Saturday, July 26, 2014

The Crazy Life

In the last few months I'm not sure if I have spent more than four days in a row at my house .... and I'm not complaining at all. I've spent a lot of time in Napa, been to the Bradley Lodge a few times and over the last few days I was in Newport Beach.

The Meritage Resort and Spa has been keeping me busy as I work on a variety of marketing projects, including a lot of print projects as we implement a new version of the logo. With events for 4th of July, Latin Nights with the trumpet player from Santana's band and many other events and activities it's been a lot of fun so far ... including going to see the chef (I needed a fork) ... he wouldn't let me leave without a spoon and pint of ice cream. I also got my official work laptop ... bringing me up to a total of three laptops that I use on a regular basis and two that I will be traveling with.

When not traveling out of the region I was able to have friends over for a BBQ'd chicken dinner, go to church at Bayside and dinner at Jack's, plus head to the State Fair twice for Sacramento Republic FC soccer games. I hadn't been to the fair in years and it was fun to walk through all the exhibits, including the one all about candy, see a few of the animals, walk through the garden, featuring Ironstone Vineyards vines, the 9/11 Memorial, and even taste some great wines for free from SaveMart. The two soccer games were also a lot of fun, especially after a friend invited us down to his field level seats, although they didn't win the two games I went to (both against International upper division teams), we played hard and had nothing to be ashamed of. With all the traveling I also decided one night that I wanted to stay home and watched the game from home with commentary through their live YouTube channel.

This week I headed down to a sister property of The Meritage Resort and Spa, The Balboa Bay Resort in Newport Beach. It was so much fun to see the property for the first time, eat at their newly remodeled restaurant/gastropub "A & O", go out into Balboa Bay on a Duffy boat, and hang out with my team from The Meritage, while also getting to meet lots of people that I have only known through email for the last few months and years.

After a quick flight back to Sacramento I was off to The Meritage for a reporter visit and tour (I had been trying to get the reporter to come to Napa and The Meritage for four years, he confirmed Thursday night that he could come for a tour and dinner). It was so much fun to chat and talk about the entire property, and with the pictures that were posted of dinner, I know the team at Siena treated them well.
Pictures for those with iPads.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Playing Tourist at the Bradley Lodge

After buying a new car on Tuesday I put it to the test beginning Wednesday. I started my nearly 500 mile "test drive" to Napa on Wednesday morning and ended today after spending time with friends at the Bradley Lodge. After two days in Napa, I met friends on Thursday evening at my parents' house and headed to the Bradley Lodge to play tourist for a few days.

Friday we drove down to Murphys for the day, visiting Mercer Caverns, downtown Murphys, and Ironstone Vineyards. The caverns are always impressive, lunch at Firewood was tasty, and Ironstone was a great place to finish out our day with a little bit of wine and I got to show my friends the giant piece of gold they have in their museum, while also showing them the beautiful grounds of the winery and amphitheatre.

On Saturday we took a shorter drive down to Big Trees State Park to see big trees and drove down to Beaver Creek for lunch and exploration. Once back at the Bradley Lodge we decided to go to the pool and then met up with my parents to head down to Arnold for a Saturday night concert in the park to listen to Chains Required, who we had heard open for Shane Dwight at the Ironstone Fourth of July celebration a few years ago.

After packing up on Sunday we took one last field trip to the Sierra Nevada Logging Museum and White Pines Lake. It was my first time going inside the museum and it was fun to read about some of the equipment they had and to find out there was a chainsaw with the same name as my brother.
Photos for those with iPads.

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Giving, Photos, Party and Fireworks

In the last two weeks I have been at my house for about 72 hours. I've given blood at BloodSource, been to the downtown Napa and Arnold 4th of July Parades, seen fireworks and Shane Dwight Band at Ironstone Amphitheatre in Murphys, gone to two Sacramento Republic FC soccer games at Bonney Field and I've been working for (no longer just with) The Meritage Resort a lot. Last week I was busy with the resort's photographer taking photos of all the newly remodeled guestrooms, suites and ballroom, plus helped with their first "Red, White and BBQ" party on 4th of July, and got my new desk all set up. To top off my last two weeks I headed to Future Ford of Roseville to get my brakes worked on and instead of paying for new brakes ended up driving home a new 2014 Ford Escape. It wasn't exactly in my plans for the day, but I love the new car smell, amenities and it's brakes seem to work great so far.
Photos for those with iPads.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Soccer in Napa and Sacramento, Plus Golf Lessons

It was a week full of sports ... I started out at Crush Ultra Lounge at The Meritage Resort and Spa to help film a promotional video. Luckily it was during the Wold Cup USA v. Ghana game, so I was able to watch a little during our filming. Later in the week I started golf lessons at Woodcreek Oaks Golf Course in Roseville, after four hours of lessons I think I'm nearly ready for the PGA tour (maybe watching more than playing). I also had the opportunity to head to Bonney Field at Cal Expo, the new home of the Sacramento Republic FC. It was awesome to be able to sit so close to the field and to see our team win with a last minute goal on their new home field! There was also eating with friends ... we went healthy, mixed greens with rotisserie chicken (and maybe a little ice cream for dessert).
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Sunday, June 15, 2014

Running in Napa and the Lady A Concert at Ironstone

I've worked in Napa for about five years, but last week was the first time I went on a real run in Napa. I went with a few employees to Skyline Park and we ran to Lake Marie... 2.5 miles up hill to start and then 2.5 miles downhill to finish. After working in Napa for a few days I headed to the Bradley Lodge to be with family for Father's Day Weekend and for the Lady Antebellum concert at Ironstone Amphitheatre. The concert was amazing and the wine flowed too. Once back at the Bradley Lodge we were able to spend time at the pool, eat great food, I took a run into Big Trees State Park and we headed to a community Father's Day Pancake Breakfast. While my parent's are still at the Bradley Lodge I headed to their house and cooked up some of their vegetables for my dinner.
Photos for those with iPads.

Monday, June 09, 2014

Good Day Sacramento, Stand Up Paddle Boarding and a Day on the Farm

It was a great week to hang out with friends. It started of with a trip to Good Day Sacramento as Chef Krisztian Karkus from The Meritage Resort and Spa showed how to make "Cured Gravlax with Scandinavian Mustard Sauce and Arugula." After lots of the work I love, by Saturday it was time to get outside and exercise. Some friends and I went to the Sac State Aquatics Center at Lake Natoma. We rented two stand up paddleboards and one kayak and we were off. It was a fun way to spend time, get outside, exercise and learn a new skill (for me at least), stand up paddleboarding. Since we were all in swim suits our next stop was Beach Hut Deli for sandwiches and, for me, beer.

On Saturday night we stopped for McFlurry's (it was 100+ degrees outside) before making our way to the last Sacramento Republic FC game at Hughes Stadium. I wore one of my new shirts, and we found shade, actually staying pretty cool for the entire game as temperatures dropped into low 80s at the end of the game, best part ... our team scored a goal in the 93 minute to tie the game!

Sunday didn't provide much relief to the heat, but that didn't stop me from heading to the Sinclair Family Farm in Newcastle for their "Day on the Farm," and a trip to the gym, Islands Restaurant for dinner with friends and church at the very well air-conditioned, Bayside.
Pictures for those with iPads.

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Seeing the Kids, New SacRepublic Gear, Burgers and Grilling

Since I started my company, there hasn't been a "normal" week, that said, each week brings new challenges and new reasons why starting it was the right decision. This week was no exception. I was able to take my grandma to medical appointments at Standford Medical Center (thankfully all is well and her next scheduled appointment isn't until May 2015). I worked from waiting rooms and hospitality areas, making me so glad that virtually everywhere has WiFi nowadays, which makes working from anywhere possible. Along with the drive to the Bay Area we got to see my brother and his family, plus watch my youngest nephew sing on his last day of preschool. Once back in Sacramento and on my way back to Roseville I stopped at the #SacTweetup that was being held at the Sacramento Republic FC office. It was fun to see so many friends I hadn't seen in awhile, enjoy great food and I even won four Sac Republic t-shirts (and purchased a practiced jersey and key-chain/bottle opener).

On Friday one of my pictures from my week of Skippy was used by the company, which was pretty cool. I also took a DVD of media clips up to Loomis Basin Equine Medical Center and then headed to my parents' former neighbor's house for dinner ... thick grilled steaks, corn and vegetables. I brought the wine, while my mom and grandma worked on a custom new BBQ cover.

Saturday and Sunday were busy days of cleaning my house (doing the things I don't like ... dusting/cleaning the plantation shutters and mopping), but I also had time for fun. I went to church and Red Robin with friends on Saturday and fired up my BBQ on Sunday to grill some chicken for the week.
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