April 15, 2013

Healthy Pursuits: Wandering Off and Coming Back


So yeah, in this week's shameless attempt to take a bunch of random stuff and force it into a theme...

Have you ever noticed that life is sometimes a lot more like a circle than a straight line?

We don't so much take off in a straight path with the "old" behind us and the "new" in front of us.  Instead, we circle around, visiting new things and returning to old things, and we just hope like hell that there's some interior growth along the way so that each cycle adds more awesomeness and less screwing up.

Or hell, lets call it a Spiral rather than a circle.  Because not only can you add another dimension and make it pretty, it comes with the whole fancy transtheoretical theory of change attached to it and makes a blog post sound more sciencey!



Anyway, all this leads to four thoughts I wanted to share:


1.  In your quest to lead a healthier and happier life, you could find yourself back in a place you've been before. Do not despair!

This could be on purpose, like when a new dog learns old tricks, or this could be unintentional and feel f--cked up, like the whole two steps forward, one step backward, three more steps backward, huge temper tantrum, five steps forward thing.  (Wait, that's not how you're supposed to do it?)

In any event, if you think of change as a spiral in which you could be ascending even as you are circling...then you can "be" at the same place, but at the same time "not be" at the same place at all!

Remember, you have a whole different brain now that knows more things, and has a whole different way of processing the same obstacles, setbacks, and triumphs. So the new experience of a familiar place can be a whole different adventure, with a new perspective and possibly new options.

The trick is to avoid just doing the zombie thing and going through the same old motions unconsciously. Wise brains are for USING, not snacking on.



2. This is one of those sneaky "I'm wandering off" for yet another vacation blog posts.

And yeah, I'm always wandering off from the blog for one reason or another, because hey, I'm spoiled and slothful and am incredibly fortunate and have no intention of blogging at the beach. But at least this time we've a couple of great guest posts coming up and I'm leaving you in good hands.

And it's another example of "same but different."  Because yeah, these pre-vacation photos are from last year's Budget Hawaiin Fitness Vacation and the Lobster and I are Coming Back to Hawaii again, hooray!


 
Best Traveling Companion Evah

And yep, some things don't change. It is yet another cheapskate adventure (off-season roundtrip air for $300 bucks! Condo shared with pals at $50/night per couple! Friend in the rental car business! Costco runs and picnics on the agenda rather than fancy restaurants!)


A Mai Tai please! Oh crap... Forgot to bring a waiter. Or a bar. 

On the other hand, we are going to a different island (Maui this time, last time was Big Island) and are vacationing with our San Diego posse rather than beloved Mother in Law, so it will be a different and possibly rowdier adventure. Plus every year I am less of a stressbucket worrywart, so this could be kinda awesome!

3.  Quick Question for Regular Cranky Fitness Commenters: Do you "Come Back?"

So most people who show up at Cranky Fitness are just googling something like "hysterectomy recovery" or "best weight loss blogs" or, here's a recent one I can relate to, "heart rate monitors that can be read without reading glasses" ... but these visitors arrive, look around, think "sheesh it's weird here!" and never return.

However, some of you stop by and comment. I love that!

And some of you even stop by and comment, and then Come Back later to see if there has been further discussion.  I love that even more!  I can't tell you how grateful I am for the sense of community it brings to have a little back and forth down in the comments.  Especially with the shitty blogger interface that makes it difficult to figure out how to subscribe to comments (it is, however, possible).

Sadly, I rarely "come back" myself on other blogs, I am just too time-management challenged to be able to pull it off. Which of course makes me even more grateful for the returning folks here.

But anyway, lately I've been going old school here at Cranky Fitness and trying to reply to more comments, at least on posts that are recent and not giveaways. Sometimes I do so right away, but often I get behind and don't get around to it for a day or two.

So, duh: I am fully aware that all this leads to about 9/10 of the reply comments I leave not being read.  Which is not exactly efficient!

I have no idea what I'm going to do about this in the long run.  It starts to get weird when you reply to most, but not all comments, though I do skip folks with links to commercial sites.

But I'm thinking at least:

If any of you cherished regulars want to let me know if you sometimes come back to read replies, or, alternatively, if you are like me and almost never come back because you are understandably busy, that would be helpful information!

4.  I'm Excited about Going on Vacation, But Also Really Excited About Coming Back!

So this is me waving goodbye and hello again, as one of the best things about returning from a vacation is picking back up with everyone here. You guys ROCK!!

Zombie photo:brooklyntyger
Spiral image: entirely subjective

How 'bout you guys, any thoughts about Wandering Off or Coming Back?

66 comments:

  1. *looks around* Sheesh, it's weird here.

    I LIKE it! #8-)

    I'm signed up to the comments RSS feed so I see all the comments, sadly including all the "Hey, you ωrote a fantastic article about this topic which I'm not going to mention!! I'm gonna tell all my friends to check out this article, ωhich I ωon't refer to in any ωay although I've totally read it!!! I'm also gonna inexplicably use "ω" instead of "w" in my comment!!!! Check out my ωebsite!!!!!" ones, which are at least mercifully easy to ignore.

    Enjoy Hawaii! I'm jealous!

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    1. Too funny Shadowduck, so sorry you have to see those. And what is it with the funny "ω" thing?

      Lately they've been getting MEAN too, complaining about typos or formatting. Grrr.

      thanks so much for your help on the comments RSS feed info, I just wish I had a better platform that made commenting easier. But tried to switch to Wordpress last year and it was a timesucking disaster that ended up being abandoned.

      Someday I'll get this blogging thing figured out!

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    2. Well, if they moan about typos at least you know they actually read the post! #;-)

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    3. Nope, I think these come with pre-packaged insults, but, um, yeah, there is almost always a typo in there somewhere with my posts so they're usually accidentally right!

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  2. I do come back - your comments, and your commenters (present self excepted) are fun to read and I get a lot out of the conversations that happen!

    Ahhh, Maui. I love it there. Hoping to make it happen again in the next year - in the meantime, write my name in the sand, ok? Hope you and the Lobster have a wonderful trip!

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    1. Thanks Shelley, that's great to know!

      And sure, would love to write your name in the sand. Will try to get around to it BEFORE the mai tai's, or it may come out more like SH3L73Y...

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    2. LOL!!! If you get a chance, have some gelato at Ono Gelato - my favorite is the coconut flavor, but they are all sooooo good!

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    3. Sounds ono-licious will have to check it out!

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  3. Love the pictures Crabby. You look awesome (and soooo young! ;-) heheh...)
    I like to see life as a spiral as well (or a bunch of concentric circles). Yes, you will find yourself revisiting old places that you would rather leave behind, but what really matters is that you are making progress towards finding your own center (or core). The closer you get to it, the less time and energy you will waste traveling away from it. We're like our own satellite... gravitatign around our true self, first at a certain distance, then getting closer and closer... until we "land" on ourselves. I gather this is what "they" call enlightenment. :-)

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    1. Ooh HSH, love the satellite image, and the way it's all about moving inward rather than outward. Very cool! And amazing you are so knowledgeable being only 16 years old. :)

      (And know I owe ya an email, off to the gym soon but taking care of email later this afternoon.)

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    2. I know eh! So much wisdom in such a young gal! LOL ;-) Have fun at the gym! :-)

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    3. HSH, I agree with Crabby - I love the satelite image!

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  4. Maui oka noi :):) I can almost hear the birds, feel the warmish night breeze moving the stars around the sky and the warm sand between my toes right now! Have a super vacation and check out the little black sand beach sort of near the south end of the island......

    I come to this site daily and love reading all the replies (so, yes - I venture back on a semi obsessive basis to see who else wrote something funny, inightful or interesting).

    Aloha :)

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    1. Aloha backatcha Anonymous!! Who needs a name someday... :)

      Will look for the little black sand beach, sounds wonderful! And you've planted such a vivid image of Hawaii in my head I'm going to have a hard time using said head for anything constructive this morning. Which ain't necessarily a bad thing.

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  5. Every Path

    I walk alone

    Footprints never to be retouched or revisited.

    But rejoice!

    Understanding comes in the end as it was so clearly understood in the beginning...

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  6. I commonly come back to see what who said what when.

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    1. Thank you Leah!

      And I believe you are the longest-time commenter here. We are SO lucky to get hear from you, as years go by and the blog gets sillier and sillier!

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  7. I need to figure out now to get the comments and replies in my email. Shadowduck gets 'em with RSS.. I'll try that. The last one I really came back a few times and am making a point only here because there does seem to be some actual conversation and support. Usually I don't. I need to be alerted to a comment or reply. Lots of other comment forms have an easy way for that..

    Beyond all that... Enjoy your vacation! I think it's brilliant not to blog while you're away. Relax and live a little!

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    1. I know Tree, I HATE that I can't seem to get a simple option like word press has to email followup comments.

      Thanks for hanging in there and coming back though, I really appreciate it!

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  8. I enjoy reading the replies almost as much as your thoughful wisdom. As a matter of fact, I think my very first comment was on your original Hawaii post since I love, love, love Hawaii. My major fitness/weight loss inspiration is due to the fact that I expect to wear a bikini (probably a tankini in reality) strolling along the beautiful Pacific Ocean and taking less than 90 minutes to climb Diamondhead again. That and my fantasy of running the Ironman in Hawaii, because if your going to kill yourself participating in an Ironman race- what a great place to be :)

    Oh, and as my wise mother taught all six of her children "Not all who wander are lost" and let me assure you we have ALL wandered. Have Fun and Be Safe!

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    1. Ah Mrs Mars you're right, you were back on that post too! Next time I'll just have to pack you with me to Hawaii and save you the trouble of logging in. :)

      Re: "if your going to kill yourself participating in an Ironman race- what a great place to be..." Love that! Not that I plan on killing myself that way; I think drowning in a vat of Shelley's ono gelato sounds like an even better way to go.

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  9. Ugh! Who eats brain with their bare hands? Gross!

    Enjoy your vacation. Had my lottery numbers only come in I would be buying my own island right now! I guess I will just have to look at the pictures.

    I always come back to read comments 'cause somebody might be talking about me so I got to know!

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    1. You crack me up Cindy. Yeah, those zombies need to learn some table manners!

      And when you buy your island, let me know... I'm looking for a location for my Cranky Fitness Spa/Exercise/Coaching-Workshop/Healthy Hedonism retreat, which I'm sure I'll be getting together any day now. :)

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    2. I'm back!!! Just like a bad smell!! End of the day funk! It happens.
      I just had to prove I come back because ... I spend a lot of time proving unimportant stuff so I can say "SEE I told you so"!

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  10. Like the spiral idea. And the illustration because I learn/remember better with a visual aid.
    I sometimes come back to read replies. When I have some time. Love reading your blogs! I made it to Hawaii once and would love, love, love to do it again. Enjoy!!!

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    1. Hey thanks so muck mk!

      Originally I had an even more fancy looking spiral with all this psych jargon on it to represent stages of change, which I thought made the post look more respectable. But dang those copyright laws and I chickened out.

      Always love it when you stop by!

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  11. That spiral is such a great analogy! And now that you mention it, I'm SO ready to go back to Hawaii. *sigh*

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    1. Sorry to plant that notion if it isn't in the cards anytime soon, but hope you get to go before too long Donna!

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  12. It's sad, but i often can't get back -- by the time i do everything else on my always massive to do list, and get to every blog, getting back would probably only get done if i totally quit sleeping, which would make my answers make no sense, so all that to say someone please pass me some more coffee!

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    1. I feel the same way messymimi, which is why I feel so lucky there are some regular-commer-backers here.

      And yeah, I think its time for me to brew another pot myself!

      Oh wait, the whole point of this was for me to remember who doesn't get a chance to stop back and calibrate replies accordingly... darn!

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  13. I frequently come back to check out your wit and wisdom. :)

    Have a great vacation!
    Gaye

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    1. Thanks Gaye! A lot easier knowing I have a couple of great guest posts coming. :)

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  14. Honestly, outside the gym, i make the same mistakes too often, I learn but still do it.. DOH! ;)

    So happy for your vacation & I so want to come! Heck the way yo are going is the way we go all the time! We have a time share but bought it in the early 80's so long paid for & eat in all the time & we just don't go fancy anyway. :) I love that Costco is there now!

    On comments, some people have a way that their comment comes back to you & others you have to remember to go back - me, I am memory challenged! ;) I try to come back though. I have tried to respond to comments but so often am behind but I try...

    Have a wonderful vacation!

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    1. Ooh, you've got a already paid for timeshare? Awesome!

      Wish I could get the darn follow up comments emailed, but thanks for coming back sometimes. Given all you got going, it's amazing you ever make it back!

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  15. I come back - your comment section is one of my favorites because of the complete sense of community over here.
    Have a great time in Hawaii (my happy place!!)! Love that you are going with the rowdy crew!! Enjoy your vacay!!

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    1. Thanks so much Kim. And yeah, I am SO lucky, both for Hawaii and awesome blog commenters like you!

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  16. I often do come back to check out the new comments - it's usually very entertaining! Since I am stuck at a desk all day during the week, it's a nice way to take a little break.

    Hope you have a great trip!

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    1. Oh good, so many of my favorite folks actually do come back so I feel like less of an ass replying to comments, this is great to know!

      Thanks JavaChick, longtime commenters like you make the blog so much more fun to read.

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  17. I subscribe to the comment by email, of course, which means I read them all, but not in context, which means I ought to come back to the blog and answer them more often, which would mean, like messymimi, skipping sleep.

    Mary Anne in Kentucky, meaningfully

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    1. (comment thread, dadgummit!)

      Mary Anne in Kentucky

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    2. Solarity, given how hard you work and how much you've contributed I can't imagine wanting you to go without sleep to be even more of a helpful Cranketeer.

      Sleep, girl!

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  18. So somehow I missed checking the news earlier today and feel kinda silly talking about vacations etc after the Boston Marathon bombings. Sure hope no one in our community or their family and friends have been hurt.

    Many marathoners and friends of marathoners stop by here or have fitness blogs, hope everyone is ok!

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  19. Death Ride GrandmaApril 15, 2013 at 11:00 PM

    Yes, Crabby, I come back frequently & try to keep up with all those fun chats. I don't always get here - some days just escape, but it's always fun. You have a nice, varied group of commenters. Mostly when I read comments on blogs they are all friends of the blogger, or all nurses, or all trying to lose weight - all focused on the relatively specific topic of the blog. I am almost never tempted to comment, and have never entered a conversation like this one.

    That business of circling/spiraling back to where we've been? I usually sort of enjoy it. Things whiz by too fast these days, and sometimes it almost feels like getting a "take-over," maybe even a Groundhog Day experience - a chance to refine & improve the way I deal with something when I find myself in a familiar spot. Basically, what you said about being in the same place, only it's not the same.

    And Hawaii - I am jealous! We will be on Maui in July with extended family. One grandson turns 3 while we are there. If I make it through the Death Ride, or possibly even if I don't, I hope to ride up Haleakala. Are you a snorkeler? We have relatives on Maui so I have been there lots & have definite favorite places for gaping at fish. You may still be able to see some whales, too. I really love hearing them call under water. The sound must carry for miles, although it does not sound loud. You can often hear it very close to shore with no whales in sight. Aloha!

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    1. So funny, DRG, that your Maui ambitions involving biking up Haleakala, and mine involve kicking back and sipping Mai Tai's! (Though I gotta admit, those are best enjoyed after a day of hiking or biking or otherwise getting out and enjoying the gorgeousness).

      And you've been such a source of inspiration to so many here. I'm so glad you've braved the commenter-unfriendly interface to keep stopping by. Love that you support others as well as inspire by being so kick-ass in your approach to fitness!

      So hey, while I've got you here... you're one of those folks who is very sensibly un-findable should one want to track you down. But if you'd like to email me your email address sometime, would be great to have on hand; you tend to be on the short list in the non-random part of goals giveaways. Should the RNG pick your name, would be great to be able to let you know.

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  20. I wondered about your people (readers) and the Marathon. I sure do hope everyone is okay. Such a sad thing.

    I rarely return but I do read follow up comments by subscribing to them in email. It helps when you respond to your comments in the manner that you do, by addressing someone by name - otherwise it's impossible to know to whom you are replying and then I'd have to come back to see. ;)

    I hope you and the Lobster have a wonderful trip. Be safe.

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    1. Thanks Hilary!

      You're another of those folks who I so treasure, not only for your awesome puns and 'old timer' status, but because your comments remind me to go look at your photos which are inevitably STUNNING.

      And that's great info about the fact the comments don't arrive threaded; I was trying to use names just in case but also felt a little silly in case that was unnecessary. Good to know I should get better about it in the future!

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  21. Crabby, Can you check my email please as i don't seem to be getting any email updates. Its graced241@yahoo.com - I signed up over 1 month ago. Thanks X

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    1. Oh shoot Grace, thanks for letting me know about the email update problem!

      I think the email sign up is through feedburner, wonder what the hell their problem is?

      I'll take a look with my extremely limited trouble-shooting skills, but realistically probably not until I get back from vacation. Thanks so much for finding your way here anyway!

      This is the sort of stuff that makes me wish I could make enough money from blogging to hire someone to figure this stuff out. Or that I had a bigger brain. :)

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    2. I always wish I had a techie blogger pal to call with questions like that. My husband is pretty techie but not necessarily with all of my blog stuff.

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  22. Have a wonderful trip! I love the pictures. :)

    I, too, come back and check comments. I didn't know there was an email notification thing-y. I'll have to check that out.

    I love the idea of all of this being a spiral. And the reminder that even if a situation seems all "WTF, didn't I solve this dang issue already?!?!" this is a great opportunity to see it from a new perspective.

    I just found this quote today and love it: “We don’t see things as they are, we see things as we are at any point in time”. ~Melody Beattie.

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    1. Oh good, another checker-backer, thanks Theresa! I really do think that all you awesome commenters are what makes the blog fun, and those who just read the posts themselves are missing the best part.

      I totally love that quote... so easy to forget how much we bring of ourselves to "reality"... and thus, how much opportunity we have to construct reality for ourselves. (The older I get, the more I live in a la-la land of my own creation. Wait, was that a unicorn that just walked by?)

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  23. I always check back -- I love the pool of commenters and your responses and the responses back to you.

    And I like the spiral metaphor. I've always said to my kids that life is an ocean -- everything changes around you all the time. You may have to run from sharks or get washed way off course by a current. But you can always aim for where you want to go, and you may find sunken treasure where you least expect it. To which my teenage daughter rolls her eyes and mock puts her finger down her throat and my son demonstrates how thoroughly he absorbed my wisdom by asking if I've seen his ipad charger.

    Have a wonderful trip!

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    1. Ah Trabbs Boy, that comment is an awesome example of why I think the comments are so much more worthwhile than the blog!

      Love the ocean metaphor as well as the incredible inspiration it provides for your kids. :)

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  24. I check back too. This is the only blog I follow so I can keep up. I like the community of commenters. That being said I only check back once or twice on each post.
    I am liking the spiral idea as I often wander away and come back to most things. Nice to think that it does not always have mean I am just a dabbler. I have so many things on the go and am always wanting to add more. It gets impossible to keep them all on the go at the same time. Priorities change as well. Things move up and down the relative importance scale in my life.

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    1. Seriously Tina, only once or twice? I think you should be refreshing the screen every few minutes to see what happens next!

      And yeah, I don't think the wander off/wander back thing is something to be apologetic about, it just means you are Flexible! At least that's what I'm telling myself, as I bounce around from shiny thing to shiny thing. The important thing in my mind is to feel engaged without feeling overwhelmed; sometimes tough but far better than being bored!

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    2. Anyone have a suggestion for which HRM to get? I am looking at the Polar FT7 and the FT60. Cranky tell Polar to send you more stuff. I need a FT60 review.

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    3. Hit send too fast. Have fun in Hawii. It looks beautiful there. I still envy the Scotland trip just a little

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  25. Have a great trip! Sounds like you found some great deals...wish I knew your secrets.

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  26. I stumbled upon your blog a little while ago and often check in to see where you're at.

    I enjoy your style of writing, and you usually put a smile on my face - what more can I ask?! :)

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  27. Wow, I'd love to got to Hawaii, really looks like you can kick back and relax. Have a great time :)

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  28. I'm so jealous of your trips. Could I trade you a few National Parks for Hawaii? : ) Hey, I am coming your way though at the end of May. Making a Seaworld/Legoland/Disneyland trip with the kids. Gonna be around? Or already headed back east?

    Depends on the day. I'm having trouble even keeping up with reading blogs lately (hence, you know, commenting here 9 days after the fact). But if it's a post I'm very interested in, or if I've commented/replied, then I'll definitely check back.

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    1. Oh, but yeah, that whole comment-reply-email thing that wordpress does would be really nice. :)

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  29. I've been to Hawaii last year and I really had a great fun especially in Waikiki. The place is a paradise! Anyway, I love the spiral concept in this article. You have this unique style of writing which really catches the attention of your fanatic readers. Keep on posting! :-D

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  30. Thanks What a great info you have given us by your blog. I like it and will share it to my friends.
    dentist in Modesto

    ReplyDelete

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