Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Eleven Happy Years...

On Saturday, Russ and I celebrated 11 years of marriage. Since he was in San Diego on business last week, we decided to take advantage of it and spend a night there. I flew in Friday afternoon, and Russ picked me up from the airport.

On our second anniversary, when I was very pregnant with Paige, we had eaten at a restaurant in La Jolla called Forever Fondue. Since our first date was in La Jolla, too, that is where we decided to eat. It was in a different building, but the food was the same. We had a cheese appetizer, sirloin and vegetables for the entree, and a very yummy turtle chocolate fondue for dessert. Expensive, but a fun experience and very filling.
Afterward, we walked along the beach at La Jolla Shores, just like we did on the night we met. Then we drove to the top of Mt. Soledad, and we stood at the chain link fence where we had stood that night twelve and a half years ago... February 5, 2000, to be exact!

We were tired after that, but the hotel had given us free tickets to ride on the Bahia Belle paddleboat, which cruises across Mission Bay between our hotel and the Bahia hotel all night long. It was adults only at that hour, and who wouldn't want to hang out with a bunch of drunks on a boat? They had semi-live music, dancing, and drinks, but we spent most of our time up top enjoying the view. It was calmer up there.
This was the first time in my life I didn't have to show my ID for a 21+ event. They did ask for ID, but I had left my purse in the hotel and would miss the boat if I had to go back. Russ said they only let me pass because I was with the 40-year-old. Thanks, hon. By then, I had crazy hair from the humidity... just like the night we met, so it was kinda nostalgic. Haha.
Our hotel was fantastic. I bought it on Hotwire, and we got a free upgrade to this primo room overlooking the bay. How lucky is that? Plus, these guys arrived nice and early to play beach volleyball...
Russ made a pitch for IHOP for breakfast, but I told him we had to eat at the hotel if we could eat outside by the bay. I win :) Hey, it was a special occasion!
The grounds of the hotel were tropical, including these exotic birds. They were saying hello, peekaboo, and pretty bird. I spent a long time waiting for this bird to pick its feathers so I could get this perfect glamor shot... Russ was already so over the birds by then.
When Russ and I were dating, he told me about how he would take girls sailing... after all these years, it was finally my turn! We rented a little sailboat so we could cruise around the bay.
This was a perfect afternoon. It wasn't cold, it wasn't hot... it was just perfect.
Russ was too busy handling the lines and the rudder to take a picture of me. That suited me fine... don't let go of the controls! I have issues with sailboats that stem from my childhood when Uncle Stan tipped us over in a catamaran... it scarred me for life. Then my dad always felt triumphant when he could dip the side railings of the yachts he rented in the water, and that scared me half to death. We can lean just enough to move at a decent clip, and that's good enough for me!!
If only I could go back... that was so much fun! Whenever I see sailboats out in the bay, it looks so peaceful. With the sound of the gulls and the water lapping against the hull, it is a little slice of paradise. I am missing living in San Diego right about now!
There's our room! See how fabulous? I wish we could have stayed longer!
Later, we headed down to Mission Beach to ride the Giant Dipper roller coaster. This is the last time you will see Russ' ASU hat... thank goodness. He needed a new one anyway!
I tried to take a photo on the coaster, and this is all I got. After that, I decided it was best to hold on. I almost lost my hat, too!
Hat hair!
After laughing it up over that, we got into the car and I got my sunglasses out of my purse. They were totally busted! That was the most expensive roller coaster ride I've ever been on!!
We drove home that evening because I had to be home in time to play piano for the primary program. It was a short trip, but totally worth it and a wonderful time together!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Auntie Anne has nothin' on us...

My friends Marsa, Melanie, and Lisa came over to make pretzels and keep me company while Russ was out of town :) Melanie was the demonstrator, and she was pretty much like a pro.
We made two batches, which amounts to about 30 pretzels, and most of them were gone before we were done! What can I say? We love carbs, and it's hard to resist a pretzel fresh out of the oven... it doesn't help when your friend says, "Just eat the whole thing!!" when you are trying to be good and only eat a small piece at a time so that you'll feel like you are eating less than you really are. Haha.

Sorry that picture is pretty lousy... I took several before I realized my lens had been smudged up by a kid. A review of the most recently taken photos revealed the culprit... BRANDON!

Okay, with a clean lens I got one nice shot of the last pan that came out of the oven.
Don't you wish you could grab one through the screen? Yeah, they might not look professional... especially Marsa's... but they sure tasted like it. I made a fresh batch this afternoon using whole wheat flour (grown by my dad) so that Russ wouldn't have to have a leftover cold pretzel, and he was hooked. He said I could make him fresh pretzels anytime!

Yeah, we're basically Martha Stewarts at this point :) Can't wait for our next cooking adventure!!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


When from the summer sky doth fall
a bounty wet and glorious
a spore makes haste to take its root
and face the task laborious
and while the treasure yet abounds
it spreads out nigh and thither
for when the sun return again
it knows that it must wither
it serve thee well to laud the shroom
that lives a life so fearless
for when the day hath come and gone
the little shroom is tearless

-Stacey J

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Vomiting, stitches, and colds, OH MY!

Welcome to my life. It all started one Thursday a couple weeks back when Kyle brought home a cold. He was home from school Friday, Brandon started a runny nose on Saturday, and Paige finished off Sunday by crashing on her scooter and landing herself in the ER to get 5 stitches.

By midnight, we finally busted out of there. She was the best patient ever!
Don't be thinkin' the fun stopped there. On Monday, Will was home from school with the same cold... and let me tell ya, that crud lasted for days and days. Brandon's issues went on for like two weeks... I wiped a lot of boogers and changed a lot of nasty diapers.

Monday afternoon, I got a call that Kallie was in the nurse's office. When I showed up, she woke up from her nap and vomited all over the sick bed. She got a fever, continued to vomit throughout the afternoon, and stayed home from school for the next two days.

By Saturday, I figured we were all on the mend. Yippee! Time to get the stitches out, enjoy the weekend, and get all the kids back in school on Monday.
But alas, the fun wasn't over yet. When I woke up during the night on Sunday, I felt a little tickle in my throat. Uh oh. Monday, I was stricken with a mild case of malaise, and by Tuesday my sore throat was in full swing. On Wednesday, I thought my symptoms were subsiding when I suddenly came down with a full on cold... congestion galore, coughing, sneezing... the whole enchilada. This was not your typical cold... it sucked! I didn't leave the house for four days, and my house turned into a junk yard... the kids had cereal for dinner!

You might suppose that it's time for me to give you the happy ending now... WRONG! On Thursday, I started to develop pink eye, which spread to my other eye by Friday. By Sunday, I thought my eyes were improving, but they took a turn for the worse overnight. Finally, I gave into everyone's pleadings and went to urgent care. After an aggravating visit there (don't get me started on that), I started my eye drops... and now... finally... I am on the mend. Just a residual cough and five more days of antibiotic drops to deal with.

Paige and Russ seem to have dodged "the crud" so far, but I think it's too early to start celebrating...