All posts by susan

December 2023

So much happens in December. We made crafts and knitted, made spiced nuts and carefully wrapped gifts. We ice skated and ate meals with friends and family and had so much fun that I did not take any pictures at all. Still, I am so glad that I continue to share a few photos here to help me remember. And I know this is true at the end of every month but somehow at the years end I really want to hold it all and not let it go. This blog has preserved the sweetest moments for me to look back on. It is my heart on the internet. Thank you for visiting.

We brought Hugo, our Norfolk Pine inside and decorated our apartment for Christmas.

We attended a concert at the Paramount called “Let Us Break Bread” that honored Tina Turner. It was a lot of fun and totally worth it even in our top floor balcony seats.

We flew to Los Angeles to visit family.

Emma and Grandpa. We stay in Grandpa’s living room and watch old movies with him every day.

There were many old photo albums to look at and I snapped so many photos of my Mom. I still wear her blue shirt. 🙂

We had a wonderful time with family, delivering and opening presents and sipping prosecco (me) at the huge Christmas Eve party. Lots of sweets, yummy food and good conversation.


Stocking treats for me.


Here is Emma sporting a new shirt and jewelry and eating blueberries on Christmas day. Such a lucky kid.

After Christmas we are eager to return home to maiki.

We walked around the lake and visited the library in Chinatown.

Spent the last day of the year in Dimond park by Sausal creek with friends.

Holiday trip to the Monterey Bay

We decided to take off a few days during the week of Thanksgiving and go on a family trip. I booked a place to stay in Moss Landing that was both between Santa Cruz and Monterey and affordable. Off we drove down Hwy 1.

We stopped for a late lunch in Santa Cruz and ate sandwiches here by the ocean.

We ended up arriving in Moss Landing around 5ish. Then I noticed, whoa it is dark here and there is only the slough and farm land and not much else.

That evening we settled in at the hotel and wandered to a Thai restaurant for a not good beer and yummy spring rolls that was a block away.

The next morning we awoke hungry and ready to explore so we drove to Monterey. We found a place to eat near Cannery Row. Afterwards we strolled around.

Here are some harbor seals resting on the beach after a long night of hunting.

We ventured into all the shops and got new sunglasses for Emma and maiki and a bottle of dill olive oil for me.

When we got back to the car we drove south down the coast of Monterey. The beaches were beautiful!

We got out to walk to the sandy shore. Emma looked for shells and played with seaweed. We saw sea otters a little ways out in the water. Luckily maiki snapped this picture.

We drove down to Point Lobos, a regional park on the coast. It had crazy beautiful preserved coastline.

All of the sea lions were camped out on a rock in the water, quite far away. A hungry Emma was disappoined and ready to leave. We drove to Carmel for lunch.

We returned to Moss Landing just before the sun set. We took a walk to the beach. It was lovely.

We walked around the harbor where Emma could hear more sea lions. They were behind a fence but maiki held her up so she could see them. We saw funny (to us) notices that said “Beware of sea lions” and keep your children and pets safe from the large, hungry sea monsters.

That evening we had drinks and chips and salsa at a mexican restaurant in Moss Landing. We sat outside with heat lamps all around us.

Day three we had breakfast in Moss Landing. We visited a cafe called the Power Plant. I ate toast with persimmons, honey, pecans and thyme! So yummy!

Next Emma and I went kayaking in the Elkhorn Slough! That was very fun and we saw a mother sea otter with her baby! That is something I will never forget. The baby was crying because it was hungry. The mother would put the baby down in the water and dive to get food. She would open the shell, bring the baby on her lap and feed the baby, then do it all over again. Emma and I were entranced.

** maiki took pictures of us in the water, will post soon. **

We shared fish and chips before driving to Santa Cruz.

On the wharf Emma got her wish. We saw so many sea lions!

photos from November


Walk on the first night of the autumn equinox.


Emma made a bonsai presentation for her charter school’s gathering of learners.


We took a family trip to the Monterey bay. It was so beautiful! This is in Santa Cruz (more photos to come!)


We visited Claude at the Academy of Sciences on thanksgiving day.


Our baby is getting so tall!



We went to Ardenwood farms with our charter school friends. Not much was happening that day but it was blessedly silent.