Craigslist Bamboo Desk

Everyone, my craigslist game is on! The family and I just got back from a week long vacation visiting the San Francisco Bay Area. After day 5, I was already craving to go home back to Sac just to settle down and gain back a normal routine. And guys, when we arrived..I made no plans to waste time and let my creative itch rest. The Sunday evening we arrived home, I hit Craigslist, and searched my tail off to something to transform.

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Photo from my Instagram account @tiffanystidings

Is it me? Or am I on fire on Craigslist?! Vintage Bamboo desk, that is screaming for a new paint job!!! ($30)

#Craigslist #Sacramento #FrugalFind#Thrifty #Secondhand #Used #Desk#BambooDesk #DIY

I’d like to present to you my latest Craigslist transformation. A vintage wooden bamboo desk purchased for $30 (Originally $40, but the lady spotted some cracks, and knocked off $10 bucks!)

So it all started with the intent to browse through Craigslist for a desk for my oldest son. The school year is about to begin, and with entering 4th grade, I wanted him to have a solid big boy desk. Well, my search derailed, as I spotted this fantastic vintage bamboo desk for $40. With a few knicks and chips, it was not bothered by the imperfections. I jumped to contacting the seller and arranged a pick-up for Monday morning.

The boys and I traveled about 20-25 minutes north from Sacramento to a town called Orangevale. A neighboring city to Citrus Heights. My 9 year old son helped me carry the desk into the car, and we went straight to the closest home improvement store for paint and supplies.

As we got home, I just used some wall spackle to fill in the imperfections of the desk, which was the reason the seller took off $10 of the original price. The wall spackle is something I had already after using it to fill in holes at our previous residence. Simply, using a joint putty knife (flat surface tool –basically the handyman version of a kitchen spatula) spread your spackle using the putty knife to the surface of your project. If you look closely at the above picture, I filled in the holes of the top desk surface, and also on the right corner side of the desk.

Spackling Process:

  1. Spead spackle.
  2. Set to dry. I waited 30 minutes since they were small areas.
  3. Scrape away excess compound from surface with your putty knife.
  4. With the blade at a 90-degree angle to the surface. Take care that you don’t remove the spackle from the hole or crack when you remove the excess.
  5. Use a damp cloth to remove any compound adjacent to the patch that you didn’t remove by scraping.

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After evening out our imperfections using the spackle, my son and I gently sanded down the desk, and also gave it a good cleaning with a wet cloth. After that, the painting process began. The color palette I decided to go for was a navy blue, and blue lagoon by Valspar.

The color selection was chosen upon my family room IKEA area rug.  (MARSLEV High Pile, Tuquoise, Beige Rug) Also, the main reason I was searching up desks on Craigslist was because my son needed a desk. This bamboo may or may not be his, but will be placed within our common living area, which can be used as a pop-up desk area for anyone to use besides mommy. Hehehe.

We painted the exterior of the desk in the Blue Lagoon, and interior (drawers), and dark mid-night blue. I also kept the bamboo hardware the original color, but gave it a fresh look with Krylon Satin Ivory spray paint I already had.

Paint Colors:

Exterior: Valspar Blue Lagoon (CI 189)

Interior Drawers: Valspar Dark Night (4003-4C)

Hardware: Krylon Color Max Spray Paint in Satin Ivory

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Before purchasing this desk, I had already knew how I wanted to style it! Gold, gold, gold!! If you’ve been shopping at Target lately,  I’m pretty sure you’ve noticed the College/Dorm Room decor and essentials. Over the summer, I’ve been slowly collecting the gold items at Target. From outdoor patio gold glass terrariums, gold candle holders, to the DollarSpot file and mail holders!

Speaking of dorm room essentials, please be sure to check out my latest YouTube video!!! Yes!! I’m back!!! Seriously, it’s been like a year! But I’m hitting it hard on all social media platforms that I’m able to handle! Check it out!

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If you know of anyone entering college and moving into a dorm, first apartment,or on their own for the first time, please be sure to check out the video! (Like & subscribe!)
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Target has tons and tons and tons of gold embellished items. From the dorm room accessories and decor, to Nate Berkus office supplies and decor. After walking throughout Target I got exactly what I needed, with still a little more wiggle room to get more elsewhere (like my favorite discount retails: Marshalls/TJMaxx/Ross and also the thrift stores!)

I purchased this awesome desk lamp, and paired it with a Target glass terrarium I purchased a few months back. I love pairing surface items in three, or 2. “Grouping” items with different heights compliment each other quite well, especially when on a desk, table, or night stand.

Target Gold Buys

Desk Lamp: James Collection LED Task Lamp -Threshold ($29.99) 

Lantern/Terrarium: Lantern Gold Metal – Small Threshold ($12.99)

Geometric Candle/Pencil Holder:
Threshold ($4.99)
Magazine Holder:
DollarSpot ($3.00)

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I’m so happy with the way the bamboo desk turned out! Stay tuned for more Craigslist furniture flips and transformations, as I continue to furnish my house here in Sac! Happy August!

Writing On The Wall

As we’re here in San Francisco, the hubby and I love exploring the city in ways we’ve never done before. Besides the typical go to landmarks and touristy hot spots…We like taking a different route. A past visit to San Francisco a few years ago, we took a Art of Tag class hosted by a local San Francisco Art Gallery.

We purchased off one of those off beat companies similar to Groupon and LivingSocial. We arrived to SoMa, was introduced to the art and history of graffiti.

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1AM Art Of Tag (1.0 Class: Covering the history of Graffiti)

1AM 

Address:

First Amendment

1000 Howard St.

San Francisco, CA 94103
(SoMa)

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(Info provided and taken from 1AM)

The art of graffiti class covered a quick intro of the history of graffiti and how it changed over time. We took a mural walk tour through the streets of SoMa in San Francisco, and saw landmark pieces and productions followed by a group wall collaboration with your class creating a piece yourself!

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With a swift introductory of the spray paint can, our instructor quickly sketched out letters, for us to fill in.

Further classes will allow hands-on time to discover your own personal style!

This was a condensed class of all their classes and graffiti tours put in one. 1AM hosts classes from:

Art Of Graffiti 1.0

Graffiti Tour: Underground Culture

Street Art

Street Art Tour: Art In Public Spaces

All classed range fro $40-$70

See more 1AM class & tour info HERE.

1am4Getting hands on experience on a public wall, with an experience artist was one of the coolest things. As a “bedroom artist,” myself, I have played around with spray paint….Not just on furniture, but on tiles, wooden slabs, using stencils and lots and lots of tape. I guess I needed that urban street experience to add to hit. Whenever I tried freehanding spray paint, I’d get a little too controlling over the entire process. I’d freak-out when the liquid paint would drip. But thats the point. Some art mediums are all about being messy right?!

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Above and below is Derrick and myself, getting into the world of tag. If I had one artful wish —it would be owning my own studio art space. To goof off, create, in any medium. I’d definitely love to experiment more and more with graffiti.

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Filling in space was my favorite. Maybe because its soo easy, and you don’t have to worry about fading. Something that I can do with color pencils, and acrylic paint, becomes so hard when on spray paint. No joke. Try.

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The little things I noticed with our art of tag teacher, Nate (Nathan Tan) was the classic black sketch book, and definitely the passion he had right along with telling us the history of tag. I loved the casual, informal approach he had to the entire thing, but with the casual form, and mannerisms, the passion was definitely there, and knowledge.

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Here’s the final product of the collaborated wall art of the class. Don’t be fooled by the white sparkle and shine. If, that weren’t there the art piece would have been pretty flat. Thanks to our teacher Nate, for sprucing up the piece. Haha

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What are your kind of out of the box dates you do with your partner? Different forms and experiences to experience a new city, or town you’re visiting. Let me know! I plan to share more experiences of our personal day dates/ date nights with you on my blog!!!

Also, be sure to check out my latest YouTube channel, as the family and I travel to and from Sacramento to San Francisco (Bay Area)! We always try to make every visit fun, and family friendly. But if daddy and I, get the few hours in the day to explore and have a day date or evening, you can count on us on exploring more night time happenings!!!

 

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If this is something you like, check out my channel! See our family travel happenings!

When In SF Explore

We’re back in San Francisco again, and can’t wait to explore!! Speaking of exploring, I want share one of the many go to happening spots for family fun — The Exploratorium!!!  As we settle in for the week of business and pleasure and push into the city, I also want to share my pit stops before entering SF.

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A few visits ago to San Francisco, we were able to experience the Exploratorium at Pier 15, hosted by Google! Being a part of the tech culture, the well distinct company invited us for a company offsite, inviting all families within the Google community. Located along Embarcadero, the Exploratorium isn’t just a museum; it’s an exploration of science that feed your curiosity!!

Exploratorium

Address:

Pier 15

(Embarcadero @ Green St.)

San Francisco, CA 94111

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When is San Francisco:
Landmarks:
If you’re unfamiliar with the San Francisco Bay Area, a one day must see is the San Francisco Bay Bridge. The San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge is a complex of bridges spanning San Francisco Bay in California. As part of Interstate 80 (880) and the direct road between San Francisco and Oakland, carries about millions of vehicles a day on its two decks!

Coming from the East Bay, visit Oakland & Emeryville:

Oakland/Emeryville sits on the east end of the Bay Bridge, which has pit stops of the Bay Street shopping center & my favorite the Emeryville Public Market.

The Emeryville Public Market is retail center with an emphasis on casual ethnic eateries, plus stores & services. Offering over 20 unique food retailers representing the diversity of San Francisco Bay Area. Guitar Center & Urban Outfitters too!

Emeryville Public Market

Address:

5959 Shellmound Street.

Emeryville, CA 94608

Public Market has recently been renovated, along with their renovation you’ll spot out a fantastic modern geometric mural, within the Public Marker Food Hall by artist Ollie Glatzer.

Check out the story behind the art HERE.

Twiiter:  @Public_Market

Instagram: @PublicMarketEmeryville

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Bay Street | Emeryville

Address:

5616 Bay Street.

Emeryville, CA 94608

Bay Street has fabulous stores, atmosphere, food and live entertainment.

Retailers include H&M, Sephora, Uniqlo, West Elm, several restaurants and a AMC theatre.

Now let’s talk about the exploratorium.

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First of all, the Exploratorium isn’t just for kids. Yes, it’s perfect for families to check out, but when I was a teenager, and in my early twenties, the Exploratorium was always a perfect date spot while exploring San Francisco. Just a short walk from the ferry building, this new location of the Exploratorium is in a convenient area! The price might seem high, but believe me, it’s more than worth it; you’ll be amazed by the things you learn.

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The Exploratorium holds countless exhibits to the point where it’s almost overwhelming.Time flies by quicker than you can imagine, before you know it 4 hours will have gone by in a flash.

Most exhibits are interactive, engaging both children and adults. You see some people spinning in chairs in one area, blowing bubbles in another, and then playing with magnetic black sand in another.

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It’s a hands-on and informative museum. The Exploratorium is gonna keep you on your toes!

San Francisco is such an amazing place to be! As a born and raised California girl, I cannot be more proud of be able to be raised here, met my forever man of my dreams, have my children at the same hospital I was born in, and go through the pages of life, tech life, and 50s homestyle living! Now, situated in Sacramento, monthly visits back to San Francisco make me love the city more and more, as well as my state!!

Thanks to Airbnb, my family and I are able to rent out homes, by the locals and actually “live there.” Check out my Airbnb post, on our visits from San Francisco to San Diego, this past month!! Click the Airbnb logo!

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Are you a frequent Airbnb traveler? Is Airbnb the latest lifestyle for you? Are you a host? Or just a well journeyed* traveler?

Comment below and share your story!

Lakeside Lounge

In past summer vacations, the family and I were really consistent in going camping. We would travel up north to the redwoods (Humboldt Redwoods), and also up to Nevada County (Scotts Flat Lake Campground) Although being around the redwoods was amazing and majestic, the family and I weren’t always down for the long 5+hour drive.

California’s northwestern edge has spectacular network of parks. Half of the world’s coast redwoods, the world’s tallest living things, (which grow over 350 feet!) So, if ever in California, please be sure to check out our beautiful redwoods!

Our favorite type of camping is definitely the kind when we’re near a lake! Scotts Flat Lake was our go to for 2 years straight. It’s a destination for outdoor fun and activities, open year round, and conveniently located between Sacramento and Lake Tahoe!! (One extra PLUS why we moved up to Sacramento! We love the outdoors!!) Camping between the June, July, and August summer months are the prime time frames to visit!

One of our favorite camping lazy day agendas, which is always on our itinerary is lakeside lounging.  Whether or not your a child, pre-teen, twenty something, or senior citizen, there is always something to do at the lake! Here is a list I’ve created for summer activities to do at the lake! Chill out, relax, and soak up the sun!!!

Lake Activities

Water Activities :

Sailing

Kayaking

Canoe

Sail Boating

Jet Skiing

Wak Boarding

Paddle Boarding

Fishing

Camp

Shore Actives :

BBQ

Picnicking

Volleyball

Badminton

Play Frisbee

Building  Sand Castles

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Some lakes also support annual no motor days. Enjoy a day on the lake without all the noise or waves. These days always draw a crowds. Support the local boy scouts by grabbing a hot dog and relaxing on the lake (Hosted at Scotts Flat Lake). Paddle Board demos, sail boat rides are provided as well as kayak and canoe rentals.

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Lakeside lounging is one our favorite past times. With the kids growing much older, I want to continue the tradition of “outdoor living” (camping Hehe). I feel blessed to have been raised by a family who loves being outdoors, as a child I remember going camping or staying a few days in a cabin in Yosemite. So many memories….Something I want to share with my kids now.

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Check out more about Scotts Flat Lake HERE.

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Do you love summer camping?

When is your favorite time to camp?

What are your favorite camp grounds?

Comment below!!

 

 

Storing Memories

Storing family video and photos can be very overwhelming. I get it. With today’s technology it can get pretty messy, if you’re not to comfortable trusting the cloud or internet. Many of the older generation, tend to get intimidated by technology. Trust me, my mom asks me to post her photos on her Facebook.

Here I’m going to share with you my process on archiving all my family photos and videos. Since having my first child in 2007, I first starting using Snapfish. Its a web-based photo sharing and photo printing service, where I’ve been storing all my photos, and also sharing them via email with family and friends.

*******Note, I’m no super tech saavy genius. This is just a process that works for me, and I’ve definitely grown along the way! So if you have a process that works for you, stick with it! This is just a process I’d like to share and hopefully inspire others who hasn’t created a system for archiving important digital family memories!******
My Family Photo/Video Archiving Process:
 
  1. Upload
    From anywhere your photos and videos are on, a point and shoot camera, DSLR, iPhone, iPad, upload and transfer your precious videos and photos to your home based computer. This system works for me on my iMac, it’s my headquarters for all my memories. I find it easier to transfer all my footage onto one machine, vs. having footage stored on multiple devices around the house.
  2. Organize in iPhoto & Desktop
    ORGANIZE, ORGANIZE, ORGANIZE. I’m very particular as I archive my footage. From separating all my events, “EJ’s Birthday,” “Lily’s Baptism,” “Picnic At The Park,” even if all those events happened in one day. I separate them! It may be a lot of work, and time consuming, but it’s worth it. Everything will be easy to find within your folders, and also, as they are carefully split and dated in your chosen photo storage site.
  3. Snapfish/Costco
    Since I found out I was having a baby, late 2006 I started storing my photos on Snapfish. It was a safe place to upload and share. This was before storing things on the cloud. To he honest, I don’t really use the cloud to store my photos and videos. Snapfish tends to scale down the photo to a weaker quality, but I’ve been storing all my photos here, there’s no turning back now. (I’m just stuck in my ways.)Snapfish
    Costco has been a safe family favorite. Many of my family members have Costco, and use their photo center. I remember the days when my mom and I would bring all the film rolls and fill out a whole bunch of envelopes right after a family vacation or during the summer. We would be outside filling out the envelopes and seal them ready to develop and pick-up in a week. Nowadays, there is no need to do that. We can just upload from the comfort of our home, and pick-up as soon as a few hours, at a cheap price!costco
  4. Video Clips, imported to iMovie
    We all take videos on our mobile devices— from our camera phone, using SnapChat, to Facebook Video. Point and shoot cameras have been my go to electronic to capture all the precious moments I share with my family. Video editing has been a new found hobby of mine. I’ve been recording snippets of our lives for so long, that now it’s time to compile them into video. There are days when I get soo overwhelmed with the heavy archive of digital moments just sitting on my desktop, that I spend countless hours in the night, just editing family videos. (No. Really.)Here’s my process of editing video to the upload, and sharing them with family.imovie

    1. Record
    2. Save
    3. Edit (I just use iMovie which is a movie editing application that came with my iMac)
    4. Upload to private* or public Youtube account.
      I’d prefer having a private account, becuase I’m sure not everyone wants their private lives exposed for the internet world to see.
    5. Categorize to playlists.
      From Travel, to Sports, School related, to Dance Recitals. You name it, you catergorize it! I simply have Family Travel, monthly vlogs, and two separate playlists for each of my boys.
    6. Share with family and friends
      There’s nothing better than sharing your family video via email. Send the link over to grandma and grandpa, and have them see what the kids are up to via Youtube! (Using a shared link.)

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      Aside from my Tiffany’s Tidings Youtube channel, I created another public channel, focused towards my family travel. A new lifestyle that we’ve adapted to since moving to Sacramento. Since our family is back in the Bay Area, the family and I travel back and forth every month to visit. As we do so, I record as the boys and I travel and discover our old hometown, and surrounding cities.

      If you’re interested in seeing our travels from Sacramento to San Francisco, come check out my channel! If you like what you see, hit the thumbs up button and subscribe!!

    7. Chromecast on a Friday night!!!
      The family and I love checking our family Youtube at the end of every month. If* mommy is consistent making videos, the kids simply queue it up, and Chromecast it to the tv. 
How do you categorize your family footage? What this process helpful to anyone? Or possibly similar? Comment below! I’d love to hear how other parents keep and organize all their family movies and pics!
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Cincinnati Zoo Experience

During our stay in the midwest, we visited the Cincinnati Zoo. Located in Avondale,  the fourth largest neighborhood in Cincinnati and the home to the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden the family and I made the short 10-15 drive from Oakley to Avondale. The family are zoo lovers, so, wherever we travel we make it a priority to check out the local zoo. After hearing that the Cincy zoo is one of the top 5 zoo’s in the country is was apparent that we had to check it out!!

Entry to Cincinnati Zoo.

Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden

Address: 

3400 Vine St.

Cincinnati, OH 45220

With Cincinnati Zoo’s known reputation for being one of the best Zoos in the nation, I was very excited to actually be in the state of Ohio to check it out! During our visit many of the exhibits where open, so experiencing all the animals in their habitats were quite amazing! There are tons of things to look at! We spent a good hour in each exhibit, and just about at each exhibit zoo keepers would be around and talk extensively about for the animal for a bit.

Admission: Was around $20-$25 for a child’s admission and adults for the unlimited rides

(merry-go-round & train)

As began our tour around the zoo, our first stop was to make it in time for the giraffe ridge where you can experience a close encounter with a giraffe on a feeding station. MAJOR photo op opportunity parents! ($3 Charge).

The giraffes were within the the zoo’s Africa exhibit that has great views of all of the animals, including Cheetahs, Flamingos, African Lion, Meerkat, and Painted Dog Valley.

Check out how close we were to the Rhino in the Rhino Reserve!

This exhibit included a Black Rhino, Indian rhino, Zebra, Bongo, and Okapi!!

During our visit, our boys flocked to the nursery in the children’s zoo. That’s where staff care for and feed the infant animals — some of them in diapers. The children’s zoo is an area within the zoo, that includes an exploration station, nursery, and petting zoo. Also, just a few steps away is the train station perfect for families to catch a ride and transfer to another part of the zoo!

Other family faves: a walk-through turkey cage, a glass bubble that lets kids poke their heads inside the manatee exhibit, and a trek over to the Wildlife Canyon to see a red-haired Sumatran rhino wallow in the mud.

The boys leaning in to see Orangutan, located within the Jungle Trails exhibit.

Jungle Trails includes: Tropical African Animansl, bonobo, and Tropical Asian Animals.

Last but not least the kids enjoyed the merry-go-round.

Good times Cincinnati Zoo. We had a great time!

Summer vacations is all about family time. We were lucky enough to fly out to Ohio for a business trip, and also combine it with a family vacation we will always remember. The Cincinnati Zoo was definitely a fun place to visit and a top notch zoo graded by our family! When in Cincy, please check out!!!

Midwest Visit

Exactly two summer’s ago, the family and I have a paid trip to Cincinnati, Ohio. Why Ohio? Well, the hubby at the time worked for a wonderful startup company called Ahalogy. The company offers a performance content marking solution for enterprise. They help marketers (such as bloggers like myself) connect with consumers via meaningful, data-driven content. The visit to Cincy, was originally a business trip, for the hubby, but turned into a welcoming family vacation, as at the time we were considering moving to the mid-west. Which, coming from the West coast, leaving the Bay breeze, beaches, mountain ranges, and hot-pot of cultural diversity was a huge toss up. BUT once you break it down to the cost of living…And seeing the remarkable culture and housing provided in Cincy, it’s a very hard decision to make.

Anywho! Back to my trip intro…Ahalogy was kind enough to cover our traveling expenses, and hospitality. They offered their company apartment to our family, located in the heart of the Oakley neighborhood. The neighborhood is filled with young professionals, and situated close to neighboring areas for young families to take short walks to city favorite book stores, boutique shops, brunch spots, weekly farmers markets, and many many different coffee shops within each block.

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Here were the boys at the Cincinnati Northern Kentucky International Airport, waiting for our flight back to San Francisco.

Is it me? Or do you enjoy the “On This Day” feature on Facebook, where you see past memories and posts you’ve made? I honestly love it!!! Here’s an Instagram shot of the boys. It was my first time traveling with the boys, alone!!! No help from daddy, no help by my parent. It was awesome. 5 hours with a 3 & 6 year old boy was quite easy. I give it up to the parents who fly with young ones. I guess I was lucky.

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Airport ready with these boys.

#CamerinoBoys #JetSetters#ParentingSolo #ParentFlyers

#Cincinnati #OH #CVG #Ohio✈️💺🎒🎫

 

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Upon our arrival to Cincy after taking a red eye from San Francisco, our first stop wast taking a walk through the Theodore M Berry International Friendship Park. Located in downtown Cincy, its a very narrow green space named for Cincinnati’s first African-American mayor, with long walking & bike trails. Coming from a city in the Bay Area that is nestled between the Silicon Valley, culture and scenic, and major public areas are uncommon. So after our walk around International Friendship Park, we were basically shocked, and in love with Cincinnati already.

Cincinnati has a wide area and selection of riverfront parks to hang out at. One popular playground my boys liked was located in Sawyer Point, directly beneath the “Big Mac” bridge.  The playground is a huge wonderland for children of all ages to explore.  The playground is enormous, with a wide variety of activities for adventure!!  There are musical instruments, a climbing wall, a truck to drive, slides galore, swings, ramps, steps, ladders, passageways, nooks, crannies, tunnels and so much more!

Playground Parent PLUS: It’s located under the bridge, it stays pretty shady at the playground, which is nice in the summer July heat!

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The boys walking through Saywer Point’s playground.

Saywer Point Park

Sawyer Point Park & Yeatman’s Cove are a pair of side-by-side parks on the riverfront of downtown Cincinnati, Ohio. The two linear parks stretch one mile along the north shore of the Ohio River.

705 E Pete Rose Way,

Cincinnati, OH 45202

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One of a kind crossing….

 Out of the nine bridges crossing the Ohio River, this is the only one that is purple.
The Newport Southbank Bridge, popularly known as the Purple People Bridge. It stretches over the Ohio River, connecting Newport, Kentucky to downtown Cincinnati, Ohio. Wikipedia
Read more here: Purple People Bridge
Now, coming from a city where bridges are commonly used only for automobiles, and never for pedestrians it was hard for me to believe there was such a bridge just for people. Yes, I know, it makes me seem like I live in bubble.
BUT FUN FACT: when we visited Cincinnati, we were considering to buy real estate there! We saw about 4-5 homes that week we visited.

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Here’s the boys at age 3 & 6 at the time (July 2014) at what we thought was Devou Park in Kentucky. Our GPS accidentally took us to the property of the Children’s Home (Of Northern Kentucky) which we had thought was the park. This grassy green area in Kentucky overlooks to Cincinnati.

Devou Park

Address: Covington, KY 41011

Devou park is a massive park with an amphitheater, golf course, lake & museum, plus sports fields & trails.

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Have you ever been to the Midwest? Especially Cincinnati, Ohio? If so comment below! Everything from the people, culture, homes, communities, coffee shops are oh so what amazing! After our visit, I was obsessing about traveling to other cool small/town cities with hip low key culture….

Check out more posts on my Family Adventures page!! I’ll be posting a part 2 to our Cincy trip on Family to-dos, and our favorite spots!

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Sac Urban Art + Yelp Eats

One major appreciation I’ve been enjoying here in Sacramento is the street art! In every city, urban art is what adds to a cities identity and culture. Oakland, New York, Portland, Seattle, Los Angeles, you name it…It’s everywhere. For me, simple living, lesser crowds and culture has such a huge factor. I guess its the introvert in myself. I find myself exploring downtown Sacramento alone a lot. While the my man is working at home, the boys are at school I’ll tend to drift over to the heart of the city, near the captiol and wander.

Wikipedia describes Urban art as is a style of art that related to cities and city life, often done by artists who live in or have a passion for city life. In that way urban art combines street art and graffiti and is often used to summarize all visual art forms arising in urban areas, being inspired by urban architecture or thematizing urban live style.

Celebrating my 5 months here in Sacramento, I’d like to share a few pieces I’ve happen to take a picture of as I stroll the city. From not being originally from this city, I’m really enjoying it here. Little things like these make me happy. And it isn’t even a lot. It just really

 

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J St. (In between 25th & 26th St.)

 Here’s a Sam Flores mural Derrick and I came across after having lunch at Kru.

EATS: Kru Contemporary Japanese Cuisine

Derrick loved how the sushi rolls were pretty unique. Using top grade ingredients, the bf couldn’t stop raving about how unique Kru’s sushi was. “Nothing like I ever tasted before..” is a common tip from fellow Yelpers.

Kru’s Address:
2516 J St, Sacramento, CA 95816
(Midtown)

Upper Playground

(Picture taken via Pinterest Saved By Upper Playground)

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J St. & 16th (Corner to P.F Changs)

While waiting for dinner I spotted this piece on a door of what is probably an electrical box. I was telling my hubby, I’d love a piece like this of myself! I guess its the beauty of the woman, and the floral headpiece. I’m a sucker for urban art with whimsical florals and beauty.

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Across from Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar, there is a parking-lot primarily filled with graffiti culture. It bleeds around the surrounding buildings from 16th to 17th, and J St. to Jazz Alley, into a garage, where no cars park, but is open to the public. Awesome graffiti art, in formal gallery spaces, definitely strike my fancy whenever we’re waiting for our table downtown.

EATS: When in Sac check out Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar!!!

It’s a local Japanese chain serving sushi, small plates & hot entrees in a stylish space!! 

his restaurant is located right across he auditorium, and there is a public parking lot across the street (with the graffiti!) for $5 flat rate.

They used a good reservation/waiting system. You just need to go to the hostess and they will text you when your table is ready.

Located in downtown Sac, this spot doesn’t look like your average sushi joint.  Spacious, two floors, the ambiance and environment is classy and trendy at the same time.
Mikuni’s Address:
530 J St #150, Sacramento, CA 95814
(Downtown)

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Stay tuned for more posts as I continue to discover more urban art around my new city!! I’m also aiming to share my favorite Sac EATS!! I’m excited to share with you that I’ve become a part of the Yelp Elite Squad for 2016!! Yay!!

I’ve been a little off the grid with my Yelp reviews since 2012 (?) I know, was I living under a rock or something? No. Not really. It was just really competitive to become a Yelp Elite in the Bay. (HA! Seriously.)

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You can check out my personal YELP profile HERE.

LINK:

http://tiffanymac.yelp.com

 

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Shit Sandwich

My current summer read has been Elizabeth Gilbert’s ‘Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear.’ Author of ‘EAT, PRAY, LOVE,’ Gilbert covers the creative process, and the bravery required to pursue our passions. For anyone who’s ever struggled with feeling worthy to express themselves through art, or been discouraged by the absence of inspiration, I’m not being hyperbolic when I say this book might change your life.
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Relaxing poolside reading ‘Big Magic,’ is my summer jam. I’ve consumed myself with reading, every second I can. When I’m not blogging, editing movies, or hanging out with my family, I fill me time reading this book. Sometimes re-reading chapters. It totally hits the spot for those who sometimes get scared from the creative process. I’ve been bringing this book with me everywhere I go, from the bed, coffee shop, to poolside. I’ve attracted other mom’s filled with curiosity,  about this book. And boy I tell you….It’s so worth reading!!
BIG MAGICBelow is a snippet from one of my favorite chapters called “Shit Sandwich”
Taken from Elizabeth Gilbert’s ‘Big Magic’
What’s your favorite flavor of shit sandwich?
 
Everything sucks sometime. You just have to decide what sort of suckage you’re willing to deal with. So the question is not so much “What are you passionate about?” The question is “What are you passionate enough about what you endure the most disagreeable aspects of the work?”
 
>>If you truly love having babies, for instance, then you don’t care about the morning sickness
 
>>If you truly want to see the world, you’ll risk getting pick pocketed on the train.
 
>>If you truly want to practice your figure skating, you’ll get up before dawn on cold mornings to go to the ice rink and skate.
 
Because if you truly love and want something enough–whatever it is—then you don’t really mind eating the shit sandwich that comes with it.
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I’ve seen people love things with all their heart, but it turns out, they didn’t want to eat the shit sandwich that comes along with their pursuit.
 
Which leaves me hungrily eyeballing their half eaten shit sandwich, wanting to ask “Are you going to finish that?”
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Can we all agree, we all somehow have half eaten a shit sandwich. Sometimes it takes us awhile to finish it, but it’s all out of the process. I can’t stand it, when I see half eaten shit sandwiches around. Because, there are so many other people out there willing to eat it all up!!!
To any of you our there trying to pursue something…….Stick with it, and take the shit from the shit sandwich. It’s part of the learning process. Wheeeew. I’m getting pretty emotional writing this post. Not to knock on anyone, but I’ve been touchingbase with a few peers, and talk about what they’ve been up too, and I believe it’s a little saddening to hear, all they’ve been doing to binge watching Game Of Thrones. They are soo emotionally invested, they can’t bare to balance anything else? Possibly something productive? I personally, do not watch the show, because I have no time. I’m not saying it’s a bad series.
But I would rather do something a lot more productive in life. So here’s to our shit sandwiches. Whatever it is in life. Take a huge bite of it, and enjoy!!
Hope you all are enjoying your summer so far!!!
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Live There

Since the move to Sacramento, the family and I have made a few visits back to the Bay Area. It’s nice to sleep at the parent’s house, and go back to what was once your normal routine. To take familiar roads/streets routes to your favorite coffee and ice cream shop. It’s always special and nostalgic to go back home. But there are parts of me not missing it. The Bay definitely is more crowded then Sacramento, and that’s what reminds me why we moved. But what about other cities in the Bay Area where I never lived? How about living there temporarily?

This upcoming month has quite a bit of traveling. The hubby, has a San Francisco business trip every month. During his stay, the company covers his expenses using Airbnb & Uber. So what better way for the kids and I to hop on that opportunity and change up the pace of living here in Sac, while we’re still on summer vacation? Airbnb has been our go-to hospitality route.

 

Airbnb San Francisco AGENDA

Today, the kids and I will traveling to meet daddy in San Francisco. Our current plans are to stay a night together, have fun the Mission, sleep, and enjoy brunch. The kids and I will continue to explore once daddy heads back to work. Since we are somewhat natives to the San Francisco Bay Area, I’ll be dropping the boys off to their grandparents house back in the East Bay (approx. 45 minutes away from SF w/o traffic)

Coming back to the Bay Area, is really refreshing for me. I have the help of my parents to watch the kids, as my hubby and I can focus on us as a couple. I’ll be taking BART (Bay Area Rapid Transportation), back into San Francisco, as my hubby has his car nestled at the Airbnb spot. All moving parts, are all carefully planned out, and set into place. A lot of coordination. but really simple.

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After moving to Sacramento, our visits back to the Bay Area, are a lot more high quality. As we use Airbnb, Uber, and other parts of local transportation, there is more of a appreciation to this place, that I wasn’t able to enjoy while living here. Not many peers understand, why we left the Bay Area. But at this point, there is no need to explain, for them to understand. We visit consistently, and explore places than we ever could.

Out decision to relocate to another city, was mature, well thought out, and the best for our family. With this move, and new lifestyle of Airbnb’ing back to San Francisco, we’ve gained a lot more than actually living and paying to live in San Francisco.

 

FUN FACT: We’ve met more people within the past 4 months of living in Sacramento and heading back to San Francisco, then we ever did living in the Bay Area, and being stagnant. Social circles were at a dead stop. Growth within our peers were moving at different paces, and we were unable to relate. Why live like that?

 

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Airbnb is a place to explore places you would have never visited, and experience them in a way as if you actually lived there. Many Airbnb spots we’ve stayed in including, Portand, OR, Seattle, WA, Sonoma, Santa Clara, and San Francisco, all have been very accommodating to us. The hosts, tend to host families. Living there, is all what they are about.

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The best part of Airbnb is choosing the right place for you! The hubby and I Chromecast our laptops to the main TV in our home and share our browsers. We poor a glass of wine/ lately, beer…Crafts beers for him and enjoy looking through different places for our next trip. We join and settle on a collaboration of our interior likes and styles. He like, modern industrial, I like that with a touch of boho chic. We’re definitely an eclectic couple! Overall, we always find the right place for us. Sometimes, we’re not able to find the Airbnb spot we like, due to availability. so we always settle for safe, clean, and location. It always works out in the end.

So theres my upcoming summer plans. Aibnb to San Francisco every month!!! Stay tuned for something special, as I’m adding more videos to the blog. Something separate from tiffanystidings video, but more personal travels. Subscribe to the channel below and stay tuned for future content! I’ll be sharing our travels, discoveries in Sacramento, San Francisco, and maybe just maybe San Diego, if we can squeeze that in to our busy summer……….

Trust me. You wouldn’t to miss out. I’ve been working hard on my video editing skills. (HAHAHA) 

 

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Subscribe to the channel above! It’s my personal travel channel, of the local happenings I come across from fun family spots, Airbnb interior tours, and much more!

 

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