Archive for the ‘To Do Lists’ Category

Staycation List Update

I’ve been checking things off my list.  Saturday, I went to the Palo Alto Farmer’s Market and picked up spices from Spice Hound.  I was missing some basic stuff like oregano, black peppercorns, red pepper flakes, taco seasoning, paprika, and crushed garlic.  While there, I also picked up some great goat and sheep’s milk cheeses from Garden Variety Cheese.

It was raining, but I was on a mission.  I headed to the Palo Alto Apple Store in search of an iPad mini to send to Sonny for my Karma Point Mission.  Why didn’t anyone tell me that minis are sold out?  Maybe someone did and I wasn’t paying attention.  I guess the media is right, no one wants them.  At least I saw the new store.  The noise situation wasn’t as bad as the media had said either.  It was loud, but not difficult to hear the conversation I was having.

Having failed at finding an iPad Mini, I retreated to my car which was sitting unlocked three blocks away.  I couldn’t lock it because it was raining.  Earlier that morning, my car alarm was going off for no apparent reason.  Turns out, my third brake light assembly is loose and according to the interwebs, there are reports that when that light isn’t sealed properly, water leaks in and sets off the alarm.  Well, it was raining and the assembly was loose and the alarm was going off, so I just didn’t lock my car until it dried out.

I checked my list of things to do, and the second item was to pick up my wine shipments.  I couldn’t go through vacation without getting some good wine!  So I called up Keanu and we headed up into the Santa Cruz hills.


First stop was Regale.  The last time Sparkles was out visiting, we met up with his German exchange student friend to go wine tasting.  I dropped my membership at Burrell School after tasting their chardonnay that smells like burnt rubber.  Next door is the newly built Regale.  Expensive, but a lovely garden and good wine, so I started a membership, but I haven’t been back since.  I had two shipments to pick up.  Luckily, it happened to be shipment day.


Second stop was my other favorite winery, Loma Prieta.  I was only behind on one shipment there since they don’t produce as much and have fewer shipments.  When we walked in the door, there was Cupcake (aka Golf Buddy K) and her crew.  They’d gone wine tasting without me!  Or I went without them.  Whatever.  Let’s let bygones be bygones.

Turns out, Saturday was a Passport Day.  And Cupcake et al had passports and were going to use them with or without us.  Keanu and I didn’t have passports, but decided to tag along.  Our next stop was Burrell School.  The chardonnay had mellowed out a little since last time, but still smelled horrendous to me.  A couple other people thought it smelled like sesame.  Whatever, I was driving, so I was dumping.


Our last stop happened to have three wineries all pouring.  They had run out of passports, so we paid $15 for all the tastings.  Pretty good deal.  The wines weren’t anything to write home about, so probably best I had to pay for the tastings.

I got home in time to walk the dog, inject the cat and make dinner.  A good evening in.  I seem to have a lot of those lately.

On Sunday, Perl wanted something out of this staycation, so we went to Fort Funston.  As always, I was worried about the weather, but it turned out to be a gorgeous day.


Monday, I went to the mall to pick up an iPad mini.  Failing that, I bought an iPod touch instead.  Then I stopped by White House | Black Market.  I know better, but I just couldn’t help myself.  I also picked up a few things from Bare Escentuals that I was low on.  I hate going to the mall, so I was hoping that going on Monday morning before kids are out on vacation would be acceptable.  I hated going there anyways.

After the mall, I needed to mail the iPad mini and iPod touch, so Perl and I went for a walk to the post office.  We stopped at the Palace Cafe and I had a late lunch.  Perl got more attention while we sat there than she has ever gotten sitting on Murphy Street.


Monday also kicked off my attempts at shedding a few pounds.  Strangely, it is easier for me to diet during vacation because I have time to think about what I am eating, log it, and get more exercise.  And I don’t go out to eat as much because I have more time to cook.

Tuesday, I finally checked playing golf off my list.  Cupcake and I stopped by Sunken Gardens for nine holes before she had to go off to work.  I thought about playing another round in the afternoon, but it was pretty windy.  Instead, Keanu and I grabbed lunch and then picked up our Turkey Trot race packets for the Thanksgiving Day run.

In the afternoon, Perl and I walked to Target and I picked up a FitBit One to help me track my progress on My Fitness Pal.  Hopefully I stick with it this time.  If so, I should be at my target weight by July.  This morning, Perl and I have already walked 2.15 miles to the grocery store and back.  I bought some yogurt so I can stop eating pancakes for breakfast.  Although I did finally find a pancake recipe that works for me—Whole Wheat Apple Pancakes.  I was too lazy to separate the eggs, and I added in some blueberries and banana too.  According to My Fitness Pal, the recipe makes pancakes for four and each serving is 297 calories with 53 g of carbs, 4 g of Fat, 11 g of Protein and 464 mg of Sodium

Today’s plan is to get some stuff done around the house.  The weather isn’t great today, although the sun is finally coming out, but I want to do some cooking for tomorrow’s dinner and get some of the stuff done on my computer that I’ve been avoiding.  Maybe I can knock off a few more items on my list!

√ Buy an iPad mini tomorrow that isn’t for me. Maybe one for me too.
√ Pick up my wine shipments in the Santa Cruz mountains
– Run the Silicon Valley Turkey Trot
– Bike the trails in Monterrey
√ Play golf
√ Take my dog to Fort Funston
– Make an Aperture book of my Italy trip
– Plan a trip around the world
√ Buy new spices from
√ Setup doctors appointments
– Minimize my junk email
– Make cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving day
– Spend Thanksgiving day with my holidays family and call the rest of my family
– Have a play date for Perl with Princess K
– Investigate colors to paint my condo this summer
– Finish my Italy travelogue before I finish my staycation


Errand success!

First stop was the bookstore. She wasn't busy being a 10 am on a Friday morning, so she said she would take a look through all my books. I managed to score $58 in store credit and then spent $33.

Next stop, Goodwill. This was my big win for the day. Before going, I made a list of everything I was bringing and looked up their values. A big box of clothes, some shoes, luggage, a full set of dishes, and leftover books legally nets me $260 in tax deductions.

I then made a pit stop at home to shower now that my heavy lifting was done, and slather on sunscreen since errands must be done with Myrtle's top down.

On to the DMV. It makes me nervous to see old people there who can barely walk. What is their reaction time? I hope when I get to that age that I realize I have to let go of my car. Until then, the DMV took $200. I was just going to get my bank off the title—about time, since I've owned the car for three years—but it seems my registration is due in August, so I paid it now. But they wouldn't give it to me because I need a smog check.

Off to AAA, since I also need to pay my home insurance. However, the insurance side wasn't open, and the smog check people were busy until 3. On to more errands.

I stopped to buy dog food then went to the golf course to pick up my clubs. The Callaway dealer was out, but my clubs were there. A beautiful set of X22 graphite shaft Women's clubs. They are blue and have pretty flowery squiggles on the head. Very girly. :-)

To my surprise, they let me walk out with $900 worth of clubs! By the way, I paid *much* less than that. I can't wait to try them out! I'm so excited! :-)

Before I can go to the driving range, I have to finish my todo list. So I stopped at work to pick up my drycleaning and then on to the recycling center to get rid of the busted recieved that I've been carrying around in my trunk for a month or two. I was amazed at everything going on there. Lots of recycling, gigantic bricks of crushed aluminum. A big SMARTStation for separating trash. It gives me hope that things are going to the proper places.

I figured I shouldn't leave my new clubs in the car, especially since I haven't even paid for them yet. So I dropped of the clubs, drycleaning and dog food at home and went back to AAA for my smog check.

The smog check was uneventful, although my car feels violated by the probe up her ass.

Back to the DMV where I found an empty nip of Jack Daniels in the parking lot. Seriously, who thinks that is a good idea?

I feel like I'm playing bingo waiting for A042 to be called. I'm thinking of shouting when it does, but I don't. I get my registration sticker and head home.

I have been successful with today's errands. Still a few more things to do, but they involve shopping. And I hate shopping. Let's do math! Or walk the dog and go to a party? Good enough!

Hope you all had a successful day!


I have a day off and I'm not travelling. I think the world may have ended. For those of you who are concerned, don't be. I have plenty of trips scheduled for the next six months. You won't be disappointed in my Four Weddings and a Funeral year. And I'm not kidding. Weddings in Mexico (successfully completed without catching the swine flu), Montana, Texas and upstate New York and a funeral in Maine.

Yes, I've had a funeral on my calendar for a couple months now. Frankie was a good family friend. He and his wife, Virgie, ran the rollerskating rink and were a big part of my childhood summers. He lived a good long life, but his last few years were rough. He passed this winter and was creamated. Burying someone in Maine through six feet of frost is a bit difficult, so a plan to celebrate his life was scheduled for the summer when his family could all make the trek north.

One side benefit is that Meme has her best friend back for the summer. I'm looking forward to seeing Virgie in a couple weeks.

But before that, I have an exciting wedding in Montana. And next weekend, Pocket Watch Man is coming to visit! Pocket Watch Man is a friend from London. He and I worked together back in the dark ages before my family knew about the Internet and CD drives were new. He used to test our software by timing it with his pocket watch. So now I have to come up with some crazy stuff to do while he is here.

Before that though, I need to finish cleaning my apartment. I had piles of stuff to go to goodwill on my dining room table. Now my little convertible is filled to the brim. I have a whole list of things to do including dropping books off at the library, going to the DMV to get the bank off the title of my car that I have owned for the last three years, changing my address which I also should have done three years ago, and recycling some old electronics. It should be a busy day, but my goal is to have my place back to normal by the end of the weekend.

So far, I've walked the dog and I'm having a vanilla latte in a coffee shop telling all of you my plans to be productive. I'm currently failing. But the bookstore just opened, so I'm off like a prom dress!


A few weeks ago, my (evil) Fairy Godfather took away all of the karma points that I’d been collecting. (I deserved it.) Since then I’ve been running in a deficit. Good things happen and then they are immediately followed by something bad. I have yet to get back in the black. This is the story of my demise.

Today has been crazy. I slept for about six hours, then got up at 6:30 am so that I could empty, wash, and refill the litter box; vacuum then shampoo the carpet; dye my hair; put my clean clothes away; take out the trash; and walk the dog.

I was at work by 9:30. Had a busy day including drinking the koolaid and submitting all my projects. Ran errands, including the previously written about trip to the tattoo parlor. Was out of work early (by 5:30). Walked the dog, grabbed a slice of cold leftover pizza and ran to my first HOA meeting where I was being voted onto the board.

They needed one more person to have a quorum, since I didn’t count yet, and she was running half an hour late. Luckily, they let me go early so that I could get to my team dinner. Drove into Santana Row, where it is notoriously difficult to find a parking spot. Tried one parking lot unsuccessfully. Pulled into the next lot. A guy walking to his car spotted me with the top down and said, “Right over here.” I told him he was my new best friend.

Dinner was over, but I arrived in time for dessert and a drink. We then went to the next bar. It seems like it is an Irish pub, but the dance music made it difficult to believe. Baby-S showed up around 11 pm. Danced for a minute just to say we did and then off to the next bar, which was more crowded and more dance music. Lost a teammate in the travels, but I went back for him and made sure he got home safely. Overall, it was a fun night and I managed to only have two drinks the entire five hours.

Finally home at 1 am, I started to pack. At 2:30 am I realized I’d left my noise canceling headphones at work and that I didn’t want to fly without them. Drove to work and back. In bed at 3:30 am.

Typical lunch errands

Took Travel Buddy P with me on my lunchtime errands today. Stopped at the drug store, a grocery store, burrito store, and a tatoo parlor. She was amused by the bongs in the back. Travel Buddy P thinks I take her to the best places! I’ll let you wonder why I was there.