Friday, December 15, 2006

What fresh hell is this?!

First of all, mad props to the person in the city of Fresno who decided that it was NOT OK to be able to see your garbage cans from the street.

We keep the garbage cans on the side of our house, like all out neighbors do. They are in the spot where they have been since we moved here, three years ago.

The exact phrase in the notice we got was: "No container shall be stored in the front yard, side yard or on a street, unless the container is screened from view of the street." It is signed, "D.HOLM Code Enforcement Specialist." Because nobody wants to be called, "D.HOLM- Trash Can Photographer". Or "D.HOLM- Garbage Snitch N'Bitch."

The first offense is a warning. The second offense is $50. Repeated offenses? Up to $1500. Yikes.

We got our first Notice of Violation this week, along with (as far as I can tell) 99.9% of our neighbors, because they were all standing around and complaining after the mail came.

For your enjoyment, here is a photo of the enclosed photo of our unlawful garbage can placement:

Hard to see what the problem is? Let's go hi tech!

Ok. Granted, there are people who have Christmas decorations which are arguably more irritating to view than our garbage cans. But we complied, for the time being.

Look! You can see our fence! And our extremely ugly water and power meters!!!

In the meantime, we are trying to come up with a solution that thwarts the need to put the garbage cans in the backyard. So far, I have come up with this attractive option:

Who doesn't need a festive garbage can cozy? We could change them seasonally to share our holiday spirit with the whole neighborhood.

In other news, PG&E just gave us a credit on our bill. A $480 credit. Whoa.

While I am thrilled to not have to pay the people for the next few the heck did they make a mistake of this magnitude? Almost 500 bucks? The hell?!!

I sort of want to demand that they pay us back. IN cash. WITH interest. Which is what they would demand from us, if our bill was in arrears. There's also no explanation of how this happened, or any kind of apology. Just a credit on our bill.

Did they think that we wouldn't notice?

Anyway. Ho ho ho! I am off to SF again, but I leave at the ass-crack of dawn tomorrow, and return at 8PM, so it's not much a a trip. I am so totally bringing my knitting. :)

Thursday, December 14, 2006


Stumped for a thoughful gift idea for "the man who has everything?"

Ok- THIS is hilarious.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Take that, jogging bitches!

I used to ride my bike while my dad ran in the evenings, when I was a kid. When we passed people, they'd acknowledge us- you'd always wave or say hi. That's still the case in a lot of places.

I have been running/walking alternately with the dogs in the mornings, at least 4 days a week. It's working out well for me and the dogs, so that's good.

Anyway. There are at least two men who run in the early mornings- they both always wave to me and say good morning.

The jogging bitches, however, are a different story.

First of all, they both wear matching jackets with the reflective stripe, and they both are talking effortlessly as they jog past me.

Secondly, they have never once acknowledged my prescence in any way.

The first time I saw them, I waved- and nothing. Did they not see me?

This is not likely. I have two panting 90 lb. dogs, and I am gasping for air, so I am not exactly inconspicuous. The second time I saw them, I said, "HI!"

Nothing. And I know they heard and saw me, because they stopped talking when they rounded the corner of the street I was on.

Ooooookay. Am I polluting their air with my fatness? Are they anti-dog? What the hell?

I don't know why this bothers me so much. but it does: I want to find out where they live and let my dogs defile their begonias.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

O Christmas Tree

Date night tonight was great. I skipped the gym, but I did manage to go out this morning and walk the dogs.

The Man and I hit CPK, and I ordered a salad with the dressing on the side like a sycophant good girl. I decided to do a small splurge and have a few bites of the dessert we ordered- apple crisp with vanilla ice cream and caramel syrup. What can I say- I am a sucker for caramel! Three bites later, The Man coaxed me into a fourth bite, and then I ceremoniously put down the spoon.

Then we headed to Target, and picked out our Christmas tree. It's a nice 7 foot Noble Fir, there is just enough room for our star to fit on top without touching the ceiling. I will post pics when we get all the lights and decorations on.

It took a lot of maneuvering to got the thing set up- we had to move a big table, and then a bunch of chairs and my spinning wheel and a cabinet sewing machine got to visit a few different rooms before we achieved a workable layout. But it's worth it- I do love the smell of a real tree!

I did go to the gym last night, which was surreal, because the place has been REMODELED completely since the last time I have been in there. Whoops. It's nice though, they have more machines, and I actually got to hop directly onto an elliptical without sticking my name on a list or anything. I had a great workout, although I noticed discrepancies between my Polar monitor and the figured produced by the machine. Hmmmmmm......

I also bit the bullet and took my measurements today. There's a wakeup call I really didn't want to answer. I suppose it could be worse- I could have kept ignoring the weight gain until I was back where I was in March! Ironically, the only thing that has actually gotten bigger than my initial measurements is my bustline- by an inch. Everything else is smaller or the same. I guess I should be thankful!

In other news, the Grinch seems to have paid my brother a visit. When my bro and his wife came home from work today, they realized that someone had stolen a bunch of their Christmas decorations. How awful is that? Gotta love Sacramento...although, I know this happens in Fresno too. There are some really messed-up people out there.

Monday, December 04, 2006

I Ran...(so far away)

The End.

No, seriously, I did.

Mostly because I could feel the jeans getting a mite snug. But also because I looked at my two mutts outside, and realized that they needed exercise as much as I do.

Plus, I was up at 6AM for no discernable reason, and it was either exercise, or clean the catbox. (Aha! I have found my source of negative motivation!)

So we went out into the freezing cold, and I ran, and walked, and ran, and walked...and also tested out my new Polar Heart Rate Monitor.

I was a little intimidated at first, but I can actually see how this would be a really great motivational tool. First of all, when you are a Big Girl, it's difficult to get a fair picture of calories burned. It was something I didn't even think about, until I realized how many more calories I burned when I used the elliptical machine than when I used the treadmill, or looked up the data on an aerobics class.

Then I finally had that epiphany- HELLO, the only thing that you actually plug your weight into is the elliptical machine. What are those other weight formulae based on? The assumption that since you are a woman, you weigh somewhere in the neighborhood of 120-150 lbs. Which in my case, is laughable. If one of those women put 100 lbs in a back pack and set off up the hill in her Nikes, she might come close.

So I set up my Polar Monitor, and lo and behond! It states that my walk/run combo this morning burned almost 400 calories in a half hour, and also reminded me to bump my heart rate up into the ideal "target area". (Whatever the hell that is. I haven't dome it yet, because it requires some mad mathematical skillz which I totally do not have.)So it will, I am sure, warn me if my ventricles are going to explode, or something. It also stores your highest heart rate achieved, the median heart rate of your workout, calories burned, and exercise time.

I plugged it all into Fit Day, and set some new goals- my final goal is my birthday next year. It spat out my caloric limits and ideal weight loss per week, so it's totally do-able and healthy.

I have been slacking, and making excuses. A big one has been the pregancy thing. Ideally, if you want to get pregnant, you're supposed to take it easy on the exercise and not be dieting. Yes, that policy's been working great for me so far!

The other side of the double-edged sword is that it's supposed to be easier to get PG if you are at your ideal weight. So I have decided to play with the other side of the odds, and not make excuses anymore. If I get pregnant(by some miracle) my body won't be under a lot of stress; I prevented myself from lowering my allowable amount of calories. I want to be happy and have some wiggle room, since this is going to be...


Well, let's face it. It's the rest of my life, this ongoing battle with weight. I want to be healthy and active, to stay around for The Man, and to eventually be one of those moms out there on the playground, playing as hard as their kids do. And while I can exercise without dieting and lose pounds and inches, dieting without exercising does not have the same effect. Skinny is not the goal here- healthy is.

What kind of lunatic starts a diet two weeks before Christmas?!

I guess you're looking at her.