2015 Newsletter

2015 was a year filled sharing wonderful experiences with family and friends, near and far. We did a lot of travelling during the year, divided almost equally between vacations and participating in Aikido-related activities. Michael is still working at SHOP.COM – next year will be his 19th year with the company. Danielle’s Aikido school is growing again as it enters its 43rd year. Image above: cherry blossoms at Yakushido Shrine/Temple (Hiraoi), Japan.
Sadly we lost one ‘friend’ in January, Lucy, our beautiful Solomon Island Eclectus (above, right). Middle photo: a mother deer and her two fawn, just outside our front door. Above left: view from our deck, looking across Monterey Bay at dusk. Each day we are thankful for being able to live in such a beautiful place.
In February, we took advantage of a great cruise deal and travelled with our cruise-buddies, Stewart and Katie, on a 10 day Mexico cruise, round trip out of San Francisco. Our ports-of-call were Loreto, La Paz, Puerto Vallarta, and Cabo San Lucas. On “sea days” we would walk/jog outside on the promenade deck for about 45 minutes before going to breakfast. Then wind down for the rest of the day :-) We did bring our collapsible Jo (wooden staff) and, if we didn’t have a massage or nap scheduled, we would practice Aikido Jo kata in the outdoor basketball court on the top deck. Not all cruise lines still have ‘formal’ nights, but Princess still does which we really enjoy. La Paz was the only new destination for us. Our favorite stop (again) was Loreto, where we enjoyed folk musicians and dancers in the town square, had a wonderful couple’s massage, lunched on nachos and beer, and got in some souvenir/gift shopping.