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Month: November 2020

thanksgiving aka foodfest

thanksgiving aka foodfest

really, does 2020 have anything to be thankful for? i mean, i guess i’m thankful that the orange psycho wasn’t reelected, but of all the detritus that 202 has thrown at us, and for how awful the OP is, that’s a pretty low bar.

to be fair, i did miss that jane wasn’t joining me for tday. this year was the 10-year anniversary of our super awesome black friday shopping (i got a $500 fridge, we used two expired coupons, and won a scratch-off lottery ticket). and while we did watch die hard at the same time, it just wasn’t the same. sigh. next year.

but, i did make food. in fact, i am still eating food. specifically, pie. my pumpkin pie was ginormous! and there are leftovers galore. i’m gonna have to freeze some turkey.

i always have good intentions with taking pics with my good camera, but it’s sadly just easier in the moment to grab the phone camera. anyway, here are some food pics.

i’ve been using this brine since before the pioneer woman sold out to food network. it makes an organic, additive-free turkey delicious.

spatchcocked bird! i roasts in about an hour and a half/hour 45. it’s so much quicker. maybe some year i will try putting it on the grill.

i found a butterscotch tart in a martha stewart magazine last fall and had to try it out. it’s so good.  

obligatory pecan pie because nate requested it and hates pumpkin pie.

then there’s my pumpkin beauty. it’s pretty zingy this year because i made the filling while i was drunko and kept adding stuff. it’s also a little sweeter than i’d prefer, but you know what? pumpkin pies are easy peasy to make (like seriously, the filling is three ingredients and then spices), and i have a metric ton of pumpkin yet, so i may just make another one.

i picked up some dinner rolls from a bakery in st joe (the dinner rolls megan and i had at krewe restaurant – omg they are to die for) and i got some flowers while i was there. you can see my just-in-time-completed puzzle on the table.

not a bad spread. i love squash.

time for die hard! and some stan on the lap! (the halloween cat house has since been retired for the season.)

omg it’s a yeti sighting! nate’s bday is today. he’s 43 yikes.

random things for the start of a long weekend

random things for the start of a long weekend

a few mini reviews:

  1. the new shoes i just got are pretty awesome so far. i tried the past few runs without my dumb orthotic and lo – no pain! it’s got a mid-ish heel drop (8mm – not zero but not 13mm like asics), and it’s made for flat footed peeps like myself. i’ve only been on the treadmill so far, and it actually seems to help with the weird hip/knee pain i’d been having, too, after transitioning to indoors. i’ hoping to get out for a couple outdoor runs this week, and we’ll see how they do on the asphalt!
  2. my new phone didn’t come with headphones, which i use for phone calls mostly, so i went to amazon to get a pair of apple brand ‘phones. in the past i’ve had pretty good luck with amazon warehouse items – returned items that have been repackaged or just no packaging for a lot cheaper. so i bought a pair thru that. and they are NOT apple. when i plugged them in, they wanted to connect via bluetooth, which was the opposite of what i wanted with these. so, i returned them and tomorrow i’m heading to target to an actual pair of apple headphones. thanks amazon.
  3. blind-baking pie crusts for pumpkin pie soooooo makes sense, but the last couple time i tried blind baking a pie, it shrunk up. so, after watching some videos and looking a an expert baker’s instagram today, i think i’m ready to try another blind baked crust tomorrow when i make some pies. is this a mini review? maybe it will turn into one tomorrow when i try it out.
  4. MAYBE tomorrow i will debut “drunk baking with kate” on my youtube channel. wouldn’t that be interesting.
  5. and here’s a final review on super long weekend. i love thanksgiving weekend because you get all the hard stuff front loaded and then the rest of the weekend is for relaxing. i took wednesday off, so i have a nice, long, 5-day-drinking weekend HAHA.

now i’m off to do some yoga. i’m not sure if i should take a short break from fightmaster yoga or if doing yoga with her while i’m still sad about her death would be good. i’ll try tonight and see how it goes. what a loss to the world.

the light in me honors the light in you

the light in me honors the light in you

my first blog mention of fightmaster yoga is in october of 2014. i’ve been doing almost exclusively fightmaster yoga on youtube for 6 years, and on a daily basis for the past two years. her yoga is for everyone – 10-mintue yoga, beginner’s yoga, vinyasa flow yoga, hour+ ashtanga yoga, meditation, breathing, slow, fast. over new year’s, she’d do a challenge and new videos would get uploaded every day. otherwise, she’d upload a video about once a week. she has 673 videos on her youtube channel and more in her myyogapal app that she created with her husband.

i chose lesley because of the way her voice sounded and how she only expected the best we could do – not the full iteration of the pose. as long as you feel a stretch, that’s all that matters. there’s no enlightenment at the bottom of a split – just a sweaty yoga mat. every day i turned on a video and followed her easy instructions as i flowed through poses, listening more than watching. her quotes and affirmations at the end of the practice leave me feeling refreshed every time. her positive attitude and easy smiles are what makes me come back to her videos. i had wanted to go to one of her retreats or do yoga teacher training with her, or even just go to california and do a personal yoga practice with her. after the pandemic was over, it was my plan to find a way to go to her next yoga retreat.

this morning i found out that she died unexpectedly.

i’m on her email list, and her husband (duke) wrote to her followers with the news along with her last video upload. i don’t know what happened or how she died; duke is usually forthcoming, and i expect that he will update later on, but given the situation, i understand why there is no explanation right now.

i didn’t know lesley personally, but i still knew her. she was a voice i looked forward to every day (and still will in her old videos). she was a voice that i knew would always calm and relax me. she was a centered voice and an available voice. she was a voice that didn’t expect anything but the most you could do in the moment.

this it gut-wrenching. i will miss her.

namaste, lesley.

xennials know. WOMEN know.

xennials know. WOMEN know.

i just tweeted about this, but here is basically the “unroll” of my tweet thread about my experience this evening in the target electronics department!

after being in st cloud earlier today and seeing the crowds, i decided to wait until late evening to head to target so i could avoid crowds and covid. i was in search of a bluetooth speaker that didn’t suck so i could listen to podcasts and music in the kitchen. a reasonable thing to want. i found a JBL flip that seemed to have decent sound when i turned on the sample for 1.3 seconds (it was LOUD).

an associate in electronics grabbed the speaker for me and was ringing me up when another associate came over to ask him a question from a couple he was helping. the couple was maybe a little older than i was.

the two associates were dudes in their 20s – someone you’d automatically think of when you think of someone who works in the target electronics department. i listened to the question: would an iphone 12 work with the USB A lightning charger or do they NEED the USB C charger? (for those of you who know nothing about this [dad], the USB C is much newer technology than the A, a lot less ubiquitous, and more expensive [tho not prohibitively so]).

so, i interrupted and said, “yes the A will charge the iphone; it’ll just be slow.” because i knew. i have an iphone 12. i plugged it into my computer to restore the backup when i got it. i had to use an A because my computer has no C outlets. it worked.

at this point, the dude talking paused, glanced at me, then turned back to the other dude and continued talking. 

what? -_-

looking back, i feel like i should be infuriated by this, but i literally am just like, huh. i thought this generation was supposed to be past this.

(i have this sticker at work. it’s by emily mcdowell.)

so, i turned to the couple, noticed the woman was the one holding a phone case to purchase, and said directly to her while nodding, “yes, the regular USB will charge an iphone 12.” the dude asked, “will it just be a slow charge?” i nodded and the woman gave a thumbs up.

then of course, the target dude decided that he would talk to them about how go make their phone charge faster and all that and walked over to them, so i decided to leave. said thanks, grabbed my fancy speaker, and left.

i really should have told them to get that USB C charger tho. if your phone can handle it, GET IT. it is LIFE CHANGING and i can’t believe how fast my phone charges. costco has a wall outlet and cord for about $15 i think. i charge my phone in what seems like no time these days. so fast.

as an aside on charger with the old cord, you might need an actual apple A charger – my 3rd party one doesn’t work with my new phone 🙁 but that’s ok because of my superfast charger! and it works with my wireless charger and my apple charger that’s plugged into my computer and the wall brick.

so, lesson of the day for target brossociates: never underestimate xennial* women’s electronics knowledge. quit with that dismissive behavior.

*microgeneration of about 1977-1984, a cusp of genX and millennials**. grew up analog and embraced a digital adulthood. we are rather optimistic cynics. or cynical optimists. whichever you choose.

**millennials are older than you think. the youngest millennials are 25ish and oldest are pushing 40. the “kids these days” are genZ.

runnerversary: some top 3s of my time running

runnerversary: some top 3s of my time running

as i was slogging along for four miles on the treadmill this evening, i realized that november marks 9 years since i started running. 9 years! holy cats, that’s a long time and a lot of miles. my runkeeper tells me  i’m about to roll over on 4,000 tracked miles, which probably is about 2/3 of what i’ve run since i only started tracking my treadmill winter runs last winter.

to inadvertently commemorate this anniversary, i ordered some new shoes: brooks bedlams. brooks were the first shoes i bought specifically for running, but i ditched them for asics for a long time, then i had foot issues and i’ve been trial-and-erroring with shoes for the past nine months. i’ve got a good feeling about these!

top 3 running moments:

  1. first time i ran a nonstop mile. i was going to the st. ben’s fieldhouse at 10:30 at night to run around the track, following the couch to 5k plan. it was probably the week before christmas, and i was still getting my breathing under control and figured out, when i managed to get a mile in without stopping.
  2. first time i enjoyed a run. it was sprummertime in st. joe, 68º, evening on a saturday, and i was running a pretty quick pace for me. there was minimal hurting, my feet were having a not-bad time, breathing was ok, and i realized that this is what people talked about when they talked about having a good run.
  3. the first ragnar i did, my 8 mile was the last and i had rolled my ankle multiple times. physically, this run was probably my absolute worst. bottom of the barrel. but the timing of that loop was magical. i started in the dark with a headlamp on, fell in a hole, continued to run on a wobbly gross ankle in the dark, but the sun came up through the trees and slowly made its way up in the late-september woods.

3 worst things about running

  1. starting. your breathing sucks. your legs hurt. your hips hurt. you use these muscles that aren’t used to being used, and they scream at you to stop. your lungs are even worst. you can take ibuprofen to shut up the muscles, but there’s nothing for the breathing except to push through til it works itself out.
  2. injuries. you all know my feet in general suck at running. it’s a wonder that i’m still going, but PT, tape, the right shoes, and exercises can help with that. but there’s nothing but rest for ankle sprains.

    i rolled my ankle on a run on a gravel road in austin, rolled the other one at one ragnar, and had a few minor rolls here and there. i’ve biffed it in the woods in st. john’s, tripped on the track at st. ben’s, fell off a footbridge and got a massive thigh bruise at ragnar, fell and scraped a knee and hand at another ragnar,  etc. etc. the good news is, i have learned that CONSTANT VIGILANCE is key when running on anything not flat, and wearing the right shoes always helps. also, pick up my feet. i’ve been acute injury free for a couple years now.
  3. it can get expensive, especially when you buy stabilizing shoes like i do. relatively speaking, running is an inexpensive sport. it’s not like hockey or football. but dropping $150 on a pair of shoes that will last you 6 months can get kind of depressing. not to mention a reasonable sum on runderwear every year. but, to do this and do it without pain or injuries and feel comfortable, i’ll spend the cash.

3 best things about running

  1. eating food. i mean, that’s generally why i run.
  2. getting done running. especially when it was a good run with good time. stretching, peeling off the shoes and socks, drinking a lot of water to quench the thirst. then eating food.
  3. finding your muscles. my leg muscles are like rocks.
lonelygiving 2020

lonelygiving 2020

holy cow, how is it thanksgiving NEXT WEEK already? when this year is over, i expect a refund on all the time i’ve missed! i guess this means i need to go grocery shopping this weekend for some thanksgiving food stuffs.

oh, you bet i’m still making full on tday dinner! i’ve already got my turkey, bread crumbs for dressing, and 8 cans of organic pumpkin. i think the splendid table was trying to convince me on twitter that recipes for downsized pies were the way to go this thanksgiving.

excuse me? you underestimate my ability to eat pumpkin pie, all day, every day.

so, still doing the traditional stuff: turkey, dressing, potatoes, squash, cran sauce, and some other vegetable (brussels sprouts?). the plus side about doing full on tday for two people is the leftovers, so that’s good news. and of course, all the pie for me. gonna make me a butterscotch tart again this year. and if there’s no company, that means i spend all day taking food pics. there are worse things than a lonelygiving. i mean, in addition to spreading covid throughout the land.

hmmm… maybe i could livestream my cooking….

if nate pops up with a negative covid test and i pop up with a negative covid test, jane is welcome to show up if she so wishes, but this may be the year of watching die hard via zoom. maybe others could join us!

in which i talk about covid, covid, the apocalypse, and a free press

in which i talk about covid, covid, the apocalypse, and a free press

i talked to megan tonight, who does an occasional shift as a pharmacist at a hospital in the cities, and she said she has never ever seen anything like what’s going on there right now. covid is taking over the hospitals, so god forbid you need the ICU for something like a broken bone or heart attack. i think that my work is set up that we are overflow for the st cloud hospital, but we haven’t gotten to that point yet. (we’re a block away from the hospital and we have several labs for our nursing programs).

on a positive note, nate is symptom free so far. turns out his coworker did test positive, and the last time he was with her was a little over a week ago, so i’m holding out hope that he avoided that exposure. he got a mail-in test and will do that tomorrow morning. i’ve got one coming tuesday, i think, so i’ll take one too just to make sure. in the meantime, i’ll stay at home from work until after thanksgiving break.

there are several severe conservatives on twitter talking about rising up and taking up arms over stupid mask mandates. over wearing a MASK. no one is asking you to cut off a limb or flagellate yourself; you wear a mask to prevent your germs from spreading to other people. you know what they say: your rights to swing your arms end where my nose begins. (i think a scotus judge said that.)

so the apocalypse comes, and instead of having to defend yourself against the zombies (haha at first i wrote zombines, the best defense against the buggers) with guns and knives, you need to wear a mask to protect others. the lack of empathy is pretty resounding and just confirms that many americans are sadly hyperindividualistic and can’t see past their noses for the community that they are a part of. but they’ll certainly bludgeon others’ noses.

i would also like to talk about this image, but i think i already did.

imagine a world without a free press and not knowing what was going on (well, it might be nice to take an info break, but i think that’s more about instant saturation of the newscycle that we’re currently in). there’s a reason that a free press is part of the first amendment.


(i have to say, my anxiety level is much lower now that i know we’re not getting four more years of psycho orange goober, but i’m still annoyed at 2020.)

(also, i have no solutions in this blog post. just a lot of ranting. please post your solutions.)



oh, you know that i was watching the little UPS truck* track along the roads of avon all day today, bringing my phone to me sometime between 2-6 p.m. right around 5 p.m., it showed up at my door!

so now i’m getting used to the swipe-y-ness that is the new(ish) iphone interface.

before i packed away the iphone SE2 to send to lori, i took some comparison pics between the iphone SE1, SE2, and the iphone mini.

the mini falls almost directly in between them. it’s almost as wide as the SE2 but not nearly as close in height as to the SE1.

and while the 4S will always be the perfect pocket phone, if i have to have a phone that goes in the pocket with a decent camera, then the mini will have to do! and, with the mini, apple brought back the square corners, which feel so much more substantial than the rounded corners. i really like that design, and i’m happy that they went back to it.

i had the SE2 for only 5 months, but i’m glad that i went to the mini. it’s more compact and i’m excited to take some pics with the camera and test it out! more in the daylight.

*i really wish fedex and UPS would combine their features. if i login to fedex, it automatically populates my deliveries without tracking numbers. but i can watch my package on a map on UPS. #firstworldproblems




last weekend, nate’s coworker came to work with a 102º temperature. then on monday, she decided to get tested for covid. her husband was also getting test for covid (before the deciding to come to work thing).

nate has shown no symptoms, but i do know that he contracts sickness like my white pants contract cat hair. so if he WAS exposed, he will probably get covid. and he said his work idiot is one of those people who pulls down their mask to sneeze.


so, while nate has no symptoms and is waiting to hear, he is not getting tested yet. i told my coworker and my boss what was happening in the chance that he will need to get tested. and today, they decided to implement stricter stay at home rules, which means i have to stay home from my job where i mainly sit in the corner and do my work, even tho nate’s the one who was exposed and is waiting for a result.

meanwhile, nate is still going to work at his workplace where he interacts with a lot of people on a daily basis. in what world does this make sense?

my luck, her test will come back negative and i’ll have to just pack up my work computer and other junk and take it back tomorrow. (i work with a lot of large files on a work server, which is frustratingly slow when connecting via VPN or remote desktop, so i prefer to work at work.)

and while all this is happening, my coworker’s kid was exposed and needs to stay home from daycare for 14 days, and he needs to be watched! so now my coworker is basically out sick for two weeks. this was the very scenario that he was working from home to prevent 😂

what a time to be alive.

jugglin’ phones

jugglin’ phones

friday was such a flurry amid election news, that when i got to work that morning and a reminder on my phone went off to “order iphone mini,” it was complete (and pleasant) surprise!

in june i got the iphone SE2 – after about 2 years of using an SE 1 and 3 years prior to that of the iphone 5 (and prior to that? iphone 4S – RIP).

so the SE2 was a huge jump in size and was heavy compared to the SE1, not to mention took up more real estate and was cumbersome to reach the upper left one handed.

when they announced the iphone 12 mini, i was like, sign me up! even though i’d just purchased a new phone. anything to bring down the size in my pocket.

last friday was pre-order day, and after some back and forth between apple and tmobile, i ended up going with tmobile’s purchase. got my new iphone mini in the sea green color coming to me this friday!

cousin lori is going to purchase my SE2 from me – and so i erased it and cleaned it for her on sunday, then pulled out my sim to put in my SE1 to use til my mini showed up.

the keyboard is TINY!! i had enlarged the keyboard on the SE2, and going back to minikeyboard was kind of funny. i’m not complaining, because that phone sure fits nice in a pocket, but it was kind of funny going backward on size.  here’s hoping the mini will be all i’m hoping for!

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