Showing posts from 2011

Sierra Nevada Brewery Tour

We went to the second largest micro-brewery today ... Sierra Nevada in Chico. My dad (a beer aficionado) was perhaps the most excited for the trip, but my mom, grandma and I were all looking forward to the tour as well. We started off at the gift shop and by looking at the impressive antique Santa collection they have, then it was tour time. We got to smell the hops, see the grinder, take a look at the various tanks and learn about the entire process before heading in to see where the beer is bottled and packaged for shipping. The tour finished up with free beer tasting, not a bad way to finish up if you ask me.

Beyond the tasting and tour I was impressed by the fact that they produce most of their own electricity through solar panels on every roof and hydrogen fuel cells and they ship their used barley to farms throughout the state as feed for cows. They also offer benefits similar to what you might get at Google or Facebook including "beer bucks" with every paycheck (rede…

A Progressive Christmas

Since we celebrated Christmas with the entire family a few weeks ago in Redwood City, we had a low key Christmas Eve and Christmas Day this year. We started off by heading to my grandma's in Lodi on Christmas Eve. After picking her up we headed to take some time to remember my grandpa at the cemetery before heading to see family in Modesto. After great conversation and tasty pizza we headed back to Lodi.

On Christmas Day we slept in, had a scrumptious breakfast and headed to the movies. I was surprised to see a long line at the Lodi Cinema before 10 a.m., evidently lots of people enjoy going to the movies on Christmas Day. We saw War Horse (really good movie) and even got free popcorn since we signed up for the e-newsletter. Once the movie was done we headed back to my grandma's house, spoke with all of the family via ooVoo (like Skype), FaceTime and Tango, played Pinochle and then it was time for Prime Rib and wine. Although I had eaten plenty of cookies already, we piled in…

Social Life

Sometimes I think I don't have much of a social life, but over the last week I have had an event to attend almost every afternoon or evening. I started off with a happy hour at Claim Jumper on Monday with a business networking group I'm a part of. Tuesday my entire office came together to cook for 17 families who needed a holiday meal through Volunteers of America. Wednesday I helped deliver the meals during lunch, then went to Chick-Fil-A for dinner before checking out Christmas lights in Rocklin with some friends. Thursday I had a lunch with Citizen Voice/Safely Out at Pride Industries in Natomas, I sit on their marketing and communications committee. Friday it was time to discuss the next Placer Business Tweetup over lunch at Freebirds.

Saturday I worked on cleaning my house to get ready to have seven family friends over for dinner on Sunday. Sunday my roommate and I prepared a tasty pasta dish for friends and then everyone headed to Bayside for a Christmas service featuri…

Christmas, a few weeks early

Since my brother and his family will be in Oregon and Washington celebrating Christmas we got to celebrate Christmas a few weeks early. We also celebrated my aunt's birthday right on time since she flew in with my uncle and cousin from Texas for the day Saturday.

I helped kid-sit on Friday before and after my field trip to Facebook until my parents and grandma arrived. Once they arrived my brother and sister-in-law headed to the Facebook Christmas Party at San Francisco's City Hall (it looked like a spectacular event). Saturday my dad and I headed to SFO to pick up my aunt and her family. Once we we arrived back we celebrated my aunt's 50th birthday with cake, gifts and a few hilarious cards. Throughout the day we continued our family tradition of eating, watched the kids open some amazing Christmas gifts and even watched my nephew do some tricks on his scooter at the local skate park. My aunt also surprised her youngest daughter and my grandma with a special gift ... tick…

Visiting Facebook

I barely made it to the Facebookcorporate office in Palo Alto before they move to their new office complex in Menlo Park. I have wanted to visit Facebook since my sister-in-law started working there over a year ago, but today was my first chance. After finding a place to park (not an easy feat for the employees, a little easier for visitors), I took the obligatory photo of the address sign and then headed into the lobby to sign in and take more pictures.

The lobby offered a few more photo opps, including a framed Facebook logo that had signatures of various executives and celebrities, a lego sculpture of the Facebook logo, a "HACK" sign (hack is for all intensive purposes Facebook's motto) and a TV screen that shows all of the connections people are making around the world with Facebook.

Once inside the offices I saw the famous wall (and took a few pictures, I practically blend in). After the wall I looked around the office, saw Mark Zuckerberg, Sheryl Sandberg and what…

An Expansion Tour

Today I had the opportunity to visit The Meritage Resort and Spa, listen to how the Napa Valley Destination Council is helping to promote the region and walk through the expansion at The Meritage Resort. The conference was a great opportunity to hear what each of the five regions within the Napa Valley is doing to help bring visitors to the area. I recommend visiting The Meritage and Downtown Napa during every visit to the area (both are clients).

After the conference we stepped out onto the Vineyard Terrace for wine and appetizers and headed out to the construction site for a quick tour. The 7,300 square foot ballroom has drywall up, the gym is starting to take shape and Crush Ultra Lounge, a sports bar with six luxury bowling lanes, is also looking great. I cannot wait to see the finished product that opens towards the end of April 2012!

Before heading to my brother's house in Redwood City I had a beautiful dinner at Siena that included Filet Mignon and flour-less chocolate cake

Zoo, Cupcakes, Chicken and Beef

It was an eclectic week of eating. I started the week off at the News10Blogger Bash that took place at the Sacramento Zoo. The event featured some tasty appetizers from Mendocino County (one lucky attendee won a trip) and cupcakes from Drizzle Cupcakes in Sacramento. Since I was still a hungry and needed to use a coupon before the end of the year @YetAnotherSusan and I headed to Chick-Fil-A Arden Fair for a quick dinner and milkshake after the event. While there we got to talk to the person behind the restaurant's Twitter handle and I even got to take home a mini "Eat Mor Chikin" cow.

After finding out that Five Guys opened in Roseville my roommate and I knew we had to try it. We had both been to Five Guys before, but never so close to home. Saturday night we embarked on our journey to the land of free peanuts and tasty burgers. I got a "Little" Cheeseburger "All the Way" (meaning it has all the standard toppings and condiments), he had the Bacon Chees…

First A&W and Christmas

On our way home from the Bradley Lodge my parents, grandma and I stopped by the first A&W Restaurant in Lodi, CA for lunch. Despite my grandma living in Lodi this was my first time visiting the restaurant that opened in 1919! The root beer float was amazing and my dad's milkshake looked great too.

Once back at Fort Bradley I quickly got all of my Christmas stuff out of the garage and started to put up my outside lights and tree. Three and a half hours later everything was decorated, the "fire" was lit, the house was vacuumed (lots of "pine needles" were on the carpet) and the laundry was started.

Thanksgiving 2011

We had a great time at the Bradley Lodge this Thanksgiving. We started out celebrating the gender announcement ... I'm getting a niece in April 2012. Our family continued to celebrate by eating for the rest of the week. Between meals, I made sure to run everyday - got up to 4.4 miles (elevation is 5,100' - total climb was 680'+) - my brother and his family went sledding at Bear Valley, we headed to Murphys for appetizers and even saw the DorringtonChristmas Tree Lighting.

It's a Girl

My first niece, my parent's first granddaughter, my grandma's first great-granddaughter, my brother/sister-in-law's first daughter and my nephew's first sister will be born sometime in April 2012. We found out the gender officially last night and celebrated at the Bradley Lodge today.

Leave comments for name suggestions ... other kids are Luke and Levi.

Siena at The Meritage Resort and Spa

My job is full of contrasts, but I like both ends of the spectrum (sometimes it's the times in the middle that are the most difficult). Two weeks ago I was waking up at three in the morning and working until midnight. Last night I had a client meeting at The Meritage Resort and Spa in Napa and ate a fabulous dinner at Siena, the resort's signature restaurant. Our meal at the Chef's table was served family style and everything tasted amazing.

We started with a Caesar Fondue (salad) and a large platter of Caprese.
 That was followed by minestrone soup.

Then pene pasta with three difference sauces and meatballs that were larger than baseballs.

After that they brought out lots of salmon and a chicken.

Since I was already incredibly full, I had to polish it off with a dessert trio. The trio included flourless chocolate cake, tiramisu and something cool with fruit. Since it couldn't just be a trio, we also had Spingies (Sicilian style donuts) and a chocolate plate.
I was too busy…

Happy Birthday to Me!

Well it's official, I'm one year closer to the big 30. I had a great time at the pre-celebration in Napa (it was nice of all the celebrities to come out for my party at Mondavi) and I had a great weekend with my family at the Bradley Lodge. We relaxed, ate dinner at Sarafina's in Arnold and Google even remembered to say Happy Birthday (along with about 100 other people on Facebook and Twitter)!

Napa Valley Film Festival

I attended my first film festival this week, although I didn't see any films, so I'm not sure if it really counts. I was there working on behalf of a client to tweet during the event (it's frowned upon to tweet during movies).  It was a lot of fun to hang out at the Bosch Culinary Stage at the Oxbow Public Market, drink some wine from 1976 while talking to the stars from Bottle Shock in the Buick Tweet House at the Avia and be at VIP parties at both the Napa Valley Opera House and Robert Mondavi.

It was a busy 27 hours, but luckily I got to hang out with my friends from The Meritage, meet the celebrities, eat some amazing food (Siena, Gott's Roadside and Pica Pica) and I even walked away with an early birthday gift from Bosch.

I'm looking forward to my next trip to Napa (maybe this week or next week) and was glad that I could be a part of the inaugural film festival, can't wait for next year. Now I'm at the Bradley Lodge celebrating my birthday!

Convoy of Hope

After learning nine days prior to Convoy of Hope that I would be doing all of the media outreach for it, I had no idea what to expect. I knew it would be a challenge, I knew it would be a lot of work and I hoped that the media would help spread the word to the community, especially to those in need of assistance. Thankfully every major Sacramento news outlet answered my prayers and helped let the community know about Sacramento's largest humanitarian event of the year, Sacramento Convoy of Hope. A huge thanks goes out to all of media including KCRA, News 10, CBS 13/Good Day Sacramento, FOX 40, The Sacramento Bee, KFBK, K-LOVE, Roseville Patch and many other local Christian and Catholic Radio stations for covering the event, before, during and after.

All of that coverage and the help provided by more than 2,300 volunteers to more than 13,000 honored guests made my long days (waking up as early as 3 a.m. - I even had to drink soda for the caffeine) worth it. It was an honor to be a p…


I had two events planned this week. A live shot with Chef Mike Collins from The Meritage Resort and Spa at Fox40 on Tuesday and the IABC/AMASVmixer at Lounge on 20, Wednesday night. It wasn't going to be too exciting, I was going to catch up on reading, relax, sleep lots and maybe get a few runs in over the weekend.

Plan = gym, work, home
Actual = gym, work, Jars of Clay concert at Bayside with Andrew Ripp and Dave Barnes, got email asking me to take over media relations for Convoy of Hope

Plan = gym, work, watch a movie, read
Actual = gym, work, Convoy of Hope media outreach, trip to OMG Yogurt for pumpkin froyo, dinner at Burgers and Brew, Matt Nathanson concert at Ace of Spades

Plan = sleep in, clean house, run, church, read, watch TV
Actual = woke up early, did media outreach for Convoy of Hope, cleaned house (more than I thought), got $14.91 at Coin Star by trading in my pennies, nickels and dimes in, church, talked to neighbor, put out Halloween decor, wat…

Fall Organization at the Bradley Lodge

First, the Bradley Lodge has changed management companies. It is now available to rent through Cedar Creek Realty. All you need to do is call them and they will personally book your stay. If you know my family or me, just contact us and we'll help too.

This weekend was my first time at the Bradley Lodge since the Fourth of July ... yes it had been more than three months! Normally we focus on the outside of the lodge: painting and staining, replacing the deck, clearing the property of pine needles, etc. This time we focused on the often unseen storage areas and the garage. These are the areas that we keep some of our stuff throughout the year that is not accessible to people that rent. There's nothing too exciting, so don't bother trying to break in. It was a great opportunity to throw away some boxes, get some of the holiday decorations better organized and we even made it easier to turn on and off the water, by removing a piece of wood, adding a step and most importantly …

Happy Birthday

It's birthday week for the Bradley's. Natalie and Luke had their birthday's earlier this week and my dad's birthday is tomorrow. This weekend we celebrated and had a party for Luke.  He, his friends and family members from across the Western United States (California, Washington and Arizona) all headed to Safari Run in San Mateo for an afternoon of fun in their play structure and an amazing cake. We then headed to BJ's for an after party, pizza and a Pizooki.

Mountain Biking Adventure

After purchasing my first Living Social Adventure about a month ago, it was time to experience the adventure today. I got up early and headed up to Truckee, passing through some snow on the way. When I arrived in Truckee at Cycle Paths it was foggy and cold, but it quickly cleared up and we had bright sun and perfect temperatures for our entire ride. The ride was fantastic, the views were spectacular and the bikes that they supplied were amazing (they retail for around $3,600) with full-suspension and disc brakes. Everyone that we went with was at about the same skill level, so we got a long ride in (8-10 miles). The guides from Tahoe Mountain Guides were all very helpful too, even giving me a few pointers as I rode. Once we arrived back at the trail-head we were treated to lunch by Smokey's Kitchen and Catering. All-in-all a great experience and I look forward to not only going mountain biking again with Tahoe Mountain Guides, but to going on more Living Social Adventures. Just …

The Roseville Galleria Re-Opens

It has been almost a year since the debacle that was the Galleria fire. There was the "Rebuilding Together" and "My Mall" campaigns (I still have my t-shirt and still wear it to the gym) and there was me helping to let everyone know that the mall was partially re-opening. Today, the Roseville Galleria "re-opened." I'm using quotes because as you can see by the photos there are still quite a few "coming soon" store fronts, which was a little disappointing. I hope they will all be able to open before the true start of the holiday shopping season.

Now for the good ... the Disney Store is amazing, they have movies playing in the hallway, so you're welcome to park the kids (and I presume husband) there for awhile. The mall has two kid/family play areas, once again another place to park (or bribe) the non-shoppers. The mall seemed to be brighter than it used to and there were newly designed light fixtures hanging from the ceiling (I think, I …

The New Terminal B at Sacramento International Airport - SMF

For $1 billion I knew it was going to be amazing, I just didn't know what to expect. The new Terminal B at the Sacramento International Airport has been needed for decades and under-construction for a few years. Today they let the public come in and take a tour. The Central Terminal includes check-in, baggage claim, a few restaurants and a relaxation area with rocking chairs for people to watch  the airplanes go by. Oh, it also includes a giant red rabbit. Nothing says "Welcome to Sacramento" like a giant red rabbit, almost as good as the oddly colored Tower Bridge that spans the Sacramento River between Sacramento and West Sacramento. All of that said, the central terminal is beautiful, large, functional and seemed like it would be pretty relaxing and inviting for all air travelers.

Once you've checked-in, it's time to take the monorail/people mover to Terminal B. This is where you finally go through security (which was beautiful today ... there wasn't any …

Visiting with Family and Taking a Trip to the Farm

The family converged on Lodi for a mini reunion on Saturday and Sunday. My dad's brother and his wife from Georgia are in California for two weeks traveling around with my parents. Last week they were at a house in Jenner and then on the beach in Capitola, this week they are at the Bradley Lodge. Knowing this, we all met in Lodi at my grandma's for an amazing time of talking, hanging out with the kids and being together to celebrate my parents 40th wedding anniversary (side note: My parent's celebrated their 40th anniversary in Napa a few weeks ago too. They stayed at The Meritage, enjoyed dinner at Siena and my brother and I gave them the gift of a couples massage at Spa Terra. They also spent a night at The Napa River Inn). We got a picture of three generations of brothers, ate some tri-tip and of course had my semi-famous brownies and my sister-in-law made some tasty red-velvet cake.  On Sunday, my grandma, brother's family and I all headed to Phillips Farm (also h…