Tuesday, December 22, 2009

On the trail...

A few pictures from Sunday's hike with the Sunday Hikers Meetup Group. We headed up Thayne Canyon, a Millcreek Canyon trail I never hiked before. It was a pretty little canyon, especially with all the snow. Like most Millcreek Canyon it was a pretty good uphill trek. The trail was pretty well traveled, we hiked until it narrowed and hit the spot where we would have needed snow shows, probably 3 or 4 miles round trip. Thank goodness for Yaktrax (traction aids for your boots) without then these hilly trails would probably be impossible in the winter. Unfortunately, I stuck my camera in pocket, but left my memory card in my computer, so I could take amy pictures. Thanks Jola, for posting these 2 pictures! It's kind of weird being in photos for a change. I'm the one with Daisy dog!


Sunday, December 20, 2009

Friday, December 18, 2009

My New Man....


So last Sunday we finally had a nice snow storm. Not "The Greatest Snow on Earth" like the old license plates say, but heavy, wet show. Definitely not powder snow.
As I was shoveling the snow off of the driveway it occured to me that it was great snowman snow, something we rarely have, so why not roll great big snowballs to get some of the snow off of my driveway. So I did, and rolled the first big ball to the front yard spot where I wanted my snowman. Then I rolled the second ball over.

Of course the problem is that hefting the second ball up on top of the first ball is a two person job, and I'm a single gal, and my daughter was off visiting her borfriend. So what to do? A ramp,I thought, I needed a ramp. I tried a snowboard, but that didn't work, it was too slippery. Then I spied my rickety old stepladder in the garage. It was perfect, I was able to roll my ball right up to where I wanted it. So see, a single gal can manage just fine on her own with a little innovation!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

And so it begins...


Yup, this week was started the last year of 4th decade.... the countdown to the big 50.... the 20th anniversary of my 29th birthday!!! Na, not the last one I am one of those strange folks that doesn't mind sharing her age, or being her age... except when trying to mountain bike up hill... that's when I wish I was 29 again.

It was a good birthday... my sister sent my the lovely flowers in the picture (she knows I love Santa!), my friend Jason, daughter and I out to dinner, afterwards we had cake with my neighbor Val and her daughter Zoe. The cake was a yummy flourless chocolate torte made my baker extraordinaire daughter. If that wasn't sugar enough one of the grad students in my lab had made me cupcakes.... I think everyone wants me sweetened up.

Interestingly I don't think I've ever had so many birthday greetings... a card from my mom who never forgets... a cool bird feeder from a friend and tons of cyber-greetings. The internet is fun that way. Open a facebook account and everyone remembers your birthday!!!!

If all the birthday greetings weren't enough, mother nature sent my favorite gift... a snow storm!!! What more could a December girl want?!

Friday, December 04, 2009

Tarot Cards

Tonight was Gallery Stroll night at the local art galleries, so I decided to head downtown to see what's up in the art word this month. My favorite gallery stroll stop is Artspace, where there's not only a gallery, but artist studios that are open to public on Gallery Stroll nights.

Linda Dalton Walker is one of the studio artists who's work I like. She does alot of portraits, big vibrant portraits. Normally portraiture isn't really my thing, but I really like hers. It's been interesting to see where she works, and to get to talk with her, and learn a little about her artistic process.

Her recent work includes a series of Tarot Cards that I think are pretty cool. It's been fun to stop by and see her progress on the set. Tonight we chatted a bit about tarot, a subject I really know nothing about. Discussing the fortune telling got me thinking about my future. A number of years ago I had an idea about what my future would be like, but after having my life turned upside down by divorce I realize I have no idea what my future holds anymore. On one hand that is a kind of depressing thought, on the other it is kind of intriguing. I have no idea what adventures, good or bad the future holds. It could be really intersting, it certainly will be different. But would I want to know? Right now, I don't think so. For some reason the thought of predicting my future is a little scary to me. I think I will have to be patient and just see what happens. I don't know if I even believe in tarot, but I'd be hestitant to dabble in it right now anyway. I may, however, be interested in buying a set of Linda's cards when she has them made. Maybe then I will be brave and find someone to read them for me.

So would you want to have your cards read?

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

More from the trail...


November has come and gone without enough snow to give us an early ski season. No big Thanksgiving opener, hopefully we'll get dumped on by Christmas. So instead of hitting the slopes I've been trying to get up in th mountains for a hike every weekend. This weekend I joined the Sunday Hikers Meetup Group for a trek up the Burch Hollow Trail in Millcreek Canyon.

I think we hiked about 3 miles up, and as all the Millcreek Canyon trails go, up means up! We were approaching a nice ridgeline in the distance, which seemed like a good goal, until one of the guys explained to us that while it seems like we should be able to hike to it, it never really get any closer. He appeares to be correct about that, so eventually we decided we needed to turn around and save the ridge for another, longer day.


Turning around was probably a good thing, because sometimes the downhill trek is as hard or harder (especially in the knees) than the uphill one. This time of year the trail conditions range from dry, to snowy, to icy, to thick and muddy. Slip sliding down the icy and muddy sections was a little bit challenging at times, but I'm proud to say I mangaged to stay upright the whole way.

And Daisy of course had a great time. This trail would have done her in during the heat of the summer, but this time of year it was perfect for her.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Belated Holiday Greetings!


I meant to post Thanksgiving Day greetings on Thanksgiving, but somehow it didn't happen... probably because I was too busy cooking. I thought it was going to be a low key dinner, just me and my kids and friend of mine. Then the day before the holiday Matt mentioned that 3 of his friends from college decided to road trip up for the weekend. They have friends here and apparently think Salt Lake is a hip place to come party. So of course I told Matt he could invite them to dinner if they had no other plans, which they didn't, so we ended up with a full house for dinner. After pouring the wine and sitting down I looked at Matts friend who was sitting at the end of the table and said "I guess you have to say grace". The look on his face was positively priceless, he thought I was serious and totally didn't know what to do... until Matt, Sarah and I burst out laughting because we all knew I was kidding. Being the non-religious types we skipped grace and had a nice toast to thankfulness instead. I really enjoyed having all the "boys" over for dinner. It nice to get a glimpse into Matt's college life.

I had a great Black Friday as well. Did I go shopping? Hell no!!! A few friends and I headed up to Crystal Hot Springs for an afternoom of soaking and sunning, followed by a nice dinner at Jeremiahs on the way home. That's my idea of a perfect Black Friday!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Question of the day....


Why would men bother with high maintenance hairdos? Or really, that was my question last night. I went with some friends out to a club to hear a band, and was dumbfounded by the number of guys with high maintenance do's. Not just a little hair gel, but how about a full mohawk that must have stood a foot straight up in the air. It was kind of golden in color and looked interesting when back lit just right. Then there was the guy who sported the "crown". He has a wide, crown like headband, and his hair was styled onto lots of three inch spikes sticking straight up from. How about a short fluffy mohawk colored magenta red. Even the guys with more "normal" styles seemed had hair styles much more fussy than most guys I know. Lot of hair gel or mousse or "product" of somesort. I can't deal with fussy, high maintenance hairdos for myself it's hard to pictures guys wanting to deal with hair hassle, but apparently it's hip, at least with the younger guys!

Monday, October 12, 2009

On the trail...


Yesterday I decided that I should try to take Daisy on more hike up to Dog Lake before the the end of the season. The Big Water Trail is at the very end of of the Millcreek Canyon road, and the upper half of the canyon closes for winter at the end of the month. Sure enough winter has already started up there, with the exception of a couple of west facing dry spots, and some chocolate pudding like wet spots, most of the trail was snow packed from the parking lot up to the lake. It was a tiny bit slippery for me in my hiking boots, but heavenly for Daisy who just loves frolicking in the snow. She must be showing her age (she's 9), for the first time ever she didn't play in the water at lake. It was pretty cold, maybe she's a smart dog after all. We hiked the three miles up ad the three miles down, but it wasn't until I was about 30 feet from the parking lot that I slipped on the ice and landed on my rear...
I'm not sure but I think Daisy laughed at me....



Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Ebay....

Ta da, after a long hiatus, I started listing some beads on ebay again... hopefully someone will find them and like them. Sometime early in the summer my friends wanted to go on bike ride on the night I normally did ebay listings... so I skipped one night. And then it happened again, and again... and the next thing you know I've taken the summer off from ebay. But now it's time to let some beads go... they are kind of weighing down the south side of my house again....

Sunday, October 04, 2009

The Utah Roller Coaster

From my deck...

Wednesday night, from Olympus hills

My backyard, Thursday morning

The other Utah Roller Coaster.... the weather. We get beautiful fall weather and beautiful sunsets. I wish I had brought my camera when I went out to the Park City farmers market (Park Silly) last weekend, the fall colors the blue skies, it was so beautiful. My friend, who drove that day, owns a convertible, and it was positively perfect top down weather. But being Utah things change quickly. Tuesday it was 80 degrees, Wednesday my daughter called me at work, all excited because it was snowing. Thursday we awoke to snow in the yard, and had to scrape the car windshields. The weather coaster is always interesting here.

Friday was my annual pants-a-phobia day.... after only wearing shorts and skirts all summer, the advent of the cold weather meant it was time to put on long pants - for the first time since May. After so long without wearing pants I'm almost phobic about puttingthem on again, thus the first time I wear then is my pants-a-phobia day... the day I have to get over my pants phobia.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A day at the fair...


I recently had a great day bonding with my daughter. We went to the state fair, something we always did as a family, so I was glad she still wanted to go when it was just she and I. I like all the diverse things the fair has to offer, farm animals, flowers, vegetables, fine arts, photography, arts and crafts, vendors selling crazy thing you know nobody really needs. We saw it all... except the giant pumpkins... they moved then this year, and we never found them. Darn.

I'm always fascinated by how they treat the "arts". Quilts and needle work are with the baked goods in the "home arts" building. Paintings and bronzes are the "fine arts". Photography has it's own exhibit, and then there's the "creative arts" which encompasses everything else. This is my favorite exhibit, because it is so absurdly diverse, and such a prime example of the art vs craft argument. Things like stained glass, pottery, woodworking, and jewelry making which can be pretty darn fine art, are displayed right alongside kids diaramas, silk flower arrangements and plastic canvas needlework. Art and kitsch all lumped together,it's kind of sad in a way. This years plastic canvas showpiece was a huge castle sized for Barbie dolls, complete with opulent room fulls of plastic canvas doll furniture. All under glass like fine art.

We checked out all the animals. I love the bunnies, and this year Sarah was in to the cows. Maybe she's her grandfathers girl. He studied animal hubandry, ans worked in the beef industry (If you shopped at Kroger in the '70s and '80s he bought your beef). While other kids dads may have had bowling or golf trophies, my dad had dresser full of cow trophies. Maybe Sarah gets her cow love from him. The cows seemed to love her too, they could probably tell she's a vegetarian! (So maybe she's not that much like PopPop)

And last but not least there were the rides! I have to admit that at first I didn't want to spend the $20+ each to get ride passes, then Sarah pointed out that next year she would be at college so this may be our last fair together. So ride passes it was and ride we did. We rode most everything, to the point we were both a little sick. We rode the most wild one: two arms with cages on the ends that flip you upside down both backward and forwards as the arms spin around. As we aproached the on ramp I had to remind Sarah - "You realize that some high school drop out, with missing teeth, who got drunk last night, put this ride together", but it didn't stop her from wanting to ride. We tossed forward and backwards and spun upside down and just laughed and laughed. The highlight of course was the tilt-a-whirl... We've always been tilt-a-whirl gals. I think we rode 7 times, 5 of them back to back rides! I don't know if the smiling carnie was more amused by how we'd run down the exit ramp then get right back on, or amused that 48 year old woman was racing on and off the ride. A good time was had by all!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

I'm back... I hope





The other day I came home from work and this is how I found my two favorite critters, Daisy and Oreo. Kind of begs the question "What were they doing all day that seem so very worn out?" I certainly don't have any idea!

I can kind of relate to how they appear to be feeling... I have not been feeling at all ambitious since returning from my vacation. I've also been plagued by computer problems... My poor laptop had been acting squirrely for a while, squirrely enough that I wrote all my files and pictures to Cd's at the end of July. Not sure what the problem is... a recalcitrant virus that I can't find and conquer?, a badly bogged down windows OS?, some fried hardware, possibly due to a frayed power cord not replaced soon enough? It finally became a terminal issue, a computer booting to the "blue screen of death", regardless of safe mode or any other trick I could think of. I decided to bite the bullet and and restore my computer back to factory condition. I figured if I had a virus problem or OS problem this should fix it. So after using the Thinkpad recovery program to backdoor my way to hard drive to back up any remaining files I hit the magic nuke and rebuild button.

All good so far, until I realized I couldn't connect to my wireless nework, which had been set up by a now exhusband who apparently never wrote down the passwords. After hours of fretting and being sure I'd never get back on the internet again, I finally got brave and hit the reset button on the router. It's amazing what a big problem your mind can make of something that you don't know how to fix. By some miracle I managed to get everything back up and working and connected in just a few minutes... I guess I didn't need to torture myself with worry after all.

But sadly, after all that and reinstalling some programs, the squirrely problems are back. Some times the computer will work fine for an hour other times it bluescreens every five minutes. The probability of a crash is correlated with how much you have done since your last save: the more you've typed the more apt the computer is to crash before you hit the save button or send the email.

And if that's not bad enough I also had 3 computers terminally crash at work this month...a mother board, a hard disk controller, a power supply. Just try finding parts for a 15 year old computer that runs old but important equipment! UGH! I'm getting kind of sick of computer hell!!! And now I guess I should be thinking about replacing my laptop... double ugh! Can someone please send some good computer karma my way!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Hawaii Again...


I was lucky enough to take my trip to Hawaii because of one of my friends. She had a couple of free condos in Maui because of her travel club membership, and she decided to invite us and some other friends to join them on vacation. Our little travel club consited of me my two girlfriends, one girlfriend's new husband and our 7 kids - three 19 year olds, three 17 year olds and a 13 year old. We have all been friends since our kids all were all toddlers at day care together. With 3 woman, 1 man and 7 kids, all from Utah, the polygamy state, we decided to call our trip the "Sisterwives Tour".

One of fun little excursions was taking the whole family to a luau. The old Lahiana Luau is right along the water were we were treated to yet another lovely sunset. I was a little worried that the kids would all think a luau was lame, but they all enjoyed it as much as we adults did... even if they were a little apalled about the dead pig in the pit!




Our "family" at the luau. Being a big Utah family and all We couldn't all fitat one table, so the 17 year old girls got one of their own.

Aren't they just cute as can be?

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Nerd Humor


One of the guys in my lab has spent most of the summer in a lab in Australia learning new research techniques. He finally sent us postcard this week. I love his quirky sense of humor, sending us a little of his research in the mail. I guess laboratories don't sell post cards to send to your friends back home.... maybe there is an entrepreneurial opportunity there. LOL. Oh, the horizontal white "lines" in the picture in the middle... that's DNA!!!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Vacation...



I guess I took a little vacation from my blogging as well as a real life vacation. The kids and I took a trip to Mauii with some friends. One of our tourist moments was a trip to the top of the Haleakala Volcano to see the sunrise over the crater. Fortunately we did this on our second day there, because still being on "Utah time" (4 hours later) made getting up at 3:30 AM so we could be at the 10,000 ft summit by sunrise a little easier. It was, perhaps, the most spectacular sunrise I've seen in my life. Also a cold one! Even in Hawaii it's darn cold at that altitude! It was also an easy summit, we could drive nearly to the top, and it was only a short hike to the summit... it seems that hiking to 10,000 ft is easier at sea level LOL!


It was Sunday, which for me was actually Son-day, as it was my son's birthday. He thought that rising to see the sunrise was pretty cool way to start his birthday.

Me and my boy, waiting for the sunrise!



Being the the lucky boy he is, he got to end the day in style, as this was the night we chose for a sunset dinner cruise. Sunday, Son-day, Sunrise, Sunset! Sea level to10,000 feet in one day. I think my boy had a great 20th birthday!


Sarah, Matt and the setting sun!

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

My Universary...


Yeah, today was the day... My Universary. That's my name for the day that would have been my anniversary had my marriage not come to such a sad demise. Having divorced 18 months ago this was 2nd Universary, but it was kind of a big one, because had things worked out the way they should have it would have been my 25th aniversary.

I was a little worried about getting depressed, so I figured the best thing to do was to stay busy... fortunately one of my hiking, biking buddies suggested we join the local Meetup mountain biking group for a ride. So after work we headed out to the Glenwild trail in Park City. The coordinators split up us into two groups, a beginner type group (most of my friends and I) and a more advanced, gonzo, type group. Mike, who led our group was really patient with us beginner types, and he gave us some great instuction. With the exception of one of my friends taking a bad spill, it was a really nice ride.

My other anti depression plans was to invite my buddies over to meet my friend Miss Rita (Margy-Rita!)after the ride. I thought it would just be the four of us, but the rest of the biking group was so nice I ended up inviting everyone for the apres-ride margarita party.

It's always interesting when you open up and are friendly to strangers. It turns out the coordinator of the group lives a couple of blocks away. One of the women, was also a recent divorcee, another woman lives near by and was sure she knew me, turns out are kids played on a soccer team together, and we have several common friends. Every turn of the conversation we found commonalities. My old friends, my new friends, we all had fun talking and laughing! We even toasted my Universary. I can't think of the last time I had so much fun inviting a bunch of strangers to my house. I think it's something I should do more often. Turned out to be just the thing I needed on what could have easily been such a dreary day! Reach out and be friendly. it may just bring you happiness!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Watch Me Create!



Wow. I can tell it's summertime... I've been too busy (hiking, biking, socializing) to keep up with my blogging.... guess I'll be posting some retro-blogs soon.

Meanwhile, today you can find me entertaining teenagers over on Watch Me Create!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Hiking again... Alexander Basin

Today I hiked with the Wasatch Hiking Meetup Group up to Alexander Basin In Millcreek Canyon. This hike was not for the faint of heart. It wasn't very long, only a mile and a half up to the basin,but it was steep, but about a 1300 ft elevation gain. This trail went pretty much straight up the hill with hardly any switch backs. And I mean UP! It was definitely humbling for me, as I was the slow one in the group, something that I'm usually not. Proof I really need to loose the extra weight I guess(or shave off some years as I always seem to be the "old" one in the group)

The wild flowers were incredible, and we got to see a great big bull moose!





This shot reminds me of the ending scene from "The Sound of Music"


Look close there's a moose in there!


Some wildlower pictures of course!