Wide trails, narrow trails,
Missed trail? Never lost --- for long,
On a perfect February day, we were two of the few hikers wearing a coat. We found easy access to the Constellation Trail at the lower parking lot of the Phippen Museum in Prescott Valley, AZ. We thought that the trails we walked looked a little rugged for our new e-bikes.
Take your time, breathe in
Breathe out, Stretch your arms up high
Touch the sky with health.
The clear air deceives you. It is thinner and takes more effort to breathe for new comers and older hikers. There’s no need to rush. This is not a good trail for runners. Rock outcropping spring up in the middle of the trail. Main trails were marked with white dots.
Blink and you’ve veered off the main loop. One wrong step, and you’re separated from your walking buddy, but not for long. Maps appear out of nowhere. Or use the app on your phone.
If you stay on the broad trails along the mail loop, you can walk it in only 2. 4 miles or less than an hour if you don’t take pictures. We couldn’t resist the views of the Granite Dells, scruffy shrubs, an area of new homes, with the Flagstaff Mountains in the background.
One side trail that heads up to the top of the dells named The Lost Wall Mountain Biking Trail has only one review – “Not nearly as compelling as photos imply. All slow no flow.” Lost Wall Biking Trail
Vince and I were glad we left our bikes and took only our dog. Kalev enjoyed it.
Happy Blogging This Week.
Poet’s Choice today and Writer’s Quotes Choice tomorrow — It’s as simple as making a meme.
A journalist at heart, the Haibun gives me the chance to explain the back story.
Tip: Editing Pictures without Photoshop
This morning I read the list of block types. Editing pictures is a snap. Last month, for Becky B’s BrightSquare Challenge, I struggled to make pictures exactly square in Photoshop Elements 15. I would get between 1-10 pixels off unless it luckily snapped into place. With the block editor you don’t even have to try.
It did not add a watermark and when I cropped it, the old watermark was either cut in half or disappeared.
Sadje asks pertinent questions and even though I’ve told this story to some, it bears repeating because embarrassing to me can be funny to others. Right?
In the late 1960s our mother worked in Lloyd Center, the largest mall in the Northwest at that time. We often went to work with her where there was more to do than at our house. Our favorite recreation at the mall was ice skating.
Lloyd Center still has a large ice rink at the center of the mall surrounded by shops and the largest department store in the city on the top floor. A railing prevented people from hurling themselves from the top level onto the rink and getting a free skating session. Shoppers stood around the perimeter of the high railing and watched the skaters whirling around below. On the lower level, where the skating rink was, people sat in the upscale restaurant that lined the rink for better viewing.
Like we did about most things, my brother, Randy and I competed over everything, who got to sit in the front seat of the car, who was fastest, who could eat the most French Fries on the shared plate. You might know the scenarios.
The weirdest thing had happened to Randy that year. When we moved to Portland, at 15 I stood a proud 5 feet 4.5 inches tall. Randy topped out at 5 feet 3 inches. (ha ha) The way younger brothers are supposed to be. He started growing when he turned 14 or 15. He stopped one year later at 6 feet 3 inches tall. I didn’t make the adjustment immediately, I was still older and bigger in my mind.
On this particular night I prepared hurriedly, pinned my hair up, and hastily threw on a frosted gray, page boy wig which, for some STRANGE reason, must have been popular at the time. No make-up and I was ready to go. Mom didn’t want to be late to work!
We got out on the ice and I challenged him to a race. We were neck in neck all the way through the first corner. Then he put his giant legs in gear and with one easy stride glided past me. As I crossed my legs around the last stretch of the corner for just one more great push, part of my skate stayed cemented in the ice. Just one little prickly pointy part of my skate refused to budge, and the rest of the skate decided to stay with it.
Randy gracefully rounded the next corner before he noticed that his spunky sister was MIA.
He was the only one who didn’t see it, however. The floor guard instantly sped to my aid, spraying ice chips in my red face as he turned to make the rapid stop to help me up. “Are you OK?” he asked politely.
Of course I was OK. I was mad and my wig was out of my reach. I ignored his outstretched hand to use both of mine to crawl invisibly over to my wig and get it on as fast as possible. Which I did. Even so, I could still see the guard bent over double laughing after he was sure I was all right.
My hair pinned back, I threw on my wig, jumped up and skated for the bathroom trying to get the hair out of my face.
The bathroom – at last – I looked in the mirror. My wig was on backwards. I never wanted to go out again. I took it off and threw it in a locker. I sat for a few minutes debating about what to do. Mom would get off work at 9:00. It was only minutes after 6:00. The night was young. I proceeded to unload my hair of bobby pins. Style was a moot point. Fine hair blows around anyway.
Fast Forward a Few Years
All my life I have been a faller, and it’s always been a joke in the family. Branches and rocks on the bike path caught in my inline skates causing me to fall on my face. fell in a parking lot three times, on a college campus in a puddle, going up stairs in high school, and those are just the memorable times when people saw, or might have seen me.
However, there were times in the last ten years it’s been funny because I wasn’t seriously hurt, but not a joke. I tripped on a landscape rock while running to take pictures of the night time Christmas Parade. An uneven sidewalk tripped me as I struggled with a purse in one hand and a glass of water in the other. I tripped on our own porch stair carrying an armful of something. Walking alone, texting I tripped on a rock and fell in the middle of a country road. I
Fortunately I always fall forward on my face, except when I’m sitting with my feet in the sink.
Tips to Avoid Falling at All Costs
Older people simply SHOULD NOT FALL. Since I have not fallen in a couple of years, I consider myself somewhat of an expert. LOL
Wear good shoes if you fall a lot. Avoid heels, straps, flip flops and anything with slippery soles. I wear a stability shoe which looks like a running shoe but keeps your foot more stable.
Don’t carry anything between your eyes and your feet. If you can’t see your feet, you could be in trouble.
Be mindful. I am learning what this means, and I haven’t always been mindful. My right foot doesn’t come up as far as I think it does. I know that now, so when I go up steps, I am mindful of what my right foot is doing.
Don’t walk and do other things at the same time – focus. If you are not going to practice mindfulness, then leave your phone in your pocket and camera behind. I’ve broken two cameras and one phone falling.
Use walking sticks (or a cane I dread the day) I don’t use either, but I am holding on to my husband more on trails if I feel nervous about stepping up or down on uneven or slippery slopes.
Do you have a moment in time where you wished you could disappear forever? I shared ONE of my many embarrassing moments. Now fair is fair. It’s your turn!
Two shoes, two different colors to an interview?
You fell off when you were standing on the table? (I did that, too in a school cafeteria after school.)
We have been talking about eating nutritious meals and exercising. The topic of this week’s Writer’s Quotes Wednesday challenge is balance. Balance has many meanings and is broad enough to give you a lot of ways to go with it.
It may simply be the challenge of staying upright while walking on a tightrope, paying your bills and coming out with money still in the account, eating from all the right food groups, or holding one or more babies on your hips without dropping them.
We just watched the movie “Adrift,” a true story in which a storm caused a sailboat to lose its balance. Children should have a well-balanced education which includes physical education, art, music, science, social studies, literature and time and ways for exploring their interests.
Artists balance colors to make a beautiful painting. Music lovers enjoy a balance of types of music. Readers read a balance of fiction and non-fiction.
Architects design buildings that will be balanced and create a sense of beauty and balance in the city. All of us balance the hours in our day.
These photos were all from a weekend trip I took to San Francisco with a good friend in May, 2013. We balanced work, family, and still managed to get a girls weekend out.
Where is balance leading you this week?
My Response to Quotes
“I have the feeling that in a balanced life one should die penniless. The trick is dismantling.”
My grandmother told me when she neared the end of her life that it was so hard to figure out how much money she might need to make it through life. She lived through the Great Depression and pinched pennies all her life. A few years before my grandparents retired they invested all their savings in Certificates of Deposits which earned two digit interest. It wasn’t a fortune, but she could have been very comfortable.
Yet when the car needed new tires to replace unsafe bald ones, she wouldn’t purchase them because she was afraid she might run out of money. I understand her fears but I am trying to be a little more balanced as I age and dismantle as I go.
Unlike Art, I don’t want to die penniless because I want to leave something to our son and other family members who might need it.
“The critical part of a balance in life is choosing priorities. If you are trying to balance a family and a career, the choices are complex because both are important.”
Graduation from high school marks the entrance into adulthood and a time for choices. For some it is time to start work in a family business or at a first job. For others a time to finish education, and for others time to start a family. Some people put off family to build a career, and others put off the career to raise a family. Others balance both successfully.
We all make choices each day to keep our lives balanced. We save money so we can retire, or we don’t and we work until we drop. Or we don’t work hard, don’t stress and when we get old we have start working with no skills or rely on others when emergencies arise. We stress about everything or we stress out others.
Some of us have our lives balanced enough we retire early so we can work or play at something we have always dreamed of doing if only we had the time. A few of us super balanced souls work because it is what we love to do. We are writers, race car drivers, photographers, artists, mechanics, bakers, realtors, teachers, fitness experts, nurses, consultants, clothes designers, own our own business, law, medical or dental practice. We balance and adjust our lives to fit the schedules we have etched out.
We upsize, downsize, and right-size our lives, our belongings, our homes, our social lives, our giving, even our community service so that our lives stay in balance.
How to Play #WQWWC
Have fun with this topic and some quotes and expound in words, pictures or both. Feel free to use the logo in your post, or as a widget in your sidebar.
Our bodies are our gardens, to which our wills are our gardeners.
Every morning for the past few years, I walked around my garden collecting the fresh fruits and vegetables, popping many into my mouth as I walked. Will power has never been my strong suit when it comes to food. My suggestion is that if will power is not your thing, grow a garden and get full on what grows in it. Chocolate cake doesn’t grow on trees.
Even in this high-tech age, the low-tech plant continues to be the key to nutrition and health.
I can go for low-tech plants, can you? Carol’s relatives introduced me to pavlova on my trip to Australia. Fruit never tasted so good!
Life expectancy would grow by leaps and bounds if green vegetables smelled as good as bacon.
I’ve shared this picture before because it is so green. It doesn’t smell a bit like bacon when it’s cooked. In fact my husband has been known to come in and say, “What’s that terrible smell? What are you cooking?” That’s not a great recommendation for eating well. Are there green vegetables that you love to smell when they cook?
Old people shouldn’t eat health foods. They need all the preservatives they can get.
We did not buy a single treat at this stop. That’s not saying we didn’t help ourselves elsewhere, but we practiced Shakespeare’s advice for the moment. Of course, we’re not old!
Diet + Exercise
Exercise is king. Nutrition is queen. Put them together and you’ve got a kingdom.
As a teen, LaLanne suffered from headaches and bulimia, and temporarily dropped out of high school at age 14. The following year, at age 15, he heard health food pioneer Paul Bragg give a talk on health and nutrition, focusing on the “evils of meat and sugar. Bragg’s message had a powerful influence on LaLanne, who then changed his life and started focusing on his diet and exercise.” Wikipedia
Grandma Golda, my mother’s mom, and I exercised in front of the television with Jack LaLanne. I’m glad nobody had a video camera on us. I was about five. Grandma was about 50 and neither of us could do the exercises.
Exercise is easy in the open air if you are having fun, learning something, or exploring new territory. We hiked miles or kilometers in the Bunya Mountains, and it was great fun and with good company and at a slow pace, not even a struggle. Walking doesn’t make you skinny, though. Jack L. is right, you have to eat right, drink moderately or not at all, and exercise.
My goal this month was to lose seven pounds. During the first few days, I put on two. I am back down to my original weight after fifteen days. I’m hoping that my goal of no sweets and 7,000 steps a day will take me closer to my goal.
This Australian “health food” was to die for! Pumpkins abound in Australian cuisine. I believed that Carol and her friends and family and I hiked enough miles over the Australian landscape for me to deserve this treat.
The second day of a diet is always easier than the first. By the second day you’re off it.
After finding this quote, I read an article about Jack Gleason’s like. Even though I grew up seeing him on television, I didn’t know much about him. He died when he was 71, just two years older than I am now. Perspective makes a huge difference. He was just old to me when he died. Now, not so much! No only was he overweight, but he drank huge amounts of whiskey.
Unlike Jack LaLanne, he was never the poster child for fitness and nutrition.
President Kennedy pushed exercise and fitness when I started high school, and it probably changed the lives of our generation. Even though I’m not in great shape, I’m 69 have survived cancer, and I still hike, bike, and workout in the gym irregularly. Sadly, I am the poster child for someone who loves to eat.
Jackie Gleason joked about diet and exercise and sadly, I do too even though I didn’t think he was funny. What wrong with that picture?
It is no joke. I am a little schizophrenic about diet and exercise. My mother was obese, and I never wanted to do that to my body. But I learned at her knee to eat sweets and and they still tempt me. She had heart issues and survived kidney cancer living to the age of 80.
My father was not overweight, but could and did eat a half pound of bacon a day and a cup of hot chocolate made with real cocoa and sugar every morning for most of his adult life. He boasted that he could eat a 12 oz. bag of Hershey’s Kisses at a sitting. He seldom exercised either, and he died of colon cancer at age 63.
What’s Your Story?
Please take a few minutes to visit one or two posts and get acquainted with the #WQWWC community.