Monday, October 11, 2021

Homeschool Fieldtrip San Francisco Zoo & Gardens #SFZoo #California #Homeschool

 *Hosted guests of the San Francisco Zoo

I LOVE the San Francisco Zoo. It is a beautiful place with amazing animals. The landscape, buildings, park playground and the food make this place more than a home for the animals, its a destination if you are visiting the Bay Area. 

We are a homeschool family (long before the pandemic) and I try to find ways to make what my son learns in books also an experience in life. This is why I love Zoos and what they do to educated children about animal conservation. I feel like kids seeing these wonderous animals in person will help them further understand why we must conserve the land of these creatures. 

My son LOVES and I mean LOVES Giraffes!! Anytime we can make a visit to a Zoo they are the first animal we check out. We enjoyed a close up visit with an adorable giraffe that made my son so happy. We also learned why they have dark colored tongues, its like sunscreen to not get a sun burn. We were standing in our group circle for this close encounter so he was all ours for a few moments. The Zoo created spots for families to stand in (they are painted on the ground) so people can keep a safe distance.

Educational opportunities are all over the park on signs and posters.

The Eastern Lowland Gorillas are one of my favorite animals to visit at the SF Zoo. I could sit there for hours watching them interact with each other. The silver back is magnificent to see in person and the antics of the other gorillas is adorable! We watched them toss blankets at one another and take turns sitting in a cozy bucket.

As a Californian, bears have a special place in my list of favorite animals. The California Grizzly Bear is our state animal and also on our state flag. The strength and size of the bears leave me in awe to see one close up. Watching one casually play in a mini lake was amazing to see.

We also saw a Mexican Gray Wolf, American Black Bear, Scarlet Ibis, Rhino, Zebra and so many other magnificent animals. We did not see the whole Zoo this trip since this place is HUGE but it is also a great reason to go back and see more of the animals.

THE FOOD. I did not expect the food to be so delicious or have so many options. Our chef was so nice and prepared our food right there fresh. My husband and I ordered the 100% Grass Fed burgers and our son ordered a meatball sub with of course mac n cheese on the side. They maintained safety by having us wear our masks indoors and eat outside on the wooden picnic tables. The Zoo is so beautiful that I prefer to eat outside, you will even get to see all the peacocks walking around as you enjoy your meal.

Back in 2013 my son was the first kid to play on the San Francisco Zoo Elinor Friend Playground. We visited the playground as guests and WOW was it cool! We of course had to take the time to play after we ate. 

Slide 2021 (he doesn't need my help up there anymore!)

Slide 2013 (he is so little and this must have seemed huge to him)

The playground is awesome. It has many places for parents to sit, a squishy ground to help in falls and bumps, different themes for each playground area and hand sanitizer stations too. My son played on the swings, went down the slides and we enjoyed the beautiful cool day outside.

We have a tradition to our Zoo trips that we always leave with a stuffed animal. We visited the gift shop and found a giraffe stuffed animal that we did not already own (this is tough to come by when your kid has dozens of them lol).

Welcome to our herd, Mort the newest stuffie to join our crew.

We always enjoy our visits to the SF Zoo. It is an experience in learning about animals, plants and conservation. All mixed in with a fun playground and even a train ride. We definitely rode the train ride, it is a lovely way to see part of the park and a rest for your legs. Our favorite, the carousel was not running that day but hopefully it will be next time.


Friday, October 1, 2021

Happy October 1st! Pumpkin Spice Fudge Recipe #PumpkinSpice


I LOVE the Fall! Like seriously love it!! The weather, the food the clothing, the holidays, ALL of it! To celebrate the 1st day of October I made Pumpkin Spice Fudge. I use a simple recipe that I have adapted over the years of making fudge. Fudge making is a family tradition that my Mom has inspired me to share with my family. My fudge is a marshmallow creme based recipe. I love the smooth rich texture that using the Jet-Puffed gives to a recipe.


3 Cups of Sugar

1 Tablespoon of pure Maple Syrup

3/4 Cup of Butter (1 1/2 Sticks)

2/3 Cup of Evaporated Milk 

1/2 Cup of Pumpkin Puree

1 Tablespoon of Pumpkin Pie Spice

2 Cups of White Chocolate Chips 

1 jar (7 oz.) Marshmallow Creme


1. Grease a pan with butter to make the fudge easier to cut out to serve. I used a 10x14 pan since I was looking for smaller pieces of fudge, if you want it thicker use a smaller pan.

2. Put sugar, maple syrup, evaporated milk, pumpkin, butter and pumpkin pie spice in a saucepan. Bring to a full boil over medium heat. Stir constantly!!! (You will burn the sugar in the fudge if you let it sit and reach a boil) When it reaches a boil, keep stirring for 5 minutes or until your candy thermometer reaches 230 degrees.

3. Take the mixture off the heat and immediately add the white chocolate chips and marshmallow creme. Stir until all the chocolate chips are melted and the marshmallow creme is incorporated. 

4. Pour the mixture into your greased pan and let cool for about 2 hours. Cut into 1 inch pieces and serve. Store in covered container in the fridge. 

TIPS: I slice up the butter and chop up the white chocolate chips to make them easier to melt.


Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Antique Trove and Letters from the Past #antique #Roseville #oldisnew

I absolutely LOVE Antique stores! I am a huge lover of History and an antique store is a time capsule of everyday life. I could spend hours in a store. Some of my favorite items are photographs, letters, jewelry and trinkets. These personal items are a window into time of someone's life that was already lived. There is a depth to that type of item that I am drawn to. I always wonder what is the story behind the item.

I recently decided to go to a local antique store that I have no clue why I had not gone before. I had made assumptions that it being a huge as a warehouse that it must not be as intimate of a store like ones I have previously visited. But I was so very wrong! The Antique Trove in Roseville CA is a treasure hunting delight. 

The store is huge and divided into little booths that are ran by individual sellers. Almost like an indoor market. The sellers are not at the booth so you can spend as much time as you like browsing the items without being interrupted. Each item is labeled with a price so no need to wonder how much they are asking. The variety of items in the store was amazing. 

I went into the store looking for a birthday present for myself. I took my husband and son with me and they had as much as a wonderful time as I did. They focused on the old toys, movie posters and man cave items.

As we wandered I was drawn to a shelf with old dishes and greeting cards on it. I spotted a small bundle of letters. Oh the curiosity of what was in the letters beckoned me to buy it! I took a picture of it and told myself if I still wanted it after looking through the store I would go back for it. I definitely went back for the letters to purchase. The city on the envelope is what made me have to buy them. Pasadena holds a special place in my heart as having so many joyous childhood memories there and also hosts my favorite annual parade.

I have only opened two of the letters so far, I don't want to rush my historical experience. The first two are correspondence between a Mother and her daughter. The letters are from the 1930's and I have cried a few times reading  a glimpse into the life of these two women. Letter writing is a lost form of communication, I find it beautiful!

I am planning to try to find the people that are related to these women and offer them back a piece of their history. I know myself I would love to have a letter written by one of my relatives, especially my Grandmother. 

What has been your favorite find at an Antique store?

Monday, July 12, 2021

My Top Favorites Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2021 #NordstromStyling #NSale

#NordstromStyling #NordstromAnniversarySale #Nsale #StayNspired

*I will receive compensation from items purchased from my lists*

Nordstrom is my heart! As a child my Mother shopped there for my shoes and clothing. As an adult I shop there for my whole family. (I even work there!!)

I might be frugal but that in no means defines me as cheap! I LOVE good brands but I NEED to get a good deal. That is where the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale steps in.

The Anniversary sale is the biggest sale of the year full of Fall and Winter Fashions. Of course stuff for now like sandals, dresses and stuff for home but this is when I shop Fall/Winter and Christmas. The sale is first available for Nordstrom credit card holders from July 12th - July 27th, depending on your level you can start shopping on different days. July 28th it opens up to the public and anyone can shop!

I have made a list of my top 9 favorite items for varies different categories. I have seen this sale up close for the last 9 years and know if you want it buy it right away since things sell out fast! I will be on Instagram for the blog sharing and streaming different items I see in the store near me.

Feel free to message me on Instagram if you have any questions about an item.

I have a few brand favorites that I included my must haves: Ugg & Timberland

If you are planning for a new child in your life or shopping for someone who is the Baby items on the sale are at a great savings. The sale features some of the top brands in Baby Gear like Nuna, UPPAbaby, Bugaboo, Stokke, Cybex and Maxi-Cosi. 

Baby Gear

Baby Must Haves

Baby Boy

Baby Girl

Baby Boy 12-24 Months

Baby Girl 12-24 Months

Baby / New Walker Shoes

Clothing for the kids in your life can be purchased at great discounts during the sale. A good way to get your back to school shopping started. Timberland, Nike, Adidas, NorthFace, Vans, Converse and so much more!

Boy Clothing 2T-7

Girl Clothing 2T-7

Girls Clothing

Boys Clothing

Girl Shoes

Boy Shoes

The Women's section is the most fun to post about! I find some many items that I want. My birthday and wedding anniversary are on the horizon so I definitely use that as an excuse to shop for ME! I buy gifts for the Holidays, Hostess Gifts and Birthdays during the event as well. Planning ahead and saving money is a win going into the holidays when most items are sold out.

Women's Boots

Women's Athletic Shoes

Women's Comfy Shoes

Women's Clothing

Women Purses

Women Self Care

The Men's Sale is where I spoil my husband! I think he likes to shop more than me sometimes!!! He takes great care of his skin, dresses casual and comfy. I added some of my favorites and customer favorites.

Men's Clothing

Men's Accessories

Men's Shoes

Men Self Care 

A home is where the heart is yes, but also where your stuff is! Let it be stuff that brings you joy. The feel of a home sets the tone for all other aspects of your life. I added my favorite coffee, cleaning, cooking and decor items to my lists. I also added a list for Gifts.


Gifts Under $50

What are your top Wish List Items?
What great items have you purched?

I love seeing what everyone is buying!!!

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