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Hiking in the woods: turtles, snakes, birds, and rodents

Thursday, June 09, 2011

It's very hot today, but it's much cooler in the woods; and that's one of my favorite places to get my mileage in.
As soon as I made the trailhead, I saw the most beautiful snake. At first glance, it was black and white striped, but as it moved slowly across my path (must have been the heat) I saw it was kind of like a blocky giraffe pattern of black patches with broad white borders in between. I resisted the urge to capture it and make it my pet, and stood still to let him pass. Poor little guy was rattling his teeny tail nervously, but I was sure he was not poisonous.
Having never seen this type of snake in the wild, and because I'm a big snake fan, I googled him as soon as I got home, and learned he was an eastern king snake. I'm dorky that way.

Patio Tomatoes

June has ushered in the dog days. We are right at triple digits today, and the humidity is sky-high. I can't figure out if my tomato plant is happy or sad. The leaves are droopy and yellowy, but the tomatoes reddening at record speed. My pots dry out so quickly, I sometimes have to water twice a day.


Taking Care of Pup

After another scary bout with doggie feeling to ill to eat, she's finally got her appetite back and is gaining weight. I'm dutifully mixing her meals as fast as I can, and keeping the A/C cranked. The bad thing is, now that she's blind, she has trouble finding her water. We've added several bowls to familiar places.


Can't Wait for This Class to be Over

We started out with nine students, which is typical for horticulture. By the third class, six student had dropped. I check my email every day, thinking the class will be cancelled, because I know the usual minimum to run a class is eight students. I don't know how it can run with just three. The teacher is so crass, I seriously considered dropping the class myself, but I've been waiting two years to take it. It is a required class for my specialization.
The teacher apparently is not computer literate, so communicating via blackboard or email won't be happening. On the first day, she alienated everyone. We were given drafting work to do, despite the fact that NONE of us had the necessary materials or a book (we could have had these things if she had communicated with us electronically prior to class). Then, she loudly criticized us for not being able to draw decent circles or a straight lines freehand (no ruler, no compass). She also used too much technical jargon for a beginning class. On top of that, she swears and makes off-color comments and innuendo. I came to class with my usual writing implement, a fine point marker, and when she came to my desk to 'correct' my drafting technique, she removed the cap from my marker WITH HER TEETH. You heard me. She put my pen in her mouth. And no, I did not have anything else to write with. I almost walked out the door RIGHT THEN.
I really hope I haven't made a big mistake by staying!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PHEBESS 6/9/2011 6:18PM


I CANNOT imagine ever EVER opening someone else's pen or marker with my teeth!!!!! UGH!!!! I'd probably carry around some hand sanitizer to class, so I could clean off my marker. Bleah!!!!

However, the hike in the woods sounds wonderful!

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MBSHAZZER 6/9/2011 5:42PM

    Wow, that sounds like quite a class! Who knows, maybe it will be one of those Stockholm syndrome things by the end!

Good news on your dog; hope she stays cool and comfortable!

And I'll trade you a few mangos for some tomatoes!

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Two 10Ks in two days

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Yep, I did it. A 10K yesterday, and another 10K this morning.
That's because the auto repair shop is exactly ten kilometers from my house. So, yesterday, I walked home after dropping the car off, and today I walked back to get it. I always get the vehicle inspection done early in June, before the annual trip to Florida; which will be short this year because of our sick pup. No long, drawn-out beach strolling vacation, no landscape work on my brother's house.
I'm going to school early today so I can camp out in the library and study without any interruptions. It's one of those rare occassions when my assignment is done early, in it's entirety, so I'm not cramming at my desk and swearing at my printer. So, I intend to sprawl myself out in a quiet, air conditioned corner, and relax until class begins. I've already done my 2 hrs of cardio, and I'm slipping away for a few precious minutes to study for my goals. Just for right now, I'm all caught up.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JLPNURSE 6/9/2011 3:33PM

    Wow, impressive

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SECRETFUN 6/8/2011 9:16PM

  Awesome indeed! I want to know how that feels, although it might frighten me.

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PHEBESS 6/8/2011 7:57PM

    Wonderful! You must be feeling great!!!

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MBSHAZZER 6/8/2011 6:42PM

    Awesome! I love it when I can combine exercise with errands. Nice job on getting ahead of your schoolwork, too!

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It's June, and I've decided to make some

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Why not? Any excuse is good if you want to make positive changes.

My committment to get back into the 1-hr a day minimum cardio fell apart, along with my health, in January. I have been pretty slack the first half of 2011.
June is a good time to start fresh.


Rafael Nadal wins French Open

Is it wrong for me to say I wanted Federer to win because he is easier on the eyes?
Seriously, watching Nadal was tough. He fidgets and 'adjusts' himself (yes, his private parts) CONSTANTLY. He spits all over the court. Evey time the camera was on him, I was disgusted. He was groping and gougeing at his shorts as if he couldn't dislodge his wedgie, dripping sweat, and spitting everywhere. Federer, on the other hand, always seems to look amazingly cool and dry, as if he has some magic way to avoid sweating in public. He never spits or touches himself. So, although both men are outstanding athletes, I sided with Federer because he looked so gentlemanly.


A favorite grocery item disappears from local shelves

I never knew how much I needed this item until I could no longer find it at ANY local grocery store. Apparently I can't live without it, because I was willing to drive over 75 miles to get the last three jars at Wegmans. And order a case of it from Amazon.
That's addiction.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PHLOX13 6/22/2011 10:36AM

    I'm half Indian and cannot live without my Indian food. It looks like you can order the chile relish directly from Pataks:

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TARABEAR 6/6/2011 6:58PM

    Great idea setting mid-year goals! You can do it! GO NB!!!

Um, yeah. I don't need to watch a man adjust himself and spit. Thankyouverymuch.

I hate when favorite products get disconntinued. So inconsiderate of them.

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MBSHAZZER 6/6/2011 12:08PM

    My goodness, that looks like a fine product! I will have to see if my personal shopper (the BF) can find it!

I'm with you on the Federer thing... I don't watch tennis, so I don't know about all of the adjustments, but Feds is definitely hotter!

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_UMAMI_ 6/5/2011 10:07PM


1) I was just thinking this! I've had a really rough six months (DH's meds weren't working), and I'm totally ready for a reboot for 2011. If the damn heat doesn't do me in. emoticon
My goal is also one hour a day of exercise minimum (ST/cardio/yoga mix). Maybe one day off.

2) My parents, especially my dad, are HUGE tennis fans, and my dad still plays, into his 80's. He's actually a really good player, and has the legs and trophies to prove it. Tennis is *so* about the eye-candy. I can't stand the overly-loud grunters, myself. They make me flinch!

3) It's funny what we become addicted to. I got a craving for salsa verde, and my husband has "gifted" me with about 10 pounds of tomatillos in the past two weeks, of which I've only used about 1/3. I think I'm getting over that craving....heh. But seeing that Indian label has me craving raita. Kind of on a coriander/cilantro kick.

Nice post!

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Exercise really DOES make you feel better

Saturday, June 04, 2011

But you have got to get up and make yourself do it.
It is amazing how ONE vigorous workout makes you feel better for so many hours afterward. It lasts all day, carrying me all the way to the next workout.

The thing is, when you miss the workout, you don't feel noticeably bad. You just don't feel much change, one way or the other, which is what makes slacking off so dangerous. But getting up and getting the workout, you DO feel a noticeable change, and you feel it right away.

Maybe if it was the other way around, more people would work out... like if you felt bad immediately upon missing the daily workout, I mean. Like say, 24 hours later, you would start to feel noticeably worse if you haven't had your workout and a whole day has gone by. Maybe then, if there was prompt, short-term discomfort involved, people would get up and do it.
Sigh... people don't react much to long-term discomfort. They adjust to the pain, and look for prompt, short-term rewards like PIE.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

1HAPPYWOMAN 6/18/2011 2:01AM

    I am copying your words and putting them on my desktop for inspiration! This totally resonates with me, and I think it will be the kick in the pants I need to get me out the door and onto my bike. Thank you!!!!!

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PHEBESS 6/5/2011 7:02PM

    Yup, it definitely is good therapy! But yes, so easy to backslide.

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MBSHAZZER 6/5/2011 9:18AM

    I call exercise my natural prozac! And oddly, I DO feel awful when I don't workout. the BF will push me out the door because my mood is so foul before I exercise!

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"Beautiful Queen!"

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

That's what he says every time he passes me, riding his bicycle around the neighborhood. It always gives me a lift.
He says it when I know I'm looking good, but he even says it when I am at my worst. And in return, he gets a big smile, and I say 'thank you.'
I have no idea who this man is; just some random neighbor. I only see him a few times a year. But in this simple way, he lets me know, every time he sees me, that he is seeing female loveliness, and he appreciates what he sees. And I feel like a beautiful queen every time. And then, he just passes on by, never saying another word.
He doesn't need to.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JLPNURSE 6/9/2011 3:54PM


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ITSABSURD 6/4/2011 1:37PM

    Awww; it's always great to get compliments.

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_UMAMI_ 6/3/2011 12:56AM

    I love this!! One of my oldest girlfriends (since we were 10 y.o.) and I used to go eat at some weirdo potato place when we were in college, and the owner/counter guy always exclaimed,"BEAUTIFUL LADEEEEEEEZ!" at us, before we ordered our buttload of carbs w/ cheese. We'd blush and giggle, and make fun of his accent.

But yeah, made me feel kinda special. I'm glad you have someone in your 'hood tooting a horn for you. We all need that.

Be the Queen! Ditch that lame wave though---wave with gusto!

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PHEBESS 6/2/2011 1:29PM

    What a nice man!!!!!

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MBSHAZZER 6/2/2011 1:18PM

    That's AWESOME! :D

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