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big sur

29 Nov

finally out of LA

rest stop wildlife

After our trip to San Diego we drove back up the coast to Seattle. If you ever google map the route between San Diego & Big Sur you will see that it says 7.5 hours, up to 10 hours in traffic. Um, LA traffic is no joke. I don’t know if there is a non-rush hour time of day there. We took a 1 hour break and it literally took us over 12 hours.

I don’t recommend driving on California Hwy 1 at midnight either. It is crazy windey and the visibility is, oh, maybe 12 feet. It was a pretty terrifying experience, we were sure we were driving on the edge of a hundred foot cliff and that any false move would mean our demise. Kind of like when Pee Wee is riding with the ex-con Mickey in Pee Wee’s Big Adventure & the winding road signs turn all crazy & they end up crashing off the cliff and surounded by taxidermied wild animals… But we survived! And so we got to stay at the Ripplewood Resort in Big Sur.

The Ripplewood Resort has a super cute grocery with a decent variety of food. The attached gas station is something like the last gas station until Carmel. So they charge upwards of $4 per gallon. But hey, they have to get that gas delivered in the middle of nowhere so they have to pass the spendings on to you, right?

Mike & Hondo lego-ing in the cabin

Hondo's drawing

A surprise drawing left in Hondo's sketchbook by our Japanese artist friend KaToPe

Ripplewood Resort is just up the road from Julia Pfeiffer Burns state park.


maxin' & relaxin'



28 Nov

After the Comicon we spent our last day in San Diego at Legoland. Mike’s mom’s bowling team mate works for Lego (dreamy!) and got us a couple of comp tickets. What a treat! 

Lego bulk aisle

raw Lego plastic nibs

One of the coolest things that happened was that this lovely lady Renata who runs the mini Lego Factory took us on a behind the scenes tour. We weren’t sure if she singled us out because she saw Hondo’s pump or if we were just regular plain old lucky. She gave us a handful of the raw bits that legos are made of & took a bit of molten lego off the press & made a little lego goo sculpture for us.





Lego textiles

Some inspiring home decor ideas, I fully intend to make a lego Navajo blanket & some ethnic masks for our walls…


pirate cannon

The mini Star Wars exhibit is pretty awe-inspiring. The details are so perfect & minute and it’s all made with the more classic brick shapes.

Does anyone else smell bantha budu?


ewok village

millenium falcon

There are also lego depictions of different cities & world landmarks… my favorite being the sort of antiquated version of the old seedy times square. Amazing…

times square rolexes

tour de france

where babies come from

8 Oct

Today Hondo mentioned something to me about “when daddy found me” to which I had to inquire, “where exactly do you think you came from?” Turns out that Hondo has made up his own version of the birds & the bees story. (Guess we dodged that bullet, huh?) Hondo explained that sometime after Mike moved to Seattle he found Hondo swaddled on the ground. Who swaddled him & left him there? A stranger. “sort of like when Hagrid left Harry Potter” on the Dursley’s doorstep. After Mike & I met and got married, the doctor cut my belly open & put Hondo in it. Then they took him out. So it seems to be kind of a Harry Potter meets Invasion of the Body Snatchers scenario. Definitely better than anything I could come up with. It kind of reminded me of a more genuine version of this


the inspiration



found baby!

Dedicated to baby Grayson who was so lucky to be found by Matt & given to Katie.


4 Oct

We did have a pretty exciting summer, in July Hondo & I tagged along with Mike to the San Diego Comicon. It was Mike’s 5th time so to him it’s become more familiar, less dazzling, a job more or less. To us it was crazy exciting, it was so crowded you could barely move. I should have gotten Hondo one of those child leashes to ease my fear of losing him in a sea of Storm Troopers & Sailor Moons…

Hondo had several people ask to take his photo right when we arrived. I wonder what character they thought he was dressed as? I’m pretty sure cowboy with a JDRF “Rufus” the diabetic teddy bear might have been the most original costume of the day.

Comicon is like the opposite of a normal social event. It’s no big deal if another girl is wearing the same outfit as you are. In fact, you will willingly pose for hundreds of pictures with that girl.

The lego booth had an collasal pile of yellow bricks that I couldn’t really capture in all it’s glory. It was like a 10 foot wide pile of gold at the end of a cartoon rainbow.

An amazing giant card-back Darth Vader package. Every dude dressed as Darth Vader got to have a little “Honey I Shrunk the Kids” moment here. 

pining for the new releases

MythBusters Adam & Jamie

trying out Rayman in the Sony Playstation booth

in between the two dudes is Hurley from Lost

Hondo always tells these guys, “I have a toy of you…”

Me & the hilarious Rob McElhenny from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (who was also on Lost one time, weird!)

Hondo with larger than life Ugly Dolls

That lady with the glasses & the burgundy shag haircut was literally Chewbacca’s handler. Does that mean that he was the “real” Chewbacca? Or maybe it was Justin Timberlake hiding out in a Chewbacca suit?

“I have a toy of you!”

Showed up to the party in the same Princess Leia costume? No problem! I like how the super tan & skinny one didn’t even bother to do her hair. Weird.

“I have a toy of you!”

“I have a toy of you!” This guy was actually one of me & Mike’s favorites. He really had the Jack Sparrow swagger down pat.

This D2 was remote controlled from an unknown source, it was totally magical.

“I have a toy of you.” Check.
Afterward Hondo & I went to Horton Plaza to have a break at the Nordstrom Cafe. When we were there we saw Mike Tyson. Hands down the most unexpected celebrity sighting ever. And what an entourage! Kind of overkill, don’t you think? Who would dare to mess with him anyway?

old tucson

3 Aug

We just got back from an epic road trip from San Diego to Seattle and I wanted to post these pics of our trip to Old Tucson before I get sidetracked and move on to the next adventure. Old Tucson is a movie studio/theme park located just west of Tucson near Saguaro National Park. Hondo loved it, he is all about being a cowboy. I got him some Frye boots from Ebay before we left so that I could avoid buying him full price cowboy boots in Tucson. They didn’t leave his feet the whole time we were there despite the 100+ degree weather. We had a great time, it’s not too crowded even though it used to be Arizona’s #2 tourist attraction (just behind the Grand Canyon.)

Little House on the Prairie costumes

Real Guns!

This amazing school house is one of a handful of the original structures that remains (a fire in 1995 destroyed the rest.) They had the most amazingly creepy set up in here, with the slouchy mannequin school marm and some piped in audio of ghostly children’s voices reciting the alphabet and occasionally an adult woman’s voice would interject, “Enunciate, please.” It was amazing. Did I tell you it was amazing? Uh-mey-zing. Sorry, I only know one adjective.

The cast of the live action cowboy shows actually perform all the shows in the park, so you’ll see them do a goofy routine at this Alamo (which is one of the sets you might recognize from ‘The Three Amigos’,) and then you’ll see the girl do a completely earnest medley of popular western theme songs in the theater.

desert museum

22 Jun

Remind me to go to Arizona every Memorial Day when it’s still struggling to reach 60 degrees in Seattle. It is the perfect antidote to all those pesky side effects of low vitamin D levels. Now that we have a kid we get to do all kinds of fun touristy stuff that we never used to do there like go to the Sonora Desert Museum. I think I got a little bit of heat stroke from this visit but it was still fun.

nothing is cuter than prairie dogs

Mike & Hondo with Uncle Brian

wild lizard

javelinas, they are only as closely related to pigs as we are to chimpanzees

Mike & Hondo with Grandma & Grandpa

Paloverde ecosystem

mine cars

camp fire kids

12 May

Amber & I started a camp fire troop, it’s been a little crazy but really fun. I kind of had social anxiety about the first meeting but the kids seemed to love it and they just keep getting better. We just had meeting number 3 on Tuesday. We made pillows (not pictured) at the first meeting, candles at the second meeting and first aid kits at the third meeting. We also gave the kids little pouches to hold their kits & their home-made mini notebooks that Danielle helped us put together… the notebooks will be for their earned stickers (the little kids have more opportunities to earn stickers than badges for the first year or so).

"make sure you get your parent's help with the ointments"

the candles were made in various thrift store jelly jars