WATERMELLEN's SparkPeople Blog http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal.asp?id=WATERMELLEN WATERMELLEN's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community SparkPeople.com http://assets2.sparkpeople.com/assets/nav/logo_spark.gif http://www.sparkpeople.com/ News http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6474714 So glad some of you were able to open (and found useful) the link I'd posted yesterday on pharmacogenetic testing. <BR> <BR> Several would like to invest in such testing but expressed concerns about threatened insurance coverage in the event they went ahead . . and of course the medical/insurance regime is quite different north and south of the border. So: my opinion about that isn't worth much! My guess is: denial of coverage on either side of the border could trigger legal challenge. A... Thu, 22 Mar 2018 08:09:36 EST Genetic Testing http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6474371 <link>www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/artic<BR>le-dna-on-drugs-how-genetic-tests-coul<BR>d-make-prescriptions-more-precise/ </link> <BR> <BR> A number of Sparkies have purchased mail-in genetic testing kits -- primarily concerned with ancestry issues. <BR> <BR> But current research indicates that genetic testing could make prescriptions more precise. <BR> <BR> The article linked above (sadly) is one of those "register" items: three for free, then pay. And it's lengthy: but it was in m... Wed, 21 Mar 2018 07:37:55 EST Social Prescriptions http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6474026 <link>www.thestar.com/life/health_wellness<BR>/opinion/2018/03/18/doctors-are-starti<BR>ng-to-give-patients-social-perscriptions.html </link> <BR> <BR> Supposing your doctor gave you a prescription for exercise? Stipulating when, where, how long, what intensity? Or a prescription to take an art class? Or to engage in a community event? <BR> <BR> We know that such activities can contribute as much to health as a prescription for medication. And sometimes doctors suggest 'em. But appa... Tue, 20 Mar 2018 05:54:15 EST Slinky Minky!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6473673 Yesterday DH had to buy a particular fluid for his shaver which is only available locally at an outlet mall. <BR> <BR> OK then. <BR> <BR> It was cold but sunny, a lovely day to be outside. (Too little snow for XC skiing . . . ) We parked on the edge of the parking lot, adjacent to some frozen ponds with cattails all around. I listened for but did not hear any redwings yet. <BR> <BR> But: there was a mink, undulating sinuously across the ice, slipping and sliding . . . he looked like he... Mon, 19 Mar 2018 06:41:48 EST Pre-membering http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6473385 <BR> <BR> As always, I enjoyed the comments on yesterday's "gated" blog a lot. I absolutely agree there's a difference between "gated" and "bubbled" (oblivious to privilege) and that we need a balance of moderation between self-care and self-immolation on the pyres of public service. A balance point which itself teeter-totters on a different fulcrum for each and every one of us. <BR> <BR> And yes: I feel a bit less guilty for my own life of (relative) privilege, so thanks! <BR> <BR> M... Sun, 18 Mar 2018 10:33:00 EST Gated? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6473107 Gated communities still aren't very common in Canada. But many Canadian friends have winter residences in gated communities south of the border. One such friend, who is to put it mildly something of an "acquired taste", has been subjected to my mild teasing: "How come Americans get to gate you in, but we don't?" And sometimes he's taken that in good part and sometimes not . . . maybe it's not all that funny. <BR> <BR> But there are some seniors' gated communities evolving here, often bu... Sat, 17 Mar 2018 11:49:57 EST ALICIA363: Unwilling or Unable? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6472764 <link>www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo<BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=6472758 </link> <BR> <BR> I'm intrigued by ALICIA363's blog this morning, derived from journal musings as she exercised. <BR> <BR> How much energy do I have? Do I need to conserve some (during a workout) for future responsibilities? Maybe even a few pleasures? <BR> <BR> Or when I flag at my workout, is it just a function of unwillingness, looking for an excuse (particularly that "I'm getting older" excuse)? <B... Fri, 16 Mar 2018 08:37:49 EST Recess Walk http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6472627 I did not have enough time for a "recess" walk today. <BR> <BR> As I contemplated whether I'd go anyway, I was thinking primarily about how cold it was outside and how rushed I was and that it did not matter really whether I went or not. I would not burn that many calories. It would not improve my fitness all that much. <BR> <BR> But: I decided to go anyhow. Walking pretty much as fast as possible for the scant 25 minutes I had. <BR> <BR> And I realized that I had completely undere... Thu, 15 Mar 2018 20:09:56 EST To Life!! Yes, Even Life "Sentences"!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6472133 My "life sentence" blog yesterday was really a follow up riff on the prior "any diet will work" blog. "Diet" meaning "the way I choose to eat". CHOOOOOOOOOOOSE really being the operative verb in that "life sentence". <BR> <BR> Yeah, truly I am good with it. (At least most of the time. And when I am not, then a blog like yesterday's reminds myself, I AM good with it.) <BR> <BR> Went out for lunch yesterday with DH and two good guy friends. Yes, they all ordered mammoth guy burger-y th... Wed, 14 Mar 2018 08:08:23 EST Life Sentence http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6471846 Following up on yesterday's blog: I'm just reminding myself that dieting is a life sentence. <BR> <BR> I am dieting for life. <BR> <BR> For MY life: which is hugely enriched by MAINtaining my weight loss. <BR> <BR> (Richer, sweeter than ANYthing that I can eat . . . seconds on the lips, months on the hips as my mother used to say!!) Tue, 13 Mar 2018 09:35:03 EST Choose Any Diet . . . http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6471467 I know: for many of us "diet" is a four letter word. <BR> <BR> But all it really means is the way we choose to eat. <BR> <BR> I wish I could provide a link to an article from this morning's Globe and Mail to Alex Hutchinson's article this morning on the "diet wars" and how both low-carb and low-fat diet schemes work essentially the same way. Can't: it's a "register only" link. <BR> <BR> Hutchinson reviews the current research and tells us what many of us have already learned from persona... Mon, 12 Mar 2018 08:16:04 EST Do Miracles Happen?? HOLLYM48! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6471155 <link>www.sparkpeople.com/mypage.asp?id=HO<BR>LLYM48 </link> <BR> <BR> I always enjoy HOLYM48's presence here on Spark People -- she's one of the sunny, upbeat, positive personalities: a real gift. <BR> <BR> And I like her "status post" picture today: Miracles don't happen. Sweat happens. Effort happens. Thought happens. <BR> <BR> Oh yeah. <BR> <BR> And when sweat and effort and thought happen? <BR> <BR> There's much more potential for miracles. Of all kinds. <BR> <BR> Miracle... Sun, 11 Mar 2018 10:10:09 EST Be Large http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6470815 <link>www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/arti<BR>cle-advice-for-young-women-be-large/ </link> <BR> <BR> Loved this article today in my Globe and Mail, derived from a new book by one of my fave columnists Elizabeth Renzetti. She's imagining an invite to deliver a commencement speech at her university: and thinking how much energy women in particular devote to being smaller than they are. Smaller in physical size, smaller in voice, smaller in impact. She reminisces about how this pressure t... Sat, 10 Mar 2018 08:33:47 EST Tough Day http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6470517 Tough day yesterday: but I toughed it out (and did NOT overeat). <BR> <BR> Tough day coming up and I'm ready. Lunch will be hit or miss but I've had a high protein breakfast: egg white omelette with lots of veggies and low fat goat cheese. Will put an apple in my briefcase. <BR> <BR> OK then. <BR> <BR> It looks like I may need to work through a considerable chunk of the weekend too: but I am NOT forgoing my workout at the gym. <BR> <BR> There's the program!! Fri, 9 Mar 2018 07:30:15 EST Back to Winter! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6470175 The north wind shall blow <BR> And we shall have snow <BR> And what will the robin do then, poor thing? <BR> <BR> He'll sit in a barn <BR> And keep himself warm <BR> And hide his head under his wing, poor thing <BR> And hide his head under his wing. <BR> <BR> Cold again here with snow falling: not enough to XC ski but certainly enough to feel like winter again. <BR> <BR> And: not hearing or seeing any birds in my back yard at the moment or on my office bird feeders either (although coupl... Thu, 8 Mar 2018 07:00:41 EST Fruit Feeder Fail http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6469496 . . . . or maybe not, given it's likely the squirrels also require an infusion of vitamins from fresh fruit at this time of the year?? <BR> <BR> Anyhow, the fruit feeder (and that nifty design was not my invention, I borrowed if after googling for ideas) was down on the ground when I got home from work late yesterday. <BR> <BR> Oh well oh well. <BR> <BR> I'll be trying to find a Plan B. Because absolutely on my recess walk yesterday I could hear robins and redwing blackbirds calling -- ... Tue, 6 Mar 2018 07:44:41 EST Fruit Feeder http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6469099 <img src="http://photosaws.sparkpeople.com/guid/e908c574-e6ac-44f6-8b33-f25ffd3fab75.jpg"> <BR> <BR> I heard a robin in the back yard yesterday -- sounding irritable!! <BR> <BR> It's cold cold cold here and there won't be any worms for a LOOOOOONG time. So: I made this little "fruit feeder" with two long drinking straws . . . chopped up the orange flesh and mixed in a few halved grapes. <BR> <BR> If the robin doesn't find it, I think the squirrels will!! <BR> <BR> (Also heard the unmi... Mon, 5 Mar 2018 06:46:42 EST Fennel Soup (Recipe added) http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6468792 I don't buy fennel often but I do like it . . . and it was on sale at a good price when I picked up the groceries yesterday. <BR> <BR> I wasn't sure if I'd incorporate the fennel into my lunch time salads (arugula, orange, almonds maybe?) or into my supper soup this week. <BR> <BR> But, after doing a quick search for ideas, I think the soup. With some tomato and fish, a little potato and maybe some beans . . . tarragon? And stirring in some greens at the end. A chowder!! <BR> <BR> OK ... Sun, 4 Mar 2018 09:27:35 EST Modern Outrage http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6468509 <link>www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/mode<BR>rn-outrage-is-making-it-harder-to-bett<BR>ersociety/article38179877/ </link> <BR> <BR> What an interesting analysis by MJ Crockett, Yale professor of psychology. And he makes the explicit link between addiction to fast food (fat, sugar, salt) and addiction to modern outrage, fuelled by social media. It's a dense and chewy article (high intellectual fibre, to continue the food metaphor!) and so I'll provide a few key quotations: <BR> <BR> "... Sat, 3 Mar 2018 10:43:59 EST Unexpected Temporary Spring http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6467837 We've had a few days of glorious spring "teaser" weather here . . . but apparently that's coming to an end later today with a return to winter as previously scheduled. Massive snow etc. I'm hoping that might mean an opportunity for XC skiing over the weekend: I'm still driving around with my skis in my car!! <BR> <BR> But today is an in-office drafting day and there should be no reason at all NOT to get out for a recess walk! <BR> <BR> A few days ago, during "recess" I heard (but was unab... Thu, 1 Mar 2018 08:10:21 EST Reading the Comments . . . http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6467654 on my blog yesterday is at least as interesting as reading the blog! <BR> <BR> Thanks to every one of you who "weighed in". I value and respect your opinions. Wed, 28 Feb 2018 17:42:05 EST Should We/Can We Ignore Politics? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6467106 <link>www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-bu<BR>siness/mec-faces-calls-to-drop-outdoor<BR>-brands-owned-by-us-gun-manufacturer/a<BR>rticle38110551/ </link> <BR> <BR> Spark People is all about health and wellness. So generally people posting on Spark avoid political topics. <BR> <BR> And: I'm a Canadian. So I've felt particularly constrained not to post on American political topics here at Spark. <BR> <BR> But: while I was vacationing in Costa Rica there was yet another horrific and pro... Tue, 27 Feb 2018 07:39:02 EST Now Back to Work! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6466794 There's a glorious pot of supper soup in the fridge . . . black bean and rice with tomato, corn, bell pepper and celery, carrot, onion, cilantro. Mmmmmm. <BR> <BR> And lunch salads: shrimp and spinach, mushroom, radish, Brussel sprouts. Plus fruit: mango, banana, mixed berries. <BR> <BR> All right then. I've kept in touch with my office remotely and I'm reasonably confident there's nothing too worrisome that hasn't been fielded by our awesome staff!! <BR> <BR> Back at it! I think my b... Mon, 26 Feb 2018 08:21:15 EST And: Back to Spark!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6466522 What a wonderful break!! We were birding in Costa Rica and it was a fabulous two weeks. A birding company set up an itinerary for us (accommodations, bird guides, rental car) and we drove ourselves from San Jose to Tarcoles on the Pacific Coast to Arenal in the north and then to Bajo del Toro in the cloud forest and further east to Selva and back through the mountains to San Jose. Saw a rare and beautiful turquoise browed motmot on our very last day in the final hotel gardens which was an un... Sun, 25 Feb 2018 11:53:58 EST Spark Break http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6461877 . . . . but I'll be back! Sun, 11 Feb 2018 06:35:50 EST Friday! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6461430 I like Friday evenings. <BR> <BR> Pulling into my snowy driveway, safely home. And it's still light out there! The days are getting longer! <BR> <BR> Greeted with big tail thumps by Charlie. And white hyacinths on the kitchen table. <BR> <BR> Changing out of my work clothes. Into my at home cord jeans and sweater. <BR> <BR> Soon a glass of white wine. With a bowl of curried chicken lentil soup. <BR> <BR> The whole weekend stretching out ahead of me . . . Fri, 9 Feb 2018 17:56:01 EST Losing Friends When You Lose Weight http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6460883 <link>brightlineeating.com/2018/02/letting<BR>-go-of-relationships-as-we-grow-on-our<BR>-recovery-journey/?inf_contact_key=d4e<BR>6f6b26aca2637b6b4ef639a2d21d93243953ed<BR>e0cdf36069853ba4937a368 </link> <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> Susan Peirce Thompson has an interesting vlog this week on a topic I've seen raised many times here at Spark People. <BR> <BR> What happens to our closest relationships -- not just with friends, sometimes with family members too, and even including spouses -- when ... Thu, 8 Feb 2018 06:26:44 EST The Post http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6460742 <link>www.tribute.ca/trailers/the-post/227<BR>54/ </link> <BR> <BR> Went to see Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks in The Post, sneaking out on a work night: and it is terrific! <BR> <BR> Set in the pre-Watergate Nixon era, it's all about the courageous decision of The Washington Post to publish documents setting out about 30 years of complicity by US Presidents in escalation of the Vietnam war. <BR> <BR> And it was up to Kay Graham, female publisher shunted into that role after the suicide... Wed, 7 Feb 2018 18:12:07 EST Too Old to Wear Jeans? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6460165 <link>ca.yahoo.com/style/ever-old-wear-jea<BR>ns-191226360.html </link> <BR> <BR> I admit it: succumbed to the click bait. <BR> <BR> And: UK survey indicates people are "too old" to wear jeans at age 53: because shopping for new jeans after age 53 becomes too traumatic. Especially for women. Who go from store to store looking for the perfect fit. Burst into tears. <BR> <BR> Me? I'm NEVER going to stop wearing jeans. And: I find jeans shopping now easier than when I was younger. I'm... Tue, 6 Feb 2018 07:55:26 EST Changing Up Exercise http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6459767 Really feels good to change up the exercise a bit -- even if the exercise itself (sticky XC skiing) is less than optimal. <BR> <BR> I always prefer exercise outside: golf, kayaking, walking, XC skiing. <BR> <BR> Sure the gym is great for ST and I have a long standing group of gym buddies/acquaintances, always good to catch up with them while I'm there. But OUTSIDE suits me best every time. Preferably with a bit of a "forest bathing" component. <BR> <BR> No question, the XC skiing dr... Mon, 5 Feb 2018 07:58:57 EST Second Ski!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6459620 Got some fresh wax and tried skiing again today but . . . still not much glide. It was sticky and slow. <BR> <BR> Still wonderful to be out there in the fresh snow, and a terrific workout! My arms and back are really feeling it. <BR> <BR> All set for a week of work with soup made (curried chicken lentil) and salads good to go for lunches too. <BR> <BR> Sun, 4 Feb 2018 20:20:48 EST First Ski http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6459201 It was lovely to get out there . . . but gotta say, not optimal ski conditions. <BR> <BR> Not a whole lotta snow and my wax was all grip no glide. <BR> <BR> Oh well oh well. Good exercise anyhow and a beautiful moody grey sky! <BR> <BR> Maybe tomorrow will be another possibility!! Sat, 3 Feb 2018 16:17:50 EST This Could be the Weekend . . . http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6458683 . . . for a first XC ski!! <BR> <BR> Right now it's -20C and that's WAY too cold. But: we have some fresh snow, probably enough for skiing: and forecasts for temps to rise to -5C Saturday and Sunday: and that's very skiable. <BR> <BR> I cannot every remember a delay so late in the season for skiing: typically we get some in before Christmas. But this year when there has been snow we've had very very cold patches -- as much as -25C + wind chill -- and then above freezing and no snow at ... Fri, 2 Feb 2018 07:56:41 EST Swiss Cheese http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6458252 Really appreciated all of the sympathy and commiseration yesterday, Sparkies. I'm clearly not the ONLY one who finds this MAINtaining thing hard! <BR> <BR> Yesterday had an appointment with a new dermatologist (the one who'd been taking care of me for almost 20 years is now practising only in the Big City and although I tried twice, it was just too hard to get there for regular appointments). <BR> <BR> So: it's been awhile. <BR> <BR> And: after a very thorough inspection, doctor decid... Thu, 1 Feb 2018 06:12:02 EST Why Isn't This Easier???? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6457873 JEANKNEE's thoughtful and detailed comment on yesterday's blog really caught my attention. Here's just a part of it. <BR> <BR> "I am keenly aware that I do not share the mental/emotional struggles that many Sparkers routinely face. Why not? This puzzles me. I am extremely grateful that I rarely face such challenges. And, when I do, I recognize them for what they are, I call them out, and brush them off quite easily." <BR> <BR> And of course I'm glad that this is her experience. She goes o... Wed, 31 Jan 2018 07:07:01 EST How Much More? Shout Out to KRISZTA11 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6457532 <link>www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo<BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=6457494 </link> <BR> <BR> How much more can I eat and still get away with it? That's the title of KRISZTA11's great blog -- a long time maintainer who keeps maintaining because she's prepared to ask herself the tough questions. <BR> <BR> It's almost like a game of "chicken" with the scales. If I eat 100 calories extra, will the scales blip up? How about 300 calories? Or even 1,000 calories? <BR> <BR> Well ... Tue, 30 Jan 2018 07:30:22 EST Better Together http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6457145 <link>www.theglobeandmail.com/life/health-<BR>and-fitness/health/five-smart-food-com<BR>binations-that-boost-nutrition/article<BR>37749290/ </link> <BR> <BR> I liked nutritionist Leslie Beck's column in the Globe today about maximizing nutrition by eating certain whole foods together. <BR> <BR> Good food synergy. <BR> <BR> Such as eggs in my spinach salad . . . to increase the absorption of Vitamin E and other antioxidants. <BR> <BR> Strawberries with blueberries . . . to max the rec... Mon, 29 Jan 2018 08:14:19 EST Split Pea Soup http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6456791 Split pea is a French Canadian speciality. And it's been a long time since I made a pot. <BR> <BR> I decided to tweak the recipe. Some lean sausage, browned and then drained thoroughly, with excess fat rinsed in hot water in a sieve and set aside. <BR> <BR> And lots more veggies than usual. Celery, carrots, onions of course. Plus diced canned tomatoes and quite a bit of leftover broccoli/beet/kale slaw. <BR> <BR> Red chili flakes and thyme and rosemary for seasonings. (I'll decide l... Sun, 28 Jan 2018 10:00:39 EST Learning to be Kinder http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6456471 Kindness. The older I get the more I believe kindness is the fundamental ethical value. <BR> <BR> And learning to be kind? A life long process. <BR> <BR> Our beloved aged golden retriever, Charlie, has taught me a lot about being kind. <BR> <BR> He has probably never heard a cross word from any of us. And of course he's never NEEDED to hear a cross word from any of us either. <BR> <BR> He is kind to us. Companionable, affectionate: even adoring (without fawning). <BR> <BR> He al... Sat, 27 Jan 2018 10:50:03 EST AWOL http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6456234 It's sunny. And mild here today: +2C. <BR> <BR> I coulda kept on working. <BR> <BR> But: I didn't. <BR> <BR> Came home, changed into my cords and warm sweater and jacket and took a brisk walk for about one and a quarter hours. Not enough snow for XC skiing. <BR> <BR> It was gorgeous. Lots of others out walking too. Some with their dogs (poor ol' Charlie can't manage long walks any more . . . ). <BR> <BR> So I'm feeling great! And ready for the weekend too. <BR> <BR> Best ... Fri, 26 Jan 2018 16:17:15 EST The Dorito Effect: Shout out to GENIE-B http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6455933 <link>www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo<BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=6455859 </link> <BR> <BR> Such a fascinating series of blogs reviewing The Dorito Effect by Mark Schatzker!!! GENIE-B is offering a real service to Sparkies, summarizing succinctly all of the interesting information about how obesity is linked to fake non-nutrition foods with heightened and artificial flavours which trigger ever increasing appetite in the search for nutrition and satisfaction which just is not the... Thu, 25 Jan 2018 21:14:01 EST Carpe Diem http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6455282 There was a tiny sliver of "nice" weather yesterday: +4C and sunny. And: it coincided with a break in my schedule. So I grabbed it for a lunch walk!! <BR> <BR> A hairy woodpecker! And some lively chickadees buzzing around in a happy little flock. <BR> <BR> OK then: by the end of the day we were socked in with heavy snow fall. And the drive home was slippery (but it DID beat the freezing rain anticipated!). <BR> <BR> The pleasure of recess stuck with me: no kidding. Powerful!! Wed, 24 Jan 2018 06:10:56 EST Dramatic Weather http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6454931 We had bucketing rain AND lightening about 2:30 a.m., sustained for quite a while -- and although there's still a bit of snow out there this morning, it's mostly giant puddles. Not freezing rain thankfully because I'd like to get to the office. <BR> <BR> On Sunday we got all suited up in the XC ski clothes and went to our club but . . . there was more bright green grass than snow. <BR> <BR> January thaw: I can remember them my whole life. And not thinking that winter is giving up yet. ... Tue, 23 Jan 2018 08:08:29 EST "Lose 50% more with Premium" http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6454521 That was the enticing promise on my Start page this morning. Didn't click to open the link but . . . I'm maybe a bit sceptical. <BR> <BR> I'm not a Premium member. But I can remember when Spark didn't offer an option for evading advertisements and encouraged us to believe that the ads kept the site free. Many of which ads were somewhat conceptually incoherent with the Spark People core message: dubious manufactured foods, dubious "beauty" and techy products etc. etc. <BR> <BR> I don't... Mon, 22 Jan 2018 07:59:15 EST Delights: 1CRAZYDOG! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6454133 Today for some reason my mouse is not permitting me to "right click" and "cut and paste": but I really wanted to provide the link to 1CRAZYDOG's "quote of the day" on her status post from Jo Lena Johnson. So this is not an exact quote! <BR> <BR> "We can have plans but we need to leave some space for surprises, delights, connections and the time for things to unfold." <BR> <BR> **** <link>www.sparkpeople.com/mypage.asp?id=1C<BR>RAZYDOG </link> <BR> <BR> Yes!! I had plans yester... Sun, 21 Jan 2018 09:59:34 EST A Long Day . . . http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6453732 . . . stretches out enjoyably ahead of me. I was up early early because DH needed to head to the city for a day long program . . . <BR> <BR> And so I've already got three loads of laundry done and will be at the gym at close to 9 am. Plenty of time for a thorough workout. <BR> <BR> And then at a leisurely pace lots of time for other activities -- the library, maybe a little shopping (check out the sale racks???) and the groceries: not a job I relish so much but want to get it done so it ... Sat, 20 Jan 2018 08:47:23 EST Weight Loss Plateau and Strength Training http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6452932 <link>www.theglobeandmail.com/life/health-<BR>and-fitness/the-hidden-causes-for-weig<BR>ht-loss-plateaus/article37591332/ </link> <BR> <BR> Leslie Beck is "Canada's leading nutritionist" and writes a regular column for the Toronto Globe and Mail. <BR> <BR> I liked this article about strength training and muscle weight because -- it's pretty sobering. <BR> <BR> Sure I gain muscle by strength training. And sure that muscle has weight. But: not much weight. Maybe 1-2 pounds after 4-6 mo... Thu, 18 Jan 2018 07:41:57 EST NUOVAELLE and the 5% http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6452800 <link>www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo<BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=6451646 </link> <BR> <BR> What a great blog by veteran (almost 9 year) Sparkie NUOVAELLE who writes very movingly about what it takes to MAINtain weight loss. <BR> <BR> Only 5% of people who take weight off maintain that weight loss . . . and she is absolutely determined to be among them. <BR> <BR> Persistence, she tells us, is what it takes. And I agree absolutely: day after day after day. <BR> <BR> Trackin... Wed, 17 Jan 2018 21:02:01 EST 50,000 http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6452150 Yes, I KNOW that (according to Trivia A) that's the average number of calories people burn cleaning their houses each year. <BR> <BR> OK then: there have to be quite a few house proud persons out there burning well in excess of the average . . . because I'm pulling that stat WAY down for sure!! <BR> <BR> Does lugging baskets of laundry down to the washing machine from the third floor count??? <BR> <BR> Does carrying in bags of groceries from the car count??? <BR> <BR> Does unloading th... Tue, 16 Jan 2018 08:08:02 EST Blue Monday http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=6451689 <link>www.thestar.com/life/2016/01/18/blue<BR>-monday-5-things-about-the-years-most-<BR>depressing-day.html </link> <BR> <BR> The third Monday in January: the most depressing day in the year? <BR> <BR> I've got my daylight on -- it's cold and grey here. <BR> <BR> And yup, Fats Domino offers a bit of an antidote too!! <BR> <BR> <link>www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2hq3DW_Bgk </link> Mon, 15 Jan 2018 08:19:40 EST