Sunday, May 25, 2008

Loving California!

Yesterday afternoon we left for California!  It has been a long time since we have had a vacation, and we decided to combine a visit to see my brother (who is finishing his PhD. at Berkeley) with a little vacay of our own.  We have tried to visit my brother since he moved to Berkeley 2 years ago, so it was thrilling to earn 2 free tickets and finally find the time to travel. My mom and dad kindly dropped us off at the airport and are taking care of our four-legged little one while we are gone.  
We hit the ground running (well, rolling on the plane :) and started sight-seeing immediately.  It was 5:30 California time, 7:30 our normal time.  The first thing we did was drove down the crooked street in San Francisco.  I loved looking at all the pretty houses-SO different from ours in Texas!-and also enjoyed the huge incline we drove on to get to the top of the road.  I am still amazed at the drivers who have to park their cars on this ramp of a street!
The crooked Lombard street, view going down

Then we headed to dinner.  Jeff has a favorite restaurant that overlooks the ocean.  On the way to eat, we got a glimpse of the Golden Gate Bridge at sunset...

Dinner at the Cliff House by the ocean...

This morning we had brunch at a delicious little restaurant, Sunny Side Cafe.  I had the most amazing french toast with peanut butter cream cheese and grilled bananas on top, yum!  I would eat here every weekend if I could!  Delish!

This afternoon we walked around campus and visited the Sather Tower.  The view from the top was amazing, and we even got to hear part of a bell concert as we toured.  

View from the tower

Huge bells in the tower
We also got to tour Jeff's research lab and see some incredible microscopes.  This one is worth somewhere between 3-4 million dollars!  That just blows my mind!  I can hardly believe he gets to work with such amazing equipment--it is right up his alley.  Jeff will finish his PhD this year and then return to Rice/Baylor in Houston to finish his M.D.  He has worked so hard; I am so proud of him.  It has been such a treat to spend time with him and his precious girlfriend Sara.  We are so excited to see them again at the end of this week!

No doubt one of my favorite things all day was our visit to the Rose Garden.  I have never seen so many roses so beautifully displayed.  It was incredible!  We walked around and stopped to smell as many roses as we could...the fragrance was lovely.

Berkeley Rose Garden
A few of the beauties

Jeff and Sara
Clowning around
Tomorrow we leave for the valley to spend a few days in Napa and Sonoma.  I can't wait to see that part of the country!  Wednesday we are going to Muir Woods to see the ginormous trees and hike a bit.

Did I mention the weather here is incredible?  We left 90 degree temperatures and arrived to 60.  The day warms up a bit, and the nights are chilly.  We love cold weather and are savoring every bit.
As for the fitness challenge, we walked 5 miles today around Berkeley, so I think we are going to make it.  44 miles down, 6 to go!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Fitness Challenge

Adam and I embarked on a Fitness Challenge with our church on May 1st.  The challenge?  To run or walk 50 miles in May.  May not sound difficult, but when you both work 14-hour days 3 days a week, that makes it a bit challenging...hence the name.  We don't know where the fitness part comes in.  Our clothes already fit now; if we get all healthy, our clothes will stop fitting--go figure.  Anyways, we are almost halfway there, with 24 miles under our belt and 26 more to go.  The bummer is we leave for California in a week, which means we either double up miles this week (eeek!) or commit to working out while on vacation.  Hmmmm.....any suggestions?

Katie, please note my lack of parenthesis in this post, in honor of you.  :)

Honey, I couldn't help but post one of your favorite characters above.  Considering how much I loathe the Simpsons, I hope you appreciate it.  You are much cuter than Homer when you you. :)

Tuesday, May 06, 2008


is what this puppy has brought into our lives the last two weeks. There have been some scary moments as well, but joy threaded through it all. Lyric is finally in the clear as far as her health goes--we were unsure for a while if she would recover from her bronchitis. 4 vet visits (yeah, 4 visits in a week and a half) and two antibiotics later she is cough-free! Thank you, Lord! We can erase pneumonia as a possibility and no longer listen to her pitiful, painful cough. Poor baby.
We have waited 6 years for this puppy, and she was totally worth the wait. She is everything we, snuggly, sweet, friendly, playful...just a treasure to have in our home. I have always been a dog-lover but had no idea how much I would love having one all to myself! Ahhh, the bliss. Some of my favorite things...

  • She follows us around everywhere we go, and loves to lay on our feet when we are working in the kitchen. My heart melts every time she does it.
  • Her favorite toy is a little lamb we call Lambie, who she always carries around with her and loves to squeak. Bunny is a close second. Thanks to her puppy grandmas, she has many toys to carry around and squeak.
  • She is brilliant. Seriously. She has already learned to sit, lay down, kiss, give a high five, go to her bed, get on the towel (especially nice for rainy days) and is learning to roll over. Oh, and she is potty trained too. YES! I am convinced that by the time she is 12 weeks she will know the entire alphabet and be able to cook as well.
  • Her favorite treat (recommended by the breeder) is Honey Nut Cheerios. Mommy and Daddy are very grateful for her cheap (and necessarily so) taste. Way to go, Lyric! You are a ministry pup through and through!
  • She has the cutest little puppy face we have ever seen, and she knows how to work those precious green puppy eyes when she has done something wrong.
  • She is a snuggler. She especially loves to snuggle after bath time, or before we put her in her kennel for the night. We have a routine...let her out, snuggle, put her to bed. If you know Adam and I well, you know we are snugglers...she fits right in, and we love it.One of her favorite things is to be rocked in our arms like a baby while we rub her little belly.
  • She has a special love for her daddy's socks, and frequently sneaks them when I am in the laundry room. Yes, it is naughty, but still pretty stinkin' cute. This is only a real problem when she chomps into the socks while daddy is still wearing them.
  • Every morning I let her out and feed her before Adam gets up (he takes the middle of the night shift, so I am happy to wake up before him!!). After she eats she goes and sits outside our bedroom door waiting for him to come out. It is so precious.
  • She has the softest fur, and it fluffs up after her bath making her look like a little puff ball. He hair sticks up on her head, and we enjoy laughing at her and her little mohawk. If you saw our Christmas card 2 years ago, then you know like daddy like daughter.
  • We (ok, me) already have nicknames for her. Liri, Lili, favorite is when she is in trouble and I use her entire name in a serious voice, "Lyric Melody Watson!!" Yes, her middle name is Melody. Come on, we couldn't resist!
  • She looks like a little wet rat when we bath her. It is hilarious how she puffs right up afterwards.
Snuggle time after her bath

The post-bath mini mohawk :)