I worked from a client's office two days this week on the Peninsula. There's nothing remarkable about this except for the fact that Alan's office is literally right down the street. As I was getting off the freeway - taking the Half Moon Bay exit - I thought to myself, "wouldn't it be cute to call Alan and suggest that we meet up after work and head to Half Moon Bay for a nice dinner on the beach?" As soon as I thought it, I figured there would be 1001 reasons why we couldn't do it. Except, I couldn't figure out what any of them would be. We were - again - literally right down the street from one another, it was a Friday evening so we shouldn't be working too late, and HMB is a short distance away from San Mateo.
When I called him to broach the subject I prefaced it with the fact that he'd probably think I'm crazy (I have a lot of hair-brained schemes), but he was into it. All I needed to do was find a place to go and make reservations. While I was in a brainstorm, he texted me about a brew pub but according to the people I was with it was only marginally good. And besides, we had a long drive home afterwards and going to a place devoted to beer probably isn't a good idea.
After asking around we ended up at Sam's Chowder House on the main highway, overlooking a beautiful little bay.
The drive over 92 down to the beach is just gorgeous - I wish I would have gotten pictures but I forgot.
When we got to Sam's the parking lot was very crowded which I thought was a bad sign but because we had a reservation for a little bit later, they were able to seat us out on the patio overlooking the water but protected by a glass wind barrier.
Alan had wanted to get a raw plate to share but because this little excursion was my idea I wanted to get the lobster clam bake. When we were in Maine several years ago (2000?) we went to Ogunquit - or was it Wells? - and ended up joining some sort of family reunion thing (not our family) at a big barn building for a lobster clam bake. It was one of our best meals during that trip.
The clams and mussels were very good but the lobster was only okay, unfortunately. What was also delicious was the onion and potatoes that were sitting below all the seafood soaking up their juices. By the time we were finished I was so disgustingly full that it was hard to move. For someone who has to wear a bathing suit in a couple of weeks, you wouldn't think I was concerned.
After dinner we walked down the beach where I was promptly attacked by million of sand fleas, and yes, I have even more bite marks on my feet/ankles to show for it. What can I say, I'm sweet!
It seems like Tuesday is the day I get a lot of home decor newsletters delivered to my inbox. I spend some time in the morning reading the ones I'm interested in; from there I find even more places to check out. Today, I'm all about rooms with vintage charm or tropical undertones.
What I love about this bathroom is many-fold. The clawfoot tub, the giant mirror (imagine the room lit up by candles, the flames reflected in that sapce), the vintage white hexagon tiles and the beat up farm table as a vanity area. Oh, and I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the wire basket for holding extra white fluffy towels. Oh, and the light. As someone who currently has a tiny, dark, dingy bathroom, this space speaks to everything I would want in a space.
Again, another design element I'd like to add to our home. We have two giant washers that can be side-by-side (as they are now) or stacking (as they used to be). I'd love to install a nice countertop, add beadboard to the walls, paint everything a bright white and add cute accessories. Right now the room looks like a giant dump space and it's just kind of dirty and ugly and boring.
I'm a sucker for pale blue & black furniture together (our loft dining room stuck to this color scheme). What I absolutely love about this room - and miss about our loft - are those big windows and all that sunlight. I say that now, but I also remember how damn hot it got when we couldn't keep the sunlight out.
It's hard to believe this isn't a coastal cottage, but according to Beach Cottage Love this farmhouse is actually on a 180-acre farm in Round Top, Texas. No beach in sight, but the owners still managed to capture that light, bright, breezy feel that you typically see in CA and FL cottages. And can you believe that porch swing?! Where do I get one of my own?
Since we could all use a little inspiration to help kick-start our how we design our home for better - more pleasant - living, I'll be doing posts like this on a semi-regular basis. Stay tuned for the interiors, exteriors and other inspiration for things that make a house a home.
Last night after dinner I was planning to lay in the hammock in the backyard. One step out the back door and I was hit with a hundred little raindrops. It was warm - but cooling - the sky was this strange taupe color and fat droplets of water were hitting the ground everywhere with loud ker-thunk noises. I looked to my right and through the trees of my neighbors house saw the makings of a double rainbow. It wasn't the best vantage point, so I ran to the front yard where Alan pointed out it was a whole rainbow stretching across the sky. What a sight! The only other place I've seen a full rainbow - double at that! - was in Hawaii. What a gift from mother nature.
I only had my iPhone with me so the pictures aren't great quality, but this was one of the most vivid rainbows I've ever seen. You could distinctly make out the red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple color spectrums like magic bands of light.
About five 4th of July's ago, we had reservations to go camping in Humboldt Redwoods State Park. Dakota got sick and we spent the weekend with her in and out of the vet, hoping she'd be okay. Since that time, we talked a lot about making our way up to Humboldt but for one reason or another plans never crystallized.
Back at the beginning March I realized, "Oh crap, 4th of July is only 4 months away!" and decided to get cracking on getting a camping reservation for Lake Tahoe. Ha! Apparently those reservations are taken nearly a year in advance. (Note to self: start planning for next year, next month.) Undeterred from our desire to go camping again after a long hiatus, I researched other state parks we'd seen at one point or another. And that's when I remembered - Humboldt Redwoods State Park. Unfortunately that park too was full, so we settled for another one right down the road, Richardson Grove State Park.
Unfortunately, as we were gearing up for camping - buying new supplies & provisions for the weekend - Alan came down with a bad cold. He rarely gets sick but when he does, watch out. Fever, coughing, sore throat - the whole lot. It looked touch & go there for awhile - right up until Friday morning, in fact. We finally left the house around noon and wouldn't you know, hit a mass of traffic in Petaluma. What should have been a 3.5 hour drive ended up being a 4.5 hour drive - but that was nothing compared to coming home!
The first thing we saw when we pulled up to the park was a deer in a meadow right by the check in stand. Bodes well, no? Then we saw a long line of cars in front of us waiting to check in as well - didn't bode so well (noise and all that). Finally we checked in and made our way to the campsite - right by the main highway. That'd be 101 for all you west coasters who know what that means. Yeah, we could hear road noise the entire trip. For those that don't know, 101 is a major route that runs between CA, OR and WA and is traversed by all types of vehicles, including semis and tractor trailers. It was LOUD. After a while the noise kind of faded into the background but every now and then you'd be shocked into realizing just where you were. Aside from the noise, our campground was really gorgeous - at the end of a loop, extremely large and somewhat secluded from everyone but our nearest neighbors (who were serious wanna be thugs, compelete with pit bull and all).
After setting up our tent and relaxing for a bit, we walked over to the river to check out the "seasonal swimming hole." I'd read on various blogs that there was great swimming along the Eel River and we caught glimpses of the river as we drove down the highway so I was definitely excited. Much to my happiness, the river and the little swimming hole did not disappoint. But first, you had to cross a little bridge to get to the other side. Me and bridges? Not so good - yes, even though it was tiny. If you look closely you'll notice broken boards. *shudder*