The Actual Birthday...

Conveniently, our library book sale coincided with my true birthday, so my volunteering had me surrounded by a few of my favorite things... books and friends (everyone comes to this event).

Mom came by with birthday brownies and a dinner invitation for later.
Chris and Jan brought a huge, beautiful cake for me to share. Friends came by with birthday hugs, flowers and a song or two.
"Best friends are the people in your life that make you
laugh louder, smile brighter, and live better."
I ♥ my friends!

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Tahoe Chamber's Business Expo...

Tonight was a fine example of the most fun anyone can have (should have?) for $10 in Tahoe.

We pre-partied in an opulent suite in Harrah's and then it was off for the festivities. The annual Business EXPO is the most dynamic business event of the year and showcases Tahoe Chamber members raising the bar in business. 
Attendees were educated and pampered.

Tradition dictates that Steve and Bob get photographed with the lovelies.
The food and drinks were out-of-this world. The businesses really impressed.

Photo booths are some of my favorite things. 
Emily is the goddess that makes this event happen. I think she's amazing.

I think this photo sums up the night... completely. Enough said!

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Wild & Scenic Film Festival...

A tradition since moving to Tahoe, The Wild and Scenic Film Festival exhibits powerful environmental and adventure films, inspiring its audience to take further action regarding issues that impact our environment, ourselves and our world. The Sierra Nevada Alliance, its sponsor, has been protecting and restoring the Sierra’s majestic mountains, roaring rivers, still clear waters, rural communities and teeming wildlife since 1993.

Each film, while uniquely different, really did inspire. I had two favorites. The Ridge, aptly described: "Danny Macaskill is a very good bike rider. A very, very good bike rider. So he climbed a mountain near his home on the Isle of Skye and did something that will make you scream with joy and horror."

The other favorite was Sufferfest 2. "Less than a year after enchaining the fifteen tallest peaks in California, by bike, Alex Honnold and Cedar Wright have forgotten that it was their worst trip ever and for some reason…they are at it again. This time they attack an ambitious goal to climb 45 of the American Southwest’s most iconic Desert Towers, via their most difficult routes, in an epic and scenic bike journey that takes them through Colorado, Utah, New Mexico and Arizona. This movie has it all: gale force winds, hard climbing, snow in the desert, loose rock, and a puppy. What more could you ask for?" I ask the same question when describing this film festival. Fun stuff.

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Waterfalls, 2 Lakes, 2 Concerts, Too Fun..

Wanting to show a different side of our Lake Tahoe Basin, we headed to Fallen Leaf Lake and beyond.

Stop #1: The Beautiful Glen Alpine Falls. These never fail to impress.

Lily Lake is my favorite of the small lakes that are easy to access. Gorgeous views and peacefulness.
A pause on the shore of Fallen Leaf Lake made the morning complete.
Our first magical music happened aboard the Tahoe Paradise for Ike & Martin's Pints and Paddles. When we saw they had a concert while Robby, Bob and Annie were in town, we knew this event was a must!
On the Lake with these two... spectacular!

While we were cruising, Jenny was birding. She took this photo of our boat through her bird scope using her cell phone. Pretty amazing!
The cruise ended as the sunset illuminated the sky and we were then off to our next venue.
Our friend, Robert, was performing as the semester final for his college music class. The entire Abbey Road album was played. What talent.

The perfect conclusion to an exceptional two day visit. Music, new friends, old friends and unforgettable memories. Outstanding Day #25.

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Old Friends & A History Lesson...

For 35 years, Annie and I have been friends. A birthday isn't quite a birthday without her here to celebrate.

We had a tour of the new Hard Rock and toasted our reunion on the patio. Fun stuff.

Pyramid Lake and the Imagined West was presented by author, Dr. Bernard Mergen who shared the incredible history of Pyramid Lake from the 1840s to the present in an educational and entertaining way at our library.

Dr. Mergen lived at Pyramid Lake in the mid-20th century. In his book, At Pyramid Lake, he writes on the cultural history of the location. The book conveys colorful stories of the residents and squatters, and visits from celebrities such as Herbert Hoover and Zane Grey. I left knowing so much more about this neighboring body of water and we've made plans to see it next week. Awesome way to end our day!

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Street Art in Sebastopol...

We fell in love with Patrick Amiot's Sculpture Art on Florence Avenue. Made of 'junk', it was incredible and demands a future visit.

According to Patrick, "The whole purpose of my work is to glorify these objects, because they have their own spirit. When a hubcap has traveled on a truck for millions of miles, and has seen the prairies in the winter and the hot summer asphalt, when it's done traveling with that truck and finds itself in the scrap yard and I find it, I kind of like to use that. This hubcap, or whatever piece of metal, from the day it was manufactured until now, has an important history. And I like to think the spirit of all these things lived incredible lives. If they could talk to you, they could tell amazing stories. That's something I don't want to hide."
And his car is a work of art, in of itself. Love this guy!

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Weekend with the Kids...

The best mom present ever, is time with her children. What a great, great gift this weekend was.

Group home improvement projects were completed, from lawn care to book shelf construction.

While everyone worked, I delighted in the spring flowers of C's garden... glorious.

My birthday dessert was pumpkin cheesecake. YUM!

One evening was spent in the Redwoods. K's sweet girlfriend's parents invited us over for our first meeting and it was magical. My sons have awesome people in their lives. I am truly happy for them.
We were excited to learn about fairy rings. Coast redwoods can also reproduce asexually by layering or sprouting from the root crown, stump, or even fallen branches; if a tree falls over, it will regenerate a row of new trees along the trunk, so many trees naturally grow in a straight line. Sprouts originate from dormant or adventitious buds at or under the surface of the bark. The dormant sprouts are stimulated when the main adult stem gets damaged or starts to die. Many sprouts spontaneously erupt and develop around the circumference of the tree trunk. Within a short period after sprouting, each sprout will develop its own root system, with the dominant sprouts forming a ring of trees around the parent root crown or stump. This ring of trees is called a "fairy ring".
We explored a neighbor's nursery and were impressed with the massive Rhododendrons and the very interesting Buddha's Hand.

The weekend ended with all of us walking to Downtown for beers on the patio of Russian River Brewery. Warm sunshine and plenty of family time. Yes, I'm one happy birthday girl.

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