Saturday, March 14, 2009

Poppies Popping - Saturday 3/14/2009

The poppies are starting up a little early this year, thanks to all the rain. Most of them are up on inaccessible hills in our area.

According to the Antelope Valley California Poppy Preserve's website, the poppies aren't in full bloom yet.

We have a few in our yard. Most of the flowers on the hills near us are smaller yellow and purple flowers.

These were taken on Soledad Canyon Road.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Spinning Out of Control - Friday 3/13/2009

I keep track of my workouts in my calendar and online. This week was going well till Friday.

Mon : 20 min + 15 min brisk walk

Tue : 35 min cardio/elliptical

Wed : 60 min spinning class + 15 min warm-up + 80 crunches - This spinning class was great! The instructor was fun. She mixed up a lot of basic moves into sprints and rests of different lengths. At the end she let us do whatever we wanted for a couple of minutes and I really pounded it. It was amazing and I hit the zone and felt great for 24 hours.

Thu : worked late to help a coworker and didn’t make it to a class I was hoping to take

Fri : 65 min spinning class + 15 min warm up + 80 crunches
—This class was off from the beginning. Didn’t like the instructor at all. She sauntered in late, adjusted my bike to a position that gave me a couple of pinched nerves in my back (I’m realizing by Sunday morning), and basically let us follow along to her personal workout. She had zero body fat, and didn’t do what most instructors do,which is remind you to work at your 6 or 8 or whatever you’re going for.

She’d just have us go full tilt for the length of a whole song. BORING, plus anaerobic and not good for those of us who are carrying some extra weight.

One young woman who was new was probably 50 pounds over weight. The instructor cranked my bike’s resistance up and I saw her do the same to the other woman. Dangerous.

She does not know who I am. Doesn’t know what issues I might have. I left feeling sick and was still blotchy in the face an hour later. I should probably complain to the gym. She’s teaching at least 2 classes a week and she’s lazy about the teaching part. (rant rant)

Lesson learned: I know my limits and I know when I am really working hard, and no one cranks my bike up but me.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Show Me the Tater! - Thursday 3/12/2009

There has been a lot of chatter on Facebook today about the impending arrival of a batch of corned beef and cabbage. The raw materials arrived today, but it takes a long time to cook this dish, so we were thwarted in our attempts to have it for dinner.

(It has been started, as you can see, in the big yellow stock pot in the background.)

Dodger's determined to get to the bottom of this.

Where is the potato he has been promised? Huh?

If you'd like to be Dodger's friend, he's on Facebook as Artful Dodger. Is it wise to name your pets after scruffy, pick-pocketing street urchins?

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

CSI: Toluca Lake - Wednesday 3/11/2009

What the heck happened to OneL's mini-fridge overnight!?

Let's consider the evidence, shall we?

Indentation of some sort in the frost-laded freezer compartment. It's about six inches long, and rounded as if a cylinder was resting there. What could make that distinctive mark?


No. Not enough toes.


No. Too narrow.

Thermonuclear device?

I don't think so, but the idea will haunt me throughout the investigation.

Further inspection draws my eye to the brown liquid in the bottom of the refrigerator compartment and on top of the filing cabinet upon which it rests. Same liquid is splashed on the interior door.

Dried blood?

A fingerful rules this out. Blood's salty. This is sweet.

I snort some. No effect beyond a sticky burning sensation.

Will need to resort to brute intelligence to determine the type of substance. No time to wait for lab results. A life could be at stake.

What's that? A cylinder rests strangely akimbo in the door! Could it be connected with the indentation in the frost?!?

Cue process music! Darken the lights! Take a swab! Measure it. Measure it twice! Scrunch up forehead. Purse lips.


I think I have the answer!

This Diet Coke, bottled in only a few dozen plants in North America, apparently exploded when the liquid inside froze. Took the whole bottom of the can out and blew open the refrigerator door.

Luckily this happened after work hours, so no one was hurt.

Or were they?

It's 7:00 a.m. No one else is here yet. Was anyone injured? Or worse yet...killed!?!?!?!?!

Will make it my mission to grill everyone regarding her possible involvement upon her arrival.

Making coffee.

Setting up interrogation lamp and unpacking Girl Scout Cookies, which will function as a much better incentive than a carrot with this crowd.

I am on it folks.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Flat Brayden Has Landed! - Tuesday 3/10/2009

My cousin's son is participating in a Flat Stanley project in his second grade class, and they asked me to host his flat self!

If you're unfamiliar with the Flat Stanley concept, you can click on the link above or trust my explanation in a nutshell. It's based on a 1964 children's book by the same name, in which a child is flattened but not hurt, and decides to mail himself to a place he would like to visit but can't otherwise.

I am absolutely thrilled to host Flat Brayden! He arrived today and we set him up in the guest room. Even though it was a long trip, he was too excited to take a nap, but he was very nice about lying down for a bit and having a little apple juice.

We get to have him for a couple of weeks, so I'm looking forward to taking him camping, and to the rocks, and the mountains, and maybe Hydra will teach him a few chords on the guitar.

Hydra and I had our first argument about Flat Brayden. Hydra said it would be okay to give him a Coke, but I thought apple juice was more appropriate for a second grader. I mean, caffeine on a school night?

You have to set some limits. And who's going to stay up all night with him all hyped up? Huh?

This raising kids thing is as hard as everyone says it is!

Monday, March 09, 2009

Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood - Monday 3/9/2009

They've restored the sign at Papoo's Hot Dog Show. Yay!

It's a gorgeous day. Sunny and cool. Perfect for walking during breaks.

Down the street at Trader Joe's it looks like a European market. Wow.

Later, at Braveheart's, I attempt to capture the drool of ecstasy on Jimmy's face. Didn't really capture it, darn it.

Settling in for the night in the guest bed. Braveheart has a keen sense of style and decor, but I wouldn't advise letting your kid spend the night in here.