Category Archive: Uncategorized

Big changes! Our first home and Sirena’s first day at preschool

After 10 months of living in my Mom and Aunt Tina’s garage (all of us–me, Kevin, Sirena, and Lola) and savingsavingsaving we finally signed the papers for our first home just days after Christmas! What made it extra special was that we purchased a close family friend’s home which I had been visiting since middle school and the home is in a neighborhood just minutes from both of Sirena’s grandparents. The process was a lot smoother than the horror stories we’ve heard and we were beyond elated to finally hold the keys to our very first home.

The home was move-in ready which was great, we just spent a week painting, cleaning, and moving all of our junk in.


Sirena holding the keys to our first home!


Welcome home!!


I think she’s a fan of the house.


Enjoying her new big girl bedroom


We just showed her the closet door we painted with chalkboard paint, she was so excited.


A girl and her dog in their new backyard


Sirena’s first day at preschool…

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Out front before going in. She wasn’t sure what was quite in store for her yet!

The preschool director sent us photos throughout the day her very first day. Made it just a tad less hard to be away from her!




Kevin’s Kitchenaid

A couple of weeks ago Kevin passed the final oral and practical exam needed to earn his aircraft mechanics certification!  It was a wonderful end to a big chapter in our lives.

We’ve come a long way since the middle of his second semester when I posted this short post about him aceing his midterm.  Two years of schooling, Monday through Friday evening, plus Kevin working Saturdays and Sundays.  I can sit here and lament about how awful it was without him but I can only imagine how hard it was on him working/going to school 7 days a week.  And now that his final exams are done, he’s now a certified aircraft mechanic!

So shortly after he aced his exam we went out to our local home goods store to purchase something that Kevin’s had his eye on for years to celebrate…a Kitchenaid mixer!

And of course I documented his first attempt at making cookies using it…

Kevin taking his Kitchenaid out for its maiden voyage!

A true baker requires lots of tools

Lola waiting (in vain) for a bit of cookie dough

Mmm mmm mmm!

So I forgot to take a photo of the finished product (chewy, gooey chocolate chip cookies) but just take my word for it that they were amazing.

How I love that little baker aircraft mechanic of mine.

Somewhat related to Kevin’s baking…but probably not enough of a story to make into it’s own post…

For Kevin’s birthday in early September I tried my hand at making a New York cheesecake and I’m happy to report it turned out pretty darn good!

I followed this recipe to the T and we were super happy with the results.

Not too shabby, eh?

Check out that golden crust, mmm mmm mmm!

The happy birthday boy

Oh how I wish we had some leftovers tonight! 🙂

Five years of marriage

Today is our five year wedding anniversary.  It’s hard to believe that it’s been five years since it feels like it’s gone by so fast but we’ve also done so much and have both grown so much it also is hard to believe that it’s <em>only</em> been five years.

I’m working on a post with a few lists of my five favorite things about our marriage that I had hoped to put up today but with the move across the Bay, living out of boxes and not having internet connection at home it hasn’t been easy so it’ll have to wait a bit (mainly because I want to read it to him before posting it for the world to see 🙂 ).

Here are some photos from that hot summer day in San Pedro five years ago…

The wedding party–Kevin’s sister, my best friend Erin, my sister the maid-of-honor, me, Kev, Kevin’s brother the best man, Kevin’s best friend, my brother, our nephew the ring bearer, our niece the flower girl

Our ceremony was short and sweet (just the way we like ’em!).  We were on a balcony overlooking our guests who were enjoying the beautiful garden below and we were married by one of my dear family friends

We did it!


The newlyweds!

Me and my brother, mom and sister

With my new set of parents

With Kevin’s grandma Margie (one of my all-time favorite photos)

Me and my beautiful niece Katelyn

Our first dance

We danced to Chicago’s “Colour my world” and every time I hear it I am taken back to our wedding day.  The lyrics are beautiful:

“As time goes on
I realize
Just what you mean
To me
And now
Now that you’re near
Promise your love
That I’ve waited to share
And dreams
Of our moments together
Colour my world
With hope
Of loving you”

Here’s a link to the song if you’ve never heard it (it’s short and beautiful!)

I also surprised Kevin with the Hawaiian wedding dance

Nothin’ sweeter than wedding cake!

Spring art show at Academy of Art

Carleigh invited me to the spring art show hosted by the university she works for which is an annual event that showcases the best of the best from their students.  The university offers degrees in just about everything so there was a lot to see.  I fell in love with a lot of the pieces shown and here are some of my favorites!

This is a painting. No joke.

Really neat advertisement

Carleigh thought I would really like this one. Turns out, I do! Hahah.

Brilliant 24 Hour Fitness ad

One of my favorite mixed media pieces

Favorite photograph


Carleigh and I LOVED this artist’s work.

The Urban Farmer (um, where can I get one of these?)

I want this.

Welcome to our new website!

After 1 1/2 years of {fairly} consistent posting on our blog, we decided to grow up and get our own website—welcome to!

We’re excited to have a little more control of the site and we’re super stoked about the new layout…what do you think??

For those of you who have us bookmarked or follow us using Google Reader or Blogger, please be sure to update the link!

Enjoy looking around and thank you so much to all of our followers for sticking around on our adventures!

With lots of love,

Lisa, Kevin & Lola

twenty ten/twenty eleven

2010 was a good year for us.  Kevin got another year of schooling under his belt (only one more semester to go!) and he landed a great, flexible job at Pet Camp while he goes to school full-time.  I survived a few rounds of lay-offs at work and feel pretty solid in my position at work (they like me, they really like me! 😉 ).  I also survived my first two semesters of graduate school (sometimes it felt like I was just barely making it, but I did it!)  We developed a really strong, close relationship with our friends Carleigh and Scott and look forward to many more years of hanging out with those two knuckleheads!  😉

And so far it looks as though 2011 will have a lot in store for us.  Kevin will graduate from school (WOOHOOOO!) in May and who knows where his first position in the field will take us.  And I’m really looking forward to making a plan for becoming a teacher once Kevin’s out of school.  In July of this year we’ll also be celebrating our five year wedding anniversary and we’re really looking forward to celebrating our wonderful, happy, quirky relationship.

We hope that 2011 is a happy and healthy year for all of you, dear readers!  🙂

My first tattoo

So what was the Christmas gift I told you I asked Kevin to get me? Well, if the title of this post didn’t give it away…my first tattoo!!

In 2006 on our honeymoon on the big island of Hawai’i we spent a lovely afternoon at Punalu’u Beach and I fell in love with the image below that was found on a monument describing the legend of the beach:

Legend has it that the mystical sea turtle named Kauila had the power to turn herself into a little girl to play with and protect the children of Punalu’u.

Since seeing it I knew I wanted it tattooed on me but never worked up the courage (or the funds) to go out and actually get it. A co-worker suggested the local SF shop One Shot Tattoo and I was happy with the reviews they had on Yelp. I still wasn’t sure, though, if I was brave enough to actually get it.

The following week I received an e-mail from one of those daily coupon websites ( which randomly had a 51% off a one hour session at that same exact tattoo shop I had been referred to! I knew I couldn’t pass up the amazing deal so purchased it right away in hopes that I’d work up the courage to actually set up an appointment sometime in the next week.

On Tuesday 12/28 Carleigh and I met up at Corona Heights dog park for a doggie play date and she suggested we just drop by the shop to get a quote and have them sketch it out…who woulda thought that I’d end up under the needle the same day! I’m happy I bit the bullet and did it that day instead of worrying about it all week (or month, or year!). It honestly didn’t hurt as bad as I thought (though the shading was the most painful) and I am so happy I got it!

Yes, that is a genuine smile!

Seeing it for the first time (happy it didn’t turn out to be a flamingo like one of the other artists joked around while I was under the needle and said it was “an awesome flamingo”, haha)…so happy with it!

The healing process was quick and almost pain and itch free–it was pretty painful the first few hours after I got it but other than that it was like it wasn’t even there! I can’t wait for the warmer weather so I can show it off more. 😉

Mini apartment makeover

In early December I was getting an itch to change things around in our apartment–so one day while Kevin was at work I got to work on moving furniture! That in turn inspired us to go to Ikea for some shelves for our kitchen and before we knew it the whole apartment was changed a bit!

The before photos of our apartment (from when we first moved in) can be found at this link.

I rearranged the bed and armchair, switched out lamps, moved the bookshelf to the living room, and brought in the side table that had been next to our couch.

Living room:
I brought in the bookshelf from our bedroom and rearranged the corner area a wee bit.

Sleepy head Lola

I cleaned out all of our shelves (boy did that feel good!), we put up shelving, and cleared off a lot of our counter space. This was after being inspired by an amazing book signing/class I went to in November by Kami McBride and her new book “The Herbal Kitchen”–she inspired me to keep all of the herbs/spices within reach on the counter so that I’d be more inspired to use them in everyday cooking for their medicinal properties.

Top shelf: Flour, sugar, Kevin’s baking cookbooks (The Breadmaker’s Apprentice and The Art & Soul of Baking), pasta, brown rice, cake flour, brown sugar
Bottom: Lavendar, barley, coffee beans, my cookbooks (The Herbal Kitchen, Everyday Food, The Student’s Vegetarian Cookbook), quinoa, honey, barley, tea, polenta

I’m feeling so much better about our living space (isn’t it amazing how little changes can make such a big difference?), hope you enjoyed a mini tour of our apartment! 🙂

Beautiful SF skies

On my walk home I’m occasionally astounded by the sky. From our street we can see directly across to Bernal Heights hill and there are times that the sky just blows me away. Here are some recent shots that I wanted to share!

Reminded me of a safari

For some reason I notice the sky a lot more living up here–it’s like the clouds have more character up here! 😉 Hope you enjoyed the photos.

We’re back!

So it seems I had to take a two month hiatus to feel inspired enough to update the blog, but we’re back!

Lots of fun stuff to come–campfires, Brianne & Brian’s visit, poker, Edmonds family visit, Berkeley, mansions in San Jose, bowling, bluegrass festival, spa, escargot, a half marathon, lots of food and of course lots of pictures of Lola. 🙂