Tag Archives: reading

Sellwood Dog Park


After work yesterday I drove to Sellwood and decided to spend some quiet time alone in the park.

Oaks Park is a great park that I always forget about. It’s so close to our house, too. I brought my book, a blanket and some water. I walked around the park a little bit to check it out first.

Sellwood Park is right on the Willamette River, too. The weather was absolutely perfect for sitting in the park. I spread out the blanket and sat down to relax and unwind.

The sun wasn’t too hot. There was a beautiful view of the river. I watched the waterskiiers, people boating up and down the river. There was a peaceful breeze too. It was pretty much the best spot in Portland.

I read my Sookie Stackhouse book and just listened to the lapping waves on the beach.

I quickly got distracted from my book, though. I realized I was in a dog park and I got distracted watching all the dogs play. They were hilarious! There were no fights and the dogs all played together like they were best friends.

Then I saw these two bears!

They were HUGE! I have no idea what breed of dog they were. One of them came over to say hi to me.

There were a bunch of different dogs that came to visit me where I was sitting. I decided to give up on the book and just watch the puppies.

I stayed at the park for about an hour and a half and then headed home. Michael was so sweet and took care of me.

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How Do You Balance Life?


I think about this question a lot: “How do you balance life with fitness, health and FUN?”

So many people ask me how I lost the weight and how I keep it off. I tell them about the hard work it takes. It takes commitment and dedication.

Yesterday I realized something….I don’t think I have any hobbies anymore. Before I became a weight-losing-fiend, a big hobby was EATING. And laying around. I watched a lot of TV. In fact, I was a TV/Movie renting addict. I’d spend an entire weekend lost in front of the TV. I watched many, many hours of shows. Like I’d watch an entire season of something in one weekend.

Some other hobbies I had were more positive, of course. Scrap-booking, TONS of reading, writing, hanging out with friends, shopping, playing with my kitties. I also volunteered every weekend at Cat Adoption Team. I also volunteered for the Sunshine Division , planting trees with SOLV and other organizations. Volunteering made me feel really good and I enjoyed doing it! Sometimes it was really hard work, too.

Then I started working out.

Working out became my hobby. I was seeing progress and I was happy with the results so I did it more and more. Then my stamina improved and I could work out longer and harder. Whenever I had a free evening, I was in the gym working my butt off. Literally!

While this is all well and good, I got to a point where I was working out too much. I previously mentioned that I was over-training and worked out every day for 28 days straight. I was desperate to get over the plateau I was stuck in and nothing I was doing worked. It was then that I made the “Two Days Off a Week No Matter What” Rule.

It was needed. I still have that rule. But now I have the conundrum of “what do I do now?” Suddenly having free time, I didn’t know what to do with myself!

My reading hobby went by the wayside because you can’t really read much when you’re working out all the time. 🙂

Last night I decided to change that. When I got home from work, I took my book out to the back porch to enjoy the warm summer evening.

I laid on our chaise lounge and read my book. It was so peaceful out there! Our house is surrounded by farmland and green space. Our yard is really big too and I listened to the wind in the trees and the birds chirping.

The entire time, Fat Kitty was watching me from inside.

He scratched the sliding door and whined wanting to come outside! Silly cat. Michael finished watching Tour de France and we made dinner and ate outside on the deck.

Our kitchen is sort of a disaster zone right now. We have huge tarps covering the tiles until we can finish laying the rest of the tile and grout/seal them. Needless to say, we wanted something fast and easy for dinner. Hence: hot dogs and fries. 🙂

Calories for dinner:

Hot Dog Bun: 120 calories

Hot Dog: 190 calories

Fries (baked): 206 calories

Ketchup: 60 calories (over estimation)

Shredded Cheese: 100 calories

Total for dinner: 676 calories

Not too bad for a quickie dinner! Love Ketchup!


We sat outside on the deck for awhile, chatting and hanging out. Then the skeeters came out! The citronella candles weren’t helping so we called it a night.

While we were cleaning out the pantry, we found an old bottle of this:

Rumple Minze? What the heck? I think it was Michael’s before I moved in. There was barely even half a shot left. I swigged it down (trying not to barf) and recycled the bottle. Gross. It was like Peppermint Schnapps or something!

Last night was good. I really enjoyed relaxing on the deck and I plan on doing A LOT of that this summer!

So my question for you, dear readers, is how do you balance everything in your life? How do you find the time to work/go to school, blog, workout, spend time with friends and family, and have your own down time? What hobbies do you have?