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Ten Things of Thankful: Catalina Edition

I'm a bit late joining the hop this week.  John and I just returned from Catalina Island, so this post will be much like the vacation slide shows of old.  First, though, I have to mention something from the home front. 

1.  I'm thankful for a working refrigerator!  After trying (unsuccessfully) to have the previous one repaired, we decided to bite the bullet and buy another one.  Sears Outlet provided a great deal, and their delivery guys even arrived a few minutes early. 

Working refrigerator secured, and with food stocked for youngest daughter, John and I traveled for hours to arrive on Catalina Island:  26 miles across the sea, but still in Los Angeles county.  

2.  I'm thankful for the beauty of the seaside setting.

 3.  I'm thankful for the varied birds. 

4.  I'm thankful for quirky signs found throughout town.

I wonder how "Frozen" helped business?

5.  I'm thankful for the moon's reflection on the water.

6.  I'm thankful for flowering plants on buildings (in November, no less!)

7.  I'm thankful for the food tour we went on.  John and I happened to be the only ones signed up, so we enjoyed a private walking tour of six of the best restaurants in Avalon.  The tour guide also gave us an insider's look into the island, and introduced us to the history of the town. 

8.  I'm thankful that some of that history has been preserved.  We went to the theater on Friday night, and I loved the architecture and pipe organ.  

See that metal wire on the bottom of the seat?  That is a hat holder, so gentlemen could securely store their hats during the movie!
9.  I'm thankful for sea creatures.  Besides the orange garibaldi fish and the harbor seal that I (sort of) captured in photos, we saw dolphins (from the boat both to and from the island) and a leopard shark that was 4-5 feet long.  If only I had a water camera!  Swimming with a not-dangerous-to-humans shark was really cool. 

Can you see the seal?  He's in the water, and his head is poking up.  I only had my phone camera with me; otherwise, I could have zoomed better.
10.  As always, I'm thankful for John.  He makes the best kayaking and snorkeling buddy!  

What are you thankful for this week?  
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  1. As usual, the photography is stunning. That seaside pic blew me away!

    1. Thank you. Avalon really is a photogenic town.

  2. Another great holiday-tip for us actually. I'm glad you had such a wonderful time there. It looks wonderful! (And congrats on your new fridge too..)

    1. We did have a great time--and we are loving having a fridge, too! :-)

  3. (FRIST?)
    excellent photos! (as always…) nice work with the moon, we had an impressive one here (in New England) last night as I was driving. Tried to get a photo…phone camera didn't do anything other than reflect off the inside of the windshield (made the follow 3.7 seconds of driving kind of exciting)… held my real estate camera out the driver side window… but that didn't work either*.

    * no, actually stopping the car somehow did not occur to me. lol

    1. (not quite)
      Moon shots are tricky, but the first rule of thumb is, "Pull over and stop the car." Please don't risk life and limb just for a photo. I must have taken at least 25 shots to end up with that one. I still am trying for the elusive, see-the-detail-in-the-moon photo. I might need a better camera first. :-)

  4. What an amazing trip and photos, too!

    1. We had a really nice time, and are already talking about needing to go back soon!

  5. Ohhh WOW! It looks like your week has been so incredibly wonderful, Kristi :D And is that a pelican? WE HAD ONE OF THOSE IN WALES! Okay, so ours was a statue one, but he's a very important (to Husby and I) pelican, because one of the things very early on in our relationship which made us laugh and realise we were right for each other was that we saw this statue on the wall of Cardiff castle, turned to each other and both started quoting the pelican limerick.

    Did you eat something at each of the restaurants? How lovely that you got such undivided attention :)

    1. Yes, it is a pelican. I'm unfamiliar with the limerick, though.
      Yes, the tour included food: in the 3-hour tour, we sampled: steak, vegetable soup, coconut shrimp, green beans, fish, rice, clam chowder, crab cake, a ginger beer (soft drink) float, and dark chocolate/pistachio bark for me and shortbread for John. We revisited a few of the restaurants for meals later in our stay.

  6. Having finally broken down and getting a new refrigerator a few months ago -- I sure understand the thankful of that! I love my new fridge. I'm glad you posted this when you did. In all my years of living in southern California I have never gone to Catalina and I was actually thinking that I should go and take Amara with me! Now I am convinced! It would be a great educational experience for both of us. Thank you.

    1. The history museum there has free admission for children under 15. :-) I was amazed at how comfortable the water was; we snorkeled in the short wet suits and were just fine. If you don't snorkel, I would recommend a glass bottom boat or sub tour. The water is very clear, and it was easy to see lots of fish! The movie theater only shows one film, so if you wanted to see the organist play, you might want to check ahead of time to make sure the movie is appropriate for children. (Big Hero 6 is showing right now.) Check groupon for deals on the boat ride over--or if you ride on your birthday, it's free! :-)

  7. Stunning pictures and I SAW THE SEAL!!!!! I especially like the sorry we are open sign.

    1. Oh, good! It was the best shot I got, but seemed to me like it was a bit like "Where's Waldo?"
      I probably should have taken another photo, of the sign under the Sorry sign. It was standing in front of a giant statue of two hamburgers and said "Fine Food Served Here."

  8. Catalina looks positively fantastic - what a wonderful trip! Even better to go with your best guy!
    Your photos, as always, are just lovely.
    And the fridge is very exciting - what a beauty!

    1. I am excited about the fridge, but most excited that it actually works! My last one was also pretty, but I really need more than a pretty face from my appliances. :-) I'm definitely more a function over form sort of person.

  9. I love Catalina but found driving there to be taking your life in your hands... too narrow as I recall as you got higher up...

    1. We were only there over one night, so we didn't actually venture out of Avalon (with the exception of kayaking/snorkeling). We didn't rent a golf cart; we just walked everywhere on land. We will have to go back sometime and see the interior of the island.

  10. Wonderful photographs of your trip to a very beautiful place. And I can really appreciate your refrigerator!

    1. It was really pretty there. I was surprised that the water was as comfortable as it was. We wore wet suits, but didn't need full suits, just the short ones.

  11. The pipe organ looks fabulous. I wish I could play it.

  12. Oh, you have such beautiful choices for vacations! How Bryan and I decided to live in landlocked Indiana is beyond me.

    Nice fridge! :)


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