Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Music Memory R.E.M. - Half A World Away

R.E.M. was and is iconic to me. Most if not all of their songs hold a special place in my heart and trigger quite a few memories especially the albums of my youth. I was struggling to find how to post a memory of another song when I came across this gem and changed.

This song is beautiful and always takes me back to Swan Valley, Idaho. Imagine sitting in the back seat of a car, the window down, wind kissing my face and playing with my hair. Sun is setting, the Snake River saunters along and the Tetons loom in the background. The song makes the moment perfect.

It is one of my favorite places, songs, and memories. This may be the first memory of R.E.M. but it won't be the last, there are just too many.

Monday, October 26, 2009

If She Could Talk...

She would be telling her Mommy and Daddy that she wants to visit her favorite Aunt in California. Spring time would be best. Yep I just know that is exactly what she would say.

On a side note, I received this picture because I sent her the outfit she it wearing. I must admit when it comes to my Nieces and Nephews I can't help but spoil them a bit. Especially when I see a cool T-shirt. It's a sickness I know but they look super cute in them and they wear them all of the time.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Great Northwest...

I received the following email from my Brother in Law the morning after I returned from my recent vacation:

I can't help but feel a slight bit of disappointment that here we are in the age of instant information and facebook and blogs and cell phones and yet my two tech savvy sisters-in-law go on a cool vacation to the Northwest and here I am update-less. I went over my checklist this morning:
Cool Pictures? - nope
Humorous Anecdotes? - nope
Travel Nightmare Stories? - nope
Travel Activity Narratives? - nope
Streaming Video? -nope

All I got was a lousy facebook notice that Jamie had left . . . and come back. It's like the entire weekend was a gigantic black hole!
Is this to be borne? It is not!

So to appease him the narrative is a bit like this:
My Sister and I had a fabulous vacation up North. I really feel at home in the Northwest, having the Mountains near and the water makes me feel alive. I may just one day move up there.

When we were walking to the rental car we started to get worried that it was going to be one of the many PT Cruisers that M loathes we breathed a sigh of relief when it was an ugly red Cobalt instead. Once we realized that it had UT plates however we groaned and then laughed. Proof that M can't leave UT behind and I can't vacation without having UT around.

We promptly drove down to Tacoma to see the UW campus. It was a really cool and small campus. I think M was in love and will most likely be enrolling for her graduate work. We walked around and enjoyed all of the Chihuly glass.

Afterwards we drove to Mt. Rainier, unfortunately the entrance we chose was closed but the drive was beautiful. We walked around a bit and enjoyed the view.

Off to Seattle, that is where we chose to stay. Our Hotel was near the Space Needle so that night we walked over and enjoyed the park without a lot of people. It was quite a lovely way to do it.

The next day we chose to drive up to Vancouver B.C. for no other reason than we wanted to go. It is only a couple of hours away and it was a fabulous way to spend a Friday. Next time we will plan better on what exactly we want to see. Stanley Park was gorgeous. Other than sitting in the customs lines, the blinking traffic lights (which drove M mad) and the fact my hair decided to curl on its own for the first time ever. I loved Vancouver and will be planning another vacation there soon.

Saturday was our Seattle day, it was also the day that it rained (we thought it was always like that, apparently not according to the news it was a big storm). Our pant legs were perpetually wet and who knows what our hair looked like. We went to the Aquarium which was a bit of a disappointment, only because we have seen better ones. Then we walked up to the Seattle Art Museum. They were having a kids festival so the first floor was LOUD and filled with Children's artist's singing away. I am sure if I were a parent I might have tolerated it a bit more but no, had to get up to the other floors fast.

It's a great museum and really easy to get to. They currently have a Michelangelo exhibit which was pretty amazing especially with the Chorale singers that were performing. It is always entertaining to peruse a Museum with M, she just does not like Modern Art, so she provides amusing commentary on how she could make that or way is that considered Art.
We walked around and found Pikes Market, Yeah not my favorite place but we can say we were there. I prefer non-touristy destinations myself, besides it was crowded!

Sunday we decided to drive around the area and see the scenery. First we went down to Olympia, the fall colors along the highway were amazing. I had to call our Mom because she always freaks out when the place is beautiful. Then we crossed over to Tacoma Narrows and drove up to Bremerton.

I really enjoyed Bremerton and I think my Parents should move there instead constantly talking about Idaho (not that there is anything wrong with that). We ate really bad Mexican food and then drove along the Olympic National Park which was stunning, up to Port Angeles. Yes the same town that is in those Twilight books at least we didn't go to Forks (that would be lame). We were there long enough to fill up with gas and that is about it.

Monday it was our last day and we weren't ready to leave. I fell absolutely in love with the place. We found Kerry Park which really had amazing views of Seattle and the Puget Sound, and then went to a somewhat dodgy Chinese restaurant, only because of the flies.

As far as nightmare stories, there weren't really any except for the kid above us whose parents let him jump around until 1 am every night. I swear he weighed 400 lbs.

If you have an itching to go, do so and do it in the fall. The colors are brilliant! I can't wait for the next trip up there.

Thanks to M for making it a fun trip, it was lovely to spend time with my sister and watch her relax a bit away from the stresses of school and work.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Quilts In Trees

Alden Lane Nursery in Livermore presents a Quilt show one weekend every year. A few of the Quilting Ladies at Church have gone in the past. This year I joined, granted I am not a quilter and the youngest in the group, I am glad I went.

My Aunts quilt and though I love to see their work, I have little will power to take it on myself, maybe one day when I get a place with a bit more closet space. (my tiny closet barely fits my clothes).

Not only were the Quilts gorgeous but the setting was enchanting. The old Oaks curling and bending gave off a surreal view, the flowers and plants at the nursery were gorgeous. I was in picture heaven as you can see below.

One day I would love to walk through with my Aunts, I really think they would be in heaven.

I loved this massive oak, it's branches twisting into roots

How could you not love a Tomato and Peppers with arms and legs made out of garden hose.

If you get a chance and you are in the Bay area it is a great way to spend a fall morning. You should plan on it next year.

Oh to Serve

So this post is a little delayed due to the fact this happened almost 2 months ago. My friend Dauny and I were put in charge of gathering a group for a service project. It was fun to plan, but there was that nagging feeling it wouldn't work out. Well it did! We had plenty of people show up to help and we worked super hard on one of the hottest days of the summer.
It felt great to help beautify Oakland and get to work along side some really amazing people.

By the way the Woman in the blue pants standing is in her 90's, if she can plant, dig and rake then there is no excuse for the rest of us.

The picture was taken when we were almost done, we were one hot and dirty group, literally.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Come on...

Yesterday started of interestingly enough with a major storm that knocked out the power allowing me to sleep an extra half hour, a drive into work that took an hour (normally 20 min) and opening a box of Kashi that just plain amused me enough to take a picture of it.

Cereal is expensive. Were talking $4 a box sometimes and this is with all brands. Just like a bag of chips they seem to not fill the interior bag much, but we have come to expect it. When I opened my new box yesterday, I noticed that the interior bag was considerably smaller than it used to be, it was full, but notice the difference below. Maybe they are saving on plastic, but it defeats the purpose when the cardboard box is almost double in size.
Don't take this post the wrong way because I LOVE Kashi cereals. I really do especially the Strawberry Fields goodness and I will continue to purchase, however maybe they should reconsider packaging and or price.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Mi Familia

Fortunate, Blissful, Content, Blessed, Fortuitous, Golden, Stupendous, just a few words to describe how I feel when I think of my Family.
They are really a marvelous group of people and I am grateful I get to be one of them.