Friday, November 17, 2017

Shoe Boxes 2017

We did our traditional TNDC Friendsgiving and Shoe Box packing this week.  It was super fun to see Avery get to help for the first time!   And to have Tyler there after a 3 year hiatus in Florida!

We did 102 boxes and had a bunch of stuff leftover because we were all so into gathering he goodies this year!

Monday, November 13, 2017

Fall Ball

This is Grace's last Fall Ball in High School.  It was a fun nite - they went to Taco Bell before dance!  Then they went to the dance at Levi Stadium.


Hops has taken ownership of this pink pillow and has carried it around for months.  She carries it, lays down and puts her head on it.

It was becoming pretty dirty and gross, so Grace made her the blue one which has a cover that can be removed and washed.  Now she carries them both around and snuggles with them.

Sunday, November 05, 2017

Pirate Party

Since Cindy's kitchen was made by a pirate (Jim), she decided to host her first party in it as a Pirate themed party!  So we celebrate Mr C and Mr Screwtop's birthdays while dressed as pirates in the new kitchen....which is BEAUTIFUL!

Friday, November 03, 2017

Train, Scooter, Ferry - An Angel Island Boondoggle

In the elevator at the train station - Jim's peg leg hit the ceiling

Ashley, Jim, Marty and I went on an epic urban backpacking adventure to Angel Island.  We got incredible fall weather for early November -- it was mild, no fog or wind and beautiful blue skies.

Waiting for our train

Our "Goober Driver",  Renee, dropped us off at the train station at about 9 am and we headed up to the city. 

Jim scootering thru the City with this peg leg on his back

We got to the city and stood around for awhile trying to decide which direction to walk in order to catch our ferry at Pier 41.  A local homeless man decided it was his job to help us while he was eating a tamale!  He gave us all kinds of advice the last of which was, "You'll never make it. You have a cripple with you.  I am a local.  It's way too far to walk."  With that advice, we headed off towards the pier, walking the whole way along the Embarcadero.  It was a 3.1 mile flat walk - which may seem like a long way for a city dweller, but for a backpacker, it was a walk in the park!

Under the Bay Bridge

We took in all the sites and made it to Pier 41 with about 30 minutes to spare.   So Jim and Marty decided to spend their free time eating hotdogs.  Ashley and I decided to get a bucket of donuts!

Bucket of Donuts

Our ferry ride took about 20 mins
We all ate some more snacks on the ferry and were ready to hike a mile to our camping spot when we got to the island.
Marty helping carry Jim's back off the ferry
While waiting around to check in for our camp spot, some woman approached Jim and said, "I saw you in Santa Cruz a few weeks sure get around."  LOL!  He must make an impression rushing around on that scooter.

The road to our camp spot was a bit steep in spots so it was slow roll, literally, to get there.  But that allowed us to get some great views.

An old building - no longer used.

Once we arrived at our campsite with amazing views, we settled down for traditional tea time on the trail!  Everyone had tea and shared their snacks.   This was Ashley's first backpacking trip and I was thrilled when she declared that "Tea Time" was her favorite part!

Our tent with the Golden Gate bridge in the background

After tea time, Marty, Ashley and I hiked down to the beach and left Jim to fend off the aggressive raccoons that the ranger warned us about.  In reality though, we never saw a racoon!

Ashley drinking her backpacking brew

After a beach walk, it was beer time and time to watch the sunset and the lights come on in the city.

More beer as the sun set
Once the sun set, we started making dinner.   Jim and Marty brought steaks that the bbqed on the grill provided at the camp site.  What a backpacking treat for them.
At about 7 am, the turkey vultures were waiting for Ashley to get out of her tent

The night was mild and held an almost full moon!  The next morning we woke up to another beautiful day.   We had some breakfast, talked about our gear and packed up to catch the 10:20 am ferry.

Waiting for our morning ferry

When we got back to the city, we walked to the Ferry Building, did a little lookey loo tourtisty stuff and then had a delicious lunch at the Hog Island Oyster Company.  Ashley and I split a delicious arugula, roasted corn, yellow tomato, avocado salad with a lime yogurt dressing!  It was especially yummy since the nite before we had eaten freeze dried corn in our top ramen dinner!

Then we headed to the train station where we caught the 2:00 pm train home to Diridon Station where our "Goober Driver", Renee, met us!   All in all it was a great boondoggle that we would like to do again but stay two nites so we have time to explore the island more.  Plus, we would like to go when Jim has two working legs!

A man.  A beer.  A peg leg.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Halloween 2017

These three are goofy!

 Happy Halloween!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Cherry Lake - drained

Cherry from the communication station

Two weekends ago, we took a ride out to Cherry to check out how low it is.  They have been draining it to repair the dam and we had not yet seen it.

Eleanor which is about a mile east of Cherry - it's full to the brim!

The pictures above were taken at the communications station that we sometimes drive up to so that we can get a good view of Cherry and Eleanor or to play in the snow in the winter.  Jim is still on his peg leg so we couldn't do much exploring or hiking.  Grace brought all her camera gear and took some pics for school assignments.

Then we drove right down to Cherry and saw exactly how low it was.   It was super cool to see although I wish we could have hiked down to the water line to look for treasures.

Pic taken from the middle of the dam

Pic taken from middle of the dam looking back at the boat ramp

This has something to do with the water flow but I don't know what!

Boat Damage

We took the boat out of the lake for the season and winterized it.  Unfortunately, when we took it out, we noticed that someone had hit the corner of the deck and ripped off a big metal bracket.  We had moved the boat close to the boat ramp and figured that someone had backed into it and then pulled forward ripping off the bracket.

It's a big bummer!

Left is what it should look like.  Right is ripped off!
Power washing the muck off the bottom of the boat