Monday, November 27, 2006

These Ladies Can Mountain Bike!

You have to watch their videos! They are great!

Speedy Beaver Racing

Sunday, November 26, 2006

You Know You're From . . .

You Know You're From Seattle When...

You have a very strong opinion about where your coffee beans are grown, and you can taste the difference between Sumatran and Ethiopian

You feel guilty throwing an aluminum can in the trash.

You use the words "sun break" and know what it means.

You know more than 10 words to describe a cup of coffee.

You know what a dry cappachino is.

You obey all traffic laws EXCEPT "keep right except to pass."

You know at least eight people who work for either Microsoft or Boeing.

You invite twice as many people as you really want to a party since only half will actually show up.

You know what Lutefiske is.

You personally know someone from Alaska.

You consider floating bridges a pain in the butt, not an engineering marvel.

You know how to pronounce "Sequim", "Puyallup" and "Issaquah."

You have roots in Oregon, Idaho or Montana, but wanted a high paying job.

You've tried to get a job in Alaska, especially a summer job only.

You think skiing always means being covered from head to toe, on snow or water.

You know at least three Microsoft burnouts, of which two are millionaires.

You use more than 5 words to order a cup of coffee. "I want to order an unleaded, double, short, skinny, wet cappuccino with a shot of Amaretto please."

A "designer" wardrobe comes from REI, Eddie Bauer, Lands End, and Birkenstock.

You consider it a sunny day if the sun is visible at some point of the day.

You've been "snow" skiing in the RAIN more than in the snow.

When you're discussing rainforests and volcanoes, you're NOT talking about Hawaii.

You Remember the Kingdome

You have tried to forget about WTO

You know how BLUE the skies are here compared to Eastern Washington

The guy at 8:30 am at Starbucks wearing the baseball cap and sunglasses who looks like Phyllis Diller is really a trans named Eva Destruction that used to play with Hole.

Your car insurance costs more because your neighbors don't have any!

Your mayor is straight, 1/2 your friends are gay, the man who delivers your mail has a bumper sticker that reads "when they pry it from my cold dead fingers....", and your Burger World drive thru order taker was a computer millionaire last week.

You actually get these jokes and pass them on to other friends from Seattle.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

20th Annual Bike Festival Winthrop, WA

Joe and I went to the annual bike festival over in Winthrop this past weekend. We arrived on Friday afternoon October 6th and returned on Monday October 9th. We had an awesome time! We signed up for the Buck Mountain mountain bike ride, thirty one miles of cross country riding with a lot of up hill climbing and downhill fun! At around 15 miles into the ride we arrived at Buck Lake where a wonderful lunch awaited all riders. Refreshed we finished the last 15 miles and headed for our cabin and the hot tub out on the deck overlooking the Chewuck River. We had a full moon on the 7th and the sky was a clear crystal chilly star filled night. On Sunday Joe and I just relaxed and enjoyed the races on top of Sun Mountain, sight seeing through the town, and eating homemade pumpkin ice cream. It was hard coming home.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Catching Up

I have not posted in over two weeks and thought I would catch up today. On Saturday, September 16th I led a mountain bike ride at Lake Sawyer. Fourteen people showed up for my ride. It was a beautiful warm fall day. Saturday, September 23rd Joe and I participated in a road event called the Emerald City Lights Bike Ride. It was for a very good cause. To raise money and food to feed families in need during Thanksgiving. We rode with Jim and the day was gorgeous! The trees in the park when we first arrived were red and the morning sun was streaming down through them. The ride was beautiful. Scenery fantastic and the ride hilly, challenging, but fun!

Monday, September 11, 2006

Poker Run at Dash Point . . . Super!

Yesterday, Joe and I did the Poker Run at Dash Point State Park with our friend Jim. We had a great time! We ran into a lot of friends on the trail and after the ride; friends we have not seen since my foot surgery. After the ride we stayed for the hamburgers, hot dogs, chips, cookies, brownies and festivities! There was a huffy toss, limbo game, bunny hop contest, and a stunt jump for the more advanced riders to show us what they got! Joe, Jim, and I did not have great poker hands so we did not win anything there. But the three of us did get something from the raffle drawing! The weather was perfect fall weather. Blue clear skies, 70 degree temperature, and low humidity. I would give this day an A+!!!!! Hope to see more days like this one through October!

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Great weekend!

Yesterday Joe and I had a great mountain bike ride. We rode at a nearby favorite spot with a good friend. The day felt like a fall day. The sky was a clear blue, the sun was warm but not hot like a summer sun, the shadows were long, the air was crisp and the day made the ride that much more pleasurable. We began at 10 AM and finished a little after 2 PM. After our ride we hung around for the longest time just chatting, enjoying the day, the company, and reliving the ride. Today Joe and I did a wonderful road ride right out our front door! The weather today was a repeat of yesterday's. We rode down our block past the park and boat launch and followed the lake for a mile before turning onto tree lined streets. It's days like these that make life's best memories. Oh how I hate to see this weekend come to an end.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Great Weekend!

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday were great days because I rode my bikes on all three days! On Friday I met Kim D. and Amber W. for a road ride. We started at 3:00 PM and did 19.2 miles. On Saturday, Joe and two friends of ours, Jim and Tony, went on a mountain bike ride at Lake Sawyer. It was my first mountain bike ride since my surgery in December. So seven months ago! WOW! Finally on Sunday Joe and I did a road ride from our house to Buckley and back. We got a little over 24 miles in. I'm a little stiff this morning from my three day biking episode but I'm happy! I think I will pay for it soon, I have to meet my trainer at 10 AM this morning for some weight training! Oh no!

Monday, July 03, 2006

Great Ride!

Yesterday, July 2nd, Joe and I had a great ride. We left our house at 9:30 AM. The sun was shining the humidity was low and there was a wonderful cool breeze blowing. We left our house and skirted around the edge of the lake near our house. Then we headed southeast towards Mount Rainier. What a view! Mount Rainier in the backdrop, fields covered in wild flowers, horses, cows, birds for our viewing pleasure. It was a casual ride. After all it had been a long winter and spring of zero riding because of my surgery. Our usual 16 mph average speed was not to be reached this day. Instead we ended up with a 13.6 mph average speed. We rode 25 miles. Twenty miles into the ride our power aide was not doing it for us, so we stopped at Starbucks for something a little bit more tasty. While Joe went inside to get our drinks I claimed an umbrella table and guarded our bikes. Joe returned with his green tea frappuccino in one hand and my iced mocha in the other. Mmmmm did it hit the spot. We sat and enjoyed our drinks and the day. Finally rested and refreshed we once again mounted our bikes to finish the last five miles in record time! It was great!

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Saturday . . . A Hot One!

Today Joe, Jackie, and I went on our Flaming Geyer ride. 18 miles out and back! We started our ride around 10 AM and by the time we finished it was hot. We had a good ride! Tomorrow we are going out even earlier as the temperatures for tomorrow are supposed to be even hotter than today!

Later in the afternoon Joe and I went to Pier One and then IKEA looking for a new lamp to go with my new family room furniture. I am also searching for a trunk of some sort to place the blankets and pillows that I keep in the family room for those cold nights into. No luck there either. I will go and look again tomorrow after our ride.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Busy First Week Off!

I have been off for one entire week and what a week it has been! Saturday my husband and I bought new furniture for our family room. Sunday was Father's Day and a wonderful day spent with Joe and the kids. Monday was clean the house day. Tuesday I had my stitches removed from my foot. Two weeks ago I had surgery to remove the hardware from my foot. I am finally at the end of this long six month foot ordeal and the entire summer lies ahead of me! Wednesday I had a 9:00 AM dental appointment and then hurried home to meet the carpet cleaner. I had my entire house's carpets steamed cleaned. I have been going to the gym, I went Tuesday and Wednesday and had quite the workouts! And this weekend it is going to be an absolutely picture perfect one. Both Saturday and Sunday the temps will be in the 80s! And both Saturday and Sunday Joe, Jackie, and I are going on nice long bike rides! Life is good.

Friday, June 16, 2006

First Day Off for Summer!

Today is my first day off for summer break! The kids finished on Wednesday, they were dismissed at 10:35 and staff's last day was yesterday! Now I have my summer days ahead of me! Hopefully I will get a lot of mountain and road biking in the next couple of months. And of course today, my first day off, it's pouring down rain! As my husband always says, "Like a cow peeing on a rock!" That's how hard it's raining this very minute. So much for a bike ride today! I guess I can get started on my annual "summer house cleaning" . . . but I just don't feel like it! Sigh.

Besides biking all summer long my good friend and I read about a dozen books together during the summer months. She also works in a school back east. In fact she and I worked in the same school in the early nineties before my husband was transferred to the Seattle area. Every summer we would read a half dozen or so books and then discuss them. Even after I moved we continued our summer book ritual. We still pick a book, read a few chapters, and then share our thoughts on the book via email instead of meeting at her house or mine like in the past. This will be our ninth summer of "summer reading" together.

And another big event this summer; my parents and sister are coming on July 20th for a week long visit. That means the visitor "tours" . . . Seattle, Pikes Place Market, Mount Rainier, a ferry ride the usual site seeing ventures. When they return to Pittsburgh my daughter and I will be going back with them for a four day visit returning back home on August first. Then on August 12th we go on our family vacation. Joe, the kids, and me. This year we are headed to Glacier National Park for some hiking, white water rafting, and some great mountain biking down Big Mountain near White Fish. While we are in Montana we will stop and visit my husband's mom, sister, and brother in Havre and also a quick stop to see his brother in Billings.

By the time we return it will be a little over a week before the new school year begins and I have to return to work.

I feel this summer will be my fastest. It's my first day off and I already feel it's half over! They seemed much much longer when I was kid. Sign of aging? Perhaps, or our hectic culture. Whatever I hope this will be a great summer!

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Hard Ride

Yesterday I did a hard ride. I did the hill valley ride. Left my house and did a nice rolling 5 miles, at 5 miles cruised down 2 1/2 mile long steep hill into the valley. Cruised in the valley enjoying the scenery; Beautiful flowers with Mount Rainier backdrop. Finally time to climb the hill out of the valley and head home. Did pretty good for not really riding since my surgery. Did not stop but made it all the way to the top. Not my usual fast climb but a descent climb.

I wanted to get this ride in because today it's raining and this Tuesday I go in for surgery to have the last two screws removed from my foot. I will probably be out again for 2-4 weeks. Until swelling goes down and stitches removed. But this is the end! I see the light at the end of the tunnel. This surgery started in December and had me off my bike for 5 months! So happy it's almost over! I will have end of June and the rest of the summer to bike to my hearts content! Hooray!

Monday, May 29, 2006

Rainy Memorial Day Weekend

It rained on Friday, it rained on Saturday, it rained on Sunday, will it rain today, Memorial Day? According to the local weather . . . NO! Will they be right today? I hope so! I do see clearing outside my window. Is that blue patches peeking through the white and gray clouds? Oh please let it clear! I did not get a single bike ride in this holiday weekend. Maybe this afternoon before company arrives. I would like to be outside for our bbq so I hope the sun comes out and dries everything. Other wise it will be hamburgers and hot dogs inside this year. What a difference a year makes. Last Memorila Day weekend it was in the middle 90s and Joe and I were biking up Devil's Gulch with friends on our mountain bikes. This year we are sitting at home praying for sun with a high temperature forcasted in the mid 60s. Regardless, I will think positive and make it a nice day. After all this is the start of summer. There will be warm days for riding I'm sure!

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Great Weekend!

Both Saturday and Sunday were fantastic. The weather was perfect; the sun was out, there wasn't a single cloud in the sky and the temperature for both days was in the 70s. Plus I got to ride my bike on Saturday and Sunday with my daughter. We did 26.5 miles on Saturday and 30.2 miles today. Got some sun, two nice rides, and well spent time with my daughter. Only wish my son and husband could have joined us. But hubby is sick and son is away at college. My son did call me this afternoon to wish me a happy Mother's Day. A perfect weekend. :)

Saturday, April 29, 2006

After Work Ride

On Thursday, April 27th I took a co-worker cycling. She is new to cycling so I took her to a favorite bike trail close by. The afternoon was absolutely picture perfect. From the trail we had picturesque views of Mt. Rainier and the Carbon River. Because she is new to cycling I made sure we stopped a few times to give her a break and allow her to stretch and get a good drink of water. She was having fun and said she was feeling great! Finally 10 miles out she was ready to turn around and head back and I thoroughly agreed. We enjoyed the ride so much we decided to do this every Thursday after work, weather permitting. When I talked to her the next day she did say she had trouble rising from a chair later that night. She explained that her legs and knees were tired but the next morning she felt fine. Her hands were a little sore too and she told me that she is going to buy a pair of gloves before our next ride. Also another teacher we work with is interested in joining us too! Looks like we may have started something here.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Sad sad day

It’s 4:30 Sunday morning and I can’t sleep. Yesterday we had to put my daughter’s pet ferret to sleep. It was a sad day. Tink was loved by everyone in our family. We called my son Aaron who is away at college to tell him about Tink and he was sad too. Tink would have been six this August. Not wanting to sit at home thinking about Tink Joe, Jackie, and I went for a long road ride. It was a beautiful spring day. Warm, sunny, and not a cloud in the sky. The ride helped a lot to get our minds off Tink. It’s amazing how attached a person gets to their pets. Tink had character and individuality. He was loving and playful. He will be missed for a long long time. I told my husband no more pets. I can’t handle this part of it. Last year it was Kuma our dog of 14 years and this year Tink.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

The Sun Came Out!

Shortly after I posted my message this morning Joe and Jackie woke up and the three of us noticed something odd . . . the sun was out and shining brightly! So we went for a twenty mile ride! Wow, what a great ride! We rode on a scenic back country road where the scenery was just beautiful. Spring in full swing with fields of wild flowers, horses, llamas, Scottish Highland cows, trees budding every where. After yesterdays's ride in that nasty weather today's ride on this gorgeous spring day was heavenly!

Riding In the Rain, Wind, and Cold

Yesterday Joe, our daughter Jackie, and me went for a road ride. When we left the sun was shining. But I noticed in the distance dark formidable looking clouds. I expressed my concern to both Joe and Jackie and they thought we would get our ride in before the storm arrived. Well, they were half right. At our turn around point the rain started coming down and a few minutes later the wind started. It was a typical Easter weekend storm. The weather station had been predicting snow in the mountains and they were right. Snow in the mountains and cold freezing rain in the valley. Regardless, we still had a great ride. The previous week Joe and I were away visiting my parents in Pittsburgh. We returned on Saturday the eighth. I returned to work on Monday and did not ride all week long. So I was looking forward to this weekend and my first ride in over two weeks. I was hoping the weather would co-operate but in the spring that’s asking a lot. My foot felt great. My right leg did get tired about two thirds of the way through the ride but other than that I felt pretty good. With warmer weather ahead and my foot on the mend I believe I will be back in shape by the end of May or first of June.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Back Home

Last Sunday, April 2nd, I left Seattle for Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh is where my parents live and I usually make the trek home once or twice a year. It was good seeing mom and dad and two of my siblings and their families. Of course every visit back to the “Pitt” means a five pound weight gain for me. There is no way I can escape this fact. Believe me through the years I have tried to no avail. It seems everyone wants to feed me as soon as I arrive. I didn’t even have my coat off for five minutes or finished giving everyone their hello kisses and hugs when my mom uttered those famous words of hers, “Come and sit down I made you some spaghetti, or cookies, or rice and steak . . . you must be starving after your long plane ride!” And so it began! And it’s useless, I’m not kidding, trying to persuade her that you are not hungry. So I gave up a long time ago and just accepted the fact that whenever I go home, eating and weight gain will be part of my annual visit home. But as soon as I get home I hit the gym and add a few extra miles to my bike rides until I am back to my normal weight again.

This year my sister Christine and I took mom to Phipps for the annual flower show. Mom really enjoyed it and I did too. Christine said she had a great time also. And of course we took dad out for his birthday, he turned 89 on April third. We had family and friends join us and dad was the man of the hour. He was tickled pink. My sister’s mother-in-law always invites me to her house for a huge spaghetti dinner whenever I am in town. And this year was no exception. She cooked enough food for twenty people and there were only eight of us! She had spaghetti, chicken parmesan, hot Italian sausages with green peppers and onions. I swear fifty meatballs, Italian bread, stuffed hot peppers, salad, pork cooked in the sauce and two desserts! The two desserts were, her made from scratch double chocolate cake frosted with her “cooked” homemade frosting and a pineapple coconut pound cake in the shape of a rose petal! These cakes were not made from any old boxed cake mix, no no they were made from scratch and they were delicious!

Thank God my weeks visit was over and it was time to fly home. The elastic on my pants were pretty stretched (I knew better then to bring pants with buttons or zippers!), mom and friends had done their job.

Well here I am back home. I wanted to get a ride in today but I had too much to do. My sister said that she would be coming out this July for a visit and would bring mom and dad with her. I look forward to them finally coming to see me.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Casual ride on the Orting Trail

Today Joe, Jackie, and me went for a ten mile bike ride on the Orting Trail. It was an overcast day with some sun breaks. We even got a few raindrops on us but other than that it was a nice ride. There were a lot of people out on the trail; cyclists, runners, inline skaters, and people just out for a Sunday stroll. The temperature was very mild, upper fifties. The valley floor was dressed in its finest yellow because the daffodils are at their peak. In three weeks the Tacoma Wheelmen Bicycle Club will be hosting their 31st annual Daffodil Classic. I believe I can safely say that spring is in full swing.

After being in a cast for three and half months I can happily report that my foot did very well on it's first real outside bike ride since December. But my ankle did get sore. Just to remind you, I sprained it the day before I went in to have my cast removed. On my next ride I think taping it will help to support and stablize the weak ankle which should keep it from hurting too much but still allow me to get some easy rides in.

I'm happy that I got to ride today because tonight Joe and I are leaving on a 10:30 flight for Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh is where I was born and raised and where my parents still live. When I get back next Saturday the serious cycling will begin!

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

I Don't Believe It!

I just cannot believe this happened to me. The first day in regular shoes, no crutches, no cast, got the ok yesterday from my doctor that I may walk and ride again . . . I go and sprain my ankle! It puffed up like an adder! It looks like a golf ball! No one to blame but myself. Yesterday, at work, I was still in the boot cast and I was in a rush and tripped. With my leg so atophied the boot was loose and of course I sprained my ankle! Oh believe me I still wore my shoes today. My foot did not hurt but my darn ankle sure did. After a few hours I had to use my dang crutches again because my ankle was really throwing out the pain messages. I could scream . . . I think I will . . . pardon me . . . .

aahhhhh that felt good. Hopefully the sprain will heal quickly.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Great News!

I had an appointment this afternoon with my foot doctor. He took x-rays to see how my bones were mending and mending they are! He gave me the go ahead to shed my cast and crutches and starting tomorrow . . . I may wear shoes again! Real shoes! But the best news; he said that I may begin cycling again! He did say to start off easy, naturally, and listen to my body. But YES I may ride again! Just in time too . . . spring has just begun and summer is just around the corner. I can't wait to walk into work tomorrow morning with shoes on my feet! No crutches, which means I can stop by Starbucks for a mocha and carry it to my office! No crutches means free hands again. Of course you should see my poor whithered calf! It's a sad little thing. My work is definitely cut out for me! But I am one happy person tonight!

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Seattle Times Article

I found this article while surfing tonight and I found it to be very true. (For some reason sleep seems to elude me this evening . . . could it be all the coffee and mochas I had today?) I know what I'm talking about because Joe and I have been to Oregon on biking vacations. Yea, you can say that Joe and I are "Boomer Bikers." Yea, we stay in motels with comfy beds, showers, and a nice restaurant. Tent? You're kidding, right? My back would not find a sleeping bag on cold hard ground appealing. I wouldn't be able to get out of the bag let alone ride my bike after a night in a tent! And you know what, we earned the comfy bed and hot shower. We raised our two kids, put them through college, it's our turn. We love to bike and we love Oregon. Put the two together and you have heaven on earth. So when I found this article that was published by the Seattle Times on March 20, 2006 titled "Oregon Seeks Bigger Share of Boomer Biking Crowd" I decided to post it here to share with visitors to my site. And because I found it very interesting too!

Hey don't get me wrong. We have biked in other states too. But Oregon has been the best so far. Next summer (or the summer after) we plan on going international. I think our first stop will be Tuscany. But that's down the road. Right now on to the article . . .

EUGENE, Ore. — They're middle-aged but not grown up. They like to play outdoors but take their creature comforts come nightfall.

They're baby-boomer bicyclists. They're people who can drop $1,000, $2,000 or even $8,000 on their two-wheelers.

Recreation and tourism officials see gold in promoting Oregon as the premier place for them to ride. They have organized an Oregon Bicycling Summit on April 1 in Eugene.

"Bicycling is one of the most affluent sporting activities out there right now," said Jerry Norquist, executive director of Cycle Oregon, a nonprofit cycling organization.

He said many boomer cyclists "no longer like to just go out and camp in a tent and cook on a stove. They like to stay in a bed-and-breakfast or a hotel and they like to eat at a good restaurant. ... We call it credit-card touring."

He said officials are pushing to improve Oregon roads for cyclists, get cycling routes marked and mapped, grease the tourism communications, "brand" Oregon cycling and market it nationally and internationally.

The state draws people from around the globe for bicycle-touring events and wins recognition for its cycling environment.

Eugene landed on Bicycling magazine's list of best medium-size cycling cities this year. And Portland won the title as the best cycling city of any size in the nation.

"It can't hurt to have that reputation developed even more," said Jan VanderTuin, executive director of the Center for Appropriate Transport in Eugene.

Shoe shopping!

Today I am going shopping for some stiffed soled shoes! Last week my doctor said I may begin wearing shoes but they had to be stiffed soled like hiking boots. So long crutches and cast . . . hello freedom!

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Finally, on my feet or rather foot again!

Well, after 3 1/2 months off my bike because of foot surgery, I got the go ahead from my doctor to begin walking and spinning again. Let me just say this, "It's amazing how much muscle and muscle strength you can lose in such a short time." My husband setup my bike on my trainer in the family room. I plugged my ipod into our entertainment system, jacked up the volume to my favorite tunes and began spinning. Thirty minutes later I was dying and had to stop. Normally I could spin for hours! I've done double centuries! But being optimistic, it's only March. Hopefully by June I will be back in form. Stay tuned . . .