Archive for November, 2011

This is another accidental thing I decided to do.  Yep.  It’s a holiday running challenge.  😆

I’m on the Runner’s World forums, and apparently, they do challenges.  These are a great way to stay motivated during times like, oh, I don’t know, the holidays.  😆

So let’s break it down.

There are two teams; the Running Reindeer and the Galloping Gobblers.  While assignment to a team is completely random and done by the mathematics of the complicated program (that I can’t begin to explain), as a turkey baby this year, I was delighted to become a member of the Gobbler team.

As I understand it, the program sorts folks into teams by mileage.  This year, it appears to be relatively balanced.  One team has 139 players; the other has 136.  I’ve pledged to do 140 miles in the 5 1/2 weeks.  Barring illness, this should be easily doable for me.

275 players. Nearly 38,000 miles pledged.

Yes, that’s right.  Your eyes are not deceiving you- nearly 38,000 miles pledged.  That works out to an average of 3.45 miles per person per day. At this point, I have to assume there may be illness and/or injury.  I am not sure how the program is manipulated or adjusted for those situations, but I know there is a way.

We’re 5 days in.  Apparently, there are folks who will add totals today who have not yet logged their miles mi.  Regardless, here are some numbers to blow your mind

5,459.46 miles have been logged. To put this in perspective, I have logged 24.75 miles in three days of running. (I didn’t run on Thursday and spent Friday in bed)

I am not even ON the leaderboard top 50 runners.  The leader has 84.2 miles; followed by #2 at 76.4 (and today was that person’s rest day- those miles were logged in 4 days!); #3 has 75 miles.  The runners bringing up the leaderboard at numbers #47, #48, #49 and #50 have each logged 30.80 miles. I land at #38 on my team roster.

#1 is a female runner in the 30-34 age group; #2 is a gentleman in the 55-59 age group. #12 is a male in the 60-64 age group with 51.36.   !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am #8 in my women’s age group. I’m #18 in the overall age group.

(Can you tell how much I ♥♥♥ the data?!)

At this point on Monday (it’s evening at this writing), my team has logged 233.53 miles.  The other team has logged 282.4 and we are 241 miles behind!!!  Holy cow!! But don’t worry- that really comes out to 1.79 miles per player to close the gap.

Obviously, people haven’t all posted, because other daily totals were considerably higher.  For example, yesterday my team did 644.36 miles.  The highest day total (by the other team) was 700.15 miles.

It’s early yet.  I’ll be posting updates, mostly because I find the statistics simply fascinating. (no, really, I do- I’m not exaggerating :lol:)

I joined because I’m running and logging my miles anyhow, and I figured it would be fun to join a team challenge like this. My normal running days, I’d do 7.25, but I’ve been inspired to add another daily mile for ninja miles. It would be nice to get a little bit ahead and help out the team.

Go Gobblers!   


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Hey- You Watch It!!

If you’ve been reading along, you will know how much I love my chickens.  There is *nothing* better than knowing where your food is coming from, and knowing their living conditions.  This post is not about that.  🙂

It is, however, about food. Part of our living philosophy is to eat foods that are in as close to their natural state as possible.  Every one of my kids know how to  cook, including our 7-year-old. Cooking in our house means using raw ingredients.  My kids will tell you, that while a stray, packaged waffle over at Nana and Papa’s is ok, it gets old in a hurry, and they will actually turn them down if required to eat them for long periods of time.  They particularly can’t stand “fake” pancakes, as they call them.

This post isn’t about that, either.  What I’m ranting about today is processed foods, and the “stuff” the government allows to be put in them, all the while punishing people using whole (and {gasp!} sometimes raw) ingredients.

If you’ve read my Ode to Chickies, you’ve come to understand the appalling “regulations” by which chicken eggs are considered to be “organic,” “free range,” “certified humane,” etc.  In my opinion, folks are generally WAY too trusting of the government to keep them “safe.”

Here’s another example.  Check your food packages- do you have anything that has “fiber added”? Have you ever stopped to think about WHAT that added fiber actually is?

See anything that says cellulose in the ingredients?  How about cellulose gum, powdered cellulose, microcrystalline cellulose, etc?

Cellulose.  Sounds pretty benign, doesn’t it?

Cellulose.  Wood pulp.

That’s right, people. Cellulose is virgin wood pulp that is processed.  And guess what?  I know this is a shocker, but we mere humans can’t actually digest wood pulp, because we lack the enzyme to do so.

So, the government says that wood pulp is ok to eat, but you can’t sell raw milk of any kind nor are you allowed (in Colorado) to sell a dead animal or charge money for harvesting it. Each state has its own regulations, some of which are bizarre.

We’re not even talking about selling, either.  In some states, it is illegal to use raw milk for your own personal use. (No, I am not going to get into the debate over whether to pasteurize or not- when you are talking commercial dairies that use antibiotics and questionable feed, that all needs to be taken into consideration- and that’s not what we’re talking about.)

“Did you know a family in the midwest who ran a dairy farm was recently raided?  Along with their personal computers (used for homeschooling), dairying equipment, and personal records, the officials also took the raw milk in the family’s house fridge.  They were told it was illegal, even though the family drank it themselves and did not sell anything out of that fridge!  Another family dairy was raided, and the cheese building was quardoned off.  The family was not allowed to access the cheese stored in the aging cellar, that they had made, for the purpose of feeding it to themselves!!”

Did you hear about the woman in Michigan who faced 93 days in jail (criminal charges) for growing a garden in her front yard? I could not make this stuff up!

Read the entire How Are You A Criminal? post, courtesy of my friends at the Red Gate Farm.  I am not joking- READ THIS!  And then share it with everyone you know. There are many more examples she has shared that demonstrate sheer lunacy.

Once you’ve done that, go here to the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund site  and read about some of the current things that are happening.

This is not something to ignore.  Our freedom to eat real food is being eroded, all the while non-foods are being packaged and marketed en masse to unsuspecting folks; folks who are relying on the government to “keep them safe” and healthy.


Another one to share is the article, titled “15 Food Companies That Serve You ‘Wood'” from Food Freedom.

That’s all.  Back to your regularly scheduled programming.  🙂


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Carrie: owner of Carrie’s Cafe.

Lindsey: Carrie’s sister and the genius in the kitchen.

Greg: former cop whose family was murdered; comes in to eat at least breakfast every day at Carrie’s.

Andi: 16-year-old server in Carrie’s Cafe; living with her uncle.

Bill: Andi’s boyfriend of sorts; seen at a party punching Jase for paying too much attention to Andi.

Jase: missing part-time dishwasher in Carrie’s Cafe. 

Every one has secrets. Carrie and Lindsey- runaways at young ages; Carrie did what she could to protect Lindsey and raise her the best she could. That’s how they ended up at the cafe to begin with. Now at 33 years old, Carrie and her sister have settled into a new “norm,”- will the past catch up to them?

Greg is still haunted by the murder of his family, knowing he was the intended victim. Why wasn’t he the one to move his car that day?

Andi has secrets, too. What secret ties her and Jase together?  When Jase ends up dead, the new question is who did it?  Was it Bill, Andi’s jealous boyfriend?

I love how this story revolves around a small community and patrons of the cafe. This is a classic mystery which weaves all the characters together, while having a few different themes running through it.  I thought this book could have easily gone a lot longer without having gotten stale or slow-moving.

The style of this book was one where I thought I had read this author before, but as it turns out, I hadn’t.  She is now on my list of authors to read more of.  If you like mysteries, this is a book for you!

I give this 4 out of 5 stars. It was good; I have no real complaints.  This wasn’t one I’ve been thinking about since I finished it, so I’m giving it 4 instead of 5 stars.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

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When I got near 100 miles, I ended up going a bit over.  And then I got to thinking, maybe y’all are tired of getting updates every 100 miles, so I thought I would wait until 150 miles.


Total VFF/miles record #6: 153.45

Total yearly miles to date: 706.01

Total VFF miles to date: 397.45

Miles before shoes: 309.56

Lowest mileage (less the race at 6.21 miles)- 3.50: I did this twice- once was the day before the race and then the other when was I was having hip issues.

Normal mileage- 6.75/7 ish.  There were a few times I got a late start and only managed 5; less those two times, everything else was 6.5ish +. (for example, today I did 8.25)

This is around the time when I’d be paying really close attention to my shoes if I hadn’t changed them out already.  I don’t see any end in sight for my VFFs. I’m really pleased that I can increase my mileage without issue, which is huge for me.  There is nothing like setting goals only to be thwarted by pain and/or injury.

This month, I’ll have fewer miles, due to time away and the holidays.  October mileage was 118.5; I’ve only got 84.45 for November.  I hope to hit at least 100, and that should not be a problem, barring something unforseen (knock on wood)

So there you have it. My plan is to do a final update at the end of the year, which would put me around the 150 mark for the next record, give or take.

And, lest you think I’m totally insane for keeping track of this all, I have come to learn that I am in no way unusual in that regard in the running world…..  😆

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Welcome to Hell

Yep.  Hell.  This is what it is; this is where I’m at.


Sacrilegious, I know.  Still.  I hate them.

The only redeemable quality about this time of year is going to church on Christmas Eve, which, of course, causes problems.

My foul mood hit yesterday as I “learned” that they had “decided” they were coming over here for Thanksgiving.  So, today, instead of running, I get to go shopping around town, trying to find food that will no doubt be criticized and I’m sure not cooked right.

And this is not about the food.  Every year, I do the turkey and then we drive it over, along with our side dishes and whatever else I am inclined to make. Of course, we are never on time (because they want to eat at 10 am) so the other dishes are cold, blah blah blah.

You know, it would have been nice to have been asked how I felt about that.  So now, I can’t even leave (on my own da** birthday) and get some peace, because my house will have other people.

But hey- the bulk of the food will be hot.  I am not making any other side dishes.  I don’t have room in my kitchen; sorry, no double oven here. Maybe I should make everything with egg; you know, the ones that aren’t “good enough” to eat because we don’t bleach them.  (yes, you read that right  🙄 )

I need to get going.  Shopping to do; kids to gripe at to get cleaning, etc etc etc. I had planned on getting all the Christmas stuff out of storage so the kids can put it up.  Now I don’t know that I’ll have space, although if we’re not eating in the dining room, I suppose I could put all that stuff in there as usual.  I’m tempted not to decorate at all. If I didn’t have kids, I absolutely would not.

This was supposed to be our Christmas away from home. Not only did hunny not get his request in on time, but I think he’s thinking it’s because of the chickens that we can’t leave for that length of time.  He’s probably right.

I don’t know that I can handle it two years in a row without going ballistic. I wish I could just go away somewhere and not have to deal with all this crap.

Welcome to hell. 30 days and hopefully counting down.

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Old Colorado West. Outlaws. Lawmen. Doctors. And the women who love them.

14 years ago, Duke Foster was shot in the leg and crippled by lawman Chet McCarty, who had tracked Duke following a string of armed robberies in Missouri and Kansas.  While doing 10 years in Leavenworth, he secretly became friends with a prison guard. Once paroled, Foster handsomely paid his friend for what he’d done for him during the years he was imprisoned. 

Present day, that guard now works in another position the federal building in Denver, and has his ear to the ground.  He hears that Chet McCarty is on his way out to Denver.  After notifying Foster, it doesn’t take long for the gang to come up with a plan to kidnap McCarty; shoot him in the leg, and force him to live out his days confined in their hideout in the San Juan mountains.

The thorn in their side is U.S. Chief Marshall John Brockman, aka known as “the Stranger.”  John is a preacher gunman, and subordinate to Chet McCarty.  They are also friends.  John has an uncanny knack for killing those out to kill him, particularly in situations where normal men would be outmanned and outgunned.

Throw into the mix John’s wife, Breanna, a country doctor, a new nurse, and a Christian hospital staff, and you have a good mix of intrigue and concurrent plots to keep your interest.

I will say, I was initially thrilled that this book has locales that are my personal favorites in the country- the San Juan mountains in southern Colorado, Gunnison, Black Canyon, and Monarch Pass. (If you’ve never had the chance to get to these places- GO!  You won’t regret it! Here’s a picture of the Black Canyon area- see what I mean?)

Initially, I was disappointed.  The beginning of this book was SO slow going, I was not looking forward to having to plow through it. About midway, it picked up, though, and became quite good.

I appreciated the medical history. I appreciated the suspense.  One thing that I thought could have been better was the use of the same Bible story numerous times throughout the book.  I understand where the author was going with this; however, I think his point could have been made better had he used more than the single example.

This was an ok book.  I have favorite authors and while he is not one of them, I would read another of his titles if it became available to me.  I try to keep an open mind and read at least two or three books from an author before deciding whether or not to pursue additional titles.  That being said, those that don’t know much about Christianity or how to be saved would probably really appreciate this book.

I give this book 3.5 stars out of 5.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

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In my cruising around the internet, I’ve stumbled across her.  (ok, not really stumbled since the story was linked from one of my running site, but hey….)

Apparently, there is a lady out there running in a bikini. And flip-flops, some say (I think they are huraches, which some do actually run in….). She has (obviously) been dubbed  “The Bikini Jogger.”

I think she’s just a minimalist runner, and there is nothing wrong with that.  😀

Apparently, she is setting a trend, although the “Speedo Imitator” isn’t as bold with his foot attire.

It’ll be interesting to see what kind of a trend gets going here…….  😆  (no, sorry, I won’t be climbing on that bandwagon any time soon, lol)

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10 years. That’s how long it’s been. That’s how long it’s been since Claudia was free.

10 years ago, Claudia’s life changed. No, 10 years ago, Claudia’s life unravelled.  Funny thing is, it’s only now that it’s beginning to show……

10 years ago, a school bus was stopped at a railroad crossing, and the lives of the people on the bus- mostly highschoolers- were changed forever. BJ, the young cheerleading coach and best friend to Claudia, was murdered.

Football star Casio was shot in the arm. Principal’s daughter Georgie gave CPR while waiting for the paramedics who were stranded on the other side of the train tracks by the long freight train. Cheerleader Claudia held BJ, sobbing and willing her to live.

10 years later, Claudia’s husband, Victor, is the Assistant District Attorney. He sets out to try to solve this cold case, hoping to bring closure to the community and help ease Claudia’s escalating panic attacks. It’s a race against the clock as Claudia’s emotional state and their marriage begin to collapse.

Written from a variety of perspectives (including the dying BJ), this book definitely keeps you guessing. In addition to the main story line, sub-plots totally, delightfully entangled all of these characters. Serita Jakes is absolutely one of my new favorite authors. I will definitely be looking for more of her books and recommending her to my friends!!

Because there were a few things that were a little bit confusing, I give this 4.5 out of 5 stars.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

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I know y’all are gasping and picking yourselves up off the floor, you know, from the shock of that admission. 😆

I’m coming clean- I am picky. Most of the time, I’m pretty laid back and easy-going; however, in some particular regards, I am way too picky. That means that I like what I like, and I don’t what I don’t, for those needing clarification.

Today, I once again faced my nemesis and ended up wasting an entire afternoon. I am pretty sure, though, that victory is mine. (muwah ha ha ha)

Yesterday was a bad electronics day. Firstly, the left side of my headphones stopped working. Then my iopd went all wonky; skipping, repeating, randomly shuffling through settings (including the radio and basically refusing to cooperate.) This was after mile 3, and I wasn’t going any faster at that point than I had been. So, I commandeered my oldest dds ipod, and had the same result. ????

By this time, Iwas past mile 4 and steam was coming out of my ears, I was so ticked. I really need to listen to something while I’m running! I settled for listening to the random, thankful that the voice-over lady hadn’t turned on……

Anyhow. My task for this afternoon was to stop at Target on my way home and replace my headphones. This should have been a no-brainer. For years, I suffered with ill-fitting headphones; headphones that would come flying out once they got sweaty; headphones that would come falling off repeatedly. I have heard of those who use sports tape to tape them in- I’m allergic to the tape.

Several years ago, hunny was tired of my constant complaining secretly went on a headphone search for me, and found me an awesome pair for my birthday. They were *exactly* what I was looking for- lightweight; sweat/water-resistant; and over the ear adjustable. I had gone through numerous clip-on (over the ear) headphones and never had any real luck with getting them to fit right, which then left me annoyed.

He found a set Target and picked them up. Granted,  if it was me shopping, I would have not spent that amount on myself, but wouldn’t have batted an eye at spending it on him. (This reminds me of that part of Ron White’s standup where he’s talking about diamonds. “Diamonds.  That’ll shut her up.” :lol:)

My plan for this afternoon was to swing by Target on my way home and get a new set. That’ll teach me to plan!

Do you think they had them? Nope. “No problem,” I thought, “they are Nike’s, so I’m sure the sporting goods store will have them.”

Nope. So I thought, “Well, I guess I’ll check Radio Shack, then.”

Nope. So then I thought, “Oooook, I guess that leaves the sporting good store in the mall (yes, I know, we actually DO have a mall, although our only local Hallmark store is now out of business, and we don’t have the leather store in there anymore, either….) as a last-ditch effort.

Nope. So I wandered down to Foot Locker, thinking certainly they wouldn’t have them, and I wasn’t disappointed.

That’s what I get for thinking! “Easy enough,” I thought again (even though we know how that turned out just a bit ago- apparently, it takes a bit for me to learn….), I’ll just go home and find them on the internet.”

Two hours later, I had emailed hunny to ask him if he could remember what he paid and which ones they are. Even once he got home, I was still debating which ones to get. His response was to say, “Christmas is coming.  They always have stuff like that at Christmas…..”

“But that’s eons away!  I can’t suffer with regular ear buds until then!  I’ll go crazy!” {and mumble mumble, we could count them as my birthday present, she says quietly}

After hemming and hawing, I finally went for the ones that I am pretty sure are the same ones I already have.

Here’s my gripe: PEOPLE. LISTEN UP!  If you have a product that you LIKE, please leave a review online. Because otherwise, people like me will waste spend hours of their lives, swinging back and forth between cost and the one product they think they had success with, only to find there is no review for that one at all, and so now it’s like a shot in the dark, for all practical purposes.


My Nike Vapors are totally adjustable. These are the ONLY pair of headphones I’ve found that I like. They fit well. They sound good. They are water/sweat resistant.

My headphones should be here in a week or so.  I hope I survive. 😆

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Have you been waiting with bated breath?  I know I sure have! 😉

Results via the paper today- time was 1:09:38.  That gives me a time of 11:13 per, which is still better than I thought. What’s interesting is that the gentleman whose Iphone time I was going off of is listed as having a time of 9 minutes behind me. Seeing as I passed him around mile out from the finish and wasn’t going that much faster (I didn’t think) this strikes me as odd.

I think the solution to this is going to be to ask at the actual finish (look on the sticker) and compare to a stop watch. That’s more stuff to have to go out and find, but I guess that’s the only way I’ll be comfortable. Or I could diddle with my ipod (nano), but I think the watch will be easier.

I wasn’t last, either, which is surprising, because I didn’t think there were that many people (including several men) behind me.  I must have really been zoned out.

So there we have it in print.  I finished and didn’t die.  😆

Back to your regularly scheduled programming.  :mrgreen:

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