A Perfect Balance

  1. JAN 31

    The hubby and I just returned from a lovely two day getaway, joining my sister-in-law and her spouse in beautiful Santa Ynez, California – gorgeous wine and horse country.  As we drove up the coast past Santa Barbara, the rolling hills became greener, the clouds seemed fluffier in the blue sky, even the livestock that dotted the pastures seemed at ease.  Cows, horses, alpacas, pigs, even the ostrich looked so picturesque and, well, relaxed.

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    Stop whine-ing and start wine-ing!

    Our first order of business was to meet the in-laws at Dierberg Winery for some wine tasting.  Following a flight of seven enjoyable pours, we headed to the Inn to check in and begin planning our evening.  First stop, the complimentary wine and cheese gathering in the hotel great room.  Ensconced before a roaring fire, we chatted amiably with a lone Texas man, in the area for a team cycling event.  The man was well-travelled and we shared several anecdotes about visits to distant locales, whilst sipping and munching away happily.

    As is always the case, while engaged in this conversation, my mind was tallying up the calories I was thoughtlessly ingesting and, while enjoying myself, I couldn’t help steeling my resolve to actually use the gym clothes I’d packed that morning, with a visit to the Inn’s fitness center the next day.  As is usually the case, I diligently pack some lightweight workout clothes and shoes in my suitcase.  Whether or not they are actually put to use is always up for grabs.  The intent is always there; the follow-through?  Not so much.  But if this guy could say goodbye to his wife and child, and catch a flight to California to bicycle, surely I could take the elevator down two levels and get myself on the treadmill!

    The evening ended following a steak dinner and wine back at the Inn.  This was serious.  I HAD to get to my workout in the morning.

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    Weight, it gets better!

    The following morning, I’m happy to report, I rode the elevator down to the basement and made good use of the tiny workout facility, working up a really good sweat in the effort.  I don’t know if the gods were testing me, but no less than three staff members tried in vain to help me change the channel from the talk show that was blaring “Big Game Snacks” featuring ‘Bacon Wrapped Tater Tot Bombs’ – really?? – turn down the volume for the love of God!
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    This artichoke you up!

    Back home, I am taking advantage of a rare rainy day in SoCal, prepping food to stock our fridge with healthy and tasty treats that will be waiting for me the next time I mindlessly open the door to “just look”.  Because really, we all want to live our lives and enjoy ourselves.  And we all, ideally, would like to maintain some level of fitness and, of course, good health.  So naturally that means that somehow we must each find a manageable equilibrium.  How does one do that?  How difficult is it to achieve and hold onto?  I ask myself those questions every day. In the meantime, I just keep searching, keep trying, putting one foot in front of the other, looking for the elusive perfect balance.

    I’d love to hear how you are managing this.  Have you found your balance?  What set backs have you had?  What progress or discoveries have you made?  Please add your thoughts, suggestions, anecdotes and yes, recipes! in the COMMENTS box below.  We all look forward to hearing and learning from you!

    (Corny photo captions provided by enthusiastically misguided elder son & husband.)

    Next up: Surviving the Super Bowl blitz!
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