November 30, 2010

My Little List of Thanks

As we close out my favorite holiday


I am humbled by all that I am thankful for in my life.

Here is a little list of my thanks:

1. I am thankful for my faith:

It grounds me, comforts me and sharpens me daily.

2. I am thankful for my husband:
He humbles me. He strengthens me. He fills my love tank.

3. I am thankful for my three beautiful daughters:

I love claiming that I am their mom. They make me that proud.

4. I am thankful for the strongest tribe there is to surround me:

My family and friends hold me up and raise my bar.

5. I am thankful for the Navy that provides for our family:

It is never dull, always stable and painfully rewarding.

6. I am thankful I can stay at home to take care of my family:

There is nothing more gratifying than the daily grind of
my girls and supporting my husband.

7. I am thankful for my health:
It allows me to fully enjoy the life I've been given.

There are so many more things that make me stop to say thank you.
These are the biggies.

I might have to make an addendum later when I go through my day
and remember more that I should have listed.

Having said that...

I would love to hear about the things that
would be on your little list of thanks.

As always,

for visiting.

November 29, 2010

I Can't Wait...

I'm so excited.

I must share my good news.

Not only did I find out that
one of my oldest and dearest friends is
coming for a quick visit,


to top it off
my dear, sister-in-law
(after some slight finagling)
is going to piggy back and join us in that visit!

Let me explain what
these two gals mean to me:

Corine is one of my original life-long friends.
She is the one that knew me when I was still yet to wear make up.
She is the one that knew me when I was listening to
The Theme From Greatest American Hero
(Believe It or Not)

Corine moved into my neighborhood when we were both in 7th grade.
This is was just the beginning.

Here we are in 9th grade.

Do you like the matching sweaters around our necks?
How about the bangs?

Here we are in 9th grade again.
We both did tall flags for our Junior High.
That is when our school was called Junior High,
not Middle School.

We were at the Bonita Fest when they still had a parade.
Go Bonita Crusaders.
Are their colors even Black and Orange still?

Fast forward 3 years.
12th grade graduation

How's that for 80's big hair?

The Navy moved me far away from San Diego.
Here we are at one of my visits back home.

We didn't even plan the denim duo.

20 year High School Reunion

That is my dear friend Corine.

Now, let me tell you about Heather.
Heather is someone I could not live without,
another life-long friend.

I talk to Heather daily...
no matter the miles or time zone.

We have talked each other off many ledges over the years.

I love her dearly and am SO happy she is not only my friend,
but family.

You see...

Heath is the one that connected me with my (then, future) husband.

Here we are, circa 1995, in the back room
while we worked at Hot Dog on a Stick
(I only had a crush on her brother at this point)

One decade later,
on one of her many trips to visit.
Heath helps celebrate Michael's 40th.

Heath's High School Reunion
I was her "date"

Corine, Heather and I go way back.

I'm so excited I get BOTH these
great gals all to myself for a much needed

Here is a list of things we plan on doing:

1. Eating Well
2. Drinking Wine while eating well
3. Talk about the latest and greatest
4. Laugh heartily
5. Enjoy the comforts only found with those life long friends.

There is nothing like it.
You can't buy it.
You can't plan for it.
Life long friends just happen.

I am rich in friendship,
rich beyond words...

Can't wait to see you both.
Love you, ladies!

Tell me about one of your lifelong friends...

As always,

for visiting.

November 26, 2010

What do you do on a full tummy?

We all have our traditions on Turkey Day.
We all do that thing we do year after year:

For some it's the family game of football in the backyard.
For others it watching those NFL games on the flatscreen.

For us, it's our annual,
after-dinner walk around the hood.

Here is team testosterone trying to steal a minute to catch the score.
Even Homer is hanging with the manly men.

We decided to take a stroll before the tryptofan really set in

That temp was a moderate mid 50's,
perfect for an afternoon jaunt.

Of course we couldn't pass up an opportunity
for our favorite family pose

Even Grammie and Pop pop joined in the fun.

What do you and YOUR family do on a full tummy
after the big meal on turkey day?

As always,

for visiting

November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving Day Table Setting 2010

As if you haven't seen enough
Thanksgiving table settings
posted on this blog so far.

I got one more for ya...

Here it is.
One for the road.

Thanksgiving 2010
Brookes Townhouse

I had to stick with this season's theme:
Christmas meets Thanksgiving

Yes, that is Santa meets pumpkins with a few star fish thrown in...

You remember those tried and true
monogrammed napkins?
Not sick of them yet, are ya?

Me neither...

That is a crinkled up table cloth I bunched up in the middle.
I used it as a "runner" on top of my tablecloth,
highlighting the stuff in the center.

Tell me how you dressed up your table for the big day?

Shoot, send a pictures.
Would love to celebrate YOUR table setting.

As always,

for visiting.

November 24, 2010

Ding Ding Ding Ding...Captain United States Navy Arriving

It was never our goal in the Navy to make it to Captain.

It was never our ambition to make it past that coveted 20-year mark.

The Navy life is not always an easy path,
especially for an active and involved family.

Having said that,
guess who just made it above and beyond all expectation?

That's my guy,
my man,
my partner.

My husband.

He leads our family.
He is an amazing provider.
He is respected and revered by me and my kids.

He is our strength and our foundation.
He is smart and humble.
He is a hard, hard worker.

He takes pride in his family and his profession.

I am the lucky one here.

We could not be more proud of him.

Here he is being sworn in.
I forget how formal it is at these promotion ceremonies.

One very important and busy man lead the ceremony,
who said a lot of wonderful things about my guy.

In fact, he not only said great things about my guy,
but great things about Navy life and those that support it.
I might have cried a little.

I knew this very important and busy man had a full schedule
yet he took the time to hang out with me,
my family and my husband
before the festivities
just to get to know us a little more.

All I know is that when you have two stars included in your rank,
you don't exactly have a lot of down time to chat with a bunch of common folk.
He made us feel honored, worthy and most welcomed.

Needless to say, I was more than impressed with all the words said,
the people involved and the care they all took of me,
my husband and our family during this ceremony.

Thank you to an amazing staff and their support for making all this happen!

It is customary for chosen loved ones to do the pinning of the
new collar devices (rank insignias) on the lapels.

Michael asked his parents and me to do the honors
while the girls looked on.

Here we are after it was all said and done.
Michael and his team estrogen.

I could not be more proud to stand beside him
in life and in his Navy career.

His most proud endeavor:
his three beautiful daughters.

Ted and Pat flew in for this special occasion...
all the way from chilly Langley, Washington.

Ted, a retired Navy Captain himself, was especially
honored to be there to witness the full circle he created.

Mary our treasured friend from our early Navy days,
wouldn't miss it.

The girls made Dad a homemade card.
They huddled around him as he read it.

The Navy has been a wild adventure for our family.
It is never dull and continues to sharpen us as a unit.

The Navy humbles us.
The Navy makes us appreciate the family we can not be with.
The Navy makes my family strong.

The adventure continues...

As always,
thank you

for visiting.

November 21, 2010

Thankgiving: Setting The Table

I am so corny.
I LOVE setting the table for company,
especially a grand daddy of a day like Thanksgiving.

I typically never do it the same.

I like to mix and match chargers, place mats, dishes and
even my grandmothers old monkey pod square plates from Hong Kong.

I'd like to think it sharpens my creative skills.
Not sure about that.
But I love to make a table pretty.

I also like to use things I already have and use greenery from outside.

Here is the table set for Thanksgiving 2007.
Can you tell I was into zebra at the time?

Rough cut strips of burlap with zebra strips of fabric underneath,
as table runners

Am I the only dork who actually likes to take pictures
of my table before all the fun starts?

Here is the table set for Thanksgiving 2008.

Same burlap rough edged fabric strips as table runners

Ditched the zebra, introduced mercury glass
Sprigs from the back yard

No, this next one is NOT Thanksgiving but
swap out the yellow daffodils and you've got a simple Thanksgiving Table
anyone could pull together

3 simple square glass vases
1 stem in each vase
(I did buy these guys at my local Trader Joe's)

My lovely sister in law got me these
timeless monogrammed napkins one Christmas.

I have used them countless ways.
Here I clipped some evergreen from the front,
tied it up with twine
and a mailing tag
with a hand drawn monogram for each guest.

I have yet to set our Thanksgiving table this year.
You know I'll be taking pictures, though.

Just priming the pump with this post.

Share with me ways you make your table setting extra special.

As always,

for visiting.

November 20, 2010

Latest Obsession--Aviators

I made the switch.
I did it.

I've moved in a new direction with eye ware.

We all have a pair of these guys. Right?

This is me in my big, bubble glasses.
Love them.
Wore them with vigor and loyalty for many years.

Well, it was time for a change.

Maybe it's an East Coast thing.
Maybe it's just time for a new look.

You remember this guy, don't you?

Here is the original inspiration,
Top Gun,
circa 1986.

Timeless style never dies.

Check out
modern day version:

Classic. Simple.



Even the Becks are rocking
their his and hers AVIATORS.

Yes, unisex!

Tell me if the Aviator is in YOU.

Ray Ban has been selling Aviators for many years.
This is the classic RB3025.
They have many variations of this bad boy now.
Not bad for starting around $99.

From Bubbles to Aviators.
What do you think?

As always,

for visiting.