Tuesday, November 30, 2010

San Francisco-Day 5-Headed Home!

After our late night we all took our time getting up and around on our last morning. Then we realized we were running out of time and started shoving things in bags and suitcases.

Then we decided it was time for breakfast. We walked a few blocks from the hotel and found a little outdoor cafe. It is amazing what a difference a few hours makes in the type of people you see on the streets.

My two eggs and hash browns and water came to a total of $9. Man was I ready for Oklahoma pricing.

We of course had to take a picture. What else do you do on a girls' trip?? I asked the ladies behind us to take our picture and wasn't surprised to hear a very thick accent. The one that spoke a little English agreed to take the picture. The other one turned and sort of smiled since she was in the picture.

We were finishing when two men came up and said they weren't going to ask us for money, they were going to ask to eat the rest of the food on our plates. That's something we'd run into around every corner while we were there, beggars. Lying on the sidewalk, holding signs, having their dogs hold signs. Dogs with signs with dirty words on them. And no, I didn't get a picture. We got up to leave because we were uncomfortable and after we'd crossed the street they started digging in. The ladies behind us gave them cash and we spotted them outside Subway soon after. Soon it was time to grab our bags and figure out the fastest and cheapest way to get to the airport. With four woman and more than four total bags, we were looking at two different cabs. The guy that holds the whistle and catches cabs for the hotel (I'm sure he has an official title) suggested a Town Car. It was about $12 a person and we decided it was the way to go. I'm sure the scenery was nice on the way out but I couldn't look away from the rear view mirror. He was either handsome in a dark mysterious way...or was planning how he was going to kill us. We survived so I guess it was the first choice:c)

When I fly I have to wear the patches behind my ears or I feel the need to throw up my socks. I had patches leftover from the Phoenix trip so I knew I'd be fine. Sadly I can't throw away trash and when I got out my last one to put on for this flight, it was just an empty package. Nice going Stefunk. Not to worry, I'd packed my sea sickness bracelets. Not fashionable, but they'd helped me through the flight in my uncle's home built plane. For some stinking reason we had two layovers. And you know what we found out?? The same plane! We got off in Reno, went to the bathroom, and heard the call to get in line. We were there a total of 15 minutes. We asked the stewardess why we'd gotten off and she was as confused as we were.

And the bracelets?? They did two things. Jack. Squat. I wanted to throw up my socks. My shoes. And my shoelaces. And while I was at it, my toenail polish.

I took pictures while I could to try and keep my mind off of it.

It didn't work. But I am happy to report, I did not throw anything up. I was several different colors of green during the three flights, but I kept everything in. Even though I hate to fly, I do love the views. From bridges, to islands, to neighborhoods, to what looks like patchwork quilts, to clouds, it is an amazing view.

But my favorite view?? The four people that were waiting for me when I got off the plane:c) I didn't take a picture because I was tearing up and hugging. It was soooo good to be home!

Monday, November 29, 2010

San Francisco-Day 4

So what would you do after running 13.1 miles, walking about 7, and dancing the night away?? Go on a Segway tour of course! We slept in a bit, hopped in two cabs, and headed to the wharf. We were told to pick our ride and get ready for class. I picked this one. It was named 'Golden Gopher'. I couldn't resist:c) Sure wish I'd checked the tires before all the other ones were chosen! I just hoped I wouldn't get stuck on a slippery slope.After a video and a 30 minute class with obstacle courses, we were on our way. Segway's are really easy to drive but quite a bit frightening at first. Did you know the way to get it up off the ground is to raise your leg (ouch), push down on the back edge (ouch), and continue pushing until it's standing upright (ouch). Of the 15 people there for the tour, all but 3 had run the race. There was a lot of moaning. The Segway is so sensitive to movement. You don't really have to make big movements to make it go anywhere. It almost senses it. Slight heel pressure and you'll slow down. Curl your toes a little and you take off. It was addictive! I never wanted to walk again. And speaking of that, the boot completely threw them off. They finally decided it wasn't allowed. I got to sport a lovely pink (dirty) Croc. I was assured they're sanitized, it just looked dirty.

Apparently you're not supposed to take pictures while driving a Segway. I was caught, and told not to. So sorry, no tour pictures. I had to wait until we were stopped on a pier at the end to take pictures. Not only are Segways a little tricky to get on, they're a little tricky to get off. It's still moving as you step off because your feet are moving. We were taught exactly how to do it.

Some people still had trouble. It was continually running backwards into her until someone saved her. Aren't we cute?? We don't look like we're in pain at all. But trust me, we are. Mounted and ready to leave:) Okay, so I snuck a picture when the guide wasn't looking. After all, it was the side of Alcatraz I hadn't been on. And hi there! Soon we were back on our boring feet and deciding what to do next. Lunch was in order. Well, but one of our group needed to use the bathroom. Sadly this is what you run into a lot around town. Even though it was October the flowers were amazing! These made me want to go into the building. Sadly I was limping so far behind the group that I didn't get to voice my opinion. After lunch we hopped a cab, thank the good Lord, and headed to some shopping in Chinatown. You can't go to San Francisco without seeing (and smelling) Chinatown. Every store has the exact same things for sale, just a few different prices. I found a good deal on three silk hand painted umbrellas for three sweet girls, and from then on just took in the scenery. And the smells. Oh my stars the smells.

I wish I knew what bird this used to be. It certainly wasn't laundry I was smelling. These...creeped me out at first, but I decided they were roots...of some sort. But this? We smelled it a block away. Holy fish Batman! I just stopped and stared. And took pictures. Don't want the whole fish? How about some fish parts? Or need something a bit smaller? Right here in this tub. Don't want it fresh and fly bitten? Bagged, dried, and salted.I thought the smell couldn't be any worse....until I smelled this. I couldn't even walk in. It was disgusting!! I don't even know what it is. And I don't ever want to know. When we were all shopped out, and completely worn slick out we decided since it was our last day in town we had to ride a cable car. After all, we had them on our necklaces. It would be a lie to not ride one. Luckily we found a stop, a car, and some open side space. No way I was going to sit.

The boot was frightened, but we survived. And took pictures.

Look at that view! I was going to miss this city. To top off a wonderful day I got to go to dinner with my wonderful cousin Scott, his wife Adrienne, and their adorable little four month sweetie Olivia. Olivia had decided the day before to get 'stranger danger' so I didn't get any cuddle time. Sad day. But I got to be in a 100 year old San Francisco apartment. On the (gulp) third (gulp) floor. Ouch. I really didn't think I was going to make it. After dinner I had to have a group shot and I had to hold that sweet little bundle. I told Scott to hand her to me back first so she didn't see what was happening. Karreen was ready to snap the shot as fast as possible. I'm not sure if Olivia is scared of me or the flash, but we got a picture none the less. Love those 3!!

I could have easily crashed after we got back to the hotel but another Angel called from the hotel she and her sister had moved into across the street. (They were staying an extra day.) Actually, they called from the hot tub. Our hotel didn't have a pool or a hot tub. That my friends, is a crime. After the race in Phoenix the both of those were wonderful for soothing sore everythings. It was really cold outside so there was no way I was going to put on a swimsuit and sit in an outdoor hot tub. But since my feet and calves were killing me I did roll up my jeans and enjoy the conversation. We were in the middle of the hotel on the 16th floor. The towers of the rest of the hotel up to the 42nd floor were all around us.

Since two of the four of us were still hungry we ran out to Subway and headed back to the hotel. But Heather had an idea...why not go to the restaurant on the 42nd floor and eat the Subway sandwiches there. It's a very expensive restaurant, why wouldn't they let four women from Oklahoma sneak in with Subway sandwiches?? You know what, they did! I of course took pictures. It was really foggy, and dark, and the reflection from the restaurant lights didn't help, but I got a few that don't make you nauseous when you look at them.

That's the hot tub we were in! I didn't feel the pool but I sure hope it was heated. And there's Union Square. We'd started the race the day before almost under the yellow sign. Finally around midnight Karreen and I headed back to our hotel. Midnight in downtown San Francisco is a tad bit iffy. I clutched my purse and hobbled as fast as I could.

My trip was coming to an end and I was glad we'd done as much as we could. But I was ready to head home and see my family!

And I'm not going to lie...I missed the flatness of Oklahoma.

Soooo flat.

Friday, November 26, 2010

My Baby

My baby is 9 today. How did that happen?

Anyway, Happy Birthday Reagan!!

I love many things about her but here are 9 of my favorites.

1. She is still betrothed to the most adorable boy. They told us when they were two. Just tonight at football game he asked her if she was still his girlfriend. She of course answered yes.

2. She says the funniest things. Tonight we all put on three or four layers and headed to the football game. It was 37 degrees when we left. Kennedy was whining under her breath and finally said, "I'm hot." Reagan instantly said, "And I'm sexy."

She volunteered to pray one night at dinner right after McKinley also volunteered. McKinley prayed first and instead of starting as soon as her sister was done, Reagan said, "My prayer is going to be way better than that." She then asked God to bless the food to the 'nurses' of our bodies. A few days later she tried again. This time we got 'nurseries'.

One night while we were all sitting around watching tv she just out of the blue said, "If you put Funyuns on the grill, do they turn into onion rings?"

But one of my favorites? She came home early from school one day for a sudden all over rash. Weirdest thing. I let her stay here while I ran to school to pick up her sisters when they got out. As we walked back in the door she said, "Oh man! Next time I'm home alone I'm going to eat all the whipping cream!" This was brought up last night when Shawn applied a lot of spray whipping cream to his three slices of pie. It lead to this. Today as she unwrapped her presents at her family party guess what she got?? Her very own bottle of spray whipping cream. Thanks Juju! She's already had several hits tonight:c) 3. This is something I love about all my girls, but especially today and for Reagan. When it's their birthday I ask them what they want for every meal of the day. We'll take them anywhere for anything. They all ask for my cooking. That is an amazing compliment.

Reagan's menu for today:

Breakfast:Biscuits and Cocoa Gravy and Scrambled Eggs
Lunch:Baked Potato Soup and Homemade Breadsticks with Parmesan/Garlic Butter
Dinner:Crock Pot Lasagna and Gogo's Green Beans
Dessert:Heavenly Bars 4. She not only plays the piano and takes voice but she's also quite a little artist. She puts my stick figures to shame. I love to find her drawing.
5. She just proclaimed her love and devotion to God by asking to be baptized. It was one of the proudest moments of my life. Kennedy was baptized right before her. It was what we gave Gigi for her 89th birthday. She said it was a wonderful gift. 6. She begged and begged at age 4 to take voice like her sisters. She hasn't always loved it, but she has the sweetest little voice and delightful motions when she sings. This year she's sung a trio with her sisters for almost 1,000 people, been asked to sing for Wednesday night Prayer Meeting, and asked to sing for ARMM (Academy of Retired Ministers and Missionaries). She did each with a sweet smile and warm heart. 7. She played soccer again for our church with her amazing Daddy as her coach again. Because of my trip and McKinley having auditions I couldn't go to many games. But when I was there that girl scored! And scored plenty:c) 8. She is soooo adventurous! I always thought the baby of the family was reserved and shy and quiet. Not this one! She's up for just about anything. Zip lining? Sure. She did it twice! 9. She's a sweet friend, sister, daughter, student, neighbor, and cousin. She is so compassionate to everyone. Again I thought the baby of the family wouldn't like to be around younger cousins. But she has proven me wrong once again by being sweet and loving to her little cousins.So my baby is 9. I still can't come to terms with it, but I'm so happy we've had 9 wonderful years with her. I can't wait to see what her future holds. We love you Reagan Teal!!