May 31, 2012

A Secret Hike, Champagne, and River Shenanigans

First - new here? Get acquainted with our blog:

I've been putting off writing another post because my last experience with Blogger and it deleting my post had me so pissed that I just couldn't deal. So I gave myself a time-out...but I'm back now!!!

I have a very good reason for being "back on the blog" and that's because we had an amazing Memorial Weekend with our friends Emily and Anna and it needs sharing. Tom and I love to camp and love to camp with friends (but never more than 6 people). Our favorite region is (no surprise) the Russian River area because it offers all our favorite activities. (river, ocean, Guerneville, hiking, redwoods) More than that, the entire area feels like a throwback to the 1950s. It's become a big part of our summers. Sadly, due to California State budget cuts, most of the beautiful state parks in our area have closed their campgrounds. This is truly heartbreaking - least of all because it limits our camping options. It's heartbreaking because Northern California is full of amazing state parks with huge redwoods, flowing rivers, coastal access, estuaries teeming with life - and camping is such a great way to experience those areas, especially for families. I hope they get this figured out sooner, rather than later but, my gut feeling is that, even if/when there are the funds available, it's going to take a lot of money and effort to get these campgrounds up and running again after being neglected for several years.
Previous owner of Schoolhouse Canyon

Last year, we camped at a private campground, Schoolhouse Canyon, which is beautiful, if a little crowded for our taste. This year, we ventured back to Schoolhouse with Emily and Anna. It was a perfect weekend. The history of the place is interesting - the same family has owned the land for 6 generations. The current owner, Chris, is very talkative and will happily tell you the entire family history. Check out that photo of his grandmother on the Russian River. -->

I spent Friday prepping foods and packing up and Tom and I got up to the site on Friday evening. While he set up our tent and started the fire, I recreated our entire apartment in the woods. I'm a comfort camper. I wish I'd taken pictures - I'm still getting used to this blog thing.... But, I really did. Just take my word for it. When Emily and Anna arrived, we had an easy dinner of sausages and/or hot dogs, with homemade baked beans (I made them Thursday night), and grilled potatoes. Since they take the longest to cook, I like to cook a ton of potatoes on the first night so you only have to reheat them for breakfasts (mmmm....burritos) and dinners moving forward.

May 25, 2012

Stupid Blogger - Sonoma Weekend

I wrote a long post about our perfect weekend in Sonoma in the Russian River Valley and somehow, it got deleted and I'm so mad that I'm not even going to re-write it now.

Long (amazingly funny, witty) story short, we went to Cazadero, we stayed in this place, we saw lots of wildlife including our temporary pet goat, Reba, and here are all the pictures.

And here's one photo of our cabin so that this post doesn't bore you to death.

Stupid Blogger/Blogspot.

May 19, 2012

10 Great All-American Road Trips

Getting psyched for our cross country road trip!

Saw this list of great road trips on Yahoo today and wanted to share!

May 14, 2012

What I'll Miss on The Trip, or...Haikus to My Hair Dryer

We're leaving SF in less than four months. As Tom would say, "CRAY CRAY!" (I'm not kidding, he really does say that.) As the days tick away and we get closer to The Trip, I find myself appreciating little luxuries in my life and realizing I'm going to be without those goods. (And, before you get your feelings hurt - if you're reading this, it probably means that I'll miss you also...but this list is just for stuff, not peeps.)

Here's the list:

Clarence, my stuffed turtle that I have slept with nearly every night for 10 years. He's the perfect size and shape for a nighttime cuddle buddy and I'm not ashamed to admit it. Sometimes, I have to wrestle him away from Tom. He's part of our family. I'll miss him very, very much. I considered cutting off his head and bringing him with me...but Tom pointed out that everyone in the hostels would think I am crazy.

May 12, 2012

The Last Time....(Just a quick thought)

We're less than 4 months from leaving SF for The Trip, and I keep finding myself thinking things like, "This is probably the last time I'll buy dish soap before we leave," or, "I wonder if this olive oil will last until we leave or if I'll need to buy it one last time," and, "This is probably the last time I'll wear these boots until we get back."

It's very exciting, but I'm already sad about when I'll be thinking, "This is the last pizza/cheeseburger/martini I'll have for awhile." And don't even get me started on the long, forced absence from decent wine... Depressing, huh?

And a bigger part of me is worried about when I start to think that about our friends... "This is the last time we'll see Russ and Cee and Leon for a year!" We're not there yet (we'll see them many more times this summer), but in time, it will be the last time...and we'll miss everyone.

It's a good thing Tom and I actually like each other a lot.

Our "Last Supper" before The Trip will include wine (like Jesus') and pizza (like South Park's).

May 10, 2012

Pig Intestine Soup Anyone? (Adventures in Burma)

I usually get most excited to travel to places I've never been. I look forward to see the sites for the first time, try new foods, have unique experiences. This time around though, one of the places I am most excited to go to on this trip is a country I have already been - Burma, or Myanmar. I visited Burma for two weeks in June, 2003, and it left such an impression on me that I have been wanting to go back since. I want to see how it's changed, but mostly, I want to go with Steph and experience it with her for the first time. I'll give a little background to Burma because it is like no other place I have been.

Bagan, Burma