Friday, August 29, 2008

CONGRATULATIONS, STEPHEN!!!

I know that everyone is expecting a continuing description of our vacation, BUT something wonderful has happened....



My DEAR husband, Stephen has gotten a job as a teacher. Our prayers (and I know some of yours) have been answered!!! Stephen was offered a position at the school where he has been a "Computer Tech" for the last 3 1/2 years and where he performed his student teaching. The position is "Reading Resource Teacher" and he begins this Wednesday. He is very excited! The position is half-time which allows him the opportunity to sub in the afternoon as well as continue tutoring. Most importantly, he gets to begin his "BTSA" or induction program required by the state that will be paid for by his district...if he hadn't got a job after a few years, the expense is ours and it costs over $4000. Even more exciting, NOW we can begin trying to start our family.
I am so proud of Stephen and excited that he gets to stay at the school he loves with all his friends and collegues there. I know the children are very lucky to have him there and will be extremely excited to see that "Mr. Lineberry" aka "Mr. Steve" are still with them.

We will post pictures of the classroom soon.

Love to all :)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Stay-cation continued Day One

Whew, that was quite the long post about our morning at the Reagan Library (which by the way, doesn't have a library that we saw). After leaving the library, since we were already in Stephen's mission area, we decided to take a tour. First, we headed to one of the apartments he stayed in while living in Thousand Oaks...


Next, we headed to our favorite mexican restaurant...Lupe's. Stephen had taken me on a tour of his mission a couple of years ago while we were on our way to camp in Monterey.


After a yummy lunch, we headed out to see the Stake Center he went to while serving in Thousand Oaks as well as other sites...I am including some pictures from 05' of us on the hill above the Stake Center so everyone can see how beautiful this area is as well as how skinny I used to be before marrying Stephen ;)



We then headed out to Santa Rosa Valley on our way to Oxnard. Stephen decided to stop in and try to visit a family he was very close to during his mission, The Wutkee's!!! The parents actually drove up right after we had parked. It turned out that one of Stephen's best friends from Nashville married one of the Wutkee girls...so it was great for Stephen to hear about his old friend. I was so impressed with this family and was grateful for the hour or so that we got to spend with the parents. They even showed me a pic of Stephen at his friend's wedding way back in 97'...Wow! He was such a hottie even back then.


After leaving the Wutkee's we headed to Oxnard and after picking up some "Spudnuts", donuts made from potato flour that were quite yummy, we made it to the beach in time for sunset...Stephen is being silly as usual :)





We had a fun drive home along PCH down through Malibu and then off to bed!!!

Our "Stay"cation!!!

So we are fully engulfed in our "stay"cation and I am fully enjoying the time off with my one and only :) This is now week two of my time off work so I figured I had better catch y'all up on week one.

We started the week by first heading out to Simi Valley to visit the Ronald Reagan Library. It was awesome because we hit no traffic and we had beautiful weather. Stephen and I were both surprised at the size of the place and how much it had to see. Please enjoy the pictures below.

It's Ronnie himself greeting you as you enter his library...


Stephen doing a quick test shot...we weren't allowed to use flashes in side...


Ronald Reagan's desk with his journal open to the day he was shot...he had really poor penmanship.



Nancy's dresses were a special exhibit. The pictures do not do them justice to how beautiful they were.




Replica of his family kitchen growing up as well as his early years. Can you find him in the class photo?...





His years as Governor...


The Bible he used while taking his presidential oath...and the map of the election (hope it is just the same this year Blue=Obama :)



The Olympic torch used in the 84' games...I told Stephen how excited I was to see it, because I had actually gone to LA with a soccer friend and her dad to see the torch ran through the city...I was 12 at the time and had a blast riding the bus from place to place to see the torch multiple times. (YES I rode a city bus!!!)


Here we are giving our news briefing...I think my news is better than Stephen's!



Next is, YES, you guessed it folks!!!! It is the actual Air Force One Reagan used. We were suprised too!!! It is amazing...they actually built the pavilion around the plane. It is a Boeing 707. Unfortunately, we were not allowed to take pictures inside. The inside is fully replicated to Reagan's time with a Jelly Belly jar in each compartment of the plane. Below the plane, that is tilted by 2 degrees to simulate a take off, is Marine One helicopter and Reagan's limo as part of a motorcade.









After Air Force one you head outside to a beautiful view of Simi Valley and a part of the Berlin Wall as well as Reagan's resting place, where I won a pack of Jelly Belly's since I knew who Reagan was quoting at the opening of the library...it was Anne Frank. She said, as quoted by Reagan, "I know in my heart that man is good, that what is right will always eventually triumph and there is purpose and worth to each and every life."




Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Our time with the wild animals!!!

Well I have been a bad blogger and have not made a post in quite awhile...a few weeks back, we had the wonderful opportunity to visit San Diego. We recently acquired an annual pass for both the San Diego Zoo and Wild Animal Park for the very cheap price of $79 for the both of us with the bonus of the entire cost being tax deductible...since we are now members fo the Zoological Society.

We went to the zoo on Friday where we had a blast seeing all the animals...including a polar bear having Stephen's favorite snack...carrots!!!





I enjoyed the gorillas and orangutans...I love to try to figure out what they are thinking. The gorillas were enjoying a yummy popsicle while we were there.




They also had pandas which was fun, but much more limited than I expected...and the baby pandas were asleep...Boo!!






After the zoo, we went to visit some of our favorite people...DA' PEARSONS!!! We love to visit San Diego, because it usually means we are going to get to hang out with Matt, Mary, Elizabeth and Evan. We hung at the house for a few hours with Mary and the kids because Matt was busy flying overhead.

After good conversation and fun with the kids... we decided to go have dinner at this very fun restaurant called, I think, "Studio Diner". It was good times...the diner is located next door to a TV studio where they have filmed quite a few shows. My highlight was when Stephen came from the patio with Evan (who had to go see the dinosaur on the patio) and informed me that there was a signed poster of Guy from the Food Network...I had just been discussing with Mary how much I loved Guy's show "Diner, Drive-Ins and Dives" so I was quite excited to know that he had already visited this Diner and even more eager to eat. Turned out the food was great...I had a very yummy Tuna Sandwich, while everyone else had breakfast plates.

However, the true highlight of the diner and I am so sad I didn't have the camera...while we were leaving...Stephen said to me..."look it's a giant!" Perplexed I looked out the window to see a huge specimen of a man...OK I will just say it...he was a GIANT..over 7 feet and over 300 pounds. To make it even weider he was dressed like he was part of the cast of Harry Potter, specifically "Hagrid". I lost it and was so excited...saying, "LOOK, LOOK a GIANT!!!" As we drove home, we could not figure out why the man was dressed that way. Finally, a light bulb...I said, "Stephen he was dressed probably for a TV show filming." DUH!!!

We were lucky to be able to stay at the Miramar Inn, which is on the base at Miramar, thanks to Matt/Mary. It was a real nice room with a couch and kitchenette. The Pearson's hung out in our room for about an hour, Matt included who met us dressed in his flight suit at the entrance to the hotel.

The next morning after a yummy continental breakfast supplied by the hotel...we were waiting for the Pearson's outside of the one mini mart on base we were allowed to shop in...where we acquired yummy snacks for the day. While waiting, we noticed a young Marine standing at attention in dress greens outside the entrance to the mini mart. He saluted and stood at attention for everyone who went inside. Matt called to let us know they were on their way...Stephen immediately related the story of the Marine at the door who was now being berated by off duty servicemen...some were nice as well, one even bringing the poor guy water. Matt informed us that the Marine was most definately in trouble for something he did. It was SO entertaining to watch...every person stopped to talk to the Marine and ask him what he did. He was at attention like a guard at Buckingham Palace, except this was the equivalent of a Rite Aid. Finally after about a 1/2 hour a very large man started in on the poor marine...pointing his finger at him while he yelled. The marine stood there kind of stunned but humble. After the yelling ended the large Marine walked away with his bag of groceries and the in trouble marine stooped picked up his water and walked away with his head down. Seems the man yelling at him was his superior officer who had assigned the duty. Good times and very informative.

With the Pearson's in tow, we headed to the San Diego Wild Animal Park. They bought annual passes as well so we will be heading down there to be with them often. It was great spending the day seeing all the animals and most importantly hanging out with the Pearson's. I always love to see Stephen and Matt together...they are so close, like brothers. It is great to see Stephen so happy enjoying himself. And my time with Mary is always the best...I always tell Stephen how much I love her and how I am amazed how close I have become with her and how easily we get along since we have only known each other for a couple of years and only see each other a few times a year. Stephen's response is, "of course, Mary is the BEST!!!" Please enjoy the pics below...including a pic of a very little animal who we saw take it's first steps. Sorry can't remember the name.







Sorry that was a long post...but you enjoyed it.

Love to all :)