Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Beaches "Corner View Path"

What is a trip to California without a trip to the Beach.  Nothing right!  One has to go to the beach when going to California.  It is a must!!!! While there are many great beaches in California my favorite is Laguna Beach.  I also like Dana Point and I like Crystal Cove which are both on each side of Laguna.  Now skip Laguna city center beach which is always crowded, but just go a little farther down the street towards Dana Point and you will be assured to find a parking spot and for pretty cheap.  Just a dollar an hour.  Laguna just has such a fun atmosphere and once you are done with the beach and  are totally starving which you will be as sea air always makes me hungry you will find so many great places to eat nearby and some fun places to shop too!  This is where I would live if we had a gazillion dollars!  The houses are fantastic !  It is my happy place here in the United States.  I don't even have to get out of the car to be happy driving down the Pacific Coast Hwy through these towns.  My heart just sings!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

California Adventure

The last time I was in California, California Adventure didn't even exist.  Since we were just at Disney World in April with my mother-in-law and nephew in April we thought we would skip going to Disney and just do California Adventure.  Such a good decision!  While the park is smaller than Disney it is a really fun park though it could offer a few more rides for smaller children.  The girls were just about an inch away from riding many of the rides.  Boo!  My two favorite rides were Soaring through California which takes you on a journey through California landscapes and the second was Radiator Spring Racers.  So much fun!!!  Winston loved the giant roller coaster.  This park focuses on more of the modern movies such as Ariel, Cars, Monster Inc, and Toys Story.  At the end of the day, the offer a really fantastic dancing water show.  Word of advice though if you want to see that show is you need a fast pass ticket to get a good spot to see it.  I didn't know this.  We still were able to see the show, but the children really had a hard time seeing.  What was nice about this park is that it wasn't as crowded as Disney and we were able to walk on most of the rides except for an exception of a few rides.  The children had a blast!

Monday, June 29, 2015


Every time I would turn on the TV, read a blog, or see pictures of California on Facebook my heart would do a little happy dance and it became more and more apparent  I needed to go home.  You see, I was born in California and lived there until I was 11 and even after we moved to Alaska many vacations were spent in California.  The last time I was in California was 8 years ago when my son Roman was just a baby.  My husband had won and award for his work and we were given an all expense paid trip to Laguna Beach, California.  We stayed at the Ritz Carlton.  Looking back on those few days seems all like a dream.  It was so magical.  We arrived in Los Angeles on Friday.  My husband couldn't get away from work and Harris is in Chicago for national FBLA competition, so my mother came along with me to help me with the children.  Our first stop was In & Out Burger.  So so good and so so crowded; however, just as good as I remembered it to be.  Then it was on to Santa Monica.  The beach and pier are a pretty fun place to hang out and had we had more time we would have walked along the 3rd street esplanade.  Sadly, it was only in the 60's .  The water was freezing. It didn't stop some of us at least putting our toes in the water.  Stay tuned for more adventures.  We will be here in California for the next week and a half.  Have you ever been to L.A.?  What was your favorite thing you saw?

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Monochrome "Corner View"

In honor of the Dragon Boat Festival this past week, I thought I would take you back to China through monochrome eyes.

Corner View is a weekly gathering - each Wednesday - created by Jane of Spain Daily, where bloggers from all corners of the world share their view on a pre-arranged theme. If you'd like to join in, please leave a link to your Corner View post in the comments below, and be sure to visit other participants too.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Saturday, June 20, 2015


Full of sass and always talking little miss always keeps me on the go.  She is the master brain behind the trouble but sweet as a bug!  She loves to dress up but always seems to look like a hot mess. We adore this one and are so happy she came to our family.  She loves to color, paint, and plaster stickers wherever she believes a sticker belongs.  She is kind and a good friend not only to her sister but to the other kids at school and church.  Her favorite color purple!  Her favorite food is peas and noodles. She loves fruit!  Her favorite TV show is Daniel the Tiger and Barney.  She does not like animals. They scare her to hyperventilation.  She adores her siblings!  Her favorite song is follow the prophet and itsy bitsy spider.  Her papa is the favorite!  She loves her dolls.  She likes to play at the park and swim.

Happy Birthday Addy Cakes!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Cashew Chicken and The Week from HE Double Hockey Sticks!

WOW!  This week was long.  My husband has been out of town all week and boy being a single parent to 5 children is not for the faint in heart.  The hardest part was that I didn't have a second driver, so that left it all up to me.  On Tuesday, I think I spent about 4 1/2 hours in the car!  It doesn't help that this city has some of the worst traffic in the United States.  All I can say is I am glad that it is the weekend and tomorrow I can sleep in!  I have been getting up every morning to drive my son to the train station.  The train station is about a half hour away from my house.  Coming home from the train station at night takes about 45 minutes.  I guess I shouldn't complain because if I had to drive him all the way into the city we would be looking at an 1 1/2 hour drive due to the traffic.  If you follow me on instagram, you may have seen that the girls got into some diaper cream and covered themselves and the play room with the cream.  The worst part was the carpets. I just about cried. After two hours of scrubbing, I gave up and called a carpet cleaner who was thankfully able to get it out!  Another night, I left the girls with my older son so that I could take Winston to his church youth group activity and the girls found the scissors and cut their hair.  Once again, thankfully they didn't go hog while and only cut off a strand on each others heads.  On top of this we have had construction crews hear all week finishing up the backyard patio.  The noise from the power washers and saws makes me want to check into the crazy house. Now you can see why I am glad this week is over,  The only good discovery of the week was finding out how easy it is to make Cashew Chicken.  Reading that book on China got me in the mood for Chinese Food.  I don't know why I always think it is hard to make, but it isn't.  If you like Chinese food you have to try this recipe.

adapted from a Martha Stewart recipe

Cashew Chicken
3 chicken breast cut into bite size pieces
1/2 a head of broccoli cut into bite size pieces and cooked until tender.
2 Tablespoons of Canola Oil
1Tablespoon of cornstarch
3/4 cup of cashews
6 Tablespoons of minced garlic
8 scallions cut
salt and pepper to taste
4 Tablespoons of rice wine vinegar
6 Tablespoons of hoisin sauce
1/4 cup of water.
Serve with brown or white rice

Toss chicken with salt, pepper, and cornstarch.  Brown in oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When the chicken is almost cooked add garlic, scallions, and broccoli.  Whisk together rice wine, hoisin sauce and water and pour over chicken.  Cook for about another minute or two until sauce has thickened and chicken is cooked through.

I hope you all have a great weekend!  We are off to the pool and counting down the minutes when my husbands plane arrives from Bonaire tomorrow night.  

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Paper "Corner View"

I have a love hate relationship with paper.  On the one hand paper is useful for so many things like this cute little creation from Addy or books that I so dearly love.  Yes, I am one of the last few people to convert to the electronic books.  My husband even gave me a tablet recently and told me to download all the books I want till my little heart is content, but I just can't.  I love the smell of the paper and turning the pages. The opportunity to underline a great quote or turn down the corner of the page when I need to remember the page I am on. Electronic books are just not the same.  We go through a ridiculous amount of paper in this house as I have a couple budding artist.  Addy could paint for hours if you would let her and even Roman has a creative streak.  My hate comes in stacks of paper throughout my house.  I feel like I am in a constant battle.  I throw one piece away and two or three seem to spring up in it's place.

Corner View is a weekly gathering - each Wednesday - created by Jane of Spain Daily, where bloggers from all corners of the world share their view on a pre-arranged theme. If you'd like to join in, please leave a link to your Corner View post in the comments below, and be sure to visit other participants too.