That’s Just Bananananas

Not that I’m a “prepper” or anything, but after looking on-line for food dehydrators, I noticed that all you really need is a heat source and air circulation. So instead of tossing even more bananas into our freezer (for the gallons of fruit smoothies I’ll make if it ever gets warm in Leadville), I sliced them thinly, spread them on a cookie rack and tossed them into our always-warm-because-of-the-pilot-light-gas-oven.

Voila! Banananana chips the next day. I suddenly feel guilty about wasting all that unused heat for so many years. Looks like I’ll be doing lots of slicing soon.

But now I might need a vacuum sealer. Any suggestions?

The Little Bamboo that Couldn’t

photoThey said it couldn’t be done. Evidently, one winter in an unheated Leadville bathroom will make you stronger…or kill you.

Perhaps it’s the shock to my system when I sit on the icy seat each morning–after ensuring that the water in the bowl is not frozen–that invigorates me. Or maybe it’s the frequency of goosebumps, regardless of the hot water in the shower, that keeps me feeling perky.

Sorry, little bamboo. We can’t all be warriors.


Booby-cake, booby-cake, mam-mo-gram,

Smash me a boob as fast as you can;

Pull it, squish it, and mark it with a B,

Crank that mother down for doctor to see.

I was very excited to hear that my mammogram center had updated their equipment to the latest 3-D imaging machine.

“Finally!” I thought, “an exam that won’t leave my bodacious tatas tortured!”

My enthusiasm drained, however, when I heard those fateful words.

“The tighter the better for an accurate image. Let me know when you can’t stand it anymore.”

Crank, crank, crank. I fight back a tear and she stops.

“Hold your breath,” she instructs me. My breathing is already shallow from the pain and I fear I may not have enough oxygen in my lungs to sustain me through the machine’s rotation, but I know that if I pass out, I’ll end up with my right one hanging way lower than my left one, and somehow I manage to remain upright.

I try not to hate her. She’s just doing her job and by the time she needs one of these exams, they will have a pain-free method.

But for now I try to pretend I don’t mind having this young booby-tech treating my lady lumps like they were pizza dough.

Finally, the assault ends and I head to the bathroom where I apply deodorant. The bathroom is lovely…updated sink, flowers, hand towels stacked in a neat pile, soap and lotion…and a picture that—without my assistance—hangs lower on one side than the other.

“Hold your breath,” I say, and snap a photo. “That wasn’t so bad, now, was it?”

I head home, wondering if all this is really necessary, and decide that I just might skip next year’s appointment. “The girls” will be tickled.






Do I really hate it?

Do I really hate having to shovel day after day, sometimes for several hours, only to have my work undone by a city plow? Do I really hate having to bundle up on a -10 degree morning, ensuring almost no skin is exposed, to take my dog on his “time to go” walk, only to end up having to remove my hat and unzip because even though it’s freezing, the brilliant sun combined with the pumping of my blood is making me sweat? Do I really hate jumping into our Tempur-Pedic bed when the room temperature is hovering below 50, only to have my husband laugh at my “Ooof!” when I land on the brick-like surface before weaseling my way over to where his warmth has already created a snuggly cocoon?

And do I hate spending 20 extra minutes at Safeway because I know—and must chat with—someone in every aisle, or cleaning out the ashes of our wood-burning stove before starting a fire around which family and friends will gather, or having to walk to the post office instead of drive because it would be faster than shoveling out my car?


No. No, I don’t.

It’s funny, but I’ve been struggling with life in Leadville since well before we moved here nearly seven years ago. I often want to hate it, and sometimes I convince myself that I do.

But I really don’t, though I’ll never be fond of that city plow.

Ides of March Writers’ Retreat!

It’s ON! Reserve your spot now, because space is limited!

Here are our presenters and session titles I will post Bios/photos/session blurbs soon:

Lisa Marie BoehmkeMindfulness in Writing

Amy FrykholmScheduling Productivity

Stephanie FrykholmWrite Awake: Exploring the Creative Aliveness of Embodied Writing

Al DawsonShort Stories: Adventures in Life

Laurel McHargueDirect Publishing (and a bonus evening field-trip/sensory writing)

Jane ProvorseLet’s Write a Play!

Karen RinehartWriting Off the Nose (dialogue writing)

Jeffrey A. RunyonProsody 101

and here are the details:

The IDES OF MARCH Writers’ Retreat is open for reservations!

Where? The Inn at Twin Lakes.
We have eight workshop presenters over two days, from 1 pm on the 15th through noon on the 16th, and two options:

$150 gets you the whole package (sessions, 2 meals, snacks/coffee/tea, sleep at the Inn).
$100 gets you everything but the sleepover!

Space is limited, and reservations will be first-come-first-served.

Call the Inn if you’re ready to escape next month: 719-486-7965