Why do they call it the Emerald Isle?

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Now, 45 of the 50 Nifty

Alaska makes 45 . . . states visited that is (who really wants to go to the Dakotas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, or Wisconsin anyway?). It is one of my favorites, no not in terms of shopping but definitley in terms of scenery, food, weather, and nice people.

At first I though it slightly sucked to have to take Chubs but it turned out to be a great snuggling opportunity and everyone helped with him, and the truth is I couldn't have stood to be away from him that long. We had such a fun time on our cruise, for one thing we were some of the youngest people on the ship which allowed us free reign of the boat after about 9:00 p.m. We took Holland America and it was a great cruise line, friendly and delicious.

One of my favorite things we did, which I did not get pictures of, is the spa treatments. We spent three different days getting facials, massages, exfoliations, toxins released, hydropooled, and just relaxing on the mosaic warming chairs watching the mountains and the ocean pass. Lance and I had a couples massage which was very romantic, while Shanny tended/slept with Chubs (thanks peentz). It was one of our funnest family trips, here is a visual re-cap . . .

Here is the Oosterdam, our ship . . . Here is downtown Juneau, Alaska's capital. It is built on a very small strip of land sandwhiched between the mountains and the ocean, beautiful. They had the MOST amazing peanut butter chocolate chunk fudge I could've imagined.
Juneau after lunch at The Hangar. Good choice Woggie.
The sea planes coming in for a landing.
Taken leaving Juneau from the deck of the ship, Allyson, Lindsey, me, Shannon. Is it just me or is Ally's flower attacking Lindz?

The bears in Alaska are actually very friendly.

This is Sitka, our least fave town.

Lance and chubs on the deck of the ship while we viewed the Hubbard Glacier.
Hubbard Glacier, the largest Glacier in the world. This glacier is one of the only glaciers expanding, it is 76 miles long.
Chubs in his chef's hat at the chef's parade dinner.

Jeff and Chubs on our last formal night.
Ketchikan, our favorite city. This city was lively and fun. I've eaten fish and chips in England and Ireland, from Boston to San Fran and Seattle so HEAR THIS: They can't hold a candle to Ketchikan Alaska. The fish and chips here were made of halibut and just melted in your mouth. And the tartar sauce was made with fresh dill not dill pickle relish, mmmmm.

Victoria, British Columbia

This city is a West Family favorite. We vacationed here a couple of times growing up, then had an adult trip here two years ago, then we were lucky enough to get our cruise ship to stop here. If you ever get the chance to go it is so beautiful, the weather is perfect, it is lush and green, incredible buildings, some pretty great shopping, and wonderful restaurants. Below is Shanny snuggling with Chubs (the empress hotel is behind).

POP! Goes her tongue - on the water front, gov't building in the background.
Grandpa making Chubs laugh as usual.
The bay and Empress Hotel, this is the city center.

Getting Our Groove On

One of the funnest parts of the vacay for sure was the night activities. Most of us are night owls sans woggie (ally) and sometimes Lindz so we partied into the wee hours most nights and closed down that big ship if you know what I mean. We played card games,and got our ping pong on in the tournaments until 2 or 3 a.m. We spent the last two nights at Northern Lights, the ship's night club. D.J. Matt knew how to put the needle on the record for 70's night. Of course we had to request "Raining Men" Jeff even got into that one (not so much). I loved the Mojitos and Strawberry Daquirris, here are the pics of us taking over the dance floor . . .

By the end of the cruise Ally kept saying she was pregnant . . . with a food baby. Here she is moaning about it and showing it off. Below you get a feel for the true hidden talent within the West family, you'll see particularly Jeff's got a huge talent!

Formal Night

I guess everyone knows that these cruise ships have formal night, here is ours:

Above is my parents at dinner, below is me and my date. Lance wasn't about to let some cruise ship tell him how to dress at dinner so he didn't bring anything nicer than a pair of jeans. As a result they wouldn't even let him in for dinner.

Here are Lindsey, Ally, Jeff, Shannon, and me while we were having "after dinner drinks and dancing" in the Ocean Bar.

Mom and Dad cutting a rug - so cute.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Heavy Heart

It is with a heavy heart and teary eyes that I come to you now. I have received some news that is absolutley the worst news I've heard since, since, maybe since I found out Chaz has a kidney condition (that is a little dramatic, I know, but I am truly sad) MOONLIGHT HAS BEEN CANCELLED. I am devastated, this show was the best blend of action, romance, comedy that I have ever seen on TV. Not to mention the beautiful cast, I even love Shannyn Sossaman after her evilness here.

This song playing, Lucky, is from one of my fave Moonlight scenes when Mick and Beth are discussing their relationship on the roof top, they share a passionate kiss, then he flies to a post to look over the city at night and it's totally a Moulin Rouge moment. It just kept getting more creative and interesting with cool plot twists and vampire fight scenes. I love Beth. The second song playing is from the final finale of Moonlight, shower scene wooo. I am trying to "let it go" but the sadness just keeps sinking deeper, somehow I don't feel like "we are the lucky ones" now.

PS just found out Men in Trees is cancelled too - are you kidding me? Like people are still watching Grey's Freaking Anatomy and skipping these Gems?! I guess that's why stupid movies like Independence Day and Iron Man etc are so popular, uh!!!!

Zoey's Moment

And so I'm back, from outer space, you just walked in to find me here with that sad look upon my face (the sad look is due to the lack of attention my blog has received) BUT I will survive . . . anyway, sorry V for the lack of posts but I am really deliberating my posts because I am sick of posting about kids and their activities all the time and I've been out of town and been in hibernation over a couple of really bad migraines anyway, so here I go with another post about kid acitivites . . . but these ARE special and come back soon cuz I am posting about my fab Alaskan get away.

Zoey's artistic year culminated in two events; her art show, May 10, and her dance concert, May 17. She was SO excited for both, she lives for art class each week and spends several hours a day coloring and drawing. Here are a couple of examples of her work at the show (she painted the teddy bear):

Below, she is preparing for her Enchanted "Happy Little Working Song" dance number.

Waiting for their curtain call . . .

Marlee and Zoey after