Monday, August 29, 2005

This past weekend was my church's 30th anniversary celebration. Saturday evening was a lovely banquet catered by Marie Callender's. The mushroom/artichoke chicken was yummy! The program was lovely but our family has attended this church for 10 years and most of the celebration went back to the beginning. I did not know a lot of the people who returned for this event or some that were mentioned. An excellent DVD was produced using a lot of old photos but again I really didn't recognize the people in the pictures. But the banquet and entertainment were great.

Then on Sunday we had our annual picnic which w
as also part of the celebration. The founding pastor was the speaker for the morning and he was really good. The picnic was excellent, as usual, and the weather was warm but not too bad. I remembered to take my camera to the picnic so here are some pictures from that event. Sorry, I forgot my camera for the banquet.

This area was used to serve drinks, shaved ice,
desserts and signing up children for Sunday School.

Amy and Julie man the registration table

Charles Leckie our pastor on the left and Donald Shoff the former pastor on the right

Lots of good food and fellowship

The children got to make a craft or ...

play games like toss the water balloon

Yum, the dessert table

Yes, a good time was had by all!

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Leona Vincent Rath
1915 - 2005

Yesterday was the memorial service for Ellen's mother, Leona. I took the above picture at her 90th Birthday party in March.

Here are a few things I learned about Leona yesterday:

Her mother had a difficult labor and Leona was born by cesarean section. This was 1915!!! Her mother was so grateful to the doctors and the hospital, St. Vincents, for saving her life and that of her daughter that she choose the middle name of Vincent in thankfulness to them.

Leona was named after her father, Leonard who died when she was two.

At one time she lived in the country because her mother was a cook for ranch hands and she had a life long love of cowboys from living on this ranch.

Leona and her husband never planned on having children but after 15 years of marriage at the age of 40 they were blessed with Ellen.

Leona and her husband divorced when she was 50 so she went back to work as a saleswoman at Robinsons in Los Angeles to help support her and her
daughter. She worked there for 20 years.

Now here are some things I knew about Leona:

She was always sweet and kind and never had a bad word to say about anyone.

She always had a smile on her face.

She always asked after the rest of the family when you visited her.

Her wedding gift to us was a brown tea pot (which I still
have). In her card she stated that the best tea is brewed is a brown pot.

Finally here are some things I know about Ellen and her family:

They are an example to us in caring for our parents and the elderly in this day and age. Leona lived with them for eight years. It wasn't always the easiest thing but it was the best thing. Ellen has wonderful memories of her mother. The granddaughters have wonderful memories of their grandmother. Grandmother was there for all their school and church events and watched them grow up close and personal. Ellen is a wonderful testimony in this day and age of people who think only of themselves in that she took such wonderful care of her mother.

Leona will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved her.

Friday, August 26, 2005

I am posting today to let you know about a new series of books I have stumbled across. Tuesday evening I decided to attend our fair city's monthly city council meeting. I thought the meeting started at 7 but it really began at 7:30 so I went next door to our lovely library. I discovered a book there by author Laura Childs entitled The Jasmine Moon Murder. This book is one of a series called "A Tea Shop Mystery". If you like mysteries, if you like tea, if you like the setting of South Carolina and if you like Civil War references then I can recommend these books. Here is a link to the author's web site

Also in this book are references to all kinds of teas, great ideas for tea party themes and recipes are printed in the back.

I intend to visit the library and order from them the other titles in the series. Our library only has the one title. I love it when I discover a new series of books. I wish I had stumbled across this at the beginning of summer because I love nothing better than to sit back with a good book and read and read.

Regarding Jennifer's class. Because the company who supplies the chefs clothing had lost her order, they shipped the clothing to her and waved the $10 shipping fee. So we did not have to drive into Los Angeles to pick up the clothing and it was delivered by UPS to our door on Wednesday afternoon. Finally, something worked out well! Even though the class has hardly met, their first test was Thursday. "On what?", I asked. Jennifer tells me the class is pretty much self taught and that they, the students, are responsible for reading the chapter(s) and being ready for testing on said subject. They are allowed to write names down (there are a lot of French words for cooking terms) and take the cards with them for the test. She said there was 44 questions on the test and knows she missed two. Other than that she feels she did very well on the rest of the test. Monday they are to come to class dressed out. Also Monday she should be getting her liability form and so can take that to the pastry shop and hopefully get her volunteer job squared away there for her 60 hours of service. That is really the only thing left hanging at this point.

Today we will be attending a Memorial Service for my friend Ellen's mother. I will post about that tomorrow.

Update: Several people I know with Blogger accounts are having problems with spam type comments. In order to prevent this happening to me I have turned on word verification for any comments posted. Now when you leave a comment you must post the letters you see. This prevents machines from leaving spam comments.

Monday, August 22, 2005

In order to understand this post you have to read the post below. We did not get Jennifer's chef clothing today. When she called they had no record of her order!!! It wasn't in the computer. The girl had to go look on people's desks to see if she could find it and would call Jennifer back. So I called the bank to see if the debit card had cleared and it hadn't. The girl called back. She had found the order and would see it was processed immediately. Jennifer is to call back after 3 PM tomorrow and it may be ready. But we are not driving over there in rush hour traffic. We will go in the afternoon on Wednesday (if it is ready, that is). Jennifer doesn't need these articles of clothing until next week, thank goodness. This stuff drives me crazy!
I promised I would write about Jennifer's experiences and now is as good a time as any.

Her work at camp was supposed to end on Saturday, Aug. 13 but instead we got a phone call from her on the 10th saying she was sick and could we come pick her up. I think when she came home for the one night on the 6th she may have caught what I had. Who knows. So her employment ended early. The nurse had put her on bed rest on Monday and she ever got better. School was starting on the 15th so the best thing was for her to come home and get well. She did recover and was fine by the 15th and so started classes (such as they've been).

The culinary class is 11.5 units. Nothing was said in the catalog about also having the work experience class which meets one day a week and is 2 units. So when the class ended on Monday most of the class trooped over to registration and signed up for it. Fortunately it wasn't full (after all, how could it be when they didn't know they needed it?). So on Mondays her culinary class will start at 7 AM and go until 2 PM and the work experience class will go from 2 PM until 3 PM. Then on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday the culinary class starts at 7 AM and goes until 1 PM. As part of work experience the student needs to get a job in the industry. If you do it on a voluntary basis, you need 60 hours for the semester. If you get paid, then you need 75 hours. So, Jennifer remembered hearing about a bakery nearby. Turns out her teacher/chef knows the owner, gave her his card and told her to call the owner right away. She did that and the owner asked her to come in, said it sounded good to him and for her to fax him the hours she can work and he would get back to her. Also, because she is volunteer she needs a liability form from the school. So the next day she asked about the liability form. That she can only get from the work experience class which only meets on Mondays. Guess what. No class today, it's not meeting again until next Monday. So she faxed the owner her hours and told him she won't have the form until Monday the 29th. She hasn't heard back from him. If this all works out, I will name the bakery and post a link to their web site.

So besides the job, she needed an updated TB skin test. When you work food services you need this once a year. Health services at the college was back logged so she went to Kaiser on Tuesday, got the test, back to Kaiser on Thursday and got a clear read. Then she needed to order her chefs clothing. Two tops, two pairs of pants, and other stuff which came to $100. Her name is embroidered on the tops along with the school logo. When she goes to her job she must wear these chef whites. Rather than have the clothing shipped (another $10) she will pick them up. We are going together today to get them because the area is not that great. Then she also needed to order knives and other things which comes to $110 and she will get those in class tomorrow. All this plus her books and class fees makes this class cost close to $700!!!

Turns out the class let out really early on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. It didn't even meet on Thursday or today. There is some big thing going on in Los Angeles and her teacher/chef is a judge. That is also the reason why the work experience class isn't meeting, because that teacher is the wife of culinary teacher/chef and she is involved too. What a way to get an education.

Then this weekend, Friday night to Sunday night, Jennifer went to Ft. Tejon to a Civil War Reenactment. It was very hot there but a good time was had by all. If she took pictures, and if I can get them on this computer I will post some here.

What have I been up to? Putting up with all the drama associated with all of the above for one thing. Also I have been looking for a nice dress to wear to the wedding in September. This is not the season for dresses. Very, very hard to find a nice normal dress in So. California. Everything is separates and this peasant look that is the rage right now. Look, a 56 year old woman wants a nice normal dress ... she doesn't want to look like a peasant! Finally found something yesterday after church at Burlington Coat Factory. This place sells everything, not just coats and the prices are reasonable. I found a two piece outfit that looks like a dress and a nice pair of shoes. I suspect it will be hot on September 24th and this is lightweight yet dressy. I am pleased. I will take pictures at the wedding and post when the time comes.

So, I think I'm caught up with my posting. School is gearing up. I have gone into the classroom a few times and am getting stuff ready. The class lists are to be posted Wednesday and I think I will go down then and check things out. Our first meeting will be Thursday, September 1 when we all get to do CPR training. Every two years this has to be done. Then we are having a nice lunch prepared by the church staff. On Tuesday, September 6 we have an OSHA meeting with a bunch of other schools in the morning. This is all required by the State of California. Then in the afternoon will be a staff meeting. Somewhere in all of this Catherine and I need to get the room ready because Wednesday, September 7 the little angels start school. Yipee!!

Friday, August 19, 2005

Well, I did Disneyland yesterday from opening to closing, 8 to Midnight. Not as tired as I thought I'd be because I sat in theaters throughout the day to rest my feet.

I had wanted to leave at 7 but didn't get away until 7:20. On Wednesday nights we park our cars around back in the parking lot behind our house because of street sweeping in the early morning hours. Turns out someone tried to syphon off the gas from our Olds. It does not have a locking gas cap whereas the Toyota does. Paul is going to see if he can find one for the Olds. With gas prices the way they are now I guess people are desperate. Anyway I noticed a gas cap on the ground by the car, a short red hose and when I carefully opened the cover to the gas tank (I wanted to preserve possible fingerprints) the gas cap was off so it was our gas cap on the ground. Also there was moisture (gasoline) on the ground around that area. They didn't get much and we surmise that whoever it was got scared off and dropped everything. So all of this, and getting Paul to come out, and checking to make sure we hadn't lost all of our gas delayed my start time. Jennifer needed to go to Kaiser to get her TB skin test read so she and Paul needed a working car so I couldn't leave until we determined that. So I hear from Jennifer that Paul called the police and they came out and looked and took a report and statement. They did not take fingerprints and it is considered petty theft. So now that we are getting up before 7 AM on Thursday we will just move the cars in the morning and as I said Paul will try and get a locking gas cap for the Olds.

So I made fairly decent time over to the park. The traffic was only heavy in a couple of brief areas. Much to my surprise in entering the parking structure they did not have us park in the structure. Instead we were routed outside and I ended up in the outdoor side parking area clear at the back. So I had to walk all the way to the front to get to the tram.

So got to the entrance and breezed through security as I do not carry a bag. I had my money and driver's license in my money belt which I wear under my clothing. I did have my jacket as the morning was cool and we had the overcast clouds until around 10:30. Later I got a locker and put my jacket and car keys in it. I also got my cup of coffee at the Markethouse corner place which meant I could get more coffee for free during the day. I did get another cup in the evening. So I was in line to get in at 8 and they had just opened.

I first headed to Fantasyland to ride Peter Pan. That line is always so long so I thought I'd get it out of the way. The line was already long but not clear out in the walkway area. After that I thought I'd do all the Fantasyland rides because that is something I hardly ever do so after Peter Pan I rode the carousel (I could of gotten the gold horse but it was stopped too high up, I couldn't even get my foot up that high into the stirrup), then Snow White, Pinnoccio, Dumbo (I did get gold Dumbo), Casey Jr., Mr. Toad, and Teacups (I didn't spin). I decided to skip Storybook as I'd seen the things from Casey Jr., and that line is always long. I also wanted to do Alice but by now that line was long. I noticed the line for the Matterhorn was short so I did that. Because I was a single rider I got pulled out of line and put on quickly. I skipped Toon Town and Small World this time around.

So after leaving the Matterhorn I headed to Tomorrowland to get a Fast Pass for Space Mtn. I could smell the good food at the food court there and thought about breakfast (even tho I'd had cereal here at home) but the lines were long and I convinced myself I didn't need it. The line was long for Space Mtn. so got the FastPass. Now it's around 10:15 and the return time was 12:35 to 1:35. So I went to Main Street and got the locker and coffee and headed over to Splash Mtn. I stopped and got a Churro near Haunted Mansion and sat near the train and ate that and drank my coffee. Then I headed to Splash Mtn. I asked the Fast Pass guy if that ride still had a single rider line, yes through the exit. So I did that. I was the only one doing it and I had to wait maybe two minutes. People in one group did not want to sit in the front of the log so the line guy told me, "you're in number 1". I know now why people don't want to sit there. I got soaked but it was so much fun. The water comes right into the boat and you end up sitting in the water! So after getting off and clearing my glasses I decided to go on Winnie The Pooh just to see what all the talk is about. The first part is blustery day and it felt good and helped dry me. The ride is cute but it still disgusts me they took out Country Bears. Left there and slowly walked in the sun toward Hungry Bear and noticed the line for the canoes. They had three canoes lined up and ready to go so I did that. I ended up in the third one and we had to wait for the Columbia as they were bringing it out and around for the day. So paddling in the sun again helped me dry off. It was only my bottom that was still wet but it slowly dried during the morning. After that I went on Haunted Mansion. The line was somewhat long but it just kept moving. I have discovered that if there are two lines, for some reason the right line moves faster. I was in the right line and moved right on past the people on the left and into the mansion. Down below the line was backed up into the hallway and did not move. I think the ride was stopped for awhile but once it got running again we moved along pretty well.

After Mansion I had planned to go on Pirates Of The Caraibean but now the line was long and slow so I skipped it and went to Indie Jones. They did not have the Fast Pass on for this one (and I wouldn't have been able to use it anyway). The wait was listed at 30 minutes and that was pretty much right on. At the point where you go up the stairs I choose the right side and it moved faster. The vehicle was the normal bumpy moving around setting. After that I went on Jungle Cruise and the skipper was OK. By now it was 12:45 so I made my way over to Space Mountain and decided to get a Fast Pass for the new Buzz ride. The wait time on Space Mtn. was now 80 minutes but with Fast Pass it was only like 10 minutes. I love that ride! After getting off it was still not time for Buzz so I went into Honey I Shrunk The Kids. It was nice to just sit for awhile and take my shoes off. The only bad part was my seat area didn't work. I didn't feel the mice, I didn't have air in my face and I didn't get water on me when the dog sneezed. After that it was time for Buzz. That was OK. I got level 3 out of 7. It took me awhile to figure out the ray gun and where my red light was shining. My picture did not come out so I was not able to send it via email to myself. From Buzz I went over to Star Tours because the line was short. I was directed to the left line and sure enough the right line was constantly moving and was much faster than the left line.

Now it is after 2 so I headed over to DCA where I went to Soarin and used the single rider pass. This time I did not have to wait too long and there was only 2 other people ahead of me. Unfortunately I was in the last row but I still like being in there. From there I went to TOT and there was a long line. So I looked over at the return time for Fast Pass and it was 30 minutes so I got one and went over to Turtle Talk. That is so amazing. Someone had a birthday so he led us in singing Happy Birthday turtle style. When that ended I made my way back to Tower Of Terror and got right in. In talking to a woman while waiting to get on she said she had never been before to which I smiled and said this is really scary. Getting off at the end she looked and me and said "you were right!" So now it is almost 4:15 so I ran over to get into Aladdin. I was in the Mezzanine second row on the right end. Took off my shoes and enjoyed the show. The "good" genie was on. The carpet was flying and comes real close to that corner area where I was. On my way out of DCA they were just starting the Block Party Parade so I hung around to watch. Gosh, those dancer kids really work out. They were just drenched by the time they finished. They have a character for Boo from Monsters, Inc. that is just adorable. You can see Boo's face in her little monster costume. Everyone oohs and ahs over her when she comes by.

Now it is after 5 and I'm really hungry. My plan had been to eat mid day but that didn't work out. So I left DCA and hiked over to McD's. Now this was the only real bad experience of the day. Here is a McD's at dinner hour and right across the street from Disneyland and they only had two girls handling the front. And not only did they have to take orders, get money, etc., but they also had to get the food. The guy in front in my line had a huge order and it was all "special" ... no mayo on this, no mustard on that, etc. And the order was wrong so she kept having to go back and get things. I thought she was going to break into tears at some point! It took me 15 minutes before I got waited on and then I had to wait for my food. I was really disappointed, not in the food but the service.

So now it is around 6:30 and I head back to Disneyland, use the rest room and go get my jacket and keys from the locker. I got a "free" cup of coffee because my plan is to find a seat and wait it out for the fireworks. I have been on all the rides I want to go on so I am willing to sit for over two hours. Well, at 6:45 all the benches are taken, and most of the curb. People have laid out blankets and towels for their friends and family. I found one small spot on the curb right directly in front of the castle and I folded my jacket and sat on it. The family next to me got take out dinners from that mexican restaurant that looked really good. I talked to them for awhile. Around 8 there was no one behind me so I took my jacket, made a pillow and laid down for awhile. It was a long wait but worth it. I had the best seat and everyone sat down so no one was in my way!

After that I followed the herd (moo) over to where Fantasmic is. I got the good spot down from where the tech crew is and no one stood up to film in that sit down area so I had front and center there also. Talked to the couple next to me and they are my age, maybe a little younger. They are from Iowa and they came out to spend a few days at the resort and then Saturday they are leaving on the Disney Magic as it takes its cruise back to Florida. 14 days. They were on a waiting list and a cabin came up so they took it. Then when they get to Florida they are going to rent a car and drive to Disneyworld and spend a few days there! Must be nice!!!! We had a good time talking and passing the time.

I waited for the crowd to thin out and noticed people were just walking on POTC so I did that. Sat in the middle of the front row all by myself. Then Indie said 30 minute wait but it was maybe 10 minutes at the most. This time the car was really racheted up. It was really cool. Then I went on Jungle Cruise at night. Let me tell you, at that time of night those skippers are really loony. I had one of the best guys in a long time. He was older and he went way off script. He was really funny. Then I left the park. It was now a loooong walk back to the car and my car was the only one left in that area. The drive home was a breeze. Only 15 minutes from the parking lot to the Lakewood off ramp.

All in all a really good day. Got to do everything I wanted plus some things I hadn't planned. The weather was perfect and the crowds weren't all that bad. If you know how to work the system, ie Fastpass and Single rider, you can do lots of things.

I did not take my camera with me as in June Jennifer took lots of pictures. Maybe later I will find one from that trip to plug in at the top.

Jennifer is home from camp and school has started but that is a whole different post. Maybe some other time. I have a feeling my posts are going to get fewer and farther between.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Yesterday I went to Amber's bridal shower. Amber is the oldest daughter of my very good friend Ellen. I have known Ellen's husband Bob since we were both kids and attended the same church in Los Angeles. So I have known Ellen since Bob started dating her and for a time she and I even worked together in the same office (I was her manager, and we are still friends!). My daughter Jennifer was born in between Amber and the next oldest daughter Stacy and because Jennifer is an only child these girls (and there is a third, Carolyn) are like her sisters.

So, Amber is getting married in September to a wonderful young man she has been dating since high school. Amber just graduated from Cal State Fullerton and he graduated from Biola two years ago. So now it is time for them to make the big plunge!

The shower was lovely. Amber is a lovely girl and will make a beautiful bride. We all had such a good time and she got lots of great gifts, things she had registered for. We played three games one of which was "how well do you know Amber" and I got the most answers right!

One of her gifts was a set of four tea cups and saucers that had belonged to her grandmother. They were old and lovely. Also a nice book on teas with recipes for giving teas and a tea kettle. This gift was from Amber's grandmother but put together by her mother. Her grandmother has lived with them for many years but recently her health turned, she's 90, and she is now in an assisted living facility. So I took the cups and saucers and the book and set them up next to a picture of Amber's grandmother when she was a young woman.

And the big surprise of the day was that Jennifer was able to come down from camp. She found out on Saturday morning that the couple who are the staff overseers and live in Westminster were coming down with a couple of the guys for the night. Jennifer asked if she could come too and they said sure. She was dropped off at the house where the bridal shower was. She didn't quite make it in time for the shower but she got to visit with the girls and see the gifts.

We came home and had dinner and she did a laundry and got on her computer and talked with her on-line friends. She was so happy to sleep in her own bed if only for one night. This morning we all went to church and then while I was at handbell practice after church Paul took her over to the house where the couple live (not far from our church) and she left with them to go back up to camp for one more week. Then next Saturday we will go and pick her up and her job will be over.

I have a nasty little summer cold. Mostly in my chest and doing a lot of coughing. I either caught it because of a woman on the trolley in San Diego who coughed and coughed and coughed or the air conditioning in our motel room which we left on all night. Sigh.

I should also mention that last Thursday I met the teacher I work for, Catherine, at our school and we cleaned out the cabinets in our room. It was a job that really needed doing and we felt so good afterwards. We threw away a lot of stuff, gave some things to a preschool and other stuff to a thrift store. We have lots of shelf space now. She had her mother with her who is a really great lady and full of spunk for 84 years of age and they took me to lunch at Mimi's. It was good to see them and get caught up on things.

So, what does this week hold? Well, the weatherman says it will be cooler. One can only hope. I still have one more free ticket to Disneyland from my CHOC walk last year. So maybe this is the week to do that. And I want to buy Amber's wedding present while the pickings are still good.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

We had a nice two days in San Diego. Through out this post I will scatter a few photos. I took lots and lots of photos and selected a few for my Epson on line album. You can view them by using this link:

My Epson Album

I have resized them in PhotoShop so they should load quickly.

We left for San Diego on Monday morning. We had a few errands to run like getting gas for the car and getting Jennifer's books for the Fall Semester. We made good time down, it's about a two hour trip,
and traffic was light to medium heavy.

First thing we did was go to
Chula Vista where we had made reservations at Motel 6 and we checked in and paid for our room. The room was not available yet but we expected that. It was now around 11:30 and so we went to McDonalds which was located right in front of Motel 6 and had a little lunch and then headed across the street to The Trolley station. The Trolley is San Diego's light rail service. It travels all around the area and down as far as the border. It reminds me a lot of our Metro Rail here in the Los Angeles area. After purchasing our tickets a trolley came by about 5 minutes later. We stayed on the trolley all the way to the Santa Fe Depot which was the nearest stop to the pier area. Just like our Metro rail we traveled through not so good areas and very nice areas. It took about 20 minutes and we didn't have to worry about driving back into San Diego or parking. Over all it cost less for both of us to travel this way (Paul, as a senior, only paid $1) then for us to pay parking.

We walked the three blocks to The Midway and got our first glimpse.

Not ever having been on or near an aircraft carrier it was pretty impressive to me. When Paul was in the Navy in the mid 1950's he was on a carrier called the Essex which was smaller than The Midway
. I would say Paul was like a kid in a candy store.

After purchasing our tickets we went aboard and began our self guided tour on the hanger deck. There we found some photos of aircraft that have flown off of carriers over the years and Paul found a photo of the plane (well, not the exact one) he flew.

They also had a trainer aircraft just like Paul trained on.

After walking around the hanger deck we climbed up several levels to the flight deck. Here they had many aircraft on display. We wandered around looking at them and then went over to the control area of the carrier called The Island. Here a group of 16 of us climbed small narrow ladders and got a guided tour by a docent of this part of the ship.

the tour we wandered out to the bow of the flight deck. It was such a beautiful day. The breeze was blowing and looking back to the East thunderheads made a beautiful backdrop.

From this area we climbed back down to the hanger deck and then down some more levels to the engine room. This was a part of the ship Paul really wanted to see and he was happy it was open to the public. From there we climbed back to the flight deck and then down again to sick bay, the galley, the post office, and the machine shop. Then back to the hangar deck and forward to the berthing spaces, the Junior Officer's quarters, and the Forecastle. Here they have laid out the anchors which have just been refurbished.

One of the areas Paul really wanted to see was The Ready Room. It was here where Paul and the other pilots hung out during the day and received their orders. So Paul found a docent who told us that part of the ship was not open to the Public yet. They were working on it. When Paul mentioned his interest and why, the docent took us up. So we climbed up two flights of narrow stairs. Boy, because it isn't open to the public yet, it was hot up there! But Paul was so happy because the one room looked just like the one on the Essex. And some of the squadron emblems where painted on the floor including his squadrons.

So over all it was a real good visit. We left the area (my feet were killing me and I didn't feel like walking around the pier area) around 4:30 and made our way back to the Trolley station. We got back to Chula Vista and got our room and rested. Around 7 we decided to go eat. There was a Denny's right across the street but neither of us is overly fond of Denny's so we looked up places in the phone book. We found they had a Home Town Buffet south of
us and so went there. We aren't much for trying new food and so stuck with what we knew. We headed back to our room and watched the news and I watched the end of the movie The Sixth Sense.

The next morning we took our time. No sense in rushing around, we are on vacation! We went to breakfast around 10 across the street at a place that specializes in pancakes. The food and service were really good and we had a nice big breakfast. We walked back to our room and packed and checked out and headed to the San Diego Zoo.

We have not been to the zoo since Jennifer was little. It is such a nice zoo. Of course, it is world famous. A month or so prior to this we got a coupon book in the mail and in it was an $8 off the special value ticket so that is what we got. This gave us the opportunity to ride the tour bus around the zoo, use the in zoo shuttle bus and ride the skyway as many times as we wanted. We decided to walk the inner part of the zoo first and then take the bus around the outside part and not walk in those areas.

The zoo is very lush in its plantings and where you walk, you feel like you're in the jungle or a rain forest. The animals are in more natural habitats rather than cages.

After walking around we went to see the sea lion show and then took the skyway over to the west part of the zoo and saw the polar bears and then walked to where the pandas are. The female panda was off exhibit as she was expecting her baby any time and sure enough on this mornings news we heard she gave birth last night.

We walked along the Sun Bear Forest path to the front of the zoo and took the bus tour. Our guild was a young lady who was very enthusiastic which
made for a nice trip. After the tour we headed back to a couple of things we wanted to see closer. It was getting to be late afternoon and we decided we wanted to ride the skyway again. In heading in that direction a show was going on called Living Garden. Now in the brochure there is no explanation given as to what this is and if we hadn't been walking by we would not have gone out of our way to see it. It was mesmerizing. A young woman is on a stage dressed like a fountain. Water comes out of her "fingertips" and her head. She moves slowly to music which is a recorded voice like Sarah Brightman singing Italian love songs. We watched this for awhile and then headed to the skyway and took that over and then got back on and came back. We were going to get our monies worth.

When we got back another showing of Living Garden was in progress and so we watched more. It would appear that the same girl does all the shows. They begin at 3:30, last 20 minutes and are every half hour until the last show at 7:30. I would imagine that is not easy to perform let alone carrying all the weight of that costume. I was really impressed.

Now it was going on 6 so after a short walk through the gift shop we headed out and home. The drive was very nice and low clouds had come in making for a cool drive. We wanted to eat somewhere but could not find a place in Oceanside on the street we got off on. Mostly fast food. So we ended up at Sizzlers in San Juan Capistrano. We got home around 9 to a stuffy house but after opening doors and windows it freshened up pretty fast,

We had a pile of mail both snail and e to check and took our showers and went to bed tired. We had a really nice time. Lots of walking and my feet are still recuperating today. San Diego is a really nice vacation destination. We have gone a number of times in the past for Sea World and Balboa Park and its museums and look forward to returning some time in the future.