Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I loves myself an Adirondack Chair!

I just completed one of the funnest things I've done in a while, and I'm so proud of myself. My friend Ana and I took a woodworking class for women, where we made our own Adirondack chairs! :) It was super fun! We got to use all sorts of tools - table saw, chop saw, band saw, scroll saw, router, sanders ... and lots of things I'm now forgetting the names of. It was 5 weeks, and I had a lot more fun than I'd thought I would.

I want to take it again so I'll have matching chairs. So here's Ana doing some free-handed cutting on the table saw. All the machines made me a bit nervous at first, but you get used to them quickly. I think this one was my favourite, the router. It's what helps make these nice rounded edges on things. Here I am learning how to use it the first night. That's Mary Anne, the instructor showing me what to do.And here we are in our finished chairs! :) I'm so proud of us!
And here it is outside my front door. I want to paint "I made this chair" on it so that everyone looking at it knows that I made it!!! :) Have I said yet that I'm really proud of Ana and myself? I'm not really a tool-type girl...or at least I never thought I was. But now... I can see how you can get the woodworking bug.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Ankylosing Spondylitis and how to deal with it

Wow, really, I'll try to get better at updating! :) You know, it's been a really tough year medically. My back got all messed up when I was in Vancouver. In looking for a cause of that...well, we found out why. I've been diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis. Oh hooray.

It's a type of arthritis that affects usually the spine and causes inflammation which can lead, in severe cases, to a fused spine. But hopefully it won't get that bad for me. It does most likely mean chronic pain and flare-ups. And there's nothing they can do about it. Exercise, good posture and pain management...that's about it.

I've been thinking for a while about what I want for my third tattoo. For over a year I've been thinking about Randy Pausch and his comment about choosing to be a Tigger or an Eeyore. If you look two posts below this one you'll see my explanation. Well, this latest just made me want it even more. So this last Sunday, after careful research of artists, I got my third tattoo. :) I'm very happy with it.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Camping and Dirt Series...oh yea, and the HDO

Whooboy! What a busy weekend! It was the High Desert Omnium, the road bike race put on by the Bend Bella Cyclists this weekend. It went REALLY well, but it's always crazy busy. More so than the mtb races I've done, 'cause this was two days...and road races ARE just more complicated. Anyway, it went really well, I have some pics...but those will have to wait until I get back.

Back from where? :) Well, I leave tomorrow morning for a week's vacation, culminating in a Dirt Series clinic at Whistler! I'm really excited. We're also going to spend a couple days in Vancouver so I can meet my new niece...and have a memorial for my grandmother who passed away a couple weeks ago.

I'm looking forward to having a great vacation. I have pictures...but you'll have to wait until I get back.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Every day, I CHOOSE to be a Tigger

In the past year I've had quite a few people comment on how I've managed to stay positive despite all the physical and emotional setbacks that have come my way. It's because every day I choose to be a Tigger instead of an Eeyore. I've had a role model recently whom I would be lucky to emulate.

Have you heard about Randy Pausch. He was a professor who was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and was told in 2007 that he only had 3-6 months to live. He lived almost a year. He gave an amazing lecture, wrote a book...and he passed away this last Friday.

He said in his now famous speech that we all have a choice. We can choose to be a Tigger or an Eeyore. He has TRULY inspired me. I chose, every day, to be a Tigger. And I hope that when my time comes I can say what he did: "I don't know how to not have fun. I'm dying... and I'm having fun". It's been my mantra every time something comes up that challenges me...I choose to be a Tigger. Not I AM a Tigger...but I choose to be.

If you haven't listened to his lecture or read his book, check it out:
http://download.srv.cs.cmu.edu/~pausch/

Tomorrow when you wake up...what do you want to chose, Tigger or Eeyore?

What an honor!

My brother and sister-in-law have done me the ultimate honor. They've given my name to Mia as her middle name! Chandra's a GREAT name, and I hope she likes it too. I was so happy, and touched, when they told me, it made me cry. :)
Here's Kai being a great big brother. Gee, think he likes her?? :) :)

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Mia's birth, from her daddy's perspective

I love my brother's story. Especially the part where he passes out...
"At 9:45 Saturday morning Jennifer produced a beautiful baby girl (or, to those without child-bearing experience, a squidgy caracature that turns from blue to pink faster than - and not completely unlike - a squid does.)

With my svelte build it was no surprise when she weighed in at a meagre (ahem) 8 lbs 9 oz. Yes the real father is quite possibly from the water buffalo family, but we love her just the same, of course.

Mom's in rehab after a drug mixing effort that would've earned her 'cred' in Hunter S Thompson's circles. She is, however fine and facing neither remission nor the shakes.

Possibly the best part (knowing you sadistic lot) was when, after a night of no sleep (nor Red Bull Vodkas) and little to eat, just when the anesthesiologist was preparing the epidural, dad fainted, plopped in his seat, out cold, and thereby provided mum's laughing gas with some brilliant material. We've named her Mia."

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Welcome to the world Mia!

My new niece was born this morning...a week late! Her name is Mia... which in Italian means either "wished for child" or "rebellion". I think she's both, since she refused to be born when she was "supposed" to. Hee hee. Here are a couple pictures, but check out my Flickr site for more.

interesting book

I just finished Raw Shark Texts by Steven Hall. Wow. Now that's one mind-f*#k of a book! Here's what the description is: "When Eric Sanderson wakes from a lengthy unconsciousness, he has no memory. A letter from "The First Eric Sanderson" directs him to psychologist Dr. Randle, who tells Eric he is afflicted with a "dissociative condition." Eric learns about his former life—specifically a glorious romance with girlfriend Clio Aames, who drowned three years earlier—and is soon on the run from the Ludovician, a "species of purely conceptual fish" that "feeds on human memories and the intrinsic sense of self." Once he hooks up with Scout, a young woman on the run from her own metaphysical predator, the two trek through a subterranean labyrinth made of telephone directories (masses of words offer protection, as do Dictaphone recordings), decode encrypted communications and encounter a series of strange characters on the way to the big-bang showdown with the beast."

A conceptual shark???? What the hell? Interesting book...but I have no idea what i think about it. We're reading it for book club, so it will be very interesting to see what others think. I'm not sure it's amazing literature, or if it even succeeds in it's attempt...but it did keep me interested, so that's something at least.

I said I was going to blog more about the Cascade Cycling Classic...but to be honest I'm too tired. We did have our Story Stars program today with Todd Parr...I think he's my new favourite author! He's a great guy, and I really enjoyed getting to know him. If you haven't already, check out his books with your kids.
Some of my favourites are Underwear Do's and Don'ts, Reading Makes You Feel Good, the Otto series and It's Ok to be Different. Oh heck, I love all his work :)

It was great. the Staff all wore underwear on our heads like one of our characters! Hee hee. We had dinner with him, and I got some books autographed, which was great. Definitely check out his work.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Cascade Cycling Classic

Wow, busy but great weekend! I officiated for the CCC on Friday at the crit and Sat on the Cascade Lakes road stage and Sunday on the Awbrey Butte circuit. Sat and Sun I did the Cat 2's and on Friday I did them all except the pro men and pro women. I'll update more on another day when I'm not rushing off to a Board meeting.

It was super-fun. Stressful, but fun. I learned a lot in preparation for the High Desert Omnium which is in a couple weeks. If you want to check out the pictures I took of the CCC look at my Flickr site:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/chandravan

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Another fun day at the library....

So here's what I've been dealing with the last couple days. We've had two instances of vandalism in the men's bathroom - feces smeared all over the walls, toilet paper rolls soaked with urine, toilet paper rolls stuffed into the toilets, wads of paper towels and toilet paper on the ceiling...YUCK!!!!!

So we called the sheriff...and it's a felony! We know who did it, two boys from out of town that come in to use the computer. We have their parent's cell phone number and the sheriff is tracking them down! Whooboy are those two young men in TROUBLE!

As they should be. That's just disgusting!!!! Who does that? Who on earth wants to play/touch their own poop!!!! Have I said "Yuck!" yet?

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

No WAY!!!!

I seem to be very into the videos the last week or so! :)

There's NO WAY I could do that. It made me shudder and look away just watching a couple of the sections!

I had a great weekend, but I haven't downloaded my pics yet. Fun fourth, Bella ride, then Sunday rode from Swampy to Bend again with Barrie and then floated the river... I'm telling you, there's NO better way to spend a weekend day!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Awwwwww!

I can't help it, I'm SUCH a sucker for these types of things.
I'll do a little research to see if I can find out whether this is real or not...

Ok, did my research. It is indeed true and that is real footage. The whole story is pretty amazing.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Cat vs crayfish

Cat vs Crayfish


Not only do I LOVE the choice in music, that crayfish has got quite the fighters stance! And the dog in the back is just bored...

Monday, June 30, 2008

Pickett's and beyond...

I can't believe I didn't take any pictures of Pickett's Charge! I was too busy running around to stop and take pics. Oh well. It went really smoothly, so I'm happy. I'm also super happy that it's over!!!! :) I love doing those, but they're a lot of work and take a lot out of you. Work's been busy since then too, so I was feeling a bit overwhelmed.

It's getting better now. I had a good weekend. Sunday I steam cleaned my carpets. Again, I'm glad I did it...but did I really have to pick such an already hot day! :) My house was pretty damn warm by the evening. Saturday Barrie and I rode from Swampy down to Bend. The mosquitoes were really bad. And they much preferred Barrie to me. They were driving her insane!

I love that ride. It's so pretty. I was hoping that the trail was completely clear of snow, and it was except for one snow mound that we had to skirt around. It was great though and we plan to do it again soon. I have a couple friends that want to join us on that one next time we ride it.

My legs did pretty well. By the time we got down to Ben's my legs were starting to feel quite weak from all the standing you do on the descending. They didn't hurt though! That may have been helped that we floated the river after riding. Iced my legs. Or at least cooled them. LOVE floating the river! :)

So a couple weeks ago I went to BC to get my Nexus pass and visit the Richmond library for work. I did manage to see my brother and his family which was really nice. They just bought a new house, and it's within walking distance of where they currently live. They're expecting their second child in a couple weeks.

Anyway, we took a walk to see their new place, and of course Kai had to ride his bike. He's so cute. He did have one oopsie into the tall grass.
It took him quite a while to struggle upright then get his bike out. Daddy helped, of course.

The raccoons are back! :) This is my one raccoon that comes every night. I put out a water dish for him too, 'cause he gets HOT. Last night he washed his food in it, like raccoons like to do, then he tipped it over so he could lay in it belly down. Cutie. Don't worry, I'm not making a pet of him.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

BBQ Recipes

So these are the recipes from my BBQ this weekend:

Costal Cuisine Dry Rub
(good for seafood, chicken and vegetables, make in advance and store in an airtight container)
2 tbsp salt
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp black powder
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp dried basil
1 tbsp paprika
1 tbsp dried tarragon (optional)

Costal Cedar Planked Salmon
1 filet of fresh salmon
3 tbsp Costal Cuisine Dry Rub or your favourite marinade
1 cedar grilling plank

Set salmon, skin side down on soaked plank. Season with Costal Cuisine rub or your favourite marinade.
Place plank on preheated grill with low to medium heat. Grill for 10-20 minutes with lid closed, until salmon flakes easily.

(For cedar planked chicken substitute boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Grill for 30 minutes or until juices run clear.


Red Pepper and Corn Relish
(for on top of salmon)
2 tbsp plus 2 tsp coriander seeds
4 red bell peppers
4 tbsp olive oil
4 cups corn kernels (if fresh, from about 4 ears)
4 green onions, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
¼ cup dry white wine
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp honey
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

Toast coriander seeds in a small skillet over medium heat until aromatic, stirring frequently, about 2 minutes. Cool slightly. Crush in mortar with pestle.
Char bell peppers over gas flame or under broiler until blackened on all sides. Enclose in paper bag 10 minutes. Peel and seed peppers; cut into ½ inch pieces.
Heat 2 tbsp oil in large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add corn and green onions and sauté until corn begins to brown in spots, about 5 minutes.
Add garlic and thyme, sauté about 2 minutes.
Add wine and stir until liquid evaporates, about 1 minute.
Remove from heat and stir in bell peppers, lemon juice, honey and remaining 2 tbsp olive oil. Add 1 ½ tsp crushed coriander seeds.
Relish can be made 8 hours ahead: cover and refrigerate. Stir over medium heat until heated through before serving.
Stir in parsley and season to taste with salt and pepper.


Ceviche
1 lb bay scallops
8 limes, juiced
2 tomatoes, diced
5 green onions, minced
2 stalks celery, sliced
½ green bell pepper, minced
½ cup chopped fresh parsley
1 ½ tbsp olive oil
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro

Rinse scallops and place in a medium bowl. Pour lime juice over the scallops. The scallops should be completely immersed in the lime juice. Chill the lime juice and scallops all day or overnight until the scallops are opaque (you cannot see through them).
Empty ½ of the lime juice from the bowl. Add remaining ingredients. Stir gently. Chill and for effect serve in fancy glasses with a slice of lime hanging over the rim.


Tuna Ceviche
2 lbs sushi-grade tuna, cut into ½ inch cubes
1 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
½ cup cilantro, roughly chopped (plus a few leaves for garnish)
1 tbsp finely chopped ginger root
½ jalapeno, finely chopped
¾ cup coconut milk
4 scallions (or green onions), green part only, thinly sliced
1 tbsp fresh lime juice
½ tsp fish sauce
1 tbsp grated lemon zest

In a medium bowl, combine all of the ingredients except the cilantro garnish and chill for 2 hours. Salt to taste and garnish with cilantro leaves.


Grilled Vegetables
Marinade - mix all ingredients well, makes about 2 cups
1 cup olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp roasted garlic or roasted garlic puree
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup champagne vinegar
2 tsp Dijon or spicy brown mustard

Vegetables
4 Roma tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1 head fennel, trimmed and sliced ¼ inch thick, 8 slices
zucchini, thickly sliced
yellow squash, thickly sliced
10 medium asparagus
Red bell pepper, sliced into wedges
Yellow bell pepper, sliced into wedges
Shitake mushroom caps or quartered large mushrooms
Vidalia onion, thickly sliced
¼ cup toasted pine nuts
¼ cup asiago cheese
½ cup chiffonade basil

To cook vegetables (this is for a more “finished” veggie platter than I did the other night)
Marinade vegetables in about 1 ¼ cup of above marinade for 2 hours (approx)
Preheat grill
Cook vegetables on grill until tender, turning over as needed
Remove vegetables from grill, let come to room temperature
Arrange vegetables on large platter
Sprinkle with basil, pine nuts and asiago; drizzle with remaining marinade


Herb Marinated Back Yard Garden Salad
4 large tomatoes cut into ¾ inch chunks
½ red onion julienne
1 yellow or orange pepper julienne
1 red pepper julienne
1 jalapeno pepper, fine julienne
1 cucumber cut into quartered slices
½ cup basil chopped
¼ cup mint chopped
½ cup scallions (or green onions) chopped
4 tbsp chives, chopped
½ tbsp thyme chopped
(6 oz mixed greens of your choosing) - optional

For the dressing:
4 cloves garlic chopped
2/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup rice vinegar
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp lemon zest
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
salt and pepper

Mix all dressing ingredients in a 2 qt bowl
Add produce and herbs to dressing, fold gently, let stand for 10 minutes
Adjust seasonings if needed
Optional: serve with greens of your choosing


Passion Fruit Sangria
2 bottles sweet white wine (Voniger, Muscat, Sweet Riesling, Gewurztraminer)
2 lemons cut into wedges
2 oranges cut into wedges
2 limes cut into wedges
4 cups passion fruit juice (I used guava since I couldn’t find passion fruit)
4 cups pineapple juice
2 cups ginger ale
2 kiwi fruit

Pour wine in the pitcher and squeeze the juice wedges from the lemon, orange and lime into the wine. Toss in the fruit wedges. Toss in the fruit wedges (leaving out seeds if possible) and add passion fruit juice and pineapple juice. Chill overnight. Add ginger ale and thinly sliced kiwi fruit just before serving.


Blood Orange Sangria
2 bottles fruity red wine
2 cups sliced strawberries
2 cups apple juice or cider
2/3 cup Triple Sec (orange flavored liqueur)
½ cup sugar
4 whole cloves
3 seedless oranges, each cut into 16 wedges
2 cinnamon sticks
1 lemon
1 lime
Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher and stir until sugar dissolves. Cover and chill 8 hours or overnight. Discard cloves and cinnamon sticks.


Frozen Blackberry-Lemon Chiffon Pie
1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
3 tbsp butter, melted
2 tbsp milk
Cooking spray
3 cups blackberries (fresh if available, but frozen work too)
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
¼ tsp salt
4 large egg whites (I use Egg Beaters)
1 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
6 tbsp water

Combine first 3 ingredients in a bowl, toss with a fork until moist. Press into bottom and up sides of a 9-inch springform pan coated with cooking spray.
Combine 3 cups blackberries and fresh lemon juice in a blender; process until smooth. Strain mixture through s sieve over a bowl. Discard solids.
Place salt and egg whites in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed until foamy.
Combine sugar and water in a saucepan; bring to a boil. Cook, without stirring, until a thermometer registers 250 degrees.
Gradually pour the hot sugar into egg mixture, eating at medium speed, then at high speed, until stiff peaks form.
Gently fold in blackberry mixture; pour into prepared crust. Cover and freeze 8 hours or overnight. Let stand 5 minutes at room temperature before serving. Garnish with fresh blackberries and mint if desired.


(I didn’t make this one, but for those that said it sounded interesting…)
Pecan, Cranberry & Apricot Stuffed Apples
4 Rome or other baking apples
¼ cup pecans, finely chopped
¼ cup chopped dried cranberries and apricots
¼ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
1 tbsp melted butter
¼ cup brown sugar
8 cinnamon sticks for garnish

Halve and remove cores from apples. Cut a small slice from the bottom of each half so that it can lie flat on the plank
Combine ingredients and spoon stuffing into each apple half. Garnish with cinnamon sticks. Place apples on soaked plank.
Grill for about 10 minutes on low heat until the apples are tender, but be careful not to overook.
Wonderful served with ice cream.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Suttle Lake

The Suttle Lake ride is truly quite easy, but it's super-fun because of where it is. Here's Izzy taking a swim. Not sure I'd be dipping my toes in there, but next time I go I'm definitely bringing my bathing suit! :)

It was brilliant sunshine when we started, but the clouds started rolling in about 1/2 way through our ride. It was off and on sunny for the rest of the way around the lake. This is a shot from the far end looking back the way we came.


The trail is RIGHT along the lake, so you do pass "through" the campgrounds. Here someone has very nicely tied their boat to a tree across the trail! Barrie wanted to cut the line...I told her she couldn't! :) You can see the trail here. It's like this all the way around the lake - clear and well defined.

We stopped at one of the campgrounds to sit for a while and eat a picnic lunch. We took too long, because about 2 minutes before the end of our ride it started to POUR!!!! Here's Barrie putting on her rain jacket. I'm amazed that you can't see the rain...it was coming down really hard. And of course my jacket was in the car. By the time we got there and got our bikes on the roof I was soaked! :) The nice thing about technical clothing is that it dries really quickly

So the look around the lake is only about 3.5 miles, but you start the ride at the Camp Sherman road, which makes it a 13 mile lollipop. The above picture is on our way back along the lollipop stem. The trail in that section is gently rolling with nothing too technical. The "scariest" parts were where the bushes and trees had not been trimmed back yet and you literally had to duck down over the bike and close your eyes to get through! Hee hee.

A super-fun ride that I can't wait to do again.

Monday, June 02, 2008

June is here

Well after a week or two of nasty weather the sun is back! Thank god!!!! All is well, but my poor little legs are just not doing as well as I'd hoped. Still a lot of pain, and some noticeable loss of strength. A lot of that is just from lack of use, but some is probably caused by the surgery. so what that means is that I need to hit the gym more and start concentrating on building that strength back up.

I want one of those Staples Easy Buttons for my life...but evidently it doesn't work that way! :)

Saturday a friend and I rode the Suttle Lake tie and loop. It's not a technical ride in ANY sense of the word, but it was SOOO much fun! The tie is rolling single track beside HWY 20 and then the loop around the lake is super easy but fun because it's so gorgeous there. I was pre-riding it for the beginner ride I'm leading soon. I wanted something that was easy but out of town. Something different. I have a couple pictures and I'll post them once I download them from my camera

Sunday I did the Heaven Can Wait breast cancer walk. This was the largest year ever with 3,300 people walking! Amazing. Oh yea, a couple weekends ago I saw Michael Franti in concert and he was just wonderful! I have a couple pictures from before the concert...but my battery died right when I went to take a picture of him on stage! I was so pissed. We managed to find quite a bit of space right at the front at the side of the stage. Awesome view and he was superb, as always. I'm so bummed that I didn't get any pictures of him though!!! :(

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Hmm...

Wow, I haven't updated in a while! The Cascade Chainbreaker was on May 11, and i was super busy getting ready for it, and then since then I think I've just been tired! And busy. I promise though, I'll update soon. Tomorrow even if I have time...

Monday, May 05, 2008

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Well, I had Mexican food on Friday in honor of Cinco de Mayo...'cause it'll probably be next to impossible to get into a Mexican restaurant tonight! :) Ok, and I also went to try out my new non-allergy to shellfish. I had a crab dish, and stole some shrimp off a friend's plate...and no problems! :) Hooray!!!!! I'm so excited. The dog allergy is still stumping me though. That's the only test spot that is STILL all red. All the rest have faded. It's just weird.

Saturday I lead a Bella mtb ride. It was so nice to get out, but showed me again just how out of shape I am. Hopefully I get out for another one after work today. Then Sunday I went for a little bike ride with Izzy...she loves to bike, but she's getting old so you have to go really slooooow. Then in the afternoon I biked to the Old Mill and say Iron Man with a friend. It was fun. Pure fluff...but sometimes that's what we're looking for!

This coming weekend is the Cascade Chainbreaker. If you're not racing and bored...come out and volunteer! We can always use more volunteers. It's going to be great. This is the 11th annual race, and it's tons of fun. If you want to register, you can do so online or in person at Webcyclery on Saturday 12-4 or on race day at the race from 8:30-9:30.

Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Shellfish!

I went and had allergy tests done today. I wanted to know for sure what I'm allergic to or not. And it turns out I'm NOT allergic to shellfish!!!! :) I'm soooooo happy! I have absolutely no idea why I'e reacted to shellfish in the past, but it's a negative. I'm also not allergic to juniper, or if I am it's really mild.

What I AM allergic to is dust mites, which is very common...and DOGS! No fraking way! I've had dogs all my life, except for the past couple years. But even since I've moved here I've been around dogs a lot, spent a lot of time sleeping in beds that dogs have been in...and I've never noticed any problems. I think they must have made a mistake and put something else on my skin! :)

Well, doesn't matter, I'm not going to avoid dogs. I've never noticed a reaction, so that's jut too bad. So, I have to take this nasal spray twice a day for two weeks, then a different kind once a day for two weeks then it's back to the doc to see what he says. He thinks my asthma is also related to all this.

So...good news about the shellfish. I'm gorging myself on shrimp and crab for the next six months!

Monday, April 28, 2008

First real mountain bike ride of the season

This Saturday I went for my first real mountain bike ride of the season. It did pretty good for having been "off" for about 6 months or more. the previous weekend the Bella ride went out to the Maston trails, which are on Cline Butte Hwy between Tumalo and Redmond. I had to work, so I couldn't go. Instead we went this last Saturday. All in all we had a group of seven ladies: myself and Barrie, Ana, Julie, Lisa, Tracy and "lipstick" Laura.

It's a great first ride of the season. It's already super dry and dusty...I can't even imagine how it is in July or August! I think I'd only ride it in the winter or early spring. Anyway, it was fun. pretty much flat with some rolling hills, but not much. Very little technical, and what is there is easy to ride around instead of through or over.

My big problem...other than being SOOOOO out of shape was the juniper. As I've said, I'm developing a juniper allergy (I think). It made breathing difficult. Or, even more difficult I should say. But I had a great time. It was lovely sunshine, hot and a great group. I didn't get any pictures of the ride, only two from getting ready. I need to learn how to take pictures, or remember to take pictures ON the ride! :)
Sunday was just gorgeous too. It wasn't just warm, it was HOT. Went for a cruiser ride, swung by McKay park where we saw that Alder Creek was having canoe and kayak demos. So Barrie and I took out two different canoes to "test-drive" them. Yea...going straight was very difficult for us! :) And then I had to head to work in Sunriver. So that was the weekend....

Friday, April 25, 2008

Loki's getting a swelled head

Finally, one of my cats made it on to stuffonmycat.com! :) Loki's feeling pretty proud of herself.

http://www.stuffonmycat.com/index.php?itemid=8967

Monday, April 14, 2008

Allergies

It looks like I might be finally developing an allergy to Juniper, like a lot of other people. I've been here just over 7 years and this is the first time...I think. First time I've really noticed and thought maybe that's what they are. So I'm going to go see an allergist/immunologist to get tested. Not only for that, but I developed a shell-fish allergy about 6 years ago. It'd be nice to know for SURE what I'm allergic to and what I'm no longer sensitive to.

In the mean time, over-the-counter stuff is helping. Man, allergies really wipe you out though!!!

Monday, April 07, 2008

The rest of PLA and Minneapolis

Do you know who that is? Between Sheila and I? If you guessed Mary Richards from the Mary Tyler Moore Show, you're right! :) The show was set in Minneapolis, and there is a statue of her just blocks from our hotel. We HAD to get our picture taken with her. Sheila's covering it, but she's wearing super kicky boots! So one morning we took a walk, saw the above statue, visited the Minneapolis Public Library (which is SOOOO cool!) and walked down to the river. I have LOTS of pictures of that morning, and only a couple here. So if you want to see more check out my PLA gallery.

The outside of the library has a pattern painted onto all the windows. You can see them from the outside, but from the inside it doesn't impair your view. Each side is different. The below side is Birch trees (can you see them?),one side is water (for the river), one is grain and grasses and the last is snow. It's very cool.
Overall I was very impressed with the library. It had a lot of really great stuff. One thing I particularly loved were there "compact stacks". They're on rails and they sit close together. When you want to get a book within that aisle, you push that button you can see on the side, and they slide apart. There is, of course, a safety mechanism that senses if anything passes between the stacks (like an arm, leg or whatever), and it immediately stops. This is a great way to shelve more books when you don't have much space. It' s so cool!
The kids area was really great, with fabulous colors and all sorts of great things for them to play with and on. The teen area was amazing! One of my favourite things was this one room. The walls were painted with this silver white-board material and the kids could write anyting they wanted on it...as long as they stayed within the guidelines (like no profanity etc).

Then Saturday we were off to the Mall of America. My favourite thing was the aquarium. It was quite cool, and I'm really glad we went. There was this one giant turtle that weighed about 600 lbs and took five men to move him onto the scale. The best past was the tunnel. The tunnel went through all the pools, sharks, Amazon, shallow water reefs etc. Very cool. On my Flickr site are a couple pictures from there.
Ok, so last year Jesse, the largest shark at the aquarium, decided to try and eat one of the other sharks. She grabbed this little reef shark and swam around with it in her mouth! Luckily, the little shark was not hurt. In 2003 Jesse did eat another shark. They named the little shark Fish Stick, and she's back in the tank, fully recovered.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Mall of America, baby!

Yesterday we left the conference after it was over and went to the Mall of America. Lynne went to the mall with us a bit, then headed off to visit family for a day or two. You can't really wee it, but Lynne and I are standing under the sign.

This is the amusement park in the center. I think it's so cool. And it's sooooo quiet! Nowhere near as loud as outside amusement park rides. I have to say though, I'm a bit disappointed in the mall itself. I thought it would be bigger.
There is this cool Lego Land area where kids can make their own Lego creations, but there are also "professionally" done ones. Here's a plane hanging from the ceiling.

This morning Sheila and I are off to do a bit more shopping, visit the Underwater Adventures Aquarium there and then tomorrow we're on our way home.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

PLA, day 2...but first day of programs

Wow, I went to two amazing sessions this morning...so I think I'm jaded for the rest of the conference. I'll be judging all other sessions by those ones! I won't blog about those here. If you really want to know about them you'll have to check out my other blog, Librarian on the Loose.

This was a cool look at part of the Minneapolis skyline. I thought the old church, the new mirrored building and then the brown one behind it was... pretty. And then in front is the skyway. The skyway is a glass-enclosed pedestrian bridges at the second floor level. It's over five miles in length and connects over 50 blocks of downtown. 'Cause it gets c-c-c-c-cold here you know!
Tonight we went to another vendor reception, Midwest Tapes. It was muuuuuuuuch better than last night's one by Overdrive. It was really a full dinner with drinks, desert, and a LOT more room to sit.

Lynne, Sheila and I are having a "flair" contest. You know, flair, from the movie "Office Space"? I figure if we have to be geeks to wear those huge ugly badges/lanyards, I'm going to fly my freak flag and embrace my tackiness! So...we're seeing who can put the most "stuff" on them! So far Sheila is winning...but not after tomorrow!!!! :)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

PLA!

Well, we arrived in Minnesota. PLA is exciting so far. Of course we've only seen the exhibit hall and gone to the Overdrive reception...but pretty good so far. Here are a couple pictures, but check my PLA gallery for all our pictures. More will be added as the days go by. Here's Sheila, the national conference virgin, checking in.
At the entrance to the exhibit hall there was a polka band playing! It was GREAT!!!!!! :)
And perhaps the best thing we've seen so far is the cart escalator at the 2 story target store across the street from our hotel.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Off to the land of ice and snow...

I leave at 4:45 tomorrow morning for the Public Library Association's annual conference, this year in Minneapolis. It's going to be fun! There are quite a few programs I want to see, and Minneapolis looks interesting too. The conference is Wednesday-Saturday. I'm flying home Monday, 'cause flying home Sat or Sunday was about $200 more expensive! So instead Sheila and I are flying back Monday and going to go to the Mall of America on Sunday.

I'm not really that interested in shopping...I want to see the aquarium and the indoor amusement park and all that! I will do some shopping though...I want new knee-high boots. I will do some blogging from the conference. Minneapolis in March, here I come!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Hoppy Easter!

Every year my friend Cheryl hosts an Easter brunch, and it's always TONS of fun. Great food, good drinks (although this year we only managed to finish off eight bottles of champagne, whereas we finished off eleven bottles at Easter last year), and great friends. It's too bad we didn't have it Saturday... it was such a nice warm day. Oh well, we love it inside or out. Here are just a couple pictures. To see the rest check here.

Lynne, who couldn't be here got Cheryl this lovely Easter wreath to greet us at the door. I guess she got it at an action at the Oregon Library Association Board's retreat last year. LOVE IT! :) It's got eggs and feathers! I mean, how much better can you get! Hee hee. We did miss Jimmy and Lynne and the kids though.

Again, as usual Cheryl went crazy and made such amazing food! A turkey, a ham, this great vegetable dish, these fabulous beans, and fruit, veggies and dip, breads etc. Rachel brought her "famous" scalloped potatoes (which ROCK), Paige brought a quiche, and Colleen brought more fruit. Since we couldn't sit outside because of the weather we were a bit scrunched... but it all worked out perfectly. Here's April in the food line:

After dinner we played our usual card game, spoons. Know that one? Everyone gets four cards, and then you pick up and pass along cards that you don't want...the object is to get four of a kind, surreptitiously grab a spoon, and the last one to get a spoon "looses". Kinda like musical chairs but with cards and spoons. It came down to a showdown between Colleen and Kevin. Can you guess from this picture who won??? :)
However, in Cheryl's house no one is a looser...so the person each round that did not get a spoon, you get a prize! April and I choose the wind-up Peeps! they were so cute. We had Peeps races. Guess April just wanted her Peep to know who was who!

Sheila was trying to take a picture of one of the many candy bowls, but wound up taking this very cute video. The laugh that starts it off is Cheryl's awesome laugh! :)
video

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Here chicky, chicky, chicky

On our way to the Summit yesterday we saw these chicks in the window of Donner Flowers. They're there for EWaster, of course. They're SOOOO cute! I could sit and watch them for hours. That one lying down in the back isn't dead...we thought it was for a moment, but it woke up. He's just sleepy.

Had a good St Patricks. A couple beers and a ruben sandwich....it was nice.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Something BIG this way....went

Sunday morning I went for a walk with Barrie and Izzy. We came across these HUGE paw prints in the muck! I mean HUGE! Izzy very considerately put her paw right beside the print so you can see the sizes. now, Izzy is a black lab. She's not small. Look at the size of those! Can't be cougar, since they retract their claws and this print has definite claw marks. I'm not sure Great Dane's or St Bernard's have paws that size...and bear feet are not that round. They're longer and more...well, more like our own footprints. What do you think it could be?

Izzy is SUCH a cutie! Here she is with all of the sticks I gave her. She felt she had to shred them. Silly girl.

We started our walk just past the Entrada Lodge and walked down to the river and then along the Deschutes River Trail for a ways. It was just gorgeous out. Nippy when we started but we were both sweating by the time we headed back. Simply gorgeous day.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Chugging along

Well, I've done nothing exciting 'cause I've been sick. This cold has just tired me out! I did watch a great documentary called Double Dare, about two stunt women. It features Jeannie Epper, who was Wonder Woman's double and has been working as a stunt woman for over 50 years. She's currently in her late 60's and STILL working! The other woman they profile is Zoe Bell...who I think is just the bees knees! :) Yea, love her!

It's a very interesting movie. Talks a lot about the stunt/movie industry, what it takes to make it and what it takes to make it as a female in such a male dominated field. The Eppers are evidently the Flying Waldendas of movie stunts.

My book club just finished reading Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky. The book was....ok, pretty good but not AMAZING! However, the story around the life of Irene Nemirovsky is! In 1942 when she wrote Suite Francaise she was already a well-recognized and regarded author in France. She was a Russian Jew, so was arrested and taken to to Auschwitz where she soon died. Even though she had converted to Catholicism in 1939! Her husband fought to get her out, without realizing that she was already dead. In response to his requests they arrested him too, sent him to Auschwitz where he was executed immediately. :( So sad. but their two daughters survived and had with them the manuscript for Suite Francaise. It's a fascinating story.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

For Sylvia....

I made an appointment for the 14th! :P

Monday, March 03, 2008

Weekend visit

Well, I had a great weekend with my parents...other than being sick, that is! :) They arrived Thursday and left this morning. We had a really good visit. Friday I took the day off work and we went skiing. This was my first downhill skiing since my surgeries. I only did 5 runs, because I didn't want to overdo it. I did two runs before lunch and then three after. I could have done a couple more, but I was also happy with what I did do.

The rest of the time I spent in the lodge reading and doing crossword puzzles. I was getting sick, and I could feel the work my legs were doing, so I was happy to rest. Then Saturday my cold got pretty bad so I spent the day on the couch and in bed and my parents went snowshoeing. They had a great time! Wish I'd been able to go with them. Then Sunday we just hung out and went on a walk. I still feel pretty rough, but I'm hoping I'm on the mend. I don't feel like I am...but I hope I am! :)

Last week I got some more catnip and it came with this plastic ball with holes in it. So you put the catnip in the ball and the cats go crazy over it. I gave it to them on Sunday, and pretty soon, guess where it wound up...

Monday, February 25, 2008

Beading class

Yesterday I taught my second beading class at the Bend library. It went, if possible, even better than the first one. I had 24 attendees and 9 people on the waiting list. Everyone enjoyed themselves, learned something new and 6 of the women have already signed up for the workshop I'm having in Sunriver on March 15. :) I love teaching, and I especially love teaching people how to bead!

Saturday I did manage to get out for a walk, despite the tightness in my legs. I haven't been particularly happy with them the last couple weeks. They're still REALLY tight, and still hurt when I walk or now that I'm trying to start running. But despite that we walked the River Trail from up on Aubrey Butte back towards town. It was just gorgeous! It was quite warm and the sun was out. Now many clouds in the sky...just perfect.
This week seems to be my doctor or physical body work week! I'm seeing my massage therapist today for what I am sure will be a very painful leg massage, tomorrow I see a specialist at the Center for my hand/wrist/arm, then go from there to my acupuncturist who is working on both legs and arm...more legs the last week. Then Wednesday I see a different massage therapist to do some more specific work on my arm.

My New Year's resolution is to NOT have surgery this year...and I plan on keeping that resolution! :)

My parents are coming to visit on Thursday and they're staying until Monday. That's a long time for them. Now that my dad retired they can come for longer. We're planning on skiing Friday, then snowshoe Saturday and just hang our Sunday. They'll drive home Monday. AND I'll get daily...or twice daily leg passages. Ahhhh. :)

Sunday, February 10, 2008

The Goose came back, the very next day...

You know that song The Cat Came Back the Very Next Day? Here's a link to a video done for it. I loved it as a kid.


Anyway, that ceramic goose I got in the New Year's White Elephant? I took it with my to the BBC ExCom holiday party and gave it away for that. After all the opening and stealing...I wound up getting it back! Well, there was NO way I was going to take it home with me. So I hid it in Cate and Josh's . That's where we had the party. Hee hee hee. She eventually found it and laughed her ass off.

Well, this morning a friend came to pick something up, I was standing on the doorstep talking to her and what do I see? What the hell is that????I look closer....
IT'S THE FREAKING CERAMIC GOOSE!!! Or duck. Whatever it is. Evidently Cate had come over when I was not here and hid it in the snowbank. It's been there for about 4 days. The snow finally melted enough that I saw it. Funny, funny, funny. :)

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Puppy Bowl IV!

I LOVE THE PUPPY BOWL! :) I'm not really a football fan, so instead I'm watching Animal Planet's Puppy Bowl IV. It's not a Canadian thing that I don't enjoy football...there are many Canadians that are American football crazy. It's just me. I didn't grow up watching football...and it holds no interest for me whatsoever. Football, baseball, basketball...whatever. I'd rather watch Puppy Bowl! :)

I think these two were my favourites. The first one is a Corgi mix named Bria and the other is an unknown mixed breed named Scuba. Look at those ears! Hee hee hee.
I'm not sure I can say that...they're all so cute!!!! The great thing about Puppy Bowl...other than it's histerical to watch, is that all of the dogs (and the kittens in the halftime show) are from shelters, and there is info on the Animal Planet website about adopting these and other dogs. If you didn't get a chance to see it since you were busy watching the super Bowl, check oput the videos on the Animal Planet page.

Today I also made cream of mushroom soup (yummy) and this great Mousaka! I haven't had Mousaka in a very long time. It toos a while, since you need to roast the eggplant, then make the meat mixture, then the sauce, put it all together and bake...but it was worth it. I made two, so one's going in the freezer for another day.