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Site Diary 2010


26th August - Sleeping Beauty: The END!

It was under the shower that 'Incredible Ladies' was born, and it was under the shower that it now has been put to rest. It is Tuesday night now, well actually it is Wednesday already, the day when I would put final touches to my baby, and I will do so now for one last time. Well, a good three years is a long stretch, it feels natural to be a bit sentimental. But it also is a length of time that makes review necessary, and the review tells me to listen to my own advice:

If something is not working, then there is no point of trying harder, then one needs to try different!

I wanted to make Incredible Ladies something incredible - for me and for others. I wanted to make it big, to span the globe, to connect cultures and ages. I had the ideas, I worked hard - so I thought, but probably not hard enough - and probably it would have needed some risk taking to bring the site from a mere one woman show to an e-zine. I tried a few times to lift it to the next level, but technology has overtaken me more than once, and I just have to acknowledge that I am not a risk taker. Probably life is too good to me to give me a real kick to achieve great things. Well, that is nothing one can complain about, is it?

I had a great time with Incredible Ladies. I learned so much; about myself, who my friends are, to write... better, and about how the internet and the virtual world in general are working. And I still would sign every single word I have written... well, probably not every single one: There are quite a few typos and weird grammatical constructs.

So it is time to re-focus, not for Incredible Ladies but for me. The site will stay alive, I will just not do any updates anymore. At a later point I may re-publish bits and pieces under a different name and inviting the gentlemen as well, and I certainly will keep writing. You still will be able to stay in touch via my blogs 'Rika's Columns' and 'Bloody Hell... what did I do now', and my YouTube Channel. I will still do my charity challenges for 'Orangutan Land Trust', and who knows I might even publish my book, eventually.

We might meet on Facebook, Twitter, Xing or LinkedIn... and there are a few more places into which I am dropping by once in a while, would be nice to bump into you!

I am wishing you all the best for your endeavours, and always remember: ending a thing that is not successful is never a failure, but the start to something new - as long as you are getting your bum up!

Always yours!


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19th August - Travel, cakes, shopping, and dealing with the aftermath

THAT was a wonderful trip to Braunschweig, my former home town, and all the boxes on my list got ticked. First morning after an elaborated breakfast: Shopping spree! Detlef had done some excellent research and all that was needed was one, single shop.

I went into BiBA (German site) and every single item had my name tag on it. The shop attendant was utterly excited - understandably - and found that I would be suitable to model their stuff. Whatever I touched just suited and fitted me like tailored specifically for my shape. Hence the shopping went a bit out of hand and after two hours I was exhausted but done with everything I wanted.

The olive tones suit me perfectly and the two jacket kind of things can be worn as a warm blouse as well.

See, the office at my work place has a horrible, old aircon which at times tends to almost freeze the inhabitants to death, so I need nice cardigans and layers. On the other hand one doesn't want to wear cardies all the time and normal blouses just don't fit my arms anymore. Additionally, given my age, one tends to heat up quite a bit - blasting aircon or not - so blouses have to be airy but warm-ish at the same time.

The stuff I bought is just brilliant. The blue one I already wore several times during the trip and it has become my favourite. Who would have thought that blue would become me.

Well, now that everything is settled into the wardrobe it turns out that not all is sorted. As usual one has some following-on to do. I need some decent black trousers... two more jeans from Aura are ready to be picked up tomorrow.

Well, and as usual: One never has enough boots!

After dropping off the goodies at the hotel, which hubby smartly had chosen to be bang in the middle of the city, a well deserved break was advised.

Cake Time!

I had promised myself Bienenstich and Lemon-cream roll. Off we went into my favourite take away bakery and I couldn't help but buying them all in one go, adding a Mandelhörnchen on top.

Well, what can I say. I was glad Detlef kept shooting pictures of me going mad on them so in the end he only managed to snatch one bite of the lemon roll.

Awww... what a lovely dinner that was... and done with it in a jiffy.

After a bit more strolling around, finding out what is new and what is still in the old place after ten years, and discovering a bakery with a name that now sounds rather odd, we met mother in law for coffee in her favourite coffee place, a lovely bookstore. So nicely renovated!

They integrated an old building into the modern framework of the new bookstore. This is the view from the third floor. The coffee place is in the second and you can see the tips of a real tree planted on that level like in a front garden.

A walkway is leading from the modern part into the old house where there is a play room for kids. Just beautiful! And I got lucky. I ordered the second last piece of cake from a huge gateau... apparently it could not be sliced into two without if falling apart... you guessed correctly: I got the whole huge thing! By the time Detlef could say 'Wanna try' it was all gone. He knew when he married me that he would have to be quick in regard to cake snatching.

At night we met friends... and again there was food. Next morning: breakfast, two hours later: birthday lunch, afternoon: b-day coffee, and on Sunday morning breakfast with my aunt.

I can safely say that I exceeded my calorie allowance by a weeks worth of food. The task now is to catch up with everything and to start concentrating on training and the bodybuilding challenge. The last update is two weeks back and focus on that side of IL is urgently needed. So that should be the last of my feeding frenzy stories; from now on it's all about motivation, challenges, food, and sport... Argh! Wish me luck, I really do need it!


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12th August - Off I go now!

Yay! Eventually! I am going to be away together with my husband for the fist time in eight years. We had tied us down with all the pets and now we have found a lovely lady who loves the cats and who is going to house sit... she has a certain dislike towards everything pond related, but calls this part of her duties therapy. So we are pleased, relieved and happy... and yay! I am going to travel for a whole four nights.

Well, right now things are not entirely 'yay' yet, as the usual pre-travel stuff is taking place, but Thursday 5PM I will just let everything fall to the floor and will walk off!

And for that very good reason I am going to leave you with just one column which will explain it all, and will move on to all the other tasks on my list.

You may want to follow me and hubby on Facebook to catch all the lovely pictures of cakes and food which we intend to post. See you next week with hopefully a lot of new stuff which is due to be bought in Germany


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5th August - Holiday Month, or is it?

Well it is very calm at work and the last two weeks of the month I will be taking off, but...!

.. again, something is not quite right, clearly: It is cold and rainy and not really summary anymore. A new German student at work asked today if that would be the usual kind of weather we have that time of the year...

NOPE! It isn't!

August is supposed to be nice and fine and warm. It is so cold and rainy at the moment that I am not even releasing Mr. Wheezy Hog back into the wild. He has recovered quite well, and is only slightly wheezy.

He is getting fat and respectively is doing quite well in what one does when having eaten a lot... I actually rather would like to have him attending to that sort of business in the garden rather than my spare room, but I will not put him out into the rain. So he may get a little bit more of a headstart in terms of love handles before the cold season kicks in.

Mushrooms are pretty, but August is clearly too early for them to grow in the lawn

I however did have a creative phase this week and wrote a new column. Not a particularly funny one, but well... I just had to think about why my life appears to flow in waves of moaning and bingeing and then again in high activity to catch up on the good stuff again - a lifestyle which is a bit annoying, especially with the task ahead. So far this article seems to keep me on track, hence me hoping that my thoughts about re-focusing eventually will change things to the better in the long run... meaning to get a more steady lifestyle.

Since last weeks announcement of a date for the Bodybuilding competition I updated my training schedule again and added a calender ... oh, oh,... it's always less time than one might think. Training is going well, though, and I already figured out a few things about posing and possible styles of music, so after the holidays I will crank it up a bit. Oh, just remembered: I have one more big hurdle. I need a posing bikini. It is as if those are only crafted by a secret society in the US of A and one only can get one when paying at least a few hundred dollars. All I want is a tiny sheet of cloth with some strings attached. Skip the Swarovsky christals... I think all this decoration looks odd alongside a lot of muscles anyway. I have to admit: This scene is a tiny bit mad...

Oh well, what can I say! This mad woman will call it a day now. Beauty sleep is needed. Have a lovely rest of the week and enjoy your weekend!


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29th July - We are on!

Please all mark the 5th June in your calendars: That's the day of truth when I will be on a stage in a bikini in front of a lot of people!

A few days ago I found the poster and the first thing that happened was my guts playing havoc. I felt like just before the exams at university. Luckily that has settled a bit now and life is back to normal. Well, almost. Sometimes I am missing my writing, but everything right now evolves around losing fat, training, finding a bikini and learning how to pose. So not a lot of soul searching going on and all this hands on stuff takes away the wit a bit. It's hard to be funny when all I think about is when and what to eat and when I can eventually go to the gym again. Yep! I can't wait to get to the gym and everything that keeps me from it makes me grumpy. It's a bit like before an exam: Whenever I got nervous I quickly studied an hour or two.

I am apologising to all of you who like my columns, but right now I just can't write properly. At the moment I just have to take myself a bit too seriously to be funny about it - otherwise I wouldn't get through it, I guess. Actually it feels a bit like the beginnings about 6 years back when I took my selfish time, when I pulled out of a lot of conversations because I needed to think and do things for myself to not lose the focus. Given all that the most of the Incredible Ladies action will now take place in the 'Bloody Hell' blog. But I will be back. There will be a time when I will reflect on this year of madness, and I will draw my conclusions - and hopefully in the way you like it. So please bear with me for a little while longer.

And for the rest of it I would like to ask all garden owners a favour. I took on a sick hedgehog and when the vet checked him out we started talking. This little fella has lung worm and pneumonia, and I told her that I would like to have him back as we don't have so many.

She then told me that a lot of hedgehogs die from eating poisoned slugs which had eaten slug pellets.

So, please don't use slug pellets in the garden, rather nurture a hedgehog.

My little friend who is now named 'Mr. Wheezy Hog' has now come back to me, residing in our spare room - yes, he smells and roams free as he was fit enough to escape the, rather high, box I had allocated to him.

From tomorrow on I will have to administer another round of wormer - no idea how that will work out - and then in a good weeks time he hopefully will be able to join the other two in the garden. Unfortunately the pix are of bad quality, I had to be quick with the mobile. Additionally he is nocturnal and I don't want to stress him with too much light.

Now he has his own little castle
tucked behind my rowing machine
and after his night stroll he marches
straight in digging himself into the towel.


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22nd July - Oh, it's one of those days...

... it's actually one of those weeks. I'm all thumbs since a few days already and I think I might just be ready for some holidays. The other day Imola's little one broke her arm and I was told that they had been worried about her toppling over quite often recently, and when the incident happened they discussed the matter with the teacher and were told that the kids are just knackered by the heat and that a break is needed. The same might be true for me.

I am catching myself more and more often to be drawn to things related to holidays, like the beautiful sailing ships which are for hire at the Ipswich marina, or the wonderful new hotel in Singapore. And now on top of it all the weather is changing from hot via humid to rain, turning my mushy scatterbrain into a headache rendering me incapable of producing a decent article or any kind of creative product worth publication.

So I decided to take it easy for a bit. Almost all my friends are leaving the country this weekend for their holidays, and I may just sink into my armchair with a bowl of my favourite ice-cream and dream a bit after them.

To all of you travelling: Have safe and lovely holidays! And to all of you staying: Take it easy... and the ice-cream is from Lidl, you may want to try the Tiramisu!

See you later, my freezer is calling...


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15th July - Just a few bits and pieces

Life seems to be too good: There is nothing of any seriousness to report!

Well apart from that my friend's little girl broke arm and things are tough for the both of them right now, but as soon as the pain is gone she will be proud of her special role, and as my grandma used to say: By the time you marry it will be all alright! All the best to you girls: Big hug!

I am spared from cinema at the moment because the cinema addicts in my environment managed to watch literally everything and nothing new came on, so I have time to go out with the girls. Giggly, silly, girly chats at the pub, leaving all the cares behind and living in the moment. Yes!

Throughout the week all my focus is still on losing fat and gaining muscle. It's a bit of a chore, but I broke the ice-cream addiction yesterday, sticking nicely to the training - which is kicking in - and actually feeling rather good. Next month I am going to travel to Germany to see friends and family after a really long time. Some of them I haven't seen in years and I am keen to see their reaction to my shapeshifting.

I started to listen to music now to find a piece for the posing routine. I have a piece in mind, don't know the name, and worse... I can't sing. So there is nobody in the world who would be able to help me find it. Yesterday I listened for two hours to classical snippets on YouTube and now I only very faintly can remember the one I am looking for. That's going to be a toughy.

Having my time idling away like this I have not written anything substancial except of the one or the other blog update. Luckily I got treated with some video posts on Twitter. Sloth seem to be the new thing... and I have to admit: They ARE adorable.

Let's show off a bit for the pub

And here are a few charity appeals as this year the ladies are going to support the charities of their own choice:

Enjoy whatever you are doing and have a great summer!


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8th July - Training, Ice cream and more Training

Gosh, I am ice cream addicted... I have phases, last week it was burgers - just the meaty bit, but still; and no, I am not pregnant! I am wondering though, if my fat loss and muscle gain is resulting in weird reactions telling me what I should eat. Like carbos for energy, and protein for muscle building. I know that it is not just cravings, I am really hungry, and then I want those specific things... Weird effects, really.

Training is going well, incorporated an additional incline powerwalking session on the treadmill now to do a bit more for the old calves... well, and to burn off the calories from all the ice cream. The shoulders are eventually the first section to be finished on the Exercises page of the blog and I added some new Hightlights as well.

And on the photo front there are no news because the photo shoot had to be cancelled due to dear photographer friend having caught a bad cold. So I decided to contemplate the last one a bit more and asked myself why I am so keen on photo shoots. I have to say: I only can recommend it.

So have a lovely rest of the week and don't shy away when hubby gets the camera out during your next BBQ!


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1st July - Summer, Summer, Summer...

And I could go on like this! It is hot... and I am loving it! Admittedly at times I have to slow down a bit, but altogether the warmth is lovely. I like it in the gym when the muscles are all soft, and I like it that I don't have to carry the spare pullover, pair of socks or cardigan. Only our cats are a bit annoyed... and annoying. They have become even pickier with their food, as we do when it is hot, and a big part of my daily tasks is to lid and un-lid cat bowls to avoid fly infestation.

This eventually was an event-less week in regard to food; usually events have to do with eating, and I so much want to keep a rhythm for a while to become a bit leaner. But movie on Thursday 'Letters to Juliet' was quite enjoyable and not food related, and during the family fun day organised by BT for its employees at Adastral Park on Saturday I shipped around all the cliffs of ice-cream vans and hog roasts and stayed with my trusted sandwiches.

And pay-off came: This morning I saw the 65kg for the first time in years, which was worth a 'quickie' on the blog. Then I took a decision which was worth another blog entry. Well, and I did a bit of column writing as well. See, that is the good thing when a week is rather boring, at times the mind is starting to float and I actually get some ideas about what I could write.

So off we go into another warm and floaty week with a hopefully lovely weekend. Have a good one!


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The file got a bit big, so see the first half year here.

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Copyright 2007
Author: Rika