Wednesday, August 26, 2009

me and my bike

A few evenings ago I was sitting out on my front stoop enjoying the quiet of dusk. All the children on our street, including ours, were inside, there was no traffic and the light was almost completely gone from the sky.

As I sat there, a woman about my age, wearing a filmy white dress came halfway down our court on a bicycle. She turned around just before she got to our house and headed back out of our court. I assumed she was just exploring and continued my daydreaming. A few minutes later she caught my eye again, she was riding past the end of my court. Now I was curious. What was she doing? I kept my attention at the end of the court and watched her sail past three or four more times. It was getting darker and darker but her white dress was shining out in the dusky light that remained. She came down my street one more time, and came all the way to the end and turned around. When she rode past my stoop she spotted me and just sort of nodded her head and continued on.

I was so jealous. She seemed like she was having such fun. Her dress was blowing in the wind she created with her movement, making her look like she was flying. I wanted to do it too, but by now it was entirely too dark. I made a promise to myself to ride my bike the next evening.

The next night around 8pm I hopped on my bike and headed out of my court. I realized that she must have been circling around the courts on our hilltop so I started off to do the same thing. As I made the turn out of my court I spotted her! She and her husband were in their driveway. She was holding her bike and her husband was filling the tires for her. I waved to them both and continued down the street. I rode in and out of 3 or 4 courts and before I got back to her street she passed me going the other way. I called out "I'm copying you!" she yelled "Great!". The next time we passed each other she said "Doesn't it feel wonderful?" and I answered with a resounding "YES". I have not officially met her and don't know her name, but one of these days I have every intention of stopping by and introducing myself.

Since that first night I have done this routine several more evenings. I even set the alarm on my cell phone to go off at 7:30 so that I would have more daylight. I think this is working well as an exercise routine for several reasons:
  1. There aren't any steep hills. Lots of small easy inclines but nothing that makes me get off and push or takes the fun out of the ride.
  2. I can quit at any time and not have a long trek back home.
  3. I don't have to change clothes or put on special shoes or start my car. I just open the garage door and head out.
Not only am I getting some much needed exercise and fresh air, but I am enjoying the sunsets and checking out how our neighbors decorate and landscape their homes. I have seen several houses that I want to take Sheldon past so I can ask him if we can copy them. One has a freshly painted white stoop and another has a lovely stone stoop both of which I covet.

I have also seen strange things, like the neighbor who empties his cat litter under the mailbox. Is that a statement against the US mail or the neighborhood?

I did have to stop for several days though because I put my back out and didn't want to aggravate it further. I'm better today though and hoping to hit the street again!

The best part????

I'm down 2 more pounds on my weightloss goal!!!! WOOOOOO!!!!

Easy Stroganoff

I made a new recipe the other night and although it was a little bland for dinner that night let me just tell you that the left overs were beyond fab. I just ate the last of it and wish I had more. I am sorely tempted to run to the store and get the stuff...hmmm.

I have made another crock pot stroganoff that was delicious but I don't know where I got the recipe and I can't find it now. This one is truly easy.

one can cream of mushroom soup, diluted
one can beef broth
1 pound stew beef cut into 1" pieces
1 cup sour cream
The recipe called for 2 cups cooked noodles but I used 1.5 cups cooked rice, your choice.

Combine soup, broth and meat in the crock pot and cook on high for 3-4 hours then cook on low for 3-4 more hours. Stir in the rice and sour cream and cook on high for 20 minutes. I didn't think to do this until after noon so I browned the meat first and then just cooked it on high for the 4 hours and low for 2 more hours.

As I said it was a little bland, but marvelous comfort food.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

I heart cloth diapers...

This is a small soapbox moment, not a dig at anyone who uses or used disposable diapers. It was only by using cloth diapers and breast feeding that I was able to stay home with my son for two and half years. For that whole first year he was basically free. He never tasted formula and never even had a bottle in his mouth. I taught him how to drink out of a straw when he was two months old and that was how he got water and juice and other liquids. I know that probably sounds extreme, but I knew from the beginning what a hard-headed child I had, and my fear was that he would like the "easiness" of a bottle nipple and never go back. I stand by that decision.

When Miles was born there was no doubt I was gonna use cloth diapers. In my family it was the norm so I never gave it a second thought, I even inherited diapers from one of my aunts so I didn't have to buy anything at the beginning and only had to buy a dozen now and then when the old ones fell apart. Old ones make great dust rags by the way. My friends all thought I was crazy for using cloth but one trip down the disposable aisle at the grocery store was enough to convince me that I was only crazy like a fox. Cloth diapers save money, save the planet, are better for the baby and make potty training easier too!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

August is a weird month...

Hi All,
I have a confession to make. I have a love hate relationship with August. I met, married and divorced my ex husband in different Augusts. I had my baby in August. My sweetheart was born in August. It brings hot and muggy weather to my part of the universe. It signals the Summer is flying by. This year I go back to school (year 26 of my 50 year plan) on August 31st and though I am excited about being back on campus, I am also terrified that I won't be able to cut it this time.

Also, as if this isn't enough stress, I have started Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred. If today is the 4th I must be on day 4. Yikes, she is kicking my butt! She wants me to kick my own butt, but I just can't get my legs up that high. I did it in the evening Friday/Saturday/Sunday, but I skipped last night so that I could do it in the morning starting today. I'm not sure which is worse. The best part about the morning is the fact that it is DONE for today. The first night, I literally cried when I was done. The next two nights I was sore and moany, but I made it through the whole thing without tears. This morning I could hardly finish some sections but I didn't feel near as sore (no idea how that worked out!) But after my shower, all I wanted to do was climb back into bed and collapse for 5 or 6 hours. The only place I can do it is in the bedroom as we don't have a DVD player set up in the basement yet and I don't want to disturb the whole family by doing it in the family room at 4:30 in the AM. Sheldon actually got up and did it with me this morning, which was nice, but I don't know if he will continue.

The best part is that I am already down four pounds!!! Go ME!!!

Monday, August 3, 2009

He will always be my baby.

My sweet baby will be 15 on the 16th of this month. He is over six feet tall and handsome and sweet as all get out. He broke his arm last Sunday skateboarding. I got to bathe him the other day for the first time since he was six. He was mortified, but it was my honor to get him into the tub, get him out of the tub, dry him off, clean his ears and get him dressed. Sometimes, just for a second, I miss those days of babyhood and boyhood. I was never a very patient mama. In fact, I didn't really want to be a mama. I'm glad his dad convinced me to try though. He is definitely the finest thing I have ever done.