Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Enchanted Forest

We are a few days into the kids winter break so I'm trying to get things done while keeping the kids somewhat entertained. Yesterday we went to visit my cousin Hannah and meet her new baby W! It was fun! Sure, we had some chaotic moments where the babies don't cooperate but it was all great! I was just happy to see them and catch up on stuff.

The highlight of the day was our visit to the Enchanted Forest of Lights at Descanso Gardens. I believe this is the first year but it really is a super experience for everyone. My video will show the cool things we saw and experienced.

Hope you enjoyed my video and got a glimpse of what our enchanted evening was like.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

more random things


These awesome shoes are a gift to myself! I saw them and when they went on sale during Black Friday, I grabbed them! 

I wear them in the house for now to stretch them out a bit and to get used to wearing them. I also need to get stronger laces. The ribbon laces are very pretty but not practical for actual laces...


A photo posted by Debbie T (@moodybq) on

A photo posted by Debbie T (@moodybq) on


I am still working my way through the Opal sock yarn Advent Calendar. I love seeing each day will produce another little mini skein of sock yarn. I'm trying to keep up with knitting a couple of hexipuffs from each one and it's a challenge but I'm getting more hexipuffs this way for my seat cushions. 

Also, I'm knitting ornaments  from them like little hats, and hopefully socks and sweaters. My plan is to have an ornament for my family members. I better get going!

Friday, December 09, 2016

tis the season

Hope you all are having a great Christmas season and remembering to share the gift of love and compassion.

I've been busy working my side biz while doing all my normal activities and naturally some are getting cut out...well, that just can't happen. I usually knit or paint a little gift for family members so I need to get going. My wrists are not able to handle all the long hours of knitting I used to do but I will try to balance it all.



A photo posted by Debbie T (@moodybq) on


Shadow has been in-your-face and pet me type of mood so it's sort of funny. When we first got him, he was super skittish and aloof but now almost 2 years later he is the most aggressive about getting his head pets. Shadow will head butt, put his paw on your face or hand in order for you to move that unused hand and pet him! Then when you finally bend to his will, he will make these soft grunts and it racks me up.

Okay, back to knitting... I knit a couple of small things that I think my family will like.


A photo posted by Debbie T (@moodybq) on

This little cat is adorable. I think I used a smaller weight yarn but pretty much everything is adaptable. 

The best one is my zero calorie donut. Really just the cutest thing. This one made my wrists ache but I plowed through because I wanted it done. Off course I want to knit more in more color combos so I'll have to try. 
A photo posted by Debbie T (@moodybq) on

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

something different



For some reason, I find this commercial extremely funny.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Rainy Thanksgiving

I hope that you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We had a nice, low-key time with just our family of four and my mom. Hector ordered a smoked turkey from our favorite smoke meat shop in Bishop and it was super delicious! I really liked that I could just heat it in the oven since it was fully cooked. Usually Hector and I have to tie and wrestle the turkey and then skewer it for our rotisserie. It comes out amazing and fast but it' just more effort overall.

The meal was lovely and it was nice to just share a nice meal. My mom is getting older and family is so important to us. My mom's friend recently passed away 2 weeks ago so we need to cherish our moments.

Black Friday was another low key day for me although the kids ventured out and walked to Target and Toys r Us. They are more adventurous than me, obviously. I went out Wednesday shopping and spent my anniversary gift card at Nordstrom. I didn't have any ideas except for some makeup eye brushes. 

Side note: I bought 3 brushes. A blender brush, an eye shadow brush and smaller taper brush. Lately, I've been doing my eye makeup differently to work with my hooded eyes so I thought some new brushes would be nice. I used them Wednesday night and boy, I noticed a huge difference in the ease of application. Brushes have come a long way! 

So back to shopping....I was wandering around Nordstrom and found the sale table at the purse section. Needless to say, my shopping was done after that. 2 purses and some more bucks past my gift card amount but it was done. Another side note: I ended going back Sunday because the Black Friday deal gave me another 20% off one of my purses. Yay!

Hector and I went dancing a couple times which was fun! Add a couple hockey games sprinkled in there and some good rain in SoCal made for a wonderful weekend!!



Friday, November 18, 2016

Smile

LEGO DEPECHE MODE ENJOY THE SILENCE from Lukas Tuzar on Vimeo.

It's Friday and I hope everyone had a great week! Time to relax (a little) and enjoy! 

My week was super busy yet I'm learning to appreciate the ups and downs a little more. I'm grateful to my wonderful husband...did I forget to mention that we had our 20th wedding anniversary on the 9th? 

Thanksgiving is coming up fast...I just realized this when people begin asking what our plans are? What? It's next week?!? Luckily Hector ordered the turkey which arrived yesterday. 

I'll leave you with a joke...

Why did the cranberry sauce turn red??



It saw the turkey dressing!!!!!!


Boom! :)



Sunday, November 06, 2016

Another weekend flies by...

It's already November!! How did that happen? I remember that 2016 didn't start off so well (in general) and has continued to be a sad/weird/not-so-good year. 

The good things for me personally though is that 1) I turned 50 years old and Hector threw an awesome, epic surprise party that he worked on for almost a year...2) Hector and I will be celebrating our 20th wedding anniversary which I still can't believe...3) I'm still challenging myself personally to always improve and become a better person.

Sometimes, it's easy to get complacent and in a rut so one has to shake thing up a bit sometimes. 

Meanwhile, I gave our hockey tickets away to out niece and her daughter since Hector went to Vegas and I couldn't find anyone to go with me. Then Julie steps in saying her BF isn't going to the hockey game with her so she asks me....everyone wins! Best of all, we got to try out the new restaurant Cleo in DTLA. Mediterranean food at its best. Everything we ordered was excellent. Hummus, Brussel sprouts, kabobs and drinks. We will definitely be going back again soon.

Then we have the hockey game...to top off our evening the Kings win!! First win in regulation which is kind of weird almost a month into the season. I got to visit Trish and her daughter during intermissions so it was just a really nice night. 

Sunday morning I was able to sleep in a little bit which is always a sweet thing. Not much on our schedule except to take the kids to California Adventure for the afternoon. They never have been in the Grand Californian so for some reason it was exciting for them. They were equally excited to enter the park through the hotel entrance which saves us time going all the way around. Quick security check and bam, we're in the park. It was also Dapper Day at the park where people dress up, mostly in vintage/retro clothing which adds a nice touch. 

Phew!! Okay, another week starts...a very important week that includes Election Day. Please exercise your right to vote!!!!

Saturday, November 05, 2016

Halloween Weekend


So much to catch up on...still working on my time management but things are moving along and we are happy and healthy.

We had a super busy Halloween weekend with H debuting his One Punch Man Saitama costume which involves H shaving his head.

Yes, he shaved his head and it totally completes the look. 


Saitama

I admit, I was skeptical if people would recognize this character since he's kind of a niche anime cartoon but nope, I was wrong. As soon as we approached the door, the bouncer knew, the cashier knew and another employee knew. Heh.


Saitama

My costume on Saturday night which is a vague sort of animal. I'm going with panther, yeah! This night we went to the Pet Shop Boys concert in DTLA. It was awesome and I've been a huge fan since the very beginning. I remember several years ago that we were going to see them at the Hollywood Bowl but it was cancelled. 

Recently I noticed that they were in concert in Vegas so I searched and wow, they're in Los Angeles at the the Microsoft Theatre! We've never been there and it's a really great venue. 

We arrived early to use our Morton's gift card and enjoy some great bar food and drinks. We love Morton's and sat in the bar watching the Kings lose. 


Saitama
Saitama <Saitama

We had a such great time and PSB sounded fabulous. They have so many hits and they released a new album so there wasn't enough time for all their hits but so much fun. 


Saitama

We even ran into another Saitama at LA Live!! So funny! 

On Sunday, we had a family event at the Hollywood Bowl to see Nightmare Before Christmas with Danny Elfman and the original cast sing along to the film. This is the last year that Danny Elfman will do this which is sad but it looked like everyone involved loved performing and it was super cool to see them get so animated (haha).

I did get dressed up as Fiona from Adventure Time while our kids declined. We had lots of fun dressing up at all our events and now is the big question of whether Hector will keep his head shaved or grow out his hair...I guess that will be for future posts..

Saitama

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Kick in the Pants

Last week I met several people in a room of hundreds that are encouraging and supportive. I joined these people to partner with the MDs that created ProActiv and now have their own premium skincare line.

I'm taking charge of my destiny to love my skin and share it with everyone! I tried the Reverse regimen and it works!!  I will be posting before/after photos eventually but after 3 months, I've noticed better skin texture, smaller pores and lightening of my dark/age spots. 

My Rodan and Fields website. Please take the time to use the Solutions Tool and be sure to click next until the end to email your results. It's easy!

It's not too late to get great skin and with a 60 day money back guarantee, you can't lose! 

Friday, October 21, 2016

Ant

Another photo from my archives...


IMG_5116

Love this....need to work on focus although I do love the lines of the flower. 
From 2009. This was taken on my Rebel  XT which I have now loaned to Tyler for his high school photography class. He hasn't used it yet but I look forward to his learning process.


Thursday, October 20, 2016

water drops

Red  Flower1


It seems that my hobbies have increased in the last several years and my photography has suffered. I also realize I need to tag my photos so I can find them easier....

Anyway, here is  an oldie from 2011.  I really do love photography although the DSLR is quite heavy for my wrist. I'll need to wear a brace and see if that helps....



Monday, October 17, 2016

Vegas: Oct 7, 2016

More Vegas!! Not the typical gambling and debauchery type of day. We had to do some serious work for the morning in cleaning out Carlos' place. It was a very long day...up til 3 am the night before and up again at 9 am.

I vlogged our activities and sped it up to make it not so tedious. I tried inserting music at the right times. For whatever reason, the video software is limited in choices so sometimes I use the youtube audio library but I can't seem to put in more than one track into my video. So now I notice that the fountain scene has no music. Ugh. So sorry.

Well, please enjoy the video and I will keep working on it....




I will be venturing on a personal adventure so stay tuned for that. i hope to earn some extra $ and we shall see how it goes. 


Saturday, October 15, 2016

Adult Getaway

Wow, I just finished recovering from our Las Vegas getaway without the kids!!! It was they're first time alone on their own but they did great. 

So the weekend of October 7-8 was the final Frozen Fury. This is a LA Kings preseason event that combines Vegas and hockey. Always a rowdy affair and since this is the final year, there were 2 games to enjoy! As some of you may know, Las Vegas is getting their very own NHL team (name to be determined soon) so that means the Kings can't really hold their Frozen Fury in Vegas. But that doesn't mean we won't have hockey in Vegas because I think this just opens the opportunity to visit Vegas more often.

It's a win-win in my eyes. I don't even have to see a Kings game because I would see any hockey game there to be supportive. Lol.

So back to Frozen Fury...I talked Hector into going with me this year and I booked a flight/hotel package. For some reason, the hotel rates were really high during this weekend. In years past, we've stayed at the MGM because that's where the hockey games were held and the pool area really is a plus for my friends. MGM rates were crazy expensive so our motley crew of 8 were scattered all over the Strip. Also the new arena (T-Mobile arena) is not specifically tied to a hotel casino so we'd all have to trek to the games anyway. 

We had people staying at Monte Carlo, the Venetian, AirBnb and I chose Vdara. It turned out as you'll see in my video that our place at Vdara became the central hangout before both games. 



If you just watched my video, I am extremely excited at  our "room". Hector and I've traveled quite a bit but this was our first HUGE upgrade. I don't have any tips or advice as to why we got this fantastic place but I'll lay out a few reasons as to why it worked out.


  1. We arrived on a Thursday. And very late, close to midnight. 
  2. In addition to Frozen Fury there are a convention at the MGM for 15,000 for the R + F skincare line.
I think it was a combo of those 2 things along with rooms selling out that we got upgraded to a one bedroom penthouse suite. I like saying that. With a gorgeous view of the Strip and the Bellagio fountains. 

It was definitely a great surprise to kick off our weekend. Stay tuned for more!!!


    Wednesday, October 05, 2016

    San Diego weekend; part 2



    We managed to drive down toward the waterfront area of San Diego and look around a bit. I always have fond memories of SD and it is a great place to visit. Sure you have the obvious places like Sea World and the San Diego Zoo but there are many other things to enjoy....




    Monday, October 03, 2016

    Vlogging

    My version of vlogging is just highlighting or showing what I want. Basically it's just another form of expression for me. Definitely nothing groundbreaking but it's fun for me. Just like photos are memories, so are videos. 





    Friday, September 30, 2016

    September

    I feel like I am failing my goals, once again but I will move forward...

    Honestly, I made a video last week and was in the process of uploading it to YouTube and the program unexpectedly quit on me. Hair-pulling moment over lost editing!!! So today I pulled myself back into the sauna-esque office room to redo this video. 

    Oh and somehow between the 2 video editing sessions, I caught a cold from Hector. So that wasn't fun. And there was a heatwave of 100* that has slowly decreased to about 85* today which is much better but our house has retained all of the week's heat and kept it retained to act like a sauna in the office.

    The good news is that I have a new video to show you and since I'm on a roll, I am loading up part 2 of my San Diego weekend to edit. We'll see if there is anything good or I'll just scrap it and move on.




    Have a great weekend and keep cool people!!

    Wednesday, September 14, 2016

    Survey

    Sorry for the delay....family situations, back to school and other life issues can sometimes sideline me. 

    My BIL Carlos was probably one of my 2 regulars to keep up with me and my family and now he's gone. RIP. My hubby is probably my 2nd regular because I like to think he'll see some interesting fact about me or something I post. Hee hee. 

    So that leaves me the question, do any of my readers care if I blog with pictures or vlog with video?  Hmmmm, well chime in your preference in the comments...


    I have a bunch of ideas so now I need to prep for some and see how they come out. Take care!!


    Saturday, August 20, 2016

    Sadness

    On Tuesday, we received the sad news that Carlos, H's brother passed away. There are lots of emotions going through our hearts and minds but we remember Carlos as being kind and stubborn. Sure, being stubborn is not usually seen as a positive trait because he could really be frustrating but that's how I remember him but that frustration is now looked on as an endearment because that's who Carlos was. I didn't always agree with him but he was always nice to me and caring.

    Carlos spent the last part of his life in Vegas and his visits became more infrequent in the past few years but I remember him wanting to go to the ocean one time. we went to the tide pools and he had a great time scrambling around the rocks with my kids. 

    So on Wednesday, the kids and I went to the Redondo Beach pier to find some peace and comfort. I recorded a video and I will always have it to remind me of Carlos and his spirit. 

    RIP Carlos. We will miss you yet you are in our hearts. 


    Wednesday, August 17, 2016

    OC Fair date



    The kids and I go to the OC Fair every summer and always have a great time. It's the perfect size for us to see all the rides, exhibits and FOOD!!

    Hector joined in on the fun twice this year and we pigged out. It's even better if we have more friends to share the huge portions. We tried to arrange an outing with friends but something came up so it didn't work out. 

    The kids take off to explore which is nice so they don't get totally bored while we go looking at the Parade of Products. I bought my supply of pink jewelry cleaner and had my ring and Hector's ring cleaned and polished.

    I caught pokemon at the fair too.I can't wait till next year's fair!


    Tuesday, August 16, 2016

    Stockton visit

    Wow, this NorCal trip flew by and to end it we stopped in Stockton to visit my alma mater University of the Pacific where I spent 5 of my college years earning my pharmacy degree. It was a great experience where I made lots of wonderful friends and memories. 

    Of course, it's changed a little and  I had fun showing the kids around campus. I am still learning editing and working on my steady camera work. Always a work in progress!




    Stockton has grown a lot since I was here last which is great although the crime rate is still pretty bad in some areas. We had lunch a some burger joint and cooled down with a some Sonic later that afternoon. 

    Summer is winding down with a lot of schools already beginning but our school district starts after Labor Day so that can be a good thing.

    Thursday, August 11, 2016

    NorCal trip: Day 3 and 4


    Day 3 was a scheduled college tour of Cal Berkeley. I didn't record any video since it was guided but I  did a shot of the kids at the gate which was used by Pixar for Monsters university. It was a very interesting tour and our student guide had a lot of funny and interesting facts and stories. 


    Day 4: we are in Sacramento and not much planned so off we went to see Cal State Chico. We did our own self-guided tour and it's very pretty. 







    Monday, August 08, 2016

    Day 2 of NorCal trip



    After a day of driving up the state, a day in SF exploring we were ready to chill and relax. Linda suggested mini-golf so off we went. Only 2 courses to choose from but there was a big variety of challenges and we all had fun.

    I remember loving mini-golf as a kid. 

    Friday, August 05, 2016

    Day 7: Love your spouse challenge

    Hector and Debbie at Golden Pavillion

    Travelling!! Hector has opened the world to my eyes and therefore our kids reap the benefits also!
    I had not traveled practically at all until I met Hector. I heard that you can tell a person's real personality when you travel with them. Heck, I learned a lot about myself too.

    In the end, keep an open mind and wear comfortable shoes! Now, our family loves traveling and we always have great memories. Japan is a special favorite because this is our very international trip as a family with 2 young boys and the Japanese people couldn't have nicer to us.

    So the 2nd time to Japan was again very special. Both kids had great times experiencing the different food and shops.There were no meltdowns, no arguments and no injuries! It was nice to be able to enjoy some other sights this time that we couldn't do before and we were able to explore more of Japan this time around.

    We share this loving bond and I look forward to spending the rest of my life with Hector.

    Note: I may extend this challenge to a monthly basis since I feel I have more to share and learn.


    Thursday, August 04, 2016

    Day 6: Love your Spouse challenge

    hockey buddies forever

    What I love about Hector and us is how we complement one another. Sure we have our disagreeable moments but we know that deep down, we love our spouse and will work toward a resolution. Sometimes that means, having to say you're sorry even though no one is at fault or forgiving the person/situation. I've learned to swallow my pride and sometimes it's not worth to engage in drama, a grudge or just having a different opinion.

    I don't like conflict and who does? But sometimes it's easier to try and get past it for the greater good. Don't sweat the small stuff  (because it's all small stuff).

    Wednesday, August 03, 2016

    Day 5: Love your Spouse challenge

    A photo posted by Debbie T (@moodybq) on

    I love ice hockey but I owe it all to Hector. One Christmas, I got a 3 game pack to the LA Kings for Hector. We went and it was fun but I wasn't really all that excited about it.
    Over the years, the number of games kept increasing and the location of our seats got better and better. I'm not sure when I realized I had this hockey addiction but I'm hooked.

    Sure, I gripe about the ticket prices and Hector reassures me that its fine and that we can afford it. Well, it has paid off so much to see the LA Kings rise from a not-so-good team to a 2 time Stanley Cup champion and for us to actually witness the team winning the Cup at home. 

    We have another thing to share and love which is pretty awesome to have your soulmate have the same feelings. I never would have thought myself as a "sports fan" but thanks to Hector, I am a hockey fan! 

    Tuesday, August 02, 2016

    Day 4: :Love your Spouse Challenge

    Wedding Day

    Our wedding day, November 9, 1996. It took a while to reach this day after 5 years of dating, on and off (mostly on) and we needed every moment to discover our true love for one another. 

    This year will our 20th anniversary and it's flown by! Sure we had our tough times and lots of really wonderful times but we managed to work through it all. I can't imagine my life without this man and all that he does for me and our family. 

    He works hard to keep give us more than we could ever need. He is generous to a fault and he will always give me love and support. Life is too short to let all that we have to give and offer go to waste. He pushes me to be a better person, in fact he does this to everyone I know. I love him and myself to be the best person I can be and it's due to this guy! XO


    Monday, August 01, 2016

    Day 3: Love your Spouse Challenge

    So in Love.


    One of our traits that we love about each other is our love for dancing. I have to be in the mood for it much more than Hector but in the last year, we revived our dance nights. When we first started dating, we went out dancing as much as we could. Really! Like 3 or 4 times a week. It was more a challenge back then because dance music was mostly Top 40 so alternative/new wave was really scarce. Then I discovered techno/dance/electronic music and that kept me happy. Hector is much more flexible in his music dance choices.

    Here we are, must have been in 1996 at our first apartment together when we first got married. Hector's secret weapon was his pretty hazel eyes that mostly was hidden behind his glasses but when we went out he would wear contacts and ladies, watch out! :)

    We go dancing almost every weekend and now it's easier to find me fave new wave places because it is now retro/oldie music. We have our own favorites and we have lots of fun together which is a testament to our love. Maybe eventually we will start ballroom dancing to keep ourselves on our toes and always keep dancing  with each other.

    Saturday, July 30, 2016

    Day 2: Love Your Spouse challenge

    Remember Sacramento? Hector got his residency there and I basically only left that area about 18 months previous so I didn't imagine myself going back there so soon.

    Luckily, I still had college friends in the area that I could visit and catch up.

    One of my good friends, Monica actually commuted to school which was about 30 minutes each way. She and her family were super nice to me especially on the holidays I couldn't go home. 

    The fun fact was/is that her family owns an egg ranch in Acampo outside of Lodi. It was a startling thing to me because it was so country to this city girl. I would go to Monica's house overnight sometimes where her German family welcomed me with open arms and huge amounts of food. The first time I had dinner, they served steaks like full on huge T-bone steaks. I think my eyes bulged out when I saw the size of them! Then it was their turn to look at me funny when I asked for 1/2 of it. 

    I had such good times there, seeing how the ranch operated and the huge warehouses of chickens. When Monica brought eggs, she brought a flat of eggs. When her family had a party, there wasn't just one dessert but a whole table of them. I had not idea what they were but there were oh so delicious. 

    Her dad and his friends would let us try vodka drinks and be cool with it. I have the best memories of that place. 

    So I had to share with Hector all the good times and we headed out there one day I was visiting Hector in Sacramento. 

    It looks like we're having a great time. And yes, we got a flat of eggs.


    Eggs for Sale.

    Friday, July 29, 2016

    Love Your Spouse Challenge

    Day 1: I keep seeing this Love Your Spouse Challenge for 7 days on FB which got me thinking, what would I post and share? So I'll do my own challenge here on my blog and I can share more story about the photo.


    The Beginning of Us

    Here we are, practically babies...not really I'm 25 and Hector is 32. The year is 1992. Hector graduated med school and I was one year out from pharmacy school. My friend Kathy and I decided to throw a Black & White party for friends and co-workers. We had about 10 people show up which was fine for us. It was chill. Hector drove up from San Diego and at the end of the night, he said that he had something for me.

    I wasn't sure what to expect but Hector pulls out an envelope with a letter inside that had been opened. I started to read it but I wasn't sure what it meant; it was from UC Davis in Sacramento. I looked up at Hector what does this mean? He said that he got a surgery residency in Sacramento so he didn't have to leave me.

    Hector had gotten a residency in Buffalo, NY so that would have been a huge change in our relationship. Sacramento was closer at 350 miles versus 3,000 miles. But it was closer.

    Even back then although we said were not serious, it seemed that we spent a lot of our free time together. Maybe I didn't realize it back then how we would end up together but I knew that Hector was important to me.

    I was sheltered in many ways and Hector wanted to see what was out in the world for him but I think God had a plan for us. :)


    Thursday, July 28, 2016

    NorCal: Day in SF

    I took the kids on a road trip about a week or so ago. We headed up north to SF where we spent a few days with my friend Linda who showed us around....we met when we were new grads out of pharmacy school and had an instant connection. We are about the same age but she was already married and soon expecting her first son. Then her husband got transferred to Virginia and they moved away. We stayed in contact and after a few more years and another baby boy for her, they moved back to California but to the SF area where they've been since. She came down to LA for my wedding and another visit soon after my first son was born. We always have a great time and it still continues when we see each other again.

    I made a video and slapped it together. I will eventually learn better filming and editing techniques but it's another fun outlet for me.


    Wednesday, July 27, 2016

    Cat and Yarn

    IMG_7039.jpg
    This year, it seems that the cats have switched up their preferences in humans. Shadow was usually all about the person on the loveseat and still does but he now spends a lot of time with me over on the other side of the sofa. He does love his head scratches the most.


    IMG_7079.jpg

    We had a heatwave last week and it is still hot for here so I finished knitting a shawl! Using up that pretty stash yarn and taking advantage of a pattern free for a limited time.Stripes and lace make this interesting enough and now it looks like Starry Night from Van Gogh. Well, it reminds me of it...

    Trying to finish up some other projects before the Olympics start and then the Ravellenic challenge begins....

    Friday, July 15, 2016

    Roadtrip!

    Heading out for an adventure....


    Wednesday, July 13, 2016

    Universal Studios Hollywood

    Our summer is sort of loosey goosey in that our plans are not plans at all and mostly impulsive. I saw a local mom friend post her impromptu trip to Universal Studios July 5th and she said the crowds weren't too bad. So off I hustle to get our discount annual passes, finish our errands and drive out the next day. 

    Our focus was on Harry Potter world with the kids' understanding that the Forbidden Journey line may be long so we'll do whatever else to pass the time. Hey, I'm sure we can find some sort of entertainment at an amusement park.

    We arrived to the park at about 1pm. The crowds were fine until we hit Harry Potter...that's where everyone is! Still, it's not horrible and the wait time to Forbidden Journey is 120 minutes. We get in line and realize we're going to have to wait in the sun for a good portion of it. So we get out of line to try again later in the day. 

    Next up on our agenda is to try Butterbeer. I heard from people that it sort of like cream soda with butterscotch. Okay,  so I tell the kids that we will be sharing one. The lines were long for butterbeer which is understandable since it was about 85*. Also the lines were moving slowly so of course, employees pop up with platters of butterbeers for sale in the souvenir mug (read: higher price). We resisted as long as we could (5 minutes in the sun) and I caved to the souvenir mug. Yes, over twice the amount of a regular cup but it was yummy and now I have a mug. :) You can file that tip away for your next visit. Hey, it's your money.

    All right, so I lost some $ in the butterbeer department but totally made up for it in the popcorn department. A nice big souvenir bucket of popcorn for $6 but keep your receipt to get free refills of popcorn for that day!! Yes, we must have filled that bucket about 6 times the entire day so yeah, that's another tip for you. 

    Another huge success for us was the ride department. I have one kid that wants to ride rollercoasters etc while the other one does not. It makes for interesting back n' forth conversations between all of us to try to convince or at least figure out why Josh refuses. One reason is his fear of heights. That is something very real and scary for him so I won't force him on that. But some (maybe half) of the rides at are 3D or virtual type rides which is a slightly  easier sell. Tyler and I did have to talk a bit for The Simpsons ride which had a 60 minute wait. 1: It (the line) was mostly in the shade with misters. 2: There were plenty of monitors and big billboards to keep him entertained. 3: We all took Dramamine.
    Turns out...Joshua enjoyed it. It was in a virtual amusement park so basically virtual rollercoaster without the height aspect. My Dramamine did not kick in on time because that ride is pretty wild. I kept my eyes closed most of the ride. 

    We chilled with popcorn and the animal show for a bit then headed over to the Minions ride. That was a 30 minute wait. Joshua did not need any encouragement for this and I really liked this ride. Maybe the Dramamine started working on me but the ride wasn't as crazy as The Simpsons ride. I approve the Minions ride. 

    Dinner was early at 5pm at the Hard Rock at Citywalk. That was nice 1: air-conditioning 2: lots of seating in air-conditioning 3: good food with air-conditioning. 

    We headed back to the park to see Forbidden Journey wait time was still over 2 hours so we went on the Studio Tour. This time it seemed more entertaining because on some of the location sets there were actors set up. We saw Marilyn Monroe on the NY city set and Norman Bates at the Bates Motel. 

    By the time the tour was finished it was 7 pm. Th wait time for Forbidden Journey was 90 minutes. The sun was starting to set and the crowds were noticeably smaller. By the time we actually go to the ride, the wait time was at 75 minutes. Josh and I waited in line with Tyler until we got to the castle entrance where there are lockers for loose items. Joshua decided he didn't want to go on the ride and I didn't either since i heard about motion issues. We waited in the gift shop area while Tyler hopped into the single rider line. From beginning to end, the time was 30 minutes. There is your other helpful tip.

    And that did it for us and our day at Universal. I think we'll go back again in September since our passes are blocked out till then. 

    Here is a my video of our time at the park. I'm still learning about editing video and going through the tutorial helped me a lot. Still lots to learn so stay tuned for more....


    Monday, July 11, 2016

    July already??

    So much is going on since the kids are off school for the summer....Let me think. The kids get out later than most schools so we relax the first week to get in the mood. 

    Then the Fourth of July  weekend is the kids and my Anime Expo. Four days of fun and cosplay watching while checking out the cool items and art. This year really seemed to explode in the number of people. Every year, we've noticed more and more attendees but this year was super crowded. It took us 3 days for us to fully go through all the exhibits and artist alley. Usually we can wind back and forth down each aisle to check out out every booth but this year, we had to take detours because of crowds. 

    Also Tyler is a big fan of one author who draws Stupid Fox and she has 3 books now. Last year we didn't find her until the last day so she was sold out of Book 2. So this year, on day 1 we made a beeline to her booth and got the 2nd book. It's also great that the author is there so she will offer to sign the book.

    The kids bought art prints so I've been meaning to frame them and Tyler found another print of the same character from Fire Emblem. We also got them framed already so yay for us!!

    I attempted to record some of the expo and here it is.... 




    How many anime characters can you name?? Seriously, so many!!! Maybe I'll make a video showing what we bought....our last day was much better since the crowds were smaller which leads me to see all the booths and therefore buy so much more..


    Tuesday, June 14, 2016

    Sockhead 5(?)

    A photo posted by Debbie T (@moodybq) on

    I had this project sitting around for a long time which is actually normal for this particular project. I love using fingering weight for hats but it just takes me soooooo long to complete. But when I finish one, I'm totally in love with it and want to knit more. So I cast on another one which will probably take me a year to finish but it's so easy to pick up when I feel the moment.

    Noro always lures me in with their colors and I actually ran out of yarn and found another Noro yarn in a slightly thinner weight but I don't think anyone can tell...can you see where I switched yarns?



    Thursday, June 09, 2016

    Starry Sunflowers

    My latest art piece...Starry Sunflowers. I find this smaller canvas boards (maybe 6x9 inches) at Daiso which are perfect for me to practice on and only $1.50 for a 2 pack. It's all about the journey..




    Starting small. #starrynight #sunflowers #acrylic #vangogh @theartsherpa

    I'm enjoying myself which is the most important part and I need an outlet since my wrist has been acting up and sore. I don't think SUPing and biking helped it either! Lol.





    Tuesday, June 07, 2016

    blotches

    Finding videos to watch then trying them for myself...

    This one was fun but the waiting for the layers to dry took some patience.

    Mix acrylic paint with water and paint it onto watercolor paper. Splatter rubbing alcohol onto it to get the blotchy effect. Repeat multiple times with different colors. I think I had about 6 layers.


    Trying something new. Not done yet.

    Only 2 layers, trying to find the right ratio of paint:water.


    I kicked up the vibrancy. Still some more later to go.

    Covering it all up with pink.


    I made greeting cards out of my last painting. 😍

    And the finished product! It was originally a large sheet of watercolor paper, maybe 11 x 14 so I cut them down to fit onto some plain greeting cards to make an interesting trio set.

    What do you think of them?? What colors should I try next?

    Monday, June 06, 2016

    Let's do This!



    Trying something different and out of my comfort zone...a video! I am in no capacity an expert but this was fun to do. I bribed Josh into being a guest so he could try the candy. It worked and it was a fun experience for both of us. 

    Of course, there is still tons that I can work on to improve but we need to keep pushing ourselves! :)

    I'm comfortable sharing this here on my blog but not on Facebook yet. My friends and family can be spared (for now). 

    Saturday, June 04, 2016

    Armed Forces Parade

    I don't know why we haven't ever made it down to this parade since it's in our own town just a mile away. 

    Well, this year we made it a point to go...because Josh was marching in the parade!! 

    It's a nice parade with lots of military vehicles and aircraft with all the branches of the armed forces represented.

    Even though our city is fairly large, it was nice to see the small town feel and community!


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    Thursday, June 02, 2016

    Hexipuffs

    Another project for the never ending sock yarn leftovers which has been in progress for a couple of years but I dug out the bag of hexipuffs determined to knit more...

    Found my neglected bag of #hexipuffs Goal is to fill another bag in 2 months 1-2/day.

     
    See? This is what I accomplished in a week. Not a lot but it's something. When I have time, I knit a hexipuff which I hope to have enough to sew together for some seat cushions for the kitchen. In theory, I think it will be awesome and great looking, plus functional for the hard seats. Then reality sets in and I think of how easy will it be to clean, etc.

    But I will press forth since the original pattern is a blanket so I always have that to fall back on. Just add another 5 years before that will be done. That's why I decided on seat cushions in the first place.

      And then there were 2 #hexipuffs

    My little pile of squishy #hexipuffs for the week.

    Snapshots: Japanese goodies

    Some cute Japanese items because 99.9% of their items are cute.


    Adding to my OT playoff pool prize.

    These are some notecards & envelopes (perfect for gift knitting) and a black lucky cat that is solar powered. I have a white version and it sits on my kitchen shelf by the sink happily waving. 

    I ate the last of these delicious cookies that Hector brought home. It is a white chocolate thin sandwich cookie that perfect and yummy. I love that they're individually wrapped so I can enjoy them without worry.  If you ever run across them, please send me a box. :)


    My last cookie from Hector's trip to Japan.