Sunny California

The weather has been spectacular this weekend in the Bay Area. And to think it's snowing on the East Coast! Not missing NYC this weekend at all. But I will say I do miss the east coast falls. Leaves don't change much around here, or at least not in my garden.

I've been inspired by Karin A over here and want to take her up on her challenge of creating a monthly mood board. However, my garden finds are filled with what I would typically associate with Spring!

It will be interesting to see what November brings to my garden and seeing how these mood boards change.

In the meantime, these bright colors are inspiring me to get outside to enjoy the beautiful weather!

View from Moss Beach Distillery

Pillar Point Harbor


Strolling along Pillar Point

Driving along 92
Now this seems like fall!


Random thoughts and yippees

1. My car's horn sounds like a dying lamb. When a car swerves in a front of me, I want to be able to mash on the horn, having it blast out the horn equivalent of "@#**#^^@$^ you, you horrible driver!!!!" Instead, it says "Baaaaaahh."

And then, when there is someone in front of me who hasn't seen the light change to green, I actually just want the horn to say "Ahem, excuse me, light's green!" in a nice friendly gentle-reminder kind of way. Instead, it says "Baaaaaaahh."

And when I want to give a thumb's up to a driver who refuses to let some car cut in front of him, I want my horn to say "Nice move!" Instead, it says "Baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah."

Cars need more than one type of horn, don't they?

2. Pumpkin Brown Butter Cupcakes are awesome. Sprinkle Bakes is awesome. One day my food photography will be as good as hers. One day. Definitely not today. Or tomorrow.

I tried to be good and eat just half
So much for that. Now I must go for a run.

Pumpkin Brown Butter Cupcakes
It would be nice to have a recipe for just one cupcake since I have
absolutely no self-control. Had to bring these to the office to
protect myself and my hips.

3. I was flipping through the Crate and Barrel catalog last night and I saw this:

Not what they're selling. But Ai likey! And I want to find one for my kitchen. The search begins!

4. After I run a gazillion miles to burn off these cupcakes, I'm heading into the city for my first Wild Kitchen! Yippee!! Can't wait, but shhhh, it's a secret!


A garden at its full potential

Still searching for the perfect gardener. Well, not really. I just know I need one, and I keep hoping one will just drop in my lap. Kind of like the perfect man. I might just have to ask my neighbor to loan me hers (the gardener, not her man).

But in the meantime, I tried to attack the weeds and lay down some tarp that I found in the tool shed to prevent their regrowth. I also took to clearing out some of the dying veggies. I grow lettuce every year, and yet, I never harvest what grows. I don't know why. I just let them grow and grow until they start bolting. And then I end up buying lettuce at the farmer's market. Anyhow, as I tore out the lettuce, I was admiring the end product of the lettuce. Maybe that's why I let them bolt. Just to let them grow to their full potential. Or I'm just lazy.

After tearing out the lettuce, I took to the peas, chives and a variety of herbs. Yes, I let them all grow to their full potential.

Dried out pea pods. They look like aliens

Chives. I really like the dried out flowers



These guys never quite made it to their full potential
Anyhow, I still have to trim the hedges and rake the leaves. Prune the plum tree. Mow the front lawn. Weed, weed and weed. Pull out the overgrown banana canna (I really don't wanna banana canna... ok, that was bad). And by the time I finish all that, I'll have to do it all over again. Aaaackkk!!!!! Must... get... help...


Crafts and Cocktails

Cocktails on a Sunday afternoon seemed like a good idea at the time. Unfortunately, one cocktail led to two, which led to... well, more. An afternoon became an evening, and today, it has hit me for the umpteenth time that I am not in my twenties anymore. Sigh. Doesn't help that I threw out my back this morning. All I did was lean over slightly and I felt a sharp pain down my back. Now it's all spazzed out. Definitely not in my twenties anymore.

Anyhow, prior to my cocktail extravaganza, I was crafting away this weekend. I am in a very crafty state of mind these days. I've been making these magazine bowls for friends, it's like knitting. But instead of a basket of yarn, I have my basket of folded magazine pages.

My basket of folded magazine pages (from the Restoration Hardware catalog)

Coiled up pages, original DIY here

Another use for the coil

I filled this bowl with paper flowers, but forgot to take a photo

Also, block letters are all the rage these days, but they are hecka expensive. I thought I would put some old cardboard boxes to good use, along with pages from an old dictionary. I was sort of inspired by this pinata DIY.

Brought to you by the letters "R" and "S"

S is for songbirds
S is for Songbirds, tweet tweet

Some branches and tissue paper make a simple decoration

Here's one of those paper flowers

I gave the letters to my friends as a housewarming gift. They loved them! Now I just need to find some time to make the whole alphabet!


My garden

Dear Garden,

I love you, I truly do.
When we first met three years ago, you were run down.

But with some hard work and little sweat (ok, a lot of sweat)
I helped to mend you.

We created a lovely relationship.
So many days spent together.
You've given me so many gifts.
We have run around and played together.
We have enjoyed evenings watching movies together.
We have sat in silence, and it has all been glorious.

I have loved your colors, your shapes
You have welcomed my friends, my family.
You have been wonderful.

But you have let yourself go... I know that's just your nature.
You've let your branches run wild

Your grasses grow long

You throw your leaves all over the place

You've spread yourself past your boundaries.

I need some space
It's me, not you.

I've tried to do it on my own.
But I can't.
It's just too hard.

We need help. I know we've tried in the past.
And they never really seemed to care to get to know you.
Just in and out, on auto-pilot.
I'll find someone good, I promise.
We can both be happy...

Yeah, it's time to get a gardener. I'm giving in.


Music festivals

I feel like a teenage groupie these days, going to a million concerts, blasting my poor ear drums out, standing near the front line getting smooshed by true teenage groupies. Not sure if it's a midlife crisis, or that I just love music. I'll go with the latter.

Anyhow, this past Sunday was the Treasure Island Music Festival. It was a beautiful day, with the bay and the city as the backdrop. Unfortunately, my camera was temporarily confiscated as it was "too professional" to allow in the concert. Puh-lease. Ok, yes, I did have a 100-300 mm lens, but it's this cheap lens made by a company called Quantary. If you are looking to buy a zoom lens but can't afford the $500 price tag, this is a great one to start with.

TI Music

Well, without my "professional" camera, it was just me and my iPhone 3G. (Obviously, I'm not a techie although I wouldn't mind getting the newest iPhone just for a better camera. But can I say that the new iPhones are more expensive than my "professional" camera lens? Am I bitter that I couldn't have my camera there. No, of course not.)

So Ai and her Ai-Phone (yes, I just went there). And Ai had my eye in the sky (oh, someone please stop me).

Treasure Island Music Fest

The Head and the Heart was just fantastic. A-ma-zing. I was singing and smiling from ear to ear. The sun was starting to set behind them, a breeze blowing their hair, wisps of fog dancing through them, and their harmonies were just luscious. It was a beautiful setting, not sure if that can even be captured on camera, professional or not.

The concert ended with Death Cab for Cutie, another favorite. I was hoping to see Zooey Deschanel (married to lead singer Ben Gibbard) up on the stage doing the chicken dance, but no such luck. There were some interesting jellyfish dancing though...

Next up, Bridge School Benefit? Tickets are sold out, but I'm going to see if I can get my hands on some...

free graphic for myspace
Remember, I'm not a techie. Animated through gickr.com

TI Music Fest

Sunset on the bay
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