Saturday, January 31, 2009

'twas the night before.....

T'was the night before Tampa, when all thru the town

Steelers fans were ready for the Cardinals to go down.

The flags and banners were all hung with care,

All over Tampa, the Steelers are there.

The players were nestled, all snug in their beds,

While visions of Super Bowl danced in their heads.

With Tomlin in charge, I had no fear

And settled down for the game of the year.

When in the stadium there arose such a clatter

Cardinal's fans wondered just what was the matter

For at the stadium there was a great flash,

Someone had entered with no ticket, no cash.

The light from the moon's glow,

Gave the luster of mid-day to the man standing below.

The smoke from his cigar made the air gloomy

They knew in a moment it was Art Rooney

He held the team's roster, his plan of attack

Big Ben to Hines Ward and Willie Parker is the back.

He saw in the defense a Curtain of Steel

If they can't sack Warner then nobody will.

Troy will cover the field, he'll be everywhere

I'm telling you Cardinals you better beware

His long locks of hair will flow in the breeze

He will catch Warner's passes with the greatest of ease.

Mr. Rooney walked the sidelines, he paced to and fro

He wore black and gold from his head to his toe

terrible towel he held oh so tight

As he looked to the heavens on that Tampa night.

Then the words that he spoke left a feeling of Gold and Black

Lord, get us home to Pittsburgh with a six pack! 


Favorite Players

Here are a few of my favorite players on the Steelers:

Troy Polomalu, Strong Safety in the Defense.  Watch for him and you'll have a hard time NOT seeing him.  He is everywhere on defense! 
 He wears his hair in a long mane that overflows down onto his back.  He is the playmaker when a big play is needed and helps with almost every defensive play.  He intercepted the ball in the AFC championship game two weeks ago to help secure the Steelers place in this Superbowl.

Hines Ward, Wide Receiver in the Offense.  He always has a smile, whether he makes the play or not.  He is a master at catching the ball, running and even 
blocking when needed.  He hurt himself in the last AFC Championship game, but he is listed as a probable for the Superbowl.  He also became the Steelers all-time Wide Receiver in 2005 with his 538th catch.

What I also like about both of these players is their respectful, courteous behavior on and off the field.  

Friday, January 30, 2009

I couldn't resist

In case any of you had any doubt that this weekend I would not post anything about the Superbowl..
then stop reading now :)

Thursday, January 29, 2009

The first haircut

Not much to write except that Bella looks ADORABLE!
Her behavior is improving and she certainly knows right from wrong.  She has this look when she has done something I know that when I see her dip her head and look at my from under her eyebrows that I should go looking for something amiss.
Still, I am wondering why there are times when she just DOES NOT want to walk...I have never heard of a puppy that doesn't like to walk (or at least not on the sidewalk....beaches are fine!).  any suggestions?

This is her with her new pillow and rope carrot that I brought back for her for Christmas!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Our Anniversary in Paradise

On the last day that we were in the Maldives, we celebrated our 12th anniversary.
It was an absolutely amazing day that started with this at our breakfast:

We didn't dive on this day since we are believers in the 24 hour, no diving before flying policy.  So, instead, after our delicious breakfast we headed out in a kayak.

We came to this little stretch of sand that the resort put this hammock on.  Could you resist?  We couldn't!!
So, we thought we would lounge around for a little.  Then we kayaked to this other little island and snorkeled.  Yes, I admit it.... if we can't dive, we at least try to snorkel to see anything else we possibly can in the water :)

While we were arriving to this island, we caught sight of a large school of small sardines.  Then, to our surprise and delight, a baby Black tip shark swimming amongst them...having a tasty meal, we assumed!  We were not bale to get a picture since they swim so quickly and move away even quicker when something approaches it.  We were quite excited though!

After we returned to the island we went for our "before flying 30+ hours" massage.  Again, it was wonderful!  Even though I already posted this picture, I figured to complete this whole day in the post, why not post it again!

The rest of the day we spent lounging around by the pool, taking fotos, relishing in our last day in this Paradise.  Then....

 I had a surprise dinner planned for my husband!
There were many options, and I chose to have a private dinner on the beach.  
They led us through this candle lit walkway to this spectacular tent to watch the sunset and celebrate together, alone!

It was so romantic!  The Thai

food was quite delicious and so much of it!  Sorry that some of the food pictures are blurry, but I was a little preoccupied to worry.  At least I took them :)

We had beautiful flowers and candles on the table.  They dug out holes in the sand to light up

 the tent.  They even had a cake for us...  after the delicious Thai fruit, coconut, sticky rice and condensed milk desert!  We decided to have them bring it to the room.

And to both of our surprises.....
this is what we walked in to find:

We were both so surprised.... this is all rose petals and towels like two birds.  think that is it?  We did, until:

It was really a special, memorable evening.  

Friday, January 23, 2009

ok, back to Paradise- Cool fish

Now that the Steelers have been posted about, the historical inauguration has
been posted about....

let's get back to Paradise!

This was us swimming around the huts.  We decided to go for an early morning swim before breakfast, and our friends took this picture of us!

The fish were abundant around the small coral heads here.  It was quite surprising to see so many in such shallow water.  Here is an octopus that we saw:

Here is a school of blue striped grunt that was literally right underneath our casita:

and another quite stunning fish, though I am not sure what the name is!

Enjoy these from the snorkeling and watch for more fish from the diving!

Thursday, January 22, 2009


This is such a beautiful song to 
represent our country and the
new administration of Barack Obama.
I am so proud to belong to
such a great country.
God bless America

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Concert

Last night I went to see James Blunt and Elton John in concert.  This is from last night!!
I was there to the right of the stage (if you are looking at the stage)

I thoroughly enjoyed James Blunt. He is entertaining, 
talented and gave a great full hour of beautiful music.

Elton John...well, he is Elton John!  
He is getting older and is quite out of shape, 
but he is a master of music.  
I can't tell you how many times I watched his fingers 
work magic on the the keyboard, by watching the big tvs.
We bought the more expensive tickets, 
which got us closer to the action.  
We only had to stand for the whole 4 hours of the concert, wriggle our way around
2 Jolly Blue Giants, but hey, in the end....
it was a great show.  
Truthfully, James Blunt was my favorite, but how can one complain
about having the amazing opportunity to see 
Elton John perform?
It was a great night!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Steelers Theme Song

Steelers Update-READ THIS ONE!!!

Thank you to all my blogging friends who have put up with my Steelers. I am happy to announce:


Steelers 23 -Baltimore Ravens 14
Here we go, Steelers, here we go!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Paradise- my fascination with starfish

I am not sure why this is, or even when in over these 16 years of diving it happened, but I have now found starfish to be so cool. They come in all different sizes and colors.... here are a sampling from The Maldives!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Paradise-The shipwreck

Now, onto the diving....

we are serious divers....we love to dive and dive every chance we get! The Maldives have many great dive sites...unfortunately we could only dive close to our island, but it was plenty! We saw many things that I will tell you all about over the next few days.

This is a shipwreck that we dove on twice. The first time was at night and the second during the day. For those of you that are not divers, let me tell you... I love to dive at night. Once you get over the initial disorientation of not being in daylight, the dive is usually incredible! Different fish come out at night, while others sleep!

Taking pictures are difficult at any moment under the water (and sometimes above, too!), but they can be even more challenging at night. I actually did not take my camera on the night dive on the wreck so.... These fotos are of the day dive on this wreck. The wreck was sunk on purpose to provide a new home for fish and corals....and of course to entertain us :) I found it to be quite interesting in it's structure.
Can you see what looks like rain in this foto? It is a school of what I believe are sardines! Very cool!
Enjoy the dive!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Paradise, The pool

Come and sit with me by the pool.... enjoy the tranquility on this Monday... a hectic day where we all get back to our normal routines. A day where sometimes we forget what wonderful things happened over the weekend, magical sunshine lightens our days, mystical full moons brighten our nights... and I still linger in my paradise, at the infinity edge pool that made you feel like you were one with the ocean, or falling off the face of the Earth. Let the sun set on us today whilst we remember our own piece of paradise....

my other paradise....

between my Steelers winning today, the first of their playoff finals, and 24 starting tonight....
I can almost imagine this as my other paradise!
Ok, the Steelers played their first playoff game tonight and played really well. Final score Steelers 35-San Diego Chargers 24.
Then, 24 is on NOW!! How excited am I??? SUPER EXCITED :)

Might I add ....
all of you have been so supportive of all my travels and adventures. Someone commented about how lucky I am, and please know, I DO feel extremely lucky. We live a very fortunate life and I knwo that God has blessed us immensely. I thank Him for my life every day and know that He is always watching over us.
I am glad that you have been here with me through my journeys and hope that you know how much it means to me that you are all so supportive in my adventures! Enjoy the ride....
Paradise to be continued tomorrow!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Paradise-The Spa

The Thai definitely know how to "spa". They own "spa" for me!

We decided to treat ourselves on the first day that we arrived. The flights were long and our bodies were tired, so why not! We also decided to prep our bodies for the same long journey home on the last day!
The smells circulating around the spa were sensuous... lavender and lemongrass, sweet and fresh. The decor and music made you feel at once relaxed and calm, just like the whole feel of the island. They greet you at the spa's reception desk which is an open air, beautiful setting. They sit you down, give you some fresh cold lemongrass flavored tea and ask you how strong you want your massage.
The first time we both said strong, and boy, did they deliver. Elbows into the back, thumbs into the muscles, palms and forearms, kneading the tension away. The last day we choose medium, and it was just as good, but with two different girls, a totally different and relaxing massage. They start by washing your feet in a coconut milk bath, then lead you to your tables. As you can see, we had massages at the same time together in the same room. Probably meant to be very sensual, but we were both in our own worlds....loving it just the same!
After the massage they, once again, give you lemongrass tea, but this time it is hot, and helps everything feel warm inside. You can shower in the outside shower if you want, or leave the scented oils moisturizing your skin after your days in the sun. It was a great start and end to an amazing paradise.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Paradise-The over the water bungalow

So, even though we are traveling back to Brazil today, I didn't want to leave all of you hanging and waiting for the bungalow pictures.

As we walked to the bungalows I felt an overwhelming sense of serene and calmness. You could practically feel your worries, stresses being blown away in the warm gentle breezes. The sun shone on us every day, but there was always a breeze to keep us cool. In fact, we kept the double doors open 24/7. The person that turned our bed down at night used to close the doors, and as soon as we got back we would prop them open to sleep to the sounds of the water lapping and the breezes cooling us through the night.

The bed was beautifully covered in rose petals. They gifted us sarongs, or pareos, to use and keep as a remembrance of our dreamy days there. The wooden ray was to put on the bed if you wanted the sheets changed more often than every other day. They are trying to conserve their paradise. If you click on the picture you may be able to read how they put it. The key was also a ray....very tasteful. Funny, though, after the first few days we ended up leaving our room without a key and left it open....tranquility at it's highest!
Once again, the details really make this feel even more special. Another example....(besides the rose petals on the bed!) was the simple beauty of the shampoo, conditioner, bath foam and the body milk (not pictured). Their scent was mixtures of florals and coconuts. Divine!

Ok, here is the view, taken from the water, of our bungalow. It is an inviting bedroom with a beautiful shower/bathroom area.
If you notice under the windows of the shower are completely open to the breezes with a view of the crystalline water. The colors are mesmerizing.
The bed looks out over these waters, or should I call it a pool. The water is only about 15 feet deep, great for early morning swims and snorkeling. We saw many fish, corals and even an octopus in these pools! We spent many an hour lounging here!
I will leave you for today dreaming with the beautiful colors of the sunset from our balcony....