Random review - Addidas Climacool shirts

In my experience, Addidas ClimaCool fitness shirts are sucktastic if you actually want to use them for their intended purpose and not just hang out and look cute and athletic in them. Seriously - I bought my cute hot pink addidas Climacool shirt for hiking in Arizona and while there I baked in it, but thought it was just the desert temps that I wasn't used to that were making me overheat (it was +29C and, you know, a desert) and so I washed it and forgot about it until this morning when I was running around to grab my gear and make the bus and grabbed this shirt again in a rush to give it another try...and bleh. I was so hot and sweaty in it I felt like I was wearing a plastic bag. No breathing at all...I sweated like a cold can of beer on a hot day... sweat trickled down into my eyes and I could not cool off, even with the bigass gym fan pointed at me. True, it did wick sweat off me, but it made me sweat more because it just didn't breathe. To be fair it was spin and sculpt class with yelley Mel so I was working my ass off, but I kept moving nearer to the giant fan in the sculpt section in a desperate attempt to not overheat. I would wear this shirt as a regular shirt (it is nicely styled and fits well) but for my actual workouts? Maybe as a fall outdoor running shirt or hiking but definitely NOT for an intense sweat it up shirt. I like tanks and shirts that that breathe and even my el cheapo $12 Costco workout tank breathes better than this thing.
So in my opinion -save your $$$ - SO not worth it... I haven't felt nauseous from nearly overheating in a fitness class since the AC broke in the building during a packed spin class...

OK rant done.

Hi :)
As you can tell from my rant above, my morning workout class was very sweaty and hot, but I did push myself and worked out hard. It's friday and I'm so glad. It's been an odd week with a lot of bad new for close friends of mine and drudgery at work and I'm glad to send it off into the ether. Thankfully I have a full docket of useful things to do at work today and then a relaxing evening set up for myself before we get up nice and early to go visit Dad for a few days. I need to unwind and my dad's cabin/home is the best place in the world for that for me. Add in that it's J's birthday and I will be making cake and some of my canned peaches....and yay :)

Hope you all have a nice long weekend. See you on the flipside :)

well, that was good

This morning was spin class with Jocelyn. I love her - happy but intense. There was tension, jumps, tabatas...and sweat :) I worked hard to try and force the ennui out of my toes feel fantastic at the moment. I even did a bunch of ab and back work after since I had 10 minutes and I am ready for my day.
I'm starting to get excited about my mini holiday mid september. My sister is flying in to visit from Ottawa and we're going to go up and visit my dad at the lake for  a week. Both J and her husband have to work so we'll be able to relax and just veg and catch up with each other and Dad in my favourite place on earth. On my bus ride in this morning I decided I am going to start putting together bodyweight and jogging workouts for the lake. I really want to spend time getting back in touch with how I feel and exercising for the good of my soul on my own time and not just in the early morning as part of my day...there has got to be a lot of bodyweight stuff I can do to put together a few solid bootcampy outdoor workouts and I might even be able to convince my sister to do them with me. That would be a blast.
Buuuuut...for now, I shall eat my breakfast and get down to work. Another long day of work in sciencetown awaits me.
Later taters...


Lately work has been meh. I'm not gonna lie...I'm not feeling it. Trying to reboot and work hard, but it's not easy. Both of us are feeling stressed about work lately and have been taking evenings to unwind together. Monday night was a 3 hour walk out in the woods. Last night was snuggly popcorn movie night. It's the little things :)
This morning I tried to focus some angst outward and gave it my all in sculpt class. Mel was back and made us work hard and I feel really good physically now for putting in the full effort.
As for the rest of it? Today I vow to take each hour as it is and try to do my best so that at the end of the day I feel good about what I've accomplished and can relax a bit.
Trying to remember that it is only two more days until I can go visit my dad and decompress in the woods all weekend. Just have to make it there...

Granola bars

I have been hunting for a good granola bar recipe that isn't sweet to stop buying processed snacks and I do believe I have found it. Made it tonight and LOVE them. They are a bit crunchy...
4 T almond butter
3 T honey
3 1/2 T agave syrup
big splash of vanilla extract
1 T brown sugar
1 1/2 c puffed rice 
1/2 c Grape-Nuts or All Bran
1 1/2 c rolled slow oats (I used porridge oats cuz there's a little bran and flax in them too)
1/3 c dried fruit- used blueberries this time if you're curious
1/4 c raw pumpkin seeds
1/3 c raw sunflower seeds 
~1/2 t cinnamon (to taste- I just sprinkled it all over the place)

1. Preheat oven to 325 F. Line 8- or 9-inch square pan with a parchment paper (you want longer ends than the length of the pan).
2. Warm butter, honey, syrup, vanilla and brown sugar until sugar has melted and butter has thinned.
3. Mix dry ingredients in big bowl and dust with cinnamon. Pour liquid on top, mixing as you go.
4. When everything is equally, fully coated, spread the mixture into the pan. Press mixture down with long ends of the parchment paper really well. Bake for about 25 minutes until it starts to brown. Push down again and let cool completely before you cut them into 12 bars and devour.


Quick pop in to log and say hiya.
This weekend I relaxed a lot, made some potato bread and got a few things done...set up and organized my laundry area cupboard and generally futzed about, reading, seeing The World's End (very funny movie, just my sense of humour - recommend it) and just recharging. It was nice. Nothing major...just life.
This morning I crawled out of bed and came in for spin and sculpt. It was with the unexcitable instructor, but it was a solid workout so I feel ready for the day.
Gotta ruN!

The pie police aren't real you know

Last night I got to hang with an old friend and share her happy news...I won't say it out loud yet cuz I don't want to jinx anything after their years of waiting...maybe you can already guess what it is. But yes...good things :) We went out for coffee and pie at the local book store coffee shop to celebrate...and a first happened. For both of us. Yup - we couldn't finish it. We both had a mocha and a piece of coconut pie which wasn't very big, toasting the news with full forks...and half way through we were done with both coffee and pie. We agreed next time we would share the pie and have tea instead.
There aren't a lot of things I love and will do my best to finish (especially if I have to pay for it) but coffee and pie is one of them...and I walked away from 1/3 of my pie and 1/2 my coffee. I'll let that sink in - I didn't finish pie or coffee. I know. It was very rich and I had thoroughly enjoyed what I had...and was done. Heather and I have both changed our eating in the last few years...and it really is true what they say that once you eat well your body tells you what it needs. Why cram in food just to finish and feel bloated and bleh - you don't need to. The food police will not come and arrest you. Honest. They didn't come.
Yup -still learning every day :)

And so this morning, with nary a foodbaby remaining I came in to work out. There was no class but I made up my own workout. 3 rounds through of:
-10 pickup and shoulder 15 Lb, deep squat and put it back down. Alternate shoulders.
-10 pushups
-10 side arm raises T style (8 Lb)
-10 front arm raises T style (8 Lb)
-10 lawn mower weight pickup and standing row on both arms (15 Lb weight)
-10 forward lunge with side twist (8Lb), both legs
-20 switch lunges (still hate these...)
-20 hanging ab crunches
-20 back extensions
Then I hopped on the interval program on the elliptical for 28 minutes and called it a day.

Now I get to finish friday off nicely and look forward to the weekend. It's been a long week so I am looking forward to it. I have to rack my apricot wine and think I'll try my hand at trying a new food recipe, as well as see a movie with J and friends. Read the new book I picked up last night. Drink lots of tea.
I'm relaxing just typing this.

Have a great weekend everyone. Hug the ones you love and celebrate the little things.
Life is good :)


Ha HA!
So close to friday. But not yet.
Last night I got to visit with my brother and his wife and play board games and visit a bit with their old Japanese student...she was so jet lagged! Poor thing - she managed to last the evening but I bet she sleeps most of tomorrow. Nothing like 26 hours travelling to wipe you out! We visited a bit and nibbled on all the weird snacky foods she brought us from Japan. I love Japanese snacks...they are so...bizarre. And the labels do not give any hint to what's in them... it's mystery snacking! :) Lots of different kinds of little packs of crackers, cookies, chocolate bits and fish jerky. Mmm.
In the end I got home late and then stayed up to visit with J a bit and add the strawberries to my beer and then do some errands...a late night. But, I still got up for my workout today. Woot! It was spin class with Mimi. It was a good one-I like her. She's mid-50s and kicks ass and is very inspiring as an instructor. A good sweaty way to start your day.

And so, I'm here with a bunch of coffee to keep my eyes open and get things done.
Here goes thursday! :)

goodbye money, we'll miss you

Last night we met with the contractors to finalize the re-shingling and resurfacing of our roof, capping off the chimney and installing new eavestrough. I am satisfied we will get the best quality materials and the company seems decent enough and doesn't appear to be gouging us...I just wish it didn't come to $10K with tax, but what can ya do? The roof is rather important on a house and ours is in pretty terrible shape...it's also low sloping so it's prone to leaks and needs particular kinds of roofing materials. Meh. Just crossing my fingers everything will go well and we'll be set for another 20 years or so. I kinda had to arrange it mostly on my own, so I worry that I somehow screwed up, but you do what you need to do and then move on. With amounts that large floating around I get all nervous...a friend of a friend works for a roofing contractor so we could pick his brain about things and he thinks things seem reasonable so I'm not going to worry...much...


This morning I came in for sculpt class and had a solid overall workout. Today is another busy day and then dinner at my brother's house. One of his old exchange students is back form Japan to visit and it will be nice to see her again :).

We have normality. I repeat, we have normality...

Good morning little taters.
Mellow and happy are we here at Casa Geo. The heat wave seems to be lifting and it's time for breezy evening strolls at sunset (oh sun, why are you starting to set so early? Was it something we said?) and tasty salads of garden fresh veggies. Fall is starting - my favourite time of year. Soon the leaves will start to turn...and if we're very lucky here in the "windy city" they'll stay on the trees a bit for us to gawk at.

This AM I came in to spin class. Sweaty hard spin class with Jocelyn. I added in 2 rounds through of 6 ab and back exercises and called it done for the day. Whew...class seemed too long. I *have* been away from things for too long. Classes are starting on campus and soon the gym will be packed again (sigh) so I'm trying to enjoy the last few weeks of fitness classes before it's a coin toss as to whether I even get to fit in them or not...

It's a blue moon tonight - hoping for clear skies and another night stroll with my J. The rest of the week is full up of work and family obligations so I'm hoping for another mellow night like last night. Hope you all have a fabulous day. I'm off to roll up my sleeves and help someone decommission their lab. Courage.

Can can can you do the can can

So yeah -I am digging the canning. It was hades hot outside all weekend so I hid inside with the AC and Geeked Out reading Sandman comics and watching old Doctor Who with J...and also made stuff all weekend with fresh fruit and produce from the farmers market. Yep, I now have 5 jars of canned peaches in light syrup, peach vanilla bourbon jam (seriously the best thing ever ever ever), peach raspberry gewurztraminer jam (also scrummy) and rhubarb raspberry ginger jam (yup). I found low sugar pectin so I could cut the sugar a bit to my tastes. Mmmm. I also made a few jars each of pickled garlic, pickled jalapenos and spicy dilly beans. Then I was suckered in by saturday morning's farmers market fresh veg and ended up picking up enough to make 7 jars of spicy salsa on sunday too. I have to wait for the pickles but I've tried everything else as I canned it and oh...yeah...I'm totally doing this every fall from now on. Making delicious things I can't get elsewhere and knowing it came from local farmers is amazing.   My table is covered with jars of things. Me hee.
After lab work and doing large scale restaurant work in uni I found it to be not too hard to do at all. The salsa was an exercise in chopping, but so tasty and worth it :).
This morning I was up as I promised myself and in for my workout. It was yelly Mel for spin and sculpt and she made us work hard. I feel great. I can tell it's been too long away as I had to go down in weights from what I usually do, but I tried my best. A great way to start the week.
Hope you all had a nice weekend! I'm off to a great start with the new week...

this is the way we brew the hootch...

After starting up some strawberry beer last night (cuz there just isn't enough hootch brewing around here) I spent last night talking an old friend through some stuff and in the end was up very late again. J worked all evening and will work this evening again...so tonight I will get to canning my peaches, and maybe my beans. Saturday I will try some jalapenos and jam. I'm trying to just try out a few things I know I'd like so I figure dilly beans, pickled garlic and jalapenos is a good start along with some peach jam and maybe even peach raspberry jam. I may peter out before the last jam...or I may even try apple butter...we shall see. I have all the stuff I need for canning now so since J has to work tonight I will transform myself from brewmaster into canmaster and get to it.
This week has been a bit of a write-off for workouts. It's finally good and hot here and the heat makes me feel headachey and ill so by the time I get in and cool off and feel normal I'm usually onto something else. Even the bus ride in to work this morning has me feeling meh. I know some people love the heat but I'm happy when it stays around 24 C.
In the end though it comes down to this: My life and workout schedule is way out of whack and I need to get back to it. I know consistancy is the key, so there's no excuses.
Hope you are having a nice week. I am :)

quote of the week

"Do you remember that great story about that hobbit who told Gandalf to fuck off, and sat at home picking his hairy toes all day before his entire village was swallowed up by the armies of darkness? No. No you bloody don’t. So put on your backpack and get out there, Frodo" ~Grant

Vino Geo

Made a veg and bean salad last night for supper that was insanely fresh and delicious. It has fresh lime juice and cumin and walnut oil. A nice way to end a long work day. We finally got a quote on our roof repairs and altho it's gonna hurt, it is good to know the costs and I think we've found a decent company to do it, so I need to book them this week so that before winter we will have a new roof  with new eaves again. I can't wait for no more leaks...our roof is low sloped and it's been getting leakier and leakier with the years. My half assed patching attempts have done nothing and I can't repaint the ceiling where it's leaked through until we fix the roof, so we're just sucking it up to get it fixed. Knowing the work to be done was the trickiest part. I'm hoping it's easier from here. I love our old house, but there was a reason we got a deal on it! It needs new everything... :P

On a happier note I was up late last night racking my blueberry wine in to the carboy (and getting it all over the walls...ahem) and starting up a mini-batch of apricot wine. You're supposed to measure specific gravity to get ideas of how the fermentation is going but with blueberry wine there is so much fruit in the way the hydrometer won't float well...so it's mystery strength wine...oooooh! Tasted OK when I got a mouthful siphoning so I'm not worried.
I have never tried apricot wine before but I had 2 Lb of apricots so I thought I would give it a go. It makes 1 gallon so it's not too much...experimental to see if I want to make more next year. I got started late after we headed out on a nice long evening walk in the to the library to grab a few books.  J has some good reading for the next few days and I have some canning books to read through before a saturday of canning. The librarian forgave J's fines for him (really nice of her!). A really nice evening...but very late.

And so...ended up very tired today. Slept in and had some oatmeal before crawling in to work...tried to get up early and wimped out. I must get back into mornings more. Summers are so very random and lovely and I can't bring myself to go to bed early when the sun is still up. It'll be dark soon enough :)

Geo's day off

I did nothing all weekend but hang out with my J and it was everything I hoped it would be :). 13 years...*grin*

We saw a few Fringe plays (two which were just outstanding) and relaxed away the weekend sipping wine and eating peaches...and peach pie. OMG. I made peach pie. Have you ever had a fresh peach pie? No? If not, well...you're missing out on life's goodness to you. It's pretty much my favourite food of all time (and that is saying something). It is a little slice of heaven you only get once a year when the orchards grace us with proper ripe fruit. I picked up 20Lb of BC peaches at the farmer's market on saturday and plan to spend all this week using it up deliciously. Made a few pies (froze one for later) and will make some preserves and jam this week too.
Today is back at work and tonight I have to rack over my blueberry wine to the carbuoy and start up a small batch of apricot wine with some other fruit I picked up as well. I also have a batch of fruit beer to get going so our cellar will be all stocked up for another year.
Ans yes, tonight I'll work out as penance for my weekend of indulgence. For now, tho,  it's coffee and work time.

Hope you all have a fabulous day and your weekends were glorious too. :)


Long week. So glad it's friday. It's my anniversary on monday so J and I took the day off to spend together...it will be nice to have another long weekend together. As a gift to ourselves we went out last night and got new pillows and a nice set of 400 count cotton sheets. Yay for new sheets :)

This morning the spin and sculpt instructor was sick (not too dissapointed, since it was el blando) so I modified a ZWOW and did 30 minutes interval on the elliptical afterwards. The workout was 3 rounds through:
-20 weighted deep squats with alternating side twists (10 lb)
-10 cross legged pushups
-15 roundhouse/cross body kicks (each side)
-10 clean and press (35 Lb)
-10 four pointed weighted punches (2 X10 Lb, punch to each toe and to each alternating high corner)
-10 box step ups with high knee (each side)
-15 V-sit crunches

I forgot how I'm hungrier when I workout. It should take a few more days before I get used to the hungries again...right now I'm trying to keep to regular meals with more proteins and not get "hangry" by missing out on lots of water and a healthy snack when I need one.

Overall though -I feel oh so nifty. This weekend should be sunny but cool so hopefully we can see a few more Fringe plays and go for a few hikes and maybe even have a picnic. I'm hitting up the BC fruit truck for fresh peaches on saturday and plan on canning some preserves and making some pies....and just eating a few fresh ones...maybe grilling a few on the BBQ and drizzling them with greek yogurt and maple syrup. Mmm...there is nothing like an orchard ripe peach...
Anyways, hope you all have a fabulous weekend! I plan to :)


I thought I had a family things last night but had the date wrong, so I had a free evening and I was quite lazy since J worked all evening. I spent last night scheming and looking for recipes for peach ginger preserves and pickling things...specifically jalapenos and salsa. Anyone have a good salsa recipe?? :)

This morning I came in for spin class with el blando instructor. Solid workout but she was quiet and monotone...boring. Still, glad I worked out. I threw in some ab stuff at the end and now I'm in for work and feeling all spiffy.

Tasty food alert: Last night for supper I made this salad...I subbed rice for quinoa since quinoa hurts mah belleh and subbed parsley for cilantro since it tastes like soap to me and...wow. So very tasty and fresh. I have more for lunch today...hooray :)

Must dash. Lots to do today.
Later taters.

Finding my own way back

Second day back at the gym and the instructor was a no show. But the 3 of us who had showed up made our own workout...it was pretty decent :) It was good to get sweaty again and I feel fantastic! My workout was two times through 20 reps of the following exercises followed by 30 minutes on a hill program on the elliptical and some stretching:
-squat + side leg raise (with 15Lb bar)
-good mornings (with 15Lb bar)
-bent row (with 15Lb bar)
-clean and press (with 15Lb bar)
-deadlift (with 15Lb bar)
-dragon curtsy squats
-bicep curls (8Lb)
-tricep extensions (8Lb)
-bent back fly (5Lb)
-side and front T- raises (5 Lb)
-shoulder press (with 15Lb bar)
-kettlebell swing (10Lb)
-bird dogs
-(10 only) pushup + planked knee to elbow crunch each side 2 times

Last night was grocery haul for the month. Finally able to take advantage of the deep freeze. Spent a bit more $$ than usual, but we are well stocked up now with canned goods and frozen veg, a case of chicken breasts and I've made 2 dozen homemade burgers from scratch for us. I am determined to make as much of our food from scratch as I can and keep things healthy. Even picked up some materials so I can do a bit of jam making and pickling this month. I want to try a few small batches of pickled beans and garlic and chutneys and jams. My mum in law has the canning stuff and offered to lend it to me to try out so I need the jars and what goes in them to start. Should be fun.
And now?

Long weekend? Yes please.

This weekend was a lovely long weekend. Saturday was a bit of a bizarrity (babbled about it on my other blog), but the rest of it was nice and relaxing with BBQs, Fringe festival plays and a rainy day relaxing and reading the new Ben Goldacre book Bad Pharma (which I would HIGHLY recommend if you want to know more about the current flaws and problems in the pharmaceutical and medical research...prepare to get angry!), starting up a few cider batches, sipping wine and just spending time with J, which doesn't happen enough. I feel grounded.
This morning it is back to the basics again and a commitment to being constant. Consistancy, for me, is the big winner and balancer at the end of the day. For the next month until my sister comes to visit mid september (meep) I pledge to workout my 5 mornings a week and eat balanced and settle back into life. My health is a priority along with work and other life things. This morning I crawled out of bed reluctantly at 520 and was in to the spin class. A whole month off and I didn't die, although I admit I could have :P. And so, I feel great.

Old friends

Spent last night catching up with my friends...it's a great thing when a best friend of yours marries a best friend of your husband :) Add to that their smart well behaved and generally awesome kids and, well, we just don't get to see them enough. Wish they were closer....and am so glad they could stop in on their way through for a bit. We went out for indian buffet and then just went for a long walk by the river and hung out until late late late. Now they are off in the car again to a family reunion and I am on my way to work. It's a long weekend here and I am really looking forward to a weekend here at home. I've got schemes for the farmer's market, a few errands and then hitting some shows at the Fringe festival with my luv. Here's hoping for a good weekend and a relaxing monday off.

Hope you all have a great day and a great weekend. Take the time to hug the ones you love and smile like a kid at the good things....because life is good :)

I am the sleeping king I can do anything

This morning I was a sleeper inner...but for good reason I think. I have learned that good friends of ours and their kids will be coming by to stay the night and I spent the evening cleaning the house, washing sheets... and starting the blueberry wine I've been trying to start up for days. Wine will be ready to pitch the yeast tonight and the house looks pretty spiffy. I must say though... crushing 10Lb of blueberries with your hands is a workout in and of itself :). It all meant I was up late late late and then just as I fell asleep at midnight J got home from shooting Fringe festival stuff and so I woke up again and we visited for an hour or so. So yeah- getting up at 5:30 hurt too much. I had the start of a headache, which didn't bode well so I went back to bed for an hour and feel much better for it. Healthy breakfast and I'm out the door for a good day.

Must dash though. One of our new mass spec lab toys we've been eagerly awaiting (which I think is worth more than my house) is being delivered and set up today and I am excited like a little kid to play with the new toys :). Must go science up the world a bit.
Later taters!