Biking at the Beach

I finally went outside today! It’s the first time since about the first of the year that I opted outside!

Biking at the Beach

I was all set to do this great hike at Caesar’s Creek on my birthday..but the negative temperatures and unfamiliar terrain made me pause. Then it seemed the weather was wicked on my days off, and I was too wimpy and lazy to go outside. If I was still running, I would have been outside 5 days out of 7. Because that’s what ultra runners do. Since I no longer run, I no longer have a great training goal which gets me outside.  I need the outside, people.

Plan IT

Today, my day off from work, I planned to take Helga out. I settled on Salt Fork State Park, the home of many trail runs for me. I decided to go ride Helga on the beach, as I really haven’t spent much time on the beach area of the park.

Biking at the Beach

Juggling Clothes

Being a cyclist is much different than being a runner. I’m still struggling with what to wear biking versus running. The wind chill can be greater on the bike, and I have to think about feet staying warm biking.Biking at the Beach

No Wind

I lucked out today. It was about 24 F, but with little wind. The cold wind off a body of water can be killer cold.  I biked around the beach area.

Biking at the Beach

I wandered down a few mowed areas that I had never been to before. They weren’t very long.

Biking at the Beach

Nobody was out on this Tuesday noon, but I did see tracks that someone had been afoot lately.

Biking at the Beach

I was glad I broke my inside streak and opted outside. I love being outside and experiencing new places. I just need to plan my outings, to make sure I actually get out and do them!

Biking at the Beach

Week Five Art Journal Challenge Numbers


Week Five Art Journal Challenge Numbers

This is something I can get my head around! Let’s art journal about numbers!

Angel Numbers

A co-worker mentioned “angel numbers” during this week. Since I’ve been thinking about numbers,I perked right up. Apparently, when you see a random “pattern” of numbers, that could be the angels sending you a message. That’s pretty cool.

Art Journal Challenge Numbers

Three is a Magic Number

Who Could Forget “Three is a Magic Number” from Schoolhouse Rocks?

Art Journal Challenge Numbers

Art Journal Challenge Numbers

“Every triangle has three corners, every triangle has three sides
No more, no less, you don’t have to guess
When it’s three, you can see
It’s a magic number”

It Goes to Eleven

There is the iconic “This is Spinal Tap” movie, where Nigel explains their special speakers; they go to eleven.

These Go to Eleven


I’ve had fun with “numbers” this week. Special numbers popped into my head-Route 66, 9-11, Cloud Nine, the Magic Eight Ball, even the Poop Emoji. Oops, don’t forget the Special Pi Number that makes up the border!

Art Journal Challenge Numbers

Art Journal Challenge Numbers

This has been my most fun week. Onto Week Six!

Week Four Art Journal Challenge Pie Chart

Week Four Prompt Pie Chart

Week Four Art Journal Challenge Pie Chart

Again, where did  I come up with these ideas? I thought I would share a few pics along the way as I art journal pie charts.

Week Three Faceless Beauty bled through onto Week 4, I decided to Gesso over it.

Art Journal Week Four Pie Chart

My art supplies are pretty cheap. Pie Chart in Progress These watercolors were about twelve bucks from Walmart. My acrylic paints-I think there were twelve or twenty in a box-was seven dollars as a clearance item at Walmart. I have crayons, markers, all bought over the years. There is nothing expensive in my mixed media toolkit.

Art Journal Week Four Pie Chart

Did you get a huge catalog from Ikea? It’s a great resource to use as your plotter between pages, to mix paint on, dab the water off your paint brush.  Any big catalog would do!

Pie Chart

As the week progressed, I realized I didn’t need to make a pie chart of any particular thing, like how much carb/protein/fat I ate all day, or a breakdown of the different types of red wine that we drink. Pie Charts can be simple circles to fill in with design.

Pie Chart in Progress

This was just kind of a random, doodling kind of week. I guess that is what art journaling is about.

Pie Chart Art Journal

Pie Chart Art Journal

Pie Chart Art Journal

Onto Week Five!

Week Three Art Journal Challenge Beauty

Art Journal Week Three Beauty


This is the third week of January. We’ve had snow, bitter cold, winds..and today? A high of 43 F. Feels like summer. Okay, I’m stretching it a bit. It’s time for Art Journal Week Three. My prompt was: beauty.

Week Three Prompt Beauty

Who came up with these prompts? (Me.) What was I thinking when I wrote down beauty as a week challenge to art journal beauty?

Art Journal Week Three Beauty

Start with a Face

When I thought of beauty, I first thought of the quote “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” and then I thought of an attractive person-a female. I decided to draw a face. When I painted the face in, choosing white color, I paused. I was going to dabble and doodle all over the face, but decided to leave it blank.

Your Idea of Beauty

Later in the week, I decided to add pictures to demonstrate what a different point of view would find beautiful. A hot sports car. The Mona Lisa. A field of tulips. Everyone has a different vision of beauty. A mother holding a newborn. A trickling stream in the woods. The Milky Way.



I looked for a few quotes on beauty to add to the page. This one resonated with me.

Art Journal Week Three Beauty


Week Three Wrap

How did I think week three went? Eh, okay from a creativity viewpoint. The page seems a bit unfinished. I’m going to leave it for now, let it percolate. Onto Week Four!

Week Two Art Journal Challenge Bullet Journal

Bullet Journal


I’ve been pretty fascinated with bullet journals. I’ve “pinned” many pages on my Pinterest account.

Although very interesting, they seem like too much work for me.

When my little pen landed on “bullet journal” I pondered what to create for one week.

Week Two Art Journal Bullet Journal

Since I have been reading much more this year, I decided to go with “Books to Read” on the right. I listed my all time favorite books on the left.

Bullet Journal Books to Read Page

That still left the lower left quadrant. What to list?


Since I am a podcast junkie, I decided to list my favorite podcasts in January, then revisit my page in December and list my favorites, to see if there is any overlap. Sometimes my podcast attention span changes rapidly, so it will be fun to see what topics I have migrated to eleven months later.

Podcast Bullet Journal Page

On to Week Three!

My Word for 2018



My word for 2018 is HEALTH.

I usually go with a verb, embrace, try, improve. But I recognize I need to place myself in the order of priority, so HEALTH is the word for 2018.

Three Components of Health

Physical Health

Three Areas to Focus On:


Obesity is a big HUGE problems in the United States. Being obese is a huge inidcator of Type II diabetes. I’m obese. Now, I used to be obese/borderline overweight on the old BMI Chart, but I used to be an endurance runner too and getting lots of cardio exercise. Now I’m obese, not a runner, and, at a high risk for Type II diabetes..or pre-diabetes:  People who are overweight or have obesity have added pressure on their body’s ability to use insulin to properly control blood sugar levels, and are therefore more likely to develop diabetes.

5.7 lbs lost in December. Yay! I’m glad I went back to Weight Watchers.


My right arthritic knee affects me. Why not get a knee replacement? Well, it’s not that easy. One, it’s major surgery. Two, the company that I work for requires surgery to occur at a “Center of Excellence” which means it’s not going to be local to me. Meaning, right now, I’m not even going down that road to explore.

The best way to improve my knee is weight loss. See Focus Number One.

Blood Sugar

I tested my blood sugar earlier in December.

It was 108. That is not good people.

A fasting blood sugar level from 100 to 125 mg/dL (5.6 to 7.0 mmol/L) is considered prediabetes. This result is sometimes called impaired fasting glucose.

It doesn’t matter how badass I think myself, my body is a 52 year old fat female, with danger signs pointing to future problems if I don’t start taking better care of myself.


Mental health is tied into emotional health for me. Cognitively I think I am fine. I have started playing “Words with Friends 2” to keep working on thinking.


I am still struggling with not being an ultra runner. Or a plain old runner. Maybe it is taking me longer than others to give up their passion and hobby and identity.

New Hobbies


Biking is taking over the endurance factor that I crave. I like biking. Maybe I even love biking. I love biking in the terms that it takes me to new places that I haven’t seen before, I’m still out there exploring, sans just now by mechanical means.

Art Journalling

This started via smash books, the 30 Days of List Challenge. I’ve enjoyed making and exploring different types of art mediums. I can be creative besides words! Who knew? When you are not running, there’s much more free time in the day.

Art Journal Welcome Page

So here it is 2018, and I am going to improve my HEALTH!





Health has been staring me in the face.  I gained weight after my knee surgery. No big deal, I will get that off when I get back to running.

But I didn’t get back to running. In fact, my depression and inability to accept not being a runner lead to a deep apathy-let’s call this depression-about my weight gain. I frankly just didn’t care about my weight for most of the year.  My bike ride helped, I did train for that, but after the bike ride, sometimes I would work out, but most days I would not.

Pants were getting tighter so I bought a bigger size. Then I went on hormone therapy because I’m menopausal and I literally gained ten pounds in one month. My fat pants were getting very tight and now my tops weren’t fitting. All this weight was settling right around my abdomen.



52 Challenge Art Journal


52 in 52 Art Journal Challenge

Happy Birthday to Me! I turn 52 this year. There are 52 weeks in the year, so you know what is coming…some sort of weekly challenge!

Art Journal Challenge

What to do? Something different each week? I turned to an art journal challenge. I’ve been dabbling in smash books the last few years. Smash books are free form scrap books, full of paper, pictures, other remembrances and souvenirs. I made one for both our New Zealand vacation and my CO-GAP bike ride last year. It was fun to create.

My C&O GAP Bike Tour Journal

My C&O GAP Bike Tour Journal

New Zealand Vacation Smash Book

New Zealand Vacation Smash Book

New Zealand Vacation Smash Book

The original idea was to use a different type of art media each week, but I realized I needed some ideas to create with the different form of media.

Create a new art journal page based on prompts each week

I randomly created these prompts.

52 challenge premise

52 Challenge Prompts

The plan is to just grab a pencil, close my eyes, and stab a prompt, that will be the prompt for the week. One week gives you plenty of time to work on the spread.

It’s My Birthday So I will Cheat

Except for Week One. Week One is my birthday week, so the prompt is “birthday cake”.

Art Journal Birthday Cake