Saturday, April 17, 2010


It's been forever, I know. A lot has been going on in my personal life and I just couldn't wrap my head around anything other than watching movies, running, and working. But I'm back and have lots of fun things coming up this year!

Stay tuned...

Friday, January 9, 2009


A little while ago, it was so cold here that I told Skyler "If it rains, it's going to snow on the mountain!" Sure enough, a couple of days later it started raining and our nearby mountain was full of snow. We decided to head up there to play in it for an afternoon before it all melted.

Here it is, from a distance. We're about 10-15 minutes from the base of the mountain but then it takes about another 20-25 to get up to the top.

We drove up and they had the road closed about 2 miles from the top because of ice on the roads. We parked where we could and got out. Skyler was THRILLED with the amount of snow there was (trust me, it was very little!) but she didn't care. She jumped out and immediately started making snowballs to throw at me!

She was determined to sled down whatever slope we could find. She wasn't going very fast but having a blast!

Then she got the great idea (yeah, right) to walk the rest of the way to the summit of the mountain. Now this coming from the girl who can't walk down the block without asking to be held. I never thought she'd make it but we didn't have a schedule. I thought I'd just let her try and see how far we got. We could always turn around.

Here she is at the beginning of the hike. It's pretty much all up hill and the shady spots were very icy. She stopped every time there was a patch of snow to try and make a snow angel.

or to just climb in the snow

We were about 3/4 of the way up and she got thirsty. Well, I didn't bring ANYTHING with me. Hey, I didn't think we'd get a block, much less 2 miles! I had a bottle of water and snacks in the car but nothing with me. So, I told her to eat snow, only the untouched snow. Nothing that had been touched, stepped on, poked at, or peed on. That seemed to tide her over for a while. But she was determined to keep going!

Notice in this picture that the road is still clear of snow. There's ice in patches but most of the snow is still on the sides of the road.

Then we turned the corner and everything was just covered!

Then we went down our secret little sledding road that nobody really knows about and she really got some good sledding in.

After we were done sledding it was time to head back to the car before it got dark. That is when the real complaining started. She was fine with leaving, in fact I pulled her on the sled for probably 1/4 of the way. After that she CRIED . THE . ENTIRE . WAY . DOWN! She was cold, she was itchy (probably from being a little wet), she was tired, she was thirsty, she HATED the snow, she never wanted to come back to the snow, she's so glad we don't live in the snow...I heard it all. I was so happy to get back to the car! It was a tough day of hiking and being cold but it was worth it!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Disney World recap

I'm so sorry it's taken me so long to get this out and that I've been so out of the loop. I've been super busy with work, orders, Skyler's school, Christmas, you name it! I wanted to get this recap written down before I forgot all about our trip!

Day 1: Magic Kingdom and Epcot
On our first day we woke up bright and early and headed over to Magic Kingdom to be there when it opened at 10. If you've never been to Disney World, you arrive at the "Transportation Center" where either you park or a shuttle drops you off. Then you can get on either the monorail to take you to Epcot or the Magic Kingdom or you can get on a ferry to take you to Magic Kingdom. We chose the Ferry and it was a beautiful view from the dock.

We've been to Disneyland multiple times so we knew most of the rides at the Magic Kingdom but what we didn't expect was for those familiar rides to be different. It was so strange riding Pirates of the Carribean or The Jungle Cruise and to have them be different than the ride we've been riding all our lives! Here's Skyler and Steve on Thunder Mountain Railroad:

After spending a while at MK we took the monorail over to Epcot. We didn't have a lot of time but managed to ride a few rides and have dinner in Japan.

It was FREEZING in Florida but we still had a good time.

Day 2: Hollywood Studios

After arriving in Hollywood Studios we immediately went straight for the Tower of Terror (which last year was Skyler's favorite ride at Disneyland). She was so excited to go again. I think she forgot what it was all about because after getting off she was so terrified she probably didn't talk for about 20 minutes! She said she would NEVER go on it again! Toy Story Mania is a really fun ride but probably our longest line we had to wait in. You get to wear 3D glasses though which is always fun.

We also discovered Skyler's new favorite ride, The Rockin' Roller Coaster. She's never been on an upside down roller coaster and this one goes upside down 3 times! We went on it 4 times that day.

Day 3: Downtown Disney, Magic Kingdom

We had special tickets for Mickey's Very Merry Christmas in the evening so we spent the afternoon at Downtown Disney having lunch and shopping. Then over to Magic Kingdom for the party. They had free hot chocolate, cookies, and apple slices,

a special Christmas parade (which we were front row for), a special lighting of the castle,

(Skyler thought this was pretty cool!)

and SNOW on Main Street! It was a lot of fun getting to go to a special party. We've never done anything like that before. Oh, did I mention it was cold? Skyler is wearing 2 sweatshirts in this picture!

Day 4: Animal Kingdom

We started out at Animal Kingdom by going on the safari ride which was cool to see some animals a little closer up than you would at a zoo. Then it was off to Skyler's new favorite ride, Expedition Everest!
We went on this ride 5 times this day. We really got good at figuring out how to go on a ride as many times as possible. Skyler even met a friend in line and after much sweet talking, got her dad to let the two girls ride together on the ride. I'm so sad we didn't get her contact information because Skyler talked about her for 3 days straight!

I think this was our favorite park. The streets are decorated exactly like they would look in Africa or Nepal. It's just amazing. You really feel like you're there. We could have spent a lot more time here.

Day 5: Hollywood Studios and Epcot

At this point we were just trying to get to everything that we hadn't seen the first time around. We saw a couple of shows and went on a few rides. We were able to go on Rockin' Roller Coaster 3 more times bringing our total up to 7 times on this ride! Then it was back over to Epcot. We tried to get reservations to eat at some fun restaurants but everything was booked so we ended up having fish and chips in the UK. Steve was happy with his Guiness!

Day 6: Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom

This was our last day in the parks. We started out by getting fast passes for Everest, meeting all the characters and getting Skyler's face painted,

looking at a few animals, and then grabbing some lunch. While we were getting situated and josteling food I looked over and spotted a friend of mine, from California, and her entire family! I knew they were going to Disney World and that this would be their first day in the parks. I assumed they'd start in the Magic Kingdom and I had left her a message but didn't hear back from her. How random that we would run into each other! We managed to go on Everest another 4 times bringing our grand total to 9 times! This was everyone's favorite ride! Then it was back over to the Magic Kingdom for one last whirl wind around the park. Skyler decided she wanted to stand in line to see the princesses. She's never done this before so we let her. She was so excited!

Here's my summary: it was really cold, really hard to get around (the monorail only goes to 2 out of the 4 parks), and really tiring. We had fun but I think we'll stick to Disneyland from now on!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

mystery revealed!

Most of you guessed the "mystery vacation." We went to Disney World! We just got back on Monday. I'm still downloading pictures so I'll post those probably this weekend.

We woke Skyler up at 5am last Monday and of course I had to take a picture! Good morning sunshine!

A friend of ours got her a Disney World sweatshirt a year or so ago for Christmas so after we got her dressed we asked her if she wanted to know where we were going. We put her sweatshirt on her and told her to look in the mirror (remember, it was 5am so she was a little out of it, not at all aware of what we were dressing her in).

She was so excited and couldn't believe we woke her up "IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT!" More updates to follow...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

mystery vacation

We've been planning a vacation for a while now, maybe 3 months or more, but we've kept the destination a secret from our 5 1/2 year old. At first we just didn't talk about it and she had no idea we were going anywhere. Then, as it got closer, we mentioned it because it was apparent on the calendar that we were traveling in November.

However, we didn't want to tell her where we were going because she'd be so excited, all we'd hear about every day is her asking when we were leaving. So, we decided to do something different.

We are giving her a clue every day (or each day she asks). At first she was trying to guess with every clue and I finally told her that even if she guessed correctly, I wasn't going to tell her. I said she could keep all the clues fresh in her mind and think about how they all go together, then the day we leave she can guess, and if she guesses correctly, we'll tell her.
Here are her clues:
1. It's far away
2. there's wild animals there
3. there's water there
4. she knows someone who lives there
5. we can eat food from around the world
6. lots of people go there
7. mom and dad have never been there (this totally stumped her! She thought for sure we were going to Disneyland but we've been there before. She also wondered how we knew what was there if we had never been there before?)
8. there are pirates there
9. we might go on a boat while we're there
10. there will be lots of walking
11. there are hotels there (and therefore, she concluded that we will be staying overnight)
We leave Monday. Do you know where we're going???

Thursday, October 30, 2008


Eek! Has it really been almost a month since my last post? I guess I've been a little busy. It's apparent by the fact that I've got 273 posts to catch up on Bloglines! Life will slow down a little next weeked since everything I'm doing right now is leading up to that. Here's what I'm working on:

1. my sister-in-law is moving in with us this weekend for 5 months! I love her to death but this means getting her room ready. My mom stays in our guest room when she comes over every week and it's also where I store all of my wrapping paper, prom dresses (yes, I still have my prom dresses!), my wedding dress, old momentos, and a whole cabinet full of gifts for upcoming occasions. Now, not only do I have to clean all of that out and find a new home for it, I have to clean out the playroom so that, when my mom comes over every week, she has a place to sleep. Goodbuy play kitchen, hello grandma!

2. My church puts on a Holiday Boutique every year that I'm participating in again this year. It's next Wed. and Thurs. so I'm frantically trying to sew and get everything ready for that. I'll post some things I'm working on later. No time now!

3. My MOMS Club puts on a Regional Luncheon every year for all the chapters in our Region and ours is next weekend in San Francisco. Because it's local, I've foolishly taken on some of the coordinating. With another volunteer we're doing ALL of the centerpieces for the luncheon, 34 tables! I'll post pictures of those later, again, no time! This year I've also taken on the task of the slide show. This is something that someone else has done every year and just couldn't take it on this year. For some reason I agreed to do it. It's a BIG deal people! Everyone is going to stop what they're doing, all 300 people, and watch and listen (yes, I have to pick out music too!) to my slide show. Aah! I'm already getting nervous! In addition to this, I'm also in charge of our chapter's raffle basket. Again, wait for the pictures but let me just tell you, this one's a doozie! So far the retail value of the contents exceeds $1400 and there's still one thing I'm waiting on. It's going to be sooooo cool!

And just because I like to include pictures, here's a random one from my yard:

So, aside from the above things, I'm not up to much. What have you been up to???

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

we have a visitor!

Over the weekend we had a visitor set up house outside on our porch!

She took over the porch light:

the pumpkins:

and then later came back and brought all of her babies with her!

I'll think we'll keep least until Nov. 1.

Monday, September 29, 2008

First Triathlon...


My first triathlon was this weekend and it was so much fun! This is going to be a long post because I want to remember everything.
I had been training for 4 months for the See Jane Run Triathlon and the day was finally upon me. I was feeling pretty nervous for a couple of days before the race. On edge, not able to concentrate, with a million things to do before Saturday. On Thursday, after picking up Skyler from school, we drove out to Oakland to the See Jane Run store and picked up my race packet. Then I had to stop by the bike shop on the way home to get my brakes adjusted. On Friday night we met up with my friend Carrie for a carbo load dinner. Then home to pack my bag and get everything ready.
On Saturday I woke up at 6am and got dressed in my swim outfit (tri shorts, a sports bra, and a tri top) with warm clothes on over (it was 57 degrees outside). Then I got all my water and electrolyte drinks together, quickly made a bagel with peanut butter, grabbed a banana and hit the road. I was meeting at my friend's house at 6:30. We arrived at the lake (Shadow Cliffs) at about 7:15. Our wave was hitting the beach at 8:20am.

I had been feeling really anxious about the swim so about 9 days before the race I started positive imaging. As I fell asleep at night I would envision getting in the water, slowing down my breathing, taking each stroke, rounding the bouy, crossing the lake and heading toward the other bouy, etc. until I was exiting the water feeling great and strong. Well, I think it totally worked! When we got to the lake I wasn't nervous about the swim AT ALL! I even brought a little anxiety spray that you spray inside your mouth and I didn't even need it.

After setting up our transition area, getting our time chips, and getting body marked we were ready. A friend of ours, who was originally doing the triathlon with us but got injured, showed up to cheer us on and take pictures. Thanks Tracie! We walked down to the beach and got in the water to warm up a little and get used to the temperature. Then they were calling our wave to get into position. This is us just before warming up. I'm in the middle, number 327:

The water level was really low in the lake this year so we had to go into the water a ways before starting. This meant we were standing on ground that isn't usually stood on because the water is usually too deep. Let me just tell you, it was DISGUSTING! It was like standing in pudding up to your knees. Every step you sunk down into...something. Everyone was happy to start swimming so we wouldn't have to stand in it! I did the swim in 12:26 (1/4 mile swim). This is really good for me because each time I had practiced the swim in the lake it had taken me 14 min. That's me on the far left in the pink cap starting my swim:

The bike was pretty easy. Nothing to really report. I had taped some food to my bike so I could eat it during the ride and I think that really helped. It was 11 miles and I did it in 40 minutes. It normally would take me about 50-55 min. to ride 11 miles (I'm not a very strong bike rider) so I was very pleased with this time!

This was a lot easier than I had anticipated. I felt great and maybe it was the food I'd eaten on the bike but I had more energy than I thought I would. It wasn't too hot so I was able to push myself a little more. I did walk some of it because there are about 4 hills on the course that I wasn't about to run over. The 3 mile course took me about 38 min which is a little longer than usual but I'm attributing that to the hills.

Here we are afterwards with "Super Jane."

Of course we had to buy some comemorative gear to celebrate our success:

All in all, my goal was to finish in under 2 hours and I finished in 1:36! I'm very happy with my time and I had so much fun. I couldn't have done it without my 2 friends right along side me and my friends on the sidelines cheering me on. And of course it wouldn't be the same without the free celebratory beer afterwards!

It was a lot of fun and I can't wait to do something like it again!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Fall Decorating

I just love Fall! I'm so happy it's officially only 2 days away and that the weather is starting to chill around here (we even had a few sprinkles last night!).

I was inspired by Chris to work on my Fall decorating this weekend. Here's what I've come up with so far.

These pumpkins are ones that my mom bought me for Christmas last year so this is the first time they're out and in my kitchen. Sorry about the ugly sweet potatoe sitting next to them!

These are on my mantel in the living room. They may not stay there though. The mantel is a little narrower than I thought and these are breakable. I love them with the clock that my friend Tracie got me for my birthday though!

This is my favorite Southern Living item. She stays up year around but just happens to fit in with my color scheme and with Fall!

This is another Southern Living inspiration. I bought the urn from my favorite SL at Home rep then had her over to put together the arrangement for me. She just has an eye for these kinds of things. This also has been up all year but I just love it! It's in my entryway.

I got these pumpkins from Target today! I just love them and wish I could afford to go back and get more. Can you tell I love pumpkins?

Now I just need to work on my front porch. I'm thinking of something like this:
Do you think it's a little much??

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Virgo Celebrations

This past weekend was filled with birthday celebrations. First, on Friday night, all my girlfriends got together for our annual Virgo Birthday Dinner. There were only 2 Virgos there. Myself and a friend:

but there were a couple that had Virgo children and the rest were just along for a fun dinner. We went to a new Mexican restaurant in town, ordered a pitcher of Sangria, and just enjoyed each other's company. Afterwards we went outside to talk for an hour or so. When we all get together it's hard to leave at the end of the night because we're having so much fun!

(Inside joke on the pose...please excuse the silliness!)

Then Saturday night a good friend of mine was celebrating her 40th birthday in the city (San Francisco) at the Sir Francis Drake Hotel. Here I am with the birthday girl on the left:

She was in the Harry Denton suite and Harry Denton himself came up to wish her a Happy Birthday! We hung out in her suite for a while where we ate dinner and birthday cake and then headed up to the Starlight Room for a little dancing.

It was a really fun night! Happy 40th Gina!