30 September, 2016

Nature on the doorstep

Yesterday evening I saw a bear cub.  We both did, so I know I didn't imagine it.  Ben had just gotten home and I was standing near the doors to the deck when a bear cub walked into my sightline from the right, and sauntered right across the deck!  I said "A bear!" Clever, me.  I watched, mouth agape as it leisurely strolled across the deck right in front of my eyes,  Ben said, "Get a picture!" but by the time I did it had started towards the back to the ravine.  I opened the door so I wouldn't be shooting through the glass but the noise startled it and it gained speed and headed down the ravine.  Where was mama bear and papa bear?  Not far,  I would suspect.

I had to drive into the U District yesterday to do a little banking and I stopped at Trader Joe's in Redmond on the way home for some wine.  Before that I walked across the shopping center parking lot to the craft store to see if I could find some washable yarn for a pair of Seahawks color socks for Ben, since the angora blend ones didn't last long.  The store is a Benjamin Franklin craft store that I thought would have crappy yarn, but indeed they had some lovely stuff!  Also the acrylic I needed but I am sure going to go back there.  I am happy I found a LYS with something other than Red Heart brand.

I finished up the Cheyenne shawl and bound off so that I can start the socks today.  I would like to get a few projects blocked but that will have to wait until next week since we are having company for dinner Saturday and I don't want a bunch of stuff all over the floor.

I fully intended to go to the gym this morning for my run, even though my foot was still a bit sore yesterday.  But that is not going to happen.  It is still WAY too sore for that.  I can't imagine getting it into my tight running shoe.  I still get zings of pain that make me shiver.  The swelling is down but it is still very bruised and sorer than I would like.  Hopefully I can get Tink to go twice around the park.

Tonight at 6 o'clock is the first Husky conference game.  They're playing Stanford, a tough and also ranked team.  The weather is perfect.  It should be an awesome game.  Go Huskies!!

28 September, 2016

Clumsy clumsy me

Yesterday was beautiful and sunny and I had errands galore.  I had my manicure and pedicure, a went to Costco, and after lunch drove to the Redmond recycle center.  I had skipped Tinkerbell's park walk, which I would have normally done after I ate lunch, because she was peacefully snoozing in her bed and I had to get to Redmond before traffic got bad.  So when I got home around 2 I just assumed she would want to continue her snooze-fest in the front in the sun or in the back on the deck.  But she was whining and not content to be in the front.  I therefore assumed she wanted to go for a walk, so I grabbed her leash and hooked her up and urged her towards the front door.  No deal though, not where she wanted to go.  Fine, so I walked back towards the back yard thinking she wanted to walk around out there but no dice, she put on the breaks before we even got to the door.  Well what the heck?  So we walked back up into the dining room and she walked through and out to the door to the garage!  She wanted to go to the park!  We go out that door when we take the car.  I wasn't entirely convinced so we walked through the laundry and down into the garage and didn't she stop by the car's back door!  Well good communication like that is rewarded to off we went to the  park.  And now who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks??

I had a little time before I had to start dinner when we got back so I was sitting on the couch contemplating my shawl -- bind off or go another row?  I got up and caught my little toe on the corner of the rattan chest we use as a coffee table.  Oh lordy did that hurt!  It woke me up in the night and kept me up for hours.  It is black and blue and swollen.  But I can put weight on it so I am skipping my 3 mile run for today -- as if I have a choice - and I'm going to put it up and ice it and hope for good things.  I think I just stretched the tendons or whatever.... ligaments ...  If anything was broken I wouldn't be able to hobble around on it.  I don't think.  In any case, if it's not better in a couple of days I'll head to the doctor.

And speaking of doctor, I keep getting these dire notices saying my health insurance is finished and I had better make sure I'm covered.  I am pretty darned sure I handled this WAY before I retired, but I'll double check today.  Maybe even triple check.

26 September, 2016

Happy Monday

Well the rest of the vacation was super awesome.  A day and a night in Florence in a place right on the river.  The weather was gorgeous and the view was so very nice.  Wednesday morning we headed inland to the McKenzie river and a cabin in a little tiny place called Rainbow.  The cabin was just incredible.  And right ON the river.  We had two nights there and the weather was great for the first day but cloudy and rainy the second.  It didn't matter.  It was so nice.  We had a fire and a good TV to watch football on Thursday,  Then Friday we took off for McMinnville.  I found a winery I wanted to visit and we had reservations for dinner at one of my favorite French restaurants.  We bought some crazy good wine at the winery and I found an excellent bottle for dinner too.  It was wonderful.  The motel was crap though.  We just slept there and got out asap in the morning.

The Husky game wasn't on until 7:30 Saturday night so we got home in plenty of time.  I got all the clothes sorted and in the wash and unpacked.  Pizza and salad for dinner as we watched the football game and I knit.  Perfection.  They won in overtime.  A nail biter.

Then Sunday was football all day.  Now the I can do shopping and errands on the week days there is none of that nonsense on the weekends.  I got to knit and knit and knit.  I am nearly done with the latest wrap.  It's from "Cozy Stash-busting Knits" and it's called Cheyenne.  I added on to it, adding another increase row after the last chart C repeat and then just knitting in garter stitch until I have to bind off.  It's going to give a ruffled bottom to it.  Nice.  And I love the color of this yarn.

I am remarkably busy.  My time gets filled and my calendar as well.  I used to feel like I was wasting so much time at work when I had real stuff to do.  Now I get to do all my real stuff.  I got the tomatoes picked and plants pulled up.  Shopping and dinner cooking. A good workout.  A walk in the park with Tink.  Did my monthly budget and paid bills.  And the sun is shining.  For now.

Now it is time to get the rest of the dinner ingredients ready to go into the pot.  And Monday Night Football tonight.  I"ll finish up that shawl.

19 September, 2016

The good and the terrible

Our motel in Lincoln City left much to be desired, except for the view which was super awesome.  The access to the ocean beach was not bad either although about a million stairs.  Tink did very well on the beach and she even braved the stairs like a champ.  She loves the beach!  I brought a hard ball to throw for her and she chased it an acted like a puppy.  That was Friday.  Saturday we woke up to a heavy mist that in a couple of hours turned into a full on heavy rain.  I mean heavy.  We drove out for breakfast and then got supplies because we were not planning on going out in that downpour to a club, especially if we could work out how to watch the Huskies.  We got smoked salmon and beer and bread and stopped for an excellent bowl of clam chowder before heading back to get comfy and watch the Huskies.

The game started at 5 but the motel TV did not get the Pac-12 network.  Thank goodness for WiFi.  I got it on my computer on the Pac-12 network website and we watch the whole thing, only having to call down twice to have the guy re-boot the network.  I love my MacBook.  The picture was stunning and made all that much nicer by the fact that the Huskies crushed Portland State.  Oh, and the Ducks lost as well to Nebraska.  That was pretty nice to watch too.

Sunday morning we headed out from Lincoln City to Yachts.  We stopped for a little breakfast, drove through Newport, which was quite stinky from the fishing and just run down and icky.  We got to Yachts around 11:30 am, which is quite early for a 4 o'clock check in but we figured we could hang out in the bar and watch football until the room was ready.  They got it done before the Seahawks kickoff at 1:15.  The room is nice and spacious with a beautiful view again.  Then we watched the mess that was the Seahawks game.  The Rams beat us and Russel Wilson only got me a little over 8 points!  Needless to say I lost my matchup.  I should have gone with my guts and played a couple of my bench players who did well last week.  I will make some changes to my line up for sure for next week and probably bench Wilson to boot.  *sigh*  Ah well, early days.

I think we'll just kick back and walk Tink some more today.  It's only Monday and we've got the entire week yet!  Yay!  Vacation

16 September, 2016


Gosh here it is Friday already!  Wednesday was pretty busy with getting everything ready for the trip.  The garden and the new potted plants were soaked and hopefully that will be fine.  I do believe it's going to cloud up and rain at least a couple of times while we are gone so the new plants should be okay.

We took off early early early Thursday morning so that Ben could make a meeting in Portland.  The traffic wasn't bad at all and we made good time.  After dropping him off at 10am at the office I made a quick call to the hotel to see if I could get early check in.  The woman on the phone was rude.  "Check in is 3pm".  So I explained to her that I was at loose ends and couldn't she please check the reservation and see when the room might be ready.  I know that people don't all wait until noon to check out.  But she would not cooperate and reiterated that check in is 3pm.  Well I didn't know what to do with myself and Tink.  I had had no breakfast and I was beyond hungry at that point and 30 minutes from the hotel.  But I thought what the heck, let's drive over there anyway and at least the front desk person might be more helpful and tell me where we could go to hang out where dogs are allowed.  Thank goodness the front desk person was very very friendly and helpful as well.  She directed me to the river front on the Washington side of the Columbia.  There is a river walk and several restaurants with patios.  Tinkie and I had a nice walk along the river and then at 11:30 when I could no longer wait, I found a seat on a patio that allows dogs and we had a little rest and some lunch.  I ordered a cup of clam chowder and some fish and chips.  The chowder was just awful.  I didn't find a single clam in that cup, and it was way too thick and floury.  The fish and chips was nice - the fish was breaded with Panko bread crumbs so it was very light but not much flavor.  So I didn't each much, but enough to keep me going.  Then at noon off we went again.  We had no choice but to keep walking around for a while longer.  We finished the river walk for a second time and then we went to a cafe where I had an iced coffee and Tink could lay in the shade.  And then Ben called - he was getting out of there early.

By the time I picked him up, he had a bite to eat, and we got to the hotel it was time to check in.  There's not much around here but a big mall, a really second tier type of one.  So I located a dog friendly brew pub in Vancouver, just 7 minutes away, and we drove over there and had a nice beer in the shade on the patio.  Very nice.  But I was exhausted from all of the walking around with the dog I had been doing in the sun plus there was Thursday night football on, so we went back to the room and crashed and ordered pizza.

This morning I got up when Ben left, around 7 or 7:30.  Tink was already whining to go out when I was in the shower so I just put on my face cream and threw on some clothes and took her out for a nice long long walk.  She did her business and then I could get dressed.  As I was eating breakfast downstairs one of the women at the desk had see me take Tink out and we were talking about dogs.  I said I was going over to Petco when they opened and maybe I could get her a bath there and she was saying that is where she takes her dogs, so I ate and then went to get Tink and we took our sweet time walking over there.   Actually I spent a bit of time brushing her but it didn't do much good.  She needed a bath.  Petco didn't open until 9 so we had some time.  As luck would have it, they did have time to do her so that's where she is now, getting cleaned up and her nails clipped.  We'll be able to pick her up when we check out at noon.

I've got some time -- maybe I'll do a little knitting.  I've got nearly an hour.  Ahhh ..... I am so lucky.

14 September, 2016

The cliche

I have heard time and again people say "I don't know how I had time to work" after they retire.  And you know what?  I get it.  The void gets filled pretty darned quickly.  I should be on my way to the gym this morning, but I have a miserable headache.  It almost feels like I'm coming down with a cold, but since we are leaving for vacation tomorrow I am going to ignore that.  That being said, I'm not going to force myself to go to the gym when I don't feel 100%.  There's plenty to do around here to get ready for our week plus on the road.  Laundry for starters.  I'll get myself together and take Tink to the park first.  It is, again, a gorgeous September morning.  It looks like it's going to cloud up here later in the week, but we'll enjoy the sunshine while we have it.

Yesterday I went to lunch with Ben's sister up by Trinity.  Google maps directed me to the restaurant up the old Woodinville Duval road through just gorgeous hills with lots of horse farms and an equestrian park.  I am anxious to start find a place too ride but I've got to wait until we get back from vacation.  I could have looked this week but it didn't make any sense to do that since I won't be back until the 25th.

Eww ... I just made a bowl of oatmeal and it was just not right.  I think the oats were just too old - like maybe a year.  And the milk is off.  I'll have this orange for breakfast instead.  And then get cleaned up and take Tink to the park.  And keep my fingers crossed it's just my sinuses acting up and I am NOT getting a cold!!!

13 September, 2016

My favorite time of year

I love love love September!  Especially when we get these beautiful blue sky days.  There's football and trees turning colors and it's still warm and sunny and gorgeous.  Yesterday my new routine got interrupted and I spent extra time at the park.  Ben texted me at 7 AM saying he was coming home.  He had forgotten his laptop at home!  So it was a work at home day for him, except it was also the housekeeper's day so .....  And normally it would be my workout day but everything got mixed up.

After breakfast and while he was working I took Tink to the park directly rather than go in to the gym because I knew we had to get out of the house by noon.  We spent a little over an hour at Cottage Lake Park, with Tink doing the leading mostly.  She went around twice which is a big walk for her.  Then we headed home.  I had a couple of errands to run up at Alderwood Mall so we hung out here until it was just about time for her to arrive, and then off we went for lunch in the sunshine. By the time we had a leisurely lunch and took our time on the errands at the Shane and the mall it was time for a drive home, the long way through Maltby and Trasher's Corner.  Lovely.  She was just about finished up when we got here so I took my laptop outside and that was pretty much the day.

Football again, since it was Monday night, and since it was the FIRST Monday night game there were two and mine didn't start until after 7.  I already won my matchup but I had the LA defense and I was just playing for points.  Their defense sucked and that left me in third place overall, which is awesome.  Now if I can just keep it up.  I have to set my lineup soon but now you're not stuck with a player any more.  You can change your line up right up until kick off for that particular game, unlike before when the lineup was frozen at Thursday night's kick off.  We are concerned with Russel Wilson's sprained ankle.  But also I have a tight end and a WR I want to move around.  Fun!!

I am going like lightening through my latest knitting project.  I'll take it along with me on our trip because it is supposed to be rainy on the coast, not that it matters to me, but I might like to knit a bit.  I love this yarn - it was a gift and the green color is absolutely gorgeous.  I'll have plenty to expand the pattern a bit and make it bigger, which is what I like.

Now Tink is whining and I have even eaten breakfast yet.  She wants to go to the park!

09 September, 2016

Three miles

Oh boy -- what a great workout I had today!  I ran 3 miles in 47:39.  Granted that is on a treadmill and not out on the asphalt - but I am just so very happy that my wind is coming back and I haven't hurt myself.  I think I'll make that my goal - three miles each time.  If I can get it done in less than 45 minutes, then good for me.  Maybe I'll run a race this fall!

After Tinkie's walk in the park I came home and had lunch and then went out to Costco to pick up a few things, then back home to clean up the mess in the kitchen.  I baked cookies last night while the dinner was cooking and found that there were bugs in the flour and sugar!  Ick!!!  I ran to the store for new flour and sugar and then sealed everything up tight.  This afternoon I emptied the cupboard and wiped everything down.  I believe the culprit may have been the Balsamic vinegar

Last night was the opening of the NFL season and I had a guy on the Bronco's team.  He did very well for me. My first match up of the season is with Ali.  He always does so well so it would be super awesome if I could beat him.  Huskies tomorrow.  Playing Idaho.  It should be a good game.

The weather has turned nice again and I'm looking forward to our week in Oregon.  I am wondering if I should get somebody to water my plants though.  The three new crocosmia I planted have become a banquet for the deer.  I am not so happy.  I'll have to find the deer repellant this weekend.

08 September, 2016

Fifteen minutes more

I am SO lucky!  I wasn't feeling any negative effects from my 30 minutes on the treadmill so I added another 15.  I tried to do 5 walking and 5 running but my wind is not quite back yet - well, what do expect after only one time.  I am not so patient with myself.  Anyway it was a terrific 45 minutes.  I worked up quite a sweat.  Then a little stretching and I called it.  Friday I will shoot for a full hour on the treadmill and some upper body work.  I have all the time in the world now, don't I?  I am so used to hurrying myself through the gym and now I can take all the time I want.  Tink was patiently waiting in the car for me - well snoozing actually and so then we took off for the  park and we got another nice walk in for her.  Today I think we'll go to Marymoor Offleash Dog Park for our long walk.  I need to go get myself a bigger gym bag and I've also got to get my car washed so it'll be a busy morning.

Ben's flight was on time from San Francisco and the traffic wasn't bad coming home because I could use the diamond lane most of the way.  As I predicted he was pretty darned tired and was in bed early.  I'm glad he's home.  It is awfully quiet around here without him.

I'm working on my new project and Ben even commented - "Oh, knitting's back!"  It is the cooler weather.  It is supposed to clear up here today and be sunny for the next week at least.  That means both the Seahawks and the Huskies will have sunshine for their season opener.  Well I know the Huskies played last weekend but that didn't really count.  This game coming up is Idaho.  NFL starts tonight.  My fantasy team doesn't have anyone on for tonight .... oh wait maybe I do have somebody.  I do - I have a running back on Denver's team.  It's Denver vs Carolina tonight.  Woohoo!  Away we go.

07 September, 2016

A fabulous fabulous lady day

Oh what a great, relaxing day!  I was able to get in for my manicure an pedicure at 10.  Nobody else there.   Then up to the mall to get my jewelry checked. Good thing too!  They found a loose baguette so that ring is staying there this week to get fixed.  I had an hour before I was due to check in at the spa so I took myself to lunch and had a gorgeous salad and a mediocre glass of wine.

The spa, for the first time in I don't know how many visits, was quiet for a change.  I guess now that I can go during less busy hours, I'll be able to enjoy the quiet and relax rather than wish people shut the fuck up.  A nice soak, and then the body scrub followed by the moisturizing treatment which includes a mass of cucumbers and other green dripping things being put on your face.  I tell you though, you end up coming out of there feeling so soft and smooth and relaxed.

By the time I got home it was after 4.  Tink got her walk and I got to knit on my new project.  But then the phone rang.  And rang again and before I knew it it was time for dinner.  I meant to get my HBO shows caught up but I did not do that.  Maybe tonight.  I expect Ben will be in bed early.

It is raining today and so dark.  The weather is supposed to get better soon though.  For now, I've got to get some clothes on, walk Tink and then head off to the gym.  Maybe 45 minutes on the treadmill this morning?  We'll see.

06 September, 2016

This is the real day

Yup.  NOW I feel it.  Today is the start school and I am at home.  Hoorah!  Now it feels real and I am having a special celebration today.  I booked a day at my favorite spa for a soak, a body scrub and a body moisturizer.  It is such a treat.  It is so very relaxing and I feel so so good when it's done.  Before that I'm going to try to get in to get my manicure and pedicure.  I wanted to do it on Saturday but I was not feeling so hot.  In retrospect it must have been stress but I felt like I was coming down with a bad cold or something.  I did get in to sign up at the gym and then for the rest of the day I just lazed around, snoozed and Sunday woke up feeling great.

So far Tink got some nice long walks this weekend and yesterday I went to my new gym and did half an hour on the tread mill.  Yes, I could have done more but I was afraid of overdoing it after such a long hiatus.  And the good news is that I am not so sore this morning.  My back a little bit but overall not too bad.  Wednesday I'll do another half hour and then do a few weights or machines.  Slowly ease into it.

I started another project yesterday. I was going to be strict with myself but after cleaning off my yarn shelves on the weekend I got too jazzed about all the lovely yarn I have there and started a new project rather than finish up something I have.  I do think that of the four WIPs I will finish 3 of them.  I definitely am going to frog the lace front cardigan.

Ben comes home tomorrow.  It feels like a really long time that he's been gone.  And this going weekend NFL starts.  The Huskies had their season opener on Saturday and looked very good.  They weren't playing a very difficult opponent but still .... very exciting.  And Dish finally got their contract dispute cleared cup with Channel 13 so no more antenna for Seahawks.  Life is awesome.

02 September, 2016

The day has finally arrived

My last day at work.  Unreal.  I don't feel scared or anxious or sad.  It just feels like Friday before a long weekend and when the long weekend is over, I don't have to come back here.  Weird.  But I'll make a new routine.  Tomorrow I'm going to sign up for the gym and then Monday I start my new weekly routing - hopefully they will be open on the holiday.  My life needs structure and going to the gym is a good way to start. 

I got my office nearly cleaned out yesterday.  I've got at least one more load to haul out to the car.  Maybe two.  I threw away a lot of junk yesterday.  I got an email last night around 8 from my friend Andy, saying he and Kate wanted to have a drink with me on my way out to my car.  Well .... I would have liked to know that sooner!  I made reservations at Purple for six - I know it's early, but it is difficult to get a table there at a normal time!  Did they really think I was going to hang around here until 5 o'clock?!?  I don't have anything to do except clean out my office!  I told him perhaps we could plan to have lunch or a drink later in the month.  I need to be on the road no later than four in order to get home in time to walk Tink and change my clothes.  We could meet at 3 I guess but then we have one hour .... not ideal.

Last night was the last preseason game.  The Seahawks won but I got bored by the half.  And Tink was anxious for bed.  I put her in, but she wouldn't stop whining until I came in too.  I can't get the game in there because of the antenna issue - which was working well last night, thank goodness.  So I read on my iPad for a while and had a long night's sleep.  And woke up to the alarm for the last time. 

01 September, 2016

Still not quite there

As I was texting to my sister last night, the reality of this being my last couple days of work has not truly sunk in yet.  I suspect that Monday while I'm on the treadmill it might start feeling real.  Or maybe not until Thursday or Friday when Ben has taken off for work and I'm left to my own devices.  Right now it just feels like any of the 28 other starts to the new school year.  I am looking forward to a Husky football game Saturday.  The office is quiet as everyone has taken off for vacations.  Normal normal normal. Except I won't be coming back after the holiday.  Except for that.

I spent most of yesterday getting my computer stuff cleaned out and moved into the cloud.  I'll do more of that today and also take away all of my work out clothes and as much of the stuff as I can.  I think most of this stuff will end up in the garbage.  I have a couple of pieces of artwork that I'll bring home along with my workout clothes but coffee mugs?  Don't want them. 

Last night I got caught up on my HBO shows and tonight is the last pre-season football game.  It's not going to be very interesting to me because the starters don't really play much, if at all.  I am looking forward to the real thing.  One more week.  I am going to kick butt this year in my fantasy league!

Today though -- today I'm going to get the reservations finished up for our trip to Oregon later this month.  And that's probably about it.