31.7.08

I've worked how many hours...

It's been a week of working long days. That's much easier in the summer when the sun comes up early and I wake up earlier. Today I worked 8:30-5:30 and then went to the Bolder Options open house with my mentee. I am now sleepy.

I think I get to go out this weekend to Maria's for bacon brunch with Amanda and Kelly. Other than that, I will be a sleeping monster.

While I'm asleep this weekend, here's some reading material to enjoy:

29.7.08

how's my day going?


This picture pretty much says it all. My two-hole punch exploded all over my floor. I couldn't sweep up all the holes either. Luckily our cleaner comes tomorrow. Yes, I do know her name and I will tell her thank you when I see her.

I swam tonight. It was really fun. I did better than I thought I would. I'm hoping I can keep up with the swimming on Tuesday nights. We'll see what happens.

The other thing I realized: I need to make a morning exercise plan before I go to bed at night. Otherwise I'll never get up and do anything. My plan tomorrow is to run in the morning around Lake Nokomis. (There, now I'm accountable. I learned that from this article). Tomorrow night I might "play" tennis with a co-worker. That will probably turn into me running around and getting really sweaty in the heat so I'm choosing not to count that as exercise.

For some of my friends who are trying to exercise, start running, and so on, a look at how much exercise is really needed to loose weight. Kind of reassuring. That's about what I do in a week. (Now if I could only eat less I'd be fine.)

Also, mostly for Amanda and Kelly who are in various stages of schooling, two things:
1. Websites I've never heard of but look really useful.
2. Where to find free (I can only assume that means legal) books online.

28.7.08

I'd like to congratulate myself

I have a block when it comes to changing light switches in my house. A while ago, the light switch to my chandelier broke. I tried to fix it to no avail. I lived without light in my living room until a handy man came to fix the hole in my bathroom and I had him fix that too. Turns out I'd wired it correctly, the switch was faulty. Nonetheless, the block remained. So I was quite intimidated when my hallway light stopped working and it was clearly because of the switch. (See how it's split in two?)


I boldly went to Home Depot and bought a new light switch, for $0.52 which I felt stupid putting on a debit card (that may be a separate blog post) and came back and wired it up. And behold.... nothing.



Until I changed the light bulb. It works now. Go me.

I'd also like to share my most recent internet readings...
Fat friends make you fat, in Europe anyways. Interesting article and perhaps the most ridiculous picture I've ever seen.

I laughed out loud when I read this. Good for the real passenger for speaking up quickly and good for passenger number 3 for being hilarious sticking up for another human being.

Who remembers Oregon Trail? Gosh, this brought memories back.

Finally, I've been keeping an eye on this story because of where I work. There was a rally in Iowa this week to support the workers at the largest Kosher meat packing plant in the US. And the companion piece, Who's filling the jobs recently vacated by so many Spanish speakers?.

26.7.08

Just another reason to shave my head...

video

Watch the above video at your own risk. Why? I was cleaning today (a Saturday) and the experience has taught me that I should always clean on Sundays instead.

I am grossed out by wet hair in the bath tub. Yes, I am the only one using the tub. Yes, it's got to be my hair. It's still gross. I've met other people in my life who are similarly grossed out by this phenomenon. I have a ton of hair on my head. I'm not too hairy in generally, but the hair on my head is like wild kingdom. A lot of it gets washed out when I shampoo my hair. Today I was scrubbing the tub out when some of said hair caught my eye, what follows can only be described as a near death experience.

The final image is below and I warn you, it's not pleasant.











Thanks to Kelly

A long time ago, Kelly made me a really nice ankle bracelet. It's the summer so of course I wear it all the time. And every time I wear it, I get tons of compliments. So many in fact, that I decided the ankle bracelet (and Kelly) deserved their own post. Good job and thanks again!


25.7.08

where's Liz been

No place exciting, that's for sure. I had the busiest week ever at work. I am so excited for the weekend. I'm imagining reading and eating crap all weekend. I'll probably run at some point too. And I need to do laundry.

What've I done since we last spoke?

Wednesday: I honestly can't remember. I think there was a lot of work. I know there was no exercising. Ooooh, I think I went to Target.

Thursday: For sure there was a lot of work that day. I walked at the Y (I need my eight visits this month) and then I went to the JCC to play volleyball. It was fun. I didn't end up with any bruises.

Today: Owing to the insane hours I'd worked earlier this week, I woke up late and went into work an hour late. In the morning I ran sprints at the Y. Getting ready for the Milk Run. I had two meetings out of my office. Once I came back, I shut my door and typed furiously until everything was documented. Now, I am sitting on my couch watching the Tour de France. Simply amazing.

What have I seen on the web in the meantime?

Rare and expensive Nintendo DS games. I knew Tetris would be there, even before I read the list.

Farm Subsidies explained. A fantastic article that explained a lot.

The best money advice I ever got. I've only made it to 12 of 40, but helpful input.

For Kelly, who will be a teacher, I know you're not going to teach math, but I think you'll find this information helpful.

My parents are going to remodel the kitchen in their condo, this is something they'll need to know about.

And finally, I am a "Next Generation" girl, but here's a few things Star Trek gave us.

22.7.08

More from the wastelands of time internet:

Great visuals:
  • No one knows how its head got in there. Poor cat. Safe for work.

  • Breakdown of federal lands by state. You can clearly see the west was the least settled when Teddy Roosevelt started making national parks left and right. I'm mildly surprised Kentucky isn't higher. It was Mammoth Cave National Park (one of the four caves turned into a national park) and some national forests.




Health and Fitness related:




Race:
  • Women seem to care more about race in relationships than men. Though the author is surprised, I am not. It's kind of a long article but it's interesting. I once dated a guy who was not the same race as me and we did talk about kids once or twice. I wasn't bothered that kids would be biracial. I was worried the kids wouldn't care about the part of the heritage that has to do with my race. And I was worried how my extended family would treat them. Ultimately it didn't work out with the guy for other reasons. He did write me the other day though...

  • And the follow up, Which city in the US is the most racist: a readers poll. Really interesting. I'd draw your attention to comment 49. I am not surprised. Heh, Kentucky.




Miscellaneous:

21.7.08

No one knows why I thought it was a good idea...

But I wound up working out twice today. Although the second time was sort of an impulse.

I woke up and went to the gym. I did the stair climber in honor of the big hills I run up in August at the Milk Run. It still kicks my butt. I didn't know my arms could sweat.

After work my mentee wanted to take a friend with her tonight. There was some confusion and I thought she wanted to go swimming so I was in my bathing suit with a shirt and shorts over it. We met another mentor/mentee match and walked around Lake Nokomis. Ultimately the water was closed because of a high bacteria count. Although people still had their kids in the water.

After dropping my mentee off, I realized that I had all the equipment I needed to go for a swim at the Y. For like a really swim workout. So I did. I swam a 1600 (yards) which is 64 laps. My whole body is like jello. And I keep trying to convince myself that I'll wake up early tomorrow to take a shower so I don't have to do it tonight. Really I keep trying to convince myself I run tomorrow morning. I hope I do. I have to meet someone at 8am for coffee. Mmmm. I can taste it already.

20.7.08

Pretty soon, I'll have 1000 blog entires

Wow, 1,000 entries is a lot. I'm at 933 right now, so I should hit 1,000 by the end of the year at least. Maybe sooner. What have I been doing?

Monday: I went swimming with my mentee. I swam laps which I hadn't expected to do and was sore the next day (more like three).

Tuesday:: I have no earthly idea what I did on Tuesday.

Wednesday: was our staff party. See that fence in all the pictures? 35E is basically down a steep bank on the other side of it. Some of the staff members were playing around until I accidentally hit the ball over the fence. Actually, I hit it and it bounced off the food table and over the fence. It was like a train wreck in slow motion. Everyone can see exactly how it's going to end but no one can take their eyes off the action. Woops.






Thursday: When I got home from work Thursday I ran hills for 30 minutes and then went swimming. After the volleyball incident, one of my colleagues asked me to play in a game with her at the JCC. I had a really nice time. The people there were all pretty good. Most were better than me at volleyball but I make up for lack of skill in athleticism. I was really tired by the end but it was fun. I don't know if I'll go again because I'm not a member of the JCC. There was some confusion and drama.

Friday:I finally quit the aquarium. I so badly didn't want to work that I decided the final straw had finally come. Really, Friday night I called in sick. I decided I didn't need to exercise Friday on account of the beating double work-out the day before. Plus my knee and one arm were quite bruised.

Saturday: I wrote an email saying that I couldn't work there anymore because of my schedule at my other job. Which is really true, just not the way it sounds. I have a normal schedule at my other job and no longer want to work on my time off. Saturday I spent most of the day reading the last Harry Potter book. Not sure what made me pick it up.

Sunday: I decided I needed to set another goal for the Nike+iPod deal to keep me running. I was disappointed that I couldn't say, "I want to run XX minutes this week". I can only say, "I want to run XX times per XX weeks" and it makes me choose between 4, 8, 10 and some other higher numbers of weeks. I ran 45 minutes this morning. I was really hot. I thought I was going to pass out. Really, I thought I was going to have a different problem. I was just glad I didn't eat breakfast first. After the run, I walked around Lake Hiawatha too. Lance Armstrong congratulated me on my longest run yet because I left the iPod going while I was walking. Hey, I'll take it. Then I came back and got in the pool. Now I'm sitting her writing and thinking about going grocery shopping.

18.7.08

Links Roundup

From Freakonomics:




Fun stuff from around the web:




From the world of science:




And finally, from the world of health and well being:

13.7.08

What was my weekend like?

Saturday was the day of no roads being open here in South Minneapolis so I stayed in and... well slept and read mostly. Around 6:00 I went for a nice walk around Lake Nokomis and then to the bank to deposit a check. I came back and wouldn't allow myself to shower (which I really needed) until the house was clean. It was a good strategy. The home cleaning and showering both got done. I also shopped online for a computer AC adapter for Amanda (hope that got worked out). I think ultimately she needed one faster than it could ever be mailed so she was forced to make a deal with the devil buy one from Best Buy.

Sunday, I was a little more productive. I ran and then walked. Eight weeks ago I set a goal at the Nike+ site to run more often. Today I also accomplished my goal of running 16 times in 8 weeks. I counted the attic cleanings as a run. (Honestly they were more like five runs, either way it was well earned.) While I was running, I realized I have to start running hills. Like now. It's the only training I really do for the Milk Run but it's important because the first two miles of the race are up hill.

I also went grocery shopping and cooked my lunch for the week, Quinoa Tofu Salad. Obviously, I took liberties with the ingredients because tomatoes don't go in my food (or anyone else's right now really) and cucumber doesn't belong in anything that has to last a whole week. But I'm at the point in my cooking where I have enough in my freezer that I could have a few different things to eat this week. Exciting. Sadly, the tupperware hasn't caught up to the "freezing a ton of food at once" so I may need to visit Target sometime soon.

Other than that, it's been a slow day so obviously I've had plenty of time these past couple days to find good stuff on the web, and find it I did:

11.7.08

Look at all the stuff I found on the web

Fun Websites:
Best time killing website creativity website ever. Seriously, I could spend hours doing this.


Kelly:
Kelly, if you can't find Tetris for the DS, this might make your day.


Fresh of the Failboat:
Fail #1. This one is obvious.

Cincinnati chili fails too. I promise you, no one in Cincinnati took this the dirty way. A "three way" is the most popular menu item. Although now that I start explaining it, it feels like I'm just digging the hole deeper.

Accessibility fail. Maybe it's part of a wheel chair obstacle course.

Computer fail funnies. The sad proof that even a Mac can screw up from time to time.

Signage fail. It sounds like this drive in now has porn. (Safe for work.)

Not sure who or what failed here, still funny.


Health related. Amanda, this is your section:
For Amanda who is studying this stuff. I find it interesting too, but she's more likely to click if she sees her name.

This is a health related political issue that never crossed my mind. Just more proof that I'm single. I also don't know how much people are paying out of pocket, and if the fact that people have to pay out of pocket keeps the price low. Or is it really high?

How hot are you and how much does it matter?. I think the last person has the most interesting answers.

Who wants to know if they are a genetic freak have unusual genes. If the sixth toe doesn't get in your way, it's probably fine.

Want to live longer? It sounds good to me. All these ladies I serve, I can't wait to be a Grandma. Here's how to do it.

And a final inspiring note about our health care Medicare gets restored. All of my clients are served by Medicare. All of your parents will be soon too.


Your mom parents:
Speaking of your parents, they're still better shoppers than we are. I could actually identify with this article.


Oh Canada:
Another reason Canada and KFC rock. How long have people been waiting for vegan fast food? Seriously, Minnesota is close to Canada, bring it on down.


Back to the I Am America and So Can You category:
The Colbert Bump is real. Or maybe it's only real if you're marketing to people who watch the Colbert Report. By the way, I can watch the full show now at Hulu. That's just another nail in the coffin of the standard cable package.

Is this really necessary?


From the Consumerist:
Consumerist hates Wal Mart. Apparently Wal Mart doesn't think too much of itself either.

Consumerist tells me Saigon is breaking the merchant agreement by making me buy $10 worth of food before accepting my Visa. It's ok. I'll still eat there.

Consumerist Hates Northwest and I am amused.


Life Planning:
50 things to do before you die. I was surprised how many of these I'd actually done already. If you need help Make a life plan. It's ok if you choose not to sky dive.


Cultural Planning:
A really interesting public safety issue given my workplace. I work with people who cover their hair. It's interesting because usually you don't even know people are wearing a wig unless they tell you. It is an identifying feature because it's the same wig all the time usually. They're so expensive ladies only buy one. Also, in Minnesota women are allowed to have their head covered in driver's license photos. I learned that one time when I had a bandanna on and they didn't ask me to remove it. (I regretted it the whole time I had that ID.)


The Olympics:
Dara Tores certainly is one of the most exciting athletes in the olympics this year. I can't wait to see how she does. And here's a local talent also going to the olympics.

I just thought a couple of these pictures looked cool, especially the one where they're all the dress uniform and it looks like a geometric pattern.

Speaking of China some unexpected effects of the one child policy?


And Conservation:
Mom just told me her work authorized a 4 day work week to save energy. It seems employers who are flexible tend to maximize their resources while inflexible ones are stupid.

Compare paper to plastic. A really informative article. And the follow up, Seatlle follows Europe's lead and decides styrofoam and plastic are bad.

8.7.08

The worst dream ever

I just had a pretty rough dream. It could be payback for cleaning out the attic.

In the dream, I was living in my old apartment, where I first lived when I moved to Minnesota. I'd just bought half of the house and I was going to share it with Joyce, my old land lady. I had everything I needed, the house was kind of set up and I was trying to avoid clutter.

And then I remembered I had this other apartment in another part of town. I thought, "how am I affording this?" and "I really did just buy part of this house right?" After all those answers came back, I decided I needed to get rid of the other apartment. I think it was in Northeast Minneapolis, which while lovely, has no appeal to me at all. I thought, "Ill just pack up or sell everything in that apartment, I wonder how fast it can happen".

And then I got to the apartment. And in it was all of my grandmother's stuff. In the dream it was a lot nicer and bigger than the stuff she had in real life. There were beds and bed spreads and dressers in just about every room and a gigantic china cabinet. My first thought was "how did this all get up to Minneapolis?" and then I thought, "well, we're just going to have to send it back to Cincinnati" followed by, "oh crap, that'll take for ever. I'll have to pay another month's rent. How am I affording this?"

And I started to pack and was completely overwhelmed. It's important to note that I've moved several times (about half of them in 2004) and have never been simply too overwhelmed to pack. So anyway, I tried to pack and it just wasn't working. I got a little bit done. And then my Uncle Jerry showed up and he helped me go through some of the things and decide what to do with them. (So this would have been his mom's stuff too.) I also couldn't figure out the last time I'd actually lived in the apartment or why I had an apartment in that part of town. I am a South Minneapolis girl.

The most notable thing in the dream: Uncle Jerry showing up and helping me decide what to do. I liked Uncle Jerry when I was a little kid. His son (my cousin) is about six months younger than me and we were always really close. We would spend like all day on Saturday together when we were kids. And then we hit junior high and that stuff was less interesting. I really grew away from them. It seemed like we never had much in common. Adulthood had mildly changed that. Both Jimmy and I work really hard and now Uncle Jerry sees my Mom and Dad more than he used to. It's not like it was when we were kids though.

When I was home I took out a whole bunch of Grandma's stuff and brought it down so Jerry and Mom could look at it and decide what to do with it together. Uncle Jerry's reaction to the pile? "Burn it all". (No. Seriously) I have a few things of my Grandma's, mostly her cooking stuff. She had a lot of nice stuff that Mom will never use. She was one of those great old women who would "entertain" with the crystal and the silver tea sets and the fine china. Mom feels bad that she'll never use it. I feel bad that Mom feels bad. And now I'm dreaming about it.

6.7.08

More important things for you to know about

I am powerful

At least that's how running makes me feel. It was so hot today I'm happy I found the motivation to run. Thanks to the YWCA for the air conditioning.

Other things I did today include:

Bank to deposit a couple of checks. There's a new Wells Fargo location right by the YWCA but the ATMs aren't nice. They don't have pens or a place to write, which makes signing the checks and writing on the deposit envelope most interesting.

Shopping at my co-op where I spent a little more money than I meant too. I bought toffuti "ice-cream" sandwiches in a moment of running induced hunger. I'll let you know how those turn out. I got mint chocolate chip.

Swimming because it was so hot outside I nearly passed out every time I left air conditioning. Yeah pool!
Laundry when I wasn't in the pool. When the clothes came out of the dryer I had to lay them flat on the bed to let the heat dissipate before I could hang them up.

Television and movies. Wimbledon was exciting to watch this year. I'm a closet Roger Federer fan but Nadal is really quite likable. I was also watching some Harry Potter movies and 10 Things I Hate About You was on TV.

Cooking. This is where I spend the bulk of my day. I made Turkey Apple Picadillo and coconut creamed corn (one of my vegan dishes for the week) for my lunch. Those are all packed and ready to go. I made Kik Alicha a yummy Ethiopian dish (also vegan) for dinner tonight, I'll probably have more tomorrow. And I made a whole bunch of Wheat Berry and Lentil Salad or as I refer to it, vegan protein salad and froze it. I can have it for lunch a few times either this week or next. It's nice to have frozen stuff like that in reserve in case I get sick of the main lunch I've made for the week. Although, Turkey. Yum. I almost made a corn with mushrooms and bacon but I behaved.

As you can imagine, it took me a while to clean up after all that cooking. I'll run the dishwasher tonight. The beautiful thing is, I usually only have to run it once a week. After I cleaned the kitchen, I hung up all that laundry.

4.7.08

The most notable things on the web, ever

I'm saving my energy for tomorrow by not going out too much today. The fourth of July just isn't my holiday anyways. So instead, I've found some hilarious and some thought provoking things on the web today

Thought provoking:




And the otherwise notable:

3.7.08

Special thanks to Eric. Also, Kelly, I hope you enjoy your present

A special thanks to Eric who helped me get back into wireless action. It was really helpful. I hope you enjoy the subway!

Kelly, I hope you enjoy your birthday gift. My favorite part of it was actually like a second gift which became necessary to accommodate Amazon's shipping policy. I'm kind of glad they have that policy right now. Hopefully you are too.

Amanda, dinner was awesome.

To say thank you, I hope you will enjoy some of these sites:

2.7.08

It's that time of year

I just registered for this years Milk Run and so can you. It's August 24th this year and I'd love to have company. Walking around the fair alone is nice, but it's nicer with you guys. Remember the first time I ran it? That was a while ago.

So, I'm formally inviting you all to join me or cheer for me in this race.

1.7.08

Requests for pictures will now be honored

There have been several requests for pictures of my trip home. Some wanted to see the dress. Some wanted to see baby Luke. I wanted to share the attic incident.

Rehearsal Dinner, Thursday Night
First off, the rehearsal dinner was nice. It helps that I knew almost everyone there. My first two bosses (the older brother and sister in law of the groom) were there. Aunt Elaine, a nun who has gotten me into considerable trouble was also there. (Heh heh, fun with nuns.) I was also happy to learn I knew the groomsman who was going to escort me. I'd worked with him for a long time and he's a really nice guy. I'd also had a pretty obvious crush on him for several years. Luckily that was long ago enough that it wasn't awkward for him to escort me down the aisle in a wedding.


Partners in Crime Aunt Elaine and I

There's the bride! She looked really fantastic at the rehearsal and the wedding.


Jenny and her bridesmaids. We're calling this our "more bars in more places" pose because we're lined up by height. (I think I'm the only one not wearing heals. Jenny's still shorter.)

That's Tony, the groomsman who escorted me.

Friday: Attic Cleaning
The next day, Friday, began the attic cleaning. It was really quite a traumatic experience. And really sad. I told my mom I could sort of trace her OCD over the years by looking at things in the attic. I started off with the easy room. It was only easy because part of the crap in there was mine from caving and half the stuff in the room didn't even belong to us. It was also the room where I kept the most stuff, old antiques that Mom thought may be valuable. I cleaned the floor and covered them with sheets.

And then I went into the bowling alley. The pictures are deceptive because I really did a lot of work. This day we made two full recycling trips and filled about half of a dumpster. There's a recycling dumpster at the school that anyone in the neighborhood can use. (I wish we just rented one. It might come to that.) We had to stop though because we met the realtor to see the new condo.

During the cleaning, I was also reminded how bad my allergies are when I go to Cincinnati. (What allergies? I know, I only have them there.) I wore a rag over my face the whole time I was cleaning and ditched the contacts at the end of the weekend even though they were brand new. The handkerchief over the face resulted in an hilarious incident at the local dumpster when I forgot I was wearing it.


We lovingly refer to this as "the bowling alley" but what we really mean in trash heap. I think the top is actually Mike and Linda's and the bottom is our side. At least in this, my parents are not alone.



The clean version of the "easy" room. It actually looks really good. I got rid of a lot of stuff.


Remember the trip to the dumpster. Currently Mom's OCD shows itself in her having to wear gloves. She has really sensitive, dry skin and it breaks out all the time, which is why she says she has to wear gloves. I think it also has to do with the frequency that she washes her hands. It's less when she can just wash the gloves. Normally I think it's weird but today I totally agree. You can actually see how dirty they are in the picture.


Friday: Spaghetti
The reward for all the cleaning and running up and down four stories came Friday night when I got to eat spaghetti see my family. (Yeah, they're more important than the food. Sure.)


John's dog Mocha.


John, for future reference, when you take pictures of yourself like this and leave them as a "gift" on my camera, my way of thanking you will be to post them to the internet.


Jen and Luke.


Is it wrong that I have so many pictures of people taking pictures? I find it hilarious.


Here are some nice ones to enjoy.


Saturday: The Wedding and Reception
Saturday was pretty much consumed by the wedding. I got my hair cut (the last time that happened was right before Kelly's wedding) and an up-do. The ceremony was around 1:30 and then we spend the next three hours (no, seriously) taking pictures. We got to go some behind the scenes places at Union Terminal since 90% of the wedding party does or did work there at one time. The photographer loved it because it's an historic building and he normally doesn't get that kind of access. We were some cool places. The reception was fun. It turned out that I gave a toast. It was really short but I'm glad I got to say something.


The up-do.

Michelle, me and Laura, the three bridesmaids.

Jenny's Grandma. She's really nice.
Hey, look who's married.
In the limo. That might be one of the best shots of what the dress looked like.

Inside the old executive office at Union Terminal. This wood relief etching is what the building actually looks like. It holds three museums, two traveling exhibit galleries, the historical library and the art gallery. It's gigantic.

No one knows why Jenny needed help drinking water. On the wedding day, we don't ask.
This one is also at Union Terminal.

At the reception.


Sunday: Attic Part II
On Sunday I had mild success with the attic. There's still one room and a cedar closet that need to be addressed, but the monster bowling alley has been addressed. I kept going through these boxes of books that we had to recycle. Inevitably there would be a bible hidden deep down. It's like all the boxes were booby trapped. I left the stack of bibles for someone else to deal with. It didn't feel right for me to be the one to deal with those.


Still wearing that scarf.

Oh look, floors and a wall. I didn't know those were there. Is there any explanation I could give for the toilet sitting there?

Sunday Night: Flying Home
And finally, two hilarious airport "fails". One is a signage fail from Cincinnati (like there's not a better way to phrase that?). The other, look closely and you'll see what appears to be blue tape on the door. Of the airplane.