Sunday, March 31, 2013

What astonishing gorgeous weather we are having! Wow. The whole weekend has just been perfect. I took this shot yesterday evening waiting for the Max train back behind the Greyhound Bus Station. It never came. Eventually they deployed a bus. I just like it that these are street trees.

I have had a most excellent Easter. For a tired person. As my week ahead is going to be full of people I decided in the end not to go to church but to walk the track fast instead. I then came home and washed up and finished reading the mystery by Alafair Burke (this one is the next in the series, note to self.) that I splurged and bought for my Kindle earlier in the week.

And then I took a nap. A long nap.

It is going to be a busy week ahead. I am looking forward to being out in it and savoring every minute of spring.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Another phone shot (hence the smaller size) from Wednesday. Mostly I just wanted to get this link up to the article in the Times about solar storms that made me think long and focused about disaster preparedness. We were talking about the meteor in Siberia last night. Luckily it was not an area where Olga's family is from; but somebody's family lives there. It was one heck of a lucky break, apparently, that it hit where and when it did. I heard the audio for the first time yesterday.

With all that said I intend to fully inhabit and appreciate this beautiful spring day here in the Pacific Northwest.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Yes. I know this shot I took with my phone yesterday evening is blurry. But it is so exuberantly spring. It was mild, it was dry, there are tulips coming up to keep the daffodils company in all the yards. It was heavenly. I am glad I am getting out more these days because I truly enjoy it.

Sammy had a good day. Stella let me give her the allergy medicine I need to squirt down her throat that tastes pretty awful and is always a challenge to get in her.

I am learning how to get just enough activity but not too much to keep in tune my activity monitor program. This evening I went over and walked around the track twice fast. That's all I needed.

Tomorrow evening my fellow yoga teacher students and I are meeting with our teacher Olga to go over how to design short effective practices for the hips.

And Saturday? Beautiful Saturday? I get to go spend the better part of the day with Jack and Leo, who I hear are rumored to be weighing in at 10 lb. each. They are still kittens though. I am sure.

Monday, March 25, 2013

I feel sad for those folks out there having  more winter and even vaguely guilty about our wild and forceful spring. Trees are blooming in one day. So much energy involved in doing that!

Tonight I am procrastinating. Actually I have been mostly procrastinating for the last four days. I took Friday off to get my homework and taxes done. I got some homework done yesterday. I blew off going to Women's Circle that I very much enjoy so I could do homework this evening.

Instead I took a nap with Stella and then felt bad about that and went and walked around the track really fast for a couple of miles.

We found out today that in addition to the effects of sequestration, (no filling vacant positions or new computers or consultants), now they are making an additional 7.5% in cuts.

It was very demoralizing news. There is a point where doing more with less just doesn't work anymore and it becomes just plain less. I guess the new paradigm is be happy to have a job no matter how badly you end up doing it because there are no resources.

I need to stop thinking about how I am going to make it through the next six years and just think about how to enjoy each day as it blooms. My link is a fun column about positive procrastination by the science writer John Tierney.

Maybe if the most important thing on my list is vacuuming I can get one of my student strategies done!

Friday, March 22, 2013

I managed to have a lovely day procrastinating. Not doing yoga homework and my taxes. Listened to podcasts and went to the gym and luxuriously did a yoga practice just for me. I made lists and cleaned and did loads of laundry.

I watched this preview and thought "Who is that guy, his voice is so familiar???" Alan Rickman in contemporary clothes. How funny.

Yesterday I received a postcard that was written in Athens by Miss E. but just mailed from Seattle this last week. It was sweet that she thought of me, or that her mother did.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

I was looking at this photo today and thinking why didn't I put this up last Sunday for St. Patrick's Day. I don't have any traditions for that day and this year I even forgot to wear green but I was aware of the day.

Today I listened to this wonderful Tiny Desk Concert. Hang in there because the third song is just beautiful. And who can resist the Obama Reel?

I have been eating more fruit lately and I have been taking the seeds out of my golden delicious apples and throwing them out for the birds. 

Last night as I was falling asleep I listened to the How Stuff Works History podcast about Johnny Appleseed. The real guy. They talk about how planting an apple seed from a particular apple will not produce a tree of that same variety. The seed is a cross of the tree the fruit was grown on and the variety that was the cross pollinator. I was groggy and the podcast was so interesting I listened to it again today. Who knew? I ended up thinking about the old orchard up on Powell Butte.

I am taking a comp day off work tomorrow and am very happy about having a luxurious three day weekend. Even if I do have homework and taxes to do.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Tonight just at dusk in the rain I went out for a modest walk. About 20 minutes. I did this to hit my activity level for the day. This has been the most active week for me since I started wearing my activity monitor.

This picture taken a bit earlier in the day (and a few years back) shows so wonderfully the winter spring transition going on in my neighborhood. I like that I was actually out and about in the damp to see that the trees up the block just started to bloom in the last two days.

Even if I can't take pictures very well in the soggy dark.

The fact that we finally have hospice care set-up as a responsive routine for Sammy (my cat) has allowed me to be more active, that and the good fortune of having a public track across the street.

Anyway the link today is all about using technology to help maintain weight loss.

Now, if I can just figure out a way to have it help with the crushing load of stuff to do at work...


Monday, March 18, 2013

I took this yesterday afternoon. I have been admiring this mash up of three trees on 11th and SW Salmon in the spring for many years. It always blooms fairly early in the spring. A happy harbinger.

Things around here remain busy and I admit I took some time out this weekend to finish listening to the audiobook version of Gone Girl. I am glad I did because in so many ways it is a cultural phenomena but I can't say I enjoyed it. Sort of like Nick can't help admiring Amy's psychotic scheming and follow-through I couldn't help admiring the construction and the writing of the book. But I sure as heck wouldn't want to meet anyone in it.

I was also waiting to post here until I could find a decent link and I have! The Sentence First Blog. How did I miss this one? I just love this stuff. I also downloaded all 26 episodes if Slate's Lexicon Valley podcast today.

If you want me, you'll know where I am. :) Tomorrow we are learning all about our quads in my yoga class.

Friday, March 15, 2013

I love the light here as well as the colors.

Here is the new Anne Carson interview. I am looking forward to finding the time to read it this weekend.

Tonight I went out and walked around the track fast. I am always fascinated by track life. There was this one fellow running a steady pace in blue jeans, a black hoodie, with the hood pulled up and black gloves even though it was 60 degrees out.

There is a story there I am sure.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Crazy busy day. Wonderful surprise that even though it was mostly gray, it was also mostly dry and mild. Warm even this afternoon.

It turns out the new Fresh Air online media person is into wonderful photography. I keep borrowing links from her. Like these amazing self-portraits in black and white.

Tomorrow there is nothing on the after work schedule other than a grocery shop and some thinking about next week's yoga class. Ah.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

So busy lately. Wonderful wonderful signs of color and fragrance as spring unfolds in the gloom.

My big accomplishment today so far (besides holding my temper at work) is to give Sammy a shot that involves two needles and not sticking myself with either one! 

I am teaching yoga in about an hour and am looking forward to that. 

Calves, we are focusing on our calves. All I need now is to learn how to pronounce the name of the gastrocnemius muscleIt sounds a bit like Gas-Trok-Neemius in the online dictionary. That is the the big calf muscle closest to the surface of the skin on the top part of the lower leg. I know the soleus muscle from ballet class. 

Yesterday was a good day in every way except work, but that is saying a lot.  

My link today is an article about diet plateaus. Something that apparently invariably happens six to eight months out. 

Sunday, March 10, 2013

This is one of the wild beach bunnies that lives in Pacific City Oregon. We'll be there for the weekend in about six weeks but I am already getting into the Easter mood. It was mostly dry today, which made getting around so much more pleasant in the gloom.

No link, just checking in. The poetry reading today was fun and inspirational. Reminded me that I can put everything that I am into the poems and that what I am is not just a person who gives medicine to her cats.

I have my practice designed to teach on Tuesday and I finished reading The Drowning in one big marathon session last night. The ability to read remains one of my most constant and reliable pleasures.

Friday, March 8, 2013

I tried posting this earlier and Sammy walked across the keyboard and the alignment got all wonky. I took this shot on my walk after work today. I did a loop along the south waterfront and came back over the Gibbs Street Bridge. So much construction going on down there and an amazing amount of people.

Anyway, this was as I was back in Lair Hill. I was standing in the street with the camera and this gentleman walked by with his black and white barky dog and asked in a very teacher like way, "Tell me what you see".

I said something like, I like the ways things age, the peeling paint...but of course I meant the working of time on things. I don't know exactly when I became interested in this. Maybe always. I just like the composition here. Note the budding tree on the right. We had sun all day!

My link today is a puff piece in the LA Times  about adjusting to the time change this weekend. How we struggle to make up for the lost hour. But I liked the picture. A bus in Sherman Oaks. That is where we lived when I was born. I don't think I saw a bus until we moved to Seattle when I was 5(ish).

Next week my favorite niece turns 46. Talk about the workings of time.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Color is starting to appear in more places. This morning while working  I had sunlight on my computer screens for the first time since fall. Oh lovely light.

Work remains stressful and overwhelming. They just keep giving me new things to do.

My link today is another Blogspot Blog, I am happy to say. A pretty amazing fabric artist named Mister Finch. I am probably late to the game and everybody knows of him. MJ pointed him out to me on Facebook.

I stuck myself for the second time this week this evening with a needle. I have the amazing cat sitter vet tech RN coming over to give me more lessons and help out tomorrow. I can do this thing. I can.

At least the dental work is done for now. And they ended up charging me less than the estimate. That is pretty cool.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

You can't go wrong with bricks and birdbaths...

My link today is the winning photos in the Smithsonian Photo Contest with a particularly fetching shot of an owlet. I don't have a thing about raptors...no.

Not sure if it is allergies or the wet gloom or just plain burnout but I am struggling with my huge unwieldy workload today and keep asking "Is it Friday yet?"

We are supposed to have sun Friday.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

I took this yesterday. We had sun here in Portland all afternoon. I enjoy finding details I've never seen before on walks I have taken many times. This pretty window is one of those.

The occasional poem I wrote (as requested for a hospice volunteer newsletter a friend from work is tasked with gathering content for) is being well received. I'll put it up over on Meander. I am relieved. One almost has to ferret out what folks want when they ask for these things as they know it when they see it but can't articulate it.

Now for my "real" link today to Exercises for Strengthening the Rotator Cuff. I just spent part of the weekend writing an essay on the difference between Physical Therapy and Yoga and I had to laugh when looking at these exercises because in my tradition when do all these movements integrated within the context of other things but Oh Well. I personally just hate the idea of doing remedial exercises in pain, when one can do them beforehand as preventative. But we all do illogical things. It makes us richly human.

I'll tell that to myself next time my weigh in doesn't go well.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

I had forgotten how much a person could get done while procrastinating on homework. :)

This stack of old bricks is across the street from the uninsured church, historical bookstore, former hippy hangout that burned down a few years back. I am sure they have a story to tell.

My heroes today are the folks that work in Interlibrary Loan. In a week they not only found but delivered to our Central Library a copy of a murder mystery by Camilla L√§ckberg that I only could find used in Florida or California. This copy  came from Treasure Valley Community College. 

In thinking about all these terrifying heart wrenching cuts from sequestration it is nice to know that folks are out there right this moment providing amazing services for ordinary folks like me.

My link today is for the Oregon Symphony. I should go this season. Particularly after reading about Joshua Bell and Lang Lang in Solomon's Book.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

I am getting excited as we get closer to the Equinox and Easter (my favorite holiday) because the light gets so much more interesting. It has been unusually warm here this week and I have been making brief excursions out into the drippy gloom periodically. I just took this cheerful burst of color shot this afternoon a few blocks from here.

To get up to 100% of my recommended activity on my Activity Link device I have been going out later in the day than usual and walking to the set of stairs not so very far away that Mr. Finch and I used to walk to in the 5 months before we knew for certain he was sick.

My link today is to the page for the Science Times. If you scroll down to the middle of the page you can subscribe to and listen to the modest in length Science Times podcast. This week it is about owls and mapping the brain..It is definitely worth a listen.