Working on living better: TOLT

Hey there! I’m actually back home — did you miss me? You can catch up a bit with what’s been going on in my life with my Weekly Wrap. But today I’m Thinking Out Loud, assuming I can actually gather my scattered thoughts.

Living better, not longer (although longer is nice, too)
This month has been hard, and not just physically, although there’s that. There have definitely been way more nights of interrupted sleep than good nights. I’ve spent the majority of this month away from home.

It’s been hard emotionally, too, though. It’s so difficult to see my parents, once so with it and vital, in the state they are in now. My mom is still quite with it, but she’s physically much frailer, although it’s been three weeks since the surgery. And being my dad’s caretaker is wearing on her.

We are a long lived family, and I want to live better. I’m trying so hard to use my parents as an example. I eat better; I’m more physically active than they were at my age.

Is it just inevitable that this is what happens when you’re very elderly? I hope not. I want to break the cycle. I want to live better, not necessarily longer. I want to always be willing to learn new things, to be more flexible, to admit my frailties but do my best to stay strong.

It isn’t easy. It takes work. But what is the point of living longer if you’re unhappy?

Even the shorter days haven’t bothered me
Yet, anyway. I’ve been so busy most days that I’ve had little time to think about how short the days are getting. I suppose that’s a good thing — you can always find a silver lining if you look hard enough.

But I did notice that it was dark before 8 pm last night. 😦

What I’m loving lately
Tarte Rainforest of the Sea Quench Lip Rescue (affiliate link). But I wouldn’t buy it at Amazon, much cheaper at Sephora. It’s a non sticky lip gloss with good stuff and I’m just loving it.

I meant to try to take a photo but I forgot. Trust me, it’s pretty and feels good.

New Orleans, March 2017, anyone?
I saw the Best Damn Race in New Orleans on @runswithpugs on Instagram. Yeah, baby. I highly doubt I’ll get the $1 registration, but you can transfer your bib to someone else or defer to the following year. That’s what I’m talking about!

With the craziness of elderly parents, I never know what’s going to happen. It means training through the winter, of course, but knowing I could cancel if I had to or defer it takes the pressure off.

Hello, Mr. Judy, whaddya think?

It may have been love at first sight

Bandit update
Bandit continues to improve, although it continues to be the dance of one step forwards, two steps backwards. For instance, he’s taken to barking for a little while when he goes into his crate at night. Maybe we’re not tiring him out enough?

Or is it the fact that he’s getting a little more freedom in the house, and he’s testing his boundaries?

Earning his freedom

We have been trying out having him in a bed next to a couch, on leash; at night when we’re watching tv, sometimes I do it during the day if Gizmo isn’t being active. Mostly he’s been quite good, but last night didn’t work out so well.

Mr. Judy was having a tough day, and he was angry, and he was scaring Bandit, he ended up going underneath the recliner (where I was sitting). Down saved the day, because he was basically gonna choke himself getting out of there, but I told him down, and then was able to get him safely out. He went back into the kitchen, since he’s comfortable there (he normally gets gated in there at night while we watch tv).

Train your dogs, people, I can’t emphasize it enough. The basic commands. You never know when they could save your dog’s life.

In the good news department, he’s been doing really well meeting people on our walks, including teenage kids. I have everyone feed him treats. We had both dogs in the car together for the first time last weekend, and we took Bandit to the park.

He was a wild child initially — would’t even take treats, and he’s become a highly food motivated dog. He wasn’t when we got him, not at all, but now that tail is going furiously when he thinks a treat is coming. He did eventually settle down. No growling at dogs or people.

Speaking of growling, he started to do that out of the blue in his crate last night. No one was near him. No one outside, as far as I know. I let him out, he pee’d, and that was that.

I had my regular pet sitter come in to meet him yesterday. She’s actually the one that started the whole Bandit mess. The only person who has been in the house since we got Bandit was the trainer, so I had no idea how he’d react. But I have to be out a long time tomorrow doing my long run, so I wanted to see how she felt about coming in to let the dogs out into the backyard.

He barked, of course (I had him in his crate), but greeted her with a wagging tail, and when I let him out, he was jumping on her (in a good way). He was totally fine with her. I did tell her if he reacts differently to her coming in when I’m not there tomorrow, and she’s not comfortable with him, just leave. He’ll survive (I guess she could always let Lola out; she’d appreciate it, I’m sure).

While we were chatting in the backyard, with both dogs out, a rabbit suddenly appeared. Usually the dogs give chase and the rabbit makes its escape. Except this rabbit couldn’t seem to figure it out, and the dogs were chasing the poor thing back and forth like five times. I can call Lola off a rabbit, but Bandit’s recall is definitely not that good yet. I swear he came damn close to getting it, but eventually it did escape.

* Disclaimer: this is an affiliate link. I make a very small commission if you buy this product from Amazon after clicking through my link.

Talk to me. Tell me in the comments:

What are you loving lately?

What are you doing to live better?

Who wants to run the best damn race in New Orleans with me next spring?

I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud

24 thoughts on “Working on living better: TOLT

    1. I didn’t really take up running because of my mom’s health issues; to this day, I’m still not completely sure why I did!

      But my mom’s diabetes was totally her on fault. Yes, it runs in our family — on both sides. And high blood pressure runs on her side.

      My mom was pretty overweight most of her adult life. And it never really seemed to bother her. As a friend said, you reap what you sow.

      I’ll continue to work hard at staying healthy.

      And yeah, of course I want both! It doesn’t seem to happen that often. 😦


  1. I’d love to go to New Orleans but probably can’t get the time off or afford to go. Maybe next year or instead of Feb.Florida trip.

    You should have a good day for your long race on Friday. My race on Sunday has humidity & rain in the forecast.

    Is that the first time for Mr Judy pictured on your blog??

    See you at some point. Hopefully before NYC.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. New Orleans IS next year (technically), LOL. But yes, I’d be surprised if you could do that being fairly new at your job. I wonder how humid it is in March? Probably a lot already! But it sounds like fun. Geez, by that time my dad will have just turned 91, God willing!

      Nope, Mr. Judy has appeared before. Just not very often. He usually prefers to be behind the camera.


      1. I try to plan in advance, but I have people constraints that always make it iffy. Of course if I get in & do it in 2017, I’m not going back in 2018.

        And if you weren’t already signed up for that half in FL, you could’ve joined us! Assuming there’s an “us”. Assuming I even get to go. Sometimes procrastination actually works. 😉


      2. I’ve only been to NOLA once (oddly enough for a work conference) & I wasn’t a runner then! Although that is one of the cities I’m not sure I’d feel real comfortable on my own.

        But the food . . . post race beignets — yum!


      3. Mr. Judy was with me — usually I tagged along on his business trips; he enjoyed tagging along on mine! I was actually there as “press”, thou, so it really was work.

        We stayed a few days afterward tho. Ate at Brennan’s. 😊


  2. That’s always one thing that’s scared me about getting older too – I don’t want to become frail and tired and rely on meds to get me through. A lot of that runs in one side of my family, and while my parents are doing pretty good so far, there are some things that I wish they’d improve on. I dunno. I guess we just have to do as much as we can to make sure our bodies last as long as they can. And that’s good news about Bandit constantly getting better. You’re like the Dog Whisperer 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s especially scary for us (me & my husband), since we have no children. My sister keeps saying she’ll make sure we’re taking care of, but she’s 7 years older than me!

      I keep saying that we ought to change Bandit’s name to Lucky. I’m sure so much of it was the major upheaval in his life, but he has still made life very complicated. Since it’s only been a couple of months, I’m mindful not to trust him too much yet or push him too much, either. It takes time to build trust on both sides.


  3. I’d like to be older and healthier than my parents, but I sometimes wonder if the damage has been done already. As a child I liked to stay indoor and read. I think the fact that I didn’t do anything other than walking then is the reason why I’m not fit enough to do much more than walking now- my heart didn’t adapt when it could and it doesn’t have the reserve now Despite me trying!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I truly believe that you can get fitter, at ANY point in your life. I believe that my mom and dad could, even at their ages.

      But you have to want to.

      Sure, sometimes you can’t reverse damage from your youth, but going forward and living healthier is never a bad thing.

      I also wasn’t super active as a child, and many of my hobbies (yes, reading, too) were sedentary.

      And here I am 50+, and maybe in the best shape of my life. Mind you, I definitely don’t have the energy I had when I was 20, or 30, or . . . but in my 20s, I used to have terrible insomnia. While I still struggle with sleep sometimes, I sleep a LOT better than I did then, no doubt because of how active I am.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I knew you’d be in, Tricia. Maybe Holly too? How fun would that be?

      Mr. Judy had a few exceptions, but I was able to “reassure” him.

      But it’s Mardi Gras (no, that’s in February).

      But it’s hurricane season (no, that’s june- december).

      Even if I sign up, there’s no guarantee I’d be able to run it, but it sounds like fun and I’ve only been to NOLA once, and that was before I was a runner. And since I’ve become a runner, I’ve wanted to explore NOLA on foot! But not in summer.

      No doubt if it’s very humid, which I know it could be, it would be a really slow half for me. Especially I’d be coming off winter up here, but hey, it’s more about the destination, not the finish time!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I am with you, I do want to live better, but I am not sure how much we can really overcome our genes. I have tried to eat healthy, be active, and I am still having some every similar health problems like my Mom. I keep thinking I should be doing better than I am.
    I think LA in March is going to be hot for me LOL

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m not sure the temps would be all that much different in LA than VA in March . . . probably more humid. Averages tend to be about 60 for a low, mid 70s for a high. It will be way worse on me, I could be heading out there in a snow storm!

      I do believe you can overcome your genes; it’s definitely part of the picture, but it’s not the end of the story.

      I know that you are definitely working hard to be healthy, though, Karen.


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