Family, Fun & Fireworks

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View approaching San Diego — the landscape never ceases to amaze me with the differences between the striking but brown California landscape and the green rolling hills where I live in Atlanta.

Travel this week has taken me to San Diego, CA to visit my daughter and her boyfriend for the 4th of July holiday weekend. They moved to San Diego two years ago and I’ve been lucky to visit several times, each time exploring a new area of the city and to hike, eat and drink (and we’re really good at those last two). This trip included kayaking in Mission Bay on a gorgeous Saturday, followed by fish tacos and craft beer at Ballast Point brewery. It seems there’s a craft beer spot on every corner here like there’s a church on every corner in the South, and yes, craft beer is like a religion in San Diego. I’ve enjoyed the big world of wine from several countries for so long that I never really paid attention to all the hoopla around craft beer. But now that I’ve had the opportunity to taste so many different ones and discover the nuances that the makers are crafting, it’s really expanded my beer horizons. So I’ve now been to the Church of Craft Beer a few times in San Diego, and am the better for it.

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The succulents that grow all over San Diego always intrigue me, with their varied shapes, colors and sizes. I’ve taken some home with no luck in getting them to survive but I really want to keep trying. Any tips from anyone who successfully grows them in a more humid climate and one that also can have freezing temperatures in the winter?

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Dinner at 100 Wines Kitchen, what’s not to like about that name for a restaurant? A bistro and wine bar with a French-inspired menu and some of the best roasted cauliflower I’ve ever had.

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Really liked this clever way to make a light fixture out of an old glass bottle.  An idea for the many bottles like these I see in the antique markets!

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We took a picnic to watch the Big Bay Boom fireworks on display from several points across the San Diego harbour, the largest 4th of July fireworks show west of the Mississippi. A fantastic explosion of color and shapes, and such a nice way to close out this trip. Given that so many people in the world have suffered unspeakable horrors lately, I am very thankful for those who keep our country and other parts of the world safe. And thankful that we have the freedom to gather and watch stars explode in the air instead of bombs. Wishing peace for all people around the world!

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Morgan and Shaun are moving back to the southeast at the end of July, and I’m so happy they will be only a couple of hours away by car instead of a cross-country flight!  This sweet little print hangs in their kitchen and I seem to read it anew every time I’m there.  As I reflect on the 4th of July holiday that we just celebrated and this visit to family,  here’s to a future filled with lots of people to love and the enjoyment of each other’s cooking!

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