Sunday, September 07, 2014

Catching Up - Earthquake, Soccer and Camp Out

I haven't been home much over the last few weeks, but it has been fun. I started out with a cooking segment on Fox40 to promote a winemaker dinner with Grgich Hills Estate at The Meritage. Went to Orange County for a few days and got to see all of the hotels that PHG operates in the area, including a construction site in Huntington Beach that will soon be the Pasea. Once back in Napa I enjoyed meeting with Mike Grgich and a fantastic multicourse dinner in the Estate Cave.

Then there were trips to Bayside, a bike ride in Folsom around Lake Natoma, dinner at Trademark Pizza, a 30th birthday party, lots of meals with friends ... and the unexpected, an earthquake in Napa. As soon as I heard about the earthquake I headed to The Meritage, even doing a radio interview with KGO-AM on my way. Although there was not major damage at The Meritage, I and the other staff were busy the day of the quake and for the week after reassuring future guests that they could keep their travel plans. Beyond the earthquake, it was fun to meet with former colleagues during the DoNapa Culinary Crawl in Downtown Napa and to learn about digital photography when cloud cover forced us to cancel our stargazing experience.

Back in Sacramento Camp Bradley welcomed 34 guests on Labor Day Weekend, my dad and I went to a few soccer games to watch the playoff (and hopefully MLS) bound Sacramento Republic FC play at Bonney Field, dinner with family friends, helping River Life Covenant Church get ready for new Sunday School classes, dinner at California Pizza Kitchen, and much more.
Photos for those with iPads.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Hitch, Helicopter and Soccer

I would say it was a busy week, but I think they all are nowadays. I started off on Monday by taking my car to the dealership to get a hitch installed (so I could attach my bike rack) and got the car windows tinted. Wednesday I enjoyed dinner at Flame and Fire in Roseville. Then, beginning Thursday I was in Napa for two days full of pretty exciting meetings talking about new projects and initiatives, plus dinner at Goose and Gander, and I got to see a helicopter land in our parking lot.
On Saturday I took it easy with a five mile run, trip to the gym, church, dinner at Dos Coyotes and saw the Sacramento Republic FC win another game at home. Now time to clean my house, do laundry and pack for another week of fun ... Napa, Newport Beach for two days and more Napa.
Pictures for those with iPads.

Monday, August 04, 2014

Cave Man Diet, Wine and Friends


I started the week off with my last visit to the California State Fair and an amazing soccer game, Sac Republic won 5-0! It was fun to see with my dad, brother and nephew, he also enjoyed pizza while I went with a giant turkey leg.

My trip to Napa this week involved helping film a show that will air in the Bay Area before the Napa Valley Film Festival. The food our culinary team made all looked so delicious that I stayed for dinner too, always a good decision.

Once back in Roseville and Sacramento a few friends and I ended up heading to my parent's house to use their pool, celebrate National Ice Cream Sandwich Day and eat dinner, and then I hosted them for dinner the next night .. rotisserie chicken is always a hit.
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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.
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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.
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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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