mandysee_mandydo: (Default)
To accompany the photos and video on Facebook, I decided to blog about our experience walking through the woods to go grocery shopping.

We packed Ian's stroller with water and a snack for him, the usual baby stuff, my purse, and a folding shopping buggy that we have, covered the stroller with a bug net, and set out toward the schools. We knew there was a way into Langdon Park from there that would get us almost immediately onto the Heritage Trail, which leads right up to Hatch Plaza along the Baker River, across the river from Tenney Mountain Highway. It was a beautiful day for a walk and we had plenty of time to walk the woods and determine if it was even a possibility with the three of us and a stroller.

Walking to the schools was easy, since they are a block away and the road is paved until the beginning of school grounds. We walked the dirt service road through the athletic fields and past the old ski jump until we got to the trail by the ball field that led down to the field where we could get to the Heritage Trail. Until the field we were entirely on trails and roads.

Once at the field we found we had to walk along the edge of the field where a "path" had been more recently mowed and wasn't as tall as the rest of the grass. I found myself glad I was wearing long pants and long sleeves! We followed the edge of the field until we reached the trail that was clearly marked with the brown Heritage Trail marker.

The beginning of the trail was wide and well maintained. It was very easy walking and we enjoyed the relative obfuscation of the forest and the sights and smells of nature even if accompanied by the sounds of the highway across the river from us. A little while in we came to a chain link fence with an opening wide enough for pedestrians and bicycles to pass but not much larger. The stroller fit through with no trouble, though it was a bit muddy. As we progressed further and further along the trail, the path became narrower and narrower until it was a thin line through high ferns and grass. On the narrowest of the path we had a little trouble with the stroller but it wasn't impassable. Eventually we came out at Hatch Plaza and went on our way shopping.

We had a very light lunch and drinks before leaving Hatch Plaza and heading home via the streets, mainly Highland Street. For those unfamiliar with Plymouth, Highland Street is one of the main roads in town that goes up a huge hill and then back down it. It connects downtown at Main Street (US Route 3) with the businesses on Tenney Mountain Highway (US Routes 3A & 25) and was once itself US Route 25 many, many years ago before the state built the section that runs along the Baker River up to Highland Street.

We walked up the hill, but instead of going back down Highland Street to where it intersects with ours, we went down the road leading to the schools so we could cross through and come out a block away from our home on the other end of our street. We stopped at the high school to sit at a picnic table and rest since the hill was a bit tiring. We enjoyed the company of some nuthatches in the tree next to us and then we continued on to home. For the trip back, we had bought a block of ice to keep the perishables cold.

The trip by road was 1.6 miles according to Google Maps. Looking at the map and eyeballing the trail we took, I suspect the trail was probably around 1.25 - 1.5 miles. Either way took us about an hour to walk, but we did stop to rest on the way home. I know I've walked the roads to just before Hatch Plaza in about half an hour by myself at a steady clip. The woods didn't have the hill, since it followed the river around the base of the hill. We had some downhill first getting to the trail, but not much, and then a little uphill at the Hatch Plaza end. While the roads were certainly not overgrown with vegetation, I think with some care to the trails the woods could prove a far more enjoyable walk to Hatch Plaza without the bother of walking uphill only to go back downhill.

We only walked for a small amount of groceries, so walking was fine. If we were shopping for more, I would certainly want to bike Route 3 to Tenney Mountain Highway and then along the highway to Hatch Plaza. I've done that bike route many times and, with a couple of bikes and a bike trailer, I think we could all go shopping together with the speed and convenience of biking over walking while still not using fossil fuels, which saves us money and reduces our carbon footprint. In the winter I see the trail being a better option if we wanted to snowshoe to get groceries no matter the amount because we could just load them onto a sled and drag it. The challenge would be to find a way to safely bring Ian with us.
mandysee_mandydo: (Ultrasound #1)
This weekend was interesting to say the least, in both good and bad ways. First lets get the bad out of the way. This morning Kathy woke up feeling ill. She had an upset stomach and those rotten-egg, sulfuric burps. I made her breakfast and shortly afterward it came right back up and she got horrid stomach cramps. We called the hospital and then the OB/GYN office and the doctor gave us instructions to put her on a clear diet and get plenty of fluids, take Immodium for any diarrhea (which came later), and prescribed medicine for the nausea. We also need to keep watch on the baby's movements. It got really bad, but Kathy's been sleeping most of the day and as of this moment is at least feeling somewhat better and isn't vomiting after even taking in water. So that's the bad.

The good was that although we thought we were going down for a surprise party for my Dad, it was actually a surprise baby shower for us. Yay! My Mom, sisters, Gram, and extended family and friends of the family were there for food, gifts, and conversation. My sisters ended up pitching in together to get us the travel system, which was one of the big things we really needed. Thanks Jess and Cat! We also got a bunch of bath time stuff, clothes, blankets, books, baby food, bottles, and burping cloths. Some of the clothes and blankets were handmade by family so that is wonderful! Also at the baby shower my family decided that now that the gifts were bought that it was okay for us to tell them the sex of our baby. We figured we might as well tell, but first everyone decided to pitch in $2 each for a guess at the baby's sex. We revealed our baby's sex after all guesses were in and baby got all of the money (which I very gratefully placed in the baby's piggy bank tonight when we got home). We'll definitely share the sex of our baby with everyone, but only after Kathy's parents are told next.

The other good thing was that my Dad helped me get the truck running again and even pitched in to buy the new battery for us. The check engine light isn't coming on, so we may be able to bring it in and have it pass inspection now that all the work is done and the check engine light is off. If so, that will be a huge help. Does anyone have any suggestions for good garages in the Plymouth area? We definitely will not be going to Kirk's or KTM because of prior experiences with them. Anyone else?
mandysee_mandydo: (Birth of Venus)
I've managed to cut out more meat from my diet, but only in parts. I'm not turning entirely vegetarian, but I'm down to only having actual meat once a day, provided my latest plan works. The basic rule is that whenever one consumes carbohydrates, one should have one serving of protein or one serving of fat to slow down the conversion of that carbohydrate into sugars that trigger insulin production, which then becomes fat.

For morning I have two eggs and one serving of fruit or vegetable for breakfast. Eggs are actually a good source of protein. Sometimes I add cheese if I make an omelet.

For a snack I usually have a serving of nuts, cheese, or cottage cheese with one serving of fruit.

For lunch it's usually a salad with some sort of protein (in the past meat), shredded cheese and salad dressing for fat.

I occasionally have a snack between lunch and dinner, as well. It might usually be either more fruit and protein or three cups of popcorn (hold the butter) and a protein.

For dinner it's usually 6 oz. of meat with steamed veggies.

For lunch now I'm going to try avocado in place of meat so I get good fats instead of the meat. I may also add sliced raw almonds to add some protein and calcium and get rid of the shredded cheese. We'll see how it goes. I don't care for avocado alone, but I'm hoping I might like it more in salad.

EDIT: Avocado in the salad is a go! It didn't gross me out like plain avocado does and blended in nicely.
mandysee_mandydo: (Birth of Venus)
I've started walking again, beyond just the walking everywhere now that we're back in town. My weight loss is stalled so I need to kick it back into high gear. I also decided tonight that I would start doing ab crunches again and was surprised that I was able to do two sets of 25 reps. Not too shabby considering it's been months since I even attempted any ab exercises! My walk yesterday was from the office up to the schools and then home. Tonight we walked all the way across campus and back, which took about 45 minutes. I think if I can get back in the habit of walking at least 30-60 minutes a day, add in three or four days of doing ab crunches, and then maybe throw in some other aerobic exercise I'll be well on my way.

I've started reading Gender Outlaw by Kate Bornstein (thanks [livejournal.com profile] sk_brainstorm  for loaning it to me!) and so far it's a very easy and interesting read. I like her point of view regarding gender fluidity and breaking the gender rules. There are little things here and there that bug me, but nothing major, and I'll probably go into those a little more once I've had a chance to finish the book.

Tomorrow is the employee picnic at work. Free lunch! Woohoo! And it won't be ramen or grilled cheese or corn meal mush. I have mixed feelings about being able to spend $30 on a week of groceries for two people. The revelation in this is just how much the free market attitude has dire consequences on our nation's health. I'm not unconvinced that our nation's obesity problem doesn't stem at least in large part from speculation on commodities. Sure it's easy for poor people or even lower middle class people to scrape by and live on the cheap, but don't expect people living on the cheap to eat healthy. It just isn't possible. The cheap stuff is all processed foods that can be mass produced and come in conveniently stackable packaging that facilitates bulk shipment of vast quantities of product. The healthy stuff (which doesn't really come from local farms but gets shipped from all over the country and world) isn't as convenient to ship. Fuel goes up in price, bringing food with it, leaving those scraping by to eat whatever fits within the stretched food budget. This means pastas and noodles and sandwiches are the menu: in other words, lots of empty, processed, refined carbohydrates with little in the way of lean protein or healthy fats to accompany them.
mandysee_mandydo: (Birth of Venus)
There was a time when I couldn't eat salad without drowning it in dressing. Now when I have dressing it's as much as or less than the serving size. For the past week or so, though, I've neglected to bring dressing with me to work and have been eating my salads plain. Oddly enough, I've come to not mind it and maybe even enjoy it.

And it seems I'm back in the swing of walking daily. So far in the past week I've only missed going for an extended walk on Monday, and even then I did some walking.

I'm starting to get used to GIMP. I've been using Photoshop for... holy crap almost ten years now! So it's a slow process. I'm still struggling to find my favorite features but I'm getting there.
mandysee_mandydo: (Birth of Venus)
I currently have a partially eaten pint of Ben & Jerry's ice cream in the freezer at home. This is awesome. Why is it awesome?

In the past when I would buy a pint of Ben & Jerry's it would be gone as soon as I opened it. I would eat it all in one sitting without hesitation and before you could blink an eye. Last night [profile] painted_wolf and I each bought a pint. We arrived at home and each had around one serving of our respective ice creams and put them away. I've learned at least to some degree to keep track of my portions! :D

On the flip side, I've discovered a weakness for raw, unsalted cashews. I need to control my portions with them. I've had two or three handfuls so far today already. *tsktsk*
mandysee_mandydo: (V)
Surprise, surprise. A recent study found the US ranked dead last among industrialized nations in health care despite all the money we spend on it. The measure for this was the number of preventable deaths. One of the biggest (but certainly not the only) factors was the high number of uninsured Americans. Canada and Australia were among the highest ranking. I really don't want to hear anyone complaining the Canada health care is so much worse than American health care because the government provides health care. At least according to this study, that just isn't the case. I'm wondering if there are other similar studies available that show the same thing...

http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080108/lf_afp/ushealthfrancemortality_080108191353
mandysee_mandydo: (Default)
My cankles are going away!!! ^_^ The swelling in my ankles has gone down a great deal I noticed yesterday. I can see and feel my ankle bone again on my left leg! My right leg is still worse but the swelling has gone down there, too. The splochiness is going away some, too.

I'm eating less for breakfast now. I'm down to eating only two eggs for breakfast now.

I started walking in the morning this morning before I do anything else. It feels so amazing! I think a morning walk is the way to go for now as far as exercise is concerned. I think I'll have the best luck keeping up with my routine if I make it a morning priority.
mandysee_mandydo: (captain jack sparrow)
First, I weighed in. I've lost 10 pounds over the past couple of weeks! Yay!!! ^_^

Second, the unthinkable has happened: I have overcome my fear and loathing of needles! I went in for lab work for my physical and the needle was nothing. No blacking out or nausea. I was fine. It didn't even hurt! I just sat there stunned for a couple of seconds just like, "Wow, I've been afraid of THAT all these years?!"

Third, 18 hours of fasting and I came out of it to eat an omelette and nothing else and I'm full. That is made of awesome! I am so ready for my annual birthday fasting. Piece of cake!!!

O_o

Did I just quote Dr. Shen? Oh my.

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Jamie Amana Capach

September 2016

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