Thursday, July 17, 2008

We Are At the Beach, Mondos, Cove, Faria, Yay....too fun, fun, fun!

This was "by-far" the best experience at the beach house we have ever had. Relaxing, wonderful weather, and everyone sooooo happy--even though there's so many people here! Daily-it has been wonderful weather and no kid tried to pound another, even though all are so young. No bottles mix-uped, food all was wonderful, and the fishing...well as you can see from my photo it's all been sharks (not that particular one) and lots and lots of stingrays. All were catch and release, however, Matt, my nephew, removed the barbs from the rays, so the children wouldn't step on them later.

Kiely, Larin & Dave, Robert, Dave's brother and a close family friend, who served her mission here about 4 years ago, are this very moment surfing. Mothers never quit being mothers, so I'm worried about the scary sea life under the top of the water.

We didn't have the low tide or the grunion, but we had a wonderful FHE with our "Titles of Liberty" and lots of singing and little kids dancing to 'Seagulls flapping in the Ocean Beeze' (popcorn popping) and every song we could think of to sing. The game that was popular this year and scored lots of fun was a crazy 'Train' game for the adults.

Oh, the BEST was our family pictures taken by Whitebalance Photography and Ashley (the wonderful) Stalker and who is an amazing photographer! We bought the pictures but now we have to decide which ones! She caught the most fabulous shots of our family at the beach. Not all people in my family are cooperative. I didn't tell them to do that pose. Second picture above, is an example of the non-compliant family members! Of course, they have my DNA...

Little, our dog, was missing from the pictures--she was home guarding our house. She hates the beach and water and would have just been so sad in the pictures if she had seen the dead baby seal. Little doesn't get over such things and carries them in her heart.

The beach relaxes, somehow heals, romantic, nostalgic, and most of all a place where we can enjoy all year the amazing time we had. We'll talk forever..Do you remember when....rotflol. I can't wait to go again already and it's not over yet!

Monday, July 7, 2008

What? I Love This Place! Hearst's Hacienda & Mission San Antonio, Valley of the Oaks

I put up a post about La Hacienda's landlords and truly, it is the commander of the post and his family who now live there. Lots of YM and YW were there-but not a lot of noise. I was petting the black cat that was waiting outside our door and I met the commander's wife. They are members of our church--They are LDS2!! Steve and I visited with her over 2 hours and got the full tour and of course, the tower room that she has all restored. Amazingly, restored. The tower is a beautiful blue and their oldest at home has the tower as her bedroom.

Beth is the sweetest and hardest working--doing all she can with own funds and own work to bring back the beauty of the big ranch home of Hearst. I told her she was my new best friend and her husband (the commander) surprised me and said,"You can't have her, she's my best friend." So, I'm claiming her as my second. I didn't see much of him as he was busy (on one of his few days off) taking all the scouts on a stake high adventure.

Their home is beautifully furnished with Church painting and over the main fire place downstairs is a picture of George Washington kneeling with his horse. The upstairs main fire place has beautiful an old oil painting of the Nauvoo Temple. She has done so much and it is all with keeping of the integrity of the original site.

I really enjoyed meeting her family and for the short time I was able to spend with Beth, was precious, and made our stay there so much more special.

Our trips up north always bring wonderful surprises. Huh, Kiely? LYMI