Thursday, July 28, 2016

disappointment and the opposite

EDIT:  We returned to the Tulsa Rose Garden to get photos of the devastation;  as we approached it from a different spot, though, we found this:

At least the garden was not just allowed to die of neglect -- twas a different kind of act!  Probably some helpful-but-ignorant volunteer deadheader....  Some of the wasteland is here:

On the same premises, what they call the conservatory:

Here's a view of the garden at Philbrook, though, from just below the terrace:

If you're ever in Tulsa, i couldn't recommend strongly enough that you visit this wonderful house/art-museum!  :-)


Now that our sunroom addition and backyard renovations are pretty much done, my husband has become sadly restless, so we're facing a certain amount of short excursions to keep him from getting bored.  Well, i'm certainly willing to see more of my native land, and i'm DEFINITELY inclined to enjoy it more by car than by plane!

So we struck out onto the road on Tuesday, to revisit the city we enjoyed living in for far too short a period.  In the late afternoon we arrived in Tulsa and settled into our hotel with plans to start early the next morning, to revisit a few old favorite places and see some new ones as well.

We drove past our old house, which looked much like it did, except for the addition of a new dormer in the attic area.  Hmph....  The front was also excessively festooned with flags, despite the length of time since the last two patriotic holidays.  :-P  My impression of people who over-display ANY indicator of alliegiance is a suspicion that someone doth protest too much....

Then we drove a few blocks away to view what i think was my husband's first object in our visit and thence the disappointment!  The Tulsa Rose Garden, when we moved away, was a Victorian delight!  But since we left, the bottom two or three terraces no longer held rose bushes, but perennial common flowers and a shocking number of weeds, even in the paths.  The fountains and pools were either dry or full of green, scummy water.  We were appalled!

Up toward the top of the slope, there were still beds of roses, but they seemed sadly neglected.  Obviously, many bushes had died and been removed, but not replaced.  The other plants, like big conifers, had weeds growing up under and within them.

We learned that the Garden now belongs to Woodward Park, which it adjoins.  I don't know if it did at the turn of the century when we moved away, but the upshot is that it looked INFINITELY better then.  Considering how stunning and glorious the azaleas of WP are, you'd think they'd at least TRY to do as good a job with the roses, but obviously they don't  care.

From the Tulsa Rose Garden we progressed to the newer (unimpressive) garden space connected and the "conservatory" (greenhouse) which did look well-managed, and then the arboretum where we used to walk our dogs (okay but not impressive either).

Then we crossed a parking-lot and entered the museum belonging to the Tulsa Historical Society, which hadn't been open when we lived there.  It was a good, but not great, museum which documented the significance of our first capitol of the petroleum industry -- good historical narratives, but not much by way of relics or material displays.  Tulsa, despite its small size, has a distinguished history of innovation -- we enjoyed the museum.

After lunch at the Wild Fork in Utica Square (which we had also patronized during our residence), we went to MY first choice of sites in the city worth visiting -- Philbrook.  NO disappointment there at all.

A little background -- my husband used to work for Phillips Petroleum, the creation of Frank Phillips (first class jerk, and i can tell you some interesting gossip about his wife, wink nudge...);  Philbrook was originally the Tulsa home of Frank's brother Waite, who seems to have married a woman of a great deal more class/character.  Frank's and Jane's "mansion" in Bartlesville is far from impressive, while one can see that Waite's and Genevieve's had some very nice touches ... and their garden is very impressive indeed!

Waite Phillips gave his house and art collection to the city of Tulsa, and also gave his property in New Mexico to the Boy Scouts (Philmont).  I don't know if Frank EVER gave anything to anybody.

After spending hours perusing plants, historical relics, and works of art, i was ready to relax for the rest of the afternoon!  This morning we checked out of our hotel and began a NEW adventure ... but more on that later....

Thursday, July 21, 2016

hot, hot summer

...After a chilly spring....

Not much is going on with me, except an ongoing war with the squirrels in my garden!  The bunnies seem to be stymied by the raised beds and knee-high fence on the side they could access, but the squirrels have stolen three or four ripening tomatoes.  I daren't poison them, because if they die in the yards to the east or west of us, dogs might suffer.  So we've bought some "critter barrier" netting and stakes, and will try to fence THEM out, too.

Not a single word of new information is coming from the nutritional world, that i've seen.  Of course, there continue to be BS articles and studies reported by corporate media, and the slap-downs from our favorite researchers, physicians and journalists.  There are also confirmations of things WE were convinced about a decade ago -- that's great for people just making up their minds now, but the rest of us are yawning.

My husband has independently discovered the efficacy of 2-5 intermittent fasting.  He is becoming pretty consistent about designating Mondays as fast-days, and extending it at least until Tuesday supper, and is getting good results from it.  I join him for Monday, but i usually have to start eating again at lunch-time the next day;  individual tolerance of fasting is obviously quite variable!  It works quite well for us to do it this way, though;  the rest of the week, he eats pretty much whatever he wants, and i'm more liberal with myself than i might be otherwise.

The light-triggered not-really-hypomania-but-something-similar, which i noticed in the late spring, is getting better.  Interestingly, i never noticed it before this year!  I've been controlling it with valerian, and keeping dark chocolate at my bedside to help me get back to sleep if it wakes me up.  I've cut back on caffeinated coffee some days, too (and i don't allow myself caffeine or nicotine after 4 in the afternoon, either).  I'm inclined to hypothesize that the insomnia many older people face is because of a dysregulated stress-hormone system.  Valerian seems to help control its secretion.

Self-awareness is truly the key to health when it comes to our diet.  I've gotten to where i can tell what macronutrient i need, if i sometimes feel unsatisfied in the evening.  I can tell when i need more B12 or iron, or magnesium, or salt -- definitely!  I can tell when i've taken in more carb than my body prefers.  Younger women with very-busy lives probably aren't going to be able to do it -- they're paying attention to too many other things to be able to devote attention to subtle physical clues, on top of their constantly-fluctuating hormonal balance.

You bet your ass, i wish i had learned 30 years ago what i know now, but i recognize how unlikely that would have been.  ;-)

Enjoy the sunshine, friends!  It won't be with us ALL year!

Saturday, July 2, 2016

"redundancy" redundancy ;-)

The other day when I posted, I named it before I wrote it, and then managed to forget to say something.  Oh well, whenever I post while busy, I often make mistakes of that nature!

The redundancy I was referring to is what has been going on in the LC nutrition world I frequent.  There is very little under the sun which is new, unfortunately.  ;-)  I'm the member of a few private groups on facebook, and a lot of the posted studies and articles are either repetitions or confirmations of everything we low-carbers are already convinced-of. 

Resolved:  that butter is good for you;  that sugar is bad for you;  that the amount of starch you can handle is extremely variable, depending on many things;  that the people who make our policy are dangerously influenced by processors of junk-food....

I suppose I should be glad that good studies/articles that support my own observations are out there -- the best-written of them I pass along to my friends who are interested in diet-influencing-health but who don't have my free time or passion for the subject.  I should also be unsurprised by the corruption of researchers (it's much harder to fool clinicians) who insist that metabolic and neurological toxins are okay "in moderation," but it still infuriates me.

In the end, that's why so many bloggers slow way down in producing fact-filled posts, or like me, change the discussion to observations of anomalies of experience.  I really miss the frequent expositions that Wooo used to treat us to, concerning everything from sociology to pharmacology, to her entertaining rants.  I sadly miss J Stanton, too, but he pointed this situation out a long time ago, here.

It's kinda like a version of "evolve or die," isn't it?  ;-)