Thursday, October 30, 2014

Making Spätzle

Spätzle: We've been gardening more and biking shorter distances -- mostly with Bungee, our rat terrier. This was a great year for tomatoes and peppers, many of which went into the sauce for tonight's meal. In this video, Dale makes German/Austrian spaetzle.

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Monarch pupa

These monarch butterfly pupae are so splendid.  We have three of them now, and another likely to form today.  One failed part way through the pupation process yesterday, but there are still 13 more caterpillars eating and growing and looking good.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Going slow

Watch "Monarch caterpillar explores tropical milkweed." on YouTube

After retiring on April 1st, I resumed biking every day but added some time consuming other activities - - gardening and raising monarch butterflies.  The caterpillars came from Monarch Watch and are growing at a tremendous rate on tropical milkweed (Asclepias currasavica or blood flower).  Luckily, some local milkweed has also sprouted, because it turns out that the older caterpillars are avoiding the leaves on the tropical milkweed and eating only the flowers - - something about regulating the amount of the milkweed toxin that they need to accumulate, I guess.  They are happy to switch to Minnesota native milkweed though, so I think we should be able to get all of them to maturity without running out of food.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

385 days of cycling

We celebrated our 385th consecutive day of cycling with a trike train ride with friends on Lake Harriet. It's been easier to ride every day than to blog every month (outdated browser on a computer for which I'm not the administrator, and difficulty with my new smartphone or the blogging app -- not sure which). Some of our bike rides in December were very brief, and a few of mine were around the living room on a small folding bike, but as the days get longer, we're both commuting on our trikes. Last year, the the ice on the lakes never got thick enough for safe riding, but it's a foot thick now after a January cold snap, and relatively clear of snow. We let a couple of other cyclists try out the trike train on the lake while I took a short movie of it.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Going strong

We're more than two thirds of the way through the year and have cycled every day.  My phone app for blogging about it hasn't been working since I got a new phone, so here's a summary:  We rode 100 kilometers for the Minnesota Ironman in early May, a couple of group trike rides with the MiNiTOT group in June, the Midwest Recumbent Rally in August -- with a 4-trike train trip through the old railroad tunnels on the Elroy-Sparta trail on the way home -- and the two Twin Cities rides in September (the St. Paul Classic and the Tour of Minneapolis).  The St. Paul Classic's 41-mile loop formed the backbone of our only 100-mile ride of the year;  we rode to and from the event, and took a long detour across Minneapolis and into the western suburbs and back during the afternoon. That ride, on September 9, has to serve as my annual 9/11 ride, which was interrupted when I was called in to work 30 miles out from the start, to cover for a sick co-worker.  It's been a great year for cycling so far. 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

113 Days of Biking

We've been doing the 366 Days of Biking and are 22 days into the "30 Days of Biking" challenge, but blogging our year of cycling has fallen by the wayside -- in favor of actually riding the bikes for the past 113 days (and working). 

For Earth Day, we rode to the co-op and brought back four full baskets of groceries.  The bike baskets are from BASIL.  We love the way they can be hung on the side of a grocery cart and then just lifted onto the bike racks. 


Thursday, January 05, 2012

January 5

Today was a telecommuting day, but I found time to take a seven -mile ride in the evening to meet up with Dale on his commute home and to stop for groceries.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

First Commute of 2012

From Daily Rides of 2012
The streets are a mess, the sun goes up after I get to work and sets before I get out, it's cold, and the ride isn't particularly scenic -- but I really enjoy cycle-commuting.  It's easier to load up my computer and head off in the early morning to work than to take a recreational ride around the lake on a sunny winter afternoon;  having a reason to ride is a big part of my motivation.  (5.4 miles round trip)

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Winter cycling on ice

From Daily Rides of 2012
Every year since 2002, when I first tried to take at least one bike ride a day, Minnesota weather has stopped me in my tracks. This little Anura trike took me around Lake Harriet today and then up an icy hill toward home.  Even without studded tires, its traction is impressive.  (Dale was riding the one with the larger wheels and the studded tires.)  It was another day for a short ride, just three miles. 

Monday, January 02, 2012

Just 364 more days

From Daily Rides of 2012

Without the Greenspeed Anura trikes, the idea of cycling every day of 2012 would already be dead in the water (or perhaps it would already be "on ice").  As it was, I had to zig-zag uphill at one point.  Dale had it easier on the trike with 20" rear wheels and studded tires, but mine was running ordinary tires on 16" wheels. 

We weren't very ambitious.  A 2.6 mile ride to the post office to mail a 100th birthday card to Dale's childhood dance teacher and then to the co-op for some groceries was plenty.