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Weekend Wanderer

Wandering the Weekends in California and beyond

Lets GO – Chico

In the world of Birkenstocks and North Face jackets, I stood in my vans and RipCurl sweater. With Bruce – who was concentrated on where he could find the nearest Goodwill and look for some carhartt pants. We went up North as a Thompson img_0845Family + Bruce to cheer for the Chico State Volleyball team and celebrate Torey’s Senior Night. Back into the world of a small college town, I liked being able to park the car and walk around. We had lunch at what my sister Katey called a “Chico establishment”: Madison Bear Garden. Where we had our first round of Sierra Nevada, as Chico is the brewery’s hometown.

 

wait.

 

Can I back it up?

 

Let’s talk about Southwest airlines. WHERE I HAD NO IDEA YOU COULDN’T PRE ASSIGN YOUR SEATS. Thank goodness for Kasey whose ten foot long legs saved an entire row for Bruce and I.

Okay back to 50 degree weather and leaves falling from the sky: Chico was CHILLY. Not that we were expecting a heat wave, but it was nice to get away and wear sweaters and socks again.  Kasey and I stepped out of the airport, and immediately almost backed right back inside. The wind chill wall that hit you when you walked out was a 20 degree difference than what was in the airport…or in Newport.

There were no restaurant chains in the small town, seemed like most everything was family or small business owned. I love farmers markets, and the Chico Farmers market on Saturday mornings had some of the most produce I have ever seen at any farmers market. It was awesome being in an area where there actually are seasons. The leaves were on the ground, and falling as we were walking around. You HAD to wear a jacket outside at night or you would freeze you booty.

It was fun having the entire family all together, but I think if it was longer than a weekend – a few more arguments would have broken out. We kind of perfected the mean mug also this trip.

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I kinda of compare Kasey and Bruce’s friendship/relationship to that of Khloe and Scott. They’re more brother and sister than friends, and they’ll play tricks on each other, but then also team up against the rest of the tribe together. Especially, back to sharing a hotel room with them – the sassiness never stops.

Even though the weekend was centered around volleyball – it was also centered around having fun. With exploring the a new area, making jokes about one another, and playing games in the hotel room.

or shopping at the local Chico Wildcat apparel store – which by the way has Ugly Christmas Sweaters with the Chico logo on them. Epic.

 

We also took a Christmas picture. So that was chill. img_0858

30 Days of Gratitude

Holy Shmokes. It’s November. Already. Hot damn.

What are you thankful for?

Are you thankful?

You thankful?

Thankful?

Thirty days of November, and usually the theme of the month is “thankfulness” because Thanksgiving also falls in this month. I’ve seen a lot of pictures or posts on Pinterest and Facebook for a 30 Days of Gratitude Challenge. You know, what family member are you greatful for today? What teacher are you most greatful for? When I know I could write about my sister Kasey and my 4th grade teacher – I decided to make my own. Mainly because I wanted to bring attention to the little things that sometimes we glance over or take for granted.

Feel free to join, or just glance over. You don’t have to blog about it ( i won’t be blogging every day, but a tweet here or there), post about it, talk about it. Just once a day, think of one small thing. Some may be silly, some may be stupid (like really..what SOUND am I grateful for?) but some may just get you thinking.

1. What smell are you most grateful for?

2. What plant are you most grateful for?

3. What small thing that you use daily are you thankful for?

4. What piece of technology are you grateful for?

5. What book are you most grateful for?

6. What work related activty are you grateful for? (ya know, if possible)

7. What comfort food are you most thankful for?

8. What day of the week are you grateful for?

9. What shoes are you thankful for?

10. What song are you grateful for right now?

11. What sound are you grateful for?

12. What fruit are you thankful for?

13. What drink are you thankful for?

14. What outside activity are you grateful for?

15. What movie are you thankful for?

16. What about your body are you thankful for?

17. What moment this week are you thankful for?

18.Who in your house are you thankful for?

19. What makes you happy that you are grateful for?

20. What phone call are you thankful for?

21. What piece of clothing are you grateful for?

22. What item in your bedroom are you grateful for?

23. What place in your house are you most thankful for?

24. What time of the day are you grateful for?

25. What shortcut are you thankful for?

26. What item in your office are you thankful for?

27. What snack are you thankful for?

28. What shirt are you thankful for?

29. What item in your kitchen are you grateful for?

30. What are you thankful for?

 

So starting with #1. 

What smell are you most grateful for?

DoTerra Deep Blue. Tuesdays are rough, two tough work outs of spin class and circuit training (then to throw on top of that the rigorous taco tuesday eating). So I use my deep blue rub on my arms, legs, abs (ha ya okay…”abs”) to help with the soreness. It works and it smells nice too!

Molokai – It’s About the People

I spent last weekend on my favorite island. Molokai. It may have only been for about 48 hours, but I got my fair share in of soaking up the sun, and breathing in the good energy from everyone. The Na Wahine O Ke Kai race is a 42 mile outrigger race for women from the island of Molokai to the Island of Oahu and it is more than just another channel crossing. It’s a Channel Crossing from Molokai to Oahu with girls from all over the world with one common goal – to get to the other side. make-horse-2

But before we even get to the race start – theres so much more to take in. Molokai is about the people. Not just the people in your crew, or the people in your friends crew but also the people of the island of Molokai. There are the families that take in paddlers, greet everyone in town and help make everyone feel happy. You can’t walk to the grocery store in town without someone waving at you. I meet new friends EVERY DAmake-horse-3MN TIME I get to Molokai. I mean, NAC may be a handful sometimes – but we always bring swag to give out! I’ve met women in my first crossing in 2010, that I may only see once a year but I still go and pick up with them like no time has passed! All because this race and this island has brought us back to together. It literally is the FRIENDLY ISLE. The friends that I have there, that live there, make me their home feel like my home away from home. Molokai is about respecting the beaches and the land around you, being thankful that you are able to continue year after year to visit this island for an outrigger race. I couldn’t be more stoked to stay a weekend on Molokai and I wish I had more time!

Each crew is it’s own family. They bond together, support each other, and get each other across the channel. I was lucky enough to have a super special crew this year for the crossing. My close friends, a mother and her two daughters, new friends and all around a great group of girls to cross the channel with. It was a challenging crossing, I don’t think anyone would disagree. But your crew makes it fun! You can’t have a good crossing without positive vibes all around and smiles!

Molokai is about the people, the friends and the family. We may have trained all year for this race – but the reward isn’t getting to Oahu. The reward is the time spend together on this island, playing and relaxing. It’s meeting new friends and catching up with the girls you only talk to on Facebook!

So take the time, breathe deep, smile more and enjoy everything and everyone around you.  Because you deserve everything the world has to offer around you.

molokai-crew-2016

We are H U M A N

This is the same post I shared on my facebook…

W E A R E H U M A N

This happened because we are human.

This happened because we are too comfortable.

This happened because we let our teammates down.

This is not her fault, it’s also not the drivers.

Boat ladders are needed.

Prop guards are needed, yes absolutely. 100%.

But so is awareness, attentiveness, teamwork, and acceptance of mistakes. Her life will never be the same, she has a long way to go. We need to do what we can to support her. We need to do what we can to help the next escort boat driver who finds themselves in this position. We need to do what we can, to control the situation.

I’m 26 years old, a girl, and I’ve been running my own escort boat for only 5 years. Hitting someone with the prop is my absolute nightmare. I’ve been paddling for 11 years. Getting hit by a prop is my absolute nightmare. There are many precautions to take, and you can take them all. But something could always go wrong. What are we going to do when something goes wrong? What’s our instinct? Get mad? No. Our instinct should be to band together, to support, to find a solution, and not place blame. This is our own fault.

A safe boat driver doesn’t mean an older driver; it doesn’t mean a male driver. It just means a safe driver. So those topics of conversation need to come to a halt. This is not on the race directors, this is not on the lead safety boat, this is not on the race. This is on us. What we need more than safer drivers, are safer paddlers. We shouldn’t have let her jump in the water, in one of the busiest spots an escort boat could be; before the race. It’s little things like that, becoming more aware of our surroundings. Knowing when the right time to jump, and the wrong time to jump. Our sport is compiled of jumping off motor boats, into canoes, and then back into motor boats. You can educate someone all you want on when to jump, where to jump, how to jump – but someone will always forget and jump wrong. Because we are human. You can give someone all the tools to be a successful escort captain, but something will fall apart or not work. Because we are human.

As a paddling community, we need to be more aware. And right now we need to band together to support each other. Crossing season isn’t over. But we can be more aware, and help prevent what we have control over.

My thoughts are with you, Aunty Faith Kalei-Imaizumi. My heart is with you Hawaii. My strength is behind the paddling community. Let’s support her together. Instead of placing blame. Let’s make sure her family knows we have her back.

 

https://www.gofundme.com/2pmggu4

 

My 10th Catalina Crossing

This past weekend was the Catalina Crossing US Outrigger Championships! It takes a lot of training, a lot of work and a lot of planning just to GET to the start line that Saturday morning. It’s not something I take lightly. It’s something special and different than any other channel crossing. It’s home base.  It’s family – all the girls that you’ve trained all season with on the water together for one last race.

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This crossing was a little different. I came to the realization that I have been doing so many other things for so many other people – that this race was for MYSELF. I didn’t need to impress anyone, take care of anyone, babysit anyone. I was 13 miles from land during my race, halfway, and the only person I had to watch out for was myself. This was my tenth crossing. And it was hard.

We paddled into a headwind and side swell for 5 hours. But there wasn’t a time where we wanted to give up, or stop. We kept pressing and we kept going. We rallied together, pushed through our mistakes and kept racing.

The next day, we turned around to come home. The men raced back. It was a fast course, the wind was at their backs. And even though the fastest guys were up front; the most exciting part was in the middle. With the 5 junior teams competing against each other! Teams from LA, Newport, Hawaii and Dana point! It was the largest division of juniors that we have had at that race in a long time. I couldn’t have imagined a better race for these boys that I escorted across the channel. They were the boys that ever gave up, that hammered through the chop and evaded a 500 ft tanker coming across the course. We did it boys!

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List #10

This is list # 10. Out of 52 lists. From my journal of The 52 Lists Project, it’s a killer interactive book and journal that get’s you thinking about yourself. From the first week of your year, to the 52nd week.

And in natural Kelly fashion – I’m not going in order. I’m doing list #10 right now, because this is the list I need to complete at this moment in my life, in my week, in my day.

LIST OF THE THINGS YOU SHOULD IGNORE

  • Anyone else’s Body Language – I read too much into it. Oh, they sighed loudly – they must be frustrated and stress and want me to know. I’ve learned to hate “sighing” because I don’t know what people mean when they sigh. What do I do? I asked someone a questions, shoulders shrugged – they must not care? or do they? You smiled when I asked you something – are you just trying got get me to stop asking questions? I know Dave does this 😉
  • Reactions – I spend more time thinking about the reaction to any of my actions instead of just going for it. I think too much about what other people will think instead of concentrating on myself.
  • Time – Ignore time. Time lost. Time needed. Time past. Time until.
  • Instagram – I SPEND WAY TO MUCH FRICKIN TIME ON INSTAGRAM
  • Concerns and feelings of people who are in no way shape or form involved, impacted or invested in or by my life. Strangers. I care about strangers.
  • Emails – after 6pm? I can get to them tomorrow…right? Maybe I’ll just take a peek…

It’s a short list. There is probably more. But after reading through…maybe these aren’t bad things…maybe I shouldn’t ignore them…

 

xxoo

Find Something That Makes You HAPPY and Do It Often

It’s not that hard.

Make a list.

Make a list of ten things.

Make a list of ten things that make you happy.

Then do those ten things every week AND SMILE

1. Paddle

2. Blog

3. Sleep in with Biggie

4. Crushing it at Spin Class

5. Reading

6. Dancing in the kitchen to some booty bouncing hip hop before I go to work

7. TACO TUESDAY

8. Staying home and catching up on my shows

9. Plan a new weekend adventure

10. Visit Bruce for a few ferry rides while he works the graveyard shift

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Gorge Camping – Live Life Outside

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I’ve been back from the PNW for a week now, and I’m still trying to figure out when to go back!

While the 24 hour drive up was a ride from hell..literally. 104 degrees and no air conditioning in tIMG_6860he truck? While towing a trailer? guess were we took this Dodge 2500 hundred when we got back? That’s right – it’s blowing cold now.  Other than sizzling like fajitas on a cast iron skillet, the ride up was great! We didn’t stop, just trucked all the way through until we got to Val’s uncles house, at 4am Friday morning.

That’s when the real adventure started. Rows and rows of green trees, a small town full of super friendly people and the Colombia Gorge ready to be paddled on.

The river was completely difference than anything I’ve every paddled on. The river obviously runs towards the ocean, so the current is going opposite way of us. However, the mountains and cliffs on both the Oregon and Washington side create a tunnel, and the wind blowing on shore and push up to 20 kts! The race was epic. and hard. Epically hard. We don’t have surf like that in California and the whole time us girls are hootin’ and hollerin’ and having a great time. Our crew worked hard together and most importantly supported and trusted each other. Keeping each other honest in the canoe and then supporting each other through all 12 miles of the down wind race. There were parts of the race that got a little hairy, specifically when we had to cross over from the south side to the north side and go across the white caps. But knowing each other as well as we did, and blending together as well as we did we were able to keep calm and move forward. The short paddles we did before the race seemed like nothing compared to race day! 13708389_10154190018751655_8545151291604792409_oThe rest of weekend was spent relaxing at our campsites underneath 100 ft trees and hiking to 100 ft water falls. We camped at the Wyeth Campground which had incredibly spacious lots and an amazing camp host named Polly. There were close to 18 of us that took up 4 campsites. We were literally eating blackberries off the road, and watching the sun go down at 9pm.

Our hikes were based right off the Colombia River Highway, where there cIMG_7105lose to a dozen different waterfalls to hike to. Den Mother Deidre knew all the trails secrets!! They ranged from a 2 mile round trip, to a 10 mile round trip. Elowah falls was my favorite. A two mile round trip with cut backs and climbing (with the pug of course) that ended at a
free flowing (cold) water fall. It was gorgeous, eye opening and definitely must see if you are ever in Oregon. Another challenging hike, was Oneonta falls which was complete with climbing over a complete log jam and then walking a half a mile in 5 feet of water! And ofcourse we finished our hikes by stopping by our new favorite little Brewery, Thunder Island Brewery.  Which had an amazing view, and pretty sweet area to hang out in while we waited for the guys to finish their afternoon activities on the water.

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It may have only been a 4 day weekend up north but I love the area, and I love the people I traveled with. I love living life outside!

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Check out this video made by braddah Bronson about the trip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QQi8aXqp138

 

Lake Arrowhead – Last Minute Adventure

IMG_6564Sometimes the best weekend getaways are the ones that don’t take much planning. I’m lucky enough to have a family cabin up in Twin Peaks near Lake Arrowhead and a great tribe to travel with. This used to be one of the only “vacation” spots my family would regularly go to, with 5 kids it’s hard to go anywhere. It always surprises me how easy it is to head up the mountain, and every time I go up I’m stoked on the weather and surroundings. IMG_6598

What makes the weekend trips epic, are the people you travel with. Luckily we had a good vibe tribe heading up the mountain with us. The loop our cabin is on isn’t filled with AIRBNBS or VRBO’s, it really is a quiet family community. We barely get cell phone service, cable has a few channels and we’re forced to actually interact with each other and spend the night trying to figure out how to play pictionary properly. The mornings were the best time, I’d wake up first and let Biggie out for his morning roam. That was my favorite time of the day, when it was literally no other sound except for the pug snorting around the nearest tree. We’d make waffles and bacon, and within 37 seconds the entire cabin was awake by the smell of breakfast. Which really isn’t that hard, because you can stand in the living room and see into the other two rooms and bathrooms without rotating. Hey, everyone likes to be cozy.

But as usual, where ever we go, we find something to paddle and somewhere to paddle on. Lake Gregory  has a greaIMG_6567t spot to set up a chair and drop a cooler for a few hours while enjoying the fresh air and the lake itself. It’s one of the best kept secrets in the area, as most people spend their time on Lake Arrowhead or up in Big Bear. You can bring your own equipment, however they have a fee to launch. During the summer the water is super refreshing, which is convenient when your sisters try to flip your boy scout canoe!

Friday night the electricity went out, a power outage that affect the entire loop. It was about midnight and we were still awake playing board games, just like you normally would in any cabin setting – am I right? Once we got over the IMG_6487“OMG this is a horror movie waiting to happen” mode, we grabbed all the candles we could to lighten up the small cabin. But the best lighting we got was outside under the stars. Everyone laying down on the porch just staring up at the stars and watching them appear from behind the trees was one of the most relaxing moments I’ve had in months.

Lake Arrowhead has a killer summer set up for concerts at the lake ( http://www.lakearrowhead.com/village.html ) and also fun things to do all day. I mean, we just walked around, stopped for tacos and fed the ducks; but we totally could have spent the entire day there like we used to. We just wanted to head down the mountain (which took all of 20 minutes) before the sun went down.

Fresh hikes, fun days and a margarita to join the sunset. I need to spend more time up the mountain. IMG_6522IMG_6658

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