Archive for December, 2005

Dec 31 2005

2005 SF Road Trip Vacation

I’m a little behind on the blog because we’ve been on the road. We decided to spend Christmas in San Francisco and make the trek a road trip. The theory was that we could take our time wandering up the coast and get Nathan some much needed “behind the wheel” time for his impending drivers license.

Here’s Nathan at the steering wheel:

Nathan did a great job driving, clocking 15 – 20 hours on the trip. I’m sure he felt very fortunate to have Mom telling him what to do from the passenger seat, and Dad screaming “SLOW DOWN!!!” from the back back. Erin was in the back offering color commentary.

At some point I was told to “Zip It and Go with the Flow,” so I spent a lot of time playing CivIV and trying hard not to look out the windshield. Not an easy task for a control freak. Also, the French and English teamed up and beat me up in Civ, so I was pretty grumpy.

We stopped off in Santa Barbara to check out UCSB:

I wanted to see an neat interactive map display I’d heard about at the Library, but it wasn’t up yet. Good excuse for another road trip.

We stopped for 2 nights at Solvang, a town I’d heard about as a great biking location and the setting for the movie “Sideways.”

Here Nathan and Erin show their interest in seeing the sights (or ever getting out of a hotel room before noon):

Man, kids these days. In my day, we went out and played in the fresh air. When it wasn’t snowing, or raining, or tornadoing. On those days we played video games on proper consoles, not these tiny, dim, hand held contraptions. Well, I DID have a Merlin…

Ok, here’s the obligatory Solvang “ain’t we all Dutch and stuff” set of pictures:

Jeez! Even away from the hotel room, they gotta be pushing buttons!

More pictures from the first leg of the trip here.

On Friday, we zoomed up the coast and just made it to our 3p tour reservation for Hearst Castle. I had always wanted to see the place, AND we got a new camera for Christmas, so I was very excited to get up there and take some neat pictures:

Well, there ya go! Nice pictures, eh? NO!!! SOMEone SAID she had the camera when she had to sprint in to make sure the tour bus didn’t leave as Nathan parked. Well, SOMEone ELSE was sure he heard her say she had it. Or he was just delirious from a 3 day diet of Doritos and envisioning his fiery death on an interstate.

Here’s a link to flickr’s “hearstcastle” tag.
There are 2224 pictures there. I’m sure mine would have been better. Sniff.

The mansion is wonderful! I highly recommend checking it out.

Nathan was tired from driving, and it was getting dark and foggy, so I took over the drive to San Francisco. One thing we learned on this trip is that Highway 1 is GORGEOUS during the day when there is light and it is not dark. And foggy. And wet. Sigh… It was a stressful drive, but we made it and hit the sack at the Wharf Hyatt.

The next morning we all hopped out of bed and got moving to see the sights and take advantage of as much daylight as possible!

YEAH RIGHT! For some reason, these people thought they were on vacation or something. The boy sleeps as well as he drives:

And the mom and girl are pretty good at it too:

Well, at some point, we got out to see the sights:

Erin had her first cable car ride:

I think she liked it:

Nathan really needs a haircut:

Oh, wait, that’s not him. Here he is:

We finally relented and let him get a sword. Hey, if you can drive a car, you should be allowed to hack off people’s heads, right?

He was overwhelmed by the choices:

He finally settled on a $15 Kill Bill knockoff. Now lets see if his mom ever lets him take it off the wall.

Erin also enjoyed shopping in Chinatown:

More pictures from Christmas Eve in San Francisco here.

Christmas in a Hotel!

Nathan refuses to be totally awake, but he’ll at least sit up for presents:

Erin loves manga:

Elaine gets a tiny present:

Then we headed out for the traditional Christmas meal of Dim Sum:

And got some cloudy picture from the top of the parking structure. See how happy Nathan is to be awake!

More pictures from Christmas day.

Day 3 in San Francisco

Since we’d been in SF for 3 days, and we were staying at the Wharf, we thought we should actually go look at it. This is a crappy picture, but it’s proof we were there, right?

Here we enjoy a view of the sea lions at Pier 39. I think Nathan’s yawning…

Ah, now’s he’s more awake!

Is he smiling? We’re not sure… Erin is tho!

Nathan and I always love going to see the Bushman in SF. He’s the guy on the bottom left, hiding behind a few branches waiting for people not to notice him. Then he goes “BOO!” We can watch him for hours. Here’s a picture of him with a victim:

Mom and Nathan watch the fun:

More pictures from Day 3.

We got home late on Tuesday. On Wednesday, Joe and Lorah Gross came to visit. Joe and I took a killer bike ride up some of our San Diego mountains:

Nope, that’s not Joe, but he looks a lot LIKE Joe, kinda. If I’d have been thinking, I’d have asked for a picture actually WITH Joe, but I was too tired from climbing that mountain to think. The lady with us is Grace. Oh, and the fake Joe is Jack, a buddy of Joe’s who has actually ridden the Furnace 508, which I hear is a way that bikers can add even more pain to the whole experience.

Joe took some neat pictures of us actually moving:

That’s the next cover of Bicycling Mag!!!

More pictures from this ride here.

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Dec 21 2005

Happy Holidays!

Published by under Family

Here’s wishing you all the very best Holidays and a Happy New Year!

Heh, I’m gonna get in trouble for THIS one!!!

December in San Diego (you can tell cuz I’m wearing a windbreaker… 🙂 )

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Dec 15 2005

Notori Spawn!

Published by under Friends

Congrats Mark and Leah!

This morning, 12/15, at 7:27am, Leah gave birth to our daughter, Kara Rose
Notarus. Mother and daughter are doing fine, and Kara is remarkably
calm for someone directly related to Mark.

Kara was 21″ long, and 6lbs 14oz.

Yesterday was a fun day. Leah’s water broke early in the day, so mild
that we’re not even sure when. She had a regularly scheduled
appointment at 5:30pm, where they said “You’re going to the
hospital!”. We leisurely packed everything we own into the CRV, and
headed in, arriving at the hospital around 7pm. We had a comparitively
easy night, with mild contractions until about 5 in the morning, when
they introduced some pitocin. Active labor started about 6:30.

Mark and Leah

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Dec 11 2005

Academic Computing Throws Great Parties!

Published by under Declan,Friends

This guy is at EVERY party!

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Dec 05 2005

The Baby Boy is 16!!!

Published by under Family,Nathan

Holy cow, we have a 16 yr old! Stay off the streets!

A proud mommy:

Careful, Erin’s eyeing your presents!!!

More pictures.

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