Friday, August 31, 2012

Adrianne's Bridal Luncheon

We are in Durham, NC this weekend for Adrianne & Ricky's wedding!! The big day is tomorrow evening.

The festivities began this morning with a Bridal Luncheon hosted by Kathy. It was a lovely time!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Inflight entertainment

We've boarded our flight from SFO to RDU. In the eleven years i've been flying to NC with Dick to visit his family, this is the first time that we have a non-stop option. Yay!

Bonus: 5.25 hour flight with Direct TV. I think it's kind of awesome that I can spend the entire flight watching HGTV. :)

See you on the other side!
Thanks to my Gay Boyfriend for taking care of our home and kitty while we are away!

Things that make me happy. :)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Fundraising Milestone: $7,500

Screenshot from my fundraising page

Yesterday afternoon, with the support of all of my generous sponsors, we surpassed a major milestone in my fundraising for the Immediate Impact Breast Cancer Walk - we have raised more than $7,500!! We are more than 75% of the way towards my $10,0000 goal!

Another milestone was reached this morning. We have just surpassed the amount of money that I have raised in every other year that I have walked and fundraised. Last year, we raised $7,605, and in 2010, we raised $6,240. Each year, I'm amazed at the amount of money that my generous and supportive friends have donated.

So far, I have logged in over 270 training miles with my team, the Warming Hut Hotties in the months of June, July and August, which does not include the workouts and more moderate training that I do on my own.

I still have 4 more weeks before the big event to continue my training and my fund-raising. There is no limit to the amount of money that we can raise to help in the fight against breast cancer.

Thank you all again for your incredible support and generosity.

You've filled my heart and you've inspired me.

I am honored to be representing all of you when I walk at the end of September.

If you'd like to help support me in the 2012 Immediate Impact Walk, please donate here.

Thank you!!!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Back-to-Back Weekend Part 2: Sunday's 20-mile Training Walk!

Sunday's 20-mile walk!

It's the Grandaddy of all training walks each year! The 20-mile walk from San Francisco to Tiburon!

We met bright and early at 6:30am. We usually meet at Fort Mason for this walk, but Linda had to change the plans this year since the America's Cup World Series was going on.

A bunch of Hotties ready group at 6:30am to walk another 20-miles!
(photo by Linda Imlay)

Linda also changed a few other things this year: we started out by walking through the Presidio a bit before heading over the bridge. We walked through the Presidio Cemetery, which was quite beautiful. I had never walked through there before.

View from the Presidio Cemetery

We had the most amazing route support all weekend long! Buffie joined Connie and Renee today, and treated us with homemade banana bread that she had stayed up late baking for us the night before. Thank you, Buffie, Connie and Renee!!!

Renee and Buffie offering delicious Banana Bread to help keep us going

It was an unexpected beautiful day to walk across the Golden Gate Bridge! For the first time in several weeks, the fog was not shrouding the bridge, and we had clear, blue skies! It's always so magical to walk across the Golden Gate Bridge in the early morning. There are only a few cars, so it is not nearly as noisy as it would be later in the day. There are also far fewer pedestrians and bikers out at this time. Very peaceful!

Gorgeous day to walk across the bridge!

(taken from Linda's photo caption) This was new to me. in paris, lovers put locks on the Ponte des Arts and throw the key into the Seine. there were lots of locks on the fencing along the first part of the bridge. this was in german with a mock ring and all.

Walking across the Golden Gate Bridge

View from the Golden Gate Bridge as the sun rises over San Francisco and Alcatraz

Our fabulous route support ladies met us on the other side of the bridge at the North Lookout point. Potty break, some more snacks, hydrate, and ready to continue!

wonderful route support!

Next stop: Sausalito!

View from underneath the bridge

We walked under the bridge, down past the Bay Discovery Museum.
We walked up Alexander Street, eventually making our way to Sausalito.

Carol and Trina taking our annual picture in this very spot. 3 years running!

We enjoyed a quick lunch break at the Mollie Stones in Sausalito before heading out onto Bridgeway. The multi-use path through the marsh area is 2.5 miles. Our wonderful route support group met us half-way along the path with fruit kabobs!!

Linda, enjoying delish fruit kabobs (of watermelon, cantaloupe, and blueberries!) curtesy of Buffie, Renee and Connie!

We continued on towards Strawberry. Along the way, we were all delighted with the part of the Strawberry took out of the regular route. (remember, we walked extra miles in the Presidio this morning. This is where Linda was able to take out some milage from a less-exciting part of Marin County.

During our last pit-stop, a ladybug landed on Linda's top. I told her it must be extra good luck to have a ladybug land on your boobs. :)

We walked the last 3.25 miles along the trail all the way to Tiburon. Again, we were so lucky with the weather today. It was sunny, clear, but never too hot. So grateful for the nice weather.

We pulled into Tiburon right around 1:45pm, after having walked for just over 7 hours. We had a nice amount of time to have a quick lunch (and drinks!) at Sam's before boarding the ferry to head back to San Francisco.

Pretty view along the trail to Tiburon

Stats for today's BIG walk to Tiburon!

celebrating with drinks at Sam's!

Happy Hotties


We boarded the ferry back to San Francisco at 2:00. After a quick stop to Angel Island, we were on our way. It was a beautiful day out on the Bay!

Yep - we walked across that bridge about 7 hours ago!

Hotties enjoying the ferry ride home

We docked at Pier 41, and walked the last 2 miles of the day back to our cars. Here are a few more shots from the day.

Walking isn't for wimps

these shoes (and feet!) covered 40-miles together this weekend

Congratulations, Warming Hut Hotties on completing another successful and wonderful Back-to-Back Weekend! Thank you for the amazing weekend of walking, talking, laughter and friendship. xo

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Back-to-Back Weekend Part 1: Saturday's 20-mile training walk

Saturday's first 10-mile loop

It's the annual Warming Hut Hotties Back-to-Back Weekend! What does that mean? 2 Days, 20 miles each day! We are just over 4 weeks out from the Immediate Impact Breast Cancer Walk. The back-to-back weekend is the pinnacle of our weekend training for the year. From here, we'll scaling back on the mileage, getting our bodies prepared for the big event.

Saturday's 20-mile walk is two loops of 10-miles each. It's planned in a way so that walkers can choose if they want to walk 10, 15, 18 or 20 miles for the day.

We had an early start at 6:15am, departing at 6:30. The sun had just started to rise when we left. Actually, I should rephrase by saying it was just starting to get light by the time we left. The sun never really came out all day. The temps were in the mid to high 50s all day. I wore my usual layers - a tank top, a long sleeved shirt and a jacket. I never took any layers off all day.

We started the walk by walking under the Golden Gate Bride, and walked down and up the fantastic Batteries to Bluffs Trail. Along the way, we spied several schools of dolphins playing in the Pacific Ocean! So cool!

We walked through Golden Gate Park to Stow Lake, walked around the lake (very pretty) and onto JFK Drive. We came out to Lake Street, back into the Presidio, and made our way back to the Warming Hut by 10:00am for our "lunch" break.

Foggy, Golden Gate Bridge at 6:15am

Batteries to Bluffs Trail - where we saw the dolphins

Finishing Batteries to Bluffs, looking back at the Golden Gate Bridge

Saturday's second 10-mile loop

As we headed out for the second loop, we walked along the Ecology Trail, and up to Inspiration Point Overlook. For the first time that I can recall, we saw a group of painters at Inspiration Point creating landscape paintings. Very cool.

plein air painting at inspiration point

One of the most memorable moments of the day was when we passed a Garage Sale on Lake Street. We pass many garage sales during our walks, but this was the first time that we all stopped and actually purchased! Part of what was being sold was a box full of toys from Toy Story! Most of the characters were represented: Woody, Buzz Lightyear, Bullseye (the horse), Slinky Dog and Jessie. They were all in a box labeled Sunnyside (nice detail!). We simply couldn't leave them all there. The Hotties pitched in and divided up the Toy Story gang amongst three people. As much as I would have loved adopting a new friend, I'm kind of proud of myself for showing restraint. We all know that I do not *need* another doll in my house. :) All toys went to new loving homes - some of them even got to go together! :)

Box o' Toy Story Toys at the Garage Sale

Happy Toy Story Toys rescued by the Hotties!

The Toy Story Toys hitched a ride with our fantastic route support vehicle - Thank you to Connie and Renee for providing awesome and much appreciated route support all weekend long! Connie and Renee provided snacks, water as well as a ride for anyone who needed it.

We walked all the way down Geary Blvd and took a quick break at the beautiful Land's End Outlook. From there, we headed up the Land's End Trail (and stairs!)

Hottie Group Shot!

Walking up the Land's End Trail stairs

Carol and Monica sitting in a tree...

We walked the length of the Land's End trail, and came out onto El Camino del Mar, and walked around Sea Cliff. We waded through some sand at Baker Beach before heading back towards the Presidio.

View of the Golden Gate Bridge in the mid-afternoon

Apparently, The World's Cup World Series took place this weekend in the San Francisco Bay. I had no idea. ;) As we rounded the corner and saw the bay, we saw hundreds of boats out on the bay! It was very cool. We were able to see some of the competing boats speed across the bay.

boats on the Bay

Saturday's walk(s) were great! Lots of fun, even without the sun. :)

Friday, August 24, 2012

Glassybaby Painting #2 and a Quick Study

"glassybaby #2"
oil on canvas
8 x 8 inches

I had another great painting session with Dean yesterday. I finished a second glassybaby painting which I have been working on for the last couple of sessions. I'm not quite as happy with it as I was with my first glassybaby painting" but that's okay. They are all going to be a little bit different. If I were to do another, I'd try to make the subject size a little larger, like it was in the first one. I think it makes for a better composition. The light blue color is sea foam, for anyone who wants to know. :)

Here are photos from the process of this painting over the last 3 sessions.

session one

session two

session three - complete

the set-up

Before I finished my second glassybaby painting, Dean had me do a new kind of lesson yesterday. He had a photograph of a boy at a beach that he had printed out. He also had two small boards that he had roughly sketched the boy on: one for him, and one for me. He knows that I've been doing a lot of figure drawing lately, and that my next painting that I'm planning will be of a figure. He thought it would be fun and helpful to have me do a quick study from the photograph. As I said, he had two sketches done - one for each of us, so that he and I could do it together side-by-side. I really enjoyed the process, and learned a lot from it! First, we spent about 10 minutes mixing paint colors to try to achieve the colors on the palette before we started to paint at all. It's always a hard process for me, as I don't think I have a strong sense of color, but I am learning! Next, we filled in each "block" of color - the three different colors of water, the color of the sand, and the dark and lighter color values in the skin tone of the subject. It was all very quick, maybe about 20 minutes of painting. It was very interesting to see how quickly a painting can come to life, even without focusing on details. I only used about 2-3 brushes, and a palette knife to paint with. I was concerned that it would be too flat, without much interest. I will say that once I brought it home, and looked at it with fresh eyes, that I was pretty happy with the results. It's one of those paintings that when you step back, you actually see a lot of detail, but when you look closely, there's not actually much there.

Very interesting process. I hope we do more of these little studies. I think I could benefit from them greatly.

"Study - Boy on Beach
oil on board
6 x 6 inches

Here's one last photo of the paintings from yesterday's session.