Ariel ATX Biking Adventures

Today, all I knew is that I wanted to go on a bike ride…but wasn’t sure where. Fortunately, in Austin…anywhere you go is exciting, especially when you have a bike like mine. It’s an Ariel Specialized; she’s a hybrid (trail and road)…and simply perfect. 

I ended up biking about a 20 mile round trip and it was beautiful.  I didn’t take too many pictures (I blame snapchat), but here are a few moments from today’s bike adventure. 

This picture below is of an old house next to a tall building downtown that reminds me of the movie Up. This is Austin. 

This is Clive, a cool bar on Rainey Street. They always have great music playing.

I have a lot of different pictures of Austin but not one from this angle, on the I-35 side.

Selfie on the Boardwalk, downtown in the back…and $250 Costa del Mars on my face 😎.

That’s Ariel…and my TriNet water bottle. 

…and a PowerLine with some cool graffiti. 

Had to stop at Juiceland to juice me up for the ride back home. Got a bike discount…and two mosquito bites 😒.

Today was a good day.

ROAD TRIP!!! California to Texas

One of the coolest things I’ve done yet: road trip from Alameda, California to Austin,  Texas.  Below are some of my favorite pictures from the trip. We started the drive Sunday, June 29th and arrived in ATX on Thursday, July 3rd.

The beauty of the trip was so much more than just what can be seen in the pictures. For starters, the fact that I was moving to Austin to basically start anew made the trip that much more amazing. I was leaving an entire life behind: my family and friends, my job, my beautiful home in Alameda…and California itself.  Whatever could not fit in my Nissan Altima Hybrid…simply was given to family, friends or the Goodwill; at the end of all the packing, all I really had left was about 1/3 of my clothes and shoes, pictures, 6 bottles of wine and champagne, my zebra chair, favorite antique lamp, bamboo plant, and my zebra stuffed animal from when I was 5 years old.  Leaving was not hard to do though…I was and still very am excited about this new chapter in my life! =)

Also, I turned 30 years old a few days after the start of the trip (July 1st – the first day of the second half of the year).  Turning 30 is a milestone in life, and I must say that waking up at the Grand Canyon and having a romantic dinner in Ruidoso, New Mexico on the same day was the perfect way to spend my 30th birthday.

Here are just a few out of the nearly thousands of photos we took along the way:

First stop, Monterey!

Fish Hopper  Surf Board

He wanted to see Pebble Beach!

Pebble Beach

We cruised The Pacific Coast Highway (Highway 1) from the Bay Area to Los Angeles:

Us Highway 1 PCH

CastleRockHouse  White Elephant

Tay Hollywood  Hollywood

The beauty of a place so desolate…

IMG_20140630_184443 (2)  Train

Clouds Clouds2

There’s a baby tornado in the shot below!

Tornado

The picture of the open road right below is now my current Facebook cover photo.

Road Trip

Made it to the Grand Canyon in time for the Sunset.  Waking up to see the sun glazing over the canyon on my 30th birthday was pretty sweet too.

20140630_194310_HDR Sunset GC Us GC  Touch itGC

lol GC  GC2TayGC

Saw a bear for the first time ever!

BEar

Drove straight to Ruidoso, New Mexico right after the Grand Canyon…perfect timing for Taylor to make the most romantic birthday dinner ever!

Welcome to NM  Ruidoso 2

Finally made it!

welcome to TX

My Boxers

Today I got to spend time with my boxers. I try to visit whenever I can. They bring a joy to me like nothing or no one else can bring. Their names are Bruiser and Chika (the brindle). Bruiser loves his toys and Chika loves attention; they’re such like humans sometimes, it’s ridiculous. Anyway, just thought I’d share some boxer doggie love from today.

They were so excited to see me, but then I gave them treats and they forgot I was there for a moment. Lol

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Bruiser is such a poser for the camera.

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It’s hard to get Chika to look at the camera. She’s not as photogenic as Bruiser lol.

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Kisses for the Chika-girl

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Bruiser and his ball! He pretends like nothing else besides his ball matters, but he’s as loyal and loving as a dog can be. When he hears ANYTHING suspicious, he’s on the lookout.

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Bruiser, loves to look sexy for the camera.

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She missed me. I missed her.  I couldn’t ask her to be anymore precious.

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Alamere Falls and All

Last Saturday’s hike to Alamere Falls was more than I could ever ask for in a hike.  There are so many ways to describe the experience that it almost makes it difficult to find the words.

As I usually like to do when I’m at loss for words in describing amazingness, I’ve shared some pictures below highlighting the day…the glorious day, it was.

Rope swinging. There was this super awesome rope swing off the trail that my bestie knew about from hiking there previously. This was my first time rope swinging ever, and it was sensational!

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A freaking waterfall onto the Pacific Coast beach! Need I say more…other than I nearly passed out from hypothermia sitting under the waterfall for this picture.

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One of the most amazing waterfalls I’ve ever seen.

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Hiking and picnicking with my wonderful friends. This ultimately is what I enjoy most about our hikes. We are so alive.

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Peace. Along the trail…surrounded by waterfalls, rope swings, hikers and all…was this lake.  From this angle, it’s hard to believe we could possibly disturb this lake with our rope swinging splashes and wildness.

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Beach fun. We did the limbo, did cartwheels, swam in the ocean. We had so much fun on the beach…our hiking midpoint.

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The views alongside the trails were breathtaking. This picture was taken on a cliff which is why I have that look of fear…fear of falling backward off of the cliff and…uh…ruining the hike for sure.  I’ve realized you have to live life on the edge though, occasionally, to get the most out of it. You learn, see, and experience things you never knew were possible.

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Working on my Saturday Morning

The weekend is in full swing…yet here I am about to get some work in for the next few hours.  One may think this would be a lousy way to spend their Saturday morning, but when you enjoy what you do, it’s not a bad deal at all.  I am not one to really separate work from life either, because it’s all life in the end, which is all the more reason to enjoy your work.

And not to worry, there are lots of super fun activities scheduled for later in my Saturday!

Happy Saturday!

Sand Art & Love

I went to the beach the other day because what else is there better to do than go to the beach whenever you have the opportunity.  Anyway, as I was daydreaming, I had this urge to just play in the sand like I did when I was a kid…at this very same beach in Alameda where my Dad often took my brother, sister and me.  Below are some of the pictures I took, and the messages I left behind.

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Let’s Talk Straw

Below are just a few of the millions of favorite pictures I have from my #Colestraw life! It started years ago and has evolved into something I have yet to fully understand! It’s an obsession now!  When I whip a spare straw out of my purse in front of a crowd, especially if the straw has an umbrella or changes colors, and then place it in my glass of wine, my glass (or can) of beer, my mimosa or whatever the beverage may be (other than a hot one), the looks I get are priceless. The conversations I have are simply wonderful.

I genuinely enjoy hearing people tell me why, in there opinion, drinking beer, wine, or whatever the beverage may be (excluding hot ones) is awesome.  Of course, to state the obvious, drinking red wine out of a straw helps prevent your teeth from turning red, but also your lips. It’s fun seeing some people barely realize this when they see me drinking my red wine with my straw.  People often ask if I get drunk faster…I’ve not tested this theory yet, but I plan to soon, so until then, they get “dunno.” I also enjoy when people ask if I have any extra – like how some people bum a smoke, they’ll bum a straw.

The conversations aren’t always so positive.  Some people have told me that using a straw so much will cause more wrinkles lol… or we’ll chat about how straws can be bad for the environment.  I stress the exclusion of straws in hot drinks because it was through one of my amazing conversations that I discovered that doing so was potentially harmful to my health if the chemicals from the plastic melt into the drink. 

Straws in beer and wine, to say the least, have sparked some of the most interesting conversations I’ve had! Excited for more #Colestraw life!

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So many more to come…