Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Produce galore

My dad works with produce, so the last couple of weeks he has brought me boxes of delicious fruits and vegetables. The one thing I have noticed is how flavorful it is, and I am pretty sure it's because everything is organic. Normally I only buy organic bananas. I have to have organic bananas because they taste so much better than non-organic. Little did I know, so does everything else! The apples, oranges, tomatoes, zucchini, asparagus, you name it... Organic fruits and veggies have so much flavor. I am pretty surprised at the difference. I know eating organic is better for you, but it's not always the most reasonable to buy. For me, now tasting the big difference, and knowing how much better organic produce is for you, I will not hesitate to spend a few extra dollars next time I go shopping. Next time you go to the store, pick up one organic banana and one non-organic banana. Compare the two and let me know what you think. Is there a difference? Or am I just crazy?! :)

Friday, March 23, 2012

Window of love

One of my favorite views is from a window in our laundry room. Looking out of this window reminds me everyday how lucky I am. I love where we live, I love that it feels like I live on a mini farm and I love the pictures hanging from one side to the other. To me, it's picture perfect. 
Our mini farm is only missing a few things, farm animals! I would love to live on a farm with a lot of animals, even though I would need all the help I could get, because I wouldn't have a clue what to do except give them a perfect home.  I'm lucky enough to have the occasional  deer grazing on the grass around our house. I love when they come to eat.   I have tried to feed them carrots, I can get pretty close to them,  but they don't eat them. Maybe I'm confusing deer for reindeer?! Then of course we have raccoons and all of the neighborhood cats who visit daily.  The cats have me figured out, they know I'm an animal lover and if they are ever in the mood for a mid-afternoon snack, they are guaranteed to find food here. I leave cat food out for my two cats, but our large bag of food seems to go a lot faster since we have moved here. I'm glad I can feed the neighborhood. The more animals the better! 

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

CornerStone Sonoma

A good friend of mine told me about a place where you can wine taste, enjoy art, grab lunch and walk around the grounds. Nick and I went and checked it out this last weekend. The wine was great, the grounds were fascinating, and it's a perfect place for adults and kids. My friend and her 10 year old daughter met us there, we all enjoyed watching her daughter play and run off some energy. Nick and I only made it to one of the tasting rooms, so we are looking forward to going back to enjoy more art and taste the wine we didn't get to try.

running through the windmills 

Yarn balls

One of my favorites. They twinkled in the sun, so pretty! 

Tired panda 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Garden of kale

A couple months ago I planted five kale plants in my yard (this is the only vegetable I have planted so far).  I cannot believe how much they have grown, they are beautiful!  It's amazing how kale can  tolerate hot and cold temperatures.  This is the perfect vegetable for me to grow, it's low maintenance, one plant provides so many leaves  and it hasn't died on me.
 I love kale, not only is it good for you but it tastes good too. Since my kale has been such a success, I am looking forward to planting more vegetables. How perfect and convenient to walk right outside your front door and hand pick your dinner, I can't wait!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Rainy day necessities

I love being home on a rainy day. It's never fun to be out driving in traffic or walking to and from your car dealing with a wet umbrella. My perfect rainy day (like today), is leaving work early, and being home! Nothing is better than being home when it's wet outside...
We all know that when you go outside in the rain you make sure you have at least one of the following, rain boots, an umbrella, a rain coat,  a poncho, or yellow rain pants (you can never be too prepared).
 Well,  same goes for being inside when you're  home getting comfy and cozy.  I make sure to have my favorite socks on, my softest blanket around me, a good book to keep me company, many cups of tea, a fire, and of course Annie. 
There you have it.  Try out my perfect rainy day recipe, and see for yourself why I love being home on a rainy day. 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Lunch in the park with Grams

My Grandma and I wanted to enjoy one of the last days of sunshine before all the rain comes. We decided to grab sandwiches, our dogs and head to a local park to soak up some sun. I love hanging out with my Gma, she's the best and I am so lucky she only lives 5 minutes away form me. 
We had a great time at the park with the dogs, I look forward to our next picnic together! 

Friday, March 9, 2012

Happy 8 months!!

It's that time of month again! Nick and I have been married for a whole eight months. Yay! We are now on a four month countdown  until our one year. It really is crazy how fast time flies. Marriage is amazing and I am loving every minute of it. I know, I know...  it has only been eight months, but I am still loving it!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Take me out to the ball game

Pre-season is upon us and Nick and I can hardly wait to go to a Giants game. We love taking the ferry over to San Francisco because,  you don't have to deal with parking in the city, you can enjoy the views from the boat, you have the option to sit outside in the sun with the wind blowing against your face and enjoy a beer if you choose. It makes for a day of fun. Nick and I prefer sitting in the bleacher section, it's a perfect view, the tickets are always reasonably priced  and you sit pretty close to the field.  Day games are my favorite because they are usually warmer and after the game you have the rest of the day to explore SF.
Baseball season can't start soon enough, go Giants!!

Our visit to Cooperstown this last summer...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

A new rack

I love scarfs. I love them in every shape, size, texture and color. I hate to admit it but, I haven't given my scarfs the best life in the past.  Most of them were living in the bottom of my closet. Some getting stepped on if sticking out too much, others tucked away in a corner collecting dust and wrinkles as if they were aging,  and the rest of them not getting any attention from me due to other clothes overshadowing them. So, as of yesterday I have put my foot down, this is all coming to an end...
 My scarfs  have a new rack, a new home and a new place to shine. Not only is my new rack cute, it was very reasonable and you would never guess where I bought it... Big Lots! Yes, I am a bargain shopper so I shop at Big Lots here and there. My last visit I discovered the Jessica McClintock section. Who knew Big Lots sold Jessica McClintock? I didn't!  I wanted to buy everything, her line has so many cute things. I want to go back asap!
Although the online store doesn't show off her best items,  take a look here. You never know what you might find.
 Happy bargain hunting!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Baby proof

I have no idea what it would be like having a baby, but after sleepless nights getting up with Annie (my dog) I feel like she has prepared me and given me a  better idea of what motherhood might entail.  
Annie has slept in a crate since she was a puppy. She loves her crate. We have to lock her crate because she used to wake up in the middle of the night and have  'accidents' on our floor. 
Last night Annie was thirsty right before bedtime. Well, we know what that means... in about four hours she will probably need to wake up to go outside. And that she did, not once but four times last night. She scratches on her crate until I wake up to let her out. I let her out four times about every half hour. Once to go potty, the other three times I followed her as she walked around the house and finally plopped down in her bed in the living room. She can't stay in there because it's the middle of the night, so I picked her up and put her back in her crate. Like I said she did this three more times. She has never wanted out of her crate just because. Usually she has a reason, needs to go to the bathroom or needs water. 
I felt bad, poor baby girl. I think she is just restless. This morning when Nick's alarm went off she started crying right away to get out again. Nick was so sweet, he took her outside then brought her bed in from the living room that she was so persistent to lay on. Annie has been sleeping soundly all morning after our restless night. 
I love my sleep, I love a good 9-10 hours of sleep. I am such a grump when I have to wake up in the middle of the night. I really do not know how I am going to do it if and when Nick and I have kids. I'm going to cherish my sleep now as much as a can. 
A walk is definitely in store for the little girl today. I may have been a grump last night, but waking up to her little face in the morning makes my sleepless night worth it. 

Monday, March 5, 2012

Addicted to tea

Since my body is so sensitive to caffeine  (even decaf coffee) I have turned to tea. Herbal tea that is! I drink so much tea it's crazy. My tea routine is, chamomile in the morning on an empty stomach, peppermint tea after breakfast and before lunch, more chamomile after work, and a sweet flavored tea after dinner. I just can't get enough!
It slowly wakes my body up each morning (which I hear is good) it soothes my stomach after meals, and satisfies my sweet tooth after dinner.
If you are a coffee lover, try being a tea lover for just a day. You might be surprised how wonderful it makes you feel, especially on a cold day.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Envolve wine party

On Saturday Nick, my mom and I went to the Envolve wine club party to support our wine making friends, Danny Fay, Mike Benziger and Ben Flajnik. One of the winemakers is Nick's roommate from college, so for Nick it was a college reunion having seen a lot of old friends, and for my mom and I it was enjoying great wine (we love their pinot) delicious food, and making new friends. The event was held at a beautiful barn in Sonoma. The view of rolling vineyards was breathtaking. The sun set captured the vineyards and the barn at it's finest.
We had a great time and look forward to the next Envolve wine party.

Cal Poly roommates  
My mom, Capmbell, and Ben (The bachelor) 

Evolve Cabernet 

Tomato plant 

Mug shot "pretend like we are in jail" 

Rolling vineyards 

Enjoying sunshine 

Table centerpieces 

My one and only!

Join their wine club and attend the parties with us!
Check out their wine  club  here

Friday, March 2, 2012

Dinner with Martha Stewart

Okay, maybe not really Martha Stewart, but close! 
My sister in law, Gwen is so talented. She can make just about anything from crafts, jewelry, food, even delicious presentable deserts. My brother and his wife had my family over  for dinner this evening. They had a spinach salad, salmon, wild rice with mushrooms, and homemade bread (of course it was homemade). After dinner we indulged in desert. YUM! Two different tarts to choose from (of course I had to try both) one was a whip cream/mascarpone filling, and the other had a custard filling. And again it was homemade, even down to the crust.
Gwen makes all of us ladies look bad. She is so talented I can hardly stand it. My brother is one lucky guy! 

Salmon marinated (overnight)  in brown sugar and tamari sauce 

Custard fruit tart