Tuesday, November 17, 2009


I keep thinking that I’ll suddenly find myself with time on my hands one of these days… but it hasn’t happened yet! 

My Dad, Mom and me at Fitzpatrick Winery We took advantage of the balmy fall weather on Sunday to take a wine-tasting trip in the foothills of the Sierra, east of Sacramento, picking up my Mom and Dad on the way.  The wineries of El Dorado and Amador counties tend to specialize in red wines, particularly Zinfandel, a favorite of mine.  Unlike the Napa and Sonoma valleys to the west, these wineries are tucked into hilly countryside, hidden in folds along winding, often narrow, two lane roads.  Very few (if any?) charge for tasting, and the tasting rooms are frequently staffed by someone very involved with the winemaking.

Fall color in the vineyardsOur target on Sunday was Sierra Vista Winery, where they were hosting a special event: wine, chili, and chocolate!  I’m not sure of the proper wine-and-chili pairing, but the chili sure tasted good on a cool fall day – as did the chocolate and wine.  We left empty-handed, heading on visit an old favorite of mine, Fitzpatrick Winery.  Their hilltop location is a great spot to drink wine and take in sweeping vistas of the vineyards, now cloaked in fall colors.  They make dynamite red wines and very special ports, several of which we purchased for consumption on cold winter nights. 

Monday held a trip back to “Gold Country”, for lunch with my Dad and sister Nancy in Placerville.  This cute, bustling little town has quite a history and I always enjoy a visit there.  After lunch, we took a short stroll so Nancy and I could pop into a favorite store or two.  It was really nice to have some quiet time with my dad and sister… we all enjoyed each other’s company.

Teavana Teas - YUM! Today was “catch-up” day, nibbling away at the long list of “things I haven’t gotten to yet”.  Finances to get caught up.  The Boomer mail arrived and needed attention.  A trip to Trader Joes with Thanksgiving in the back of my mind.  Back home for lunch, then a walk over to the mall to the Teavana store to replenish my stock of teas with old favorites and a couple new blends. 

Teas is “the new coffee” for me, since my doctor recommended cutting out coffee (and increasingly frequent heartburn) a couple years ago.  Since then, I discovered several teas I LOVE, and I usually get small amounts of three or four new blends when I’m near a Teavana store. 

I’ve suffered a bit of insomnia recently, so today I was particularly interested in their Tranquil Dream herbal tea, which I am sipping as I write.  I’d forgotten how much I enjoy chamomile… it’s so sixties!  In Tranquil Dream, chamomile is blended with mint and and who knows what all else, very soothing. Sleepy Luna enjoys the new flannel pillowcase. With the light rain falling, a warm cup of tea with honey, and Luna already sleeping beside me, I think tonight might be quite restful.

Tomorrow I have a date with my friend Becky for breakfast, a date with the mammogram machine at 11:30, and plans with our RV’ing friends Jim and Ellie for dinner.  An appointment with our financial planner on Thursday and on Friday: nothing!  Nada!  Huh, we’ll see about that.  :)


  1. Laurie--please give Jim and Ellie a hug for us, we will see them this winter in Arizona. Enjoy your dinner with them!

  2. Laurie, Love the Teavana stores. I know you are a fan of Diners, Drive-ins and Dives- have you been to Tex Wasabis its over by the Arden Mall. If you have not you must- and a must have is the Jackass Roll its gringo sushi. Actually the prices and the food are really good. Johns favorite was the vegas fries- buffalo wing sauce on french fries..

  3. Oh, man... how are we going to fit in a visit to Tex Wasabi? To the calendar! Thanks for the tip.

  4. Luna - I have your twin sister. Dorothy is my 11 year old Russian Blue cat. She looks exactly like you. She is very loving to me and her Airedale Terrier, Dusty. Neither of them shed, which helps to make me a very happy human. They both, very much, want us to go fulltime. We all enjoy "your" blog. It makes us really want to get on the road.

  5. We love Diners, Drive-ins and Dives too, and have been to several of the places he has profiled. We live in El Dorado Hills (when we're not on the road) and being sushi fans, we went to Tex Wasabi's. To be blunt, we were disappointed; the service was slow, the rolls were too cute (trying too hard to be fusion eccentric), although the atmosphere was very nice.

    We're sticking with Mikuni's