Tuesday, September 02, 2008
We had a great time! The weather was stupdendous, which was pretty surprising considering Alaska is having one of the coldest, wettest summers on record -- totally the opposite of us, with one of the hottest, driest summers on records (and temps still in the high 90s).
I want to thank everyone for their well wishes -- much appreciated.
Above we're at the border between the Yukon in Canada and Alaska -- actually, that was one of the coldest places we went, outside of Glacier Bay. They must pipe in cold air for that sign.
Our house is okay, the dogs are okay, and the cats are okay, thankfully. My car is at the dealers (my husband was actually able to get it started, although it took some work), and I've been trying to contact them without much luck so far.
I think my eating was mostly okay. I only ate dessert once a day, and usually only half a dessert at that -- although we did go to the chocoholics' buffet, surprisingly at my husband's insistence -- I was ready to go to sleep. It wasn't actually all that tempting, and all I had was a couple of bites of cake and some chocolate covered strawberries & bananas. I wouldn't be surprised to find I gained a little even so, but we'll see.
I never once took an elevator. That's part of my fitness plan on cruises. Considering my inlaws were on deck 5, and we were on deck 9, there was lots of stair climbing every day. We did lots of walking, too. I never did the rock climbing wall (altho my niece & nephew did), or any of the exercise classes -- because the only one that was free was at 8 am. That was a bit disappointing; on past cruises, they've had more free exercise classes at various times throughout the day -- and without such a nice facility, too!
About the only disappointment was that we didn't see much wildlife. A lot of people on the cruise saw whales several times -- but we always just seemed to miss them. We did see a bear going into the woods at Mendenhall Glacier, and we ran across a wildlife rehabilitation center in a small craft fair sort of tucked away in Ketchikan -- and saw a young bald eagle there.
We've been whale watching before, though, and we've seen whales; we've even been eagle watching, so we've see eagles before, too. But no moose, no otters, no seals, no eagles out in the wild. It was the first bear we've ever seen out in the wild, but we just barely saw him. On the other hand, I'm not really sure I want to see bears in the wild!
Still trying to catch up on mail, email, blogs, sleep, etc. As much as I enjoy traveling -- and I don't think I ever really want to go home -- it's still nice to be home.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
My hhusband always makes fun of me because I always travel with food. It makes my life easier, though. For instance, this morning I had a Vitamuffin I'd brought with me and some almonds for breakfast. There weren't a lot of healthy choices other than cereal here, and I don't really find cereal that filling. And this way whoever I'm staying with doesn't have to worry about me, either.
Other things I travel with: mini Luna & Clif bars, carrots (in this case, because I know I'll have access to a refrigerator), and Attune bars.
Attune bars are pretty cool. They're a chocolate bar, and they're only 100 calories, taste like a Nestle bar, plus they have more probiotics in them than yogurt. I find they're great when you travel -- keeps you nice & regular and tastes much better than prunes (and makes a good dessert).
The hardest part of this vacation, really, is that my FIL is failing rapidly. Not physically, but mentally, and we're not all completely sure he's going to tolerate this trip.
Friday, August 22, 2008
My luck finally seems to have turned. My husband arrived on time, he took the dogs up, I finished up packing and only went to bed about half an hour late. Our flight was uneventful -- and I have dried up enough so that it wasn't painful.
I'm not100% sure why sickness and travel goes hand in hand. I know that the stress of getting ready comes into play, although I'm not sick more than I am.
I'm reminded of "Eat, Pray, Love". I read it before it became so popular, before the author was on Oprah -- and thought it was just okay. I recently reread it --there are still parts I don't like -- she just comes across as whiny in the beginning to me, but I got a lot more out of it this time. I think it imparts many of the lessons of "A New Earth" in a much more approachable manner.
Anyway, there is a part where Richard from Texas says he prays & prays for an open heart, over and over. And then one day finds himself having open heart surgery! The moral, of course, is to create more detailed goals (or be careful what you wish for, I guess).
Just as I prayed to be healthy . . . and I am. Almost. I forgot to ask to make sure my possessions (my car & home, among other things) would be safe while I was gone -- or home, for that matter.
Now that all the prep work is done, I can relax and enjoy the vacation. Today is lovely. I think tomorrow is supposed to be nice as well. We have always come to Seattle in the summer, and the weather has always been lovely.
Hope everyone out there is doing well, and once again, a sincere thanks for all the good vibes & well wishes!
Thursday, August 21, 2008
I am fast approaching mine. This entire week has been plagued by bad luck for me. I won't bore you with most of the details. It culminated with my flat tire, and when I went to go for my haircut & get the tire fixed yesterday, my car just plain wouldn't start. Luckily, I had my husband's car, so I was able to get my hair cut.
There have been a few rays of sunshine here and there. I've been meaning to buy a monocular for a long time. I really liked the idea of it better than binoculars. Since I'd left early for my haircut, meaning to stop and get the tire fixed, I had some time to browse a nearby discount store. Lo and behold, two monoculars from The Sharper Image -- travel size!
And my husband did actually make it home; another good thing.
And just when you think you're drowning in a pit of bad luck, there's always someone worse off than you. The woman I board the dogs with has pneumonia (another worry, although she has help) -- although she thought I sounded a lot worse than her when we talked yesterday.
The cherry on top was to find out my neighbors had a break-in. Nothing taken and no one hurt, thankfully, but apparently the cops think there are kids in the neighborhood knocking on doors to see if you're home. So that is another worry while we're gone. They broke a back window to get in -- then set off the motion detectors & left. It must have happened in the two hours I was gone, or I would have thought I'd have heard something.
Our neighbors are so sweet. She was really worried about my car trouble! It is very troubling, though, because if someone broke one of our windows, our cats would be gone, and I would be devastated. Normally our pet sitter leaves us a message each day on our answering machine, only we won't have cell phone access for much of our trip.
For the first time in probably years, the thought did cross my mind yesterday that a nice piece of chocolate cake -- a really sweet, fattening piece, not just any old piece -- might solve my problems. The thought crossed my mind in a grocery store with a fantastic bakery, but I didn't succumb, and I ate healthily when I did get home. I know no amount of food, fattening or otherwise, will solve my problems.
So my car won't start, my flat still needs to be fixed, and somehow the dogs have to get to the boarder's. I've still got to finish packing, wash the sheets & change the bed, clean the kitchen, clean a litterbox, finish the instructions for the pet sitter. Ok, yes, I'm whining & I hate to whine.
Oh, and I don't know what I weighed before our vacation since I can't get to my WW meeting today (I could've yesterday had I known I wouldn't be able to today).
In 10 years will these things matter? No, they won't. What will matter is having a good time while I'm gone, and that's what I'm determined to do.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
But stay grounded. That's always the secret, isn't it? But just where is the secret formula that lets you know how high to reach, and how much to keep your feet on the ground?
I'm wrapping up my Olympics theme here. Alexander Artemev, who performed such a stunning pommel horse routine for the team to lead them to a bronze medal, decided he needed to add something extra for the individual finals.
As we've heard over and over during the Olympics, performing harder routines gets higher scores -- but at greater risk.
It's the same for us. If we eat too little trying for a great weight loss, our bodies slam on the brakes and we don't lose at all. Same thing with exercise.
And what about goals? They say that you should put your goals out there, to take accountability for them, and make them big, to push yourself to reach them. I've tried that with what I want my weight to be, but that doesn't seem to work for me. I'll put down a number that seems reasonable, only to fall short.
Although if I didn't reach for that bigger number, who's to say that I would lose less than I actually did? Alexander didn't get his medal. But he gave his all. It just wasn't in his stars for that day.
It's okay to reach for the stars, just stay flexible so that if you don't make it, you can bend back down and stay grounded.
This was in my inbox yesterday. I'd decided on the subject of this blog before I received this -- the synchronicity of the universe can be pretty amazing if you keep yourself open to it:
"Behold the turtle. He makes progress only when he sticks his neck out."
-- James Bryant Conant
And this one came today:
"To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe."
-- Anatole France
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