Thursday, July 26, 2012
Okay, I know it's off-topic and not terribly exciting, but it still is useful. File under Learning Something New Every Day.
Did you know that dust build-up in the sockets of light bulbs makes them overheat and blow out faster? I sure didn't. I probably vacuum out the light bulb sockets in the chandeliers and ceiling lights....once a year? Maybe? I did realize that dust and the occasional moth probably wasn't a good thing, but frankly, vacuuming light bulb sockets isn't high on my to-do list.
And, apparently, the older the wiring, the more important this is. I suppose that overheating sockets could lead to a fire, too, although I don't know this for sure.
HIPPIECHICK says that there's mercury in the new fluorescent bulbs, so I can't recommend one way or the other on them, but given the new info on blue light emissions (my previous blog on insomnia), I"m sticking to regular incandescent tungsten light bulbs next to me and in the bedroom. I'll still use the fluorescent ones that last for five years (so they say...) in the fixtures that require ladders to change bulbs.
Who knows - maybe I"ll even vacuum the fixtures more often.
Friday, July 20, 2012
Any of you who read my blogs or irritated "status" updates know I don't sleep well. Ive always been one of those, "I'll sleep when I"m dead" people, but in the last year or two it's become ridiculous. Now maybe I know why.
Seems computers and smart phones (and tvs, but they aren't right next to our heads) emit a wavelength of light that is normally only found in daylight, and scientists suggest that this may be screwing with the circadian rhythms of some susceptible humans. They think that perhaps until technology can sort this out (and they're working on it as we speak) the best thing to do is not to play around with computers and phones right before - or in - bed.
I don't know about you, but if I can't sleep, the first thing I do after I finish reading my bedside book is haul out the computer and see what other night owls are up to. Or else I text my children, and if they're sleeping, I'll play some teensy game on the phone.
I may have to change that and just keep a bigger pile of books and magazines by the bed. Only I may have to change light bulbs, too - seems many of the fluorescent bulbs also emit this blue light.
Here's the link to the article in the Chicago Tribune, by staff writer Monica Eng:
Thursday, July 19, 2012
I chose to take the dog on a nice long ramble this morning. The hay was cut and taken out last week, so the farm is like a 100 acre lawn, albeit a brown and stubby one (we could use some rain here, please.) We went into all the corners and she had a lovely sniff, I just looked around happily, then we started for home and our respective water bowls and glasses. The I noticed...
...the Brush Hog was gone.
A Brush (or Bush, depending upon brand, I think) Hog isn't a small thing. It's like a 4'x4' single blade lawnmower that hooks to a tractor, made of metal and probably weighs...I'm guessing here...400 pounds, with sharp edges. In other words, you don't just drop it in the truck of your car and leave. I rooted around in the underbrush and tall weeds, but sure enough, no Brush Hog.
I usually don't think of this as being the sort of place where things get stolen - most folks don't even lock their doors (being a city kid, I have to - it'd drive me nuts otherwise.) But it was looking like someone had, in fact, stolen the Brush Hog.
So I got in the car, mentally loaded for bear, and went off in search. I'm pretty liberal about lending tools and machinery, but the borrowers always at least have the courtesy to mention it to me. I checked the farms of the guys who cut the hay - no dice. (And no Brush Hog.) I checked the grounds of one of our local known thieves - no Brush Hog. Asked a neighbor. No Brush Hog.
Finally it occurred to me to call the other neighbor - a good friend and generally a really good guy. I didn't see why he'd take my Brush Hog, but I was running out of options. Sure enough, he had it. Not only that, he apparently told me he had planned to take it. He'd borrowed it and not only used it, but oiled it and straightened it and whatever else one does with that sort of thing. Apparently I *cough* forgot.
So, having spent the better part of the day running all over hell and gone looking for something that I should have known was across the street, I've decided to start my new life tomorrow instead of today. I shall take a lovely, soaky bath, have a cocktail, a BLT (*with* mayonnaise, although not too much) and go to bed early. Apparently I need a little extra rest.
And when I start my day tomorrow, #1 on my list will be something about not jumping to conclusions.
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
I don't know about you all, but I tend to lose weight in fits and starts. I lose five or six pounds, then slack up on my efforts. I don't think it's because I falsely feel like, "I've got this" - more like something else comes along that captures my attention. Since I've gotten some good habits in place, I don't gain back the weight, but I totally stop losing, and I just cruise along like that for a while...sometimes a really long while. Mayo on the sandwich here, extra beer there, too hot to exercise the next day....and on it goes.
I'm about half way through my weight loss journey (although when I get to the end, I may decide to do another ten pounds...it's sort of a "see how things are when I get there" deal), but like the project of the upstairs bathroom, which has been half done for over a year now, I'm tired of the project and I want it finished.
I've not only been "dieting" (let's just call it that, okay?) for years, I've been widowed now for a year and a half, been stuck with house projects for that long or longer, just generally stuck.
I think it's time to pull up my big girl britches and finish a few of these projects. Finish the !@#$ bookcases, paint the upstairs bathroom, and lose the remaining thirty-odd pounds. I'm ready for the next chapter in my life, whatever it may be, and I don't want to be carrying around the "house that grief built" - I want to head into it healthy and happy, and to do that, I need to shed a few more pounds. Not because I'm not okay the way I am, but because I know I can be better.
So instead of resting on my, um...laurels...I'm going to reboot my efforts. I'm mostly living on what the CSA feeds me each week (did I mention how shockingly good raw kohlrabi is? Sliced thinly with a sprinkle of salt - YUM) so that part is easy. The hot spell is supposed to end tonight or tomorrow, so there goes that excuse - I've been walking and lifting sporadically, but I think I'll make a plan and stick to it, what the hell, even track it here in SP.
I've learned so much from the challenges in my life - not just weight and grief, but basically the whole buffet table of setbacks and craziness - and I want to share that with others. To do that, I need to dress that part, and to do *that*, I need to shop in a smaller size.
I suck at self-discipline, so I figure the only way I can achieve these goals is to show up here and use the tools SP offers. You guys are my community, if only virtually. I've come to believe that if we can lean on one another occasionally, we can beat this weight beast.
So let's go. * knuckle bumps several Spark Friends, with shouts of WooHoo in the background*
Sunday, July 15, 2012
(Sorry. Couldn't resist.)
I actually like beets, even the canned ones. One of my favorite salads is sliced beets with oranges. Heck, I'll even eat the dreaded Harvard beets, although it's not my favorite.
Here's some more beet info and a couple recipes from NPR:
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