Wildcat Camp, Point Reyes

July 20, 2015

Description of Photo On Saturday we joined a fun group of 9 new and old friends for a trip to Wildcat Camp in Point Reyes. It was a moderate 6-mile hike to the meadow site overlooking the ocean, and though tough at times, carrying all of our gear and food on our backs felt rewarding.

Highlights included a walk down the beach to Alamere Falls, a rare 'tidefall' flowing directly into the ocean, a nighttime beach bonfire with s'mores, and a peaceful Sunday coffee on the sand to watch the sun rise over the waves.

Camping Gear

July 14, 2015

This weekend I am embarking on my second camping trip of the summer. That's more camping in the past three weeks than I experienced the entire four years we lived in Texas. Camping in the summer was such a large part of my childhood, and I am excited to get back to it! It is rewarding to be active and unplugged in the wilderness.

Here is a peek at the clothing and gear I'm currently using for these Northern California adventures. My packing list varies depending on the type of trip and the available amenities at each campsite. These are just a few of my favorite items when packing light.

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Outdoor gear ain't cheap! I recommend borrowing from friends, shopping at REI's garage sales, or buying second-hand. The great thing about these sturdy items is they last a long time (for example, the sleeping bag I've used since 8th grade, and the tent my Dad bought in the '90s), and often come with a warranty that the company will repair or replace worn items. 

Home | Organize

July 7, 2015

Starting my new job as an organizer, and reading this book has created the perfect storm for organizational motivation within my own home. Undoubtedly, in times of change and unpredictability (say, moving across the country), we hold on to the things we can control. One way I maintain that sense of control is by creating a soothing home environment.

To me, a calm home means little clutter. Our new home is not there yet, but we're making baby steps. Today I completed a few organizational tasks, and I thought I'd share three steps I follow in making sustainable organizing updates. 

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1. Purge. Ahhh it feels so nice tossing items that either a.) don't "spark joy" or b.) feel unnecessary. Those jeans that have followed me to four cities in four years, but have yet to make an appearance on my body? Time to go!

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2. Use aesthetically pleasing storage. If the solution looks nice and is enjoyable to use, I find myself more likely to stick to it. (Important note: Too much storage is counter productive. Items not visible or inaccessible are used less, and likely fall into the category not necessary.)

It is not in my budget to purchase pretty new containers for my organizational tweaks; rather, I like to repurpose common household items.

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3. Group together 'families'. Functionality is important—by grouping similar items together, I'm abiding by the organizing mantra a place for everything and everything in its place. For example, I sought a solution for seasonal items (bathing suits and towels), and displayed them so they're both handy and colorful in my closet. No more digging through my drawer to find the matching bikini top and bottom. 

A major piece of maintaining a tidy, organized home is being selective with consumption. The less thoughtless spending, the less need to create additional storage and spend time organizing. Living within a budget, and adopting a careful purchasing mindset, means I have to live with an 'unfinished' apartment to allow the thoughtful piecing together of the home. Note the makeshift shelf I created with wooden chopping boards for my cookbook display—it will do just fine until I find the perfect bookshelf for our kitchen nook. 

Tomales Point + Napa

July 6, 2015

We celebrated July 4th with a foggy hike at Point Reyes National Seashore, and a first-time visit to Napa.

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^ Dairy farms dot the Point Reyes Peninsula. These happy California cows have a view of Tomales Bay.

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^ Pierce Point Ranch on Tomales Point—a former dairy ranch established in 1858

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^ Tule Elk

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^ Tomales Bay

And then to Napa...

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^ Biked a flat loop along the Silverado Trail, stopping at Regusci Winery for a tasting

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^ ...and toasted to one year of marriage. Cheers!

Camping in Big Sur

July 1, 2015

big sur rocky panorama

We recently drove south to spend a night in the redwoods at Limekiln State Park in Big Sur. Our group of 5 had a great time hiking the trails within the park, eating delicious meals prepared over open flame (thanks to new friends who can cook!), and watching the most beautiful cotton candy sunset on the 'private' beach.

Big Sur is the magical stretch of coast where M and I honeymooned just a year ago. I still can't believe all of the Pacific beauty is now so accessible to us for quick overnight trips.

limekiln state park tent campinglimekiln state park hike


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