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Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Birthday Blitzkrieg

Turning 29 wasn't as big a deal to me as I thought it might be.  I think it has a lot to do with the fact that God has established my family.  That is, I'm married, and I have a kid. (The previous statement can seem to me both surreal and hyperreal.  It's one of those things that you don't realize the gravity of until it's happening to you.)  Actually, this may have been one of my favorite birthdays.  I'm twenty-nine, and feeling so fine.

James had a surprise planned for me for Saturday, July 9th.  He told me to free up my calendar and find a baby sitter.  He was also really specific when I asked what I should wear.  I love how he understands my concern for fashion.  I wanted to wear something pretty, but he said, "Um, you should wear a t-shirt or tank top, and shorts.  But not too short."  I asked, "Are we playing sports?"  He just laughed.


Basically, if Abe Froman were the sausage king of Los Angeles, then James = Ferris.


"The question isn't 'What are we going to do today?'  The question is 'What aren't we going to do today?'"


Thus, we had a blitz of activity set in Griffith Park, rather than downtown Chicago, but it was movie-worthy nonetheless.


Driving up Griffith Park Dr.


Setting off on our tandem bike ride


A stop for lunch at the Golden Spur Cafe


James and this chick


Enjoying an Arnold Palmer


I shared


Want some?


The Rodeo Burger was bigger than my head

White picket fences


Inside the Autry Museum:
Bessie Coleman,
first black female pilot


Harlem Rides the Range
featuring an "All-Colored Cast"


Elmer Sneezwood,
just as scary in pictures as in person


The Three Amigos gun holsters!


Kid craft room - loved the chairs


If you mess with the buffalo,
you get the horns!


A new sheriff's in town


"And a pair of fancy spurs, fancy spurs..."


James is such a cowboy.


Out in front of the museum with Gene


To the Zoo!
James being a prairie dog
"oooOOOoo!  Where does this go?"


High-fiving a monitor lizard


Evil rat-like deer guy.  Don't remember its name.


Ludwig van Monkey


Black (neck) Swan


Flamingos!


The family of giraffes reminded us of Miles


But this little guy did more -
he has Miles' hairdo


Supermodel


Koalas are so cute


Relaxing kangaroos


We had to hot-foot it back to the entrance
because our bikes were due back at 5.


Bye, zoo!


On the trail...


So sweaty, but we made it in time.  Thank goodness for
P90X!  I don't think I could've ran AND biked that much otherwise...
My phone message from the guy running the rental place 
said something like, "Hello, Mr. James?  Where --- oh, okay."


One last photo on the bicycle built for two


To end the evening:  The Griffith Park Observatory
The pendulum is so classic


Us & the Greek gods mural
Plus the pendulum reflection in my glasses


A late afternoon snack


Shooting the world with the viewer


My weight on Jupiter.  ha!


James' bowlcut
(I laughed about this for about 8 minutes nonstop
and had to sit on the stairs to keep from falling down.)


Up on the roof


"So, can we climb your stairs?"
"No."


Gotta get in!


Setting sun and the obelisk


Oh Pluto, we remember you.


The actual birthday, July 10th
All-you-can-eat sushi on Sunday


I think we only needed one round


Mark brought home my birthday cake
from King's Hawaiian Bakery & Restaurant


Paradise Cake - it's so beautiful!
Guava, passionfruit, and lime layers
with whipped frosting and fruit glaze

Life moves pretty fast.  If you don't stop and look around 
once in a while, you could miss it.