Saturday, December 31, 2016

Is It 2017 Yet?

Man oh man, I thought this year would never end!  I mean, I know we still have about 4 more hours-- and a lot can happen between now and then, but I am hoping 2017 comes in a quieter fashion than this year started for Jason and I.  We are not, by any means, 2016 haters-- a lot of great things have happened to us this year-- but, this has been a long, rough year for the world.  So, today I wanted to take the opportunity to look at some of our challenges and triumphs... because I think it's important to take time to look back so you can appreciate how far you've come.

New Year's Day 2016

On New Year's Day 2016, Jason and I were driving home from a holiday trip home to Oregon.  We left my parent's house in the Portland area early in the morning, and were making good time when we started the steep trek up the Siskiyou Pass-- about halfway between Portland and Sacramento.  We were nearly to the summit, when the car started rapidly slowing down, and the engine stopped...

It was dark, we were in the fast lane next to the skinny shoulder, and had to pull over quickly.  Freaked out and shaking-- we called for help-- then sat and waited.  The tow truck came, and pulled us to safety and eventually a mechanic.   When the employees couldn't help us, we walked across the parking lot to a hotel, and rented a room for the night.  Two unexpected days off from work, a dead car, a long day inside a dealership and a lot of money later-- we were back on the road to California in a brand new car.

It wasn't an ideal start to the year-- but the universe forced us to upgrade our POS car to a more reliable one, and for that I am thankful.

Covering Super Bowl 50 and Other Big Stories

After our rough start to the year, I hit the ground running at work.  CBS was broadcasting Super Bowl 50, and it was right down the road in San Francisco.  We were going all out with our coverage, and that meant a lot of work.

The week of the Super Bowl, we had several crews in San Francisco. And as the day got nearer, our anchors traveled west to host the show from the field.  The Friday night before the big game was one of my favorite shows to produce.  I wanted to try something different with our field anchors.  Instead of tossing back and forth between them and our in house anchor, I wanted them to do the whole show from the field.  It was risky, and a bit choppy because there was a delay and a fireworks show going off in the middle of the first block-- but I wouldn't changed how I put this show together.  It was such a cool moment to bring to the viewers on live TV, and I am proud of the hard work I put into preparing, and the beautiful coordination of my director, Frank.  You can watch the first part of the show above.

Jason and I also got a chance to go to San Francisco the week before the Super Bowl and participate in some of the events and activities scheduled around the big game.  I'm not a huge sports person, but I am glad I went-- despite the fact that I was getting over a terrible cold.  Who knows when a chance like that will come along again!

Some of the other newsworthy events I covered this year, and was proud of the job done by myself and my co-workers: the Brussels & Nice terror attacks, the arrest of Stockton Mayor Anthony Silva, Election Night 2016, the opening act at the Golden 1 Center, nearly every night in our November Ratings period, and the New Year's Day special I put together for tomorrow.

Adventures in Being Engaged

Holy crap!  I got engaged this year!  Also, I am only to March-- so this post might be just as long as this year has felt.

On a gorgeous March day, my incredibly sweet boyfriend (now fiance) took me to my favorite place in California, Point Reyes.  He got down on one knee and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him.  After eight wonderful, at times long, years together-- of course I said yes.  And even though I knew it was coming, I still cried!  You can read our engagement story here.

Since that day, we've been doing the things engaged folks do!  We set a date, picked a venue, registered for gifts, made a wedding website, chose our wedding party, interviewed vendors, and I started the daunting task of trying on wedding gowns.  We have quite a bit of time to go-- but we're having fun and trying to keep things laid back.

I am so excited to finally be husband and wife... but that will have to wait until 2018!  You can learn more about our wedding, by clicking on the tab with the same name above... or by clicking here.

An Emmy & a College Acceptance

I wish all of my topics were supported by photographs, but sadly they're not.

In June of 2016 Jason headed back to school to lay the ground work to earn his teaching credential.  And since then, he has been busting his butt to finish the first half of the program.  It's been an incredibly stressful time for him, and for our relationship-- dealing with grueling hours, a lack of sleep and not much time to spend together.  But it's also been incredible to watch him do something that he truly loves.  For a very long time, I have known Jason should teach.  He has this way of being able to talk to anyone... and I mean ANYONE... without judgement or attitude.  It's something special to experience, especially when you see him with kids or teenagers.  I am just glad he finally listened to me, and made the decision to go back to school :)

June of 2016 also meant BIG things for me...  I won my first Emmy!  I didn't go to the ceremony, because we had made other plans-- but this was such an exciting moment.  Jason and I were huddled around my phone when the announcement was made.  The show I won for was a difficult one.  I was producing our Noon and 4pm shows that day, because of vacations and staffing.  At 7am we learned Hometown Hero Spencer Stone had been stabbed.  From there it was a whirlwind of writing and news conferences and coordinating reporters.  It was stressful, and I remember going home and having a bottle of wine to myself.  But you know what?  My hard work paid off-- and this win really inspired me to continue working my butt off.

2016 challenged me professionally in ways I didn't know I could still be challenged.  I have grown so much in the last year-- I couldn't gush more about how lucky I am to be in a newsroom that believes in my abilities and encourages me to try new things and pushes me to be better!  I hope to continue learning and growing, and I am excited to see what 2017 throws my way!

The BEST Concert of My Life

Believe what you want, but I have been to A LOT of concerts in my time-- and this was by far the best.  I bought these tickets on a whim, because I knew Jason liked Macklemore.  I did too, but Jason was the true fan.   He would be in San Francisco during Memorial Day weekend, and I knew this would be one of our last times to spend time together before Jason went to school.  So I bought two tickets, we booked a hotel room, and we road the train into the city for a fun night out.  I didn't know I was in for musical fucking magic!  Words can't express just how great of a performer Macklemore was, and just how incredible his song line up was-- maybe it was the magic of San Francisco.  But I will say this... if he ever makes a stop near you, go!  You won't be sorry.

Macklemore's concert inspired us to be a bit more musical this year.  In September we drove to San Jose to re-live our high school years and see Blink 182 in concert.  Pure nostalgic fun, I tell ya!  I also went to a music festival with some co-workers and got to see Weezer in concert :)  I hope 2017 brings more concert opportunities-- I forgot how much fun it can be!

Friendships New & Old

Sometimes life puts amazing people in your path, and it's up to you to recognize the opportunities to invite those aforementioned amazing people into your world.  I am not very good at doing this.   It stems from a long line of trust, self-esteem, abandonment and depression issues-- all things I am working very hard with a therapist to learn how to cope with.  But, it makes it hard to build good, lasting relationships.

Despite all this, I have met some incredible people this year-- and though my personal struggles have kept me from being as open and friendly as I would like to be-- I have had some truly great moments with the people above.  They've invited me to celebrate their new families,  their milestone birthdays and the holidays.  They've allowed me to be a witness to their life-long commitment to each other.  We've gone to concerts, had Gilmore Girls Marathons and explored Northern California together.  It's been a true gift, and I hope that 2017 brings more love and friendship to my world.

Amazing, yet limited, Adventures

California continues to surprise me.  The beauty, the history, the shear size!  My last, almost three years here have been full of fun and exploration-- and though this year didn't see as much travel as I normally like to do, we still had some pretty incredible adventures.

We saw Yosemite for the first time.  After three hours in the car, pulling into Yosemite Valley was truly breathtaking.  If I could live in John Muir's little cabin for the rest of my life I would!  We hiked the Mist Trail, took in El Capitan and Yosemite Falls, and wished we had more than a day to spend in such an incredible place.  But don't worry Yosemite-- we'll be back.

2016 also took us to the beach a few times.  Point Reyes will always have a special place in my heart-- and especially now that Jason proposed there.  But we also made the long trek southwest to Carmel-by-the-Sea.  It was smoky when we went, because of a massive wildfire... and the Maserati festival was in town, so the streets were crowded.  But none of that kept me from falling in love with the place.  Khloe was allowed practically everywhere... and we got to eat at Doris Day's Hotel. #Amazing.

Voting for a Woman

I know we're all election-ed out, but bear with me.  Regardless of your take on the candidates, who you voted for, any of that partisan politics crap-- take a minute to revel in the fact that in 2016 our nation had the chance to vote for the first woman to clinch the nomination of a major party.  That's incredible!

I got emotional in the voting booth, filling in that circle for Hillary Clinton.  It was such an incredible moment to see a woman at the top of my ballot.  And though the results of the election didn't go the way I wanted, I feel an immense sense of pride in my country that we got this far.  Women got one step closer to being equal to men.  Revel in that fact America.  And keep fighting the good fight.

Harsh Realities

2016 wasn't without it's challenges for me.  I have mentioned a few of them above, and I want to take the time to list some of the significant ones below.

  • Gaining Weight.  It's been a struggle over the past 9, nearly 10 years.  And this year, I got big enough to almost need to buy 2 seats on a plane.
  • Watching Beloved Family Members Get Older.  It's something that's been in the back of my mind for years.  But this year, I got a sobering picture of my Grandmother's true age and limitations.  It's not terrible, it's just facts.
  • Depression and Anxiety.  They're still here.  And I'm still working on them.  Change is slow, painful, and a pain in the ass.

Those are my triumphs and challenges of 2016.  I am thankful for every one of them-- even though at times I have hated their existence.  And, while this year brought some harsh realities and tremendous loss in the celebrity world-- it wasn't the worst year I have ever lived through.  I don't know what the new year holds for me, but I do know the plans I have made for myself.  And I am excited to move forward and see what 2017 has to offer!

Thank you for sitting down to read my words.  I hope they inspire you to reflect on your past year and celebrate the good and the bad.  Cheers to 2017!

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Oh Baby! Receiving Blankets

Today's post is all about the littles your friends and siblings are bringing into this world-- and an easy gift for them in their first few months of life.blankets for them.  Our lives are full of littles right now.  In fact, Jason's sister just had a baby girl last month-- making us and auntie and uncle yet again!  And with that, I got inspired.

These are incredibly easy blankets you can put together in a matter of minutes.  All you need are two yards of flannel!

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Old Sacramento Engagement Photos

Our Engagement Photos are here!!!!  My beautiful friend and former co-worker, Audrey, and her husband offered to take them for us as a wedding gift at the end of June.  It was one of the hottest days of the year, but we got gussied up anyway, and had a fun little photo shoot in Old Sacramento.

We got our photos on Friday, but with family in town I haven't had much time to share them.  I'll post them to an album on Facebook-- but I also wanted to share them here on the blog for folks who don't have or use social media often.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Big Gains & Small Victories

Happy June Lovelies!

Man did the month of May get away from me.  I really wanted to get a jump start on my fitness and healthy living, but instead I got sick from stress and gained 10 pounds.   But you know what?  It was just an important reminder to myself that I need to find better was to relieve my stress, and let things go.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Motown, Macklemore & MMMMM

Hello Lovelies!

It's been such a crazy May, and my drive to write got away from me as I focused a bit more on my job during our ratings period.  But now I am back, and I hope you're all having a great holiday weekend-- and taking some time to remember the men and women who lost their lives fighting for our freedom.


This is one of my favorite days to cover the lack of news at work-- all the pomp and circumstance, the salutes and tributes, and the amazing stories of heroism that we get to report on.  It's an incredible reminder of how lucky I am to live in this country, and to be grateful for everything life throws my way.

While we're honoring our fallen heros, I think this weekend is also about celebrating our freedoms.  Jason and I decided to celebrate ours with a weekend full of music and food.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Review: "In a Dark, Dark Wood"

Oh.  My.  God.  I loved this book!

Where do I start?  I first heard about it while on my morning drive to work, back when I produced the 5 PM show.  Back then I got to listen to the end of  Morning Edition, when they talk to authors.  I've posted the interview below, so you listen to it.

Intrigued yet?

Monday, May 9, 2016

Meal Organization

Organization is an incredibly important part of my healthy lifestyle.  Without it, I spend a lot of extra money on fast food or expensive trips to Nugget Market.  I also tend to partake in the crazy food that shows up in the newsroom.  That means a lot of extra calories.  So, instead I spend my Sunday's grocery shopping and meal prepping for the week.

One of my favorite tools to stay "meal organized" during the week are these lunch box containers from Rubbermaid.  This isn't a paid post, I am not getting anything from Rubbermaid for writing this.  I just really enjoy this product and wanted to pass it along to you, my friends.

You can find these at most stores: Target, Walmart, Fred Meyer for my northwest peeps-- or you can buy them on Amazon.  They cost about $10-$15 depending on the kind you buy.  We own the "Sandwhich Kit" and "Salad Kit."   What I love about both of these kits is that each piece clips onto or inside of the other, so you don't have to worry about loose pieces sliding around your lunch bag.  It also comes with its own ice pack to keep things cool.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Tacos, Adulting & Emmys

Happy Sunday Lovelies!

I know during the week, I've been sharing posts on various subjects-- but on Sundays I wanted to start taking the opportunity to share with you some of what's been going on in my life, outside of my blog posts.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Our Proposal Story

'Literally, the day before Jason popped the question-- I had a co-worker tell me to pay attention to the subtle cues Jason would be giving me the day he proposed...  Well, I didn't.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Old Sacramento

It might be considered a bit cheesy and a little touristy-- but if you live in Sacramento, or are visiting, you should take the opportunity to go back in time and visit a little place called Old Sacramento.

Photo Source: Trip Advisor

This part of town lines the Sacramento River downtown, but it's a bit hidden behind the modern-day city.  Once you turn on Front Street and round the corner, you're transported back into the Mid-19th Century complete with cobblestone roads and a wooden boardwalk along the river.  You could spend an entire day exploring the shops and museums.

Honestly, this is our go-to place to take people visiting from out of town because there's something for everyone.  So if you're interested, I've put together a list of things to checkout if you find yourself in Old Sacramento.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Chicken-Hummus Power Bowl

I don't know about you, but sharing recipes is my favorite part about blogging.  I love good food, and sharing it with friends and family.  Today's recipe is one of my go-to lunch recipes.  It's delicious, easy to make, and super healthy!

Originally, I ordered something similar at Panera Bread.  It's called their "Power Bowl"-- and it's chock-full of powerful protein.  Plus, it's only about 300 calories!

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Starting Over, Yet Again

Welcome to May my lovelies!

It's been such a long time-- but I am ready to get back in it.  Before we dive right back into living healthy and finding alternative ways to destress, I must confess something to you.  I have not been good to myself.  The move to Sacramento 2 years ago was much harder than I would like to admit to anyone.  And having Jason gone in South Korea only added to my hardship.

When I got down here, I felt confident, healthy and happy.  And despite my therapist's suggestion that my first move down here, after finding a place to live, should be to find someone to continue working with on my depression-- I didn't.  And that only led me back down a very dark path.  I let my anti-depressant prescription run out, without getting a new one.  I became withdrawn again.  And I started binge-eating my feelings.  It wasn't good.

And after two years of wandering down a dark and emotional path-- I've decided to get back into it.  It helps that I now have a pretty ring on my finger to motivate me, but that's not the real reason I am choosing to get back into this.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Guess Who's Back!

It's me!  Remember me?  I know it's been a while-- bunt I am excited to return with new goals, ideas for revamping my blog and of course, new recipes.  But today, I am going to use my space to update you on what's been going on in my life.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Early Grape Harvest

The third story I field produced for CBS 13 was my favorite so far!  Late last month, I got the chance to head up to Amador County to talk to a winery about the early grape harvest and the impact it's having on California's wine country.  Grapes came in about a month early, partially because of the drought and partially because there was an early harvest last year.

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