Kelly the Culinarian

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Three Things Thursday

1. Our tomatoes went crazy this week. One of them looks like a bush at this point. But alas, no red ones yet. My guess is we'll end up with 482 ripe tomatoes at one time this summer and have no idea what to do with it. Bring on the bruschetta, caprese and pasta sauce.

2. I'm still working on my race recap for the Door County Half Iron last weekend and let me tell you, it was a doozy. Stay tuned, friends.

3. Pokemon Go still reigns supreme in my house. At this point, we run out of Pokeballs in about three seconds, so it evolves more into see, but don't capture, the Pokemon. Works for me.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Three Things Thursday

1. Pokemon Go is taking over the world. There were more users on the app this week than Twitter, so marketers are definitely taking notice. I tweeted this photo last week with a snide remark about how it's just encouraging more people to go out and exercise. I was subsequently interviewed by The Wall Street Journal. Like a boss.

2. We went on a double date this week with some of my favorite people to see The Book of Mormon. I saw it years ago when it was in previews on Broadway when my work used to take me to New York every year. It was as magical and irreverent as I remembered.

3. There's that small matter of a half ironman I'm tackling on Sunday with Brent and Alyssa that I've chosen not to think about at. all. I know I can do it - I ran 13.1 on a treadmill this weekend, and we just biked a century the weekend before that. As for swimming ... the fact that I haven't been in a pool since Texas is probably no big deal because swimming is more about practice than training, right? Wish me luck.

At least my bike looks ready

Monday, July 11, 2016

Get your dog's teeth cleaned!

Bravely boating the high seas ... of a no-wake lake
I thought I was pretty good at the whole adulting thing. I've had Napoleon for seven years and have
run point on grooming, vaccinations, feeding and general pet maintenance. Having a pet is a responsibility and expense, and a privilege earned by keeping up on all the details. Heart worm pills, rabies shots, nail trims and wellness visits are all part of the deal.

At his check up last year, the vet said Napoleon's teeth looked good and he was set. He usually gets them cleaned every other year, augmented by teeth brushing at the groomer. When I took him in last week to get a shot before being boarded, the vet said he needed his teeth cleaned as soon as was convenient.

I made an appointment for the following week and expected a vet bill for the procedure, which is performed under anesthesia, along with maybe one pulled tooth.

Head butting a unicorn
I got a call when Napoleon was still in surgery informing me that his teeth were worse than anticipated.

He would need 11 teeth removed.


It's been a few days and he's totally fine. Basically all the tiny little teeth in the front are gone. Nothing of substance that will impact his quality of life. Upside: He no longer has stink breath.

In another week, he'll be back to eating his regular food and playing with his normal toys. I know it's very common for little dogs, especially as they get older. But damn do I feel guilty. The vet assures me these things happen and couldn't be helped.

Let this be a costly cautionary tale: get your pet's teeth cleaned regularly. Budget and schedule accordingly.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Three Things Thursday

1. I've decided I need a smoker. Our friends have both an electric and a wood-powered model and say they haven't used the wood model since getting the electric. But this seems to be quite a bone of contention in the barbecue world. What say you, Internet?

2. If you follow me on Instagram, you saw I did some major training this weekend. I biked one loop (42 miles) of the Ironman Wisconsin route on Saturday, then did a century ride on Sunday. My legs were tired to start with, and I got a flat 10 miles into the century, so it was an adventure.

3. But that meant Monday was a Funday. We went on a long walk along the trails of Verona, then hoped onboard a friend's boat for fun in the sun - sort of. It was much colder than expected, and I'm not sure if everyone in our party had fun. I can't tell if Napoleon likes boats or not. He seems to enjoy the wind, but when we arrived at the marina, he jumped off the boat, ran up the dock and sat by the truck. Maybe it was fun once he got going?

Friday, July 1, 2016

Heat training in Texas

The joy of a September Ironman in Wisconsin is that the weather could really run the gambit. It could be crisp and fall-like. It could also be scathingly hot. Maybe even in the same day.
Training for fall is easy - it's my favorite season for so many reasons, not the least of which is that it's runner's weather. The unknown is how high the mercury will go. I would venture there are very few runners who would say that high temps are their jam, but we do what we have to to finish the race.

When I was in Texas, I basically tried to embrace the suck. There was plenty of it to go around - the Austin area was experiencing an unusual bout of warm weather, with each day reaching at least 96 degrees (real feel of 100ish). As much as possible, I got up early to run in that golden area of the Venn diagram in which it's light outside but the kids aren't awake yet.

The challenge there is if it the sun isn't hot yet, it's humid because the moisture hasn't been burned off. Win some, lose some. With this strategy, I set out to gradually build up my tolerance. The first few days, I didn't even try to measure distance. I just went for as long as I could, and sometimes, I wanted to quit in the first 10 minutes. I tried to go a bit further every day. I made it to 3.5 one morning, so the next morning's four miles felt like a marathon.

It took a little more than a week before I actually felt acclimated to the heat. I wished I had brought a handheld with me on this trip. Music was key to this evolution. I don't usually listen to anything while I run since music is illegal in most triathlons, but it did help ease this transition. By the end of my 12 days in Texas, I was able to run 8 unbroken miles in the heat. Here's what I learned:

  • Start slow
  • Listen to your body and use perceived exertion, rather than distance or time, as an indication of how hard you're working
  • Mix up the routine - on the days I could only run two miles, I would add a quick travel WOD in to work my muscles and extend the time I was working out
  • Don't get discouraged 
  • Hydrate all the time so you have something to sweat out

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Three Things Thursday

1. I'm bunking with my parents this week and have been helping out around the house. They have a roomba, and if I lived in a single-story house, I'd get one in a minute. How dreamy is it to come home to fresh carpet lines every night? That said, I don't understand why this thing is so loud. It sounds like a stand mixer barreling blindly through every room all day long.

2. I got a delicious care package from Wild Garden featuring their Mediterranean line of marinades and pilafs. I can't wait to try this alongside some healthy grilling options. I'm hoping to get some pork tenderloins on the grill with veggie kabobs and some of these side dishes.

3. I know I've reached peak healthy living blogger status by the mere fact that I tried and enjoyed groats. The hotel I stayed at served a made-to-order organic and vegetarian breakfast every day, along with a manager's reception nightly. Groats are one step closer to nature than oatmeal, and very filling. I had a bowl with milk, local honey and peanut butter daily. I'm expecting my membership card to the HLB society any day now.

Complete with chalkboard signage!

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Life in the Lone Star State

I'm a week into a 12-day jaunt in Texas, visiting my family and enjoying a little summer vacation with the small ones. I've had so much fun sharing one of my favorite cities with my favorite people. There were nature walks:

 Couch cuddles:

A bat-watching party:

 Feasts aplenty (Franklin's is worth the time, money and heartburn):

And happy hours!

So in case you wonder where I've been, I'm safe and sound. Training in the heat the best I can, wearing tons of sunscreen and working remotely thanks to my dear friend Wifi. More to come!