I have become a swimmer

But there is something you should know.  I hate to work out and I hate to sweat.  I have a hip issue… a shoulder issue… a back issue… and a lung issue (as in “heaven help me I cannot breathe and I’m going to die”). So because of my issues, I don’t like to work out. I’m averse to pain that way. On the flip side of things, I have a back fat issue, my thighs touch issue, a belly issue, and an emerging double chin issue. Something had to be done.

I realize I still have alot to learn, but here are some things that have worked for me as I’ve started this journey.

#1 Just get in the water. People of all shapes, sizes, and fitness levels swim laps. It’s for everyone. People aren’t there because they are in shape (well, some are). They are there to get in shape or maintain their fitness, so “Go you!”

#2 A good pair of goggles, ear plugs and a swim cap are great to have. Goggles are a must. Ear plugs help keep the water out of your ear (which I was having a big problem with), and a swim cap keeps my hair out of my face (even though I feel and look like a dork).

#3 Use swim props. A kick board is great and I bought my own pull buoy to get a burning arm workout. I actually love my pull buoy and usually start my laps by using this.

#4 Sit in the hot tub for a few minutes after your swim. Soothe your muscles, relax and give yourself a pat on the back! Yay you!

#5 Get one of those hang up bags for your toiletries. A well spent $10 at Walmart. It’s so easy to grab a shower after your swim and to have all your stuff in a hang up bag on your shower door is so quick and convenient.

#6 Don’t forget your underwear! Not that this has happened to me (cough, cough). Who wants to leave the gym commando style? Wouldn’t THAT be embarrassing! (Ahem)

#7 Keep some sort of protein bar and water bottle in your bag. After I swim, I am famished.  Nibbling on a Clif bar helps bring back some energy and not feel wiped out.

At my pool, 36 laps is a mile. That has been my goal 3-4 times a week for over a month now. It used to take me alittle over an hour. 5 weeks later I’ve cut it down to 45 minutes and every day I try to beat my time just alittle more. For me, small goals are best. I’m only in competition with myself.

My punks have been beside me the whole way. Two weeks ago, Ol’ Blue Eyes decided to join us. They are my biggest encouragers and push me beyond what I think I can do… and I end up doing it because they believe in me. Isn’t it amazing what we can do when the ones we love most believe we can?



Taos Sunset and a Storm


We recently made a trip to Taos, Red River and Santa Fe. One night as we were headed back to Taos, a storm was approaching as the sun was setting. The light was amazing. The play of darkness and light was so dramatic and beautiful. I don’t know that any camera can ever really catch what my eyes were soaking in, but I did my best.


Hey guess what? I have a blog!

Sorry I’ve been a bit absent around here, but we’ve been enjoying our summer, so I haven’t posted since our trip to San Diego. It’s just some plain ol’ summer fun we’ve been having, so here’s a peek at what we’ve been up to.

Warning:  It’s random. Very, very random.

We’ve been antiquing…


and my youngest always finds the guitars and plays them while we shop.Untitled

My oldest is driving me everywhere. This is just weird. Overall he is doing good. I’ve only screamed like a crazy lady once, other than that he’s pretty good.


My children cannot resist the white board in my husbands office. Sometimes I wonder, what do people think when they walk in there and see this?Untitled

I caught Gone With the Wind on AMC. I love this movie so much. I started calling Ol’ Blue Eyes Rhett, so I could dramatically say “Oh Rhett!” He didn’t respond much to that, in fact I think he thought I temporarily lost my mind. Maybe I did but, ” I can’t think about that right now. If I do, I’ll go crazy. I’ll think about that tomorrow.”Untitled

Rhett, I mean Ol’ Blue Eyes painted the kitchen white for me. My kitchen has been a white balance nightmare, so we fixed that. Even my cabinets are white now. OH HAPPY DAY I am so happy with it! Now time for me to paint a few canvases for the breakfast area but that will have to wait for now, “Fiddledee dee!”


On July 4th, my family thought that it was a good idea to for all of us to climb on the roof and watch the fireworks all over town. It’s true, you could see fireworks 360 degrees all around us, but I was too busy having a panic attack to enjoy it. I may have noticed my kids were pros at get up and down off the roof… and I may have also noticed that one of my neighbors chimney looked liked it could have been shot with a paintball gun (ahem)… but I can’t be real sure about that because I was too preoccupied with the fact that I was resting my foot on my skylight and that everything could collapse at any given moment. My oldest punk felt sorry for me, so he came and sat by me and talked me down off the roof. Mental note: I’m not doing that again, especially in my ugly shoes.


I am learning to knit! I know, this is very exciting. Besides the fact that I feel like a granny while I’m doing it, I love knitting. I’ve crocheted since I was a little girl, but knitting is new to me. Does this mean I’m getting old? Wait. Don’t answer that.


We’ve been swimming. Lots. Of. Laps. It’s been a daily exercise for us to swim atleast a mile. It’s not easy, and when my punks want to race me, I have to remind them that I’m older and that I need my Geritol pills first. Then they ask me, what’s Geritol? Nevermind.


This is the most you will see of me on this blog at the swimming pool… You’re welcome.


I got a Lifeproof case for my iPhone, so it can go underwater. I don’t care who you are, it’s just pretty darn cool to take pictures under water.


My golden becomes completely irrational when the trash man comes. The trash man has come Tuesday and Thursday every week of his existence, but he just can’t handle it. I don’t know why, it’s just an enigma yet somehow we are amused and entertained. It’s the simple things I guess.Untitled

We went to the lake with my dad on his duck boat.


My youngest got up on skis, but we decided the duck boat couldn’t pull me or my oldest out the the water. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.


My oldest got to enjoy the inter-tube and we had lots of fun. I don’t know how his neck handled it, but we were all sore for the next three days. Mental note: Don’t try to ski again and next time ask someone to put sunscreen on your back.


We’ve played a few tennis matches in 100+ heat… which means I get to watch in 100+ heat. At the end of the day we’re all zombies, but this is what he loves, so this is what we do.  I love watching him, especially when he gets feisty on the court. It’s just hard to play your best in this heat.



My brother in law finds the weirdest stuff, but last summer he came over with this huge chalkboard. One of our local middle schools was tearing out the chalkboards and putting in white boards, so he brought us one. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with it, so we finally hung it in my oldest punks room and he is thrilled. There’s some serious project planning happening in there. He’s going to make a sword. He’s made swords before, so this creativity isn’t new, but he’s loving all the space to draw out his plans.


I made some huevo in the hole. Pioneer Woman posted the recipe yesterday.


They were so good! Make them SOON!


Ol’ Blue Eyes is still working on Humpty (66 Mustang). All the Kings horsemen need to show up around here and put Humpty back together again.


My golden is being severely mistreated. He gets no. love. at. all.


We’ve had some pretty big thunderheads that refuse to pour down on us, and I’m tired of it. Send the rain! (shaking fists at the sky)


But they sure are pretty to look at. I took this with my iPhone out my front door last night.


And that’s a wrap! I’m sure there’s more boring details that I left out, fiddledee dee!

What have you been up to this summer? I hope it’s been great! Now if we could just make a trip to the mountains, our summer will be complete! Can you believe school is right around the corner?

La Jolla Beach, California


Our last night in San Diego, we headed over to La Jolla Cove.


It was quickly becoming the golden hour and the tide was slowly pushing its way in.


I was alittle nervous with my punks there on the rocks…


but nature would soon teach them a lesson.


Then they decided to be The Sorcerer’s Apprentice and orchestrate the waves…




The seals are just fun to watch. They bark, nip, fight for rock space to sun themselves, poise themselves, fight for dominance positions and swim with  people who are swimming in the ocean.


We were all just mesmerized watching the waves crash along the rocks. That sound is one I hope to remember forever.


Kissing seals!


This is my youngest punk. Doesn’t he look like he belongs in California? He loves all there is to do here and begged me to rent him a wet suit and surf board for the hour left of light. He wanted to snorkel. He wanted to swim with the seals. He wanted to surf. When this didn’t happen, he was all over the rocks giving me panic attacks every 3 seconds.


Here they are, orchestrating the waves again.


But the waves are getting closer and not listening to their command!


But my youngest, always to the edge on adventure, just has to test mother nature and go closer to the edge. More people gather on the rocks, which only encourages him. In the meantime, I have no fingernails left.




Enough is enough! Get up here and watch the sunset!


My oldest took this picture of Ol’ Blue  Eyes and I.


I tried a slow shutter speed on this one. Kind of cool.


Sunset with two body surfers in the water. *sigh*


And if you missed this video before, here’s a little video of sunset from the beach with the two body surfers and then a seal who comes in swimming from the right side of the screen. Next time we go to San Diego, we will definitely be spending more time in La Jolla.

La Jolla



Sometimes I get on a photography subject matter kick.


Sometimes it’s people and faces, but lately it’s been flowers.


I’ve tried to push myself with each lens I have.



Sometimes I like to challenge myself and I decided that I will photograph beauty that is within 50 steps from my front porch.


I’m always amazed at what I find so close to home, because I really don’t feel like I live in a pretty place.


This is honeysuckle from my backyard.


This is a begonia on my front porch, and that turquoise in the background is my water-hose.


Here’s another pansy from my front porch.


And this is my neighbors spanish moss.


Buds, outside my kitchen window. Everything is so different up close. The beauty of different.


And the time came when the risk to remain tight in a bud…


was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” ~Anaïs Nin


Balboa Park – San Diego, CA


How could I blog about San Diego and NOT include Balboa Park? It’s impossible! So here I am, fallen in love with Balboa Park and so far away from it.


I miss it already. I could walk around this place at least once a week for the rest of my life and most likely see something I’ve never seen before.


The architecture and detailing is inspiring!


You can read about the park’s history here, but I fell in love with the paths…


the fountains…


the man playing violin, the runners and all the different types of people…


the sculptures…


and the architecture.


But what I really fell in love with was the Art Center.


I walked in and saw this…


and this, and I knew that these people spoke my language. My artsy, color loving, paint slinging self and my NEED to do what I do and nurture that part of myself was understood here.


I could live in here. The succulent plants, the colored walk ways, the tile roofs, stucco walls and glorious turquoise doors. I loved this place.


Then I saw some arrows leading me to a place…


and I found a lady blowing glass. One was instructing, one was learning.  Into the kiln then…


blow the glass and shape it always turning sometimes swinging.



Back into the kiln after swinging making it longer. All I know is that I want to do this sometime in my lifetime.


I wish this was my front door to my house. I may have to sketch and paint this.


I found so much inspiration in this little space.



Now I can’t wait to get going in my sketchbook!