Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Monterey Bay Aquarium Love

You didn't think I walked away from the Monterey Bay Aquarium without getting an overload of overly cutesy couple shots, did you? Of course I wouldn't walk away without those. Fortunately, it's a benefit to have a second photographer aka Justinbustin in our family for just those exact moments. Trying to get Brando to be serious is a whole other story...
 Seen these jeans much lately? It's not about to get any better. Seeing as how I only packed two pairs of jeans this trip to California, and pretty much wore jeans the whole time, these jeans and I are on a much more than need to know basis.
 Brando trying to eat me. Like usual. He only got a little bite this time.
Ooh la la
 Finally, a normal kissing picture. But, I have to admit, I secretly like the other ones better. Shhh, just don't tell Brando.
And a normal smiling one - we actually had to go back and take this one because there wasn't a single photo from the first time where Brando wasn't goofy. Love that man, and I mean that as I type it with a huge grin on my face.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Monterey Bay Aquarium

When we visit California, going by the Monterey Bay Aquarium is always a must for the boys, especially Shawners. Once upon a time we took him scuba diving in the pretty little enclosed bay they have outside the aquarium. Next goal is to go on a private tour! This time came close as we were able to go into the basement of the aquarium, something nobody ever gets to do - not even boy scout troops. I'm always fascinated with the inner workings of places and attractions, so it was a blast for me to see. The kids were pretty fascinated, too.

The walls of the MBA are peppered with quotes about the sea. This one in particular resounds with me.
Ha! I totally put the wrong quote in there the first time. Yes, thank you, Anne Stevenson, maybe "the sea is as close as we come to another world" as the quote goes that I had mistakenly posted prior, but, Jacques-Yves Cousteau, your quote is actually the one that resounds with me, "...the sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonders forever." That quote leaves me breathless with the thought of how perfectly it captures the wondernment that the sea creatures below elicit.

And in accordance with that,
there's not many words to describe that thing we call the sea.
My thoughts and prayers go to all those experiencing Hurricane Irene right now

My oldest on the left, and my sister's oldest on the right in quiet fascination of the sea's many wonders. The boys are two and a half months apart.
Sea turtles - hands down my favorite wildlife of the sea.
Cousins - moments like these make me smile. Mine are second from the left and fourth from the left.

The sea turtles are where my quiet fascination comes in.

Southern Africa Penguins

 Our private basement tour
Leafy Sea Dragon

 In that rocky enclosed bay is where Shawners scuba dived in a dry suit last year

 Do you see the sea lion?

Just next door to the aquarium - a private little boardwalk area with the entry stuck in between two buildings.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

You Know What Life is All About?

The little moments... the moments you send your son off to middle school and hang onto him with every fiber in your being, and he lets you with a big grin on his face. And then politely says, "See you later, Mom."
The moments you send your fourth grader off to his first day of fourth grade and his favorite moment of his "awesome" day is coming home with your neighbor who picked him up along with her daughter after her first day of kindergarten, who he has known since she was a baby.
The moments where you are so incredibly stressed about your oldest entering middle school and that him needing you is officially over, the fact that you committed to a friend's barbeque when all you really need to do is spend your last day with your son before he's off to middle school, as well as tried a new church, and started your oldest in a robotics club by taking him to build a robotic competition table at Home Depot all in one day that you let it all out on the person you love the most, and he turns around and loves you so incredibly much that you feel like he's treating you like you did nothing unkind to him at all by unloading on him and then you feel incredibly guilty for doing just that, but in a I have such an amazing husband sort of way.
That is what life is all about.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Make 'Em Go Oh, oh, oh, As You Shoot Across the Sky-y-y

Anybody ever hear of Fly Texas? Moolala is offering a deal to learn to hang glide for $49 from them - if YOU buy it, make sure and use that link so they know I referred you, and tell me if you do! What a steal - and something I've been wanting to do forEVER! But, before I buy ANY deal, I always check the reviews, and they have none! Anybody know ANYthing about them at all?
This could be ME!

Update: After a little more research, I found two discussion threads here and here on hangliding.org that recommended Jeff Hunt from Fly Texas. Sounds like a safe bet! Now, to go deposit a check so I can purchase the deal...

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Are you getting replies to your comments?

This is a public service announcement for those of you oh-so-sweet bloggers who leave comments (and some more California love):
Sea turtles at Monterey Bay Aquarium
When you leave a comment, make sure you've edited your Blogger user profile to include your email address, then check the show email address box, and hit save. Here is a photo tutorial of exactly how to do it. That way your email shows up instead of 'no-reply' when your comment comes through and I can say hi via email back to you! And I LOVE to say hi :) . And, no, it's not just you, there a lot that are that way.
 Penguins at Monterey Bay Aquarium
Now, back to your regularly scheduled, well, me.
Rio Del Mar Beach

Friday, August 19, 2011

Down at the Boardwalk We'll Be Having Some Fun

Some of my favorite childhood memories are at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Yet, the Boardwalk is one of those things I didn't fully appreciate as a child. The amazing view of the ocean as you glide by on a ride (or in my case grip the bar in front of you in fear that these tiny metal brackets holding you up will disintegrate and leave you crashing to the ground).

The bright colors of the rides contrasting with the blue sky, amidst the palm trees.

 The relatively cheap thrills in such an amazing location.
Marini's candies - a must-eat

I fully appreciate every moment I get there now.

Photos of the Rock O Plane and Hang Glider by Justinbustin

*Post Title slightly modified from The Drifter's Under the Boardwalk*


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