For better or worse, here I am—trapped in paradise. As long as I continue to live in this vital, inimitable spot on the globe,

I will continue to seek out the unique…the delicious…the innovative products, services and traditions of San Luis Obispo County.

Stay posted for a few of my favorite things.

About Me...

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A wanderlust at heart... captivated by the California Central Coast. Join me on my culinary and vino-infused adventures as I explore and discover the regional novelties of San Luis Obispo County that make living here...easy to stay...and hard to leave.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

San Luis Obispo County Winter Waves

There is something intoxicating about the sound of crashing waves. I've lived in San Luis Obispo County for well over a decade and I don't think I will ever tire of visiting the local coastline. 

Yesterday, in anticipation of predicted high winter swell, I went in search of monumental waves. I visited three different beaches—each one enveloped in cloudy, sultry skies—and captured fleeting glimpses of waves breaking with tremendous force. 

Here are a few snapshots. 

Early morning at Pismo Beach: beautiful satin swell.
Early afternoon: Cayucos State Beach. With Morro Rock in the distance, what an awe-inspiring view.

Late afternoon: I headed to Morro Bay. People came out in droves to watch the surf break behind Morro Rock

Sunday, January 19, 2014

San Luis Obispo County Vacations

Pismo Beach sunset.
Lately I've been dealing with a big problem: How do I spend my free time in San Luis Obispo County?

With so much to choose from, like wine tasting, dining at farm-to-table restaurants, hiking local trails, hitting sandy beaches, visiting farmers markets and so much more, how to prioritize my leisurely activities?

I did a little research and discovered the following web sites useful in navigating SLO County's choice endeavors. Whether you're planning to visit this pristine area for a vacation, or you're a slocal who lives here and needs suggestions for a staycation, the possibilities of how to spend your time are endless. 

I hope you find these sites helpful to fine-tune your SLO itinerary.
This web site focuses on the county's coastal region and breaks it down into ten regional destinations; conveniently lets you search for lodging, activities, restaurants and wineries by region; and provides an upcoming events calendar. You can even build an itinerary, complete with maps. Please note, they do not provide information on Paso Robles wine country.
Brought to you by the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce, this site lists the chamber members' lodging, restaurants, wine tasting, activities, shopping and news/media information. You can conveniently search lodging and restaurants by price and location. They also have several quick links that provide more information on the county, including a virtual visitor's guide. 
You can find links to dining, activities, upcoming events and can easily book your lodging through this site within any of the county's communities. And to boot—they offer a free visitor's guide and a section on local deals.
They provide popular things to do in San Luis Obispo City and the surrounding area, vacation ideas, hotels, deals and packages. You can also sign up for their Secrets of SLO newsletter and receive email tips about upcoming events and special offers. 

If you have other sites you'd like to recommend, please leave your suggestions in the comments section below. I'd also love to hear about some of your SLO County favorite pastimes, places and establishments. 

I hope you discover something new and exceptional in San Luis Obispo!

This evening's sunset at one of my old standbys: Pismo Beach.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

100 SLO Days

Some of you know that in 2012 I launched a blog called 100 SLO Days. This site was my way of holding myself accountable after committing to exercise for at least 30 minutes per day, consecutively for 100 days. I felt blogging each day about my workout adventures in San Luis Obispo County would help keep me accountable. It definitely did. 

But something else happened along the way. When I hit the local beaches and hiking trails, I documented my outdoor activities by bringing a camera along. I captured wildflowers growing on the Bluffs Trail in Montana de Oro in Los Osos, humpback whales feeding in the harbor at Avila Beach, lizards sunning themselves on Bishop Peak, and awesome sunsets at Pismo Beach. My camera became an extension of my surroundings. 

Although those initial 100 days are long gone, I still continue my frequent outdoor workouts. Please consider following along with me on 100 SLO Days. I promise to offer up some sound fitness advice once in a while, and I'll keep trekking with a camera in hand...bringing you snapshots of this California Central Coast mecca. 

Warm weather and high wind conditions brought choppy waves to these surfers in Shell Beach yesterday.
The clouds brought this dreamlike sunset.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2014 New Year's Intentions

Don't worry, this isn't another blurb on New Year's resolutions. Well, actually it is, but since today is the start of a brand new year and many of us are introspective, hopeful, and ready to jump into 2014 with good intentions, I just can't help myself. 

I'm actually not big on resolutions as I believe in goal setting throughout the year. If there's an objective I want to achieve, I don't think it makes sense to wait until January 1 to declare my ambitions. But for the past few weeks I've been pondering numerous objectives that I'd like to bring to fruition in the new year—and I've been stressing about them. 

With a bevy of good intentions flowing through my mind—like exercising, reading and meditating daily; eating healthier foods and drinking more water; running races; exploring new hiking trails; taking up a water sport; cultivating new friendships; traveling more often; studying Japanese again; launching a new website; publishing more stories and pictures; finishing decorating my home; hiring a housekeeper; taking more cooking classes; learning and creating new recipes; buying a new camera and improving my photography skillsI've felt as if my 2014 wishlist was a jumbled mash in my brain. 

Then this afternoon...I had an aha moment. This welcome revelation occurred to me as I was reading friends' and family members' comments about some of the San Luis Obispo County pictures I posted on a social networking site. I realized something very important yet genuinely simple: I just need to keep on doing the things I love. I believe that when you come from a place of elation, the Universe helps align your intentions and good things happen. 

So, I'm going to relax and trust that I'll get wherever it is that I want to go. I wish you the best in 2014 and beyond. Thank you for following along on my SLO County adventures.

2013 New Year's Eve Sunset at Pismo Beach.

2014 New Year's Day Morning at Pismo Beach.
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