Sunday, June 29, 2008

Smoke Alarm

So we've had this smoke situation for the past week. There were wild fires to the north and south of us last weekend and lucky us in the Bay Area ended up with all the smoke in our air. Usually we enjoy clear blue skies every day. This week we have been forced to endure grey, smoke filled skies - it looks like its overcast but there's actually not a single cloud in the sky. Its kind of creepy actually. We've been instructed to stay indoors as much as possible to avoid any health complications - although it took the authorities about 3 days to issue the warning.

This is Monday June 23rd. At the end of that road you should be able to clearly see hills in the background but they are barely visible.

This is Thursday June 26th. You can barely even see the outline of the hills - way too much smoke in the air!!!

Things are looking more normal today and there is even a hint of blue in the sky. Hopefully we'll be breathing clean air again in no time!

Here are the 3 pics side by side for your viewing pleasure :-)

Saturday, June 28, 2008


This morning Josh was at work and I should have been cleaning the apartment, so naturally I decided to go shopping. I checked out the candy section at Cost Plus to see if they had any of my favorite South African and English candies. I was so excited to see these:

I absolutely LOVE liquorice allsorts!!! It is rare that I find them in stores - I usually have to stock up when I go to England, or buy them from an overpriced online store. I love how it says "proper sweets" - so English! Josh (like most Americans) is not a fan of black liquorice so I also got some chocolate so he wouldn't feel left out. Also, they were giving all customers a free Eco tote which I thought was awesome - especially since its a totally snazzy cream cotton one and is much cuter than the ones I've bought from other stores!

After that I decided to have a quick look in Pier 1 since its right next door (and yes I realize this was an unnecessary stop since I was just there on Sunday) and bought a bar of dark chocolate soap. I love eating chocolate so why not try bathing in it?! I should really wait to try it since I already have 5 bars of soap in the shower but patience isn't really one of my virtues so I'm sure it'll be in the shower tomorrow morning :-)

Friday, June 27, 2008


A couple of weeks ago I got the idea in my head that I wanted to make my own soap. When I told Josh I wanted to make soap he said "what do you want to do that for - we have tons of Dove in the bathroom cupboard!" haha - men are so simplistic. Anyway I ordered some supplies online and this week I made my first attempt. It didnt go very well - apparently I'm not a natural soaper!

The first batch was lemon verbena scent and I was trying to color it a nice bright yellow. Those brown specks are color pigment I couldnt get to mix in - not so attractive. I also totally overdid it with the fragrance oil and the soap makes the entire bathroom smell like lemon verbena - oops!

Next we have an attempt at a color swirl. I waited too long to pour the blue soap and the white was already setting up so the blue didnt go all the way to bottom of the mold. I did a better job with the fragrance on this batch and they have a pleasant minty flavor.

Definitely back to the drawing board on this project! :-)

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Weekend Antics

On Saturday it was super hot and I felt bad that Josh had to work so I decided to make him some cupcakes. I was lazy and made the cake from a box but I did make the frosting from scratch (store bought frosting is gross!). I am no pastry chef but I tried to get creative with the frosting and they came out pretty cute - even Josh thought so. Most importantly they were delish!

This was my favorite one :-)

A couple months ago I found these little swallow charms and made this necklace with them:

I totally fell in love with the little birds and I've been thinking about some more interesting necklaces I could make with them. Anyway, I've been collecting different beads and charms and today I sat down and made 8 necklaces! I like them all but there is one that I really love. Some of them are gifts so I will have to wait until they have reached their new homes before I post pics. I dont know why I love these little birds so much because I dont really like real birds ... wierd ...

In other news Josh and I were browsing in Pier 1 this morning and I came across this pillow:

I think its adorable and I would love to have it in my living room! Unfortunately it only comes in blue and our color scheme is black and white with warm accents - not really a place light blue fits in. Josh would kill me if I decided to redecorate the entire room to incorporate a cute pillow so I'm going to do the next best thing - try to make my own version. If my project works I'll post pics ... and if I never mention it again you'll know it was a heinous disaster!

Saturday, June 21, 2008


Since I posted a picture of how Hobbes spends most of her day I figured I should also post one of Monkey's favorite pose. Cats are known for their grace but he is definitely an exception ...

Monday, June 16, 2008

Walkie Talkies

This past Saturday was the National Kidney Foundation's 2008 Kidney Walk. The dialysis clinic I work at formed a team of staff and patients and we had a great time walking for charity. Thanks to our many generous sponsors we raised over $2700 and were the second highest fundraising team!

Saturday, June 14, 2008


This is how sweet little Hobbes spent most of the day on Friday. I certainly wouldnt mind the life of a cat!

Friday, June 13, 2008


Since I had way too many cherries to eat in a few days I decided to try bottling some to eat later. I had never bottled before so I was a little nervous but everything seemed to go according to plan. This morning I opened a bottle to see how they tasted and they are delicious!!! They will be perfect with vanilla ice cream :-)

Monday, June 9, 2008

Sweet and Juicy

This past weekend Josh and I went out to the Brentwood fruit orchards to pick cherries. I was super excited! Josh wasnt really into it but he went with me so I didnt have to go alone. I tasted a cherry when we first walked into the orchard and it was the most delicious cherry I've ever had - so sweet and juicy! Most of the trees were picked clean and only had a few cherries on the very top branches but then we came across this jackpot tree that was completely covered in fruit - it was amazing! We had only planned to pick about 2 pounds of fruit but got carried away at the jackpot tree and picked 7 pounds!!! When we went to pay the guy at the register said it was getting close to closing time and if we walked to the end of the driveway and changed the sign from 'open' to 'closed' we could have the cherries for $5 - what a bargain! Now I just have to figure out how to use up 7 pounds of cherries ...
I think in the end Josh had a good time and he might even go back with me to pick peaches - woohoo!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

A New Blog

Since my other blog is shared with a friend and it was started to post our photography efforts I dont want to clutter it with unrelated posts, but I still want to post my ramblings somewhere. And so this blog is born.