Saturday, December 25, 2010

Jesse Tea!

This month, in an effort to help the kids focus on Advent, we made Jesse Tree ornaments for each day of Advent (pictured in an earlier post.) And so, on the 23rd, with Advent nearly at an end, I surprised them with a Jesse Tea Party. The idea is to have treats that represent the Bible stories we read to go along with the Jesse Tree ornaments, and see if the kids can identify them.

"O Radiant Dawn" grilled cheese sandwiches. Okay, little bit of a stretch, but we needed an anchor food before the kids started on the cookies.

Not everything I made turned out so well...
and a one, and a two...angel cookies burned on high!

Now on to what worked: Ten commandment Milano cookies, and Isaac's bundles of wood in the form of pretzel sticks and string cheese (incidentally, tying string cheese around pretzels is way harder than it sounds).

My best work for the day: Flower of Jesse cookies.

Abraham's descendents would be more numerous than these star cookies.

Tobias' fish crackers and apples with the gummie worms standing in for the serpent.

And finally, "House of Bread" rolls for Bethlehem.

I didn't tell the kids about the tea party or what we were doing, but as soon as the girls sat down they started guessing what the snacks were for. In fact, Monica was coming up with stuff that hadn't even occured to me, like the bread rolls and sparkling cider representing Melchisedek. I wish I had thought of that.

So the kids stuffed themselves silly, and had no idea they were learning catechism. Thanks to the Shower of Roses blog for this great idea.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Lunar Eclipse, December 20th, 2010

The clouds broke apart for a few minutes for an early present, a Lunar Eclipse. Here are a couple of pictures.

This one is from 2257 hr. local time in California.

The moon in totality at 2355 hr. in California.

However, we did not have snow to start our winter for the 48th year in a row.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Advent 2010

It is Advent time again, so up go the decorations!

"You're tall, string those up there!"

No children were harmed in the decorating of this house.

The Mendozas do an art project, and the house does not burn down!
This is a Jesse Tree. It represents the Family Tree of Jesus, and each ornament stands for an event or person in the Bible.

Because nothing says christmas like the Starship Enterprise.

I can see Jean-Luc Picard from my house!

Need antlers and a red nose for the van now.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Kramer Sighting! Jimi Hendrix Edition

While watching our fine copy of the Monterey Pop Festival on DVD, we had a Kramer sighting!

Look and see...

Believability Rating: 33%.

The spelling of the name is spot on, and this Kramer is an engineer of sorts.

The Eddie Kramer who remixed the Jimi Hendrix portion of this Festival was born in South Africa, however, and is a sound engineer. The Kramer we know has NEVER heard a Jimi Hendrix song. Much less heard OF Jimi Hendrix.

Plus sound engineer Eddie Kramer is about 30 years older than Oklahoma Kramer. Oklahoma Kramer would also not approve of burning an instrument just to upstage the band The Who. Maybe.

Oh well.

Stayed tuned next time for another edition of


Thousands Of Teddy Bears Leap To Their Deaths In Calgary

Actually this was a charity drive by Petro Canada.

Over 23,000 Teddy bears were donated. Not bad considering attendance for the game was 16,000.

This was on Sunday the 12th of December, and the next day, players form the Calgary Hitmen went to a Fueling Station where 50 agencies picked up some stuffed Ursine-Canadians. Some players also went to the Alberta Children's HOspital to deliver some bears as well.

Finally, a Hockey Team from Calgary that San Jose Sharks fans can love!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


"i'm kind, I'm caring...."


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Perplexing Church Signs

Can anyone tell me just what is going on here?

OK, we know about wolves and and lambs in the Bible. Bears are mentioned in 1 Samuel, chapter 17. Cows are in the Bible frequently as well.

Let's see, Gangs, gangs, gangs....

Nope. Can't find the word "gangs."

Even in the messed up New World Translation, I can't find Gangs.

Would the Philistines count as a gang?

I am so confused.

Seen at Sacred Heart, Salinas, CA on the Feast of St. Nicholas, 2010.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Happy Birthday, Margaret!

Happy 2nd Birthday, Margaret!

It is a lot warmer over here in the land of your birth today, although we have not had snow either since 1962.

Enjoy yourself some cake and presents, as we enjoy this time-traveling cake.

God bless you, and may the Blessed Virgin Mary, who appeared on this day to St. Juan Diego, ever look after you.

We love you very much!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Monterey Bay Aquarium, December 2010

It's free week at the Monterey Bay Aquarium!

If you ever get a chance to visit the Central part of the Left Coast, one suggested stop, besides Yosemite National Park, is the Monterey Bay Aquarium. If you have ever seen Star TrekIV, The Voyage Home, then you might recognize the aquarium. One of us was even there when they filmed!

Here are just a few pictures to view. Let's head on inside, shall we?

Here is one of the Sea Otters. They are actually trained in a manner of sorts, but it is for their benefit. They are trained to get into nets so that they can be taken out of the tank for treatment. All the Otters at the Aquarium cannot be returned to the ocean for various reasons.

Hard to get a picture of them under the water.

Not fossils, but the skeleton of a whale.

Some of the Jellyfish found in the Monterey Bay.

Yes, this is actually a Seahorse, one called a Dragon Seahorse.

Yet another Seahorse that looks like the plastic plants you buy for your aquarium. Weird!

Seahorse swimming on by.

Sunset in Monterey.
Next time we go, it will be during Library Week when they give more free tickets!

Kansas Mom, How Could You???


Spotted in Monterey, CA on December 7th, 2010

We didn't know you were into this sort of stuff....

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Violin Recital by the kids, November 2010

Violin Recital by the kids at Church of the Wayfarer in Carmel, CA from last month.

First up is Long, Long Ago.

Next, Shortin' bread!

Finally, our newest Violin player, with Mockingbird.

You kids did very well, and we are very proud of you!

Halloween, 2010

A shot of our front yard for Halloween, 2010.

It is hard to tell, but that is a headless pirate, and two giant spiders way in the back on the lawn.

Shelob, eat your heart out!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Congratulations To Lieutenant Commander Eddie Kramer!

Congratulations to the now Lieutenant Commander Eddie Kramer!

He now becomes our favourite Lieutenant Commander of all time, replacing this guy...
Data spent 12 years as a Lieutenant, while Eddie has has done it in substantially less time. They both also share a love of Sherlock Holmes, and have had alternate realities. Data experienced his in a temporal rift, while LCDR Kramer had his in California. Brent Spiner was born in Texas, and LCDR Kramer was born in Oklahoma, right above. However Eddie does not have a cat, which is a strike against.

So, congratulations, Lieutenant Commander Kramer! Enjoy putting on that third pip to indicate your rank like they do on Star Trek, The Next Generation.

And now for a musical tribute to Lieutenant Commander Kramer from the Simpsons:

Thank you for your service to our country, and all the hardships you have endured being away from your family. We love you very much! Congratulations!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

A Bunny's View Of Los Angeles

In our our effort to bring news about people who know or want to learn how to ride horses(Seller ID # 4144 click here!), we now present another one of our friends.

Many people blog and post pictures of Los Angeles.

Not many of those people are Bunnies.

Here is one of Heather's friends from High School who has lived in Los Angeles for quite a while, although he is a native of Salinas (something he does not want people to know, but there it is now out in the public).

Robert has a great sense of humour, honed by hours and hours of whatever it is he does in his spare time. One of the things that Robert likes to watch is Mystery Science Theater and its newest incarnation, RiffTrax, where old and new movies are made fun of. It seems peculiar that we have a set of friends who would watch these with us, yet we have never had the full complement of people over to our house who do like these. When all these people are considered, it is highly unlikely that they would ever meet in any other circumstance, yet if they WERE to come for a movie to be made fun of, they would all have a great time.

We just wouldn't mention the Blue Man Group.

So if you want to see what LA looks like from a cute, but rather mischievous rabbit's point of view, check out Robert's (or Rob to anyone who met him after 1988) blog.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving to all, especially those in service to our country.

Proclamation Establishing Thanksgiving Day

October 3, 1863

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of unequalled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defence, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle, or the ship; the axe had enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years, with large increase of freedom.

No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy.

It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and voice by the whole American people. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to his tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand, and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the city of Washington, this third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the independence of the United States the eighty-eighth.

A. Lincoln

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Reeks Of Maine, 2011 Edition

The Advent season is coming, so, it is time to think about what to stick to your house.

Instead of tacky plastic displays, why not get a beautiful, tasteful Wreath From Maine!

They not only have wreaths, but garlands to wrap around pillars or posts, and swags to go over doors. We have had them in the past, and they smell so good without being overpowering.
We even happen to know someone who is selling these online, our friend Elizabeth Kramer.

So when you are ready to order, head on over to the Wreaths Of Maine website, and choose your wreath, garland, or swag. Ms. Kramer has a seller ID, which is 4144. Click on the above link, or go here:

So this Advent and Christmas, put a little beauty in your house. Get a Wreath of Maine. Don't buy a cheap Mexican knock-off where the "Balsam Fir" is actually made out of coloured Chili Lights.

Come on, buy a Wreath of Maine from Elizabeth, Seller ID #4144. This little girl right below is happy that you are going to buy one.

Don't make her cry by NOT buying one.

This little girl's Godfather would greatly appreciate it if you would make her happy if you bought a Wreath from Elizabeth, Seller ID #4144.


SELLER ID #4144! "Pookielizard" is another ID!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Space Hippies Are Evil

You know it.

Gene Roddenberry knew it.

The American People know it.

Space Hippies are evil.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Sunset Over Seaside, California

Sunset over Seaside, California from the parking lot of Best Buy.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

My Weekend Is Starting To Take Shape....

What more could I want from my weekend?
Maybe a friend to watch a painful MST3K movie with.
Where are you Robert Chin and Michael Jackson impersonator?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Stop The Press! Ulysses Has Sold His Red Pick-Up!

It is with great sadness to hear from one of our favourite Naval Officers, Admiral Nimitz, that Ulysses has sold his Red Toyota Pick-up truck?

Has the world gone mad?

Maybe next, one of our friends will start rooting for the SF Giants, or something similarly vile.

The Red Toyota, to put it simply, was almost synonymous with Ulysses.

Personally, I can remember Ulysses and I going out at 2100 hrs. on a Wednesday last year, going to 6 different stores in search of Batman: Arkham Asylum for the PS3. I can remember going 65 on Boronda Road, sure we would be stopped by the cops.

Our kids loved riding in the Red Truck. It was a badge of honour, and something that they all wanted to do.

When he parked his truck in Moss Landing, some birds had done their business on his truck. It looked like the windows were broken, and Ulysses promised to get the "Vandal Punks" who had messed his truck.

We would often see his truck on Sunday afternoons, speeding by us on 101 on the way to Holy Mass, just passing us up.

One could also hear him before seeing him as well, as often The Dark Knight soundtrack, or Andrea Bocelli would be blasting at roughly 135 Decibels.

Good times!

Ulysses will be stationed overseas, and will not be in need of his Truck. So we will miss you, big Red Truck. You provided us with so many happy memories, from forays to East Salinas in search of Tequila, to gong to Holy Mass and Divine Liturgy.

We will miss you too, Ulysses.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Kraemer sighting! Wichita, Kansas Edition!

It seems that the Kraemers are ever expanding their reach into every corner of America. Now they are getting into the Media!

Call it the Military-Industrial-Entertainment-Kraemer complex.

So we are just minding our own business, watching TV like mind-numbed Robots, when a piece comes on about visiting the great prairies of Middle-America, when lo and behold, there is a Kraemer, right there on TV, in front of our children. We had to cover the eyes of the two smaller ones.

Let's take a look at the video evidence.

Believability Rating: 78%.
Confidence is high on this one!
First of all, this gentleman works for a station based in the mid-west, where the Kramers are from. In fact there are 7770 people with the last name Kramer in Oklahoma, according to the U.S. Census. They are all related.
It would seem strange that they would have a child who is older than any of them, but they do watch a lot of Star Trek, where time travel is a daily occurrence on the show.
this gentleman also works for a station that has a bureau in SALINA, Kansas, which sounds suspiciously like SALINAS, California. Let's compare the two. Here is a link to the most recent image we could find of Salina, Kansas. Here is one of Salinas, California.
They look similar, don't they? It just could NOT be a coincidence. They used to live near Salinas; this guys works for a station with a bureau in Salina. It is so uncanny, it sends shivers up your spine. Or it could be my fourth meal from Taco Bell trying to come back up.
Don't think that we are fooled by that extra "E" in your name. We knoew thaet you are a KRAMER!
Stay tuned for a strange but true Ulysses sighting in Carmel!

Monday, November 8, 2010

We Need A New Computer...

Our old is starting to get a little old.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Back To The Future!

Happy Birthday, from the past, Elizabeth!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


We found out what happened to the priest who married us!

We found out about him RIGHT HERE! (Click on the link!)

Monday, November 1, 2010

Happy Birthday, Elizabeth!

Happy Birthday to you!
Happy Birthday to you!
Happy Birthday, Dear Elizabeth,
Happy Birthday to you!

Happy Birthday greetings, not from the past...
Not from the future...
But rather like Star Trek or Lost,

From an alternate universe!

Yes, an alternate universe where Birthday Cake from Shaw's is health food, and vegetables are junk food.

An alternate world where all you kids go to public school.

An alternate world where Ulysses is a Hippie. With long hair. And a Volkswagen Bus.

And don't even ask about what your Mom and Dad is like here.

An alternate universe where our families actually live right next door to each other. As a matter of fact, you are over here right now, and it is really creepy because you are watching me type this. Whoa, this is weird.

Hey, stop hitting me with your Riding Crop! That hurts!!!

In this universe, you are still having your birthday today, although this month is known as Glacqnor (the Q is silent), so you were born on the 41st of Glacqnor here.

There is one thing here that is the same: You are a very precious young lady to us here too, and we love you very much.

And so, your alternate universe friends wish you a very Happy Birthday. We hope you enjoy lots of yummy Brussels sprouts and asparagus which is what we'll be having here.

Hey, quit hitting me with your Riding Crop, and stop kicking me (O.K., I guess some things don't change, even in alternate universes)!

18 Years Ago Yesterday...

18 Years ago, the Mendoza Family got its shaky start. right before our Wedding, there was a Funeral for a Lady who was also named Mendoza (no relation), who had no flowers and no one really to serve her Funeral Mass. Hey, how about 6 current or former Seminarians to Serve? the person who delivered our flowers was early, so we got two uses out of the flowers.

Here is a picture of the happy couple right after the Wedding at St. Mary of the Nativity Church in Salinas, Halloween, 1992.

The Priest who witnessed our wedding was really nice. We can't recall his name right now. We often wonder what happened to him, what he's doing right now.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Man charged with assault with sandwich in Dover, New Hampshire

Yeah, you read that headline correctly.

In one of the most dangerous states in the union, a man in south eastern New Hampshire has been charged with assault with a sandwich.

One has to wonder when dangerous things like these will be regulated. Although the sandwich was not identified, what if the sandwich had been a KFC Double Down?

Kramers, I would appeal to your common sense, to take this story under advisement, and urge you to move back to California. For your own safety. We promise not to throw any sandwiches at you. Well, maybe some softer Mexican food at worst.

Plus we sort of miss you guys a lot.

NB: Bring some sandwiches and KFC Double Downs with you. Maybe some Dunkin' Doughnuts too.

You can read more on this story here.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Happy Birthday, Rafaela Sanchez!

Happy Birthday, Monica!

How appropriate you should be born on the Feast of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque and on the anniversary of the Loma Prieta Earthquake.

You are a soft, delicate flower, just like an earthquake, yet you have a love for Our Lord and his Blessed Mother like St. Margaret Mary.

God bless you on your birthday. You Mom and Dad love you very much.


Most of the time.

Just where does your personality come from?

At least I did not misspell YOUR name.

New Hampshire 2010: The Musical!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

The Baptism of Cecilia Kramer

The reason for ultimately going to New Hampshire has not been all the fun that we have shown, albeit it would have been worth it to do just those things.

The reason for going was to go to the Baptism of the latest Kramer Kutie, Cecilia, born on the 12th of August of this year. By grace, we also went to be the Godparents for this child.

We had figured that this particular post would have appeared on a certain other site. However, with the kind permission of the Kramer Family, we are blessed to post here this selection of pictures from the Baptism of Cecilia Kramer on the Feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary.

The day of your Baptism is here!
The Tabernacle is the focus of the Church.
Baptismal Shell.

The anointing before Baptism.

The blessing of the Font.

"We ask you, Father, with your Son to send the Holy Ghost upon the water of this font. May all who are buried with Christ in the death of Baptism rise also with Him to newness of life. We ask this through Christ our Lord."

" Cecilia, I baptise you in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost. "

" Parents and Godparents, this light is entrusted to you to be kept burning brightly. This child of yours has been enlightened by Christ. She is to walk always as a child of the light. May she keep the flame of faith alive in her heart. When the Lord comes, may she go out to meet him with all the Saints in the heavenly Kingdom."
Blessing over the newly Baptised, the parents, Godparents, and Families.

Happy Baptism Day, Cecilia Rose! We love you very much.

Thanks again to the Kramer Family for letting us post these pictures, hosting us, and having us as Godparents to your new daughter. We really cannot thank you enough.