Sunday, April 17, 2016

Swing & Miss

Most of the time, the projects I've taken on have been a success. That's not to say they don't have road bumps, unexpected steps, and sometimes a lot of problem solving, however they usually end up working out the way I envisioned, give or take. And then, every now and then, I just have an epic failure.

Right at a year ago now, I installed a screen door to the back porch. It wasn't perfect, however I was happy with how it looked and functioned. As time went on, it started looking sadder... and sadder....... and sadder. Finally, it was sagging to such a degree that there was basically no point in having it at all because the gap was so large bugs could just fly straight inside with plenty of room to spare. Plus, the spray paint sealant didn't seem to do much (can't say I'm too surprised) and it slowly started greying and deteriorating.

I decided it was time to take it down (which of course took 30 seconds, as compared to hours of work to get it hung) and ordered this hanging screen to take its place. It's basically a piece of mesh with a slit down the middle and a magnet to keep it closed when you're not using it. It hangs from a tension rod and does a great job filling the space. It came with some velcro pieces that you can stick to the door frame, however for now it's just hanging and doesn't seem to need the extra anchoring.


It took some trial and error to get here and I'm really happy with the new solution! The screen door looked cute when it was freshly hung, however it never fit perfectly because the door frame isn't square, whereas the hanging mesh fills the space with a lot of flexibility. 

We're supposed to have a rainy week in Austin and John and I have already enjoyed a day of having the door open and listening to this weather!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Flying South(ern California) for the Winter

It seems that January has become the traditional month for us to go on a vacation. We started in 2014 with our honeymoon to Kauai & Oahu, and then we visited San Francisco in 2015, and this year we visited San Diego. Each year as we plan when and where to go, January seems to always stand out as one of the quietest months in both of our professions--less real estate for me to pour over (by the way... I need to update you all on my new gig in another post!) and less BBQ events for John.

We have a long list of places we want to go, however we've been trying to stick to shorter trips (around 4-5 days), so that limits us to the US. We're further narrowed by the type of weather in January, because places we'd love to go like DC or Portland or Seattle aren't going to be nearly as fun in the winter as they would be otherwise. So, this year we found ourselves back in California, and it was marvelous!

Just like our trip to San Francisco, we decided to segway. Say what you will about it looking silly, we just know there's no better way to cover ground and see the sights! And, sights aside, it's fun! We saw huge areas of the city this way, and it's great because you're out and about with a guide who's teaching you the lay of the land. We lucked out on this trip and managed to be the only people on our tours, so we got to go wherever we wanted rather than sticking strictly to the regular plan. We segwayed all through Balboa Park, Mission Bay and Mission Beach, and all over La Jolla.  

Seals at La Jolla 
La Jolla

Sea Lions at La Jolla

Botanical Garden in Balboa Park
During our tour of Mission Beach we came across a group of about 200 people doing a group yoga class outside overlooking the ocean. Our guide told us that the instructor lived right across the street from this spot, and that the city was getting after him for not having a license for the yoga class. What they were more upset about than anything was his pet pig who co-instructed with him. They made him give up the pig, but the yoga class lives on...

Mission Beach
While waiting for one of our guides, we stumbled upon a race in Mission Bay. It started out with kayakers, then came the stand-up paddle boarders, and next was a group of people lying down on the boards and paddling with their arms. Is there a name for that? Who knows. All I do know is that the water was super cold--58 degrees to be exact--and I can't imagine being in it! We were freezing just watching them because the wind was fierce! All in all there were probably 300 of them that went by. They just kept coming and coming.


We also had some yummy food. We had dinner one night at a restaurant called Puesto, and we got to sit next to the kitchen. I watched this gal make a ton of corn tortillas.


Almost all of the tacos had "crispy cheese" which was basically cheese cooked on the griddle. You can see it in the left and center tacos.


One of our favorite places, while not foodie at all, was Hash House A Go Go. Oh my


This place started in San Diego and now exists in some other cities as well. We had no idea it was going to be so huge (this picture doesn't do it justice) so we definitely should have split something. Oh well! I had bacon, onion, avocado, and cheese all melted and mixed together over crispy potatoes, and John got fried chicken benedict. Yowza!


After eating enough food for 6 people, we headed to the zoo. The one thing John really wanted to do was to go on the "Morning with Pandas" tour, so we paid extra to do that and it was so worth it!!


We learned a tremendous amount--all things we never would have known if we had just gone and toured it on our own. For example, each animal has its own "bedroom" that it can go into each night. This is basically a private space that guests can't see, so the zoo as over twice as big as what meets the eye. In the morning, the keepers open the door from their bedroom back to their enclosure, and the animals get to decide if they want to come out for the day into their enclosure. If they don't, they just hang out in their bedroom--no one forces them to come out.

We also got to see some of the pandas that weren't visible to the rest of the public. One of them, their male panda, is named Gao Gao. Did you know that all pandas, all over the world, are owned by China? We were interested to learn that! Even the ones that are born in other countries belong to China. 

Gao Gao was born in the wild and was disrupting some farmers, so he got sent here as kind of a "reject" panda because we needed a male and he is very little and unimpressive looking. No one had very high expectations of him, and he's actually turned out to be quite the stud! The tour guide at the zoo said they all know that "Gao Gao knows how how to do the wow wow." Bahaha.

Chowin down on some bamboo
Did you know that pandas eat bamboo that's so hard it would break a wood chipper? Their jaws are so strong and muscular that their ears wiggle a whole bunch when they chew.



We also got to see tons of other exhibits at the zoo, including a... golden retriever. Yes, that's right. I was confused when we went by an exhibit with a dog in it. As it turns out, pairing cheetahs with a dog helps them stay calm and feel confident. Nuts, huh? Here's proof in case you think I'm crazy.






We also got to feed the giraffes which was fun since I haven't done it since I was a kid! I was one of the lucky ones who actually got to give them a snack before they lost interest. 


Hellooooo there!

One evening we went horseback riding down to the beach. It was super interesting because the path we took was very near the border to Tijuana. I had no idea that the border wall actually extends out into the ocean and then just... stops! I wish I had gotten a picture because it was a weird sight to see.

John's horse was Pokey, mine was Millie. Pokey was preoccupied with rubbing himself (and John) against bushes, while Millie insisted on tripping every 10th step or so :)

It was a great trip! As always, we were happy to come home and sleep in our bed and see our little dog. Nothing like a Sweet Olive to make you miss your routine! I wouldn't trade her doggy kisses for anything. 

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Oh, Adulthood

Well, hi! It's been a while. There aren't too many home updates these days... at least none of the exciting variety. We've encountered some suuuuuper fun maintenance issues which have made me feel old and boring. And yes, I know I'm not actually old. But sometimes I feel that way when I spend a lot of money at the dentist rather than at Anthropologie, like I used to.  If you'd like to catch up on what we've been doing, here's a little essay for you.

Sometimes (actually, most of the time), it's hard for me to believe I'm an "adult." I have to put it in quotations because that word just sounds so... formal. And legitimate. I've been an "adult" for enough years now for it to be completely official, and yet I still find myself in disbelief.

You know how when you were young you were positive that you knew everything? I don't know if you felt that way, but I definitely did. I remember being deeply insulted as a child when adults would explain that my perspective would change as I got older, or that I just didn't know enough yet to understand something. To me, that was the ultimate affront, because I ALREADY KNEW EVERYTHING. All the things. And now, over the past few years, I've had this weird shift where actually, I'm pretty sure I know nothing. There is just so, so much to learn. So much growth and understanding that has yet to happen.

Do you read Momastery? Because if you don't, you should. Glennon is the single funniest person I've ever known (and by known, I mean found on the internet). When she posted this to Instagram, I was like, YES! THIS!!! It spoke directly to my soul. Glennon, by the way, is a forty-something-year-old, so I feel much better (and simultaneously worse) that this feeling continues to occur as you age.


One time, the tenants in our rent house called me to say that they smelled gas, and that they were worried there was a leak. So I thought to myself, "Emergency!! What do I do!?"

First instinct: call dad. No answer. Then I realized he was out of the country on a business trip and it was 2am his time.

Second instinct: call mom. Also no answer, and I realized that she, too, was out of town on a business trip, and must be in meetings.

[[Aside: is there anything more unsettling than both of your parents being out of town at the same time?]]

So, that left me parent-less, and in my quest to find an "adultier adult," I called a colleague who suggested I call the gas company. As it turns out, they have an emergency line (1-800-959-LEAK) and they came out to check it out. Luckily, the tenants had just been smelling the gasoline in their lawnmower and there was no leak, no emergency. Whew!

The reason I started writing this post is because I feel like recently we're spending an awful lot of time and effort and money on adult-y things, which feels so, so weird. And sometimes lame.

I've lived my whole life with perfect eyesight. Lucky me. Then, when I became a realtor, it started going downhill. I have no idea how much can be attributed to getting older and how much is from staring at a computer screen a good bit during the day, but it got to the point where I couldn't read street signs... so I went to the eye doctor, aka the scariest place on earth. Before that, I'd probably gone twice in my entire life. We'd have screenings at school when I was younger, but as far as going in and having someone dilate my eyes and stare back into the depths of my optic nerve... yeah, twice. I feel nauseous just thinking about it.

The verdict: time to get glasses.


Weird. I eventually got contacts as well, which I wear probably half of the time. Glasses bother me, contacts bother me. Bah.

Then, John had a sad trip to the dentist. Neither of us ever needed braces, so I guess we figured that we were set for life in the dental department. Wrong-o. John's upper teeth are perfect, and John's lower teeth are also perfect. Unfortunately, how the top teeth and bottom teeth line up isn't perfect, and it's wearing down his enamel pretty significantly. So, he had to get invisalign, or what we lovingly refer to as his "dentures." Pretty much everyone has said they didn't/don't even notice because you really can't see them (hence the "invisa" in "invisalign"). That was the good news. The bad news was... they cost HOW MUCH?! Yeah. Avoid.

One day, I went into the bank, and then I came out to find someone had hit my car and peaced out without leaving a note. Karma, y'all. So that was another fun way to spend a nice chunk of change. Luckily my deductible isn't outrageous, and my coverage includes a rental, but my golly the hassle of all of it was the real pain in the neck.

John and I were downstairs one night and I started to hear the faint noise of... drip... drip... drip. Then it registered, and I felt complete panic. I ran upstairs, and sure enough, water was dripping from the ceiling. I climbed up into the attic and couldn't figure out what was wrong. When this happens in someone's home, it's because the drain line is clogged and water is leaking out, but I was convinced that couldn't be the issue because I religiously climb up into our attic every 30 days to put anti-fungal stuff in there to make sure it doesn't clog, and because when there is a clog, usually the pan under the unit fills up with water, but ours was almost completely dry rather than overflowing. So, I figured it could be some other issue with the HVAC, or possibly the water heater which is also up there.


Again, first instinct: call dad. Unfortunately, he was in Mexico on a business trip and couldn't come over, but he did answer the phone. I had already done all the things he told me to do (go in the attic and see if the issue was obvious, turn off the water in case it was the water heater, turn off the power in case it was the HVAC), except trying to blow the line to see if it was in fact clogged. I tried blowing it out and that didn't seem to be the issue.

So, John and I resigned ourselves to a hot night. Luckily, it wasn't too bad because the house had already cooled down from when the AC was on, and the next day was uncharacteristically cool. The HVAC guy came the next day and decided it was, indeed, a clog. How on earth could there be a clog if I had spent so much time up there de-clogging like a model homeowner?!?! Turns out that when our HVAC was installed (prior to us owning our home), they installed the access point to the drain line incorrectly.

You'll see the access point on the left side of this picture is pretty far down the drain line, when actually it should be up by the unit, where it is now (the sweet HVAC man didn't charge me for moving it--thank you thank you thank you). The treatments I'd been doing were effectively cleaning everything to the left of the access point, but not to the right of it. We ended up with a clog in the p-trap, which backed the unit up and it started over flowing with condensate, which soaked our ceiling because there isn't a pan under the left side of the unit where the water was coming out. ::insert sobbing and a few choice words here::


We have a small stain on the ceiling which is actually less noticeable in reality than it is in this picture. I may eventually try and color match the ceiling to paint over it, but it's not a big deal because you honestly can't really see it in person. The reasons it's so long and skinny is because that's where two piece of drywall come together, so the water trickled through the little valley it created in the attic.


Moral of the story: if you're not already cleaning your drain line monthly, start. You can buy anti-fungal tabs online, or you can use vinegar. They used to recommend bleach, but not anymore. Second moral of the story: go over to your drain line (like really, right now, get up and walk over) and check to make sure it's right next to the unit rather than inches or feet down the drain line like ours was. If it right by the unit, call someone to come move it!! Otherwise, your cleaning is ineffective and you will suffer like we did.

So, the next day, I was taking a shower feeling grateful for a functioning AC unit when the water stopped draining. No no no no!!!!! Any guesses on what I did first? Called dad. I asked if there was any chance that blowing the line just moved the clog farther down and it was now affecting the master bath, and he said that no, it wasn't that because where the two connect, the pipe is much wider (like 6 inches in diameter), so the 1 inch-wide HVAC clog wouldn't be clogging that big of a pipe. I started having visions of all of our plumbing being ripped out and flooring and drywall being replaced, but my dad said to just go buy a plunger and fill the tub with some water and then plunge the drain.

Wham bam, worked like a charm. Crisis averted.

A few days later, John and I were watching TV and I heard a weird grinding noise. Turns out our washer is eating itself alive, and almost no one will work on it because it's a Samsung, and apparently appliance repairmen and repairwomen avoid Samsung like the plague. If only we'd known that when we bought it... because we actually bought the top reviewed units! We found a Samsung specialist, and we're currently waiting on our parts to come in. He actually has no idea what's wrong with it so he's decided to replace pretty much everything. Thankfully, we're still under the extended warranty with Lowe's, so they're eating the cost. WHEW!!



All of these appliance issues + the hit and run were within about two weeks of each other, so it's felt a little relentless and I'm just waiting to see what breaks once the washer is fixed, ha!

On the flip side to all of these messes: gratitude. So much gratitude for the house we live in, the fact that we have AC to begin with, that we can put our clothes in a machine and come back an hour later to a pile of clean laundry. Feeling pretty dang thankful that I can see street signs with my glasses and that John's teeth will still be in good shape when we're old and wrinkly. This post by Glennon about "perspectacles" (perspective + spectacles) rocks my world. Yes, I have a healthy appreciation for pretty things and have worked hard to make our home a space that feels good to us, but running water is a luxury that I try and remind myself to not take for granted.

I started a Gratitude Journal a few weeks ago. Each morning, I write down three things I'm grateful for. Pretty cool way to start the day--it forces you to put on your perspectacles and acknowledge all that we so often overlook.



Friday, May 1, 2015

Outside... Inside

So... I don't have much to blog about these days, hence my long absence! I guess that's good, because it means our house is the way we want it to be, but it's so fun looking back on things here so I want to make sure I'm still documenting! Now that spring is here (sort of), I've been wanting to do some little things around the house. One was a deep clean, which felt really good, plus I needed to do our annual entryway/driveway power wash, and lastly to finally hang a screen door from the kitchen/dining room out to the back yard.

Home Depot sells really inexpensive, cute screen doors, so I grabbed one and was able to fit it in my car by about half an inch. It was a close call! A lot of the reviewers warned against the doors not being square, so I tried to find the one that was best aligned and was actually pretty impressed with the quality, especially for the price. 


As it turns out, the frame around the existing door isn't square at all, so having a square screen door wasn't too helpful! The door frame is a lot bigger at the top than at the bottom, so I sanded of quite a bit of the door to make it fit. I was originally going to use a planer, but the one my dad had made me nervous I was going to slice off chunks of my hand in the process, so I decided sanding with some 60 grit paper was a safer bet. Also... please excuse the iPhone pictures. My blogging absence has apparently made me very lazy.


The first step was to seal the wood. I contemplated painting it white to match the exterior, but I thought leaving it raw would bring a natural quality and tie in our wood patio furniture. I used Rustoleum clear matte spray paint to seal it, making sure to get every nook and cranny. The longest part of this project was probably covering up all of the screen (back + front). Since we don't get the newspaper delivered, I had to use tons of single sheets of paper which took forever. In the end, I did three coats of spray paint and it felt pretty well sealed.


The next step was to attach hardware. Pretty self-explanatory, but I made the mistake of buying spring-loaded hinges at first which ended up being way to strong/stiff for this light of a door. I returned them in favor of these spring-less hinges which were just barely narrow enough to fit in the space on the trim.


Three quick screws.


Next up was a simple door pull.


Then I hung it up! True to form, I got impatient and decided to hang it when John wasn't home to help me hold it. Luckily, since it's light, I was able to do it on my own :)


Since the hinges aren't spring loaded, the door doesn't stay completely shut on its own, so I grabbed a door spring to pull it back to the door frame.


Technically you're supposed to install the spring in the middle of the door where the T bar is, but because the door frame was so uneven, the door was hitting the frame at the bottom but not the top (leaving a gap up top), so I installed the spring up there. It helped quite a bit, and for the tiny sliver of space that was still open, I installed some weather stripping which you can barely see on the right.


For the few days of the year where it's nice enough to have the door open, we've really been enjoying it! I recently read that the air in our homes is about 10x more polluted than air outside (yuck), so this is one nice step towards reducing that. I've been looking into some easy ways to reduce indoor pollution and feel like we're doing pretty much everything we can be to breathe easy.


Since we were about to improve our view of the back yard, I figured we needed to make the view worth looking at! I planted some annuals and succulents, and what we already had that survived Black Thumb Bohne (aka me) from last year is also looking really good!




I also power washed all of our concrete which is soooo tedious! When I think back to the first time I did it, I've definitely learned a thing or to, like plan to be sore for three days and keep your mouth shut unless you want to snack on algae.


I also power washed some of our patio furniture while I was at it. It never would have occurred to me to do this for some reason, but a neighbor mentioned that they do it every year and it definitely made a big difference! We probably should have just taken better care of them from the beginning, but live and learn, right?


So, what spring cleaning/planting/projects have you been up to?

Thursday, February 12, 2015

The Golden Gate State

After our honeymoon last January, John and I had been thinking about where to go on our next vacation, and San Francisco has always stood out as the top contender. From what we read, we were expecting predictably unpredictable cold and rainy weather. I talked to a couple of friends who live in the area and they (plus every article written about San Francisco ever) said to wear layers because the weather can change really suddenly.

We must have been incredibly lucky because the weather was lovely the whole time! It was certainly chilly, but never cold, and it never rained. The ground was wet from time to time and it definitely got foggy, but we never needed an umbrella which was good... because I left it in the hotel room every time we went out! 

For the first time ever, I took my DSLR camera and didn't take one picture with it. The thing is, it's large. And, I was worried it was going to get rained on (even though it never rained at all). So, I weighed the cost-benefit and decided my iPhone was just going to have to cut it. Let me tell you, it was super liberating! That must sound silly, but it's tiring to have to constantly think about it. I think I enjoyed our time out and about a lot more without it!

We (I) did a lot of research before we went so we'd have our days planned in advance, mainly by geography. My preference is to always plan things around the way that we can see the most sights as efficiently as possible. Rarely do we stick to the plan--usually we end up nixing something in favor of doing something else, but it's nice to have an idea of what we'll be doing, knowing we can modify it however much we want once we get there.

Our luggage is so predictable: grey for me, UT for John.

We stayed at the Hotel Triton on Union Square and really liked it. It's a boutique hotel, and the only complaints we saw online were about the rooms being really small. Since we weren't planning on being in the room other than to sleep, size didn't matter to us as long as the bed was big! Indeed, there wasn't much space--just enough to set our luggage down... barely, but nothing we weren't prepared for.

Cute, right?!

To get around town, we bought two Muni passes which allowed us to use their public transportation as many times as we wanted. It was really mind blowing how convenient their system is. We used an app called Rover to figure out which kind of public transportation was nearest and fastest. It was free to download and worked unbelievably well. We'd tell it where we wanted to go, and it would give us some transportation options, sorted in order of which would be fastest. Once we chose one, it would tell us where to walk to catch the bus, how long the walk would take, how long the ride would take, and then where to walk to get to our destination. SO COOL. Every now and then we'd take Uber, but I think we only did it 4 or 5 times, two of which were going to and from the airport.

Another nice thing about the public transit is that it rarely dropped us off exactly where we needed to be, of course, so we got to walk around and see a lot of the shops and restaurants on our way.

This door speaks directly to my soul.

We went to the California Academy of the Sciences and really enjoyed seeing all of the exhibits, including a planetarium, aquarium, living rooftop, rainforest, and more I'm sure I can't remember.

Fishy
A bush with pretty flowers outside of the CAS

Our first meal in the city was at a restaurant called Zazie that a friend of mine recommended. The food was delicious, but the best part was their back deck! It was really gorgeous and felt super cozy.



For breakfast the next morning, we went to a famous place called Mama's, and stood in line for a little over an hour waiting to be seated. It's super tiny... probably 15 tables total, and when you get inside you stand in line to order before sitting down. As you wait, you get a really great view of a lot of the food, plus you can see the guys in the kitchen making everything. We I had a pretty serious case of my eyes being bigger than my stomach... let's just say that there's a long list of menu items I could tell you about from first hand experience, and they were all delicious!! John had sourdough french toast with a lemon and butter sauce and a slice of crumb cake. I had just about everything else.



After breakfast, we walked to Coit Tower which was a pretty steep climb. Doing that after eating twice as much as I should have was kind of painful, but we made it. The hill doesn't look nearly as steep in this picture as it actually was--in person it was really kind of amazing to look at the parked cars because it seemed like they should be tipping over and rolling down the hill!


View from the top!

Coit Tower

View of the city & the Golden Gate bridge from Coit Tower

On our way back to the bus stop, we walked by this awesome little mural. At first I thought they were real! Isn't this the coolest ever? I love it.


The next stop of the day was a segway tour. Sure sure, laugh all you want, but we've learned that segway haters have usually never even been on a segway! Everyone thinks it's soooooo lame, but it's not. I stand firmly behind that. If you like fun things, like golf carts, roller blading, or really any enjoyable mode of transportation, you will love segways. People think tourists go on them to see sights, and while that was partially true for us, I was so excited to go on them again just because they're unbelievably fun. It's a moving toy.

We took an advanced tour and ended up being the only two people on it! It was amazing. I wish I had gotten a picture of our tour guide--he's really what made the tour as awesome as it was. The neat thing about this tour was that it took us all over the city, including some lookouts and just regular old streets that were suuuper steep!

Goden Gate Bridge


One super cool thing we did while on the segways was to go down Lombard Street. 100% tourist move, but hey, when in Rome, right?! It was super fun, and also hilarious because our fellow tourist onlookers were actually taking our pictures in disbelief. Lots of finger pointing and oohing and awing. We couldn't believe we weren't dying during our descent, and neither could they.

Lombard Street

We actually did Lombard Street twice because of the route we took, so we hopped off to get a picture the second time :)

Lombard Street round two

One of my favorite stops was to the Exploratorium, and unfortunately I didn't get any good pictures inside, but I did get this one random selfie ;) The Exploratorium is basically a place with tons and tons (maybe a hundred?) of hands-on exhibits, most of which teach about science, but there was also a psychology section. It's technically geared towards kids, but everything we read online said that adults loved it too, and we definitely found that to be true. It's hard to explain specific exhibits because they were truly showing some phenomena that are surprising to see in person, so I don't think words would do them justice. Suffice it to say, this is a 100% must-see if you're ever in San Fran. My jaw was on the floor a good bit of the time.


On our last day, we had planned to rent a GoCar to drive to the Golden Gate Bridge. GoCars are these little three-wheeled vehicles, and they navigate and narrate based on where you go. It sounded pretty neat, but I woke up feeling really sick on our last day and didn't have it in me to have to drive the thing, or to be in charge of the map if John was driving. So, we hopped on a bus instead, and what a better choice that was! Sight-seeing with none of the work, and I didn't have to worry about being crushed by a regular-sized vehicle.

That day was the foggiest day... see the bush receding into the background? There's a slice of a cable used on the bridge that you can look at, and it's really pretty amazing to think about how many little cables are in one large cable (27,572 if you can't see it on the sign).

Golden Gate Bridge cable

Here's a closeup of what the inside looks like.


We originally planned to walk about half way across the bridge, but it was so foggy there wasn't any point. We made it a little ways across, snapped a picture, and headed back.

Golden Gate Bridge
See the gorgeous view behind us?! Yeah, neither could we.


The landscaping near the bridge was really pretty, and I loved this patch of succulents. I'm not sure if I've just never seen so many of this kind clustered together before, but I was in love.



Since we didn't walk across the bridge, we had a lot more time on our hands than we had planned. We decided to walk around Hayes Valley which is where a macaron shop I wanted to stop in was located. Umm, yum!


After that, we actually decided to go on another segway tour, this time through the Golden Gate Park. We learned a lot of really interesting things about the history of the park, and for someone that's not too fond of history, I was surprised I stayed engaged! Turns out the park used to just be a pile of sand, and everything on/in it is man-made and man-planted--nothing is native! You'd never know from looking at it that everything was brought in from elsewhere--all of the trees are very mature, and they don't look like they were placed in a specific manner. It's a really gorgeous park and I wish I had gotten a picture. Oops. We weren't allowed to snap any while actively segwaying, but it was nice to just be in the moment enjoying the tour. My favorite part was probably going through their redwood forest at sunset. Ahhh... dreamy.

As always, we're very happy to be back home. We missed Olive like crazy, and she's actually currently under the weather. Depending on how much better she gets by tomorrow morning, we may have to make our third trip of the week to our vet. If we do, it'll mean getting some imaging done to see what's going on in her tummy. We feel so bad for her! Luckily, she seems to be in good spirits. Not quite as energetic as she usually is, but she's still happy to go on walks and she wags her tail all the time, so she doesn't seem to be in any pain. Keep your fingers crossed she gets better tonight, ok?