Saturday, September 25, 2010

Momma B's Birthday/Labor Day

August through September is birthday time around here!
Kate's birthday is August 2nd, Jon's is August 6th, Jesse's is August 20th, Papa Don's is August 22nd, Bianca's is September 8th, and mine is the 27th.  Fun stuff!
Our "holiday weight gain" has already begun--so much birthday cake!!!

We celebrated Bianca's birthday on Labor Day up in Oxnard with the Mueller clan. What a beautiful day!

It was such a gorgeous day to spend at the beach!
The weather was perfect, the sand was warm, there was more than enough pizza to go around, and we enjoyed catching up with each other, laughing over old times, and watching a pod of dolphins dance on the waves.  Perfect!

Jesse and his birthday Momma  ♥

Just chillin'

Dad and Mom

Silly Jon...who wears cowboy boots to the beach?

After spending a loooooooverly afternoon at the beach, we headed back to Mom and Dad's for some of this:

Happy birthday, Momma B!

It will be months until she needs it, but Jesse and my gift to her was a handmade cap and keyhole scarf (gee, I wonder who made it?) in gorgeous hues of orange--her favorite!

Gotta love these two!
I have quite the collection of silly pictures of Jesse and Lou.

These are the only two pictures I have of the scrumptious spare ribs barbeque we had later that evening, but you can take my word for it--it was delicious!

It was a wonderful day of celebrating Momma B's birthday, relaxing with family, and enjoying good food!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Jesse's Birthday

My handsome man is 24! 

We drove up to Oxnard a few days before his birthday to celebrate his birthday and Papa Don's birthday with the Mueller clan.  Our fun family celebration was paired with an opportunity to see Laura and Dad perform in the musical, 1776.  What a fun day! cream cake!
The birthday boys!

How can a day not be fun when surrounded by all of these crazy people?  :-)


Kate is still in love with her monocle, and Jon is sporting his new "steampunk" goggles

Just a liiiiiiiiitle special :-)

After a wonderful dinner, lots of fun conversation, and some gift-giving (don't forget the cake!), we all drove up to Ojai to watch 1776.  What a talented group of people.  We were all so impressed by the musical that was directed and choreographed by high schoolers.  Laura played Martha Jefferson, which was so much fun to watch, and Dad got to play the part of the Reverend (man, that takes some serious acting!)  ;-)

On Jesse's actual birthday night, we got together with friends for dinner at BJ's and movies at the drive-in movie theater.  It was a great night!  (These photos are compliments of the amazing Greg Wilson)

Gathering friends

Mmmm...birthday pizzookie!

Cute birthday boy :-)

Since there was such a large group of us, we all brought lawn chairs and left the tailgates of our cars open so that we could hear the movie through the radio.  It worked!

Watching The Expendables at the drive-in
(do squinty eyes mean that another Brubaker needs glasses?)  :-)

The weekend after Jesse's birthday, we went to Redlands to celebrate with Momma B, Jan, and Bob.  We went to a teppan grill (my first time!)  It was amaaaaaaaazing.  The food was so good!  And it was fun to watch the chef put on such a great show for us.

Bob, Jan, and Jesse--excited about food!

Onion volcano--so cool!

Sushi and teppan grill in the same place? Amazing!

Happy boy with some birthday ice cream :-)

Such a fun night!

As you can see, we had a wonderful time celebrating Jesse's birthday!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Thinking Back to Five Years Ago

This is what we looked like way back then.

An energetic sophomore RA

and a quiet transfer student.

It wasn't love at first sight,

just a simple camaraderie.

No fireworks,
(at least, not until a year later!)

but lots of laughter that first night

as we sat on a lawn for a group outing to listen to the LA Philharmonic play under the stars.

Isn't it fun to look back?

That 18 year old girl had no idea
she was sitting next to the guy
who would change her life.
And now, I can't imagine going back
 to life as it was before.

Anniversary Trip: Days 5 & 6

Our last two days of our vacation!

One can't stay at the McClelland-Priest Bed and Breakfast and forget about it!  We were so excited to find this place.  Jesse and I still hold onto our common dream (one we each had before we even met!) of having a bed and breakfast someday, so we love treating ourselves once a year to a night at one that fits into our budget.  We absolutely loved this one! 

The house itself was built in 1879 and just breathes of Victorian beauty and richness.

Our room was so beautiful, and it was quite the treat after spending most of our vacation in a tent!

I looooved the beautiful jet tub

The B&B was in quaint little downtown Napa and was a short walk away from anything we wanted to see.  We enjoyed a delicious dinner at a lovely little Italian restaurant, and then walked around some of the shops and down to the river.  It was such a beautiful night!  I'm excited to go back again sometime.  (I think we learned the lesson that you can't really pack Napa into a one night experience!)

Thank you, Celeste, for a wonderful time at your beautiful B&B!!!

After we said goodbye to our new friends in Napa Valley, we headed back down Highway 1 to Big Sur.  We had passed it days before on our way up, and the coastline was sooo beautiful that I couldn't wait to get back to it! 

Cute little squirrel!

Jesse kept having to remind me to keep my eyes on the road while I drove.  I couldn't help it!  There were so many beautiful things to see!  My heart just soars whenever I see the ocean.  And to drive up and down it for five hours at a time is like inland-dweller's therapy.  We need to do this trip more often.  Or just move.  Hmmm....   ;-)

We had time that night to set up camp...

and walk around a little bit...

see a pretty waterfall...

and a beautiful little shady glen...

 ...but we saved our exciting excursion to McWay Falls for the next morning.  We had seen reviews about it pop up many times during our online trip planning, and knew we had to go.  I'm so glad we did! 

If I could pick any location to place my dream house, I think it would have to be with this view:
The McWay waterfall cascades 80 feet off a cliff before landing directly in the surf during high tide.  What could be more beautiful? 

Jesse and I thoroughly enjoyed every sight we could see.  So many gorgeous things!

Jesse's first gift to me was a pair of Scottish thistle earrings with amethysts. 
Seeing the real thing on our anniversary trip made us both smile.

Taking in all of the beautiful scenery

I just don't think that seeing this every morning would ever get old!!!

Jesse running back from seeing what was up the trail.
(isn't he cute?!?)

*Just* another gorgeous view

We loved our 2nd anniversary trip!!!