Archive for April, 2013

Planter Box Update

April 14, 2013

The planter box that my dad and I made a few Thanksgivings ago moved with us to CA and this spring it is finally getting some use! At first I couldn’t decide what to plant in it (flowers, herbs, lettuces??) and during a bout of homesickness I decided that I wanted bluebonnets, Texas bluebonnets. The thought of going an entire spring without seeing or smelling a bluebonnet just made me want to cry. Unfortunately bluebonnets are not quick growers and I would have had to seed them back in the fall in order to see some spring flowers so my dad graciously dug up a few plants from their property and shipped them to me.

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We both had no idea how well they would ship much less take to new soil, new weather and a new state but we gave it a go. I transplanted the bluebonnets and a couple of red poppies into the planter containers and kept them inside for a couple of days because it was dropping down below freezing at night. But eventually they had to make their way outside and either live or die…and a few weeks later most of them were still alive! Once I spotted some new leaves growing I knew we were in the clear :)

Here’s how big they were towards the end of February, a few weeks after being transplanted. The poppies grew up pretty quickly but the bluebonnets took their time.

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And here they are now…

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The poppies are huge, bushy and quickly running out of room; I’ll have to re-pot them soon in order to keep them from suffocating each other. The bluebonnets have grown more slow and steady.

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I honestly thought I would see a poppy flower bud first but lo and behold the bluebonnets have beat them to it! Their timing is perfect too, we’re leaving tomorrow for a week long vacation to Mexico :( Luckily, this bloom below is the only one showing petals so hopefully they can hold off until we get back. I’m so happy that we’re going to have Texas bluebonnets in California!

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Bear Valley Ski Trip

April 12, 2013

When we moved to California last March we just barely missed out on skiing in Tahoe; the snow wasn’t great for the 2011-2012 season and by the time we were settled enough to make the trip, powder on the trails was nonexistent. Since then we have slowly gathered some ski gear, scoring a great deal on used boots at an REI garage sale, waiting for the right time to plan a trip.

Luckily for us, the small group that we’ve connected with has gone on a group ski trip the past couple of years and we were able to participate this time around! There were 18 of us total (including a few kids) and we all stayed together in a rented vacation home. A few of us skied, others did snow-shoeing or cross country skiing, and the kids enjoyed sledding and playing in the snow. We went to Bear Valley which is directly south of Lake Tahoe. I really liked the resort, it wasn’t crowded at all, the weather was sunny and the slopes varied from nicely groomed to shin-deep powder.

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This was the first time I’d been skiing since I went to Sienna in south Lake Tahoe when I interned in Sacramento back in 2008 and Mark hadn’t been in over 10 years. Skiing is just like riding a bike, though, it came right back to us after just a few runs.

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We couldn’t have asked for better weather, it was sunny and just over 40 degrees with a little wind. That’s my kind of skiing weather, I hate when temps are in the negative and it’s just miserable being outside.

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Mark after completing his first black run ever! We all went down one or two blacks just to prove to ourselves that we could do it, haha. We mostly stuck to the blues and allthough we only skied one day, we made the most of it and stayed until the lifts closed and our quads were cramping.

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The whole skiing gang: me, Mark, Brian and Brendon.

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Parents’ Weekend Visit

April 5, 2013

{I’ve gotten so behind on blogging lately and I have no excuse, except laziness. Does that count as a valid excuse? Eh, probably not…oh well!}

About a month ago my parents came to visit us for a few days and we had such a great time showing them around our new home. We knew that we wanted to take them to Monterey so on the morning of our first full day we headed out and didn’t stop until we hit the coast.

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We visited Lover’s Point Park, did some shopping and had lunch on Cannery Row, saw some sea otters and made our way down 17 Mile Drive, stopping at Pebble Beach along the way.

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The next morning we went into the city and since it was a nice, clear day we drove up to the top of Twin Peaks for a breathtaking view of all of San Francisco.

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From the peak we could see the Golden Gate Bridge, the Transamerica Pyramid, Coit Tower, the Bay Bridge and the other bridges in south bay.

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Then we drove north through the city towards Fisherman’s Wharf pointing out Union Square, Chinatown and Lombard street along the way. We parked at Pier 39 and walked down to Ghirardeli Square, making sure to pop into our favorite sourdough bakery too!

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We indulged in a little ice cream at Ghirardeli but were soon hungry again from all the walking so we made our way back to the pier to have a fresh crab lunch.

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The sea lions were fun to watch for a bit. They were laying out on the docks warming themselves on the beautiful, sunny day.

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To show my parents some more of the greater bay area we took the long route home; we left the city going north over the Golden Gate passing through Sausalito to San Rafael, took the Richmond bridge back over the bay then drove through Berkeley and Oakland before hitting 24 to take us to Walnut Creek then home to San Ramon.

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It was a fun visit and I’m sure we wore my parents out but we just couldn’t resist showing them some of the awesome places to go and see in California!

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