Alternative to Flu Vaccine & Off my Duff!

Here's an interesting article on Dr. Mercola's blog about a study that was done on mice about how exercise may help prevent and/or cure the flu. Besides, the flu vaccine apparently doesn't even work, anyway. Food for thought.

If you aren't convinced about the potential dangers of vaccines, I am sure you would still be interested in finding out a safer alternative.

On a related note, I actually got quite a bit of exercise today, myself. I've been noticing a certain softness about my middle of late, and a certain jiggle to my thighs. Not flab, exactly, since my current weight is at the low end of what would be considered healthy for me. Just a total lack of definition.

When we lived at the camp, I used to take walks with the kids several times a week--usually only slowing down a little in winter, as our summer-village road was kept fairly snow-free, often being cleared even before many places in the town of Sylvan Lake were. I've really missed this here in Peace River. We live on top of a hill. A really looong, STEEP hill. So, I can either go for a walk around the neighbourhood--and it's pretty tough to get your heartrate up in a block and a half, unless you do it eight times, but the kids tend to whine about silly things like boredom when you try that trick--or walk downtown. Down the long, steep hill.

Well, today I said "To heck with it! I will not have a soft keester, 90% grade be darned!", and me and the kids walked downtown. It took the better part of an hour (and that was down!). We went to A&W for burgers (yes, the irony of that is apparent to me--but it's one of our "big treats" with the kids, and they love it. And Jude can say "double-u", which is way too cute.), then went to the pet store and saw the fish and bunnies, then went to Riverside Park to the playground, which from a distance had looked quite nice, but I noticed it was a little overgrown and poorly-maintained when we arrived there. Oh, well, the kids had a blast.

Then we made the VERY long, VERY steep walk back UP the hill! Jude was such a trooper--he was the only child walking, as I was pushing the other two in the double stroller. But he did really well, not complaining at all. We just stopped to rest a time or two.

As the name implies, Peace River is built in a river valley. It's gorgeous. However, it's not a broad, gently-sloping river valley with lots of room for industry, downtown, and residential areas such as Red Deer. Peace River is all about retaining walls. And steeply-sloped yards. And lots of stairs. In fact, we are kind of a rarity in that both our front and back yards are flat.
This photo is of some access stairs near the bottom of the long, steep hill to the residences on a different hill behind it.---->

On our walk down the hill, it was interesting to see the differences in levels of care people take with their yards. Sloped yards have lots of landscaping potential, I've always thought. We saw some gorgeous gardens. This one made me want to step in and run away with the faeries again. It was all stepping stones, faux-randomly placed plants of varying colours and sizes under large, overshadowing trees. Especially on the way down, earlier in the day. (By the time I took these photos on our way home, the sun was slanting right in.) Contrast that with the yard three houses previously that looked like it hadn't been mown all summer, the daisies are running rampant (where they aren't being choked out by the weeds), and the mums looked like they had seen their better, happier days. I'm thinking a gardener USED to live there, but whoever the current occupant is couldn't be bothered with yardwork. So sad. The yard has so much potential.

By the way, to all of those of you who have asked me "Is there anything you DON'T do?" I would have to say, I'm not really a gardener. Oh, sure, I can buy a few bedding plants, put them in pots, and water them. I can weed, on occasion. I can help things grow. But to actually conceptualize a garden, to know just where to put the juniper, and the flagstones, and the beautiful stone sculpture (which I didn't take a picture of, but I was in awe none-the-less), and the daisies and glads and mums and all the other plants and bushes and accessories so that it looks like a cohesive whole, and each plant is happy where it lives--that is an art I have not been able to wrap my head around. I love gardens, as you can tell, and I have dreams of someday having my own little magical faerie kingdom to retreat to, but it will have to be created by someone I hire--I'll do all the enjoying, if someone else does the creating.

Oh, and last night after I got off the computer, I went out to check the mail before the rain hit, and look at this REALLY COOL photo I got of a double-arc rainbow on the hill behind our house. This was taken around dusk--at like, 11:30!

Well, I'm off to nurse my blisters--but at least my duff is getting tough! 'Night, all!