The Road Less Traveled...

When we set off for the Bay Area, we weren't planning on an extensive explore of the backroads of Colusa County, but somehow our navigation got off track and we made a 40 mile detour of some amazing countryside.

Our first stop was to frolic in the almond blooms. This is the first time I think I've ever seen these trees flowering. Thank you to Ed for the suggestion!
California almond production began in the 1840-1850s and by 1860, almond orchards existed from Los Angeles to Yuba City. Today, our state's almond industry produces over 80 percent of the world supply. These tasty nuts are California's largest food export.

Off in the distance were the Sutter Buttes, referred to as the world's smallest mountain range, and flooded fields reminding us that just two weeks ago, this whole area was evacuated due to the threat from the Oroville Dam. Interesting.
Buffalo, long horn steers and even an emu (not photographed) delighted us along our crazy path.
This sign greeted us on several of the roads we turned onto.
This path of dirt switchbacks added a great deal of excitement to our travels.
These were the only others we shared the road with.

While Robert Frost probably was a more purposeful traveler, after surviving our trek, we too agreed with him..."Two roads diverged in a wood and I - I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference."

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An 85th Birthday...

When we moved to Tahoe, five years ago next month, our first friends were Dick and Joan. They were wonderful people to meet due to the fact that they were not only delightful but super connected in Tahoe and they introduced us to amazing organizations, places and people that enriched our new Sierra life. Due to health reasons, they had to leave "the hill" and moved back to Yuba City. Today we left the hill too, to help Dick celebrate his 85th birthday.

I love this image of Steve with Dick and a photo of himself as an infant. How cute is that!?

Bagpipe playing grandson Casey accompanied 50 joyous voices singing "Happy Birthday". That was a first for me.
Joanne (left) is our neighbor in Tahoe and her husband, Gene, worked with Dick for many years. It is wonderful that Joan and I have common friends. It is a very small world.

Through speeches and private conversations we fully confirmed what we had already surmised- in his 85 years, Dick has accomplished much and has really lived. What a great opportunity to get to know him better and meet all of his family who we have heard about so often. It was a special afternoon which we feel very special to have been a part of.

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Snowshoes & Dams...

We headed to the North Shore for snowshoeing at Lookout Point, one of our favorite spots that we wanted to share with Suellen.

We have done this hike, several times through various seasons, but today's snow was exceptionally exciting.

This is where we had lunch. What a spectacular view. We even had a Bald Eagle fly by... Wow!
Steve wanted to see how much the Truckee River is flowing so we headed to the Lake Tahoe Dam, the only place where water flows out of the Lake. The dam was built between 1909 and 1913 and stands 18.2 ft high and 109 ft long. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1981.

Historic Fanny Bridge received its name from all of the fannies that can be seen from the road as gawkers stare over the edge, where in the summer large fish frolic. Today, there were only two fannies and they were there only for the photos.
Just another unique and fun day around Lake Tahoe!

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Day #1 with Son #2's Mother-in-Law

Steve and I are very fortunate that our sons have married women who have incredible parents. In fact, we consider them all to be our friends! This weekend, Son #2's mother-in-law is here to play in the snow with us. How totally cool!

Almost immediately upon her arrival, we headed to Camp Richardson to end the day snowshoeing, an activity Suellen did once before and loved.

Dinner and drinks were enjoyed at the Beacon Restaurant for Lake Tahoe South Shore Chamber of Commerce’s Mixer, a fundraiser for former board member and Getaway Reno Tahoe owner Todd Poth and his family. The Poths' 5-month-old daughter, Ayah, is currently fighting for her life at the Salt Lake Primary Children’s Hospital. In an effort to ease the family’s traveling and lodging costs, all proceeds from the event raffle will benefit them. Oh boy did the community rally -a who's who of Tahoe's awesome people. It was heartwarming to see everyone there. Needless-to-say, we not only ate well and drank strong Rum Runners, we bought raffle tickets and made bids on the silent auction items, adding our support.

It was a pretty ideal Day #1 in Tahoe.

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"Wishful Drinking" by Carrie Fisher

When Carrie Fisher passed away in December, I had requested her memoir from the library. It finally came.

I read it because I wanted to know more about this woman who has been in my life since that first Star Wars film in 1977. Wow! Hers really is a tragic tale. While the book is described as humorous, the jokes thinly veil the deep sadness of this talented woman's messed up life.
In Wishful Drinking, adapted from her one-woman stage show, Fisher reveals what it was really like to grow up a product of "Hollywood in-breeding," come of age on the set of a little movie called Star Wars, and become a cultural icon and bestselling action figure at the age of nineteen.
Our perspectives can be changed with knowledge and I have a new appreciation for Ms Fisher, too bad it came after she was gone. So very sad.

"Resentment is like drinking poison
and waiting for the other person to die."
-Carrie Fisher

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Lake Tahoe After the Big Snow...

While snowfall records haven't been broken quite yet, we did get a bunch of new, beautiful snow yesterday. It has made everything look truly magical.

When this kayaker got closer he yelled, "It's really cold!" You think?

I love finding snowmen while out and about. They are the happy byproduct of a storm. How wonderful.

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Snowshoeing with Cyndy's Family...

We had the opportunity to show Cyndy's family, from Boston, our elevated fun. It was a bit blustery but so worth being out and about in it all.

Bob encourage all to sniff a tree. Stick your nose into a crevice of the bark and take a big sniff. It may smell like butterscotch or vanilla. The next person who smells it may insist it's more like cinnamon, or even coconut. Scientists don't know why a closely sniffed Ponderosa smells like baking cookies. What it smells like doesn't matter as much as getting everyone to sniff a tree. Bob is great at persuading all.
Lesson learned: Never review photos on your camera while snowshoeing. Lesson #2: Never let Steve have your camera when looking at photos while snowshoeing.
This was the first time snowshoeing for the out-of-towners. They all did great.
Eagle Point was more dramatic than Wednesday but just as breathtaking. It was the perfect spot for a first time snowshoeing adventure.

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