Saturday, April 11, 2009

Happy Easter/Passover/Saturday!

Time to catch up again.

The yard work has continued as it has been possible around the unusual amount of rain we have had here. The rain is very good because we have been in a drought for about the past umpteen years but it makes for difficult times in terms of yardwork so I've picked and cut and pulled as I can.

Most exciting for me is that I have identified 4 holes in my pond liner and patched them. Still not holding water but holding more water than it was before and so I continue my patching. It is a pain but less of a pain than moving all the granite blocks and re-homing the one little goldfish and certainly $10 worth of liner patch is much better than $125 or $150 worth of new liner although I can only put that off for another couple of years.

I continue to work out and in the past 10 days harder than ever. I use a Polar heart rate monitor when I work out to get the most out of my efforts. Polar has a website and a downloadable tool for their products where you can upload your training sessions and keep track of time, distance, and calories burned based on your weight and heart rate. They also have challenges which are posted by other users. I have recently joined 2 challenges. One is Most calories burned by Sept 4 2009 and I am #5 out of 12 on that one. The other is who can train hardest in April and I am 11 out of 26. Not bad for an old lady up against 18 year old Slovokian men! I've become kind of obsessive about it though. I burn between 600 - 700 calories a day on the treadmill and the competitor in me wants to do 3 or 4 sessions a day so I can WIN but I just don't have it in me.

On an entirely unrelated note I have a recipe for all bird lovers out there. I love my backyard birds and I keep them in really good birdseed and suet cakes. Suet cakes can get pricey though so I searched the innernets and found a recipe:

2 cups yellow corn meal
1/2 cup el-cheapo crunchy peanut butter
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup bacon grease (you can use store bought lard but not as good - the bird go apeshit over the bacon grease. I have several friends saving it for me.)

I also add other crap that is going bad in my pantry. Once I added stale Rice Krispies. A few times I have ground up old nuts (almonds, walnuts) that I once would have tossed. Recently I found dried mealworms at Wild Birds Unlimited and added them to my last batch. You can also add cheap birdseed to fill it out. This is actually "spreadable" which means you can spread it on a tree or throw it on the ground or whip up a hanging block of wood and spread it on that. I have seen birds watch me come out with the container and by the time I get back inside they are all OVER the feeder.

Update on Princess: We continue to deal with her "issues." She still does not want to be picked up but she now will get on the sofa and if I stay very still she will rest her front paws on my leg and sit for a moment or two. She is a sweet girl and totally belongs in this family. She now plays with Mackie and is beginning to play with Phoebe. She lived in a garage by herself for 3 years (when she wasn't in a cage at PetSmart waiting to be adopted) and so she loves looking out the windows at the yard. I love all my cats so much but Princess is a survivor and a tough little cookie and I just adore her and love watching her make progress. I feel enormous guilt that I did not bring her home 2 years before I did but I think she forgives me. She is happy and healthy and it took a while but she managed to land in a great home - MINE!

Life is good.