Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Friday, April 23, 2010

here we go again

After a short run this morning, I decided that I do need to go back to the physiotherapist, but I really don't want to. Not only am I having problems with the knot again in my right calf, but I am also worried about a tender Achilles tendon on my left heel. Needless to say but I'll say it anyway, this is very frustrating.

I've been pacing myself quite slowly to build up to a training program that starts in May (just around the corner) with hopes of running a marathon in the fall, but even "the best laid plans of mice and men..." or however that goes. The point is my season has barely started and I'm already faltering.

The calf has been getting worse. Last week I ran 45 minutes before it started to ache; today, it was 15 minutes when the ache set in. My Achilles only seems to be bothered when I run uphill. Ha! Okay, so I can stop running up hills. Haha! There's no such thing as flat terrain around here. 

I'm not so eager to go see my physiotherapist who will quickly realize that I have done little to improve the strength in my calves. Lesson learned? Not really. However, after my morning run, I did do some strengthening exercises and my static stretches. I also rolled a tennis ball under my calf hitting that knot to try and work it out a little. Am I grasping at straws?

Sunday is the long run day. Let's see how it goes. I was hoping to bump up the distance, but that may not be possible.

craigslist posting

I found this ad on craigslist today, and not only did I like the pictures, but I really liked the info about the free items. 

Just left out around the back of ****St.

PLEASE DO NOT KNOCK ON DOORS!!!!! Residents do not know anything about it. If it's not there, then you are too late!!!

Everything is in good condition. Double mattress/boxspring, Sony 27" TV with remote, small loveseat/2 seater couch. Please do not rumage through anything by the house, they belong to the residents living there.

Pictures are kind of reddish. Just imagine everything to be a bit brighter. Come get it before the rain gets it!!!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

first hike of the season

On the weekend we took our first hike of the season. It was a warm-up short hike around Buntzen Lake. We had invited red jane out for dinner since she's moving east at the end of the month, and I suggested she arrive a little earlier so we could go for a hike close by.

I thought it would be a bit cooler and muckier at Buntzen Lake, but it was fairly warm and quite dry.  The dry winter really made a difference. There was a little snow to be seen up on these peaks, but not much. It was also quite a bit busier in the park that I expected. It's a popular spot in the summer for BBQs and swimming, but I didn't think people would bother much with the lake in the spring.

I'm not sure what wildflower this is. If you know, let me know. The flowers remind me of a primrose, but I really have no idea what it could be.

 There's a suspension bridge at the lake's north end, just over an hour from the lake's south end where we started. The water was beautifully still.

 I took the photo from the suspension bridge.

View from the north beach.

 Back at the start, we crossed another little bridge over this very dry creek. It will be interested to see what other trails are like as we continue our hiking season.

It was great to be on a well maintained trail with lots of ups and downs, but nothing too steep to climb. I think this was an excellent warm-up for our future hikes. Perhaps we should make it our annual warm-up trail.  My legs were a little tired because I had also run 12 k that morning, so any more of an intense hike and someone would have had to carry me.

The next hike will be Diez Vista?

Monday, April 19, 2010

Happy Anniversary.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Okay so I need to work on my decorating skills. In other words, I need to invest in some sort of decorating tools to apply icings and glazes. These were really yummy though.
Yes it's another recipe from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar by Isa Chandra-Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero. This recipe is called "Carrot Raisin Spice Chewies," and they taste like carrot cake in cookie form. I used currents instead of raisins because that's what I had on hand, and they have bits of coconut and walnut in them, and are spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger; the grated carrot in the recipe brings it all together. 

Because I'm eager to move on to the next recipe, I don't know when I'll come back to this one. When I do,  I hope I have some decorating skills to speak of.

I also thought I'd end with a picture of Gigi because I haven't posted enough cat pictures lately. She's returned to this basket that she hasn't slept in since we moved into our new place, which is almost a year ago now. Who knows why she decided to sleep in it again? She has a few choice spots around the apartment. The basket she doesn't use as much, but whenever I can't find her I know she must be there. When she was a kitten, she was able to stretch out fully and still be contained in the basket. Aw my little kitten has grown up.

She's grown a bit hasn't she?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


I'm sad to say that my mom's kitty Fiston made his last trip to the vet yesterday. Today mom sent an email out with this beautiful picture of Fiston.

Mom thinks he may have been 16, but she's not really sure since he was a neighbourhood feral that she took in. I think his name is the french (Quebec) word for son (mom or db will have to correct me on that).

Fiston was always people shy, but not with mom. He seemed to always know that he was safe with her, and that he could feel safe in his home.

I'm always grateful to those who take in the "unwanted" street cats or ferals because sometimes they need extra love and care. Fiston was one of those cats. Thanks mom for giving him such a loving home.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Run Vegan Run

I had a great run today. It was easy, breezy (for real), and I felt strong even though I was running into the wind half of the time.

My ipod has become a regular attachment during because it can be a great way to lose myself in thought or a rhythm and think less about an ache or how hard that hill is to run. However, sometimes I turn it off especially when I'm running along trails so I can hear the birds, or in today's case hear the river.

Compared to last week's long run where I spent the whole time struggling, stopping and starting, and feeling completely unmotivated, this week's run was a pleasure even with the hills. I thought about why this might be, and considered that maybe much of it depends on my mental preparation. I'm not kidding. For 2 days I've been thinking about Sunday's long run, looking forward to having the day off, and hoping to have a little break in the rain to make the running a little easier. Last night I thought about what I was eating and how it might affect my run, and I had the same thoughts this morning when I ate a light breakfast. I went out without a plan in direction, but knowing that I wanted to run for at least an hour and a half so I could break it into three 30 minute runs. I really think it made a difference. I had mentally prepared myself to be out there for a certain amount of time, and with no pressure on where to go.

I use to go for a run with a certain route mapped out so I would know exactly what distance I had covered, but I've stopped doing that for about a year now, and I find it's so much easier to go out and just run with a time goal in mind.

I ran for an hour and 20 minutes.  At the bottom of the hill I decided I'd walk the rest of the way. I didn't want to end my run by struggling for 12 minutes running uphill. It's steep climb on the lower part of the hill, and my legs just didn't have enough. Walking up the hill is a great way to cool down though.

When I reached our turn off I saw a deer dart across the road. The traffic slowed and crept passed. Then another deer trotted across the road to join the first one. They stood on the side of the road and munched a little. I called db so he could come out and see them. He seems to always miss the deer sightings. By the time he reached me, the deer had just gone down into the woods. There's a creek and a trail that cuts alongside the road, and leads to our street. We went into the trail and saw their tracks, and headed alongside the creek. There they were on the other side of the creek watching us, and they had probably been watching us for a while before we even saw them.

I ran home and grabbed the camera. 

We could only see one by the time I got back. The second one had moved further into the brush.  The light behind this deer is coming from the road above. So they were still fairly close to the road, but if you were walking along the road, you would never know they were there.

some food highlights of the week

Butternut squash and parsnip soup was on the menu on the night that we had the wind storm. It was a miserable day being cold, rainy, and extremely windy. Stanley Park was closed as was the Lions Gate bridge. Our backyard was scattered with small branches that had blown from the trees. It's quite something to watch those very tall trees sway back and forth in the wind. The wind blew right through me, and I felt like it would take hours to get warm again. I needed to make something quick and warming. We also had a butternut squash that had been sitting on the counter for a couple of weeks. Soup is such a simple meal to put together and is so rewarding.

More cookies from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar. These are Chocolate Fudgy Oatmeal Cookies. I have perhaps an unrealistic goal of baking every cookie in this book. There are 100 recipes. I've now made 9 recipes from this book. Hmm. It could take a while. db figured out that it might take me 2 years to make every recipe. I think I can do it in less. He may have been saying that to see if I would bake more cookies more often since it's his favorite sweet treat.

I'm also trying the gluten free flour mix from the book to make my cookies so I can enjoy them without too much worry. These were loaded with chocolate chips and cocoa so they were very chocolatey.

Okay these aren't mine. I'm not a maraschino cherry fan so that's one sign that I didn't make these (no offense to the cupcake maker though. They do make them look beautiful). Another indication would be that I could never frost and decorate a cupcake to make it look so beautiful. I guess a third give-away would be the packaging. They are packaged in a take-out container.
These were chocolate (note the past tense because they didn't last long) cupcakes with vanilla icing. Actually, I would call them a Black Forest cupcake because there was a cherry filling in the middle.

They were very generously given to me from the baker. She came into the store yesterday to load up on some vegan goodies, and mentioned that she'd just come from the market. I found out that she goes to a few markets on the weekend and sells vegan sweets including cupcakes. She asked me if I liked chocolate. That's an easy one to answer. Then she dashed out to her car and came back with 2 containers of cupcakes. She also gave me some mini chocolate cupcakes with a mint frosting that I shared with customers in the store. It was so kind of her. I got her card that has her website and reads, "Sweet Delights from the kitchen of the Vegan Vixen." I think I'll be seeking out which market she's at on the weekends, and try to make it to one. We have the best customers.