The Downside of the Flu Shot

I got "the crud" last night from the flu shot and spent most of today battling it as well. To make me even more uncomfortable, it was 85* in my condo. I got out the air mattress and took some nyquil. I slept reasonably well (thank you drugs). Although this morning I wasn't sure if I had a fever. Turns out my apartment was just really hot. How bad did I feel? I didn't even want coffee.

More on the multi-vitamin front because I've been reading your comments. I now take it after dinner. I decided that it was the heat that was keeping me awake before and not the multivitamin. I took a pill right before eating lunch on Sunday and threw my lunch back up because of it. I've taken it in the morning after a good breakfast (read eggs, bacon and toast) but not on anything less. I take Centrum one a day for Women. It was the only one with the right amount of iron for me.

I went to Target tonight. I'm overwhelmed by the amount of food, and the variety there. Really on some stuff the variety isn't that good but name me one other store that has three types of Turkey Bacon. Yum. The downside of Target is their soda is rarely on sale. Boo. I also learned that at Target a photo id is not required to purchase nyquil or generic forms of the drug. The only drug that can be purchased without an id is children's tylenol. Way to stop the meth labs and kids overdosing on cough medicine.

What have I found on the internet while I've been convalescing?
Indonesia says if the world wants to save their forests and endangered species, we should put our money where our mouth is. I thought, why not? It's what the nature conservancy does. Instead of an outright donation, why not forgive some foreign debt or build roads and plumbing. Just a thought.

Barack Obama promises a net neutrality law if elected. There's something we agree on.

The psychology of how men and women argue, and why we do it differently. Which we do.

A great clip from the Daily Show, has sound, probably not safe for work unless you have earphones. There's a fantastic line about Fox News in there and stick around for the end of the clip. My jaw dropped.

One third of employees violate company IT policies. I am in this one third. Want to know why? I got in trouble for installing Firefox on my computer. We almost had another discussion about how Internet Explorer can be the default browser even though I deleted the desktop shortcuts. But I've made peace with the IT lady since writing that.

Be Healthy and Give up Caffeine and Coffee. Boo. Obviously I linked to the Digg page because we should get to read everyone else's comments as well.

And finally, this tape would have been nice when I was painting my hallway. I probably wouldn't have had these issues.


I have been away for a while

I know I haven't written in a while. I can never seem to get motivated on the weekends. It must be all that relaxing. This weekend Amanda tried to make me work but I got out of it when my drill ran out of power and I didn't have the charger with me. I still keep forgetting to bring the charger to her house. That's not true. I keep forgetting to pack the charger. Once in my bag, it will be no problem to run it by her house. Woops.

I got a flu shot today and my arm feels like it got hit with a baseball bat. Although as shots go, those aren't that bad at all. I say this as someone who joined the peace corps and got several shots every week for quite a while. Also at work, my boss asked me why i odn't work with teens anymore. I described my ideal teen program which pairs teens and seniors and she was interested so I spent a little time developing that idea a little more. From the brain storm I learned:
  • It's really important to involve a diverse group of teens. Every once in a while, something will happen and it's like only for people who are this one faith. Like the contribution I have to make isn't at all valued because I don't share the faith tradition. And it feels really bad. So any youth program I'm involved in for sure needs to involve kids of many backgrounds.

  • Wouldn't bother me if all the seniors were from the faith tradition of my agency. No one knows why.

  • I have really high expectations of teens. Meaning I believe that teens can deliver a truly professional product. It took a long time for me to learn how to help teens deliver a high quality product, but once I gave them the right tools, the kids who worked for me could do anything.

  • Teens need to be paid. This has to be a job. No other way to have ridiculously high standards than by offering a monetary reward.

  • This is my baby. Meaning, I need to be in charge. Is that wrong?

Over the weekend, I saved some web pages to share with you as well.

The Monday Music Mambo even though it's Tuesday.

Name a few of your favorite music websites.

One of my favorite websites, Skreemr is linked on the sidebar there. It's a great mp3 search engine. Hey, I do not ask from whence they come. Other good mp3 search engines are AllTheWeb, most likely to find something no other sites pulls down, and Mp3 realm which has the added feature of determining if a link is functioning or broken before I try to download the file. I also think I blogged about Cha Cha another new site that is finicky but useful.

I checked my Delicious bookmarks for sites I had tagged "music". Here's a selection:
Get Music off your iPod, it's always a harder proposition that it should be.
50 Best Songs for Running Ever Made. These lists are always entertaining. I can tell who has taste like mine and who doesn't.
The Wiki Music Guide.
Jog tunes is another great site for runners, really people who do any types of workouts and enjoy listening to music.
Songbird is a fantastic little player with web-browsing and mp3 search capabilities built right in. It's a mozilla product and works with all platforms. It's billed as the "iTunes killer" and may now have the capabilities to sync with iPods. However, it's not a 1.0 product yet and feels very unfinished. I used it on my old computer because Windows Media Player sucked all resources dry. It couldn't handle my adding all these new files to my music library. I'd have to manually add them to my songbird playlist as well and I couldn't handle it. So I got iTunes.


Can't seem to convince myself that Laundry is important

Can't seem to convince myself laundry is important. Buying another sports bra seems a more logical solution. Too bad Target's parking lot is probably still full. That's such a good site for a Target, I'm amazed nothing was built there before. But seriously, mind the roundabout.

I went to the gym this morning. I found the elliptical a much more enjoyable experience when I could be a slow-poke (and not feel like I was about to faint). I haven't run in about two weeks. I'm to the point where I feel like I'm in good shape but that I'd have to actually train to run a race again. The strangest thing that's happened to me is I don't want to run outside when I feel like this. I feel like, what if I get far away from my house and something happens. At least at the Y, there are other people to help me. Maybe I'm having anniversary effects from this time last year when I couldn't run at all. (How funny that's also the post with the whole thing about the dude. Things happen in threes and he was the first. I've been through all three though so next one is the charm.)

Today I went back to the museum to borrow some supplies. I got to walk around and see a whole bunch of people. Everyone there looks great and seems to be doing well. That was a nice thing to have in the middle of my day.

I talked to my dad tonight.
  • Every time I talk to dad, must vent afterwards.

  • Even when I offer a solution no one has even considered, and one that is much less money than any solution currently in the hopper, I still get discouraged. Know why? Dad doesn't like repairs. He doesn't do them at home and doesn't schedule others to come in and do them, which is why Mom wants to move to a place that's "less work" and he doesn't like thinking about them or talking about them. He'll dispute that claim and point to all the things he's done. I would point out Mom wanted most of that stuff done for over ten years and they nearly did move once.

  • I don't know how the insulation sticks to the pipe. It's not important right now. Move on.

  • "Oh, maybe I'll compose a letter and you can type it." Bite me. Why do you always ask me to do anything on a computer instead of doing it yourself. I am not your secretary, typist, personal shopper, or google research assistant.
Thanks, I feel much better. Now I'd like to talk about some of the neat sites I've found on the internet lately.
Recently, I've witnessed several couples negotiate the details of their weddings and reception. At least two brides I know have agreed to details of the ceremony or reception that were important to the groom but they wouldn't have chosen for themselves. To both of you, I'd like to say, at least your grooms didn't ask you to do something like this. I wonder what their bridesmaids wore.

Finally, it's not the bubble wrap, but I heard about this site called Don'tDateHimGirl.com and while it does do exactly what you think it does, it's actually got some meaningful content as well. There are some nice things about dating violence, and how to date safely.


It's possible there's an end in sight

I didn't exercise today. After my rant last night, I decided I had earned the right to sleep in. (I've decided I read too many things from British authors because I almost wrote "I decided I could have a lie in".)

I was doing a restorative justice panel tonight and one of the other panel members does guess what for a living. That's right. He does construction. And he told me about the easiest, cheapest way to fix my heating issue. And I feel like I could both afford the solution and convince the board to let me give it a try. Now I just have to get Dad on board. I'm quite excited.

Then I talked with my friend Jenny who is getting married soon. She picked out this dress for the brides maids to wear. I'm feeling ok about it. I'm still quite attached to the dress I wore at Kelly's wedding but it'd be food to have two dresses so I have choices. Should the situation arise.


Oh oh the bubbles

Ok, I think my last post had the wrong general tone to convey the coolness of this site. Seriously, it's online bubble wrap that you can pop. And then, you can try it in Manic Mode which is even more entertaining. For those of you with OCD, you can make nice symmetrical designs in the bubbles. Beware, manic mode is not ideal for this pursuit.

And then you can get a fresh sheet of bubble wrap and do it again. If you're at home, turn up the volume because it's hysterical, and easily one of the coolest parts of the site. I know, you didn't think anything could be cooler than the bubble wrap. If you're at work, put in your earphones because you won't want to miss it. Seriously. Must have moooore.

Oh, oh the joys

Before I go into the things that happened today I want to let you know I've found the perfect stress reliever. Click Here to see it. You can also click on the link I added in the "favorites" section.

Today was generally good until I got home and decided to make dinner. I took my multi-vitamin which very quickly upset my stomach. I realized I needed to eat quickly to calm it down.
Step 1: Evaluate general edible-ness of existing food and find very little to eat.
Step 2: Assess that spaghetti is the most appropriate dinner time food.
Step 3: Smell romano cheese and determine that it is still edible. Possibly because I have OCD, or just because I'm picky, I must have some type of cheese to enjoy with my spaghetti.
Step 4: Make food.
Step 5: Plate food and sprinkle with cheese.
Step 6: Eat.
Step 7: Realize that I did not perform step 3 at an acceptable standard and cheese is not edible. Again sadly, the cheese is mixed in the the spaghetti and there is no way to salvage the meal.
Step 8: I have Turkey Bacon. Yum. Make Turkey Bacon, Eggs and Toast. I didn't choose this at step 2 because it seemed more like breakfast food and I am likely to repeat the meal tomorrow.

And then I went to the co-op to buy more food, since I didn't have too much. And I went to Target. Seriously, the lot is always full. It was 8:00 on a Tuesday. Can you imagine what this place looks like on a Saturday? Or at Christmas? Oh boy.

My Dad called and we had quite an interesting discussion. I told him I didn't want to buy the condo until this whole "my bedroom is 83* and there's no way to cool it off" issue is managed. And he accused me of getting cold feet and not wanting to spend all that money on a mortgage and a kitchen. I feel the need to elaborate on my position before I go pop more bubbles.
  • It is sort of a relief to not have to think about a mortgage or ridiculous payments right now. It was overwhelming at first. Although, the more information I got, the more I believed that I could financially manage, even though it would be rough at first. And I might have to severely limit the number of lattes a I drink. So he's not totally wrong. Before you freak out, I am still paying his mortgage and association fees. I wish it were still free.

  • I would pay for the repair in my wall myself if I could just get it done with. So he is wrong that I wont commit financially at all to this. We actually had a discussion about that and I think he was surprised that I really was willing to pony up. Honestly, in my head it's not a big repair. It's cutting out a piece of dry wall, and putting insulation around one pipe, and putting the dry wall back up. It's not like it's a kitchen.

  • When I told my mom about the situation and my struggles with the management company, the first words out of her mouth were, "you can't buy a condo like that". I'm kind of aggravated because if it was a condo where I didn't already have all my things here, my dad wouldn't let me buy a condo like this either. The only power I have in the situation is that I don't own the condo and can theoretically walk away. Even though I'm not going to. I have no other power to negotiate for change in this situation.

  • When I wrote a letter asking for the participation of the board, I got an email back from the management company saying they couldn't give me my own set of pipes or re-pipe the building. Bite me. This is why I have my dad work with you. And I don't want the mortgage in my name because then I really won't ever get anything out of the management company. Bite me.

  • Dad says that I should learn to live with it. That pisses me off more than anything else, even the "cold feet" comment. Mom and Dad's house is the most uncomfortable place on earth because they heat it to 55*, shut off the front of the house and spend all winter complaining about how cold the place is. And it doesn't get that cold in Cincinnati. And in the summer they put air conditioners in the rooms they use and still shut off the rest of the house. And sweat. And I point out that I won't visit them because it's so uncomfortable. Dad was surprised. Like he didn't notice I haven't been home since last Christmas and even then I left two days early to come back to Minnesota to be more comfortable. Mom knows how I feel. Mom also understands that part of the agreement of me coming home for holidays is that they will turn the heat up to a more reasonable temperature while I am home.

  • Did I mention that when Dad stays with me, he sleeps in my bedroom and he complains about how hot it is in there? I'm still hacked off from the last bullet point.
I remember a time long ago when I was freaking out about another living situation and thinking about moving. (People kept getting shot across the street from me.) Amanda talked me down remarkably well and also remarkably fast. So if this is another instances of my freaking out, I would appreciate similar treatment. Although, it's probably not fair to judge the situation on the post alone because clearly I needed to vent. Now, go pop bubbles.

Heroes of the Environment

I'm reading this fantastic piece on heroes of the environment from Time Magazine. It's a well done piece. Here are some of my thoughts about it:

1. There seem to be an inordinate number of white men on the list.

2. Lee Myung Bak (slide 5). I've never heard of this guy but I love how he resurected the city's river. Maybe he could help Cincinnati. The Ohio River is synomous with "toxic waste dump" in Cincinnati right now. Like if you eat fish out of it, you might be the next thing with gills.

3. Al Gore. That was predictable. Well earned though. He might actually be able to be elected president now.

4. Jose Goldemberg. The man who is responsible for making the US want to make ethanol out of corn. Really it's not his fault if we're stupid. Ethanol is a good idea when it's done with sugar and some other crops, just not corn really.

5. Prince Charles. I actually remember reading that several years ago.

6. Angela Merkel. Who is impressed that I knew who she was before I read this.

7. Wangara Maathai. Read her story and you will understand why the people are the most beautiful part of Africa.

8. Hammer Simwinga. The park in Zambia that's mentioned is across the border from the park in Malawi, Kasungu, where I was supposed to live. I've seen that park. I didn't see any elephants when I was there. I was grateful actually. My village outside of Kasungu is protected by armed guards. Why are there guards Liz? They protect the villagers from stray elephants. No, seriously.

9. Theo Colborn. Working to save the Great Lakes. Also, "we had gonads flying around the country". Best. Line. Ever.

10. Abul Hussam. I'd actually heard of arsenic poisoning in Bangladesh before. Is it wrong that I've learned so much from The West Wing?

11. Kristine Pearson and Rory Stear. I love it when people do things in Africa. I think we actually had some of those flashlights in Malawi. And I'm assuming these were the forerunners of the One Laptop Per Child or hand crank lap tops.


I think I nearly fainted this morning

I went to the Y this morning. I may have finally given up on the mileage goal in favor of regular workouts of any variety for the time being. Nonetheless, the ellipticals were free this morning so I got on one. And I ran and was going. And about half way through I had that light headed, "I'm gonna be sick" ick feeling. I stopped and let my heart come back to a normal rate. And then I got on a bicycle which seemed a much better choice. That might be what I do tomorrow too. Or maybe the stair master. Although if my heart couldn't take the elliptical, no one knows what it'd do on the stair master.

I came home tonight and promptly passed out on the couch. Anyone else have this issue? Just can't stay awake at the end of the day?

To follow up on a previous post where I instructed you to watch this video and count the number of times they pass the basketball. I said I saw something different than you because I have ADD. What'd I see? An extra number of passes perhaps? Fewer? Nope. I saw a freakin' gorilla. The first time I watched. How's that relate to ADD? People who have ADD are less able to tune out extraneous information from their surroundings, like traffic noise, a voice over an intercom, or a gorilla walking through the background of a video. Exciting!

I also started reading what it's like to work for Apple from an undercover employee in training. It's a good read, I'm still working on it because it's kind of long.

Great ways to entertain yourself of Google. To a certain reader of this blog, I bet none of these sites are blocked. Although, if they're not blocking eBay, how good can the software be really?

Best emails to slashdot tech support ever a really funny read. Has some language (they are copies of actual emails), but generally safe for work.

I saw the headline Nasal Spray Will Help You Socialize and Speak Better in Public and I inserted By Making You High into the headline accidentally when I read it. I mean, really, how many other directions could I go with that?


It's been a rough week

The situation with the hot spots on my wall came to a head this week. I had a total freak out after I thought I wasn't going to get any help and am now doing much better. I told my mom I was probably supposed to go through this because it reminds me of how my clients feel when they ask for help and no one will help them. It's a fairly awful experience. That's the lesson I've decided to take away from this.

Amanda and Kelly and I had a lovely day. I cooked for them. I was relieved to learn that Kelly will eat food with bananas in it, like banana corn fritters. One of the recipes from Eating Well that I love and go in spurts of cooking. Sometimes I cook it every week and then I get off of it for a while. I also made collards and black bean soup. The soup was from a carton so I was not at all offended when Kelly didn't want any. She was saving herself for homemade black bean soup which she's been trying to make all week. I guess it's one of those meals that gets cooked in several stages. I hope it's good.

The whole heating fiasco as well as other logistical issues put a damper on exercise for the week. I'm seriously re-thinking the running goal. I think I need a more general goal, measured in the amount of days I exercise or something. I feel like if I go to the gym and don't run then it's a wasted trip. Which is silly. Even sillier is how that belief translates to, "if I go to the gym, all the ellipticals will be full and I don't want to run so I won't add miles to my goal, so I just won't go at all". This is a problem. I'm thinking about ways to address said issue.

While I ponder heat and exercise, check out some of the things I've found recently:

Harry Potter is one of my favorite series ever. I was interested when I saw this headline on Yahoo: JK Rowling Outs Hogwarts Character. I clicked on the link expecting to hear some random piece of information about a less than important character, and instead read that one of the main characters is gay. I had a mixed reaction of "oh, ok", part "yeah, he did wear purple a lot, that makes sense", and part "well, it's cool that she is so comfortable with this idea, and presents it in a way that expects others to be comfortable with the idea as well". And then she started bashing the groups that have been bashing her forever, which took some of the classiness out of the whole event. Love the "oh the fan fiction" comment. Hee hee.

Click here to see a newspaper clipping of a letter seeking advice and the best response ever.

11 USB Toys Your Boss is Sure to Hate is a fantastic article about all the toys you don't want if you have a laptop. I didn't know you could make all of those things plug into a computer. Why don't you want them if you have a laptop? Any accessories connected through a USB port (a mouse for example, or a lava lamp) draw off the laptop battery and that's just a dumb way to use the power source. It's articles like this that make me consider getting a desktop.

Amanda, Click Here. For everyone else, link to a story about a bacon flavored candy bar.

I'm totally freaked out by the latest iPhone accessory. Doesn't that picture just look slightly wrong?

The next great meal at Denny's. Now that's man food.

The Power of Birth Order is a fantastic article about how being the oldest or youngest impacts your life. Me? I am an only child. In some ways I related to the "oldest" thing. But I am the second youngest of all of my cousins, for a while I was the youngest. So in some ways I really took on the role of "wild child" in the extended family. It's a great read. One of the only things that seems to mitigate birth order effects? Child abuse. How sad.

I read the headline: Football sized cockroaches featured at Underwater World. Read the first line of the actual story. Way to get the name right. It's called "Underwater Adventures", which is actually in the text of the story. Someone just didn't read and re-named the aquarium in the headline. Doh.

A new discovery about Alzheimer's and Diabetes. Very relevant to both my work and family life. Diabetes and Alzheimer's is on my mom's side of the family. Oh, the things I have to look forward to.

Given my comments about the running routine an article about How to start and keep an exercise habit seems relevant. Check out number 1. That might be the next plan. Also relevant is number 11. Doh. We'll see how I do this week. Right now I'm still sore from putting together the dresser from Ikea so I can't think about exercise yet.


The Friday Five

5, 4, 3, 2, 1...

1. Name five favorite movies.
1. Sense and Sensibility, screen play by the amazing Emma Thompson. One of my favorite romantic comedies where there's no actual kissing. But it's freaking hilarious.
2. Pride and Prejudice, another Jane Austen great. This one is a comedy dressed as a romantic movie.
3. Pirates of the Caribbean, a movie I alone of my friends seem to enjoy. But it's a really clever well written movie. It's one of those I can just put on and reduce my brain cells.
4. Love Actually. Hugh Grant. Yum.
5. What the Bleep Do We Know is my newest movie that I'm trying to watch. It is a heavy movie. I have to watch it a few (a lot) more times to be able to understand it.

2. Name four areas of interest you became interested in after you were done with your formal education.
1. Running and exercise. I think my blog is full of my commentary about that part of my life.
2. Home decorations and remodeling. I say that as someone who just put together this dresser in medium brown (not black). Remember this post?
3. Photography is a new found interest.
4. I'm hoping my next discovery will be reading again. I never really got into that before.

3. Name three things you would change about this world.
1. Everyone should have to live in Africa for at least part of their lives. I never understood how beautiful people can be to each other until I lived there.
2. Everyone should have to live in another country as an exchange student.
3. Traffic laws should be the same all over the world. That way when we do all this traveling and living in other countries, we can still drive safely.

4. Name two of your favorite childhood toys.
1. "Santa's Helper" was this little stuffed animal I had that my aunt gave me before she died.
2. Legos. I loved playing with legos. Still do actually. They're this wonderful childhood toy that actually encourages imagination without guns, or violence, or telling boys they should be tough, or telling girls they should be skinny. Just these colorful little blocks to build all kinds of wonderful things.

5. Name one person you could be handcuffed to for a full day.
Oh wow. I want to go on record and say Amanda I thought of you, but we see each other enough as it is. Kelly, I thought of you, but really you and Eric should be handcuffed in this scenario. (Both of your moms and I would be handcuffed in a different scenario.) I had this friend on the ship named Sarah who I haven't seen in ages, but as I remember her, I think we would do well handcuffed to each other. We'd just giggle the whole time. Hey, I bet Aunt Elaine would be fun to be handcuffed too. We really would just giggle all the time. Fun with nuns...


ADD and the Wednesday Mind Hump

From The Wednesday Mind Hump:
1. What is your favorite brain cell-reducing TV show?
I refuse to believe that all of my television shows reduce brain cells. However, the currently least redeeming, but with most potential show is Back To You. My other favorites are Clean House (probably equally brain-cell reducing), Brothers and Sisters and Men in Trees.

2. What is your favorite brain cell-reducing website?
Overheard in Minneapolis is so entertaining. The Presidents Game and Amanda's Map Game are fun, but maybe not totally brain cell reducing. Digpicz is a great site for all the funny images of the day. My new favorite website for searching for mp3 files is Cha Cha audio search. The old classic is Postsecret.

3. What is your favorite brain cell-reducing music?
Black Eyed Peas, maybe I'm just tired of them right now.

Speaking of brain cells, want to know about ADD?
Take this test. Then Read the results here. Want to know how many I saw? Do you know if it's different because of the ADD? Go take the test and I'll tell you later.


Day one: success

Remember my cracked plan to put my lamp on a timer to help me wake up in the morning? I set it to turn on at 5am. And I woke up. And I ran this morning on the elliptical, 3 miles. I learned my body does not move as quickly in the morning as it does at night. I think that's normal. For me anyways.
This week: 7 miles run, 8 miles to go
This month: 30 miles run, 35 miles to go

Why does 35 miles feel like for than 48 miles right now? I have no idea. I think if it doesn't rain it will be fun to run outside tomorrow.

On the web today, I found some fun things.
When there are more immigrants in the area, the price of gas goes down. How interesting.

What if Google Designed a Page to Rank High on Google. A fantastic look at how the Google algorithm makes web designers do things they would never do otherwise. I suggest also checking out the link to the "if microsoft designed the iPod box" video. It has sound but is otherwise safe for work. And it's funny.

And then I read the 10 On Tuesday topic: Ten Things That Worry You. I decided not to rise to the bait.


It's Blog Action Day

It's Blog Action Day. Glad I didn't miss it. In honor of blog action day, I'll write about the environment. Maybe instead of doing that, you'd like it if I marked the items in this list that have to do with the environment or making the world a better place.

1. Remember when I wrote about the spinning dancer. Apparently the test has taken the internet by storm. Someone at Freakonomics is looking at who is left, right, or both brained and how that corresponds to their profession. Go on over and leave a comment about yourself to add to the data. Me? I studied criminal justice, biology and social work. I can see her spinning both ways.

2. I saw the headline Microsoft wants to read your brain. All I could think was, "well, who doesn't?". Sorry.

3. Using the computer is not giving me carpal tunnel. Good news.

4. ***The Physical and Mental Benefits of Daily Meditation. How does this make the world a better place? People have studied the effects of meditation on the meditators and the general public for years. My favorite study was done in Washington DC. The researches found that on days when more people in the city meditated, the crime rate went down.***

5. Doctors of the World, a cool map that shows the ratio of doctors to people all over the world. Malawi has 50,000 people per doctor. Most of the people I knew in Malawi had never seen a doctor or nurse and probably never will. Make sure you check out Cuba, I think they have actually the most doctors per capita. Who wouldn't go to school for 25 years if it was free really?

6. ***Ten of the Coolest Trees in the World. ***

7. Now you too can discover The Top 100 Undiscovered Web Sites of the year.

8. This is a picture of a girl dressed for school. (Mildly not safe for work.) What's funny isn't the picture so much as the look of the boy in the background. I also thought, (Yup, this is why Kelly wants to teach at private school.)

9. ***The coolest tree house ever.***

Running and maybe a solution

I still didn't get up this morning so I ran after work. I ran four miles at 10:45 miles.
My weekly total: 4 Miles complete, 11 miles to run
Monthly total: 27 miles complete, 38 miles to run. Remember when that number was 65? Heh heh.

I decided that part of my issue in not being able to wake up is my curtains. The old curtains (the ones I don't have anywhere in a photo) were tabbed. This was a huge source of annoyance to me because they let in a lot of light from my courtyard. The new curtains (both times actually) are not tabbed and let in no light at all. My room is dark. But I think that is part of the problem.

After I ran, I journeyed down to Cedar Point Commons and my new Target store. ::Brief pause while a light shines down and angels sing:: I got a digital timer that I will program to turn my lamp on shortly before the alarm goes off.
Reasons why this may work:
1. I'm way too lazy to get up and turn the lamp off.
2. Light is good to help me wake up.
3. It doesn't have to happen on weekends because I bought the fancy timer.

Other thoughts about the Target store:
1. What's up with the round-about? They don't make round-abouts that big outside of Massachusetts.
2. Where is everything? It's got to be here somewhere.
3. I did not know there were this many people in Richfield.
4. I did not know there were this many people in Richfield who are not white.
5. I think we're going to need a bigger parking lot.
6. Yeah!

I'd like to leave you with this thought about people from Minneapolis. Yeah!


At Amanda's request, I'm updating my blog

Amanda and I were on the phone tonight and she said I hadn't written in my blog since she'd checked it last. So I'm doing this post in addition to the one I just did about fish and pants. (Now you want to go read that other post don't you? It's ok, the fish wasn't wearing the pants.)

As seen on the web:

Just another plug for the breast cancer site because it's a permanent tab in my Firefox and every time I hit "copy tab URLs" that one gets copied too.

You might think that a toilet shaped house would be enough for me to tell you about this link. While that's quite a lot, I'd like to add this thought: There's a World Toilet Association?

Minnesota has long prided itself on using alternative sources of energy. Our latest source of energy? Turkey poo.

Your Brain is Not Your Friend. Haven't we all felt this way?

Remember when I wrote about a cool way to keep pigeons from pooping in your pool? It seems someone with way too much time on their hands has taken this ingenious invention a step further. This one gets kids too

Great Funny Signs. Safe for work.

48 Classic Books to Boost Your Learning Experience is a cool piece. It lists the standard books that everyone thinks you have to read to be smart. The difference? This piece lists free download sites for most of the books as well. (All the ones in the public domain I'm assuming.) Amanda, this is for you, because some of these might be on that list you had a long time ago. And it's for me because I have the most time of all of us to read.

Good news

Good news. I'm feeling much better. And I ran again. I ran 4 miles today on the elliptical. I ran that far in under 40 minutes. Why do I like the elliptical? It makes me feel fast. Having nothing to stare at but the clock and my progress really does help me pace myself. This brings my total miles for the week to 8, 7 miles short of the goal of 15. It's ok. I have time. My total for October is 23 miles run and 42 miles still to run.

I actually got all kinds of stuff done today. Groceries. Laundry. Cleaning. Right now I'm baking pumpkin bread and I just got done toasting (read: burning) pumpkin seeds. I cut up the pumpkin and put all the pieces that would fit into a gallon bag. Into the freezer it went. My next project might be researching the best way to use a gallon bag worth of pumpkin. The bread only calls for one cup. Not even I eat that much bread.

What else did I do this weekend? A murphy-like set of circumstances required me to work Saturday morning. By the time I got done with that, it was clear I needed to be with people. I called my friend Liz (Other Liz). Liz and her sister Katie and I went to a great restaurant called La Hacienda. At La Hacienda, they make ceviche which is my favorite dish of all time. Amanda would for sure love it, and Kelly would probably really like it. (For sure you'd like it if you didn't have too much information. The way it's cooked sometimes freaks people out.) It's different types of seafood cooked in lime juice. The acid in the lime juice cooks the fish without the need for heat (great for nights the electricity is out).

Then we went shopping at Southdale. Katie wanted a new pair of jeans and we wound up in Eddie Bauer. I had a long time of not really liking their clothes, but they're definitely moving up on my list of favorite stores. I have a pair of pants from there that Kelly helped me pick out. I decided I should have the same pair in a different color. I picked out the size I wear and headed off to try them on with a couple of shirts when we had this exchange.

Liz comes out of dressing room to model pants.

Other Liz: Those look really nice.
Sales girl: They do look nice but they don't fit right. You need a size smaller.
Me: ::Just grins::

Obviously I bought the pants and a really cute top as well. It's red Amanda.


The Saturday 8

do you have any of the following gadgets, and what kind? when did you get them?

1. cellphone?
I got my first one when I started driving on my own. I got a cell phone as a true form of communication when I moved to Minnesota. Had one ever since.

2. digital camera?
Last year at Thanksgiving. Love it.

3. video camera?
Nope. I used them a lot at the Science Museum. My camera will take the really short video clips. That's been entertaining.

4. video game console?
I had the original Nintendo system. Now I just play games on the computer. What games am I playing? The GROW games seem to baffle my mind. The GROW cube is the last one I solved.

5. TiVo/DVR?
I have a Panasonic DVD Recorder. Not a DVR because I don't want to pay a monthly fee for the cable or for TiVo. This is just as good.

6. mp3 player/iPod?
My first was a Palm TX and then I got an iPod Shuffle. After I graduated I got an iPod Nano (red) obviously. Mine's not the fatty model though.

7. laptop computer?
The Toshiba from hell was first, and now my MacBook, which I love.

8. any widget or app on your phone or computer to makes your life easier (commute time calculator, on-time flight alert, zocdoc, etc.)?
I have a widget that tells me when new episodes of my TV shows are airing, and a weather widget. And my favorite thing is the PermaTab extension in Firefox.

Posted by lola.harrington at 6:23 AM


the Friday Five

1.If you could go back in time and change anything that has occurred in history, what would you alter and why?
I think I'd change me having to watch Ann Coulter's latest statement. That's really distressing to me. I'm not Jewish or Christian and it still feels dirty.

2.If your current life was to end today and in the next moment you were born again, where everything was the same as when you were actually born, however, you retained all of what you know from your first life, what would you do differently?
I would have stayed in Africa. I didn't have the tools to take care of myself while I was there, and I didn't get them until long after I came home. It's not a regret really. I couldn't have stayed. I just got such a bad vibe from the place I was supposed to live, and I was so sick by that time anyways. But I did like it there. Right now with looking for a mortgage and those things, I wonder if I'll ever do anything like that again. Some of the people in the peace corps were in their 30's and 40's. Some were even retired, so I guess there's still plenty of time.

3. If you could choose to become someone who has lived or who is living, who would you become and why?
I think it would be neat to be a Buddhist monk, just so my body could be trained to feel calm and peaceful all the time.

4. What do you feel is the most intense experience that is currently happening or may soon come to happen, that may "affect" our survival and what (if) any changes must occur, to continue our existence here?
The way we use our resources to generate energy. We're on the right track, looking for alternatives, but I also think it's clear that ethanol is not the answer. Sorry to farmers across the country.

5. Recalling your most earliest memories/awareness up to now, during your life so far name one thing that you consider a positive experience involving humanity now then from what you can recall in your earliest memories. Name one negative experience also.
For the positive and the negative, I remember watching my mom with her cousin Julie when Julie found out her lifelong friend had just died. I remember thinking that Mom had a really nice way of just being there, and being a comfort without really doing anything or needing anything. It was sad but also quite powerful.


So in over my head

Did you ever have one of those days at work where you thought, "wow, I'm so in over my head"? Not like "I'll never get this" kind of feeling. More like "I really wasn't expecting that. It'll take me a moment to figure this out." That was my day today. It's leaving me feel like once I get these things figured out, I'll be better at my job, able to help people more in the future. And then I went to learn to be a volunteer for an agency called Bolder Options. It should be a few months before I get paired to a kid though. We'll see how it goes.

I came home and found, well, not much on the internet. Nonetheless....

One of my favorite sayings is, "well, that's the pot calling the kettle the same thing", my own version of "That's the pot calling the kettle black". (I'm sure I heard it on The West Wing or Sports Night.) But even I am not this confused about my metaphors. Hee hee.

This story about Pate or duck liver couldn't be any less interesting. What is interesting is the name of the animal rights group. Hugs for Puppies?


4 more miles down

I am pleased to report that after not running yesterday, I did run today. After work, but I still ran. I'm planning on going to the gym tomorrow morning. I think I can, I think I can... I think I have to because the gym was crazy busy tonight. I forgot how it gets after work in the winter. It's ridiculous to me how many people work out in the evening compared to the morning. Fascinating...

I ran 4 miles in... I don't know how long it took because I wore the wrong shoes. I have the old pair of running shoes and the new pair with the Nike+ sensor in it. But I wasn't expecting to run when I went to the gym so I wore the old shoes. I had to run because there was no way I was getting near a machine right then. I'm glad I did though because I wound up feeling much better afterwards.

So let's update our total board. This week I have run: 4 miles. This month, I have run 19 miles. Still to run this week: 11 miles. Still to run in October: 46 miles. If you think I wasn't counting down from 50 to 46 in my head while I was running, you're nuts. I was loving every minute of it too.

News of the wierd from the internet

I was encouraged to hear that Amanda likes all the things I put up from my wanderings on the internet, so I'll keep doing it. At least I know she can play on her study breaks.

Water balloon prank a bust. This happened in Cincinnati, it's the only way I know about it. When you follow the link, look at the mug shot of the first guy. He looks happy to be busted.

What I want to do on my next office picnic. Nuff said.

How to hug a baby. Seriously cute. And those people are really brave to allow their baby to be "hugged" by something that big.

Are you right brained or left brained? Me? I'm both apparently. Because I will watch this thing and invariably she starts spinning in one directions and then changes while I'm watching it. You know why? It's because I'm ambidextrous and use both hands and both sides of my brain.

See how many of the weirdest animals in the world you can name. The species is listed below the picture so if you scroll slowly you can guess. I knew approximately 13 species. The sucker-footed bat? That's about the size of my finger. It's not that deadly.

The weirdest insects of the world. I don't know what was up with Digg today. They had lots of animal stuff. I didn't know as many of these. I will spare you my feelings on big beetles after the Squirrel rant. Glad to see the mosquito recognized for the true danger it poses, especially in the developing world.

I know there's at least one manly-man who reads this blog sometimes. So, this is for you. The 10 Manliest Drinks in the world. ::In television announcer voice, Please drink responsibly.::

And, I'd just like to leave you with this She must have a lot of votes. She'd probably have more if the 18-25 group voted more. At first it looks like it's not safe for work but it really is.


A brief rant about squirrels

I was on Cute Overload when I saw this picture and the accompanying editorial on the general goodness of squirrels.

And I thought to myself, "oh hell no". Squirrels are neither cute nor nice. Also, their claws aren't the problem. The real issue is their teeth. You may find yourself asking, "Liz, how do you know this? Squirrel teeth?"

I have a history with squirrels. For a long time I was a bat biologist. To catch bats we string up "mist nets" which are nets about 12M high and 12M across and about the consistency of hair nets. Bats fly through large forest passages by memory and sight and get caught in the nets rather easily if they are set correctly. Know what else gets caught in these nets if we're not careful? Squirrels. Not normal squirrels either. We get Flying Squirrels which are nocturnal. They're roughly the size of a rat and meaner than a hungry lion. And they have these teeth that are made to gnaw and jaws as strong as an iron clamp. Their teeth didn't actually break my skin, but when I'd get done extracting one of these things from the net, my hand resembled ground beef.

And then, we had to put the nets back up. After the squirrel had been in it, struggling against the net to get loose and then struggling against the net and me to be free. These nets are fragile as heck. I'm working with a hair net basically. Have you ever tried to straighten out a hairnet after a rodent had been into it? It's roughly like trying to sew together two hairbrushes. In the dark. With a hand that feels like ground beef. Now, you try that and then tell me, are squirrels cute?

It's the Monday Music Mambo

It's been a while since I've done this, but this one looked right up my alley.
Hello everyone! Today's theme is tube top day. Who wears tube tops? Women! So we'll change it to Rockin' Women Day.

Tell me your . . .

Favorite female (rock) singer
Mellisa Etheridge. I really started to like her when "Come to My Window" and "I'm the Only One" came out. She's a brilliant musician. I also like that she writes her own songs and she's an excellent performer.
Honorable mention: Sheryl Crow another outstanding performer.

Favorite female guitarist
Can I write myself in here? Hee hee. For now, I'm going with Corrine Bailey Rae who is a fantastic musician. I love her songs. Besides sounding great and having wonderful lyrics, they are written in a way that indicates she has had some musical education and background.

Favorite female bassist
I actually had to google this, and then I remembered that Sheryl Crow is actually a bassist as well as a guitar player. Usually if you can play one you can play the other to some degree. Other female bass players include Tracy Chapman, the girl from Sonic Youth, the only one I could think of, and my favorite Me'Shell Ndegeocello who I first heard of from a John Mellencamp song.

Favorite female singer from any genre
Joss Stone is the best blues singer ever and one of the only white girls who can truly pull off that style. Madeleine Peyroux brings the jazz. Amanda, you would love her music. Somewhat related to jazz is Norah Jones. From the country world, there's Martina McBride and Jo Dee Messina.

Finally, be daring and tell us who is the . . .
Queen Of All Music
That would be Mary J. Blige who has a beautiful and amazingly powerful voice. Filling out the court of music royalty will be the princess of songwriting Sarah McLachlan and the queen mum Joni Mitchell.


More on the nutrition front

After all the research I did last night on eating eggs and other stuff, I poked all over the internet for other information. My conclusion: I think nutritionists should be more accessible to the general public. Wanna know what I learned?

The nutritional needs of men and women, because they're not the same. This article reminded me that it's important to have iron in my diet. My first thought? Darn, it's too bad I don't have any of those old iron skillets we cooked on when I was a kid. Best source of iron I ever had.

Iron Rich Foods. After remembering that I should be eating iron, I went to this page to learn that I eat no good sources of iron and all of the things that inhibit the uptake of iron. I think I might need to talk with someone about this.

10 Tips for Easy Weight Loss. The best thing about this article is the math problem that let me know how many calories I should be eating in a day. Figuring 60 minutes of light to moderate activity (read: walking and running) I need 2,685 calories per day. Seriously? No wonder I'm always hungry. The tip to loose weight is to subtract 500 calories from that total, which still puts me at 2,200 calories per day. Honestly, hungry all the time.

From there, I moved on to Protein needs for athletes. I need to eat 100g of protein every day. For some reason Turkey chili sounds really good right now. Hey, that has iron too.

Overwhelmed with nutrition information, I moved on to lighter subjects. 25 signs that you are a grown-up. Someone once told me that "if you have to tell someone you're an adult, you aren't". I really try to never say I'm an adult unless we're talking about legal drinking ages because of that advice.

Kelly, here's something to do with the cans from the coke you drink. Eric would look great in this. I have a feeling that he or his dad probably has a saw that could cut the cans how they need to be cut to accomplish that look too. Seriously, I thought of you right away when I saw this picture and I really don't know why.

The best Dilbert comic ever.

And finally, I want Dad to start a "Santa Run" for Northern Kentucky Legal Aid. How cool would that be?

Holy goodnight

Well, I ran 5.7 miles today. I thought I was going to die but I did it. I actually ran .7 miles on the way to / from the marathon and 5 miles at the Y. It's hot and humid and it's October. This really doesn't seem fair. We won't talk about how slow I ran. Or the fact that I stopped for water twice in the five mile run. That's part of why i feel sick I think.

Here we go: for the first week of October, I have run 15 miles. Left to run this week: Zero Miles. Left to run this month: 50 miles. That number is getting smaller and smaller.

Also, watching the marathon runners, I'm much closer to a place in my head where I could see myself running the marathon next year. Maybe I should run a 10K first. I could do it, I have a whole year to train. I actually thought about the flying pig marathon. That's on Mother's day. That would be fun too. Although not nearly as long to train.


I'm not a total slug

Yesterday, I did nothing. I'm not entirely sure I saw another human being yesterday. A stark contrast to how I spent my days off last week. I didn't even run yesterday. It was too rainy, and then I was napping. Today, I went to the gym and I had an interesting dilemma. I decided to do the elliptical instead of running. I really try to run on that track as little as possible. I know what's coming this winter. The ellipticals at the gym are really nice and one of their features is they count the distance in miles that I've "run" on the machine. The dilemma: do these miles count towards the running goal? I had pretty much decided "yes". Then I came home and read this article (I love wikipedia) about ellipticals and decided that for sure these miles count.

Today, I ran 3.4 miles, bringing my total for the week and month to 9.3 miles. I have 5.7 miles left to run this week (read: tomorrow) and 55.7 miles for the month. I'm not sure about the running tomorrow. Why? It's supposed to be about one billion degrees. Hot for October anyways. And, the running path that I'd normally take to run that far? Blocked off by the marathon. Plus, I'd like to actually see the marathon. And it might rain.

Another thing I got done today was reorganizing my storage closet. I threw away about half of the boxes and all of the styrofoam that was in there. No one really knows what I was keeping that stuff for. I've come to my senses now. I also thought about giving a whole bunch of stuff to charity but was thwarted. Goodwill won't take the stuff I want to give, including a television and stereo. The TV definitely works. The stereo has it's days. I also have a white floor lamp with gold hardware. You were with me until the gold weren't you? I don't like it either. I'm currently exploring my other options. Anyone know how you dispose of a stereo in a way that won't kill the environment or get me arrested?

And then I made dinner. I was really distressed when I read the nutrition facts for eggs. 250 miligrams of cholesterol in one egg? And it's just a large egg, not even the extra large or the jumbo. And then I started doing more research on eggs and the likeliness that eating one will lead to a heart attack. This article from Science, the magazine of the National Science Foundation seems to encourage eating a moderate serving of eggs. This article from a somewhat less reputable source also seems to indicate that the other health qualities of eggs far outweigh their cholesterol count for anyone who does not already have high cholesterol. The reason I love eggs: their a wonderful source of protein. Is two eggs a day too much? One never seems enough.

The Saturday 8

when was the last time:

1. you got money in the mail?
I got a check for $25 from the Science Museum returning the deposit from my parking card.

2. you sent a letter?
I send DVDs to Netflix all the time. And I send letters in the course of my job all the time.

3. you received a package?
Actually, recently I've been getting big packages left and right. Among the more exciting large things I've received in the mail: my 403b plan, health insurance plan, MSW degree and social work license.

4. you purchased stamps?
Oh, I still have 39 cent stamps. What are they up to now?

5. you had to wait in line at the post office?
At the end of August, I had to mail my iPod Nano rebate to Apple. I had to make sure we got the right postage on it.

6. you talked to your mail carrier?
This morning when he opened the door for me. My mail carrier looks like a hippie. He's really nice.

7. you didn't get your mail because somebody blocked your mailbox, you missed a mail/package delivery, your mail was delivered to the wrong place, etc.
I had this whole issue with FedEx in June where they wouldn't leave packages at my door even though I authorized it. Really the problem started with Apple since they insisted on mailing my packages to the incorrect address.

8. you gave your mail carrier a gift? what was it?
Are you supposed to do that in the US? I've heard of doing it on other countries. My dad had to tip the mailman in India just to get mail. On the ship I helped sort the mail specifically so I could get my mail early. I've never given my postmaster anything, although if he ever needed a glass of water after hauling around all those letters on a hot day, I'd be happy to oblige.

The joys on the internet

Did you know that wifi signals travel better down than up? I read that the other day. So it's best to have your router as high as possible in your apartment or house. My signal is still weaker than everyone else. Why is that? I'm three feet from the thing.

First, a quick shout out to The Breast Cancer Site which is related to The Hunger Site (also linked in the side bar). Both these sites are pay-per-click. In this case, it means every time you click the button that says "click here to give, it's free" the weekly sponsor makes a donation to the site. You can click once a day.

Just another reason I don't shop at Wal-Mart. Once you get over the grossness, it's hilarious to think about. (Safe for work.)

A warning to all of you iPod Nano users out there. Oh, wait, I have one too. I remember reading an article that said Toyota had made a concept Prius that ran on a Li-Ion batter, similar to the Li-Ion batteries used in the iPod Nano and all the computers that keep setting themselves on fire. The article was bemoaning Toyota's decision not to put the new car into development because it got like 120 miles per gallon. The drawback: li-ion batters do have a track record of blowing up. I do hope Toyota is working on a solution to that problem.

Finally, the recipe for my favorite Alfredo Sauce ever. I think I gained weight just thinking about that recipe.

The internet map maps where internet users are most dense, and how the internet connects people of different geographic locations. The map of the world is fascinating. Especially look at the US, Europe, Japan and New Zealand compared to Asia and Africa. Australia is less dense I'm assuming due to the way the population is distributed there.

40 Demotivational Posters that are probably not safe for work due to language. Most of the first ones are either dumb or offensive. However: I love

  • The "hydration: the key to marathon training" is hilarious

  • The "Mom's minivan" one is so true.

  • The "Ninjas: there are four of them in this picture" makes me think of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Movie (the one with Vanilla Ice) where the bad guys would steal all this merchandise out of the backs of trucks in like four seconds and disappear.

  • The one with the skier that says "Think" I about pass out just looking at it. (This time it's not the OCD, it's the fear of heights.)

  • The very last one is both hilarious (other than the language) and makes me think of Cindee whom I hope is enjoying grad school.

A very cool article on The Value of Intangible Wealth based on a study by the World Bank. Kelly, you who are studying geography might find this interesting. It's basically saying that in the US, up to 80% of our wealth is intangible, and manifests itself in things like an efficient relatively uncorrupted judicial and law enforcement system, and infrastructure like buildings, urban spaces and roads that we all use. But in places with fewer of these things, like poor African countries, only 60% of their wealth is intangible which means a greater percentage of their wealth is in things like natural resources and marketable goods. That's really important for countries like Malawi that have very few natural resources, but a higher percentage of the country's value is tied to them.

I found this journaling program for Mac OS X through a link on Del.icio.us. I thought about using it, but then I thought what's the point when I have a blog? It'd be cool if that program could talk to my blog though. I wonder if it can. Maybe I'll download it and find out.

And now for a word about torrents. I tried this program called Miro which is an internet TV player. I didn't use it long. I found that I could find just about any television show on the air today, or that had aired in recent memory to download and play through Miro. And then I tried to actually play one. It was going to take like three hours to download a 30 minute show. So I tried a couple different shows from a couple different sources. And then I decided it was stupid and I didn't want to wait that long. Joost seems to work a bit better but has way fewer television shows. I think Netflix is still the answer. That option has the added bonus of being legal too.

An ammendment to Thursday's post

It occurs to me, that if you read the previous post, it might be less than fair to Amanda who was, in fact, awesome during that fiasco of an outing. Amanda gave me some really good ideas to think about for my bedroom. And when they didn't have exactly what I wanted, Amanda immediately redirected my energy down a more productive path (read: the burrito I'd been waiting for all week) and didn't let me buy another dresser on impulse. So thank you. Also, the burrito was excellent. I had the carne asada this time. I can only hope the beef didn't come from Sam's club.


When bad things happen with good friends...

That pretty much describes my day. I realized part of my trouble running was my diet yesterday. I ate something that absolutely did not get along with my stomach. I was trying to figure out what. All I had were leftovers. I'm assuming one of them was left a little too long. I'm suspecting pesto sauce. (It's green. Like I could see anything odd in there.)

Luckily that issue was resolved by the time Amanda came over to help me pick out a dresser at Ikea. First, Amanda vetoed the curtains. I kind of knew that was going to happen. I liked the material, and I liked how little light they let in. I was never a fan of the color. My room is a light color that looks dark, and those curtains were a dark color that looked light. They did not get along.

The bad:

The good:

I don't have a picture of my purple curtains. (I know. It didn't seem right to me either.) But if I did have a picture, I'd refer to them as "the ugly" because in the end, they really were. Maybe not, maybe I was just sick of them. The new curtains are "wheat" color, and made of linen. The old curtains were "sage" and made of faux suade. If they had a color I liked in the faux suede, I would have gone with that. I didn't like their nuetrals. My only other options were red and black which we all know are unacceptable. They had a brown but I just wasn't a fan. I also decided that brown would dictate too much about the dresser. Why is that important?

After Amanda vetoed the curtains we went to Ikea. It became clear to me, (I've always known it really) that Amanda's tastes are a bit different than mine. Not bad, we just like different styles. Amanda was encouraging me to go as light as possible with the dresser, like white or birch. I wanted to go as dark as possible. I was a bit thrown by the whole curtain fiasco, which hadn't actually been resolved until after the Ikea trip. I think I had a little less self-confidence than normal and didn't push too hard for the darker stained wood. The stain of wood we both agreed on (and I really did like this stain) was out of stock.

The decision: I guess we need Kelly's design expertise. Seriously, it's a miracle I've made any decorating decisions without Kelly's help. I just want to make my case now.
Reasons Amanda likes lighter things:
1. It runs to Amanda's tastes. She has a light dresser and it looks great in her bedroom.
2. Amanda's bedroom is not as big as my bedroom. Amanda is correct that a dark dresser would overpower her bedroom.
3. I don't know, that's all I remember.
4. I just wanted to give you as many numbers as I gave myself.

Reasons that it's ok to have dark dresser in Lizzie's bedroom:
1. I am not Amanda. I am Lizzie. I love dark stained wood. Amanda will be happy that I have found a dresser I enjoy.
2. My bedroom is 14 X 14. (It really is. I had to measure it to know how much paint to buy.) The blue on my wall is a light color and there is an off-white/cream door to the closet taking up half of one wall, making the room appear big and not oppressive.
3. The curtains are also a bright color, adding to the brightness and bigness of the room.
4. That wall has nothing on it right now. A dark piece of furniture will catch the eye and help the wall realize it's true potential as a focal point in my bedroom.
Bonus reason: that one's still in stock.

Also tonight: I found my new favorite pair of pants. I actually bought them for running because I kept not having enough clean clothes for exercise. But they're so comfortable. It's really too bad they're totally inappropriate to wear for anything other than exercise. And I bought a blouse for work. It's pink. (That's right, I'm now enough of a girl that I own a pink shirt.) I actually picked that color on purpose. It's a totally cute shirt by the way. I can't wait to wear it.

Poking around on the internet

I've been poking around on the internet a lot today. What else was I going to do with my time off? I was productive enough last week.
1. More ways for a better memory. Note number 3. My brain is bigger because I run. Now I'm just waiting for the rest of me to get smaller from running. They also talk about the benefits of coffee, which I am tragically addicted to. Not coffee so much as lattes which are more expensive than regular coffee. I also like the tip about enjoying what you're learning. It has served me well in my life. I love being a geek.
2. An article about the impact of legalizing euthanasia. It's very relevant to my line of work. I actually haven't come across this situation yet, or I haven't come across a situation where someone is ill enough to fit in the category and interested in ending their own life. Obviously I've come across people who are very sick. I feel lucky that I'm able to be a part of their journey. It's quite inspiring to see someone want to live.
3. Almost 500 Cosmetic Products in the US contain toxic levels of chemicals. Yet another reason I'm glad I don't wear make-up. I actually think women can wear make-up in an attractive way, and sometimes felt left out that I was the only one not wearing any. The real reason I don't wear make-up: I don't like it touching my face. Ewww. (It's the OCD.)
4. Blind people are asking Toyota to make the Prius louder. I've been in a couple of these cars. They are ridiculously quiet. I was telling Dad about them and that was actually the first thing I said. I don't think it's fair to say they make no noise, but I certainly can't tell when the thing is running.
5. 20 Innovations that changed the College Experience. I remember being in college and knowing about Google before most of my class mates. That's right. I was an early adopter. As for online learning environments like blackboard, I have strong feelings about them. I'm not a fan obviously. Mostly that's because the system that the U has is built to only work with internet explorer. Remember all those articles about Macs gaining popularity that I posted yesterday? Forget Macs, let's think of Firefox, the only browser to actually meet accessibility standards doesn't work with this system. Sorry, I'm better now. The energy drinks thing is just funny to me. I knew a guy who used to drink red bull like that in almost all of our classes. He seemed to need them during the day more than at night though.
6. Speaking of website accessibility, Target is getting sued over their inaccessible website. I know someone who is visually impaired and uses the speech software to navigate the internet and other software programs. This is a really big issue.
7. Optical Illusions in architecture. Maybe I can use one of these concepts to redecorate my bedroom.

Good news for those of you who were worried (like me)

I just got back from running. Apparently I shouldn't have not run for four days and then tried to go seven miles. Woops. Nonetheless, I did go 5.9 miles today. That brings my total for this week, and for the month of October to: 5.9 miles. (Every long race has a first five miles.) Still to run this week: 9.1 miles. Still to run in October: 59.1 miles.

Hmm, while the mileage for this week doesn't seem at all overwhelming, I could just about pass out looking at 59.1 miles still go to. Wow.


Here's my confession

Remember a while ago, when I said I'd try to run 65 miles in the month of October? And then I had a practice week? How far have I gone? Zero miles. I'm telling you all this because I know you'll still love me, even though I couldn't drag my lazy ass out of bed once so far this week to run.

I keep doing math in my head, like, as long as I've only got 25 miles to go, I could run 5 miles five days in a row at the end. (This, by the way, is how I scheduled homework the entire time I was in grad school. It's why I was always stayed up so late the day before class and did no work at any other time.) I was just zonked all week, and couldn't wake up at 5:30a, and for some reason, was too tired to run after work either. Honestly, that feels harder to me than waking up early and getting it over with. Maybe my friend Kelly, who has been called "a professional sleeper" has some advice for me. (Or at least she probably understands what this feels like.) I'm hoping that tomorrow and Friday (since I don't have to work) I can run longer runs and make up a little distance. I'm also hoping that next week when I get back on my regular work schedule, I can start waking up early again.

Other things that will help me get back on track: next Wednesday I go learn to be a Bolder Options volunteer. Bolder Options is like Big Brothers / Big Sisters except when you get a teenager, you run or bike with them. And I need to continue to visit the gym eight times a month to get my $20 off the membership price.

Great things I've found lately

1. Exercise for your brain.
2. Macs Are Growing in Popularity at Colleges and Universities.
3. Here's more proof.
4. If I ever get married, I want these at the reception and as a wedding gift. Until I'm married (read: cooking for more than one person on a regular basis) I can't see having a use for them.
5. They blame this picture on New York drivers, but who among us hasn't had that feeling?
6. Maybe more exercises for me to try. More on that later.
7. 10 Commandments of Investing which seemed relevant given all the changes in my life. By the way, I'm approved for a mortgage. Gaaaa.
8. Real estate in Dubai. If you're curious, Dubai is an island in the middle east that basically exploded due to revenues from... yup, oil. Can you imagine me getting a room in that building anywhere above the third floor? Either one, the one that's built that looks like a yatch, or the uber-tall one they're building. And, is anyone else bothered by the fact that the Sears Tower looks taller than the 452m building?
9. Elevators from around the world. More great buildings I will never get to enjoy.
10. Learning the Montessori Way. I went to a Montessori school. I loved it. Cincinnati now has public schools that have montessori through high school.
11. The Top 5 Things Every Extrovert Should Know About Introverts. You know which one you are. Although, my most extroverted friend is wonderfully understanding about my introverted tendencies.
12. 5 Personal Growth Lessons I Learned by Moving. Please note item number 5. I still remember.
13. Has anyone actually seen this? I've never run into a mob of angry bikers.


Ten on Tuesday

10 Television Shows I'd Like to Have (Or Already Have) on DVD
1. Studio 60 On the Sunset Strip. I think I've made my feelings about this show clear. Review my previous thoughts here. It's really too many posts to link to individually.
2. Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman. I am not ashamed.
3. The West Wing. I know, you're all shocked. I love that show. There's so many good episodes but really the dialog throughout the whole show was fantastic.
4. Sports Night, another short-lived Aaron Sorkin creation. It was really the forerunner to both West Wing and Studio 60. It was also the show that Felicity Huffman starred on before Desperate Housewives. She's great too.
5. ER but only if I didn't have to get all of the seasons. In particular I would avoid any seasons where helicopters fall from rooftops. That's just silly.
6. Friends. Especially the ones with Tom Selleck as Richard. Yum. You can find out which "Friend" you are by taking this relatively long test or this much shorter one. One quiz said I'm Phoebe. Another one said I'm part Phoebe and part Monica. I feel more Phoebe than Monica. I've always liked her better.
7. The Smurfs. You were thinking the exact same thing. Admit it.
8. Gummi Bears TV Show. Remember that one?
9. What about Fraggle Rock.
10. Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. I refer you to my comment in number two for further information.