down the lateral side of the eye down the cheek to meet up with the branch that traveled up the cheek. The other branch continues down the side of the nose to meet up with the “cheek branch”.

Again keep in mind that the meridians are not draw with fine pen points, they are more like a medium sized paint brush.

The bladder meridian having a blockage or the bladder being weak could show as signs of difficulty with the little toe, heel issues, neck tension, pain along the path of the meridian, urinary issues – difficulty or excessive.

We think of the Yang Meridians as traveling on the outside and/or back of the body, with the Yang Meridians traveling along the inside and/or front of the body. Again, just a generalization to help us know what meridians are affected with the Yin asana.

It is so interesting to me that obsessive thinking is related to a weak stomach/blocked stomach meridian. Anyone else finding stuff like that interesting?

PLEASE NOTE: Nothing you read here should be relied upon to determine a medical diagnosis or courses of treatment. The information on this blog is not intended to replace advice and instruction from a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

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Blue Angel

Posted by terrepruitt on April 13, 2018

Oooooohhhhh! A very talented friend of mine . . . she makes all types of things . . . made angels this past Christmas. And she sent me this blue one. Isn’t she beautiful? I love her and while she would make a lovely Christmas Tree ornament, I think I will have her hang around all year round. Thanks you, SuziCate!

A Blue Angel for today’s Friday Photo!

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Yin Leg Meridians

Posted by terrepruitt on April 11, 2018

The starting points for the meridians are the Jing Well Points. The Jing Well Points for the leg meridians start in the foot. There is the spleen meridian, the liver meridian, the stomach meridian, the gall bladder meridian, the bladder meridian, and the kidney meridian. Half of them are yin meridians and half of them are yang meridians. I am just briefly sharing a bit about the yin meridians of the legs at this time. The yin meridians run up the inside of the leg. The yin meridians being the spleen meridian, the liver meridian, and the kidney meridian.

The spleen meridian starts at the nail bed of the median side of the big toe, crosses the inside ankle, travels up to the knee, up the inner thigh and into the groin. It continues up into the abdomen and navel, then onto the ribs and disperses in the chest. The liver sinew meridian starts at the nail bed of the lateral side of the big toe and follows a similar path as the spleen sinew meridian, but it ends in the genitals. The kidney meridian starts at the level of underneath the ball of the foot, but is over between the second toe and the third toe. It runs up, behind the inside ankle, to the heel connecting with the bladder sinew meridian, then up to the inside area of the knee, up the inner thigh into the genitals, then up along the side of the spine the neck and occipital bone.

My quick notes show: Spleen runs to groin and up into chest. Liver runs to genitalia. Kidney runs up the leg and into brain.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitWe are learning that signs of a weak spleen might present as worry, OCD tendencies, and flabby triceps. Weakness could also show up as congestion, soggy skin texture, chronic bruising, bleeding, and anemia. The spleen is associated with digestion so a way to help build up your spleen Qi is to cook for yourself. Preparing and eating nutritious meals helps build up that Qi.

The liver and the liver meridian have to do with blood and the smooth flow of Qi. So a blocked liver meridian could be evident with symptoms of Erectile Dysfunction, Chronic Erection, or menstrual issues such as PMS. The liver is associated with the emotion of anger. A block liver channel might cause one to be angry.

A blocked kidney meridian might be the case with signs of impotence, chronic back or knee pain, weak legs, asthma, or even just shortness of breath. The kidneys are affected by trauma. Chronic fee and chronic stress taxes the kidneys and adrenal glands.

Yin Yoga poses are primarily lower body poses. They tend to affect more than one meridian at a time . . . as you can imagine considering the paths of the meridians are so close.  So when working to help the flow of Qi through these meridians one does not have to do poses for each channel.  One pose could affect them all.

So fascinating to me. What about you?

 

PLEASE NOTE:  Nothing you read here should be relied upon to determine a medical diagnosis or courses of treatment. The information on this blog is not intended to replace advice and instruction from a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

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Jing Well Points Of The Feet

Posted by terrepruitt on April 9, 2018

I am taking a Yin Yoga Teacher Training and learning all kinds of interesting things – well, I find them interesting. But first, as a reminder:  Yin Yoga generates Qi flow through the body, in particular the areas of the lower spine, hips, and pelvis. If you are inclined to believe in Qi then Yin Yoga is a way to get it flowing and help to release latency from the meridians. Yin Yoga also helps develop and maintain health of connective tissues. In addition Yin Yoga helps cultivate stillness in the body and mind to help prepare for meditation. I am not so attached to the meditation prep as I am to just the fact that Yin Yoga allows and even requires the body to be still and I think that the society in which most of us live we need to have moments of stillness. Our minds are always so full and busy it they need a rest. One way to help quite the mind is to still the body. Qi flows along meridians. Meridians have starting points or Jing Well Points. Jing Well points are where the energy arises.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFitJing Well Points of the Sinew Meridians in the foot are for the spleen, liver, stomach, gall bladder, bladder, and kidney.  The spleen meridian starts at the nail bed of the median side of the big toe. The liver sinew meridian starts at the nail bed of the lateral side of the big toe. The stomach meridian starts on the lateral side of the second toe. The gall bladder meridian is on the lateral side of the fourth toe. And the pinky toe is where the jing well point is for the bladder meridian. We are calling these meridians the leg meridians because they run up the legs to points in the body. There is also the kidney jing well point which at the level of underneath the ball of the foot and over between the second toe and the third toe. Pressure on that spot will stimulate the kidney.

The Sinew Meridians circulate along the periphery of the body. They are superficial and follow the lines of the major muscle groups. The primary meridians are deeper. As I mentioned in my first post about Yin Yoga, the Sinew Meridians are more of an area and can be targeted with Yin Yoga. The Sinew Meridians do not connect to the internal organs and originate externally at the jing well points.

The spleen, liver, and kidney meridians are Yin meridians and run on the median side of the legs.  The stomach, gall bladder, and kidney meridians are Yang meridians and run on the back or outside of the legs.

While I am only showing one foot and stated that these are the meridians in the foot, it applies to both feet.

What about you?  Do you find any of this interesting?

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