Monday, August 31, 2009

Here's a TOTALLY RANDOM little goodie...

So, I know this is completely random... but how great is this pic? I sure wish I was looking at the camera (apparently, something fascinating/annoying was happening on my left... as I am giving the death glare here), but I am still loving the pic.

This is my Grammy, my aunts Debbie and Kathy, my Mom and me. Of course I have no memories of this day (I was, like, 4 or something...), but if I remember right, we dressed up as angels and went to the hospital to surprise Grammy. I don't know... But I love it.

The End.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

I left my heart in San Francisco.


It's true, I did leave my heart in San Francisco. I left it right there on the table, next to these chunks of sourdough bread with Havarti cheese melted all over them.

Oh, how I miss the bread. I loved it so...

I do have some cool pics - from Alcatraz, from the beach the morning of the shark swim, from the Ripley's Believe it or Not and wax museums, from the cable car ride, from the ghost tour, from the aquarium, from the crepe cafe and the chocolate shop, from the hotel room and from Fisherman's Wharf. I'm tell you, I have A LOT of pictures. Sadly, I don't have a lot of time and my computer's being fussy right now (I don't know what's wrong with him, but he sure is being finicky about wanting to upload my pics). I just had to show you the bread.

Oh, the bread. Seriously, with every meal, I was in rapture over the bread. It was DELISH. I am in love with it.

The End.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

I. Survived. Alcatraz.




Yes, that's right. Yesterday I went to Alcatraz. And I survived. Barely. (And if you think I'm exaggerating about that, you can ask my inner thighs. I'm sure they would love to tell the story of Alcatraz, and how it's a miracle that we survived the trek.)

Folks, I'd like to take just a moment and let you know that I walked up this mountain. Yes, you heard me right. I. Walked. Up. This. Mountain. And then I hiked around the penitentiary for a good hour or so. And then I walked back down the mountain. ... How my legs are still working today is mystery to me. Parts of me are sore that I didn't even know I had... It's alternately ridiculous and hilarious. I laugh, I cry. (Today is pretty much like any other day, in that way. Only today my thighs and my feet are killing me, which is not the norm.)

But more about the prison tour. It was amazing! Who knew that Alcatraz had a pre-civil war history?! (Answer: not me!) We learned at the beginning of the tour that the difference in brickwork marks the different eras of use. The old brick work at the bottom is the really old stuff, then it turns to larger block brick, and then cement. It was the high security prison in the U.S., until... sadly, someone in the government started preaching about rehabilitating prisoners (rather than punishing them) and Alcatraz was put out of business (also, it was CRAZY EXPENSIVE to maintain, being out in the middle of the bay with the water and the wind, so it got shut down in the 60's).

Honestly, their little earphone/walking tour thing was AMAZING. They had former guards and former inmates narrating the whole thing. They had sweet background noises like cell doors slamming shut and prisoners rioting for effect. It was creepy as all hell. I loved it.

Ooh, get this. The only prisoners that ever escaped and weren't found had a couple brothers in the group. They dug their way through the wall with spoons and then climbed up through the pipes to the top of the building and then swam away. (Or got eaten by sharks. There's no way to really know.) They'd been learning Spanish in the weeks/months before the escape, and word on C Street (listen to me and all my prison lingo) was that they'd escaped to South America. It was a pretty brilliant plan, and the fact that two brothers were in on it was shades of Prison Break. (Which you know made me giddy. I heart Linc and Michael.)

Anyway... yesterday I went to Alcatraz (and a bunch of other places... on foot) and I survived. Today is the trolley day. (Okay, cable car day. They don't like to be called trolleys is what I'm hearing.) More to come on that. .... I guarantee that I'll be singing a little "Clang, clang, clang went the trolley" this afternoon. You can bet that my friends (and our fellow cable-car-mates) will love that. Bet'cha wish you were here...

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

And the survey says....

Post is the winner, hands down.

There are few things I enjoy more than a blind-folded taste test. (I'm thinking of the time we cousins gathered around the bar and drank pink v. Countrytime lemonade out of little paper cups at Julie's - or the time Matt and Brandon and I did the nacho Doritos v. the four cheese Doritos to see if there was really a difference.) Seriously, I do love me a good scientific experiment, so when I saw that WalMart had come out with a store brand of my favorite cereal of all time, I had to try it. But I couldn't just try it on its own (where is the joy in that?), I had to get two bowls and pour a little bit of both cereals into their own bowls so I could do a comparison/contrast study.

And like I said... Post is the winner, hands down.

This Great Value brand, while it may be a great value (it was almost a dollar less than the name brand, with 6 oz more cereal, to boot), it is not for me. The flakes? Not lightly and deliciously toasted - they're more along the lines of sugar covered foam. (They reminded me of Special K. I am not a fan of Special K.) The honey bunches? Not the same. The almonds? Just about nonexistent.

So... I'll go broke eating the Post brand. So what? I won't care, at least I'll go broke with happy taste buds.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Oh, how I need a raspberry bavarian creme pie now.




I went and saw this movie with my Lizzie last night, and oh my goodness, I loved it. LOVED IT! I had pretty much figured that I would. I knew the wardrobe for the Julia segments would be something else... I think Amy Adam's is about the cutest thing ever, and I'm one of Nora Ephron's biggest fans of all time. (As anyone who knows me knows that I have You've Got Mail virtually memorized.)

The movie was fabulous. The way the two women's lives parallelled each other, all the recipes, the beautiful buttery goodness of it all... I loved it. Go see it, it's fabulous!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Tyler's Graduation

So, last Friday I took a half day off work so I could drive to Tucson for Ty's graduation. It was a wild ride. Of course (of course!) I got lost on my way to the ceremony. (I hold mapquest responsible.) With Kirk's help, I was able to navigate my way through a bunch of construction and get there just before the graduates entered the auditorium. The ceremony was a little long (as graduation ceremonies usually are), so Connor and I entertained ourselves by making faces at each other for a good hour. (There are pics, but I'll spare my mother the embarrassment of posting them here. Her having to sit by me while I batted my eyelashes and pretended to eat my shoe for my 5 year old nephew's entertainment is embarrassment enough, I should think.)

This is the original 6. Please note how I'm the short one in the lineup. That tall Ball DNA is a fabulous thing.

And here is the whole fam damily. It was the first time we'd all been together since the 4th of July weekend last year. It was so fun to get together and hang out. (Please note the goofy face Connor's making. Enlarge the pic if you have to, it's worth it. The kid makes me laugh out loud.)

Gosh, I love my family. Congratulations, Ty! :-)