Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Graduation, Family & Friends, part1

We had a great time this past weekend, as we watched our son graduate from high school. The weekend was full of family, fun, and the very best of friends.

We truly are blessed!

In case you missed it...

...meet Landau Murphy. He'll surprise you - he sure did surprise me!

Sunday, June 26, 2011


So....backing up to Wednesday, I wanted to share a couple of pictures from our Purdue trip. First, let me say, that our first impression was not the best. We arrived Tuesday evening to 88F and heavy rain. Coming from San Diego, we are not particularly used to high humidity. We are certainly not used to hot rain! AJ and I looked at each other, and I think we both thought the same thing...."What the heck are we doing here?"

Since Indiana is a bit further north than San Diego, it stays lighter a bit longer, so we took advantage of the extra time, and drove around campus and the surrounding area for quite some time. It was quiet, and gloomy, not just because of the weather, but the older buildings seemed to have a feeling of lifelessness to them. There were very few people around, very few cars on the streets, and it was all a bit unsettling. Before finally heading back to our hotel, we stopped at a local burger joint, which had been recently featured on the Food Network's "Diners, Drive-In's and Dives" and grabbed a bite to eat.

We each had a good, greasy burger, and it was better than expected. Nothing like some comfort food to improve the mood!

I think we both settled in for the night thinking the same thing..."I hope tomorrow is better." Now, don't get me wrong, it wasn't that it was horrible....it just wasn't at all what we'd expected.

Well, we woke up Wednesday morning, after what seemed like about 15 minutes of sleep to a whole new world. The sun was shining, the weather was cooler, the humidity lower, and our outlooks oh-so-much better!

We headed back to campus for AJ's early morning orientation and registration. It was to be a very full, very exciting and very fun day. The campus was transformed in the sunlight. The buildings, though still older, had a stately air to them now, no longer looking gloomy or foreboding.

The campus was bathed in lush greenery...

and buzzing with life.

What a difference a day makes!

AJ got through all of the important stuff he needed to for the day - and it was time for a few quick "touristy" shots before we headed back to the airport. We needed to get back to San Diego so he could actually graduate from High School!

Ah-the football stadium. He can't wait to spend a lot of time here rooting on the Boilermakers!

After a great day, and as much as I really do hate to admit it, I think he will be happy here.

Wonder What Has Been Keeping Me Busy?

One picture should explain it all.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Welcome to Indiana!

Welcome to Indiana...Welcome to Purdue...

Did you bring an umbrella?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Backtracking a bit...

What better to do while flying across this great country of ours than blog? For as far as my eye can see, there are only clouds and sky. It is beautiful to say the least.

Even though I don't have an Internet connection up here, it hasn't kept me from browsing through and loading recent pictures I've been mean to. I've been behind on my blog, among other things lately. It's not so much for a lack of time as it is for an overabundance of things to do. I'm trying to find that balance in life the continues to elude me.

With that being said, I want to backtrack a bit and wish my Mom a very Happy Birthday, and my Pops a Happy Father's Day! This year, my Mom's birthday happened to fall on Father's Day, and we celebrated both together at our house with a great steak dinner. Hubby was a doll, and helped enormously with dinner, even though it was his special day too. I am a lucky girl indeed. We enjoyed the meal, a fantastic birthday cake thanks to Bear, and a fun evening of cards. It was a wonderful evening.

The last week was busy with a visit with our friends Natalie and Matthew, some pool time with the pooches, and lots of party planning for AJ's big day. He graduates on Saturday and we are expecting about 70 people to celebrate with us on Sunday. The food is ordered, the cake is ordered, the house is 95% back together from the flood...so things are moving along nicely.

After our quicky trip to Purdue, we'll get home late tomorrow night, and start putting the finishing touches on everything. Just a week from Friday, and we'll be on a plane again, this time heading towards Charleston, South Carolina to board a cruise ship bound for the Caribbean! Where the heck does the time go?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad while up, up in the sky!

The Rockies

On our way to Denver this morning, we flew over the Rockies. They were still snow-covered and spectacular!

Up, up and away!

And we are off at last...I bet you can't tell who is excited!

Off and running!

AJ and I are on a flight bound for Denver, then heading to Indianapolis! Tomorrow we get him registered for college at Purdue.

Have we been busy? Yep! You could say that!

I feel that I've been neglecting my blog and my blogger buddies-but all with good reason!

More soon!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

For J.P.

I came home to this today....

A.J. hasn't even registered for classes yet and the school pride has started. It's gonna be a long 4 years! Ha ha!

As my buddy Jack, a Boilermaker himself would say, "BOILER UP!"

Friday, June 17, 2011

Senior Prank Day

Today was Senior Prank Day at Pickle's school. Though she's not a senior yet (next year) she thoroughly enjoyed what took place. It seems the seniors were quite busy last night doing some "decorating" at school.

It was all in good clean fun, nothing malicious. You've got to give them credit for some great creativity! Wrapping an entire catwalk in plastic wrap? Alrighty then...we didn't do that when I was in school!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Pickle in Public

Last night, as part of her music class final, Pickle and her "band mates" played their original song in a public venue. I couldn't get the video the AJ took last night to upload, but here is the same song, performed at her school last Thursday night. The song is about animal cruelty - each group had to write a song about peaceful protest of a social issue.

Pardon the poor video quality...

The Day Remebered

Spend 3 minutes and watch this. It's worth your time.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Love of the Game, Love of my Boy.

AJ's love of baseball started early and runs deep.

When I say it started early, I'm not kidding.

I've been going thru a ton of old pictures lately while looking for some to use in a graduation slide show. Oh my gosh, talk about great memories! These are just a few of the hundreds of AJ that I've run across that have made me smile and reminisce. Man, oh man, am I going to miss this boy when he goes away to college! Pass the kleenex please.

Saturday, June 11, 2011


Warming up a pitcher can be important stuff...just ask AJ.

I love this picture of him-doing what he loves...

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Golden SurFURS in Action!!

Our friend Meeka's Mom and Dad made this awesome video of the Golden SurFUR team in action at this past weekend's surf competition. Check it out!

Here is another random video that one of our friends found on You Tube that shows Jill on her best ride of the day...it's still not great compared to some of the other dogs, but we were very proud of her.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Dog Bless You

For those of you on Facebook, please take a moment to "like" this page.

For every 5,000 “likes” to the Dog Bless You Facebook page, Explore.org will donate one service dog to a veteran suffering from PTSD, up to 100 dogs or $500,000!

Simply click on the link below. Then Click “Like.” Please help those who’ve given so much – it’s our duty!!!

For those who may be skeptical, here is some more information:

From Memorial Day (May 30th) to Independence Day (July 4th), Dog Bless You, a non-profit community created by Explore.org founder Charlie Annenberg Weingarten to champion the role dogs play in the lives of humans, will celebrate dogs and soldiers in America and bring service dogs to war veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder through a challenge grant centered around the Dog Bless You Facebook page.
How it Works:

For every 5,000 “likes” to the Facebook community page, Explore.org will donate one service dog to a veteran suffering from PTSD, up to 100 dogs or $500,000. Put together with The Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) and a collection of dog and veteran related organizations, the campaign offers a chance for people to participate around the ultimate goal of raising awareness surrounding PTSD and the healing role dogs can play in the lives of those affected by war. Over the course of the campaign the community page, which is currently comprised of over 175,000 fans, will feature photos, videos and discussions aimed at educating and inspiring. All organizations and individuals are invited to participate.

Quick Statistics about PTSD:

1 in every 5 military personnel returning from Iraq and Afghanistan has PTSD.
Over 500,000 U.S. troops deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq since 2001 suffer from PTSD.
Health care costs for all veterans with PTSD will be an estimated $6.2 billion biannually.

Helpful Links:

The Dog Bless You Facebook community: http://facebook.com/exploredogs (includes videos)
Explore.org , the multimedia arm of the Annenberg Foundation created to champion the selfless acts of others www.explore.org

The Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) http://iava.org/about
A great article: multimedia arm of the Annenberg Foundation created to champion the selfless acts of others.

For more information, the media contact person is:
Tom Pollak 310-309-0004