Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Snow

We decided Monday afternoon to take a trip up to Lake Tahoe to enjoy the snow.  The weather has cleared up tremendously here and it was expected to be in the high 50's low 60's in Tahoe.  We picked Simone up from school yesterday and made a quick stop at Sport Chalet to pick up a sled and some water proof gloves for me.  We had a very smooth trip up to Tahoe and made good time to Adventure Mountain.  Larry found the place online and it was only $15.00 to park and you could stay on the hills as long as you wanted.  They specifically groomed the hills for sledding, they had trails for cross country skiing, a really tiny snack bar, that was out of hot dogs, and most importantly they had bathrooms.  With a newly potty trained toddler, bathrooms in close proximity are key.  We got suited up in our snow gear in the parking lot and started walking up.  By the time we reached the sledding areas we realized we didn't need any of the layers we had just carefully donned.  Boy was it warm in the snow.  My jacket was quickly discarded and then the fleece, pretty soon we were all down to snow boots, ski pants and t-shirts.  It was perfect.  Simone cried her first time down the hill with Larry but soon she realized how much fun she could have just by collecting the snow on her yellow saucer.  I made a tiny little snow man, Simone made snow angels and had some pouting fits but overall she loved it.  We even managed to get a snowy family shot, thanks to the timer and the saucer which doubled as a shelf.  We hung out on the hills for about an hour, we all got tired pretty quickly, the snow was pretty deep in some areas and pulling your legs out of the snow and climbing the hills got pretty exhausting.  Plus were were starving...did I mention the snack bar ran out of hot dogs!  Oh and the group of people that thought it was really fun to have their 4 dogs run around off leash was really annoying.

We drove into South Lake had a quick bite at McDonald's, guess who picked that then it was close to check in time at Mont Blue so we went straight to the hotel.  We hung out for a bit, relaxed, took baths, etc.  We decided to walk over to Harrah's and Harvey's for a bit of fun in the arcade and Simone had a blast playing all the games.  She ended up with 229 tickets, thanks to Larry's 100 ticket jackpot on one game he played.  She chose a barrel of monkeys and a Jolly Rancher lolly pop.  Well maybe she was directed to them by I don't know, me.  She was very happy with her selections non-the-less.  We decided to eat at the buffet on top of Harrah's.  They had such a great view of the lake from up there.  Simone was pretty much done right in the middle of dinner and I was surprised she didn't fall asleep at the table.  Larry did a little gambling after we got back to the room and won, nothing.  We stayed back and watched some Dora on my phone and read a new book we got in the gift shop, Goodnight Lake.  I realized it wasn't about Tahoe but the great lakes so that was a bummer but it was cute anyway.

I realized the next morning why we got such a good deal on our hotel room, apparently when you only pay $59.00 per night, you don't get hot water.  Thanks Mont Blue, you kind of suck!

You can click on the photos to see them a bit larger...

Until next time Lake Tahoe...

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The new obsession...Pinterest

If you haven't seen this site yet, you need to check it out. 

It's new and its still in the BETA stages and if you want in you need an invite.  If you want one let me know I'll send you one.  They do have an option to request and invite but it's been about two weeks since I sent mine and I still haven't heard so I asked someone I follow on Twitter to send me one and she did.

The idea is you create insiration boards for whatever you want and when you see something you like on the web you can pin it to your boards with a widget you download to your web menu bar.  You can also pin photos from your computer if you want.  You can follow people like on facebook or twitter and see what they are pinning.  If you see something you like on someone else's boards you can re-pin to yours.  I pinned something yesterday that I thought was pretty random and already 3 people have commented and 7 people have re-pinned it.  By the way it was this...a magazing that is faily new that you can't subscribe to yet.  Something I need to hunt down.

If you want your creative juices to flow and marvel and the amazing photographs, food, fashion, crafts, interiors, art, etc. this is the place for you.  Inspiration abounds...Get Pinning people!

Friday, March 25, 2011

The Beauty Regimen just got better

I think it's pretty obvious that I'm a bit of a beauty junkie. I faithfully read my too many to count monthly publications always on the hunt for the next best thing, even if it's not MAC.  It was during one of my recent flipping the pages sessions that I stumbled upon this new love of my life.

Clean & Clear Mattyfing Moisturizer.  Can a moisturizer really be life changing, YES I say!  I'm usually really careful about choosing a moisturizer that contains sunscreen so SPF 15 was making me happy, oil free is another thing I look for, I mean who really needs more oil on their face.  I suppose super dry people but I'm not one of them.  Mattifying was something new for me...could this be the answers to my shiny face issues?  I've never really been someone that I would consider oily but lately it seems like no matter what I do, by 2:00pm I'm looking a little slicked.  I also wasn't that pleased with my current moisturizer.  It would take forever to soak in and I always felt like I was applying my make-up on a wet face.  So off to Target I went and picked up this little piece of heaven.  What a change, I can't even tell you, if you are even the slightest bit oily and hate the way your face looks around 2:00pm give this a try.  My face looks like it should, matte, even and flawless.  I suppose some of that has to do with the Studio Fix but anyway, it really looks so much better.  Mind you I'm choosing to ignore the little wrinkles...Anyway give it a try, I love it.

Another items I'm loving right now is this,

Garnier Skin Renewal Anti Puff Roller.  I've noticed lately that I have these really unpleasant under-eye puffy pillows.  It's a common side effect of allergies so I'm hoping that getting back on my allergy meds and using this will help de-puff my bags.  I have noticed some improvement in the first week of use, so I'll keep you posted on my progress of puffy pillow banishment.

Okay, I have to give MAC some love too and introduce you to my new favorite lip product.

MAC Sheen Supreme Lipstick colors pictured above are L-R Impressive, Bare Again and Behave Yourself.

What a great new addition to their lip line.  I'm a faithful lover of most MAC lipsticks but don't always love their new product categories.  I'm not a lipgloss girl and rarely wear it by itself mainly because I feel it doesn't have the staying power I'm looking for.  These lipsticks are really interesting.  They have the texture and squishiness like a lipgloss but the staying power of a lipstick.  I really dislike MAC's glaze and lustre formulas mainly because they seem to evaporate on me within a very short period of time.  I find these stay on better but still have the same sheer, soft qualities of those two formulas.  I find myself reaching for chapstick a lot because I like to have something on my lips to feel moisturized.  These are a great alternative, especially when going out and you want to have a bit of color.  I'm a bit disappointed with the colors offered, I feel they are too dark and heavy for impending Spring.  I chose the three that I felt would look the best and be the most versatile.  Red is just not fitting in with my lifestyle these days.  Bare Again was not one I was planning on getting, it was a replacement for another color they were out of and I'm really glad the sales girl suggested it.  It's one I will probably end up wearing the most.  It's YLBB (your lips but better) and is neutral enough to be very versatile.  I'm also loving the new packaging for these.  The lids click on and they the are flat on the top, meaning you can store them upside down, color names showing and not have them topple over like the current bullet shaped tubes.  I hope they revamp all of their lipsticks to these new tubes.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Rain

Okay already, we have had enough of this rain!  The weather around here has been crazy for a few days now.  Yesterday a tornado touched down in Williams a town that is 75 miles North of Elk Grove and  left a mile long track of distruction behind.   Okay it wasn't as crazy as Kansas but seriously a tornado in California!  We've also had plenty of hail and super high winds.  I'm really ready to be over with this rain but it looks like we will be blessed with more through Saturday.  We have a partly cloudy outlook starting on Sunday thanfully.  Hopefully my mood will improve then.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Sweet Cinnamon Scones

The Pioneer Woman was at it again and suggested another super amazing recipe, these Sweet Cinnamon Scones

I finally made them on Sunday morning and they are delicious.  You really need to wait for them to cool completely and I actually liked them even better the next day.  They fall apart too much if they are even slightly warm so make them the day or night before.  They call for Hershey's Cinnamon Chips which I know can be hard to find but they are worth the hunt.  We are lucky to have them in our local stores here.  They have a recipe for Oatmeal Cinnamon Chip Cookies on the package and I make them quite often, they are favorites around here.  We seem to like anything that has cinnamon in it for that matter.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Shamrock Shake

I'm glad I got one when I could, our local McDonald's was out of Shamrock shakes when I tried to get one today. Really? Out on St. Patrick's day...

Anyway, Happy St. Patty's Day to you all.

To my Grandma,
I really miss your big dinners, it's not the same without you.


Oh and here's the gang on the ski trip taking a Green Beer break on their last day.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Layouts

I've been a scrapping machine lately, feverishly trying to get caught up on my scrapbook pages for 2010. I really didn't do much last year we were so busy with the house, moving, setting up in the new place, etc. that I didn't find the time. Over the last two months I've been working hard on getting caught up and I'm up to October on both our family album and Simone's book. Here are some that are done that I thought came out nice. You can click on any to view larger.

These are for the family book;

And these are for Simone's book. The first I love, it uses a photo that Matthew took when he was in town for Larry's retirement dinner.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Ski Trip

Larry took off this morning for the annual Alameda Fire Department St. Patty's Day Ski Trip. His buddy Lorenzo was kind enough to pick him up here so he didn't have to drive by himself.

He sent me this photo on the way up, they were stuck in traffic and it was dumping snow (his words) it looks pretty nice from where I sit.

A few hours later they made it to Tahoe, and I'm sure dumped their bags and got to the hill as quickly as possible. They are staying at a cabin in Truckee and plan on skiing at Northstar. Larry sent this picture and all it said was "Cold"

Yes, he might be cold but look how happy he is.  He's using the new ski's he got for Christmas (purchased last week) plus new goggles so he can still wear his glasses.  The boots and clothes were all things he saved from before.  He hasn't skiid in a few years and its been a long time since he's been on this trip.  Have fun Larry, enjoy the snow, don't crash and ski safe.

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Park

Partly cloudy and sunny today so we packed up a "Picinic" lunch and went to Elk Grove Park for some fresh air.

These two kicked around the soccer ball

I took photos of the Oak Trees

They played Hide and Seek

And we snuggled

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Building

We have a new building going up near our house that we see almost everyday. Simone has been fascinated by it and everyday asks if its done yet. It's a concrete slab building that they put up wall by wall. I've actually enjoyed watching it go up myself. The crane they used was huge and they moved very quickly, Larry said it was probably really expensive to have on site. Right now they are working on placing all of the inner steal supports. I've seen renderings of the finished product and the open space in the middle will be a semi-circle glass wall and there is another on the other side of the building. Happily it will be the new home of Mercy Medical which we are a part of so hopefully our doctors will move in. I'm sure its the first of many in the huge stretch of open land. Apparently a new City Hall will also be built in the area. I guess it can't hurt to have the city government close by. I just hope the rumors of a Super Walmart aren't true.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Substitute

I finally got the call yesterday to sub in Simone's class. Ms. Susan was not going to be in class today so she asked if I could help out. I was excited to help, it's been months since she asked me if I would be interested and months since I was checked out and fingerprinted. I was to be there at 8:00am to help set-up with Ms. Miryam, Ms. Susan's aid. Ms. Miryam gave me a run down of the days events and we got busy setting up. My main job was to clean up before snack, setting out the snacks and helping where needed. The time flew by, the kids were really good, except for one little incident the day ran pretty smooth. The kids got to play outside after snack and I had fun playing basketball with them. Simone seemed to like having me around and I was very pleased that she didn't take advantage of me being there and she let me help the other kids when needed without getting jealous. It was a good day at Toddler Time.

P.S. I totally photoshoped my name into the picture above, I really wanted to see my name in lights.

Monday, March 7, 2011

The Pioneer Woman

I recently started following the Pioneer Woman, she is quite the blogger and has seven different categories of that she writes about.  I can't even imagine how she tackles all that she does in a given day.  She posted this recipe for Creamy Chicken Spaghetti Casserole a few weeks back and I made it for dinner the other night.  She's right, it's amazing.  You must I said MUST try this recipe.  It makes a lot so plan on inviting people over or freezing for later.  I suppose you could cut it in half easily enough.

A few thoughts/observations:
  • I purchased a pre-cooked roasted chicken from the grocery store because I thought it would add more flavor plus it was easier.  Just boil your spaghetti in water since you won't have the water left from boiling the chicken if you follow my lead.
  • Don't omit the mushrooms and wine, it makes the dish.
  • You can replace the olives with a number of things, artichoke hearts came to mind right away
  • The leftovers are divine!
I hope you try it and like it as much as we did.

Friday, March 4, 2011

The flowers are blooming...

Look what we have, this delightful tree that is just blooming it's little heart out.  Our plants went in just before we took ownership of the house last May so I had no idea such a pretty little number was planted in our front yard.  Every day more and more flowers emerge.  Based on the others planted near us this tree is going to be quite lovely when it matures and thankfully won't get too large.  I have my fingers crossed that its not a pollinator and won't make me sneeze.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

They just go together...

How cool did you think you were when you discovered the yummy combo of tuna sandwiches and potato chips...I know it was love at first bite for me.  In fact even now I still sneak a few chips into my sandwiches when no one is looking. 

Today when Simone announced that she wanted a tuna sandwich for lunch I thought it was time to impart this age old wisdom on my daughter.

I must say it was love at first bite for her too and I see many tuna/potato chip sammie's in her future. 

This got me thinking of other yummy combos that I love;

1.  Oreo's and milk (it has to be number one)
3.  French fries and Miracle Whip (I know, I know)
4.  Bagels and cream cheese
5.  Onion dip and Frito's
7.  Vodka and Cranberry Juice

What are your favorites?