Staying Grounded

Normally, I would be writing about our day on the hang gliding training hills on a Saturday.  However, it wasn’t worth getting up early only to find out we couldn’t fly given the wind predictions.  Tomorrow doesn’t look any more promising.  I think I hear my knees sighing with relief.

Instead, we are doing exciting things like pulling together our tax documents.  Sometimes being an adult is unavoidable.

I wish I could have enjoyed the laid back morning, but we were out of coffee.  When we’re out of coffee, I feel like I’m in a race–can I find a source of caffeine before I get a withdrawal headache?

Eventually, I gather up some bags and head towards the grocery store.  But I make a pitstop first.  It’s time for a new pair of fivefinger shoes.  I opt for a running style with a nice squishy sole that feels luxurious.  I decide I like them so well, I will wear them home and put the trekking pair I was wearing into the box.

I head on into Greenlife and pick up groceries.  Every time I go there, I think of our empty refrigerator back home and am reminded of my sister-in-law’s visit.  I pointed her to the fridge for filtered water and when she opened the door, she found a pitcher of filtered water and a 12-pack of beer.  That was it.  She laughed out loud.  I suppose it’s one of the ways we avoid adulthood.

Returning home, I am loaded with a bag on each shoulder and the bag with my old shoes in one hand.  I’m glad I only have to walk a block.  I return home to an excited dog that doesn’t know what to do with himself now that I’m home.  It’s as if he wants to punish me for going somewhere without him.  I help him find Lamb so he can have something in his mouth other than my hands.  Then, I pretend to play keep away by periodically acting like I’m going to chase him and saying all the right things.  In reality, I am putting away the groceries.

I think back to my intention of eating right all the time when we moved to Chattanooga.  Is it human nature to think that making one major change in your life will change all of it?  I must have forgotten the crux of the issue–I brought myself with me when we moved.

For today’s photography lesson, I decided to go outdoors.  I have a request for shots of our balcony, so I carry my tripod and camera across the street and start shooting.  I’m not sure what is so remarkable about a person with a tripod and camera, but I certainly attract a lot of stares.  Or maybe it’s my fivefingers shoes they’re staring at?

I am still torn on whether I like the HDR processed images as well as “traditional” processing.  It’s a lot of fun to play with, though.

You Are What You Eat

One of my new year’s resolutions was to eat 3 fruits or vegetables a day on average. It’s not a very ambitious goal, but I find I am an over achiever and there are certain goals where it is quite painful to overachieve. Going from eating an occasional fruit or vegetable to eating, say, 10 a day happens to be one of those cases where more is not better. Since my real goal is to find a sustainable balance, I figure there’s nothing to gain by making myself miserable.

It’s January 3rd today and I’ve managed to eat 5 fruits or vegetables for two days straight. Now, we are headed out for breakfast and it feels like the last meal of a vacation, which I guess technically, it is. I am hard pressed to muster the strength to order oatmeal and eat a banana. Instead, I order “scattered ‘taters” with cheese, bacon, and an egg over medium.

When it comes, I slide the egg off its plate and make a stack. The puddle of grease the egg leaves behind is only slightly less disconcerting than the pool of grease under the hash browns. I try sliding the whole stack uphill while tilting the plate, allowing the grease to run to the far side of the plate in the hope of minimizing the damage to my arteries. After eating every last bite, we head out the door stuffed and decide we have enough time to run over to the grocery store.

We are unprepared with no bags or a list. We go inside and start grabbing the supplies we need, trying not to overfill the cart as we load up, cognizant that we’re going to be carrying our groceries home in paper bags. As we work our way around the store, a steady rumbling starts, building to the unmistakeable sound of pouring rain on a metal roof. We decide Pat will run home and get both reusable grocery bags and a car. While Pat returns to get the car, I start piling on the groceries.

I pick up watercress, celery, radishes, pears, and pine nuts for my favorite salad. I throw in a nice loaf of bread, creamy tomato soup, soy milk, and avocados. The cart is overflowing at this point. Fortunately, Pat returns before I add more. Of course, by the time we leave the store, the rain has stopped and the sun is shining. We laugh when we walk outside.

My watercress salad doesn’t fully make up for my grease-pool breakfast, but the flavor combined with the feeling of eating health makes me think I could eat healthy all the time. As I scoop up the last bite of salad and the sweetness of the pear mixes perfectly with the spice of the watercress, I remember the quote from Meryl Streep above the produce section, “It is strange that the produce manager has more to do with my children’s health than their pediatrician” and smile.

Grocery Therapy

Well, dear readers, in response to requests from some of my geographically distant friends who would like to read my blog but just don’t have time, I am going to see if I can keep my entries to under 500 words for a while (not counting this paragraph, of course :-)).  Here I go . . .

I wake up with such an ache in my neck I feel nauseous (or maybe it’s the realization it’s Monday that upsets my stomach?).  I walk around with the weight of my head in my hands, trying to prevent a major spasm.

Throughout the day, no matter how much I keep my head propped on my headrest, the pain increases as I work.  I take a break in the early afternoon to lay on the floor and try to get my muscles to relax.  Then, I try sitting on the couch, which makes every muscle go nuts all over again.

I remember seeing a sign in the window of a local yoga studio advertising some type of therapy I’ve never heard of before.  I go to their website.  It’s called Ortho-Bionomy.  It sounds pretty logical as an approach, so I call and make an appointment.  Unfortunately, I will not be able to get in until tomorrow.  Jann, the therapist, suggests ice and anti-inflammatories in the interim.  I’ve been trying to only take the anti-inflammatories at night so I’m not taking too much of them, but I decide I should take Jann’s advice.  I take aspirin and prop an ice pack on my neck while I work.

I make it to the end of the day, and even manage to get all my online Christmas shopping done before I have to get away from the computer.

It’s late and we have no food.  I walk to the grocery store alone since Pat is preoccupied.  I plan to only pick up enough for dinner, but I end up getting milk and soy milk and yogurt and coffee and . . . I have only 2 grocery bags with me, figuring I can balance the load for the walk home to avoid irritating my neck further.

I look at the full cart and worry I’m going to be in agonizing pain walking the block home.  However, the aspirin, ice, and the walk over here seemed to have helped quite a bit–my neck feels better than it felt all day.  I decide to risk it.

I pay for the groceries–can I just ask, why is GreenLife/Whole Foods so freaking expensive?  Aren’t they supposed to be sourcing directly from local farmers?  Shouldn’t that make their groceries less expensive?

In any case, I divide the groceries carefully, distributing the weight evenly between the two bags.  I carry one bag on each shoulder and then walk home.  Amazingly, the weight of the bags pulling my shoulders down actually feels really good.  As long as I don’t turn my head, it helps.

When I get home, I heat up the stuffed pasta shells I bought and feed me and Pat.  It’s hot and good.  My neck is feeling more functional than I would have thought possible just an hour earlier.  Maybe I shouldn’t complain about the prices at Whole Foods since buying groceries turned out to be physical therapy as well?