Our New Addition Rules the Roost
It has been a week since we brought Little Bea home. To say that she has changed the dynamic in the house is an understatement. You might say she is the Queen. She adores Wyke and is often found snuggled up to him after they have been playing for awhile. She loves to chase the cats and they seem to be charmed by her. For them it is a thing about size. She is smaller than they are so not a threat at all. Right from the beginning they have been just curious about her. I guess from their perspective if she is a pain trying to play with them they can just climb up their indoor cat tree to get away.
This was a good week for me to be sick. John and I have both had a terrible cough, the kind that keeps you up at night and makes your ribs hurt. We essentially came down with it at the same time, he maybe a day earlier than I did. The good thing is it forced me to just rest and focus on the puppy rather than trying to get a million other things done. John did go to his doctor and was put on medicine on Thursday. I, on the other hand, loathe any medicine especially antibiotics so I defaulted to my favorite cure called GOOT. It is a weird mix of garlic, olive oil and coconut oil that is made into a paste and put on your feet at night – with at least three pairs of old socks to protect your sheets etc. I do seem to smell a bit like a Caesar Salad but then I am not going out anywhere so it doesn’t matter. It appears to be working as along with the above mentioned puppy, we slept a solid night from 10pm to 6am. She didn’t wake up and neither did I and today I feel much better. John went off to Connecticut to a funeral of a dear friend who died a month ago after a skiing accident. He was John’s golfing partner in the summer and the husband of a very dear childhood friend. I hope he is feeling better too.
Post Race Do Nothing
As I mentioned, along with a new puppy and a cough, I didn’t get much walking in this week. Maybe that’s not so bad either. I did a couple of short walks but nothing like I am used to. Next week I’ll get back into it. I really do miss it but the few days I did go out were fine. I have a ridiculous carrier thing for the puppy that I thought I would use when I walked Wyke. Little Bea is not supposed to go where other dogs have been until she is fully protected. I did walk her twice before I knew this information and she loved it. Kept right up with Wyke. However, it won’t be long before she is marching right along with us.
It is interesting about the walking. I used to get up very early and go out and walk about 3 1/2 to 4 miles before breakfast. It was when I was working so I needed to be able to either get to work or to get to my computer if I was telecommuting by 9AM. I kept up this early morning routine for a number of years after I retired and then it dawned on me that I didn’t need to do that anymore. That’s when I started doing longer walks later in the morning. The only limit on walking was time. The walks started getting longer and longer and farther afield. I can hardly wait to get back to doing those long walks in the hills in Canada. The races here have been a good distraction from the routine of daily walks so it makes a nice balance. They are just very different styles of walking. Just hope the snow eventually melts up there and that some decent weather actually comes for the spring and summer.
Sore Backs and Zero Gravity
I admit it. I don’t always do the right amount of stretching before or after my walks. I used to be able to get away with it but now I no longer can. It started last fall, I would end up with a very sore back after sitting or even sleeping. Now I want to blame it on the mattress but I know it is not just that, I need to do the stretching and loosen up those muscles. Anyway, I do think that having a decent mattress is actually important so we just started investigating getting a new mattress. It used to be so simple. Now the choices are myriad and I have no idea what is the best. There are the Tempur-Pedic which many have mentioned as the holy grail of mattresses, then there is Casper which seems to have three different levels of mattress, then I found the Saatva which is supposed to be an organic mattress. This is so stressful. We did go and try out mattresses at a local store and of course they put us on the most expensive including an adjustable frame. It puts you in a position that they call Zero Gravity. Well I must tell you that made my back very happy. So, since I can’t make up my mind about the mattress thing yet, I bought a Zero Gravity pillow for $30 which actually works great and obviously much cheaper than a mattress set.
Yoga helps and stretching makes a huge difference. All important if we want to keep going and enjoy Dynamic Aging. I missed Yoga last week because of the cough and the puppy. We do a lot of the exercises from the book Dynamic Aging by Katy Bowman, in Yoga and I try to do them on my own as well. Most recently I have been working on bending down to get something by squatting and then the challenge is to get back up again without pushing off with my arms or holding onto anything. After a few weeks of this I can feel my legs getting stronger and I no longer really have to think about it. For my golfing friends, get rid of that thing that is on the end of your putter that gets the ball out of the hole and bend your knees and pick up the ball and stand back up. You might get to do this 18 times in a game and think of how good that is!!!
More Uses for that Vegetable Broth
It’s not just for us anymore. I am making it for the pups as well. Instead of plain water added to their food I am adding a little of my homemade vegetable broth. Vegetables are good for dogs and an easy way to get them into their diet is through broth. I also give them frozen broccoli stems to chew on. Wyke thinks they are a real treat. The puppy is too young to have them yet but gradually adding a little broth to her food will be good for her. It is quite satisfying to make the broth. It tastes good and it gives all those scraps that go into the compost pile another round before being composted.
This week’s fun recipe is from Kristine’s Kitchen
I had to cook them much more than the recipe says. Not sure why but they came out quite gluey in the center. They tasted more like fudge.
15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
½ cup plain Greek yogurt
½ cup pure maple syrup or honey, I used maple syrup
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ cup old-fashioned rolled oats
½ cup bittersweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin tin with paper liners.
Place all ingredients, except for the chocolate chips, in a blender (I used my Vitamix). Blend until smooth.
Pour the mixture into the prepared muffin tin, filling each muffin cup almost to the top. Drop 4-5 chocolate chips onto the top of each muffin.
Bake for 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes in the pan and then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
These muffins have a lot of moisture and will not last long at room temperature. They are best stored in the freezer. Cool completely and then store in a zip-top plastic bag in the freezer for up to 2 months. Defrost in the microwave or at room temperature.
You may also store the muffins in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
If made with certified gluten free oats, muffins are gluten free.
Serving size: 1 muffin Calories: 143 Fat: 4g Saturated fat: 2g Carbohydrates: 24g Sugar: 11g Sodium: 30mg Fiber: 7g Protein: 7g