Even though my title is April shines, I am going to share some photos that I never did use before. I had uploaded them and for what ever reason did not use these particular photos a few months ago. I am so excited to share them here as my quirky brain wants to almost always have a theme. I know some of my blog posts I jump from subject to subject in my crazy life. But with these super fun challenges, I just can’t help myself to themes!
My life is so much brighter because of my family. They bring me so much joy and happiness and so when I can do a little traveling to visit them it is just so much fun.
We head to Pismo Beach because they have this AMAZING Cinnamon roll store that bake them fresh every day. I have shared about these cinnamon rolls before but on this day I took a lot of photos of the ocean and the pier. Thanks for visiting my BrightSquare challenge post hosted by BeckyB~ Life of B. She does such an amazing job with her challenges. It is so fun to join in when I can and share my brightsquare photos!
Welcome to my weekend coffee share where we share what’s been happening in our lives with old friends and new! What can I get for you today? I have both coffee and an assortment of teas. I have recently discovered how much I like Earl Grey tea and have been drinking it more often. This last week was a busy week as we celebrated birthdays. It was my hubby’s birthday and my sweet daughter’s. My daughter’s birthday is one day after my hubby’s. She came home for her birthday and spent time with one of her best friend’s here who’s birthday is one week earlier so it’s a busy birthday month! I am going to also call this my weekly smile post. I’ve always written these posts separately but this week was super busy so I’ll use this post for both. 😀
My daughter bought tickets to an outdoor symphony at the beach. It was super fun and an adventure to drive an hour to the beach to attend this small intimate style concert literally at the beach. It was held at Bolsa Chica State Beach which is in Huntington Beach, Ca. We arrived early enough to order food that was there for us so it was dinner and a concert that was approximately an hour long. The symphony was performed by Orchid Quartet and these women are part of the LA Philharmonic Orchestra and the music was excellent. The last performance included a keyboard player who travels and performs with the quartet. The only thing about this evening at the beach was that it was a bit chilly. It was barely 60F (15C) with the wind it felt colder. We dressed warmly and brought blankets which helped. It was super cloudy, looked like storm clouds but it did not rain. I captured some fun photos I will share. They make me SMILE!
I loved being at the beach and should visit more often and I am smiling as the drive to and from the concert was traffic free! We have so much traffic here in California and we just happened to be driving the other direction during rush hour and left early because we thought it would take us longer. So thankful it was such a nice easy, fun adventure! I have some video’s I want to share. This music is close to my heart as I just LOVE classical music and some of the pieces I can play on the piano. It was beautiful to hear this string quartet play, so enjoyable. They played Beethoven, Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky to name a few composers. I hope you enjoy!
The second video is Rhapsody in Blue by George Gershwin and there is the piano player on the keyboard behind the speaker on the left side of the stage. We were sitting at a picnic table in the back. The picnic tables were cheaper and we were a group of four. They had fire pits which cost more and seated more people. My daughter said it was just about sold out online but there were many empty seats so I am thinking the weather may have kept people from attending. Here are more photos of our fun adventure! 😀
Such a fun week and I love the setting sun, how can you not smile watching the sun shining through the clouds! I’m so thankful for all our family and friends!
Thank you for visiting my coffee share and I hope I brought you a smile or two as well. I am smiling and am so happy I could spend these days with my family. Since we were down in Huntington Beach we stopped by a dear friend who is my hubby’s best friend. My daughter hasn’t seen him in quite awhile and we were only 15 minutes from his place so it was fun to visit with him. My daughter had to get back home but am so thankful for the time we get to spend together. It will be my turn to drive and visit her soon as I haven’t seen in person her kitty that I am so excited to meet.
I have to thank Trent for hosting the Weekly Smile and Natalie who hosts the Weekend Coffee share! I so enjoy sharing and thank you so much for visiting. I hope you have a fabulous weekend and wonderful week ahead.
I have some freshly brewed coffee which I drink with a splash of Italian sweet cream. I also love Earl Grey tea and have some for you if you so desire. Can I get you a cup of either with a donut or muffin? I thought as we visit I would tell you all about my work and how I got involved in what I do for a living. I’ve been wanting to share and thought why not over a cup of coffee. So here goes nothing, as I’ll start with a little history.
Growing up I loved two things, horses and the medical field. I got my first horse when I was 10 years old and was with several English horse trainers and rode Hunter/Jumpers. When I graduated from high school I worked full-time for two different horse trainers grooming and showing year round. I thought I wanted a career in the horse industry but after 4 years of dedicating my life to horses I felt like I was missing something. I thought to myself, is this what I am going to do for the rest of my life? That’s when I decided I wanted more and thought I need to go to college. I wanted to be a nurse!
I decided to head to college and while talking to our equine veterinarian at my trainers he told me about a Veterinary Laboratory where he drops off his blood work for testing. I told my horse trainer (my boss) that I could not work full-time and go to college and so I needed to find a new job. He understood and had other grooms and other girls working for him so he continued as my horse trainer until I sold my horse. My show horse Chester my trainer convinced me to sell him which I did to a nice lady who was learning to ride. So he was retired and went to a good home. Before I left my trainer and started college I had bought a young show horse that my trainer wouldn’t let me ride! I couldn’t believe it and I was rather annoyed, so it made it much easier to head out in another direction and I sold that horse and stopped riding for awhile. I felt like it was the right decision at the time. New goals, right? I did miss the horses though…..
Can I get you a refill? or another muffin? I was able to contact the veterinary laboratory that the equine vet recommended and went for an interview and was hired on the spot! I started working there in 1982 and never looked back. It was cutting ground in the veterinary laboratory industry back then and we were using instruments that you use in the human laboratory. When I think back it is amazing how we use to do the testing compared to today. There were no computers – NONE! A lot of the testing was very old school, chloride testing by titration for example, (anyone remember chemistry in school?) a lot of manually testing that is now all 100% automated. I was hired into the Chemistry department. I was just starting college, and it was such a fun job and still is believe it or not! I Love my work!
To this day anyone can open a veterinary laboratory. There are vet hospitals and vets who have tried, and there are many smaller vet labs around that are growing but there are now two GIANT vet labs competing against each other and I worked at one and left to work at the other. The veterinary lab work is not regulated by the state. There is some federal regulations which would be for special tests that are not routine like rabies testing which I believe is done at Universities. The federal government also regulates an Equine test called Coggins which is for a highly contagious disease that the federal government has complete control over. You have to go to “Coggins” school in Iowa and be trained on how to perform this test. It tests EIA which stands for Equine Infectious Anemia which is transmitted by bloodsucking insects. Anyways, I’m going off on a tangent here and what I am trying to say is no one needs to be licensed or degreed to work in a veterinary laboratory. It is helpful but not a requirement!
It is all really complicated to explain how these huge giant chemistry analyzers work but they are completely amazing. These are used in human labs as well, all our instruments are used in both settings. I have been to training at the manufacturers on many occasions on generations of analyzers over my 40 years of working in the laboratory field. I didn’t take photos but there are two more instruments called Immulites that run endocrinology testing. I have many certifications of my training which gives me expertise in this field. I did attend college but did not get my degree. I ended up getting married and had my 3 beautiful children which are all wonderful grown adults. In the beginning, when I started at that vet lab, I just thought it a job to help me get through college. After 4 years at the vet lab I quit and went to work at a human lab which was a great experience. I was there for about 12 years and without making this too long of a story I quit to move and live in our local mountains and be a full time Mom. That only lasted one year and so we decided to move back to suburbia and I contacted friends back at the vet lab and became the supervisor of the Chemistry department. I actually love helping animals through my job and veterinary science has come a long way and is just as good as we get for ourselves! 😀
As the supervisor for 20 years I learned so very much. I realized that my job was really my career. Moving back to town and getting into this position really pushed me to learn and be a leader. I am very proud of my department and all I did for those 20 years but they were all working grave yard shift (night shift hours). Last year I decided to look for day shift employment. I knew being in management for the last 20 years that there were no viable jobs to stay with this company and so I looked elsewhere and landed a job working swing shift hours with almost the same rate of pay. I now take care of 4 instruments full-time, run blood work and prepare another 9 instruments for the night shift run. I just run quality control on those 9 instruments with a little bit of daily cleaning. It is all doable and I really enjoy this new job, with these great new hours! 😀
I hope this all isn’t too boring and sorry for the techy language which I didn’t want to over explain. If you have any questions, please ask as I’d love to share! I so appreciate you having coffee with me today. I’ll end with this photo!
It’s only fitting since I found my career because of my love of my horse. I know I am helping all those with furry friends as I run their blood work through the analyzers to see if their kidneys are working or if they have diabetes for example. There is so much more, but working in the medical field has been very rewarding. I hope you enjoyed and thank you Natalie for hosting our #weekendcoffeeshare!
Welcome to my weekly smile! 😀 I was sitting here thinking what makes me smile this week? I love to share but when you share weekly it seems like I just share the same thing over and over again. I know I change it up a bit when I can but a couple of thoughts have popped into my head for this week. I am hoping to write a separate blog post about the work that I do. How I got involved in Veterinary laboratory work is 100% because of the animals I own, I am such an animal LOVER! So my smile this week goes to all my animals! And Duchess in the photo I am sharing just took my seat!
I got up to start cooking my artichoke. I just love artichokes and cook it for about an hour and then enjoy it’s goodness and am having that for lunch today. I walked back from the kitchen and my seat has been taken, haha! I know all animal lovers can relate if you own a cat. I think cats own you, and own the house! I know I can easily move her but it isn’t the only seat in my family room, so I relocated. I have all my crafty stuff near her chair as I work on crochet projects. You can see my laptop as I am getting ready to write this post! She is super happy all curled up sleeping away!
I have written and shared a lot about my cats. They are sister’s even though they look nothing alike. Maybe they had different dads, but they came from the same litter. I adopted them from my son’s family as they had them as very tiny kittens. My daughter-in-law LOVES cats, especially kittens and would have a house full if she could. They added more kittens to the mix and they didn’t all get along as they grew into adults. They tried everything, and it was in their best interest if they came and lived with us and I am so Happy! They sure make me SMILE! 😀
I could have so many more pets. I actually live in an area where I could have chickens. They would be hen’s and we would have lots of eggs. I suppose they wouldn’t be exactly pets, but they would be more animals to take care of and to be honest I feel like the extra care would fall on my shoulders. I know I have heard they need very little care, but you can’t just ignore them, any extra care right now in my busy life is just not what I want right now! Haha, the thought of chickens just doesn’t interest me at all. Anyways, can’t think of a better segue as you all should know by now my last animal I own is my horse!
Thank you for visiting my smile post for this week. I’m smiling at the 5 animals we have that enrich our lives. They are funny, goofy, lovable and they bring so much to the world we live in. They help keep me sane and give me many, many smiles and fun days. I hope you all are having a great week! I have one more funny photo to share, because cats are just so silly! ❤
Have a happy week and weekend! If you would like to visit more smile posts click here! Thank you Trent for hosting!
Welcome to my post to my interpretation of Bright, for The Life of B ~ Becky’s challenge for the month of April. The theme is in my title and what fun to share what brings some light and smiles in this wonderful month. The word “Bright” brings so much to mind and for me I am sharing what I found the last few weeks that inspired me to share. This photo I thought was perfect to start as on my walk the sun was shining so brightly coming up over our local hills on this sunny morning. So amazing how brightly it can shine up and around the tree tops!
To continue on the sky theme as I rode on this fun cloudy day I just could not believe the silvery clouds with the sun shining so perfectly around them in the sky. This just brings sparkling cheerful thoughts of enjoying nature and all the beautiful field flowers that will soak up the suns rays that push through the clouds. I just felt this was a glorious sight, look at that colorful yellow hue, it’s brilliant!
I know, I know don’t use cell phone while driving. But I promise there wasn’t any cars anywhere near me only that one in front of me and I couldn’t help it, look at that beautiful sun setting! I even had a buggy windshield, it was worth the shot. I love how it glows above the mountain so magnificently! This just makes me smile brightly! 😀
When I pulled into the driveway from my long drive home and after watching the setting sun I couldn’t believe it was a full moon. I had to try and take a photo! I thought this isn’t too bad considering I only have a cell phone for my photo taking. I feel as full as the moon after spending a weekend with my grandchildren. I hope you enjoyed my Bright, joyous, fun post full of what I interpret as Bright for this week. I plan on sharing weekly for the month of April. Becky’s wonderful challenge is so FUN and you can join daily, weekly or when ever you get the chance. You can find her here!
Welcome to my weekend coffee share! The weather has been so wonderful we can sit outside on my porch and admire my roses that are blooming. Oh how I love Spring! Can I get you some coffee or tea? I think for those who celebrate I need to say Happy Easter. I do not have any little ones around for all that usually goes with the festivities and this is the first Easter Sunday in maybe 15 years that I am not working. I am planning on riding at the stables in the morning and then I need to figure out dinner. I did not plan at all for Easter Sunday, but I will go to the store and put something together. What do you usually do for Easter dinner? Any traditions? I use to always have a ham or turkey dinner of some sort. I’m hoping to have something nice and delicious.
I have been wanting to stay positive as there is always life that pulls us this way and that. There is a sweet friend at the stables that has gone through surgery for cancer and is now going through Chemo therapy. She said the surgery went well and they believe she will be cancer free after the Chemo is completed. She is such a strong woman, horse woman are amazing as she is coming to the stables on the weekends through this tending to her horse and I think having her horse is therapy and is helping her get through it all. She had hired someone to care for her horse during the week, but this person wasn’t showing up and so she asked me if I could help her and so she is paying me to ride her horse twice a week. I figure since I just have Chloe now, it would be my pleasure to help her. I know there are others that have lost loved ones and so I try and share happy fun things, and hopefully can help people smile. Even if it’s just for a little bit, life is tough and rough but can be joyous and fun too! I feel like I am not explaining myself very well, but hopefully ya’ll get my meaning!
I have to tell you the funny part of my good friend here at the stables, her name is Bonnie and that is my sister’s name! And even more interesting is guess what this horses name is? YES! it is Chloe! Hahaha, so there are 2 Chloe’s at the stables and now I ride both of them. My Chloe lives 2 barn stalls down from this Chloe pictured above! I am also taking care of another horse at the stables to help another friend and that horses name is Ava. So I am taking care of all girls, or mares! Let’s go girls! Haha, too cute!
I have to make sure I have the horses name next to the name Bonnie in my cell phone so I don’t text the wrong Bonnie. I actually have already done this as there was another Bonnie at our barn but she moved her horse, she is still my friend. So I have 3 Bonnie’s in my phone – popular name I think! I think Chloe is a popular name too. This mare named Chloe is very well trained and super sweet. Her owner wants her to get out on the trails and we have gone out and she is very good. I will ride her with a buddy for awhile because our trails can be scary since they are city trails. Our trails are not country trails so it takes time for the horses to get use to everything going on outside of the barn. She is easy to ride and fun in the arena. This last week I also rode my horse on the trails with my best friend.
We are really warming up here as we hit 85F (29C) today. We will be in the 80’s all this next week and so I will relish this before the summer heat arrives. I have been enjoying riding the trails and am very thankful my horse will go out by herself. She is very brave, steady and a great mount traveling around the blocks knowing every turn. I call them Chloe trail rides because she will sometimes make a turn left or right ~ to her liking! She’s so smart!
Here is a short video I wanted to share of her munching away on some grass after I had her turned out. She absolutely loves the grass, they all do. She gets plenty of food and always has some hay to eat in her stall all day long. The fresh growing grass is such a treat and I don’t let her eat too much, but it is a delight to let her graze. I hope you enjoy! ❤
I Love the stables here where I board and keep Chloe. The horses are well taken care of and the facilities and people are amazing. There are like minded ladies and men (only one man here owning and riding his horse), he is outnumbered with all of us horse crazy ladies! He is such a gentleman and helps us ladies with moving that DG dirt into stalls and other chores if needed. We have a great group and I am truly thankful for all our pony friends. We all look out for each other! 😀
I wish everyone a great Easter weekend and (maybe) you’ll be able to enjoy the time with family. I know there are many areas that this is not possible and my heart goes out to you all. I know I have been able to get in some cherished family time which makes my heart full. I am sure everyone will be safe and I hope for smiles and good times. I enjoy sharing and I will include a link here if you would like to visit other coffee shares. I will thank Natalie for hosting, she is doing an awesome job and its so wonderful to read and meet up with others.