Woolworths : The Fail Whale People.

You may recall that I broke up with Woolworths in August 2015. Since then, I have been pretty consistent with my desire to not shop there. When I changed purses recently, I did not bother putting their rewards card in there.

It turns out there is only one thing we actually NEED to buy at Woolworths which we cannot get elsewhere. Don pepperoni. We tried the Aldi version and it was ok, but it was not awesome like the Don pepperoni. Coles do not sell pepperoni in sticks here, you can only get it in packets which does not work for us. So once in a blue moon, we trek to Woolworths and stock up on Don pepperoni.

Over the past year they opened a new Woolworths at Vincentia Marketplace. We visited the marketplace when it first opened and took a look at Woolworths. That store was new and therefore was laid out in the new style. Nothing we saw inspired us to reconsider our decision to break up.

Since I saw the dietitian and changed our eating habits to involve less processed foods and more fresh foods, 99% of our shop comes from Aldi now. We visit Coles for any brand name foods we cannot get at Aldi. Each shop, that list gets smaller and smaller. I do not like eggs from Aldi, so we pick up the Manning Valley eggs from Coles, and we usually get some Don ham there. Some weeks that is all we buy from Coles.

A couple of weeks ago, Woolworths put an ad on my Facebook. They told me that Fairy Platinum dishwasher tablets would be 50% off. Ever since Pinchme sent a sample of those, we have been faithful Fairy customers. At 50% off, the tablets are a mere .35 cents each. Usually even on special the best price I will find is .50 cents each.

So off we went to Woolworths, only to find NO Fairy Platinum dishwasher tablets on special. I was so annoyed! Clearly I was not the only one, because the next time Facebook showed me the ad, it had the dates that this would be on special.

Our next grocery shopping trip fell within those dates, so we went to Woolworths, only to find that particular store did not stock Fairy Platinum at all. FAIL WHALE.

By now, I was determined I was going to buy those darn dishwasher tablets. Having failed twice, we went to the largest Woolworths in our area and picked up 4 packets. They also had salami on special, and we had just run out. So this will be our last visit to Woolworths until we next run out of salami, which I am hoping will be in early 2017. That stuff lasts a fair while, we only use 12 slices a week on our pizzas.

I don’t care what you advertise to me on the Facebook in future, Woolworths.

I am NOT picking you.

Annoyed Snoskred, bitches, shopping

Moona Moona Creek

zmoona2

Moona Moona Creek is a popular spot with locals and tourists alike.

zmoona3

It essentially splits Huskisson from Vincentia.

zmoona4

There is a bridge to cross, and you will see a lot of photos taken from the bridge (see the first photo) purely because it is a great view. However you do not usually see many pics of the bridge itself. So here is one. ;)

zmoona1

The creek is home to a lot of creatures. You will find baby crabs, baby fish up to larger fish, stingrays nestle in the sand – this would be my one note of caution about taking kids here, probably best to put them in water shoes. Also a good idea to get your foots in yourself and move around a bit first as this will usually send the rays swimming away.

Huskisson, Jervis Bay

It Turns Out, I Am A Runner.

background
My windows desktop background image. Why did I choose this, when I was not a runner?

At the start of 2016 I set myself a simple main goal for this year. Eat less, move more.

I love to walk, I always have. I was never someone who enjoyed running. I saw the value in it, especially in short sprints to raise my heart rate during workouts. I did it, but I did not LOVE it. Nor did I think I ever would love it.

I began aqua jogging regularly and discovered that I quite enjoyed that. Though I find people look at one weird, when one is doing it. Or maybe that is just me and the way I do it, because I do sprints in the shallow end to get my heart rate where I want it, then I walk the pool for a lap, back to sprints, back to the walk.

160heartrate

As time went on, I got better at running. I could do it for longer. I began to feel STRONG when I did it. I watched my legs change the more I did it. The muscles started to stand out more.

One day, I ran for a full kilometre on the treadmill. It took somewhere around 7 minutes. This was amazing to me. How is it possible that I could do this, when I used to struggle running for just one minute?

After that, I began to increase my running time during workouts. I began to challenge myself, to watch my times, to note personal best times. I walked, then *ran* up and down beach stairs. I worked on my cardio at Aqua Aerobics. I got my 1km time down to 6 minutes.

stunner

My fitness level is the best it has ever been in my 41 years on this planet. I have lost over 20kg (44 pounds) now. My nutrition is the best it has ever been. I am drinking protein shakes daily, which I never expected I would do. The best part – I am actually enjoying all of this.

I still never thought I would want to – or be able to – run long distances like 5km or 10km. One week, I walked 75km and some of that – in fact quite a bit of that – was running.

totalmileswalked

Then August 21st happened. For weeks I had been seeing signs down at the my usual walk, telling me of running events due to happen on the 21st. HA, I thought. I won’t be down here that day, it will be crazy busy.

When the day happened, it was gorgeous out. Grumpy was due to have surgery that week and I knew this might be my last chance to get out for the next week, so I checked the times for events online and found it would all be over fairly early, but there was another run due in the afternoon. If I went right then, chances were I would have the path pretty much to myself. Within 20 minutes I was in the car and on my way.

husky1

I thought – I’ll just run a little bit, then walk, then run a little, then walk. It turned out more like Forrest Gump. I just kept running, pausing only 7 times to take photos.

21082016first5k

(the blue line = pace, the red line = heart rate)

That is my personal best time for a 5km, ever. I did not stop there – I went on to walk/run another 5km that same day. The second 5km was slower and I did walk for more of it.. however the running in this case was sprints rather than an even pace. In total, I ran more that day than I ever have before. I expected to be in a world of pain the next day, but I was not. I did a recovery 5km walk, and the following day I ran 2.5km out of my 5km.

21082016second5km

I have since run another full 5km with only 3 pauses for photos. I would not call them stops, because it was literally pause, take the shot, back to running. I am running 2.5km out of my treadmill 5kms, and that is only because my treadmill gets too hot if I run a full 5km.

I enjoy running.

I am as shocked to type those words as you likely are to read them. :)

exercise

Spring Preparations @ Bay Walk

zzbay1

The weather has been pretty incredible here in Jervis Bay, as I write this it is the 12th of August and we’ve had a solid week of gorgeous days.

zzbay2

I went walking at the bay every single day for 5 days in a row.

This week I have seen – the Shoalhaven Council added new gravel to some of the beach stairs. Plus they raked away a lot of leaves and sticks.

zzbench

Shoalhaven Council re-planted this bench which used to be elsewhere on the path but there was a beach erosion incident, and it fell over. It is now back in a more sheltered position, on the opposite side of the path. If it suffers from beach erosion again over here, something is really wrong!

zzbay3

The following day the concrete had been laid, and the day after that it was painted.

menatwork

One day Shoalhaven council workers were busily trimming trees that had overgrown onto the path, plus mowing lawns along the path.

zzbay4

There was some larger tree trimming done, which I did not get photos of as they had closed off the park for safety. Today as I drove there and back, there was lawnmowing being done along Jervis Bay road.

zzbay5

I think we are ready for spring now. Fingers crossed it will be as great as winter has been – blue skies, and happy weather for walking? But perhaps it might be too much to ask. We could do with a little rain. ;)

Jervis Bay

The Collar Is Back

collar

In October last year, Grumpy had eye surgery to try and fix an eye ulcer which had developed.

Since then it has been one step forward, two steps back, probably quite boring to tell the story to you but here goes anyway.. Grumpy initially had some entropion, a condition where the eyelid rolls inwards, so that the fur is sitting against the eyeball. The vet was convinced that this was caused by squinting due to pain from the ulcer, and once we fixed the ulcer the entropion would clear up..

We non-vets had some suspicion that the entropion might have appeared before the ulcer, that it might have caused the ulcer, and that this might have been caused by her previous problem with Horners Syndrome. The problem happened to be the eye on the same side where she’d had Horners Syndrome.

grumpykitten1
Grumpy as a kitten, July 2005

Either way it seemed a bit like the chicken or the egg, which came first? We would never know, and discussion on the topic seemed a bit pointless, the vet very forceful in their opinion it must be caused by the ulcer and not willing to entertain other possibilities.. which was a bit frustrating. We figured it was best to focus on getting the ulcer problem solved.

Over the next several months, there was surgery, then eyedrops, tablets, capsules, creams, a dye put in the eye and checked with a blacklight to assess the extent of the ulcer, plus a seemingly never ending round of vet consultations which were very stressful for Grumpy. The minute we would put Grumpy in the carrier she would shake like she was terrified. Any progress we made seemed undone at the next visit. We left longer and longer between the visits, and noticed an improvement on one visit, then a decline on the next visit.

When our vet was not there one day, we saw another vet who prescribed a new MAGIC cream which we found to be work a treat. The entropion was solved almost instantly. We talked with that vet about possible surgery to fix the entropion. He felt that was some distance in the future, and hoped the cream would do the trick. However, on our next visit we discovered MAGIC cream had made the ulcer worse and we had to stop using it.

grumpykitten2
Grumpy as a kitten, July 2005

After a while, the major thing we all agreed on was that we needed to stop taking Grumpy to the vet to check on the ulcer because each time we did, the ulcer would flare up. The vet felt this was stress related, and given how much Grumpy would stress over those vet visits, we agreed to try this, plus some new medication. We have a blacklight at home, the vet supplied us with the dye, and though it took a lot of time, we did manage to eventually heal the ulcer completely at home.

This did not heal the entropion, though. That actually seemed to become worse. We still had the MAGIC cream which seemed to fix the entropion earlier on in this process, and we were using that every few days and checking to make sure the ulcer did not return. The ulcer did not return, but the entropion was not fixed by it, either.

Feeling discouraged, I arranged for our vet to do a home visit where we intended to seriously discuss the surgery option. We felt that we could not allow this eyelid to keep folding in forever. On arrival, our vet again seemed convinced there would be an ulcer causing the entropion. The dye test proved this theory wrong, and the vet then had to open their mind to other possibilities that might be causing the problem.

grumpykitten3
Grumpy as a kitten, July 2005

FINALLY we could consider other possibilities! The vet wanted to consult an cat ophthalmologist and get back to us. A week later we got the call, asking us to bring Grumpy in for blood tests in an attempt to eliminate every possible possibility before going down the surgery road. We talked about giving her anesthesia right away to make things less stressful.

The plan was, no food from midnight the night before, take away water at 6am, we would call when on our way, on arrival I would go in to let them know we had arrived, Grumpy would go straight in for the gas, they would take the bloods, we would take her home right away, and she would recover there. Great plan, I felt.

When we got there, the vet wanted to try taking the blood without the gas. I should have said no, we made a plan to try and reduce stress, lets stick to the plan. Big mistake Snoskred! The only person that can hold her is The Other Half, so he agreed to try this new plan. After 10 minutes of clipping fur, then failing to draw the bloods plus much stress, the vet finally decided to give Grumpy the gas. I was kicking myself for not saying no to this last minute change of plan.

grumpykitten4
Grumpy as a kitten, July 2005

The bloods went off to be tested, 10 days later everything came back negative, and the surgery was planned. We had to take her in the night before so she could be put on a drip and fully hydrated due to her previous kidney issues. Again we planned no food from X time, no water from X time, put her under to put the drip in, and this time I planned to say NO if anyone tried to change the plan. Luckily that did not happen, the drip was successfully put in and she was settled in for her overnight stay with plenty of items from home.

Surgery went well, just before she was sent home they gave her a painkiller which was safe to use with her kidney issues. I wish I had asked more questions about what the painkiller was and possible side effects, but at this point we were just glad to be taking her home.

On arrival home, this was not the cat we knew at all. She placed herself on guard at the door, and pretty much stayed there for the next 30!! hours, only leaving to eat, drink and bathroom. She was on high alert. Any little movement, she was tracking it. She seemed to be in no pain whatsoever, in fact she never showed any signs that she knew she’d had surgery, there was no attempt on her part to access that eye area.

grumpykitten5
Grumpy as a teenage cat, September 2005

When I did some research on the drug they had given her, mania was a side effect. When the vet called to check in, I described what was happening and it was quite common and normal in cats who were given this medication.

On the one hand, this side effect was way better than her usual post surgery behaviour, which was being totally obsessed with getting the soft collar off. On the other hand, we were worried that she was not getting any rest at all. Finally after 2 days of crazy, she got some sleep and returned to her normal self.

She goes back to the vet later this week for a quick check up. We are hoping the soft collar can be removed after that. The amount of times we have been woken by Grumpy scratching at it cannot be counted with our human numbers. ;)

kitties

Question : Answered!

yes

Every day when I go walking at Jervis Bay, I think..

yes2

Can it possibly get any more beautiful than this?

yes3

Today the question was answered.

yes4

YES!

yes5

It totally can.

yes6

All I have to do is to forget to put the SD card into the camera, and therefore be limited to 15 photos only.

yes8

I’m only showing you 7 of them.

yes1

Ok, maybe 8. There goes the dolphin boat. So many days the dolphins meet the boat here. You can also see the Huskisson sea water pool which is resting for the winter. What a place to go swimming in summer!

Jervis Bay