Monday, June 23, 2014

... climb up in the truck, keep our mouth shut, ride along - and be the girl in a country song ...

What a week! What a flurry of doing and making and going places and ... lots of napping.

I love summer.

I was able to catch a movie with McLain - Edge of Tomorrow was perfect for a date-night movie (action! explosions! humor!) and while McLain was upset that there was a little cheesy romance stuff, overall it was a good, mindless film to enjoy. On a related note - this article about the loss of truly strong female characters may be more up your alley! A lot of movies are including 'strong women' - and giving them no real function. Also a list of interesting questions, such as "could your Strong Female Character be seamlessly replaced with a floor lamp with some useful information written on it to help a male hero?". Seriously, worth the read.

Before beating the heat in the theater, we got a GREAT dinner at The Fox. Although there has been a bit of chatter on the internet about it being a horrible place to eat - both times we went I found it to be quite nice! And I liked the visiting bulldog. I just found out it is closed, and it looks like it is closed permanently. Oh well. The search for the best Anderson date night location continues!

I have also been toying with the idea of driving stick shifts. McLain had me drive Betty White in public, on the road, in Seneca - and I stalled out maybe three times. This was punctuated with waves of ugly words and comments about how stick shifts were practically the same as using the horses and buggies for transportation. And then, just as Betty and I started to get along - McLain traded her for a red two-door Explorer. I have mixed feelings. The shifting will be easier, Yankee LOVES the truck, and now we can haul things ... so we'll see. I will be driving the yet unnamed vehicle exclusively in a week or so.

I was able to go see family in Maggie Valley, briefly. It was a nice drive, and generally very pretty. The highlight of the trip was losing $7.50 in the casino. I was actually able to read an entire book while I was up there!  In case you were wondering, The Fault in our Stars is a nice poolside read and is a great example of realistic teens in teen literature. A nice relaxed day was just what I needed though, because I had signed myself up for a rough time the next day ... the Without Limits Lake Conestee 25k.

This was my longest running distance yet, my first race on trails - ever, and the hottest outdoor run I'd attempted. I was nervous and was struck by just how ... hardcore ... all the other runners were. My event was the only non-ultra thing going on that day. My time was slow, I felt awful, and I had to walk a bit. BUT I did finish. Even if I'm still fighting some soreness. 15.53mi in 3:11 and change - not too bad, but plenty of room to improve.

Everyone knows that the best rehab for sore legs is a massive road-trip to IKEA ... right? I did a lot of dreaming, but only came back with whiskey tumblers, bathmats, dishtowels, and a renewed desire to rip up the carpet in my townhouse.

On the food front - the gravlax turned out wonderfully (and addictive and tasty and I shouldn't make it too often or I will die over eating too much salt) , and McLain and I may have perfected icebox pickles! Which is great as we got 4 more pounds of cucumbers this week ... thankfully I have figured out how to make pesto so I can get rid of all of that basil.

I've been thnking about starting to get a fitness box every month - I really liked getting a Birchbox when I was subscribed. The only thing that could make the idea of a surprise box better is having it full of fitness things! The ones I've liked the idea of most so far are Kona Kase, StrideBox, and RunnerBox. Has anyone used any of these? Any words of advice?

Finally, I will leave you with an odd recipe - I bought a thing of chia and this is surprisingly non-offensive chia pudding. I use plain yogurt and almond milk. Be advised - it is BLAND unless you add fruit, spices, or flavoring. It is tasty though!

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