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Saturday, January 30, 2010

Fun, fun, fun till her daddy takes her T-Bird away..........


Izzy has a favorite toy. Its also one of her Papa's favorite toys: A giant red car that Izzy sits in and Papa gets to push her around in it. Papa calls it her T-Bird, and they take long walks around the neighborhood in it.

Izzy cracks me up sitting in it. She almost always has her hand on the steering wheel, and she just chills & checks everything out. She gets soooooo excited when she sees Papa take it out!

Loving Izzy J. and her T-Bird pushing Papa :)


(the photo collage I'm just going to print out then cut up for a scrapbook page. I know its a little awkward to look at. But you get the drift)

Sunday, January 24, 2010

The first trip of the decade was another Senor Tuna success story combining great weather, great fishing, great people, and a few great surprises. It almost goes without saying that fishing is a gamble and you never know what you are going to get, but this was another jackpot weekend of great well-rounded fishing memories. I met up with George, Kenji, and Mark T at the tailgate around 4:30 and very soon after we had a good group of excited anglers chowing down on an awesome spread of munchies and beer.

As usual, Captain Mark was ready to go early so we packed up and made our way onto the boat, but we were still waiting for our final groups of anglers to show up and we ended up leaving just a little bit behind schedule. No matter, everything was looking good and the weather window really looked promising for the whole weekend. With the big swells and storms both before and forecast for right after the weekend we were really hoping the weather held up the whole time. The game plan was as expected: Head south 150ish miles to Punta Colnett and yoyo for yellows at dawn then fill up on rockfish at the the high spots during day one, then head up the line and hit the shallows for lighter tackle rockfish, bass, sheepheads, etc. Everyone was pumped and many people hit the sack early to get ready for the morning. I myself was in the rack by 8:30, and got great sleep on a very smooth ride down the coast.

Dawn brought an incredible light show as we trained our sights on the horizon:




I did think the old "red in the morning" quote but this was just too cool, it couldn't possibly be a sign of anything bad:

Captain Mark metered around for yellowtail for a while, and we tried our luck on the yoyo but it was just not happening. No schools, no bites, no love on this day. No matter, we had flat calm seas and a very positive group ready to get started on the rock cod. We glided down the coast a few miles and set up on some deep drops to start the morning. 12 or 16 ounces of lead was the order to get down to 350 feet, but there was nearly no current and absolutely no wind so it was no problem. From the first drop everyone started to hook up and the fun began. It was an excellent grade of big reds, grouper, floridas, starries, and some lings. Once everyone got in the groove it was nearly automatic and everyone had a smile on their face. The doubles and triples started coming up before long, and there was hardly a small fish to be seen. Of course there were a lot of those salmon grouper mixed in, but when the quality reds came over the rail it was glorious.






We made a number of drifts through the morning and hit it hard every time. Many people had jigs on bottom and two shrimp flies above it and were hitting triples just by showing some patience and letting the fish load up. By lunch time everyone was satisfied and things were peaceful and relaxed, then out of nowhere I caught sight of a boat coming like a bat out of hell straight for us. I recognized it as a Mexican navy gunboat and watched it approach closer and closer.

The boat came right up to our starboard side and drifted up to within 10 yards of the boat. The captain popped out and signaled to Mark to pick up the radio on channel 16 and we just watched and waited. I was leaning up just outside the galley drinking a cold Pacifico watching and photographing the whole thing, and I am sure those guys had to be jealous of our obvious good time. The gunboat sat next to us for about 10 minutes and we fished the whole time without blinking an eye. Here is another quality double coming over the rail while the navy jefe tries to make sense of this situation.





In the end we never were boarded and we went on with out day ready for more surprises. On our next move we were moving in a few miles closer to the coast and we came upon a few humpback whales. I think it was a mother and a calf, possibly more, and we saw a number of full breaches and all sorts of spray trails. I tried my best to get a picture of the whale out of the water, and we ended up real close to the pod before they sunk out. Mark took us in for a close look and I did get this good pic of the whale saying hello.

We spent the afternoon in shallower water fishing at about 180 feet for whitefish, more reds, starries, and assorted other bottom critters. By sunset everyone had at least a full sack of fish and many had more than that, and the evening was capped off by a perfect New York steak dinner made by Chef Jeff. The fish came out of the hold that evening and the jackpot and Terry C took the win with this big ling cod in the center sticking its fat belly out to show off. Lots of great fish, and even some bonito for those who tried for them. There was a rumor going around that Kenji caught 55 fish on the first day...






We headed north during the night and had another very smooth ride despite some swell. There was nearly no wind and the temperature was just fine, and the swell was spaced out so well that it was really hard to feel it. I heard the anchor drop at 5:30 and I got up on deck to get ready. Sunrise found us just north of Salsipuedes. Once the light came in we could actually see the swells hitting the beach. There was a decent offshore wind that kicked up some awesome spray when the sets slammed the beaches. But we couldn't complain because the swell was so clean and well spaced that it was hardly detectable.

We fished the shallows for a few hours, and it was a little slow but there were brown rockfish and a few sheephead to be caught. After playing the waiting game for a while, we got slammed by three sheephead all at once. These were nice fish and I was lucky enough to get bit hard by a nice goat.





The rest of the morning was slow, many people were already satisfied by the catch yesterday, and we were slowly moving our way up the line. We had the playoffs on TV in the galley with a perfectly clear signal, relaxed fishing, and still more great weather on another sunny day. We made a move out from the shallows to the finger bank and tried a few drifts for mostly small starries, and kept moving north.

And then the last big surprise of the trip: Mark spotted a large group of birds on the surface and started to see bait. As we pulled up there were boils blowing up on the surface and it was on. A big school of bonito was all over us and it was instant chaos on the iron. Everyone who casted anything metal got hooked up and it was a full on red hot tuna bite. And these bonito were no joke, there were some hogs down there, lots of 10-12 pound rockets flying all around the boat and before long it was bloody decks in January.

I didn't have anything rigged for surface action when we pulled up on the school so I quickly tied on a purple mega bait and cast out for a quick hookup on the drop. The fish broke off after only 10 seconds and I lost my jig with it. No problem, I tied on a blue and chrome iron and sent it back out to get hooked up almost instantly again. I pulled this one in after a few minutes, kept on fishing, and it was just what we needed to get spirits up. All around the deck it was "FRESH ONE" "COMIN OUT" "FRRREESSHONNNE" "COMIN OUT" as everyone was casting iron and nailing them. We came out of that bite with more than enough bonito, and Brandon C ended up with 8 fish within a half hour.







The ride home was as smooth as glass and we all were very happy a very eventful and memorable weekend. We spend the afternoon eating, resting, and watching the playoffs all the way home. The only thing that could have made the weekend even more perfect would have been a Chargers win, but it was a choke job instead. Even that couldn't spoil my fun, and that says a lot. We got a little rain on the way in as the storm front started to creep on us, but still no wind and no problem.

Back at Seaforth the coolers were filled to the top as the fish were handed out, extra coolers were needed...no room for ice....what are we going to do with all this bonito....good problems to have. Thanks to all the Senor Tuna gang for making this another incredible experience, thanks to the Pacific Voyager crew as always, and a one of a kind thanks to George for being a one of a kind Chartermaster with mojo to spare.

Peace.

Steve



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Friday, January 22, 2010

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I see Hearts

I have a friend from high school, who also went to college with me, who is now living in Shanghi. Cool, right? He has also become an amazing photographer. He does it just for fun, but I think he could do some professional stuff.
Anyways, a few months ago he posted an album on his facebook titled "I see Hearts" and it was full of pictures of hearts he had seen all over- from street signs to the sidewalk, everywhere. It was awesome. Made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
He inspired me.
I now see hearts everywhere.
Here are a few of mine (note, these are not artistic masterpieces at all. Just everyday shots. Hearts I've seen)






He asked me to email him some of my shots.
Now I want to take more, and make sure they look awesome.
So look around you now- I'm sure you'll start seeing hearts everywhere, too :)

Sunday, January 17, 2010

PoTD: Week 2!!!!

(Ok, so looks like my blog has turned into a PoTD blog. But whatevs, it works- you can obviously see what is going on in my life by them!)

Its been a fun photography journey thus far- I'm remembering all those things I learned about photography in high school (over 10 years ago! yikes!) and also learning how to use my dSLR. I'm still kinda figuring out what my exact purpose for doing the project is, but I think its to document my life, as well as push me more artistically as a photographer. But a majority of my pictures are just every photos with the camera setting on Automatic. So really, its more about me documenting my life right now. And since that is the purpose, I need to be in some of the pictures, too! So I won't have a rule of it has to be a picture I took, but most of them will be.
Thinking of posting some of my favorites on Facebook. I would do a flickr album, but I don't know much about flickr....... so right now they are in a Picasa album which I will try to figure out how to post on the side of my blog as well.
So yeah, thats where I am right now :)
Anyway, here are my PoTD:
01-10-10: REALLY behind on putting away the xmas decor (yay for nana's help!)

01-11-10: (the dates a palandrom) making izzy spinach
(LOVE my bebe food maker)

01-12-10: Izzy is so proud of herself standing up!


Now, I can't decide which picture to use 1/13
Love the "artistic" aspect of this one:
01-03-10: Breakfast, Izzy style


But this was more what was happening that day, that doesn't happen every day
The moments I guess I'm trying to capture
(did I answer my own question here?)

01-13-10: Izzy & Nana playing while mommy does the elliptical
(note, the shiny white in the lower corner is my people magazine reflecting the flash. Took the picture while working out. Obviously wasn't working out that hard if I could take a picture at the same time.........)

PoTD 01-14-10: Jessica decorating herself with her princess lip gloss
01-15-10: Pajama Day @ (preschool)! Ms. Kat working the griddles
01-16-10: Scrapbooking party at Kims. 3 layouts done!


I've been enjoying seeing some other PoTD on other blogs. Most people are much better photographers than I am. Guess I need to work on that ;)

Sunday, January 10, 2010

PoTD: 1/4 - 1/9

Yay! I've kept up my PoTD project for a whole week now! :) I Just took a photography class at Calumet, which inspired me even more. Here's to keeping it up the whole year!

The pictures:
01-04-10: First day of work in 2010. Izzy and her buddy Baby E. playing on the floor. I think this is my favorite shot so far. Love how Baby E is out of focus in the backround, and Izzy is so sharp. 01-05-10: Izzy feeding herself cheerios. She's been doing it about 3 days now

01-06-10: Not sure if this picture counts, since I didnt' take it- but I have to use it.
Jessica getting into mischief. Black paint EVERYWHERE

01-07-10: My favorite part of my job. End of the year tax/paperwork. BLAH

01-08-10: Outtake from Izzy's 8 month photo shoot
the outtakes are some of my favorite photos :)

01-09-10: playing with the settings in my camera at a photography class.
Took the class with Krissy & Lisa.
Thought this picture just turned out really cool. Just playing around with f-stop and apeture.
Very good refresher course for me- haven't used any of those things since high school, and with a film camera!




Anyone else doing this project? I'm thinking of putting them in a flickr album, but I dont' know much about it. Thoughts?


Saturday, January 9, 2010

A new decade

So, I'm assuming its because I have my hands full with the two girls, school, and work, but I didn't make the connecting that it was a WHOLE. NEW. DECADE until, um, January 2nd or so. Oops. Don't know how I missed everyone and their mother discussing this, guess I was just in my little world......
Once I figured that out, I looked back at the past decade. And WOW did a lot happen
Went to college
Left home for the first (to go to college)
Met some of my bestest friends ever
Traveled to Europe, Asia, and Canada.
As well as all over the country
Went on my first cross country roadtrip with out my parents
Choose my profession
Opened my own business! (in home daycare/preschool)
Met and married my fabulous sexy hubby
Gave birth naturally (no drugs! crazy, I know) to two beautiful girls
Lived in 2 of the most beautiful places in the country (in my opinion anyway) (Santa Barbara and San Diego)
Ran my first race
Had so many crazy experiences.

I know that I will never have a decade quite like that again. It was my first decade as an adult, but it was a young adult- learning so much about myself, life, people, the world around me.

Though I doubt I will do as much in the next ten years, I know it will be full of exciting new things- including watching my daughters grow and possibly extending my family more. Can't wait to see :)

Friday, January 8, 2010

8 Months!!!!

I can't believe Miss Izzy J. is already 8 months old!!! And she is getting so big, it makes me sad :( Guess it will be time for another soon :)

At 8 months Isabella:
Has 2 teeth! The second one just popped through two days ago
Teething was NOT a pleasant experience for any one involved
She is still going to bed at 4:30, and (when not teething) gets up once a night, around 3 0r 4 to eat, then wakes up for the day between 6:30 and 7
Finally has somewhat of a nap schedule- 2 naps a day, one at 9 am for at least an hour, sometimes 2, then another at 1 for 40 minutes.
Le Sigh. Why don't my girls nap????
Eats and loves everything I give her- just started eating finger foods. Cheerios are her favorite :) All of her baby food has been homemade by mommy including: peas, carrots, butternutsquash, sweet potatoes, brocolli, green beans, chicken, turkey, apples, pears, bananas. Tofu & yogurt also, but mommy just buys that :)
Eats 3 meals a day
Still loving the cloth diapers
Finally hit 20 pounds!
Now is in a big girl carseat! (still facing backwards though)
Scooting around everywhere on her tummy, and starting to actually get up on her knees and crawl
Also starting to pull herself up on furniture! Oh dear.....
Is super attached to mommy
But a Daddy's girl as well
Wearing 12 month clothing
Loves to bounce when sitting and kick her legs and "jump" when laying down
Waving bye-bye!
and I SWEAR she is starting to do the "all done" baby sign. She did it once for sure :)
Still doesn't have much hair, but it is getting thicker. And its a light brown. Will it curl????
Loves to watch her big sister play with all the other preschoolers
Is a beautiful little girl and we love watching her personality come out and watch her grow.
Mommy, Daddy & big sister Jessica love her sooooooooo much!

love the "outtakes" of our monthly photo shoots. Always have one of her trying to crawl to me (and off the couch)

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Friday, January 1, 2010

New Years Resolutions: 2010

Run more: do a 10k in May- aim for a 1/2 marathon maybe???
Eat more green: more veggies, but also better for the enviornment: Happy meats, local & organic produce, less processed foods
Lose the rest of the baby weight (Jessica's baby weight) by May
10 more after that!
Best a smarter shopper, and save some money!
Blog more/Scrap more!
Do a Picture of the Day project
Cook at least 2 new meals a month
More quailty family time- we're talking about finding a new park each week for now
Fun/different dates with the Hubs. Ideas are: indoor rock climbing and local hiking (so far)
Overall, as always: be healthier, treat myself better, have a home full of happy, healthy baby girls and a happy hubby- and also being more enviornmentally aware
I'm sure I'll be adding more to this list!
As I was putting it together in my head, I realized, I don't think I've ever heard a person do a resolution that did NOT include being healthier in some form. Anyone out there not have that on their resolutions for 2010? Or are all resolutions pretty much the same as mine?