Wednesday, December 30, 2009


Picture source:

My roommate got the Wii FitPlus for us for Christmas, and this is one of my favorite fitness games to do on it. It's the Obstacle Course.

My Mii isn't blonde like this lady's is. Mine has short, dark brown hair and wears a purple dress. My roommate's Mii wears blue and has glasses. When we're not actually working out, the Wii FitPlus tracks our weight and BMI. So far, our trends are downward.

The boxing game needs you to hold the controler with the nunchuck plugged into it, but for some reason, it doesn't record my left jabs very well, so I've given up playing that game/workout for now.

The hula hoop game, in the aerobics section, gives a good workout for the midsection, and I like to do it twice: once circling to the left and once to the right (which feels wrong, but I make myself do it anyway). When I was a kid, I was the best hula hooper in the family, but after puberty struck and changed the geometry of my body, I couldn't keep a hula hoop spinning to save my life. Now, using the Wii, I'm back in business and kicking virtual butt with it.

The ski jumping game is fun, but it's not much of a workout, because it's designed to help you improve your balance. You crouch down and lean forward as your Mii slides down the ski run, and then at just the right time, you straighten your knees and try to keep from falling over while you soar through the air and then come down for a landing. Of course, if you miscalculate and lose your balance, your Mii takes a tumble, becoming a rolling snowball and you don't get a score for that jump. I benefited from beginner's luck the first couple days, but now I can't seem to get the long jumps anymore.

They warn you, before the ski jumping game and the tightrope walking game and the obstacle course (and probably some others) that you are NOT, under ANY circumstance, to jump up off the board. You must keep your feet down and just straighten your legs in a simulation of a jump, and the game will have your Mii do the jumping for you. That's good in theory, and I can manage it pretty well on most of the games. But the obstacle course has proven to be a challenge.

You run in place on the board, and your Mii runs down the course. Pause when you get to the swinging demolition balls, or they'll knock you into the ocean and you'll have to start at the beginning of that level again. On level 3 of the beginner course, they not only have gaps to jump over (or risk falling into the ocean) like on level 2, but there are rolling logs that have to be jumped as well. Those logs have become my nemesis.

I can handle the logs that roll toward Mii just fine (most of the time, but sometimes I get flattened). It's the ones that roll from the left or right that have caused me to lose control. I wait for the current log to roll by, then pitty-pat my way as fast as I can before the next log drops and starts rolling. The adrenaline starts to flow, and then the next thing I know, the game stops, a warning message pops up telling me that I am definitely NOT to jump on the board, and it makes me start over AT THE BEGINNING OF THE LOWEST LEVEL OF THE COURSE. Stupid logs!

But tonight, after getting sent back to the beginning in shame one time, I managed to clear all the logs with my feet firmly on the board, and I made it to the end of the course with about 5 seconds to spare. Score!

For the first time in eons, I actually WANT to come home and do my workout. The Wii FitPlus is the best game I (n)ever bought.

Year End

I've been thinking about how I ought to start thinking about maybe doing a year end recap. But at this rate, it looks like the year is just going to end before I'm even ready.

The nerve!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

I found this video at Hugh Hewitt's blog. It's a different rendition of one of my favorite Christmas songs.

May the Lord God made flesh be your Light and your Salvation now and forever.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Obama Approval

It's time for a thousand words. Or, rather for two thousand.

Rasmussen Reports has today's Obama Approval Index, now at an all-time low of -21. That's the percent of likely voters who strongly approve minus the percent who strongly disapprove.

Why is this man smiling?

President Obama's overall approval ratings are falling farther than the temperatures in Washington DC.

Maybe if he stopped trying to take over health care (and GM and the banks and the climate...), his approval might start improving.


Friday, December 18, 2009


I went to Costco tonight after work, because I needed to pick up just one item that I always buy there. After I walked in, I thought, "What are you doing??? It's not going to be worth waiting in Costco-at-Christmas lines just to buy some cheese!" But this thought came at exactly the time when I could see past all the entryway promotional stuff over to the cash registers. The lines were SHORT, so I stayed.

I said hi to the high school friend of my daughter's who works at Costco and who I haven't seen there in months, but I didn't linger for fear that all the other shoppers would beat me to the registers. Instead, I made a bee-line for that room in the back where they keep the fruit and lettuce, the room that's about a hundred thousand degrees below zero and even a parka isn't enough to keep you warm while you look at the grapes.

Before I got there, though, when I was near the high-density food sample area, I saw a familiar face. It was HIM, the guy who broke my heart a couple years after my divorce. But before he did that, he helped me remember what romance feels like. All that stuff I said in my Romance post about what you miss if you take things too fast, that's what I went through when I dated this guy. It was wonderful.

And then it hurt like hell, even though I didn't love him. But I got over him a long time ago, and I haven't seen him at all for a couple years.

Tonight at Costco when I saw him, there were no stomach flips or any sudden pounding of my heart. I simply recognized him and realized that, yeah, he's still around. He's still as tall and good-looking as ever, but I glanced at his hand and saw that he's married now. After all the other women with broken hearts after mine, he finally picked someone and settled down. Naturally, I kept my eyes open to see who she was.

I didn't know her, assuming his wife is the woman whose back he touched. She's unattractive and looks older than he does, with mousey brown hair pulled back into a pony tail, and frumpy clothes that Stacy and Clinton would definitely not approve of.

He could have had a beauty, with his looks, and his third broken heart (counting mine) belonged to an adorable woman with an incredible personality and joie de vivre. But he didn't want her either. Instead, he seems to have settled, and that's a little sad.

There was one night when we were dating when he took me to a dance at somebody's house, and I could tell he was head-over-heels about me (I was the same way about him), but the next time we went out, he started backing off. I always had the impression after that that he was afraid to let himself feel too much about a woman, for fear that she'd leave him devastated the way his first wife had. And he seemed to repeat that closeness followed by break-up over and over. Now it looks like he found someone who he doesn't have to worry that she'll be stolen away from him.

Life is too short to make all your decisions based on fear. That's not living, that's just existing, and if that's the case for him, it's his loss.

I walked tall and pushed my cart toward the ice-box room without saying anything to him, and he didn't say anything to me either.

The grapes looked lousy, so I went over and got my cheese and headed for the checkout stands, where there was NO LINE AT ALL!

Some days give you a big surprise. Today gave me two.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Changing Back Again

There are times in life that you don't realize things have changed, until they change back again.

One of those times for me was when I found a glucosamine product that tasted good. Officially, I have arthritis, but it wasn't until a couple years ago that it started bothering me any. After I started taking this glucosamine, I didn't really notice a difference in the ache of my hip - until I ran out of it and the product was back-ordered for two weeks. That's when I realized that my left hip joint was hurting again. I had been taking the glucosamine out of habit and because I liked the flavor. Now I make sure to always keep enough on hand in case of any more back-orders.

A similar changed happened recently, only it wasn't about a product.

I've had my job at the health clinic for almost 3 months now. I like my boss, I enjoy my work, and I'm getting the notion that they just might keep me after my probation is up next month.

What changed is that I've started singing to myself again. Nothing loudly enough for other people at work to have said anything to me about it. I do most of my singing in the car, or I'll catch myself doing it softly while I carry my tea back to my desk from the breakroom.

I don't know when I stopped singing. I used to do it at my last job, before the trip with my mom, and I continued through the trip and after I got home. I think it must have stopped when I started getting seriously low on money and had my house for sale and nothing was happening with the house sale or the job hunt. The stress must have crowded out the music.

Now that I'm working and my house has sold and there's money in the bank, I'm finally able to breathe again. And breathing allows for singing.

I first caught myself singing the chorus of Toby Mac's City on Our Knees, my latest favorite song on the Christian radio station. But with all the Spanish speaking going on at work, I'm back to ¿Con Que Pagaremos?, which I mentioned before, and even with the last remains of the cold I've had, I can hit the notes, and it sounds pretty darn good even if God and I are the only ones who hear it in my car.

And after church today, after singing Christmas carols, I'm thinking it's time for me to refresh my memory again for the traditional carols in French. I wouldn't want all that effort back in junior high school to go to waste at this point in my life.

I know I've said it before, but I'll say it yet again: Life is good. It's even better with a song.

Friday, December 04, 2009


I was getting ready for work this morning, and as I always do, I brushed my teeth. And then I remembered that I should take some cough syrup before I left, except it was already time to leave.

There are certain things that really should not be consumed when the taste of toothpaste is still in your mouth. Cough syrup is near the top of the list.

Did I do it? Yes. I have a cold, and I need to do what I can to prevent bronchitis from settling in (I'm also keeping up with my 12-hour Sudafed to protect the sinuses). But of course, the distaste of the toothpaste/cough syrup combination got me to thinking about lists, namely the What Goes Bad With Toothpaste list. Unfortunately, my list is pitifully short right now:

What Goes Bad With Toothpaste

Cough syrup.


Orange juice.


Umm... That's all I can think of. Did you notice how I spaced them out so the list looks bigger?

So, help me out. PLEASE! What do I need to add?

December Calendar Photos

At long last we come to the end of the calendar photo year.

The family photos for December are from Yellowstone National Park (here and here), during my trip with my mom. The blue one is a thermal spring near the Fountain Paint Pots. The bison are near Yellowstone Lake, and the third one is one of the many mineral springs at Mammoth Hot Springs.

My patterns calendar has a picture I took at a shop in Amish Country in Lancaster, Pennsylvania while we were on our trip. I love taking pictures of stuff for sale.

And that wraps up the SkyePuppy Calendar Year.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Dr. Senator Coburn Discusses Health Care Bill

I found this video over at Hugh Hewitt's blog, where his producer, "Generalissimo" Duane Patterson posted it today. At almost 19 minutes long, it's a sobering look at what's coming if the Democrats can get their monstrosity of a health care bill passed.