Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Trying a Couple of New Things


For the first 3 weeks of May, My Rare One and I are enrolled in the Edmonton Lifelong Learners Association's (ELLA's) daytime classes for retired people at the University of Alberta. I'm trying a couple of new things and actually enjoying myself quite a bit!

First of all -- Qigong and Tai Chi (Wu Style):


I love the poetic names of some of the moves -- "White crane spreads its wings" -- "Step back repulse monkey" -- "Part the wild horse mane" -- "Fair lady work at shuttle" -- "Step back ride the tiger." Learning and remembering the actual moves, though, is an entirely different matter! Half the time I'm just waving my hands around and making stuff up as I go along, LOL!

Secondly, I've joined the ELLA Community Chorus:


I love to sing, although I haven't actually been in a choir since I was a child. I did spend many years singing informally with other women in my Women's Drumming and Goddess Chanting Circle, which I miss now that it's over. So I'm very excited to be singing in a group setting again. Plus the teacher is taking us through some important voice lessons and warm-ups that are helpful to me.

I think I'll try to keep on with these activities once ELLA is over. There's lots of opportunities and places to do both in Edmonton.

49 comments:

anne marie in philly said...

cool! when you stop learning, you die. so many things to explore and to have fun.

jaz@octoberfarm said...

step back repulse monkey....i just said that to trump this morning.

Bob Slatten said...

I'm with AM.My Dad was a teacher and he taught us to never stop learning. Good for you.

That said,this:

"Step back repulse monkey"

Is my new catchphrase!

Parnassus said...

Hello Debra, It would be so hard to decide among the options for continuing education. I would like to take a geology class, learn basic Italian, and to play in a band again--perhaps on cornet, if the band had low enough standards!
--Jim

Marie Smith said...

Sounds wonderful, Debra. Retirement is spectacular! Continued enjoyment!

mxtodis123 said...

For a couple years after retirement I was enrolled in the Lifelong Learning program at Brooklyn College. Took some very interesting classes, but I eventually stopped attending when the classes I enjoyed started to die out. Took a writing class for two semesters but all the teacher did was talk about herself and read her own work. I also took Tai Chi there, but the class was in a gym that had no AC and it was just so miserable. Now I am blessed to get exercise and meditation classes for free through my old union. You will love Qigong.

Jono said...

It was fun to discover that some parts of my brain still work. I hope the body doesn't let me down too much. My acupuncturist teaches Qigong on Wednesdays. Should I go?
You are always so inspirational!

mistress maddie said...

Now is a time to really embrace life and enjoy it's offerings. So glad your enjoy yourselves.....my little songbird.

Kay G. said...

Singing! I am so happy for you! And that phrase, step back repulse monkey, is very catchy!

Debra She Who Seeks said...

@ Jono -- Yes, go!!!

Jeanne said...

Good for you! A person should never stop learning new things. You could start a group who meets in the park to practice song & Tai Chi.

Magaly Guerrero said...

I love this all of it. And not just because the name of your exercises are so much cooler than the profanities that are the names of any exercises I do, since I still do Marine Corps exercises.

I hope we can hear you sing one day.

Adam said...

I hope you enjoy it

laurie said...

now this is exciting!!!

Joanne Noragon said...

I am incapable at music and paid little attention until my grandchildren turned up enamored of band, instruments and music. I've spent the last six years in awe of the education they have received at school in theory and in practice. So, I'm rooting for you. Learn all you can.

Susan said...

What fun! I think you're embracing the full joy of retirement - I hope to follow in your footsteps, but will have to move out of Hooterville to reach any type of retirement Nirvana. (OMG, Jaz!! - I may just get that phrase put on a t-shirt.)

Fundy Blue said...

Way to go, Debra! I think qigong is really good for your body. I did qigong at my elementary school when it was offered one year. It was great fun, and I loved the names. If we move to Sun City Grand in Arizona, I'll have a chance to take it up again. And congrats on joining the chorus and indulging in a young passion. I'm a big believer in lifelong learning!

^.^ said...

Good for you, friend D .. and good info as well ... I myself like running and rowing ... Happy Spring, eh? Love, cat..

Kirk said...

Good for you!

DEZMOND said...

Those moves almost sound like sexual positions LOL

Leeanna Henderson said...

I'm so glad you are keeping busy. I live in a small town where 70% of the inhabitants are elderly. There is so much to do around here. I guess I'm in the right place at the right time of my life again.

MrsDuncanMahogany said...

This is just SO COOL!!!! I have always wanted to do Tai Chi and as for singing...let's just say I do it but probably shouldn't! ;)

brewella deville said...

Poetic names for sure. Are you certain the name Tai Chi isn't a Chinese translation of Kama Sutra?

Barbara said...

That's terrific. I did not have enough outside interests while I was retired and I believe it is important to keep stimulated and social in a retired lifestyle.

Rawknrobyn.blogspot.com said...

How fun! Glad for you. I've done a little bit of tai chi - it's very zen. I like(d) it.

Guillaume said...

Your post reminded me that I want to go back learning Krav Maga. Okay, not quite the same thing.

Rosemary said...

Good for you - it is sensible to keep the little grey cells alert, active and alive.

Magic Love Crow said...

My mom and I did Tai Chi a few years ago. I would love to do it again! It was so much fun! Sing??? Debra, would love to hear you sing!! I think this is all brilliant! Good for you and your Rare One!

Magic Love Crow said...

Question for you Deb, when did you start calling your Rare One, that name? I think it's so beautiful!

BW Bandy said...

I confine my singing to the shower.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

@ Magic Love Crow -- I've been calling her "My Rare One" right from the beginning of our relationship. The phrase comes from an old Scottish folk tune called The Tiree Love Song whose chorus ends with the line: "Will you come away with me, love / to be my own, my rare one?"

Weekend-Windup said...

Sounds great that you are doing a wonderful job. All the best!

Anonymous said...

Exercise that keeps you fit and supple without feeling like you’ve run a marathon. It also focuses the mind, as does singing.
Have fun!
JP

bj said...

It's always a blessing when I try new things and find I enjoy them...
Have fun with it all and know that you ARE blessed if you can sing. I can't carry a note in a paper bag !

bill lisleman said...

music training and practice improves you brain. Check out Prof. Nina Kraus at http://www.brainvolts.northwestern.edu/

Laura said...

That sounds awesome!
blessings
~*~

Missy George said...

Good for you..Have fun!!! I have a "thing" about having to be someplace at a certain time on a certain day every week...I guess I try to be "unstructured".I guess that comes from a lifetime of work, going to the "Y", meetings, etc.No more...Enjoy your new adventures...Helps to have someone to enjoy them with as well!!

Janie Junebug said...

Good for you. I love watching people do Tai Chi. The moves are so graceful.

Love,
Janie

Onevikinggirl said...

Very inspirational! Those things are on my would want to do too. Please tell how it progresses.
And never stop being curious!

mshatch said...

I can't wait to retire! Glad you're enjoying yourself :)

Oh, and I suck at singing.

lady M said...

What an excellent thing to do - I hope these activities bring you a lot of joy.

Rain said...

Sounds like fun Debra! I love Tai Chi, haven't done it in years though. I laughed at how you said you were waving your hands around, I did the same when I was first learning it lol!

Laura said...

You have inspired me!
We are new to El Paso and we need to investigate new things:)

Fundy Blue said...

Thinking of you today and game seven for the Jets! Go Jets!

Elsie Amata said...

So awesome! You do tai chi the way I do yoga. If you asked me the name of a position I'm attempting to do, I'd have to make it up because I'm far too focused on where my hands and legs are supposed to be and not what the position is called. Then, after I've failed the actual move, I've modified it to make one that works for me. haha Who cares? It keeps me mobile, right? So glad you and your Rare One are kickin' it together!

Elsie

Carol Blackburn said...

Sounds like loads of fun. I love Tai Chi and have been doing it for years, off and on. As for singing, can't carry a tune except in a duffel bag these days as vocal chords are shot. I do sing in my mind though and I am never off tune there. Have a great weekend.

Magic Love Crow said...

Deb, that is so beautiful!!! Thanks for telling me the story!!!

NanaDiana said...

Good for you for pursuing those things. I have always wanted to try Tai Chi and I may do that yet this year. Isn't it amazing when we are able to just keep learning new stuff....and....like you....I would be the one "parting the crane's tailfeathers" by making up my own moves-and giving it its own name. lol xo Diana

Jenn said...

That is wonderful! Lifelong learning is great and should be something everyone does if they can!