Thursday, August 28, 2008

Fun at the Aquarium

Yesterday I went to the Long Beach Aquarium with my SIL and my two nephews, as this is the last week of summer vacation before school starts. We had a fun time and both of my nephews enjoyed getting to see and touch the sting rays and sharks at the "Shark Lagoon". It was interesting to feel the difference between the rays (very slick and smooth) and the small hammerhead shark (almost like human skin). A lot of the pictures that I tried taking inside the exhibits didn't come out, as you were not allowed to use the flash when taking pictures (very unstandably so), but these are some of the better ones I was able to get. I especially was intrigued by the seahorses and seadragons. There was one called a "leafy sea dragon" ( and is the one in the photos - it was just fascinating! We also saw sea lions, otters, various fish, big clams (I had never seen one opened before today - it was amazing to see their "mouth"), and small jelly fish that were incredible - they looked like little neon signs with different colors - they were really something to see. They had tube-like structures that looked like those lights in tubes that change colors and flash. Really wild! I wish I could have gotten a picture of them.

I hope everyone had a great summer. It sure did go by fast. We've been very lucky here in So. Cal. not to have had a real hot summer, but I'm sure that will change - it always does when the kids go back to school. It always seems to heat-up and stay hot until October, when the Santa Ana Winds kick-in. I just pray that we don't have any wildfires this year.

On the crafting front, I have completed my heart charms, added them to the bracelet, and am now in the process of making charms with crystals and then it will be finished! I will share pictures of it in the next day or so. I think it turned out really cute and I know I will be wearing it a lot.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Slowly But Surely

I have made some progress on the beaded heart charms for my bracelet. I haven't been able to work on it as much as I have wanted to, but I pick it up and so some beading whenever I have a few spare minutes.

The weather here has been beautiful lately (knock on wood). Today it has been extremely mild - I love it! As I type this, it is only 81 degrees at 1:15 in the afternoon. I know that when school starts after Labor Day it will be HOT - it always is.

Saturday was my birthday and my family & I enjoyed a wonderful dinner at my favorite local Japanese restaurant. It was so amazing to see my 3-year-old nephew gobble up the miso soup and the rest of his dinner! I don't know many kids who would actually care for the taste, but he loves it. After each spoonful he would say "ahhhh". He especially likes the pieces of tofu. It was so cute. He is such a little foodie! My 9-year-old nephew would have none of the miso soup but absolutely loves the teriyaki sauce, especially on his rice! We had a nice dinner and then went back to my brother and SIL's house for rum cake from my favorite Italian bakery (which is right in their neighborhood) and coffee. It was a quiet day, but the evening was fun and I always look forward to the times we get to spend together.

I hope everyone is enjoying the last few weeks of their summer. It's hard to believe that it's almost over, although I know of at least one mom who will be so glad when school starts again! I always laugh when they show the commercial where families are shopping for back-to-school supplies and the song playing in the background is "...the most wonderful time of the year!" whose title escapes me but I know it's actually a Christmas song. Very funny.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Cancer Sucks

I wasn't sure if I should post about something so personal, but I got some pretty devastating news last Sunday and it's constantly been on my mind this whole week. My cousin "R" was just diagnosed with colon cancer. Even though we haven't seen each other very much in the last few years, we have always been close. We are the same age and I have great memories of times we spent together when we were growing up. We see each other at important family functions, birthdays, and funerals (unfortunately). He is going to see a specialist at Cedars-Sinai on the 19th of this month. He was telling me that Sharon Osbourne made a huge donation to the hospital, as that's where she was treated for her colon cancer. I know that he's got some hard times ahead of him, but I pray that he can beat this and be around for a long time to come. I've lost too many people I love and care about to this damn disease. I just ask that anyone reading this will keep good thoughts for him.

On a happier note, I finished painting the back room today. It was quite an overwhelming task, but I'm so glad that it's done and it looks so nice! I feel quite good about being able to accomplish all that I have these last few months. I've painted almost every room in the house by myself and now I can concentrate on more crafty pursuits! I started on my beaded heart bracelet charms with the Delica beads and it is so much easier and faster with them than having to sort through the irregularly-shaped seed beads, although as I had blogged before, I still do like how they look.

Well, I hope everyone is enjoying watching the Olympics. I'm going to go sit down and do some beading now while watching them.