Category Archives: poway

Motorcycles aren’t so scary

My mom may just keel over after reading that title, but I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s true.  Motorcycles aren’t scary.  I don’t think they’re dangerous, either.  You know what’s dangerous?  The people riding the motorcycles.  And sometimes the people driving cars around motorcycles (I’m talking to you, you dumb white car with the handicapped sticker).  I guess it can be said about a lot of things in the world, but as long as you’re responsible and careful, I don’t think motorcycles should scare you.  Those words are pretty important, though: Responsible and Careful.

When we took our motorcycle safety class, one of the instructors told us she had been riding for years (she told us how many, I just don’t remember, but it was a lot of years) and had just recently ugraded her bike to a 650cc, or 700cc, something like that.  Her point was, it had taken her all this time to be able to handle a more powerful bike.  She told us stories of people who run out buy the biggest bike they can afford as their first bike because it looks cool and they think they can handle it.  They don’t want a smaller one because they don’t want anyone to make fun of them.  I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t really care what other people think of me, my bike, or all the gear I wear.  Sometimes, when it’s hot and sticky, I really wish we could just ride around in a t-shirt.  But then I think how much I’d regret that decision if anything ever happened.  Better safe than sorry, right? 

T has a friend who rode dirt bikes when he was a kid and now wants to buy a motorcycle.  Granted, he may be all talk and may never actually purchase anything due to his, uh, frugal nature, but the bike he wants is almost twice as big as the one T has.  And T’s had a lot of years of riding under his belt.  And now he has to worry that his friend may end up with a motorcycle way beyond his abilities, something that could get him seriously hurt.  Why would you want your friends to worry about you over something like that?

I joke that I am totally ready for a big bike.  That, because I’d ridden a total of maybe 200 miles, I have already outgrown my little Rebel.  I joke about it, but I know I’m not.  Sometimes my little bike already feels too heavy.  What would I do with a bigger one?  I know that every time I get on my bike, a little part of T stresses out because he would feel so guilty if I ever got hurt.  I figure, if I’m ever ready for a bigger bike, he’ll let me know.  After all, that’s how I learned I was ready to go from closed neighborhood streets to the actual streets of Poway.  Because T told me I was.  We just go slow and steady until I’m not nervous.  We go where there isn’t a lot of traffic.  We ride when there aren’t a lot of cars on the road.  He’s the one who taught me that it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks.  You go at your own pace and if you have to slow down so you don’t crash, then you just slow down.  And if you’re riding with people who get mad at you for that, then you don’t ride with them any more.  You wear the gear for protection, not style.  Of course, that didn’t stop me from buying a helmet primarily because it was pretty.

We took our motorcycle gang out for a ride on Sunday.  I guess it was our first group ride ever!  And it was fun.  I suppose it will become more fun when I’m not so focused on staying on the road and watching my outside-inside-outside curves and can look around and see the scenery, but it was still fun.  We ended up at The Hideout Saloon near Santa Ysabel.  It’s this little place that’s only open on the weekend and seems to be only frequented by bikers.  They have a short menu, simple food, but it all tastes delicious after a good ride.  Plus, the people watching is amazingly fun.  Riding in a group is a lot less intense than when it’s just the two of us.  I guess because I was in the middle, I didn’t have to worry so much about cars in front and back of me.  Plus, the roads we took didn’t really have too many cars.  Quite a bit of roadkill, but not too many cars.  It was a good ride and it makes me excited to take more.

Don’t worry, mom.  I’m in good hands.

gone fishin’

Not really.  I just like all those signs that say that… I think it’s cute, in a rustic, country sort of way.  But we are going on vacation!  Where are we going?  Hee, hee…

We’re going to San Diego!  I hear they have lovely weather, a World Famous Zoo, Shamu, and a lot of up-and-coming restaurants.  There is so much to do and see… I hope we can fit it all into a weekend.  Maybe we’ll find a good place for breakfast, then do some wandering – what?  Well, yes, we do live in San Diego.  I mean, technically, we live in the city of Poway, but I see your point.

No, we are not having a “staycation”.  I hate that term.  It’s dumb.  It’s the media’s way of saying people don’t have enough money to leave their homes and go somewhere else.  Those people obviously haven’t heard of things called vacation savings accounts.  I guess it’s also possible those people just didn’t want to spend $400 on a plane ticket that use to cost $250. 

In any case, we’re just going to play at home.  After countless weekends of digging, planting, watering, installing, and spending all our time on the house, we are taking a weekend to play.  No errands, no to-do lists, and no cooking (this was T’s suggestion, not mine).  T did allot 1 hour (no more!) to organize our tool shed to see if we can more efficiently use the space, but other than that, we’re just going to explore the city we live and work in.  We’re going to go find restaurants we’ve never been to, maybe some we’ve never even heard of before.  We’re going to use the Zoo and Wild Animal Park membership that basically acts as my charitable contribution for the year.  We’re going to sleep in and not worry about what time it is.  It’s going to be fun.  And we won’t have to pay for a hotel, rent a car, or worry about the dogs.

Lappert’s is open!

Lappert’s Ice Cream is now open!  I think they’ve only been open for a couple of weeks.  They did run out of Dole Whip last weekend, but I heard the guy say more was on the way and they did not plan on ever running out again.  Yes, you heard me – Dole Whip.  That crazy pineapple thing you only get at Disneyland when waiting for the Tiki Room.  Now you can get it in Poway, that’s how cool we are.

I can’t tell if Lappert’s is different from Lappert’s Hawaii, or if the difference is in the location of the stores.  Lappert’s flavors have tropical things like coconut, macadamia nuts, Kona coffee, banana, mango, and guava (but not all in one ice cream).  I tasted the guava sorbet (kind of tart, very guava), the cinnamon (nice and subtle but tasty), and the banana caramel (yummy, but a little fluffy).  T had the run raisin, which tastes exactly how rum raisin should taste.  I also informed him that See’s Candies makes a nice rum raisin candy.  The ice cream is creamy, not grainy, and the flavors are good.  They taste like you expect them to taste and they’re clean, not muddied or confusing.  I don’t even know if that makes sense.  There is also a self-sprinkle bar where you can add sprinkles of many colors.  The kids seem to enjoy that.

We are definitely going back for the Dole Whip.  We don’t really go out for ice cream (or frozen yogurt) very often, but I’d much rather go to Lappert’s instead of Baskin Robbins.  So, there you go.  Frozen treats in Poway = Golden Spoon, In the Mix, and Lappert’s.

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In the Mix – Poway

Everyone knows that Pinkberry created a monster when they unleashed their oh-so-hip, we-only-serve-two-flavors, tart frozen yogurt franchise.  Copycats sprung overnight to fill in spots.  Some continue to serve only 2 flavors; others got all fancy and went with 4.  We’re a big fan of Yogurt World (especially the newer Mira Mesa location), with their 12 or so different flavors.  A Whole Lotta Yogurt opened up in Poway and we started going there after eating at Mr. Hummus, but it wasn’t the same as Yogurt World.  The mochi balls weren’t the same, either, which I don’t understand because how many different mochi ball vendors can there possibly be?  We did try a Cactusberry in Palm Springs, which was very good and quite refreshing in the August heat.  I liked their guava yogurt.  T had mango fruit on top of his plain vanilla yogurt, but the mango tasted like sushi.  Yuck.  Now he’s scared of mango in yogurt places.

Not too long ago (maybe a couple of months?) we would be driving down Poway Road and we’d see a guy with a sign that said “Yogurt”.  It would sometimes be pointing to the Vons shopping center, but he was always standing on the Ultrastar side of the street.  If I wasn’t the driver, I would always scan the shopping centers, trying to figure out where this yogurt place was.  Was it even frozen yogurt?  Maybe someone decided to open up a regular non-frozen yogurt bar.  In Poway.  Who knew?  For the longest time, I couldn’t find it.  When I went to Henry’s, I’d forget about it and never thought to drive around looking for the sign.  Finally, a friend said it was in the Vons center, next to Vons.  We still didn’t see the sign.  The sign guy was still standing on the other side of the street.  And then, one day, I saw it.  In the Mix.  Next to H&R Block, next to Vons.  But we still didn’t venture in.

The other night, we were going to go for a walk up the big hill behind our house.  But we got accosted by our crazy neighbor (seriously, she’s crazy and apparently thinks going ballistic is a better approach that just asking nicely) and by the time she stopped screaming and ranting it was too dark to climb up a hill.  So we walked the other way towards the shopping centers.  And decided to finally see if In the Mix was suitable for a local frozen yogurt snack.  The flavors are different, and I don’t know that I like all of them.  The peanut butter was really good, and I enjoyed the strawberry banana.  I’d like to see a mango or peach flavor.  A good banana flavor would be awesome.  If they could manage to get guava, like Cactusberry I’d be in heaven.  All in all, we like it better than A Whole Lotta Yogurt.  They do have mochi balls, but not those funny flavored jelly bits you see at Yogurt World.  I think they had 8 flavors total.  Oh!  They have malted milk powder as a topping.  If you’ve ever had that on ice cream, you know it’s really good.

So, yes, worth stopping by.  38 cents an ounce, just like everyone else in the frozen yogurt community.  They do use paper cups, not styrafoam, if that makes you more inclined to give them business.  The spoons are still regular plastic, though.  The decor is very cute.  More cupcake shop that frozen yogurt, but I’m into that.  If you see their kids running around, that also adds a big dollop of cuteness. =)

In celebration of bacon

… and backyards.

To celebrate our new backyard (thanks, Mom!), we threw a Labor Day bbq.  Except we did it on the day before Labor Day so we’d have an extra day to recuperate (I think I actually didn’t feel caught up until Wednesday).  T felt we needed a theme, but we didn’t want some cheesy theme.  I also didn’t want something that would require extra decorating beyond “clean” and “just vacuumed”.  We ended up going with “bacon”.  Here’s what I threw out for appetizers:

  • bacon-wrapped, cream cheese-filled jalapenos (from the garden!)
  • bacon-wrapped, mustard-marinated bananas
  • peanut butter, scallion, & bacon canapes
  • bacon-wrapped water chestnuts
  • blue cheese bacon dip
  • deviled eggs with Bacon Salt (so, no real bacon involved there)
  • jalapeno artichoke dip with endive and cucumbers (so I could offer healthy vegetables; the dip came from Costco)

People, I went through 4 pounds of bacon.  Four pounds!  And I ran out of bacon when wrapping the water chestnuts!  We also made bacon-wrapped scallops, corn, tri tip, pork ribs, dorado with mango salsa, and Cami brought her famous potato salad.  Then we continued to stuff people with dessert: malted milk ice cream, lemon basil sorbet, grilled pound cake with blueberries and peanut butter whipped cream, and the grilled banana bar (thanks to Jayden for the idea!)  I’d say it was all a hit, except for the grilled Caesar salad.

Everything worked out that we were able to show out outdoor movie, which ended up as a lot of silly screaming and some disturbing broom-whapping (the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre).  Either I’ve seen the remake or I’ve watched a “horror” movie with very similar scenes.  I can’t figure out which.  But it was quite fun and I’m looking forward to more movies.  Even after the warm weather is gone.  I’m going to curl up on the patio with hot chocolate and down blankets! 

I think it was a very successful party.  Friends from out of town came in for the bbq, and I was very happy to see them.  I was also touched that they would arrange their schedules and travel in for us.  I mean, obviously they get to see all their friends in one place, but I’m glad we were able to provide that opportunity.  I must be getting older because I’ve started to really appreciate the friends we have and that we have the ability to see them so often.

T said we keep outdoing ourselves and raising the bar too high.  After this bbq, I’m inclined to agree.  I mean, I actually enjoy going all out for our parties and showing off what we can pull off.  I’m good at it, so why not?  Each of our friends throw equally fun parties in their own styles and it’s always a good time.  I joked that our next party was going to be totally simple, to lower everyone’s standards.  I said we’ll just order pizza and get back to square one.  Then I started thinking about it and decided that even if I said we’ll order pizza, I know I’d end up buying pizza dough and setting up a grilled pizza bar.  Probably with root beer floats with homemade vanilla ice cream.  And T would probably want to try making the root beer himself.  Or we’d provide the vanilla porter we just brewed (and tasted).  Maybe “simple” isn’t in my party-throwing nature.

In just a few months, it’ll be holiday time.  Which means time for another Pre-Thanksgiving/Early Festivus party.  It’s usually fewer people, but a fancier dinner.  It’s going to be busy this year with conferences, a baby shower, and regular holiday stuff, but I’ve been saving up my grievances so we’re totally holding a party!  Plus, I finally figured out how to roast a prime rib, which is pretty awesome and totally show-off of me.

Summer is fleeting, but I have to admit that we’re getting into my favorite seasons.  I love long summer days and weather perfect for hammock-napping, but when the air starts getting chilly (which it hasn’t, yet) and we get to build fires and curl up in blankets I am a totally happy girl.  And if I thought September snuck up on me, I know the rest of the year will be going by in the blink of an eye.