Saturday, April 26, 2014

Planning ahead

I felt well enough today to go for a short walk and then work outside in the yard for a while. I am hereby vowing right now to get outside more often this summer. This was the one just a handful of few nice days we’ve had all year so far, but there are lots more coming, and I need to remember that they are fleeting. And what I mean by “fleeting” is “it’s really great to live in Montana if you can conveniently forget all about a little thing called NOVEMBER THROUGH MARCH.”

We actually did a good job getting ourselves out of the house last summer. We went to the mountains several times and had many swim meets and climbing trips. Oh, and we went to Hawaii! I made a photo collage of our summer 2013 fun and put it in my office to remind me of what the warm season should be like and that one has to be proactive to make it happen. I have an identical collage frame that I’m hoping to fill with lots of photogenic summer 2014 excitement. I guess after that we’re screwed.

Friday, April 25, 2014

The bright side of being sick

I took “nothing is quite clicking for me lately” to the next level recently by getting really sick. I mean, I’m happy that I can still breathe and eat and all—it’s not one of the more horrible kinds of sickness—but for four days I have been alternating between shivering under layers of clothing with a space heater blowing at my face and waking up in puddles of sweat with a fever of (not actually measured) a million degrees. The pain in my throat suggests that I might have some sort of minor infection there.

Don’t feel too sorry for me (not that anybody WOULD, as often as I have bragged obnoxiously about never getting sick): M.H. was mostly spared from the disease and has been doing most of the hard work of cooking and cleaning and generally taking care of everything. I have been doing most of the easy work of sitting at my desk pushing buttons and then going to lie down for a while and then pushing the buttons some more.

The whole family got this to some degree, but here is that bright side: The disease fostered several we’re-all-in-the-same-boat-and-can-relate-to-one-another-and-work-together-as-a-team-to-get-through-this kind of moments, which was nice. And we learned that we’ve got our cooking routines so ingrained that we can keep ourselves pretty darn well fed, even while operating at about 28 percent of our normal combined stamina. I was kind of fascinated by the realization that we never even considered just ordering something in or going out to eat. When you refuse to eat gluten, your restaurant options become so limited—and everything is so annoying—that you’d rather just make orange chicken at home. For real.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Toothpaste is a lie? Or at least so far, so good?

I’ve been taking a few baby steps toward more natural living, but nothing high stakes—I mean, if your shampoo experimentation goes terribly wrong, what's the worst that can happen? A bad hair day? Hey, if you’re lucky, you won’t even notice because your all-natural cleaning products left the bathroom mirror all streaky. (Just kidding: All-natural cleaning products are AWESOME.)

I have to admit, though: Oral care is scarier territory. It really didn’t seem so when I bought a bunch of natural toothpaste back in December, but when the time for my six-month checkup rolled around, I started getting nervous and imagining worst-case scenarios:


Imaginary hygienist: “The staining on your teeth is much worse than before. Have you been doing anything differently?”
Imaginary me: “I still brush and floss daily, but now I brush with dirt.”
Imaginary hygienist: “What? Why?”
Imaginary me: “Um, foaming agents, fluoride, remineralizing, glycerin, something, something?”


Imaginary dentist: “You have six new cavities and your gum line is receding. Have you been flossing regularly?”
Imaginary me: “Yes, and also brushing my teeth with dirt.”
Imaginary dentist: “What? Why?”
Imaginary me: “I DO know it was something to do with my health.”


To avoid the shame of the above scenarios, I figured I could play dumb and pretend not to know the ingredients of the natural toothpaste (Redmond clay, salt, and essential oils), but could I get away with pretending to not know the name of it (“Earthpaste”)?

I was nervous through the whole visit. Did I detect more scraping than usual? Was the exam taking a little longer? But the stress was for nothing. I had the normal amount of staining from drinking so much tea, my X-rays looked great, my gum line (and I QUOTE) “looks fantastic,” and everything was fine.

Thanks … [looks around, lowers voice] … “Earthpaste.”

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Gray April

I should probably take steps to get rid of the spam comments on my blog, but sometimes I kind of like them. For example:
Thanks designed for sharing such a fastidious opinion
paragraph is pleasant, thats why i have read it fully
Cute, right?

It reminded me that it’s been awhile since I actually wrote a pleasant paragraph—because nothing is quite clicking for me lately. Just to throw out a couple of examples: I’m eating really healthfully and feeling OK but not fantastic (which is frustrating because I’m eating enough vegetables to warrant fantastic); I’m easing back into exercising but just getting sore and injured (my hip hurts like I did when I was training for the Ironman, yet I haven’t even run a mile straight yet); and I’m working like a maniac but am told I haven’t made any more money than I did last year at this time (HOW IS THAT EVEN POSSIBLE?).

I’m not sure what might be missing from my life, but my prime suspect is sunlight. If it ever becomes available, I will be sure to leave this cave and go get some.