Thursday, June 14, 2012

Anniversary Celebration

On Memorial Day, we headed back to Tucson. This time, we took 'the 8' to San Diego - then along the border, to Yuma and home. In San Diego, we had lunch with my good friend (and country cousin) Marijo and her husband, Lawrence. They are moving to Japan next month for 2 years, so it was wonderful to see them and introduce them to Dan.

Tuesday was our "official" anniversary. We spent the day working. On our way into work, we stopped at Wheel Donuts (the local donut shop that Dan loves) for breakfast.

After work, we went out to Buffalo Wild Wings. Sure, it's not fancy - but we love it. AND it was 'Traditional Tuesday,' which we love - and I love a good, yeah, it may not be fancy, but it's us. We walked out stuffed and satisfied and then Dan said, "SO - wanna buy a cake?"

"No." Disheartened Dan replies, "You don't?"

Well, no, not really. I was stuffed - and I don't really like cake. BUT, I know that look and after a year of marriage, I'm starting to learn which battles are just not worth it. SO - we got a cake.

Wait - Happy WHAT? Annivershfhsdlkfsdy?
Cake Wrecks, anyone??

His idea. Seriously, what a cutie. :)

...and sorry about the sideways pics. I didn't flip 'em before adding.

Honeyversary Day 3: Chillaxin'

On Sunday, we relaxed. We read the paper, drank coffee, at breakfast, watched the Indy 500 (our hosts are Indianans, after all).

Then, we visited Irvine's city park, a former Navy training base (I think; I may not get these facts right). When the City of Irvine bought the land, they created a plan to transform it into the largest city green-space/park - larger even than Central Park. A community garden and Farmer's Market are housed there. Currently, there is a giant orange balloon (tethered) that you and 29 of your friends can rise 400 feet into the air and peruse the cityscape.

There is also a CAROUSEL! We couldn't ride the balloon due to winds - but we could ride the carousel.

After visiting the park, Dan and I went for a walk into the hills beyond Larry & PJ's. At the top of the hill, we found this little guy: a real roadrunner!

If you look really closely above the hill, you'll see an orange circle. That's the balloon at the Irvine park.

That night, we were able to enjoy dinner with my great-uncle Bob and great-aunt Ruth. It was such a blessed evening. It was terrific to spend the weekend celebrating our marriage with family that hadn't been able to come to the wedding!

It was a really wonderful weekend. We needed a weekend to just completely relax and let go. Larry and PJ were excellent hosts. We can't thank them enough!

Honeyversary Day 2: Relaxation

On Saturday, Larry and PJ had arranged for us to have brunch 'on the ocean' in Laguna Beach. The restaurant is the former home a Hollywood star. It was excellent food, service - and even better company. We were able to have a 'window seat' and look out directly onto the ocean.

Our anniversary mouse

Family as Friends: PJ, Larry, me, Dan - what a view!

After brunch, we walked along the ocean (not on the sand, but along a 2-mile sidewalk above the 'beach'/rocks). It was beautiful.

Can't pass up a photo op with some unique art! I tried to get Dan to pose like the whale, but I think he took offense to the suggestion. I wasn't trying to insinuate that he's like the whale....

9/11 Memorial - beams from each of the Towers

Fun fact: though near the ocean, southern California is still a desert/arid climate. Thanks to the Hoover Dam and the canal system, California has lush, rich vegetation and farm fields due to water from the Colorado River. Just think, Arizona could have gotten that water.... 

We found a beach wedding!

So, I had to take several pictures. Dan thought I was totally weird for doing this; I think it must have been the nostalgia.

DOLPHINS!  We saw several dolphins swimming out in the ocean.

After vising the beach and walking along the ocean, we went wine tasting. It was glorious and fun.
After wine tasting at two places, we took naps. Then ate delicious tri-tip, soaked up the sunshine, laughed, and watched the Disney fireworks - all from Larry & PJ's backyard.

Honeyversary, Day 1 - Disneyland!

"Honeyversary? What's that, Jessica?"

Oh, you know, that time when you combine a honeymoon into your first anniversary celebration.

For our "honeyversary" - aka first anniversary wedding weekend - we headed west to sunny, cooler, (more) humid southern California! Living in Tucson, we'd already had days in the triple digits, so it was SUCH a relief to spend 3 days with weather in the 60s-70s. I loved being able to break out the jeans for a few days. We left Tucson mid-afternoon on Thursday, and took I-10 (or "the 10" to Califonians) to Irvine. We were welcomed with open arms into Larry and PJ Colando's home (cousins to Dan's mom).

On Friday morning, we slept in and then enjoyed breakfast with Larry and PJ before heading to the happiest place on earth: Disneyland! Dan and I have both been to Disneyworld, but never to Disneyland - so we figured it was a must. The two are fairly similar; the one ride that is different, the Matterhorn, was closed for repairs. Whomp-whomp.

We had a great day. Favorite ride: Space Mountain (Jessica); Pirates of the Caribbean (Dan). I got to see my first Disney parade! Dan got to conquer his fear of Snow White and her scary adventures. AND we came to the mutual agreement that we will only take our children to Disneyland/world when they are old enough to walk without whining. The strollers take over the park! [That rule, by the way, comes courtesy of my parents who made that rule for our family regarding when we could go to the Iowa State Fair...which meant no Fair for me until I was 9.]

The adventure begins.
BTW - like my glasses? Totally went shopping in the school's lost and found for these babies. Oh. YES.

Prepare for the amazement of watching Michael Jackson from 1986 in a Star Wars-esque 3D adventure.

You know, it really IS a small world.

Visiting ToonTown revealed that Dan has not seen Who Framed Roger Rabbit? Add that to the "must-see" movies!

Mickey kicks off the parade! He was actually playing those drums, too.

Belle and Cinderella


Lots of awesomeness happening here.

It's a jolly holiday with Mary!

Sleeping Beauty's castle

This was my amazing dessert. We ate in the "French Quarter" of Frontierland. We played it smart during the day and had snacked on some popcorn and brought our own giant water bottle (several water fountains in the park). Then, we splurged on one big meal. That cake was all worth it; it was much more like a mouse and ah-mazing.

I can't pass up a carousel - and now I have roped Dan into it!

That's right! We got to meet THE couple of the hour! It was a total fluke. We were waiting for the fireworks to start (which ended being canceled due to wind) and headed over to catch 'Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln.' Tucked away in this corner near the theater with Lincoln, there was a line of about 10-15 people. We looked and there were Mickey and Minnie! I told Dan that we had to get our pictue taken with them. We walked to the theater anyway. After inside for about 2 minutes, Dan said, "You want to go get our picture taken?" YES.  How often do you get to meet the power couple of the century? ;-)