Blog Archive

Thursday, November 25, 2010

A day in the life

As you may already know from the video I had previously posted, Maria loves Cinderella and anything princess oriented.  One afternoon I came home to find this scene....

princess trip

Supposedly she was a sleeping princess waiting for her prince (Scott) to come and kiss her so she would awake from her slumber. Scott and Ginger had piled the books on her to see if she'd move... she didn't.

She laid there for quite awhile and Scott and I thought she was bound to fall asleep for an afternoon nap.  Then she filled us in on her plan.

"I'm waiting for the prince to come and kiss me" she said.

Oooohhh... well alrighty then.


Pretty cute and quite the imagination!

This past week I took Maria to Great Clips for a long overdue haircut.

haircut dip

I was sceptical about going there, but Jenny did a great job and Maria sat there like an angel.  Not one peep.


Having her hair short really makes everyone's life a lot easier.  No more pulling out barrettes... or hair for that matter.


She really seems to like it short too.  Now I need to figure out what to do with Ginger's hair... bangs or no bangs??


Scott has started work and seems to like it there.  He's found a co-worker who enjoys biking and invited him to go on a night ride. It's nice to know he's making friends... now I just need to find a good knitting circle where I can learn and meet new people.

With Scott being gone 12-14 hours a day, life around here can get a bit chaotic.  However, I seem to have settled into a routine which requires me getting up at 7:00 am... something that is not easy for me.  Generally the girls play all morning until Ginger's morning nap, where lately Maria's been napping too.  During these quiet moments, I take out my latest knitting project and attempt to collect my thoughts.  I enjoy the quiet very much. :)

the girls2-0581

Surprisingly the days go by quickly and before I know it, it's time to make dinner and put the kids to bed.  I'm also beginning to think that things run a bit smoother around here WITH Scott gone all day.  I suppose it could be that there's no conflicting ideas of who's boss.

I've been experienting with some new recipes which is always fun. A butternut squash meatloaf, which needs a few tweaks, and a broccoli and goat cheese gallette, which I enjoyed more than anyone else, will be sure to grace our table once again.

the girls-0585

Today is Thanksgiving and we'll be spending it here at the campground.  We'll be attending a potluck in the KOA recreation room and we're told that there will be turkey, potaoes, stuffing, and pie.  I'll be making some bars this afternoon to bring to the occasion.  I have no plans of braving the crowds tomorrow for a day of shopping, but I do plan on purchasing a paper to take a peek at the ads.

We have lots to be thankful for and we try to take nothing for granted.  I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday and be sure to eat LOTS of turkey.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Maria... our wonder child

If you've been following this blog, you may remember me mentioning that Maria surprised us one night with a new "special talent".  Well, after many attempts of capturing it on my phone, I was finally able to produce a "keeper" and it took me all morning to figure out how to edit it in imovie.

Due note that she's only 3½ and doesn't really know how to read. This is her favorite book and has been requesting it every night for the past few months. She has "read" us the whole thing but refuses to do it in front of the camera... hence the small break in the middle.


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Keeping the girls occupied

I'm sure many of you mothers out there now how hectic the day can get around dinner time.  The kids are hungry, you're hungry, the hubbs is coming home... most likely hungry, everyone is tired, the kids are whining, and you are anxiously awaiting bedtime.

This is my least favorite part of the day, and it has become 10 times worse being in such a confined space.  The other night upon our return from the antique fair, I put in Alice In Wonderland to keep the girls occupied and out of my hair while I made dinner.


Normally Ginger doesn't sit still long enough to watch more than a few minutes of a movie, but since she was feverish, zoning out on a movie seemed to be just what she needed.


Maria likes movies and would watch them all day if I let her...


so normally we save them for emergencies... like dinner time.


I loved that they were willing to share the chair and sit there like such big girls.  No pushing, shoving, whining, or crying.


But by the time dinner was ready, Ginger was ready for bed.  Poor thing.  I hate when the kids aren't feeling well.


Ginger's fever has broken and she slept away the majority of yesterday afternoon.  Today she seemed to be acting more like herself, so I was making plans to take the girls to the mall after lunch.  That is until I discovered a spreading rash on her belly and neck.  Perhaps it's the end of the virus and nothing too serious.

I guess one more day inside won't be so bad. 

Monday, November 15, 2010

Our eventful Sunday afternoon

After returning from our Lake Tahoe adventure, Ginger unfortunately came down with illness.  We weren't sure what exactly, but she's had a fever for the last few days and a bit of a stuffy nose.  One thing is for sure, she hasn't been herself.

Sunday morning she woke up with no fever and was be-boppin' around here as if she felt like a million bucks, so we decided to venture out for the Sunday farmer's market and the monthly antique fair.

Our first stop was the market.  Bustling with people hoping to bring home the freshest produce and the freshest meats, we dove right in coming home with armfuls of bountiful goodness.  Squash, beets, apples, pluots, grapes, cherry tomatoes, and many more including persimmons.  I was a bit skeptical having never tasted them before, but after trying a sample I quickly realized they were delicious! Crisp like an apple, but with a depth and sweetness much like a mango.

It was a large market with many vendors to choose from.  Fresh fish at great prices, free range chicken, mountains of fruits and vegetables, and different varieties of plants, including our favorite... sedum.


The prices were the best part.  Less expensive than shopping at your local grocery store and walking away knowing where everything came from leaves you peace of mind.  We ended up coming home with much more than we could carry and only spent $17.


We would've liked to have picked up some fresh salmon for last night's dinner, but since we were heading to the antique fair afterwards, we decided to save that for next week.

Flea markets and antique fairs were something I was looking forward to experiencing once we moved out west.  Duluth, as far as I know, has never had a flea market and I believe the closest one was over an hour away. Antiquing has always been something I enjoy and to get the chance to go to Sac's monthly antique fair was such a treat.

Browsing through all the treasures and daydreaming about where I'd put this and that was a lot of fun.  Too bad we don't have more room in the trailer.  Even Scott enjoyed himself!

There were lots of old bottles...



there were beautiful displays with old crates, tables, and chairs.  There were filing cabinets, an amazing metal card catalog, chests and trunks, and the coolest large set of school gym lockers.

Mason jars full of buttons and bells...


and one booth in particular that specialized in vintage buttons.  It was total eye candy!


...vintage dolls and doll houses, rocking horses, and many trucks, tractors, and airplanes.




and silverware with beautiful patina



It was a jolly good time and we came home with 2 pairs of used saltwater sandals for the girls, and a lovely set of milk glass salt and pepper shakers with red and green sailboats on the front.  Cute!

By the end of the long afternoon, the girls were tuckered out and we were ready to go home and cook up some of our fresh veggies for supper.


Unfortunately, Ginger's fever came back and more recuperation was in order.  I do hope she gets better soon and that nobody else contracts this icky bug.

I'm still trying to convince Maria to let me video tape her doing her new "talent".  It's quite cute and I just may have to bribe her with candy. :)

More soon!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Old Town, downtown, and everywhere in between

There tends to be a trend here where everyone calls Sacramento "Sac".  Upon hearing this popular nickname, Scott and I laughed.  What do YOU think of when YOU hear the word?!  My point exactly.  Anyways, we've have since come accustomed to it and been using the abbreviation... of course with smiles on our faces.

We decided to load up the kids in the Burley, hop on our bikes, and ride the 4 or 5 miles into downtown "Sac". :) We intended on grabbing a cup of coffee once we got there and turning right back around.  I decided to have tea... hibiscus-lemongrass to be exact.  It was delish, but could've used a bit of honey to balance the tartness of the lemon.  It came with my own teapot and strainer too, which made it that much more enjoyable.

break for tea

We've also taken note that many areas of "Sac" are a wee bit "ghetto".  Okay, a lot ghetto.  Mind you, there are pockets of neighborhoods here and there with cute stucco houses and nice landscaping, but overall.... it's ghetto.  Perhaps this is what most capitol cities are like, I wouldn't know.  But, if you're planning on moving here, you're best off living in one of the many suburbs like Roseville which also has a great shopping area.

"Sac" does have it's perks though.  Old Town is full of history with cobblestone roads and old buildings filled with shops and cafes.  You can also walk along the path next to the river and soak in all the cool boats.

old town

We have yet to eat out anywhere.  However, my friend and I ate at Tapa The World last week and thought it was pretty good. There's a lot of great sounding restaurants that we can't wait to try once Scott starts working again.  The Tower Cafe is supposed to have the best french toast... I guess I'll be the judge of that.  We might even go to a REAL sushi bar!  We had a few back home, but I'm sure the fish is much fresher being this close to the ocean.  I don't even know if I like sushi!

I'm getting to know my way around town a bit better too.  I got my first haircut today and I didn't get lost!

Scott passed his ACLS test and did the last phase of his physical today.  We'll be heading out for Lake Tahoe tomorrow morning to see some friends.  It'll be kind of nice to stay at a hotel with a real bed and spend some time in the pool and hot tub.  I know the kids will really enjoy it too.

Speaking of kids... I want to share some pictures of the girls.  Well, mostly Ginger.  The weather has been pretty warm here and because she has a tendancy to overheat like her father, I decided to style her hair in pig tails for the first time. She has so much more hair at this age than Maria did and seeing her with them made me giggle.  She's also taken a liking to playing with my phone.  She's figured out how to pull out the keypad and she pushes the buttons as if she's text messaging her grandma.  So cute!

the conversation

piggy tails


Maria has also surprised us with something she's learned as well. I'm planning on catching it on video for you all to see.  You'll be just as shocked as we were :)

**I just want to say thanks to all of you out there that have been reading and commenting here as well as on facebook.  It's great to read all your feedback and warm wishes**

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Sacramento at last

Well, here we are... Sacramento.  To be honest, I'm not even sure when we arrived, but it feels as though we've already been here a week.  We're staying at another KOA campground in West Sacramento, which turned out to be the nicest one in the area.  There's a pool, game room, free cable, and nice showers WITH a bathmat to step on.  Something I've come to appreciate while being on the road.

We've already done a bit of exploring, but haven't taken many pictures... yet.  Scott seems to have acquainted himself with the freeways and city streets, while I on the other hand, have only driven into downtown once and came right back home.  Realizing the truck won't fit into any parking ramps, and with few small parking spaces, I found myself frustrated.  I need more practice or maybe I just need to learn how to get to the Arden Fair Mall.  One store that is only a mile or two away though is IKEA.

love IKEA

We made our first trip there a few days ago and had ourselves a $1 ice cream cone when we were finished shopping.  It was actually really good and the cone was crunchy and fresh, not stale and chewy.

Scott's been busy studying in the evenings for an ACLS class that is this weekend. I have all the confidence in the world that he'll pass with flying colors.

The girls have been on bike rides to several parks around the city and have also explored the grounds in which we live.  They've discovered a bench over by the pond that is home to different creatures including a snake and a lizard.  Pretty cool.  The weather here has been gorgeous!!  Since we've arrived, it's been sunny and in the mid to upper 70's.  We have our pants rolled up and we're wearing our flip flops.  Scott even took a dip in the pool last night!  Neither of us miss the colder, wet weather they've been having back home.  However, the increase in spiders around here really freaks me out.  I just killed another HUGE one (that makes 4 today) on the wall just above where I sleep.  YUCK!!  I don't know how they're getting in here! 

I met and had lunch with another online friend yesterday.  She's less than two hours away which means frequent road trips are inevitable. 

Today Scott, the girls and I drove to a wonderful park in East Sacramento.  The playground there was much like the old Playfront Park back home with it's wooden castle-like apparatus.  There was also a pond with fountains, turtles, ducks, and geese.

H street

There's also a nice community center with a large outdoor pool.  Much bigger than the one here at the campground.  It center also houses a library and offers different classes that you can take.

orange & white chevron

The only major problem that we've run into since being here, is a red ant invasion back in the girls' room.  A few days ago, Maria began whining off and on throughout the day about being itchy.  I blew it off because there were no bite marks on her skin and also because she will find any excuse to complain.  Yesterday morning I noticed some ants on the kitchen floor and a few more in the bedroom.  Today they've quadrupled in numbers and are all around Maria's bed.  I thought for sure they were coming from the trailer trunk, but come to find out they've found a way in around the outdoor electrical outlet.  Scott set out some traps and also sprayed some ant killer at the base of the problem hoping they'll bring it back to the nest.  Tonight Maria is sleeping by me on the floor and Scott is sleeping in her bed.  He seems to think that little red ants crawling all around his head won't be bothersome.  I'm still unsure if the itching is still just in her head or if it's real, but lets hope this problem gets resolved and the "itching" goes away.

Otherwise, things have been good.  I believe we're planning a trip to Lake Tahoe next Thursday to visit some of Scott's friends.  I've never been there and I hear it's beautiful!  We're considering renting a room at one of the casinos up there.  Here's to hoping there's no bedbugs!!

I leave you tonight with a picture of tonight's sky... it's just like a watercolor painting, isn't it?


More soon!!

Monday, November 1, 2010

San Fransisco... the coolest city on earth!

Wow!  San Fransisco... what an awesome city!


Not only do they have the beautiful Golden Gate Bridge, but they also have several awesome and fun sites to see.  So many that it's impossible to see them all in one day... as we found out.

Coming over the bridge was incredible!  Scott and I both found ourselves gawking at the humongous structure.  Maria thought it was pretty cool too.

We paid the toll to enter the city and quickly realized that a large truck with a 34 ft. trailer attached is no way to tour this city.  We missed our exit right off the bridge and found ourselves in the middle of busy and extremely tight intersection.  We got out of there as quick as we could.


We headed to a southern suburb where we stayed at a campground right on the ocean.  It was quite nice and we chose to run to the local market and make some dinner rather than head into the big city.  That would be left for the next morning, where we got an early start and made the most out of our busy day.

Our first stop was of course, the Golden Gate Bridge.  We walked around, took some pictures, and then decided to drive into the city.


We just happened to be on the right route to drive down the crookedest street in the world... Lombard St.  This isn't a very good picture of it, but it quite crooked and steep!

We were also able to take in all the beautiful row houses and architecture.  Each of the houses had beautifully trimmed hedges and gorgeous flowering bushes.  Some homes were brightly painted, others had awesome gated entry ways, and most had iron balconies.  This city was definitely turning out to be MORE than I had expected.


After Lombard St., we parked the truck down by the pier and headed out on foot.  We came to Pier 39 which was lined with tourist shops and restaurants.  There were fishing boats, sail boats, and seals!

the boats


Right in the middle of the pier was a carousel, in which Maria got to ride.  She chose the dolphin. :)

Pier 39

There was also a candy shop with barrels and barrels of candy and saltwater taffy.  Quite appropriate for being by the sea.


Maria caught eye of the candy cigarettes.  Something which took me by surprise considering the negative views on smoking these days.  However, it sure did take me back to my childhood.  I used to go to the gas station down the street from my house and buy these.  I'm sure I felt pretty cool with one of these in my mouth. Maria walked away empty handed.

candy cigs-0378

The seals were fun to see too! I didn't expect to see them around the corner just sitting there like sardines.


I think Maria could've stayed and watched them all day.

watching seals

Further down the street was Fisherman's Wharf.  We actually didn't spend much time here because we had so much other stuff we wanted to get to that day.  It was bustling with tourists as well as...

Fisherman's Wharf

street musicians!  


This steel drum quartet made me feel like I was in the Caribbean.

crab station

We decided to take the old cable car up to Chinatown.  Little Ginger was hanging onto the pole like a pro.


It was fun to do and we're glad we had it on our to do list.


Chinatown was amazingly beautiful.  The main street was decorated with lanterns and flags, and the shop windows were so bright and cheerful.




I wish we would've had more time to spend here to grab a bite to eat.  I'm sure the Chinese cuisine is pretty impressive.



We met up with a friend of Scott's who lives in the city at The Irish Bank.  It's a bar and restaurant close to Chinatown.  We grabbed a Starbucks and headed to catch the F train back to our vehicle.  We wanted to see the Mission district before dark.  Unfortunately, we didn't know exactly where we were going and it was getting late.  The Mission is supposedly filled with many large, beautiful  murals.  We'll have to check them out the next time we visit... which I'm sure won't be too far off.

I bought a pair of John Fluevog boots, which I'm really excited about and then we were off, back to the campground.  On our way though, we happened to be driving past Twin Peaks.  We took the windy road up the hill to discover this beautiful site.

twin peaks-0414

We're so glad we were able to see San Fransisco at night.  It's wonderful how things just work out like that.

Overall it was a wonderful trip to the city by the bay.

Can't wait to go back!