Thursday, September 30, 2010

Long Walks Through La Jolla Shores

Can you smell the sea salt air?

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Start of Freda's Flowers

When I first saw the jelly rolls of Bliss, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with mine.
Freda's Flowers is the newest pattern designed by my good friend Nanette Merrill of Freda's Hive.

This line is flying off the shelves.

Bliss by Bonnie and Camille of Cotton Way
I've been counting the days until I knew I would have a few Blissful moments all to myself.

I think I had my sewing machine set up in our hotel room before the suitcases were even unpacked.
Did you know that with a little adaptability a couch can double as a design wall?

I've been encouraging Mr. Cactus to take all the time he needs on the golf course.
It's a sacrifice, but...I'll be okay....
"Really dear, play 18 holes. There are many wonderful courses here in San Diego. Wouldn't you like to play them ALL?"

I have often listened to Nanette tell stories of her childhood in Pennsylvania and the wonderful example of her mother Freda.
It's only fitting that a flower be named in her honor.

Nanette's Version
Nanette has been having a retreat with the women in her family, and she has been teaching the sewers and non-sewers alike, how to make Freda's Flowers.
Make sure to run over to her blog and see all the fun they have been having together.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

San Diego Coast

One of the reasons I wanted to come to San Diego for a get-away, was to have a reprieve from the hot summer weather of Southern Utah.
Now I'm wondering if we brought the triple digit temperatures with us.
Yesterday marked the hottest day ever recorded in San Diego and LA.

I'm still getting used to the idea that we have no agenda. No children to keep busy or others to plan around. We can get up when we want, drive to an area that catches our eye, and stay as long as we wish.
We are enjoying the luxury of being spontaneous.
(my children might claim this is a new word in my vocabulary)

With a packed picnic lunch, we leisurely stopped along the cliffs of La Jolla where the cool ocean breezes made for a perfect day.

While the tide is out, the rocky crevices hold an amazing array of sea life.

Coral, sea anemones, crabs...

and very unique rock formations.

Later in the afternoon we drove down to Point Loma, near the Southern tip of California. From here you can see the San Diego skyline in one direction, and Tijuana, Mexico in another direction.

On September 28, 1542 (exactly 468 years ago today), Jean Rodriguiz Cabrillo became the first European to set foot on the West Coast of the United States.

In celebration, reenactments of Cabrillo's landing are currently taking place.

I was a little nervous letting Mr. Cactus near some of the actor's props.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Quilters Coop

On our drive to San Diego, I suggested to Mr. Cactus that I would enjoy stopping at a quilt shop along the way.

One of my favorite shops in Southern California is Quilters Coop in the heart of Old Town Temecula.
Have you ever noticed the reaction when a man walks into a quilt shop? Everyone seems to stop what they are doing and look your way.
I decided this probably wasn't the best time to ask him to hold my purse while I looked at fabric.

Fortunately, Mr. Cactus was a good sport and even chatted with the friendly staff.
He asked for directions to the "guys room with the large screen TV".

Every quilt store needs a motto.

Cute displays with fun items.

I loved the Pink stove in the middle of the room, complete with vintage kitchen fabrics.

I know my friends Lori and Nanette would love this teapot cozy.

Quilters Coop also has a great selection of Civil War and Antique patterns.
It was only fair after waiting for me, that we stop at a place that Mr. Cactus wanted to see.

Torrey Pines Golf Course, overlooks the Pacific ocean in San Diego and was the site of the 2008 U.S. Open.
Mr. Cactus was glued to the TV as Tiger Woods took the cup that year.

California Dreamin'

Sunday, September 26, 2010

San Diego Temple

As members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, we love to visit our temples as we travel on vacation.
One of the first things I wanted to do when we arrived in Southern California was to go to the San Diego Temple.
For us, temples are sacred structures where eternal questions are answered:
  • Where did I come from?
  • Why am I here?
  • Where am I going?
  • What is my relationship to my maker?
  • What of my family?
  • Will there be another Existence after this, and, if so, will we know one another?

The San Diego Temple is situated on 7.2 acres in La Jolla, California.
We arrived on a beautiful day, with clear blue skies. Absolutely stunning architecture, inside and out.
The temple was a lot bigger than I expected it to be.

When visiting temple grounds, I love to see the radiant smiles on the newly married brides and grooms, as they pose with family for pictures.
Temples are different than regular Church houses of worship.
They are very unique in purpose and function.

For me, entering the temple provides an opportunity to ponder, and communicate with God.
I experience a peace and comfort that I cannot find anywhere else.

Gordon B. Hinkley has said:
"The work that goes on in these buildings sets forth God's eternal purposes with reference to man—God's child and creation. For the most part, temple work is concerned with the family, with each of us as members of God's eternal family and with each of us as members of earthly families. It is concerned with the sanctity and eternal nature of the marriage covenant and family relationships."
The gold-leafed Angel Moroni Statue rests atop many of our temples, and is commonly used as an unofficial symbol of our faith.
If you have any questions about temples, feel free to e-mail me.
You can also find additional information at

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Empty Nest

After 30+ years, and 5 children we are experiencing Empty Nest.
Our youngest has gone off to college.

It's definitely a time of mixed emotions.
We make great efforts to raise our children to be independent, with the skills necessary for that outside world.
And then when they leave we are often left wondering how the time went by so fast.
I keep listening for Sounds:
The refrigerator door opening
The front door opening
Teenage laughter
Teenage friends
Drum practice
Band practice at our house (at least I knew where they were)
Pool parties
Late night hours
The constant hum of the dishwasher, washer and dryer
Hi Mom, I'm home
Bye, Mom
Love you, Mom

Now, it's just QUIET

Mr. Cactus had the perfect solution for Empty Nest.
A week's vacation to San Diego for just the two of us.
We pondered the last time we went away together, without children, family or friends.
All the hustle and bustle to get from here to there.
And honestly, we could not recall a date.

I'm feeling very spoiled. Mr. Cactus brought his golf clubs, and I've got my sewing machine.
Free time to see the sites, rest and relax.
And we have our cell phones to call our children when the pangs set in.