Thursday, May 29, 2008

Some More Vacation Reports

Monday we drove up to visit Laura and Brett. We took brats, buns and salad makings. They fixed baked beans and fruit jello. It was a good summer meal with good company. Even though storms were predicted, the day stayed warm and sunny all day. We only got rained on a few minutes driving home.

Tuesday was not summery at all. It was cold, wet and windy all day. I stayed inside and sorted things in the sewing room, finished sewing a skirt I'd started about 2 years back, and worked on a blouse that was about 1/4 done maybe a year and a half ago. The fabrics are resorted and I have a better handle on what kinds of patterns and supplies are still here. I was very happy to have the whole day to do that kind of stuff. I never went running, which I sort of regretted, but the weather was just too icky. I am ready for heat and sun.

Drh worked on the vacuum system in the shop. I fixed hot German potato salad, smoked sausage in sauerkraut, salad, and applesauce for supper. The potato salad was good - the first time I'd ever made it.

Wednesday morning was prettier than Tuesday. I cleaned the bathroom, and cleaned out the inside of the car, including vacuuming and doing the leather cleaning/treatment on the seats. I continued working on the unfinished blouse, hoping for a good fit so I can use that same pattern in a different sleeve version for another summer top I have in mind. In the afternoon we took a random motorcycle ride. Later we went to the Chiefs' baseball game and enjoyed free hotdogs and peanuts for supper. A good combination of work and relaxation for the day.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Weekend List

Listing things that I do/accomplish during my vacation - first weekend:

Friday evening: Made and took taco bean salad (no meat) to friends' house for dinner. They made chicken enchiladas and brownies. Yummy.

Saturday: Got up at 6:45 and went to town to farmers' market, where I bought oakleaf and red leaf lettuces, purple basil and hydroponic tomatoes. I could've bought some nice-looking green onions and radishes, too, but already had some from the grocery store.
Stopped at garden shop and got $45 worth of geraniums and annuals for flower pots on the deck.
Made an elastic-waist skirt with attached apron for a young friend.
Did two loads of laundry.
Talked on the phone for quite awhile with a friend who lost her mother a few days ago.
Had a hamburger for lunch - drh cooked on the Geo. Forman.
Worked on the purple valances for one of the church classrooms.
Ran 4 miles. It was warm and my legs were tired, but I started a new pair of shoes and that helped my hip, I think.
Started planting the flowers.
Cleaned up a little and changed clothes; then we rode the motorcycle to the dirt track races. I got cold from the strong east wind, and the dirt was really blowing so we were filthy. But the races were entertaining enough. Glad I didn't shower before we went!

Sunday: Prepared and served coffee hour at church.
Read the paper. Cleaned the kitchen and took out recycling.
Had some taco bean salad for lunch.
Planted the rest of the flowers in the pots.
Took a motorcycle ride around the lakes. It was beautiful out. The lakes are really full.
Thinly sliced a piece of sirloin that we haven't gotten around to cooking this weekend. Put the pieces in a zip bag with marinade for fajitas, then put it in the freezer for a meal later this week or next.
Made a really good salad and drh cooked the rest of the hamburgers on the grill. Had a glass of syrah/red zin with dinner. Very nice.
Cleaned up kitchen again.
Paid bills online.

Red romaine and oakleaf lettuces - torn, chopped tomato, sliced radishes and green onions, a few basil leaves chopped, seasoned with oregano, garlic powder, salt, black pepper, olive oil and red wine vinegar. Topped with spoonful of goat cheese with basil and roasted garlic, croutons. The only thing to make it better would have been homemade croutons.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Time Off

Last night after running I was sitting with friends at the after-run place. I mentioned how my right hip hurts, though I expected the left side to feel more effects of the trail run, since I kept leading with my left leg while leaping mud holes. Someone said, "and heaven forbid that we take a couple days off when we're sore!" He's right - unless in severe pain, time off isn't just automatic - you have to try another run. So I'm hoping the hip will feel fine by tomorrow.

Otherwise the run was good, perfect weather and the tree blossoms still smell so sweet.

Speaking of time off, I will be off work all next week. Some of the things I hope to accomplish:
Finish the church valances.
Make a skirt for a young friend.
Have lunch with another friend, who will be moving to Germany at the end of summer.
Cut drh's hair again.
Clean out closets.
Clean out the car.
Buy and plant flowers in the pots on the deck.
Work on some other sewing projects.
Figure out what to wear to a wedding in a couple of weeks.

Also we hope to take a motorcycle trip for a couple of days.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Muddy Fun

I just got back from a 5-mile trail race that was both hard and a blast. The weather started out cool and cloudy - 55 degrees. The trail was mostly on a very hilly mowed strip in wooded prairie, with several mud holes, one real stream and a big swampy place with ankle deep water to cross. Needless to say, my shoes have never looked worse.

I'd hoped to run it in 56 minutes, but the last mile was hopeless as it was sharply uphill and into a strong west wind of at least 20 mph. But I did squeak in at about 59:59, I think.

A friend drove over with me, and we had a good time getting better acquainted and laughing about the craziness of running in mud and wind, and about how muddy we were at the end. We should've taken a camera along.

It was a beautiful day and all the honeysuckle and wild cherry blossoms smelled heavenly, and birds were singing, the sun was making the wet grass swamps sparkle. Altogether a wonderful way to spend a Saturday morning.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Carry On

Since I had the day off yesterday, I ran a long list of errands, starting with a hair cut appointment. Then I got the car washed; took my blazers to the dry cleaner; went to WM to stock up on papergoods and cold medicines; returned a pair of non-fitting shorts to TJMaxx and had a good look around, picked out new sandals and a cool, muted yellow patent leather, big shoulder bag; picked out a pattern and browsed fabric at the fabric store; stopped for a drive-thru burger, fries and orange drink; went to the library to renew a book and checked out a couple more; changed clothes to go running.

The weather had been variously cloudy and sunny all day with a brisk south wind. Rain or storms were supposed to hold off until late evening. I met my friends to run, and the western sky was looking black. I got about 1/2 mile out on the trail and saw lightening, so I ran back to the car. Darn! I was feeling like it would be a good run, but better safe than sorry. The rest of them kept on around the loop, but I left before they got back to the parking lot. Just a little afraid of lightening.

By the time I got home it was spitting rain. Shortly after that, we had two intense little storms with heavy rain, wind and hail. I'm glad I wasn't out in that weather, and also glad my freshly washed car was already in the garage.

As to the new yellow bag, I decided to use my new (a few weeks old) pink one as my "small" bag instead of looking for a new smaller bag. The pink one was just borderline big enough anyway. I love the yellow one.

Monday, May 12, 2008

A Belated Cinco de Mayo

We invited company for dinner on Saturday and since drh has been feeling somewhat under the weather with sinus trouble, I decided to cook in the crockpot rather than ask him to cook on the grill. With Cinco de Mayo having just passed, Mexican food sounded good to me.

The menu was:
Country boneless pork ribs - seasoned with chili powder, garlic, cumin, oregano, salt, pepper and canned green chilies, cooked in crockpot. I expected this meat to shred, but it didn't. So I just cut it up into cubes.
Mexican brown rice - seasoned with green onions, cumin, garlic, salt, canned tomatoes.
Fruit cole slaw with shredded cabbage, green apples, pineapples and grapes.
Meat was served with whole wheat tortillas, shredded cheddar, cut black olives, cut tomatoes, fat-free sour cream.
Dyed-in-the-Wool New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc wine, beer.
Vanilla ice cream with caramel and chocolate syrup, mixed nuts.

We had a nice visit and updates on all the kids of both families, plus shirt-tail relatives.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Ten Things

My sisters and I often try to list ten things we've finished or marked off a to-do list each day. The main purpose is to solidify the feeling of accomplishment, I suppose - perhaps to quantify the every day trivia and somehow make it more real or meaningful.

So I don't quite have ten things for today yet, but I'll keep working on it. Here's my start:

Cleaned my bathroom
Mended the shower curtain where one of the grommets came out
Washed the towels, sheets and shower curtain, including the liner
Hung up all my clothes lying on both guest beds
Ran 4.6 miles
Got the mail

I need to take a shower, then do some cooking ahead for the rest of the week. I'll be back.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Panicked Too Soon

I guess I got a bit overexcited about my sore shin. Went to sports med clinic and had an xray. Xray negative, which for stress fracture is not necessarily proof you don't have it. Two spots of calcification showed up under the skin directly over the shin bone in the sore places. He and the physician's assistant did lots of poking, tapping, and twisting. Nothing hurt when they did that except the two spots. Dr. said I can run if it doesn't hurt while running. And he said, "You know what you're doing." He meant regarding increase in mileage, etc. Reassuring. He said that if I did have stress fractures it would not be due to overtraining, but to bone loss due to hormone changes. Recommended more calcium and weight-bearing squats to build bone.

So the discomfort gets less every day, which is also encouraging. I didn't run last night. Hoping tomorrow I feel even better and can run the race.