Santa Barbara

I do love Santa Barbara.IMG_0209

The beach walk is lovely and you can literally walk for miles right by the ocean. It was a little breezy this morning and my eyes were watering a lot.  This is a residual effect of when I was on Velcade, my eyes just watered all the time. It doesn’t happen too much now except for the cooler air and wind.

We had a lovely coffee at Renauds and in a while, we’re going to the Thrift store for a quick look and then maybe downtown.

B has to work at the co-op later so I shall read and then we can figure out dinner.

Last night we went to our standby Ollio’s pizzeria. Oh my, their pizza is the best and their chopped salad is excellent. It was crazy busy but we still had a good time.

We came back to the room and watched some  Olympic figure skating. That was a treat as we don’t have TV at home.

Simple Sunday

The decluttering count is up to 850. This is since October 1st I think.

My husband cleaned up his office and threw tons of stuff away( yeah B!!!!). Then I had him get the Christmas bins and reduced from 4 to 2. My goal is always to reduce by half. I didn’t go thru the ornaments just cleaned up boxes and threw away some things I know I won’t use.( in thrift store box). ( 3 tree candles, a computer mini tree that lights up, and some other things I threw out(boxes and a leaking snow globe. At one point I collected snow globes but realized this wasn’t for me. I have a few left and when I open then at decorating time I’ll decide whether to give them to goodwill.

So all in all a win-win.

We went to Costco pre-Holiday time and won’t be back till probably after Christmas. I spent @ $300 on just food. This includes beer for B and wine (4 bottles) for Thanksgiving and Christmas. So lots of butter for baking, cheese, cuz it’s cheese, organic tofu, Starbucks winter blend of coffee, mayo on sale( I love that). So all good there.

It’s interesting going to Costco as a non-consumer advocate (as much as possible for us, right now), and seeing ALL THE STUFF! Wow, it is a little overwhelming. It’s important to just get what you need and go. So for instance. I use some mayonnaise and the coupon was for, I think,$2.00 off. So a giant mayo for $4 something. I will get thru it actually as I make egg salad, tuna salad, dressings etc with mayo. So a good purchase.

Dinner is grilled tofu with golden gravy, a salad of kale, spinach, chard, walnuts, and pomegranate things. Plus mashed potatoes.  I was disappointed Costco didn’t have the huge bag of russets.  One of the best freezer meals to make are double stuffed potatoes. We use these all the time. So, I’ll have to wait till next time.img_0496

Exciting news, tomorrow we head up to South Lake Tahoe for B to work and I get to tag along. Lucky me!!! At the condo, I’ll cook some dinner and we’ll do breakfast.  Just simple scrambled eggs and toast!!

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Beautiful Lake Tahoe!!

 

 

Friday things

I went and helped set up books for the bake and book sale tomorrow.  Then I left to take my son to pick up his Subaru that had some sort of oil leak but it was covered by the warranty we got when we paid for the engine to be rebuilt.

Then I went to the store and picked up cream, cat food, wine and a few other essentials for the weekend.

Tomorrow I am going over to the book sale early to help out and then leaving around 10 or so since we’re driving up to Chico so B can pick up his motorcycle. It’ll be a long day but I’ll get thru it. He’s been set on a Triumph which is what he had in college. Then reconsidered and found a brand new Honda Rebel. It’s a smaller motorcycle and that may be a good thing.  It won’t hold resale the same as a Triumph, but that’s not why he’s buying it.  This money comes from the many bonuses he has had over the years that usually has gone to bills. So it’s his turn.

 

Speaking of budgets, things are okay. The bills are getting paid but we’re still not putting away money above and beyond the 401 k that is taken out automatically.  In the next 2 months we have property tax and house insurance so 2 really big annual bills. Sigh… I really hope we get a handle on this as retirement looms out there.  But I am optimistic we will have it sorted as we go into those years.  We have to get rid of the car payment and that will free up some money.  But he gets a reimbursement for the car so it’s a double edge sword.  Still, I hope by mid-year next year the Santa Fe is paid and then we can look at the last car loan for him in these last 3 years.

I am trying very hard to be as frugal as I can and only buying essentials.  Even so, things do come up.

Dinner is Friday night pizza.

 

Back from Nakoma

Nakoma is a golf resort and lodge in Northern California. The main attraction is that it was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. Apparently, the plans were uncovered at some point and the investors of this resort bought the rights to the plans. The Lodge is quite spectacular. Apparently, the golf course, named the Dragon, is one of the more challenging ones in the country.  Also, it is for really rich people as witnessed by us.

We had dinner at the Lodge and it was a disaster. The roasted garlic plate was good, not great. My French onion soup I sent back as it was yucky and the Ceasar salad was weird in that the romaine lettuce was chopped or shredded really. I ate about a third.  All in all not impressive which was too bad as it is a unique experience.  Maybe we hit an off night.

Then we headed the next day to Quincy and had breakfast at our favorite place.  I shopped the co- op a little while B worked and then we headed home. It was a lovely fall drive.

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Catching up

We’re still at Tahoe for a few more days. It’s lovely here with fewer kids running around and therefore quieter.  Mostly retired folks.  There are a few families here and there but even the beach is dramatically less busy. Of course, this is the weekend, so it’ll get busier.

We celebrated our 47th wedding anniversary here and planned to go to a fancy place for lunch. But the menu wasn’t impressive and it turned out not to be fancy but order at the counter. This was The Ridge if you’re interested.  So we decided to make fancy cheese and avocado sandwiches in camp and it was perfect. We’ll do something special out sometime. I’m not one to hold to ‘it has to be’ this way so it was easy.

We’ve had 3 Lodge dinners and last night was a pizza again. So much fun to cook with the Lodge.  But tonight we’re thinking a soup or quesadilla. Just an easy meal.

We had fun going to Goodwill and then we’ve been at the grocery store almost every day for either ice or whatever.  But since Safeway is just up at the corner it’s convenient.

We also have been to the gym twice and that was good to do some weights. I need to ramp up my workouts.

OMG, I forgot, the best news of all my LABS came in the normal range. I’m going on 14 months. Pretty amazing!!!!! I see my oncologist the first week of September so it’ll be just a touch base with him. So relieved and obviously, happy.

On a political note, it’s just amazing Trump would pardon Arapio(sp?) . I mean can we go any lower. And now banning transgender going into the service. We are going backward.  Geez, hard to really comprehend how low Trump can go.

Oh, and how bout it’s okay to leave up the Confederate statues to represent oppression because the civil war was about taxes(which I’m sure was part of the picture) and slavery was legal( so it wasn’t about that)?. So we need to keep them as symbols of respect…Well, I’m obviously being facetious and referring to another bloggers post about the whole statue thing so I’ll leave it at that.  This is my blog and I’ll write what I want just as she can write what she wants. We’re all entitled to believe what we believe as long as it doesn’t oppress or hurt others. I’m pretty sure that’s what neo nazis and white supremacists want to do.

Anywho…. it’s a beautiful day in Tahoe. I hope the hurricane in Texas didn’t cause too much damage.

Getting ready for Tahoe

We’re off in a few days for 2 weeks at my favorite place on Earth. Lake Tahoe.  It’s where I want my ashes dropped or at least in the vicinity(ha, ha,).

But the first night it’s just the 2 of us. Then the next day B has to come home because our son is having a surgical procedure and it will involve anesthesia so someone needs to take him and bring him home. So, my daughter will drive up with the dogs for 3 nights and then B will come back up on Sunday.  It will be a little juggling around till Monday and then we should be good. Someone has to be here to take care of the 2 cats and the goat and chickens.  Plus watering gardens.  I’ll drive back down myself probably Monday.

But overall it should be wonderful will nice temperatures and even cool at night.

I’ve been packing dry food and others things. I also put out the 2 Lodges to take.

Mostly it’ll be relaxing, reading and walking. This year we bought a screened tent to put over the table. It may rain so this would help some. I didn’t want to get an EZ up after I saw how big they are and they weigh a lot. Usually, we try and buy one new item each camping season to add to our gear.

Nothing new on the dog front. Haven’t seen the lady or her dogs so I’m hoping she’s not coming to the park at all.

I’m excited I tried making bagels and they came out pretty good. I’d ordered a few things from King Arthur Flour and one was non diastatic barley malt powder.  It’s what makes NY bagels , well, NY bagels. I think they came out great but my oven wasn’t calibrating (which it does from time to time) so the heat wasn’t coming up to 425. So it was a little hit and miss.

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a little fuzzy on the last picture

 

 

 

5 things on Frugal Friday

It’s been somewhat of a frugal week.

  • I didn’t really grocery shop, just picked up a few things at our local market.
  • Needed to go to Target but didn’t.
  • Ate most all of our meals at home with the exception of yesterday we had lunch out(see below).
  • used up things in the refrigerator to make meals ( BBQ tempeh was one).
  • Didn’t order from Amazon but need to do that soon ( a Lodge cast iron pan for my son for school).

We had a fun time going up to Truckee yesterday to get my Senior Golden pass card to the NF, parks and other benefits. B has one and we use that to reserve for Nevada Beach which makes camping there half price. If you are 62, you should go get one as the price will go up to $80 in October. Right now it’s $10.

So I’ve been wanting to go to JAX’s in Truckee that I read about. Guy Ferrera went there and reviewed it as it is a diner. It did not disappoint. The turkey melt with avocado was delicious. B had a chocolate shake and boy was it sweet. Anyway, lots of people up there and traffic on I 80 was thick. But we still had a good time and I got my pass. IMG_0819.jpgIMG_0818.jpg

Today, I’m going to the gym and then to Target to get my notebook for budgeting. Then into the store for a few things like polenta which I like to get bulk.

It’s Friday night pizza on the grill again as it’s supposed to be 101 today.