Tuesday, August 30, 2016

5 Reasons Why Netflix Needs to Revive Stalker

Stalker was a great show. It aired on CBS in the fall of 2014 and instantly made me start looking over my shoulder. The show followed Lt. Beth Davis and her Threat Assessment Unit inside the Los Angeles Police Department. Beth and her team investigated cases of stalking, cyber harassment, voyeurism and romantic fixation. Beth being driven by her own personal experience as a victim could understand the victims and had in depth knowledge of how a stalker mind thinks. Ben and Janice her team members are equally skilled in understanding the thought process of a stalker. When a new member is added to the team, Jack, a transfer from New York. The team begins to buckle a little. However, Jack is skilled in understanding how a stalker thinks and adds vast knowledge to the team. His personality is what's got him into trouble before and may again.

I loved this show. It had 20 episodes air and when I heard it was being cancelled, I was so sad! I got on the internet and there was tons of other people posting about how they thought it was insane that CBS was cancelling this excellent program. So queue up Netflix! This is a platform that I think it would do amazingly well on. I mean look at The Killing. It was on for a season and TNT cancelled it. Netflix picked it up and finished it and people are still watching it and loving it. This could the next show that they pick up and give it another go. Here's my five reasons why I think Netflix should give it a shot...

1. It's believable. All of the stories and the plots they were 100% believable. I don't know about you but I've been watching a show before and once something happens that could never happen I get turned off by the show. In every episode those horrible things could happen to you or someone you know. That's what made it scary because it was believable.

2. The music. The show did it's own original versions of classic songs. It was one of it's staples. At the end of every episode they would take a classic song and turn it into it's own new version. It was always interesting and we would wait to see which song they picked and hear how they chose to perform it.

3. The plot lines. The storylines were original. They weren't horribly played out, redone story lines from every cheesy movie you've ever seen about stalker. They were intricate and you never knew what was going to happen next.

4. CBS put all their eggs in one basket that fall television season. Stalker debuted the same time as Madam Secretary. The network put all their advertising time and money into Madam Secretary (which is a good show) and left Stalker out in the cold. It was like you had to pump it by word of mouth to let people know about it. Once you'd mention though the people who watched were loving it. This could happen easily with Netflix. People don't have cable but they've got Netflix.

5. CBS gave it the worst time slot. The show started on Wednesdays at 10:00 p.m. I'm sorry but I'm an adult and have a full time job. I get up early and don't have time to watch an hour long show at 10pm at night. I would DVR it and watch it the next day though! Then it went to Monday's at 9:00 p.m. after a few months. Well how can you get into a new show if you're moving it around? You can't. Netflix people could watch it at anytime! Binge watch!

Were you a fan of Stalker? Do you have a show you wish Netflix would revive?

Monday, August 29, 2016

Full House Hommage

San Francisco.

The famous quote by Mark Twain, "The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco" isn't a lie. We made the less than two hour car ride over into the bay last weekend and it was freezing. While Sacramento and other northern California towns have been experiencing 95+ degree days, San Fran was a balmy 62 degrees when we arrived. I think it reached it's high at 71 but the bay breeze never made it feel hot in any way. We started our day by traveling up to the vista point to see the Golden Gate Bridge in all it's glory.
This bench coincidently was the same one my husband I did engagement photos on

I just love looking at the Golden Gate. I mean yeah, most days it's half emerged in the fog but when you get a glimpse of the entire bridge it just makes you appreciate it a little more. I could spend an hour telling you about why I love seeing the bridge but I won't. Instead, I'll just give you the cliff notes. When I was kid growing up in West Virginia we didn't take big trips to the west coast. My parents were working folks. They had jobs to go to and bills to pay. We were on a budget. I secretly blame my father. I think he just didn't want to get on a plane or go anywhere that he couldn't threaten to drive home from. When we did go on vacation we went to east coast places like Florida for Disney and North/South Carolina for the beach. We toured monuments in Washington D.C. and kept going to our staple location, Pigeon Forge. We didn't get on fancy planes. Some of my best memories were eating cheeto balls from the can in the back seat asking how much longer till we are there?!

This was my best friend's first time seeing the bridge up close and personal. She's a West Virginia girl too so she gets it...

So imagine my wondering eyes when a show called Full House pops on TGIFriday and captivates my young self? 

You probably guessed it! I was awestruck. I was like that's the life! DJ had her cool lips phone, Uncle Jesse was always having famous rockers drop in and her dad was a television host. What could be any cooler?! At the opening of the show the Golden Gate would be there in all it's glory secretly screaming to me, "Come visit me! Come live this amazing life that DJ and the rest of the Tanners are!" I mean granted it probably wasn't but I thought what a cool place in my grade school mind. Queue to the fall of 2012 and I'm living out here. I'm literally less than 2 hours from the place that my kid self had thought was super cool and rad.

It was really hard to wrap my mind around it. It's crazy how life can lead you places. Anyways, I digress. After we visited with the Golden Gate we headed to the other Full House hotspot... The Painted Ladies.

These famous row houses are a National Landmark and real people live in them. Ok, fine their very rich people but their still real people. The yellow and red house fondly known as the Full House home is by far the most popular but the other fabulous houses shouldn't be ignored. The colors are spectacular!

So for two small town girls, being in the city and seeing these landmarks in person is really special. Now I'm working on my friend to get her to move to the west coast. If it was up to me all of my friends and family would live within a 2 hour driving distance. Clearly so we can go do all these fun things together.

Friday, August 26, 2016

The Best Wine Tour in Napa

When my the Maid of Honor in my wedding tells me that she's coming to visit me in California you plan fun adventures. I'm recruiting her to move to the west coast so of course I had to think of the best places to take her. We knew that we wanted to visit San Francisco, but of course there's wine country.The first place that came to mind when she said she wanted to visit Napa was the Castle Winery also known as... Castello Di Amorosa.

My husband and I have toured this winery before and we loved it. It's located in Calistoga on the top of a huge hill. Castello di Amorosa opened it's doors to the public in April of 2007 and is the sister winery to V. Sattui located just a few miles down the road. What makes Castello unique is the fact that it was modeled after a Tuscan Castle. The Castle was created by using materials brought over and hundreds of thousands of hours of labor to recreate the look of an authentic Tuscan Castle in the 13th century. This winery isn't stuffy like some of the others can be and the wine is excellent. The tour takes you through the castle and ends with a tasting of all their finest wines.

Every detail of the winery sets you into the mentality that you are in Tuscany living in the 13th century.

And you thought that's all there was? Wrong! They have livestock too! Just how a real 13th century winery would have....

The winery was a hit! Erica loved the winery so much she bought a case and became a member! Now we just need her to visit again so we can get that member pricing tour. The tour never gets old and the tasting is always a great time. The wine just gets better and better. Their most popular bottle is La Fantasia. I highly suggest taking the tour or buying some online. This wine isn't available in stores so if someone tells you they bought it in a store don't believe them. It's only available by coming to the winery or online.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Stitch Fix Outtakes

Every month when my Stitch Fix box arrives, I get so excited to share what's arrived on my doorstop. Sometimes in the process of taking photos to share with you there's a few that don't make the cut. Usually, my husband snaps the photo too early, or my hair is right in my eyes or our cat Tesco instantly feels the need for attention. I get tickled when I scroll through the photos and thought I'd share some with all of you. So without further ado these are a few of my Stitch Fix photo outtakes....

Fixing my hair and of course the walk off...

Then there's the adjusting....

Don't know what Stitch Fix is? Well let me tell you a little bit about it. Start by filling out your style profile. You will complete questions on sizing, pricing, preferences, colors, etc. You can also write notes about likes and dislikes. Make sure to link your fashion board on Pinterest so your stylist can see what you like. This really helps! The notes to your stylist can really help determine what you get in your box. Take the time to write your stylist a note! I feel that's one of the most important things to getting the items you really want to see in your fixes.
Next, order your first fix! You will be charged a $20.00 styling fee however, if you keep any item [one or more] you will be credited back the $20.00 towards that purchase. I always recommend keeping at least one item or you are essentially giving away $20.00 and getting nothing in return. You will receive 5 items (made up of clothing, jewelry, and handbags). I personally never want jewelry in my fix so I just always let my stylist know! If you refer a friend you get credit so your styling fee could potentially be free.

When your box arrives decide what you want to keep and what you want to send back (in the pre-paid postage envelope)! You have 3 business days  from receiving your fix to decide so use this time to try everything on and see what works best for you. Go out of your comfort zone! This is what makes Stitch Fix fun! It's like being a celebrity and getting clothing sent to you! I've chosen to receive monthly fixes but remember it is in no way a subscription service and you are able to decide when you want another fix, whether that be in 6 months or 2 years from your first fix! As always, if you have any questions feel free to leave them in the comments section below. To save some cash on future fixes they offer an awesome referral package, if you use my referral link I'll get to bypass the styling fee at least once!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

How I Lost 28 Pounds

When I got engaged in 2014, I knew that I wanted to lose weight for our wedding. It was a day I had always dreamed about and I wanted to look my best. I also started a new job and in that new position I was sitting a lot at a desk which was unlike my previous job where I was on my feet the majority of the day. By the time I bought my dress in December of 2014, I weighed in at 148 pounds. For some people this number may not look too high but to me it was one of the highest weights I had ever weighed in at. Take into account the fact that I'm only 5'4'' in height.

The majority of my weight is usually in my lower half and especially my legs. They just love to hold on to that weight and it's been that way my entire life. The first place I'll lose weight is in my face and chest.

So in May of 2015, I really set out to lose the weight. I started eating portioned meals that consisted of broccoli, rice, chicken or fish. Well guess what... I hate broccoli and asparagus. Which was the alternative to the broccoli. I also went to the gym 5 times a week and worked with a trainer. The results in one week... 7 pounds. That was a crazy amount for me to lose in one week! It wasn't water weight either because I was drinking a gallon (literally) a day. So the next week, I was working out at the gym and on the way home all of my muscles seized up and I had no idea what was happening to me. Queue a ride to the Emergency Room in an ambulance and I was told I had literally no potassium in my body, my electrolytes were depleted and that I indeed was dehydrated.

I said screw this! This wasn't real life for me. I don't have time to go to the gym five times a week. I'm tired after work, I don't want to get up at the crack of dawn to go and I'm just NOT a 5 times a week to the gym type of person. Nor am I a broccoli kind of girl. I'm just not! So after I started eating my normal food again and drinking my water. I had been a huge fan of Diet 7Up and Sprite Zero. I started drinking nothing but Smart Water.

Then we had some crazy life moments and stress kicked in. Then the summer months rolled in and then the fall. I was having tons of anxiety for the first time in my life. By my wedding I had got down to 120 pounds. It was the smallest I had ever been in my life! I couldn't even remember a time in high school or college that I weighed 120 lbs. I was always around 125. But on my wedding day, I was down 28 pounds. Luckily, I knew I had lost a lot of weight and started my dress altering's in October. It had to be taken in multiple sizes.

Since our wedding I've been able to keep the weight off +- a few pounds. Right now I'm sitting at 128 lbs. but I don't sit around and think about it. I like where I'm at and I'm ok with that! I like how my clothing fits and I like what I see back in the mirror. Will I always want legs like Carrie Underwood and Arms like a bikini model? Sure! Do I want rock hard abs that would make those bikini models cry? Sure! But for right now I'm happy with where I'm at.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Dinosaurs & Moon Landings

Do you believe in Dinosaurs?
I do.

Do you believe we landed on the moon?
I do.

I didn't even know there was a debate about dinosaurs till recently. I'm sitting on the couch and one night my husband tells me he doesn't think dinosaurs really existed.

Excuse me, what?

That was my initial reaction. I think it was around the time the new Jurassic World movie was coming out. So we got into this huge debate about how I believe they really did exists and how he really thinks their just made up. You guys... I can't even make this debate up. I was literally like, "You've got to be kidding me!" At first I laughed it off because I thought he was joking. I thought he was just doing one of those little things where you pretend to disagree but really you agree. Just having fun with me. Um... it's been a year now and he isn't yelling out, "Just kidding!"

In fact, he's become even more serious when he tries to reason with anyone who will listen. When he learns of anyone else who agrees with him, they become his new favorite person. He's like, "Yeah! They know what's up!" Queue my eye roll.

Then there's the debate on if we really did land on the moon. I get that there's tons of conspiracy theorist out there. People I worked in the space industry. Give it up... we really did go to the moon. We really did walk on it. It wasn't a television sound stage that these men walked on. It was the actual moon that we all look up into the sky at. These brave, young men dared to go where no man had ever gone. They risked their lives to the unknown and some of them lost their lives in the process of trying to get to the moon. Don't tarnish their memory and their legacy by giving any ammunition to this debate.

My husband knows how passionate I am about the space program. He'll do this joke just to mess with me. If something space related comes on television or I'm watching The Martian for the 100th time he'll slip out of his mouth a joke about we didn't really go there. I know he actually believes we did. If he didn't we'd have to have a real chat.

So what do you think about this recent trend with people really believing that dinosaurs didn't exist? My husband thinks that the bones were planted and their fake. His biggest justification to his theory is.... what happened to the water dinosaurs? If they really did exists then what happened to them?!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

The Halloween Tree

Since last December, I've been toying with the item of getting a black Christmas tree. At our wedding we had guests sign Christmas bulbs  that we could bring out year after year and display. Plus our cake topper could also dub as a tree topper. I knew then that I wanted to display these ornaments and our tree topper on a tree the following season. Since the bulbs are all different pops of color, I knew that I wanted a tree that would allow these colors to pop. I got online and went to my go to Christmas tree store and that's when I saw it. A black tree. But could I sell my husband on the idea of a black tree? That doesn't seem too practical does it? Well it is....

Thus the Halloween tree was born. It doesn't just serve the purpose of being our wedding tree, it comes out early as a Halloween tree! My husband loves Halloween so doing a Halloween tree showed it's not just a Christmas tree.

This tree is 7 feet tall and came pre-lit with white lights. The fabric ornaments were handcrafted by me. If you want to see them in detail you can go here or here. The other ornaments were found at the craft store and honestly the dollar store. Items like the big orange spider and the spiders around the tree, the rat and the bats were all items I found at the dollar store. They aren't particularly ornaments but you can place them to sit on the branches. The garland is mesh used for wreaths and I found it at the dollar store. This tree took 3 rolls.


I'm really happy with how the tree turned out. The people who have seen it so far love it which makes my heart happy. Now once Halloween is over the tree will be relocated to a different room and the decorations will get traded out for our wedding ones. So be honest. What do you thin of our Halloween tree? Do you decorate for Halloween?

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Elvis, Always the King

Today in 1977, Elvis Presley left this world but left a lasting impression that is never to be forgotten. Since I was a little girl, I have always loved Elvis. His style, his music, his Graceland home, everything about him I've always been fascinated with. When I finally made a pilgrimage to Memphis, it was everything I thought it would be. I was even lucky enough to return for Elvis Week. Every year since then I when Elvis week begins, I always wish I could be back in Memphis celebrating his life and legacy.

Elvis Week begins a week before the death of Elvis and culminates on the day of his death with the candlelight vigil. Thousands of people flood the gates of Graceland and make their way to the meditation garden which is home to Elvis' resting place. Holding candles and paying their respects this event brings in tons of fans and is broadcast live on the internet.

While I can't attend this years celebrations. I'm still thinking of the King of Rock n' Roll today! You can see all of my love and previous Elvis Week posts on Elvis here. You'll also see my Elvis Christmas tree! In the meantime here's my top 5 Elvis songs...

My Way
Kentucky Rain
Burning Love
Always On My Mind
If I Can Dream

Monday, August 15, 2016

Dreaming of Retirement

While I love my job, I sometimes find myself sitting around and thinking of retirement. This usually happens most  after I've returned from a vacation. I think about where we will live, what we will do and how we will fill our days instead of going to work. 

1. Texas

Texas has two major points in its favor when it comes to money. Texans don't have to pay personal income tax. That's a big savings! The other of your a Veteran you don't have to pay as much property tax and in some cases none! Thanks to my husbands service we would pay less. 

2. San Diego, California.

I recently went to San Diego for work and then back again for Comic Con and I loved it! My husband was equally impressed with it. The weather is amazing all year long, the traffic is nothing like bigger cities such as Los Angeles and things were overly expensive (OK fine the houses might be a little high for the square footage). We already live in California so the move wouldn't be a huge journey to another state. We wouldn't have to change our tags, etc so the headache would be a little smaller.

3. Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.

I love it there. I've always loved it there. When I took my husband there in June he loved it too. I grew up going there and taking trips with my mom so of course it holds tons of sentimental value. There is always something to do, somewhere to go eat and some place to shop. My favorite stores such as A Christmas Place is there so I'm pretty for sure I would go completely nuts over the holidays. What little sanity I have left would escape because I would get a part time job there to feed my Christmas addiction.

4. Hawaii.

We would unclutter and not take all of our junk. We would be living the island life. The beaches, the sun, the tropics. The only draw backs tourists non stop, sunburns, not being super close to amazing medicine (I feel like here I can be airlifted anywhere). Plus I've done some digging and it's extremely pricey to retire to Hawaii. The tax breaks aren't as great as other states but hey... in the end it's Hawaii.

5. Sacramento, California.

We could stay put where we are. We already have a home and hopefully by then it will be paid off. We always talk about getting one of those really small drivable RVs and driving around the country to see things. We have a few decades to figure it out but hey... it's fun to think about and you never know we could win the lottery and make it happen sooner rather than later.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Adele Live 2016

On the last day of July, Adele stepped on stage in San Jose, California and you can believe we were there. We had bought these tickets on December 7, 2015. We had been waiting for this concert for almost eight months. As each month passed by and she performed concert after concert we were holding our breath that she wouldn't cancel. She started her world tour in Europe and then made her way to America. San Jose was near her last stop on the tour so we were very happy her vocal cords held up and that she didn't suffer any injuries. When the concert started she told us this was her 62nd show and her 13th in America.
Let me tell you. Adele is amazing live. I think she sounds even better in person that she does on her album. She has a live band behind her and at one point she does an acoustic set. She did a great mix of songs from her previous album and her current. While she is amazing when she's singing, she's equally entertaining when she isn't. In between songs and while drinking her honey she converses with the audience. Fans that are closest to the stage interact with and she even invited two little girls on stage to take a picture with her. She also gave away a jersey and signed it. She also offered to pose for selfies if the people would just turn their cameras around for her.
We sat up top at the SAP Center but that was ok! She was just amazing and I hope she comes back to California again some day. I would totally pay to see her again in concert. Since the concert, I've been listening to her album on repeat! I never buy concert t-shirts because their just so over priced but this time I did. I sported that sucker on Saturday while blaring her music. Seriously. If you get the chance to see her live in concert don't pass up the opportunity. She is worth the price and it'll be a memory forever.
My top 5 Adele songs...
Set Fire to the Rain
Someone Like You
Rumor Has It
Water Under the Bridge
I should mention that I also love Send My Love but then I'd get into the fact that I love all of her songs but those are my top 5. What's your favorite Adele song? Were you lucky to see her during this concert tour or in another setting?