Thursday, 30 May 2013

Reality bites

I am saddened to discover that I can no longer touch my knees with my nose.  I know this may sound a little ridiculous to some of you, but I have always prided myself on my relatively good flexibility.  Turns out I was quite delusional.  Although I am getting fitter, faster and stronger with all the run training (yesterday's 6km run had an average pace of 5'15" per km) and workouts (today's ab challenge was 105 sit ups, 160 crunches, 60 leg raises and a 1:35 plank, and the plank challenge was a 3 minute full plank), my flexibility is waning considerably.  My hamstrings are really tight!  Although I can still easily touch my toes without bending my knees, I can no longer fold completely in half like I used to, and for some reason I find this very disappointing.  My body is getting older and less supple.  So I've decided it is time to change that (well, the suppleness at least), and take up yoga.  Perhaps one day I'll be able to do the splits again (I miss being able to do that, oddly enough), but for right now, I was just glad to be able to do my leg raises today without the unfortunately-all-too-familiar feeling of tightness in my hamstrings, after a 30 minute yoga session beforehand.  I am unwilling to pay a fortune for yoga classes, and can't get to the free yoga sessions at Lululemon (bad time of the day), so is anyone able to recommend a good yoga DVD?  As a complete newbie it's very hard to know which one would be good to start with.

Turns out I can't do handstands any more either.  It's not the balancing or strength that's a problem, it's that as soon as my body is inverted, pressure builds up so much in my head that my face starts to swell and my eyeballs go all red.  It's quite an uncomfortable (slightly painful) feeling.  I found this out today while attempting to do the daily hiit workout.  Won't be doing that one again, let me tell you!  I'm a little less disappointed about this as I am about my flexibility, so I think I can live with this development.

Speaking of disappointments, I was a little bummed that last night's dinner didn't quite go to plan.  I was making a silverbeet and ricotta frittata, and kumara and leek rosti with garlic aioli.  Both were perfectly edible, but it wasn't quite the meal I had in my head.  The frittata was a little overcooked on the bottom, and the extra light ricotta wasn't really suited to being used as a topping.  Plus, I forgot to season the egg so it was a little bland.  The rosti came out fine, but the aioli was a complete bust.  I've never made it before, and due to my inexperience used the wrong attachment in my food processor.  That, coupled with the oil being poured in too quickly, resulted in not-aioli.  It tasted fine but looked rather revolting.  Perhaps I should've stuck to the original plan and just made crumbed schnitzel... Oh well...  Tonight's dinner should be a little better - leftover silverbeet and ricotta frittata (with lots of seasoning) and Mongolian beef.  Not the best combination, but edible all the same.  Hopefully. 

I did have one success yesterday (aside from breakfast which was ridiculously good - bread fresh out of the oven, toasted and served with scrambled eggs (made with cream, y'all!) avocado and feta - yum!), which will never ever be repeated.  I made brown sugar chewies.  Dude.  It was amazeballs.  So good in fact, that out of the 16 pieces I cut out of the slice, I ate ten of them.  This is why I will never make that recipe again.  I cannot help myself.  This inability to control myself may be repeated soon, when I make this Amish cinnamon bread.  And I have plans to make cinnamon pull-apart bread for breakfast one morning this weekend.  Also potentially problematic.  I've said it before and I'll say it again - Pinterest is dangerous!

It can be good too though - I found the recipe for these no-bake energy bites (they're really yummy!  I added some dried cranberries to mine.  Yes, I've grown to like cranberries now in case you're wondering), and these vegan nori rolls (delicious!).  I'm looking forward to giving some baked oatmeal a go this week too.  We got a couple of persimmons in this week's Foodbox, so I'm going to try this persimmon and cranberry oatmeal recipe (probably halved though, I doubt Deane and I will be able to eat a whole batch between us, even over a few days.  And the kids certainly won't eat it!).  I'll let you know how it turns out.

In knitting news, I'm rather glad I pulled out of the Sock Madness competition last round.  They've had to call a halt to that round (the slow team, despite their best efforts, just weren't able to get enough finishers across the line and the round had been going for weeks - very unusual for this stage of the competition), and the specs (and now pattern) for round five is out - a button and a zip is included in this sock!  The pattern isn't yet up on Ravelry so I can't link to it, but needless to say I'm very pleased to not have to knit this pattern.  I'm plodding along on Deane's sweater, and am over halfway done on the sleeves now.  I might have it done by the end of the weekend if all goes well, which is probably good timing considering how the temperature has dropped recently.  The Starks are right - winter is coming! ;-)

By the way, do you remember months and months ago (in fact, last year) I was knitting a secret project and promised to show you once the recipient had the item?  Yeah, she received it quite some time ago, and I just forgot to show you.  Oops.  In any case, the project was the Bias 'Before & After' Scarf, that I knit with some laceweight gifted to me by my friend Jill in America.  It was knit up into the scarf with some beads added along the ends, and sent back to her.  Why, you may ask?  Because the name of the yarn was 'Crazy Woman' and I thought she deserved it more than I did ;-P  Sadly, I forgot to hang on to the yarn tag so I couldn't tell you what the yarn was that I used, but it was a wool silk mix of some description.

The Cassidy cardigan made its way down to Napier, and I'm pleased to say that my sister fits it.  So although the yarn was my birthday gift, dyed in a specifically requested colourway, at least the effort of knitting it wasn't wasted and in need of being frogged.  I believe the cardigan will be put to good use over the winter, and hopefully many more winters to come.  My niece's shrug cardigan also fits, so the rest of my birthday yarn didn't go to waste either :)  I have two skeins of the pink yarn left.  Anyone want to take it off my hands?  $20 per skein plus postage and its yours ;)

Next on the to-knit list is going to be a Chandail cardigan - the only cardigan in my favourites that a) is knit in worsted weight yarn (which I have enough yardage for), b) is knit in one piece, and c) has a size small enough to fit me.  I really wanted to knit the White Pine cardigan but I would have the same problem as the Cassidy cardigan in that the smallest size is for a 36" bust.  I was going to knit hoodies for my boys but both have said quite emphatically that they do not want a hand knit sweater for winter, so rather than be hurt by the obvious dissing of my awesome knitting skills (haha) I shall take this as a blessing and happily cast on something else for me.  This recent development will also help me stick to the self-imposed stash-only knitting.  I'm doing very well so far this year knitting only from stash (or yarn that was purchased at the beginning of the year specifically for a gift, in the case of Deane's Doctor Who scarf).  My decision to not go to KAN this year will help me avoid buying more yarn, so let's see if I can get through the rest of the year yarn-purchase free!

So, plans for the rest of this week - finish the assignment I'm working on tomorrow, then get Deane's sweater finished over the weekend.  Make yummy breakfasts and dinners and very dangerous baked goods for all the in-between times (Hobbits have it right with second breakfast and elevenses I think...).  Next week, hopefully start my new cardi.  I think the colder weather calls for a snuggly new cardi, don't you? 

Also starting on Monday is (in my mind) the official beginning of my half marathon training.  Really looking forward to the longer distance runs!  As much as I'm enjoying the improvement in stamina for hill runs, and the sprints which are helping increase my speed, I've missed the longer runs I'd become accustomed to.  With the addition of yoga to my training, I'm hoping for an injury free rest of the year.  Marathon next year perhaps...?  One can hope...

Friday, 24 May 2013

Sweater weather

Yes, the temperature is starting to drop a little more, which means crisp days, cool nights and warmer clothes.  Yay!  I'm very pleased about this.  I do rather love snuggling into cozy clothes, or smooshing up on the couch with a blanket and some knitting.  Can't wait for it to get even colder!  Of course, being up in Auckland it doesn't get nearly as cold as I'd like, but we make do, don't we?  I'll be digging out the scarves and shawls, and maybe some hats.  I did something I've been wanting to do for some time, and chopped all my hair off.  I went from this:

To this:

Quite a change, huh?  I haven't had my hair this short since I was 12!!  I'm hopefully less likely to get mistaken for a boy now.  Fingers crossed...

I rather like it.  The kids hate it.  Deane is ambivalent.  But then, he's ambivalent about most things.  Of course, this now means my neck is going to be extra cold, and my head is going to feel a little more chilly, so hats and scarves will be essential this winter!  Looking forward to it ;-)  I'm already enjoying not having to flick my hair out of the way 50 million times a day, pull long strands of hair off anything and everything (including food), and unclog the drain on an almost daily basis.  It's nice.  And I'm very happy about the amount of shampoo and conditioner I WON'T be using!  There's a money saver right there!  Especially when the hair products you use cost $45-$50 a bottle...  Runs and workouts no longer require ridiculously tight hair ties just to keep it all under control, and showers are waaaaaay quicker!  Hurrah!  No doubt I'll get sick of it soon and decide to grow it out.  I seem to have a five to seven year cycle with short/long hair cuts.  At the moment though, I'm totally loving this cut.  I'm having so much fun trying out different ways of styling it!  Tomorrow I might go for a semi-mohawk look ;-P

On the workout front, things have been going pretty well.  Run training is ticking along smoothly, and next week is the last 5-10km training week.  Then it's on to the half training!  Woohoo!  BodyRock workouts are killer, particularly the ones I did over the weekend and on Tuesday.  It was part of a seven day challenge, and wow.  It was challenging.  But it was so much fun to do!  I may just have to do that whole week of workouts again :-)  It'd be nice to have all the flash equipment, but my backpack full of yarn (that weighs about 3.5kg) in place of a sandbag and ugi ball, and chairs and a broomstick instead of equalizers will do.  At least I have the stationary bike!  And plenty of space in the other half of the lounge that nobody else uses.  It's become my yarn storage room/home gym.

Other things I've been having fun with is food!  Glorious food.  This week has seen more chocolate chip muffins, a divine chocolate cake, a ridiculously yummy spiced pear upside down cake (with cream!  OMG!!), pumpkin soup with way too many croutons (they were so good!), and a really yummy coleslaw:

1/4 head of red cabbage, sliced thinly
150g NZ yams (otherwise known as oca), grated
1/2 c yoghurt (I used fat free, but greek would be good)
1 tsp minced garlic
1/4 c olive oil (I used rice bran, we were out of olive)
salt and pepper
chopped parsley

Combine the yoghurt, oil, garlic, parsley and seasonings in a jar and shake well, then pour over the cabbage and yams until well mixed.  Leave to sit and chill in the fridge, then devour.  YUM!  Tonight, I'm going to give these vegetable nori rolls a go.  Can't wait!  Deane's feeling a little meat-deprived (don't know why, we had Japanese-style meatballs on Tuesday, beef pot roast on Wednesday, and chicken last night) so he's having steak.  As for the kids... I haven't figured that out yet.  I'm guessing T will be happy with baked beans - he loves them, and hasn't had any for a while.  X... maybe he can share Deane's steak.  It's a 280g scotch fillet, I'm sure he won't mind ;-)

Oh, and I finished my Cassidy cardigan!  But guess what?  I forgot to take photos.  Duh!  Also, it's too big for me so I sent it off to Napier with my parents so they could give it to my sister.  No guarantees she'll fit it either (it'll be too small for her probably) so there is a possibility it will be coming back.  Either way, I'll get a pic of it eventually.  This means, of course, that the nice cozy hooded cardigan I was planning on living in this winter didn't quite pan out, so I'm thinking about what to cast on next.  I have half a dozen skeins of Cascade 220 in Turtle (same colour as the wedding afghan I knit recently) that I was planning on knitting into a Tea Leaves cardigan, but this might be used for a hoodie for T instead (since his favourite colour is green, and he's grown out of his other hand knit hoodie).  Plus, I've been eyeing up this cardigan, and I'd also really like to knit this one.  It's been in my faves for a year now.  And seriously, how cute is this sweater?  While I decide, I've been working on this sweater for Deane, sans double seed stitch pattern (because he wanted a plain v-neck sweater.  Fine with me!).  It's been over a year in the making.  Well, I intended to make him a sweater last year and botched it, so I'm making a different one now.  I cast it on last week, and have finished the body:

Yes I know, not a terribly thrilling picture really.  A plain black sweater body.  Wasn't terribly thrilling to knit either (XXL size too, I'll have you know), but I'm more than happy to knit it.  Mostly because I feel guilty about not having knit it last year like I said I would, but also because it is mindless, easy knitting and it allows me time to deliberate over what to cast on next.  Well, it did for a while anyway.  I cast on the sleeves for this sweater last night, but my 4mm circular isn't long enough to do them two-at-a-time, so I'm hoping to be able to borrow some interchangeable tips off a friend.  I could buy some, but borrowing them will get them to me quicker ;-)  I'll order some and swap once they arrive, but in the mean time, I have to wait until Sunday.  Today is Friday.  That means I either have to forego knitting, or cast something else on.  I haven't decided what to knit yet!!!  What am I going to do?!?!?  Ideas welcome :-)

Must dash, the kids are due home any second.  I'm off to make vegetable nori rolls.  Have a great weekend!!

Monday, 13 May 2013

Mother's Day

For once, Mother's Day was a success.  The family didn't forget!  I got breakfast in bed consisting of a large cup of tea, a toasted cheese English muffin with cream cheese and berry sauce (interesting... ), and a fresh fruit salad with yoghurt and more berry sauce.  Of course, Deane and I had discussed the previous evening how the morning would proceed, as I had planned on going for a run.  I was informed that the children were looking forward to bringing me breakfast in bed and would be most upset if I was up before them.  So at 6.30am I snuck quietly down to the kitchen to turn on the oven for Deane so he could bake the loaf of bread for the morning, then slipped back into bed and waited patiently for everyone to wake up, go downstairs to make my breakfast and bring it up to me.  I got bored and pulled out my kindle once they'd gone down, but put it away again when I heard them coming up the stairs.  X had made me a card, and T had made some neat little paper puzzles at school in a wee parcel.  Very cute! 

After breakfast I headed out to Cornwall Park for a bit of an 'off-road' run.  I had been around the sheep track there a couple of weeks ago with a friend and thought I knew where to go.  Turns out I didn't, and I got rather lost!

I was supposed to run 11.25km, and ended up running 12.5km - oops.  But it was an excellent run and I thoroughly enjoyed it, despite getting stuck briefly in a paddock full of cows surrounded by an electric fence.  Don't ask me how I managed it, I'm not entirely sure myself!  The second lap around the park included a run up One Tree Hill, where I snapped a few pics of the stunning view.  It was a beautiful day:

I enjoyed the run so much, I think I might do it again next weekend.  In a slightly less meandering fashion of course ;-)

When I got home, I had time to squeeze in my ab challenge for the day before a quick shower, then dashed off to knitting for the afternoon, where I had a lunch of fresh fruit salad and yoghurt, sans berry sauce ;-)  Nothing else on the menu appealed, particularly as most involved some form of bread, or the portion size was too large.  To be honest the fruit salad was ridiculously huge, but it's fruit so who cares?  Between knitting that afternoon and when I got home that evening (Deane had cooked dinner - Moroccan chicken, woohoo!), I managed to finish the wee shrug cardigan I was knitting for my niece's birthday:

 Night pic

Day pic, with ribbon - snapped quickly at NZ Post before wrapping and sending

I couldn't decide on a ribbon colour, so got two colours and wrapped the rolls in with the cardi.  That way the ribbon can be changed to suit, or when it gets all frayed at the ends as ribbon often does.  I hope she likes it, and I hope it fits!  The pattern is Saffron by Elena Nodel, knit with Knitsch Delft DK (from Holland Road Yarn Company) in 'Rose', from the Bigger on the Inside yarn club.  I knit the shrug length, with 1/2-3/4 length sleeves.  It was a relatively quick knit, only taking me six days.  What took the longest was the ruffle edging around the body of the cardigan - by the time I cast off, there was somewhere between 500 and 600 stitches.  I kept losing count and gave up after a while.  Still, it was fun to knit and the pattern was very easy to follow.  And I got it finished in plenty of time, hurrah!  Next, I think I'll go back to the Cassidy cardigan and finish that off before casting on Deane's winter sweater that I have finally decided on a pattern for.  And no, it's not because it is a 'Twilight' pattern, it is because the sweater is fairly plain (I'm probably going to omit the seed-stitch textured patterning at the top), is V-neck, and knit in the round.  And there's a size that will fit Deane's... larger proportions ;-)

Round four of Sock Madness is upon us, and I cast on the sock on Saturday.  I knit the toe and part of the foot before deciding that a) I didn't really like it; b) there was a mistake I'd made that I couldn't be bothered fixing; and c) I have more important things to be doing at the moment, like writing a 2,000 word assignment that's due at the end of the month!  So, after some deliberation, I decided to frog the sock and gracefully bow out of the competition for this year.  I don't think anyone on my team is complaining ;-)

Ooh, now I promised to tell you how the Foodbox went that we got last week.  Well!  Delivery was right on time for that evening's dinner, so once I'd unpacked the box I quickly pillaged some of the broccolini and a carrot:

I love the minimal packaging that goes into it:

Only the things that need to be packaged, are (spinach, mung bean sprouts, cherry tomatoes, lettuce and broccolini) - everything else is just put straight in the box.  They also ask that you leave the box out for them to collect when they next deliver, so they can re-use it.  Awesome :-)

Over the course of the week, I have made marinated kale and chickpea salad (yum!!), mung bean sprout stir fry (also yum!), vegetable soup (a winter staple - soooooo good!!!), and some spinach and feta mini muffins, which were not so flash.  I followed the recipe in the latest Real magazine and there's either a typo or somebody has some weird tastes.  The recipe called for 3/4 cup of brown sugar, which made the muffins both sweet and savoury.  Very odd, and I couldn't decide if I liked it or not.  Deane was a little on the fence, then decided that he fell in the 'don't like' category, so I ended up giving half away, and chucking the rest.  Oh well, perhaps I'll have better luck next time.  I'm going to make fried cabbage (minus the bacon) to go with some smoked fish cakes for dinner tonight (hopefully the smoked fish cakes recipe in the same issue of Real is better - fingers crossed!), and since the persimmon wasn't quite ripe enough when it arrived, it's still sitting in the fruit bowl.  I'm going to make a persimmon, feijoa and apple crumble for dessert.  Should be good!

Tomorrow's delivery will have new season potatoes, carrots, brown onions, broccoli, butternut pumpkin, parsnips, brussels sprouts, Oyster mushrooms, spring onion, shanghai cabbage, cherry tomatoes, leek, fancy lettuce, rose apples, granny smith apples, packham pears, gold kiwifruit, mandarins, bananas and a lemon.  Plus I've ordered two dozen free range eggs, which will get devoured over the week.  We like our eggs ;-)  With the increased amount of fruit I'm currently eating, I ended up getting some extra apples, kiwifruit and mandarins at the supermarket the other day just to top up the fruit bowl, but otherwise I think the amount of fruit and veg contained in the box is about right for us.  And I really am enjoying trying new things to use up the different vegetables!

Right, must dash.  I have 240 squats and a BodyRock workout that needs doing, before I get stuck into this assignment.  Have a fabulous week, and I hope your Mother's Day was as awesome as mine was!

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Several random things

1. I had a scary encounter this morning on my run.  I was heading through Bouzaid Way from Viaduct Harbour Avenue to Fanshawe Street when I saw a man walking towards me.  I smiled and kept going.  He tried to step in my way but I managed to dodge him, then he waved his arms in my face and started yelling abuse at me.  It was a little daunting, and I was very glad it was later in the morning and not my usual running time of around 6.30am.  I was also glad that it was at the end of my run and I was heading home.  Time for a relaxing cup of tea I think!

2. My fruit and vegetable box gets delivered this afternoon, yay!  I'm looking forward to trying a persimmon - I've never eaten one that wasn't dried or baked into a cake.

3. I have sewn together all the body pieces of my Cassidy cardigan, and I'm not sure I like the sizing.  One of the downsides of knitting a garment in pieces - you never really know for sure how it's going to look until you've put it together.  Also, the sleeve shoulder seams are not to my liking.  I don't quite know what to do about that right now, so it's going to sit in a corner while I think about it.

4. We're having apple cider pork and potatoes for dinner this evening, I can't wait!  Fingers crossed it turns out as good as the last time I made it.

5. My new blender works fabulously well.  I played the role of short-order cook this morning, making stir-fried cauli-rice and spring onions for myself, waffles for T, and a banana berry smoothie for X.  I wonder what Deane would've had for breakfast if he was here...?

6. I've found a company based in Palmerston North that delivers free range chicken and pork, and organic beef and lamb.  I'll stick with the Green Meadows beef (because it is amazing!) but will order our chicken, pork and lamb from Moreish when we next need meat.  I'm so happy to have found reliable New Zealand sources for all our meat, eggs, fruit and vegetables.  Fresh local product, healthy, happy, well looked after animals - what could be better?

7. I got an A+ for my first Information Industry assignment, yaaaaaaay!!!  Now, on to the second assignment.

That is all.  Carry on.

Sunday, 5 May 2013

So much stuff to tell you, expect a crazy mish-mash post. This is a week in bits.

Yes, there's been a bit going on in the last week or so.  I finished the body parts of my Cassidy cardigan, and blocked them so I could sew them together.  Unfortunately, the dye ran quite spectacularly (which was apparently to be expected, and I should have guessed it would happen since I ended up with blue hands every time I knit with the yarn, but still.  I have never had dye run THIS MUCH):

Thankfully, there's still some left in the garment ;-)  Aside from this little inconvenience, I absolutely love the yarn.  It is squishy and soft, and lovely to work with.  I am very much looking forward to wearing the finished cardigan!  (But will be very sure to avoid wearing it next to light-coloured clothing!)  So at some point in the next couple of days I'll sit down and sew all the pieces together, ready to pick up the stitches for the hood and button bands.  Sewing is not my favourite part, but one must endure... ;-)

As soon as I'd cast off the sleeves last Saturday night and set the pieces to dry, I happily cast on Deane's Doctor Who scarf.  I had ordered the yarn in early February, and it finally arrived last Friday (bloody Canada Post.  Slowest postal service on the planet).  I've been wanting to knit one of these for a long time, and the opportunity had arisen when I discovered (through the Yarn Harlot) that a yarn store (Little Red Mitten in Ontario) was selling a kit with the season 12 scarf recipe and accompanying yarn with the closest to canon colours.  I didn't get much done the first night, since I'd started so late in the evening:

Day 1

I also managed to drop a stitch in the light brown (otherwise known as 'Saddle Tan') block, and didn't realise until after I'd finished the red section.  So I had pick it up through the dark brown ('Choco Kisses'), yellow ('Goldenrod') and red ('Red Fox') blocks. As you may know, picking up a dropped stitch through that many rows of garter stitch is quite a challenge, especially when it wasn't dropped from the top row.  I had to steal yarn from the adjacent stitches on each row, which is why there's a weird, tighter-knit rectangle.  I fixed that the following day, and managed to get a bit more knit.  Five hours was spent driving from Auckland to Napier, so I didn't knit as much as I'd have liked:

Day 2

But I made up for that the next day:

Day 3

And the next day:

Day 4

It was around this time it occurred to me that I may be able to finish the scarf in a week, and have it done before we left to go home.  The race was on!

Day 5

Day 6 - 10 year old added for scale ;)

The knitting was done, but there were all those ends to weave in!  Another one of my not-so-favourite jobs.  Still, I got stuck in - nobody was going to do it for me, right?  About three hours later, I had finished the ends:

Not much to show for all that time really, is it?  Then, it was onto the fringe.

11.30pm, and the scarf was complete.  Time for bed!!  Long drive home tomorrow...


So we arrived in Napier Sunday evening, and spent Monday fluffing around going shopping and getting my broken food processor replaced with a swanky new one (yay!!!), plus I did a BodyRock workout and 140 squats.  Mum cooked an amazing roast lamb dinner (my favourite meal).  Tuesday morning I headed out for a 6.5km run along the riverbank near my parents' house, using the Rotary pathway, then did BodyRock.

Wednesday was more shopping and hanging out with the family, and I got to go try out kick boxing with my BFF.  It was a lot of fun!  And that covered the 'cross-training' part of my run training schedule too :)  Not to mention BodyRock and the 150 squats I did that morning...

On Thursday I had a rather lovely 8.5km run through the hills of Taradale - Puketapu Road (twice) and Cumberland Rise, plus BodyRock and 155 squats.

Hey Napier, you're pretty when you wake up in the morning

The boys stayed at their nana's for the night, and I spent the evening with my BFF eating Chinese takeaway and waaaaaay too much chocolate while watching Thor and The Avengers movies.  Awesome evening.  On Friday I squeezed in a quick 3.8km run, my BodyRock workout and 160 squats before heading around to my sister's for the day to look after the four kids (her two and my two) while she went to work.  It was a surprisingly stress-free day.  I guess when there's enough kids, they manage to occupy themselves quite well.

Conveniently, Saturday was a rest day for the squat challenge, BodyRock 30 Day Challenge and my run training, so we packed up and got on the road at 8am to head home, and arrived in time for a late lunch.  We lucked out with the weather too - it didn't rain until after we got home.  I was lucky with the weather again this morning, managing a 9.5km run before the rain arrived - I was finishing up my 180 squats when it started.  And just so you know, doing 180 squats right after a 9.5km run is REALLY HARD WORK!   Having said that, they're helping a lot with my knees - the muscles in and around my knees are really strong now, which is helping me run longer distances.  My knees still hurt after about 5km, but I think that's just something I'm going to be dealing with long-term anyway.  It's not bad, and they only get sore to a certain point then don't get any worse, so I'm going to keep going.  I'm not giving up on my goal to run a marathon that easily!


I came across a company during the week via Facebook that looked interesting - Foodbox.  I ordered The Big Bang box for this week, which will be delivered on Tuesday.  I'm really looking forward to it!  This week's collection of fruits and vegetables are new season potatoes, carrots, red onion, broccolini, baby white cabbage, swede, baby spinach, kale, lebanese cucumber, cherry tomatoes, 'fancy' lettuce, spring onions, mung beans, mandarins, persimmons, feijoas, ambrosia apples, bananas, kiwifruit and lemonade apples.  Yum yum yum!!! I think it'll be great fun to have this delivered every week, and will enjoy the challenge of trying to incorporate the fruits and vegetables into the weekly meal plan.  I have registered to have the Big Bang box ordered weekly at this stage, and will assess how that goes over the next couple of weeks.  If we need more, I can get a bigger box.  Less, get a smaller box.  Or we can change the frequency of the delivery.  This is such a fantastic idea!  And it means less trips to the supermarket, as the main reason for weekly shops was to get fresh fruit and vegetables.  Now, I can stock up on staples and shop less frequently.  Might have to add eggs to the fruit and veg delivery though.  I love that you have this option too.  Awesome stuff!!  I'll let you know how it goes.

In the mean time, anybody got any good ideas for persimmons?  I know how to bake them into a cake, but would love some different options aside from adding them to a fruit salad or eating them on their own.

Fast Forward

Tomorrow is back-to-school day (HURRAH!), and the boys will have fresh bread and a butterscotch cake to go in their lunch boxes (gotta love routine).  I will be getting stuck into an assignment, and possibly looking at that calculus workbook I have to get through so I can study Statistical Analysis next trimester (urgh...).  The house needs a good clean so I'll be getting back into the cleaning calendar too.  It will be the fourth and final week of the BodyRock 30 Day Challenge, and I'll be nearing the 200 mark for the squat challenge.  Next weekend, I'll have cracked the 10km mark for run training.  Yes!!

I hope you have a good week!