7/30/18 Chronicles

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  Monday 7/23/18

I got up very late this morning...I was just tired and wanted to sleep in! I didn't get up until almost 11:30. We didn't get our morning walk, though, so that wasn't good.

I weighed myself as I do now, weekly, and I gained back most of the pound I lost last week. Fooey!  Still eating too many carbs and calories, I guess. Back to just salads and sugar free stuff for me. Mostly, anyway.

nectarine ice creamFor breakfast I made myself a salad with scrambled eggs. For lunch, I had a half of a ham and cheese sandwich. For dinner, I had another salad, with turkey. I did have a few snacks, though, so that's where the problem lies, clearly. Most of it is sugar free, but it's still just too much. I had a low carb ice cream bar, some caramel popcorn, and later on I made some nectarine ice cream. It was sugar free except for the nectarines.

I had a lot of work to do on my site today. I had all my usual stuff, plus I had to something that one of my volunteers is supposed toBrandy in dining room do...She went out of town without telling me, so I had to figure it out from visiting her Facebook page.

I've been trying to post more on my site's Twitter page, to promote it, especially during Comic-Con. I will have a ton of photos to put up, sometime soon, from the convention. It's a lot of work...

Once again, the mail carrier gave one of my packages to the next door neighbor. This is getting annoying!

You may recall that I have these baby gates up all over my house to keep Brandy from going into certain rooms and chewing things up. I finally decided to let her go into the main dining room. She was whimpering to go in there all the time. I used the gates to keep her from the furniture and Carly from GHdrapes.  I just let her in today. She's happy to go in there, but she's reluctant because she knows that she's not normally allowed in there.

I was very sleepy in the afternoon, so Brandy and I took a nap for a few hours. Bad idea. I wasn't tired at all later. Too much sleep.

It wasn't a very exciting day...mostly, I just worked on my sitevery dry plants  and watched TV. I have a few summer or year-round shows I watch, and then I have many episodes of "General Hospital" to catch up on. I'm back in June, 2017 right now.

I notice that my plants in the backyard are getting kind caramel popcornof brown. We haven't had nearly as much rain as we usually get in the Spring and Summer.

I ordered this delicious caramel popcorn on Amazon. It's not low carb, though, so I have to limit myself to a small amount.

I made myself stay up until dawn so I could walk Brandy. I knew that if I tried to go to bed around 4 and just sleep for 3 hours, it wouldn't work.

  Tuesday 7/24/18

I took a few pictures of the sunrise around 6:10, at least as much as we can see of itbackyard sunrise (filtered through all the trees). It was very nice that early in the morning. Almost cold! It was great.

We went back to sleep for a while, and then got up again about 1:30. I was sick all afternoon, probably from eating out Saturday at JavaPrimo. I can't eat there any more. Apparently the food had gluten.   I took another nap after that.

Now that the weather is cooler, Brandy lies out in the sun sometimes. It must be tough to have that big heavy coat all the time in this heat and humidity. Dogs always seem to enjoy the sun, though.

Brandy eying my PopsicleWe learned that Brandy isn't afraid of the one standing gate that we have.  She just pushes past it.  Now we can't use that one for doorways. Bummer. At least she's still afraid of the others.

We had our evening walk. It was warm, but not too bad. Always glad to be done with it, though! I always have a sugar free Popsicle afterwards to help cool off.

hamburger mixI made this yummy dinner. I grilled some onions and then fried up lean hamburger. I added in bacon, extra sharp cheddar cheese, sugar free barbecue sauce, and garlic powder. It was really good and reminded me a little of Sloppy Joes. It tasted way better than it looks here!

I had bought the caramel popcorn bags on Amazon, but they sent way too many, and they're very addictive. Today I separated them into small bags so I will only eat a tiny bit at a time. (That didn't work - they got stale!)

Today is my brother Pat's birthday.

Tonight I'm doing laundry, dishes and packing. Trying to get everything ready for tomorrow!

I went to bed about 2am after I finished the laundry and did some other things.

  Wednesday 7/25/18

Brandy spends a lot of time sleeping...I asked David to wake me up at 6am, but I woke up around 5:45, itching. I told him to wake me up at 6:30, but then I kept waking up, so I just got up, around 6:15. I walked Brandy. It was a little chilly outside.

I spent all morning getting ready for our trip. I had to finish packing everything. I had a lot of clean clothes to sort through and put away, as well as the clothes to pack in the suitcases.  I let Brandy lie on the bed while I did that. She was pretty good. As long asBrandy chewing on her toy on the bed. she has her toys to chew on, she's usually pretty good about not chewing on the clothes!

David came back around 11. We drove to the kennel and Beautiful crepe myrtles in front of Overstreet at SAUleft Brandy off there. Then we went to SAU. The campus is full of beautiful flowers, especially the crepe myrtles that are everywhere in our town.   He had a meeting. I went to mail a package, but I forgot that they don't take credit cards at the SAU post office. I had my ATM card, but I forgot that I got a new one in the mail, so the old one isn't working anymore. I got a soda and went back to David's office to wait for him. I chatted with his assistants, who are very nice.

We left about 1:15 and drove to Hot Springs. It's a pretty drive. We're staying at theLake Degray Hampton Inn. The hotels in Hot Springs are strangely lacking for such a tourist area. They have two old hotels, including the Arlington, that we stayed in last time, that our room at the Hampton Innare being refurbished. They have an Embassy Suites/Hilton, but the rooms are over $400! After that, it's mostly cheap hotels, and motels. Weird.

Driving in, I saw that the Clarion is right by the lake, which is very pretty. We should have stayed there. I had no idea it had such a view. Oh, well. Maybe next time!

David went to his meeting. I had snacks from home, so IGF snacks munched on those.  I called to see if the German restaurant that I wanted to go had gluten free options. They said there's a GF menu, so that made my day.  I had a snack and went to sleep. He came back around 6 or so.  We wanted to take the Lyft over to the restaurant, but it wasn't working...the app just hung there. So we walked across the street to this strip mall and stopped at this place, The Blitzed Pig. We hoped to find an ATM in case we needed to call a cab. I tried the Lyft again, and this time it worked. However, the app still said that we were at our hotel, so I had to text the driver, to let him know that we were over across the street.

My dinnerWe went to the restaurant, and I was still very thrilled to have a GF restaurant. It was a bit disappointing, though. I had the sausage and cheese plate, and a potato pancake. David had the schnitzel. Both the sausage and schnitzel were very dry. It was almost like low fat sausage or something. Yuck. The cheese was really good, and the potato pancake was outstanding. Also, I had the pear cider that I had last time - delicious.  Too bad the rest of the food wasn't as good.

From there, we took a Lyft over to the casino at Oaklawn. We had fun, even though we didn't win much. Then we stopped at a place called Rocky's Corner that we'd been to before. I wanted dessert, but they didn't have anything.  We went back to our room. I had a lot of sleep earlier, so I stayed up pretty late. I was very itchy and didn't sleep much.

  Thursday 7/26/18Hampton Inn breakfast

I did a lot of work on my site last night, but I wanted to stay off the computer for a while (hurts my spine after awhile, not very ergonomic). I listened to music on my iPod. 

After David woke up, we went downstairs to the free breakfast. It was pretty good. They had scrambled eggs with ham and cheese, bacon, and fried potatoes, all really good, which I sampled. They also had cereal, fruit, yogurt, muffins, waffles....all sorts of stuff. I just had some fruit and a little bit of Cheerios. I should have asked about gluten, but I didn't.

We left our hotel after that. I was SO tired. I slept a lot in the car. There was a lot of beautiful scenery along the way, including Lake Arkansas.  We stopped a couple of times. The first time was just at a gas station, so I got a soda.  Later, we stopped in Fort Smith, which is a pretty big city of 90,000 people (I had no idea!). We were originally going to woodsy roadstop at the Outback, but we weren't that hungry after our big breakfast, so we just went to Denny's. My stomach wasn't feeling well. I just had some sausage, fruit and half a GF muffin.

We drove to our destination: Fayetteville, which is kind of up in the mountains a little. You can tell because the roads get morhotel lobbye narrow, and there are more big trees, as well as the road goes up.  After we checked in, we went walking around a little. It's a beautiful college town. We're staying at the hotel called The Chancellor. It's pretty nice, but nothing too special. Their website says they're upscale, but I don't think they're all that great. Not as nice as most Sheratons, for instance.  When we arrived, no one helped us with our bags. I had to get my own cart.  There was one valet guy who came out and told David where to park, but he didn't help me with the bags.  The woman at the front desk was not particularly efficient or friendly. She didn't seem to care view from our hotelthat much about her job. Also, the lobby is pretty nondescript. Usually, if we go to a nice hotel, I'm taking photos of the decor,Burton's Creamery truck the flowers, etc. but there wasn't really much to take photos of. Their website tries to make it sound much nicer than it is. The room was nice, and we had a great view of the town.

We walked around a bit. I got some ice cream from a truck. It was very town signgood, but I just had a little and threw the rest out, since I'm really not supposed to have that many carbs.. They have a lot of hills here, so we really did quite a lot of walking today, up and down hills.

We had a nap and then went to dinner at this great Thai restaurant, AA Taste of Thai food Taste of Thai. They are gluten-friendly. The waitress said that 98% of their menu is GF. I had this scrumptious dish with chicken, veggies and peanut sauce. I sure wish we had this place in clock and interesting buildingour part of Arkansas! It was SO good!!

After that, we walked down further. There were a few news vans and quite a few cop cars. We wondered what was going on. Later, we read that there had been a drive-by shooting! Wow!

I took a lot of pictures, and we stopped in some places to have drinks and snacks. We went back to our hotel last. This is a very dog-friendlyfriendly bulldog city. We saw many dogs, some of them very friendly and sweet. We were sitting in our hotel bistro, when a man came in with this great bulldog. He had the bulldog up on a bar stool next to him. It was very great and licked me. It was so cute.

I had hoped to try this place that has karaoke tonight, but we couldn't find it and didn't feel like walking back to where it was. Too many hills!

rubber duckyMany people I know on social media are at the General Hospital Fan Weekend events starting today. They're also having events for "All My Children" and "One Life to Live." I read that Susan Lucci will be there! Darn it, wish I could go.

I forgot to mention that housekeeping left us a little green ducky on our bathtub!  Cute!

I'm going to bed early, about 10...hope I can sleep the whole night, since I had so much sleep tonight in the car, plus a nap!

  Friday 7/27/18

I was able to sleep well, so that's a great thing. I woke up about 6:15.  I went downstairs to get some breakfast to go. It was $15 and not even close to worth it. Definitely not as good as the free one I had yesterday at the Hampton Inn! The food was very bland. Once again, I stupidly forgot to ask if it was GF.

Now I'm just here watching re-runs on the TV (I watched "The Nanny"). David left for his meeting at 7:40.  He packed the suitcases into the car. They're letting me stay until he's back. Checkout time is early: 11.  They said I can stay until noon for free; it's $25 after that. Hopefully he'll be back by noon. If not, maybe I'll just go down to the lobby to check out and wait. It's not a very big lobby, but I can find somewhere to sit.

our view of the airport

I went back to sleep, and then he was done early! So I rushed to get ready, took a shower etc.  We checked out and then drove to Little Rock. We were part way there when I realized I left my pillow in the hotel! Darn it. (They mailed it to me thankour room at the Comfort Inn in Little Rock goodness!)

As usual, I slept a lot in the car. It's hard for me not to sleep when I'm in a moving car or bus. We stopped in Russellville for lunch at the McDonald's.

We stayed at the Comfort Inn near the airport in Little Rock. We've stayed there quite a few times before.  After we got there, housekeeping's noteDavid went to the downtown area for snacks. I would have gone with him, but I had a phone interview with an actress, and I wasn't sure we would back in time.  He did come back in time, though. Oh, well. We had a nice nap after that.

Housekeeping left us a little welcome note. Since we're Choice Hotel members, they gave us a little gift bag of snacks, and two free waters. Woo hoo!my dinner at Cache

For dinner, we went down to Cache as usual. They changed their menu, but I think they made it better. I had a really good duck dish. They have really good GF bread there, too.  We Friendly Great Danewere sitting by the window, and a man was walking his big great dane past us, so I went out to say hi. Very friendly but slobbery dog.

We stopped briefly at the Irish bar for drinks and snacks. I stopped at the little store next to it and bought some GF cookies and crackers, like I always do, but then I stupidly left the bag in the Lyft! Not that I needed all those carbs.

David went to sleep pretty early. I wasn't tired, so I couldn't sleep. I had a rough night, trying to sleep but not sleeping. Too much sleep during the day again. I did some work on my site...

  Saturday 7/28/18our gate at the airport

I took a shower about 3:40am, since I had to get up early, anyway. The breakfast downstairs started at 4am. It was OK...not as good as the one at the Hampton Inn, but at least it was free. We packed up and left for the airport around 5:15. We were right across the street from the the airport.

the sun and plane through the rainy windowIt was a little drizzly out.  We waited a long time to board; our flight was delayed, and they changed our gate.  Otherwise, it was an uneventful flight...there was one bumpy part. I was sleeping for most of it. So tired! We had a very funny flight attendant. When I asked if they had hot chocolate (because the plane was so cold), he replied, "Oh, aren't you adorable!" or something like that. OK, then....They had to stop serving drinks while there was a bumpy part, so we got drinks late. We changed flights in Chicago at O'Hare.  Both our flights were less than 2 hours, so there were no movies.  We both wished we'd had enough time infruit cup Chicago to go in to the city and have lunch, but sadly, we didn't.

We stopped briefly at the Chicago Cubs restaurant (they were undergoing renovations, though, so they had a very limited menu). I just had some fruit. They have a lot of great stores at that airport. I found one that sells Vosges chocolates, so I bought some. Yum! I only got the ones marked GF. I used to go to their store in chocolates from Vosgesthe mall at Ceasar's Palace every time we went to Vegas. Delicious gourmet chocolate. They have some really bizarre flavors, and I don't like it when they combine too many strange things with chocolate. I'm not a huge fan of combining unusual savory and sweet flavors, in general.

I slept in our airport boarding area....not the most comfortable place, but I was just exhausted. I had left my airplane pillow at home, so I bought a new one. It worked well, though.

I now have over 500 Instagram followers! Yay!!! That's very cool. That happened very quickly.

We both slept on the second flight, too. Both of our flights were in fairly smallboarding plane planes, so we didn't have to share the row with anyone, except across the aisle. There were some pretty loud children on our flights, though.

I spent way too much time last night on the computer, so my right shoulder/neck was hurting a lot all day. UGH.

We arrived in Burlington in the afternoon, around 3:22. The airport here is very pretty metal elephant-- not like most airports I've seen. They have a lot of wood in the decor. It looks very rustic, yet chic.  There's a yoga room with classes! And they have interesting artwork and statues. There's also a computer you can use at the baggage claim. It's just a very nice airport.

We got our hotel shuttle for the Holiday Inn. It's a very prettychecking in city. Very Eastern looking, like Boston or something. But nicer.

After checking in, we took a nap and woke up after salad at RiRa7pm.  We took Lyft over to the area called Church Street Marketplace, where they have many restaurants, bars and stores. Most of the stores were closed, though. We had dinner at the Irish place, Ri Ra. He had fish and chips. I just had a salad. The have many gluten free choices in the restaurants here. At first, weChurch Street accidentally went to this other place called Sweetwaters, until we realized that we were in the wrong place. They're right across from each other.

This is another great dog-friendly city! We saw so many. I wish our town was like that. Unfortunately, it seems to me that the me in front of City Hallmost dog-friendly cities are the ones that are either really big, or touristy, or that have mild weather. Most of the time, you see dogs sitting outside with their owners. If you live in a real hot and humid places that are not so big, they don't tend to have the outdoor areas. I don't think we have one place here that has an outdoor section. That's kind of silly because the weather here is not so bad the rest of the year. It's only bad in the summer.great chocolate torte with ice cream

Speaking of which, the weather here in Burlington is beautiful. it's in the 70's. I'm glad I brought my sweater because it's a little chilly for me (especially with the wind). David bought a sweatshirt at the CVS because he was a little cold. We went back to Sweetwaters afterwards, where I had a yummy flourless chocolateManhattan torte, served with mint chocolate chip ice cream and whipped cream (it was HUGE). I couldn't finish it. We walked around the area and took many photos. We also stopped in this little pizza place called Manhattan to have drinks and wait for our Lyft back to the hotel. 

We came back and were in bed before midnight. I'm very tired and will probably go to sleep soon. Well, as usual, I tried, but I couldn't sleep. I think I finally went to sleep after 1 or 2am.

  Sunday 7/29/18

David went for his walk this morning. Then we went over to the airport to rent a car.Me and Ronald McDonald They upgraded us to an SUV - a Ford Escape. Very nice. I would buy one.

They have this Ronald McDonald statue at the airport. He sits on a bench and has his arm up so you can sit there and it looks like he's posing for a photo. I couldn't do that when we landed because other people were sitting there. So I had to take that photo when we went to pick up the car!

Beautiful hills near the Von Trapp Family LodgeWe drove up the mountains to Stowe. I took a lot of photos. We saw many very beautiful trees and mountains. The Von Trapp family (from "The Sound of Music") has a lodge up there as well as some restaurants. It's just beautiful there. We also saw signs warning of moose and deer.  First we went up to the lodge (resort and hotel),Von Trapp Bierhaus but that had a different restaurant than the one we were looking for. We wanted the one that was like a traditional German restaurant or beer hall. So we had to drive back down a little ways and take a different turn until we found it.

We sat outside and it was very pretty there. The waiter was slow to yummy sausage plateget to us, but after that, he was fine.  I always love sausages, and their sausage plate was gluten free! It was great. David had the chicken schnitzel. Both dishes came with mashed potatoes mixed with sauerkraut that was really good.  We both thought the food was as good as any we'd had in Germany, and this was definitely the best restaurant we went to this whole trip.  Too bad we couldn't sample the beer, since they make their own! He was driving, and they didn't have any gluten free beer.  I did buy some souvenirs, though, at their gift shop.

our view while we were eating

I hope you can check out all of the photos I posted on Instagram! Keep scrolling down until you see the photo of the great dane! Ben & Jerry's factory

He was getting tired, so we drove back after lunch.  Maybe we can come some other time and see more of the area. The first Ben & maple candiesJerry's is there, and they have a tour for their current factory.  We stopped at a couple of stores back in Burlington. They had this cute display with Big Foot!  Every place here sells these little maple candies that are hard to resist.

We came back and went down to the Church Street Marketplace again forDeer head at Ri Ra drinks and snacks. The Lyft driver was a really nice lady that also gave us a coupon for free beer at this restaurant she manages just down the street. She also told us about the lake (Lake Champlain) down the street, so after that, we walked down to the lake. They have a little park, boats, a restaurant, an aquarium and other stuff. It was very beautiful, and I took lots of photos and some videos of the lake, the boats, the ducks, and some seagulls.

me at Lake Champlain

We came back, and he took a nap. The only drawback is that I can't find any karaoke. I guess we should have gone last night. The only place I can find it at all, for Sunday or Monday, only has it starting at 11pm. That's too late for David.  That's what I get for marrying a morning person, I guess...

pork sandwichIn the early evening, we took Lyft again, down to the same Church Street area, for dinner at Sweetwaters. They have a large GF menu. Neither of us was super hungry, since we had such a huge lunch. I had a hard time deciding because I'm not used to having so many choices. I had the pulled pork BBQ sandwich, which came with mashed potatoes and a small cole slaw. It was OK. The bread was a little crusty, and what the heck was I thinking, getting BBQ outside the South or Texas? LOL! That was dumb.

We walked down to The Vermont Pub & Brewery after that, where that Lyft driver waslocal ice cream manager and gave us the free coupon.  It was actually a coupon for a flight of 6 beers. This is where they gave you a small taste of the variety of beers they make. He said most of them were good. I just had some locally-made ice cream, which was very good.  After that, we stopped briefly at our hotel bar to get some drinks. The nice thing about staying here is that they let me take the big glass of soda to our room. Their glasses are big, not like some places. Also, we're Vermont Pub & Brewery outdoor signon the first floor, so it's not far to go.  Plus, it wouldn't be far if I wanted to go back to get a refill.

He went to bed pretty quickly. I wanted to, but I was sick from gluten. It was probably from one of those hotel breakfasts. I've been stupid to assume those are GF or safe. It's just difficult in the mornings, especially if we're checking out of a hotel and there's a free breakfast. He's always in a hurry, and it's hard to find a Denny's or something nearby where I can eat.

It was a bad night because I typed too much, too, and the fingers on my left hand were hurting, and then my neck on that side was also spasming. I forgot to bring my muscle relaxer pills, since I've been doing so well lately because of that epidural shot. I really overdid it the past few days, between the phone and the computer.  I took Aleve, but it still hurt a lot. I also had a lot of itching and congestion. It was hard to sleep, and I was up past 3am. Well, hope you enjoyed reading about our trip. Tomorrow is our anniversary! You can read about that in next week's blog. Here's another beautiful photo of the mountains I took.

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This page updated 8/10/18

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