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Living The Dream (well, I'm trying...)

My California "Hook-Up!" 
Jul. 21, 2011 9:18 pm 
Updated: Aug. 7, 2011 3:30 pm
My California Hook-Up!!!

A "50 Year Anniversary Celebration/Family Reunion" (and Mickey Mouse) took our family to Southern California this year for our vacation. We'd planned for over a year to head south as a family to go to Disneyland with our children and grandgals; then head to the high desert (can you say HOT?) to spend time with family and merrily celebrate the 50 Year Wedding Anniversary of my oldest sister and the man of her dreams, a constant in my life since the age of 10.

Who knew that in May, my daughter, Christine and I would go to Las Vegas and meet some of the most wonderful, kind and generous women on earth, spurring an add-on "hook-up" to our already very well thought out and planned vacation? (RideMax is the the only way to go to Disneyland BTW! about "well planned". But, that's another blog in and of itself)

I sent Baking Nana an e-mail, after mentioning in a Buzz post, our vacation plans and asked her if there was anyway we could get together while we were in Anaheim. Without blinking an eye, (or a key stroke on her computer) she very generously said "YES! Let's do this!!! Whatever it takes, Let's make this work."

I e-mailed Marianne and xraybarb e-mailed me and we were off and running making our plans to get together. I am still very amazed that these three ladies (who are just beautiful - inside and outside) would drive to see us. They worked out the details amongst themselves and just told us they'd pick us up at our hotel..... not to worry about renting cars and such.

Tuesday, July 12th at 11:30am on the dot, here came Baking Nana and Marianne to get us. We were to meet xraybarb at the Garden Walk in Anaheim for lunch. We ate a very delicious meal at The Cheesecake Factory and had the most remarkable time visiting, laughing and getting to know each other EVEN better. My daughter-in-love, Jill came and so did my bestest, darling and precious grandgals, Rylea and Evan. We had a wonderful girl's day out that included a trip Baking Nana planned to a great little farmer's market. Marianne brought us some wonderful and delicious cookies. Still need to get that recipe from you Marianne!

Lunch at The Cheesecake Factory

Daughter-In-Love Jill and GrandGal Evan

Back row: Rylea, xraybarb, Jill, Christine,
Front row: Marianne, Candice, Penny, Evan

Who took the above picture? A total stranger I grabbed as he was walking by.

Christine and Barb lusting after Corn! (poor girls)
They need good men! Just kidding!

Rosa Plums - YUM!!!

Rylea - One tuckered out girl!!!

Our time with Baking Nana, Marianne and xraybarb was so much fun. I only wish I could be there tomorrow at Marianne's for the SoCal get-together. Thank you ladies from the bottom of my heart for a wonderful, wonderful, wonderful day! We-Jill, Evan, Rylea, Christine and myself loved being with you. Thank you again for a lovely time.
Jul. 21, 2011 9:28 pm
aww, I see my ladies!!! Y'all looked like you had a blast!
Jul. 21, 2011 9:28 pm
Omygosh! You guys make me jealous!I WILL see you all next time! So glad you all had a great time...great pics and aren't we all so lucky to have such great friends?????
Jul. 21, 2011 9:32 pm
Looks like a great time! Thanks for sharing!
Jul. 21, 2011 9:32 pm
Love it Candice! You totally cracked me up with your comment about Christine and Barb. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA..... Now that is funny.......
Jul. 21, 2011 9:33 pm
In the back row~ Which Christine is that? We have several?
Jul. 21, 2011 9:43 pm
I do so enjoy seeing and hearing about these get togethers..Thank you so much for sharing!
Jul. 21, 2011 9:59 pm
Howdy mis7up! Oh, we surely did have a good time. Wish your cute little self with your dawling little accent could've been there too! Hugs girlie!
Jul. 21, 2011 10:01 pm
Cindy, I SO hope you will. I would just love to meet you! And, yes, we are so very lucky. These ladies are truly friends for life!
Jul. 21, 2011 10:02 pm
Super nice blog Candice! So nice that so many of us are having an opportunity to get to know each other in person. You all look Terrific! Thanks for sharing with the rest of us.
Jul. 21, 2011 10:03 pm
Oh Shannon, it was a gob-O-fun! Thanks for stopping in... It's "Christine NICU RN," my daughter. Sorry, I should've mentioned that in the blog. Thanks for bringing to my attention.
Jul. 21, 2011 10:05 pm
Hi Avon! Those two really cracked US up! They're pretty funny, those two. Pretty too!
Jul. 21, 2011 10:05 pm
Well, except for Christine's eyebrows. (poor girl, she'll never live that down)
Jul. 21, 2011 10:09 pm
Hey Anissa, thank you. You know I love hearing about get-togethers too! It's just so cool, people meeting on a website meeting up in real life. 20 years ago, something like this would just NEVER happen. Glad you dropped in.
Jul. 21, 2011 10:10 pm
I love it!!! I'm going to meet these ladies if it is the last thing I do. It looks like you all had sooo much fun. (Barb, unhand the corn) Thanks for the blog and pics. Much enjoyed!!
Jul. 21, 2011 10:12 pm
Hi Patty, I know...isn't it great that we are so lucky. AR people are great! I love that I've had the opportunity to meet some wonderful people from our site.
Jul. 21, 2011 10:16 pm
Well Hello there Toni Jo, my fellow Oregonian! So glad you came by. Yes, yes, and yes! Whatever you have to do, however you have to do it, Figure out a way to "hook-up." You'll be glad you did.
Jul. 22, 2011 5:56 am
Ahhhh, thanks for the photos, Candice. So happy to see them! It really is amazing how fast of friends we've all gotten to be. My hubby and I will be up in Oregon the last part of October, so my DH already knows we'll have to meet up for lunch. Thanks for the memories (I feel a song coming on.....).
Jul. 22, 2011 6:23 am
Thanks for the blog and pictures Candice. It is so fun seeing what everyone looks like. I really wanted to go to the Ohio Gathering but it didn't work with graduation weekend. I sure hope poor Christine's eyebrows grow back quickly! Your granddaughters are adorable. Looks like Rylea has had enough. She must have had a very busy day with you ladies!!
Jul. 22, 2011 6:27 am
Great blog Candice! I am so glad that you took the time out of your vacation to meet with us. It was great to meet your family. What a perfect day. We will be thinking of you tomorrow as we gather at Marianne's for some more AR foodie fun. :)
Jul. 22, 2011 6:28 am
Oh and I meant to say, your granddaughter are wonderful - what great kids.
Jul. 22, 2011 8:51 am
How wonderful! Too bad I won't get to see you tomorrow. I'm really looking foward to tomorrow. I'm so glad you got the opportunity to meet these wonderful ladies! Great pictures!
Jul. 22, 2011 10:41 am
Thanks for sharing your fun with us...and that Farmer's Market looks fantastic!
Jul. 22, 2011 11:27 am
Oh lovecakes, I want to be there soooooo bad! I will be with you all in spirit though. Have fun and maybe someday we can meet. I'd so love that!
Jul. 22, 2011 11:28 am
Hiya Wendie! you are very welcome! We had so much fun and the farmer's market WAS fantastic! Thanks for reading my blog!
Jul. 22, 2011 11:31 am
Ba'Nana, I so want to be there tomorrow! I'm actually pouting today that I can't. :( Please give everyone a hug from me!
Jul. 22, 2011 12:27 pm
Will do Candice! I am sure we will have loads of pictures to share too. Thanks again for a wonderful day!
Jul. 22, 2011 1:08 pm
It was a WONderful afternoon! What a great way to start my day (before heading to work)! I am so glad I just butted my way in to lunch with all you lovely ladies (= (Btw, dinner was great, too! Love doggie bags and leftovers!) Candice the pics are great - thank you for sharing! And, I miss you, too! (OH! And thank you for the LOL!)
Jul. 22, 2011 1:25 pm
Hi Barb, AND, Missy... you did NOT butt your way into lunch. I'm just very grateful you were able to come. (I love your sense of humor!) BTW, click to enlarge the picture of us all at the table,.... you'll get a perfect view of Christine's eyebrows.... I mean her NOT-eyebrows. Sorry DD Christine, I just can't help myself!
Jul. 22, 2011 1:41 pm
LOL! Candice! You are SO bad! =DDD
Jul. 22, 2011 2:06 pm
Thanks for the blog! Looks like you ladies had a fantastic time! I too love the corn comment- teehee :) Love all the pics, you all look like you have known each other for years and years! I hope to meet some people in person one of these days soon! Now, if you will excuse me, I am off to forage- the pic of those plums made my mouth water for some fruit :)
Jul. 22, 2011 2:23 pm
Nice blog Candice (Mom)! I especially love the eyebrow coments. And, Barb and I are doing just fine! It WAS great to see the ladies again. Such great people! It was a wonderful day.
Jul. 22, 2011 6:16 pm
Looks like another fun get together. DH & I are coming to Tacoma, WA from Oct. 21-Oct. 25 to see the DS at Ft. Lewis. Will be trying to hook up somewhere in between with Candice & Christine. BN, when are you heading out that way?
Jul. 22, 2011 6:30 pm
Christine - I am brow challenged. At least you have eye brows! It was so great to see you. :)
Jul. 22, 2011 6:32 pm
Magnolia Blossem - we aren't planning any major trips right now. We were hoping to go to Idaho on business in August but that fell through. August of 2012 - Seattle is my next goal! More on that later..... :-)
Jul. 22, 2011 6:54 pm
Enjoyed reading! So nice to hear about AR friends getting together!
Jul. 22, 2011 9:16 pm
Puck, it would be great to meet you. Just hop on over the Oregon. There's several AR Peeps in the PNW.
Jul. 22, 2011 9:17 pm
Christine-NICU RN, thanks honey! I know, you and Barb ARE just fine. Actually, you're better than just fine. You're both AWESOME!!!
Jul. 22, 2011 9:19 pm
Magnolia Blossom, I can't wait for you to come our way. We trying to plan something so we can meet up. It will be great to see you again. Thanks for reading my blog!
Jul. 22, 2011 9:22 pm
Hi *~Lissa~*, You know, I do too! I'm waiting with bated breathe to hear about the SoCal gathering that takes place tomorrow!
Jul. 23, 2011 2:35 am
Btw, thank you again for bringing your weather down with you! The weather was SO nice last week!
Jul. 23, 2011 8:04 am
Looks like you had so much fun!! Jealous!!
Jul. 23, 2011 1:38 pm
I so miss you all :)
Jul. 23, 2011 2:34 pm
Looks like fun! I wish I was just a little closer!
Jul. 24, 2011 6:19 am
LOL! Barb, I aim to please. The weather really WAS beautiful. Not too hot for our stay in Anaheim. At my sister's in the desert..... not so much! It was wwwaaayyy too hot for us.
Jul. 24, 2011 6:20 am
chris k, thank you so much for dropping in. I know the feeling. I'm WAY jealous that I couldn't go to the SoCal gathering. I know they had a good time!
Jul. 24, 2011 6:21 am
Julie, I MISS you too sweetie. Hope you're having fun in Hi-why-ya!!! Love you!
Jul. 24, 2011 6:23 am
MSC, I wished I could meet everyone on AR! That's the cunundrum of it all, isn't it??? Maybe someday, huh?
Jul. 24, 2011 10:29 am
You need to haul Avon over here to Dublin with you sometime Candice!!
Jul. 25, 2011 6:55 am
Wouldn't that be a hoot Trishie? However, I'm just wondering if the three of us would get into much trouble and get outselves thrown out of the Emeral Isle.
Jul. 25, 2011 8:45 am
very nice Candice, love to see the gals all dressed up in smiles
Jul. 25, 2011 10:08 am
I'm sure I could steer us clear of "An Garda Síochána" ..........
Jul. 25, 2011 12:27 pm
Love the pictures and helping us all be a fly on the wall at lunch!
Jul. 25, 2011 7:40 pm
Ah, what a lovely time that looked! I'm preparing to bake my ladies that are coming to Missouri this weekend for our Midwest roundup. LOL No, I'm not putting them in the oven. Mother Nature will. That Magnolia Blossom sure gets around ;) She gets to come here this weekend. Thanks for sharing the fun there!
Jul. 26, 2011 5:25 pm
Cat - if you invite Candice, the weather will drop 10 degrees (= It had been so awful here, and has been a lot hotter since - but the week our friends from Oregon were here, the weather was WONderful! Btw, Cat, Happy Birthday, in case I don't see you, again, in the meantime! Have a wonderful weekend! What a treat to have an AR birthday party! [In "real life" (=] You and SoupLovingNicole, too! [I should have told my kids I wanted a plane ticket for my birthday this year (=]
Jul. 27, 2011 7:38 am
RG, Yes... aren't they all beautiful women?!!
Jul. 27, 2011 7:40 am
And, girls!
Jul. 27, 2011 7:42 am
Carrie, I would love to be a fly on the wall this weekend for the upcoming get-together! Wanna be my "fly" date?
Jul. 27, 2011 7:45 am
Cathill, I want to come to the MIDWEST Roundup so very badly! I'm (originally)from Indiana, you know. Please be sure to hug everyone's neck for ME!!! And, give that cute Nikki-girl a great big ole' kiss on the check for me too!!!
Jul. 27, 2011 5:52 pm
What a great time you had!!! LOVE IT!!!
Jul. 27, 2011 6:16 pm
LOLOLOL Xray Barb I asked for 2 songs for my kid to download for me. A little cheaper than a plane ticket :)(: but you are ALWAYS welcome here! Candice, Indiana is about 8 hours away from here but it sure looks the same as here. And you are welcome to stop in if you ever make it to MO! Nicole will be here Saturday. I can't wait!!! And Magnolia Blossom and Bhawk and Mangel and.... :)(:
Jul. 28, 2011 2:30 am
Oh, Cat, don't I just wish! These gatherings are so wonderful - each one just leaves you wanting the next! [Like Lays potato chips (=]
Jul. 28, 2011 1:40 pm
FrankFamily5, we are all like "old" friends now. I love these gals and can't wait to see them again!
Jul. 28, 2011 1:42 pm
Cat Hill, I didn't know Laura was coming. Well, grab her and give her a big ole kiss from me too! Oooohhhh, I'm getting jealous. I want to come, I want to come to meet everyone and laugh and eat, and... oh darn-it! I want to come!
Aug. 7, 2011 3:30 pm
Glad your comment prompted me to read this wonderful blog.
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About Me
I am a wife and mother of 5 grown children. Being semi-retired has allowed me time to do things I've put off doing; like really learning to cook and bake. I also love to garden, read, scrapbook and just recently I've gotten into geneology. I am loving this phase of my life with my husband and family.
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