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Showing posts from August, 2013

Clothes and more clothes

Tell me when you're bored. Heh.

I must have donated an entire container of old clothes to Goodwill at some point. It's not where it used to be, and it has always been stored in that one spot (guest room closet). The only thing I really remember being in there was a heavy woven cotton vest that I liked to wear with a t-shirt and jeans when the weather started getting cooler. So, really, no big loss.

Of the other two containers – a box and a bag – the bag had all the way-too-small stuff.

Twenty years ago I wore a size 6. A SIX! There are three dresses and several pairs of dressy shorts in that bag to prove it. I transferred everything from the bag to the box, because the box had all the stuff I can wear now. Including two skirts I could have been wearing all summer, and five pairs of jeans. Yee-haw!

Three of those pairs of jeans are size 12, and fit perfectly. Yee-haw AGAIN! Which is weird, because everything is from long ago and far away, back when a size 12 looked like today&#…

I did it, I did it, I did it!

With one day and two miles to spare, I hit my August goal of logging 150 walking/jogging miles. Yay, me!
I won't be repeating this feat in September. But I don't have to. I'm just happy I was able to hit it for August, even skipping three days due to illness.
Did I say yay, me? I think I did!

August 30 - Clutter

The picture plan

Jen wants photos of me IN the tunic. And the dress. And I promised a photo of me wearing the dress I wore for our blessing ceremony. Soon, my pretties, soon. I'm going to update the progress photos and add the wardrobe shots as soon as the scale hits the minus-50 mark.

As of this morning, that's still 4.5 pounds from now.

Also, since I don't have boots or leggings/tights, a photo of me wearing just the tunic would NOT be pretty, lemmetellya. (I'm also beginning to think flats would look better than boots. And I already have some of those. Still need tights, though.)

I follow a couple folks on Pinterest who pin the most beautiful clothing/accessory ideas. The photos come from retail websites, which I don't cruise much, since my closets already resemble retail stores, with similar items in multiple sizes. I really don't want to begin cruising retail sites, either.

Buying clothes is not something I enjoy doing. Wait. Let me back up. Trying on clothes is not someth…

August 29 - Lucky

Still purging …

the clothes.

I've gone through all but one dresser drawer – the only one left has pajamas, swimsuits and workout wear in it. Yesterday I tackled the closet and got through everything but the sweaters. The giveaway pile is growing, and includes the two pair of linen slacks I shrank on purpose earlier in the summer. So sad to be getting rid of them, but they truly are miles too large now.

I have two more old-clothing stashes to go through and then I can start thinking about what I'll need going forward.

Both of you may be wondering why I'm getting rid of all these too-big clothes. Well, every time I've hung on to a larger-sized wardrobe in the past, I've grown back into it. I have no intention of doing that this time. I am, in fact, running out of time at my age, and I'd like for my current and future clothes to be smaller sizes than the ones I'm getting rid of.

Back when I was buying all this new stuff in larger sizes (when I'd resigned myself to always …

August 28 - Corridor

How I know summer's over

Summer technically began June 21 and lasts until September 22. Really, though? It started on Memorial Day,  just as it always has, and it ended last night. (Sometimes the Memorial Day holiday also falls on my birthday, so we could just say summer starts on the day I was born. OH YES WE COULD.)

It's August 28. Three weeks of summer remain. Why do I say it ended last night? Because I drove home from my volunteer gig at the prison in the dark. SOB!

The more birthdays I celebrate, the more I avoid nighttime driving. It wouldn't be right, though, to leave the other volunteer carrying the meeting by herself until daylight lasts beyond 8:30 p.m. (Probably wouldn't be very good for me to go that long without a meeting either.)

So I made that drive a little more slowly and a little more carefully last night, watching for deer (there are far too many this year, many more than I ever remember) and listening to Dylan.

There are plenty of good things about summer winding down.
Fewer bug…

August 27 - 10 minutes from home

Shopping wears me OUT!

Yesterday had 24 hours in it, just like every other day of the week, but it seemed to last SO. MUCH. LONGER.

This "Young" chick ain't gettin' any younger. But I think I might have skipped the last two stops 45 pounds ago. My husband and I had a late lunch, where I was suddenly overcome with fatigue. He offered to come back another day, but seriously? We were right there, and the idea of driving all that way to go shopping AGAIN, at a later date. was less appealing than just getting it done.

So it's done. YAY!

I have two events coming up soon, both of which require dressier dresses than I already own. I have a gorgeous hand-knit (by me!) jacket that looks great with a long skinny skirt that will work for one event, but it needs to be cool that night. And here in West Virginia, there's no guarantee it's going to be cool on October 12.

The other event is the annual convention for West Virginia Federation of Democratic Women, next month. I don't remember …

Oops! Skipped a day!

I hope NaBloPoMo doesn't put me in timeout.

The Saturday meeting (3rd District, WV Federation of Democratic Women) went very well. We were disappointed that our Congressman and Governor declined our invitation to attend and speak, but those who did present information more than made up for their absence.

The political climate here in West Virginia has gone from true-blue to purple. And it's a kind of reddish-purple, since the Governor and our freshman Senator are widely regarded as Democrats in Name Only (DINOs). Our true-blue Senator, Jay Rockefeller, is retiring after this term. The announced Republican candidate for his seat has won her Congressional district for several years. No Democrat has come out swinging against her yet. Here's the frontrunner … but she hasn't announced.

Two of WV's three Congressional representatives are Republican. My Congressman, the only Democrat, is facing a tough, tough challenge in 2014. Tough. He's been sliding to the right of…

August 25 - Culture

Big day today

I'm co-hosting a Democratic women's meeting for the 3rd District of West Virginia today. Lunch at noon, speaker and business following the meal. I have to welcome everyone and give a presentation on how social media can help our individual county clubs.

I'm also going to talk about communication. I'm not good at connecting with my local members because

I don't much care for talking on the phone, and Not all of them have e-mail addresses
My preferred method of conversation is actually texting. But I realize not everyone texts. For me, the unlimited texting package is worth every penny. And, really, it's not very many pennies at all. The funny thing is, though, I mostly text with only half a dozen people, three of which are my daughter and her children.

(I will send a 140-character text to one of the grandchildren and get a yes or no reply. They're definitely not getting their money's worth. Heh.)

We're also going to discuss increasing membership (agai…

August 23 - Yellow

I'm so awesome


We're all awesome. Just to be clear. Truly. All of us.

But I just took the screenshot of Week 6 of the Cto5K workouts and I'm telling you what:

You can see that several days elapsed from Day 2 to Day 3. Several days of travel and illness. Several days where I had NO energy. Two of which I just simply stayed in bed. And the rest of those days I could only walk. No running was possible AT ALL.

All that rest was, apparently, a good thing for running 22 straight minutes. The first two days the running intervals were broken up with short periods of walking. Yesterday was the continuous run. The app lets me know when I'm at the halfway point, so I knew I was just slightly slower than I needed to be to hit two miles. Alas, I just didn't have it in me. But .04 of a mile short is, um, pretty awesome! Yes? Yes!

In other goal-oriented news, my quest to log 150 miles this month is within sight. I absolutely have to average five miles a day for the next nine da…

August 22 - Room

The one bad thing about paleo. And then some more stuff.

Maybe there are more, I don't know. Probably there are more. But for me, after eating this way for four and a half months (I know, isn't that crazy!?!), the bad thing is this: When you're hungry – really hungry, shaky hungry, ready-to-pass-out hungry – you have to STOP WHAT YOU'RE DOING and COOK SOMETHING.

Which can be inconvenient if you're out and about.

Fortunately that kind of hunger rarely happens, but it did for me, just now. I was in the middle of emptying the dishwasher and was suddenly overcome with hunger. The dishwasher remained half emptied as I quickly threw some bacon in a skillet and got the eggs ready to scramble.

A note: There really is no "quickly" when it comes to opening a new package of bacon. With all the modern technology we enjoy and all the innovative products available, WHY can't someone develop a packaging system for bacon that doesn't involve scissors?

So. Breakfast has been cooked and eaten (and my huband finished putt…

August 21 - Slow

I'm okay. Really I am.

I did, however, miss a great photo opportunity yesterday, due to poor planning on my part.

The prompt was "stairs." (Here's where I get my daily prompts.)

I don't have stairs in my house. There is a small set of steps at one end of the patio. There's a flight of boring wooden stairs in the garage. When I first saw yesterday's prompt three weeks ago, I figured it would be one I'd have to skip.

So I promptly forgot the prompt. AND THEN WENT TO THE STATE CAPITOL. Which is, of course, a gorgeous architectural masterpiece full of staircases. Marble staircases. With gorgeous wooden bannisters. I guess you'll have to take my word for it, since I DIDN'T TAKE ANY PHOTOS.

Almost makes me want to go back and try again.

I did take this photo (among many others. Oh, and see all that marble? That's what the staircases were made of, too):
And here's what I have to say about it.

Our county Democratic women's club decided to have our monthly meeting ye…

August 19 - Lost

The streak endeth

I don't even know how many days I walked in a row. I can access the website more easily on the laptop. I'm blogging from bed, on the tablet.My throat started hurting Friday evening in Charlottesville, where we'd gone for our little getaway. My husband's son was spending the night with us Saturday, so we left early to have plenty of time to get ready for his visit.By Sunday morning I couldn't talk and decided just to stay in bed. The boys took care of their own breakfasts.I tried getting up this morning and ended up passing out and falling in the kitchen. Low blood sugar and/or pressure, probably. Throat is still sore. Slight fever. Blech.But ... it's Monday. We all know what that means, right? Another 3.5 down, for a total of 45.5. Not bad after three days of restaurant eating.And now I'm going back to sleep.

August 17 - Exercise

August 16 - Cooking

August 15 - The best

August 14 - Trash

What was I thinking?

Even though Bob Dylan sang, "Time passes slowly, here in the mountains …," sometimes time kinda gets away from me.

Last time I went to the grocery – I don't even remember what day it was, but it hasn't been very long – I stocked up on produce. That's standard operating procedure around here. We've eaten quite a bit of it, and yet here it is THE DAY BEFORE WE LEAVE FOR A THREE-DAY TRIP and the crispers are still full of peppers and lettuce and grapes, oh my.

The grapes can go in the freezer. Looks like I'll be having a salad for lunch and stir-fry for dinner. Good thing carrots keep a long time.

• • •
The visitation for Melissa was very emotional. The children have been taken back and more than likely split up, which is beyond sad. Giving them up was Melissa's decision, according to the bishop's wife. The sister I stayed with when I took Melissa and Simon to Pennsylvania actually cried on my shoulder. She said their mother died at 57, and they all …

August 13 - Fast

Can't. Sleep.

Thank you for your kind words and thoughts about Melissa.

What I didn't tell you yesterday is that she and her husband were fostering four children. The youngest is one and the oldest is not quite six. I don't know what will happen to them now. The agency felt they were being well cared for. If they took them from Melissa and Simon they would have to be split up into different families, as no one else was willing to take four. So they stayed, despite the diagnosis and with a lot of help from the community.

When I was visiting Melissa Saturday, the littlest one tucked himself onto the couch beside me. He wanted a little cuddle, which I was happy to give him. I didn't see any of the other children, but there were many people in the house and I know someone was paying attention to them.

Visitation is this afternoon at four; my husband and I will go. Her funeral is tomorrow, and I think we'll stay home. Burials, to me, seem like private, family events.

It's raining her…

August 12 - Macro (Dew drop on tomato leaf)

She's gone

A neighbor just stopped by to tell me that my Amish friend Melissa, who I wrote about this morning, died last night.

The Amish communities here have church every other week. It seemed odd to me to see so many buggies yesterday, when I knew that church had been the previous week. Turns out, according to the neighbor, that they all those families – 18 buggies altogether – spent their Sunday morning and a good part of the afternoon singing to Melissa.

She surely loved that.

She's up, she's down, she's up, she's down

Lost 2.5 pounds this week, for a total of 42 since Christmas. LoseIt says I'll reach my revised goal of 65 pounds on Thanksgiving Day.

I think LoseIt is a little optimistic. And more than a little ironic. Heh.

I've been feeling somewhat subdued (I always want to spell that "s-u-b-d-u-d-e") this weekend. I learned a couple weeks ago that one of my Amish neighbors is terminally ill with bladder cancer. Stage 4. She's young, not yet 40, and I've gotten to know her quite well since they've become part of our community.

I drove her and her husband to visit her family last fall. I've taken her on many shopping trips. I helped her get a doctor's appointment at our county's free health clinic, after many visits with two different chiropractors.

The Amish don't care much for modern medicine, preferring to take a more natural path to healing with vitamins and herbs. Unfortunately for my neighbor, she waited too long. She was told she had Lyme's …

August 11 - I love doing this!

August 10 - Beverage

Yesterday turned out to be GREAT

At least the fitness portion of it. The rest of the day was fine, but I really felt super-energized for the morning workout session.

Yesterday was Week 5, Day 3 of Cto5K. My husband and I again started out together on Indian Creek Road (hereafter known as the flat road). I always record the total distance/pace using the Map My Run app on my phone. After a mile, I started the RunDouble training app and was a little surprised to find I was supposed to run 20 minutes straight, preceded and followed by five-minute warm-up and cool-down walking periods.

That means this week's training sessions were all different. I'd gotten pretty used to doing the same thing each day. Wonder what next week will bring? (I don't plan ahead. I'm more of a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants kinda gal.)

At any rate, I'm glad we were on the flat road, because I still can't run up all the hills on the road I live on. (Making me think I should probably have a look at the upcoming workouts, to mak…

August 9 - 2:00

If you keep on doing what you've always done ...

you'll keep on getting what you've always got.

That's something I learned in AA, years ago, and it's worked very well for me when I remember it.

I'm thinking about it this morning because today's weather will be a repeat of yesterday's, and yesterday's SUCKED. The temperature wasn't so very awful – high 70s/low 80s – but the humidity was quite high and it rained most of the day.

My husband and I drove to the flat-road route so we could walk together and it was most unpleasant. Little gnats buzzing around, much sweating, very sluggish. We turned around before we even got to two miles. And before we got back home again it was pouring down rain.

If I don't want yesterday to repeat itself, I need to get out NOW, while it's still coolish. The humidity is an ungodly 100 percent, but I can handle that if it's only 70 degrees. More rain is headed this way, probably in less than two hours.

Therefore … see ya!

August 8 - Peek-a-boo

This might stir things up

Thank you all SO MUCH for your encouragement and empathy and wise words yesterday. I was on track and back to basics all day, and already feel better mentally and physically.

It's truly amazing how unclean eating affects not just my body but also my mind and emotions, particularly after an extended period of clean eating. This is all new for me. Counting calories or points or fat grams, as I have in the past, meant I could eat anything as long as it fit within the daily calorie or point or fat-gram parameters.

"Anything" included sugar-free or low-fat substitutes for real foods which had too many calories per serving to be satisfying. Think frozen desserts, processed meats, Snackwell cookies and anything that comes in a 100-calorie pack.

To be sure, I'm still counting. My current parameters are calories and carbohydrate grams. But the foods I'm choosing are as simple as they can be, and generally require a bit more prep work than opening a package.

Sometimes I ha…

August 7 - A sign


I'm writing this for me. You're welcome to read it, of course, I really love it when you read my almost-daily drivel. And I love when you write a few words and leave them here as comments. In this case, your comments are certainly welcome, but your advice isn't. Tea and sympathy, maybe. Encouragement to keep on keepin' on, CERTAINLY. But I'm not asking for advice.

I'm sorry if that sounds harsh, but hey. It's my blog and I'm setting up rules. At least for today's post. Heh.

I've been following this primal/paleo/cavewoman plan for four months, as of today. My weight loss has slowed considerably, after the initial whoosh. I weigh myself daily and I'm up 1.5 pounds already from Monday's official weigh-in.

Eating sugar and wheat (in the form of s'mores) over the weekend seems to have pushed the craving button in my brain. I'm certainly eating cleanly again, but I'm not loving it the way I did a few weeks ago.

Time to do an attitu…

August 6 - This means a lot to me

The results are in!

Well, one of them, anyway.

I came in 36th out of 54 total runners in the 5K I did weekend before last. Official time was 36:46, which means my pace was 5.06 mph. Blistering! Blazing! Hahaha.

I have no idea how many runners were in the 60-to-64 age group. I'm guessing I was it.

Obviously the organizers of this 5K have no idea how important it is to provide as much information as possible for serious participants like me. (I'm cracking myself up here.)

I approached blaze-aliciousness yesterday during one five-minute running interval of the Cto5K program. The little voice said my pace was 10:05 – nearly 6 mph! I remember, long, long ago in a galaxy far, far away, actually running on a treadmill for half an hour at a 10-minute pace.

Who was that woman, and is it too late to get her back?

So yesterday was our seventh wedding anniversary and we began the day with a nice long walk along Indian Creek. I did, indeed, leave him in my dust a couple of times. I logged 7.6 miles in the sam…

August 5 - Early

Lots of catching up to do

First, though, it's Monday, and we all know what that means, right? Here in the Middle of Nowhere it's weigh-in day. Sadly, I didn't make my mini-goal of weighing what I weighed when I got married seven years ago TODAY. In fact, I gained a pound.

[Insert very sad face here.]

I find it very difficult to blog when I have houseguests, and even though my houseguests were really yard guests – my son and granddaughter camped in our back yard over the weekend – I still didn't find time to post anything more than photos.

So. Last week was the fourth of the Cto5K training workouts. I figured out that if the walking interval came at the bottom of a hill, I could just walk back up it and run down for the next running interval. Maybe a bit of a cheat, but OH WELL. Here are my stats:
I felt really good about last week's training. What I really wish is that I didn't have to drive to the flat road. I'm a teensy bit uncomfortable running there alone, as it's quite a De…

August 4 - Fresh

August 3 - Skyline

Just a photo and a very few words

We lit the inaugural campfire in the new firepit last night. I stayed outside later than I have since I was in high school. Heh. Had so much fun roasting marshmallows and learning what a "biscuit on a stick" is. (My son baked them, and he, my husband and my granddaughter gobbled them up! It's a canned biscuit. No big deal.)

We're off today on a bit of a hike to a waterfall. I love having family visit ...

August 2 - Incomplete

New challenge. And a dose of gratitude.

So I managed to walk/jog/run 130 miles in July, which helped me hit that 700-mile mark for the year. What better way to celebrate August than to go for 150? That's only 4.838 miles a day – let's just call it five, shall we?
We'll be going on a short trip later in the month, but I'm pretty sure we'll be able to manage a couple fitness walks among the other touristy walking we plan to do. If I throw a couple six-milers in each week, that should take care of an unplanned rest day.
But since I'm streaking (18 straight days so far), I'm not planning on having any unplanned rest days, either.
I was sitting somewhere yesterday – can't remember if it was in the car or in a chair – and felt a little itchy right between my shoulder blades. So I scratched that spot, and then realized that was something I didn't used to be able to do. It had more to do with shoulder pain than mobility, but 40 pounds ago I had to ask for help. 
When I get down to brass tacks, I …

August 1 - Something beginning with N


Happy August! We're smack dab in the middle of the Dog Days of summer, according to Wikipedia, although the Farmer's Almanac says they run from July 3 through August 11. So we're almost done! We should be experiencing the hottest temperatures of the year now, and the least amount of rainfall.

Not. Happening.


Mind you, I'm certainly not complaining. The cloud cover and sprinkles are keeping the heat down, thus reducing the need for air conditioning. In fact, I'd probably have the house opened up if it weren't for the humidity.

I am getting a little weary of the morning fog, however. Day after day after day I wake up hoping for clear skies, and day after day after day I'm greeted by a thick grey mist hovering over the hayfield to the west and the mountains to the east.

Why am I weary? Because my preference is to walk in clean, clear air, rather than the thick, moist atmosphere the fog creates. BUT: It&#…