breakfast, Brunch, coffee, Family, Food, photography, Travel, Uncategorized

Beachy vibes: San Clemente, California

  Greetings! It has been a while since my last post. Much has happened between then and now, including my parents-in-law moving to their 'new' home in San Clemente. It is a place our family frequented in past years, as the house belonged to the husband's grandmother. Nevertheless, the change is bittersweet. Our family has … Continue reading Beachy vibes: San Clemente, California

Family, Opinion, Organization, Uncategorized, writing

New Year’s Resolutions and/versus Goal Setting

I confess that I am indeed one of the millions of Americans who year after year make resolutions for the New Year.  If I am entirely honest, about half of the resolutions I make- those such as exercise more, give up caffeine, cut back on carbs, etc.- I make with the intention of not keeping… Continue reading New Year’s Resolutions and/versus Goal Setting

Hiking, Organization, Pets, Shopping, Travel, Uncategorized

Great Hikes: Be Prepared

Welcome back to my two-part series on hiking with dogs. Today the focus will be on how to prepare for a hike with your best pal. As with just about everything in life, there are some inherent risks in exploring the great outdoors.  Weather, unexpected terrain, wildlife (by which I typically mean insects, though we… Continue reading Great Hikes: Be Prepared

breakfast, Brunch, coffee, Food, Kids, Style, Travel, Uncategorized, wine and drink

Girls’ Weekend with my favorite ladies

Another weekend is come and gone, and this was one for the books. The boys in our family each left for the weekend one at a time, starting with the husband on Friday, the younger boy Saturday before dawn, and finally my high schooler in the early afternoon. I call it 'bachelorette weekend' whenever the… Continue reading Girls’ Weekend with my favorite ladies

Hobbies, Kids, Organization, School, Scrapbooking, Uncategorized

Our last picture day of elementary school, scrapbooks, and what to do with class photo pages

Today was Picture Day at the elementary school Sami attends. It was the last Picture Day that I will pay Lifetouch good money for, in anticipation of that envelope of three-by-fives and wallets to pass out to relatives out of state and overseas. Samantha is in fifth grade this year; next year she will be… Continue reading Our last picture day of elementary school, scrapbooks, and what to do with class photo pages

holidays, Travel, Uncategorized, writing

Tournament of Roses: a few more

It doesn’t happen too often, but there are breakdowns and other issues that happen on parade day. For that, there are towing companies at the ready just in case something goes wrong. At yesterday's 130th Tournament of Roses, there was indeed a malfunction toward the end of the parade. With two floats behind it, in… Continue reading Tournament of Roses: a few more

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holidays, Travel, Uncategorized, writing

California Traditions: the Tournament of Roses

Something I take for granted living in Southern California is how close  we are to many events. This morning was the 130th Tournament of Roses lovingly called the Rose Parade. The theme this year was The Melody of Life, in celebration of the music in our lives and was a beautiful and multicultural experience. There… Continue reading California Traditions: the Tournament of Roses

Family, holidays, Kids, Shopping, Style, Uncategorized

A Guide to Last Minute Gift Giving

If you’re where I am this year, then you’ve only got gifts for half the folks on your list, and are currently in a cold sweat dreading a trip to the local mall. Never fear, here are some gift ideas that avoid the mall. Though you still may get into a fight over a parking… Continue reading A Guide to Last Minute Gift Giving

Food, Shopping, Style, Travel, Uncategorized, wine, wine and drink

A Day in LeClaire

Our last day in Iowa was spent in the town of LeClaire, right on the banks of the Mighty Mississippi. What brought us there was the husband’s desire to check out Antique Archeology from History Channel’s “American Pickers.” We found so much more. We did indeed head to Antique Archeology, joining the many visitors at… Continue reading A Day in LeClaire

Family, Food, Travel, Uncategorized

Quad Cities Iowa and Illinois

As the kids get older more of our summer vacations are spent apart, having our own adventures, with us eventually coming together again. This summer I counted 18 days that we spent all together as a family between school letting out and starting again, with the majority of those being the week before school started.… Continue reading Quad Cities Iowa and Illinois