keep on truckin'

I need to get my groove going.  I feel like it's slooowly happening, but I want it now.  N.O.W. New house, new schedules, new munchkin activities, new responsibilities.  We still aren't unpacked from the move, and I'm not sure when that might actually happen.   BigDaddy is in season so making breakfast for dinner, again, is an option.  My meal plans are barely getting made, much less followed.  Back to school, with our additional post-move duties, is throwing me for a loop.  Doesn't this all sound familiar? ;)  Like last year-at-this-time familiar?

But I also know this too shall pass.  At some point, maybe late Fall, we will be more settled into our house, have our routine down, and be a semi well-oiled machine. And that's okay.  At some point we WILL get there. or not. But I haven't been blogging, haven't been working out, haven't been doing much planning in general.  So this is my feeble attempt to get the ball rolling...

Back to School came and went without a hitch. Nothing like last year's beyond embarrassing sob-fest at Kinder Open House or first day sniffles after the bus left.  I knew BigBoy was excited to get back to school and I was in heaven with his teacher and class.  All good fuzzy feelings.  Sassy started preschool this past week and this Mama has three whole munchkin-free mornings, which will soon be totally filled up with errands and volunteering and fund-raising planning.... but get this. I miss them.  It's the Mom double-edged sword.  You can't wait to have some free time and then you feel all weird cuz your shadows are missing.  Don't even get me started about next year when Sassy is jumping on that school bus with Bigboy-- I can already feel the waterworks are swelling up.

I worked out yesterday, one of my super easy, beginner videos.  But I did it.  I took the first step and struggled through it with my pitiful self.  I even hopped on Mr. Snarky and logged into wii fit.  Even after our eatingpalooza from camp, moving, and vacay, I'm down a bit!  I'll take it! But I'm uncomfortable in my own skin right now.  When I'm grabbing the comfy yoga/gaucho pants as soon as they are clean, I know I'm due for a change. 

I also have some updates to blog about.  Remember when I was on my Know Your Farmer Tour and I committed to buying better, local food? I am proud to say I am now the owner of an upright freezer filled with Polyface beef, chicken and a turkey.  I'm putting my money where my mouth is!  Now that we are home, I'm visiting our favorite farm stand again and I love it.  I'm just sad that it feels like we missed most of the summer season. We still have apples to pick. can. not. wait. but Fall just isn't the same for yummy fresh produce.

So there you have it, my blog brain dump.  I'm hoping to get on here more regularly, I feel better when I do and my mama brain feels a bit more useful.  Ta ta for now.


Just call me Gidget

Lunzy aka Surf Diva.
Look at me, look at me!  I'm a guest blogger on the San Diego Convention and Visitor's Bureau

Many months ago I posted a comment on their blog and was randomly selected as a winner for a free group surf lesson.  For your reading pleasure, I bring you Lunzy a la San Diego ConVis: 

As some of you know, I won a group surf lesson with Surf Diva via the San Diego Convention and Visitor’s Bureau website. Surf lessons? Me? BWAHAHA! But in the spirit of Embracing the Crazy this summer (it’s been a doozy!) I did just that. I took the challenge and just went for it.

My family and I take an annual trip to San Diego every year as part of a family reunion on my husband’s side. We are both native Californians, attended SDSU and lived in San Diego for some time, so it’s a great time catching up with family and friends. We now live with our two munchkins (ages 6 & 4) in what I call the “Kinda Country”, in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia. Kinda the antithesis of San Diego. After I won the free lesson I decided to add that to our agenda for this year’s Big Fat Summer Vacation.

Now saying your going to take a surf lesson and doing the actual lesson were two totally different things.  {Read more on ConVis...}


BFSV-TwiTour (Port Angeles, Forks & La Push, WA)

Sorry for the loooongest trip recap ever!  BigDaddy's preseason always, always kicks my booty more than I think it will.  But essentially I become a single parent for a few weeks, he is gone before we get up and home after we are all asleep.  And our laundry multiplies like rabbits.  and the double bonus this year... one laptop is sick and our other went with BigDaddy, so I was stuck with the baby netbook and a 2 inch screen to feed my facebook addiction. 

Without further ado, The Big Fat Summer Vacation continues....After the San Juans and Nikki's we headed onto our last ferry ride of the trip.  Off to Port Angeles (via Port Townsend) and the official start of Twi-Tour!  Woot, Woot!  

We took the early ferry over since we didn't want to chance something going wrong and running out of time.  We were jamming a lot of action into one day.  PA with a meal at Bella Italia (of course!) and a showing of Eclipse, then heading out to La Push that same night.  Thankfully it got dark so late we would have lots of light still into the early evening.  

We found ourselves with ample time, too much actually. Stuck in PA waiting for 4 p.m.  I totally spaced on checking out Bella Italia's info and didn't realize that it didn't open until 4. uuugh!  We could still make the early showing of Eclipse if we hurried since they were right by each other.  We ended up hanging out on the beach for a bit, eating fudge and other snacks from one of the little village shops.  I also found a used book at one of the official Twilight Sites book store--- totally didn't realize it, but a super cool store and bought Omnivore's Dilemma (you know, light vacation type reading...)

Port Angeles' Lincoln Theater.

Finally at 3:40 it dawned on us that we should have made reservations. ouch!  BigDaddy pokes his head in and asks if that's going to be a problem.  No worries, they insist it won't be an issue since they won't be very busy.  BAHAHAHA.  No, they weren't busy, however they asked if anyone else had reservations, sat them first and we were stuck waiting in line.  the.slowest.service.evah.  

On my date with Eddie; Mushroom Ravioli and a Coke.

I wish I could say it was great fun. a perfect start to the TwiTour. or even awesome food. or how about a friendly, smiling staff. nope. no chance. juat "okay" food, HORRIBLY slow service (we had to go to the later show and race to it) and overpriced.  Our server seemed completely annoyed that she had our table, and actually seemed completely annoyed that she had to be a waitress in general. when I ordered the Portabella Ravioli and a Coke.  I said something like "I'm sure nobody orders that" or something to that effect, I got the courtesy laugh and "yeah... and everyone says that too."  

Oh no she didn't.

Don't piss MamaBear off Missy.  At this point BigDaddy and I are brainstorming how we can make her life miserable.  Calling non-stop and asking for her to make a reservation for Cullen. Ask her to hold my doll and pose for picture.  Ask her if vampires ever come in. stuff like that.  Made us feel better at least.  Everyone was visibly miffed and we should have taken notes from the family that sat down next to us.  Mom asked the hostess what the quickest thing would be to order and then ordered 5 spaghetti and meatball meals two seconds later.  They were done and gone before we even finished our bread.

We chocked it up to a restaurant with bad management and bailed to see Eclipse.  Apparently Eclipse was considered a family-friendly movie by some and we were in the company of toddlers. Toddlers?! Seriously people???  I was praying this was not how the rest of the trip would be.  We moved seats to be as far from them as possible and enjoyed the show.

So long PA, off to La Push! 

I woke up before BigDaddy and didn’t know what to expect since we arrived at La Push the night before and it was dark. really, really dark.  I stared out into black nothingness. And we were totally off-grid.  No cell service, no TV, no wireless, no in-room phone, no nada.  A little creepy when you are supposedly in the land of Native American Werewolves.

I braced myself as I pulled open the blinds that covered our huge ocean view windows. I almost fell over.  Huge, twisted tree trunks strewn about, followed by a now familiar log-lined rock beach with a distance view of rocky boulders and a forested cliff.  I seriously felt like I woke up inside New Moon.  To say La Push is beautiful, would be a huge disservice.  It’s breathtaking.  This was our big splurge hotel for the trip.  (Quileute Resort on the Quileute Nation Reservation)  Totally worth it.  

La Push.  Right outside our cabin.
 I felt like should be meditating here, not thinking about werewolves.  Especially after I took a beach stroll and hung out with a bald eagle for a bit.  I let BigDaddy sleep in, but come on, this is the epicenter of our TwiTour, Twilight Mecca!! we needed to get our day started.  

BigDaddy is 6'7".  these are some big, HUGE, trees.
Per Nikki's advice, we drove through Forks the night before since it was only a few minutes down 101 past the La Push exit.  We hadn’t had dinner so we stopped at Forks’ Outfitters and Thriftway (it's one HUGE store) and grabbed some staples to keep in our room, bought some souvenirs (the cheapest place in town for Twilight stuff,) took a few “Welcome to Forks” shots, got the lay of the land and headed out to The Rez.  
Ta-da! We made it!!

 The day was overcast, misty and a bit rainy.  Perfect Twilight in Forks weather! (Non-Twihards: Forks was chosen as the setting since it gets the most non-sunny days in the continental US)

I knew I wanted to eat breakfast at the Forks Coffee Shop, the local greasy spoon diner. Best choice EVER.  It was the total antithesis to our “Twilight Meal” in Port Angeles. Lots of fellow Twilighters (and their husbands/boyfriends/dads) mixed in with friendly locals.  Our waitress, who had worked there for over 30 years, rocked and made us feel totally welcome.  Friendly service, generous portions, and strong coffee.  Our kind of place!   We brought out Eddie and she cracked up.  Next thing we hear is “Hey, Buzz. Saw! C’mere!”  She turns to me and says “This is OUR Edward”  Oh good lord, the town’s “talent” who thinks he represents Edward in Forks.  BigDaddy and I exchanged that what-in-the-world-is-coming-down-the-aisle- look. Correct that, the local talent that looks EXACTLY like Rob Pattinson. No, maybe cuter.  He liked Eddie too and we took a bunch of fun photos (for a tip, of course.)  

Buzzsaw and Eddie hanging out at Forks Coffee Shop.

Twilight Fever had been released and you could start to feel the energy.  People started asking Buzzsaw for photos, people wanted to take OUR photos with Eddie, people wanted photos with Eddie and everyone is talking to each other between trips to the bathroom. As we pay our bill, our waitress makes sure we take a picture with Eddie and a “werewolf tooth” she found on the beach. I heart Forks!

Evidence of The Dawg. eww.
 We head over to the visitor center for our Forks Tour Map and to take shots of Bella’s red truck.  We signed the guest book and got to stick a pin to represent where we live.  The first visitors from the the Kinda Country! Holla!

Representin' the Kinda Country!

After driving by the town’s official “Twilight, The Book landmarks” (they didn’t film the movies here) we dropped off post cards at the Forks post office, and called it a day.  But not without a stop by Dazzled by Twilight on Main Street, a retail store devoted to Twilight and all things vampire/werewolf.  Merchandised products galore under a twinkle-lit “forest”  I grabbed a few magnets as we bought most of our Forks/Twilight souvenirs the night before. 

The Cullen House- actually Miller Tree Inn B & B.

Daddy C-- where are you??  swoon.
Eddie hanging out in his tree at Bella's House.

Heading back to The Rez. 
We headed back to La Push and spot an official looking sign for smoked salmon.  We decide to turn off and check it out.  We are definitely on the reservation.  The sad little neighborhood is covered with trash and the run down track homes are total dumps.  Where in the world is this smoked salmon place??  Oh.  We see a hand spray painted sign announcing “smoked fish” for sale at this residence. It could be the best smoked salmon in the world, but we would never know.  The house is piled with junk and the windows are all covered in tribal paintings. We do a slow roll and get the heck out. 

We get back to our place and realize we can do the trail hike through the Olympic National Forest to Second Beach during low tide.  Can I keep saying amazing, breathtaking and gorgeous without sounding like a broken record? Because really, this entire area is just that. And then some.  

Searching for mountain lions in the Olympic National Park.
First peek at Second Beach. Pinch me!!

I try to imagine where the Quileutes would be cliff diving because in reality, they don’t do that here.  But it’s so easy to envision Jacob hanging out at the beach with his pack brothers. The tide pools meet up with a huge stretch of sandy beach.  We pair up with another couple on the walk back and after chatting for a while, find out they are staying in the cabin next to us, but are non-Twilighters.  Wait, WHAT?! They took a few shots with Eddie in the forest for their daughter and we make plans to meet up later for a bonfire.  We head back out to "town" for dinner at Pacific Pizza (another friendly, local place that has fun with the Twilight crowd.)  We met up with our new friends and enjoyed a gorgeous/amazing/breathtaking sunset as we enjoyed drinks and s’mores. A girl could get used to this.

shhh... don't tell anyone that Eddie crossed the treaty line!
I can't even begin to explain how fun our Twi-Tour was.  We laughed the entire time.  BigDaddy was such a great partner for this trip, totally into it and let me completely geek-out in TwiMom mode.  What more could a girl want??  

At this point, after a week, I was informed by Nana that my children haven’t had time to miss us since they are in cousin heaven. Roger that, but right back at ya kiddos!  MamaBear was pretty happy in the land of Vamps and Wolves. Did we really have to go back home??


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