Friday Five: Just a bunch of photos

Happy Friday, everyone! Yeah, I know, not so happy for a lot of people. Well, when I’m sad, something in my brain clicks over and I start doing (or at least, wanting to do) new and/or creative things. Or maybe just go for a walk.

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All of which I’ve been doing, over the past couple of weeks. And it’s starting to show up in my daily weigh-ins, so Monday should bring me closer to those ever-elusive ’70s, y’all!

Anyway, without further adieux (as our French-Canadian neighbors might say, if they were grammatically challenged, which they’re definitely NOT — je vous aime, le Canada!!), here are five pictures I took recently:

  1. 1 - Art Journal

    On the first of the month, I decided to start ‘art journaling’ again. I’ve done it before, most recently 2015-2016. I ran out of ideas, and steam. However, after we lost Princess, I decided to go back to it, and just keep it simple and cheerful — so far, so good!

  2. 2 - First ever bike tire

    I’ve also taken up — ta-da! — bicycle repair! Well, at least the basics. I’m practicing on a super-old bike that was rusting away in our back yard. Yesterday I decided it was time to learn to change the tires — and I did! Here’s my very first ever replaced bike tire!

  3. 4 - Finished Bike.jpg

    Habemus bike, with both tires properly installed, mounted & pumped up, and a decent-looking seat as well! Looks really good with all those rays of sun pouring over it, huh? Still needs a lot of work, but it’s definitely looking better than it’s looked for, oh, the past decade!

  4. 5 - Fire.jpg

    Speaking of sad things, this is the view of one of the Southern California wildfires currently disrupting people’s lives. This is the Woolsey Fire, and if you follow that link, there’s some suggestions of how to help those affected.

  5. 1 - Grumpy Pumpkins.jpg

    Saw these in front of a neighbor’s house on my walk this morning. Aren’t these the saddest pumpkins you’ve ever seen? Don’t you just wish you could pick them up, pat them on the head and say, “There, there, it’s gonna be OK”? No? Me neither. Ick.

That’s it, a visual treat for your Friday Five. Hope your weekend goes well, and see you Monday for the weigh-in!

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Friday Five: A little late and a little short!

Hmm, I keep calling these posts the “Friday Five,” even though, from time to time, I can’t come up with five things. Wonder why?

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Yeah, but as Homer Simpson once said, “Hope springs internal,” so I’ll keep giving it the ol’ college try!

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Anyway, without actually getting into the numbers game, I did a lot of walking and BIKING this week! I’m particularly proud of the latter because I’ve been letting my poor ol’ cruiser languish in the garage for months, not even taking it out to wipe off the spiders.

But last week I decided it was time, so I’ve been puttering around the Valley (or at least my part of it) and getting slightly better at dodging traffic, not to mention running errands — groceries, post office, etc.

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So it’s been a productive week all around, and I’m looking forward to more bike/walk adventures in the near future (though preferably not at the same time)!

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That’s it — I guess the Friday Five will just be five memes, loosely connected by the fact that they’re on my page! Oh well, I’ll be back Monday with a weigh-in — a good one this time, I hope! Have a great weekend (and try to get outdoors, if you can)!

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Friday Five: Now we’re cookin’ with gas (and Spam)!

Happy Friday, everyone, and BOY, have I got a busy day ahead of me! I’m doing a LOT of cooking for two big events this weekend. First, tomorrow (Saturday), Mr. 50by60’s side of the family will be getting together to celebrate a bunch of birthdays.

I should explain that Mr. 50by60 is one of SEVEN brothers!

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So naturally, his mom feels it’s over her pay grade to remember all their birthdays. She likes to just get ’em all over with at once, and I can’t say I blame her! Anyway, MY mom gave me her patented recipe for “Spam loaf,” so that’ll be my contribution to the mix, sort of from one mother-in-law to another.

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Second, we’ve got ANOTHER big church potluck on Sunday! And those of you who know me and/or who’ve read this blog before know that means only one thing:

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So here ya go, for this week’s Friday Five: four recipes I’m gonna make today, plus one variation you might want to try – enjoy!

  1. Mom’s Spam Loaf!
    spam.png
  2. Aunt Chrissy’s Key Lime Pie! It’s the best, trust me!!
    mmm key.jpg
  3. And you might want to try this little variation on #2: Orange Pie. I made it a couple of years ago and it turned out pretty good. Basically, it’s EXACTLY the same recipe as my Key Lime Pie, except you MUST add sugar, like maybe half a cup per pie. Also, taste the mixture before you bake it, ’cause fresh unsweetened oranges are almost as tart as lemons, in case you hadn’t noticed.
    orange
  4. Key Lime Pie (low calorie)
    I’ve actually seen a few different versions of this, but the main difference seems to be that different sites recommend specific brands for the pie crust, the yogurt, or the gelatin. However, the BASIC recipe is the same. This Weight Watchers version from geniuskitchen.com is as simple as it gets:

  5. Aunt Chrissy’s Parmesan Crisps — mmm good!
    parmesan.jpgmmm

And there you go, five more or less great recipes you can try — and save!

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Let me know if you make any of these yourself, and send me a picture — I’ll put it in a future post!

Thanks, everyone! Hope YOUR weekend has some family, food, and/or fun! See you Monday for the post-potluck weigh-in!

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Friday Five: hey, I’m famous!

  1. I was debating whether to do a blog post this morning at all. Then I thought I’d do one entitled “No blog post today” with some funny memes to that effect. So I did a search on Google images, titled “no blog post today” memes. Guess what? almost ALL the search results were from MY blog posts of the past!
    lazy.jpg

    Probably just lazy.

    Still, check it out and see for yourself: “no blog post today” memes on Google!

  2. I did actually do something exercise-related this week, though — got back on the bike! And here’s the pic to prove it:

    0917181127b

    My venerable Electra Townie Cruiser, taking a break while I take a pic!

  3. More often than not, though, I stayed home and did (ugh) housework-type stuff. NOT vacuuming* or floor-scrubbing (sorry, Mr. 50by60!), but less traumatic stuff like laundry and sweeping. Doing the laundry can be good exercise if you have access to an outdoor clothesline – lots of leaning over, picking things up, then reaching up to hang them. Sweeping the floor obviously has some exercise potential as well.

    wanda

    It’s good practice, in case one of your fellow employees shows up with the pinkeye.

  4. *Because:

    nature

    I’m with the cats…and nature!

  5. Free TJ’s plug (although I’m certainly open to bribes, they ain’t payin’ me!) — if you need a good lower-calorie substitute for that nice crunchy bag of Doritos or Lay’s, why not try these?
    tjs

    They’re freeze-dried Fuji apple slices, yummy and crunchy. A nice compromise when you’re cravin’ the crunchy stuff. (And I’ll be lookin’ for that TJ’s gift card in the mail, Corporate! Remember, I can always delete this plug!)

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Bonus blog points if you remember this funny guy!

Alright, that’s all I got! Have a great weekend, everyone! See ya Monday!

monday

Friday Five: How was your short week?

  1. Hey, everyone! Like most of you, Mr. 50by60 and I had a short work week, since Monday was a big holiday here in the Lower 48. (You know, Labor Day — aka my birthday?) Which means Tuesday was your Monday, right? So Tuesday’s Monday, Wednesday’s Tuesday, Thursday’s Wednesday, and ipso facto ergo sum, today’s really Thursday and I’m a day early! What a great week!
    short.jpg
  2. And I actually did get something useful done this week — as mentioned in my previous post, I created a brand new page here at WordPress, Women Who Run With the Stooges! Which, technically, isn’t “new” because I originally created it in 1999. Yes, kids, we actually had computers in the PREVIOUS CENTURY!
    any key.jpg
    And this was one of the many websites (or as we called them in the olden days, “websites”) I created back then, but the only one anyone but myself actually read. And it was really getting kind of sad, seeing it dying a slow painful death over at Angelfire (ick!), so now it’s here and safe and (theoretically) better than ever! (If nothing else, it’s forced me to relearn HTML coding, nyuk nyuk!)
    print is dead.jpg
  3. Yesterday I had a fun time: went to the dentist for a cleaning. Not just a regular cleaning, though — a DEEP CLEANING! And they had to give me Novocaine & everything ’cause I’m so sensitive. Somehow, some of the Novocaine actually got in/near my right eye, and my eyelid felt like it was stuck for most of the day. I had to force myself to blink so it wouldn’t water all over the place. It’s better this morning, thank goodness. Don’t you love going to the dentist?
    asking
  4. Earlier in the week (pre-numb-eyeball), I went to Anytime Fitness Chatsworth where I mentioned to Kaily that I’d reached my weight loss goal (50 pounds by age 60, aka the name of this blog!) last week. She congratulated me and did a little video interview with me right on the spot. My plan was to post the video here, then send them the link to this post to put on their Facebook page. However, as of this morning, I still don’t see it anywhere, so I’ll just post this charming spacesaver till I get it.
    missing.jpg
  5. Whew…it’s tough to come up with five things, much less five things that have anything whatsoever in common.

    Either way, my hat’s off to Amy Welborn who manages to come up with SEVEN things every Friday, fer cryin’ out loud!

That’s it! Time to carpe the diem and make some toast or something! Have a great day and weekend, everyone — see you Monday!

carpe.jpg

Friday Five: Excuses, excuses, and more excuses!

barbienew.jpg

A blogger named Kaylee (Chair in the Shade), wrote an amusing post on July 27, 2017, listing her “12 Excuses Why There’s No Blog Post Today.” Go over and read it — then I’m going to shamelessly borrow the following five of her reasons:

  1. My life is boring.  I don’t have anything good to post.
    Actually, my life really isn’t that boring. However, it seems kind of boring and lame when I try to describe it to other people. Perhaps I’m not as good a writer as she is!
    nothing.jpg
  2. I have nothing to say.
    Well, that’s not quite true — I always have a lot to say, but most of the time I realize later I probably shouldn’t have said it!
    zip it.jpg
  3. I need to clean my house.
    Hmm…well, that kinda goes without saying. And just saying it isn’t going to clean the house. I am doing laundry today, though.
    nap dyn.jpg
  4. I should really read some other blogs for inspiration.
    Now THAT is definitely true! And there’s quite a few excellent bloggers out there too, even in this age of Instagram and Twitter! Kaylee’s just one of them. Check out my Blogroll (off to the right somewhere, depending on which app/program you’re using to read this), and you’ll undoubtedly find someone you like.
    eyeroll.jpg
  5. I don’t want to be copying other bloggers.
    Yes, which is why I DEFINITELY won’t be copying any of Kaylee’s other 12 reasons! However, I do want to thank her for inspiring me this morning! And yes, I’m adding her blog to my Blogroll, as soon as I figure out how to work that widget! Thanks, Kaylee!
    me too.jpg

Have a great day, everyone — see you Monday for the Last Weigh-In Before The Big Vacation (which I’ll tell you about Monday!)!

 

 

Friday Five: As promised: all the yummy stuff I got to eat on the Fourth of July!

Happy Friday! As promised in Monday’s post, here are a few of the goodies I scoffed on Wednesday while visiting my fabulous brother and sister-in-law’s annual 4th-of-July party.

  1. BAKED BEANS!! Mr. 50by60 and I don’t have beans a lot. I won’t go into too much detail about why. Still, every once in a while, they’re a treat. To a point.
    beans.jpg
  2. HOT DOGS!! My traditional holiday indulgence, grilled to perfection and with LOTS of ketchup on my hot dogs. Yeah, I’m one of those!
    hot dog.jpg
  3. POTATO SALAD!! Not normally one of my favorites, even on holidays, but someone brought in a tub of Reser’s Potato Salad, and I have to admit, it was goooood!!
    potato salad
  4. POTSTICKERS WITH SOY SAUCE!! Mmmmore please!!
    potstickers.jpg
    and of COURSE:
  5. CAKE!! See, the 4th of July is also our niece Kate’s birthday. And this year, she turned 18. So OF COURSE we had birthday cake! Not just any ol’ cake, though — ice cream cake. And not just ONE ice cream cake, but THREE (at least — I lost count after the the third). Happy birthday, Kate!
    birthday.jpg

And yes, I did have a teensy little weight gain the day after, which I’m still coming down from. Oh well, there’s more to life than your diet, right? Every once in a while you just gotta cut loose and enjoy yourself. Right?

regret

See you on Monday, when we’ll find out just how much damage that delicious feast did!

Friday 5: Day 5 … what a weigh to go!

Good morning,  everyone! It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood, and I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for a beautiful weekend!

who's with me

Yeah baby!! But first, let’s get this stuff outta the way:

1. Day 5 of the 7-day weight averaging thing:

193.8
great

Wow — that was unexpected! Hey, remember how I started out on Monday at 198.0? That’s almost seven, count ’em 7, pounds lost in five days! Now you know and I know that could NOT be 7 pounds of fat. It’s definitely water — and tomorrow morning it could very well go up again. Which demonstrates that we really shouldn’t worry about these little (and sometimes not-so-little) fluctuations from day to day, or even week to week. As long as the LONG-TERM trend is downwards, you’re fine. (Jay at aworkoutroutine.com lists a whole bunch of reasons for these daily fluctuations here.)

2. Another day, another gym. Now that I’ve been a member at Anytime Fitness Chatsworth for more than 30 days, I’m allowed to visit gyms in other locations, so this past Wednesday I visited the one in Simi Valley (shoutout to Jasmine in the office!) It was actually pretty nice, although the video treadmills were set up a little differently: no YouTube app, so no Corner Gas, but a whole slew of DirecTV channels, so lots of sitcoms and game shows. It’s all good!

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Anytime Fitness Simi Valley

3. Eat something small to keep from eating something big. So yesterday I was doing a walk around my neighborhood, when I was suddenly seized with an almost irresistible desire to stop at the nearest KFC and savor as much of those 11 herbs ‘n spices as possible. Where that desire came from I have no idea. I thought I’d managed to kick the fried chicken habit, but ya know, these things come back to haunt you.

kfc evil

I confess — I actually walked to the door of the KFC down the street, ready to take the calorie hit. FORTUNATELY, it was 10:45 and they didn’t open till 11:00. So I went to the Starbucks next door, ordered an Americano with just a scosche of regular, full-fat half-and-half, and decided to indulge in one of their yummy 80-calorie string cheeses.

Half an hour later, after sitting at a table sipping my coffee and savoring the cheese, I walked out — with absolutely NO desire to revisit the KFC, even though it was wide open! Yes, the evil cravings were GONE!

So there you go — today’s Diet Wisdom:

If you’re struggling against a 1,000-calorie craving,
treat yourself to something yummy with 100 calories instead.

Worth a shot, right? Let me know how that works out for you.

4. Man, I’m having trouble coming up with a fourth thing. Tell you what, we’ll just agree that this counts as #4, and move on. Um, if that’s OK with you …

whatever.jpg

Thanks, Napoleon!

5. On a more serious note, very saddened to read this morning that Anthony Bourdain apparently took his own life. Although I hadn’t watched very many episodes of his show, “Parts Unknown,” I did recently read his book, “Typhoid Mary,” the true story of an Irish immigrant cook who spread disease to dozens of people before she was found and jailed. What made the book really enjoyable is that he obviously felt a lot of sympathy for her, as one cook to another. It was a good book. He wrote quite a few books. It’s sad to hear he’s not going to write any more.

+Eternal memory, Mr. Bourdain

OK, that’s your Friday Five, more or less. Hope you have a great weekend — see you Monday!

Friday Five: 4 things I’m looking forward to, plus 1 yogurt recipe!

Well, good morning, one and all! You know, summer’s on its way, and although it may be a bit premature, here are a few things I’m really looking forward. Plus, a fun Chobani yogurt tweak! Ready? Here we go!

  1. Swimming pool! I know, I know, I keep yammering about the awesome pool at my 24 Hour Fitness. But c’mon, isn’t it gorgeous? I’m really looking forward to that first 100-degree-plus day I can dip my tootsies in that cool blue water (and blithely ignore all the grunting and tire flipping from the CrossFit area next door). Mmm, pool!
    image10
  2. Train trip! My husband and I like to take train trips. (Well, he IS an engineer!) And this year is no exception. This August, we’re taking the Amtrak Coast Starlight up to Olympia, Washington, where we’ll meet lots of friends we haven’t seen for a while at a special event our church sponsors every year. I always love that moment when the train starts moving slowly, slowly, sloowwwllyyy* out of the station. (*well, it IS Amtrak, after all!)
    amtrak.jpg
  3. Beach Walks! Once the weather starts warming up, I hop in my rusty but trusty ol’ 2005 Toyota and head down to the best beach in Southern California, with the most awesome parking you can imagine, with trails and bike paths and all sorts of places to get that outdoorsy, fun in the sun exercise we all crave so much. Yes, I’m heading to the fabulous Beacha del Incognito! (Heh — you didn’t really think I was gonna TELL you where it is, now did you?? It’s MINE!!)
    secret.jpg
  4. Hittin’ the Gym — in Multiple Locations! Yeah, as I’ve yammered on about ad infinitum these past couple of weeks, I joined the fabulous Anytime Fitness Chatsworth. I’m very happy with it so far, especially the treadmills with video screens and the studios where I can work out in complete privacy, most of the time (except when some hapless newbie stumbles in by mistake looking for the restroom). Anyway, in a couple of weeks I’ll have hit my 30-day mark so I can visit some of the other locations! And you’ll get to hear about it! Aren’t you just thrilled?

     

  5. YOGURT TWEAK!! And now, as promised, here’s an idea I came up with totally on my own, which you may want to incorporate into your breakfast routine!

See, earlier this year, I became enamored with Chobani Yogurts, specifically their Vanilla Blended version. I still like the Yoplait Lights at 90 calories, but the Chobani’s only 20 calories more (you do the math, I still haven’t had my coffee), and has a more substantial feel to it.

Well, NOW they have a flavor called Vanilla Chocolate Chunk blended. Which, I mean … uh … chocolate AND vanilla? That’s almost overkill, dude!

chobani.JPG
And it’s 170 calories, which isn’t TOO bad. About the same as an egg (70 calories) and a slice of bacon (90 calories), give or take a few. (Again, math / coffee.) But there are two problems with it: 1) it’s really hard to find, at least in my area, and 2) that is a bit higher in calories that I normally want in a yogurt.

Well, never fear – I’ve got your lower-calorie Vanilla Chocolate Chunk yogurt idea right here! Just get a little container of chocolate sprinkles at the grocery store (they’re in the baking aisle, with all the cake decorating stuff), and add a little to your plain or vanilla yogurt. Even if it’s not on the label, I looked it up: one teaspoon is 20 calories.

So, let’s say you start with unflavored yogurt, which is @ 70 or 80 calories. Add the sprinkles (20 calories) and a little vanilla extract, et voila! Your own Vanilla Chocolate Chunk yogurt, at or near 100 calories! Mmm!! You’re welcome!!
sprinkles

So there ya go — your Friday Five with some yummy summertime ideas. I’ll be back Monday when I’m hoping all that extra vacation weight will be gone gone gone! Have a great weekend, everyone!

 

Lamest, groggiest “Friday Five” so far!

Boxing yourself into a regular format on your blog (like my “Rhymin’ Weekly Weigh-ins” on Monday and “Friday Five” on … you guessed it), can really help you stick to your goal of blogging regularly. It gives you a framework and helps you corral your random thoughts into a targeted post so they make more sense.

So overall, most of the time, a specific, regular format is a good thing. However, there are a few notable exceptions.

Like today, for instance. It’s Friday, so I should be putting together my “Friday Five.” However, it’s also cloudy, gloomy, and a bit chilly. Plus I’m still not completely awake. Plus I just can’t think of anything to hook five connected thoughts together.

I probably could, if I put more thought into it – or if, as I’ve done before and HIGHLY recommend, I’d put together a rough draft yesterday, and just tweaked it a bit this morning. But guess what? I didn’t do that. So now, all I have to offer you is this lame post, full of lamentations and excuses for why I didn’t do what, after all, no one but ME really made any kind of commitment to do.

On the other hand … I DID manage to make this post five paragraphs long! Maybe that counts as a “Friday Five,” hmm? Especially if I embed this fun video to make you, my loyal readers, dance and sing! Yeah, that’s the ticket!

See you Monday, everyone!