Oh Go Float Yourself - Float House Review

What is floating you ask? This recent trend is gaining popularity and for good reason. It is suuuuper relaxing and in my opinion, one of the ultimate self care "me" times. 

This past weekend I had the opportunity to go check out the Float House Edmonton. It was basically pure bliss. But before we get into my review of the Float House, first let's chat about what floating is.

What is a float tank?

Basically it's a tank you lie in with a high salt water content so that you actually float in the water without effort. The tank is enclosed to block out noise, light and basically most sensory stimulation. It's sometimes called a sensory deprivation tank.

The amount of salt that goes into every tank!

The amount of salt that goes into every tank!

What's the point?

By removing the stimulus of noise, light, draft etc the body can go into a deeper state of relaxation and/or meditation. 

What if I'm claustrophobic?

This is a REAL question. I 100% have claustrophobia issues. about 5/6 years ago I had my first experience in a tank and it wasn't too bad (I had already done lots of work on my claustrophobia), but I was able to keep the door of the tank open to ease my anxiety. That said the tank I was in was on the smaller side so I found myself not completely relaxed. Personally at Float House Edmonton in particular their tanks are so big that I was completely comfortable and even closed the door all the way .

What do you in there the whole time?

Well, whatever you want to do I guess. Dominic did a great job of explaining some things about being in the tank. He suggested some things like playing in the space a bit, ways to find comfort, doing a body scan or meditation. I personally found it comforting to play around with my positioning a bit, make waves in the water and feel around the walls a bit before coming into a settled position. The great part is that whenever you feel ready you can leave. The tank is in it's pwn room and you can get out and shower whenever you feel you are ready too. 

What are the benefits of floating?

There are tons! I go for the relaxation and meditation. But check out the Float Houses #WhyWeFloat page for the best resource on this subject.

So about Float House. 

I love the vibe in there. Located just off Whyte Ave it's amazing to come off a busy street into the chill setting. The space is very clean, relaxed and inviting. Sitting down with Dominic, he helped put me at ease about the process, giving me a lot of good tips. 

Inviting front reception with the stunning at work.

Inviting front reception with the stunning at work.

The amazing intention setting wall.

The amazing intention setting wall.

The room itself is beautiful. A private shower in the room, just outside the tank. It makes it easier to have a cleansing shower before the float and a nice warm shower upon stepping out. There is a few lighting options. You can choose total darkness, which sets on a timer. You set it to total dark and it gives you time to get into the tank and settle before it goes all dark. Additionally you can choose more light or a little bit of light. There are a couple of small holes in the ceiling of the tank that let in the smallest amount of the room light. I chose this option to help keep me oriented. 

The tank itself is really large. I'm 5'2" and had lots of space to bounce back and forth from foot to head. Additionally height wise I'm pretty sure I could actually stand up in the tank. So It felt more like floating in a room then a tub. 

float tank.jpg

One of the best parts however is the post float. There is this beautiful room where they encourage you to sit and have some tea, or maybe read, write or reflect. I had a beautiful conversation with Dominic and another floater afterwards. It was like hanging out with long time friends. 

Calming and relaxing please to come back to real life stimulus in the post float lounge. 

Calming and relaxing please to come back to real life stimulus in the post float lounge. 

Reading selection in the post float lounge. 

Reading selection in the post float lounge. 

Overall, I really love this place. Personally every Sunday I have a morning bath and I think I will be replacing that time once a month with a float. 

Have you ever floated?

 

Love, Jen

What's A Mala Anyways?

Mala’s have become very popular lately. They look gorgeous but they also can serve a function.

 

What are the made from?

Many different materials are used in the making of mala’s. I’ve seen beads made from animal bone, different stones and rocks.

Mine here is from  Mala and Me  made from black onyx. "  Black Onyx   assists with challenges in life, especially those caused by a drain of energy. This stone can help you to feel comfortable within yourself and in your surroundings.  Black Onyx is said to promote self-control helping the wearer to keep excessive emotions and passions under control, while keeping you protected."

Mine here is from Mala and Me made from black onyx. "Black Onyx  assists with challenges in life, especially those caused by a drain of energy. This stone can help you to feel comfortable within yourself and in your surroundings. Black Onyx is said to promote self-control helping the wearer to keep excessive emotions and passions under control, while keeping you protected."

What are they used for?

They can be worn with the intention of the stones/gems they are made from protecting/helping you. Traditionally malas have been used in helping meditation. Using the beads on the necklace to help repeat an intention or a point of focus in meditation. 

I had surgery on Monday and since I have been spending time meditating on healing. With each bead I repeat to myself over and over "I am healing and healthy".
 

mala.jpg

Why 108 beads?

I've heard many reasons behind the 108 beads. The number 108 comes up in many ways, including even the fact that the suns diameter is exactly 108 times the size of the earth's.

My super sweet bracelete from  Eliasz and Ella

My super sweet bracelete from Eliasz and Ella

What about the bracelets? 

I also love bracelets. I think they look pretty stacked on wrists with different colours, but I use them for quick little reminders. While I'm waiting in the car to pick up my daughters from school or while I'm teaching and people are laying in Savanasa. A moments to align with my intentions for myself and my day. Sometimes I use no mantra and just use it to count a few deep breaths.

The mystery of the mala solved. 

Love

Jen The Bitchin' Housewife

Clear Space, Clear Mind

There is a clear trend right now after the holidays of decluttering spaces and getting rid of excess "stuff". We have filled our homes with more toys and gadgets and whatever else, we feel stuffed to the brim and even slightly suffocated by everything. 

I've been in the process since right after Christmas of decluttering closets and rooms and toy boxes. And it feels so good. I've been looking into this a bit lately and there is a lot of weight in being surrounded by "stuff".

In a time of year when we are ready for new challenges and changes, sometimes we can feel stuck. We are stuck in our stuff! Physically seeing doors bursting and drawers overflowing, keeps us in the space mentally even.

When we start to clear the space around us we are allowing the things we want to come in. We can choose what is important and what we want to allow back into our lives, homes and head space. Clean work spaces cultivate calm and creativity!

A few years back I discovered Fly Lady, a great system of daily working on specific small things for a short period of time, eventually leading up to a clean space. I recommend checking it out if you feel like you have a mountain to sift through!

And as you are decluttering and shedding the excess that we do not need, add a little bit of mindfulness to it. Set out to clean a closet or room with the intention of creating space for the things you DO want in your life. Space to create, work, play or whatever.

It feels really good to see the space clear AND to take items to be donated. I am took 4 bags yesterday! Plus a drop off at out cities Reuse centre! Here in Edmonton you can check out the City of Edmonton Waste Wise App for where to send items if you aren't sure. 

"Clear clutter, make space for you" Magdelena Vandenberg

"Clear clutter, make space for you" Magdelena Vandenberg

Love, 

Jen The Bitchin' Housewife

5 Minute Mommy Mantras

On my Instagram page I posted a couple weeks ago about after I teach my Monday morning class I hang out after and work through some Mantras.

I had a few responses asking about Mantras, soooooo I've created a FREE 4 week Mantras program I'm launching this upcoming Monday for my email subscribers!

Subscribe to make sure you get in on the mantras!

Self Love & Self Improvement

The world is full of mixed messages and we are in a time in the world where FINALLY marketing to us women isn't 100% about telling us that we are not good enough unless we are thin/pretty blah blah blah. We still have lots of work to do of course, but I feel like it leaves us in  a great divide. 

Recently I've seen some images shared by fitness mamas I admire Mama Lion Strong and Wendy Powell. I agree with both of these images.

 

Reads "If you ever wander into that mindset of thinking that to take care of your body + your emotional + physical well-being is somehow shallow or vain or not important, please think again. You have every right to feel good about yourself." 

Reads "Those extra 5-10 pounds, that place where your body naturally wants to be -that's your life. That's your late night pizza with your man, that Sunday morning bottomless brunch, your favourite cupcake in the whole entire world because you wanted to treat yourself. Those extra 5-10 pounds are your favourite memories, your unforgettable trips, your celebrations of life. Those extra 5-10 pounds are your spontaneity, your freedom, your love. 

I whole heartedly agree with both of these statements and adore these women sharing them. That said, it seems confusing right? A message of "if you want to change, that's okay." and a message of "love those things you may wish to change."

The struggle is real my friends. Finding the balance between these two is very hard. And I will let you in on a little secret. I don't know the answer or what to tell you. I feel this struggle all the time. I don't have a tip or a trick to help you with this one. I just want to let you know you are not alone. 

I've been working with my own nutrition coach because I feel like yeah, there is nothing wrong with wanting to make some changes. Then much to his annoyance I'm sure, I see the other side of the coin and think to myself that I should just eat the thing or enjoy the wine and my body is perfectly imperfect the way it is, this moment will not last. 

So what do we do?

The only advice I offer is sitting with ourselves to see where things really come from. This is a practice of something we do daily, hourly, weekly whatever. I assure you it is not a one time sit down thing. Sitting with ourselves (also known as meditation) and discovering what we actually feel behind these thoughts. 

I wish you look in your journey and know you are not alone. 

Love, 

Jen the Bitchin' Housewife

Self Care Sunday - Something For The Soul

Hey guys, I'm back again with Self Care Sunday. I was gone last weekend because of training and being caught up in  a million things at once, so I took my own advice and instead of pressuring myself to write I took some time to relax. 

This weekend I had a post planned for you but I attended the Wellness on Whyte's Fine Tune at Noon event and I was inspired to write something else. My dear friend Chris and I went together and both came out all blissed out on the other side. At first we did the 6 healing sounds (watch their blog for info on these), then was given acupuncture, aromatherapy and tuning forks. While the entire room had to be serviced you were left to hang out in your own mind for a while. A relaxing meditative experience for sure.

So, brings me to today's Self Care post. Doing something for the soul. I like to think that all my self care posts are nurturing for the soul, but realize maybe while doing these things we can still be caught up in our own heads and thoughts. All this chatter about why we can or can not do something, or how we should be doing something else and so on. 

This week seek out something that sets fire to your soul. Find one thing to do that makes you feel good inside. Without restrictions or limitations. Don't worry if people will stare or what others might think of you. Something you are interested in, always wanted to do and/or you have forgotten you love. This is about you going deep inside and finding something that makes your heart sing.

Gene Kelly living it up in the rain. 

Gene Kelly living it up in the rain. 

A few ideas: 

  • Coloring or painting. At home or find a paint night.
  • Singing your favorite song at the top of your lungs. In the car, shower or random farmers field.
  • Attending a meditation class/workshop.
  • Dancing in the rain. You're Gene Kelly in the movie Dancing In The Rain.
  • Rolling down a hill.
  • Skinny dipping in the lake.
  • Writing a story.
  • Taking a city class. Learn to cook Indian food or knit or karate chop!
  • Plan a girls night and laugh until your cheeks hurt. 
A fond memory with my oldest, playing and laughing until our cheeks hurt. 

A fond memory with my oldest, playing and laughing until our cheeks hurt. 

What is something you love to do? Whats something that sets fire to your soul?

 

Love,

Jen

Self Care Sunday - Taking Yourself On A Date

Welcome back to Self Care Sunday. This week we are talking about taking ourselves on a date. I am all about a girls night out every once and a while for sure, but sometime I find it even more stressful trying to plan them. Every one is busy and finding a date that works can sometimes feel impossible. 

This week my husband was in a course and I had to teach yoga at a place without childcare. My daughters went off to our trusted occasional dayhome so I could teach. Rather then them being there only the hour or so I would be gone I dropped them off an hour and a half before. With no plan to grocery shop or run errands before hand I took myself on a sort of mini date. I went and got an iced coffee, read a bit and even had a mini nap in car from listening to a mediation! (luckily I set an alarm in case that happened!)

So this week, plan to spend some time alone. Same as every week, schedule the time (and keep it), turn off your phone and enjoy this time to yourself. The world will not end, the emails will not vanish and the problems will all still exist when you are done. This time is for you to enjoy. 

A few ideas for self dates:

  • Coffee and a book at a local coffee shop.
  • Take yourself to a movie.
  • Take yourself for dinner. Check out that local restaurant you've been wanting to try. 
  • A night at a hotel. A bubble bath, room service and making a mess without having to clean it up. 
  • A day of shopping. Real shopping for yourself, not your kids or husband or friends birthday party. If funds are low you can always go to a thrift store. I actually recommend it instead. Save the planet a bit and you never know what you are really going to find. I've found Lululemons for $6!
  • Book a photo shoot. You could do Boudoir or some headshots for your Linked In profile. 
  • Look up a paint class. Those guided paint classes with wine and snacks are awesome with friends, but totally doable by yourself! I like the Paint Nites
  • A long drive. Nowhere to go or "stop by" on the way. Here in Alberta we actually have some interesting back roads and sites to see. 
  • Book a city community class. Learn pottery or how to knit!

I encourage you to try and find something maybe you wouldn't normally do on your own. Such as a movie or dinner. Remember you are taking yourself on a date. Spending the time falling in love with yourself a little. 

Love, 

Jen

Self Care Sunday - Walking

Welcome back to Self Care Sunday. Last week we talked about A Simple Bath. Did you make time to care for yourself this week? It's okay if you didn't. Guess what? You get another shot this week! 

This week I want to chat about walking. Again a simple self care most of us can do. Almost every day I wake before my family. I'm an early riser. A few days a week I meet my friends and we do workouts at 6am, but one day this week I woke up and went for a walk in my neighborhood. I felt the rising sunshine on my face, the still crisp cool morning air on my skin and since I was walking without a "purpose" or "place to go", I was able to slow down and take in the smell of the trees, lawns being watered and notice details of my neighbors houses I've never noticed before. 

I finally walked far enough to this space that open up and overlooks the river valley. I've been here before, but never really paid attention to the view or noticed the trail that leads down the side! I've always been so busy as I pass by. I took a moment to sit on the ground and have a few big beautiful breaths and stretches. I got home feeling refreshed and rejuvenated as much as a sweat dripping, muscle burning workout. 

Walking is a simple task, it feels good and gives you the time to reflect. Daydream a little, sort out problems in your head, listen to your favorite music, plan your week ahead, reconfirm mantras and positive affirmations. You can also check out this wonderful post 17 Health Benefits of Walking.

A few tips for getting in your walk:

  • Schedule a day (or more) and the time that you will take this walk. Put it in your calendar and note it's as important and someone asking you to do something else. Note if you are a morning or evening person and possible go with the sunrise or sunset.
  • Wear comfortable clothes and shoes. This isn't a fashion show.
  • Download some calming music or an inspiring podcast if your neighborhood or time of day is a noisy one.
  • Talk a water if you will be gone a while or it's hot out.
  • Get help with children. Ask your partner for this time alone, ask another friend to watch your kids and then when you are done you watch hers and she can go for a walk. If you have to bring the kids, there is no shame in giving them toys or distractions in the stroller to occupy them a little. Remember this is about you, not them.  
  • Put your phone on airplane or don't bring it. No Facebook or tweets or emails or phone calls. This is your time to be with yourself. 

 

Share with me where your walking journey takes you.

Love,

Jen