Archive for April, 2006

Detox Day 3

Posted by Karen in Day to Day.
Sunday, April 30th, 2006 at 8:14 pm

I’m feeling very bi-polar today. I waver between thinking this is a piece of cake and totally throwing in the towel. It’s interesting. Nate and I were talking about how if we were in a place where food options were limited, like if we were traveling or something, it wouldn’t be a big deal. But because we are surrounded by options it’s pure hell! Ok, maybe it’s not that bad.

I had to work at my other job today. It turns out that place makes me want to eat too. Go figure. The hardest part of the day was right when I walked in and someone had started a big ole pot of coffee brewing – mmm, rainy Sunday morning coffee. And in the afternoon when a customer offered me a piece of this candy we sell that I’ve really been wanting to try. Oh, and when our friends picked up their dog and gave us chocolate truffles as a thank-you. And when I walked past the Domino’s pizza place on my way to my car and smelled the delicious aroma.

It’s now been raining for 3 days straight.

Detox Day 2

Posted by Karen in Bruno, Day to Day.
Saturday, April 29th, 2006 at 8:27 pm

I WANT SUGAR! Or salt! Salt would be good too! ANYTHING! JUST GIVE ME A SNACK!!! And don’t ask me how it’s going, because I’M IRRITABLE!!!

Just when I was thinking that detoxing had made Nate a little crabby, I surpassed him by leaps and bounds. Of course, it doesn’t help that it has been raining non-stop for 2 days straight, or that there are two giant dogs (we’re dog-sitting) tearing around our house and needing to go out to pee every 5 minutes and then have all 8 of their muddy paws wiped off.

Even though I currently HATE it, so far I am learning a lot about my eating habits. Basically, I eat when I’m tired, I eat when I’m having a hard time getting my work done, being at my office makes me want to eat, being at home makes me want to eat, and I crave sugary and salty things. Well that’s just great. Only a FEW things to work on!

This picture sums up how I feel on Detox Day 2:

Detox Day 1

Posted by Karen in Day to Day.
Friday, April 28th, 2006 at 10:16 am

So Nate and I started a detox program this morning. For the next several days we will be ridding our bodies of toxins by eating not a whole lot of some pretty boring things. Lots of brown rice and steamed or raw veggies. We spent our last day of food freedom wisely – yesterday was Dining Out for Life day, where lots of Twin Cities restaurants donate a portion of their proceeds to the Aliveness project, a community center that provides services and programs to people living with AIDS/HIV. A great reason for us to eat out for lunch and dinner! So after gorging ourselves yesterday at Azia and Pizza Luce, we are now all about discipline.

We started by weaning ourselves off caffeine earlier this week. I swear Nate drinks twice as much coffee as me, but it was irritatingly easy for him. I, however, had two days of pretty much non-stop headaches. Starting this morning it’s nothing but nutritious food and vitamins. Out, free radicals! Out, I say! Wouldn’t you know though, I come to work and there is a freakin free pancake breakfast in my building! The whole place reeks of buttery maple syrup goodness! Must… persevere…

My goal is to make it to next Thursday, when we can celebrate our success by drinking copious amounts of craft beers at Arborfest. But I have absolutely terrible food willpower, and as for Nate, well, I’m not sure he can go more than a couple of days without a beer, so we’ll see. We’ll be keeping you posted on our progress.

More fun weekend photos (or, More fun with my new camera!)

Posted by Karen in Day to Day, Landscaping.
Monday, April 24th, 2006 at 11:10 am

Ooh, daffodils! We did that! Pretty soon it’s going to be all tulips – the first one looked like it might just open today!

Exoskeleton of a big ole bug. cooooool.

And this is a picture of the findings from our archaeological dig. When I was turning over the soil and mixing in compost in a corner of the garden I kept hitting really big, hard things. I started pulling random things out, but kept hitting more, so I kept trying to dig deeper. Finally I told Nate that I simply would not be able to move on if I didn’t know what was all down there, so he may as well come and help me. Which he did. It’s a really bad picture, but we mostly pulled out a bunch of huge rusty nails and wires, big pieces of painted glass, pieces of plates, some chunks of glass that looked as if they had been in a fire or struck by lightning or something, and a couple of what appear to be animal bones. Was it a pet cemetery? Probably not. Just someone’s garbage pit? Most likely. But perhaps they weren’t animal bones…

duhn duhn duhhnnn….

Un Jardin Bonito!

Posted by Nate in Garden, Landscaping.
Saturday, April 22nd, 2006 at 8:52 pm

Ok, so after Karen’s enthusiastic but detail-free post, I’ve been tasked with posting a few more pictures and notes. Here goes: First, some "before" pictures: on the left, the buried path, and on the right the garden as it existed a week ago.

First thing we did was dig out a new section of garden for raspberries and rhubarb. I’m putting in some edging left, and then tilling the surface – mixing compost and some new dirt.

Helpy doing his thing with the tomato bed frame, and me putting in the stakes for the pumpkin and cucumber trellis.

Karen making out with one of the cool little sun faces guarding the garden, and the tomatoes in the dirt with their stakes.

The trellis at left, we’re hoping it will support the cucumbers and pumpkins. Supposedly if we put the pumpkins in pantyhose legs and tie them to the trellis they’ll stay up and grow big without taking too much room in the garden. Finally, the path. While this is totally a temporary measure – we’re going to replace the whole thing with a sweet stone path done properly – it’s one thousand times better than the overgrown mess it was a week ago.

Ta da! A big long workday for both of us, but it was wonderful – working outside in the sun in our yard with our dog… (and beer on tap in the basement.) Ahhhh…

(oh yeah, we planted: raspberries, rhubarb, a hot chili pepper, basil, dill, cilantro, mint, rosemary, 4 kinds of tomatoes, a cinderella pumpkin, and some cucumbers. Whoa.)

Oh. my. god. cutest. garden. ever!!!

Posted by Karen in Garden.
Saturday, April 22nd, 2006 at 8:40 pm

We did that.

Doggie Drama

Posted by Karen in Bruno.
Wednesday, April 19th, 2006 at 10:23 pm

After cleaning room o’ doggie diarrhea on Monday, children suddenly seemed less frightening. However, when things progressed today to (I know I should spare you this detail, but I just can’t) bloody poo, we had to take our little guy to the doctor. I had to go to a seminar thingy at school, so Nate took him in. I waited anxiously for an update, and when Nate called it was to tell me that they were doing x-rays because they thought he might have an obstruction. I yelled "No!", my eyes welled up, and my breathing sped up and threatened hyperventilation. I immediately pictured the poor lil buddy on the surgery table with a tube in his mouth, all unconscious and about to be surgeried. And then I realized, nope, kids are still scary. If I freak out this bad about my dog… It turned out that Bruiser has a case of Cryptosporidium, which, having once had it myself, I can tell you is no picnic. But with some antibiotics and a special diet he should be fine. Phew. Speaking of diet, turns out we made him chubby! "He could stand to lose 5-8 pounds." Wha? Looks like we overdid the original instructions of putting 5-10 pounds on him. Poor little fatty.

The up side of all this is that in his online quest for info on doggie diarrhea, Nate happened across this highly entertaining site.

Nate’s Birthday Bonanza!

Posted by Karen in Holidays/Birthdays/Etc.
Wednesday, April 19th, 2006 at 12:02 pm

Nate’s birthday weekend included:

  • Grilling! Not only was this the first time we used our awesome new grill, but it was our very first barbecue at our house! Our friend New Guy is doing a quite nice job of modeling it below – look out Price is Right girls.

  • Hanging out on the deck and putting our new patio furniture to good use. The homebrew and root beer were flowing, and the Hawaiian birthday cake was delightful if I do say so myself.

  • Easter/birthday brunch at Cafe 28. And the rumors you’ve undoubtedly heard are true, we ate pork sausage and bacon! First time I’ve had pork in like 10 years! It’s all part of my decision that supporting meat producers who are doing things the right way (free range, organic, sustainable) will make a bigger difference than just not eating meat at all. This restaurant buys their meat from Fischer’s Purebred Hog Farm, which raises happy, healthy piggies in an environmentally sustainable way. I’m not sure how much Nate actually cares about all that, but he sure seemed happy to have a reason to eat meat! The other exciting part of brunch was finally getting to have our first taste of Surly, Minnesota’s new beer. Very exciting, and long overdue.

  • Easter baskets! When putting together last year’s baskets, my world was rocked by the discovery that no longer are there just Reese’s peanut butter cup eggs, but you can now get ANY candy bar in the shape of an egg! Of course I had to buy one of each kind – for both of us! I learned a valuable lesson from the guilt and chub that was the result of eating each and every one of those eggs. So this year’s baskets came from Whole Foods, not Walgreens. And they actually were pretty awesome – and sans the self-loathing. I did the worst job of hiding them EVER – how could I possibly have not realized that the kegerator would of course be the first place Nate would look? Even if he didn’t look there first, he probably would have gone there to get a beer to see him through the search!

Bike route + Google maps = awesome!

Posted by Nate in Bike Commuting, Day to Day.
Monday, April 17th, 2006 at 9:58 pm

So I’ve been biking to work for a week now, and I gotta say I love it: it’s really everything it should be and then some. It helps that most of my ride is on the awesome greenway, but even the city parts aren’t bad. In fact, the whole city somehow seems different from a bike – from the random encounters with a colleague from the MIA on the same route home, to the totally different spatial awareness. Some things that are far in a car are near on a bike, and some places that a car can get you quick become a huge chore on a bike…

Remember when google maps came out? And everyone was like "whoa…"? I do. One of the first apps I found that used the (at the time unpublished) API to create a new and cool application was a pedometer that let you map your route and it would tell you how far you’d gone. Well, it’s hit the prime time: it can do elevation too! Here’s the long route I normally take, here’s the short route I can take if I need to get there in a hurry. It’s a fun tool, because it confirms what I suspected – it really is downhill going home on the greenway! Too bad there’s a big hill in both routes – there’s no good way to get to work without hitting one. Ah well, in the morning I’m fresher and can handle it, and after work it’s the first thing I hit and then it’s all downhill — unless the wind is blowing east to west, like it was today. That makes a bigger difference than you think…

In other DuoTeam scorekeeping:

  1. Bruno ate a big knuckle bone Saturday, had terrible(!!!) gas Saturday night and Sunday, puked twice and had to go out twice Sunday night, and then unleashed terrible diarrhea and pee all over the office while we were at work on Monday. Karen gets 800 points for having most of it cleaned by the time I got home.
  2. I got a Zip-It Drain Cleaner and went to town on our slow-draining bathroom sink and tub, and pulled out more gross things than you can imagine. Even still, this was only worth about 20 points.
  3. I’ll leave it to her to post details if she wants, but Karen’s grad school advisor can’t be out of our lives soon enough for me. Rhymes with "totally bipolar and a terrible person". Negative 4000 points for her.

The Mighty Minnesota Mosquito

Posted by Karen in Day to Day.
Thursday, April 13th, 2006 at 12:13 pm

That, my friends, is a giant mosquito bite on my right foot. Frankly, I’m confounded. The weather has been absolutely gorgeous these last few days, but I swear, it was nice for like a day when I got this! I sometimes like to think I’m tough, living in the land of extreme weather conditions and actually liking it, but I am humbled by the mighty mosquito. The long, dark, cold, snowy Minnesota winter makes you kind of forget about these critters, but give them one day of balmy weather and they return with a vengeance! Often called the unofficial state bird of Minnesota, these little buggers have made a nightmare out of many a picnic, hike, and patio dining experience for me, and actually ranked #2 on my Con list when I was trying to decide if I should move back to Minnesota from Colorado (#1, in case you were wondering, was hay fever – ahhh, ragweed). Nonetheless, I couldn’t be more excited about the arrival of spring! I can’t wait to garden, and hike, and camp, and lounge on our deck. I am armed with citronella candles, Deep Woods Off, and Burt’s Bees bug spray (which I got for Bruno – is it weird that I’m ok with putting deet on me but not my dog?). There are buds on trees, crocuses blooming, Nate has busted out his bike in a big way, and the grill is scheduled to debut on Saturday for his birthday bash (his b-day is actually Sunday, but we heard there was some other holiday thing happening that day). Yay spring!

Oh, and now that I have a new supafly digital camera of my own, expect more weird photos from me from now on. Consider yourselves warned. I’ll try to ease up on the maimed body parts ones though.