Picnic Surprise

I love surprises!  Giving them or receiving them, big or small!  With all our moving preparations in full swing, I wanted to put together something fun for Joel to come home to.  Just a little something to allow us to step away from the packing, breath for a moment, and enjoy.  Behind where we live is a very large grassy park, a perfect place to bring the kiddos, play with your puppy, or have a nice picnic.  I had the day off from work, so I decided I was going to surprise Joel with an evening picnic in that park!  Even with most of our kitchen items already packed up, I knew with a few key items I could pull together an awesome spread.  So I grabbed my favorite platter and a blanket scarf, packed up some fresh snacks along with a mini bottle of bubbles, and headed off to the set it all up.  On the menu was smoked salmon lettuce wraps, shrimp cocktail, sliced apples, and my homemade spicy dill pickle spears! (I’ll blog that recipe soon!) Easy-peasy and delicious!  Joel texted me when he got home, wondering where I was.  I told him that I was at the park and to come to meet me! Originally I hadn’t planned on turning this activity into a blog post, but Joel said when he received my text he “knew I was being cute and up to something” so he grabbed his camera.  And I’m glad he did!  It gave me the opportunity to share this with you all, and show you once again that it’s the little things that make life so great, and that you should celebrate them!  Sure the photos might not be perfect, but they’re 100% in the moment!  So if you’d like to do something to surprise your honey, skip the flowers or fancy dinner out, and just head to the park or beach!  With a few snacks or even just a thermos of bubbly in hand, send that text “Come meet me here! XO” and then watch an ordinary day turn into something extraordinary!  I really hope you do!!!

Cheers!

Traci

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Where the heart is…

Where the heart is

Sooooo in my last post California Lovin’ I briefly talked about how sometimes big changes happen in life, and they fall into place so effortlessly that you just can’t help but think “This is totally what I’m suppose to be doing in life right now, I’m where I’m meant to be!”  Well the winds are changing direction over here and blowing us up to SEATTLE!!!  And so far it’s been pretty smooth sailing!  That’s right, thanks to some amazing opportunities brought to us from the PNW, we are returning back to our roots and starting a new exciting chapter in our lives closer to friends and family.

Over the past year or so Seattle has been tugging on my heart strings, trying to bring me back.  With my parents getting older, and other parts of our family expanding, being closer to family is something I’ve been yearning for.  At the same time, things have been going really well for my boyfriend Joel and I down here in California, so the idea of leaving has been hard to sit with as well.  So instead of fussing over a decision and stressing out over if I made the right decision or not, I decided to just continue living life and wait for a sign.  I can be stubborn sometimes though, and need a VERY clear sign to say “HEY YOU, TRACI!  IT’S TIME TO GO THIS WAY NOW!”  Knowing that this decision wouldn’t be made by just me, I needed a sign that spoke to both Joel and I.  And that sign recently showed up in the form of incredible job opportunity for Joel.  It wasn’t something he was looking for, but when it presented itself, we both knew it was our sign.  This new place of employment would not only move him forward in big and exciting ways, but would also bring us HOME.  

Within the next few weeks we will be packing up everything we own into a moving truck and doing a little road trip back to the PNW!  Follow along on Instagram and see our adventure once we hit the road! To new beginnings…

Cheers!

Traci

 

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California Lovin’

California Lovin'

A question I’m asked quite frequently is, how my boyfriend Joel and I got together, along with, “How did you guys end up in California?”  Today I’m going to share those answers with you in one swoop, as they pretty much blend together in a “stars aligned” type of story.  But as a little precursor to this story, you have to know that I’m totally a believer in “everything happens for a reason”, “blessings in disguise” and that if a big change in your life is really suppose to happen, everything will fall into place.  When things fall into place so effortlessly, you can’t help but feel that you are EXACTLY where you are suppose to be in life at that moment.  Like ” YES, I’m meant to be here, I’m on the right track!” and it feels AMAZING!  So on that note, here’s my story!

Joel and I met a lot earlier in life than many people expect.  I was 17, he was 19 and we met at what I like to call a “Best Buy Party”.  Yes that’s right, like the electronics store, Best Buy.  These gatherings weren’t AT Best Buy, but they were occupied by and thrown by several Best Buy employees.  I had a close girlfriend who worked there and I would always accompany her to these shindigs.  Joel also worked at this Best Buy and these events just so happened to be thrown at his house that he shared with a few other employees.  Sooooo that’s basically how we met!  But there’s more to the story than just that. When I was in high school, I was SUPER shy around people I didn’t know, so these gatherings were kind of torture for me, but I really wanted to break myself of this shyness so I continued to go.  Right away I thought Joel was sooooo cute with his super bleached, almost white hair, pierced ears, and the fact that he played drums.  I’ve always been a sucker for the alternative, tattooed, pierced guys, that at first glanced seem a bit hard and bad boy-ish, but in real life are total sweet hearts…you know the type right? Well Joel totally fit the bill in my eyes, minus the tattoos.  Being that I was so shy though, it would take all courage I had to just just say HI to him!  He would always say hi back maybe a “good to see you” and then continue on his way.  And that’s it!  I always hoped he would strike up a conversation with me, but it just never happened.

After I graduated high school I moved away for college.  After about a semester I realized that particular college just wasn’t for me, and I moved back to my home town to figure things out.  And guess what, when I got back, those old Best Buy parties were still happening…. so I went, and all of a sudden Joel started talking to me! (I came to find out that the reason he didn’t really talk to me before was that, even though he thought I was super cute, I was still in high school, and he didn’t want to seem like “that guy” who dated younger chicks in high school.  This made me go “awwwwww” in my head.  I thought that was pretty respectable of him, and also pretty sweet.)  Pretty quickly we started dating, but two weeks later we stopped because he was moving away… 7 HOURS away, to finish school at a University and in my eyes our new relationship just would survive.  I mean come on, I was 19, he was 21! We were YOUNG!  The decision was mutual and we stayed friends.  Fast forward a few years, we both dated other people, and when Joel finished university he moved to Orange County, California to play music.

Now you’re probably thinking, “How the heck did you guys reconnect?!”  Well it just so happened a really close friend of mine was getting married in Dana Point, Ca.  There was no way I was going to miss this wedding and once I realized that Dana Point was in Orange County, I thought of Joel.  During my early twenties I shook a lot of my shyness away, so when I realized that this wedding was near where Joel was living, I just simply called him up and asked him if he’d like to my “plus one”.  We ended up having a great time together at the wedding and also hit up Disneyland while I was there.  So much fun!  About a week later after arriving back home in Seattle I received a call from Joel, saying that he had been looking at plane tickets to Washington and was wondering if he could come visit me.  Of course I said yes, and once again we had a really nice long weekend together.  A few days later we were texting and I flat out said “I want you to you to be my boyfriend!”  Lucky for me he responded with, “I want you to be my girlfriend!”  And that was that, we were officially a couple.

We spent the next year dating long distance.  Every month either I would fly down for a long weekend or he would fly up, and we would chat on the phone for hours every night as well as watch tv shows together via cell phone.  About 6 months into our relationship Joel asked me if I would move to California.  At that time, I just wasn’t ready.  It wasn’t that I didn’t feel ready in our relationship, but rather that I wasn’t ready to leave my life in Seattle.  I lived in a hip area in a studio condo of my own and just absolutely loved my independent life in the city.  In the following month though, that all changed.  All my girlfriend started getting engaged or in serious relationships and suddenly not many of them wanted to hang out anymore, they just wanted to be with their men.  Which I totally understood, being young and in love can do that!  But at the same time it kind of sucked for me with my guy being in a different state and now no girlfriends to hang out with.

Next, I started being really disappointed my job, for MANY reasons that I won’t get into, but I was simply no longer happy there.  In early October I  had decided that I would stay until after Christmas and then I would move to California.  Although about a week after making this decision I actually decided that I had had enough and that instead of waiting, I was going to put in my two weeks notice at the end of the week.  This was a Monday, on Tuesday my boss called me in his office and explained to me that things with the business weren’t going well and he had made the decision to cut out my position and shuffle employees and hours around to cut costs. He said that he was very sorry, but would give me 3 weeks severance pay and write me a very good recommendation letter.  Normally this would have been devastating news, but considering I had planned on giving my two weeks notice just days later, it was the best news EVER!  Not only did I not have to have that awkward conversation of putting my two weeks notice in, but I was also getting paid for 3 weeks after I left, which I of course I would not have received if I had left on my own.

My next step was to break the news to my parents.  We are a pretty close family and I thought for sure they were going to FREAK!  Except that didn’t happen, they were very supportive and said that it would be an amazing experience for me. On top of that my dad said he was going to drive my car down for me, so I could just fly down and get settled in.  So I packed up the biggest suitcase I owned, stuffed everything else that would fit into my car, and off to California I went!  I remember landing and going to the outdoor baggage claim, the amazingly warm breeze blowing against my skin, and seeing Joel waiting for me in the distance….this was now MY LIFE, and I couldn’t have been more excited!!!

As you can see through this story things really did fall into place time and time again for me, and there’s even more!!  Once I was settled, about a week and a half in, I decided to start sending out my resume and cover letter.  This particular day I put my resume up onto a sight where employers go to look for employees.  2 hours later I received a call asking me if I could come in for an interview the next day.  Within the next couple days I started working from them and I’ve been there ever since.  BOOM!  And there you have it my friends my (possibly painfully long, but hopefully enjoyable) story of how Joel and I met, how we ended up in California, and how when somethings are meant to be, the universe will just MAKE THEM HAPPEN!  I know I have seriously been blessed through these experiences and I’m incredibly grateful.

To those of you who made it through my whole story, HIGH FIVE!  You rock!  And for those of you who had always been curious, I hope you had fun reading our story!  Until next time…

Cheers!

Traci

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At Home Valentine’s Date

This past weekend my boyfriend treated me to a weekend away, and with that trip being so close to Valentine’s Day I asked him to please not plan anything for ACTUAL Valentine’s Day.  The trip was more than enough!  We had SO much fun, but more on that trip later!  Even though we celebrated early, I couldn’t let the day pass like any other day. I still wanted to do a little something to celebrate this day of love.  Yes I know, many of you out there are probably saying “ I love my partner everyday, I don’t need a special day to show them that I care.”  That’s fine and all, and I love my boyfriend everyday too, BUT I like the idea of using any excuse to celebrate.  Why not!  Life’s short, so CELEBRATE it!  With that being said I still didn’t want to go overboard, so to keep things simple, stress free and budget friendly, I put together a little  “At Home Valentine’s Date”

At Home Valentine's Date

At Home Valentine's Date

At Home Valentine's Date

At Home Valentine's Date

At Home Valentine's Date

At Home Valentine's Date

At Home Valentine's Date

At Home Valentine's Date

At Home Valentine's Date

THE MEAL

If you follow my blog, you’ve probably realized by now that I really enjoy cooking and being it the kitchen, but even for me, planning a big elaborate meal can be stressful at times, especially during the week!  So I went ahead and took to the internet to help plan my meal.  These are the recipes I went with:

Easy Pan Seared Sirloin Steak

Roasted Veggie Salad with Avocado Dressing (the only change I made was using less salt)

And seeing that there was a killer deal on shrimp at the grocery store I decided to turn our meal into a surf and turf!  I simply sautéed the shrimp with a little bit garlic and basil and BOOM!  5 minutes later it was delicious and done!

THE DESSERT

Since I planned on making a home cooked meal (and since baking isn’t really my thing!) I decided to go ahead and let a professional help me with the dessert.  Joel and I went to Whole Foods the night before and picked out a mini cake together.  They had so many amazingly delicious looking treats in their fresh dessert/bakery area that we both stood there for over 10 minutes trying to decide which one to pick!  It was definitely the most difficult part of this whole celebration, LOL!

THE DECOR

Everything I used to decorate above our dinner table I threw together out of tissue paper and twine that I already had at home in my “gift wrapping box.” YAY FREE!  And it took me MAYBE 10 minutes to assemble, WIN!

Whether you stayed at home, went out on the town, celebrated big or small, I hope you enjoyed the special time with the one’s you love! And had lots of cuddles! Happy Valentine’s Day!

Cheers!

Traci

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Hiking Dartmoor Road Trail

The last couple of weeks have been incredibly rainy in southern California…uncommonly rainy.  Like, it’s the most rain I’ve seen in the entire time I’ve lived in this state.  In fact, I read that it rained so much that San Diego County is officially no longer in a drought.  Now that has all passed though and the sunshine is back!  And to celebrate the return of our warm weather I decided that I wanted to surprise my boyfriend with a hike in Laguna Beach.  My boyfriend LOVES to hike.  We don’t go hiking very often, mostly because of my great fear of rattle snakes, but since it’s not considered “rattle snake season” right now it sounded like a great idea!  If you follow me on Instagram you may have caught a little bit of our hike on my  “Insta-Stories” as well as the pre-hike breakfast I made us!  And if you don’t follow me, maybe you should start! 🙂 Click here!

Hiking Dartmoor Road Trail

As soon as we stepped on the trail, we could tell we were in for some amazing views

Hiking Dartmoor Road Trail

Hiking Dartmoor Road Trail

We also got to see snowy mountain views!

Hiking Dartmoor Road Trail

That piece of land in the distance is Catalina Island

Hiking Dartmoor Road Trail

We were even greeted by this little guy!

Hiking Dartmoor Road Trail

Joel is quite often sneaky with his picture taking and captures me when I’m unaware

Hiking Dartmoor Road Trail

So I decided to do the same!  When I saw him in this stance I had to steal a shot.  He’s OBSESSED with these Cloudline hiking socks, so much so that he exclusively wears them everyday…not just while hiking.

Hiking Dartmoor Road Trail

I’m really hoping someone proposed here recently, because, well, it’s pretty adorable if they did!

Hiking Dartmoor Road Trail

When I told Joel that my idea for the day was to go hiking, he was pretty stoked.  He’s not big on surprises, but I love them, so it made me feel good to be able to spring this one on him.  Just a little act of affection for my guy.  And a pretty sweet way to spend a beautiful Sunday morning if you ask me!

Cheers!

Traci

 

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Top 5 favorites of early 2017

Overall, I consider myself somewhat of a minimalist.  I’m constantly getting rid of things and I hate having “extras” of an item saved for later or having items in excess.  For example, I don’t see the point in having more than one pair of running shoes.  I will continue to wear the same pair until they’re sufficiently worn out and then get a new pair after I toss or donate the old pair.  It’s a similar situation with my master bedroom bedding.  I have one set of sheets, pillow cases, and duvet cover that I adore, and when I remove them to clean, my bed stays naked for the hour or so it takes to wash and dry everything.  That being said I’m not a perfect minimalist.  I can never have enough dresses, my closet is FULL of them.  Clothing is my weak spot for sure.  Life is all about balance though right?  So one bed set and one pair of running shoes to my 1,000 dresses totally works!  I know you can’t read sarcasm, but I’m HOPING you all laughed at that last part!  ANYWAY,   when I do find new items that are super useful or bring a positive aspect into my life, I’m all about it! And today I’d like to share with you my top 5 favorite things so far in 2017.  A few are brand new to me, and a couple are oldies that continue to bring extreme joy and improve my everyday life.  They are all very different as well, so I’m bringing them to you in no particular order, I love them all equally for what they bring to the table.

 

1. Kate Spade New York “All In Good Taste” Travel Tumbler 

Kate Spade "All In Good Taste" Travel Tumbler

This thing is AMAZING! Not only is it cute and doesn’t leak in my purse, but it also keeps hot liquids hot for 3 hours and cold items cold for 9 hours.  This is ideal for my Arbonne detox tea.  Being a massage practitioner, there are days that I don’t have time to finish my tea between clients, but with this tumbler it’s not an issue.  As long as I close the mouth piece it stays nice and hot.  And when it says they say keeps your hot liquids hot for 3 hours, it means the liquid doesn’t start cooling down for 3 hours, so really your liquids will stay at least warm for longer. YAY! Get yours here.

 

2. Kung Fu Tonic 2

This wee bottle packs a punch!  Kung Fu Tonic 2 is a natural immunity booster that’s organic, raw, vegan, an just plain awesome!  With ingredients including apple cider vinegar, heirloom garlic, ginger, cayenne, and turmeric it’s not only good for you, but freaking delicious!  Just opening the bottle a smelling this stuff makes my mouth water. It’s made locally in Laguna Beach California, but can also be ordered online and shipped anywhere!  You can take this tonic straight by itself or use it to enhance your favorite foods.  I enjoy it drizzled over a salad along with a little extra apple cider vinegar and avocado oil.  A  little bit goes a long way!  Learn more and order yours here.

kung fu tonic 2

kung fu tonic 2

 

3. “Get It Done” Weekly Planning Notebook

So you might be thinking, “Okay it’s a planner, so what?”  This is SOOO not just a planner though!  There are several well thought out sections in this spiral notebook that help you stay on track.  Monday – Friday each have a section for three “Top Priority” items so you can cross those off before anything else, along with a water section to help make sure you’re getting in your 8 glasses a day!  Other great features include a “Things To Be Thankful For” section, a page for weekly menu planning with shopping list, and a full “ETC” page for anything extra you need to remember.  And what’s even better is each week is completely customizable, in that you fill in the dates yourself.  So say one week you’re away on vacation in Belize and you don’t use you planner, you won’t be wasting any pages because they aren’t preset like your typical yearly planner/calendar.  LOVE THIS!  It’s perfect for starting this new year off right!  Nice and organized!  Get it done, here.

Get It Done

Get It Done

Get It Done

4. Mieroglyphs Bracelet

Like many ladies, I enjoy accessories.  Especially jewelry.  These bracelets are hand crafted, vegan, and cruelty-free.  Each bracelet comes with a positive inspirational quote engraved on the inside, but if you have a special quote or mantra that’s special to you, they will happily engrave it in your bracelet and make it one of kind.  The bracelet sizes can be made perfect for your wrist too!  They come in several different designs.  The one I chose is called “Cappo.”  I was drawn to it because of the plaid design.  It’s the perfect bit of pop for an otherwise plain outfit, plus plaid never goes out of style!  (HELLO, BURBERRY?!)  I also really like the “naked” design which is just plain cork along with your choice of metal clasp.  On their website they state “Our intent as the Mieroglyphs organization is to provide accessories as vehicles for motivation, inspiration and positivity. With every Mieroglyphs order you can feel good about being a responsible and conscientious consumer.”  All of this makes me happy, and here at Yes To Champagne it is my focus to find the little things in life that makes one feel good.  This bracelet and company completely fit the bill!  Find what design speaks to you, here.  PS! Use code TRACI for 20% off your order!

Mieroglyphs

Mieroglyphs

Mieroglyphs

 

5. Arbonne Essentials Sleep Well Spray

This is my nighttime savior.  I struggle with having a busy mind as soon as my head hits the pillow.  At times it can keep me awake even if I’m exhausted.  When this happens I reach for my Arbonne Sleep Well Spray.  It’s a slightly sweet lemon-y flavored spray full of Arbonne’s personally engineered vegan melatonin and botanical blend that gently whisks you away to dreamland without the groggy side affects.   Whether I need to calm my mind or need to be well rested for an important day a head, I can always count on this blue bottle to help me get my ZZZ’s.  It never leaves my bedside table.  Stop counting sheep and grab a bottle here.

Arbonne Sleep Well Spray

 

And there you have it, my top 5 favorites of early 2017!  With these items in toe, this year is bound to start off on the right foot.  Maybe they will become a few of your favorites as well <3

 

Cheers!

Traci

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“HER”

While having my folks and sister in town for the holidays, my reading was put aside, and I happily spent all my extra time soaking up as much quality family time as possible.  Now that everyone has started their journeys back to Seattle I’m settling back into my normal routine, but before getting back in too deep, last night I decided to give myself a bit of “me” time.  In my mind there was no better way to do this than to dive back into my latest book.

“Her” by Harriet Lane is a Thriller (my fav genre) with two main characters, Emma and Nina.  Each chapter is marked with one of their names, and is then told through the namesakes perspective.  Emma and Nina start an unlikely friendship and although Emma sees Nina as a NEW person in her life, Nina somehow knows Emma from earlier in life, but doesn’t share this information with Emma.  As the chapters go back and forth between the characters it seems that Nina is out for revenge, but for what exactly is unclear.  So far “HER” has been very different than any other thriller that I’ve read, and I’m digging it!  There’s so much mystery and deceit I’m so intrigued to see how everything comes together in the end!  Will Emma all of a sudden remember Nina?  Or is Nina going to reveal herself?  Ahhh I NEED to finish this book and find out!

hercopy

If you haven’t read this one yet, put it on your list!  And when you get to Emma’s Chapter starting on page 187, do yourself a favor and read it like I did… I ran myself a bath, poured a glass of wine, and lit a scented candle.  I chose Santa Julia Innovacion Torrontes Pinot Grigio for my wine and Homesick Washington edition for my candle, but choose whatever tickles your fancy!  This chapter combined with my bath and wine completely swept me away.  I felt like I was on vacation in France, and IT WAS FABULOUS.  Just trust me on this one, you won’t be disappointed!

Cheers!

Traci

 

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DIY Infused Vodka

Many of us give and receive homemade goodies around the holidays, right?  Typically lots of baked goods, candy, or maybe a tin of oven baked “Chex Mix.”  Well this year I’ve decided to shake things up a bit and go in a totally different direction… Homemade Infused VODKA!  A jalapeño infused vodka for those on the naughty list, and vanilla bean vodka for those on the nice list!  Do I have your attention??  Here’s what you’ll need:

8 oz mason jars
Vodka of choice
Jalapeño
Vanilla bean

And that’s it! Super simple!

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~For the jalapeño vodka, cut one large jalapeño in half lengthwise and place one of the halves into the mason jar.  Next, pour the plain vodka over the jalapeño until the jar is full, leaving a little empty space at the top. Seal jar tightly with the lid.

**NOTE this vodka is SPICY, if you prefer less spice you can use 1/4 or 1/8 of a jalapeño.  After infusing, if it turns out too spicy for you, add more vodka to weaken the flavor.  Also the longer this one sits, the spicier it will become.

~For the vanilla bean vodka, cut one vanilla bean pod in half lengthwise so that the seeds are exposed and place the entire bean into the mason jar.  Fill the jar with plain vodka, leaving a little empty space a the top.  Seal jar tightly with the lid.

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Let the jars-o-vodka infuse for five days, shaking once or twice.  After that, the vodkas are ready to drink!  The vanilla bean vodka will take on a brownish tint and may have flecks of vanilla beans floating about but, it’s a good thing, don’t worry!  My favorite way to use these infused vodkas are in Lemon Drops!  Just replace plain vodka with the infused vodka.  The jalapeño version would also be great in a Bloody Mary!  All that’s left to do now is wrap the jar up with some twine or pop a bow right on top!  Now if you’re REALLY short on time and you’re giving this as a gift BEFORE the five “infusing” days is up, you can simply put a tag on the jar that says, “I’ll be ready to drink on (whatever date).”  For example, “I’ll be ready to drink on 12/25/2016!”  Once the jalapeño or vanilla bean pod has been removed, the vodka can be stored in the fridge or freezer for up to 1 month.  Let’s be honest though, it probably won’t last longer than a day.  😉  Happy gifting (and drinking)!

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Cheers!

Traci

 

 

 

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Tree Trimming

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There’s just something about a glowing tree just makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.  Like many of you, I’m sure, I have several fond memories of decorating the Christmas tree as a child.  My family always had an artificial tree, so all  my mom had to do was go into the closet underneath our stairs, pull out the boxes marked “CHRISTMAS” and we were ready to rock and roll!  Since moving to California 5 years ago, we’ve only had a Christmas tree once.  Since my boyfriend and I are both from the Seattle area, we typically travel home for the holidays, and to avoid coming back to a dried up tree, or having an artificial tree take up precious closet space during the rest of the year, we just forego the tree and decorate our living space with twinkle lights, stockings, and a few festive odds and ends.  This year my parents, sister, and her boyfriend are visiting US for the holidays.  I’m beyond excited to have my family sharing my home this Christmas!  It’s such a special treat, and it also means after 4 long years we finally get to have a tree again!  And only a real one will do.  You just can’t beat that fresh pine scent!

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Growing up, our tree was always adorn with multi colored lights, an eclectic collection of ornaments ranging from colorful glass balls, hand made projects from school, cartoon characters, and our favorite little gingerbread man shaped ones that smelled like sweet cinnamon cookies.   As an adult, I enjoy having a themed tree.  Smooth and textured glass balls in shades silver and turquoise along with a few icicles and snowflakes.  The colors remind of Seattle and the water, and one special ornament ties it all together.  LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!

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What kind of tree is in your home?  Do you go with the “little bit a everything” route or a themed tree like me?  Real or artificial?  I would love to hear about YOUR tree!  Leave me a comment with your tree details below!  It will be like driving through your neighborhood and seeing glimpses of you neighbors trees in the window!

Cheers!

Traci

 

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Citrus & Sunshine

My parents just arrived from Washington and will be staying with us through the holidays.  So far they are LOVING the weather.  While they’re visiting we have a lot of fun sunny California outings planned, one being citrus picking!  My Dad has been talking about this one for months, so we put it at the top of the list!  This citrus grove is tucked away out of view, behind our house within walking distance.  It’s decently hidden so we had NO CLUE it was there until one of my clients that lives nearby filled me in on it.  What an amazing little secret!  It’s home to several varieties of oranges, lemons, limes, grapefruits, mandarins, and even avocados!  The clemintine/mandarin oranges are a winter crop, so this season is the first time we’ve actually seen them growing, and we are obsessed!  I recently learned that they are nicknamed “Christmas Oranges” because of their winter timeline, how cute is that!  As you can see the trees are abundantly full, so we got to pickin’!20161204_105317

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How well do you know you’re neighborhood?  We lived in our current location for a year before finding out about this precious gem!  So chat with your neighbors and go exploring while on a evening walk, you never know what might be hidden around the corner!  Now you must excuse me, I turned about 90% of our harvest into the most amazing fresh OJ, so you know what that calls for right? MIMOSAS!

Cheers!

Traci

 

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