Let’s Hike – For the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition

On Saturday, September 26th, I participated in my second event benefiting ovarian cancer organizations. The first one was a 5K run in Campbell, California in 2018. I would not have heard of these events if it wasn’t for my roommate, Kim. We do these events in her mother’s memory. I didn’t have the chance to meet Mary but she raised a thoughtful daughter.

As if her mommy is shining down on her.

Kim decided to do a hike in Aptos to a waterfall. And knowing Kim, we were starting early. I made the trip down to the Santa Cruz area a day early to spend time with friends there and stay the night. I woke up just after 6 AM Saturday morning for a 7:30 AM start. It was so early that no one manned the entrance gate to take your money for parking. You will have to pay for it before you leave. Thankfully, it was stocked with maps and information.

TIP: Take a photo of the map with the trails outlined.

You will not have cell coverage here. Thankfully we were able to meet at random while looking for parking. We parked and initially started on the wrong trail being eager to park and me being sleepy and not the organizer. We were not headed towards the waterfall. We turned around.

What a cool tree!

On the correct route along the fire road, we eventually missed another turn. No waterfalls for us! However, we were able to cover 8.5 miles. And do our pose on a bridge!

Had to get a yoga pose of some sort. I got a cramp during this shot.

The sound of the creek is peaceful. The sound of bells of approaching cyclists, eh, not so much. However, it is better than getting ran over by these high-speeding cyclists. The thumps of runners behind you are also acceptable.

The route is well-shaded so bring a layer to take off once you warm up. Early hikers like me will also help clear the cobwebs for others. There were plenty. I am sure we will be back to do the hike to the falls, and clear some more cobwebs.

Safe hiking! Also, bring your mask in case you need to squeeze by other hikers and cannot keep 6 feet apart.

Happy to be done. I was looking forward to taking a nap.

Other related posts:
Back in Santa Cruz – Day 4/Let’s Hike
Let’s Hike – Paths in Santa Cruz

Kibatsu – San Francisco, CA

It’s only a 17-minute walk from Van Ness. Let’s do it! It was a nice but warm day in San Francisco, and supposedly my ‘rest day.’ Nope, we got about 10,000 steps in to Kibatsu in the Upper Haight neighborhood of San Francisco. We had a 5:30 reservation to sit outside. After climbing up three blocks, we were so ready to eat after a few glasses of ice water and a sip of Sapporo for my Instafriend.

It has been about three months since I last had sushi. I got take out in Santa Cruz and it did the job. I do miss the Happy Roll from Shirasoni. I had that last on Easter this year. Kibatsu was a nice treat. When Instafriend asked what I wanted to eat for our first meet up since January, I immediately responded with ‘Sushi!’ My PP (Pandemic Partner) is particular about his sushi so we haven’t gotten any recently. On this rare outing and Instafriend being in town from Linden, California, I was able to get some girl time in and have one of my favorite cuisines.

Instafriend didn’t disappoint with her selection. Neither did Kibatsu! We ordered quite a bit! We had the the tuna poke with tempura seaweed to be used as chips. We had the butter fish appetizer, a deep fried goodness. The Cherry Bomb roll which were rice balls wrapped with tuna and a red sauce. I usually ask for a huge supply of ponzu sauce but none of these dishes needed additional flavors. The butter fish was hands down our favorite dish. It was so good we ordered two. For $9 a pop, I could have more! The poke was thinly sliced and red with flavor. Instafriend isn’t a big fan of seaweed but ate these up no problem. The Cherry Bomb was good but it was our least favorite.

We then followed up with the Super Crunch Roll. It was filled with unagi, topped with spicy salmon, tempura flakes and masago. I finally got to use the generous bowl of ponzu sauce. We were stuffed and enjoyed our outing. The service was attentive and friendly.

Covid related, the staff had masks on. Tables were mostly spread out. One table was moved by the guests that were seated there but the distance issue was resolved. You do have people walking the sidewalk next to you so be weary of that. I thought it was a fine experience given the pandemic. Instafriend said she had a new favorite sushi spot. Perhaps we’ll try the Chef’s tasting menu sometime.

400 Haight Street, San Francisco
Open 5-9 PM, Wed-Sat

Continue to support local, small businesses! Please wear your mask.

Zooms with Angela Andrews

Attention, Hayward residents! If you didn’t get to tune the last two weekends to our events via Zoom with Hayward City Council candidate, Angela Andrews, you were missed! Our first Zoom on a Saturday afternoon was live from the Value Builders showroom in downtown Hayward. Behind the papered up windows lies a showroom of sunrooms and patio covers to touch and feel and envision for your backyard. I am their Project Manager. We had a good time.

The most recent Zoom was yesterday, September 6th from the patio at Buon Appetito. I worked as a Server there many years ago and to this day, their food is consistently good. We were able to chat briefly with Owners, Laura and Martino. I am thankful for their hospitality.

While on Buon Appetito‘s patio, we discussed Angela’s vision, experience and endorsements. Though not filmed, we also enjoyed salads and pizza afterwards. View the recording HERE.

I met Angela Andrews thru the Instagram account SoHaHood. It was Angela and another Hayward resident, Sharon, running the account. They promoted what was happening in Hayward, the initiatives and how to get involved. I was impressed these two ladies took the time out of their full time jobs to help promote their city. As a resident for over 15 years, I was clearly far behind. They inspired me.

Over time, Angela and I remained in touch. She would come over for get togethers, we went wine tasting in Sonoma and we also worked out together. Plus her mom! What great ladies. Angela is now a mother. She says she’s no superwoman but I am just taking care of myself and I don’t know how I would do it with a child, a family, a full-time job, on the planning commission and running for city council. I am impressed. Learn more about Angela Andrews at http://www.angelaforhayward.com

Urban Hiking in San Francisco

The city by the bay is not lacking in hills. If you can’t go to a gym during this pandemic, putting on your sneakers and heading out to San Francisco will cause you to work up a sweat. For a 7×7 city, you can go the distance, experience different climates and reach some decent elevation on foot. Here are two urban hikes we did this month.

The real reason we go to the city from the peninsula is for bread at Tartine in the Mission. My Pandemic Partner is a fan. When shelter-in-place started, it was our way to get out of the house to go for a drive and get some food. The weekly tradition continues. With an attempt to make some fitness progress by my birthday, I have convinced my PP to do something active with me while we’re out in The City.

The first hike this month was supposed to be just a walk around the neighborhood. I wanted some elevation and I definitely got what I wanted! Heading west from Dolores Park, we ran up stairs, pushed up hills, went down hills just to go back up more hills. It was a beautiful day and we started to get closer to the fog coming in. I didn’t hear any complaints of continuing so we climbed more stairs between apartment buildings leading up to Twin Peaks. He hates the wind but he ran up the stairs like a champ when we officially got to the park. I eventually made the run up myself as it was the last thing I had to do before reaching the peak.

The view was no view. It was just fog. And wind. I took a few quick photos and we made our way back. On the steep hills down, my legs were feeling a bit like jelly. I had to make sure I didn’t overdo it and took my time with each step. We avoided steep hills thankfully. I was ready to get back to the car. But it was worth it. You can’t go wrong with spontaneous adventure.

The next hike was less strenuous, planned and on a very, very warm day. We purposely left the city of Menlo Park to avoid being in a house without air conditioning. It was scheduled to be almost 100 degrees. No, thank you. If I’m going to be that hot, I’d rather be in Hawaii.

We made our usual stop at Tartine, picked up bread, iced coffees, pastries for the boys and did some work on a blanket in Dolores Park. After some progress was made, we made our way towards the Legion of Honor Museum and hiked along the coast towards the Sutro Baths ruins. The views were stunning and the paths wide enough to do a decent job of social distancing. On our way back, I jogged up a few hills. It was very warm and it was a good way to switch up the pace and get thru that incline.

San Francisco definitely has some beautiful spots. Please contact me should you need assistance with travel arrangements or an itinerary. Travel Agent here!

Birthday Fitness Challenge: Week 2

Though this fitness challenge just finished up its second week, it has been a journey. A journey filled with going to the farmers market, the grocery store, from computer to kitchen and fork from plate to mouth. Not a whole lot of traveling distance has been covered. But it has been tasty!

Sundays start with a trip to the farmers market in Palo Alto and a stop at Whole Foods Market. I bought another whole chicken from Roli Roti, vegetables and three buckets of strawberries. Oh, they smell so good.

This was the second time I bought a whole chicken. I opted out of not getting the potatoes this time. They were tasty, especially when they add their seasoning too it. Seeing all the chickens rotating will make your mouth water. However, I have to say it’s not very flavorful. I like to get the chicken to add protein to dishes and honestly, not have to make it myself. I will turn to protein alternatives this coming week. What’s your favorite way to add protein to your meals?

Grocery store visits will include lettuce, gala apples, old fashioned oats, bananas, milk, eggs, and usually some fish or red meat to throw on the grill. I started making overnight oats and it’s quite filling. Thanks to Pinterest for the idea! Mix milk, yogurt (I use Fage Greek yogurt), honey together well. Then add bananas and strawberries. Let it sit overnight. I honestly add some granola on top to add some texture and crunch. It’s filling and one bowl is good for breakfast and lunch for me. Yum!

Meatless Monday have been quite busy for me lately. I was thankful my Pandemic Partner made a tomato salad with tomatoes and basil from the farmers market and burrata and a baguette from Whole Foods! Delicious!

Tuesday’s lunch was a late one around 3 PM. I had a salad topped with leftover Roli Roti chicken and carrots. For dinner, I had the remaining overnight oats and baby carrots with hummus.

Breakfast and lunch on Wednesday was again overnight oats! It’s so easy! Dinner was not my best work but I did try and new recipe. We had sole fillets from Whole Foods. The egg, milk, lemon juice, olive oil, red onion and capers sauce was a bit off. I think I messed something up there. I don’t think it needed the dairy. Ooops! I ate it. Couldn’t waste food.

Thursday, I had the leftover fillet for lunch and yes, we had pizza for dinner. It has been several weeks since we have had Pizzeria Delfina. I honestly could put one of those prosciutto pizzas away. I took half of the pizza and put it on my plate. The rest remained in the box. And though it was delicious and my PP put his entire pizza away, I was satisfied. The pizza is also topped with arugula. It’s basically a salad, right???

Friday was a very hot day in the Bay Area. We escaped the peninsula heat to still be warm in San Francisco but a bit more doable. We bought a country loaf and pastrami sandwich to split for lunch in Dolores Park. I only had one slice of that delicious country loaf this past week. Oh, my weakness is bread and butter. So delicious! But, I had some control.

We also skipped their desserts. Oh, boy.

After a quick hike near the Legion of Honor museum, golf course and Sutro Baths, we went to Dumpling Time after we picked out beautiful pieces of meat at The Butcher Shop nearby. The beer and bacon sauce is absolutely to die for. It was the fourth time I have been there since early July. It’s delicious and the staff is so friendly. Get the tofu and pork and shrimp siu mai. We had BBQ pork buns, pork gyoza and the chili dumplings he likes. They are pretty spicy so most of it was his!

I have been tracking my macros via MyFitnessPal and only had one day where I slightly went over the recommended caloric intake. My PP has been working out with me every day. We do krav maga in the park on Tuesdays and he is liking doing BodyRock and FitOn videos with me at 5:30 PM. At first he’s hesitant and think they’ll be silly, but they really challenge him and I love seeing that sweaty, post-workout face. It might be better than my roommate’s! He may or may not have done a ballet workout with me. Shhhhh.

As for me, I feel good and feel like I am getting stronger. I am not lifting as heavy as I could in the gym but I am doing what I can. I normally would be on supplements and having a protein shake after workouts but I’m not doing that. Progress is slower than I would like and not having the extra help might be part of it. But I feel good. I feel stronger. Saturdays are weigh-in days. I added 1.2 pounds but lost more of a body fat percentage. I lost half an inch around my waist as well. I’ll take it!

Booty sweat. lOL.

Five more weeks to go until my birthday! Maybe I will aim to do another boudoir photoshoot with Angie!

Angela for Hayward House Party – 8/29/20

*** UPDATE ***
Join us on Saturday, September 5th at 11 AM for another opportunity. This time, we’ll be live from Buon Appetito.


Hayward residents! Join us for a virtual meet and greet with Planning Commissioner turned City Council candidate, Angela Andrews, on Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 3 PM. We will be doing a Zoom House Party live from Value Builders in Downtown Hayward. Tune in to learn how she will make a difference in our community and what she has already done!

HERE is the Facebook event. Mark that you are Interested or Going to get the Zoom link to join in! I hope to see you online!

Thanks to Amy Hollyfield of ABC7 for retweeting!

I personally met Angela thru SOHA Hood in an attempt to be more involved in my neighborhood. I have lived in Hayward for 18 years and have hopes my property value continues to increase in value. I am proud to support my stylish friend, Angela.

My view in Hayward, California

Related posts:
Hayward Demo
Up in the Hayward Hills
Frostie Rolls – Hayward, California
Mervyn’s Demo – Hayward, CA
Go Warriors! Hello, Hayward!

Progress at Being a WIP

It has been just over a month since I started my private Facebook group called Status: Work in Progress. Sorry, I have to personally know you to be added. I am happy to say that this past week has gained a few members and engagement has increased. We gained 4 members this week and 13 new posts today versus the 56 in the last month. I love that I know many like-minded folks that care about their health and fitness. And we’re not afraid to share! We have folks sharing their healthy meals, their struggles and my favorite, their post-workout selfies. Sweat is sexy! I am the only one that has shared silly videos of doing squats holding my morning smoothie or saying how I feel like a sausage in my leggings as I walk to the park to work out. It’s all fun. If I can motivate and support one person on their fitness journey, I would be happy to post more silliness! Those on that journey are mostly in California but even have members in Hawaii and Minnesota!

We are all a work in progress. I most certainly am and always will be. I am turning 40 in six weeks and I needed some motivation. The Bodybuilding.comc challenges always helped but they stopped doing them. I decided to challenge my roommate, Kim, to a fitness challenge. Our goal is to tighten things up in the mid-section. We shared our measurements and we have a goal of losing 3 inches. The one who loses the most by birthday on September 22nd will get a free spa day in Lake Tahoe when we can travel again. It has definitely brought our competitive side out.

“Hey, can you roller blade???” – Me. We bought blades within an hour.

So far, she has lost two pounds. I have lost one. I have tightened things up a little in terms of measurements EXCEPT the mid-section. Sheesh! We both plan on stepping it up and it’s been fun and motivating.

I think wine is what we’re really working towards.

My friend from grade school, Jennifer, might join me in some competition as well. She is also turning 40, but in November. I am sure we can work out a fun challenge and it will keep me going another month and a half. Who knows what progress I will make then!

For now, I have turned down bites of pastry from Frog Hollow and Bordeaux wine. I am trying to eat better, exercise more and get ample sleep. Today, I convinced my Pandemic Partner to do some BodyRockTV and FitOn videos. They’re really good. He thought so too afterwards. I am hoping he will continue to do them with me after our work day, which I am trying to limit to 5 PM. It’s on my calendar!

Here’s to the journey! And a lot of sweat.

If there are any brands that would like to send some fitness goodies our way, I would love to distribute it to the members! Contact me!

World Traveler Tiles Release

If you are still playing ScrabbleGo and love to travel like I do, you will want to try to get one of the World Traveler tiles to show your opponents at play. I currently have equipped the treasure map tile. It is a picture of Africa with a big red X with a dashed line leading to it. The World Traveler tiles include a postcard, a suitcase, a pink instant camera and a travel map. As travelers, we use all of these things.

I love receiving postcards in the mail and love sending them out on my travels. I usually send them to my nieces and nephews while I am out exploring. I sent my niece, Emma, a postcard from Paris last year. I loved receiving the video of her holding it and thanking me for it. I hope to one day be able to go to Paris with her and her mother someday. Her mother, one of my dearest friends, has always wanted to go and hasn’t been yet!

She drew my portrait. Nailed it! I love her.
Paris – September 2019

A suitcase is definitely needed. I have two sizes of Samsonite luggage and a large backpack I tested out in a trip to Las Vegas and to London. I honestly am not fan of carrying all my belongings on my back. Kudos to those that can backpack around the world and travel as light as possible.

Arriving in Fiji with my Samsonite & Michael Kors bag – February 2019

I do not have an instant camera or a handheld camera. I just have my iPhoneX. It has 15,000 photos I am needing to share with you via this blog! Like this beauty from the Aquarium of the Bay in San Francisco.

Lastly, a travel map. This is definitely needed. I always recommend downloading the area map from Google so you always have it handy, even if you have no internet connection. It will tell you where you are and how to get to destinations. It’s amazing. Thanks, Google.

Just finished my first half marathon, this was cool to me. Central Park, NYC.

Happy tile hunting and playing! I honestly have been spending a lot of time with the Design Home game. With wanting more real estate, part of the fun will be designing the interior to make you feel a certain way. It also can express your personality. But, now I will be back to playing ScrabbleGo when I need a break from work.

Happy gaming! And be safe! Stay home and stop the spread of Covid.

Property Owners, Be a Better Landlord

I am beyond thankful to have my own condo. With hoping to take advantage of the low mortgage rates, I am reminded to be a better landlord and property owner. If maintenance is done in a timely manner, the property will at least maintain its value and avoid more expensive repairs later if problems are not addressed. It can be a dirty job, but someone has to do it.

I recently helped a dear friend move and clean her new apartment. Her new landlord said it was cleaned. My friend had to get the carpets cleaned herself and a team of friends helped clean on move-in day. I took on the laundry room and behind the stove and fridge. This place was not cleaned thoroughly. With a lot of scrubbing, brushing, sweeping and contorting myself into small spaces, a lot of progress was made. I wouldn’t want to move into a place that was not maintained. Would they be attentive should you need something fixed? I feel my friend should get a deduction on her first month’s rent with the amount of cleaning that was done.

Behind the stove
Behind the fridge
Behind the washer
Behind the dryer
The furnace
And detailed this guy

We joked around that we should start a cleaning business. Our first target customer would be this landlord! They obviously need help. I will clean your new apartment after landlords claim they already did! FYI, I’m expensive…or provide room & board near the beach and we can work something out. My friend in Maui joked I should come deep clean her house. However, this work made me think I should probably do a deep cleaning behind my own kitchen appliances. The laundry room has recently been cleaned including the air vent. I could always be a better landlord myself but I was proud of my accomplishments yesterday: a cleaner spot for my friend and her family.

Next: get my sliding door to my balcony replaced. Happy home improvements!

Davis, CA During Covid

With a client visit scheduled for Fairfield at noon, I wanted to see one of my oldest friends and my niece about 30 minutes north. It was worth the trip. Before they were available, I invited friends I met thru the Army Corp of Engineers to meet me for a drink in Davis. My friend, Nelly, lives in Sacramento. He came down. Sandra lives in Fairfield but had plans with her family already. Retirement is treating both of them well. We are all thankful Sandra is leukemia free! Part of being Orlando Bound for Lolo was for her!

With Kim, Nelly, Sandra – Walt Disney World – January 2019

After successfully passing the Vacaville Outlets without spending a dollar (curbside pick up is available), I got to Davis early. It felt about 10 degrees hotter without the Fairfield wind. I parked in a shady area and decided to use the time to walk around downtown Davis. My route was at random but I was able to see which restaurants had outdoor seating, which stores allowed shopping indoors and which locations were definitely closed. There were quite a few options.

Continuing on my stroll, I came across quite a few art pieces. I made sure I gave ample space between I and other walkers. I would sometimes go into the street and ensure we kept a great amount of distance apart. The city has an extensive program and partnerships offering grants to artists. There is even a walking tour guide to the pieces. I wish I had known. Nonetheless, I explored and took in the free gallery. Which is your favorite?

Can’t go wrong with a puppy!
Had to take a pic of the bee for this One Busy Bee

It was time to meet Nelly and he found out that De Vere’s was closed, although I made a reservation. They apologized via Instagram. It wasn’t a big deal. We got a snack and beverages at Woodstock’s Pizza. We ordered and paid inside, took a number and sat outside, away from their designated outdoor seating area. The father the better, please! We took off our masks to drink. I had the strawberry cider and we shared a tater tot pizza to not ruin my dinner with friend and family that evening. It hit the spot. The large cider was only $8! Wow! I needed two hands to lift to drink.

The jalapenos were spicy!

It was great to catch up with Nelly. It has been a month since I was out at an establishment. The last time was for Kim‘s birthday in Santa Cruz. I didn’t feel comfortable then but Nelly and I made the best of the situation and kept our distance. I know he wouldn’t put me in harm’s way. Neither would I.

Leaving downtown, I headed east over the main freeway to my friend’s new home. I made sure they were comfortable with me visiting and I kept my mask on until they said it was OK if I didn’t. It was great to see one of my dearest friends and my growing, beautiful niece. Davis was a nice break from staying at home. I am unsure when and where my next outdoor excursion will be. Stay tuned!

Related posts:
Davis, Ca – Good Friends, a Monsieur & Ice Cream