Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Summer Happenings

Time flies, right? This summer has gone by in a blur, and here I am preparing for my daughter to start first grade in a few weeks. I am kind of dreading the craziness that is about to ensue, and kind of looking forward to getting back into a routine. Anyhow, the memories of this summer should get us through (I hope) the rest of the school year till next summer rolls around.

We spent another summer in Mammoth Lakes and Yosemite, and let me say that despite spending the last four summers there, we have filled these trips with new adventures and hikes and sight-seeing every single time! I am amazed how much there is to do up there! We visited a couple fish hatcheries, a new beautiful lake called Convict Lake, ate fried pickle chips in Lee Vining, and hiked over five and half miles on a trail in Yosemite. And would you believe that these kids of mine did a spectacular job on said hike! What troopers :) So, I will definitely be following up with a photo post from this trip.

Besides vacation, this summer has been packed full of all the regular stuff, late nights, hanging out eating shaved ice and other fun treats, and keeping the schedules full of activities. Also preparing for a large bit of work to be done on our home, which should be absolutely insane for awhile, but awesome when it is done.

I guess that's all for now, so here is a picture of me leaving! Ha! :) Till next time.....

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Good Read...Run, Don't Walk to the Bookstore!

My very lovely father-in-law graciously hands me over books he has read every so often. I try to get to them when I can, but when you're running around a lot, those books can end up collecting dust on the shelf.

I finally picked up A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving, and holy cow! I loved this book. Faith, friendship, politics, loss. This book had it all. About 10 pages before the end I let out a gasp when all of the webs that were weaved fell into place. Unbelievable! This book was released in 1989, so although I'm sure many have had the good fortune to read this book, I thought I would write this post with the recommendation for those of you haven't, to do so. This post is dedicated to you Owen!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Jewelry Board!

I have spent many, many years with a tangled mess of necklaces and bracelets in boxes around my room and in my bathroom. If I really wanted to wear something, I'd work on the ball of jewelry for about 20 minutes before my brain would snap and I'd have to hand it off to my ever patient husband. And I'd always feel bad after he would meticulously unwind said jewelry and set it out for me nicely, that I would have to put them back into the boxes where I knew that with time they would be back in a twisted heap. (Sorry dear).

After seeing tons of blog posts with all kinds of handy jewelry boards, I decided to try one out. Now I thought of buying a jewelry tree too, but I needed more room, and I wanted to put something together and feel at least mildly crafty :)

I went to Joann's, and with all my coupons in hand, spent about $12! Not too shabby!

My supplies
I would have loved to add trim or other fancy details to the board, but I was a little overwhelmed with choices. And to be honest, it was so easy to just let my jewelry be the decoration and it looked good!

My jewelry.

And here it is set up on my dresser. I just leaned it right against the wall! Easy peasy like my daughter would say ;)


It has been over a month since I put it together, and I am happy to say that I am using it wisely! I can see all my favorite pieces of jewelry easy. I can pop my stud earrings right into the cork board which is perfect, and it is so easy to hang up the jewelry when you get home that there is no excuse to not put it back.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

I Cleaned Up My Bike!

Well I've finally come out of the blogging slump...like 6 months or so later. I know, I know...that's pretty bad. I just felt a little, well, not in the mood to log-on and write . I have had SO many major changes in my little world going on, that I was on a one-way mission to plow ahead, and writing and sharing wasn't on the agenda.

I wouldn't have guessed that the big post would be about bike rust. Yah, you heard right...bike rust.
The hubby and I purchased cruising bikes at Costco a couple years ago, and I am totally
embarrassed to say that I only rode it twice around the neighborhood. Ridiculous! I am ashamed. And it gets worse because I just left those bikes on my (covered) patio, and wouldn't you know it, those puppies began to rust in the salty coastal air. (Hands covering my face).

When my sweet friend asked us to ride bikes this week down by the beach, I knew I'd better get my act together. And after a little Google searching, I found the answer.

TIN FOIL and WATER!

Seriously, that's its. How many of you out there have heard of this, because everyone I asked was shocked.

I just ripped some tinfoil and dripped water all over it and started rubbing across the rusted metal handlebars and it was coming off within a couple minutes! Crazy!

I had to share because it was too easy, and maybe it will be of assistance to one of you out there in the blog world.

Here is some really awesome (obviously kidding with the awesome comment) photos I snapped with my phone before and after the tinfoil and water scrub.

Before
And wait for it....
After!
Honestly, this wasn't even me giving it my best effort, so later this week I am going to give it another go to clean up all the little leftover bits. But, pretty good, huh? And guess what else??? I am going to go bike riding again this weekend. My bike will no longer be completely neglected. Yay! As for my blog, let's hope the neglecting isn't too bad either.

Who would have thought my comeback post would be about rust!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Confessions

1.  I ate three bowls of cereal as "snacks" yesterday.....only one of those bowls was of the healthy variety.

2.  I am too excited for the True Blood season finale tonight. One of the main characters is supposed to get the boot, who will it be? (Please don't let it be Eric, please don't let it be Eric!!)

3. We are less than three weeks from my daughter starting kindergarten, and I can't stop replaying all the big moments we've been through since she was born. I am feeling kind of sad. Where has the time gone.

4. I should already be almost done planning my daughter's birthday party for next month, but I am not close. She really threw me for a loop when she told me she wanted the theme to be half Barbie and half Ninja Turtles....do you have any idea how hard it is to mix those two?? Any idea or suggestions would be appreciated :)

5. I absolutely love fall! I'd say it is my favorite season of the year, and I am so excited it's just around the corner. But this summer has been strange, it never got unbearably hot, so I feel like summer never really happened here. It's like the seasons mixed. Crazy.

Alright, that's it for confessions.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Wine Tasting in Temecula

Well I have been officially trained in the art of wine tasting....ha! I guess it's more truthful if I just say I had my first official wine tasting class.

Expert I am not. But fun I did have.

My sweet friend J and her husband were celebrating their wedding anniversary in Temecula wine country, more specifically at the South Coast Winery and Resort, and since my husband and I hadn't spent a whole day away together since our children were born we decided to join them for a double date!

We left around 900 in the morning and didn't get back to 1100 at night!!! It felt crazy being gone the whole day...I missed my babies.

But it was spectacular. Typically the temperatures in Temecula in the summer can be stifling, and I am saying 90s to 100 easily, but the heavens were smiling down on us. Instead we had temps in the low 80s with small episodes of sprinkles. It was CRAZY!!!

Now I have said it before and I'll say it again. I am a light-weight when it comes to drinking alcohol. Like, I don't drink it almost at all. And my husband drinks even less. So, my first mistake of the day was not eating a large enough breakfast. (I guess two deviled eggs was a bad idea). And since we arrived at the first winery, Danza del Sol,  at a little after 1100, I was already feeling hungry. Three tastes in...I was feeling like I really should have ate something....(this was a preview of the rest of the day). My husband reminded me that just because you are wine tasting doesn't mean you have to drink everything they give you, but it kind of seems like wasting your money right? Well I took his advice anyway.

Danza del Sol winery. I got to say this might have been my favorite wines of the day! I'll be back for sure.
We headed for lunch immediately after leaving Danza del Sol, and we got a recommendation from the locals to get some deli sandwiches next door, and my Cuban sandwich was delish!

We then headed over to Miramonte Winery for our scheduled wine tour and tasting. My friend got a great deal on Groupon and for about $65 a couple we had about 10 samplings I believe, with a sampling of sangria, a souvenir wine glass and a few hors d' oeuvres. (Did I spell that right?? I don't think I have ever written that word out in my life!! :)

Anyway, it was fun, it was great....but the gentleman was talking a looongg time, and I appreciate his attention to detail, but I was standing in one place too long, and at this point the sun had crept out so it was hot, and I was full of these wine tastings. Well, I looked at my husband and said "hold me, I am going to pass out." He is looking at me like I must be joking, and I am clearly not. I tell my friend I am dizzy and she laughs and they give me their car keys to sit in their car. My husband and I walk out of the tour like two crazy people, but I don't care, my face is cold, my vision is blurred and I want to sit somewhere...Anywhere!!!

I made it to the curb and just sat with my head between my legs for 5 minutes and I was all better. Um...no more standing in place for extended periods, and certainly no more wine tastings today. Lesson learned. Besides, I liked iced tea sooo much better :)

After the tour ended we headed down to Ponte Winery where we had dinner reservations at the Restaurant at Ponte. I was super excited to have a delicious meal and enjoy eating outdoors in the beautiful wine country setting. We meandered through the paths around the resort and made our way to dinner ever so slowly.


The paths at Ponte.
We loved looking at the grape vines and taking it all in.



We were able to be seated earlier than our reservation, and it was nice. The table was a little small for the four of us, but we will just call it intimate :)

They even had a guitar player serenading us.



I was between getting the vegetarian dish which was zucchini stuffed with cheese, or the scallops which were twice as expensive.  I wound up getting the scallops because it was a "special occasion". The scallops themselves were good, but the green beans were WAY too salty, and they had a purple cauliflower puree that I was really excited to try, but it was strange and slimy. I would definitely come back however, because I bet that zucchini would taste pretty good, and I enjoyed their cheese, honey and olive plate. And the server was very helpful. Here are some photos of our meal courtesy of my friend's great food photo app.

Scallops with green beans and purple cauliflower puree.
Pasta with shrimp. This looked really good too. My friend's husband made a good choice :)
My hubby's pizza. He said it was okay, but too cheesy for his liking.
After dinner we went into the hotel and down to the Lounge for dessert. We ordered Tiramisu and watched some talented guys playing guitar and singing some classic 90's music.


We had a great time, we love our friends and had so much fun being together for some adult time.

Friday, July 19, 2013

You're Never to Old to Learn a New Trick!

Yay me! I finally learned how to do a French braid!

For some reason unbeknownst to me, I believed French-braiding hair was some super skill that required some level of expertise I could never achieve.

Growing up my mom didn't know how to French braid and so I was a ponytail or simple braid kind of girl. I'd secretly envy other girls and their glamorous French braids....why oh why did it look so complicated when their fingers would swiftly and nimbly pull these pieces of hair into this elaborate braid.

And now I have a daughter with this long beautiful hair and I longed to sit with her and braid her hair.

Then it hit me....google search! Why hadn't I thought of it sooner. I look there to figure out how long to bake a potato. I search there to see the best way to get a stain out of an area rug. Let's be honest....I look there for pretty much any random question I have these days.

I searched, and it was there.

And it was easy!!!

Man I wish google search engine was there when I was little.

The fruits of my labor....

Not to bad for a first try, right? (BTW, she was laying around on it for a while and that's why it looks so fuzzy, I promise! :)


Ramblings of a Sleep-Deprived Mother

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