Sunday, January 31, 2010

Wine tasting, beer tasting kind of weekend

So Friday morning about 9:30 in the morning a limo came to work to pick me and my fellow Legal team members and whisk us up to Napa for the day.
The Legal department had their very first offsite. It was a great bonding experience.
On the drive up I handed out the little goodie bags Amy and I put together for everyone. They were a hit. Everyone got a bottle of water, Slim Jims, Pringles, trail mix and granola bars.
Let me just say, this was the first time I had ever gone wine tasting and dumped some of my wine. I have NEVER done that ... until Friday. Since it was a work function I didn't want to get drunk. We have a couple of light weights in the group--so I did partake in some of their unwanted tastes.
We first hit Cakebread Cellars for some wine tasting and a tour. We learned some cool stuff and tasted some yummy wines. (The above photo is of me at Cakebread. The lighting and the angle make me look really skinny. I am not that skinny--no worries!)
After Cakebread we hit Brix for lunch. We had some super yummy appetizers. I stuck with water as my beverage. I had amazing steak fries and this awesome burger. Definitely a fuu-fuu burger. I wanted something hearty to eat since there would be more wine drinking.
After lunch we headed to Mumm, which has sparkling wine. Super yummy. I tried two sparkling reds.
And our last stop was Peju. We did a wine tasting there. I bought a bottle of Provence. It was quite yummy. The Fifty/Fifty was awesome, but also 85 bucks. Let's just say I didn't do any dumping of that wine.
On the way back to the office we did a little work talk. Some projects were discussed. We also talked about reality TV, our families, friends, past experiences, etc. It was a good time to hang out and get to know each other even better.
Saturday I hit the gym for my regular 2-hour workout.
About 2 Jacob and Aileen picked us up and we headed to the Winter Brews Festival. We tried all different types of beer. I tried a sour beer and it was sour. I do like sour--but I couldn't imagine drinking a whole glass. I tried a cherry beer, which was pretty good. The bacon brown was hmmm ... different. I had a really delicious flat bread. Man, that was good.
The weather was beautiful and sunny. We had a great time hanging out.
Saturday night we met our friends John & Nicole and Nancy for sushi at Sushiya. Dinner was delicious. And ... Nicole is pregnant. We had no idea!
Today I hit the grocery and did some end of the year shredding. Trying to get our spare room back into shape again. (That is an ongoing battle.)
Between shredding there was lounging and watching movies on Lifetime and Lifetime Movie Network.
Now I am watching Big Love.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Hey litterbug!

So tonight on the way home after spin class some idiot who drove in a lane that wasn't a lane almost hit me at one point ... he slightly swerved into my lane while he was throwing trash out of his window.
Uh, nice!
Doesn't he know that he is a litterbug?

Monday, January 25, 2010

Back to knitting

I am kinda excited. I started knitting again tonight. I realized the other day that it was weird to watch TV without knitting--but I didn't want to knit something just for the sake of knitting.
I can't remember if today was my 4th or 5th visit to Michaels in the past two weeks ... anyway, they finally had the cotton candy fun fur I have been needing. (Photos do not do justice to the pretty bright pinks and purple.) There are two little girls I am making a scoa (part scarf, part boa) for. I love making this scarf. Little girls love the colors. It is a quick knit, too.
I took it pretty easy over the weekend. I wasn't sure if I was getting sick. So I decided to not chance it and didn't do a whole lot. I worked late on Friday--well, about 7. Saturday I slept in. (Skipped the gym.) Watched some movies. Joey had a nail appointment. Then I did some house cleaning. Eventually I was on the couch with some Lambrusco, my Snuggie and movies and TV shows. Curt headed to Tahoe on the Snowbomb--a bus that picks you up at the BART station and drives you up there, you get to hang out or snowboard or ski or whatever, and then they drive you home.
Sunday Dad came over and the three of us had lunch. We had a nice visit. Then the rest of the day was pretty lazy.
I have to say my Monday went pretty quick. But this month seems to be dragging.
I am so over this rain. Geez! We had a tornado warning on Saturday. But apparently it didn't touch.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Breaking the rules

One of my new work rules for 2010 was to stop working 10-12 hour days. I broke it once in Week 1. (I was working late with our patent consultant.) And I broke it this week. I think yesterday. But I already can't remember when exactly that was. Tonight I came close. I did take a lunch break today so that made it a little better.
Work is already cranking up and it going to get busier. Not sure how I will handle it all again.
I think I really need to work on time management. But it seems like no matter what I have planned something else comes up.
I have been slacking in the gym department this week. But the plan is to get back in gear next week. I have been feeling really run down and I haven't been able to tell if I am just exhausted or getting a cold. The kinda sore throat seems to be gone.
I have been taking Nyquil at night and Zicam during the day.
I plan on taking it fairly easy this weekend.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

When it rains it pours

Man, the weather is crazy here.
I was in Phoenix over the weekend so I missed the weekend downpour.
But it did rain some in Phoenix on Monday. I had a bumpy ride home. It was a miserable flight home. Pretty bad turbulence almost the whole time, canceled drink service to keep flight attendants safe (booze would have made the flight a little easier to handle). I was in a window seat and the guy in the middle seat was not petite. I don't want to harp on the whole paying for two seats issue. But I was either leaning into the "wall" and tweaking my back or my whole left arm was rubbing against this guy's arm. Not the most comfortable ride.
I took BART to work today, working in SSF office. My umbrella turned inside out. And I saw two large umbrellas get beat on and turn inside out, too. That was entertaining. My co-worker Melissa picked me up at the BART station and then drove to our SSF office. She called me at one point and said she was about 3 miles away. But people were driving like 20 mph so it was taking some time. No worries. I was under cover.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Guest Post Tuesday

Go Fit Girl! features a Go Fit Boy! for Guest Post Tuesday. He is a second-timer. Check it out.

Monday, January 18, 2010

A21; B1

Finn was a total sweetheart last night. He slept the whole time Erica and Casey were gone. They went to see Sherlock Holmes. They said it was a good movie. Glad I was able to give them a little time out on a date. I mean, seriously, that was one of the easiest babysitting gigs I have ever had.I got a lot of sleep last night. I was so tired. (I am looking forward to my sleep tonight, too.)
This morning we kinda hung out and then headed to Wildflower again. This time Erica, Casey, Finn and I met Robert, Leah and Oliver.
We had some yummy food. Oliver was so sweet wanting to give Finn a piece of bread with butter. Mama had to explain that Finn doesn't have teeth. Finn was a little off schedule. So he started to get fussy. Casey left a little early to take Finn to the sitter for lunch and then a nap. About 12:30 we left and headed back to the Beckidads place. Leah hung out for a bit and then headed to the yarn store, where she works a few hours a week. Robert, Ollie and I visited. And then Ollie took a nap. Robert and I had a nice visit. Usually my visits to Phoenix I get so little time with Robert. Once I saw Robert for a mere 2-3 minutes.
Eventually Ollie woke up from his nap and we visited more. Then Leah came home and we headed to the airport. Ollie was so sweet sharing his cracker goldfish with me and giving me a hug when I got out of the car.
The flight home was fairly bumpy. Rain in Phoenix and in the Bay Area. It was so bumpy that they discontinued service and no drinks. Bummer.
Thursday night when I checked in for my flight I got A21, pretty good for not paying early bird fee. Last night I checked in right at 6:10 and I got B1. Dang!

I took a good amount of pictures over the weekend, and not a single one on the actual camera. I will share all later. But here are two of the cuties I visited over the weekend.

Man, that Finn is such a cutie. He is so smiley. He is a really good little guy. He is 6 months. Oliver (Ollie) just turned 3. He is posing with Eppie (sp?). He is so chatty. He kept grabbing my hand to show me stuff at his house.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Babysitting Finn

Can you believe I am sitting here writing this while Jersey Shore is on? I know the idea of this show is that it is a train wreck and you have to watch. But seriously, a bunch of spoiled brats who fight and wear douchebag Ed Hardy shirts and hats are lame. (And by fighting I mean yelling and beating each other up.) It is a tragedy when someone says someone has a Flinstone toe. I mean, c'mon. It doesn't appear that these people have any sort of job, they go clubbing, drinking, sex and fighting. Oh, and they say the F-word a lot.
Anyway, been a good visit so far here in Phoenix. Got here late Friday night. Saturday hung out with Erica, Casey and, of course, Finn. Finn is the main reason I came to town. Finn is my newest little friend and "nephew."
Somebody napped, we had breakfast, we went for walks, we hung out, good day. Then Deb came over to pick me up and we headed to George & Dragon for dinner and drinks. Some of my old Republic co-workers/friends came by. I had a lot of fun. Good to relive some old stories and to hear some new ones. I was out until about 1:30. Couldn't believe I was out so late.
Today we headed to Wildflower to meet Penny for brunch. It was a good visit. Then back to the house for a nap and some more hanging out. Erica and I walked to the grocery with Finn.
Now Finn is talking himself to sleep. I am babysitting. Erica and Casey just left for a movie. They have this awesome baby monitor, which also has a camera. Pretty cool. Oh, I just checked and Finn has fallen asleep. This little guy is a great sleeper. Sweet dreams little man.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Drinking wine, waiting for my flight and heading to PHX

There is a new wine bar in the Oakland airport called Vino Volo. It is so nice and calm here. I have had some yummy wine and ate a delicious Penne & Cheese. Two of my favorite things ... actually three, if you count the wine.
I am heading to Phoenix this weekend to meet my new little friend and "nephew" Finn. And I am also gonna get to see a lot of old friends, old co-workers who are also friends.
It is nice weather. High 60s and low 70s. Apparently it is gonna rain like crazy in the Bay Area this weekend and throughout next week.
I haven't been in the Valley of the Sun in about a year and a half. I managed to NOT visit Phoenix in all of 2009.
I can't wait to see my friends, meet Finn and see Oliver, who just turned 3. According to Mama Leah Oliver is a chatterbox. Ooooh, I am so excited to see this little person. Weeeeeeee!
OK, I am paid up. Gotta powder my nose, buy some trashy celebrity news and get some goodies from the news stand.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Dancing, lounging, napping, eating

Friday night was my company holiday party. It was originally scheduled for the first weekend in December. But with the acquisition happening and the two companies merging it got pushed back.
It was held at the Intercontinental Hotel--which is a gorgeous hotel. I left work a little after 2 and headed to the city. I arrived at the hotel a little before 3. I got into our lovely room and took a shower. Then I just lounged and relaxed in the room. Curt joined me soon after that and we hung out and then got ready for the party.
The party was a ton of fun. There was a cocktail hour with yummy appetizers and delish sparkling wine. The dinner was really good, too. And I always have fun dancing. It's always fun to see people outside of work and out of the norm element.
Curt and I slept in and then got ready to come home. We were home a little after noon. And I pretty much just lounged.
Eventually I took the ornaments off the tree, took the lights down from the tree and the front of the house and put all the Christmas stuff away.
Curt and I had dinner at a nice restaurant in the 'hood called Chu. It was really good. We both had leftovers for dinner tonight, too.
Today was another loungy, lazy day. Our friend Rachel was in town and we went to the Thai Buddhist Temple for lunch with her and her friend John.
There was some more napping today and enjoyment of the Lifetime movie Mother Knows Best. I love that movie.
I felt kinda rundown this weekend. I want to make sure NOT to get sick. So that is my excuse for napping and lounging. And I know I will be busy this week.
Hope you all have a good week.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

My newest obsession ...

is a Clorox Bleach Pen.
I remember when they first came out years ago ... I bought one or two from Target. I realized they were great for laundry whites and some clean up.
Now fast forward to recently. I saw them at Target again (they seem to have disappeared for some time) and bought two. One for the laundry room and one for cleaning.
One of the chores I hate the most is cleaning the tub and shower. It is so hard to do. And the grout in our shower is tough to keep clean. No matter how hard I scrub some of that grout just looks gross. And sometimes the scrubbing creates the grout to fall out.
The other evening (Monday I believe) I decided to take the bleach pen to the grout. (I had scrubbed the tub and walls and grout over the weekend.) It's like a miracle. Looks so clean and good. Some of it is still impossible to clean. But it looks so much better than before. I do sections at night and in the mornings before work.
I thought about taking before and after pictures. Because it is almost unbelievable how amazing it looks after.
See now that I am not working a zillion hours a day I get to do things like this when I get home and share it with you. Aren't you glad?
By they way I am at Day 3 with better work/life balance. Making sure I take some sort of lunch break and not work too late. So far so good.
Tonight after making dinner, eating it, bleaching some grout, getting my work clothes and gym bag ready I also got to watch Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. Cute movie. I loved the book as a kid.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

You don't smell so great

So I have a sensitivity (not quite an allergy) to smelly things like perfume, cologne, aftershave, smelly lotions, etc.
I worked at our South San Francisco office today so I took BART down south. On the way home a woman sat next to me who was wearing some sort of lip gloss or perfume that smelled like fake watermelon.
When I smell things like that (not real smells, manufactured smells) I usually feel nauseated and get a headache. And riding on a train doesn't help.
I am finally starting to feel a little better. The 10-minute or so walk from the BART station home with some fresh air helped.
When things like that happen I contemplate on whether I should just move (not always an option on a crowded train), ask the person to move (which I find rude) or just suffer. I have figured out a way to kinda cover my nose with my hand so I can't breath in the smell.
I use Tide Free and the Bounce sheets with no dyes or perfumes. I have to be careful when I buy hair products as many of them have some horrible artificial smells.
People who sit near me at work know of my smell issue and are considerate and not wear a lot of smelly things around me. One time I had to ask a co-worker to not wear that cologne ever again. He is a good friend and I felt comfortable saying something.
Some people feel the need to bathe in their perfume, cologne, aftershave. Ugh! We don't still need to smell you after you leave the room!
And I used to be able to wear perfume and smelly lotions. So I hope I wasn't inconsiderate when I did.
I remember years ago when I lived in Oregon my friend Angela and I went to see the Dalai Lama (which was awesome). In the instructions it mentioned to not wear lotions, hairspray, perfumes, etc. We both found that rather odd. And I was worried about my frizzy hair. But we complied.

Guest Post with a twist

It's Comment Contest Tuesday.
Go here to read the rules and comment away.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Winter break comes to an end

Uuuuhhhh. I feel like I have been away from work for a long time. I guess 11 days is a good amount of time.
Yesterday did my two hours at the gym. Then home for house cleaning and fun stuff like that.
Last night we went out with a group of friends to celebrate Cyrus' birthday. We first hit the First and Last Chance bar where Jack London hung out. The bar was small but pretty cool. When the 1906 earthquake hit the bar kinda sunk. The bar is slanted.
After that we headed to the Chop Bar for drinks and dinner. Someone ordered a Michelada. It was beer, tomato juice and a few other items. It sounded weird but I decided to taste it. It was weird good. So I ordered one. Our food was really good.
Some of the gang was gonna head to The Trappist afterward. Curt and I decided to head home (we are the oldest of that group).
Today we had lunch at the Thai Buddhist Temple in Berkeley. An old friend of Curt's, Jeff and his wife, Kathy, met us at our house and then we headed to the temple for lunch. It was a good lunch and a good visit.
The rest of the day was lounging and nappy. I was planning on putting away all the Christmas decorations and taking down the tree. That didn't happen. So maybe this week or definitely next weekend.
Now I am watching Marley & Me.

Friday, January 01, 2010

The rest of San Diego ... (Oh, and Happy New Year!)

In San Diego on Tuesday Curt decided to take a drive and visit some old haunts. I decided to hit the beach. Suit went on and then pants, hoodie and flip flops. It was fairly warm that day. Probably high 60s.
I had never laid out on the beach in pants and a hoodie. But it was still calm and relaxing. I did some reading, lounging, people watching, etc. After being out there a couple of hours I headed in for lunch. Hit the PB Alehouse for beer and a BLTA (A=avocado). Eventually Curt joined me for a beer. After that I headed back to the beach until about 3.
I came back to the hotel to find Curt lounging on our patio while drinking his tall boy of Modelo Especial. I decided to get something for myself and headed to 7-Eleven for beer and Doritos. We hung out for a bit on the patio, then hit the jacuzzi. Back to the hotel to shower and get ready for dinner.
After I got out of the shower I saw that I had a text from a former Wildcat (college newspaper) colleague who was in town for the Holiday Bowl. So Curt and I met Chris downtown for dinner and bowling.
It was a good time. Chris and I caught each other up on what certain people were up to.
Wednesday morning Curt and I were on the road about 9:30 and home by 6.
New Year's Eve
Yesterday morning I headed to the gym, ran a couple of errands, and then met Sue and Alicia for lunch. We had a good time catching up and talked for hours.
Curt and I had a nice, quiet evening at home. Just watching movies, eating sushi and I had a whole bottle of sparkling wine. We watched the ball drop.
New Year's Day
I planned to hit the gym this morning. But that dang champagne headache prevented that. So I was lazy and watched Lifetime and SVU marathon. I also finished The Girls from Ames. (Comments on that later.)
I just finished watching My Sister's Keeper. The book was really good. The movie, eh. The book was heavily focused on the youngest sister. Not the movie. And they totally changed the ending, which changed the whole focus of the book. That really disappointed me. Jodi Picoult's books always have a twist. And this movie had no twist. And, I am sorry, but Cameron Diaz is not old enough to be the mom. I remember when I first heard they were making the book into a movie and she was cast I figured she would be the youngest sister's guardian ad litem. They didn't even have that character in the movie! If you haven't read the book the movie will probably be good.

Hope everyone had a safe and Happy New Year's Eve and Happy New Year as we enter 2010. Just think, 10 years ago people were freaking out about Y2K.