Technical difficulties

Two things.
1. The DNS server we use has been broken into. *sigh*
2. My laptop had to be restored to factory settings, thanks to some malware.

So I’ll be a little spotty on posts, probably through this weekend. See you Monday (I hope)!

Antidepressant activities, and doing them anyway

Let me be the first to say that I won’t hit a bullseye with my goal for this month (walk five miles a day, five days a week). However, as I’ve mentioned before, imperfect is better than no progress at all. Walking is one of those antidepressant activities that I have no excuse for skipping. It’s free. It’s quick. It doesn’t require special equipment (dog is optional). The payoff is huge, too. I feel better. I smile more. I get more done. It makes me a better human being for the rest of the day. Seriously.

This month I have not always gotten myself out the door as planned, but this week I’ve found a pretty reliable way to manage it most of the time. On the really hard mornings, the mornings where I just want to crawl into a comforter and zone out for the day, I make a deal with myself. I don’t have to walk. I really don’t. BUT. I do have to put on my shoes and at least pick up Hank’s leash. That’s all.

The amount of canine jumping, grinning, and tapdancing that results from those two simple actions has worked 100% since I started making that little deal with myself. How can I disappoint my Hankenstein Monster? That joy! That exuberance! That FACE. I can’t be the person who breaks his heart, today. I just can’t.

After a walk, I’m always glad I did it. Today, while we were walking along the river, I saw an actual mink. It’s only the second time I’ve seen one since I moved to Boise 14 years ago. If I’d listened to the lies depression tells, I would have missed out on that experience. That’s the trick that’s working right now, anyway. Do you have mind tricks you play on yourself in order to get things done, or overcome a chronic health issue? I’d love to hear your ideas.

antidepressant activities

The big, beautiful sky that was above me, today.

April Walking Goal
Days walked: 11/30
Distance walked today: 5.94
Distance walked this month: 46.81 miles
Time walked today: 2.2 hours
Time walked this month: 17.9 hours

Imperfect is better than nothing

I haven’t hit my 5 mile goal on the last few walks, and I’m OK with that. I can do better next month. This month I pushed too hard and got a nasty sunburn. It took a few days to recover from heat exhaustion, and I had to stay out of the sun for a bit. I’m borrowing from The Nester’s philosophy and sticking with, “it doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.” I’ve seen so much more of the greenbelt than I have before, and I’ve seen several places that are deserted enough to feel like they’re a secret. Imperfectly meeting my goal sure beats just giving up because I can’t do it perfectly the first time.

I’m also adopting this philosophy: Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.

Besides, even not meeting my goal, I feel better physically, mentally, and emotionally. Three friends have told me how much happier I seem. As a bonus, Hankenstein Monster is getting plenty of exercise. A tired dog is a good dog. Even though he’s a 9# chihuahua/doxy/who-knows-what mix, he’s keeping up with me, and then some. Walking has done a world of good for both of us.

boise river greenbelt

April Walking Goal
Days walked: 9/30
Distance walked today: 3.02 miles
Distance walked this month: 36.69 miles
Time walked today: 1.25 hours
Time walked this month: 14.19 hours


Turns out my Teacup Bristlenose Chupacabra has a mild case of Gephyrophobia. He refuses to cross any footbridge we encounter, no matter how low or unthreatening it is. He has a lion’s heart about everything else, and I’m not willing to drag him across. So I carry him.

garden city greenbelt tunnel

garden city greenbelt

garden city greenbelt bridge

April Walking Goal
Days walked: 8/30
Distance walked today: 1.84 miles
Distance walked this month: 33.66 miles
Time walked today: 0.67 hours
Time walked this month: 12.94 hours

Learning to walk

I’m just a little over a week into this self-imposed challenge, and I’m starting to notice a few changes. For instance, I’m starting to walk with my head up more often. My shoulders are down and back more often, instead of up around my ears. They’re simple, small changes, but good ones. I hadn’t even realized I’d fallen into the habit of hunching up and walking like that.

Also, because I’m me, I looked up some Youtube videos done by physical therapists. I’m sore in weird ways. I have shin splints, for instance, when I should probably have sore thighs and calves, instead. Apparently, I’m walking wrong. How strange to be 38, and just learning to walk in the way that I’m built to walk. It’s a strange thought.

April Walking Goal
Days walked: 7/30
Distance walked today: 5.36 miles
Distance walked this month: 31.82 miles
Time walked today: 2.3 hours
Time walked this month: 12.27 hours

Tangerine tea review (25/100)

With this review, I’m a quarter of the way to my goal, which is appropriate, as we’re a bit over a quarter of the way through the year. :)

Tea from a friend always tastes better, doesn’t it? I received this tasty tea from my friend, Maria. She writes for My Life as a Puddle, as well as writing for several other online publications. I love her writing style, and if you get a chance, visit her site! It’s just as big a treat as the Tangerine green tea she sent me.

This tea brewed up with to a beautiful orange-gold liquor. It had a bright citrus scent (and I am a sucker for citrus anything). Fruit teas are one of my favorites, but green tea can be a hard sell. Many green teas I’ve tried have a weird sweetness to them. Not this one. It had a pleasant, delicate tangerine flavor. It even had a clean finish, which I haven’t found in many green teas, at least at this point in the great tea experiment.

tangerine green tea review

There’s a funny story behind this cup and saucer. I found the saucer in Moscow, in the 90s. I thought it was so pretty that I picked it up in spite of the fact that it didn’t have a cup to go with it. About 10 years later, one of my aunts in Boise inherited a tea set from her mother-in-law. She had a cup without a saucer. Imagine the strangeness of discovering I had a matching saucer for the cup. It’s a funny old life. I offered her the saucer to complete her set, but instead she gave me the cup.

I’m learning so much about teas, and my own tastes. A particularly useful part of this experience has been exchanging teas with different people. I’m trying all kinds of tea that I otherwise wouldn’t have tried. Getting out of my usual routine is so freeing. I’m also learning all kinds of tea terms. I’m by no means a tea snob, though. Pushing my comfort zone has been my intent, after all.

One of my goals for this year (and probably on into next year) is to try 100 different teas. Do you have a favorite tea you’d like to recommend? Would you like to swap teas? Drop me a line! I love snail mail, and I love sharing.

April Walking Goal
I got good and sunburned yesterday, so today’s walk was brief.
Distance walked today: 0.68 miles
Distance walked this month: 26.5 miles
Time walked today: 32 minutes
Time walked this month: 10 hours

Teeccino Vanilla Nut Review (tea 24/100)

24. Teeccino, “Vanilla Nut”
This is a teacup I’ve had since 1994. I bought it at a little junk shop in Cascade, Idaho. The colors are much more striking (and less ugly) in person. It also has sweet little feet.

I have to say, Teeccino Vanilla Nut is one of my absolute favorite teas. It’s marketed as “herbal coffee,” but really, isn’t herbal coffee just tea? Besides, it doesn’t taste at all like coffee. It tastes like a satisfyingly fullbodied tea. It’s rich, earthy, and nutty. The dates and figs give it a perfect, light sweetness.
teecino vanilla nut review

This is really, really good. Check out the ingredients, and try not to drool:
Roasted organic carob, organic barley, organic chicory, dates, almonds, organic dates, natural vanilla extract, natural nut flavor, figs.

This is going to be something I keep in stock. Also, I have 50 (fifty!!) teas in my stash from various pen pals that I need to review. That’s awesome!

If you’d like a second opinion on the Teeccino Vanilla Nut, May Achieve Clarity also posted about it.

One of my goals for this year (and probably on into next year) is to try 100 different teas. Do you have a favorite tea you’d like to recommend? Would you like to swap teas? Drop me a line! I love snail mail, and I love sharing.

April Walking Goal
Miles walked today: 5.12
Miles walked this month: 16.14
Time walked today: 2 hours
Total time: 5 hrs 39 min