Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Birds: Male California Quail

Recently I got a new lens for my camera. I found a 70-300mm on KSL and got it for a great price since it had been dropped. The seller had sent it in to Canon for a check up and had proof of that so I was fine with that. The lens was chosen for Dancesport and Nature. I have been using the lens primarily for Dancesport competitions up until now. 

This is a Male California Quail from my backyard in Provo, UT taken just yesterday. He was hanging with a few friends that were deeper in the brush. It was nice to be able to take this photo without disturbing him.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Getting Fit: My Fitness Pal

Earlier this week I joined MyFitnessPal.com. I had heard of it before but wasn't inclined to join. Two weeks ago I joined a Dietbet. I follow Chris Powell on facebook and he and his wife posted that they were about to start one. For some reason it caught my eye and so after a day of contemplating I decided to go for it. 

Basically you submit a bet (in this case $30) and then you attempt to lose 4% of your body weight in 4 weeks. When it's all over everyone that has participated and won splits the pot (less fees to pay the judges and such). The pot is currently over $119K. Sure there are also 3900+ players but from checking out past Dietbets it looks like the average number if winners is about half or less.  My goal beyond weight loss of course is to get my money back and I plan to join another one for sure. 

I took my before/weigh in photo standing on a scale in what they call airport attire (gym shorts and a T-shirt) and included a picture of my weight on the scale (required). Once you get verified you begin. 

My first week was pretty much a failure. I spent the majority of the week at the BYU National Dancesport competition and munched on trail mix. I guess it was a bad idea. I gained and so it was time to get serious. I started Carb Cycling (not super strict) and counting my calories and tracking my food and exercise on MyFitnessPal. It also helps that I have a good friend doing it with me. As of this post I am down 2.2lbs. If you see this a few days later I hope that the number on the ticker has increased. I am doing very well and going strong and I couldn't be happier right now with my success. 

Monday, March 17, 2014

Read: Lakeshore Chronicles #7

The Summer Hideaway by Susan Wiggs

(Lakeshore Chronicles #7)

The Summer Hideaway
In the twilight of his life, George Bellamy makes it his final wish to reconcile with an estranged brother, Charles Bellamy.

George's grandson Ross is ruled by a fierce devotion to family and a deep mistrust of the mysterious Claire . . . yet sparks fly whenever she's near. In the face of a wrenching loss, amid the enchantment of Willow Lake, Ross and Claire dare to risk everything for love.

I breezed right through this one and clearly forgot to post it back when I read it. In this one she introduced some extended family. 

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Getting Fit: Treadmill

Several months ago I found this beauty on KSL. It was only $35 and I was determined to get it home and in place all by myself. The seller and his neighbor put it in my car and I got it out of my car and to the base of my back steps alone. From there I got stuck and was unable to maneuver it up the stairs. It was hard enough getting it that far and it was time to admit defeat. I put a tarp on it and got my friend's husband and my neighbor to get it into the house. Later Nathan said to Celia that he doesn't know how I got it as far as I did. Sometimes I'm just freakishly strong.

It had a bit of a problem with the belt. It would skip as if I was running and then slipped on ice. After researching it a little I lubricated and straightened out the belt. No more slipping for now at least. Now I need use it more regularly and I will be since I just joined DietBet. More on that when I start making progress. I'm pretty excited.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Read. Lakeshore Chronicles #6

Lakeshore Christmas by Susan Wiggs

(Lakeshore Chronicles #6)

Lakeshore Christmas
Maureen Davenport finally gets to direct Avalon's annual holiday pageant, and she's determined to make it truly spectacular. But former child star Eddie Haven is turning out to be a tattooed lump of coal in her stocking. Eddie can't stand Christmas, but a judge's court order has landed him right in the middle of the merrymaking. He and Maureen spar over every detail of the pageant, from casting troubled kids to Eddie's original—and distinctly untraditional—music.

I finished this one pretty quick. So much so that I forgot to post it. It was a fun story. I'm currently reading #7 and I'm almost done. I love this series! I recommend it for sure.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

DIY. TV Wall Mount

I bought a bracket before the holidays and today we finally mounted the TV in the stamp room to the wall. It seemed easy enough and it would have been if the screws they supplied weren't too long and had to be cut to the correct length. Then, once we got it up the bracket slipped a little so we tightened it and the head of the bolt snapped right off. Grrrr. We had to take everything down and start all over remounting it 1" higher since there's a bolt stuck in the wall for good. It's all good but seems a little unsteady so we're going to add an emergency wire (that's what I'm calling it for now) just in case.