Category Archives: Fact.

Walking (Slowly).

From the department of extremely boring, I am on Day 4 of living a borderline sedentary lifestyle.

On Thursday, when I was sitting in the doctor’s office immediately post-surgery, I basically asked every way that I could to get permission to run and do yoga.  When I didn’t get that, I consoled myself with the prospect of power walking.

If I can be completely honest, when the doctor told me No Running, my first thoughts were:

  1. I am going to balloon into a whale over the next two weeks
  2. I need to focus on what I am eating so I do not balloon into a whale

Which is horrifically superficial, I know.  But this is honestly a bigger “break,” than I have ever taken from…exercise.  Even when I had awful tendinitis, I was on the exercise bike every afternoon, doing yoga every morning, and right now that is simply not an option.

With my first bandage change, there was a reality check.  I have a two inch incision and about 16 stitches in my back.  It was sort of alarming.  And it was 100% not the same as two centimeters and a few stitches.  At all.

I get it now.  I really do.  I can’t run or do yoga or even power walk right now or anything that will cause that area not to heal.  I can walk.  Slowly.  Which is just phenomenally boring.  But that is it, because I really need those stitches to stay in place and my back to mend.  I need to eat the foods my body needs in order to heal, which is not about amounts, it is about things.  Like lots of fresh produce, protein and healthy fats.  And daily mugs of hot cocoa because that is healing too.

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Victorious

What’s mildly sad about tonight: I felt extremely victorious because I completed the act of wilting an entire bag of spinach so that I wouldn’t have to deal with doing it in the morning.

Apparently that’s a deal-breaker for me.  Wilting spinach in the morning.  WHO KNEW?

Little Miss Self-Discovery, right here.

I feel like I need to become a little bit more mercurial…or something.

If we’ve already accomplished this much and it’s not even the end of September yet, I can’t even begin to imagine what the rest of the year could bring.  Fact.

Planting Time

What you’re seeing here is the first (and likely only) action shot ever on The Blog.

Fact: When you’re busy taking a picture in the middle of pouring water into your seedling flat, you’re also busy pouring water down the front of your cabinetry.

Blogging mysteries, unveiled.

As I was helter-skelter scattering seed packets into their respective bits of earth, I realized that over the winter I actually missed le jardin.

Despite my best efforts at procrastinating, as of Sunday it is planted.

The first year that we planted Le Jardin, I didn’t really think to label it properly.  I just figured that the cilantro, basil, tarragon, parsley and oregano would start to differentiate themselves.  Which they did.

This year?  My choice of plants is not-so-different as that first planting.  So this go-round, I decided to label them from the beginning.

What we’re doing: Genovese Basil, Lettuce Leaf Basil, Purple Basil, Sage.

Apparently Sage is like the Panda of the plant-world.  Whereas my Basil will only take 5-10 days to germinate, Sage apparently takes 10-20.

WHO KNEW THAT I WOULD BE HELD HOSTAGE TO THE SEED THAT REFUSES TO SPROUT?

I planted 18 pellets of each plant (there are 72 in the kit), hoping that I would get four strong plants of each kind.

The rest of the survivors?  Mother’s Day gifts.  Obviously.

What have you planted this spring?

Flowers-wise, what goes well in full-sun planters?

I’m still going to have a few extra planters leftover and the deck could always use more beauty!

Le jardin lives again!

Fact: I’ve spent the last week or so fretting about le jardin because I haven’t planted my herbs yet.  I have no one to blame but myself (let’s be serious…Marcus isn’t going to plant a garden on his own) and I know that I really just need to get over the total non-time commitment and do it already.

Non-issue.  Novelty deck herb gardens are a first-world problem.  End of story.

A phone exchange at 2:59  PM with my mother-in-law.

Sue: I want to drop something by.

Me: Promise me it’s not a Tomato Plant.  Never again.

Sue: Well, it’s not that.  But it’s sort of like that.  If you’re not going to be home, I’ll just leave it on the step.

What it actually was?

Absolutely, 100% NOT a tomato plant.

I adore it.

Her response when I told her I had received it?  Le jardin lives again!

Truth or truth?  This is 100% how and why I know that we can be related.

Have you done your planting yet?

Are there any spring blossoms where you live?

I definitely saw some forsythia in bloom on my run today and it was absolutely AMAZING.

A Total 180

Fact: Yesterday was one of the more epic St. Patrick’s Days in recent memory.

After the service portion of the Bar Mitzvah, Michelle shepherded us over to Surdyk’s for a wine tasting that ended up lasting for three hours.

The best way to describe a complimentary nine-vendor sampling is that once the lid has been removed from Pandora’s Box, there’s no way you’re going to get it back on.

The things that transpired while we were there: I was declared the first sibling that ever “fought” for Michelle (we had a moment).

I listened to one 50-year-old teacher from Rochester “preach it” and tell me all about the places she visited in Germany before she and her husband had children.  We almost hugged in the Ports/Cordials aisle.

In the same aisle, I lied to another teacher from Bloomington who wanted to sign me up for her internet-sales business.  I just couldn’t do it, but a straight “no” was the answer that eluded me.  So instead I prattled off that I was part of the 10% of Americans who do not own a cell phone.

I do not know what the real statistic for cell phone-ownership in America is, but I do know that she congratulated me for “standing up for myself.”

And for the Grand Finale, leaving with Breckenridge Vanilla Porter, New Holland Dragon’s Milk, and a few bottles of Castle Rock.  Which is to say nothing that we sampled.

Or, as Marcus so succinctly put it, I didn’t know where you had disappeared to until I saw you at the register.

Someone, please save me from myself.

Today, though totally devoid of rainbow sprinkles, a total 180.

Running long, a change of sheets, a long-awaited afternoon with girlfriends.

Laundry.  Open windows. Napping.

Four meals.  Fending off runger.  Compression tights.

What was the best part of your day?

The Honeymoon: The Corinth Canal and Sicily

Are you tired yet?

Me too.

But in a life imitates art (or is it art imitates life?)-moment, y’all should know that by this point in the trip, we were basically chomping at the bit because we were So Ready to start adventuring on dry land.

There is no rest for the weary.

The Corinth Canal

Fact: I didn’t even know the Corinth Canal EXISTED until we booked this trip.  Which is made all the more hilarious by the fact that basically all of the British passengers on our ship booked the trip specifically because we would be passing-through it.

So for all of you wondering, WTH is the Corinth Canal?   You are not alone.

But you had better believe that once Marcus and were in-the-know, we got busy working on our OMG WE’RE SO EXCITED TO BE GOING THROUGH THE CANAL-faces really quickly.

So we’re all on the same page, brief geography lesson: The Corinth Canal cuts through the middle of the Peloponnesian Peninsula.  It was dug in the late 1800’s and was meant to be ideally situated for ease of trade and travel.  Except for the fact that around that time, boats started to get…bigger.

FAIL.

So instead of being used for trade and travel, it was re-purposed for tourists.

There is no trade and really no travel, either.

Most cruise ships can’t fit through the canal.  But since we were on the smallest ship ever, we could do it.

Just barely.

For a size-comparison, The Corinth Canal is 21.3 meters wide and 7.3 meters deep.  Our ship only had a meter clearance on the bottom and a half meter clearance on either side.  So it wasn’t like some sort of JV, Panama Canal-type thing.  There was no waving to other ships.  We were really in.the.canal.

See?  Not kidding.

Since it takes about an hour and a half to go through the canal (and you know…it’s a sight), to keep them masses occupied, they threw a party above-decks where we lounged and guzzled drank copious amounts of champagne.

Obviously I didn’t have any qualms with this situation.  With the amount of champagne they had on board, the ship could have stayed in-port the entire time and I would have been happy as a clam.

Sicily

Since Mount Etna was the thing I was THE MOST EXCITED to see on our entire Mediterranean adventure, naturally it was the last place we stopped.

Like everything else on this trip of ours, getting there was a bit of an ordeal.

You see, it’s a two-hour drive from the port to get to the volcano.

How convenient.

The first hour we spent weaving through colorful coastal villages, and the second was dedicated to climbing up to 2000 meters.

Even though I’m not usually one for confining myself to a vehicle on vacation, I can’t even tell you how thankful I was for that coach ride.  We saw so much of the island that we never would have seen otherwise, and by the time we got to our final destination we were 100% positive that we wanted to return.

I would like nothing more than to spend a week in one of the Sicily’s many brightly-colored houses, with a jungle of a garden in the back.

Not really the point of the excursion, but fine.

So two hours later, as promised, we made it to 2000 meters.

In keeping with the theme of Don’t Open A Guide Book On Penalty Of Death, we weren’t exactly sure what we would find when we got there.  I mean, when you climb to the top of Diamond Head, your reward is having to slither out of a bunker.  It’s good to have realistic expectations.

Where we stopped was a “base camp” of sorts.  There were scenic vistas, one of the many smaller craters (there are four “main craters” but the thing erupts just about anywhere) and a few little restaurants.  We made the most of the hour we had up there by scampering around the crater (it’s kind of The Thing To Do), enjoying the beautiful view of the sea, and actioning a mini-date complete with wine and dessert.

And yes, that was steam/smoke you saw coming from one of the main craters in that last snap.

It was absolutely perfect.  Though of course with my luck, the volcano started spewing lava like it was a calling just a little bit over a week after we sailed away.

You can’t win them all 😉

Have you ever visited an active volcano?

What’s one slightly weird place that you’ve always wanted to visit/see?

A Proper Tailfeather

I wish I could say that this weekend was SO relaxing, but the reality is that I’ve spent the better part of two days running around town and checking things off of To Do lists.

Lest, you get the impression that To Do lists are a bad thing, you should know that crossing things off of them might qualify as a pastime in my book.

Maybe.

So where we left-off, I was getting ready to hustle out the door to a wedding.  Because it’s summer and that’s what we do these days.

We Wed.

Nina looked just gorgeous.  I think she might officially be The Happiest Bride I’ve Ever Seen.

Fact: When she and Matt were sharing their vows, she promised to be “The best mother ever to all of the sparkles in my eye,” and it took every ounce of self-control I had in me to keep from bursting out into big, ugly sobs.

They had a beautiful ketubah.  She showed us a sneak-peek of it a while back, so I was really looking forward to seeing what the finished product looked like!

I’m not 100% positive, but I think that the little peacock might be my favorite part.  I’m always a fan of a proper Tailfeather.

And their tablescapes were so effortlessly chic.  I’ll be the first to say it: Pastels can be Tricky.  But the way they popped in the middle of all of the cream, and contrasted with their bolder, place card-counterparts was just 11/10.

The macarons?  Were DEFINITELY 11/10.

Confession: I had six.  The rundown?  Three Salted Caramel, two Mocha and one Raspberry Lemon.

I couldn’t even help myself.  I blame it on the running.  Or it might have just been The Universe directing me to Fortify Myself.

Because, when I got home from the reception, The Spirit of Productivity took me.

Sometimes it’s just best to stop thinking and start acting, you know?

By the time I was ready to tuck myself-in to bed, I had a complete set of addressed thank you notes (!).  The only thing I have left to do tomorrow is stamp them and toss them in the mail.

Catharsis.

What’s the last “big” project you had to tackle?  How long did it take you to finish it?

Wedding desserts: cake, cupcake or other?

I’ll be honest, as long as it’s delicious I don’t discriminate.  There was a time where I was a cake-purist, but having eaten enough bad wedding cake, I’d really rather pass in favor of something fantastic.