Aftera day and a half of being snowed in, dear husband went to work Friday mid-morning, and older son and I tried going to Ayr Mount Friday afternoon. The shaded, gravel driveway into Ayr Mount still had about 4 inches of snow/slush on it so, after spinning the van's wheels a bit, I backed out of the driveway onto St. Mary's Rd. (the other cars were staying well away!), and we went and walked around town instead.
View of Hillsborough from the top level of the parking deck.
I once heard of a family who described themselves as "being indoor people." With all the hiking and gardening I do, I've long considered myself an outdoor person, but I lost that this year. With all the exhaustion from the CPAP, I didn't get into gardening last spring the way I normally do. I didn't even get around to planting all my annuals. Since I felt exhausted for months (so exhausted that I couldn't safely drive in the evenings and taking walks was challenging), I didn't do much outside. I started feeling better about three weeks before opening night of the summer musical so I was too busy (and it was too hot) to do much outside, and then I spent the next two months (futilely) trying to catch up on all the things I didn't do when I was exhausted.
We were on vacation for the first two weeks of October, and it was wonderful! We hiked twice most days, morning and late afternoon/evening - rain, fog, or shine. The house had a beautiful view (panorama from the deck above) so we ate outside or I read outside as often as possible. There was a sheltered spot on the deck that I could sit in even during chilly afternoons (view from that spot of Grandfather Mountain) I got used to being outside a lot again.
I feel so much better when I get outside a lot!
The last three days, I've spent the afternoons working out in the yard. Yesterday, we spent the morning at the Durham farmer's market, and the garden store, and, this morning, dear husband and I walked at Ayr Mount (right).
I'm not in choir right now because I'm trying to get my blood pressure down again (it started drifting up over the summer. The choir chairs are close together, and the choir sits sideways to the altar. I've known this isn't good for my body because I tense up in order not to bump into anyone in the close chairs, and I end up with a tension headache because of keeping my head constantly turned to the side for over an hour. Every Sunday, I'd get home from choir, change out of my church clothes, and take Advil for the tension headache/backache/Achilles tendenitis/whatever was tense that day. Unfortunately, the thing I do regularly which makes me the most tense is choir.
Since both my regular doctor and the hypertension specialist have recently recommended relaxation exercises/yoga/etc. to help get my bp down, regularly doing something that leaves my body tense (in a way that exercise, interestingly, doesn't do), undoes what I work at doing for the rest of the week. I was sad to have to drop choir, but, hopefully, I can return eventually.
Over the summer (when there's no choir anyway, and even the service I go to is cancelled), dear husband and I got into the habit of hiking on Sunday mornings. The last few weeks, we've changed that to walks at Ayr Mount, a historic home in Hillsborough. I decided, both for a new photography challenge and to get myself outside in all kinds of weather, that I would start a new blog. Last week, I put it together. It's a new photo blog platform and format, and I'm really enjoying it. I love the way it displays the photos.
My new blog is 52 Weeks at Ayr Mount. Ayr Mount is only about 8 minutes away from my house so it should be easier to keep up with the photos than it's been for our Duke Gardens blog, which I've started posting on again also (but which will probably be more intermittent).