a whale of a tale

We all have those lists. Lists of things we have always wanted to do. On my list is whale watching. It started in middle school when I wanted to be a marine biologist. This was until I realized just how much science was required in the field. So I just settled for a great whale watching trip. So when I found out that the humpback whale wintered here in Hawaii I was thrilled. Finally I would get to see them up close. So off we went. We boarded the Honolulu Starlet excitement brimming at the surface. As the boat chugged out of the safety of the harbor Zac leaned over to me and said "I sure hope the ride is smooth." In my excitement I had forgotten that the men in my life have somewhat of a weak stomach, but then again the boat was bigger then the last we had been on...

Once out into the open ocean we all decided to go out onto the front deck so we could get a better view. Then the boat started hitting the waves...here in this picture you see the happiness in Anne's face as we strike one such wave. You also see the hint of green creeping slowly into Zac's and Andrew's face. So while Anne and I were loving the ups and down of each wave Zac and Andrew decided to retire back inside to ease the queeziness that plagued them both. Sorry my boys!

What nobody told us was that whales only surface every 8-10 minutes to breathe and when they do it will be very brief. So for the first hour Anne and I scanned the water looking for that sign the whale would give us it was surfacing, that 300 mph puff of water shooting into the air. We saw nothing for the longest time so we headed back inside to watch with Zac and Andrew. Finally someone yelled 11 o'clock!! We craned our necks and of course just missed it. Then a few minutes later I saw my first whale...or more accurately my first burst of water followed by the whale's fin. And that was the first and last glimpse we had of a whale on our trip. The highlight of the trip turned out to be the dolphins who loved the slip stream that our boat made for them to swim in. They jumped out of the water doing tricks I have seen dolphins do at Sea World. It was great. Pictured above are a few of the splashes the dolphins made as they went back into the water. Sorry slow camera. Anne just loved them. Here is the conversation she and I had while watching them:

Anne: Mom, I want to get a pet dolphin.
Mom: Anne where are you going to keep this dolphin?
Anne: Well, I will get a huge bowl, bigger then the ocean, fill it with water, then keep it in our living room.
Mom: Do you think it will fit?
Anne: Well, I think we will have to move the couch.

If you look closely you can see the dolphin in the water. This would be the only picture we captured of a live animal on our trip. It was fun for us girls although I was a bit disappointed I didn't get to see a whale jumping out of the water. I still was thrilled to see my first whale fin. Dad I still want to go out with you into the Puget Sound to see the Orcas someday!


Going Private

A few good friends of ours have decided to make their blogs private and I think this is a good idea for us too considering all the weirdos out there who could be reading our blog. Although our blog was intended for family and close friends, it really can be read by anyone who clicks on a link. I figure that although it will be a harder to sign in to view the blog, those who really want to view it won't mind. I keep thinking that one can never be too careful with ones family. So, starting tomorrow I will be making it private. For family and close friends, I have most of your email addresses already. However, it would be nice if you could let me know if you want to continue viewing our blog so I can start with those email addresses first. You can either comment on this post or email me at my hotmail address: zacandjoy@hotmail.com with your email address if you think I don't have it. Hope you all keep on visiting!


our next adventure

We were so excited to find out in December that Zac had been chosen to be funded by the army for a pediatric cardiology fellowship. The army does not have there own program so Zac and I were excited to look at all the possibilities. There was Toronto's Hospital for Sick Children, but their program didn't fit what Zac needed to be learning. Then there was Denver's Children's Hospital. Finally we decided on the two best programs and after much deliberation, long flights to both east and west coast plus a very lengthy pro/con list we have decided to take the next portion of our adventure to Pittsburgh, PA. Zac will be starting as a Cardiology Fellow at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh in July!
We really are excited. My sister Anjuli lives in Maryland only 3-4 short hours away. Zac's sister lives in Michigan, only 6 hours away, and maybe just maybe Brigg and Hava will find their way to Erie, PA? I am so excited to have four seasons again. I can't wait for the the changing of the leaves and for that smell that comes along with the fall. Most of all I can't wait to wake up in the morning to a world of white snow...I have missed that so much. So much to do here to get ready but Pittsburgh here we come!!


At Last...

For all those who really know me you know I have a great love for all lemon and strawberry. For my wedding all the food was themed on these two wonderful fruits. When ever we go out I always order water, lemons on the side. In college my roommates and I invented a drink called the "Yellow Monarch" basically water, tons of lemons, and then tons of those little sugar packets. I wouldn't advise anyone make this drink if you want to stay on the good side of your waitress...but that is another story. My friend here in Hawaii makes the most wonderful Lemon Blueberry trifle...I wonder if you can substitute strawberries for the blueberries?
So when we moved here to Hawaii the first two plants I planted in my yard were strawberries and of course a lemon tree. I was so excited to live in a place where I could have my two favorites right there for the picking. I was quick to discover that while I grew many strawberries I only ever got to eat one myself. I found that the geckos around here also have a love for strawberries. What can I say, they had good taste!
Then there is my lemon tree...planted three weeks after we moved in and then the wait begun. I read all about growing a lemon tree. I was excited to find that they would bear fruit soon after being planted. Two years and six months later I FINALLY see the "fruits" of my labor. So here it is ladies and gents. The first and so far the only lemon that has grown on my tree. Did you all know that it takes about three months for lemons to turn yellow?