Thursday, May 26, 2011

Day 85 of 365

I'm not really into birds all that much. I have a bird book that we use to look up the birds we see here at the house, but we don't ever go birdwatching.

Since we live by the river, we have ducks and geese we see around ever so often. There are some quail in our neighborhood, a hummingbird that has nested in our tree a couple times, the pretty goldfinches that eat at our sunflowers in the fall (and were oh-so-friendly this week), the robins we see every day, and the occasional woodpecker.

But the most pain in the rear birds we have around are the blackbirds. They've capitalized on the holes the woodpeckers have made in the shed. We cover up the holes, but the persistent blackbirds hurl themselves against the covered holes and punch their way through again. They've nested under the eaves in the shed. We cover the hole, they peck and push again and again until they get the hole big enough to squeeze through.

We probably don't have as much patience for them because they're not as pretty as other birds. I'm not sure we'd complain if we found pretty blue robin eggs in the shed. Or if the goldfinches had nested.

But when I've had just about enough of the blackbirds, one of them goes and does this. Sitting still, singing away, just begging me to take his picture as he (or she) is perching on my not yet blooming rosebushes.

Maybe I shouldn't be so harsh to judge. It had better stay away from my shed, though.
Exercise update: 39 for 39.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Day 84 of 365

After being in a funk for most of the day yesterday, today became a let's get all this crap done day.

Between the high school kid we hired, my husband who is home every day now, and me, we have moved along nicely on the to-do list.
  • Cut out winter damage in roses.
  • Clip back tulips and other spring bulbs.
  • Dig grass out of all gardens.
  • Cut up broken branch from last week's windstorm.
  • Replant herbs (except parsley and oregano).
  • Cut landscape timbers to fit around new climbing roses.
  • Bring out patio table.
  • Put new bench together.
  • Plant morning glory.
  • Cut branches back from roof.
  • Pinch off peony side shoots.
  • Empty garbage cans of dirt/weeds.
  • Cover woodpecker hole in shed.
  • Weed strawberry bed.
  • Pinch off blooms from strawberries
  • Build trellis for tomatoes.
  • Put sealant on new bench and rocking chair.
  • Finish cement edging in wildflowers.
  • Remove landscape fabric/edging around tree.
  • Use edging from around tree to edge vegetable garden.
  • Finish terracing behind shed
  • Re-stain all landscape timbers.

As we've been working on the list, I again am reminded of how much I miss being outside. Fresh air helps with grumpy attitudes.

Without being outside I wouldn't get to see that we have blossoms on the tomatoes and pumpkins.

I would also have missed my clematis blooming.
Exercise update: 38 for 38.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Day 83 of 365

I had a doctor's appointment today and left there in a funk.

I got weighed. I usually decline having myself weighed but was excited today to see how much I lost. I've been exercising faithfully for 37 days in a row. I've been watching what I eat. We cut out sugar a while back, I'm eating salads (only 4 days so far, but jeez), and I've been cutting down my portions. But when I stepped on the scale, I was shocked. I have gained weight. So as I sat waiting for the ever-so-late doctor to show up I was alone with my thoughts. My frustrated, angry, and downright upsetting thoughts.

Then, based on the medications I'm taking, my weight gain, and some other symptoms, the doctor decided to run some tests. Seven different tubes of blood. Not two, three, or five. Seven. I almost got out my camera and took a picture right then and there, but decided there had to be something better in my day than that.

And because of my ten years on anti-inflammatories that are tough on the stomach, the almost two years spent on pain pills and Methotrexate, and some bad stomach issues I've been having, a referral to a gastroenterologist for treatment of a possible ulcer or hiatal hernia.

When I left there for the hour long drive home, I wasn't a happy camper. I had to stop at the grocery store and drug store and was still a grump.

When I got home I read up on how to give myself the new prescription I picked up. (The new Methotrexate injections.) After that I was even grumpier.

So I sat down here to write. Without a taking a picture yet.

As usual, I looked at the tree out the window. My goldfinch from Day 81 was back. But he wasn't alone. On a nearby branch sat another goldfinch. A goldfinch that kept inching closer and closer to my buddy.

I couldn't help but smile at what happened next.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Day 82 of 365

I set a personal best last night. A record of something I've never done before.

It's not that I've taken a picture and written about it every day for 82 days. It's not that I've exercised for 36 straight days. (Even though those are also personal bests.)

It was that I had a salad for two days in a row.

My husband loves vegetables. I don't. To say I hate them would be more accurate. Can't stand salad. Can't stand radishes, broccoli, cabbage, kohlrabi, peas, carrots, spinach, arugula, kale - all of which we planted this year. Tomatoes? Only if they're in salsa. Cucumbers? Only when they are pickles.

The fact that I handpicked the spinach, arugula, and radishes from the garden isn't a big deal. Making a salad from them was no big deal. But the fact that I actually ate some of that salad these last two days is a very big deal. It is quite comical to watch me eat it, though. I can't eat it plain, but I don't like salad dressing. So I mix it into something else we're having. Take a bite of potato and pile the salad on it. Anything to get it down. And down it went two nights in a row.

There are a couple vegetables I wouldn't mind eating so much. Of course they are starchy vegetables that aren't as healthy as the others. At least I'll be able to eat potatoes and corn without grimacing.

Come on corn, grow!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Day 81 of 365

It appears there are more and more times where I find that I don't notice something because it's just been there too long.

It's become part of the landscape, part of the furniture, part of the decor. It's there all the time so it's not noticeable anymore.

Like one of the puzzles I got for Christmas. I haven't opened the box and don't even know what the picture is (although I think there's yellow/orange and green in it). Yet, it's been sitting on the table with my sewing machine since December. Next to the sewing machine I've been using most days for the last couple months. The puzzle box has been in my way the entire time. Sometimes I move it to the left, sometimes I move it to the back. But for some reason, I keep forgetting it's there. Keep forgetting to actually pick it up and put it away. Or even pick it up and see what the picture is. The only reason I finally realized it was there (and didn't belong there) was because I was cleaning up the sewing room and had to dust it. (And believe me, after five months it was quite dusty.)

And like the quilt I have in the living room. The one in the huge frame. Even though I see it there every single day, it's like it doesn't register. I haven't done much more on it. Even yesterday when I was writing on my blog about being done quilting, I forgot all about it. So technically, I'm not done with quilts. I don't know how I missed that big thing in the middle of my living room.

And yesterday's radishes, too. First thing planted, first thing harvested? Nope. How did I forget that we've been eating off the arugula these last few weeks? Spinach? Yep, had that for dinner last night with the arugula and radishes. But I thought radishes were the only thing we'd planted that we'd been eating.

Finally I did catch something before it became too familiar. Every day when I'm typing away here, I look out the window. I might look at the lawn, the rose garden, or the tree right out the window. In one of my glances a couple days back I noticed a tree limb that had busted in the latest windstorm. Which then lead my mind to wander about how we're going to get it out since it's so high up in the tree, we don't have a ladder tall enough, don't want to have the high school kid climb the tree (liability issues), and how my daughter will probably have to climb it or we'll just have to leave the dead branch up there. So every day I glance up there to see if the leaves have completely died yet and how bad it would look to just leave it.

But something yellow was sitting on a branch up there. Something new, not part of the landscape, not expected. So I snapped a picture through our double paned (and somewhat dirty) windows.
Exercise update: 35 for 35.