In the afternoon we drove to the lovely town of Monterey, California. We went to several towns in California on our honeymoon way back in the dark ages…. and this town was one of them. Incredible area, the drive there is beautiful too!!

 

Ok, so I overdid the beach photos but it was gorgeous and nostalgic at the same time.

 

 

 

 

LOVE the water and the way this photo turned out…the fact that you can see through it!!

 

 

 

This pot of suculants was so intriguing, I would love to do this at home but our Oregon weather is a tad to chilly in the winter for this.

 

We didn’t go to the aquarium because it was going to take to long and we still wanted to visit 17 Mile Drive, so we walked the streets of Cannery Row in Monterey and then went to our next place of interest.

 

 

The guessing about where we were going had gone from the South to the North. I think the morning we left Sam actually thought we were going to drive to Leavenworth, WA. I took a round about way to the airport and the fact that we were talking about who knows what…that I actually passed the airport exit. I have never done that…..ever!!!

When he saw the boarding pass…well he guessed it from there.

We flew into San Jose and then began our 70 mile drive to Carmel…we were starving so we already had our breakfast place picked out. The Cottage was our choice  and we were not disappointed!!

 

It was a little chilly….so we picked a table by the fire.

 

 

This was my view…it reminded me of a little cafe in Italy…like I would know??

 

 

I ordered hot chocolate and this is what came out. How can one improve on this drink? Well, all I can say is that it was the best Hot Chocolate I have ever had!

A very hearty omelet indeed, plus we shared amazingly wonderful pancakes.

With very full stomachs and sleepy heads, we went shopping at the most darling stores you have ever laid eyes on. Of course this children’s clothing store caught my eye. Cause y’all know I am going to be a grandma THIS SUMMER!!!!

 

 

 

 

The style of the shops, homes and hotels were absolutely divine. I could have taken photos all day.

 

jiophjyfuyg

 

I want this for my side yard, its so dreamy!! They had tons of these cute little ally walk ways, they were so adorable!

 

 

 

Sooooo pretty!

This area had several different levels with shops and eateries. 

 

We only had two days in Carmel, CA and that included flying there and back. We crammed a ton into this short time. After dinner we went back to this little shop area and we noticed that there were no street lights…..kind of odd. So we drove into a residential neighborhood and there were none there either…..strange for sure.

This town is a must see if you have never been!!

Why and how are the most common questions I have been asked.

I came up with the idea because my husband rarely gets to go on family trips with us because he is working.

You see, we own our own business, ATS Appliance Repair LLC and we have tried to keep just family as employees, thus keeping our customer service at a higher standard.

Our busiest day of the week is Saturday, people don’t want to have to take off work during the week to get their appliance fixed. Our slower days are Tuesday and Wednesday.

The other reason is my husband turns 61 this May and retirement for us… may be many years ahead, I thought it would be fun to take one year and plan a surprise trip for my husband for every month starting February 2018.
Why February? Well, thats when I came up with the idea 😉

Lets talk cost….many sacrifices have to take place if you want to do this.

Here is a list that has helped me save money

  • Limit eating out during the week
  • Dutch Bros (huge waste of money, my opinion of course)
  • Menu planning for meals, saves unplanned shopping trips
  • Make lunches for work

Here is another list for budget traveling

  • Use airline miles
  • Use companion fares that some credit cards offer annually
  • Rent car through airline to get miles
  • Rent hotel through airline to get miles (unless I find an Airbnb that I have to stay in, LOL)
  • Get emails from airlines when they have promo sales
  • Pay Cash

We are trying this for a year and I will let you know at the end of the year how it has worked. Sam said he wants to plan the last trip as a surprise to me 🙂 Oh boy!! We will probably end up in a museum in South Africa.

Also, one other thing is….. I am planning trips close by not like Morocco (my dream) because we usually only have a couple of days to travel so we have to make it close by.

I am all for spicing up life and not getting bored and sitting at home just because we are getting older!  Amen? Amen!

I remember the first time my Bishops wife asked me to bake 6 of these cakes. I was newer to baking at the time and I was scared to pieces I would mess it up.

The rest is history, this cake is now my go to cake when in a hurry and its the best ever.

I have served it with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream and today tried it with caramel topping
 (my new favorite way)!!!

The recipe belongs to my sweet Sis Price.

Enjoy ~

 

Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake

  

 

I box yellow or chocolate cake mix

1 sm. box instant vanilla pudding

1 sm. box instant chocolate pudding

1 ¼ c. water

1/3 c.  oil

5 eggs

1 cup floured chocolate chips

Mix all together and bake in greased and floured Bundt pan.

Bake at 350 for 55 minutes or until tests done.

**Sis. Price recipe

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