She’s crafty!

Yesterday was art day for my sister and I.

First we had a delicious vegan breakfast at Grate Full Gardens in downtown Reno.

Then we went to the Nevada Art Museum and stared at art.

This was outside and made me think of Burning Man:

We were so INSPIRED by the art we saw we decided to try our own hand at it and went to Clay Canvas to paint pottery.

I started with a small blank platter.

I added a little paint and voila. . . a nice cheese platter for my mom:

What amused me about the whole painting process is that my sister and I picked up a bottle of wine to sip and enjoy while we were painting.

Right next door to The Clay Canvas is a restaurant that sells bottles of wine to go.

It’s a match made in heaven.

So we got our bottle of wine, slipped it into a brown baggie, and opened it at the pottery store.

Since we didn’t have cups, I grabbed two dixie cups.

Classy, eh?

Well, the hostess at the clay store OBVIOUSLY thought this was insane, because she came to us while we were sipping out dixie cups and she handed us two clear plastic cups.

I mean, it’s okay to drink wine while you paint, but could you please drink your wine out of a proper cup?

That’s my sister and I – always classing up a joint!

CHEESE!

One of my FAVORITE things I did in Sweden was visit a cheese shop in Gamla Stan (Old Town) with The Swede.

The way to my heart is not through sweets but through CHEESE!

The Swede and I decided to have a nice cheese tray after dinner, complete with a selection of wine.

[Now, being on a diet, it makes me DROOL to think of cheese and wine!]

We stepped into a small store in Stockholm and I was overwhelmed with the smell of aging cheese.

Funky yet yummy.

Mmmmmmmm!

We selected a cheese, sampled it and approved of it.

Then another.

And another.

All in all, we selected 5 cheeses of varying degrees of softness, ripeness, and gooeyness.

All VERY delicious.

Then we went to the SPECIAL store to buy wine.

In case you didn’t know, only one chain of stores, which I think are run by the government, can sell liquor.

So we go inside and The Swede tells me he wants SWEET white wine.

Okay.

Each wine had a label that graphically represented how sweet that wine was.

And I ready the graphic BACKWARDS.

So instead of getting sweet white wine, we got regular white wine.

Ah well.

I think The Swede forgave me.

That won’t fit!

luggageThere comes a time in every woman’s life when she has to look closely, inspect dimensions, and declare “There’s NO WAY that will fit!”

Which is exactly what I did when I stared at the pile of clothes and presents I want to bring to Sweden with me next to the suitcase it all has to fit into.

Quite frankly, I’m more than skeptical that it will all fit.

I’m in disbelief.

It’s just not going to happen folks.

And of course, as is my way, instead of getting rid of the wine or the presents or the makeup, I’m eliminating my clothes.

Who needs clothes anyway?

All I need is a fresh pair of underwear and I’m good to go.

One dress, one sweater, one jacket, warm leggings and VOILÁ!

You have yourself packed for Sweden.

I’d like to say that this time around I’m flying by the seat of my pants, but no.

I’m packed a week ahead of time and I have an inventory.

Because I’m neurotic that way.

The good news is that when I come back, I will be 5 bottles of wine and 2 bottles of champagne lighter than when I left.’

I fully intend to drink and gift the wine to The Swede and his friends and family.

Just in case I meet any of them, I’m prepared.

California wine FOR YOU!

AND FOR YOU!

AND CALIFORNIA SPARKLING WINE FOR YOU!

Happy faces, all around!

I’M GOING TO SWEDEN!

Apparently, when visiting Sweden from a non-EU country, you are allowed to bring in 4L of wine, 2L of champagne, and a bunch of beer.

So I’m bringing in red wine and champagne from California.

I’m bringing two bottles of Chandon Blanc de Noirs, my favorite domestic sparkling wine and 5 bottles of J. Lohr Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon.

J. Lohr is the family winery, so it’s a given that I’ll be bringing that label to Sweden with me.

I’ve also decided to get a Christmas present for The Swede’s teenage daughter.

It would certainly be awkward to hand out my presents to The Swede and have nothing for his daughter.

So I got her a California sweatshirt and a Stanford beanie.

Because both those places are near and dear to my heart and I want to share.

I’ve started collecting other miscellaneous items for my trip: things like luggage, longjohns, scarfs and sunglasses.

I am basically going to be a walking, talking, brand new woman in Sweden with all new clothes and accessories.

I even purchased brand spanking new panties.

Just because I love the look of a fresh pair.

The trick, of course, is going to be getting it all to fit in my luggage.

I’m relatively limited in what I can bring over, size wise and weight wise.

So I have to be as streamlined as possible.

Lord knows I’m not the greatest at packing light.

For my first Burning Man, I packed 16 bins of costumes, supplies, and food!

So needless to say, this will be a challenge.

But hey. . .

I’M GOING TO SWEDEN!

When you drink with your sister

Start with a mini bottle of Champagne Pink Pop. Pick it out in a pink bottle thinking it’s pink. Discover it’s not pink and be disappointed. Try champagne and be even more disappointed. Add orange juice to make it drinkable.

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Try OREgasmic Ale by Rogue Farms, because it’s supposed to be OREgasmic. Discover OREgasmic beer tastes like dirty feet and pot ash. Definitely not orgasmic. Be disappointed.

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Try cheap stacked wine which comes in its own glass. Have low expectations. Have low expectations met. Feel foolish for trying wine which comes with a pull off lid.

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Try Blood Orange Mimosa. Suspect it’s a headache in a bottle with a screw top lid, but love it anyway.  Make your sister drink most of it after dosing it with vodka.

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 Graduate to bonafide liquor – making really strong mai tai and screwdriver. Decide to hop in the hot tub naked. Have to hang foot out of hot tub because of new foot tattoo (which effing HURTS). Have sister yell at you when you accidentally dip it in the water. Feel sheepish. Snap selfie anyway.

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UPDATE:  Get RAGING cellulitis (skin infection) from dipping foot in hot tub.  Deal with your sister’s “I-told-you-so’s.”  On antibiotics.  Feel even more sheepish.

Wine tasting in Paso

Yvonne and I went wine tasting in Paso Robles on Saturday.

We took a leisurely drive from her home in Salinas to Paso Robles Saturday morning, checked into our hotel, and vegged for a few minutes before stepping into a luxury Escalade with our driver Melanie, whose job it was to squire us around town while we sipped wine.

We never got drunk but I certainly drank my limit in wine.

To note: we stopped first at J. Lohr, my family’s winery. When my parents invested in the winery during the 80s, they put us in a luxury bus and drove us down to tour the winery and estate. They even let my 16 year old sister and I drink wine, so I’ve always had a soft place in my heart for J. Lohr wines.

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It was Yvonne’s VERY FIRST TIME wine tasting and she did great: swirl, nose, examine, swirl, nose again, sip, swallow.

The wines were delicious and I waked away with 4 bottles of Cabernet Sauvignon.

Then off to Le Vigne, which I found out is pronounces LEUH VEEN YAY.

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More delicious wines and we got a cheese pairing there too which was AWESOME!

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Eberle next. Their symbol was a great boar which reminded me of this artwork on the playa in 2016.

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boar2It was time to enjoy some food, and the outdoor grill at Eberle served up delicious tri tip sandwiches, perfect for absorbing alcohol.

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Our fourth stop was Sculpterra, and they had delicious wines along with amazing sculptures and artwork. I adored the mermaid sculpture out front and had a good time checking out all the other artwork there as well as their wines.

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Finally, off to Tobin James, which was quite honestly, a little like walking into a rowdy bar in the wild wild west.

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Their serving room actually is a historical stagecoach stop and has all the feels and character of a western-style saloon.

I promptly walked in, spotted the old taps, and asked if they served beer.

The woman across the counter rolled her eyes, sized me up, and said, “We serve WINE here.”

Properly put in my place, I could only mutter, “But I saw the taps. . . “

And we were off tasting wine at Tobin James.

We returned to our hotel room and grabbed the essential après-wine tasting activity. . .

A NAP!

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When you drink with your sister

Start with a mini bottle of Champagne Pink Pop. Pick it out in a pink bottle thinking it’s pink. Discover it’s not pink and be disappointed. Try champagne and be even more disappointed. Add orange juice to make it drinkable.

image

Try OREgasmic Ale by Rogue Farms, because it’s supposed to be OREgasmic. Discover OREgasmic beer tastes like dirty feet and pot ash. Definitely not orgasmic. Be disappointed.

image

Try cheap stacked wine which comes in its own glass. Have low expectations. Have low expectations met. Feel foolish for trying wine which comes with a pull off lid.

 

image

image

Try Blood Orange Mimosa. Suspect it’s a headache in a bottle with a screw top lid, but love it anyway.  Make your sister drink most of it after dosing it with vodka.

image

image

 Graduate to bonafide liquor – making really strong mai tai and screwdriver. Decide to hop in the hot tub naked. Have to hang foot out of hot tub because of new foot tattoo (which effing HURTS). Have sister yell at you when you accidentally dip it in the water. Feel sheepish. Snap selfie anyway.

image

UPDATE:  Get RAGING cellulitis (skin infection) from dipping foot in hot tub.  Deal with your sister’s “I-told-you-so’s.”  On antibiotics.  Feel even more sheepish.

Well Kissed

My date with The Israeli went quite well.

We stayed out until midnight drinking a bottle of wine at the wine bar before moving on to Carry Nations for beer (me) and whiskey (him).

My date was lively, intelligent, and funny.

He was also very flattering and told me if he didn’t know better, he’d think I was no older than 35.

Sigh.

Love him.

I love that he’s a world traveler. I love that he was in the military. I love that he has a PhD. I love his smile and his funny accent.

But most of all I love kissing him.

We were standing face to face, comparing my height to his when he locked onto my lips and started kissing me.

It was so lovely to be kissed and kissed well. I lost myself in that kiss and melted like butter into his body. My head angled to the side and I moaned as I kissed him. Little aching moans.

There was definitely some chemistry there.

For the rest of the night he had a hard time keeping his hands and his lips off me. He kissed me at the bar. At the table. Walking to my truck. He even grabbed my hands with his as we were talking in the wine bar.

And before I left for the night, he arranged for our second date. Looks like we’re going out Friday. Dancing.

I got a message from him before he went to bed that night:

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So there you have it… the first day I’m off dating restriction and I have a GREAT date with a WONDERFUL man who thinks I’m a GREAT kisser!

A whole day of drinking and pole dancing

Bettie_Page-2So it started out with brunch with Barbara.

I had a Bloody Mary with my Scotch eggs while we discussed my love life and Barbara’s new business (Young Living, if any of you are interested in how essential oils can improve your life).

Then I ran off to my local pole dancing studio to watch their pole dancing exposition – approximately 20 some women doing burlesque, pole, sexy pole, hip hop, and ballet dance.

That’s where I had a few glasses of wine… to you know, get me in the mood to watch sexy women perform the most AMAZING dances with grace and athleticism.

Miss F is my favorite. A Bettie Page look alike with legs for days and a bod to give men heat palpitations, she can make everything look sexy – and she did to a gorgeous rendition of Portishead’s “Glory Box.”

I think the trick to pole dancing is to move slow and deliberately. Touch yourself. Make eye contact. And always always always work your booty.

The performance was an all female performance with an all female audience so the women were free to cut loose and really show their talents.

I think the safe environment really brings out the beast.

All manner of lingerie was on parade from hot pants and tutus to tassels and straps.

Loved every second of it!

Then my day concluded with a birthday party for my brother and I in downtown San Jose.

More wine.

All in all, it was a fabulous lazy Sunday and I couldn’t have crafted it better myself.

Incidentally, if any of you want to read about when I took a pole dancing class, the link is here.

Ren Faire Shenanigans

Last weekend, I packed up my camping gear, grabbed my friend Kimberly, and we drove to Casa de Fruta to camp out at the Renaissance Faire.

We had a blast.

 

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 It took all of 30 minutes to set up camp with our neighbors helping – two Ren Faire musicians names Kevin and JK.

We started in on the Rum and Cokes and before we knew it we were swallowing a bottle of white wine with our lobster ravioli dinner. Followed closely by Kimberly’s signature jello shots made with marshmallow and cotton candy flavored vodka. Mmmmm.

 

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We woke up the next morning slightly hung over but a breakfast set us straight. Then we got dressed in our Ren Faire finest and hit the festival.

 

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We went to the Ren Faire with some friends who are Ren Faire veterans and knew where to go, what to do, and what to watch.

 

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 We drank beer from sun up to sun down, people watched, and in general managed to get involved in a few shenanigans.

After the festival closed, we stayed late to listen to a musical performance by the Brick Top Blaggers. It was dancing to their music that I met Stephan, who managed to finagle an invitation back to my campsite for dinner – an invitation I later cancelled.

 

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But there you have it, one raucous weekend spent getting a little drunk and rowdy at the Nor Cal Ren Faire.