Sunday, December 18, 2016

Newbie Trail Run - One year anniversary Trail Run - MRTT

I run / hike with a local chapter of Mothers Run This Town (MRTT).   I have been enjoying events and getting back into running with this local group for over a year now.  It is the Roseville/Rocklin chapter.  My daughter is very involved as as she is an Ultra Runner and this is one of six Newbie Trail Runs that she has hosted.    We have had over 70 show up on occasions.  This is the anniversary of the trail run.  (Remind me in another post to post some amazing pics of my daughter and her trail and running accomplishments).

What is a newbie trail run?  It is a beginning level trail run 4-5 miles for all levels of runners. Many of the ultra runners assist us, as well as marathon runners, and avid runners, jogs, and power walkers.  We get into groups and we take off.  Usually at the crack of dawn and we run, jog, walk to the sunrise.  

The group is an amazing group.  Everyone is so supportive and kind.  I am so happy to be a part of this wonderful society of women.  If you are interested, look for a local chapter and join in, usually you can find them on Facebook, the groups are private.  It is woman only group, but you don't have to be a mom, you can be a SRTT (She Runs This Town).    With the support of this group I was able to get back into running this past year, and run several 5K races, some official and some on my own.  I did not meet my goal of 200 miles this year, but I got a good 150  and that is about 100 more than last year. 

 *note for the guys, in some areas the husbands, boyfriends etc, join a group for men.  I don't know what it is called...something like Dad Run the town/ He runs the town.

We had about 21 show up, which is not bad on the Sunday before Christmas.  Many waking up at 5 am, driving in the fog to the mountains, about 25 minutes away for most of us, to go out on a 29 degree day and freeze our butts off.  The pay off is rich, the sounds of the rushing river, the smell of the green moss, the fog lifting as the sun rises, and the beautiful dam at Lake Clementine, Auburn, California. 

 We ran under the Foresthill Bridge. It was most lovely and very very tall.  The hike was about 4.7 miles total.  It was all uphill to the dam and all down hill on the way back.  I would rate the trail and safe for beginners, it was not treacherous.  There are a lot of rocks and some little muddy streams to navigate, but that is the fun of the trails.  No need for speed.  It is also a way to burn off 950 calories before 9 am.  It was 797 feet of elevation gain, to about 952 elevation, so nothing too steep, but a nice work out.

What a wonderful way to get away from the hustle and bustle, post election, social media, and holiday frenzy.  Not complaining about the beautiful world that we live in, just saying it is nice to get away. 

Happy Week before Christmas, I hope you enjoy the serene and beautiful pictures from todays's hike. 

Friday, December 9, 2016

A Christmas Memory 2016 - Abigail and Amelia

Last Sunday the girls were over.   The girls are my grand daughters Abigail and Amelia.  I had recorded Santa Claus is coming to town a few weeks prior and I was saving it to watch with them.   I should have know it was "ok" to watch, but to be sure I had wanted to watch for myself.  I relished the show as a child and it has been many many years since I saw it, I didn't quite remember much about it except the song, and ironically, the wizard guy.  I wasn't sure in my memory if that guy was a good guy or a bad guy, and just how bad could be?

Well, the girls and I watched Frosty the Snowman for the second time and I decided to take a risk and watch "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" with them.  I mean I survived it, but then again, I survived hose water. (Gasp)

Oh it was a true delight.  It tells the story of a baby orphaned, and he is adopted to be Chris /Kris Kringle, and later becomes Santa Claus.  The story is truly wonderful and wonderfully narrated by Fred Astaire.  The girls being ages 5 and almost 3 were mesmerized from very beginning. 

I always wonder how much of the story they "get."   Well, not with Miss Abby as she is older and she doesn't miss anything.  Then I just sat and watched with them and waited for the gals comments  as Chris / Kris grew up to become Santa.  At first he was young and clean shaven, over time he got a red beard.  It was Abby who first said, "is he Santa yet?"    

I knew for sure then that she knew what was going on and had been carefully following the plot.  Later the beard becomes fuller and longer and Abby gets even more excited..."is he Santa yet?"  Amelia was sitting with her in the rocking chair and was following  the story closely.  And then there is grey hair in Chris/Santa's beard, the excitement in the room was measurable. 

And then, there was the first scene were we finally get to see white hair Santa, the transformation from Chris/ Kris to Santa.  The cutest thing to behold was Abby leaning forward to watch intently as Santa had arrived.  What I did not expect was to see Amelia stand up in the chair and start cheering and clapping for Santa.  It was the cutest thing I have ever seen.

And so far this year that is my Christmas Miracle.  The simple joy of innocence and the joy of believing in Santa Claus. 

Thursday, December 8, 2016

True to form the first week of December goes by and there is no tree up.  I am home recovering from a nasty cold/sinus thing and looking on Amazon to see if I should take the plunge and get a fake tree. Year after year it is a pain to get a live one, keep it alive and deal with allergies.  But on the other hand I have always fallen in love with every tree that I have had.

This year I kept saying tree... I will just decorate. And then I caught myself saying, 'oh no I have to put up a tree for the girls.'  But today I took the plunge with total honesty and told myself, "what in the heck are you talking about?  You love a tree, you adore a tree, you sit by the tree, you love the lights, you love the warmth of the holiday season, you love the music, you love everything about it." 

So there, I am getting a lovely tree probably cheap fake on amazon and I will make it lovely.  This time next year, 11 months from when I take it down, I will have one in a box in the garage and I will get to enjoy it longer than usual.

So there it is... I just ordered it for $39.75.  6 ft,  Non pre-lit econo tree, free shipping, Amazon Prime, to arrive on Monday, December 12th.

In the kitchen, I have been baking bread.  The usual sour dough and Challah bread.  It is a lovely way to make the house nice and everyone loves fresh bread.


Merry Christmas, from now until the New Year, I am going to jingle jingle all the way.  

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Tomorrow is December ....

Time flies.

What a crazy busy year.   I hope to get some holiday crafties going on.  I have three weeks.   I don't have a lot of stress now because if I were going to knit projects, I would have had to start them already and I didn't.  So Amazon Prime is my best friend.

I hope also that I can read a few of the most recent additions to my library.  Its cold and wet in Northern California this year.  Yahoo and yay!!!! Seeing the green earth this early in the year is so nice and fall is vibrant and happening all over the place.

Some of the crafties include making soap, miniatures, and perhaps a new cigar box guitar.

Violin news....I still am playing.  This is a very very nice time of the year to pull out all the Holiday tunes and play them.  It is also the 5th year anniversary of me getting my first violin.  I am so happy to say that it is great to pull out the familiar Holiday tunes and be able to play them decently.   It brings holiday cheer to my home and my heart.

Sending warm thoughts to all.  I am glad the election is over.  I hope people can heal and be happy. The world is always a better place, day after day humanity survives and we all grow and change.  Be well and be good to one another.


Wednesday, September 28, 2016

ergon - George HS Singer

                                                            ergon - George HS Singer

Hello and Happy Wednesday!

I am reviewing this book for Serena @ Poetic Book Tours

I don't have a strong background in reading and understanding poetry. But when I get a chance and open my mind to reading it, I am seldom let down.

From the very first writing in this collection, I was drawn to the writing. Even though there are more depths for me to discover, I was moved by reading through the collection the very first time.   I am also pleased as I know I can go back and "get more."  Seconds and thirds and beyond, it will be wonderful with this collection.

The writings are rich and and honest.  Life's journey is conveyed in poetic lyrical prose that is as familiar to us as rain and in my case even medication - "my brain wobbles in it's chemical bath"

I hope you all get a chance to get a copy.  My library and reading experience has been enriched by this wonderful morsel of writing.

Thanks for reading.


Tour Schedule:
Sept. 2: Life’s a Stage WebBlog by Estrella Azul (Interview)
Sept. 7: Diary of an Eccentric (Guest Post)
Sept. 7: True Book Addict (Review)
Sept. 9: Peeking Between the Pages (Review)
Sept. 14: Write-Read-Life (Review)
Sept. 16: The Chronicles of Chaos (Review)
Sept. 20: Everything Distils Into Reading (Review)
Sept. 21: Eva Lucia Reviews (Review)
Sept. 23: Eva Lucia Reviews (Interview)
Sept. 28: The Soapy Violinist (Review)
Sept. 30: Life’s a Stage WebBlog by Estrella Azul (Review)
Sept. 30: The Chronicles of Chaos (Guest Post)
TBD: Jorie Loves A Story (Review)
Oct. 11: Martha’s Bookshelf (Review)
Nov. 7: Diary of an Eccentric (Review)

edited for punctuation... 

Monday, September 19, 2016

Happy Monday - The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating

Hello and Happy Monday.  Late September is a beautiful time of year.  Please take a moment to enjoy the changing light and enjoy all that you do today.

I received a book from Algonquin - Thank you. 
The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating, Elisabeth Tova Bailey 
The cover is enchanting and the story appears to be unique and rewarding.   I can't wait to find a moment, hopefully in nature to enjoy this book.  

Description: (From Algonquin)
In a work that beautifully demonstrates the rewards of closely observing nature, Elisabeth Bailey shares an inspiring and intimate story of her uncommon encounter with a Neohelix albolabris—a common woodland snail.

While an illness keeps her bedridden, Bailey watches a wild snail that has taken up residence on her nightstand. As a result, she discovers the solace and sense of wonder that this mysterious creature brings and comes to a greater under standing of her own confined place in the world.

Intrigued by the snail’s molluscan anatomy, cryptic defenses, clear decision making, hydraulic locomotion, and mysterious courtship activities, Bailey becomes an astute and amused observer, providing a candid and engaging look into the curious life of this underappreciated small animal.

Told with wit and grace, The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating is a remarkable journey of survival and resilience, showing us how a small part of the natural world illuminates our own human existence and provides an appreciation of what it means to be fully alive.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Composing Temple Sunrise

Happy Blog Tour Day!!!

Yesterday evening I posted my blog Tour post for Composing Temple Sunrise. Opps!!!

Since I posted at 9:40 pm, I thought it was already midnight on the East Coast and that my post would post today, instead it posted for yesterday. My apologies.  Getting back to blogging and my Ipad isn't working well with google....(operator error)

Blog Tour - Composing Temple Sunrise

Monday, September 12, 2016

Composing Temple Sunrise

Composing  Temple Sunrise, Hassan El-Tayyab-review by Toni

What a great book.  I really loved the down to earth and thought provoking writing.  This book puts into words about the things we long to do, the things we crave and yet somehow we hold back.  A remarkable honest journey about following your passions and not letting fear hold you back.  Or even if it does....go with it.

As a late blooming musician, I feel the book had significance to me and many of my musician friends....  But not limited to just them... All artists, bloggers, writers, any dream...any dream.

The book is full of poignant quotes and savory inspiration.

I read it slowly and savored it.  It will inspired anyone... Any craft...any age.
Long after the page is turned, the book stills holds tight in your memory.

Thank you Serena for the opportunity to be part of the tour.

About the Author:
Hassan El-Tayyab is an award-winning singer/songwriter, author, teacher, and cultural activist currently residing in the San Francisco Bay Area. His critically acclaimed Americana act American Nomad performs regularly at festivals and venues up and down the West Coast and beyond and he teaches music in the Bay Area.

Tour Schedule:

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Hello and I hope your Thursday is lovely.

Part of the journey back to blogging is also part of my journey back to books.

Right now I am reading a good book with some good friends.   It is called Natchez Burning, by Greg Isle.  I bought it to read on my Ipad Pro from the Kindle book store.  I am enjoying the book even though it is fiction I am being acquainted with actual  racial crimes/events of 1960's Louisiana and Mississippi.   The book so far is dramatic and holds my attention.  The best part about this read is that I got to read with some of my original best friend book club readers. You all know who you are.

My sidebar has a list of upcoming books I am going to write about. However,  that was an attempt at artwork with my Ipencil for Ipad Pro.  I see that is it a bit shabby and not very clear.  So here is a more clear schedule.

September 13th, Composing Temple Sunrise, by Hassan El Tayyab
September 28th, Ergon - George Singer.

I will apologize in advance for my blog having changes here and there.  I don't recall very well how to navigate through  Blogger templates, but I will get the hang of it all soon.  I am sure there is a useful app on my Ipad.  For now, please bear with the oversized obnoxious picture of my forehead.   Also, blog tour etiquette and regular procedures??? I am out of the loop.  I will get a list of blogs to start reading and join in the gang and see what everyone is doing.

Lots of love and Sunshine.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Running and workouts - (a few weeks ago)

Today (Sunday), I faced my usual dilemma.  Do I get up and run early? (hasn't happened yet) or wait until the evening and run when it cools off ? That is usually not going to happen. Why? Because as it cools down I want wine. When Sunday afternoon arrives and the last bit of freedom before the work weeks steals hours and brain cells.

I want wine.

But as last weekend slipped away,  I found myself without a work out and all the promises of new workouts that never happened.  Two weeks ago I rode my bike for ten miles.  And I am sure that is a vague memory to my body.

So I got some motivation from a Facebook mothers running group and I decided to do a heat endurance walk.  When I left it was 98, when I got home it was 102.  Pavement jog walking. It went well and I sweated and feel wonderful.  And I added to my yearly mile count.  I am at 111 now.

I am new to running and when it comes to this whole generation of runners, I have much to learn. I used to think I was a runner, now I am beginning  to think I am a former jogger.  Anyway I have had five seriously wonderful running/jogging accomplishments this year.

I am finding that running can be a team sport even if we are all running difference races, with differnet goals and different reasons.   I am also learning the power of solo runs.  I call it therapy.

Running is my passion once more, and yet this time around I have obstacles.  Sometimes I wonder if the obstacles are there only to remind me how precious life is... How much it means to me to run..obstacles of age, weight and pain.

The newest gratification is to run/walk somewhere  that cars can't go!  To see a view that the highways obscure from us.  It has added a joy and a bonus that surpasses fitness and weight.  The views and the nature are indeed the most gratifying experience that I can recall.

So at this time, I find myself very interested in solo day hikes, runs.  This is hard for me because I am not the bravest of souls. There are wild animals and there are freaky humans.   And yet I do have to remember that people emerge from runs and hikes safe and whole everyday.  With a side note that the last time I went to a place that I felt unsafe,  I didn't even enjoy the run at all.  I feel I took away nothing.

It is safe to say that  part of my running journey is going to be on how I can run solo and not have fear.  Even if that involves a taser. I have pepper spray, and maybe even a self defense class will be in order.

Deep running thoughts.


Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Peeking In - Hello - A Real Update.

Hello all!

I am back with the best intentions.  (writing, blogging, reading books, sharing music).   I actually finished a book in the past few weeks.   Looking back fondly at my blogger days and blogger friends and finding a piece of me in there that I miss.

I won't inundate with pictures and try to catch up all in one post.

The book that I read a week or so ago was called Find Her by Lisa Gardner.
The book was recommended by my co-worker. Thanks Roch.

Quick review:  I enjoyed the book.  It was compelling page after page.    There were many chapters while reading this book that were almost heart stopping.  I always felt very very eager to finish the book.  It was a great read to get me excited about reading.   If you like mystery, suspense, I think this is a book that you will enjoy.  It is a relatively new genre for me.  I bought this book and read it on my Kindle App on my Ipad.

I received a book in the mail from Algonquin.
It is called The Last September.  Thank you Algonquin.  I didn't request the book but it sounds good.  It got me in a really bookish mood and that is where I started thinking about my book blogger friends, blogger friends, and my Page Turner Book Club.  

Yes... I make soap, and yes I still play the violin.  I will share my violin stories and soap making adventures with everyone soon.  I have a few new adventures to share also.

Please forgive my blogging graphics challenges at this point.  I am really rusty.  I don't know what has changed or what is convenient for all to see.

Cheers for now, and I hope I see you all more than once a year.