Blue Moon

December 31, 2009
Hey kids, hope everyone's holidays were merry and bright.

Sorry for the lack of updates, it's not for lack of tidbits to share. I'm so behind in writing. This awful sickness is keeping me down. I've practically slept this last week away, but that is actually a good thing, because for more than two weeks I wasn't able to sleep more than four hours. Who's bright idea is it to make night-time cold medicine in four hour doses, anyway?

After weeks of napping, hacking and just being miserable... Sunday night I slept. Monday I slept. 17 hours straight I was out. Tuesday, Wednesday and today was more of the same. Sleep, sleep, sleep. Turns out bronchial asthma combined with sinusitis wears this girl out. I'm finally beginning to feel human again, but it comes in short bursts then the fatigue takes over.

But I'm determined to get better. I must feel better.

Today marks the end of year, a decade even. Unbelievable.

I had plans to do a few posts about a year in review, but I just haven't been up for it. Instead, I'll simply say I've learned a lot and life has been put in perspective more this year than any other. A weak economy, lost money and credit and being so far underwater in our house will do that to you, but the lesson I learned is none of it matters. It's all make-believe numbers, some days you'll have money and some days you won't, it's what you do with those days that matter.

Smiles, love, laughter and joy. That's what truly matters. Fortunately, those are ours for the taking. Those aren't make-believe, they are real.

This year I did things I'd never would think possible. I never saw them coming last New Year's eve, but I'm glad I took chances and put myself out there to see what is possible. I faced fears of failure, needles and bridges. Those fears were senseless in hindsight. In 2010 and the years to follow I will continue to try... whatever comes my way.

The major change of this decade has been technology. Yet, somehow, I don't tweet, I don't have an iPhone, iTouch or iPod. I rarely text, my phone does not have internet capabilities, I've never used an MP3 player or downloaded music from iTunes. Books I read are still in print, but I have embraced online news, blogs, and even Facebook. So, I'm not completely out of touch, the way I see it, I'm just me.

The greatest webtool I discovered this year has been the Google Reader. I don't know how I kept up with blogs without it.

And the single greatest piece of technology that's changed my life in the last decade is a toss up between HD television and the dvr.

Who knows what 2010 holds, but it must be great things since we're not only beginning the new year with a full moon, but it's also a blue moon.

Best wishes for a wonderful, happy, and healthy New Year!

San Diego - Whale Cruise

December 24, 2009
December thru March, whales migrate south to bays near Baja, Mexico to mate and nurse their young. There is a deep ocean trench about 9 miles from Point Loma, whales tend to favor it.

There are a number of cruises offered in San Diego Bay. We went out with Hornblower Cruises. It was a 3.5 hour tour, there are two departures daily. We were on the 9:30 tour. Price per adult is $32 weekdays and $37 weekends.

Before we boarded we watched a couple men prepare to do some maintanence on the Carnival cruise ship. It was massive!!



We're boarded and set for the sea.



So long, San Diego...



Shelter Island...



and Point Loma.



Entering the Pacific - welcome to rough seas. It was a choppy day, many passengers suffered from sea sickness.



Birds frolicking in the Pacific.



We saw a number of military choppers overhead.





Next, we spotted dolphins. They loved to swim beside the boat.



Dolphins playing in the ocean.





Then, we spotted swells. The first sign a whale is nearby.



After toying with us, he surfaced. He was an 85 foot Fin Whale.



He was a bit camera shy.



More dolphins played about.



Sailing the Pacific



Another sailboat was headed into the bay.



Bird Bath, the choppers get a bath after every flight to rinse away saltwater.



Coronado Bridge





Heading back, downtown San Diego.



We had a great time on the cruise. It was extraordinary to see a whale and dolphins absolutely free. It's not something I ever witnessed before. It was pretty amazing.

San Diego - Food

Of course that's where I'd begin. That was my main reason for wanting to go, specifically, for Con Pane Bakery.

Roast beef


and the Italian are my favorite sandwiches from there.


The following are tasty, too.

Turkey



Turkey Cobb



Almost Grilled Cheese - Brie and Gorgonzola



We also tried the Ultimate PB & J. We consumed that on the ride home. We also devoured a number of cinnamon rolls, gruyere and chive bread, pesto & feta foccacia, and a loaf of rosemary bread. Can you say carbicide? Ahh, but it's pure bliss.

M'mmm Beer.



Tasty brews from Rock Bottom Brewery.



Point Loma Seafoods - A seafood deli, stuff dreams are made of...





We sampled the following:

Stone Crab Claws



Combo Plate: shrimp, fish and crab cake. The crab cakes were so good we ordered more.



Fish sandwich



Clam Chowder



Hodad's in Ocean Beach



Bacon Cheeseburger, supposedly one of the best, but I'd rather eat a double double. This burger reminded me a lot of the one I ate at Cheeburger Cheeburger, here in Vegas. I didn't care for that one, either.



Our last night we made reservations for Tabule, but opentable.com failed us. When we got there the restaurant was closed. We quickly yelped to find another option we were led to Dobson's Bar & Grill. The meal was very average. I can't recommend it.

We started with a cheese plate, then entrees followed.



Bistro Chicken



Seafood Spaghetti



Seared Sea Scallops



We went to a place called the Cheese Shop, we were expecting cheese, but none was found. Instead, we had a tasty breakfast.

Blurred, but delicious blueberry pancake.



Biscuits & Gravy, eggs, sausage and hashbrowns



And no San Diego trip is complete without a stop at Los Panchos De Charley. I love their Cadillac Margaritas.

Happy Festivus!

December 23, 2009
I've been saying this year has flown all year, now, here we are one week away from the end of 2009. It has seriously flown by.

It felt like Thanksgiving was days ago, but tomorrow is Christmas eve. Unreal.

I'm sure some of you are traveling for the holiday, others are hosting, and many are mad-dashing to get everything done in time.

This year I did not procrastinate. My shopping was done early. Christmas cards were sent the first week of December. Christmas gifts were shipped last week. I've already exchanged gifts with my mom. She left for Chicago last Sunday. She'll be spending the holidays with our family back there. She won't return until Jan 12.

Her trip left Frank and I without plans. He's been on vacation since the 19th, he doesn't return to work until the 30th. I only wish I had time off. We could've gone to Mexico. Instead, we're hoping for a trip in February. But big changes are ahead for Frank so we might have to put the trip off despite having the funds. We should know more in the next couple weeks.

Christmas will be just the two of us. Tomorrow, we are checking into the Signature. We'll lounge about and enjoy each other's company. Dinner is planned for Nobhill. It's been a while since we've been there. It ought to be a great meal. I know it will be a great stay, I love the Signature.

It's going to be an awfully long day at work tomorrow. I'll be so anxious. With any luck they'll cut us loose early.

I plan to get San Diego details posted that should help pass the time.

Happy Holidays!

Aria - Misc Areas

December 21, 2009
The Viva Elvis Store and Showroom are on the second level.







A couple fun designs near the buffet on the second level.





The Spa is also on the second level.



I was probably most surprised to see this...





Porte Cochere Entrance











That's it. That's Aria. The anchor of CityCenter. Impressed? Can't say that I was. However, I will reserve judgement until I can get back over there to experience it again, and see how it compares to the grand-opening hubbub.

In any case let's hope this 8 billion dollar gamble called CityCenter pays off.

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