Saturday, April 5, 2014

New things, carb-filled things...

Phew. Busiest Saturday ever. I started early and baked some bagels...

Bagels are my JAM right now, as I explained in my last post, and these are the pièce de résistance. If you don't like asiago cheese bagels, I don't want to be your friend. They've been my favorite kind of bagels since... the moment my first asiago cheese bagel touched my lips.

I love the process of making bagels. It's one of the most fun things ever: you make dough, let it rise, form the bagels themselves (it's like playing with play dough!), poach them & then you get to "decorate" them with ingredients.

I want to make all of the different kinds of bagels! So far I've just made: garlic & herb, whole wheat & asiago. That leaves me about a million other variations to try out, and I can't wait.

My new goal in life is to open a bagel shop....unless I turn out to be a concert pianist.

This piano came to live with us today! Which makes it sound a lot easier than it actually was.... We had to drive to Albany; pick up a trailer, which Aaron's boss very generously let us borrow; pick up our friend and helper, Dean; drive back to Corvallis; load the piano into the trailer; drive to our house; load it out & into our house; drive the trailer & Dean back to Albany... Phew. The moving process went much easier than the three of us anticipated, but It's so worth it. I can see the piano now from where I'm sitting, and it just makes our house seem more lived-in and homier.

And, of course, I plan to play it...the little bit that I can.

Another new thing that came today was our Canon 7D, which we won on Ebay over two weeks ago! I'm glad it came in time for our trip next week, and I'm still figuring out all of the settings & getting better at shooting Canon....

Yes, this one is out of focus. Black dogs are hard to shoot in low light, but I thought this was too adorable not to share! These are where the pups sit when they're waiting for their meals. :)

And here's a shot of our pizza dinner...yup, sourdough pizza dough was also on the docket for today. So delicious! Such a happy day!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Insta-recap

So, I know I said I'd blog more... But, the problem is, I still don't have a camera. BUT, I don't think that will not be the case much longer, so I thought I'd go ahead and jump the gun, and show you what I've been up to for the past several months. If you follow me on Instagram already, this might be kind of boring. If not, I'm @calliebellez. Get to following...

On January 1, we picked up the dogs from their holiday stay at the Muddy Dog Ranch. They were very tired and very happy to be home. So was I!

I was sick over the holidays, but started to feel better, so we took a Bouldering trip to Bend over MLK weekend where I climbed the tallest boulder problem of my life. For a girl who doesn't like heights, this was a big deal. We also drank a lot of amazing craft beer and ate delicious pub food. Oh, Central Oregon, how I love thee.

After the trip, I started to feel crappy again - a relapse from my earlier ear infection/cold. I drank lots of tea and took lots of baths and struggled to do daily activities let alone climb or go to the gym. It was the worst. I almost never get sick, so this knocked me back big time.

I never lost my appetite, though, and this fajita meal was one of my favorites so far this whole year. It was delicious. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

And then we had snow.... lots of lots of cold and snow. Thankfully, that has passed by now. I feel sorry for the Northeast, still getting covered by it.

The snow cleared in time for me to head up to Vancouver for a work conference. It was my first time in Canada, and my first time at a professional conferencey event! I wrote about it here.

One of my New Years' resolutions was to walk the dogs more. And I'm happy to say that we are succeeding with usually at least two walks per week. Sometimes they are around our neighborhood, but other times, we go for fun hikes together. I love this photo. It's the background of my phone right now. :)

I competed in my first climbing competition! At The Crux gym in Eugene. It was a total blast, and I'm glad I did it! I finished fifth in my division. Not too shabby.

We went cross-country skiing for the first time and had SO much fun!

I made bagels for the first time, and they turned out better than I ever could have imagined. EVER. They're better than any bakery bagel I have ever had in my whole life. I may have found a calling: bagel baker. Just kidding. If I did that for a living, I'd weight 300 pounds. But, I will make more.

I was, as usual, surprised at how easy it was. I was always intimidated by the poaching step, but it wasn't bad at all! Here's the recipe I used! I highly, highly suggest the cookbook.

I think next, I'm going for a doubled recipe of whole wheat bagels. Om nom.

That's it for now. See you soon!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Underrated/Forgotten moments of early 2013

This post is random, but I'm selling my old iPhone 4, and I wanted to make sure I had all my photos & everything moved off. Cue reminiscing about this time last year...

Here's to you, 2013, and some moments that never made it on to Instagram or Facebook or even this blog.

Boone says, "WTF; you guys are making me move AGAIN?"

Pretty sure this was one of our last trips to HP40: the only thing we miss about Alabama....

And then we moved. And the trip was AWESOME.

In Oregon, we found new routines.

And went on new adventures.

As soon as we landed at our new apartment, we started receiving lovely wedding gifts!

And before long, we headed home to get married. It was a bit of a bumpy trip...

Of course our wedding was awesome, but so was our rehearsal dinner.

It was so good to spend time with friends!

After the wedding, we stayed in the cozy carriage house of the beautiful Empress of Little Rock B&B.

And then, the adventures continued...

Happy 2014!

Friday, December 6, 2013

First Oregon snow

So.....I'll be a better blogger in the New Year, or after someone buys my camera so I can upgrade.

But, in any case, today marks the first snow since we've been in Corvallis. There are several inches on the ground, and it's still coming down. I enjoy weather events when I can stay home, but there's stuff to do today: a hair appointment, a holiday party. And besides, I'm completely OUT OF BOOKS! Tragedy. It will all get done, and THEN I'll sit on my couch by the fire.

UPDATE: In the middle of writing this entry, I decided to reschedule my hair appointment. Everyone gets to see my roots for two more weeks, but I'll look fresh & cute for our trip home!

Anyway: The snow. It was our new pup Charlie's first snow. He was timid at first ...for a couple of seconds before he started BOUNDING through the yard. It's funny to see the lab in him come out that way. And, as always, Boone hates it. He did his business as quickly as possible so he could rush back in and curl up into a ball on the couch.

UPDATE: The library just decided to close at 1 p.m. So no books either. I might have to download a Kindle book to make it through the storm....

Or I'll just watch my dogs play. They are pretty entertaining....

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

Today, I'm dressed like this:

I was pretty much always a witch for Halloween growing up. If I wasn't a witch, I would be a bunny or a dog or something cute. Never something super girly. Witches really embody Halloween for me.

I'm not sure when Halloween became one of my favorite holidays, and I don't go ALL out getting dressed up or going out to parties, but there's just something about it that I love. I love decorating my house with witches and ghosts and creepy things. I love watching "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!" I love going to the pumpkin patch, through corn mazes and haunted houses and to harvest festivals. I love PUMPKINS. Eating them and carving them.

My office had a pumpkin carving competition. I was bummed that not too many people participated, but that did allow Mr. Snailey here to clench the top spot in the "best decorated" category.

We made him last night! I took care of the butternut squash part, while Aaron actually carved the pumpkin. Tonight I'm planning on getting home early to wait for any trick-or-treaters we might have. This is our first year in a real house with a front door and everything, so I hope we get at least a couple kids coming by! I think we'll also roast our pumpkin seeds and bake some muffins.

The muffins aren't very Halloween-y, but Aaron has a potluck tomorrow at work, so ya know.

How are you celebrating?!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

October at Smith

We were lucky to spend two weekends at Smith Rock State Park this month! I hadn't been out there in months and months before that, which I think turned out to be a good thing. Smith Rock does strange things to my mental game in terms of climbing.

I let the crowds bother me. And the heat (even in the crispness of the central Oregon fall, the sun on those rocks is sweltering, still). But the past two trips have been really great, and I've made progress (and yes, sends)!

And I've been such a terrible blogger, I haven't even written about the new addition to our family that came in September: Charlie!!!

Charlie is a seven-month-old pitbull/lab mix. Here he is with Boone, cuddled up in the shade:

I almost can't handle how adorable they are. Charlie has a very sweet, calm disposition. He's sort of slow and lumbering. Much more thoughtful and accepting than Boone. They balance each other out well. They're both learning things form each other, and I love watching them interact.

We're hanging out at the Morning Glory wall and the Dihedrals mostly. Aaron's working a 12b called Latest Rage! Here's me this past weekend, after my send of Nine Gallon Buckets and before working my project, Cool Ranch Flavor. I was on Cool Ranch when we started feeling a few raindrops, which turned into a bit of a downpour and mass evacuation from the park. Eek!

I'll leave you with Ryan Palo, a guy who can climb much, much harder than me. Here he is aiding his way up Scar Face to set up a giant top rope SWING at the top. You stand, tied in, on top of a nearby boulder and let your belayer pull you off so you can swing back and forth a few times. It looks like a blast!

Smith Rock IS a beautiful place. I'm too hard on it sometimes.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Fito, I quit you!

I have a confession to make. For the past.... year? (I don't even know how long), I've been an obsessed "Fitocrat". For those that don't know, I'm talking about the social networking/fitness tracking site, Fitocracy.

And after this weekend, I quit. Why this weekend? Well, because I'm SO close to leveling up, and if my projections are correct, it will happen sometime Friday or Saturday and.... look! I already sound like a crazy person.

Here's my profile page for the site:

Below this, my daily workouts are tracked and displayed for all to see. But not just my workouts. I've gotten to the point where I track every time I walk up stairs. Every walk I take to a different part of campus during work. Every bike commute (a little more legit, but whatever).

I feel obsessed. In a bad way.

I started "working out" when we moved to Alabama in November, 2012. There wasn't much to do there. We didn't know many people, and my job offered a discounted YMCA membership. I went to the gym a couple times a week and started running. I quickly got up to half marathon distances. We also ventured to the Birmingham bouldering gym on Thursday evenings and tried to climb outside as often as we could. And I felt AMAZING, and I wanted to keep going!

To ensure I got my daily workout in, I used a calendar and wrote a G, Y, R or C near the date to designate a day I'd gone to the gym, yoga studio, for a run or climbing. And then I discovered Fitocracy.

I love the internet. And my new love for fitness fit in perfectly with Fitocracy's goal, so I started tracking. On Fitocracy, you're awarded "points" for your workout.

For example, A recent, slow 8-mile run on light hills was worth 1028 points. That's a lot.

Two hours of climbing inside is always worth 777 points.

An hour of yoga? 234 points.

The more I used the site and the more I leveled up, the more I became more obsessed with logging points. I set a personal goal to get to 1000 points every day, which lead to the aforementioned logging of stair-walking. I worked out (with a rest day or two thrown in every week). But, on days where I went to a one-hour hot yoga class, I only earned 200-something points? And that didn't seem fair!

The points awarded for yoga is a highly disputed subject by my fellow yogis on the site. The Fitocracy Gods have decided that yoga is not as strenuous as lifting (which is the preferred Fitocracy workout ...Do you even lift, Bro?!).

The point is that it's all so arbitrary. I have been in yoga classes that probably burned thousands of calories, and I have been the typical "girl on the elliptical" burning maybe a couple hundred calories in half an hour ....but I still got the points!

The other thing about the site is that the longer you use it, the longer it takes you to "level up" because there are more points between each level. I'm finishing up 60,000 points to get to level 38 at the moment. Ugh.

Then there are the groups. Oh, the groups. In the climbing community, there is something we call "spray" ...which many Fitocracy climbers seem to have no concept of. It's bad form to talk about what grades you're climbing, but this is common place in the Fitocracy forums.

It's also common to post yourself in crazy Yoga poses. Bragging! I can't take the bragging! Yoga, especially is NOT about ego.

Everything on Fitocracy seems to be about ego. And points. And I'm just....tired of it.

I'm tired of doing those few extra pushups or situps just for the points. Not that they weren't good for me, but.... It's just been too often that I've done an extra set that I didn't really need to do!

I'd love to find a free tool (besides myfitnesspal, which I'm not a fan of), that more accurately tracks health and fitness levels. But I'm done with Fitocracy. After I level up. *cries*