I have no clue what to put here.
Perhaps some sort of rotating quote.

But those guys to the right...they're snorkeling off of Rum Point,
on Grand Cayman. You owe it to yourself to check that place out.


Another One Bites The Dust!

One more miserable month of 2020 is nigh behind us, which means we're that much closer to a potential vaccine and/or Covid-19 treatments. I have never before been so desperate to be done with a year...not even during active cancer treatments/surgeries. Buh bye, July!

This Summer has been hot, humid, largely rainless, and just lacking any variety in weather. It's not been a great year for running or sleeping, even with A/C. The lack of sleep has taken its toll on my "runs". Or do I have bone marrow cancer...? I mean, ever since that sketchy blood work 7ish weeks ago, I have been paranoid at the possibility. Because every time I think 2020 can't get worse, it does.

Weight gain has certainly not helped. I'm just about at the "Covid 19" mark. I haven't wanted to cut calories, for risk of intaking inadequate nutrients. I'm pretty desperate to bring those neutrophils back up -- at any cost. Once I have bloodwork results, next week, it's time to get back on the weight loss wagon. 

This time I'm dragging my 19 year old son with me. He needs to unlearn some really unhealthy eating habits (SO many carbs, so much sitting). Kid's got a bad potbelly. His pediatrician was shocked at how his weight has skyrocketed in the past year. He goes to work and eats nothing but vending machine cuisine. He loves getting out for runs 2-3x/week, but that's not enough. He should be running/biking twice as often as he does. Hopefully duathlons will be back on, next Spring, so he can maybe train and race some with me. Last Spring he completed his first tri and didn't enjoy the first swim leg, but he likes the running and cycling parts.

How sad is it that the only thing I'm looking forward to is a new appliance being delivered in a week. Seriously. Technically 2. Our washer no longer runs the spin cycle between the wash and rinse, just drains. So we've had to start manually running a 2nd rinse/spin to get all the soap out. The dryer often does a mediocre job, too. Both the washer and dryer are super low-rent that we finagled for free out of our builder. 7.5 years later it's time to replace them. Our original fridge only made it about 5 years. Dishwasher is next to be replaced. F low-rent GE!

So we're getting a fancy LG set to be stacked in the upstairs laundry closet. This will give us more room in the closet for color-separated hampers. The current set are side-by-side with a top-load washer and it's pretty inconvenient.

What sold us over a cheaper set -- this washer has a special tech "sportswear" fabric cycle. I suspect we'll be using that for 3/4 of loads. Having more than 2 temperature settings will be nice, too (in the Summer our washer has 3, but in the Winter the warm setting is just as icy cold as the cold setting). And being able to wash king size comforters. And it has some allergen killing features, too, but it would probably help more if we vacuumed and dusted more often, heh.

Is this midlife crisis? I already drive a sporty VW GTI..which needs to have warranty service, as the hatch won't unlock (and it has a chronic rattle somewhere around the sunroof or headliner), so it's like a true sportscar with no cargo space, now!

Tonight the hubby and I are going to take our bikes to a little out-of-the-way ice cream stand while the kiddo is at work. This will be our first ice cream cones this Summer. Hopefully there are few other people. We'll still want to carry masks and hand sanitizer. 

Covid #s are creeping up in our region...partly due to delayed graduation parties, but also beach crowds and parties. I will be thankful when Summer is over and "schools" start back up, even though school will largely mean distance-learning in some capacity, at least for a few months. I'm really thankful that my only child is beyond school-aged. I grieve and stress for my friends with younger kids. And friends with kids whose college careers have been greatly disrupted, too.

Fxck Cancer!


Waiting Game

I think today's Monday. It's rare that I know what day it is without looking at my watch. Life is moving at snail's pace. I want Summer to be over. I desperately want to FF to the presidential election. 99 days. Fuck Trump. My Covid anxiety (anxiety, in general) would be greatly minimized if the person in the Oval Office weren't a completely incompetent asshole. He's turned us into Shithole Country #1.
My next port flush and bloodwork is in a week from tomorrow. I REALLY hope my neutrophils will have reversed course and landed back in "normal" range. If they continue downward, then I'm going to require unfun testing to find out why. Seriously, it feels like I only get a few months of feeling more at ease before Cancer throws me another curve ball. As if having Trump in office AND Covid weren't enough to have me gnawing my nails and binge-drinking (and I've really kind of avoided drinking, since it trashes my already poor sleep and can cause low neutrophils, so I want to eliminate that as a potential factor, as much as possible).

Froggos...so I've accumulated most of the stuff I need to culture live fruit fly food for little dart frogs. Now I'm mostly just waiting for Josh's Frogs to have my desired critters in stock. Though I wouldn't want to order until our temps settle-down a bit, anyhow -- yesterday hit 92 when I was out driving around. Hopefully they're available closer to Sept./Oct., when heat is less likely to be an issue.

A guy in the dart frogs group I lurk in on FB keeps posting pictures of his pretty 'Highland Bronze' Dendrobates Auratus frogs.

Setting up my vivarium has been a nice stress reducer. I'm already planning ahead to converting my 50g aquarium (36x18x18) to house 5-6 of another species. First my remaining 4 dwarf rainbow fish need to cross the Rainbow Bridge. They're all closing-in on the end of their average life expectancy, so maybe that will be a project that I can start in on in the next 6-12 months. I'll have to rehome the Endler guppies that keep a constant population, too (started from 2 pair of Endlers).

Fxck Cancer!


Here's a First

For the very first time in my life I'm wishing Summer would be over with. This is not normal. Nothing about the last 4-5 months has been normal, but wishing my favorite season away -- Michigan's shortest one and the one we live for during our endless Winters -- unheard of!

But Covid cases are rapidly rising thanks to tourism and people's common sense apparently taking a Summer holiday. The same sort of scenario is playing out in tourist communities all over the Upper Midwest. We're still doing FAR better than much of the South, but...the curve we flattened is no longer flat. Coronavirus does not take a vacation.

Twice my community has been in the news in the past week. First a local batter-fried hot dog vendor posted a long screed that he claims was meant for his personal page, but it was on his business page long enough for plenty of people to record screen shots of ugly, unhinged racism and general conservative BS and pro-gun nuttery. As a food service vendor he was encouraging his staff to not wear masks. Early in the Spring he opened just as the state went on lock-down...discouraging social distancing.

Looks about white...
Then last night a woman was told to don a mask when she entered a takeout pizza joint. She refused, flipped-off the staff, kicked another customer, then went out in the parking lot, kicked a car and ran over the foot of a LEO who had been summoned. The local anti-masker crowd has a poster child. These are the people faking a disorder to enter stores...or entering a store with a mask, then pulling it off once inside; including the store where my son works. Another store in his company had a guy pull a knife on a store employee who asked him to put his mask on properly.

2020 is still beating me up. A friend shared an excellent article about allostatic load with me that really resonated. I'm doing maybe half the running and cycling that I would normally be doing...and struggling. And walking a lot, because my legs just don't want to go and my muscles hurt. It reminds me too much of how I felt shortly before my original cancer diagnosis. But it seems like plenty of people with no sketchy health history are going through the same. I'm completely annoyed by those who are having the year of their fitness careers, though. How dare they!! ๐Ÿ˜

I think I finally found a good pillow (yay for Target sales and 5% off with the Target debit card), so hopefully that helps. I didn't sleep enough, the last couple of nights, BUT I did get some appreciable DEEP sleep, which has been largely lacking, of late. I've not liked the foam pillows I've squished and we have a couple of that came with our bed...very hard, unyielding things. This Casper foam pillow has a firm foam center surrounded by smooshy, marshmallow-like softer foam. It's just right for this Goldilocks/Princess-and-the-Pea. My neck feels better today than it has in months. I'm able to sleep comfortably on my sides, which I haven't been able to do in a really long time.

Another pillow I tried was kind of similar, but WAY too thick -- like 7" in the center and forced my chin into my chest. But that one has proven to be amazing behind my back on the sofa, so it's a win.

Sleeping better will surely solve a ton of ills...I hope.

When I first started this blog I had just re-scaped a vivarium that will eventually house dart frogs. At the time it looked like this:

Now it's grown-in to look like this:

It still houses no frogs...entirely because of the Corona-craziness. And now it's been too hot to safely have frogs shipped. But I'm thinking maybe in a month or two that we'll not be hovering at or near 90ยบ every day. I think I've narrowed my frog selection down to maybe 3 Dendrobates auratus 'Super Blue' or 'Highland Bronze'.

They live on fruit flies, which I'd culture and dust with calcium/vitamins before feeding, every day. And the tank already has plenty of tiny white drawf isopods (aka "pill bugs") and springtails for them to snack on. The vivarium won't require cleaning, since the isopods and teensy springtails serve as "clean-up crew."

Fxck Cancer!