I’m a Finish Line Kinda Girl

Maybe the reason I pride myself on being a runner

is because I live for the finish line.

There’s nothing like the feeling of a crapton of hard work

paying off at the finish line of a race.

That feeling of ahhhhhhhh it’s finally here!

A blessed reward that is greatly deserved.

It makes it all worth it.

Like I said, I’m a finish line kinda girl.

I need something to look forward to,

something to dream about when life gets a little nuts.

For example,

this girl is trying to plan a wedding,

prep her kiddos for the state test that is quickly approaching,

keep the apartment clean, buy groceries, eat healthy,

try to ease back into a workout routine,

yada yada yada.

The list goes on!

Needless to say, my head has been full.

Almost on overload.

And it’s annoyingly accompanied by consecutive nights of insomnia.

Luckily, the finish line is in sight!

In exactly seven days, my boyfriend and I will be headed to Capitola

to camp beside the beach.

I can’t wait to fall asleep to waves crashing,

to feel the sand between my toes.

Better yet, to drink a cold beer and watch the sunset.

So far, the forecast is nothing but sunny skies and a perfect 70 degrees.

I. Can’t. Wait.

So when my kiddos are driving me bonkers

or when the wedding to-do’s start to overwhelm me,

I dream of the sounds of the ocean.

The finish line is near!

I can do anything!

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30 before 30…Beach Camping!

#10. Go beach camping.

There really isn’t anything better

than falling asleep to the crashing of waves.

I tried to take it all in,

the crisp air, the clear stars, and the soothing sound of the ocean.

Growing up, I didn’t spend a ton of time camping

so I can’t say I know all of the tricks of the trade

or even how to plan the ‘perfect camping trip.’

However, this was seriously everything I wanted

this idea of “beach camping” to be.

Though the weather wasn’t our ideal of perfection

(it sprinkled on and off throughout our stay)

it called for a little more creativity and resulted in a little more fun.

We spent most of our time either walking by the shore

or glued to the radio listening to the baseball madness

of the San Francisco Giants and Oakland A’s Game 4s

as well as the Sacramento Kings first preseason game.

We played cards, cooked delicious food, and enjoyed tons of laughs.

It says a lot to me when you can spend your time with just one person

and never feel like you need some “alone time.”

This was our fifth camping trip,

but our first one with just us.

And I’d have to say it was one of my favorites.

Brighton State Beach,

thanks for making my first beach camping experience

a good one to remember

and one I hope I get to relive and revisit sometime again.

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Back to School Eve

Well, my dear Summer Vacation,

you’ve come to an end.

Filled with all kinds of amazingness,

you brought me great joy and relaxation.

I vowed to savor every last second of this time off

and I’m happy to say that I met my goal.

I bid you farewell.

Until we meet again!

Disneyland was nothing but fabulous!

My boyfriend and I are similar in our traveling likes and dislikes,

which always makes our adventures that much better.

I’m sad to report I did not take pictures of all our

road trip surprises along the way down to Anaheim.

My favorite surprise I packed was a box of Disney Trivia cards

from the World of Disney Trivia game!

My boyfriend brought me a surprise of packs of baseball cards

in hopes to teach me a few new fun facts

about baseball. (Another new favorite summer love.)

Go Giants, by the way!

I’ve been to Disneyland a ton,

but there’s always something new to do.

And I always leave with things on my list for our next trip.

I’d have to say my favorite part was the

Mad T Party in California Adventure.

It’s basically an Alice in Wonderland  party, Tim Burton inspired.

Theres a House of Cards, themed drinks at a place called “Drink Me”

and even a band where Alice and the Mad Hatter sing!

Pretty much my cup of tea! (haha!)

Though as a kid I always loved Snow White,

Alice has really become one of my favorites!

Alas, the one thing on my list for our next trip has to be

finally trying one of those Dole Whips by the Tiki Room.

The lines are always long, but the treat looks so refreshing!

Don’t ask my why I haven’t taken the time to actually

stand in line and get one!

Next time!

All in all, another great Disney adventure!

Summer Farewell

What are these happy little bags for, you ask?

Well, tomorrow is the day we leave for our last vacation of the summer.

Disneyland!

These bags hold the contents of a road trip tradition.

I simply flipped two grocery bags inside out,

gave them a little Disney lovin’

and wha-lah!

This marks our 4th time going to Disneyland since we’ve started dating.

And every time we go, we always bring little surprises to open each hour on the road.

Well, this trip is going to be extra special because

we’re celebrating my boyfriend’s 30th birthday.

Stay tuned to see what’s inside!

I title this ‘Summer Farewell’

because this feels like it’s the end.

When we get back, there will only be a weekend and a day

left of my “Best Summer Ever” summer vacation.

I feel like it’s been a good one, and certainly lived up to the name

though I always have wishes of things I still want to do.

I will say that I feel that I’ve stuck to my bucket list

and been able to squeeze in some extra fun and adventures.

And so begins

my weeklong goodbye

to the best summer ever!

Road Trip Diaries…Part 3

It’s been some time since I’ve continued telling the tale

of my Pacific Northwest Road Trip adventure.

Portland was such an unexpected delight.

A city filled with bridges,

I instantly fell in love with the vibe of this city.

We began our day in Portland at the Saturday Public Market

(though it was Sunday…hmmm?)

wandering and leisurely enjoying the tent vendors.

When I’m on vacation, I love to do what the locals do

and this was a perfect way to get a taste of what Portland is like.

wandering through the market

I bought a tshirt with this bridge on it.

Our exploring continued with a trip to VooDoo Donughts.

I wasn’t really sure what the hype was about this place

as I’m not one to get excited about doughnuts.

But this was a definite ‘must do’

based soley on the fact that the line was wrapped two times around the place.

I wanted to just say that I had been there.

VooDoo prides itself on its funky and creative donut toppings.

I peeked in the window to see donuts with Oreo cookie crumbles,

others with Fruit Loops, and alas, the VooDoo donught.

We weren’t planning on getting more than one donught,

as it was just for the experience.

So in that case, we opted for the VooDoo.

It must have been our lucky day. Our VooDoo doughnut was two-headed!

All our wandering of course made us hungry,

so we dined at Deschutes Brewery.

Beer? Yes please!

Table outside? Why, of course!

The burger was delicious, the beer satisfying.

After that meal, I was a very happy camper.

Ahhhh, but wait, there’s more to this dandy adventure in Portland.

The grand finale included a trip to Powells books.

Seriously, you don’t know what kind of heaven this place is until you’ve been inside.

No joke, 4 million books. Yes, you read that right.

4 million books!

3 stories of gloriousness.  (Is that even a word?)

We gave ourselves a half hour to roam, which obviously wasn’t enough time.

I felt panicked.  Where do I even begin?

I could have spent hours in there.  I felt lost, but yet so at home.

Shockingly all I bought was a Walking Dead graphic novel for my boyfriend,

but I vow that if I ever visit Portland again (which I know I will)

I will be spending way more than a half hour in that place.

Powells covers one entire city block, holds over 4 million books, and buys about 1,500 used books daily.

Portland, you were an unexpected, yet, pleasant surprise.

Hope to see you again soon!

Road Trip Diaries…Part 2

Olympia, Washington

was quaint, artsy, trendy, and fun.

I felt like everywhere we walked

there was another amazing mural to glance at.

There were many, many more! This just happened to be one of my favorites.

It seemed like a pretty small city,

but let me tell you they had a ton of great places to eat and shops to look at.

We encountered a lot of great, genuinely friendly people on this trip,

but I’d have to say my favorite was our waitress at this cafe.

I wish I would have taken a picture of my sandwich to make your mouth water, but I scarfed that thing down before I remembered to do so. It was that good!

Greeted us with the confusing question of,

“Are you blueberry friendly?”

Which, at the time, we had no idea what it meant but said yes anyway.

We speculated what she could possibly mean by that question.

But when she arrived with our waters topped with blueberries and lemon

we were delighted and thankful we had said yes!

Then, after great conversation, delicious food, and lots of laughing,

she graciously presented us with fresh chocolate chip cookies.

“You guys cleaned your plates.  I figured you deserved it.”

So nice!

And then of course, the whole purpose for the trip was in Olympia.

The Roller Derby Bout.

A crazy, athletic, confusing game.

My favorite is that the atmosphere is very family friendly.  That was shocking to me.

There are organized cheers.  There are MCs.  Kids walk around to sell raffle tickets.

When I think of derby, I think of tough girls on skates, tattoos, aggression.

Well there was plenty of that.  But if you looked just at the crowd,

you might be a little surprised.

I tried to educate myself on the rules before the game began,

but even after watching a full hour of derby, I still don’t feel like I’ve got it down.

Either way, it was pretty fun to watch and enjoy with my teacher friends by my side.

Olympia, I am a fan of you!