THE SQEAKERS ARE GONE

From: Meridian, ID:

(Cinnamon/Raisin bagel, with cream cheese.)

(Cinnamon/Raisin bagel, with cream cheese.)

Some months ago, I began eating bagels for breakfast. Specifically, cinnamon and raisin bagels. Not every day, mind you, but several times a week, at a minimum. During most of that time, I used Philadelphia cream cheese as my preferred spread, although when we have bananas on hand, peanut butter with bananas sliced on top makes a great alternative. (Even “black” bananas work well, as long as they’ve been in the refrigerator.)

Recently, though, I discovered that Kraft makes the Philadelphia cream cheese with blueberries. And many other “flavors,” such as garden veggies, chives and onion, strawberries, and more. (I’m sure these products are not new, but I’ve never noticed them before.) This morning I stopped at the store for another container of the blueberry, and almost picked up the strawberry along with it. In the end, though, I decided I like the blueberry so much I just got two of those. Previously, I had made my own blueberry stuff just by sprinkling frozen blueberries (which our freezer is never without) on top of the ‘regular’ cream cheese, but this store-bought stuff is better. Oh, you don’t get near as many whole berries, but on the upside, what berries are in the mix aren’t constantly falling off your bagel. And, of course, the blueberry flavor is mixed throughout the cheese. Raisins are another tasty add-on for cream cheese…as are dried cranberries.

Breakfast has long been my favorite meal of the day, but when I say that I’m mostly referring to “real” breakfast menus: eggs Benedict, French toast, pancakes and sausage, steak and eggs, biscuits and gravy, hash browns. Alas, since becoming more “weight conscious,” (read: “fat”) I have pretty much given up on “real” breakfasts. At first, I mostly just went without. They say that’s not good for a person, but I didn’t find it all that difficult. In fact, on the days I skipped breakfast, I was often able to skip lunch, as well. (A double whammy to my system, I suppose.) By dinnertime, I was hungry enough to eat what amounted to three or four meals at one sitting. It’s not surprising, then, that I never did lose weight.

Since I began starting my day with a bagel and cream cheese (or peanut butter and bananas), however, I’ve been doing a little better on the weight loss program. Well, to be perfectly honest, any loss I’m managing is so slow as to be nearly un-noticeable, but at least I find it fairly easy to avoid gaining. (That’s important, too. Right?) Nevertheless, since January, I’ve lost some twelve pounds…not much as a percentage of my total weight, certainly, but the scale is going in the right direction, and I’ll happily settle for that.

***

 

(Yes, there really is a target out there.)

(Yes, there really is a target out there.)

I’ve been out to the whistlepig fields two days in a row. Janet and I went out on Sunday, primarily to try out a new .22 target I picked up at Sportsmans Warehouse on Saturday. But as you can surely imagine by now, I can’t go out there without hoping for a chance to plink a few of the little critters, no matter what the “primary” purpose of the trip might have been. On Monday, plinking was the primary purpose, as I was introducing a young friend to the popular pastime. As it turned out, I saw no more than half a dozen of the creatures on each day. And never all in the same place. It’s as if each squirrel community left one sentry above ground to alert the others in the event some unforeseen food bonanza were to fall from the heavens. The young fellow had a .22 rifle he had bought for himself in January and never yet fired, so we did do some target shooting as long as we were out there. He was glad for the opportunity to shoot the rifle, even if it wasn’t at whistlepigs. Truth is, without a scope on his new rifle, he would have actually hit precious few – if any – of the rodents. I tried to give him some coaching on the proper sight picture for an “iron” sight, but I’m not much of a coach.

The real point to make is that it appears the whistlepig “season” in this part of the country is over and done with for the year. The next time they make an appearance – at least in any numbers – will be early next spring, as soon as the blanket of snow leaves the sagebrush flats. I will miss them…I already do. But…the good news is that I can do some fishing, now. I went trout fishing in Washington state with friends in February, but that occasion is the one and only time I’ve “wet a line” this year. Uff Dah! Hard to believe! (But that’s how much I was in to shooting.)

***

To close today’s Blather, I had planned on saying, “Go USA!” to our futball (soccer) team playing Belgium at the World Cup tournament in Brazil. Instead, I took a break and watched the game (with Janet). Now it’s too late to say it. They did give it a game effort, I think. (Of course I know next to nothing about soccer, even though our older son played in school for several years. And our other son played one year before he decided to devote his energies to football…American football, that is.) There were definitely some thrilling moments in the game today, and I understand the USA team’s goalkeeper set a record for the number of “saves” in a World Cup game. The number was 16. Too bad he didn’t make it 18. Had that been the case, USA would have won 1 to nothing. Ah, well, there’s always 20??…er…how often do they have the World Cup?

I doubt, however, that even with all the hoopla of the past couple of weeks, soccer will ever seriously challenge the NFL to be “America’s Game.” For one thing, we get too impatient with low-scoring games. For another, it has to be difficult to find a sponsor for television soccer games…no opportunities during the game to run commercials. So there you go.

I hope you’re having a great week!

Bud

2 Responses

  1. Jerry Howard says:

    To bad the pigs are gone for the year. But now you have 6 or 8 months to slowly stock up on ammo. Football starts next month. Yeah baby! Go Hawks!

    • Bud Larson says:

      Hi Jer, It’s difficult to describe how sad I am that the little creatures have gone “downstairs” already. I was hoping against hope they would hang around through July. I think they’ve “gone to bed” as much because their food (grass, mostly) has dried up, as the fact that it is getting too warm for them. Ah, well, the good news is that when next spring comes around I won’t have much equipment (or ammo) to buy, as I bought pretty much everything I can think of this year. We are shoo-ins to win the tournament next April, I think. Later, Ol’ Bud

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