We went out to Islesboro yesterday, where my Mom's Dad's family has lived for hundreds of years. We started with a big old breakfast at Moody's diner on the way up. Moody's dinah, nothing finah.

Fortified by a huge plate of blueberry pancakes, I set off to bike around the island. It is a wonderful place to ride: rolling hills, very few cars, greats views, and a sea breeze. I loved this sign.

After a nice 30 miles, we found this great beach our cousin's told us about. We had it all to ourselves! We tried to take the direct route across the mud flats to explore Hutchinson Island. Bad plan. We got so stuck! Luckily we finally managed to muck our way back to the dry sand without slicing open our feet on the mussel beds.


Even though I'm on vacation this week, I did agree to take on one job- goat tender. I am part of a non-profit group that is working to restore a light-house right by my house. The lighthouse was decommissioned by the Coast Guard and was going to be torn down. The restoration is going fabulously.

Visit for more information.

Last summer we did a big clean up on the smaller rock island adjacent to the Cuckolds. In order to keep the vegetation from over taking the island, and to keep the seagulls from taking over, we decided to put a pair of goats out there in the summer. This summer's goats are a little spoiled, having grown up on the farm, so they will only eat their special feed. So every other day, I've been paddling out in the kayak in the early morning before the wind comes up. We've discovered it's a two person job. One person to distract the goats while the other person opens the feed bin and fills their bowls. If you're alone, the goats about mow you over in their eagerness to get at the food.

Dasie Duke and Blondie

We're having a bumper year for raspberries and strawberries, but also unfortunately, for biting flies. I drove to Reid State Park today, but was quickly driven away. The bugs were relentless. The beach isn't so relaxing when you have to constantly swat at flies. I got about 20 bites in an hour! The flies are also bothering the goats. This morning they were rubbing themselves against the rocks trying to scratch their bites. So while I was out of town, I stopped and got some goat safe fly spray. I just paddled back out to give it a go. What I learned is that, as much as goats don't like flies, they don't like being sprayed with fly spray even more! A couple sprays and they bolted to the other side of the island and refused to come back!


Life is pretty good. I'm on vacation. I did bootcamp Saturday, a 9 miler yesterday, and bootcamp again today, and my heel hasn't hurt at all. It's the wonderful time of the year where everything is ripe. For lunch today I made a salad of green and peas from the veggie garden and then worked my way around the yard picking rasberries, blueberries, and the last of the strawberries for dessert.

This afternoon, I finally got to try stand up paddle-boarding. I've been seeing people on these things for the past year or so, particularly on the West Coast. Lucky for me, this summer, they have them in the Harbor. It was a total blast and a good workout! Because you're standing the whole time, your legs and core are constantly working to stabilize you. Then, your arms are working the paddle. We were out for about an hour, which was just about right for the first time.

Mix it Up

The wonderful, and terrible, thing about my job right now is that it is constantly changing. Each change is a massive one, requiring me to travel to a new city, stay in a new hotel, find new running routes, familiarize myself with a new gym, learn an entire office of new people, navigate a new hospital, and find good new places to eat. The part of me that is a creature of habit, hates this. I arrived last night for the first time, and felt overwhelmed by the new airport and busy new roads. I woke up in the middle of the night panicked because I couldn't remember where I was. I pounded out a dull 60 minutes on the hotel elliptical because I hadn't had time to scope out running routes. I had gotten so used to my old trip that I could do it on autopilot.

On the other hand, the part of me that gets bored easily loves this. It's a chance to see new places, get to know different people, try new gym classes. It is a chance to start over. As I mentioned in my last post, in Santa Rosa I was falling into a habit of overindulgence. I'm trying to use this as an opportunity for growth. Here is my chance to break that and move on to a healthier routine.


One of the downsides to my job and lift-style is that it is hard to eat well. This week was particularly bad. I’m on the plane home feeling overstuffed and guilty.
It all started Sunday when I had to sprint through IAD to make my connection, which meant I didn’t have time to buy dinner. I was sitting way in the back of the plane, so by the time the food service got back to me the only thing left to buy was a giant can of Pringles. I was starving. So I bought them, and then I ate them all. When we landed 6 hours later, I was hungry again, but also completely exhausted. I didn’t want to waste time stopping for food so I got a thing of turtle Chex mix, and again ate the whole thing. Monday afternoon I was bored and alone in the office. Someone had brought in a chocolate “dirt” cake. I went back for thirds. Tuesday I tried really hard. I did well all day, and went to the grocery store and bought a grilled chicken breast and grilled veggies from the deli. But of course, there is no microwave in my hotel room. I tried heating the chicken up with an iron. It didn’t work well. So I ate my cold dinner. Cold it tasted even more like bad deli food. I tried eating outside by the pool to make it nicer. But then I was surrounded by people eating ice cream. And the ice cream chest was right there next to my chair. So I caved and bought an “Itz-It,” mint ice cream between 2 cookies covered in chocolate. Wednesday, I got in a good 8 miler and was determined to start fresh……Until there were donuts at the office. I don’t know where these donuts come from, but they are unbelievably delicious. I couldn’t stop. I ate 4. 4!!! In the afternoon I redeemed myself by climbing up and down Lombard street in San Francisco. It’s this incredibly steep hill, and also known as the curviest street in the world. There is a section where the road zig-zags back and forth. You could smell the burning breaks. Then, I went to Haight Ashbury. I ended up at “All you Knead,” for dinner, a funky diner like place. The name is apt, because the portion of pasta I got was all I “kneaded” for a whole day. But it was so good, I just kept eating until I felt like I was going to explode. I walked around for awhile after dinner to try and make myself feel a little less stuffed, but it was getting dark. The Haight still has a definite counter-culture vibe that started to feel a little scary alone at night.


I’m back in the air after a blissful week in Maine. Being in one of the most beautiful places on earth, certainly helps, but I think what makes Maine so enjoyable is that it is one of the few places that I just relax. In my everyday life, I am a planner, a creature of habit, a worrier. I spend a lot of time obsessing about the future- I usually have my plans made days in advance. I know what workout I am going to do in the morning, what I’m going to eat for all three meals, what I’m going to wear. In college, I had my papers written weeks ahead of time. I pay my bills early. I am always the first person to arrive. But in Maine, I don’t do that, I can’t. The weather, the people, the general climate wont’ allow me too. Often the wind is too strong, the seas too rough, or the fog too thick to be out on the water. My mom and brother are notoriously late and unpredictable. The bridge leading off the island may be open to let the boat traffic through, or there might be a long line of tourist traffic on route one. I can let it make me crazy, or I can just let go. Letting go is freeing. Not setting an alarm, but getting up when it feels right. Sitting on the deck with a cup of coffee, and not doing anything productive. Waiting to see where I am and what sounds good at that very moment when I am hungry. Being open to impromptu games of tennis, music sessions, and dinners with friends. I always thought that not planning ahead limited your opportunities, but I’m learning that it can also create them.


I turned 35 in June. It's an age that felt both momentous and ominous to me. I'm not just an adult, I'm an ADULT. I've never...