Weekend Wrap-Up: Painting and Walking and Friends, oh my

Another nice and relaxing weekend here in Casa de Empty Nest.

I had dinner with some friends on Friday night and then came home and started painting my dining room. I don't have a finished picture yet because every picture I've taken has shown the walls as gray, though they are def more blue than gray. If you know Devine Paints (everyone should, if they don't already), the color is Denim. And it's pretty close in color to what it sounds like. It really offsets the orangy-red walls I painted last June. I completely and totally love the way it turned out. I'm painting the rest of the room Devine Muslin. I'll post pictures when I'm done with the whole space.

Saturday, I went for a walk with a lovely little girl and her mama. 

Looking for "clues" - for something that was never explained...

An egg! The best clue ever. Found by ME!

Looking for the nest that lost the egg...
Woodpecker clue?

Washed out trail.
I love the mossy tree look.

Big birds that were too far away for us to really identify as anything other than "big birds."
Map consulting to make sure we weren't lost (on the only trail, which leads out and back).
Salamander? Tadpole? Lizard? Swimming rodent?
Later on Saturday, I went for thai food and to see Sherlock Holmes with a group of friends. This particular group is quite intelligent and I always love the conversations we have. We are all very different people - kind of like a Gilligan's Island mish-mash group - so it's interesting to see the interactions and different ways we communicate.

I'm up to season three of Breaking Bad - have you seen this show? The first season made me say, "meh" - but then the second season was more like, "whoa!" If you have strong objections that shows that feature drug usage, or drug selling, or some violence (only between drug dealers) - then you probably can skip it. This is what I was told about it: it's a show about a chemistry teacher who finds out he's dying and starts selling drugs to pay his medical bills and help secure his family's finances before he dies. Sounds interesting, right? Because don't we all worry about leaving our family behind with hideous amounts of debt? It's a pretty interesting show, though there were some episodes where I was barely paying attention because it was just a bit slow, but then there were some episodes that made up for it by being BAM-WOW-OMG. I'm not really getting where season 3 is at, the first episode is odd...we'll see what this season turns out to be.

I skyped with my college boy this morning. He's doing well - loves the area, of course. All blue skies, all the time. He's joining a fraternity, which came as a surprise to both of us really, as he wasn't really interested before he got down there. They went on a scavenger hunt the other night. In Hollywood. One which ended at a restaurant that was rented out to their group for the evening. Just another day in LA, right? I'm going down to visit in early March-it will be good to see him in person again-I miss him!!

Are You My Doctor? No, Really...Are You?

I am sure I whined about this last year, but my family doctor left me late last year (as if last year couldn't be worse). Back in the day, I don't think I would have cared, but I have been under his care for six years now, as has Andrew, and it's been great to go to someone who knows my history, and cares (or pretends to) about my life.

I've been visiting a few different doctors in the last 4 months, trying to find a family physician and have had no luck. One lady I visited was super-nice, but she was an FNP (nurse practitioner) not a physician. And it was literally her first day. And I swear it appears as if she googled something on her phone during my appt. And it took her 45 minutes to diagnose something that I had diagnosed before I got there and just needed her help finding the best solution, given my (newly diagnosed at that time) heart condition.

The next lady was really into non-drug treatments, which is fine and all, but sometimes you need to take drugs and just get better quickly. Or at the least, take drugs so you can feel better quickly. She was a bit rude about what my other doctors have done in the past, and I just didn't feel good about us being a good match. We don't all make good couples, right? (or so I've told all my ex-boyfriends)

I saw a doctor at a different clinic altogether, closer to home, and he was nice, but when I told him I didn't have a regular family physician currently, he told me I definitely needed to find one, but he wasn't accepting patients, and then he gave me three different options in that clinic. Irritating - I actually liked him.

The one thing that is constant every time I see someone new is their reaction when they see my list of medications I'm on. There are four heart meds that I take daily that typically you find in the chart of a sixty year old patient. They all say - wow, you're so young to be a heart patient! And then they go to the screen with my age, or just ask me, and then they look again at my records, and then repeat, Wow. The next view in my record is to look at my lab results, and then they comment -wow, no high cholesterol now or in the past?? Hmmm...

The doctor I visited today is probably going to be my new regular family physician. Her comment was: wow, got the unlucky straw with these genetics, huh?

Endearing, right? I like her for her directness. I like her for not making me feel like my heart disease is a sole factor of something I have done - because this disease I have does not come about by something a 37-year old does or doesn't do alone (or so they say).

Anyway, I think this new doctor is The One. Thank goodness. I'm done with the interviews.

Sundays In My City - Things I Love Edition

Skyping with Andrew! I'm so grateful for technology so that I can actually chat/see-in real time- my son while he is away! I love him so much!!!
Whiskers, the korat cat! I started a puzzle this weekend and he is always sitting next to me on the couch, keeping me company.
Ginger, my sweet lovey cat-but mostly so when I have the heated blanket on.

My monthly cable bill. I'm not kidding -this is the extent of money I spend on cable. I watch 95% of my tv shows online, when I want, commercial free. Love this!

Bingo!! One of my bingo club won the $1199 jackpot (the same that I won a couple years ago) last month. VERY exciting!!

This crocheted owl hat that I bought at a work craft fair. Someday I intend to make something similar myself-in a bigger size.

This gray color - I want to paint a couple walls this color on two walls next to this wall I painted last year. Opinions wanted please.

Unknown Mami

Journey to an Empty Nest, Part Two

The last adventure was driving down to California from Oregon. And here is the photo replay of the trip back to Oregon, just my mom and I.

Day One: San Luis Obispo
We spent the morning taking a nice, leisurely walk around SLO, including the mission and the riverwalk. 

San Luis Obispo Mission - c 1772.
The Mission Bell.
Then we headed to the Madonna Inn for lunch and a quick tour of a few of their weird hotel rooms. They have some rooms that have an interior made out of rock walls. Like the ultimate man cave. If you are looking for gaudy, they have nailed it in some of the rooms - flowers of all sorts, lots and lots of pinks. A spectacular place though - if you stay in any of the rooms, you will have the most space in a double room of any hotel ever.
The Madonna Inn. Famous for the wacky rooms and waterfall urinals.
We hit the road from there, taking a scenic drive on our way to San Francisco.

We have family that live in Davenport. In Iowa. We had to get this shot!

Spectacular beach views.

Scenic views everywhere.
Crazy highways along the coast. When I first read this sign, I thought it said "Curve Happens" - like a traffic sign person's sense of humor, playing off "shit happens".
We took a stop in Santa Cruz to walk the boardwalk and visit the ocean.
A turnout off of Hwy 1 where people were kite-boarding. So cool to watch!
We LOVE the palm trees everywhere.
Day Two: San Francisco!
We stopped to visit with Andrew's nana again, shared some cake and some stories with her family, and then settled into our hotel in Union Square. We ate dinner with a homeless guy sitting directly outside the window, staring directly at us. Big city stuff!  I woke early the next day thanks to a wonderful protest happening in Union Square that ended around 8:15-which is when I had hoped to wake up.
My mom has never been to San Fran before so we had a really ambitious day planned. We'll pretend that I didn't have a cold the entire trip back, okay?
First stop: Ferry Building farmers market.
Love farmer's market!

The Ferry Building offers a farmers market. I had the BEST french toast of my life here!

I really wish I had bought this bag!
We rode the street car, but missed out on the cable car ride (next time!).

Next stop - Alcatraz!!!
One of the few tourist places I haven't been in the city. I'm so glad we were able to go, it really is a great historic site. It's run by the state as a national park and it's pretty amazing the way they have it set up for tourism. I would guess there were 3000 people who visit a day, at about $25 each. And there isn't a whole lot of staff on the island from what we could tell, so I would venture to guess they are making a fair bit of money from this place. It is well worth the $25 we spent, very educational and the most amazing views of the city.

A lovely place to visit...but I wouldn't wanna live there!
The only known picture of my mom in jail (that I'm aware of).

View of the city from Alcatraz.
Once we were done at Alcatraz, we hit up Pier 39 and Fisherman's Wharf-a must for any visit to SF.

Next stop was Lombard street - the crookedest (and strangest) street in the world-which we drove down, but it was getting too dark to take photos.

After Lombard was a quick stop at Coit Tower for a view of the city - but we ended up not going in the tower, just looking out from a few vantage points before hitting the road.

Coit Tower - I wanted the blue of the sky, so you just have to accept the dark portraits. But look at that sky!
This was part of every single day in our travels in California. Where are all these people going???

Day Three: no photos - just driving. Lots and lots of driving.

And then I was home. After 7 days on the road, 2350 miles on my new car, over 1000 photos, a lot of traffic jams and a lot of site-seeing...back to the house, where it's just me and the kitties until mid-May.
A whole new world begins....

Journey to an Empty Nest, Part One

Last week, I began this road trip that would venture throughout California and end up at my very own empty nest.

At 37 years old, I dropped my baby boy off at college. And I now live alone for the first time in my life. Very strange. Very surreal.

Andrew and I took a three day journey down to Los Angeles, driving six (ish) hours a day, stopping at one major place a day. It was quite an easy and relaxing drive. I'm very thankful for my new car-it's so comfy and nice to drive.

Day one we went through the Redwoods, Avenue of the Giants and the Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway. If you get carsick -in any way-this route is NOT for you. It's all curves, all the time.
Creative name.
Really. It's big.


Came across a herd of about 30 wild elk.
Eating lunch, so we left them alone.
Next day was San Francisco.
San Francisco was a wee bit foggy.

But the fog cleared out by lunchtime at the pier.
A little chocolate hedgehog! Delicious. I dropped an eyeball on the pier. Sad.
Jellyfish at the aquarium on the pier.
Spirals of fish.

We got lost and stumbled upon this killer museum. We walked the grounds and took a gazillion photos. It's like a painting! Too beautiful to be real.
Took a stop to see Andrew's Nana, who lives in San Fran.
Day three was a drive to L.A.
This ranch literally has over 1,200 cattle!! It's cows as far as you can see. The smell is a tiny bit overwhelming.
Weird mounds of dirt in the middle of nowhere.
And before we knew it, we arrived at USC!!!!!!!!! Remember last time we came here and I was really unhappy that I didn't get a famous Tommy Trojan photo with Andrew? We can disregard that - I finally got one!

Andrew's new home for the next four years!!
And later that day, my sweet little mama flew down and we began the journey back - another three days on the road, nonstop touristy-stuff was ahead. I'll save that for the next post.


Related Posts with Thumbnails