Monday, February 25, 2013

Center of the Community

My trip to the Madison Community Center this evening was a reminder of just how much the place plays in the life of the community.   From people on the track and in the pool, to a class in the workout room, to the guy sitting on a machine reading his Kindle while he worked out his legs, it was a busy evening there.  The handball courts were busy, and some folks were lifting weights.  All the treadmills were busy.  But the real crowd was down in one of the gyms, where it was Dr. Seuss night, which brought families with the young ones, lining up to get tattoos, make hats, and pick up some green eggs and ham.

I'm reminded of much of the resistance that the proposal for the community center had when it was still in the planning stages.  "Nobody will go there," some said.  But there they are!  If you look at the photos, you can see the lines go out the door, kids waiting with their parents to come into our Madison Community Center.

Monday, February 18, 2013

It's Smoothie Country

Two Healthy Smoothies
After we got our new Ninja blender at Christmas time, it sat in the pantry without being used.  But that changed when the wife and I decided we needed to change our eating habits and do something different to be more healthy.  So it's had a lot of use in the last three weeks, and we have taken in a lot more fruits and vegetables since then.
On most mornings, we start with some pineapple, bananas, berries, yogurt, and a variety of other things we find rummaging around in our refrigerator.  We've made a staple of kale, for example, grinding it fine and freezing it in ice cube trays which we can throw in with the fruit.  Spinach, too.  It made a difference to blend those leafy veggies beforehand; the first ones we made were bulky and chewy and too much like a salad.
The Ninja makes good work of it all; it's no-nonsense and blends things well, its whirling Ninja blades getting the mixture to rise and blend and fall until the consistency is good and thick, but not chewy.
So far it seems to have done us good, and the flavor is super tasty.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Morning View, Ash Wednesday, Writing

View from my office, 2/13/13
Every morning I come down the stairs and look out the east window of our big old house and see the view beyond our yard, the neighbor's yard, and across the park.  It's a good view, summer and winter, and the sky is often a treat as the sun comes up and the colors rise and glow and fade with the morning.  It's a good view, this morning of Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent, the period of denial and contemplation of sacrifice.  At least for some.
But of course tomorrow is Valentine's Day, a day to celebrate love, relationships, tenderness and passion.
Today I'm working on a story I plan to read tomorrow for the memoir series at the Smith-Zimmermann Museum, following some of the others that have read and talked about their own stories.  It's coming together, but I'm sure wishing it were more finished than it is now.
Apparently the story of my reading is on the front page of the Madison Daily Leader (print edition).  This morning I'm working on family background.  I'm reading a piece I've tentatively called "Have You Heard the One about the Cowboy and the Farmer's Daughter?"  It's about my mother and father's courtship and early marriage.  We'll see how it goes.  Today will be a test.  If you're interested, it's at noon at the museum, February 14.

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

A Marlin on the Wall

Our birthday present to a young fisherman has found its home.  Kudos to his mom and dad for taking the time and effort to find the fish a spot and get it hung up in the garage.  It's just the kind of spot he needs to hang!

Thanks too to friends Andre and Stacey, who decided the poor decrepit fish was too much to handle and were looking to give him away.  It all turned out great!