Friday, July 29, 2016

Reading in different languages

Hi everyone!

Today I want to talk about reading in different languages.
As some of you might know I am besides german (with is my mothertongue) fluent in english and norwegian (soon adding swedish and finnish, as well as hungarian later and maybe another language).
English I learned in school where as norwegian I learned during my year as an AuPair and now I am studying it at university.
While being at university I saw some people disliking reading in another language than their mothertongue.
I am different.
I like it especially when I can read it in the original language, when the main spirit of the writing is still there and not lost in a translation.
Don`t get me wrong not every translation is bad, but we all know it when you are having one of the bad ones and just think "Why can`t I read the original version?".
But reading in different languages is not always easy.
During this semesters norwegian class we read 4 books. Two playing in 1800 and one modern one but with lot of information on the ocean and life in the ocean.
The two books from 1800 had some words that aren`t used any longer today and so it was a lot of looking words up involved. They also had grammar we weren`t necessarily used to. So all in all they weren`t as easy to understand as when I pick up a norwegian thriller to read it. But that is what I go to class for. To learn. The modern book was difficult in terms of the terminology and involved even more looking up but it extended my vocabulary regarding everything that has to do with the ocean.

While reading a lot of specialized literature in german at uni like literary theory and linguistics which in german is so heavy to read as we are making so incredible long sentences I prefer my outside of uni reading to be in english.
Why english you may wonder?
Well books in english are often cheaper than their translations in german.
Second point is I don`t want to loose my english skills as TV here is in german, we just talk in german besides language courses and I am just afraid of depleting my english vocabulary. So reading in english is a great option to keep it up.
And last but not least this language has nothing to do with university reading so I can really relax.

Now how did I get started with reading in different languages.
Well first in school.
Second when I was an AuPair. I didn`t got any german books in Norway. My Mom was sending them for a while but then again sending a book that costs 10 euros and pay 13 euros for shipping is ridiculous. So I started to pick up norwegian books. First from the children and then I went and got my own. Starting with Twilight and the Spiderwick Chronicles. As I already knew the plot they were "easy" reads and I wasn`t forced to look up every word that I didn`t know. The more books I read the easier it got and soon it became natural and I was reading them at the same pace as I would read a german book.

So with everything it is a progress. For me it only made my life easier. Since I am reading all three languages at the same pace, (well by now I am reading norwegian and english faster than german) I have no trouble during the semester. I am able to finish all my reading on time without any struggle. So I can highly recommend getting into reading at least in german and english and if you study languages of course in those languages too.

Let me know which languages you read in and which you prefer if you are reading in several languages.

I will soon be up with reviews on the books I read for my norwegian class.
Let me know if you want more posts like this or more book reviews and I am more than happy to post those.

Take care and I see you soon.


Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Something Special for you! Chapter 55

The cabin was unique. Cabin isn`t the right word for it. It was more of a house or even a villa. Windowfront to the lake. They were no other houses nearby and we would have this place completely to ourselves.

Our last stop would give us even more of that freedom and silence, before we had to go back into the hectic and noisy city.
The lake was perfect to try out SUP (Stand Up Paddelboarding) which was the reason why we had chosen this cabin. It was the last point on my list.
After our arrival I had spent hours on the internet doing my research on how to paddleboard so that I was standing ready to try it out the next morning.
It wasn`t as easy as it seemed, but definetly easier than surfing, although it didn`t took long before I landed in the water on my first trys. But as usual I tried as long as I needed to figure it out. And this time I managed better than Scott once I had figured it out. No one was able to get me from the lake now. I enjoyed it even more than surfing. It was calmer. I could control it better. Less action more relaxation. Exactly what I needed.
Scott on the other hand had made his way back to the land really fast, had played with Balu and had then disappeared in the cabin.

He had been strange the last couple of days. I didn`t know if it had been something I had said or done or if he had just been in a bad mood. I could have asked him, but then I thought that I could be the exact same way on some days. That I distanced myself. That I wanted to be on my own. And that the last thing that I wanted on days like this were someone asking me `what is wrong?`.

I had so much fun that I hadn`t noticed that Scott didn`t came out all day.
When I went back inside after the sun had started to set he was in the kitchen preparing dinner. He didn`t even look up, which was really strange. I went and took a quick shower and when I came back into the kitchen he had already set the table and served dinner. And although I was incredible hungry I was less interested in the food than in knowing what was wrong with him. 

She stared at me while moving the food on her plate with the fork.

"Don`t you like it?" I asked her worried, after I had observed her moving her food from A to B for a while without having eaten a single bite.

He had interrupted my thoughts yet another time only this time my thoughts weren`t filled with myself but with him. With his strange behaviour that he had shown since our campingtrip.

"No no, it is fine," I said immediatly

"But?" he asked. Should I ask him now or leave it? Now that he had asked I could take advantage of the opportunity.

"Are you okay?" I asked carefully. He had always been open towards me, but he had never talked openly about his problems, so better be careful.

"Yes, why do you ask?" I gave her my best smile but then raised my eyebrow sceptical when I saw that she didn`t believe me.

"Because you are a bit strange since we went camping" she explained. "You are so distant. Leaving without saying a word. I mean there have to be something wrong or am I wrong?"

The smile he had just had vanished in the next moment and his face turned serious and thoughtful. An explanation didn`t follow, just a question that explained his behaviour indirectly.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Review of: #MayIBeginYoga2016 Beginner Yoga Challenge!

Hi everyone!

Today I have a review and my reflections of the 2016 Beginner Yoga Challenge held by Kino McGregor (KinoYoga) on Youtube (so it is free!!!).

I started this challenge with the 2016 Bikini Series. Being out of practice and having never practice Ashtanga Yoga before I was thrilled about starting it but also scared. Hatha Yoga is tough too but I knew that Ashtanga Yoga would take it up a nodge.

As the title says it is a one month beginner yoga challenge with one extra video (so 31) for Relaxation as a bonus for the hard work you have done in the past 30 days.
You start the first couple of days with some basic poses building up to them, learning the correct form, building the strength. Then you build up to a complete practice while still learning new poses and repeating the basics. As said you built up. You practice.
And with everything you practice it can be really frustrating. The first seven days were so tough for me. I had so much trouble in holding the planks and my mind was in the state that I had to hold it until complete exhaustion kicked in. But then something changed. I started to listen to Kinos words, except and realise that this is a journey. This is something that takes time. And as soon as I realized this I was able to let go. I accepted the days where I had to stay on my hands and knees plank. And I was even prouder of the days where I could hold the plank and do my first chaturangas.

The approach Kino chooses is amazing. And it works really fast. I was doing Hatha Yoga (Yoga with Adriene) for almost a year and still couldn`t do chaturangas. With Kino I was able to do them half way through the challenge. It helped me a lot to learn the anatomy behind it although I felt embarrassed first when it got personal, but I decided to focus on the fact that this was important to learn to do the pose the right way.
Not just did I learn to controll my body I also learned to focus my mind inward.
Having Hashimotos my mind is often all over the place. I am insecure and scared and nervous. Learning to turn my mind inward helped to let these things go and I can only highly recommend to give it a try, after all it is free right?

I improved my flexibility, my strength and more over my self conscious and my body image. I can say now that I love my body and that I am thankful for it. It isn`t perfect but it is what it is.

I decided on repeating this challenge and paring it up with 30 Days of Yoga by Yoga with Adriene.
I will let you know in another post how this went.

Let me know if you did the Kino Yoga Challenge as well or if you are planning on doing so. Lets get the dialogue going.

See you soon.


Friday, July 22, 2016

Something Special for you! Chapter 54

The time in the mountains had passed super fast and it was time to make our way to our next and final destination on our list.
We had rented a cabin at a lake. The way to the cabin would take some time and Emma had offered to drive today. I had looked at her a it surprised.

"I can drive", she repeated a tiny bit offended. It wasn`t me being scared for my car or my life. I was more worried about her anxiety. What if she panics?

"I can drive", she repeated again. I gave her the keys and took my place in the passenger seat. I wondered if I should explain the car to her and she obviously noticed it by just looking at my face.

"Okay, explain it. Your car. Will the gear make trouble or should I pet the stearing wheel before I start. Whatever it is, explain it." She wasn`t furious or mad, instead she was smiling at me, knowing that every guy loves his car and that they all would have paniced when she insisted on driving. So I started to explain and she let me explain everything to her without interrupting.

We finally took off. 

I saw the first Truck driving towards us. I took a deep breath in and a big breath out. I decided to focus on the distance, on my lane and not on the cars driving towards us. With every Truck passing by it got easier. I didn`t even notice how Scott had put his hand on my leg to calm me down. I didn`t notice the first truck. Not even the second. My focus was on the goal. To drive without panicing. And it worked. I made it. After two hours I was completely relaxed had turned on the music and started to sing together with Scott.

Suddenly she drove off the route. What was wrong now? Did she need a break?

"You can canoe over there,"  she explained and pointed at the sign by the street. With that it was clear that we wouldn`t just be sitting in the car today. I would get my daily dose of adrenaline. I couldn`t tell if she had planned that secretly because planning was definetly something she enjoyed as it gave her a feeling of being secure, but this time it really seemed to be spontaneous. Maybe it was another quality of her that I got to know right now. We definetly had fun that afternoon.

I let him drive the rest of the way as the sun already started to set.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Bikini Series Reflections 2016

Hi everyone!

So sorry I didn`t manage to blog the rest of the series. Especially since we are already in the middle of round 2.
I just wanted to make everything work and have a successful Bikini Series, push through while managing university, houshold and everyday life.
I did that, but to achieve all of my goals I needed time. Time I usually use for blogging. But now enough of it. I am here to reflect.

This years Bikini Series had a great but rough start. A lot of videos had excercises that I had to modify which is frustrating. Lets name it as it is:

One thing that helped me was yoga. I had completely lost my core strength during my 3 months of pneumonia in the winter months. I had to tell myself again and again
"This is recovery. It is a process and you will get there". 
Of course did I see progress on the scale and in my pictures during the first four weeks.

My thighs had become a tiny bit slimmer and my abs more toned and less bloated. This encouraged me to try harder go in stronger.
I started the Summer Yoga Challenge from Kino Yoga which is a Beginner Yoga Challenge teaching you the basic Yoga poses (I will have an extra review on this challenge up some time soon).
This Challenge was also frustrating at the beginning. Not getting into the pose probably. Feeling my tight muscles and my decreased flexibility. Not having the strength. You name it.
But then again I did see small progress every day and every week and kept it up.

I did what I had to do focus on the goal which was 
Under 90kg.
So over 5kg to loose during this 8 week challenge. What can I say I lost 8 kg by then end of week 8. 

I kept it up. I did my Bootycalls and my PM Workouts every single day. Monday to Sunday. Implementing a habit. Forming myself a daily routine. Getting more and more used to eating healthy. Having my stomach on rebellion as soon as I tried the unhealthy stuff (there you go autoimmunity).
And by week 5 I was glowing. I was so happy in my skin and so proud of myself.

When I reached the 89kg in week 7 I was even prouder. First time in the last 2 years after my Thyroid kicked in and messed with my body I felt comfortable and proud of body.
I was suddenly able to do full chaturangas. I didn`t had to modify my Tone it up Workouts as much as I did by the beginning of the series.

And most of all I got the control over my life back, which with Hashimotos got completely crazy.

So what now?
Did I sign up for round 2 of the Bikini Series? - Yes.
Do I follow it? - Yes and No. I kept up my two a days workout wise and I kept up my healthy eating. I am down to 86,2 kg. I just had one throw back with a week of migranes and there I fell out of Tone it up and completely into the Yoga trott.
Am I okay with that? - Yes. I love Yoga and I also love TIU and everything this challenge has brought to my life. I just got tired of repeating the same workouts over and over again. I know I am going to rehab end of July and that pushing through my TIU workouts there will be hard, whereas yoga is easy to access just need to bring my mat, no weights etc. needed. It is important to move and that is what I am doing. I committed to 8 weeks of yoga during this second round and set up my own plan, which included another round of that 30 Days Summer Yoga Challenge (#MayIBeginYoga) and another round of 30 Days of Yoga by (#yogawithadriene). After this I am making my own plan. And once I am back from rehab I will get back into Tone it up.

Do I think this works for other? - Absolutely. The first four weeks were the hardest after that everything went automatically the way it went. I never felt my Hashimotos was getting in the way (yes I loose weight slower than others, but I loose it). I saw that I felt so much better and I am certain to say that it nearly felt as before my Diagnoses.

The Series was a Journey for me with ups and downs, but I have learned so much about myself and my body that I am proud that I pushed through and kept the habits I have formed up.

Have you done the challenge this year?
Let me know in the comments below.

I will see you soon.


Monday, July 18, 2016

Something Special for you! Chapter 53

I did survive the campingtrip. It was less horrible than I had expected it to be. I didn`t got eaten up by a bear nor did I freeze to death. The complete opposite, I did have fun. The last two days were just about finding freedom. I did make peace with myself and with my past. I felt a lot lighter than before. This was a new start. So far I have reached every goal I have set myself. Some things had been a real challenge and I needed Scotts help and he had been there all the way, encouraging me instead of telling me I can`t do it.

I trusted him and I did let him in like I had never done it before. I finally noticed what this meant but I still tried to push it as far away as possible. The risk of throwing this beautiful friendship away was too high.

I decided to rather focus on my sore legs and feet. For the way back home we had taken another route which instead of the 10 hours to the lake took us 13 hours back to the house.

We had just thrown all our equipment onto the truck once we reached the house. We would unpack and clean it tomorrow. Today the only thing I would do is give my feet a warm bath and then rest.

I wanted to be a little bit on my own. I had excused myself with the fact that I wanted to cook us some dinner which I also did. I really needed some distance. The more time we spent together the more certain I became why Emma was special and what Alf had seen when I talked about her. But I didn`t want to give into these thoughts. Our friendship had grown so much. She had finally started to open up and I didn`t want to risk ruining that. So I tried to push it away, but it only worked when I distanced myself from her. And she exactly knew when I needed my distance and accepted it. And there it was again. The thing that was special about her.