Not picture perfect

Thursday, July 28, 2011 | | 20 comments

We've all had this conversation with our husbands ...

I'm always the one behind the camera. When I'm gone {not happening anytime soon} no one is going to remember what I looked like.  So, it would be nice if you took some photos while on vacation.

Here is the result of our conversation ...

Try not to laugh too hard

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Despite the lovely photos  

{these pictures remind me of the faces on pain level charts posted on the wall in doctor's office ~ how badly do you feel?} 

we had a great evening downtown in Paso Robles. They had live music in their sweet little town square with food, beer, and wine vendors. It was obviously an event that families, neighbors and friends thoroughly enjoy each week. How fun to have this to look forward to every Friday night. Yet another reason to move ;)

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I think we need something like this in our town square every Friday night ... right after we get a town square that is!

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What a View

Wednesday, July 27, 2011 | | 10 comments

The scenery of California is so mesmerizing as we traveled through the countryside. The green is so vibrant against the golden dryness. The symmetrical rows of vines and plants, weedless acres of walnut trees and immaculate farming plots never seem to lose their charm.
{Perhaps it's because nothing in my yard comes remotely close to being so organized and I am envious!}

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Gorgeous ~ natural beauty!
I could figure out a way to enjoy this everyday.

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Paso Robles is just beautiful.
I should have inquired about summer employment for next year.
I'll gladly work for wine!

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This gentleman gave us a private tour of his land ... breathtaking! We had the best time at his vineyard. If you were listening in on our conversation, you would assume we were related. Our conversation was so natural and flowed freely and easily.  In fact, I think we may have made plans to get together for the holidays. He's bringing the wine :)

{everyone we met in CA was equally as nice and friendly}
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The letters on the barrels are the winemakers "gradings" of the wine at the current time.

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Love the massive size of these doors and the attention they demanded when you approached the vineyard.

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Just think how easy it would be to consume all your fruit servings in a day if you owned a vineyard! ;)

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Tuesday, July 26, 2011 | | 12 comments
It's been a crazy busy summer here in our home. My husband's work schedule has been insane with lots of travel ... opportunity for me! :)

We started our day off touring the Queen Mary in Long Beach. The history of this beautiful ship is impressive and the craftsmanship stunning even after all these years.


"Parked" right next to the Queen Mary is the Russian submarine; the Scorpion. Being the sub riding naval officer that he is, my husband felt the need to share this fine boat with me. Trying to be a good sport {being on subs scares me like you would not believe!} I went along. I was good for about 3 minutes until I hit my head on a hatch and the closterphobia began.

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In his glory! Love the smirk on his face.
I was treated to a very detailed step by step tutorial of what everything was and how it worked. I know, you're jealous! :)

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I'm not sure I would have lasted long with such amenities.


The view from the deck .


Love this photo.
The glistening of the water below the bright orange and white of the lifeboats just screams summer.

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After a guided tour we headed for one of my favorite restaurants that my husband introduced me to last year, Dukes. The food is great and view is amazing!

We enjoyed a late lunch and I did a little house hunting. There are some great deals to be had in the sunny state of California. Now all I need to do is sell our home here and convince my husband to move. I'm starting with the no snow factor ~ ha!

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It was a sunny but hazy day which created a photo challenge for me.

More to come ...

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Friday, July 22, 2011 | | 8 comments

It's  amazing what a little time of away from the daily drudge can do for your disposition.

I'm refreshed and renewed

 Ready for a new project

A few last licks of summer fun

Clam bakes with friends

Beach club gatherings


Getting back into the summer swing here on the east coast.

In celebration of the heat wave {we returned just in time!} I'll be taking it slow and easy this afternoon.

 A day by the water with sun, sand, and a few good friends is just what is required for such a celebration .

Keep cool
Take it easy!

I have a few fun photos of our trip to share with you but they will have to wait just a few more days.

It's too sunny and bright to stay indoors!

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Worth waking up early

Friday, July 15, 2011 | | 14 comments
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I'm spending my mornings walking along the beach

Enjoying an extra cup of coffee while lingering with my view

A slower daily schedule

Some alone time ... together time ... getting reacquainted

A new prospective on life is priceless! 

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The Bestest Banana Recipe

Friday, July 8, 2011 | | 17 comments

One day over lunch at school we {busy wives, mothers, and teachers all in one} were discussing how to get our families out the door during the school year with less fuss. Most of us do the majority of the prep work for each day well in advance.

I personally try to bake, cook, and freeze as much as I can to avoid the looming melt down during the height of any busy time. This recipe is one of my go tos, must haves, freezer friendly, save the day! Hope it works for you too.


Banana Bread or Muffins

3 ripe bananas

2 eggs
1 cup {lightly packed} light brown sugar
3/4 cup canola oil
1/2 cup sour cream
3/4 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. salt
1 3/4  cup flour

*Preheat oven to 350

*Mash bananas in a bowl

*In a large bowl combine eggs, sugar, oil, and sour cream. Whisk until smooth.

*Add cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, vanilla, salt, mashed bananas to the egg mixture and combine.

*Add the flour and stir until just combined.   ~ Do Not Overmix! It will ruin the batter.~

*Pour batter into pan of choice ~ loaf pan, muffin, or mini muffin pans.

*Bake loaf {1 hour or until golden}, muffin {18minutes}, mini muffins {12 minutes}

*Remove from oven and let rest until cooled on rack


{ Every now and then I like to add nuts, blueberries, or mini chocolate chips just to change it up a bit }
{add a few additional cooking time when adding blue berries}


If you're interested in some great recipes join la bella vita.

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Monday, July 4, 2011 | | 9 comments
Happy Independence Day!

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Wishing you ...

sunny skies


slowing down

time with family

great conversation

yummy food

fun drinks

memory making

spectacular fireworks!

~ Celebrate a fun filled fabulous 4th of July ~

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