Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Welcome to the Avenues

Having lived in our quaint apartment for over 2 years (the longest in one place for either of us), 
we have decided it is time to move on from the perfect adventure 
that was SoTro

We will miss...
...our frequent walks and runs to Liberty Park...
...our evening "quick, healthy" dinners at Whole Foods...
...our super unique neighbors who were always there when we needed them...
...our one of a kind "Ryan Banbury" who has gotten us through many awkward meltdowns in the rain, made us the best Friendsgiving turkey ever, taught us that fat cats are the best, helped us get out of our possessed, locked car situation, chatted with us during our many Tundra potty breaks in the wee hours of the night, and basically just been the coolest neighbor you could ask for....
...seeing Tundra's FAT head sticking waaay too far out of our 3rd story window...
...our near by friends like The Tea Grotto, Koko's Kitchen, The Park Cafe, Ex Wife's Place, Trolley Square, 9th and 9th, Mosquitoes (Mezquite Mexican Grill), Smith's Marketplace, Coffee Break, Manny's, and last but certainly not least TRAX...
...the beloved and tinted giant window in our front room...
...all the mice... of course... NOT...
...watching all the neighborhood kids flock like geese to Tundra....
...our cute, little pass-through window...
...the disaster alley way in which Tundra would struggle trying to decide which items to give up on, because you simply cannot eat them all...
and so many more...

SoTro will always be the place where we became a family

Enough with the sappiness...
We are now living in this fairy-tale cottage!

Der and I searched for weeks, 
looking for the right place. 
We are a little picky and we certainly have a strict budget. 
But.... just like the time we found SoTro... 
right as we were about out of time and at our whits end
We found this adorable Avenues home. 
We have always dreamt about living in The Avenues
and the place was nearly PERFECT!

Back yard and porch for the Tun!
Driveway to a garage... too bad you can barely fit your car down that! ha! :) 
Huge dinging room and HARD WOOD FLOORS!!! YAY! 
Huge kitchen with open cupboards for all our pretty dishes ;)
Washer and Dryer! Wonder what that will feel like!?
I am putting pretty lights all over the porch for fun bbq's! 
Big basement for guests and office time. 

So far, I have only come up with two downfalls....
The first: NO CLOSET SPACE! Ugh! Tiny closet and no coat closet. It's bad. I am in the process of trying to remedy this downfall... but no luck so far. Bags of clothes on the floor. 
The Second: I guess this is more of just a difference between apartments and houses and being a little out of downtown. BUGS! I have seen more ( and weirder) bugs in 2 days than 2 years in our apartment. 


Luckily, I am now living with 2 Derek's who can relocate all of my arch enemies.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Happiness to my father is...

...the ocean.

So he sends me beautiful pics whenever he takes a trip down there. 

And Cessy's of course!

Our fave taco shop back in the day.
Dad still goes here all the time and sends me pics to make m jealous. Jerk :)

Where it all started....
my thrift shopping obsession, that is.
The DAV is like the DI or Salvation Army of Oceanside
We used to go here all the time. 
I miss it. 

Of course, he found a Pearl Jam t-shirt

A lot of his beach trips include a car show. 
Probably, his second favorite thing on the planet. 
Classic cars.

This bug looks so much like Hope when I first got her.
Minus the rack on top.

* Maybe later I will add to this post.. since he is always sending me more beach pics. 

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Her knight in shining armor

My grams is the best person I know. 
She is the most loyal, selfless, honest, forgiving, accepting, unique, enthusiastic and perfectly goofy  
human you will ever find. 
Every adjective I just used describes her entirely and not even enough at the same time. 
If that even makes sense to anyone but me. 

She is a better mother to me than most people are lucky enough to have.
And that is coming from a daughter with a wonderful mother of her own. 
I guess I am one lucky girl, to have two amazing moms. 

I have no particular reason to be writing such a sappy post. 
It's not mothers day.
No one has died, or moved away. 
No Birthday or anniversary. 
Just a random inspiration to write the extraordinary truth about a woman who is sorely unappreciated. 

She is the one who deserves to be most appreciated. 
She is the one who dropped me off and picked me up from school, every single day. 
The one who taught me how to read. 
The one who sang loudly, every morning in the car, making it impossible to be angry.
The one who taught me that The Simpson's are bad. ;)
The one who forced me to eat my fruits and vegetables. 
The one who introduced me to Dr. Suess. 
The one who instilled my love for the Golden Oldies. 
The one who put up with my longstanding, competitive obsession with "I Spy" books. 
The one who made sure I knew every Disney movie by heart. 
The one who enjoyed McDonald's soft serve with me nearly everyday. 
The one who took me through Burger King drive through for french toast sticks every time we were late for class because she knew how much I hated walking in late. 
The one who told me to take pictures... all of the time.
The first one to send a Birthday, Anniversary, Congratulations, Christmas, Let's go to the Beach, Happy Thanksgiving...etc... card.
The one who gives the best bear hug any time, any place. 
The one who practiced all of my spelling B's with me.
The one who gives Tundra the tennis balls straight off the legs of her walker. 
The one who reminds me that laughter can heal all. 
And the one who taught me the importance of family. 

I would not be the person that I am today
without the influence of my Grams. 

Only picture I could find right now...
Grams helping me get ready for the Medieval Fair at Dartmouth Middle School

My dad is the one person who treats her the way she deserves. 
Every time he gets a few days off in a row,
he heads out to Victorville and spends it with grams. 
He calls her to check in and chat every single day. 
He comes out for every holiday. 
He takes her out to dinner and rents sappy chick flicks.
 And recently he took her on a trip. 

She mentioned that one thing she wanted to do before her time,
was go on a road trip up the California coast. 
So that is what they did. 


Her entire life, she has been waiting for her knight in shining armor to come rescue her.
At least for now she has my father.

Friday, June 20, 2014

UNBELIZABLE - Belize City - and the inbetween - Chapter

We decided to make our journey to Guatemala 
more of an adventure by taking a couple side trips 
along the way. 
Our boat docked us in Belize City 
where we were to meet up with our tour guide, Michael.
He was with Caribbean Adventures. 
We loved him. 
Such a cool guy!

We had a little bit a drive ahead of us, 
to get to our next destination. 
Luckily, there was lots to see along the way.

Belize City is probably not your ideal Belizean location for a vacation.
Not that I didn't enjoy experiencing it 
for the few minutes that we spent there.

After about a 3 hour drive,
we had made it to our first mini adventure...

Cave Tubing

 We had to trek through the jungle with these giant tubes. 
It was honestly such a cool experience. 

Crazy eyes
Our new friend Stacy.
She lives in the states now but was originally from Trinidad. 
Wild Pineapple
That is a huge termite nest! Eeh!
Its made out of mud.
If you look close you can see these little tiny termites
ALL over!

Michael informed us that these termites are not only edible...
but they taste like mint!
Of course, Der had to try them!


 Turns out they did taste like mint
No, I did not try them. 
I know, disappointing
I am usually up for trying crazy/disgusting things... but bugs (especially live ones) are my weakness
With a little pressure, I am sure I would have tried them.
But they let me off easy.

There she is... the cave we would soon be discovering
Standing in here... we had little fish nipping at our feet.
It was pretty awesome!
Exfoliation at it's best ;)
All grouped up and ready to go!
Tubers stick together

The inside of this cave was so gorgeous

Into the darkness we drift....

Bat holes

You can see the crystals sparkling on all the walls

There was a little natural waterfall in there

There were fun formations throughout the tour 
that Michael would have us search for. 
One, I remember was the McDonald's M sign.
I spotted that one of course ;)

Sometimes we would get a little too close to the wall...
More bats.. you can see that little guy. 
Daylight again... we've made it to the other side. 
Coolest bus ever
Back on dry land,
it was now time for some lunch.

A very local lunch of rice, beans, and chicken on the bone. 
It was pretty tasty. 

Oh, and we had some little, local friends join us too!

They are called the South American Coati.

Back on the road,
and onto our next mini, in between, adventure!

 Crossing a river...
Bathroom break....

Mayan Ruins meaning "Stone Woman"

The view from the top of the main pyramid was unbelievable!
Oops... I mean unbelizable... 

Just jungle for miles and miles

From up here we could hear monkeys screaming
off in the distance. 
It was really cool and also sort of terrifying

This would bring us to the end of our last day in Belize. 
And what a perfect last day it was!