Sunday, May 31, 2015

Windows Live Writer...The Love, The Hate, The Utter Frustration of it All!

Sometime between last week and yesterday,  Windows Live Writer, the Program I use on my laptop to post my blog postings,  seems to have had an argument with Blogger...and they are not talking anymore.   I'm not sure why.   There was a "Windows Update" sometime around last Wednesday....maybe that messed things up.  As a RULE....Windows Updates screw up something every time.    Sometimes it is the Media player, other times the Keyboard.   Most of the time, it is simply the printer.   This time, however, it looks like it is the Window Live Writer.

So,  Don't get me wrong,  Windows Live Writer is GREAT!   I simply love it!   I can write my blog post and add pictures and it will auto save ( to prevent those irritable moments of lost effort when the web browser crashes or closes unexpectedly.) It sets up photo galleries to post the multitude of pics that do not make the initial posting page.  It is a very cool program. And Easy to learn and navigate.   No huge waste of time trying to figure things out.  It is these very reasons that also contribute to me hating it when it is on the blink.  The ease and friendly nature, quickly forms a dependency that is difficult to shake.
And so I spent much of my time yesterday playing marriage councilor trying to get Windows Live Writer back on talking terms with Blogger.   I'm not sure what Blogger's problem is....But he is refusing to accept Windows Live 's Username and Password authentication. I have looked up forums and help topics, which do nothing to help me.   Not only do I fail to understand Techno Speak....But from the reply list....the crazy pathways and solutions do not work! 
So here I am....( this happened before, the consequences were much more sever last time) back to using blogger directly...with all it's own hang ups and issues.   Posting pictures is a pain.  Saving frequently to prepare for sudden crashes and complications are a nuisance.  But it is my only option at the moment.    You may have noticed the change in formatting over yesterday's posting.....that is the difference with Blogger. 

QUICK UPDATE!   Someone was cool enough to address this issue and post a video on how to get around it.    Basically you have to Email Blogger your post, and Blogger will understand the Email, but NOT the Windows Live  Message....hurray for UPDATES!   I THOUGHT they were supposed to make things better.   Anyway,  If you are experiencing the same issue,  give this guys method a try.  Looks fairly simple enough.  Enjoy!  And Good Luck!

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Cheryl's 22 Mile Turtle Run!

The BIG 22 Mile run was today.    From the title, you might think Cheryl ran it at an all time slow speed.    Well,  That might be partially true for the last 8 miles, but for the most part, she was tracking at her normal pace for the majority of the run.  
Nope,   the title comes from an actual turtle encounter today.   A very large snapping turtle!

Snapping turtles are not uncommon…unless you are 8 miles from the nearest body of water!     It was in the middle of the trail…in the middle of a field… the middle of farm country!

We left it alone…..there was no “"room on the bike to carry it  back to the river/creek that was back by the bridge ( about 8 miles away!) and I figured that it somehow found its way this far… must be capable of finding its way back. 

Judging from a bing search….the turtle may have been a “she” and may have been looking for a place to lay some eggs.   I’m not sure, but now I’m happy I left it alone.   The last time I “helped” a turtle, I may have done more harm than good, placing him back into the river on the side he was obviously trying to leave.   Ah well!  At least he did not get run over by a car…which is what would have happened had he remained in his current location.

Anyway,  Cheryl and I completed the 22 mile run and we managed to survive.  Cheryl even feels surprisingly “perky” after such an ordeal.  I must admit my knees are a little sore after 3 hours of pedaling.   They don’t hurt…unless I try to get up and bend them from a 90 degree angle.   Other than that, the weather was a cool 63 degrees and the cloud cover kept the sun away for the duration.   There were the usual rabbits and chipmunks, in addition to a pheasant and the indigo bunting

The Bunting was a very cool surprise this time!   As we approached the area where he was spotted last week,  Cheryl found him sitting in the middle of the trail!  He flew up just as Cheryl was a out to reach him.  His Awesome Vibrant Blue was a sight to behold against the gray clouds and green foliage.

Later, on the return trip,  we saw him again, but could not stop long enough to enjoy the show.   He settled on a branch at eye level just off the trail.   It was unfortunate that I did not bring the camera this time.   I was afraid that it would rain ( which it did…briefly and gently) and I did not want the camera to get water damage.  

So…there it is!   22 miles was the biggest hump we have had to overcome yet.   The last great obstacle will be the actual marathon…coming up in  three weeks!   We now will have to taper down our runs to get ready.  

As for the job situation.     We are still scoring at college board and I score for Pearson at home… makes for a long day and a short night’s sleep.  hopefully the money will all make it worth it.   Grandma’s Marathon will be a little expensive, and I will feel safer if we have a little extra cushion of green.  If you know what I mean.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Cheryl’s 15 Mile Chipmunk Run

Cheryl by the trailA little easier than the 20 mile run, this time I thought I would document the run with my own camera instead of borrowing pictures from other people.   pved path for the first 1/4 mileI mean,   They probably have better cameras than I do, and can wait for the best shot that remains in focus.   As for me,  I have the camera dangling from my neck and have to shoot from the hip…so to say.


Watch out for the chipmunks! So lets begin….As you can probably guess, Chipper scurries under Cheryls foot!  (see the little blur?)the critter of the day was the Chipmunk.   I failed to capture very many in focus as we trotted down the path.   Several of them ran so close that Cheryl had to actually dodge them for fear of stepping on them!   Others simply stood still until we were right up on them.  

Of course there were also rabbits and many, many birds; but the foxes, deer and Pheasants remained hidden.  It may be because we started a little later today. 

Off the paved part for gravel DSC_0356The Parking space actually had a couple of people already ahead of us.   The bike trail starts off paved, but quickly turns to gravel once you cross the main road to Washington.   This is where the majority of chippers were running around. 

Cheryl is past the gates.  the gates keep the autos out.About three miles in, we get tot he bridge. An iron bridge in the middle of farm country...   It is big, old, and rather artistic…..looking out of place in the middle of farm country.  It’s always a pretty good place to have as a land mark.   EFinally to the bridgespecially on the way back.    Judging from the lines and the extra gravel on the trail today,  we are guessing that they are getting ready for the half marathon from Keota to Washington in a couple of weeks.


Indigo Bunting Sighted! The Bunting takes WING!   Perhaps the best part ( for me, anyway) was the Indigo Bunting I finally caught on film!   Remember my camera is not the “best” for wildlife photography.   But I still am pretty surprised I was able to capture what I did.  I really love the “bullet” pics of the bird.   I guess the shudder must have been timed perfectly between wing flaps.Like a bullet in the air!  I should also mention that I’m impressed I was able to find him again.   The indigo Bunting around here in Wellman I was only able to see once.  FSpreading wings for only a moment! I’m not sure if he was simply passing through or if he was a permanent resident that was at the edge of his boundary.  

West Chester half way point between Keota and Washington The park we start at when we run in the morning. The 7 mile mark is West Chester.   A main road runs across the path so you have to watch out fro traffic.   On the days we came out here in the morning, we parked in the small park next to the school.   I’m not sure if the School is seven operational.  

Running through West Chester  A quick run through town and we are on the other side next to the large fertilizer holding tanks.    At the turnaround point,  Cheryl took a break for some water….then it was time to head back.Almost to the turn around point.   Giant Fertalizer tanks can be seen in the distance. 

Cheryl hydrates up at the turnaround.By this time,  she had lost the outer layer and forced me to carry it.   Never mind that I was overheating as well!   Ah well,  the bike is far easier to handle than running.   Even though there are still plenty of obstacles that I have to watch out for.  I may not have to worry about tripping or stepping on a rabbit, but I do have to worry about hitting one of their holes in the middle of the trail.  One of MANY rabbit holes on the trail. I wonder if the race officials from the half marathon will fill them in before the race.   Not that any runners would be so careless to step or trip over a rabbit hole.  Who knows?

Back to the bridge....only three miles to go! Finally back to the bridge and Cheryl continues to chase down Chipmunks.  It might be to blurry to see, but once chipper runs right under her foot! Another Rabbit jumps out.

Cheryl was aiming for under 2 hours for 15 miles, but that didn’t happen.   Still,  she was tracking for a decent pace.   We did not bring any snacks for refueling or take abundant water stops.    I’m sure the heat played a role in it a bit.

In the end, Cheryl shows off her time. ony a few minutes over 2 hours.    Not bad for a warm, sunny day. 15 miles seem like a walk in the park compared to last week.   Cheryl guesses it is because she is slowly molding her mental condition to the stresses of running further and further.   As for me,  Well, riding along side with a bike is far easier and even with a camera I was surprised how easy it was.   Of course, I had to weed out lots of “bad” pictures because they were either blurry or too far away to see what was in the picture. Cheryl chases the Rabbit   Maybe with more practice I will get a better knack for it.  

Hope everyone has a great long weekend this weekend.   Cheryl chases the Chipmunk. I know we are ready for a break from the job for a little while.    

To end..even more pics of Cheryl chasing small rodents….Enjoy!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Cheryl’s 20 Mile Wilderness Run!

20_miles_300 So we ran the long run yesterday, and completed it!  20 Miles!   20 long and grueling miles…..Done!

d02work chaos

This accomplishment is further enhanced because it was a rather rough week of employment this last week.   People had to train, rules had to be established, and people had to be shifted around.  An Semi-Organized Chaos pretty much sums it up.  Add to that the late night scoring and the early maintenance runs in Keota ( at around 5 am!) and there is a sense of sleep depravation and work foverworked-scoring at night atigue that makes a 20 mile run on the weekend sound impossible!Good-Running!

But we did it!   WE:  Meaning I was forced to tag along with the bike.   No big deal, you say?  Perhaps I have it slightly easier than Cheryl since I ride a bike, but after 20 miles, even my knees and ankles begin to throb.  Add to that the various bike problems that follow and my stress levels are every bit as high…without that so called “runner’s high” everyone loves to talk about.   I do not get that riding a bike…..I think I’m missing out.

Speaking of bikes, Broken Spokes I broke yet another spoke.   Not too big of a deal, except that it warps your tire frame and makes an annoying sound …..easy fix...right?made even MORE annoying after 20 miles!   So…I’ve done this before….even bought the tools to complete it at home…Piece of cake!   

24 hours later and the bike is finally fixed.   It is a long and depressing story.   Let’s just say I probably should have paid the $20 to have the shop fix it instead of taking the DIY path.  Ah well,   I can’t help being who I am….

Bright Blue Bird! Lots of deer Other than that misstep,  We managed to endure the rather high humidity and heat.  And enjoy several deer, numerous rabbits and an Indigo Bunting Sighting!     Cheryl was very excited about that.   Indigo BuntingsTons of Rabbits are fairly striking against a green and brown background 

Other than that,  My current project is scored out so I have the rest of the afternoon free.   And I guess I will take some of that time to blog and fold up something.  And make sure my bike tire does not go flat now that I have been messing with it.  Indigo Bunting  a rare find!Tomorrow is supposed to be cooler and we are thinking about running/biking in the afternoon in Iowa City after work  We shall see how things go since we might be too tired to function on any level after reading papers all day.  Not to mention there is scoring in the evening for both of us.   But I am not fond of waking up before 5 am to run/bike before the sun rises.   We shall see how things go.


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