Archive for February, 2011

Playing with the new Canon Camera

Posted by: Frances

February 25th, 2011 >> Uncategorized

Matt, Blake, Khrista, Ryan, and I all went down to Stone Brewing Company.  They have free tours that end with free beer as well as different events all the time.  The restaurant there is fantastic as well and fresh, organic, farmers market food.  While we were there, I played around with the fish eye lens on my new camera and it was quite fun.  Here are the results:


Matt and I


Matt and I







The Kind Diet Granola Bars

Posted by: Frances

February 25th, 2011 >> Uncategorized

So this time I made two batches of the granola bars that were each slightly different.  One batch I made the same as last time, but only one bag of chocolate chips and I added a 1/2 cup of organic unsalted peanut butter.  THEY ARE SOOO DELICIOUS!!!

The other batch I only used one bag of chocolate chips and I added 1/2 cup of almonds (blended from the blender).  Matt said they turned out really good.  I didn’t try those because I don’t like nuts.  Maybe I will try cashews next time and see if he likes that…

If you have 30 minutes and go buy the ingredients, I HIGHLY recommend you making these and eating them.  They are good for you and taste amazing.
I put them in my food saver bags so they would keep and I could bake a few batches at a time.

Life in California 6 months later…

Posted by: Frances

February 12th, 2011 >> Uncategorized

So, I have now been in the Los Angeles, CA area for 6 months now.  I have done two travel work assignments and taken some fun weekend trips home and around the area here.  It is very beautiful here much like the Mediterranean.  The weather in the last month has been 40s in the evenings and mornings and 60 to 70 in the afternoons which is a little on the chilly side for me.

I have had some fun adventures so far here and I am excited about the ones the future holds.  I have been able to read some interesting books, finish my Bachelor’s Degree, explore, and travel during this time.  Now, I am narrowing down a school to earn my Master’s Degree and hoping to start in the Summer or Fall of this year.  Once April is here I am also hoping to finally finish my Hang Gliding lessons at last if things work out the way I want them to.

I have to admit that I am a much happier person here than I was back East.  My job here is great, except the part about getting up at 4:40AM!!!  I work with some very nice, respectful people.  (Of course, there are still a few that get on my nerves)  The drive home from work is long and uneventful each day, but it is nice having that time to call and catch up with friends.

Matt and I  are having lots of fun and seeing some really beautiful places!  He seems to be a much more energetic person here too.

I have to say, I have nothing really to complain about except on thing….   I MISS MY FAMILY AND FRIENDS!!!  I hope that each of you come out to visit so I can share some of the really beautiful parts of the United States with you and make some memories.


MaryJane’s Ideabook.Cookbook.Lifebook

Posted by: Frances

February 12th, 2011 >> Educational

I finished ready MaryJane’s Ideabook.Cookbook.Lifebook.  I have to say it is not at all what I was expecting it to be.  I was looking for a how to book with inside tips you can’t find other places about random things you do when you are independent from society.  I.e. canning, growing your own fruits and vegetables, etc.  Even though, I was slightly disappointed I found a lot of things in this book very useful.  It is definitely a book about different parts of her life incorporated with some how to’s and recipes.

She has great recipes for some delicious food, cleaning supplies that are chemical free, tips for removing stains like red wine, and so on.



Posted by: Frances

February 9th, 2011 >> Workout

Sooo… this is week 3 for me working out to  Zuzana is fun and very hot.  She makes me want to look like her and keeps me motivated.  I have really been enjoying her workouts.  I have done 3 to 4 a week so far and she is totally kicking my butt.  My calves and legs are so soar!  I like her because her workouts range from 10 minutes to 30 minutes, so it fits into my tight schedule everyday.  She also gives me a great workout and afterwords, I feel great.  Give her a try and see what you think.  She also offers a diet as well you can follow if you wish.


Mom’s Granola from The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone

Posted by: Frances

February 9th, 2011 >> Cooking, Educational

First of all, I just loved The Kind Diet book!  I truly enjoyed reading it and now I am experimenting with Alicia’s recipes.  I am very excited about trying them out a few at a time.  So this weekend, I baked her Mom’s Granola recipe with some additional ingredients of my own:

The recipe is on page 201 of The Kind Diet book or here is my revised version:

6 cups quick-cooking oats

1/2 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup wheat germ

1/2 cup sesame seeds

1/2 cup sunflower seeds unsalted

1/2 cup safflower oil

3/4 cup brown rice syrup

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 small bags of grain-sweetened, nondairy chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Spread oats on a rimmed baking pan (12 x 15) and bake for 10 minutes.  Transfer oats to a large mixing bowl and add all the remaining ingredients together.  Stir thoroughly.

Place some Parchment paper down in your 12 x 15 baking pan.  Spread the mixture evenly in the pan.  Slightly press to level the top of the mixture.  (This will help you create rectangle bars)

Bake for 12 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan, then cut into bars.

Store in airtight container or food saver bags.


Get Rich Organizing by Anne Blumer

Posted by: Frances

February 9th, 2011 >> Crafts, Uncategorized

So last October, I was given the book Get Rich Organizing: The Professional Organizer Survival Guide to Launch, Manage, and Grow a Profitable Business.  I finished reading it and I found it to be extremely informative and detailed.  I felt like she covered everything in her book and not just for an Organizing Business. I felt like this would be a good guide for anyone starting a business to an extent.  At least it would get you on the right track and know what you need to have covered.  Check it out:


Santa Barbara, CA Weekend

Posted by: Frances

February 7th, 2011 >> Hang Gliding, Outdoor Activities, Travel

This weekend Matt and I went to Santa Barbara, CA to see Zac, Hang Glide, and hang out at the beach.  On Saturday, Matt and Zac both flew from “The Eliminator” launch site.  I brought the dogs with us and walked them all over.  The view from the launch is so beautiful!  I can’t even imagine how beautiful it was for Matt and Zac as they flew.


Standing on “The Eliminator” Launch Site

The next adventure after the two of them finished their awesome flights, we headed to Hendry’s Beach with the dogs.  That was fun and relaxing.  We walked up and down the beach as the dogs played.  We also got to see an amazing sunset.


Me at Hendry’s Beach


Matt and I

One of the other neat things I saw at the beach besides the gorgeous sunset, are ladybugs.  They are everywhere.  That was very unusual for me to see.


The Ladybug

After they both enjoyed their flights and the beach, we went to the Santa Barbara Shellfish Company for some dinner.  We ordered the 3 lb Local Rock Crab Special.  The crab was still all together when it was served.  Then, I was taught how to properly crack the crab to get to the meat.  Needless to say, we made a mess.  It was very good and there was definitely some excitement in it for me.


Santa Barbara Shellfish Company


The Crab

On Sunday, the guys went up to fly again and attempt to fly to East Beach.  It was a gorgeous day.  I wondered East Beach with the dogs the majority of the afternoon.  It was very relaxing.  Very few people were at the beach, which was very nice.  I let the dogs loose to play and enjoyed the sun.


East Beach Santa Barbara, CA


The dogs…

It was a nice weekend and felt like a vacation getaway!  Thanks Zac and Erin!