Tuesday, May 26, 2009

You really have a wonderful life!

I am so often making lists of places to go and things to do before I die, I sometimes forget all the great things I have already done! Here's a list of some of the greatest things I have experienced in my life...

I've seen both my children graduate from college!
I stood on the top of the World Trade Center. Rode in a Gondola in Venice. Bought my own home. Took a helicopter tour over the Swiss Alps. Stood in the Coliseum in Rome. Graduated college at age 37. Climbed to the CROWN of the Statue of Liberty. Had dinner on the Eiffel Tower. Was in a bar in Germany the last night of the World Cup. Cruised the Danube in Budapest. Bought a car and paid cash. Been to at least a dozen plays on Broadway and have enjoyed a Mozart concert in Vienna. I've seen Big Ben, Westminster Abbey and rode the London Eye. I shopped at Harrods in London and Bloomingdales in NYC. I had a drink with Greg Maddux. I wrote my blog from Prague.
I've been to Graceland, Niagara Falls, the very first Starbucks, Disney World, the Grand Tetons, Devil's Tower, Yellowstone Park, Mount Rushmore, and the Grand Canyon. I've seen the sunset on Puget Sound and Waikiki Beach and seen the sunrise in New York City and Cape May. I met Ned Colletti. I've been to the Smithsonian and the White House. I've walked on the Golden Gate Bridge and the Brooklyn Bridge. I've seen the Sequoias and Hoover Dam. I went to Spring Training the inaugural year at Camelback and was there to see the Dodgers sweep the NLDS against the Cubs.
I've had great beer in Brugge and Amsterdam. The best waffle in Belgium. An amazing nutella crepe in Paris. And enjoyed gelato in St. Peter's Square. I took a dozen pictures at the Ponte Vechio in Florence. I saw Michelangelo's David and the Sistine Chapel. I've been to the baseball stadiums of The Dodgers, Angels, A's, Giants, Diamondbacks, Padres and Yankees. Love this!
I have thoroughly LOVED all three of the jobs I have had. I have cherished, life-long friendships and genuine relationships within my family...and I am finally figuring out how important that really is. I am so lucky. I am so grateful.
So what do I still want to do?
Visit Greece, Spain, Portugal, Ireland, Australia...and eat my way through the rest of Italy. Go to Wrigley Field, Camden Yards, Fenway and Cooperstown. See the Dodgers go to the World Series. Buy the Porsche. Fall in love.

Heck, I'm just getting started.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Jolt 45

The only thing I love as much as baseball is music--if there is not a game on in my house, there is definitely music playing! And, since the Dodgers played early this afternoon, I decided to put the iPod on 'shuffle' as I worked around the house tonight. About 10 songs in, I stopped what I was doing and ran down stairs...Bobby Sherman was in my kitchen belting out, "Julie, do ya love me?"!!
I gotta tell ya, it is undoubtedly my favorite song of all time.
I was five years old when the song came out, and I vividly remember the day my dad brought home the single for me....my very first 45 record! I listened to that song over and over and over--until I actually wore out the needle on my record player (does anyone remember replacing needles?!) I SWORE Bobby Sherman was singing that song to me! And I remember CRYING the day I found out that he was married. (I was 8.)
Of course I still have that single--and the jacket with Bobby's beautiful picture on it. (Gina, can you name the B-side?) I actually have all my old 45s and all my old albums. Unfortunately, I no longer have a turn table....I'd probably wear out the needle anyway.
But, thanks to the iPod, tonight, in my kitchen, Bobby and I sang together LOUDLY..."oh oh oh Julie Julie Julie, do ya love me? Ahhh, Julie Julie Julie do ya care? Julie Julie are ya thinking of me? Julie Julie will ya still be there?"
I don't care what you say...tonight, I am sure he was singing to me.
"Bravery never goes out of fashion..."
William Thackeray

Sunday, May 24, 2009

It's a beautiful day for a ballgame!!

Another perfect day at the happiest place on earth!
(Yes, we were there to watch batting practice!!)
Sincerely, there is nowhere I would rather be.
It was Eliane's first time at Dodger Stadium!
Joe and Stephanie were part of the fun...and OH what fun it was! The Dodgers were down 4-1 in the 5th and came back to WIN 5-4 in the 10th!! It was a GREAT game that included a total of 23 hits and a walk off walk! (Look it up.) It was extra fun to sing "Take me out to the Ballgame" tonight as half the crowd sang "Root root root for the DODGERS" and the other half were root root rooting for the opposing team--the Angels.
Buy me some peanuts and crackerjack--and a hot dog and a Corona--
...I can't wait until I can go back.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A very HAPPY Birthday

The day began at The Original Pancake House where I enjoyed bacon and eggs and country potatoes. If I am ever offered a 'last meal'...that will be it. With ketchup and Tabasco--and a big Diet Coke--it is the absolute perfect meal!
Allison, along with my Mom and Dad and Eliane--joined in the celebration and deliciousness!
Afterward, Eliane treated us to a pedicure...the best gift ever!
(And my toes are so pretty!)
Eliane and I went shopping afterward and then I had to head over to a quick meeting at work, where they brought me a chocolate caramel dessert with a candle in it--seriously incredible! While in Laguna we did a little more shopping and ended the night with giant Margaritas and chips and guacamole--the OTHER absolute perfect meal!
My mother gave me the shirt above...look closely at the bottom. Yep, it's a Dodgers blouse! So fun. We watched the FIRST PLACE, BEST RECORD IN BASEBALL Dodgers beat the Mets and called it a night. The absolute perfect day.
Back to reality--and Slim Fast--today.

Monday, May 18, 2009

They say it's (almost) your birthday...

I walked into our staff meeting today to find a little pre-birthday treat...
And, since we were learning about and tasting our delicious new 'Summer Beverages', there was a bar--complete with bartender--at our meeting! (Went great with the cookies and cupcakes!)
...oh, and with the chocolates!
I've probably mentioned this a few times before...I really like my job.
...And, a (great) new twist on a (really great) old philosophy.

Sunday, May 17, 2009


OK...we just had an earthquake. I am SO not one to freak out...and, for the first few seconds, I just sat and thought, "oh, we're having an earthquake." For the next few seconds I thought, "oh crap, we're STILL having an earthquake..." But when it kept going, I actually jumped up and moved to a doorway--where for the NEXT FIFTEEN MORE seconds I stood there as I heard wine glasses rattling together, picture frames toppling over, and things falling off my bookshelves! My heart was beating...it seriously didn't seem like it was going to stop...house cracking, things toppling...ok, so I freaked a little!
Wow...wow...hope everyone is alright.
It's been a long time since I remember one like that...

Frisky business

In the canned food aisle of the grocery store this morning, I saw an older lady--about my height--attempting to reach the cans of soup stacked on the top shelf. I didn't want to insult her by offering to help, but, as she reached for the third and then the fourth can, I decided I could not watch any longer--I was sure that at any second she was going to be knocked out by the corn chowder or the tomato bisque...something was going to conk her in the head!

I said, "Excuse me...I am not very much taller than you, but may I help you get those cans?"
She said, "I'd love your help, dear! You may not be any taller, but you look a lot friskier!"

Frisky! YES--FRISKY! I'm telling you, it's my new favorite word.
It is just SO me!

Oh I helped her get those cans. And I've been frisky all afternoon.

London Cravings

My lovely friend Josh, a sweet bloke, is here on holiday from London...He donned his jumper and trainers and arranged a brilliant gathering of his old mates (including his current housemates) to enjoy a pint of warm ale aside bangers and mash and crumpets and biscuits...oh bloody hell...we enjoyed delightful pizza and beer!
Josh with Allison, Jordan and Luke
THE CRAVE STAFF circa 2003
Dana, Jana, me, Josh and Francisco
And Dillon and Oscar...OH SO fun to see these people!
My two favorite London-loving blokes!
Only former Saddleback Staff truly understand the incredible JOY of walking around with a pitcher of beer in your hand!
...that's Ben, one of Josh's housemates. He told us he actually used to LIVE in America--in Kentucky. We told him that Kentucky was not actually America.
With dear friends Tara and Nicole...the evening was a smashing success! These are all people I have known and loved through my days of working in college ministry.
Blimey! Let's not forget amazingly artistic Annie, who is hosting the boys while in America!
Bobby, Quid, Loo, Fishmonger, UNDERGROUND...
it was a wicked night!

Friday, May 15, 2009