Tag Archives: Outdoors

That Escalated Quickly


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Cartoon from the great Dan Piraro, as shared on FaceBook.  http://bizarro.com

Anyone else notice how we went from dead of winter to Holy-Crap-I-Just-Saw-A-Robin in less than a week? I think I even saw a rare white headed snow bird, although they usually don’t drive fly home north until April.

I was out walking the dogs a few days ago (because I’m ALWAYS walking the dogs. When I die, my tombstone will say “She really walked those dogs a lot.”) and saw my first sandhill cranes of the season fly overhead. Although I am one of those weird winter lovers, I have to admit I grinned from ear to ear when I heard them. You don’t realize how long winter is until you hear your first sandhill crane, I guess.

Saturday, the sun shone and it was 62 degrees. In Wisconsin, that’s shorts and flip flops weather. And bike riding weather. And therefore, also leg shaving weather.

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I hauled my bike up from storage, threw some air in the tires, and dug out my fancy pants bike shorts. And then I took a gander at 6 months of forest growth and had to make a decision. Was it worse to scare the neighbors with sasquatch legs or to blind them with freshly-shaven, sun-deprived, neon white legs?

You’ve heard the term “Tan fat is better than pale fat” right? Well, pale fat is better than sasquatch legs. I hunted down the pruning shears and got to work. I wanted my winter white legs to look their best in my brand spankin’ new bike shorts.

I bought my new bike shorts off the internet. With justified trepidation I might add. Cycling clothes are sketchy enough to buy even when you can try them on, seeing as they seem to be made for toddlers and anorexically thin, middle-aged men. These shorts had rave reviews on Amazon, and everyone said they fit great and the sizing chart seemed legit, so I threw the dice.

I LOVE THEM. They have mesh pockets on the side for easy storage of maps, gloves, gel packs, phones – whatever us crazy bikers can think of to stick in there. I don’t usually wear the typical bike jerseys that have the pockets in the back (see above – toddlers and skinny middle-aged men do not have BUS’s (Breasts of Unusual Size)) so this is a great idea for me. I am totally geeked out about them. Plus the price was right and they actually fit without me feeling like a stuffed sausage.

And guess what? I also bought an over the shoulder doggie holder. That’s not what it’s really called, but it should be called that because I just made that up and that’s an excellent play on words.

Okay, I didn’t really make it up – I sort of stole it from the old “over the shoulder boulder holder” joke (that’s a bra for those of you who were sheltered as a child) but you have to admit, it gives a clear and concise picture in your head and is much easier to understand than the SEO title it has on Amazon. The “i’Pet® Hands-free Reversible Small Dog Cat Sling Carrier Bag Travel Tote Soft Comfortable Puppy Kitty Rabbit Double-sided Pouch Shoulder Carry Tote Handbag”.

What?

Exactly. So I tried that out today, too. One thing about spring in Wisconsin – it gets deceptively warm for about two weeks and all the birds come back and start partying, and then it snows, rains, and freezes for a month (and the birds fall for it EVERY TIME. You would think they would learn) so you have to spend as much time in the sun as you can before it disappears again.

See below – don’t I look like Paris Hilton? I could be her twin, right?

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For the record, I’m not really the froo-froo girlie girl walking around with her poochy-woochy-kins type. But Lucky dog has a bad feet so long walks leave him limping with bloody toes. And when I leave him home, he howls – which is equally detrimental to his health because everyone wants to kill him then. This carrier worked perfectly, and will make for an awesome summer of dog walking.

Okay – I’ve rambled on for far too long, so those of you still reading – go have some cake.   You totally deserve it.

Sue

PS.  If you want to check out the shorts, you can do so here: Aero Tech Designs  I’m pleased enough that I will probably buy a second pair.  If you are interested in the doggie carrier, you can check that out here:  Over The Shoulder Doggie Holder

PPS.  On my bike ride on Saturday, I stopped to check out Wequiock Falls.  There was a guy there playing one of those wooden flutes you see advertised on cable or at art shows.  He played under the bridge, so when you stood on the observation deck, you could only hear him, not see him.  It was surreal but cool.  Just had to share.

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FitBit Round 2


“You look like a weirdo bouncing around out here,” said my husband from his open truck window. He had that look on his face. The one where he thinks I’m adorable on the one hand but doesn’t want to admit our marital status on the other. I grinned and leaned in the window, planting a kiss on his cheek, hoping that would sway him closer to “adorable” for the day.

I refrained from ‘bouncing” while he continued on his way to work, but as soon as he was out of sight, I began jogging in place again – I had to get some steps in before I was chained to my desk for the day.  Every morning I take the dogs for their “poop walk”.  The main goal is the production of outdoor tootsie rolls and not indoor tootsie rolls camouflaged on our brown carpet only to be found by an unsuspecting bare foot. Not a pleasant way to wake up.

However, our oldest dog, Lucky, is like a fussy old Englishman when it comes to picking his outdoor bathroom:  “Shall I poop here? No, no, no – doesn’t smell right. Shall I poop here, then? Hmmm. No, not quite right yet. Perhaps this spot? Drat! Still not right….Oh?  What’s this?  A delightfully dead worm!  I think I shall sniff it for 10 minutes and then roll madly about all over it!”

FOR THE LOVE OF GOD JUST POOP ALREADY!!!

FOR THE LOVE OF GOD JUST POOP ALREADY!!!

In the past, I just wandered along behind them, slack eyed and drooling before my first cup of coffee.  But, since climbing back on the FitBit pony, I realized there was a wealth of steps to be made on this walk, if only I was willing to look like the neighborhood idiot.

Seriously.  I look like that chick on the prancersize videos, only in the bustier Clydesdale version. Now, imagine seeing that come by your window when you first wake up in the morning. You can kinda see why Dave might want to deny all knowledge my existence.

Thankfully, I am NOT wearing revealing white pants.  Instead, I don the clothing of my people:  A Packer sweatshirt and pajama pants.  Hey, it’s 6:30 in the morning.  Be happy I have on a bra.

A bit of history: I bought my first FitBit Zip last year – you can read that story here – and proceeded to destroy it via wash machine. At it’s untimely demise, I fished out another crisp $100 bill and laid it down for the next step up – the FitBit Flex. Which I lost within a month because I had the great idea of attaching it to my shoe while I rode my bike (Note to self:  You are a bonehead.  That is all.).

I decided then that i was too irresponsible (and now too poor) to own a FitBit and I hung up my obsessive compulsive I MUST STEP ALL THE STEPS shoes.

Until, one day, I saw this beauty – the FitBit Charge HR.  Besides counting steps, it counts calories burned, flights of stairs climbed, and miles walked.  It has a sleep mode and an exercise mode.  It’s a watch and it pairs with my phone and buzzes with an incoming call.  Oh yeah, and it has a heart monitor in it!  Be still my geeky heart.  Nevermind that it cost more than both of my other two put together.  IT HAS A HEART MONITOR!!

FitBit Charge HR

FitBit Charge HR

So now I have this new FitBit and I’m in about a thousand challenges a week and let me tell you I am kicking FitBit ASS.

Some might say it’s become a little life controlling.  “Some” would be wrong.  I can quit anytime.  So what if we don’t have any clean underwear and I spend my evenings walking around the kitchen table until midnight?

Dave was downstairs watching TV and I had been marching around the kitchen for about 20 minutes when he came upstairs and glared at me. “What the hell are you doing?”

“Um…getting my steps in?”

“For the love.  It sounded like a herd of elephants from downstairs.  You need to get a grip.”

Fine.  I’ll walk outside.  In the dark, dark, dark outside, where we have no streetlights or sidewalks, past the woods and the cornfields, and pray I don’t get hit by a car.  Or attacked by a werewolf.  Or snatched by the Children of the Corn.

Now, if you will excuse me – I have to go find my crucifix and garlic cloves so I can go for a walk.

Until next time,

Werewolf Bait Sue

PS:  I have since learned from other people that FitBit has indeed sent people new units even if they have lost them in incredibly stupid ways, like drunk swimming, bungee jumping, wearing them during an alien abduction, leaving them in 1986 during a hot tub time machine incident, etc.

PPS.  I only bring this up because my very wise oldest sister told me to contact them both times and I didn’t follow her very sage and intelligent advice.

PPSS.  And it pains me to say this, but YOU WERE RIGHT, TERRI!

PPPSS.  Sue is still great.

 

A Little Fun


I have a headache tonight so I am going to take the easy way out and post about some fun things from the weekend, instead of wowing you with profound insight.  As you know, I am a great proponent of having fun and finding joy in the little things.  “Easily entertained” are two words often used to describe me.

I was trying to be like the Scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz. I should have bent my legs out. Hindsight is 20/20.

Believe it or not, this lifetime Wisconsinite has never been thru a corn maze, so when my sister asked me to go with her to a corn maze at Groche Organic Farms, I immediately said yes.  I am sure many of you have heard of the story of the woman who got lost in the corn maze and called 911 because she couldn’t find her way out.  This did not happen to us, mainly because of my superior map reading skills.  And because we would have had to try really hard to get lost.

Before we started, we were given a sheet with multiple choice answers on it, that corresponded with questions found in the maze.  At each question, they had a hole punch attached with string, that you used to punch out your answer.  I only mention this because it explains a couple of the pictures below.  Here is a photo journey of our day as Grown Ups of the Corn.

Seriously, you can’t get lost in this maze.

Punching Question 1…Looks more like I’m having a kidney stone attack…

Do you have any idea how much stuff is made out of corn? Neither did we. We got that question wrong.

My sister’s rendition of the hole punch – used with permission by my sister, provided I didn’t mention who she was. Oops.

Even I will admit that this is one cool picture.

Another fun thing from the weekend was a really cool app I found called Comic Book.  It lets you take your regular photos and add a ‘comic book’ effect to it, and then add stickers and such.  Here is an example – you will recognize the picture of my sister from above.  Now come on. That is some pretty cool stuff.  It didn’t stop there, either.  I played with a few more:

Lucky isn’t saying anything, as our pizza came before I could finish it.  But you see the potential here.  I love this app so much, it makes me want to go purchase an IPad because I know it will be so much more fun to use on a larger screen.  And I want an IPad.

And my last fun thing isn’t really “fun” per se, as much as it is useful.  Sometimes useful things are great for us emotionally, simply because they make our life easier or we get joy or satisfaction from using them.  This is one of those things.  Try not to be disgusted by the raw hamburger in the pan.  I know red meat is not on the list of Super Foods (unless you count foods that could kill you Super Quick), but you will have to drag me from it kicking and screaming none the less.  The utensil is the Hamburger Chopper.  Well, that’s not it’s real name.  I don’t remember what it’s real name is – I bought this one and one for my sister (coincidentally, the one I went to the corn maze with), last year before Christmas.  I have never seen them since, which is a shame, because it really is the best tool ever for cooking ground beef.

This is your lucky day!  I just googled “ground beef chopper utensil” and actually managed to find it.  It’s real name is the ChopStir.  Now go buy one!