Sutro Bath Ruins

I have wanted to visit the Sutro Bath ruins for a couple of years now and while my mom was in San Francisco for New Years, I knew it was something she would enjoy exploring, too. I love little hidden places like this, so rich with history, but now just a part of the every day San Francisco culture.  People were out for their daily stroll, letting their dogs run free amongst ruins of what a century ago used to be a 3-acre public bathhouse with an ocean view.  

The new year blur

The clock always seems to turn over to the new year in a blur of addressing Christmas cards, trips to the airport, family visiting, celebrations, and work in between. I am never one to get into the arm wrestle of requesting time off around the holidays... there are plenty of people here with kids, in-laws, etc. that I think need the time more than I do. I remember what it was like to have the 5 different houses to visit for Christmas... how fun when it was as a spoiled kid opening a million gifts at every stop, but nowadays I am happy to enjoy the day quietly in my own space.  Brent typically works holidays as well, and this year was no exception.  I drove down to drop off his Christmas dinner, getting a glimpse of his daily world behind the double-doors of the ED.  I love to see him in his white coat - it's a reminder of how hard he worked, and continues to every day (and really he just looks handsome, if I'm being honest). I gave a silent thanks to public servants who spend the holidays away from their families - despite how it seems, the world doesn't stop turning on Christmas Day.  

Thankfully, Brent had a few days off in a row to make a trip home to Arizona after Christmas, so I saw him off and picked him up on my way to-and-from San Francisco.  Arizona always breathes life back into Brent's sails in the way California does mine. I think there's something about going home again, where you were born, and feeling the sun on your skin how it felt as a kid, smelling the familiar air, and stopping at all of the places that fill your memories.  I love to hear about his trip as we drive along the curves of highway 17 on our way home... and I guessed right that Brent managed to eat at Burrito Express pretty much every day here was there.  

As always, New Years in San Francisco was filled with laughter, good food, and even better wine.  I made sure to bring my bottle of Iron Horse sparkling rose that Cheryl got me on our trip to Sonoma to share when the clock struck midnight (SO good). I must say, I took it pretty darn easy this year spending most of the time with Rudybega on my favorite little window bench at Jon and Leslie's house that overlooks the bay.  Mom and I spent our annual day together out at the edge of the city, having lunch at The Cliff House and exploring the Sutro Bath ruins, which I have wanted to do for a couple of years now. We also let the dogs run free on the beach after lunch, which is just cuteness overload. Rudy is in love with Jon and Leslie's dog Zaney, so much so that it has become difficult to keep Rudy off of her... literally.  I'll spare you those photos (but you know I took some).

I'm happy to say things at home have settled back into a normal schedule of work, outdoor activity, and trying out new recipes in the cottage kitchen. Of course, the new year has prompted its usual resolutions... I joined a yoga studio just a block from my work, and cannot tell you how much I love going there every day on my lunch break.  It is so nice to go to class instead of trying to practice at home since Boo insists on integrating himself into every pose, as you will notice in one of the snapshots below.

Snapshots of life lately

So far, this holiday season is off to a really great start...

I spent Thanksgiving in San Francisco with Jon and Leslie. It was the most perfectly gorgeous day, so Leslie and I got out to Crissy Field to let the dogs frolic on the beach.  Obviously, I had to stop Rudy for an impromptu photo shoot in his Silly Buddy bow tie with the Golden Gate in the background. Hello, Christmas card!

Brent planned our anniversary with an overnight date at the Davenport Roadhouse just like we did last year, except this year he got us the corner suite with an ocean view! I will never tire of falling asleep to the sound of crashing waves. The next day we went for a great (albeit damp) hike in Ano Nuevo State Park with a gorgeous view at the top. There was literally not another soul on the trail, so Rudy ran all the way up the trail off-leash and had the time of his life. 

The week after Thanksgiving meant it was time for our traditional Crest Ranch Christmas Tree Farm visit, this year complete with hot spiced apple cider and pumpkin bread.  Brent and I didn't get a tree, but we love to go with Cheryl and Rob, and we certainly were not going to miss Jace's first time there!  I also had the pleasure of taking the photos for the Johannes family Christmas card the next day on the Santa Cruz Wharf Pier - I cannot wait to get the finished product in the mail!  That little Jace-face is certainly photogenic.

The best news of all is that the Cremer House is finally open in Felton! Brent and I have already been twice.  We are SO happy to have a place like this in town, and will likely have to re-calculate our dine-out budget accordingly. I will also be adding to my workout schedule to counteract the increased beer and mashed potato intake.

Here are the snapshots! And yes, Brent - the following gallery of photos is 25% Rudy (since I know you're counting).