Tuesday, June 29, 2010


aka, tired. It's late for me, almost midnight. I was watching New Jersey housewives and now there's Bethanny Getting Married? on, which officially takes me down to some level at which I guess I'm "ok". I wanted to fix up my pictures for yesterdays post, which actually took a while, spacing and font, etc., but I'm kind of glad to be getting the knack of simple html and blogging stuff. Here are some pics of our tasty seafood taco and burrito dinner last night. The place is on Bascom Avenue and is technically a roach coach that's permanent, however,  it's some of the BEST food you will find in San Jose. I think that it's called "Día de Pesca" and it has these giant metal dinosaurs out front so it's not too hard to miss, so go and ¡disfruta!

we got "el borracho", no coincidence
we got "el borracho"/"the drunk" as our table id; nothing intended, I'm sure!

Jeff and Katie's lids
lids to Jeff and Katie's sodies.

my cucumber limonada
My cucumber-limonada. Such a yummy combination that I would not have thought of.

proud father
Jeff + a combination plate = a happy Jeff

chips and salsa, it's getting dark out
our chips and salsa as it got dark.

Today I gave my kids a work day and then moved many large items in my aunt's excursion (largest SUV ever created, no longer made, huge vehicle) to our storage unit. Muchas gracias to my hermano Thomas for helping me and putting up with my inane directions ("When I stop moving, you stop moving!" "No! Put your left hand on that side of the table...") (thanks Thomas!). We had the famous tortellini for dinner and settled in to watch trash tv with laundry going the whole time. Hopefully in the next day T and I can get almost all things into Memaw's house, clothes, dishes, etc., and then we can get the mattress over last, vacuum the place and move on up! Here are some of our belongings on their move, they enjoyed the ride since I drove considerately:


¡buenas noches!

Sunday, June 27, 2010


Well it's been quite a while since I posted last, which was not intentional. I actually am really enjoying this blogging thing, even if it's pretty boring to anyone but me =) So the past week has been pretty crazy,busy and fun. I'm going to try and document it list style and I'll add pictures later: I really like that I'm saving some memories for myself at least:

★ last weekend, June 18th to June 20th we were in LA for the wedding of a lovely and sweet couple that we know through M. After a hectic morning I made it to my early afternoon flight and landed in "la-la land", as a friend of M's calls it; we started at this friend's apartment which looks out on the beach in Santa Monica (tough life man). The rehearsal dinner was at a Maggiano's on Friday night and was quite yummy and filling. The boys had a bachelor's party on Thursday night which involved some wild karaoke, or so I'm told. After dinner we headed to our hotel in Santa Monica. We split a room with another couple that M knows from growing up. I've had a chance to get to know all of these people via parties held at M's parents house and also just hanging out with them when M and I are in Arizona visiting his parents.
Saturday morning M and his brother and I got in our six miles along the beach in Santa Monica and enjoyed the sights, smells and characters of Venice Beach. Needless to say, I'm ok with never going there again though the S.M. beach is glorious. The wedding was at a large church overlooking a socal valley and was a beautiful and traditional ceremony that obviously held a lot of meaning for the couple. The reception was several hours later here and was magnificent; it involved good food, sangria and dancing under the stars = yay! The next morning we enjoyed brunch together, said our goodbyes and headed home on the road. We each had one, count it, one, taco bell taco (soft for me, hard for him) on the six hour way home and then scarfed down three orders of chicken masala (heaven!) and naan from our favorite around-the-corner (but not for long!) Indian joint. Bed sure felt good that night =)

June 2010
Rehearsal dinner

June 2010
Before the ceremony in the church parking lot.

June 2010
June 2010
The beautiful and lovely reception site.

June 2010
Reception =)

June 2010
¡sangria (and carmex tube)!

June 2010
Hummingbird cookie favor for the Hummingbird Nest Ranch (consumed very quickly)!

June 2010
Beautiful sunset...

★ J and K, a married couple  that M met in his Peace Corps time, arrived in our fair burg from their east coast living to visit for a spell. They are so super nice and they have an amazing job working with kids. They decided to come visit us in sunny California and also borrow a car for some side trips. After work I picked them up. I got in my five miles that afternoon and K (the lovely lady) joined me for yoga. After showers we made some yummy beef tacos and watched Law & Order and then got to bed. It was really nice to visit and hang out. We last saw each other visiting other P.C. friends in Austin last February, so it had been a few months. J & K had just come from a wedding of two other  P.C. friends and M was happy to hear all about the wedding antics. Our friends took our car and headed for some Yosemite camping and came back to us Friday morning.
★I took my kids to see some really cool things this week. We visited the San Jose Museum of Art which currently has some great work. I love finding new things in San Jose, I think it's so funny how much stuff has always been here just under my nose while I go about being pretty oblivious. We also checked out a neat structure dedicated to the original inhabitants (Natives) and settlers (not-Natives) of San Jose and I learned some facts about San Jose along the way. Did you know that:
       * San Jose was first "started" in 1777 as a place to grow crops to feed the Spanish soldiers?
       * San Jose was incorporated as a city in 1850?
       * S. J.  was the first capital of California?
       * S. J. uses yellow sodium street lights to reduce light pollution so that the sky can be more visible from Lick Observatory?
       *...and the beat goes on...
My kids are going to set up all of their art work on the second to last day of class so that there can be a little grape juice and cheese "gallery opening" during break on the last day which means that we need something kind of random for them to do, so I've decided on "wearable art"- we're tie-dying! I'm pretty stoked and need to scrounge up some random white things so that they can now be not so white. The last day is this Thursday which blows my mind- this summer school class goes so quickly compared to the school year (well, three weeks vs. nine months = no-brainer I suppose), so this week will be pretty busy too since we  need to be out of our apartment and into our new abode (memaw's house woot woot!) by Thursday; busy, but I'm excited for it all.

Parque de los Pobladores, between 1st and Market Streets Parque de los Pobladores, between 1st and Market Streets

Parque de los Pobladores, between 1st and Market Streets Parque de los Pobladores, between 1st and Market Streets

Parque de los Pobladores, between 1st and Market Streets Parque de los Pobladores, between 1st and Market Streets

★ After M got off of work on Friday we four dropped off the dog at memaw's house and headed up to beautiful Lake Tahoe's west (best) shore. There was a stop in Auburn to enjoy some delightful Jimboys tacos which apparently don't live up (or down, perhaps?) to everyone else'sRaley's and drove over famed Donner Pass and got into our campground (Sugarpine Point State Park) at around 11. We tried to quietly set up and made it to bed around midnight. I'm always afraid of how I'll sleep while camping but it's never as uncomfortable as I think it might be, though I do admit that I'm looking forward to my bed tonight!
The weather this weekend turned out to be absolutely heavenly and it was as perfect as a Lake Tahoe weekend can possibly be. We didn't go out on the boat, but we did run a whole lot, went into town for a delish-brunch (taco ensalada!) and some depressing U.S. soccer, hung out on the beautiful beach (though M claims that it's not a beach unless it's on an ocean, lakes have shores), dunked ourselves in the frigid water, saw a bear in a dumpster, cooked burgers over our fire, played boggle (I won!), chatted a ton and just had a good ol' time.
We drove out exactly at check out time, checked out the fatty, fatty mackinaw off of Fanny Bridge, got a cobbler (razzleberry) and shakes at Ikedas and got home a couple of hours ago. We all (including Guinness) took gloriously long and hot showers and are watching our taped England vs. Germany game (wasn't that a goal?! at about 37 minutes), waiting for half time to go and get fish tacos at the stand on Bascom avenue. I'm staving off panic about all that needs to be moved/cleaned/done in the next three days, but I just need to have faith that it will get done and that I'll be totally ok. I'm super excited for the tacos tonight and definitely feel as though I deserve them- we did our 13 mile long run this morning and I'm ready for a good din-din. It's odd, after every long run I feel as though I could never run any longer but up comes the next run and there I go, which gives me heart considering that I've got 26.2 on the horizon (October).

REAL tacos! REAL tacos!
                 Jimboys in Auburn.Some good eats, as far as I know...harrumph!

Sugarpine Point State Park, our first campground camping in the early morning!
Our first campsite, getting breakfast ready before a nice run and sad soccer...

tent sweet home =) his and hers chairs
                  Tent sweet home. His and hers camp chairs!

boys and Katie bear locker, meant to keep them out, but they still come!
             Boys and girl. Our bear locker, though it didn't really keep them all away!

Katie? ?
Two cute couples, looking their best while roughing it.

smokey s'mores Katie and  mallow in her mouth
Smokey s'mores and marshmallow scarfing.

artistic sky shot, by Michael artistic foot and fire pit shot, by Michael
Artistic sky and tree shot and artistic feet and fire pit shot, both thanks to M.

the lake on the ground Photobucket
A ground-map of Lake Tahoe and Jeff and Katie being cute at Fanny Bridge.

fanny #3...fanny #4 strategically left outfanny #2Fanny Bridge; fanny #1
One fanny, two fannies, three fannies...four? Four was strategically left out?

Anyway, that was some randomness, I'll be adding in photographic evidence luego, have yourselves a lovely little Sunday and enjoy the last days of that oh-so-lovely month known as June.

Thursday, June 17, 2010


← Here's what I ate last night, this and a lovely glass of white wine while we watched ESPN's 30 for 30 (read about it here). I NEVER would have guessed myself a sports fan or ESPN watcher but it happens to be one of M's favorite pass times and despite my best intentions I've become embroiled in the wide world of sports (go Celtics!). 30 for 30 is a documentary series that's actually quite interesting and covers a broad range of topics that happen to relate to sports. Last night was all about the OJ Simpson car chase which I vaguely remember happening but M remembers clearly b/c he and his brother were watching the NBA finals (read: me=not a sports person). The format of this documentary (they vary since there's always a different filmmaker) was pretty neat-o; it had no official commentary, it was just old footage from that time but not just of the OJ chase, it was a juxtaposition of footage from the Stanley Cup final game, Arnold Palmer's final professional tournament, the 1994 World Cup and the NBA finals (with a certain Bob Costas looking the same; does the man not age?). The side-by-side was meant (I think) to showcase how this tragedy and a man's personal downfall stole the world's attention when there were so many other big sports events occurring at the same time; it was pretty riveting and made me wonder if OJ really was guilty. M says that he was, without a doubt; do you remember this event and whether you thought OJ was guilty or not? I guess I don't know what I think, I just feel bad for all of those involved, even though it was quite a while ago, it's still horrific. The filmmaker had a brief commercial blurb where he talked a bit about the whole thing and he talked of how the car chase was an early form of reality TV, which I thought was pretty interesting. I'm definitely a fan of reality TV, but a guilty one; I almost feel embarrassed for the people on most shows and especially for their children and I wonder how the TV experience will shape their childrens' lives. Then again, no one's forcing them so c'est la vie.

Today I took my kids to see a pretty cool (my favorite, I think) sculpture in downtown San Jose. I'll post pictures later since I don't have my USB cord and there is yet to be (as far as I know) wireless camera-to-computer technology. The sculpture is of John Carlos and Tommie Smith who won medals for the USA in the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City. They famously made quite a political statement by doing a variety of things when on the podium listening to the national anthem: wore no shoes (as a nod to the poverty suffered by African Americans [and others, I suppose]), wore unzipped jackets (sticking it to the man, basically), wearing an Africa-inspired colored necklace (a symbol of lynching suffered by African Americans), carried a picture of olive branches (peace, yo) and looked down while making the "Black Power" hand gesture (fist up). These two men suffered quite a bit as a result of their actions and I think that it's good to remember. I am in NO  way an expert and I think that art is such a personal experience so please take my musings with a grain of salt; I gathered the explanations from an article I read about the sculpture but I believe that everyone has their own right to interpretation. The kids liked it (I hope) and I was glad to be out in the sun.

I'm off to some light lunching, running, LAUNDRY and cleaning so that our apartment can be clean when we get back Sunday night. M drove off this morning for LA since it's his family friends and they're pretty close, so he's taking a couple of days off to hang out which is really good for him since he works very hard and long.  I'm Southwest-ing it down there tomorrow after work and we're going to drive back home together on Sunday. I confess that I love to come home to at least some order after a trip and I find that clean sheets and a made bed is the easiest/most fulfilling in said situation, so that's priority #1, along with the aforementioned laundry and the dreaded dishes...fun times 2010.

Have a great day before Friday!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


"And since all this lovliness cannot be Heaven, I know in my heart that it is June" Abba Goold Woolson (1838-1921) 

I’ve caught it…no, not the World Cup Fever (which despite all of my enjoyment and enthusiasm M claims I have not yet caught…harrumph) but June fever. I absolutely love this month. It could be because of one of the following reasons, though I blame all of them:

it is the month in which the school year that has d.r.a.g.g.e.d on has finally breathed it’s final breath
the days are their gloriest longest and light abounds
it’s finally warm!
the crickets start to sing their song
and the beat goes on…

Today I took my class on our first walking trip around downtown to check out a really cool sculpture. It’s called “Man of Fire” by Kim Yasuda and it’s a dedication to Ernesto Galarza. You can read a bit about the art and him here and here but in a nutshell he was a Mexican immigrant to California in the early 20th century and eventually earned his PhD and went on to work for the educational rights of immigrants in California. He lived in San Jose and was very involved with the public education here. He died in 1984 but this is a really cool tribute to him smack dab in the middle of downtown San Jose. The work actually is compiled of three parts all along a pedestrian paseo through several busy streets. The first element is stone “ribbons” set in the ground that have quotes about Galarza embedded in them, both in English and Spanish.







The second element is a life-sized metal sculpture of a chair and the third element is the long and slightly larger than life table at which the chair is set. The ribbons actually lead through the paseo up to the table. The table is also constructed of metal of some sort and also has a variety of pictures and quotes by Galarza embedded into it. It also has a giant hat and nails that are part of the table to represent Galarza’s agricultural roots that he remained so tied to even after immersing himself into the world of academia. I never got a chance to take a picture of the entire table since the kids were all around it but I did take pictures of the other elements as visible above. 

You should definitely check it out- there’s actually quite a bit of public art available downtown if you just keep your eyes open and even today I walked past something new-to-me. I’ll try and post on the art we’re looking at this summer since I think that it’s great to be aware of the neat-o-ness that is all around us.

In the vein of lovely summer days and nights I indulged in some local cherries from a family fruit stand. My family knows the family who owns the orchards and sells the fruit and I think that their cherries are laced with some sort of narcotic since they’re so addictive…I love the mix of colors!

I also got to check out two of my uncle’s tomato plants. They both live in my grandmother’s neighborhood (where I’m hanging out quite a bit with all of this free time during the day =) ). Tomatoes (and pretty much all vegetables) are a big thing in our family. Everyone always has at least several plants in their yard for the summer and we hardly buy any tomatoes from about late June to almost October. One uncle especially loves to garden and has a cute little raspberry plant that I ate straight off of (yum!). Living in an apartment definitely is awesome, especially being right downtown, but I do love being outside especially in this fabulous time of year and it was nice to hang out in people’s gardens today.

M and I walked to a local Great Clips so that he could get a trim before this weekend’s wedding (not ours, don’t worry!) and then we each at not one but two slices of pizza at Pizza my Heart (cheese for him and the Big Sur for me).  We walked back home and are enjoying some Law & Order: SVU (the French fries of television, according to a good friend of mine) before bed. 

Tomorrow is hopefully a day of cleaning and car maintenance before we each leave for southern California for that aforementioned wedding (no earthquakes please!). M is taking Thursday and Friday off (good for him!) and driving down Thursday AM and I’m flying down directly after my class on Friday. We’re going to hang out, go to the wedding, run a bit and drive back on Sunday and we’re both pretty excited for a little weekend get-away.

Off to bed…happy Tuesday night and enjoy this picture of someone who was ready for lights out way before everyone else!