Friday, March 27, 2009


Jessica and I had a perfect day today. We almost got lucky, and had lunch at Chez Panisse. It was booked, but we did take in the gorgeous floral arrangement and the action in the kitchen. We will go there, reservations will be made and I can't wait. I can't believe how nice the maitre 'd treated us. This is a world famous restaurant and I was treated with dignity, like a real person. Check out this recent piece on 60 minutes to learn more about Alice Waters, Chez Panisse, and the slow food movement. I looked around in glee like a kid in a candy shop.  Words won't do it justice.

Instead, we had a satisfying panini at Guerilla cafe. The highlight of the meal would have to be the drinks; Jess had an orange and red spritzer (lignonberry syrup with seltzer water and fresh mint) I had hibiscus tea.   

We drooled over fabric and I went a little nuts over all the ribbon and trims at Stone Mountain and Daughter fabric. I am definitely cherishing the time I get to spend with my best friend before her little one arrives. We made little progress on our knitting. We had quite an infuriating experience at Staples trying to get copies made. We were busy at it again with the sewing machine. Baby K will be sporting some stylish Amy Butler bibs. Jess made the most adorable little wool felt booties. We wanted that little boy to come out right then to try them on for us!

I'm growing to love this place. Sam came home a little early and we picked him up at the subway station and then we headed to the Gourmet Ghetto to get some supper. We were pleased that we could enjoy yummy food at a place that was so fancy, yet very unpretentious. Sam was able to wear a cap (hard hat hair) and change from a day doing blue collar work and no noses were turned up at us. We wore jeans and enjoyed our wine and dinner at Liaison. This is the way I love to eat. So magical. 

A Dream

I am so happy and full of joy.  I have exciting things to share with you all.  We are staying here.  Can you believe it?  Who wouldn't love to live in a charming apartment like this.  I feel like Meg Ryan in You've Got Mail, yes, I feel that I'm living straight out of a movie set.  I can walk down the street, pick a fresh bouquet of flowers, grab a coffee, get a baguette, and some fresh veggies from the market. 

Here it is.  We live in the upper front apartment (there are 4 total)  That turret (I think, I'm going to call it one anyway) in the upstairs corner is where I love to spend time sewing.  I love the three big windows.
You have a good view of our little balcony here.

Here are some of our neighbors.
This is a view from our balcony.
This is my work station.
Here is our cozy bed.
Ahh, the bay window.  I enjoy my breakfast here.  I also knit and read here.  

  A lady helped me pick out this cheery combination of flowers and then she wrapped it in tissue paper and tied it with twine.  I watched her do her magic as I waited my turn.  She is an amazing artist, she grabbed a flower here, a flower there and created a glorious arrangement, what a job.  I couldn't help but smile from the smell alone.  It didn't hurt that the flower stand was sandwiched between a french bakery and a fruit market.  I also grabbed an orange currant scone from next door (how could I resist)  I found all of these places accidentally while I was out getting laundry detergent.  I'll gladly run errands out here, it's such a pleasant, joyful experience.
Sam brought home a vase so I can contain some of those beautiful flowers and a few candles.  These little touches help make the place feel like home.  It is pretty bare, but it's simple and cozy enough.
Check out the built in bookshelves.  I am dying to fill them up.  I would gladly unpack and move in permanently, or take this place and the weather in my suitcase back with me to Spokane.

This is taken from the dining room looking into the hallway and then into the bedroom.  This place has two big rooms and a little hallway dividing it.  If you turn to the right, you can walk out onto the little balcony.
I love to read out here.  The smell of jasmine and magnolias perfume the air.

I hope you enjoyed taking a peak into where we are right now.  This is making up for all the hours spent sifting through craigslist ads.  All the e-mails that led to disappointment, we ended up in a charming location.  As always, in the end, with our crazy lifestyle it was worth it. I get to sit here instead of a boring old hotel.  I'm so amazed.  I don't know why God has blessed me with seeing so many beautiful places.  This is an experience I will never forget.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A Little Hike

Today I took a gamble.  I went on a hike.  I started out just great. It was steep, as are most walks you go on in this area.  I wandered too far onto a disappearing trail. I backtracked and got on the main path again. I marveled at the beautiful views of the bay area. I got to the very top. I went on a road near some very fancy houses. I wondered if someone was going to come out and yell at me. No one did. I kept going. I considered going back, but I just wanted to get to the top. I got to the top. I thought, hmm, this looks like it makes a loop. I wasn't sure. There was no map. It looked like it would loop. I just went with it. This was my big gamble. Common sense would tell a person to turn around and go back the way she came. I just tried it. Much to my relief, it worked out. I did have a city map with me, so had I ended up in a totally different area I could have navigated my way back home. I didn't want to climb back up that big hill. It was fun! The end.

Can I just say that this place and experience is a dream.  More to come on this little adventure of ours living in the Berkeley area for about a month and a half.  Here is a sneak peak of the cute little house we live in.

Friday, March 20, 2009

I heart Yuppie Outdoor Towns

Mt. Shasta
Cute little bungalow~I want to move right in!
I didn't think I cared much for the clothes at fancy boutiques, boy oh boy did Hot Box Betty change my mind.  I gladly could have dropped thousands at that store!
Sam and I had a great road trip out here.   And yes, I'll gladly live in a yuppie outdoor town like Bend, Oregon.  Splitting up this road trip into two days made for a really enjoyable trip.  We had time to visit Patagonia and drive around and see all the great craftsman style bungalows.  I really loved Bend.  More later on what we're up to right now.  All I can say is... yesterday was absolutely nuts!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Waiting For Spring

So I'm not going to leave you on a depressing note to start your week.  Sam, TJ, Andrea and I are starting up a youth group here.  There is a lot of space in my backyard, the church's property.  So I got thinking...  Sam and I wanted to have a garden of our own.  But why not have a community garden?  I'm very excited and hope this will work.  I don't know how big it will be, how it will work.  I don't even really know how to garden.  

After reading Alice Waters and Chez Panisse and learning about the Edible Schoolyard I've been intrigued.  I think it's a great idea and I wish every school could have a garden.  Gardens teach kids cool practical skills and encourage healthy eating.  Alice Water's idea is so cool and I hope it becomes a reality for every school.  

Movies that Make you Think

I've watched so many movies about the injustices of this world.  It drags me down and overwhelms me.  I like watching them.  I want to be informed, but it can be so soul draining.  I recommend watching them all.  I guess I'm not making a good argument to watch these movies.  But they are good, some are uplifting, some are downers, they'll make you think, they'll make you question things.  This is the way things are though, there is no denying it.

The links will take you to trailers.  I think you should pick at least one to watch.

The messed up system of immigration.   
(If you haven't seen this, watch this.  For the most part it's entertaining and uplifting and makes you want to pick up a jemba drum and learn to play)  

Talking about blood diamonds and the awful war in Sierra Leone where the 7 year olds were given machine guns and made into killing machines

Showing the corporations taking over

Telling how messed up our farming system is

Showing how scary it is to trust the system and have a baby in the US

A sad story about a man who never found peace or love from the world.  
(I hope you laugh a little that I threw this one in the mix.  The film is made so well, the music is beautiful.  This is about Timothy Treadwell the guy who lived with the grizzlies for over a decade and got eaten by them.)

The awful reality that kids are being brought up to be sex slaves.  (This movie shows a woman who gave the kids in the brothels cameras, so it's not totally a downer)

A genocide that happened not too long ago, while the US stood by and watched it happen  

What happens in our own country over in Guantanemo bay

God how does this all happen?  It shows how much I hate the world and love you.  We've messed up your beautiful creation and need you.  I want to shield my eyes.  I don't want to look, but it's all around me and it's ugly.