Yoga for everyone, even if you’re not a human pretzel!

Perhaps you’re completely new to yoga but have heard all about the benefits of the ancient practice (stress relief, good posture, and improvement of muscle tone to name a few), or perhaps, like me, you’ve enjoyed yoga for a while but have struggled a few times to make it a part of your daily routine. Third time’s the charm, right? Or tenth, that’s cool too. Wherever you are on the yogi spectrum, the library has a great collection of yoga DVDs to use in the comfort of your home. As with any exercise program, be sure to consult a physician before starting.
 
 
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Basic Yoga Workout for Dummies is split into two workouts: beginner and intermediate. The twelve postures, or asanas, you learn in the beginner segment of the DVD are common poses that you will see in any other yoga DVD or class. I loved that the instructor provided modifications of various poses in case you’d like to challenge yourself or if you’d like a more basic version to meet your physical capabilities. Throughout the beginner practice, you will hear some sound effects whenever a warning, tip, myth buster, jargon alert, or remember icon appears. Honestly, I found these sound effects a bit off-putting, but they do provide some really important information that you will want to know as you transition into each pose.

In the intermediate workout, you will learn a sun salutation which includes postures that use breath and movement together. This portion does not have sound effects. It moves a bit faster than the beginner workout, but after you’ve learned your basics, the sun salutation will be fairly easy to follow. All in all, this is a great introduction to yoga for those trying it for the first time.
{Place Basic Yoga Workout for Dummies on hold here}

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Rodney Yee and Mariel Hemingway lead you through four 15-minute segments in 15-Minute Results: Yoga that focus on specific areas of the body – upper body toning, lower body sculpting, abdominal strengthening, and total body conditioning. 15 minutes of yoga is perfect for those of us with busy lives so that we can hit the mat and be out the door in almost no time at all. These compact workouts are a bit more fast paced, much like the sun salutation in Basic Yoga Workout for Dummies, but are definitely not lacking in benefits you’d gain from a longer workout. As Rodney and Mariel will tell you, 15 minutes is better than none at all!

ImageAfter doing Kundalini Yoga to Detox and Destress with Maya Fiennes I felt incredibly relaxed and rejuvenated. Kundalini is different from Hatha yoga, the most common practice in the West — think downward facing dog, tree, and other postures that you’d learn in Basic Yoga Workout for Dummies or in 15-Minute Results: Yoga. With Kundalini yoga, you might not experience much in regards to toning and strengthening. Instead, expect a bit of chanting and a lot of breathing techniques accompanied by Maya’s own ethereal music. I’ll admit, there are some movements that may seem weird at first, but but the results are so worth it. Maya explains what each movement is doing to cleanse and detox your body. I loved this DVD so much that I went out and got my own copy!

 
Be sure to check out these yoga DVDs and many others at the library!
Namaste.
 
– a –

Pumpkin Preparedness

During this time of the year right before October I try to  start thinking about what I am going to do for the pumpkin carving season.  I’ll just highlight on a few short topics of  what it takes to be prepared.

There’s really only four basic tools you need for carving pumpkins. These include:
-Long, thin, preferably serrated knife for large cuts (drywall saw or boning knife works best)
–Small, thin, preferably serrated knife for small detailed cuts (paring knife or carving kit knife works best)
–Sharp object to transfer your pattern onto your pumpkin (tack, nail, toothpick, etc.)
–Big metal spoon to scrape out the guts of the pumpkin
–Option of using a Dremel tool for more elaborate patterns or for carving the fake pumpkins

I usually find patterns online through out the year and print them out. Some websites I use for patterns include:
http://www.zombiepumpkins.com
–Website with a vast array of pumpkin carving patterns; you do have to sign up and pay a small fee
http://www.pumpkinlady.com
–Website with a vast array of pumpkin carving patterns; you do have to sign up and pay a small fee
http://www.carvingpumpkins.com
–Website with a vast array of pumpkin carving patterns; some free selections, you do have to sign up and pay a small fee if you want more
http://www.paperpumpkins.com
–Large selection of free pumpkin patterns
-Most local stores carry pumpkin patterns around October
-The library also will have a selection of free patterns

As we get closer to October, I will post more pumpkin carving tips and tricks.

-J-

Let’s talk about Pinterest

In September, I found my way to the site and instantly loved it. A month later, as Mashable published, there was a huge spike and everyone I knew and you knew was on it. Now your favorite brands and companies, libraries, and just about everyone is pinning. Mashable even wrote this handy article about the Marketer’s Guide to Pinterest.

Aside from the obvious eye candy from travel photos to what you’d love your dream house to look like, what’s your favorite thing about the site? What I really want to know is have you made any of the recipes or done any of the crafts you’ve pinned?

Nice Knits!

With the holidays behind us and summer in the far off distance, it’s a time for being cozy inside. Sure we love reading, watching our tv shows and movie nights in, but how about making something to beat the winter boredom? Why not try your hand at knitting? Here is a wonderful selection of knitting books for beginners and pros alike:

★ Boutique ★

The Joy of Sox: 30+ must-knit designs by Linda Kopp

Hip Knit Hats: 40 Fabulous Designs by Cathy Carron

French Girl Knits: Innovative Techniques, Romantic Details, and Feminine Designs by Kristeen Griffin-Grimes

Glam Knits: 25 Designs For Luxe Yarns by Stefanie Jape

Boutique Knits: 20+ Must-Have Accessories by Laura Irwin

★ Punk ★

Knockdown Knits: 30 Projects from the Roller Derby Track by Toni Carr

DomiKNITrix: Whip Your Knitting Into Shape by Jennifer Stafford

AntiCraft: Knitting, Beading and Stitching for the Slightly Sinister by Renee Rigdon

Pretty in Punk: 25 Punk, Rock, and Goth Knitting Projects by Alyce Benevide

★ Fantasy ★

Vampire Knits: Projects to Keep You Knitting from Twilight to Dawn by Genevieve Miller

Charmed Knits: Projects for Fans of Harry Potter by Alison Hansel

Fairy Tale Knits: 32 Projects to Knit Happily Ever After by A. Stewart-Guinee

★ Portable ★

Pints and Purls: Portable Projects for the Social Knitter by Karida Collins

Take-Along Knitting: 20+ Easy Portable Projects from Your Favorite Authors by Editors of North Light Books

★ Internet Favorites ★

Brave New Knits: 26 Projects and Personalities from the Knitting Blogosphere by Julie Turjoman

★ Babies ★

Natural Nursery Knits: Twenty Handknit Projects for the New Baby by Erika Knight

Vintage Knits for Modern Babies by Hadley Fierlinger

Itty-Bitty Nursery by Susan B. Anderson

Itty-Bitty Hats: cute and cuddly caps to knit for babies and toddlers by Susan B. Anderson

★ Gift Ideas ★

KnitWit: 20 Projects for Beginners and Seasoned Knitters by Katie Boyette

Big Book of Knitted Monsters, The: Mischievous, Lovable Toys by Rebecca Danger

Knitting Mochimochi: 20 Super-Cute Strange Designs for Knitted Amigurumi by Anna Hrachovec

Amigurumi Knits: Patterns for 20 Cute Mini Knits by Hansi Singh

Gifted: Lovely Little Things to Knit and Crochet by Mags Kandis

Itty-Bitty Toys: How to Knit Animals, Dolls, and Other Playthings for Kids by Susan B. Anderson

You’re going to knock your friend’s socks off when you tell them you made it yourself instead of bought it on beloved etsy! Happy Knitting!

★★★

Would you like to teach a knitting & crochet class? We are looking for kind, patient instructors for a class this fall.  Please contact Debra Dudek at ddudek@fountaindale.org for more information .

– Sabrina