Tag Archives: me

the view from a gorgeous driftless lunchtime run.

the view from a gorgeous, driftless lunchtime run.

it’s impossible to convey the beauty of the view from the top of the ridge just a mile from my desk at organic valley. maybe a picture is worth a thousand words.

the view of the classic driftless region geography makes for quite an energizing “out and back” lunch run even on a dull day, all the more so when it’s sunny, green and lush.

do yourself a favor and view large on a big screen.

15 miles. alone, on country roads. personal best 3:40 marathon pace. could have done 20. why?

15 miles. alone, on country roads. personal best 3:40 marathon pace. could have done 20. why? I.

my motivation isn’t synthetic. and now, neither is my recovery shake :-)

26 grams of protein never tasted so good. also, lactose free.

yes i’m an organic valley brand manager so i’m a bit of a partisan, but i really do love this stuff and so does odin – so much so that we have a bit of trouble keeping it stocked in the house!

if you’ve ever made a product then you know how hard it is to go from the idea to an actual thing without making compromises along the way. if it were easy to make a great tasting, organic, high protein recovery shake with a short ingredient list and no words you can’t pronounce, then somebody would have done it already. i couldn’t be prouder of the super team who made this A Real Thing.

15 miles. alone, on country roads. personal best 3:40 marathon pace. could have done 20. why? II.

we’re still getting it stores, so if you’re interested tell your local, favorite store you’d love to have it on the shelf. if you have a whole foods or ncga coop nearby there’s a good chance you’ll find it there. also available via amazon fresh and fresh direct. of course, you can always check our product locator for more locations.

if you try it, i’d love to hear what you think.

The Girls started laying eggs!

The Girls started laying eggs!

kris went out the coop at the end of the day to check on The Girls and happened to look in the nesting box and discovered they’ve started laying eggs! whooohoooo! fresh eggs!

it seems like just yesterday we were attempting to teach frida to not eat The New Girls.

when i lifted open the lesting box, The Girls were all “oh hey! we didn’t know it did that!”

day 3669: rolling down the (kickapoo) river!

day 3669: rolling down the (kickapoo) river! I.

the kickapoo river is a 126-mile-long twisty turny tributary of the wisconsin river and gets its name from an algonquian word meaning “one who goes here, then there”. rolling down the river the low and slow river is one of the many highlights of the driftless region. because the region didn’t get razed flat by the advancing glaciers then dumped with drift they receded the river offers some spectacular views.

and it’s all the more fun when you roll down the river when family are visiting.

day 3669: rolling down the (kickapoo) river! II.

between intentionally goofing around and actually accidentally running into each there was a lot of contact on the river. i’m surprised one of them didn’t dump it. nope, that honor went to their mothers :-)

day 3669: rolling down the (kickapoo) river! III.

it was absolutely gorgeous day. sunny, light breeze, warm but not hot and no bugs!

day 3669: rolling down the (kickapoo) river! IV.

day 3669: rolling down the (kickapoo) river! V.

the ancient geography throws off a serious Enchanted Land where Faeries might Play vibe.

day 3669: rolling down the (kickapoo) river! VI.

this here is what is known locally as river beer. i think not so much because it tastes like a river but because if you take a spill it’s not the end of the world if you lose a few in the river. but we don’t do that, leave no beer behind is my motto.

day 3669: rolling down the (kickapoo) river! VIII.

on the ride back from the landing in a packed bus of merry ( and tipsy ) river goers, odin notices the sign on the bus has the same number for the half a dozen services on emergency services sign. he thinks someone was trying to make an joke that he doesn’t get. i tell him there was a day when 911 didn’t exist and you had to call a different number for all the different services and the numbers were different from town to town. he gave me the man-the-olden-days-were-crazy look.

harder. better. faster. stronger.

harder. better. faster. stronger.

today i ran 10 miles faster than i ever have before. i averaged 8.5 minute miles and on the last 5 i was running 8 minute mile pace. i could have easily run the entire 10 miles at a 8 minute mile pace. this means i shaved 10 minutes off my 10 mile run time compared to 1 year ago and about 20 minutes off my time from 2 years ago.

originally i was going to only run 8 miles but it felt so good i tacked on 2 miles. maybe there’s something to being trolled by an ice cream truck :-)

it seems reasonable to project out the performance and gains and predict that i’ll hit 7 minute pace sometime over the next year for half marathon and under distances.

two years ago i honestly thought that was impossible goal for my 6’4″ former clydesdale frame and now it’s almost a reality.

big question is what’s the upper limit? could i hit 6 minute miles. seems impossible now…

current status:

frida’s post run cool down routine.

frida's post run cool down routine.

frida loves, loves, loves to go running with me. with the warmer weather, keeping her cool is important so it’s great that she also loves, loves, loves cooling down in the kiddy pool!

she usually goes 4 or 5 miles when the weather is cooler in the mornings or evenings. 3 miles if it’s during the heat of the day and she gets plenty of water. i think she’ll totally be game for 10-13 miles runs in the winter since she’s built for running the cold.

making some modifications to the treehouse deck.

making some modifications to the treehouse deck.  I.

at the end of last summer, after camping in the trees and watching movies treehouse movie theater i was excited to kick off weekly movie screenings and having all sorts of fun up in the trees this summer.

but after spending the winter looking at the 14′x16′ deck over the winter, i couldn’t stop wondering if the supports for the deck needed to more, well, more supportive. it’s not that i think it’s dangerous now, but thinking out a few years when wear and tear starts taking its toll, i decided i needed to bolster the supports and strengthen some potential points of failure. and in order to do that, i need to take down the supports, which is extra challenging since there are no posts running to the ground.

first things first – i needed to jack up one end of the deck. a 1.5 ton bottle jack and a 4″x4″ post were the right tools for the job though they were a wee bit prone to falling over so having a second post ready was important. i’m glad i thought of that ahead of time :-)

odin helped crank up the end of the deck a few inches while i put the second post in place.

making some modifications to the treehouse deck. II.

next, i secured some shims in place on the second support on the same tree so the support could take some of the load off the 4″x4″ post.

making some modifications to the treehouse deck. III.

with the 4″x4″ post secured and the shims in place, now it’s time to take down the rightmost support down.

making some modifications to the treehouse deck. IV.

i have to add a bit of leverage in the form of a copper pipe to wrench out the 12″ lag bolt at the base of the support. every creak and groan in the deck is a bit nerve wracking.

making some modifications to the treehouse deck. V.

with the lag bolt out, then i attack the support to a pulley and knock it off the 3/4″ threaded rod that’s holding the top of the support on the tree. standing on a ladder holding a sledge hammer while knocking the support off the rod and holding the pulley rope is trickier than you might think.

making some modifications to the treehouse deck. VI.

and then it’s time to start making the support more supportive! i’m going to lengthen the horizontal section of the support so it runs the entire length of the deck, “sister” a second set of boards to the support to make it twice as thick and attach 3/8″ 12″x12″ steel plates to both sides of the support where the lag bolt goes into the tree. the bottom of the support is the key failure point so reinforcing it with over a half inch of steel will go a long way to ease my mind.

and no, i didn’t really need to use a 2 foot bit to work on the supports, but if you’ve got a big bit, baby you should use it when you get the chance.

onward!

day 3505: hanging out with the cosmos organicos garden collective contemplating probabilities.

day 3505: hanging out with the cosmos organicos garden collective contemplating probabilities. I.

exactly one year after the fire at the organic valley headquarters, we re-opened the rebuilt section of the building. hurray! and a few days after that cosmos organicos garden collective was in the garden preparing beds and planting. it’s great to get out and get your hands dirty and even more so when you’re doing it in the “shadow” of a rebuilt headquarters ( big shout-out to everyone who made it happen )!

day 3505: hanging out with the cosmos organicos garden collective contemplating probabilities. II.

working in the healthy organic soil you find lots of friends like this toad and many, many earthworms.

day 3505: hanging out with the cosmos organicos garden collective contemplating probabilities. III.

and even more fun – one of the collective found a four leaf clover! which got me to wondering what are the odds? turns out, it’s about 1 in 10,000 clovers which is a square of 100×100 clovers. assuming there are about 4 clovers in an inch, that’s a square of 33″x33″ or almost 3′x3′. so in every 3 foot square you should find a 4 leaf clover. that sounds relatively trivial, but the way my eyes work, i’ll never find the four leaf clover. they all look the same. the odds of me actually finding a 4 leaf clover in a 3 foot patch are small.

day 3505: hanging out with the cosmos organicos garden collective contemplating probabilities. IV.

odin helped out in the garden which is always fun and reminded me of just how many years he’s been toiling away in our garden plot, since well before the formation of the collective! in fact, i think that yellow wheel barrow is the same from the photos taken five years ago. it’s amazing how time flies.

day 3505: hanging out with the cosmos organicos garden collective contemplating probabilities. V.

work break! don’t tell The Suits odin was running around on the roof of the tool shed. haha. just kidding. there are no suits.

day 3505: hanging out with the cosmos organicos garden collective contemplating probabilities. VI.

amazingly enough, just a bit after finding a a four leaf clover the same person found a five leaf clover! this hurts my brain a bit. the odds of finding it are about 1 in 1,000,000 clovers which is a square of about 1,000×1,000 clovers which is about 333″x333″ or 27′x27′. so that’s a manageable amount of search space but still, IT’S A MILLION CLOVERS! i mean, the actual odds of me picking put a 5 leaf clover out of a million clovers is nill. nada. zip. and yet i’m working side by side with someone who can do it like it’s a parlor trick.

i asked him how he does it.

“i dunno, the irregularity sticks out.”

so we’ve got a four and five leaf clover finding savant in the collective. my question is what are the odds of finding a 4 leaf clover and then a 5 leaf clover? it feels like a similar calculating the odds of rolling two successive yahtzees in two rolls but how do you factor in the visual heuristic?