Wednesday, March 31, 2010

There Ain't Nuttin Here

Everyone, even Shaddy, needs a day off now and then, right?

Stop Fidgeting; Try Feedjiting Instead

I have a live traffic feed on my blog that tells me the city and state or country of those who have been and are presently visiting my website. It's in real time so I can view what's happening at any given second.

As you can see, my blog is visited by people from all over the world. I've never even heard of some of the countries. My blog has nothing grand to offer so I'm perplexed.

Occasionally, I've noticed that my blog is sometimes visited when a person enters a subject in their search engine that I've touched on at some time in one of my posts. This is explained in the listing. I also know that blog owners can travel from their blog to others in their "neighborhood" by simply going to the top of their blog page and clicking "next blog."

Does anyone know other ways that internet surfers end up at my blog or are directed to it? I'm really curious to know.
If you'd like to take a look at what I'm talking about, scroll down. You'll find it on the left side of my blog page.
(Read about the benefits of yogurt on my previous blog).

Easy & Nutritious Yogurt

Yogurt is a great food. The price of a 6-ounce container of Yoplait Light is around 50 cents. It makes a nice addition to a meal, works as a dessert or as a snack.

I don't know of many other low calorie foods that contain as much protein, calcium and other nutrients and costs so little.
As the carton indicates, L. acidophilus and phenylalanine are available to us in yogurt.
If our body contains too small a colony of L. acidophilus and other friendly bacteria, digestion can be impaired, short-changing us of the full nutritional value from foods. Fewer key vitamins will be synthesized and the immune system may be rendered less effective.
Phenylalanine is an essential amino acid. The body needs it for health but can't make it; we need to get it from food.
All of the available ingredients are listed on the carton. I truly believe that I should eat it everyday and I'm really trying to make it a habit. I like to mix in a tablespoon or two of wheat germ to cut the sweet taste and to give me something more substantial to chew on. Of course, wheat germ is a wonderful food as well.
My favorite flavors of Yoplait Light are Strawberry-Orange Sunrise, Apricot Mango, Harvest Peach, Red Raspberry and Key Lime Pie.
(FYO regarding a previous post about apple cider vinegar. I've been drinking the water/vinegar mixture with a straw placed far back on my tongue to keep the acid away from my tooth enamel).
Read about my experiences with post-vacation stress in my previous blog.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Me and Vacations

Does returning from vacations stress you out? Since I'm a creature of habit, I wonder if vacations are a good or bad thing for my mental wellness.
We arrived home from the airport a week ago on Sunday at 11:30PM and I had to be at work at 8:00AM on Monday morning. I think that was our big mistake.

Ten days have passed since we returned from our eleven-day vacation. I finally feel like I've got a grip again. Trying to catch up on everything at work and here at home has been stressful. If it were up to me, and me alone, I would probably stay home except for rather short trips.
I had tons more work waiting for me than I expected at the dental office. Besides that, Dr.'s chairside assistant had her baby on last week on Tuesday so we had a substitute come in to help him for the next six weeks. You know how it is whenever someone new arrives on the job.
I was exhausted at the end of each day last week and then had more work to face at home. I can't relax when my stuff isn't where it belongs and I don't feel right until I'm somewhat in control of my life. I have a tendency to be obsessive compulsive which explains some of my predicament.

I caught up with vacation and the usual loads of laundry on Saturday and Sunday; all mail has been opened and bills have been paid. I went to NorthPointe to workout on Tuesday afternoon last week and yesterday for a mere hour's workout. I didn't go on the weekend at all. That clearly indicates that things aren't right. My stomach has been upset off and on and I've had recurring headaches all week. I thought I was coming down with the flu last week, but fortunately I didn't.

I'm glad I had enough sense to stay away from my normal exercise schedule lately. Often, I ignore my aches and pains. Soon, I'm sure I'll be ready for physical activity again.

When we plan a vacation, Lon is normally the instigator. He's the one who gets the ball rolling. He is so good to me all year long, each and every single day, that I think he definitely deserves to get away from his normal routine, especially for our yearly vacation in Florida. He talks about it all year long.
I don't mean to sound unappreciative regarding our vacation because it was a lot of fun and I did enjoy all of it. It's just that getting back in the swing of things after a trip wears me out. I just needed to vent a bit on the inevitable downside of vacations and where else can I do that without getting kicked in the shins or slapped in the face.

You won't do that, will you? Ahh...I bet you would if you could reach me!!
(Interested in calligraphy? If so, see my previous post).
P.S. Stephanie brought Jake into the office yesterday and I got to hold him. Awesome. He's even cuter than in his pictures).

Amateur Calligraphy

***************I enjoy writing with the special pens and nibs designed for calligraphy.

I don't make it hard work by worrying excessively about spacing and other details. I draw horizontal lines on the paper and then I "just do it." I need these Biblical reminders so I cut myself some slack regarding the quality of the calligraphy.

You may have noticed, the letters in the last line of the Bible verse above had to be squeezed close together to fit on the paper. That's proof that the verse speaks truth. See what happens when I lean on my own understanding?

My spacing is off on this one too. The third and fourth lines are stretched out but still the message is strong and clear. Nothing I do can alter truths such as these.

I copied this verse for my mother after she found out that she had Parkinson's disease. I hoped it would provide her with comfort in spite of the fact that she knew the disease would and did progressively worsen.
I've made my own Christmas cards using calligraphy to write the message and to address the envelopes. I think I'll start using my pen again whenever I get the chance.
(If you like newborn babies, go to my previous post).

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Meet Jake

My co-worker, Stephanie, had her baby this past Monday. Her husband, Tim, posted these pictures on Facebook. Lacking knowledge of a better way to share them with you, I viewed them on my laptop, took pictures of the photos with my camera and then downloaded them here. I don't have the patience to take the time to find out if there's an easier or better way to get them here. That's me in a nutshell. If it isn't easy and quick for me, I won't do it.

Isn't Jake a doll? I can't wait until the day Stephanie brings him into the office. She's promised to do so when she's feeling better. She had a rough time delivering him but every day she's getting stronger.

I think Jake looks like Stephanie. His nose resembles hers.

**************Jake is so darling, dwarfed in his car seat. Unfortunately, he'll grow way too fast and before we know it he'll be too big for it.

*************Look at Jake's sock mittens!! Look at the beautiful color in his face!!! Look at that stocking hat!!

*************Is there anything in the world cuter than a tiny baby all wrapped up and comfy like this?

************Jake's definitely getting plenty of rest after his long journey. He and Mommy surely deserve it but I can't wait to see his eyes. Can you?

I'll post a picture of Jake with his eyes open as soon as I get one. I must take my camera to work with me so I can get a really clear photo of Jake to post here when Steph brings him in.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Sharks and Stingrays

In Florida last week, Jared caught this stingray from far out on the fishing pier in Venice. It was challenging to tire it out and then bring it all the way up from the water to the twenty foot high pier with other people getting in his way. He cut the tail off right away so he wouldn't get stung. Lon and I weren't with him when he caught it, but we were able to see it lying on the pier later that day.

**************Besides the stingray, Jared and Lon caught several sharks. This beauty is a sand shark.

************This one's a catfish; that's why Jared's holding it with a pair of pliers. Notice the extra-long fins which is why it's called a sail catfish.

**********A hammerhead shark looks weird from this angle, but wait until you see him face-to-face.

**************The guys really enjoy fishing in Florida. Compared to angling in the lakes in Wisconsin and Minnesota, they never know what they'll snag in the salt water of the Gulf of Mexico.
Even a fish shouldn't look this bad!!
God must have been running out of ideas when he created this face. I mean, I've seen wide-set eyes before, but isn't this just too much?

***********The closer you get to this sea critter, the more bizarre he looks.

**********Thank God for this side view of a hammerhead shark. At least from one angle he looks sleek and impressive.

His peripheral vision is something else; if I had a choice I'd want to be straight ahead of him when he's hungry and cutting through the water. I'm thinking, he'd blindly run into me, knock himself out and I'd have time to swim away with all my fingers and toes intact!
Jared spent the better part of three days on this huge pier; it's 720 feet long to be exact. Lon fished with him for a several hours on two days. The first day they caught thirty or forty catfish. On the second and third days they both caught a variety of sharks. Jared caught the stingray late in the day on his second fishing day.
All of the fish, except the stingray, were released back into the gulf waters. Lon and Jared fish for sport so unless they catch something especially big, which they often have mounted, they catch and release everything they pull in.
These photos were taken on Jared's camera. He had them developed and I took pictures of his pictures with my camera. Considering their journey, I think they turned out pretty good. I hope you enjoy them.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Springs Sprung in S. Wisconsin

Lon coaxed me outside after dinner this evening. He's already been raking the grass in our yard and wanted to show me how much better it looked.

When I noticed these signs of spring on the south and west side of the house, I ran back inside to get my camera.


Saturday, March 20, 2010

Final Siesta Key Post

It's Monday and I'm back home. This is the last batch of pictures from our vacation.

Lon and Jared went fishing on the city of Venice fishing pier. They both caught some small sharks and Jared caught a sting ray. I don't have pictures since I wasn't there with my camera but hopefully I can post the photos they took with their cameras sometime soon. They had a great time.

On Saturday, things started heating up on the beach. We had are warmest day with temperatures reaching 73 with no wind. It was perfect for our walk to the public beach just a short stroll from the condo.

*********************A bike will get you from one end of the beach to the other in a hurry, that is, if you're in a hurry.

When the temperature rose, the geckos came out to play.

Can you catch sight of the one to the left? They blend in to the background extremely well.

*********************The boat pulling the parasailers lowers the riders so they can dip their feet in the water and then takes them to the heights again.

I love to watch the sailboats dotting the waters.

********************These waters are great for good sized boats like this.

*******************These sand dunes are beyond the public beach.

*********************Here's living proof that birds of a feather flock together.

Nothings beats playing in the sand on the beach.

The public beach and parking is free.

I talked Lon into posing for a picture. He doesn't like to flaunt his fine physique.

The public beach has much to offer. Assorted stands and shops offer a variety of foods, beach wear and toys, tattoos and hair wraps.

This walk leads from the beach to the shops and parking lot.

************************You can rent these wheelchairs that roll easily in the sand.

****************************The lifeguards have these handy.

Each door on these lifeguard stands has a scene painted on the inside.

*********************Saturday was a windfree day, perfect for beach umbrellas. I never had seen so many colorful umbrellas before.

What they don't think of! Chairs with their own awnings, what next?

Beach volleyball is big at the public beach. Some weekends tournaments are held here.

Is she cute or what!!!! There were so many cute kids but I felt I was invading the privacy of families so I hesitated to take many pictures.

********************Kayaking is a blast.

********************Oh yes, there are lots of shells.

*****************************Creativity abounds.

*******************Strollers of every imaginable style and size carry children everywhere.

*********************Sports cars are all sorts of luxury cars are everywhere. This one just happened to be in the parking lot at the condo.

Thanks for sticking with me as I posted my vacation here. I hope I brought you some relaxation and fun.