Sunday, June 28, 2015


32 years.  Not a special number.  Nothing momentous about it.  Only, that number makes us realize we are edging closer and closer to that retired population and feeling aches and pains like never before.  Losing my brother-in-law in a traumatic car accident last fall (he was 50) has had an impact on us.  The effects of it are clear:  we really don't know when our time on earth is up.  We appreciate life more.  We see what remains of his work, his grieving family that is surviving without him and continually celebrating him.  We remember him often.  It has caused us to love each other more deeply and forgive more quickly.  We laugh things off and sing praise to the Lord even louder (if that's possible).  We feel the pain of hurting people.  We move faster to help.  So many things 32 years of marriage and following the Lord teaches you.

We also just exited the "parents of teenagers" stage of life.  Our youngest turned 20!  Another life passage.  When he went to college last fall, we started celebrating our freedom.  We were sidelined by my BIL's death and also our daughter's marriage.  So lots of things happening, lots of emotions, lots of prayers and wondering what comes next.  But, we know what comes next:  LOVE.  Continue to love and live and learn from each other.

 On our anniversary I joined my husband on a business trip to Austin and found this awesome mural! Perfect!

Friday, June 26, 2015


I was so excited to have my Body & Soul exercise class over with their kids recently for a swim!  It was perfect timing, right after class when we were all hot and sweaty.  Just a few got to come but it was a great day for it and we enjoyed watching the kids do their thing!  Takes me back when my kids were younger and we used to have swim parties every Wednesday afternoon .  

It's amazing to me what this class does for my emotional well-being in addition to the physical!  The uplifting songs really elevate my mood.  Sharing a little bit of our lives through prayer requests and prayer time at the beginning is good, too.  I miss it when I'm gone or we are between sessions.  I've always loved music and singing, but this really takes it a step further...I hope I can do this for a long time!  

 Our leader (pink)
The Moms
 Even a Grandma enjoying the pool with her grandson!  I hope I get to do this someday.  :)

Saturday, June 20, 2015


Wow, my bubble really got burst on this one!  Since I was born in the 60's, I didn't really remember when the first missions to the moon happened.  The wives of the astronauts really went through some stress, trying to portray being the perfect wife and perfect marriage.  There was no counseling for them, not in that era.  It's interesting to hear the memories from them, and I loved the pictures!

This one I listened to on CD while cleaning...the main things I got out of it was if you are a leader you should take responsibility for your team.  When a mistake is made, own up to it.  Don't point fingers.  When something unexpected happens say, "How fascinating!"  They used this phrase several times throughout the book when telling tales of their experiences, so that one really stuck with me.

This little book on CD kept my son and me company driving on a trip.  It's a collection of different anecdotes and stories selected from Oprah's magazine.  My favorite was the one about a woman who went on a true adventure - went against her nature to plan trips and just went on a trip totally upon recommendations from strangers.  She ended up in Tokyo and everything she ate and experienced was based on what strangers recommended.  Interesting idea!   Just something fun to listen to...

Love this one - the story of Elizabeth Bard, an American living in France, married to a Frenchman.  It's the story of how they adapted to life in a small village, after living in Paris.  I really enjoy getting to live out my dream of living abroad through books.  A memoir with recipes!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015


Gate of a home on Coronado Island
Roses on Coronado

Blooming cactus on Coronado
The coolest looking tree ever
Cold ocean water

You know, one of those water birds...

Woodpecker store at Palomar Mountain
Outside Ironside restaurant planter
Downtown SD
Serpent Tree sculpture near our hotel
The Cliffs at Torrey Pines State Reserve
Nature's trash at Torrey Pines Beach

Hiking the trails at Torrey Pines State Reserve
Outside Extraordinary Desserts
Sculpture near Convention Center
Jacaranda trees were in bloom
Rosecrans Cemetery

Sunday, June 14, 2015


That's basically what we/I did this past week.  I thought having been to San Diego three different times in my life I had seen it all.  At least all the good stuff.  Not even close!  Come to think of it, the times I had been there we hit the highlights and moved on due to time (and money) constraints.  So I explored some really interesting places.  Some of them with the Hubs and some I actually got brave and did them alone, while the Hubs was in meetings.

This is the Hotel Del Coronado on Coronado Island, literally a 5 minute drive from downtown.  It's full of history in addition to being wonderful!  It's the largest wooden structure in the US.  Built in 1888, it has entertained some of the biggest celebrities in the US.  Marilyn Monroe filmed a movie here.  Presidential dinners have been here, Babe Ruth went fishing here, and there are some cool old photos in the halls to prove it.
They do a great job keeping their beach clean and it's open to anyone - not just hotel guests.  

This is the hotel lobby, still in use today.  Their elevator is one of those cool old ones with metal bars, which I've only seen in older European hotels.

We also checked out Cabrillo National Monument and Point Loma Lighthouse at Point Loma.  Also just a short drive (15 min.) from downtown, Juan Cabrillo is the explorer who discovered California in 1542.   He felt like a failure because he didn't find any gold, or a passage way through North America.  He died mysteriously soon after leaving.  So he's not really a household name like Columbus.  

 You can also tour the lighthouse and learn a little bit about it.  
Also there are tide pools you can go down by and look for critters, but we just mostly sat on the rocks and watched the surfers!

Just so calming and beautiful.

Another off the beaten path thing we did outside San Diego was tour the Palomar Observatory.  It's about 90 min. away, up a windy mountain road, so they don't get many visitors.  It is still a working observatory, so they only have 4 tours on the weekend.  We managed to get in on one.  It houses the Hale 200 inch telescope made in 1948.  It was the largest telescope in the world for about 30 years.  Learning about how they engineered this thing was pretty cool.  Mr. Hale had a talent for building bigger and better telescopes and getting businessmen to buy in and help him finance his projects.

 So you've gotten your dose of history today!  :)

Thursday, June 11, 2015


Goodness, what a delicious place is San Diego, California!  Just got back from accompanying the Hubs on a business trip...and here's some of the places we dined.  Some were recommendations from TripAdvisor and some were from friends. Totally feeling the need to go and work out now!!!

 First stop:  Blue Water Seafood Market & Grill - made famous by Guy on DDD for their fish tacos. Oops, missed the tacos... 
 Extraordinary Desserts was so good I went twice since it was only 5 blocks from our hotel.

 Is that not scrumptious?
 We shopped the Farmer's Market right by our hotel on Saturday and made some delicious purchases for our picnic lunch.

 We got a mixture of berries and yes, those are white raspberries!
Red walnuts
 One of our picnics!

Queenstown Public House (New Zealand style food) turned out to be a favorite!  I loved the decor too but didn't want to be that weird touristy person taking a ton of pictures...

 The Hubs tried the Wild Boar burger there and said it was surprisingly mild.  I had some lamb that was really good too.  

Yes, I ate this HUGE donut from Donut Bar.

One of the best things about this trip is I got to reconnect with a friend I had not seen in 30 years, thanks to Facebook!  She recommended Slater's 50/50.

 We went and tried it out - The 50/50 burger has 50% beef, 50% bacon in the patty!  I couldn't eat the whole kinda tasted like summer sausage.

 We were blessed (?) to be staying in Little Italy, surrounded by good food.
We ate at one of the nicest Italian restaurants the last night, Buon Appetito.  I had a delicious risotto dish on a Parmesan nest.  I'd like to try to make a Parmesan nest now!

So are you feeling FULL?  Whew...