Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Anniversary On The Elation

We just got back from a really special vacation to celebrate being married for 20 years (gasp! Wow!). This was our ship, The Elation which sailed out of San Diego and took us down to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico and back again.
It was our first time going on a cruise or even on such a large ship. I was really fascinated with the wake as we moved through the water and took many many pictures of it. All those swirls and curves and colors.
Here we are as we leave San Diego. My husband, Marc was already there for a work conference so he was really glad to be going on vacation.
Our state room had a window, which kept surprising me. Because the room was just a smallish hotel room, but then you'd look out the window, and wow, you're at sea!
Every night we'd come back to our room after stuffing ourselves at another wonderful dinner to a different towel animal. This one was hanging from the light fixture and wearing my sunglasses. Kinda freaky. They had a class on how to do the towel folding and a book you could buy too, but I wasn't into learning this skill I guess.
This was a sign that just cracked me up. I know it was an international ship with an international crew, so it probably doesn't mean what it says, but still, good advice to remember!
I loved the nautical flags above the main deck. One of the days at sea was super windy and these flags were impossible to photograph, they were moving so much.
The stairways and elevators had these panels with these funny faces. Sometimes the eyes seemed to follow you.

And here's the carpet pattern which echoed the panels above and the staircase railings (the squiggly bit), reminds me of squids.
After a couple of days we arrived in Cabo San Lucas. We were up early to go on an excursion, so I took this 7am shot as we pulled in near the shore. I love how the seagull ended up in this picture (it was a surprise!).We went out on a whale watching trip in a Zodiac motorboat. Oh boy was it ever a blast! Like a two hour long really speedy, roller coaster ride.
Yes it was windy, check out my crazy hair. We saw three humpback whales, one of which breached right next to our boat. We also heard it singing which was super cool! And there was a big pod of dolphins and of course a whole lot of vast, empty, endless ocean.
We then ambled into the town of Cabo. You know you are in a foreign country when the stop sign says: "ALTO". Here are some luchadores masks hanging up for sale. I almost bought some for our sons, but talked myself out of it, turns out they would have worn them as costumes in their band (like Los Straitjackets). There were a whole lot of touristy and rude tshirts for sale. But this one really made me laugh.And to end the fun, we woke up very early to this sight out our window as the ship pulled back into the San Diego harbor. The moon setting on the horizon. Yes it is orange. Not sure why it was orange (pollution? Sea haze?), but that is the color that our eyes saw, not a trick of the camera or software.
Thanks for letting me bore you with my vacation pictures! :-)

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Sunshine Daydream

Not much is getting done around here.
We're all just lying about.

Soaking up the new spring sun.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Sea Horses Fabric

Thinking about seahorses today. Mostly because my QuiltMav friend Linda M. Poole has a fabulous new fabric line out with Avyln Fabrics.
Go check it out and see what I mean, it really is a beautifully thought-out fabric line. I'm going to request that my local quilt store carry it! I bet it would sell really well, since we are so near to the ocean and all.
I don't usually buy collections anymore, but this one is really special, has seahorses (which I love), lots of swirly details, and in those jewel toned colors that I really love to work with. hmmm, maybe there is a niece that would like a seahorse quilt?
These are all seahorse pictures that I took at the Monterey Bay Aquarium on our recent trip. Look at the camouflage on this one, amazing how they blend in with the coral.
I think that Linda has captured what is so special about seahorses, not in a technically perfect, photographic reproduction sort of way, but in a much more expressive, creative way that really sums them up for me. Their strange yet compelling anatomy with those spiraling curves and unusual details are really conveyed in a pleasing way in her fabric designs..
And then there are the leafy sea dragons, another amazing creature to get to know about. I love the shadow in this picture.

How would you like to have frilly eyelash thingies like this guy?
A list of reasons why I like leafy sea dragons.
  • Dragons, duh!
  • They look like plants
  • Love their colors.

Thursday, March 18, 2010


As we approach the Spring Equinox.
I'm noticing the light get stronger and stronger.
The flowers are noticing too and opening themselves up and welcoming the bees who have arrived. They are moving between the flowers and the plum tree which is in full blossom.

Many of these flowers are new to my garden in just the last week. They were irresistable at the hardware store.

Such a lot of joy they bring me.

Worth every penny.
Especially when they offer this.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

From Mushrooms Underfoot to Unexpected Turtles

A lovely Saturday afternoon was recently spent at Overfelt Gardens/Chinese Cultural Gardens in San Jose as I waited for my son to finish up at his Destination Imagination competition (yes! They won!). There were mushrooms a'plenty after all the winter rains.
At first I thought it was just the usual kind of city park, with some sculpture here and there.But then across the little pond I spotted this cool pavilion and realized it was something a bit more than just the usual park.
People were out enjoying the sunny day.
One of the founders of the garden and her daughter (The woman you can see there through the window) were there sweeping up and were kind enough to explain how the garden was founded and a lot about the symbolic meanings in the designs on the buildings and garden walls.
I wish I remembered it all so I could write it all down here. There was a lot about the elements, this was I believe air (see the clouds).I think this was the symbol for water (see the waves).
I particularly love this swirly wheel/sun design, it was something about the cycle of life and everything being one.The marble mama lion.Dragons on the roof tops.A painted ceiling in one of the small pavilions.Pretty designs on the ceiling and corners.
A beautiful gate to walk under.I noticed something in the corner of the gate as I walked under.A nest!

A great big statue of Confucius.

I like this picture of him where he is walking on the treetops.
Some interesting details in the marble base of a sundial.
The blossoms were popping out on a lot of the trees.

And finally, an unexpected turtle picture! I was taking a picture of the goose in the foreground with my zoom.
I didn't spot the turtle until I looked at the pictures on my computer.
Vision is a funny thing isn't it?