DRAFT TODAY, POST TOMORROW: Some posts may be in draft status until I (aka procrastinator extraordinaire) get around to posting them.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Green myths

Wow, this article gave me some things to think about! And I'm already a skeptic of most things I read. I liked the term "energy sprawl" as I just read something on LinkedIn complaining about how the southwest won't let the desert be covered in solar panels. Why can't we put them on buildings first before we start destroying the beauty of the desert? And I've never understood how green jobs would be new jobs. Won't people that have a certain type of job just be doing a different job? I know I'm naive, but that's why I'm a skeptic!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Comfortably Numb?

Sunday, I did my survey. I did not put a yes by one of the "bowel" questions since I knew the yes was a one time thing due to excessive alcohol consumption--bad me! I noticed that my fingertips felt odd. I'd say numb, but I can still feel things I'm touching and the fingers are not tingley. It almost feels like when I burnt (steamed) my fingers. Monday, my toes felt similar. It's more noticable on the right foot because I have sensory issus on my left anyway (ever since my back sugeries). I keep wiggling my toes and touching my fingers together to make sure, and yes, the numbness is still there. My shins had some numbness too but seems to be stable. On the bright side, I don't think it's getting worse.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Agility class

For the next few weeks, Teka's and Cassi's classes are combined. Tonight's course night was the first night. As always, I was late, but I got there in time for announcements and walking the course. (I had a Board meeting at 4.) I ran them both at 20 inches, and a few dogs were between. Teka's biggest issue was coming off the A frame, she could see Cassi in the kennel and went to say hi both times she ran. Then weaves were pretty bad, but better as she gets close to the end.

Cassi's runs were pretty good, including a great out to the chute, but weak weaves. She did very good on the teeter too. (Some people were complaining that the contact obstacles are all black now; apparently that is bad.)

Our second run through, I was kind of annoyed because half the 20 inch dogs decided to run 16 inches so they could leave. So there was only one dog between Teka and Cassi but we made it. And they both did the teeter just fine at the beginning of the course.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Immigration Bill

I have seen and heard a lot of the press coverage around the AZ immigration bill that Governor Brewer signed. A lot of people seem to think that supporting the bill is racist, but the majority of Arizonans and Americans support some form of this action. A response I posted to a FB chat from Pennsylvania:

Warning, I live in Phoenix. Rant on! And all the people living in states with 1/3 of their population = illegal immigrants can seriously debate this issue. The rest can send your money to help us out since we're going broke paying for medical bills and education for a bunch of non-citizens. (NO they do NOT pay income taxes--they are paid off the books and I don't appreciate having to drive or walk through the loiterers waiting for work when I run errands.) And before you call me racist, my JOB is to work with non-citizens to LEGALLY become US citizens. I can't see why those law-abiding people should be disrespected by allowing law-breaking persons the same rights. In general, these illegal immigrants (NOT immigrants) do not carry insurance, do not follow our driving laws, and do not have respect for others' property. If you like knowing your neighbors, consider having a third of your neighborhood being nomadic (that's not even including snowbirds!). How about the house next door (in a good or bad neighborhood--it doesn't matter) holding 25-50 people. Wish it on your grandma, not mine. Rant off!

Listen, I don't agree with everything in the bill. I don't think we should be able to sue the police for non-enforcement. I do think the majority of the bill is the same as federal laws already in place. Since the federal government has not enforced our national security laws, it falls to the states to do the work. With ranchers dying near our borders just for living there making an honest living, it is about time that our representatives take our citizens' safety seriously.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Memory lapse Part 2

So I was checking my multiple calendars this morning, and my Outlook (work only) calendar has a breakfast meeting on Friday. Hmmm, I thought it was the Friday I just missed. After checking with the organizer, yep, I had the wrong Friday on the written calendar (where I put my work and home calendars together). So I didn't miss it. Yet!

Presidential reading

I love books and this article and this follow up (better) article may hold a few more for my reading list. Atlas Shrugged has been on my list forever....

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Animal research

When I was younger, I may have had a different (or no) view on the issues of animal research and stem cell research. But, as of right now, I believe that both are necessary. And I believe that this research is heavily regulated, and no longer done for frivolous reasons (like cosmetics). I find it annoying that many products claim no animal testing when they were developed after someone else already did all the testing, but that's just instinctual. As a person with MS, with a relative with Parkinson's, I find it very difficult to see a world in the near future that does not have animal research. The only alternative is human research! (which we do after the animal research now....) Here, a researcher explains why she does it and touches on how she is treated. I scanned the comments but they were too annoying to read. Comments would be taken more seriously if it didn't always come back to no animals used for anything (vegans, do you hear me).

Ads for Broccoli

An interesting article on why you don't see ads for healthy foods like broccoli.

A Yoga Manifesto

There are some flaws with this article (as pointed out in the comments) but I took away the stories of the instructor, who learned from his instructor: “You are responsible for your own experience.” It's not about the environment or who is there or what is worn; that is all obvious to me. But just like life, you are responsible for your own experience!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Saturday VSWC Fun Day

A fun day at Cosmo dog park in Gilbert. Cassi had fun running, playing with the soccer ball, showing a little agility, and competing in the high jump.
Teka was confined to the kennel while everyone was playing (off-leash, barely controlled pandemonium) but got to come out and play at the end while we were packing up. She actually was sniffing other dogs near the water and behaved just fine, but didn't really play with anyone. There's still hope for her!
We had a great turnout of gray dogs (for the Weim Club) and friends, including Vizslas, Brittanys, and Shorthairs.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Memory lapse

I know it happens to everyone but wowza on this one. I was scheduled for a breakfast meeting through a professional association. I saw my reminder yesterday. I told someone in the office I would be in a little late. And then it was gone from my brain until almost lunchtime, when I thought, don't I have a meeting sometime today and checked my calendar expecting something after lunch. Even if I had checked my calendar this morning, I would have missed it, since I check my calendar at work, not at home. Is this MS or age?

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Earth Day: Inner Eco Lady

In case you think you have gone green, here is an article about someone that picks up other people's trash to recycle. Yep, out of the trash can. I'm sometimes tempted, so maybe I'll be there someday, but I am just enough of a germaphobe to resist....

Earth Day: Green branding

Being green can be confusing. Something may be greener than another option or be perceived as green when it may not be or perceived as not green when it is. This article has some great examples. I was interested in the plastic vs glass bottles as I have heard about this trend towards glass drinking bottles and haven't decided what to do on that one. I love my Nalgene bottles, but saw a cool glass bottle with a sleeve that could substitute.

Earth Day: Going green with Paper bags

Who would've thunk it? A company in China has made the production of paper bags a more green alternative. In China, where the bags have been made in a fairly labor intensive process, this new machine also reduces the cost and labor for producing paper bags. Not sure this is the greenest way to go, but it is better than they've had in many places.

Earth Day: US Forests growing back

A great article on how forests can come back if we ignore them, but not completely. An occasional fire may be needed to help woodpeckers, or reintroducing predators like cougars and wolves to keep deer in check (they eat the trees before they get large enough to survive) may be necessary. Of course, it is better to keep existing forests than try to replant them.

The 40th Earth Day

I didn't realize it (don't label me!) but I am a Gen Xer. I thought this blog post about why Gen Xers are not joining the green movement to the same degree as other age groups (especially the Boomers?!) was interesting. Of course it is overgeneralized. I think my in-laws fall in the Boomers category and they are WAY less green than I am. But my husband (my age) has been ignoring the green movement. I wonder if that is because of his role models, as one of the commenters suggests. If they don't, he won't? Well, I certainly hear a lot from my age group about the convenience factor and I relate to a lot of what the author says. But the green things she IS doing are the green things I am doing. I am making an effort. The one thing I think she missed is that we are skeptical. I find it hard to jump on a bandwagon that hasn't found the best solution yet. (ie. CFLs)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Pallet ideas

This article has weird ideas (coffin anyone?); some just need paint to make them okay. I'm impressed with how normal the sectional patio couch and the furniture pieces are. The most immediately useful seemed to be the garden uses. Nice ideas.

Chrome Scrotum

I couldn't believe that someone wrote this article but it is a little bit funny. I don't think she meant it to be "funny" but it talks about why green needs to be marketed to our primal instincts rather than looking for the logical way to explain why people should go green.

Eco and Pet friendly gardening tips

An article on pet friendly gardening. I'm going to try all the aphid tips--I'm having an issue on my roses right now, as we speak!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Protecting Pet Ownership in NY

Open letter to NY State Senator from the Dog Federation of New York, explaining who HSUS really is.

Cage-free eggs?

Interesting take on Cage Free eggs and how the push in that direction may be HSUS influencing decision making. Sounds a lot like the way they (and others) have divided "responsible" breeders and "commercial" breeders.

Constant snacking contributes to obesity in kids

While my gut reaction is "duh" I also realize that many parents seem oblivious to this fact. Kids are eating more snacks, with more calories and less nutrition, and getting fatter. Yes, kids should get snacks, but snacks are not treats.

I was a little upset at Anthony's first soccer game to realize that an article I had read making fun of the constant snacks available to the author's kids is what is actually happening. And worse, no one cares! The game was at 8 a.m. The kids are 4 and 5 and rotated throughout the game. At the end, they got Dunkin Donuts and "juice" bags. (yes, siblings watching the game got some too.) And everyone looks at me like I have three heads when I question it. "oh, they exercised." What? They didn't even break a sweat. And next, let's go to breakfast and feed them muffins (the 4 adult serving ones) and more juice.

Every group on the soccer fields had treats to give out, and I don't think I would consider any of them healthy. I would be a total outcast if I had decided to have kids!

Don't eat the marshmallow

A long but very interesting article about delayed gratification. Essentially, it says that intelligence is important, but self-control is more important to be successful. I thought it was funny that the current researchers felt the original test could not be replicated due to kids' allergies and weird diets today. So the next time I tell your kid to wait or give them a choice along those lines, don't give me that dirty look or snide comment. (re: cookies for 5 year olds, when I said, why don't we start with one per child? and got from the parent "Like you don't have any to spare.")

Monday, April 19, 2010

Dr Oz Rules

This article has some good tips and some that don't work for me. Good tips: don't wear stretchy clothes or bad clothes. But don't carry small bills? We don't have vending machines in my office, so I look at this differently: if I carry cash, I'm more likely to get what I want (good food) at lunch rather than pick up extras to feel better about using my card. I'm still affected by the days of having to have a minimum purchase to use a card I guess.

Sunday, April 18, 2010


I was so hungover this morning. I barely remember the end of last night. I just remember crying with S about some common angst we have to deal with. I am so happy and/or emotional when I'm wasted!

We went to Marcos and Lori's and she said Jaeger to me and I had to let breakfast go. I had some pretzels a little later. By the time we got to the airport, my stomach was settling and I had some cheese and fruit and crackers for the flight.

When we got in, we went to R and D's to get Cassi. They fed us (yay!) and then we went to pick up Teka. D sent us home with a (size 4, not full size) soccer ball. Apparently she had a lot of fun playing soccer when she wasn't playing with this octopus toy. She was kept separate from the other dogs except, surprisingly, Tori. It seems they are both biatches so they just stay away from each other!

Saturday, April 17, 2010


A family wedding in Indy is so fun! The wedding was at a beautiful cathedral, walking distance from the Omni Hotel reception.
There was some time between, so we went with Chuck and Jamie to get a drink and then headed to the reception.
A lovely dinner, some dancing, a lot of wine, and ended with a tequila shot with 2 of the 3 Loris.

Friday, April 16, 2010


We traveled to Indianapolis and checked in. We can see the Coors stadium from our window.
We went for a walk along the Canal. There is a huge NCAA museum along the route.
It rained on us while we were walking. It's actually a lot colder than we expected since we were told it was spring weather. We met up with J and C for dinner and saw some Rosenbaums while we were out.
After dinner, we went to Hooters to watch the Coyotes/Redwings game. The manager was not too happy with our cheering for the Yotes. Late night, lots of beer, great practice for tomorrow?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Pets everywhere!

We're heading to Indiana in the morning for C's wedding. I left work early to finish laundry and work on packing. When M got home, we got everyone packed into the truck. The cats were dropped off at Sherry's Pampered Pets, next door to the vet. Then we were headed across town to drop Cassi at R and D's. They fed us dinner--so nice, we didn't have to worry about it or go hungry! And Cassi and Teka got to play with the youngest T (the other girls were on the computer) to get a little energy out. Then we dropped Teka at J and D's. I fear she'll get in trouble, but I think she'll just end up separated from the other dogs. Then back home to get a little shut eye before the flight.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Let's go Coyotes

Stanley cup playoffs are here. We went to the Redwings game. The white-out energy was fantastic. The Coyotes started off weak but kicked it up in the third period and won 3-2. Awesome!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Spinal MS

Some information on the National MS Society website (with links to outside) about Chronic Cerebrospinal Venous Insufficiency (CCSVI), "a reported abnormality in blood drainage from the brain and spinal cord."

Trash to power

European countries are turning their trash (minus recyclable materials) into power. They are locating the plants in the neighborhoods they serve. The US has powerful groups stopping incinerator plants because they think it reduces recycling. It is just ridiculous that we can't get our act together. I still can't recycle at most public locations. We can't agree to use technologies that others are using because we don't care, as a society, about something that we don't see. Well, before you take away beef because cows produce methane, let's take care of landfills, which produce methane. This all-or-nothing approach is so familiar and tiresome

Patients know better

Health care professionals think they know how patients are feeling, dismiss symptoms, downgrade the severity of issues? What a shock! I haven't found a doctor yet that really wants to help me with my pain issue I've had for, what, 3 or 4 years now....


This article claims that a certain chemical in milk from certain breeds of cow may cause congestion in some people. Since almost all milk in this country comes from one breed of cow (not the way it was a hundred years ago, of course), shouldn't they be more specific? So for those people who overproduce mucus after drinking milk, generally due to conditions caused by inflammation, a dairy elimination diet is shown to work. That must be one of the reasons dairy is banned on the MS diet.

Meat on Mondays

Cows have been absolved of damaging the environment as reported here. Ever since vegans started with the whole let's not eat meat because of the environment and it's cows fault that we have climate change, I've been super skeptical. Animals, including cows, have been around a long time and this all seems a bit one sided. So I am super happy to see that we don't have to drive cows to extinction to save the planet! It actually looks like we need to feed cows, sheep and goats grass, which is what us "health nuts" want anyway.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Savory Oatmeal

Intriguing idea. I like something small for breakfast, and then a second breakfast (like a Hobbit) later. Usually I will have cereal for first breakfast and fruit for second breakfast, but sometimes I'll have cheese or an egg scrambled with some sauteed veggies. When I have oatmeal, I usually have oats with cranberries and walnuts. I might have to try this oatmeal with celery (who would have thunk it?) some weekend.

Old and rich

I guess when you're this old and rich, you can say whatever you want. (Yeah, there's a couple of other people too.)

I like that Mr. Dennis gives about 10% of income to charities and spends time doing things he really enjoys by not having all the electronic distractions I tend to fall prey to. (Checking my email and Facebook while watching TV!) He says that "Unless you are completely retired, earning money is the best form of wealth preservation." That is not the standard thought now, is it? Everyone wants to earn money on their house or a stock or whatever the new hot thing is. But he's got it!

Pursuit of happiness

The author of "The Happiness Project" said: it's important that you pick the right thing for you. ... I now believe that -- going through that intimidation and feeling stupid and feeling frustrated -- if you can push through that, you really do get a huge boost of happiness.

So if I hear her correctly, my embarrassing attempts at agility (especially given my gimpy running) will make me happy! Whoo-hoo!

Fido minus 5

Article about obesity in pets, how it translates compared to humans, and how to deal with it.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Arrowhead Kennel Club Agility Trial

Teka ran early, while it was still cool, and got a second place Q in Novice Jumpers, earning her title.

After a long wait, when it was getting hot, was Cassi's Open Jumpers course. She missed her weave entry, messed up the correction, and popped out at #10. Then I thought she had committed to an out-around for a jump sequence where I need to get across to the other side of the next jump, but she hadn't, so we got another refusal. Not a Q.

Next was her Open Standard run. She got distracted briefly but nailed her weaves, did the teeter fine, and finished strong. This earned her a first place Q--the only Q in her height.

Next was Open FAST. Teka ran first, really nailing the serpentine and the send bonus of two tunnels, but we ran over time. Then I ran it with Cassi, thinking she could do it but she lost time on the serpentine and totally messed up the send bonus so we went over time without completing it. It was pretty difficult, not very good flow, and the time is so short. I was just so pleased with how well Teka stayed focused.

Our last course was Teka's Novice Standard. She seemed really upbeat so I was a little hopeful. The first half of the course was just like Open Standard. We started off well, but as we approached the weaves, I said "with me" and she knew it was the weaves, so she did the nervous pee. Oh! She still has NO Novice Standard Q's and she is done with Novice FAST and Novice Jumpers.

The weekend tally: Cassi got a Q each day and Teka got the three Qs she needed to finish 2 titles. I wore my "Change your attitude" shirt today to remind me to breathe and have fun, and remove the dog from the situation if it's not working. I think I helped them both have a good time for the last trial they will have until the fall. This summer, we will need to practice weaves (in public) and tire jumps, and broad jumps for Teka.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Kachina Kennel Club Agility Trial

I was running a little late to the show but made my walk-through for Cassi's Open FAST. She didn't get much "me" time since she was the very first dog to run. She did alright until she got to the send bonus--she went through the tunnel, then around the jump, back over the wrong way, and we were done.

Teka's Novice FAST was next, with a very similar course, but less distance to the send bonus. She did pretty well, although she got very distracted right before the tunnel. I got her focus back and she finished nicely. That was a Q, finishing her Novice FAST title. She gets moved up to Open Sunday--this will be much harder for her as the send bonus is more distance from me.

Cassi ran Open Standard. It was pretty difficult--I was concerned that the first two obstacles were her worst ones, the tire and the teeter. She did have a hard time deciding to go through the tire, and then she did the teeter just fine. And it was all downhill from there. She took the jumps at odd angles, popped out of the weaves at the 10th pole, went around a jump to go to the chute, which was not the next obstacle anyway. And then she pulled it together at the end and did a very pretty walk-it, turn into a tunnel, and a couple more jumps. Not a Q!

Now things got hectic. I had to walk Teka's next course, then walk Cassi's next course, then run Teka, then run Cassi. When I was walking Teka's course, Anabel told me that I had been crowding Cassi, especially on the weaves, so I was thinking about that when I walked her course. Also, she reminded me that when Cassi is frantic, I need to pause and breathe and regain her focus instead of feeding off her.

So, here's how it went. Teka's course was Novice Standard. The tire was again the first obstacle. Teka looked at it, sniffed around, went around it, continued sniffing, not paying any attention to me. I asked to be excused and took her off the course. For her non-effort, she got a refusal, off-course and elimination.

Cassi's course was Open Jumpers. She did very well and would have done even better if I hadn't forgotten where I was going a third of the way in. She got a refusal but we recovered and she got a Q.

After my walk through for Teka's Novice Jumpers, I grabbed some french fries and Teka for some focus and play time. She seemed to be recovering from whatever funk she was in. (Several people insisted that taking her off the other course REALLY helped her attitude.) So we ran the course and Teka did everything I asked. Well, she got a refusal at the last obstacle, which was a tunnel--totally odd--but almost everyone was having that issue. Anyway, she got her Q so we had a good ending.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Post office

USPS is considering eliminating Saturday delivery to street addresses. Here is an article explaining why that's green.

I wonder if there is any impact on jobs or not.

The other day I was at the PO and saw Ellen's face on a poster with animal stamps benefiting Halo. Apparently she is a co-owner of this non-profit. I recently read several articles (not main stream media) about her string of dog purchases/adoptions. She ends up giving the dogs to staff within months. I have some trouble supporting any organization she is involved with if she doesn't understand the basic rules of pet ownership.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Scheduling me

My body is a temple? I try to believe it! This author is on a 40 day quest to make time in her schedule for herself. Many of us treat our bodies as an afterthought rather than a temple. Personally, I get tired of listening to my body complain at me about everything and anything. But I need to make my health more of a priority on a regular (all the time) basis.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Agility class

Busy day, working at home. The girls were sleeping while I was getting ready for Agility class. I don't know why they are tired--I'm the one that worked all day! :) Well, Cassi fell in the pool and panicked and Teka expended a lot of energy when the termite inspector came by, but really, I know they want to go!

We had a course, two ways. I clicked for Teka through the weaves and she started picking up some speed. I still don't have an offside weave with her but she let me me lead out two jumps. Cassi did great; I didn't but improved. :D

Teka got to work on Serpentines which she did well at. It was four jumps set up in a row (end to end but with space between) with tunnels on both ends. Then we worked on 270s, starting with two jumps set up in a 90 degree from each other, touching, and then moving them further apart. She did okay but kept having trouble one way but not the other, where she wanted to go between them instead of out and around.

Cassi got a jumpers course so we could work on front and rear crosses and a wrap. Great handling exercises but harder than it looked!

Trial update

Quick appointment at Hope; nurse took my blood instead of the care coordinator.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Get sleep, lose weight?

This article reminds me that I need to get more, and more consistent, sleep. It's good for my health!


I was multitasking, as I do every morning, when M asked me to take care of something else. He didn't mean right then but I thought he did, plus I'll just forget that he asked if I don't do it right away. So I got upset. I got over it and we moved on. And it got done, but I left some other things I was doing for later.

Then I read this Livestrong article/interview where they are saying that multitasking contributes to a lack of focus. Maybe that is my issue. I procrastinate because there is SO much to do, then do 14 things at once trying to catch up.

"Sometimes we're limited not by our goal, but by how we approach it." BTW, M is good for my health! :)


What does your joy look like? I love this: Last week, I told my husband that I was at the end of my rope, and his response with a grin was “That’s good. At the end of the rope, the only way out is up, because there isn’t enough left to hang yourself.” Oh joy. Experiencing (and noticing) joy is good for my health!


A rancher takes on a deer and hilarity ensues! Laughing is good for my health!

Monday, April 5, 2010


Great article about fact checking websites: It highlights, telling how the couple running the site see naïveté and hyper-skepticism, and a lot of people that want to have their views confirmed.

Sunday, April 4, 2010


My Volvo's AC died today. It sounds like it could "just" be the fan, but since the top is also not working, I think my car is giving up. :(

Saturday, April 3, 2010

HFCS Controversy

Interview of Princeton researcher rebutting criticism of their press release linking HFCS to obesity in rats.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Google Search Tips

I notice that the online article asks for your favorite tips but doesn't have anywhere to comment. :( The tips are pretty good though. I'm sure I'll forget all the tips, but I do like this "term site:website" tip.

Thursday, April 1, 2010


I think this looks like a fun workout!

I'm not sure about this new Nautilous machine though. It's like an elliptical, but not.