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Blah Blah Blog - LiveJournal.com

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    I thought about heading to the gulch today, but as I was looking again at the map, imagining a future route all the way around Boeing, I spotted a trail on the map and decided to check it out. Like the one I recently found when I went all the way to the edge of the gulch, this one's at the end of a very long, steep street.



    My plan was to park at Harborview Park, but I forgot one of the basic facts of life about the parks here. If a park has a parking lot that's locked up at night, it will not be open right when the park hours begin. It's just not realistic to expect, since it's probably just one or two workers driving around doing it.

    Harborview Park

    I could have parked on the side of the street right there, but decided to pull onto the one that has the trail at the end. Figuring it'd be nicer to end coming down that street instead of climbing it immediately, I set off walking the same way I came. The parking lot was still closed as I passed the park, but I stopped for a photo from across the street.

    Harborview Park

    My path took me toward the huge business parks but not entirely in them. It pleases me greatly that giant buildings around there are surrounded by the woods. It's nice.

    Buildings and woods and buildings and woods

    I turned around to get a look back toward where I parked. Absolutely stunning.

    Nice view

    I figured since the path headed down along a couple of creeks that there wouldn't be much more climbing, but I was incorrect. From the street, there are several sets of death stairs on the path. They're the ones made from railroad ties, too. Very scary to walk down, so I was glad to be walking up. I think any future routes that follow this trail with only go North, as I don't want to walk down them.

    Death stairsOvergrown death stairs

    I couldn't even get a photo of the third set of stairs, as they were even more overgrown than the second one. Right at the top of the first set, a snake slithered across the path a few feet in front of me! First time I've seen one since I got here.

    The apartment complex that the path wraps partially around is interesting. Most apartment playgrounds I've seen are fenced in, and in an area kids can't easily wander out of. The one I saw today opens right up onto the trail. Some of the apartments in the back are even right next to the trail, and there was one I could see right into. It was vacant, and it's probably a hard sell.

    Today"s awesome walk, 3.4 miles in 1:09, 7,317 steps, 385ft gain

    The rest of the path after that main climb around the apartments was pretty cool. A little steep in some areas, but nothing overly terrifying. Unless you go the other way and have to go down the stairs.

    The neighborhood I walked down through at the end was also very lovely. Houses on both sides back up to the woods, the street is wide enough to have parking on either side, and it's nice and quiet. Nice place to visit even if I wouldn't want to live there.

    I tried out my new running tights from Old Navy on this walk. They're very nice. I think I'll order three more pairs today while they're still on sale. Why three pair? That's enough to go over the $50 minimum for free shipping. No need to pay an extra $7 to ship when I can just stock up instead. Oooh, and I found a coupon code online, so that makes $22 off the whole order.

    Oh and today's the first walk that I can remember in years with no back pain during or after. Awesome.


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  • 06/25/15--12:21: Another dumb adventure
  • I recently tried to go to the Lowell Riverfront Trail and the gates were locked. I assumed at the time that the debris removal after a recent flood was still ongoing, but then next day I realized I was probably just too early. I figured today would be a nice day to go back.



    The view as I came down the hill was absolutely stunning. Everything was bright and the reflections on the river were just awesome. Watching the whole thing shift as I got lower and closer was really cool. I parked the car and walked up the hill a little bit to try to get a photo.

    20150625_064937_Richtone(HDR)

    The house across the street from where I took that was on the market while we were looking, and I kinda wanted to view it because it would have that awesome view all the time. But you can see in the listing photos that the house isn't all that great. There's also some kind of industrial place right below. And the railroad tracks are there. So we never looked at it.

    Since I climbed up there anyway, I had a look at the map on my phone and figured I could follow the road out and come back via the riverfront trail. Lowell's a historic small town that was annexed into Everett in the 1960s. It's a narrow strip between the freeway and the river, and I imagine that its isolation is why it's a little run down now. There are some interesting things to see, though. Like this apartment building.

    Apartment cross

    You just don't see an apartment building with a cross every day. I also saw another apartment building that I thought was kinda cool. I swear it must have been some sort of auto shop or something that was made into a residential building. I should have gotten a picture.

    I completely forgot there's a park on that road. Pretty good size, tennis courts. Quite nice!

    Lowell Park

    One of the reasons I've been wanting to hit that area again is to see the progress at a new subdivision you can see from the trails. I'd only ever seen that side of it, and was looking forward to seeing what was on the other side. I was kind of surprised by what I found.

    big ol" lumber machinery company
    Big ol" lumber machinery company

    I think it looks cool, but I can't imagine that's a view most people would like. The railroad tracks will ensure a lot of noise, too. Anyway, it's been a while since I was there and it looks like they haven't done much of anything. I suppose a lot of the work that goes into a new neighborhood is underground, though.

    future subdivision

    I'm pretty sure these houses are being built on the exact site of the Great Everett Tire Fire. Ha.

    Today"s awesome walk, 4.27 miles in 1:23, 9,179 steps, 195ft gain
    4.27 miles in 1:23, 9,179 steps, 195ft gain

    When I got to the road that leads down there, I saw that it's normally closed, but the gate was open for construction traffic. A cop was there rearranging the stuff in his trunk, so I just kept watching, figuring he'd say something if he didn't want me to go down there. I planned to cross over to the trail where I marked A on the map, but there was a worker there moving large rocks with a backhoe. I didn't want to put him in a bad position by asking if I could cut through, so I kept walking. It looked on the satellite view on my phone like it'd work, but I was totally wrong. That field was very overgrown, but I mostly followed tire tracks so it'd be easier. There were lots of these flowers, but they were always all by themselves.

    lonely flower

    Anyway, I had to go back the way I came, but eventually found a spot to cross back into the trails, point B on the map. Everything's all cleaned up in there from the flood, and people were running and walking dogs. Thankfully I remembered my sunglasses this time, it was so bright today.

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  • 06/25/15--12:40: Food update
  • I was at the store to pick up wine yesterday, and figured while I was there I should grab the stuff to make another batch of lunches. I'd had the mushroom stroganoff two days in a row and figured if I made another batch of something and ate one helping, I could freeze the rest. With one white bean burger and two helpings of stroganoff in the freezer already, the next batch would put me even more ahead and with nice variety.

    Creamed spinach pizza in the FOK app caught my eye, so I grabbed everything I needed for that. It makes two pizzas, so I grabbed thin crusts and decided half a pizza would be a serving. While I was there, I also wanted to find a snack. I've been eating bananas or apples for snacks and wanted something different. These are pretty good.

    These are good

    The pizza turned out ok. If I wasn't addressing my blood pressure, some salt would have helped a lot. I'll add hot sauce next time I have some, probably tomorrow. And now I don't have to cook again for breakfast or lunch until the week after next if I don't want to. Phew.

    I chose today for my weekly meal out. I knew the portions at the Korean place I've been wanting to check out would be huge, so I called in an order to go. They were out of pork katsu, so I went with chicken. Look at all this food!

    All this for ten bucks!

    The lunch itself was $7.99 and it's definitely enough for two people. I noticed they sell tubs of kimchi, so added that for two bucks. This was all just ten dollars. Nuts. I tipped them $4. There's tons left, so either Garrett can take it for his lunch tomorrow, or I'll make chicken katsu omelets for breakfast Saturday.

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  • 06/25/15--17:28: Icon origins
  • Photo by mischiefduck.


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  • 06/26/15--08:00: SchadenFriday



























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  • 06/27/15--07:38: CATURDAY
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  • 06/27/15--11:47: Mini back schmupdate
  • Of course since my back was doing so well, something had to go and ruin it. I saw Book of Love at Neighbours on Thursday. They opened the doors at 9pm but the band didn't come out until 12:25am. Tomorrow's Pride and that'll also be a lot of standing around, too. Booze will help a little, I suppose. }:)

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    I figure with marriage equality becoming the law across the USA yesterday, I may as well do a post about my own weddings. Lots of you are new friends since then, and others of you were actually there.


    I met Garrett at The Cuff on Sunday, November 9th. I'd never seen him around and was worried I wouldn't again, so I went over and talked to him. That's something I was never good at, but I didn't want to miss my chance. We hit it off and have been together ever since. I had one more date with another guy that was already planned that I didn't feel like canceling, but nothing happened there. Thankfully. That dude's a mess.

    We were also at The Cuff when he proposed and asked me to move in a year and a half later. We set the date for November 7th, 2010. Two years to the day later, though not the date because that'd be inconvenient on a Tuesday. Our friend Claire hosted the gathering in the owners' suite in her condo, and the ceremony on building's roof overlooking the bay. We both had best men named Kyle, my awesome friend Shannon officiated, and my workwife4lyfe Jessica agreed to make sure everything ran smoothly at the reception. That was held at our favorite restaurant Amore, which is unfortunately gone now. There was also a happy hour gathering the day before at Broadway Grill, which is also gone.

    IMG_6778
    Me and Dad at happy hour. I miss those awesome carafe drinks from Broadway Grill.

    IMG_6770
    Kyle, Shannon, April, and Garrett talking about something that's making Shannon make that awesome face she makes

    IMG_6769
    Big group! Claire, her mom Val, me, Kyle's brother Drew, Scott, Stacy, Dad, my niece Katie, Shannon, April, Kyle, Garrett. April's husband Steve took this and all the "official" photos. It took me a minute to figure out that it's Drew; can't see his face here, and he's thin as a rail now.

    IMG_6732IMG_6739
    Of course they made us do blowjob shots


    IMG_6786
    Pre-ceremony food. This became our breakfast when the wait at the restaurant nearby was too long.

    IMG_6796
    Getting dressed

    IMG_6892
    Shannon, the officiant

    wedding 018
    wedding 003
    Perfect day, awesome setting

    IMG_6890
    Grooms with Best Kyles

    IMG_6891
    Dad, my brother David, his wife Maria

    IMG_6885
    Dennis and Bev, Garrett's parents

    IMG_6973
    Jessica, mi waifu

    IMG_6976
    Dad and my nieces Tiffany and Katie

    G-Man (24)
    Signing and notarizing domestic partner forms, durable power of attorney paperwork, wills, and whatever else we all had to do to get as close as possible to a legal marriage before it became available to us.

    G-Man (33)
    Our Steel Magnolias-inspired cake.

    Untitled
    Getting ready to decapitate the cake. I carried the head around on a plate for a while. That's the part we saved to eat on our anniversary and we still have the plate!

    Wedding 027
    My final girl crush, Sybil. I finally knew I was gay for sure when I just couldn't pull it together to date her. She's awesome. Ok I still have crushes on Nigella Lawson and Antonia Lofaso. :)

    G-Man (62)
    My mother-in-law, Bev, clearly enjoying herself.

    G-Man (56)
    Family friend Barb, Dennis, Bev.

    Untitled-16
    Alan and AJ

    Untitled-23
    Christina and Taylor

    Untitled-7
    Chris and Sean

    I can't possibly show everyone who was there, but I got everyone to tag their flickr photos, so it's easy to findall 555 that I know about. Oh wait, 554. I see one that someone else unknowingly used that tag on one, haha. There were several you can see on flickr that I wanted to post here, but embedding was disabled.

    After the ceremony, we went back to the condo to take the tuxes off, and we had another bottle of champagne with Claire and Val on the roof. There wasn't a reason to go straight home, so a few of us stopped at Bus Stop. It's also closed now! The only businesses this wedding touched that aren't closed now are Pony, where I had my bachelor party, and The Garage, where Garrett had his. Geez.

    wedding 052
    Jessica, Jayme, Kyle, and Stacy joined us at Bus Stop. Jayme gets a huge gold star for the day. He had to work, but ran over to the wedding reception on his lunch break. More importantly, he was who I was hanging out with the day I spotted Garrett at The Cuff and introduced myself. I totally ditched Jayme for the rest of the night and he was a very good sport about it.

    Garrett's Best Kyle gave us the keys to his house in Phoenix for our honeymoon, but after Garrett's bachelor party Friday, our family happy hour Saturday, plus the wedding on Sunday, the poor guy was just too exhausted to get up for our flight. We skipped it and stayed in Seattle and had a nice time. That was my first visit to the Seattle Aquarium!

    November 7, 2010 is what we consider our wedding date, but we get a bonus date in the form of an upgrade. Marriage equality became law in Washington State on December 6th, 2012, and we were among those couples who got married on the first day possible, Sunday, December 9th. The back patio at The Cuff, where we met, was closed for the season, but the managers let us use it to have a quick ceremony. This time our friend James officiated, Brad was my witness, and Claire was Garrett's.

    Our 2-year anniversary was a few weeks earlier, and I commissioned an amazing family portrait by Tatiana Gill. I've been using my face from that portrait as an avatar on Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr almost 100% of the time since.

    Cotton Anniversary present, color version

    The original ink version of that is now the center of our family photos wall. It also made an excellent wedding cake.

    I got sidetracked while trying to send this, here"s the full cake
    Um...
    Everyone ate around our crotches for some reason.


    Getting married at The Cuff meant a lot of the photos just weren't suited for Facebook.

    That day was also immortalized in Tatiana's comic, Living in the Now.
    Living in the Now - December 9, 2012

    227
    Our marriage certificate.

    Today's been fun. Information Society made a rainbow background version of the artwork on that shirt I'm wearing and thanked SCOTUS for the ruling. I let them know I was wearing that shirt when I got married in the comments and they congratulated me! I was actually wearing that shirt the first time I went to Garrett's house, which was when we learned we have the same favorite band. Well, they're my favorite. I'd confirm with him, but he's napping right now. He might like Depeche Mode a smidge more. But my showing up in that shirt was one of those moments for him, just like his Snakes on a Plane DVD I spotted there that day was for me.

    In addition to all the good news for the country yesterday, I was treated to an excellent turn of events professionally. All of this stuff, plus Pride tomorrow in Seattle is making for a very wonderful weekend. As long as we don't all get burned to a crisp by the sun tomorrow. It's supposed to be a scorcher.

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  • 06/28/15--07:28: Steve's giving me a look
  • He seems to know I've been talking about my life more on here instead of posting pictures of him and Sam.

    20150626_184015

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  • 06/29/15--09:25: Pride 2015
  • Getting down to Seattle and back up on the bus was an ordeal, but thankfully the weather ended up much cooler than we'd feared it would be. The bar where we watch from also changed their setup. Instead of a doorway to the outer area, they now open two walls of floor-to-ceiling windows open. It's easier to get in and out, so it got and stayed really full. I stayed inside, which wasn't great for my photos, but I'd rather have fun with my friends than worry too much about getting all the shots.



    Seattle Pride 2015
    Seattle Pride 2015
    Seattle Pride 2015
    Seattle Pride 2015
    Seattle Pride 2015
    Seattle Pride 2015
    Seattle Pride 2015


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  • 06/30/15--10:20: Foiled again
  • Saturday's always a day off, and I ended up staying in Thursday, Sunday, and yesterday due to Pride festivities. It was nice to get back out again this morning. I decided today would not be a day to go all the way to the end of the gulch. Gotta work up to that.



    Today"s awesome walk, 3.58 miles in 1:34, 7,695 steps, 459ft gain
    3.58 miles in 1:34, 7,695 steps, 459ft gain

    The first time I went up into the trails on the West side of the gulch, I emerged on 6th Street. It was very overgrown and pretty unpleasant, so I was hoping to come out today on one of the streets South of there. It was looking pretty good, but when I got to the area behind the nearest houses (point A), the trail pretty much went their back fences. The surrounding area was completely full of trees that had been cut down and chopped up, so I'm curious if that area will be clearer soon. I might have been able to make my way out, but it would have required walking right up against these back fences and maybe even holding onto them while I climbed over stuff. Wasn't into it.

    So I turned back, and found myself heading out the way I didn't want to, headed toward 6th. I think it was even worse than the last time I was there. More growth, and maybe more stuff chopped down waiting to be pulled out. Or my angry mind could have been imagining it.

    A walk on the beach sounded like a nice antidote to the overgrown trails, and there are only two ways in or out of there (points B and C), so the route I should take was very clear. I think that was actually the first time I took the main road all the way down, because I can't remember ever having such a nice view of the area.

    Mukilteo lighthouse
    Fog creeping in

    I hoped that fog would creep all the way to the house, but no such luck. It's already extremely bright here and I'm sure it will be for the rest of the day. It was nice and cloudy all morning, though, which was great.

    lost glasses

    Someone left their glasses at the beach. Losing glasses is such a bummer because they're expensive and it's hard to find them unless you're wearing another pair. I noticed while I was there that it'll be a great place for gathering rocks. I was already planning on washing my gear when I got home, so I stuffed a few into the pockets of my hoodie. I'll have to head back soon with a bag. It's been ages since I tumbled a batch of rocks.

    Nature finds a way

    This is a huge pile of broken concrete slabs and rusty metal. Fun to see how well all these plants and flowers are growing there.

    Japanese Gulch

    That's a view of the gulch from the main road near the parking lot. The tracks are just barely visible and give you some idea how huge the place really is.

    No back pain at all during the walk, though the chair I'm in now isn't exactly comfortable. Might be time to add a little more stuffing in the lower back.

    I'm now very determined to find the other ways in and out of the gulch from the neighborhoods. I'm going to either drive around in the area looking for them, or reverse the direction of the walks to try to find them on foot.

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  • 07/01/15--10:54: Bootie scoot riot
  • After I finished posting yesterday, I decided to do my research on Google Maps before resorting to driving around or scouring the neighborhoods on foot. I found one entrance right away.



    Today"s awesome walk, 2.92 miles in 1:05, 6,290 steps, 403ft gain
    2.92 miles in 1:05, 6,290 steps, 403ft gain

    Point A on the map looks like this on Google's Street view:



    If you zoom way in, you can even see that there's a gap between residential lots, much like the shortcuts in our neighborhood. Scanning the rest of the map, I believe that may be the last of the entrances on the Western side, unless there's one more where I gave up yesterday. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

    Today was the first time I climbed up the hill on the residential side to the West. I'd been through the area several times going the other way, which is nicer because of the views. I stopped to admire some flowers and realized I was standing right next to a cat.

    KITTY

    It's been ages since a cat I saw out on a walk let me get this close. They usually take off as soon as they see someone, but this one really likes hanging out by those flowers.

    The trail entrance I found was a lot prettier than the view from Street View let on.

    Trail entrance

    Just beyond that entrance, they've made a bike ramp area among the trees. I thought I had a decent picture, but it was so blurry I deleted it. The trails branch off in many directions before and after there, so one could spend tons of time exploring the area.

    Unfortunately, my choices led me to a very steep area to get back to the center trail. I eventually decided to sit and scoot down. Not ideal, but so much better than slipping and possibly falling. After today, I've got some new policies and procedures in place. I'll continue to explore those trails, but I'll start from the center and work my way up. I'm also going to keep a towel in the trunk in case I come back filthy so I don't get the driver's seat all dirty. Fortunately I was able to just take the shorts off since I also have tights underneath. I went ahead and modeled that look with the timer when I got back to the car.

    "No, I wear the required uniform."

    Doable, but the shorts give me pockets so I don't have to add a fanny pack. The safety harness is also usually more visible, I'd unbuckled it by that point. I need to add an extra section on my keychain that will allow my car key to pop off, so I can carry just it and my keys don't rattle so much. I noticed it between songs today, and don't want to be that guy who's rattling around while people are sleeping.

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  • 07/02/15--11:54: Another day, another gulch
  • After yesterday's frightening ordeal, I figured I may as well look for somewhere new to check out today. To the East of me is a lot of open space, so I pushed the map further to the Southwest to see if anything interesting could be found in Mukilteo's Western slope.



    I found another big gulch on the map. In fact, it's called Big Gulch. Don't hurt your brain trying to come up with a good name or anything, guys. It's actually got more than one trail on the map, so I knew I could go there and follow all that I saw and see a great deal of what's there, if not all of it. Normally I like to climb up first and then walk back down on the sidewalk, but the moon was so amazing this morning. I hoped if I did the residential portion on the way down first, I'd get a good picture of it.

    Just after I got out of the car, I spotted this flower's perfect twisting vine. Too bad the rising sun made the flower itself so overexposed.

    7/2/2015

    The moon had nearly set by the time I got down there, but the views were absolutely insane. I didn't stop to look at any of the real estate prices in the Zillow app, but I'm sure people pay an absolute fortune to live there.

    7/2/2015
    7/2/2015
    7/2/2015
    7/2/2015

    I'm glad I was there early. Sometimes there's a shoulder on the road, sometimes there's not. I'm curious what these people do when they have parties, it's not like there's a single space of street parking. Do they shuttle people in? My choice to walk down to there paid off as there was nowhere to leave the car. In fact, the trailhead is on a government access road you're allowed to walk down, but non-official vehicles are forbidden.

    7/2/2015

    It's narrow and winding enough that there's a mirror so vehicles can see around a corner.

    7/2/2015

    Official signage and trail markers everywhere! So fancy.

    7/2/2015
    7/2/2015
    7/2/2015

    Don't go to Big Gulch if you're prone to vertigo. Even though the trails have nice supports and real bridges, it's still pretty high up and intimidating.

    7/2/2015
    7/2/2015

    One trailhead's at the Mukilteo Library. They maintain a little wilderness garden in the back.

    Mukilteo Library wilderness garden

    I couldn't stop thinking about what a wonderful neighborhood amenity these trails are for the people who live nearby. If you lived by the 92nd Street Park, where I left the car, and wanted to go to the library, there are two nature trail routes you could take instead of the noisy main road. so nice!

    7/2/2015
    7/2/2015

    Even a lot of the people who work nearby have spots where they can jump onto the trail.

    7/2/2015

    Some mushrooms for suxdonut.

    For Tats

    Lots of death stairs in this one. Thankfully. Some of the trails in Japanese Gulch really should be stairs. There's exactly one set that I've found. Again, I'm glad I went the way I did, because I prefer to walk up steps like that instead of down. Especially when there's no handrail.

    7/2/2015

    The route.

    Today"s awesome walk, 4.2 miles in 1:41, 9,071 steps, 389ft gain
    4.2 miles in 1:41, 9,071 steps, 389ft gain

    I wish you could tell by looking at the map that you can't drive past where I've marked point A. This is the third service road I've been to that looks like you can drive on it on the map, but can't. I've walked on this and one other. The third had a sign saying I couldn't.


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  • 07/03/15--08:01: SchadenFriday












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  • 07/03/15--19:13: I should have just been lazy
  • Today's a day off work, and we had a grand old time yesterday at lunch at our neighborhood bar. I woke up a little spacey, but not in pain or anything. Decided to go ahead and do a walk, maybe something easy. I wasn't thinking about all the housework waiting for me when I got back at all. And there was plenty.



    I can tell on the maps that trails on the East side of the gulch go up to the Boeing Recreation Center, and I figured I'd end up there at some point. I drove straight there today thinking I might start there, but there are signs everywhere saying it's private property for employees only. I wasn't comfortable leaving the car there, so I drove to my normal spot at the bottom of the gulch.

    Today"s awesome walk, 6.08 miles in 2:13, 13,078 steps, 615ft gain
    6.08 miles in 2:13, 13,078 steps, 615ft gain

    This map really tells a story. The recreation center is point A, and I figured it'd be an easy walk there via the roads. Point B, however, is where the roadway becomes a restricted access road. Total bummer. I turned back and almost went all the way to the car on the main trail, but I was dumb and decided to jump back on the trails and try to get back up there. I had a pretty frustrating time. I barely made it up a steep, sandy hill, only to find another one just like it but three times taller once I got up there. I can't imagine anyone ever walks up or down that part, it's just terrifying. Then I followed what I thought was a slightly-overgrown trail that ended up being more like a natural ridge. Tons of thorny vines and I couldn't even get all the way through, so I had to get caught up in all the vines twice.

    It was getting really warm and I was getting very thirsty. My heart was pounding, too. Thankfully when I got to the ball fields, there was some relief.

    7/3/2015

    I'm always saying people should avoid water while walking because wet feet blister easily, but I made an exception when I found those sprinklers. The shortcut I previously discovered was nearby, so I headed down.

    7/3/2015

    That neighborhood is so gorgeous. And it was such a relief to arrive there. It's still a ways back to the car from where I took that picture, but at least the rest is downhill or flat, and paved.

    Once I got home, I showered, had breakfast, and then jumped right into chores. Then it was time for a Canada Day bbq in Maltby, which was lovely, but also quite warm. More chores once we got back for our bbq tomorrow. I'm wiped.



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  • 07/04/15--06:30: CATURDAY



































































































  • BONUS Saturdogs


























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  • 07/05/15--13:26: A day of rest
  • Yesterday was several more hours of cleaning and party prep for our first annual barbecue and croquet tournament. It was a lot of fun, and I got to wear this awesome shirt.

    YEAH FREEDOM

    I didn't realize when I ordered that it was polyester. Not the best choice for the hottest 4th of July on record in Washington State. I suppose I should have taken a picture of all the awesome prizes I found to give away.

    Our friend Jayme stayed the night. We took him to our favorite breakfast spot before dropping him off at the bus station, then visited Garrett's parents for a bit to drop off their Tupperware and some leftover ears of corn from the party. Their cat Bella was being her usual goofy self.

    Bella requests that you maintain a respectful distance.

    We're spending the rest of the day hiding out in the basement with the AC on, eating party leftovers, drinking extra party beers, and watching TV. Not a bad way to end a holiday weekend.

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  • 07/06/15--10:14: Schmonday
  • Friday's crazy walk and chores plus the chores and party Saturday ended up being a one-two punch for my lower back. I set out for an easy walk this morning, but didn't get very far. I might have powered through with breaks, but my iPod's battery was dead and Pandora quit working because there's no service in the gulch.

    So the morning wouldn't be a complete waste, I pulled up the fencing around our yard that Garrett put up to keep the croquet balls from rolling down into the property behind us. I also pulled all the kale out of the garden and tossed it into the food and yard waste bin because we don't care for this particular kind. Too bad, as it's the only thing that really grew well.

    I've got some cooking to do today for upcoming breakfasts and lunches. There's a little more post-party organizing to take care of, and I guess a bit of yoga is in order. Except for cooking, I'll mostly just be keeping as cool as possible. The heat out there's gross.

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  • 07/07/15--09:37: Yeah, some yoga's in order
  • I only got .4 miles up the trail yesterday before I decided to turn back, for .8 miles total. I took two breaks today and managed to get a mile and decided to head back because my choices at that point were two miles total or four, and I worried four would be a big mistake. I didn't need any more breaks in that last mile, and thought about going further past the car, but decided against it. I think I'll do yoga for the rest of the week starting this afternoon and try for a walk Sunday morning.

    The sun looked very strange this morning due to the smoke from the BC wildfires.

    Smoky sunrise

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    Now this is a recipe I'm looking forward to having again. I made it yesterday and thought it was so-so while it was warm. Eating it cold today with a little bit of rice vinegar added makes it fabulous.

    It'll actually be even better next time I make it. I used quinoa noodles instead of rice noodles because I couldn't find any while I was shopping. But of course I forgot that I buy rice noodles all the time and you have to get them from the Asian section instead of with the rest of the pasta. I also used a very bland bag of frozen vegetables from WinCo, I think I can find a much better one that'll have water chestnuts and other goodies. And I used cashews because I was having a hard time finding unsalted peanuts. I don't think peanuts would be a huge improvement, though.

    It took a while, but I finally made my way through all the muffins I made. At least, I think I did. I can't find any in the freezer. A lot of things got moved around because of the party, so it's possible a couple were tossed or will just turn up at some point. Either way, today was my first day back on sweet potato tacos for breakfast, and they were awesome.

    I hated the tortillas I used last time, so I got different ones which are bigger, and made two instead of three. Broccoli slaw in those as well as lunch was a nice addition. It'll be tacos for the rest of the week's breakfasts, and there's one more serving of noodles in the fridge, plus two servings of pizza and one more stroganoff. I'm taken care of until Monday, which is nice.

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