Monday, January 31, 2011

3 Day Recap

The kids had a 3 day weekend due to a teacher in-service so we took advantage and headed to Mammoth for some snow time. I really wanted to maximize our time there and the last time we attempted that, we left at 4am to arrive around 9:30am which is really cool but none of the kids or I slept along the way so we were useless by the afternoon.

Mammoth (Jan. 2011)
East Sierras on the drive up to Mammoth.

This time we left Thursday night around 9pm and got a room in Ridgecrest by 11:30pm, woke up at 6:30am, ate breakfast and headed on out on the road again. We arrived in Mammoth at 10am and that way we were ready to last the whole day. We rented the kids ski equipment and Hector found some really cool ski pants. Cool as in ultra durable Cordura material that should last about 10 years +, unlike most pants nowadays.

Mammoth (Jan. 2011)
Sunday morning snow play.

My cousin Hannah and her group of friends came up to Mammoth the same time so I got to meet her friends and hang out with her for a bit. The weather on Friday was gorgeous, a very warm 45* and sunshine. We had a great time getting our ski/snowboard legs back.

Mammoth (Jan. 2011)

On Saturday, I spent the day with Hannah on the Eagle lodge side and I might have been too ambitious for her on her first day back on the mountain in 2 years but she still did fine. Beginners fall A LOT and she was no exception but she was a trooper and made it down. Anyway, she will try to go again with us and take another lesson. :)

Mammoth (Jan. 2011)

Meanwhile, I have been battling a cold that settled into my throat/chest giving a nasty cough with grossness that I won't go into which now has resulted in me losing my voice. Boo.

Mammoth (Jan. 2011)

Sunday we had planned on skiing again but I woke before 7am and saw light snow falling. That would change to strong winds along with the snow to light flurries so we cancelled the skiing for that day. We packed up and the kids played in the snow with their snowball maker. Hector didn't think we would need chains when driving out of town but we saw the CHAINS REQUIRED sign and lots of cars pulled over to put them on so we did too. At least we have the easiest chains to put on, and while we stayed inside I took pics of the mountains. Next thing I hear a car coming down the hill too fast (no chains) began slipping and BAM, hit the car pulled over a ways in front of us then go across the 2 lanes over into a small ditch. I was happy he missed us but about 100 yards down the rest of the hill, more cars pulled over to take their chains OFF. Uff, so we had the chains on for less than 5 minutes of driving. I took advantage to take more pics and the kids played in the snow.

Mammoth (Jan. 2011)
Candid shot of Tyler.

After that, it was smooth sailing home. :) Check out the full Flickr set here.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Scenic Route

Pretty drive along Hwy. 395 with all the snow on the mountains.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Random Notes

Little Things I Love:
  1. Hector's Shop-Vac. Who knew that this contraption I got Hector one Christmas (at his request) would be a fun and useful tool? I love using it for cleaning up all the little crumbs & what-nots in the car using all the attachments to get in those nooks and crannies. I hate vacuuming but I love this thing!
  2. My coffee mugs. I had a couple that I got when Josh and I stayed at the Wild Animal Park overnight but the kids got me 2 more for Christmas which are awesome for my collection. I use one of them daily and Josh always points out if its the one that he or Tyler gave me.
  3. My Kindle. When I do get the chance to read, I love having all the books condensed down into this e-reader. I browse the freebies and always find tons of interesting books. Which leads me to...
  4. Amazon Prime. 2 day shipping plus the fact you can find practically anything on there makes me a happy camper.
  5. NHL on the Fly. Hockey highlights from all the games that day plus interesting insight to all the teams. Also add Power Play to that too.
I'm sure I can come up with more to add to this list but that's good for now.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Short Week

The kids get a 4 day week because of a student free day on Friday so everyone is very happy. I'm trying to catch up on laundry and sorting things.

It was a happy Monday starting with Kat and I checking the Kings practice skate in El Segundo. I practiced my AF-lock back button to photograph sports/movement better and it does take some getting used to.

Here are some photos of Kat's favorite Kings player #15 Brad Richardson.

1-24-11 LA Kings Practice Skate

1-14-11 Kings Practice Skate

I also played around with the creative filters in-camera and this is what I got.

Toy camera effect.


Monday, January 24, 2011


Continuing our nice weekend, Hector made room in the garage so my car can get back in there, Tyler worked on his science project and I took the kids to the park & 7-11. Overall, another really good day!!

Best brothers.

Tyler back on the skateboard.

Josh prefers to skate.

Josh practiced his shooting.

To cool off, we got some well deserved slurpies and Tyler jumps for joy.

One Fine Day

Yesterday was a fantastic day on all levels...Tyler had a friend come over for some serious gaming action, Joshua and his Bobcats basketball team won their game (no official score but we definitely outscored them), had a terrific dinner of sushi, the Kings won a nailbiter of a game that had me on an up-n-down rollercoaster and Hector got to spend some man time with our good friend Dan (who introduced us many, many years ago). :)

 Now for some basketball photos...

Josh got his hands on the ball and wasn't immediately swarmed by kids. He managed to pass a few times tand get some assists.

See? Hands on the ball!

Josh knows how to cover his man.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Work in progress...

or WIP as we knitters call it. As usual I have several WIPs going but no worries. A pair of possum socks for Buddy, a beaded silk scarf, colorwork socks for Tyler, a couple of scarves that are hibernating and Madli's shawl that I want to finish for our upcoming Mexican cruise.

Today I focus on Madli's Shawl that I started last week and wasn't quite sure if it was the One (or the right one). I also started another shawl but wasn't feeling the love for it so I frogged it....rrrrrriiiiiiiiiiiiiipppppppppppppppppp. :)

So I finished the edging and started the main pattern that will repeat 31 times (phew) so I still need to complete the first set then knit it 30 more times. I have a month, we shall see how that goes.

To get a better idea of how the yarn will work with the pattern, I decided to lightly block what I had and then go from there.

Madli's Shawl: in progress
Here is is pinned out on my fancy garage mat/blocking mat that H bought for $20.
I do like it and I'm plunging ahead full steam. :)

Madli's Shawl: in progress

Madli's Shawl: in progress
I'm trying to stay focused but I can't help admiring it!

Friday, January 21, 2011

The dreaded stairs

Time to install the piano stairs here...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

1st Game of the Season

Bobcats Basketball
Looking good in his uniform.
Bobcats Basketball
The velcro on Josh's shoe is loose so guess who loses a shoe during the game?

Bobcats Basketball

Bobcats Basketball
After his team scores, Josh waves to the crowd.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

3 day weekend

We had our usual busy Saturdays filled with karate, basketball and hockey so it was really nice to have the Monday off. The kids got to spend some quality time with Grandma while I went to see The King's Speech with Kat & Carol. What a fantastic movie and Colin Firth definitely deserves those awards.

Hector and I also watched Inception. The problem I have is that a movie comes out and gets great reviews/feedback then we finally see the movie and it's ehhh, okay. I didn't even hear that much as in spoilers etc but it was very interesting and challenging. I even picked super simple knitting so that I can pay attention. :) Anyway, the movie has to settle in my brain then maybe when it comes to HBO, I can watch it again and something will click.

Enough talk, you wanna see some pictures?

Oilers player #26 has the puck with a Kings player coming up fast...

Then CRASH & check into the glass and this wasn't even hard.

Old Torrance
Josh gets a haircut in Old Torrance. He is really dreading it.

Old Torrance
Closed Pawn Shop in Old Torrance.

Friday, January 14, 2011


Ah, I love Morrissey and Sparks so how can I combine the two???

A Sparks song/video called "Lighten Up Morrissey". Hee hee.

Thursday, January 13, 2011


Today I went over to the Alamitos Bay marina where I could take some pictures and check out some yarn. Double score!! The weather is definitely warming up which is a nice change from this past month's chilly wet weather. I might even wear shorts this weekend!!

Alamitos Bay

Gorgeous day and weather. It was pretty bright but that just gives me a chance to practice exposure and settings.

Alamitos Bay

Alamitos Bay
Alamitos Bay

It might be hard to see but in the last photo you can still make out our local snow capped mountains. :)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Fingerless Mitts

Getting some of my knitting projects finished for others. First up is the fingerless mitts in Draygone yarn (San Jose Sharks colorway). My good friend from college is coming down to catch a Kings/Sharks game later this month and out of the choices I gave her, she chose mitts. :)

Fingerless Mitts

The best thing about these mitts is that you can fold the cuff over to allow maximum finger movement/activity and then flip them back if your fingers get cold.

Fingerless Mitts
Tyler was a great sport in modelling these!

Fingerless Mitts

Even though the Kings and Sharks have a lively rivalry, M and I don't let that get in the way of our friendship. I actually love their colors although teal isn't the most hockey-iest of colors. I found this yarn on Ravelry and Brynna makes several team colorways so you know I had to order me some Kings colors. Now the question is socks or mitts. I'm leaning toward the mitts since they will be visible whilst I cheer on my team!! Go Kings!!

These will keep her hands toasty warm and she can still read a book during intermission.

Maybe he can be a hand model.

The problem with mitts is that they are a pain in the arse to photograph. I haven't taken the proper time to setting up the tripod and remote shutter release to de self portraits but one day.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Yarn Cravings

I'm making some changes this year beginning with my sock yarn club. Shocking, I know but it will be good. First of all, the Loopy Ewe club is by lottery and I was lucky to be selected last year. Every other month, I would receive a skein of sock yarn that gave me a chance to try a new yarn usually in an exclusive colorway along with 2 patterns (one sock pattern and a non-sock pattern) and some cool knit-type goodies. This year I would be automatically be included in the club but the Loopy club is changing a bit too. As much as I love their company, I decided to skip the club since it wouldn't be fair to take someone's place if i wasn't going to truly enjoy all what the club has to offer.

Now the next step is finding another sock yarn club. Yay, for Google! Top of the list is Socks That Rock which is the name of the sock yarn line. I remember seeing it but decided against it since I was a newbie, had to pay for all 6 installments at once and not sure what to expect. That was 2 years ago and now I'm ready for this next step. So I went for it and sent an email thanking Hector for my Valentine's day present. :) What a sweet man he is; he didn't bat an eye at my yarn cravings!

So now, I just wait for the end of January for the first installment.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Short Version

Ah, weekends are too short but we managed to squeeze in plenty of activities. Karate, basketball, hockey, haircut, Sunday school,lunch with Grandma, dinner, drinks and shooting range. I might have left something out but that pretty much sums it up.

Now here are some pictures of the Kings game.

I was waiting for this kid's McFlurry to fly off when the players smash into the glass but it never did.
Kopi in a scuffle. Unheard of (til now).

Lots of action.

Game winning goal.

Saturday, January 08, 2011


Starburst filter really adds to the pizz-zazz.
We are back into the swing of things here at Chez Fromage with the added schedule of Josh's basketball practices/games. I finally got around to taking pictures of some Christmas lights a few nights ago. I used a starburst filter to really enhance the lights and it was lots of fun. I really need to remember to try it out more often!

Our blue icicles lights.

I like this one a lot.

Not sparkly light but it still almost finished one row scarf in Beaded Silk yarn that Kathy gave me for my birthday. It's so pretty and luscious.


Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Different Route Home

Another gorgeous yet cold day! I love the fresh air after the rain because honestly we don't really get that much rain here in SoCal . It's a nice refreshing change.

I took a different path home after walking the kids to school and nothing spectacular hit me but I did see this...
Neighborhood cat

I'm not sure if this is Simba or another orange cat but he wasn't very friendly and I know Simba is. He tucked himself under a big bush next to a rock so I was happy I had the 100mm lens on. He wasn't very cooperative and this is the best I could do.

It looks pretty nice as is right out of the camera.

Same picture but levels adjusted in Photoshop.

That was the only exciting thing that happened. Otherwise I took pictures of my favorite succulent @ Judy's and tiny yellow rose I planted by our porch.


I also went into our backyard to look at our sad tomoto plants etc from the summer. Surprisingly (to me anyway) that they are still producing tomatoes (some rotting on the vine) and our pathetic strawberry plant that choked out 1 measly strawberry over the summer to be eaten by some bug/worm now has 3 (yes, 3) strawberries growing. It's been really cold lately especially at night but I guess the rain awoke them somehow.


I know practically nothing about gardening so I don't know if this is usual or what.