Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Playing with the puppies

So it is raining like crazy today, and the puppies have been inside most of the day. They are feeling a bit feisty, so I have them in my office with me. I looked over and saw that they were sleeping on top of one another, and then just like that they were chewing on each other's faces. They are cracking me up!

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Sleeping with the puppies...

I went outside today to feed the puppies, then sat on the bench for a bit to watch them play. I guess I was more tired than I thought, because I fell asleep. Ric said both puppies were sleeping underneath me. He went back inside to grab the camera, but Ruth ran to meet him. He was just able to grab a pic of me sleeping and Idgie underneath.

And then here they are again right now, as I type. Ric caught them both in their new favorite place - under my chair.

But oh those darn puppies...

Okay, these two are about the cutest pups in the world. They are great on their own, but together? They are sweet enough to rot a tooth out!

Here they are yesterday, napping in my office. Notice that they must be touching at all times when they sleep. No separating these two.

And this is what I see right now, looking down from my chair in my office. I took one picture from one side and one from the other. The puppies are asleep underneath me, and each has their head facing the opposite way. But they are still completely connected, even in sleep. They are so frickin' cute!

Why so quiet?

Falling Into Forty has been quiet. I know. I have been a bad blogger of late. Having the puppies has added to that, but it really isn't the reason.

I think I am feeling a bit of the post-40 blues. Not being 40 years old, exactly, but more post-turning 40 blues. For 15 months, everything was gearing up towards my big 4-0. Physically, emotionally, mentally... it was all about becoming 40 and starting a new chapter in my life.

Well, I'm 40 now, and I feel like I am... how to describe this? ... still stuck. I have not made changes yet, and I am feeling a bit in limbo.

I need to sort through this, I know. Part of it is the expected letdown after any major event. All the energy and effort that goes into it, and *poof* it's over. But it's more than that. I need to make a plan for the next several years of my life, and figure out what I want to do. Time's a' wastin', as they say.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

More about the puppies...

And Ric made a webpage for the puppies already! Click here ---> Idgie & Ruth.

First Morning with the Girls

The girls slept through the night, waking up only when I started making "get the puppy" food noises. That definitely excited them!

So we took them out back, and they are in heaven back there. They have already started making the rounds, circling the yard (and each other!) and rolling around like crazy. It seems like the backyard was designed for them.

Here they are, wrestling about...

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

New Additions to the Family

Yes, it's true... our family is growing. Please welcome Idgie (the blonde) and Miss Ruth (the redhead).

They are both sisters, born 03 November 2006. They were the litter of a friend's dog, and Ric and I just couldn't say no. So now we have two new little ones to watch over.

Welcome Idgie and Miss Ruth!

Friday, January 19, 2007

Command of the Grill

Active duty and reserve Marines at 10 military installations around the country took up their tongs in the ultimate battle of the barbecue. They marinated, seared, and sauced in an all-out battle for top grilling honors. This book showcases the winning recipes from the competition, along with steak recipes from famous former Marines like Lee Trevino and Ed McMahon.

All proceeds from the sale of the book go to charities that support wounded or killed U.S. Marines and their families.

Click here for more information on the book and a link to order!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Date Night - Very International

Ric and I have decided to explore different world restaurants each week on our Date Nights. Living in San Diego, we have nearly every cuisine available to us, so it's time to start exploring. So far this year, we have eaten Brazilian and American. (Sorry, Ric really wanted a burger!)

Last night, we decided to try Greek food. We went to the Greek Islands Cafe at Seaport Village. We got down there just before sunset, so it was absolutely beautiful. The cold weather meant that very few tourists or locals were around, so it felt almost like having the entire area to ourselves.

This was the view looking across San Diego Bay towards the Coronado Bridge.

And the sun as it began to set behind Point Loma.

And this is Ric, trying not to look cold.

And the view from inside the cafe. The sun had just gone down.

Here I am, much warmer inside the cafe.

And Ric and I after dinner. It really was beautiful.

And the dinner itself was fantastic. We sampled a bit of everything - gyros, the shishkabob, spinach and cheese pie, stuffed grape leaves, pita bread, a cucumber dressing and a greek salad with feta cheese. It was inexpensive, delicious and filling.

Next week? Mexican. (C'mon, it's San Diego. Why put that one off when we can find a good Mexican restaurant on every corner?)

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Anything Goes - My 40th Birthday!

What can I say? The night was better than I could have wished for!

Ric is working on a great webpage recapping the entire night. Click here to check out all the photos.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

John's 40th Birthday USO Party


Dance, Dammit! - The Birthday Edition

Last night was crazy fun! Andrea and I started mid-day, enjoying mimosas and watching trash TV. Then, after a quick nap, I was ready to go. We started at Top of the Park, where the Stoly boys were making their rounds. I have no idea how many Stoly Cranberry drinks I had, and at one point the boys mixed a huge vanilla Stoly drink. Lord oh mighty!

From there, we stopped into Pick-Up Stix for some dinner. Always a good idea when you are out drinking. Then it was across the street to Flick's and then over to Rich's for dancing. What a fantastic night!

Pictures will be coming, but my camera is somewhere lost in the living room and everyone else is sleeping.

Thanks to everyone who showed up last night. It was a great way to end my 30's and start the 40's!

40 at Forty

Happy 40th birthday to me! And in honor of turning 40, I have created a list of 40 things I wan to accomplish or experience in the next year.
  1. attend Pride in a new city
  2. see a bullfight
  3. take a classic road trip
  4. clean out my garage
  5. convert video tapes to DVD
  6. go to the Del Mar horse races
  7. find and play on park swings
  8. fly a kite
  9. get a merman tattoo
  10. go sailing
  11. go to a beach bonfire
  12. have a "hand-craft holiday ornaments" party
  13. take a hot air balloon ride
  14. kayak La Jolla cove
  15. learn a magic trick
  16. make a birthday calendar
  17. play a song on the guitar
  18. purchase an original piece of art
  19. ride a bus
  20. ride a roller coaster
  21. ride Amtrak
  22. ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles on a bike
  23. ride the Palm Springs tram
  24. rock climb at Joshua Tree
  25. rollerblade the Silver Strand
  26. run a marathon
  27. experience the San Diego ghost tour
  28. see all five best picture nominees
  29. snow ski
  30. spend an afternoon in my hammock
  31. enjoy the stage trifecta: Old Globe, LJ Playhouse, Civic Theater
  32. swim naked in the ocean
  33. throw a clay pot
  34. try a trapeze class
  35. use my passport
  36. volunteer 40 hours
  37. wear a tuxedo
  38. paint my bedroom
  39. enjoy a picnic in Balboa Park
  40. write another play
That's it. How hard can it be to accomplish all of these things? Wish me luck, and be sure that I will keep blogging about each of these things as I complete them!

Saying Goodbye to Thirty-Nine

What an incredible year it's been. And then just like that, it's gone. But, oh the things I did and the places I went.
  • Enjoyed a great birthday bash weekend
  • Went ice skating
  • Became SCUBA certified, basic open water and advanced
  • Went quad riding in Glamis
  • Spent a weekend in New York City, and ran a 4k in the snow
  • Temecu-Gras, the annual wine tour
  • Went to Phoenix for Gay Pride
  • Was the top fund-raiser for the Being Alive AIDS ride
  • Diving at La Jolla shores... a lot!
  • Went to Cataline aboard the Horizon
  • Rode in the Urban Assault Race
  • Spent 9 days diving in Hawaii
  • Dove the Ruby E & The Yukon
  • Ran the Camp Pendleton Mud Run (twice!)
  • Dove the Channel Islands
  • Vacationed in Yosemite
  • Welcomed our Marine buddies back from Iraq
  • Started date nights with Ric
  • Finally went to the Birch Aquarium
  • Watched the Padres play (and win!)
  • Reconnected with Marine buddies from way back when
  • Held my own 5k fund-raiser
  • Managed to get down to a 32 inch waist!
  • Traveled to Bridgeport
  • Returned to Boot Camp for the Marine Challenge
  • Held a retirement party for Grant
  • Spent a crazy weekend in Vegas
  • Reunited with my friend Juliet!
  • Toured the Midway with my Grandpa
  • Discovered Neutral Underground on the web
  • Spent a fantastic birthday weekend with Ric in Hollywood
  • Enjoyed "Dance, Dammit," the birthday edition
This past year has been incredible. I lost nearly 30 pounds by eating healthier and working out, then put 10 of it back on over the past three months. Oh well, all the more motivation to get back to the gym and keep working out.

Thank you to all my friends - old and new - for another fantastic year. I am blessed to have such great friends, family, and husband in my life.

Now, here's to 40!

Sunday, January 7, 2007

And it begins!

Birthday Week has begun, and the presents are already rolling in! Yay for me!

The first present is from my Mom, and she decided to get me something using this photo - a favorite of mine - as inspiration.

She had the photo made into a blanket. How cool is this?

The blanket is really nice, and the image is actually woven into it. It's not just printed on the front. If you turn the blanket around, you see the opposite imagine interwoven through the fabric.

And yes, I notice that they even included the stupid scratch I had right in the middle of my forehead. (Doh!)

I LOVE this blanket, and I think it is the perfect way to kick-start my birthday week celebrations. Thanks, Mom and Jesse, for the unbelievably cool present!

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Date Night - Brazil Style

Last night was date night, so Ric and I decided to have dinner in Hillcrest at a place called Brazil by the Hill. It was delicious, though not quite the style of restaurant I was expecting. I was thinking more of the traditional type, where they keep bringing you whatever meats you want. But this was more of an American style, where you order an entree from the menu.

The steaks were delicious, though, and Ric and I had a nice evening. We kicked around the idea of choosing restaurants each week that represent a different country. We figure we could do that for most of the year, selecting a different type of food each week. We'll see how that goes. At some point, Ric will insist we go "American" and make our way to a burger joint!

Off to a great start...

I am back in action at the gym, my friends. I have worked out a new schedule that I can stick with, at least for a while. Then I may change it up just to keep things interesting.

I have been three mornings in a row, riding the bike for an hour each day. I am feeling pretty good, and I have also been much more careful with what I am eating.

Just in time for 40, this kid is back in the fitness business!

New Year's Eve - Welcome 2007!

What a fantastic New Year's Eve! This year, we decided to make a real night of it, including dinner, dancing and a nice hotel. So Grant made reservations at the Park Manor Suites, and we made it to the hotel just in time to catch the last of sunset. It was beautiful, with just enough cloud cover to make the sky light up. Gorgeous!

After sunset, we walked across the street to Jimmy Carter's Cafe. For most of the meal, we were the only customers, so it felt like having our own private restaurant. We had a delicious five course meal. I couldn't even finish everything.

After dinner and drinks downstairs in the room, we all wandered up to the roof. The Top of the Park was really nice, decorated from end to end and ready for the New Year.

This is the whole group, having a great time while counting down.

Here is Grant, enjoying his drink and clinging to the rail for dear life. (Not a fan of heights, you know...)

And Joel and Sook-Jin, dressed for the formal occasion.

And Pauline and Brooks, having a great time.

And Ric and I, topping off our formal wear with some informal headgear.

For more photos, you can check out Ric's website.

Happy New Year, everyone!