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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

California Journeying: Family, Pantheacon, and the Ocean

I just returned this morning from a week-long trip to far-off California. (Well, it's far off from where I live in upstate NY, anyway.) It was a fabulous trip, starting with a visit with my parents, sister Becky, and nephew Stamo in San Diego...which very kindly decided to have a heatwave the couple of days I was there, thanks to the Santa Ana winds. On the two previous occasions I made this trip, it was about 65 degrees when I went out. Which is still pretty nice when you are coming from minus ten. This time, it was 81 even at the ocean. Quite a change from sub-zero temps and piles of snow. I wore shorts. *mind boggles*

Yes, the sky really was that color.
Yes, that handsome guy is my dad.


My fabulous parents. Sand. Shorts. Beach. In short, heaven.

Any guesses which one of these arms belongs to the woman from upstate NY? 

Now that's a good-looking family.
I hadn't seen my nephew in two and a half years. He got TALL.

We had a great time--two days in a row at the ocean (which is my idea of heaven), my mom's homemade lasagna and apple pie, and laughing hysterically over a game of Apples to Apples.

Then I got on yet another plane to San Jose, where I spent three and a half days attending Pantheacon, one of the largest Pagan conventions in the country. Which would be fabulous enough all by itself, but I also got to spend time with my beloved step-daughter Jenn, my incredible Llewellyn editor Elysia Gallo, and my insanely wonderful critique partner/all-around-great pal Lisa. Plus all sorts of cool Llewellyn authors and Pagan friends. Plus I got to finally meet the top dude at Llewellyn, Bill, who was a sweetie.

That's Bill on the left.

Me and my beloved editor Elysia

Posters on the wall of the Llewellyn suite. Gee, those two to the right look familiar.
A LOT of Llewellyn authors, our publicist Kat, and a few innocent bystanders

Me and the amazing Selena Fox (who put on a fab Brigid healing ritual earlier in the day that Lisa and I loved)

Me and the luminous Lisa, one of my favorite people, and also a great roomie
It was pretty tough to leave all that sun and warmth (and my kid) behind and come back to the chilly Northeast. Although of course, I was pretty darned happy to get back to my cats and my own bed.

Here is last Tuesday:
The view from the patio of the restaurant where we ate lunch
 And here was this Tuesday:

Icicles, anyone?
 Still, it was nice to get away for a bit from the snow and the cold, and at least I have pictures like this to look back on...

Llewellyn publisher Bill photo-bombing me, Elysia, and Kat
Did you miss me while I was gone? Maybe just a little?

Don't wander off too far, because tomorrow (Wednesday) I'm going to have a Big Big Announcement. No, really, I mean it. BIG. HUGE BIG.

In the meanwhile, I'm going to go to bed, because I have no idea what day it is or what time zone I'm in.

I hope you're all staying warm!


  1. Glad you had such a great time here in "Sun" Diego! <3

    Man, one of these days I'll make it up to Pantheacon. That sounds amazing!

  2. I am sorry to report that my icicles look like your icicles. If you don't have to replace your gutters every year maybe mine will be all right. I walked to work through a foot of snow on Monday and Tuesday, which is not a thing we usually do here in Kentucky, and was everlastingly grateful that I could do that and not have to drive. Also grateful I have today and tomorrow off, when the temperatures are going down well below zero. Glad you had time in the warm.
    Mary Anne in Kentucky

    1. Wow--snow in Kentucky! You have my sympathy. And it isn't the gutters you have to worry about so much as the ice being pushed up under the shingles and ruining your roof. Sigh.