Paris is a wonderful city. The little pieces of history outside of the city that are worth seeing while on vacation. France is the cornerstone for inspiring wine and cheese, and it is rich in historical landmarks. Day trips make it possible for you to have a hotel in a central location, while having the opportunity to see the true lifestyle of the people of France. As many know, France can be a costly endeavor, therefore these five day trips are a comfortable distance from central Paris.
San Diego is filled with people from all cultures: Italy, Mexico, Vietnam, China, Japan, Thailand, India, and Africa and of course Californians! The culture is what defines San Diego...we are a city full of life, love, and liberty. Thousands of people visit San Diego and miss the places the locals call "The Best of San Diego," but don't worry you won't miss a thing on your next trip. Here are the best places to visit on your next trip to San Diego:
Pinecrest Lake has the best fishing in the Motherlode region with walking trails, boats, and river outlet accessible to phenomenal fishing spots. Summertime is fishing time in my parent's rural town. A little town where I spent much of my childhood hiking, fishing, and camping. In the Motherlode, fishing is a way of life; it is a beloved hobby. With so many lakes in the region and rivers flowing throughout the foothills, fishing spots are abound, but none are as great as Pinecrest Lake.
Hiking is my favorite adventury activity in the summer. Since my little one was, well little, we've hiked year round. She never complained (you know what I mean) about walking.
She knew the rule: hike until you can't go any further, and then you can hitch a ride. As a baby she would ride in the moby wrap, and once her legs were stable, she walked. She would walk a mile or two before giving in and requiring a ride.
Of course, the supply list got bigger with a kid in tow. But it is possible. This is my list of things you need when hiking with a toddler:
This lady loves a well-made beer. This lady is also a creature of habit. When I go to the store, I always buy two six packs. One six pack is a staple; it is the beer that I love most -- Stone IPA. And the other six pack is a new beer, something that I haven't tried yet.
Last week, I decided to be even more daring and buy three six packs of beers from breweries that I have never been too. As I stood in the Whole Foods beer section, I felt my furrowed brow getting stuck that way as I examined each brew with deep contemplation.
I started to feel like a true beer connoisseur. I had visited plenty of the breweries sitting in front of me. Nearly 20, in fact. What can I say? I love to travel and I love to drink beer.
After evaluating the ales, IPAs, lagers, and hefes alike, I selected three new beers that my lips have never loved up on before. And I must say that this lady chooses well. So well that I have to spill my new found loves for the following breweries and the beers that I tasted:
Lost Coast Brewery:
While I have had several of their beers in the past, I have never traveled to Eureka to experience their beers firsthand. As it is wintertime, Whole Foods had the seasonal Winterbraun available.
This beer is warm, dark, and chocolatey. Oh yes, this is great for a frigid night on the deck. The ale is full-bodied and has this strange, yet delicious caramel finish that I couldn't get over. Kind of the same way when you try an IPA for the first time. Mmm. F**ing good.
Again, another brewery that I have drank a lot of beer from, but have never been blessed with a brewery visit. I am not a fan of pale ales, but when I saw the word 'juniper' on the front of this bottle, I went into gin heaven and couldn't help but wonder if this ale would have the crisp gin finish.
God, am I glad that I am addicted to gin. The crisp and refreshing Pinesol goodness that makes gin so awesome was present all of the way through this pale ale.
The ale is smooth and has a bit of spiciness at the finish. You have got to find this ale and taste it.
Alaskan Brewing Company:
Nope, I haven't had time to fly up to Alaska just yet, but this beer might have me convinced to schedule my next vacation at a hotel across the street from the Alaskan Brewing Company.
Hopthermia might have me changing around my weekly staples. Yes, I said weekly staples. I am not a drunk, but I do like to have a beer at work and at lunch, and with dinner, and usually after the lights go down...shut up. Don't judge me. I drink beer the same way that Americans consume soda. I am fit, smart, and attribute my lack of aging to beer.
This double IPA beer highlighted my lunch hour yesterday. This beer is strong and needs a hearty meal to go along with it. Or perhaps a psycho thriller.
A quick road trip with a rental car was just thing that we needed this week. As I finished up my editorial duties for the week, I looked at the clock and decided that we were getting in the car the next morning.
I rented a little car from Hertz and at 6a.m. we were off to the beach. The drive is 6 1/2 hours along the beautiful California coast. Along the way, we stopped in at Salinas, Ca to get some much needed coffee and a bag of cashews. We love our cashews.
I had to stop because we ran out of snacks less than halfway through our trip! This girl knows how to eat.
There are several things that you need to bring in the car when road-tripping with kids:
After our stop, I made a beeline for my favorite salad and burger joint, Firestone, in sunny San Luis Obispo, Ca. Firestone offers huge salads for inexpensive prices. We walked around downtown for an hour before getting back in the car. At one point, I live here and it was nice to meander along the streets.
Finally, after passing through Santa Barbara and a few other towns, we made it to Ventura, Ca. Ventura is a cute little town off the 101 and is full of beach access. We drove down to the port where they offer a great selection of restaurants. My daughter insisted that we find some fish and chips because she is three and she never gets it...being a vegetarian and all. So much for that attempt.
We ate at Brophy's Seafood Oyster Bar and Grill. I had clam chowder and the little one had fish and chips. We had a great view of the harbor, while chowing down on some good grub. The manager was friendly and made his rounds to each table to make sure everything was up to the standard. He offered me his latest beer on tap at a discount since we have never eaten at his restaurant before. So sweet!
If you are going to take a trip to Ventura, check out the Harbor.
After we finished eat, we left our shoes in the car and went down to the beach. As the sun began to set, my daughter, the monster, ran toward the water only to return in haste as the water graced her toes. She spent an hour before it got dark running in the sand and drawing her name. She threw sand magic into the sun to make the sky fall asleep.
What a beautiful day. And then we got back in the car...
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