Moving on, up and away

As I sit outside lying on my dog's huge comfy bed cushion (the one he never uses because he's a spoiled brat and prefers MY bed) with my school work staring me in the face and the warm sun comforting my damp hair while trying to ignore a sharp pain in my ear that won't go away, I can't help but reflect on where I was 2 years ago. I still lived with my family in my childhood home in Northern California that I had lived in since I was 6. Just recently my family sold that home and with it went more than half of all my life memories (mostly good, some sad and very little bad). That's how I know life is finally changing. And for the first time, I think I'm okay with that.

A military history museum near my hometown

These are just some pictures from April 2011, the final year that I lived in my childhood home (excuse the quality - I didn't have my fancy schmancy camera back then). Although I was unhappy in my actual hometown, my house was always a happy place. What I'll miss the most is the huge yard and fruit trees (seriously, everything from avocados to cherries and apricots- it was absolutely splendid), the very hot summers (even though I complained about it back then when I'd wake up dripping in sweat- our house was over 100 years old so there was only an air conditioner in the living room), and my lovely bedroom with french doors and wood-like flooring. Djinn Djinn, my dog, on the other hand, misses the huge lawn (with thick lush green grass) and the large yard that he'd run around in when he felt like going "psycho" chasing after the squirrels. He'll also miss the endless sunlight.

Although I definitely think I was more than ready to move on and away from the place I grew up (besides, the place where I live now is 100x better for the lifestyle I now desire), I'm glad that I can look back and smile because I'm moving forward and life is only going to get better (at least, I'm always hopeful- that's the "Pollyanna" in me). I also hope that the new occupants of my childhood home will be very happy there. And so, life goes on.... How do you deal with change? Do you easily accept it?

He looks like he's singing/dancing!
The house was emptied for the first time since we moved in. Bittersweet.

Easter Weekend Getaway (Part 2)

I look like a little tiny Polly Pocket doll here- look at how short my legs appear to be! haha

There's no denying that this little California valley lakeside town is a beautiful place to see and photograph from a nature point of view (unless you're a city slicker, then you'd be bored in 3 minutes). I definitely don't consider myself a city slicker but I have to admit, I was feeling a bit homesick after being there for only a few hours (Okay, I admit this was partly because I had no access to Wi-Fi). Seriously, though. Time seemed to stop while I was there. What I thought was 7pm was actually only 2pm. The ride to the town was literally a never-ending curvy road that made me feel woozy and when we finally reached the town, it was a bit sleepy, with road construction interfering with the central part of the tourist attraction area. And of course, as you all know, the hotel was a bit silly.

I guess the reason why visiting this town wasn't that exciting was because the place where I currently live (on the beautiful central coast) is a huge tourist attraction (way more so than the lakeside town) and living here on a daily basis never gets tiring- it actually feels like a getaway vacation every day (even a trip to the post office doesn't feel like a chore). I have amazing scenery surrounding me regularly, plus access to Wi-Fi, and easy access to the likes of Target and Trader Joe's (you know, basic comforts/little luxuries that truly make life enjoyable). So stepping into the lakeside town without any of the usual comforts was just a bit harsh and unfamiliar. After several hikes, drives, and picnic-like lunches, I just didn't know what else to do (and I'm not one who gets bored easily). I suppose if I would've had my bike with me, it would've been wonderful to take a long bike ride along the lake- of course, my little dog Djinn Djinn wouldn't have apprciated that (the little fun sucker).

All minor dislikes aside, however, I'm glad I visited yet another new place in this fabulous state we call California. I may not be a world traveler yet but I do a lot of traveling within my world. I'm sure I'll be back soon (as my dad is a huge outdoors man guy person...human) but this time I'll bring plenty of books, Wi-Fi, and if I could, I'd bring Disneyland...just to sparkle it up a bit. ;) Have you ever been to a place that you thought was going to be exciting but turned out to be a bit disappointing?

Easter Weekend Getaway (Part 1)

This Easter, I dyed some eggs a day early because the next day, on Sunday, I accompanied my parents (and my dog Djinn Djinn, of course) on a weekend getaway to a peaceful town by a lake a sleepy town by a big puddle. It's the kind of town that only has a few motels and of those, only a couple of them allow dogs. As a result, I unfortunately, only have myself to blame for the motel my parents and I ended up with. Ah, who am I kidding- it's Djinn Djinn's fault for wanting to tag along ;)

It's hilarious to think about (the motel experience) now, though- while it was happening, I took it in stride and marked it off as another adventure (in my lifetime, I've experienced my fair share of crazy vacation accommodations). I wish I could say that the worst thing about this motel experience was that they didn't have Wi-fi, (even though the first thing they advertise on their sign is 'Free Wi-fi') but it wasn't. Stepping into the room was like stepping back into the 60's, and not in a good way. We experienced everything from carpets that smelled like feet, to broken water faucets, cheap tissue paper (cheaper than from the dollar store, if you can believe it) and incredibly loud squeaky doors. I tell you, it's hilarious to think about it now but while it was happening, it was a bit annoying at times.

Probably the most hilarious experience I've had in a motel room was when I was terrified to sleep all night with a window that wouldn't close (terrified that someone would crawl in through the night and murder me) only to find in the morning, that the window led to a small cliff so it would've been impossible for someone to climb up. Worried all night for nothing!

Anyway, all weird experiences aside, some highlights of the trip were: getting to see my first rainbow in YEARS, taking these beautiful pictures, seeing my dog have a great time in the sunshine, and just taking a break from everyday life (yes, including wi-fi, which meant that I was forced to go to bed way earlier than normal). What did you do for Easter? Have you ever had a crazy motel/hotel experience?