Sunday, January 21, 2007

Last Octobers' trip to New Mexico

Chronologically speaking, this trip to Albuquerque is completely out of order, but I still wanted to post it. Both Shawn and I and Shawn's parents flew out there about 3 months ago, from California and Idaho respectively, to visit my dad and timed it in such a way that we would be there for one of the weekends of the Balloon Fiesta. Albuquerque is famous for many things, like chili peppers, breakfast burritos, and drunk driving. But I think most of all it is famous for this festival, so it was quite a busy weekend there. After first arriving we wandered around Old Town for a while and then headed back to my dad's place. Everyone was pretty tired so Shawn ans his parents rested there while my dad and Sandy (who is this great lady that for some unexplainable reason likes to hang out with my dad :)) and I went over to an event at the Balloon Museum where my dad is a regular docent. As we were getting in the car there was this fabulous sunset that I stopped to take a few pictures of. On the way home we picked up a few pizzas and then went to bed early since the next morning was Mass Ascension and it started at 5:30, which meant we had to get up at 4:00am. Aren't vacations great!? So relaxing. So after getting up at this hour and dressed and over to the shuttle parking lot, we found out that for the first time in over 20 years or something it was being canceled because of the bad weather. So, we made some new plans for the day which included breakfast at I-HOP where my dad was really excited about celebrating his 60th birthday, and a trip to the Albuquerque zoo.
In front of the zoo was a highly detailed sculpture of some male animal, that made my mother-in-law giggle.
Even more humorous though was the sight of my dad on a cell phone.
While our zoo experience wasn't quite the behind the scenes tour that we'd gotten when we went to the SF zoo a few weeks earlier, it was still quite enjoyable.
That night we rode the world's longest tram up to the top of Sandia Peak.
The view from the top was spectacular. It had been sorta overcast all day and then right before the sun set there was about 20 mins of brilliant warm light as we rode up the tram. Then within about 10 mins of being at the top, right after we sat down to eat dinner at the restaurant up there, all the yellow went away and we were in the middle of thick clouds. The pictures are long exposures so they look brighter than it really was.
After dinner at High Finance we came back home to go to bed and once again prepare for an early rise as we tried again.
. . . But, after the same routine for the second morning in a row, Monday's ascension was also canceled. So, again we made new plans. All 6 of us got into Sandy's car and we drove to Santa Fe for a lovely day. We looked at model homes for a while and then went shopping, eating, gallery perusing, and photographing around the town center.
I'm not usually so in to southwestern men, but this one is pretty cute!
It was pouring down rain that night on our way back to Albuquerque so we weren't very hopeful that the weather would cooperate on our last morning there. And we were right. . .sorta. On this last morning we were there the ascension just got postponed, but it made it too late for Chuck and Barb to be able to go before their plane left. Shawn and I were able to go for about an hour before our plane left, but unfortunately because we had to take them to the airport, we could only get there in time to see a few of them landing. But even just this little bit was pretty amazing.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Candice Eggleston's Baby Shower

This weekend was great! It was my friend Candice's baby shower, and it was just about the nicest baby shower I've ever been to- way nicer than ones I throw where you have to pass around baby diapers with various melted candy bars inside and everyone has to smell the brown stuff to guess which candy bar it is! No, this one was at Il Forniao in downtown San Jose and came with fabulous food and surroundings. I'm trying to figure out how to make Candice's friends my new best friends before I have a baby. . . .
Anyway, here's a little peek at the beautiful set-up:

The expectant mother:
And the expectant grandmothers
And the awesome friends I need to try to get in with:
We played this great game where everyone cuts a piece of string the length of what they think Candice's belly circumference is. Here, her friend Miriam is giving that look that says, "ohhh- you're in trouble- that was way too long.
I don't know who this baby thought she was, but she was totally all "Look at me. Look how cute I am. By the way, Baby Showers are so 5 minutes ago- I had one like 5 months ago, you know". J/k
I was especially excited for gift time because, well, in my humble opinion, I totally got Candice the best gift. Here she is opening it :)
A few more pics:
And the expectant father:

So, slightly better than that amazing brunch was the fact that Brad and Candice were so nice and flew Holly down for the day. It was also Holly's 30th Birthday this week (Today actually!) so they planned a big family dinner for her that night at P.F. Changs. During the middle of the day we had about 5 hours though and Holly and I did something we hadn't done since high school- went to the mall and went shopping! It was so fun. Just the two of us, and just like old times, except for we didn't even need our mom's to drop us off and pick us up. We tried on clothes, got foot massages and talked about girl stuff; it was fabulous. We were also able to go and see Renee and her 9 month old baby Aurelia (sorry for the spelling) who is sooo cute. Anyway, it was a really nice day.