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What Am I?

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You Are A: Lamb!

lambPeaceful and gentle, lambs have been used in religious imagery for millennia. Lambs are baby sheep, an animal tended by shephards since the dawn of history. As a lamb, you tend to stay together in a flock and graze on grassy land. Lambs don't mind being led and tend not to go off on their own.

You were almost a: Pony or a Duck
You are least like a: Turtle or a Bear CubWhat Cute Animal Are You?

17/80

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Well, today I went to the outlets and bought new pants and winter shoes. It took me forever it felt like, but now I have a new pair of dark jeans, green corduroys, and chocolate brown “khakis”. And brown slip-on shoes. Very nice. Because it has finally gotten cold(er) here, I had to stop wearing my capris–which left me with only two pair of pants, both of which are a tad bit too big. New pants are all a size smaller, which is nice.

I haven’t gotten to Ramsey since the beginning of the week. Arg. Plus, it’s Fall Break for the rest of the school, so the hours are probably off anyway. Oh well. I will try to get back in there sometime soon.

AND. The saddest news. My adventure shirt–the one I’m wearing in almost all of my pictures here–has a tiny hole in it. The kind things get when you wash them once a week, every week, for five or six years. I’m so sad, since this sends it definitely in the playclothes pile and I won’t really be able to wear it around respectably. Not that I probably shouldt have done this years ago–but I love that stupid shirt. I’m going to wear it to shreds eventually, but until then it can still go on adventures in the woods with me. Where no one cares if there are little holes in your clothes. (After saying all this, I’ll probaby wear it to school under my fuzzy pullover next week.)

15/80

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Well, N and I went to the Arch this evening and stood with about a hundred other people in the candlelight vigil in recognition of the 2000th American military death in Iraq. It was an interesting experience.

First of all, the lack of representation from students was startling to me. Most of the people were probably older than my parents–Vietnam-era people. Also, as far as I could see, a very white crowd. I think it’s a little sad that the group was not more diverse–but I don’t know whether the age or the race aspect bothers me more. Mostly the usual suspects were there–people from church, Common Ground, OPEN, the Quakers, N and I. (There’s some overlap in those categories, so the usual suspects really get to be the USUAL suspects. Athens isn’t really that big of a town.)

There was a police officer there to make sure we didn’t get in the street or block the entrance to the University. Very necessary, since we all know how rowdy Quakers can be. Anywho. People driving down Broad definitely took notice–probably 50%+ of the people in the cars were taking long looks as they drove by. People wandering around downtown watched us for a bit. Not much to watch really–a group of people holding candles, crosses, and signs in the early evening.

Someone in a truck played Toby Keith at us loudly. There was some kind of shouting as N and I left about how soldiers were heroes and we should kiss the speaker’s rear–what that really has to do with recognizing that 2000 of those heroes are dead and we think that should stop, I don’t know.

The organizers asked the group to hold the crosses they made representing members of the armed forces who have died in Iraq from Georgia. Until a week or so ago, these were displayed in front of the iron fence on the edge of campus–until it was decided that the area actually was UGA property and therefore the crosses violated the university’s neutrality policy (I think that was the argument). As of now, they don’t have a home. Each cross (there are 60 something of them I believe) has the name of the person, their hometown, age and the date of their death.

The cross I held represented Sgt. Ronnie L. Shelley (Army National Guard) of Valdosta, Georgia. He was 34 when he and three others died three months ago when an improvised explosive device detonated near his Hummvee while on patrol in Baghdad. He left behind a wife and three children in Valdosta.

2000

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Last fall Reed, N, and I went downtown and walked through the Eyes Wide Open exhibit when it was here in Athens. At the time, there were slightly more than a thousand pairs of boots–each representing a fallen soldier in this ill-fated and baseless war. Now there are twice as many.

I think the war in Iraq is wrong. It was based on lies. We shamefully sent our troops into harm’s way unprepared. We shamefully denigrated the human rights ideals of our nation and the world’s (not that we need a war to do this). We shamefully prostitute the ideas of justice, equality, the rule of law, and democracy to meet our own ends, until they become nothing more valuable than a propaganda poster on a political shill’s wall. We shamefully do not take responsibility for the war as everyday citizens. Shame on us.

Sigh.

The first thing I heard this morning when I woke up was that Rosa Parks had died. Last October, after visiting the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute I said

Despite the hero-making that appears to be common to the US and our sound-bite society, the reality seems to be that an enormous amount of ordinary people surrounded the extraordinary few, and that mass of people attempted, and in no small part succeeded, in conforming the world to their point of view. And if that is not an idea that gives people who hunger for change hope, I dona€?t know what will.

Is there hope? Only if the ordinary people who hunger for change act.

Tomorrow there will be vigils across the country recognizing that we have crossed the 2000 mark, 2000 too many. You can go HERE to find one near you.

13/80

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Well, it’s impossible. I tried to not use the computer today from home–thinking this would motivate me to go to the library or something and work without so many distractions. HA! I am just going to have to be more disciplined at home, since I need to be able to send emails (at least) from home and do research. It’s just not efficient to go back and forth from school too much during the day. But I will try to be good at home and not fritter away my time online when I should be working.

Yesterday, I made banana bread since we had two very ripe bananas and had all the ingredients available. Apparently our baking soda is dead/inactive because the loaf is only about an inch high! Heehee. It’s still edible, but it’s kind of like banana pound cake instead of bread. Yummy.

I also made myself go to Ramsey and run today, even though I totally didn’t want to. Bleck. But I did something new and terrifying! I ran on the treadmill–all of which are in the weight room, which is filled with odd contraptions and people who really look like they know what they’re doing. I hate the weight room, and the idea of trying to figure something out in a group of people. Anyway, I jogged for about 17 minutes and everything was fine. I definitely need to get a battery for my mp3 player though–it was SO boring. On the track I can at least watch people.

The weather is finally cold here. I’m going to have to wear socks and shoes–bye bye Chacos. I love this weather–it’s windy and cool and the sky is deep, dark blue. The leaves are starting to show their colors more and more each day. Woohoo!

New Blogs

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I’ve decided to add some new blogs I’ve discovered to my bloglist. Mostly nature-ish ones.

Bootstrap Analysis is by a field ecologist in the Midwest. Her (?) most recent entry is about the possible effects of Hurricane Wilma on the population/existence of the Cozumel Thrasher.

Dharma Bums is a blog shared by a husband and wife about their life and thoughts. Their most recent post is about their walk near the Port Townsend Shipyards–with pictures. They also have a picture of a critter’s bones in their recent posts.

รูเล็ตออนไลน์Frogs and Ravens is the blog of a self-described Jill-of-all-trades who can’t shut up. Her latest post is about her adventure one day during the last week–which sounds very much like a day I would have.

Rurality is about life in rural Alabama–with tons of lovely pictures. The most recent post is about black walnuts–which made me think about my parents’ black walnut tree and wonder if they had plenty of walnuts this year.

I hope you’ll drop by their sites and have a look around. Maybe by having these blogs nearby I will be inspired to get outside more. Ha.

9/80

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Yesterday I found my college roommate’s wedding website. It was adorable and told how she and her now-hubby met and got engaged and where the wedding would be. Oh so L. I’m so happy for her–belatedly, but still happy! It also semi-updated her best friends’ lives–they were her bridesmaids. That was nice, since at one point I lived with all of them.

It also made me a little sad, since all of them are out there in the “real”world chasing their dreams down and some days I feel stuck in place. I’m still in Athens, still in school, still not really sure what I want to do with this life that I’ve gotten myself into. Ack! So a little pity party for myself, but I did get some focus out of it.

I also realize that I miss her so much! She is a true adventure monkey, let me tell you–although our first couple of months together we hated each other and were a little rude and mean to the other. Then we got over it and had a spectacular year together!! I feel more google-stalking in my future–which is how I found her page in the first place.

Google-stalking is such a fun hobby. If I’ve ever met you, then I’ve probably run you through google a couple dozen times to root out what you’re doing now. Some people–they live such off-line lives!! My brother, for example. Not that I need to keep up with him on google, but still. Actually, I don’t think he even has a computer with internet access. If I didn’t have at-home internet access who knows what I would do–I know I tease 007 about her tv-watching, but really I spend probably equal amounts online reading people’s blogs, the news, discussion fora, occasionally researching for class and doing school work. That might be interesting to find out–I can always check my email at school and work from there. Hmm, maybe on Monday I’ll be offline at home for a week.

Also, yesterday I rode my bike around our neighborhood. It was just a little bit over a mile, and I didn’t even go down every road. I just want to get used to sitting on the bike again for any amount of time, so I was glad that I actually rode a little. My legs were so incredibly tired though! I didn’t go running yesterday afternoon, so they could rest. I also ate too many sweets, but since we’re pretty much out of them now I won’t have a problem with that anymore (haha). My sweet tooth is my only snag when it comes to food–everything else generally balances out. I’m really glad that I started using fitday, since seeing how the calories fall makes me realize how unhealthy some choices are. Then I learn!!

Ok, enough of my rambling. I hope everyone has a good day.

7/80

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I’ve been so busy this week with no signs of letting up, which is why I haven’t been around. On Sunday, 007 and I went to the Georgia Apple Festival and got to see all sorts of crafts and fair food. I had a fried apple pie for lunch, which was delish but I think eating so much sugar at a time gave me a headache! That’s the consequence, I guess but I can live with it! Warm apple pie is worth it.

A few high calorie days recently. I think today is probably at least 2200–without coke! I had a candy bar and cheese crackers for a snack today since I worked this afternoon and “had” to eat out of the vending machine. Now I know to bring a snack for Thursday. We had Chinese food for dinner, which upped the calories some more. I’ve also been snacking too much since I’ve been stressed out. I will try to slow that down some, and make sure I bring an apple and some other healthy food to snack on when I’m on campus all day long.

In better news, I went to Ramsey yesterday and “rode” the bike for 45 minutes. It was on a different kind of bike, and the hills weren’t as difficult. I think I will try to get the other bike from now on, but I think it was ok–I felt like I needed to rest a little after Saturday. Today, after lunch I went to the intermural fields and the Oconee Forest Park on east campus and walked for about 40 minutes. It was nice to be in the woods on such a beautiful day. Finally, the weather has cooled off enough to wear sleeves in the morning!! Woohoo! I think fall is my favorite time of year.

Mia tagged me, and I looked up the 5th line in my 23rd post and it is [cue fanfare]:

Is it a flashback from a proto-primate ancestor that remains embedded in my human brain?

Haha. Chatter about my professor’s tie on Nov. 30, 2004. Why is it that whenever I look back at things I’ve written things like “proto-primate ancestor” always appear–in jokes, no less! Luckily, I amuse myself (at least) to no end. I’m just going to tag Reed with this–I don’t think cj has 23 posts? If you do, you should do this too!

Also, today at lunch I forgot to bring a cup from home so I had to buy a drink. The library snack shop had some Fruit20, and I thought that since I liked Prope! so much I would try this too. Big Mistake. F20 is a zero cal drink, which means it has artificial sweetner. BLECK. What was so weird is that I could only taste the aftertaste every second sip. I think Prope! only had 15 calories per 12 oz–which really isn’t that much at all, and is sweetened with sucrose. F20 is sweetened with sucralose (a non-nutritive sweetener<–said the package). Disgusting. Now I know.

Goals.

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I was trying to make a list of 100 things that I want to be able to do in my life, based on some comment I read somewhere–and I’m stuck now on #39. Surely there are more than 39 things I want to do in life–I may have to go back and be more specific. I don’t know. Anyway, while I was thinking about what I could possibly add to this list, I remembered that I should have a list of things I wanted to do from when I was younger in a book somewhere. I found the book easily (surprise) and took out the list. I’m not sure when I wrote these things down–my handwriting is atrocious and one thing on the list makes me think I’m in sixth grade–but overall, I’m probably a little bit older than that. So, anywhere between sixth grade and mid-high school. What I think is funny is that the list is SO me. Some of those things have already shown up on my new list–which also surprised me.

Here’s my list–

* go whale watching [also made new list]

* go to the North Pole [that’s where we saw Santa this summer! ;)]

* learn to ride a unicycle

* be in a play [assuming a “real” play, not a school play]

* have a store in Warm Springs [Ga]

* work as a park ranger

* visit Hershey, PA [haha!]

* learn to ride a horse [this is the one that trips me up–I took riding lessons in 6th grade, and rode horses in middle school, so I don’t really know why I would still be wanting to learn this if I were older]

* work in an animal shelter

* refinish some furniture [but what 6th grader wants to do this?]

* remodel a house

* have a library in [a] house

* have a cabin in the Yukon/Alaska

* be able to read original Bible

* have a rose garden

* go to Kenya

* learn Russian [I sort of did this one.]

* bike across America

* camp out for a week

* go sailing in the Carribean

* take a painting class

* tour Europe

* learn how to make coffee-cake

* join a Garden Club

* have afternoon tea

* read the classics

* sew my own clothes

* visit Jerusalem

* visit [the] Basques [I’m not really sure what this one’s about.]

* go scuba diving

* be a peacemaker in trouble spots [!!]

* learn to weave [also made new list]

* have photjournalist credits

* live in Spain and France

* have box seats at a Braves game [this also makes the list feel middle school to me]

* help someone learn to read

* volunteer at a school

* volunteer for Red Cross

This list is so odd. The incongruity between “peacemaker in trouble spots” and “make coffee-cake” are especially amusing–as well as the appearance of Basques. What was that about? Reed thinks it’s funny that nothing about boys appears on this list when I’m 12-15ish?, but nothing about family or work appears on my new list either, so apparently I don’t concern myself with everyday, normal life things that I expect will just occur–these things are extra. Not surprising. I would say that I was probably 14 when I wrote this, except for the horse thing. Maybe I wanted to ride better? I was not the most confident rider, so maybe that explains it.

4/80--The Scarecrow 5k

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Today was my first 5k–well, the first one where I actually ran any. I’ve been in a few 5k’s before, but only walked and didn’t even care about my time. I asked my cousin, R, earlier this summer if she wanted to run one with me–so we’ve been planning this for a while. She came into town last night for the race this morning, and it was nice to see her and catch up with her news a bit. Also, she brought pictures of her cute boyfriend–I haven’t met him yet, so it was nice to have a picture to go with a name.

We got up early this morning and moseyed down the road to Watkinsville, the next town over. They are having their fall festival today and the race is part of that. We made it to the church and picked up our numbers and stretched a bit. There weren’t hordes of people there, but I’d say a bit more than 50–not bad for a small town race I don’t think. At a little after 8, we were off!

The run started at the 1st UMC and traveled through a very pretty newer subdivision and back–it wasn’t brand new, but they were still building a few new houses here and there. Once their trees grow a little, it will be more than pretty. I ran/jogged to the first mile marker without too much problem, and then decided to walk a little. I ran/walked the rest of the way–I think I probably did about two miles or a little more running. We got to run by a pretty little lake in the back of the neighborhood, which will be gorgeous in a couple more weeks when the leaves start turning. The weather was beautiful. Not a cloud in the sky after the sun came up, and it started out a bit chilly, but I took my long sleeved tshirt off during the third mile. The sunbeams filtering through the clouds were lovely.

R said at the beginning that she could probably only run one mile of it, which didn’t bother me a bit, since I probably couldn’t run much more than that at a time! In fact, R ran the entire route–which I think she said is the farthest she’s ever run before. I think she took a couple of walking steps as she went through the water stop. The route was pretty hilly after the first mile–there were a couple of real leg-burners, and some nice inclines–but nothing too excessive!

Last week, when I thought about what my possible time would be and how this would be sort of a base line for improvement–I thought, well, if I walked it at a good pace I would probably be able to make it around 45 minutes, so that will be what I’m trying to hit. Then, I thought–oh, no–what if I don’t even make 45 minutes!! That would be so disappointing to run part of it and not even make 45 minutes! So, I revised my mental time to be ok with anything under 50 minutes. Heehee. When I crossed the road to the finish line back in the church parking lot, the clock said 38:xx!! I could hardly believe it–not that this is the fastest time ever, but it was not close to 45, much less 50!! Whee! I think the time that I crossed at was 38:41 or something like that, but the official results will be up later tonight. R was probably over a minute ahead of me, and she would have been even faster except she waited for me a bit at a couple of intersections. I’m so proud of us–and especially R since she did fantastic! “I can only run a mile”, my foot! haha.

We hung out and talked afterwards, waiting for the fun run to be over and the awards to be announced. The prizes were pieces of pottery from a local artist. Neither of us placed in the top three for our age group–I think I might have been last or second to last in that category! I think R was 5th. Next time, I said we should sign up in the 15-19 category–they didn’t have any entries so we would have been 1st and 2nd! Heehee. It was really neat to see the 10 and under category get their prizes–how fantastic would it be to win a running prize when you’re little? I think it would have been wonderful. Of course, the 2nd place girl in the 10 and under beat both of us, I believe. She and her dad (I’m assuming) were run/walking, and they kept passing us at the beginning. We also discovered yummy Prope! water, which is actually delicious.

Overall, it was so much fun and I’m glad that R and I did this. It was a beautiful day, and we were done with everything by 9:30ish. The whole day stretches out ahead of us! Which is great, because I have a lot of work to do!

But. Next time, I want a cool prize!! Haha. I’d settle for my running partner winning a cool prize, though. That would be kind of neat, too.

P.S.–Yesterday, being nearly out of clean clothes I thought–hmm, why not try on the original adventure pants? Well, I did and they fit! Woohoo.

3/80

No exercise today except for light housework. Also, I ate over 2400 calories today!! Ack! Most of that is actually Coke–like 700 calories of it, because I had it with lunch and dinner. That’s an estimate because I don’t really know how big the servings were, and I got a refill both times but didn’t drink all of it. Good grief. That is just beyond ridiculous. It was a big shock to see that add up, and is certainly something I will think about in the future. What an enormous amount of pure junk food.

We had Chik-fil-@ for dinner tonight because we wanted something quick and also had to go to the grocery store so it was one-stop shopping. I had part of a chargrilled chicken sandwich, which was a great decision–but I should have chosen the fruit instead of the fries. And water. Those would have been excellent choices. Live and learn. I also had ice cream tonight when R got here, which I’m not listing as a bad decision. Having a little ice cream here and there is fine–it’s the ice cream on a day with cokes, cheese dip, and french fries that catches up with you! Cheese dip is never a bad choice, though. Haha.

So, next time I will make better fast food choices and I will make myself eat baby carrots instead of fun size Twix. Woohoo! I have an adventure tomorrow! And the next day! Fat 28%, satfat 10%. All those calories but very little actual nutrition. Tsk, tsk.

3/80

Yesterday, I was distracted by the tempest in a teacup that my entry and comments became and didn’t update to say that I went to Ramsey after work and rode a “bike” for 24 minutes–good grief! Because I must obey rules, I obeyed the flashy little light that told me to pedal faster up the stupid hills in the program. I don’t think I’ve ever ridden my real bike up a hill at the same rate! hah! But it was a good workout, and I walked about 3 laps as well. Calories were about 1900, 31%, 6%. Not too bad considering I had french fries for lunch–so tasty!

2/80

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ARG! I just spent one of the most frustrating classtimes ever in Education Law. Today, our topic was evolution/creation and prayer in schools. Epperson, Edwards v. Aguillard, disclaimer cases, ID, the whole nine yards–or as much of it as you can get in half a class period. There was nothing really wrong with the class, it’s just that the subject matter is so incredibly frustrating.

What do you want to do when you have a school district who has a disclaimer that reads in part, “the lesson to be presented regarding the origin of life and matter, is known as the Scientific Theory of Evolution”? Repeat after me. The theory of evolution explains the mechanisms by which biodiversity occurs. It does not have one single letter about the origin of life, much less matter.

I did say as much when answering the question of whether belief in a deity and evolution “as the theory explaining the origin of life” are in conflict. (Although I was doing it while trembling–good grief, I hate that I can’t control nerves sometimes, but I just ignored it.) Of course, I said that accepting evolution does not negate the belief in a Creator–well, I said something like that. Then people went around the class talking about a day not being a literal 24 hour day, etc.–which is not really the point, in my opinion. Evolution does negate some beliefs about God (traditional Protestant God is all I’m talking about here)–special creation, dead-literal Genesis, probably a few others but those are the big two. I have to say, though, God creating each and every original okapi 6,000 years ago is totally not the sole or main point of my belief in Christianity. Argue about how many okapi Eve could brush in a day in the Garden all you want, but if you keep going down that road you spend an awful lot of time just making stuff up to fit what we learn from science (I’m looking at those people who posit an Ice Age after the Flood, and herbivorous T-rexes).

Anyway, the point that seemed to be made was that Intelligent Design (creationism’s alter ego) was what many/most people sort of believe, and that there are scientists who think it has valid criticisms–which sort of leads to the conclusion that ID has a place in the classroom. I’m not sure this is where our teacher was going with this, but it’s a bit how class ended up. Of course, if the hot new thing were believing mutation pixies were the supernatural driving force behind new mutations I don’t think that means we should teach that in science class. Science should be taught in science class–and there’s more than enough to keep people occupied for years on end there.

Personally, I believe that God is the Creator and may guide our ongoing evolution. I have absolutely not a smithereen of objective empirical or deductive proof of that–it is in the same category as mutation pixies when it comes to relevance to science classes. However, it’s how I view the world, with faith that this is so–a theological gloss over a scientific factual basis. I agree that science seems to have done a very good job of observing, explaining, and extrapolating from the natural world around us to an accurate degree that is constantly self-correcting–all without a gap requiring God’s obvious input along the way. (I’m aware that a theological gloss isn’t the most parsimonious explanation of events–but I don’t see why I should care.)

Anyway, back to ID. First, the discussion of ID would have any proponent of this campaign interrupting at every other word. It was identified much too strongly with a deity–in ID, the designer is some amorphous something or other, but definitely NOT God. Plus, in class, ID and theistic evolution had too much overlap. ID has certain criticisms of evolution–complaints about so-called irreducible complexity and information something or other–neither of which were touched on at all. Not that it is that big of a deal, but if people blindly think ID is theistic evolution–well, they’ll be surprised when they wake up one day and full-blown 6 day Genesis creation is taught as absolute fact in high school biology. ID is a front for people who want Genesis creation and only Genesis creation taught in schools, but they’ve learned not to be quite so vocal.

Secondly, two scientists were cited as giving support for ID and other criticisms of evolution. One was a physicist and another was a chemist. I’m sure that they are excellent at what they do. Neither of them are biologists, though, much less evolutionary biologists–so I’m not sure why they have any credibility or business speaking as authorities on this issue. (Just like me, they have every right to blather on about things in general.) Think about it–if you’re going in for colon cancer surgery–would you want an opthamologist as your surgeon? Me–not so much. So why should we grant non-biologists any purchase when they talk about evolution? Just because they’re scientists doesn’t mean they know everything. Just because they are very, very smart people doesn’t mean they know everything.

Oh well. I wish people were more educated. I’m not even well-educated on this subject, but I know that a lot of what is spouted off out there is nonsense. (My definition of well-educated for laypersons is whether you can explain a frequency-dependent selection model, a phylogenetic tree, and why humans are taxonomically classified as an ape. If you can’t do those things, what makes you think you know enough? I am arbitrary and I love it.) I wish people didn’t feel they had to cram their religious beliefs into a stunted mold and become blind to the utterly awe-inspiring natural mechanisms of our world. Let God out of the box.

Anywho, if you read the NY Times today, you will see an article about how the US is falling behind in science and engineering fields. No joke.

In completely unrelated news, 15 minutes of beginner Pilates this morning!

Run/Walk 2 of October!

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1/16

Well, today I moved on to W5D2. Same amount of running, but more all together. I have to say that it was actually easier to run when the distance is all together than otherwise. 6 laps r, 4 w, 6 r. Plus I walked 2 laps before I started and 2 laps at the end. Overall, 2.5 miles. The last six laps were easier I think than the first because I felt really warmed up and I got into a good rhythm. One of the other girls running finished up her last lap by upping the speed for the very last part–so I copied her on my last lap, and it felt great! Woohoo!

I hope I am finished eating today, so I will say that my calories are under 1700 with 33% fat, 11% satfat. Now that I looked something up about nutrition, I think I will try to keep the percentage at 30% and saturated fat at 10%.

Things I learned today: running is fun! Haha. Also, even one cookie isn’t worth it most of the time. If you’re going to have a coke, don’t get it from a can. Baby carrots aren’t as bad as you pretend they are.

Goals Check-in! 1/80

Well, it’s been about four weeks since I decided to focus on exercise. I’m doing well–I’ve lost four pounds–although 3 of them are a result of the 3Day (heh, just think that’s with four days of non-stop eating). I exercised on ten days in the past four weeks, which is ok. I’m only on week 5 of the C25K plan, but that’s fine with me.

As of today, I’m going to start an 80 day countdown to the end of the year. Here are my goals for the next 80 days: lose 5 lbs, running 3 miles without stopping, get back on track with fruit. Very do-able. I would like to have 16 days of exercise by the end of the next four weeks on day 28. This challenge thing is much easier when someone else sets the goals, though–I’m so much more motivated then.

You didn’t think I’d leave you with just the chicken charnel bowl, did you?

Little Chicken Charnel House

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Well, actually it’s a charnel bowl. Anywho, these are most of the chicken bones from our chicken curry leftovers–the meat was falling off the bone so I just fished all the bones out before putting it away. They’re glistening because I rinsed them off for their big debut.

Bones are interesting things, aren’t they? I love looking at them. From these bones, I know that the chickens we ate were not adults–the epiphyses were not fully attached. Long bones like femurs and tibia don’t fuse to their epiphyses until we are nearly adults–same for other animals–because the ends of the long bones (under the epiphyses) are where growth occurs, and when we reach our final height our epiphyses fuse to the long part of the bone and growth ends. This occurs in general around a certain age–which is one way forensic anthropologists can tell a skeleton’s age range. For example, human femurs fuse from 18-20 years old–so if you find a human skeleton without fully fused femural epiphyses, then you are very likely to have a juvenile. I’m almost 26, and most likely all of my bones are finished fusing.

If you click HERE you can go to a medical imaging site where you can see the epiphysis of a finger bone in different stages of fusion–from infant to adult. Apparently, there is an atlas of bone growth–how awesome!

From the chicken charnel bowl, I would know that our dinner required the minimum of three chickens to make, even though there were 5 legs and 4 thighs. While all of these bones could come from 9 chickens, there are three tibia from one side of the chicken and 2 from another. Isn’t it interesting to think that birds have tibia too?

One last random thought–isn’t it odd to think about wild chickens? Jungle fowl, domesticated chicken’s ancestor, is disturbing to me. Not that there aren’t wild turkeys here–but it is still an odd thought to me. HERE is a link to a picture of a Red Junglefowl. This is a wild birdie over in Southeast Asia–not feral, wild. HERE is a link to the Genome Sequencing Center’s analysis of red jungle fowl.

Yesterday ended up being about 1800 calories because I ate another bowl of cereal after I came home from work. Today I’m at about 1700, with 32% fat. I am glad to report that I did not drink a coke at the reception this afternoon, even though I wanted to! Instead, I had water–aren’t I a good girl? Of course, now I have a headache that is probably related.

I am going to try to do 30 minutes of Pilates before bed, but I may not make it. I stacked chairs after the reception, and that counts as exercise because I’m usually sore afterwards. My legs have been sore today from running yesterday, but not that bad.

Things I learned today: I can resist the red can of wonderfulness. Two cookies are more than enough–see brownies lesson. I should wear hose with my shoes. Less water in the crockpot.

I made chicken curry in the slow cooker today and it turned out pretty well! Chicken legs and thighs were on sale this week, so I bought a pack of each. Last time I fried chicken legs it took two eons, so I have decided that fried chicken is the domain of grandmothers and restaurants–this time it was going in the slow cooker no matter what. I also happened to buy all the makings for chicken curry without really thinking about it, so today after class I browned up the chicken (also taking an eon) threw it in the crockpot with some onion, two cans of tomatoes with “zesty” chiles, red potatoes and some curry powder–and a little bit of water. I am terrified of the slow cooker not having enough moisture to cook–I’m not sure what I think would happen, but I really don’t want to find out. Usually, we make this on the stove, but I figured it couldn’t be that hard to make in the slow cooker thingy. We came home to delicious smells and a yummy dinner. I’m glad that it turned out well, since we certainly have plenty of it. Now we have dinner tomorrow (and maybe even Friday) too! I shouldn’t have added any water–and it needed some more salt and curry powder, but none of those are horrible defects.

Run/Walk 1 of Oct!

Well, I ignored my lesson from yesterday (exercise early) because I was having a bad day. It’s ended up fine, but I’ve been feeling behind in everything recently–so this afternoon I stuck to my little plan and actually got a lot done. I feel much better.

Today was W5D1 again, since I decided to start over with that week after the 3Day. It really wasn’t bad at all–the last 4 laps/.5 mile my legs were so very heavy, but I did it! Also my upper abs were so tight the whole time–I’m not sure what’s going on there but whatever.

I should be done eating for the day, and I’ve ended up about 1600. Lessons from today–is Coke really worth it? Just stop drinking it! Very close to my fat goal today–I’m trying to get my daily percentage to 25% (does that sound good or bad?) and today I’m at 28%.

Now I’m off to work.

Church Dinner

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Tonight there was an “extended family” dinner for long time visitors and other visitors of our church in some members’ home–potluck dinner. It was nice to talk to people, although I was all nerves about going. Not too bad–I mean I’ve been going there for about a year, it’s not like I don’t know anyone at all. It was very nice–I met some people who know other law students and saw plenty of adorable babies. The pastor talked about what it means to be a member of a church as opposed to just visiting–but only for a short bit.

Anyway, I forgot that I was planning on going to Ramsey afterwards and stayed later than I thought. So no exercise today, even though I actually did go to Ramsey to meet with my group for nonprofit tax/regulation. I also ate a lot of things that I can’t put into fitday from the potluck, so I’m going to guess about 2100 calories today. A little higher than most days because a lot of the dishes had cheese–yummy! And I ate two brownies. heehee.

Things I learned today: don’t put off exercising since it’s less likely you’ll do it, one brownie is plenty, pork sausages have a lot of fat (isn’t this obvious, but it’s easier not to think about it when you don’t see a graph of your diet having 50+% fat due mostly to dratted delicious sausage)–so I think I’ll try veggie sausages from now on. I like veggie sausages just as much. I used to call link breakfast sausages Granddaddy sausages because that’s what Granddaddy had for breakfast almost everyday (they were not real pork sausages either because of his heart) along with [Enable javascript to see this email address.], grits, toast, etc. Which, of course, meant that I had them for breakfast almost everyday back before I went to school and my grandparents watched me during the day. I also drank coffee then, but only a sip because it would stunt your growth. My granddaddy’s coffee mug had a portrait of their Angus bull on it. He also washed his arms and hands before eating. And said “howdy!”.

Sometimes I wonder if I remember things correctly or if I’ve just decided that was the way it was. All of those last few sentences are things that I think I remember about my Granddaddy–but really I’m not 100% certain. Pretty certain, but not 100%. That makes me sad. Something that doesn’t make me sad is remembering how (probably the day) after I learned what a pickpocket was, I followed him around trying to pick his wallet out of his back pocket. All. Day. Long. Surprisingly, three/four year old novice pickpockets aren’t very good at their job–and I know I drove him crazy because I can remember him telling me that it was impossible for him not to feel me trying to pick his pocket and to stop it–for the millionth time. I think I got sent back inside soon afterwards.

Hmm. I rambled on to a completely different topic, didn’t I.

Amateur Unicorn Hunters

I can’t remember where I read this, but I think it was in an article about people looking for mysterious animals like the okapi (one of my favorites).

I went to Ramsey this morning, which was wonderful! Hardly anyone was there, so I felt like I could try everything out without people thinking I was an idiot. Not that I did, but I could have!! I think that on the Saturdays it is open I will try a new something each time. Today, I did the stationery bike for a little over 40 minutes on a cardio program so I had to keep my heart rate up. I didn’t get bored even without something to read, because I was busy trying to keep my rpms level and my heart rate above 156. Whee! Then I tried the [Enable javascript to see this email address.] for five minutes, which was ok. I couldn’t tell if I was doing it right since I’d never used that machine before, and I was really slow. Whatever–I’ll watch someone next time I’m on the track and see what they look like. I also walked a couple of laps.

Tomorrow I might go back and do my first run/walk after the 3Day! I feel so motivated now that I’ve exercised once. Also, I came home and entered my activities and food into fitday.com–and that is motivating as well. I will try to keep that up, because it makes me feel like I am making progress–and I eat better if I know I’m going to have to write it down. Fun, fun, fun.

PS–at the end of the day, ~1800 cal. Almost 3 servings of veggies and 1 of fruit. Things I would do differently–not drink the coke, and eat less bread.

the taxpayer's church was his alter ego

I’m back to titles that amuse me. This one was discovered as part of my reading for my Regulation of Non-profits class–someone who had the brilliant idea of forming his own church, giving it all his money, and then letting it pay his bills, all without paying any taxes. Not that he’s alone in doing this, because it seems to be fairly common. The IRS didn’t fall for his trick and said that the church lost its tax-exempt status due to private inurement–or private benefit, which is a big no-no. This is a handy way for the Service to take care of these problems without having to delve into the snakepit of defining whether it really was a church or “Pay My Bills Taxfree” is an actual religion. There are many interesting church cases in my nonprofit reading. People think they’re so clever.

Well, apparently I have finally eaten enough because today I really wasn’t hungry at all. I didn’t even eat my sandwich at lunch. Just a banana and some sunch!ps. Tonight we had breakfast for dinner–hashbrowns, sausage, eggs, and toast! Yummy. I didn’t go to Ramsey because I slept all afternoon, so I guess I will go tomorrow morning. That’s actually kind of exciting, because I will have a whole Saturday to do whatever I want–the whole day is free! I’m going to Ramsey, cleaning the house, and catching up in my classes. Woohoo!

I also have to thank my final 3Day sponsors–W, 007(again!), and maddog. Thank you so much for being a part of that wonderful adventure!

One last note–please, someone tell Cindy Sheehan to stop writing (and possibly speaking, from what I’ve read). She’s a much more powerful symbol when she is simply acting. Not that I’m a Pulitzer prize winner–far from it–but I really feel as if she needs a strong editor or something. Maybe a pr person. Eh.

Off the wagon!

Well, the 3Day has been my excuse for not drinking enough water, exercising, and eating like a hungry, yet adorable, pig. Well, that and that I didn’t have any clean clothes or good food in the house.

So, I’m going to have to climb back onto the wagon and start drinking more water, exercising when I can, and buying some fruit at the grocery store tonight. Then I’ll have something besides cereal to wolf down–ever since I got home I have been starving and eating cereal like a crazed beastie. I woke up at 5am the other day and had to eat something before I could go back to sleep. Reed has some intelligent-sounding reason about glycogen stores and replenishing that while healing my sunburn that sounds so much nicer than me just being a cute little piggie. So far, only two bowls of cereal today! Woohoo!

I’m on my third glass of water today, which means two/three more and I’ll be good for the day! Tomorrow I’m going to go to Ramsey and either run/walk (starting over with week 5) or ride the stationery bike. You see, I’ve said that I’d run two 5ks and ride a century all before December. Not that I can actually run that distance yet or have ridden a bike more than 3 miles in months–but, you know, I love challenges. That, or I have some severe delusions about my physical abilities.

SO. On with the madness–which means that life is normal here.

In other news, The Panda’s Thumb, that Reed helps manage has won an award! Scientific American named it one of the top 25 science/tech sites of the year. Woohoo! If it’s in the news and about evolution, you can find a discussion of it there–as well as follow the adventures of Prof. Steve Steve, their panda commentator. He’s currently attending the Dover trial in Pennsylvania, and he went to Alaska with us to the Evolution conference.

THE 3Day Post!

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Well, 007 and I did live to tell the tale! What an adventure–WHAT an adventure! In fact, I am totally adventured out at the moment and probably will be for a month or two at the least.

This was the hardest thing I have ever done. I’ll start from the beginning.

On Thursday, we packed our bags and headed to Atlanta so we wouldn’t have to deal with early morning traffic on Friday. We checked in to our lovely hotel, went to R3I for me to buy socks and ate dinner at the Lenox mall so we wouldn’t have to think too much about that. Hung out in our room and went to bed a little early because we had to get up at 4:30 or some such ridiculous time.

Friday, after getting up at the ridiculous time, we had breakfast and hopped on the shuttle to the opening ceremonies. I had to pick up my badge and turn in some donations, and we loaded our things up on the trucks and headed over to the stage to meet our team! When we got there, one of our teammates told me I had reached my fundraising goal!! I left home knowing I had over $1900 because of my wonderful sponsors, E and Prof. P. My mother in law, M, topped me off! Thank you so much!

I introduced 007 to the team members I had met on the Hike Inn trip and we met a few others as well. Opening ceremonies were fabulous–inspirational and symbolic and they sent us on our way in good spirits. Our first day was set to be 22.7 miles. The pit stops and grab & gos were about three miles apart and we made it to lunch (11 miles) with no real problems that I recall. We were in at least the first half of the group at this point. When we left lunch, there were still a few hundred people in line for food. The high was 82 F on Friday. We saw Stone Mountain several times along the way, increasingly closer and closer.

After lunch, we did ok. We made it to all the rest areas before they closed. At pit stop 5 (19.5), I was tired. I laid down on the warm asphalt and could have fallen asleep easily. We were tired. Our feet hurt. But, we could make it to the end, right? Right? So, off we went. This last leg was through a neighborhood for the most part–a very hilly neighborhood. A neighborhood of rolling hils. Once we finished the rolling hills, there was no sidewalk. We walked. We were at the end of our rope. We hated to give in. But, once we both were turning around to see if every single car that passed was a sweep van, we knew we were through. Finally, we saw one that we could stop–and we did! So, we climbed in and rode to camp–it was probably two more miles away. A couple of other women hopped the van too. I think we were all disappointed that we couldn’t make the distance–but I know that for us it was a very smart decision.

We made it to camp and found our tent (wonderously all set up) and our gear. We unpacked our sleeping mats to let them inflate and then walked to dinner. Spaghetti and green beans and garlic bread. I ate maybe ten bites. Really, I have never been so exhausted. It was all I could do not to fall asleep in my plate. In fact, I laid my head down on the table twice. Then it was shower time! They tell you not to go straight to the showers or you might pass out and then they’d have to drag you out naked–it’s better to eat and drink first. It was all I could do to stay awake standing in line for the shower. It was neat because it was a shower truck, so the trailer part of the tractor-trailer has two shower rooms and water heaters and everything. Pretty neat.

After that, I stumbled back to our tent–we were camping at a neighborhood/regional park, and we were on the soccer field. It was a cool night–made cooler by the fact that I was having chills! Woohoo, right. I drank about a liter of water before I went to sleep because I realized that I was a little dehydrated. Then I slept like the dead–well, if the dead has to get up to tinkle four times a night, anyway.

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