Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Mia and Jonah Photo Shoot

Last weekend a fellow photographer/friend of mine, Julie, and I took some wedding pictures of this cute couple. We had more time than we typically do at a wedding so we were able to try out some different poses and whatnot. I thought they came out pretty nice. . . although it was hard to go wrong with such beautiful people and backdrops. There's a lot of them so I'll post the inside ones now and then the outside ones a little later.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Valentines week

Like many, I use to have feelings of pseudo-dislike for Valentines Day, but after age 20 or so I think I got over that and realized that it's just silly to resist a holiday that celebrates in chocolate!
But that just reminded me of this tradition in my high school- not sure if other high schools had this tradition but at mine there were these things called "grams"- they came in all different forms- like candy grams, and binder grams, and balloon grams, etc. and they were little cards-with-a-goodie that the school sold on Valentines Day to raise money for various clubs. Well they sold them all before Valentines Day to be delivered on Valentines Day. Then when like 5th period or something rolled around there would be a break in class when some students came in to deliver to all the winners. Anyway, I just remember it being a slightly painful part of high school as some people would get like 5 of these and I would pretend like I totally didn't want one of those stupid things but was secretly kinda embarrassed that I didn't get one. . . . although I think Holly did send me one one year- that was great!
Anyway, totally not the point of this post. What I was getting at was what a lovely Valentine's celebration we had this year. Wayne has been a great date for me and Shawn the last few years, so the tradition was carried on when the 3 of us went to Woo at the Zoo last Saturday, the San Francisco zoo's Valentine week sex tour. It was this 3 hour presentation on the mating rituals of various animals and it was fiercely entertaining. It was mainly done in the form of a slide show but a few animals were brought in for show-and-tell, like this eagle
who does it in the air, belly up-ish, talons clasped to it's partner, as it free-falls from a cliff.
There was this legless lizard-
I don't remember how they do it but they look gross enough that I don't really want to know that much more about them anyway (I've had a distaste for eel-like animals ever since reading Memoirs of a Geisha years ago).
Anyway, I highly recommend this tour.
Then on Tuesday I went with a friend and got a fancy pedicure, complete with pink polish and diamonds- I'm pretty sure they were diamonds, and bought a $6 chocolate-covered strawberry (what the hell?!) for Shawn.
Then on Wednesday, the actual pink heart day, Shawn and I went to this pillow fight downtown. This was another worth-while experience. Words and pictures don't do it justice. And just in case anyone is unfamiliar with San Francisco weather, that is not snow- it's feathers.
SF friends- please come with next time!!!
We didn't really have any dinner plans after that, but we headed toward home and ended up at our default restaurant- Blue Fin. Oh, how we love Blue Fin! I'm afraid too many people are starting to catch on to this being the best sushi place in SF though. We almost had to wait! While there, Shawn, being the fan-fabulous husband he is, gave me a love letter (the highlight of this week and this post). You don't get to know what it said though :) Then we went over to Emily's place for some darn-good flourless orange-chocolate cake; if I had to choose between that and the love letter, it might be difficult.
Then on Thursday the festivities continued at The Janet Pomeroy Center (the place I "volunteer" with the theater group) with the annual Valentine Dance. There was a special treat this year with Audi doing a lip sync performance to "I feel good"- the place was rockin'!
This is my very good friend Liz, a talented actress and play write, who is gonna be disgusted that I posted her picture on a post about Valentine's Day!
And here's our fearless leader, David Lovis, the director of Theater Unlimited.
And that concludes this week of love.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Tahoe with Morgie

A couple months ago Shawn discovered there existed a sport called Skijoring, which is basically a cross between dog sledding and roller blading/cross country skiing. He was so excited at the possibility of Morgan pulling him around that he bought the whole deal right away- the harness, the belt, the book, etc. and started taking her out the day it all arrived. He's been practicing this (on roller blades) with gusto for the last few weeks. He's even had us start giving the dogs commands in sledding language. Anyway, this past weekend was the climax of these few weeks of training.
We started out our trip on Thursday night where due to some unexpected events we ended up staying at a motel in Davis for the night, a motel where Morgan got her very own double bed!!
Then we drove the rest of the way up on Friday morning and did a lot of wandering around looking for a place to eat, our cottage, the place to go play, etc. I think Morgan was feeling pretty cheated out of her big weekend with all the driving around, but we finally made it to TahoeXC and I think she forgave us for the 5 hours in the car. We had so much fun!! First of all, even with the lack of snow, it was beautiful.
Second of all, turns out I love cross country skiing. I was really nervous because I'm less than ideally coordinated and I'd never been on skis of any sort before, much less been tied to a dog while I did it, but after a rough start (I kinda stood in the same place for about 15 minutes, unable to figure out how to go up a little hill without sliding backwards) I got the hang of it and was loving it.
And thirdly, Morgan was in heaven.
This particular place didn't allow skijoring, but we figured on this first day we'd just let her run around and get used to the snow. It didn't take her long to do that at all. It was hilarious to watch her attack snow drifts and run along side us.
Although sometimes I found her running along side us distracting

Apparently, pine cones were a treat too.

Unfortunately, Morgan rained on her own parade by threatening to bite some guy, so after that we were pretty nervous to have her running around and we cut the fun short. We need Cesar. So anyway, we headed back to Tahoma Meadows, the cute little Bed and Breakfast we were staying at.
Here Morgan lucked out even more than the night before because, while she didn't get her own bed, this one was high enough for her to go underneath- a little bit of Paradise for this burier.
She went under there and pretty much didn't come out unless we left again. That night we napped, went to dinner at Sunnyside Restaurant, and watched Stunt Junkies (since we're kinda like extreme skiers now) and Top Chef.

The next day we had a hearty gourmet breakfast and went to rent some skiing equipment so we could just go out on our own. We headed off to a state park called DL Bliss and Shawn fitted up in the skijoring gear. So it turns out that DL Bliss isn't really that suited for cross country skiing. There's a main pathway that eventually leads to the lake and it's about 80% downhill. The main reason I found myself so in love with cross country skiing the day before was because it wasn't too scary. You could go fast . . . ish and slide and play and exercise without the feeling of being out of control. Anyway, this days' venue just confirmed my suspicion that I would probably hate downhill skiing. I fell every 100 feet or so. I didn't really mind falling- it made me laugh a lot, but after a while my knees weren't so happy.
Shawn had his own problems trying to get Morgie to pull. Unfortunately, she didn't turn out to be a natural at this sport. She gets distracted very easily and tripped Shawn a fair number of times. But it's a start . . .

So, as sad as it made Morgan,
we eventually decided it was probably best to head back up. We figured it would take a while since we'd only gone downhill going the other direction, but it actually went quicker. I guess falling downhill is a lot more time consuming than skiing uphill.
We ate some sandwiches that we bought earlier that morning and were going to go back out again but Morgan looked pretty tuckered out. So we spent the rest of the day just doing random things. At this point I wished I would have brought my real camera because it was so beautiful but it's still probably a good thing I didn't. I think it would have been too much to handle for a first time skier to be keeping track of a big expensive camera.
We went over to Squaw Valley to see what that's all about and watched the skiers and snowboarders there for a while. Morgan was quite popular there. Practically every other person either wanted to pet her or ask a question about her or made some comment about her. Unfortunately she was too nervous due to the noise of the ski lifts to enjoy any of this attention. We walked around the village a little bit, got some pizza and dessert back in Tahoe City and then went and got some massages at The Lighthouse Spa. If anyone is ever there, I highly recommend Rachel :). That night we rented Wag the Dog and went back to our little cabin.

So that was our trip. Now it's back to her barking at me all day long because she wants to be out playing.