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Sunday, 22 June 2014
Traveling On
Topic: Travel
I retired three years ago, moved to be near son and his family, spent two years in an apartment, then moved in with my son and his family last December.  I enjoy being able to spend time with son, daughter in law and grandkids but now I’m getting a little antsy.  I’m 67 years old and want to do some traveling before I’m too old to travel by myself.

In 1994 I spent several months driving around the US by myself after going to my son’s graduation from Northwestern in Chicago.  I had quit my job and had some saving so my daughter and I had driven up there from Tucson and she flew back to work and university, while my son drove a Uhaul with all his worldly possessions to California as he would be attending Caltech in the fall. I was then alone for the first time since they were born and wanted to see the country.  I continued east, south, west, north, west, south and finally, after several months, back to Tucson.  Then I had to get another job and worked until three years ago.

I love my children, daughter in law and grandchildren but now I want to continue traveling throughout the US, though with a little more planning of where to go.  I travel cheap and stay in campgrounds and cheap motels, eat cheap, and have few needs other than food and a place to sleep.  With social security and state retirement I would be able to travel for a long time, though very slow, staying in one place for several days as it will be the gas cost that could easily do me in.

Posted by rachela at 6:18 PM MDT
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Sunday, 8 June 2014
Pictures and walking
Topic: Walking through the world

I had a very nice walk today through Lacamas Park.  I walked 5.23 miles and feel very good.  There were hardly any people when I started shortly after noon but by the time I finished the traffic was much heavier though not crowded.  It was just warm enough to be comfortable but not too hot.

I've been sorting old family pictures this afternoon and it's not easy since my father had a his own way of labeling them and many that weren't labeled.  I've been putting this off for several years now, since my father died, but I need to get it done before the pictures deteriorate more.  Some are nearly a century old and I don't want to lose them.  I want to scan them or get someone else to scan them so my kids and my brothers families will have them.

I have boxes full of more current pictures that I took before everything was automatically digitized and I need to do something with them also but there are soooooo many. 

Posted by rachela at 8:23 PM MDT
Updated: Sunday, 8 June 2014 8:33 PM MDT
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Tuesday, 3 June 2014
Topic: Whatever

I've spent the day cleaning out and putting stuff I don't use in bags to take to Goodwill or, in the case of books, Powells.  There are so many things that I buy and use a short period or just a few times for something, especially kitchen type stuff.  I want to get down to only what I would take and use if I travelled around the US for a year, which I would like to do.

The hard things are pictures, family pictures mainly, but others.  These are not things that I want to get rid of but what will I do with them if I'm traveling full time?   I do want to get scanned in a lot of old family pictures before they deteriorate or get further damaged.  I also have a small box of letters I wrote my parents while I was in the states for school from 2nd grade on and they kept them so I have the letters to look back, especially when I was in early grade school, as read things I've forgotten about.

Decisions, decisions!   I can store stuff in a storage unit but I don't know that I will have that much and I worry about the dampness or heat.

Posted by rachela at 9:59 PM MDT
Updated: Tuesday, 3 June 2014 10:09 PM MDT
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Monday, 2 June 2014
Wildwood Trail
Topic: Walking through the world

Today was beautiful . . . sunny, not too hot, etc.  Great walking weather.  I took a side trail from Burnside Ave and 24th st which took me through a lovely tunnel of green and dumped me off at a green space with signs about how to get to the Rose Gardens and other sights along the road to the zoo and childrens museum, etc., area high above Portland.  

I found a side trail that took me to the rose gardens and was happily surprised to see an abundance of roses and people.  I had forgotten that Portland is in the middle of the Rose Festival and the big rose event will be in a couple days.  The roses were so gorgeous and smelled wonderful.  It was also very so maybe I can sneak up there after the festival and enjoy them with fewer people.

The bus came by and I got on for a ride to the top and less people.  The weather was gorgeous and there were less people around the zoo and, etc., but still more than usual.  

I walked through the Vietnam War Memorial and then followed the Wildwood trail for over three miles to Burnside Avenue.  It was wonderful, few people and great weather.  The signage is also much better than when I tried to walk the Wildwood Trail from the zoo.  There were too many trails up there and I got totally confused.

The next section is from Burnside north so I will try that one next time.   

Posted by rachela at 7:49 PM MDT
Updated: Monday, 2 June 2014 8:18 PM MDT
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Saturday, 31 May 2014
Whole 30
Topic: Food

I've been on the Whole 30 diet now for about three months.   Yes, yes, I know, the basic program is only for 30 days but it took me a while to really stick to the program.  I have now finished the 30 days and feel great.  I've lost quite a few pounds and am pleased with myself. 

Now I'm in the "adding" back period to see which of the no, no foods bother me and whitch don't.  Four days ago I ate milk and milk products and felt fine. I didn't think I was allergic or bothered by milk so that wasn't a surprise.  Today I ate some grain products, a whole wheat bagel, some pasta and a dinner roll.  So far I'm ok but I, likewise, didn't have a history of being affected by gluten.  I don't think my problem is allergies but just the effect that carbs have on me . . . like gaining weight!

When I moved to the pacific northwest I got a new drivers license and it showed that I was at 155 pounds.  Recently I got a new license since I had moved and I was at 130 pounds so eating paleo/primal/whole 30 does work for me and I feel good eating that way.  A few years (6 or 7?) ago I was up to 180 pounds and lost much of that eating paleo/primal but I do miss bread.  And sugar. And beer.  Now I have to decide how much of high carb foods I can/want to eat, if any.

Posted by rachela at 8:45 PM MDT
Updated: Saturday, 31 May 2014 8:58 PM MDT
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Now reading
Topic: Books

As usual, I am trying to read too many books at once.  The fiction books go faster than the non-fiction books but I need to slow down and finish one book before starting another.

On my kindle I'm reading "The Glorious Cause" by Robert Middlekauff.  I would like to read several books to cover the american revolution.  I have several books on my kindle that I want to get to but I keep finding new books I want to read.

On paper I am reading "Over the Edge of the World" by Laurence Bergreen which is about Magellan's circumnavigation of the world, which I am just getting into.

On Librivox, I'm listening to "Kim" by Rudyard Kipling.  This has been a favorite book of mine for years and I wanted to get back to it again.  I like some books as audio so I can listen to them as I walk but there are books that I just zone out on and start thinking of other things and I miss huge chunks of the books.

I would also like to get into some classics, both  old, old classics such as "The Divine Comedy" by Dante Alighieri, which I've already listened partway to but then my audio book player messed up and I want to try again.

I also want to get into more "recent" classics from "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen to "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" by Mark Twain. Again, I have started on many of these over the years but some I never finished and I would like to do so.

There are so many easy ways to read (listen) to books on the run now that I'm going to keep trying.  As far as current books I usually turn to murder mysteries as too many of the novels leave me cold.  There are many very good current non-fiction books but often there are so many I can't seem to decide on one to read.

Anyway, I'm trying again to get a good reading/listening habit going. 



Posted by rachela at 8:26 PM MDT
Updated: Saturday, 31 May 2014 8:44 PM MDT
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Friday, 30 May 2014
Officers Row
Topic: History

It was a beautiful day for a nice walk.  I went on a walk the Clark County Historical Museum put on.  Each year they have several different walks which are very nicely done.  They charge a fee which helps the museum and isn't very much, about $5/walk.  There are 12 of them this summer on Friday and repeated on Saturday by in a different order.  

The walk today was along Officers Row at Fort Vancouver.   There are some beautiful houses there, some more than a century old.  Most of them have businesses in them which helps in the upkeep of the homes and gives the businesses a classy place to do buiness.  It's a win/win.

Fort Vancouver is a National Historic Site with a fort, which, of course, has been build recently but is nicely done.  There are a lot of school buses this week as teachers try to figure out what to do with a bunch of kids who are very anxious for school to end.  The exhibits at the fort are very interesting and they show both historic and archaeological aspects.



Posted by rachela at 10:43 PM MDT
Updated: Friday, 30 May 2014 11:04 PM MDT
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Thursday, 29 May 2014
Much walking
Topic: Walking through the world

I went to downtown Vancouver to get tickets for the history walks the Clark County Historical Society is putting on this summer.  I've been to previous walks and found them well done.  Well the CCHS doesn't open till 11 am and we were there before 10 am so my granddaughter and I went down to the river walk to while away the time.  My GG ran, walked, talked, talked, ran, etc.  The usual activity of a 4 year old who is just enjoying herself.  

Finally I got signed up and home we went.  My GG to a playdate and I walked 4.37 miles in Lacamas Park.  It was a beautiful day but the mid afternoon missed the early birds and the people coming after work so I met very few people.  Nice!

Lacamas Park is a nice sized park within Camas WA with a variety of walks. It has Round Lake in it which draws the fishers and the boaters. It also has a protected area with the blue Camas lilies which are gorgeous in the late spring.

Now just northeast of Lacamas Park is Lacamas Lake so you can see that Camas lilies have named quite a few places including Camas WA itself. 

Anyway I had a very nice walk and thoroughly enjoyed myself. The sun was actually out and it wasn't raining, which is the default weather here is the pacific northwest. 

Posted by rachela at 9:23 PM MDT
Updated: Thursday, 29 May 2014 9:37 PM MDT
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Wednesday, 28 May 2014
Preschool graduation
Topic: Family

I went to my granddaughter's last day of preschool function.  They sang, danced and generally were really cute as preschoolers usually are.

I can recall that when I was that age were usually just sent outside to play and allowed a little more distance from the front yard as we got older.  Do we control their lives too much?  

Posted by rachela at 6:45 PM MDT
Updated: Wednesday, 28 May 2014 7:07 PM MDT
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Tuesday, 27 May 2014
Belmont - Hawthrone - Laurelhurst Walk
Topic: Volkswalks

 I walked a 10K volkswalk today through some very beautiful and old homes and very "cool" businesses.  I entered Laurelhurst Park twice which I have been meaning to do but never got around it.  It's a beautiful park some very interesting trees, some of which look like they are melting.

The houses are very upscale and, often, historic.  I always plan to learn more about the architecture of old homes but never do.  I just love looking at them.  I wouldn't want to own them as the upkeep on them would be very high. 

The walk was a 10K but I probably walked 11 or 12K as I managed, as usual, to get lost.  I walk along listening to music on my tablet and enjoying the beauty around me and finding new parts of Portland to appreciate. Unfortunately, I also tend to forget that I have a map to follow and regularly have to backtrack, as I did today.

Well, the detours are always interesting but I was tired when I got back to the start point at the Providence Medical Center.  There are two other walks starting from them that I plan on taking as they also sound interesting. 

Strange trees in Laurelhurst Park.

Posted by rachela at 7:59 PM MDT
Updated: Tuesday, 27 May 2014 8:14 PM MDT
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Saturday, 24 May 2014
Topic: Walking through the world

I walked about 7 miles on the Lacamas Lake trail here in Camas.  It runs up and back on the west side of Lacamas Lake (duh!).  It was very busy with walkers, runners, children and dogs. 

I do a lot of walking but want to get into a daily walk, at least, or every other day when life gets in the way.   I used to bike quite a bit when I lived in Tucson but I didn't have a car there.  Now I would rather drive or take public transit to a walk instead.  

I like volkswalks and other set walks but I also like to just walk.  I've been walking the streets here, usually Portland but some in Vancouver.  I just walk for one, two, maybe five miles.  I'm working on the main east west streets between I-5 and I-205.  It's interesting how many things you see when you walk a street rather than drive.  Sometimes it takes several times to walk the whole street and I often walk part of it in a different direction so there is no pressure to walk a certain direction or for a specific time.

Set or programmed walks are also nice but it's interesting to just start walking to see what you find. 

Posted by rachela at 5:26 PM MDT
Updated: Saturday, 24 May 2014 5:54 PM MDT
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Monday, 19 May 2014
Again back!!?
Topic: Whatever

Yes, back again!  I am trying to get back into posting as I have lots of plans for this next year.  

 I'm 67 years old and after 3 years of being retired I'm ready to do some traveling.  I'm lived by myself for two years and this last year I've been living with my son and his family.  I love being around them and spending time with my grandkids but I'm ready to take off again.  

I did this once before in 1994 when I was between jobs, kids were grown and I had some money when I quit the job I was in.

See for an unfinished report of that trip.

I want to travel before I get too old to do it.  I travel cheap ... camping, hostels, cheap motels ... and stop for historic markers and really cheesy roadside places.  I'm getting info together now as the test case will be in October when I plan to drive from the pacific northwest to Oklahoma for my 50th hight school graduation reunion. I'm not sure how much I'm looking forward to that but I do want to see a few people that I still remember.

Posted by rachela at 3:53 PM MDT
Updated: Monday, 19 May 2014 5:31 PM MDT
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Friday, 6 April 2012
Coming back after a long time to see if it still works.

Posted by rachela at 10:42 PM MDT
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Friday, 15 October 2004
Moving Time
I'm trying out Live Journal right now so come over and see me at

Posted by rachela at 9:08 PM MDT
Updated: Friday, 15 October 2004 9:13 PM MDT
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Tuesday, 24 August 2004
Cotton Candy
Topic: Poetry
Walk, walk, walk, walk
Along the street and tired
Eyes lift to the clouds made of
Orange cotton candy in a sky
Thinking of losing the day.

Walk, walk, walk, walk
Feet tired but look at the sky.
Look at the moon in a fat crescent
Welcoming the evening and
Silvering the twilight.

Walk, walk, walk, walk
Others walk and fade into
The twilight. The dark.
Just a little more and then
The bus. Sit on the bus.

Posted by rachela at 10:07 PM MDT
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Terrible, horrible, no good day (days?)
Topic: Whatever
I messed up my computer on Sunday morning and spent the entire day restoring it and trying to fix it. One problem is that it's a Windows 98 and so old that when I had to download new updated versions of some programs, they didn't like it. The new programs (and may I say that it's really tacky that you can't download old programs) made other programs not work (and may I say that I am so ticked at Microsoft I even started looking at getting a Linux operating system).

I do need to upgrade my OS and it would be interesting to try Linux and if that doesn't work, move on to a new Microsoft upgrade (Ugggg!). I don't dislike Microsoft for making money but for trying to control my computer. The Internet Explorer is the biggest problem. I had to get a new MSMoney which requires the latest version of IE but the latest version of IE closes down when I try to get around in Yahoo so I had to install Netscape to use with Yahoo and am so pissed off at all this messing around.

I was still thoroughly stressed on Monday since I was so upset on Sunday (no computer!) and didn't sleep well so I then managed to not have a real happy Monday. This morning I have a dentist appointment, but it's only a cleaning, so I'm hoping a more leisurely arising and such due to the cleaning, will lead to a better day.

Posted by rachela at 8:37 AM MDT
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Friday, 20 August 2004
I took the
The Autism Quotient Test at Newsweek and got a score of 31. That's a bit high I think. Average is 11-22, men usually score 17 and women 15. 23-31 is above average, 32-50 is very high (high functioning autism or Asperger Syndrome score about 35). I've known I was a bit skewed toward the autism side on the continuum but I do think that 31 is a bit high. Maybe it's because I've been helping with training for two weeks at work and all that perkiness and being "up" have really got me down.

I've always had a problem with all the social cues that everyone gets and can't read people very well. I function ok though and enjoy social occasions to some extent as long as I can have some down time by myself. It's better as I get older since I don't worry so much about what people think of me. I do know that I'm considered cold and unfriendly by some people, which isn't true but I don't really know how to change that. Let's change that last sentence a little I do know sort of know how to act friendlier but it's often such an effort and I don't know why people need me to constantly reaffirm that I love them. We aren't talking about significant others or family members but people I just meet at work or wherever.

Ever since I read much about autism or asperger I realized I leaned toward that. What is irritating is I seem to have more of the the social ineptness than the genius and brilliance in math or such. Damn, you'd think that if I have to be a klutz at relationships I should have some compensating ability, but I haven't found it yet.

Ok I scored high on the autism test, I score high on the ADD tests, I'm INTP and I'm still functioning and raised two really wonderful children. Not bad.

Posted by rachela at 10:22 PM MDT
Updated: Friday, 20 August 2004 10:42 PM MDT
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Thursday, 19 August 2004
Sky at evening
Topic: Walking through the world
I'm still trying to get in five miles a day of walking except when I ride my bike to work so I'm beginning to see some beautiful sunsets since between walking the five miles, the bus ride to take care of the rest of way home and stopping at a store, it's getting close to 7:00 pm when I get home. There were some beautiful pink clouds to the west but to the west the cky was that clear twilight light blue that is so beautiful. I always think of it as eggshell it looks so fragile and delicate.

Posted by rachela at 9:52 PM MDT
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Wilcat Welcome
Topic: Whatever
I helped for two hours yesterday morning and I am so sore today. Actually just my upper arms. Wildcat Welcome is when we help the students move into the dorms. It really is fun. We had a dorm that is mostly freshman and the parents and kids were a little hyper but grateful for the help. A couple even tried to tip us even though that's not allowed.

Yesterday was the first day they could move in. We arrived at 9:00 when they could start coming and it looked so empty but within a few minutes we had all the work we could handle. At least the dorm we were assigned to had an elevator. One down the road had no elevators and three floors. A couple of us helped helped one girl carry some stuff to her third floor room in that one and it was hard but she should stay in good shape.

In the afternoon I spent a couple hours helping made Id cards for the students, and a few employees. It was fun. We have the same setup as DMVs and the end product is a little plastic card. I don't use mine much except for checking books out of the library and getting into our building when we work on Saturday when you not only have to swipe your Catcard to get in the building but to make the elevators move. The students use them for everything so parents were anxiously putting cash on the cards and worrying about the meal plan.

Last week I spent an afternoon at the international students orientation since I work in the tax area of our payables and payroll, so I have truly been a part of welcoming the students this year. Usually I just notice that there seem to be more people walking around the university. It is nice to see them back, not just because they are why we are here, but there's an energy they bring.

Posted by rachela at 9:46 PM MDT
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Sunday, 15 August 2004
Fresh basil
Topic: Food
I'm trying to grow some herbs on my balcony and it's so so. The tarragon and rosemary are trying to die. The cilantro is just sitting there, but the basil and mint are growing like crazy. I picked a bunch of the basil and mint and hung them up to dry and then realized the basil would be great with the chicken breasts I needed to cook.

I chopped a handful of basil leaves finely and added a couple cloves of minced garlic. I mixed this with olive oil and rubbed it all on the chicken breasts. These were broiled about 12 minutes on the first side and 6 minutes on the second side. I had the broiler a little far away at first so it took longer than I expected.

I softened some chopped onions in olive oil and added black rice (forbidden rice) and let it heat in the oil for a couple minutes. Then I added vegetable broth and some tarragon (dried, bought) and salt, covered it and let it cook till the water was gone.

With the chicken and rice I had grapes and carrot sticks so it was a yummy supper. The best part is that I cooked up two packages of chicken breasts so I cut the rest into chunks and put portions in plastic baggies and froze them. These are great for lunches as they are really finger foods, if you just let them thaw, and the next week is going to be so busy I doubt I will get a real lunch hour.

Posted by rachela at 10:19 PM MDT
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