March has been very busy with work, so I find balance in a variety of outdoor activities. I love the diversity of nature that Southern California offers…it’s only hard to choose which activity to do :-)! We had a “rainy” March in California – which means lots of snow in the mountains. It is true, you can go surfing in the morning and snowboarding in the afternoon here in SoCal – all in one day.
We had planned a winter vacation to Mammoth, but due to our tight work schedule, we had to cancel our trip. However, we did a day trip to Big Bear mountain. I was kind of nervous of getting back on my snowboard after an almost 1 year (unintentional) break and not sure if I could even ride down the mountain. The conditions were perfect as there was just a storm that moved over – so all fresh powder. As soon as we arrived on top of the mountain and I stood on my board I remembered what to do. Actually, I’ve had my best snowboarding experience ever. I focused on turning my shoulder on the turns instead of my feet and it worked wonders. I’ve been watching the Winter Olympics and cheering on Shaun White and Chloe Kim. Their skills must have rubbed off on me (HAHAHAHA). Seriously, I’m not sure what it is, but sometimes when you start with no expectations it turns out better than expected. I had a ton of fun and we stayed until it got too crowded in the afternoon. I’m not even sure if we can go another time before summer, but I can’t wait to get back on the slopes!
Run, Bike, Ride, Repeat
There are so many activities we like to do so we try to switch it up each weekend. My only must do is volleyball on Saturdays. I can’t wait to get out early morning and play until everyone is tired and I have no one to play with anymore :-). Another one of our Sunday traditions is starting the day with a (longer – for me) run…mostly in one of the Canyons here so Ulli can get some hill work in. That way we earn our Sunday Brunch 🙂 We’ve also got back on our mountain bike. We have great trails here in Orange County and are really lucky to have Aliso Wood Canyon in our “backyard” which offers some of the best trails in Southern California. The ride starts out pretty easy but then you have to climb up steep & technical trails to get to Top of the World. From there you can choose from several downhill trails. It’s a lot of fun and a good workout….which you only feel when you get home 🙂
I’ve been practicing riding a motorcycle with sidecar to get familiar with shifting. I’m feeling more comfortable each time and having fun doing it. However, I always loved riding with Ulli and being the passenger on the backseat. I feel very safe with him and love the feeling of riding on a bike. So the other weekend after our morning run, we did a motorcycle tour. We rode down Pacific Coast Highway from Laguna Beach to Newport Beach. I can never get enough of this coastal view. There’s nothing like the freedom of riding on a motorcycle down the Southern California coast…..ahhh….until you run out of gas and have to push up the bike and get an Uber to the gas station (yes, that happened). Our reward was a stop at our favorite smoothie/bowl place Sejuiced in Corona Del Mar.
So many activities…so little time! What do you like to do on the weekend? What are your favorite scenic driving routes? Always like to hear what everyone is up to 🙂
These days are flying by. The last few weeks have been super busy at work and on the weekend I’ve been using every minute to find my balance outdoors. Each Saturday I get up at 5am to be out on the beach volleyball court for lesson and playing and I’ve had so much fun learning this sport (ok also a lot of frustration too as my body is not cooperating the way I want to sometimes). I had been playing for a few months, but have found an awesome coach who is patient with me to get me to the next level. I also made some new friends while playing and it’s been so much fun being at the beach from sunrise to sunset. I’m still hoping to see Kerri Walsh out on practice sometime, I know she trains around here…:-)
We also have had some very unique weather especially where I live – close to the beach. With warm days and cool ocean water the marine layer clouds develop and the fog moves in over the coastal areas. As we live on top of a canyon, it’s a spectacular phenomenon to witness and something you don’t see every day. I posted some pictures below and video here so you can see for yourself. They actually call it “June gloom” but it’s just March now. Does that mean it’s already hotter than it’s supposed to be?
Another highlight these past days was going to see the Red Hot Chili Peppers live at the Staples Center (here’s a sneak peak). The venue is iconic (home of the LA Lakers) and seeing the band that loves LA as much as I do was freaking awesome. I almost forgot how many incredible songs they have and now they’re back on my running playlist. My current favorite tracks are Give it Away, Can’t stop and Soul to Squeeze. RHCP are such a cool band and they’re touring right now – so go see them! On that note, Ulli met Anthony Kiedis a while ago in Malibu and they had a quick chat about motorcycles and stuff…really nice guy too!
We also went one day to Big Bear Mountain to go snowboarding (first time this year), as we had some unusual storms earlier this month (you may remember the flooding in Northern California). Rain at the beach means snow in the mountains, so we had a blast playing in the snow. I always have to decide snow or sunshine each weekend – and so far beach & sun have won (Ulli is not happy). Last weekend we’ve been to Indian wells which is in the desert (next to Palm Springs). We went to the tennis tournament there and I actually struggled with the heat at 100F. It’s so unique to California to experience snow, extreme heat, marine fog and sunny 70F all within a 2 hour driving radius (so you can even go on the same day). For me as an outdoor enthusiast it’s a true adventure paradise – and hard to choose where to go each weekend (yeah I know tough life).
What have you been up to lately? How is the March weather where you are? Have you been to any memorable concerts or sports events? Would love to hear!
P.S. As we’re talking music today – I discovered the band LANY (my #1 song is “ILYSB”) and Matt Franco “Fresh Eyes” – L.O.V.E. these two songs! Is anyone with me on this?
Thanksgiving has become one of my favorite holidays as it’s the start of Christmas season but without the stress of getting presents. It’s all about good food and spending quality time together with your loved ones. This Thanksgiving day we had a super early start at 4:30am as we signed up for the 10k Turkey Trot run in Dana Point. It was a crisp morning in the 50s with over 16,000 runners. I usually run part of this route on my own as it’s so scenic, but it was fun going out together as a group. Also, there were a lot of unique costumes and people (and dogs) cheering the runners on. I was happy to finish in 59minutes which was 10min faster than two weeks ago in Las Vegas. I guess a 15k has to be the next challenge…
The rest of the day we spent decorating the house, going for a walk on the beach and enjoying our feast (vegan roast was delicious). It’s also the season when I can finally watch all Christmas movies again. We watched Love Actually and Family Man – what are your favorite Christmas movies?