Sunday, November 27, 2011

Lost Weekend

Lauren came home for Thanksgiving vacation and "invited" me (you need an invitation, apparently) to joint

Well.............had I only known.

It became an addiction.  I was barely here all weekend.  Drew was laughing because so many of my conversations were sprinkled with references to something I had seen on Pintrest.  Well. I have FINALLY torn myself away!

I do want to share some things I saw there.  So here they are...

could DIY for christmas?
If I were a Grandma, I would love one (or more) of these!

Christmas crafts
Or this...can you imagine!  How sweet!

Grandma's House...
Wow.  This is really nice.

And I found a bunch of recipes too.  Like this one for a casual dinner

Stuffed Pepperoni and Cheese Bread.  This looks so good!

Heed my warning though:  Maybe you shouldn't go to

If you do....see you sometime next year!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Thanksgiving On My Walks

Solitary Walks
My walk on Sunday
The Vineyards.  The grapes have already been harvested.

And some people think it's all sun, sand and beaches in California!  This is Northern California,  in wine country, with seasons, agriculture and harvests.

I could walk for hours here.
Lake Tulloch Walk
We'll be spending Thanksgiving Day with our friends Doug and Michele and their (grown up) kids and Michele said she wanted so much for all of us to go .....on a walk.  I can't wait!

                                                   Happy Thanksgiving

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


What d' ya know,  Late Night Television is making our hometown of Pleasanton famous!

Locals call Pleasanton "P-town".  No kidding.  We even have sweatshirts sporting the nickname...

Craig Ferguson did have me in stitches about our local pizza place called "Gay 90's" has been there for ages - loooong before "gay" had any other meaning besides "fun".  And the pizza there is fabulous! That's the place I make the family take me on my birthday every year because my birthday dinner is always pizza and chocolate cake.

 The monologue is kinda funny:
And, he's right about Dean's cafe - it's a dive but locals go there for breakfast (not me so much) - they need to at least clean the windows.  Yuk. The guys like it, though..

 But, I really want to put in a plug for John Madden's Rose Hotel.  The Madden family, John (and sons) from football fame, own a lot of stuff in town because this is where their family has lived for decades and they built this hotel about 10 years ago and...they open it up to soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.  It's a small luxury hotel - very high-end...rooms at $$$$$.  But if you are returning from the war (and we have a lot of soldiers in uniform around here because they're in the reserves at Camp Parks) you can spend a free weekend at the Rose Hotel and get a bunch of discounts to local venues. 

Every one of the light-posts downtown has an American flag flying from it along with two or more yellow ribbons, each with the names of a Pleasanton soldier serving in the war. 

Pleasanton has a lot of high tech business but also a lot of the 1950's in it.  

It's a good town.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

A Whale of A Good Time!

A few posts ago I wrote about what a nice weekend we had at Jon and Danielle's wedding in Santa Cruz and that we stayed at the Dream Inn where the wedding was held...the following day Dave and I took off for a drive along the coast.  We posted pictures of the dogs running in the waves..well, at that time Dave spotted something in the water off the coast and swore it was a whale but we could never have gotten a picture of it because it was pretty far away.  I followed it with our binoculars and it kept surfacing but then disappeared. this!  With the Dream Inn in the background.  WOW.  And this happened right off the beach in the post about the wedding...about 2 days later - it was a few hundred yards from the wedding breakfast where the girls were playing volleyball.  Who knows what's out there in the ocean - so CLOSE!!!

The whale came up out of the water a few hundred yards off this beach (on the left).  The Dream Inn and Cowell Beach, where Jon and Danielle's wedding was held,  are in the background.


So much for those kayakers in my post.  They were luckeeee!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Happy Birth Days

Baby Jillian has arrived into the extended Bayly clan and we are so happy for Kristen, Chris and Devon and Grandma and Grandpa too.  She's a lucky little girl!  Jillian joins two of our bunch in recent birthdays.  

Coincidentally, Kevin's and Lauren's birthdays were this week - only 4 days apart from each other - so we celebrated them together.  As it turns out, Baby Jillian and Lauren share the same birthday.

 Drew came home for the weekend so it was really nice!  But we missed our Lauren...still at school.
Drew and I and the future Bride and Groom, Kevin and Lauren

Kevin spent the day with me and we went wine tasting in the Livermore Valley.  We had a really nice day together while Lauren spent the day shopping with her Mom.  It was a real treat for me to have a day with Kevin - more like a fun birthday for me! (Well, I did do all the work all those years ago...) But Kevin came away with a few bottles of really nice wine at the end of the day.  He liked the Thomas Coyne Zinfandel and their dessert wine called "Sweet Emilie" which is named after the winemaker's wife, Emilie Coyne.  She heard it was his birthday so she autographed the bottle for him.  After that, we went to another one of our favorite wineries, Las Positas, which is owned by our neighbors at the lake.  They make amazingly great wines!   

While we were at the Thomas Coyne winery, we happened on the crushing of the grapes:

Poor guy...didn't know his picture was being taken  :)

               Happy Birth Day to all the November Scorpios!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

No Shave November

If the man in your life would like to go without shaving for a whole month - this is the place for him! 


Kevin's office is all in on this endeavor to raise money to fight prostate cancer.  Kevin loves it because if you are supporting the fundraiser, you're not supposed to shave for the whole month of November!   I guess the website wants participants to grow a mustache (hence "Movember") but Kevin is calling  it "No Shave November" and is so enthusiastic that he's not shaving his whole face!  For a month!  Lauren is less than enthsued however because it seems Kevin grows porcupine quills for whiskers. I can't wait to see him in a full month's worth of beard.  And then see him shave it off immediately on December 1.

If you want to donate toward the cure for Prostate Cancer, you can go to the following link and donate - any amount ... $5 will be great!  Here's the link:   

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Mennonite Girls Can Cook!

I found a really fun website for good recipes!  Don't ask me how I found it because I have no clue!  It was just one of those things when you're bored and fishing around the web for something interesting.  Anyway, some of their recipes look really good.  It's not gourmet cuisine but I found a bunch of stuff I'd like to try and they even have a separate category of Gluten-Free recipes and I love that because Giovanna is gluten-free and now I have some stuff to make for her!

Here's the link:

Anyway, I'll keep it it my favorites in the sidebar for awhile and see how it goes....