LAURELSPARK's SparkPeople Blog LAURELSPARK's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community The moment he has been waiting for! The teen went off to MIZZOU yesterday! He has been counting the days. <BR> I can't wait to clean his room and the loft area that he claimed as his territory. Does anyone want two pet turtles!?!? <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> By the way, we stopped to get gas before leaving. Can you believe it? <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Sat, 17 Jan 2015 10:58:40 EST Family vacation We're having a great time in Utah! <BR> <BR> The kids have been doing this...... <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Hubby and I have been sightseeing and taking lots of pictures. Here's a few..... <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src="http://photos... Thu, 8 Jan 2015 21:40:10 EST Merry Christmas! I borrowed this from a SparkFriend......hope she does not mind. <BR> <BR> Christmas gift suggestions~ <BR> <BR> To your enemy, forgiveness. <BR> To an opponent, tolerance. <BR> To a friend, your heart. <BR> To a customer, service. <BR> To all, charity. <BR> To every child, a good example. <BR> To yourself, respect! <BR> <BR> <BR> <em>446</em> <em>460</em> <em>446</em> <em>460</em> <em>446</em> <em>460</em> Thu, 25 Dec 2014 09:47:36 EST San Francisco We loved San Francisco! I have not been there since I was a kid and it was fun to be back. We did not rent a car so we walked. Our farthest walk was from pier 39, across the Golden Gate, and back. We're home now so let the laundry begin. <BR> <BR> Some of my favorite places....... <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople... Tue, 7 Oct 2014 10:28:53 EST Oktoberfest Yesterday we rode 8 miles up the Katy Trail to the Oktoberfest . He had a few beers and some great German food. What a great morning! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Best brat ever..........brat, kraut, swiss, mustard, and a pretzel bun. Yum! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> .......and a Houfbrau! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> ... Sun, 28 Sep 2014 14:49:07 EST I'm on my way home........ From an Alaskan cruise. We took lots of pics, ate lots, saw many spectacular things, and got lots of exercise...............more to come! Sun, 10 Aug 2014 12:12:53 EST One Day Challenge Today will be the hardest challenge that I've had in a long time. <BR> <BR> We are going on vacation soon and am back to one pound from my goal weight. My challenge is that I have two meal "dates" today. The first one will happen at lunch. A friend of mine visiting (from out-of-town) and we're going to lunch with friends. The second challenge will happen at dinner. It's hubby's birthday and my mom is taking us out to dinner. <BR> <BR> <em>521</em> <BR> <BR> I've resolved to ha... Tue, 22 Jul 2014 08:34:42 EST Can't wait.................. go on vacation! I've been cleaning the house, grocery shopping for the teen, doing piles of laundry, filing paperwork, gardening, getting lots of exercise, and working to drop a few pounds in anticipation of our upcoming vacation. Can't wait to go! <BR> <BR> <em>334</em> <BR> <BR> Sun, 20 Jul 2014 07:20:27 EST Temper, temper! My temper got me into trouble yesterday. After a hard day of work (shopping, gardening, cleaning, and working on I fixed dinner. (I always start on it at 5ish because I never know when my hubby will be home.........usually it is between 5 and 6:30.) After that was taken care of, I headed to the basement to do some cleaning. While I was cleaning, my hubby snuck in and ate a half a loaf of bread with cheese on it. You might wonder what is wrong with that. Well, two things. ... Tue, 1 Jul 2014 08:02:11 EST Worth every minute! Today I brought in the first blooms of the season. All of my work grooming the plants was worth it! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Mon, 30 Jun 2014 10:40:46 EST Fun on the Katy Trail Yesterday was a beautiful day so we too a ride in the trail. Here are some of our highlights. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Hubby in the last shade we would find for 10 miles. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Me resting at Frontier Park in St. Charles. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=" Sun, 29 Jun 2014 11:33:14 EST Happy 92nd Birthday......... To the best mom in the world! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> (Mom, hubby, the three stooges, and me.) Fri, 27 Jun 2014 11:43:32 EST Happy Anniversary! Tomorrow is my 35th wedding anniversary. WooHoo! Happy Anniversary to the love of my life! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Sun, 1 Jun 2014 09:25:55 EST SparkFriends I found a fun picture of the two SparkFriends that I spent last week with in CA. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I guess you've figured out that they are my sisters. I'm the one in the middle.......I think that their was taken around 1962. Wed, 28 May 2014 11:04:28 EST Coastal California We just got back from a great trip. We celebrated my birthday, our 35th wedding anniversary, and a sparkfriend's 40th anniversary. We got lots of exercise and had a great time. I thought I'd share a few pics. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpe... Sat, 24 May 2014 10:01:50 EST Weekend with Sparkfriends I'm excited to be spending the weekend with two of my Sparkfriends, Right now I'm sitting in our veranda, looking out on to the Pacific. Later we will swim, hike, and make merry! I can't wait until my friends arrive! <BR> <BR> Here's the view from our condo. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I hope that you have a great weekend! Sat, 17 May 2014 10:39:22 EST Orchid Show Today was the last day of the Orchid Show at the Missouri Botanical Garden. Hubby and I walked through the exhibition hall and the took a power walk around the gardens. It was cool but it was great to see what is starting to come up. I took lots of pics and here are some of my favorites....... <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.s... Sat, 22 Mar 2014 19:40:30 EST More Las Vegas Hubby attended a convention so I tagged along. While hubby was at meetings, I walked, walked, walked! <BR> <BR> My longest trek was from New York, New York (where we stayed) to the Stratosphere (where my cousin's son plays with Frankie Moreno). I got some great pics. I put on a few pounds (no surprise, no worries). <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src="http://p... Sat, 1 Mar 2014 10:21:58 EST Viva Las Vegas! Have had a great time in Las Vegas! I took lots of pics so I'll post them tomorrow. Back to the freezing Midwest. <BR> <BR> <em>67</em> <BR> <BR> Thu, 27 Feb 2014 14:26:10 EST Walking In 2 Degree Weather........ Yesterday we got the snow and today we got the cold. On cold mornings like this morning (it was 2 at 9AM), I walk at the mall with my walking buddies. We usually walk two or three times a week and often run into (not literally) other retirees from our school district. When it warms up, we will walk outside. Spring will not come soon enough this year! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Thu, 6 Feb 2014 19:22:45 EST What to do on a snowy day............ Once again........ <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> So, here's what I'm doing today......... <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> No, I'm not riding the bike that is against the wall........I'm walking on the machine that is behind my son's stinky old couch. Then I'm working on the basement. All of the junk belongs to my two sons who have moved out. Why has our basement become the... Wed, 5 Feb 2014 11:00:52 EST Here we go again! We have had more snow this season than I ever remember. Up to twelve inches is predicted. Isn't it beautiful? <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> And now for my holiday nemesis........ <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I will kick my popcorn habit to the curb and get back to eating healthier. <em>521</em> <BR> <BR> Oops! The Disney pic must be a Freudian slip......... <BR> <... Sun, 5 Jan 2014 11:22:42 EST Garden Glow The Garden Glow was great. It was not too cold but it was crowded. I thought I'd share some pics........ <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=" Sat, 28 Dec 2013 09:45:20 EST Wow! We got our first real snow and it is beautiful. I've never tried it post pics before so I thought I'd give it a try. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> From the front porch. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Hubby's man cave. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> From the back deck. <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeop... Sat, 14 Dec 2013 09:37:22 EST It's not my fault! Hubby and I picked up a pizza for the teen (from Costco) but it did not make it home in one piece. We got to the entrance and it was blocked off. It had been windy (we did not realize that there were severe thunderstorm warnings out), a tree had knocked over a power line, and there was a live wire across the road. The fire/police crew said had could walk by if we walked on someone's lawn so debated over walking the two miles to our house with the groceries or eating the pizza while it was ... Sun, 17 Nov 2013 16:07:55 EST Dreams I often have vivid dreams and had a crazy one last night. I dreamed that I was taking some kind of writing class (I'm not sure where or why). The class was being held on some outdoor bleachers . It was a small class so we introduced ourselves to each other. I was surprised to find that all of my classmates were Sparkfriends . Go figure! <BR> <BR> <em>252</em> Mon, 4 Nov 2013 20:55:13 EST I love Baltimore! We are having a blast in Baltimore! There is so much to do and see. We have split our time between walking around the harbor area and visiting churches, neighborhoods, and cemeteries where my ancestors on my mom's side of the family lived and were buried. I have become obsessed with local history and have been reading about it every chance I get. <BR> Tomorrow we head up to Pennsylvania to meet my mom's cousin and compare notes on common ancestors. <BR> <BR> We watched the Cardinal game... Wed, 16 Oct 2013 08:18:25 EST See you later Just wanted to let you know that I won't be sparking much over the next few weeks. Hubby and I are heading out to do some family research. We will spend most of our time in and around Baltimore. We'll be spending some time with my mom's cousin Chris, who I have never met, and she and her husband will be showing us places where relatives live/ed and died. I was not interested in genealogy until recently and was not aware that all of my mom's side of the family landed in Baltimore. I have ... Tue, 8 Oct 2013 12:41:16 EST It's not my fault................. ................that the Cardinals lost yesterday but I promise to stay away from the remainder of the games. Every time I go to a game, we lose, so I will stay home. It's also not my fault that I had nachos and pizza at the game. Hubby asked me to split them with him and I did not want to hurt his feelings. <BR> <BR> <em>198</em> Sat, 5 Oct 2013 17:32:41 EST To many choices..... There are so many Fall activities to do today that we are having problems deciding. Topping my list are visiting the Daniel Boone Home, biking to a brewery, and visiting a winery. All of the choices involve getting outdoors! <BR> <BR> What's on your list today..........I hope that you get to do something fun. Happy Fall!!!!! Sun, 22 Sep 2013 09:06:28 EST Too much fun! Snorkeling <em>248</em> <BR> Hiking <em>248</em> <BR> Eating at great places <em>248</em> <BR> Drinking lots Rum punch <em>248</em> <BR> Doing lots of shopping <em>248</em> <BR> Having one more day of fun <em>334</em> Sat, 14 Sep 2013 08:07:04 EST Having a great time! We're having a great time in St. Thomas. Lots of snorkeling, shopping, walking, , food , and drink.......but it's worth it! <BR> <BR> Hope that you are having a great week......!!!!!!! <BR> Wed, 11 Sep 2013 17:55:20 EST Baby it's hot outside! 90 degrees and sunny!!!!!!!!!!!!! <BR> <BR> 8.56 miles in 45 minutes over hilly terrain!!!!!!!!!!!!! <BR> <BR> 6 pounds of library books in my daypack!!!!!!!!!! <BR> <BR> Enough said!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! <BR> <BR> <em>332</em> <em>198</em> <em>67</em> <em>332</em> <em>198</em> <em>67</em> <em>332</em> <em>198</em> <em>67</em> <BR> <BR> Fri, 30 Aug 2013 11:06:43 EST Three times is NOT a charm! We tried to bike to the northern trailhead of the Katy Trail and still have not made it. The first time we tried, we ran through a patch of deadly invisible thorn and ended up having to hitch a ride back to our car. The second time we tried, the trail was clocked by tons (and I mean it literally) of hard, blackish sludge that was deposited when the Mo river flooded over the trail. Yesterday, I just couldn't make it the last 5 miles. (In my defense, I had been at work until 12 midnight the... Sun, 25 Aug 2013 08:38:53 EST Summer's back..............but it's not stopping me! The temp and humidity are back to normal but they are not stopping me. When you live in Missouri you learn to stay out of the heat in the summer. That's just the way it is! <BR> <BR> Today I walked with friends in the morning and am going on a bike ride when hubby gets home at 6ish. In between times, I'm sparking and cleaning. What could be better! <BR> <BR> <BR> <em>332</em> <em>311</em> <em>17</em> <em>332</em> <em>311</em> <em>17</em> Wed, 21 Aug 2013 14:40:07 EST I'm getting there! I've been working my way back to my goal weight and I'm making progress. We've got only a few weeks left until vacation so I have to continue to work hard. <BR> <BR> Today, I'm biking with a friend. We are meeting in a lot at the top of a hill (which I have named cardiac hill) and are riding to Creve Coeur Lake and back. We're meeting early as our summer heat and humidity have returned. <BR> <BR> Have a great day! What are you doing for fun today? <BR> <BR> <em>381</em> <em>332<... Tue, 20 Aug 2013 09:00:37 EST I made it............ ............home before the rain! <BR> <BR> I had to come up with an excuse to get on my bike so I decided to go to the grocery store door for soy milk and syrup. When I headed out it looked like rain, but I went anyway. I got halfway there and remembered that i had a prescription to pick up. After that I remembered that I had some Tupperware waiting for me at the Beauty Salon. It was a good thing that I had brought my big day pack with me. I pedaled furiously to get home before the rai... Thu, 8 Aug 2013 13:56:28 EST My life is so boring................................... but I love it. <BR> <BR> Hubby and I went on our Saturday bike ride and it was great. We went on a very hilly trail (you know it will be stenuous when they have warning signs) so we did not go as far. Afterward, we went to Costco (another Saturday ritual) and bought hubby a new smoker. Later we are going to the movies with son#3 after we grill up some brats. "Boring," you say? I'll take boring any Saturday. <BR> <BR> <em>334</em> Sat, 3 Aug 2013 20:20:44 EST So long, July!!! July was not a good month for me so I'm glad to see it go. Thankfully, I've gotten out of the funk mode and am ready to be a good little sparker again. Here are my August goals: <BR> <BR> <BR> 1.Get back to my goal weight <BR> <BR> 2. Work out 60 minutes on days I don't work, 30 on others. <BR> <BR> 3. Eat 5 servings of Fruits/Veggies a day. <BR> <BR> 4. Drink 8 glasses of water a day. <BR> <BR> Short but to the point! <BR> <BR> Have a great day, friends! <BR> <BR> <em>192</em> ... Thu, 1 Aug 2013 09:29:54 EST Reset I've been getting lots of exercise but I've been eating way too many things that I shouldn't (like the bag of jelly beans that I had last night) so this morning I hit the reset button. I weighed in and changed my weight. I'm going back to eating three square meals and little processed food. I know I can do it; I've done it before. Wish me luck! Mon, 29 Jul 2013 08:20:50 EST Unbelievable weather! Less that 80 degrees in the summer............UNBELIEVABLE! <BR> <BR> Yesterday I took my mom to Shaw's Garden. We took the tram around the garden (she doesn't walk far at 91) and had a wonderful time. This morning hubby and I went on a bike ride and had breakfast at a new café one block north of the Katy Trail. We started lawn work when we got home and I am taking a break on the deck, in the shade, with my computer on my lap. Later we are BBQ-ing. What a great day! <BR> <BR> How about... Sat, 27 Jul 2013 15:00:05 EST Happy Birthday Hubby! We met the first Thursday of our Freshman year in college and have spent 41 birthdays together. Wow...........time flies when you're having fun. Here's to 41 more! Mon, 22 Jul 2013 11:20:10 EST Off to wine country! Hubby's birthday is tomorrow so son#1 is taking us to wine country for the day. We often bike down there but have never made a day of it. There are many local wineries and lots of quaint shops. I'm not much of a drinker but I'm sure we can find something that I like. How many calories do you burn sitting on a bluff overlooking farmland and drinking wine! At least we got a great walk in yesterday! Sun, 21 Jul 2013 10:35:42 EST Somebody loves me! Unfortunately, it is the bugs who live in my mulch. I have been diligently weeding and mulching for the last few days and every morning I wake up with new bug bites. One more reason to win the lottery and hire a gardener! Thu, 18 Jul 2013 08:07:38 EST Excited about tonight! I'm excited because I'm going to the Muny tonight to see Les Miserables with son#1 and a friend. Hopefully the new fans will help cool off the warm weather. My parents used to take the family to the Muny when I was little and we used to sit in the free seats. <BR> <BR> I googled the Muny an found some interesting stuff on it. Thought I'd share this...... <BR> <BR> History of The Muny <BR> <BR> In 1914, Luther Ely Smith began staging pageant-Masques on Art Hill in Forest Park. In 191... Tue, 16 Jul 2013 08:29:42 EST Watch what you eat! My day started great....I woke up at 6:30 and decided to get on the computer before waking hubby up for our ride. I turned on the computer and down came son #3. He informed me that he had eaten some carrot cake and was feeling sick. He hardly ever eats anything before we/he reads the ingredients but he did this time and he is highly allergic to nuts. He said that since it was carrot cake he thought the crunchy things were carrots! I gave him some allergy meds, which seemed to help for a ... Sat, 13 Jul 2013 21:20:10 EST Curses.........foiled again! (Dick Dastardly used to say that. It's pretty sad when one starts quoting cartoon characters, isn't it?. You can find him at<BR>.) <BR> <BR> Anyway, my outdoor plans have turned to dust. It has been raining since 5ish (along with lots of thunder). I will have to put Plan B into effect. I always have a Plan B and this one involves filing paperwork, measuring for new window treatments, laundry, walking in the basement with Leslie Sansone and gang... Wed, 10 Jul 2013 07:08:55 EST I can't wait............. ..........until tomorrow. I am off work for 4 days and have so many things to catch up on. I hate to admit it, but I haven't even trimmed the bushes (it should be done in the spring) yet. The weeds in the flower beds are thriving and all of the roses/flowers need to be sprayed for Japanese beetles. I am also walking with friends twice during the week and have a bike ride planned for Saturday, <BR> <BR> How about you? Do you have anything fun planned for the week? <BR> <BR> Tue, 9 Jul 2013 20:42:54 EST See ya!!!! Sun's out, <BR> Bikes are packed up, <BR> See ya!!! Wed, 3 Jul 2013 15:22:09 EST I love paperwork!! Well, not really, but I'm trying to stay positive. It rained all day so I have been stuck inside with all of my paperwork that has stacked up. The good news is that I caught up on all of my filing and have dinner ready for hubby when he walks in the door. The bad news is that I had about 10 pounds of cheese popcorn to fuel me throughout the day. I'm praying for sun tomorrow so I can be bike is screaming for a workout. Tue, 2 Jul 2013 19:48:14 EST