All of two weeks have passed since I loaded up every square inch of my CR-V and drove halfway across the country to start our adventure of part-time living in Northern California. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, read this. :)
Living in NorCal has been quite the experience. The 80 degree weather, though unseasonably warm, is really tough to beat. Running errands with my windows down and sunroof back in FLIP FLOPS with Shawn Lyon blaring over the speakers is such a dream. (Btw, if you haven’t picked up his new EP yet, you NEED TO. It’s only $4.95 on iTunes.)
Despite going through a bout of homesickness last week, I have to say my experience in the Bay Area has actually been a lot of fun and I can feel it bonding John and I (still baby newlyweds) in some really positive ways, as we have only each other to rely on. People have always told me, “The best advice I can give a newly, married couple is to move to a place where they don’t know anyone so they can truly leave and cleave!” We’re finding our rhythm without the distractions of Air Force life and the inconveniences of a long-distance relationship. So far my life around the Bay Area has consisted of:
– Processing all the work I shot before making the move – though it’s the off-season, I keep plenty busy!
– Running lots of errands to stock and furnish our little apartment
– Eating In-N-Out Burger on multiple occasions
– Working out at 24 Hour Fitness on multiple occasions to burn off the In-N-Out… ;-)
– Grocery shopping at Trader Joe’s & Farmers Markets
– Entertaining my new hobby – bread baking!
– Lots of time spent in traffic; my average MPG has totally tanked with all the stop and go
– Walking the beautiful Dish Hike around Stanford
– Multiple accusations of “being such a Coloradan” after complaining about the humidity
– Explorations to the coastline to visit Monterey & Carmel
– City trips to gawk at the Golden Gate
– And our latest weekend adventure: exploring the Sonoma wine valley over Valentine’s weekend
I don’t post much of my personal work – though it’s a bit of a New Year’s resolution to do so. So this is a treat for you, I hope, to see some of the imagery that intrigues me when there’s not a bride and groom present. :-)
We started off our weekend with a little chocolate and California Champagne tasting at Korbel. We found the 50-minute tour about Korbel’s 133-year-old history to be incredibly interesting! We tasted some totally delicious champagnes that Korbel doesn’t distribute that were to die for (the Rouge, in particular) and ridiculously inexpensive. Would you judge me if I joined the Korbel wine club? :-) And a little known fact: Korbel was making champagne before the 1891 champagne treaty was signed, so they actually CAN call their sparkling wine champagne.
After a picnic lunch at the above spot, we stopped by the Rodney Strong tasting room.
Doesn’t this photo below just scream, “René Deniston, junior wine-maker since 2015”? I am so ready for my internship.
Our next stop was Ledson Winery, mostly to see the pretty castle, but when we walked in it felt way too commercialized and busy, so we snapped few photos and headed off to our next stop.
Our last stop of the day, planned to coincide with sunset, was the BREATHTAKINGLY beautiful Chateau St. Jean. John and I skipped the tasting room and went straight for a glass (a pinot noir for me and a fumé blanc for him) and a bar of chocolate and found a spot to watch the sun sink into the hills.
Check back for more weekend adventures in wine country! I hope to make a habit out if those trips. ;-)
Absolutely gorgeous, Rene! Counting the days till my own trip to Sonoma County at the end of March. Glad to hear you are mostly enjoying my hometown/area; I grew up in Milpitas!
Beautiful!! Can’t wait to go out there again and you better believe visiting you will be at the TOP of our list!