Ringing in the New Year, with 16 of our favorite people

Posted by Lauren

Ok, since starting to blog again I’ve used four posts to cover Thanksgiving to Christmas… and you KNOW what’s next (plus, I mentioned it in the title)… New Year’s! After an eventful year-end at work (including a fun happy hour on 12/30), I woke up for 6 AM bar on New Year’s Eve. Gotta tuck, tuck, tuck before partying all night, right? After class we packed up the car and drove to Sacramento, where we picked up Kerry and Matt. Two hours later, we arrived here…



This lovely cabin in South Lake Tahoe was perfect for our group. We divvied up the bed assignments and decided to head into town for drinks/food. There were good reviews on Yelp for The Brewery, so we gave it a shot.

Unfortunately the 30 min wait quote turned into an hour, and then when we finally sat down (they separated our group of 9 into two tables in different rooms), our waiter took about an hour to take our order/deliver drinks. He didn’t even say if food was on its way and 1/2 of our group hadn’t eaten anything all day! Yikes. All in all, we won’t be back and we wouldn’t recommend for groups.

We went back to the cabin and played a few drinking games….


Surprise of the night goes to Nicole. After working all day on the 31st, she was going to spend the night at home and wake up early to drive to Tahoe. Instead, she drove up to Tahoe with her boyfriend THAT night and made it before the countdown. It was awesome!! Nicole is assimilating into my college friend group which is basically the greatest thing ever.


We kept celebrating as the midnight countdown drew near…..



Just because you’re in a cabin doesn’t mean you can’t dress up!


Ari, Nicole, Me, Kerry, Krizia


(Most of) The Crew… Vic, Maria, Kyle, Ellie, Matt, Ari, Andrew, Clay, Kyle, Ian, Nicole, Chase, Tyler, Krish, Kerry!


One of those selfies that rivals Ellen’s. Lucky for us, Ari has really long arms!

Also lucky for Kerry who, on the morning of New Year’s Day, found the hidden coin in her slice of Ari’s homemade vasilopita (greek tradition: cake made for new years with a hidden coin baked inside; finder has good luck for the year). Lucky ducky! tahoe06tahoed1

I’m not sure why this photo below is relevant, but we look pretty cute. :) We spent a lot of cabin time on the couch, in our PJs….


But we tried to get outside to enjoy the snow too! On New Years we went sledding outside our cabin….


Darren & Kitra (newlyweds!)


Victor & Maria (newlyweds!)


Kerry & Krish (NOT newlyweds! haha)


Clay, Darren, Andrew

After sledding we did something…. maybe watch football? (there was a LOT of football). Then we enjoyed a delicious HOMEMADE lasagna dinner, courtesy of Kitra and Darren. HOLY MOLY it was so goooooood. After dinner we played the most epic game of Baseball ever. First, we split the cabin into two teams: Nor Cal vs. So Cal. Up until the 7th inning stretch Team Nor Cal had a hefty lead. Then, Kerry’s lucky coin rubbed off on the So Cal team and they came back with an epic 9th inning, including a walk-off home run.


It. Was. Awesome. After that we hailed two cabs and went to Harrah’s so the guys could gamble.


Tyler left the craps table with a good chunk of change and the other guys….. didn’t do too bad. I think. We also had fun on the slots, especially when Ian won about $80 on the penny machine. You better bet we hooted and hollered as if he won $8,000.


The next morning we had an early wake up call for a group photo. (Nicole took it, thank you!) But really, we had to get going so that half the group could hit the slopes at Heavenly.


Since we brought our gear, Kyle and I were able to get a few runs in before the rest of the group arrived on the mountain. We also had time for a suuuuper sunny/squinty selfie. That lake tho.

tahoe12 tahoe13


Then we found the group! There was pretty much one (fun) skiable run that was open. So we did that over and over and over. It was also nice stopping at lunchtime to soak up the sun :)



Kyle K.




Victor (lol)





Around 4 pm Kyle and I went back to the cabin and jumped into the hot tub where Kerry, Krish, Ian, Nicole, and Chase had been happily stewin for most of the day. Then Ari came out and took the funniest picture of the whole trip. HAHAHAH love this.


That night we ordered takeout from Hunan Garden which was really smart because we were 1) getting sick of pizza rolls and tortilla chips and 2) Clay loves Chinese food (mostly Panda Express though) and 3) we needed a good base before playing round after round of Asshole and King’s Cup. Things got interesting when we set a rule for breaking the ring-of-cards… ;)


The next morning (Sunday) a few of us drove to the lake… you know, LAKE TAHOE. The coolest thing was happening 30 feet away from the “beach” — the rim of the lake was freezing! You could walk out on to the frozen ice layer and see it cracking at the edges. Chunks of ice would float in and out. It was really entertaining! tahoec2tahoec3



…..And good for photos :)


That night we all went out for sushi at Samurai (there were only 8 of us left) and then finished the night with Jenga. Who doesn’t love Jenga?! So suspenseful.


And that’s how Nicole and I spent New Years with 16 of our favorite people. Looking forward to everything in 2015!

How was your New Years? What was the best part?

Cushing Crossing + Homemade Monopoly


Posted by Lauren

**Our hearts go out to the runners, spectators, and volunteers involved with the Boston Marathon. We are so relieved that our Aunt Patty safely crossed the finish line.**

This weekend included a lot of sleep and relaxation while at our cabin in Tahoe. I like to think my sleep levels are topped off and ready for this sleepless week ahead. Bring on the caffeine!


Instead of skiing on dirt (there is hardly any snow left), I wrote the 9 things blog post while Kyle, Todd, Linda, and Bradley tore up the slopes for 40 minutes. They returned to the car after two runs and Linda described the snow as “donkey.” We had a more compelling reason to be at Squaw though… The 23rd Annual Cushing Crossing. Dubbed “the best event of the spring season,” this ritual pond skimming event challenges participants to cross the chilly waters of Cushing Pond on skis, a snowboard, or any other contraption. A celebrity judging panel, hilarious emcees, a large crowd, and 50+ adventurers take part in the event. I’ll let the photos do the talking…..

cushing crossing squaw valley 2013

After the hilarity of Cushing Crossing, we drove back to Truckee and picked up food. Once we arrived at the cabin, I changed into my running shoes and set out on a 6-mile loop. I ran, walked, and hiked for about 1:15… the views were spectacular (and I found my dream house)!

tahoe donner dream house

I arrived at the cabin (not ^ that ^ cabin… I wish!), showered, and joined everyone for dinner. We had zucchini-wrapped goat cheese, shrimp cocktail, and a sesame-ginger chicken + veggie stir-fry. Someone suggested we play Monopoly – only problem was that the game box at the cabin was missing the entire board. Linda and Jess got crafty and literally constructed a Monopoly board from scratch so we could all play.


Everything was fine and dandy until this guy secured Boardwalk and Park Place:


Your eyes do not deceive you… that is an antique Blackberry in the above photo…. Anywho, I gave up on the game after paying $1500 rent for landing on Park Place with a hotel. Damn you, Todd!

make your own monopoly board


We all slept in and slowly packed up our stuff. Kyle and I were the first ones on the road… we had brunch plans at a place in Colfax called Dine ‘n’ Dash Cafe (on Yelp too). The restaurant was adorable, with antiques on every surface and a beautiful outdoor patio.

dine n dash cafe colfax

I chose the cinnamon sugar waffle with bananas and whipped cream + extra crispy bacon. Kyle ordered the carnitas breakfast burrito (but the waitress messed up and gave him someone else’s chorizo breakfast burrito). Both of our choices were pretty darn good and I’d definitely recommend this local spot for anyone between Sacramento and Reno.

Back in the Bay Area, my first stop was at the gym for a decent 6 mile run/walk. The 24 hour fitness has a set of treadmills with TVs attached to them, but the channel selection is pretty terrible. Luckily I had this face to stare at ….

adam scott golf masters green jacket

Oh, hi!

Adam Scott Masters Win 18th Hole

More on Sunday later!

Questions: Would you ever compete in a pond skimming event?
Did you follow the Masters’ golf tournament this weekend?
What’s your all-time favorite board game?
When you play Monopoly, is there a certain game piece you always want to be?
(I like the iron and the hat)


Wordless: Tahoe + Snowmobiling

coldstream adventures snowmobiling truckee tahoe 1

Posted by Lauren

Nicole isn’t feeling well. I am not feeling well. What kind of germs did we encounter last week?

By nature of how many times I had to blow my nose this morning, I am going to go with a wordless post to recap my weekend in Tahoe. Nicole took me to the airport at 4:30 AM!!! on Saturday and Kyle picked me up in Reno so that I could enjoy a weekend with friends up in the snow. We stayed at Darrin’s cabin with Kit, Adrienne, and Kevin. Our short ski day and long parking lot BBQ was so much fun! Then, on Sunday, Kyle and I went snowmobiling with Coldstream Adventures… it was his Christmas present!

A picture is worth 1,000 words, so here is 16,000 words. :)

*** SATURDAY ***


Up BRIGHT and EARLY. Too early for Instagram, apparently.

old confusing microwave

Most confusing microwave award goes to….

squaw lake tahoe skiing

We need more snow!


Man in a suit. < Man in a dog suit.


Me, Kit, Adrienne, Kyle, Kevin (we agreed to dress up :)

squaw valley parking lot bbq

Parking lot BBQ! SO FUN.

lo ski suit onesie

Stylin in this onesie.


Watched the Nature Valley U.S. Alpine Championships (or maybe I took a nap)

auld dubliner squaw valley curry chips

Drinks and complimentary curry chips from the Auld Dubliner!

*** SUNDAY ***

wild cherries cafe truckee ca 3

Brunch at my new favorite Truckee cafe – Wild Cherries Coffee House!

wild cherries cafe truckee ca 1

Roast Beef on Focaccia Build-Your-Own

wild cherries cafe truckee ca 2

Ladies who brunch.

coldstream adventures snowmobiling truckee tahoe 1

Sledding! Coldstream Adventures is awesome BTW.

coldstream adventures snowmobiling truckee tahoe 3

6,000 feet and up.

coldstream adventures snowmobiling truckee tahoe 4

First time behind the wheel/skis?

coldstream adventures snowmobiling truckee tahoe 2

Open meadow shenanigans.

What a great weekend! p.s. I started my new job today and the first day was pretty amazing… it is going to be quite the adventure!

What was the highlight of your weekend? Have you ever been snowmobiling?


24 Hour Tank

march roadtrip tahoe

Posted by Lauren

march roadtrip tahoe

Alphabet Soup!

Over the weekend I went through a full tank of gas in just 24 hours! It was definitely a whirlwind weekend with a lot to do, places to go, and people to see! On Friday night, after Nicole’s 21st birthday dinner, I filled up my empty gas tank at the cheapest gas station in town (I love Arco’s AMPM). Somehow, the miles just ticked away: 1, 2, 3… 456, 457, 458…

1. Nicole’s 21st on Friday (a few back and forth trips to Los Gatos/San Jose)


2. San Jose > Palo Alto (to retrieve Nicole’s mysteriously missing iPhone) > Oakland for the Bouncy Ball 10K


3. Oakland > San Jose with two sleepy heads


4. San Jose > Gilroy for outlet shopping and hanging with the newly engaged couple, Victor & Maria!!


After outlet pricing and gift cards, I only spent $60 at Lululemon for 4 bottoms (cycling shorts, commuter bicycling pants, running shorts, running capris). SCORE.


Italian nachos, shoe string fries, beers, and the happy couple (tiger cub not included)

5. Gilroy > San Jose to quickly hang out with Kyle, Darrin, Todd, Jess + friends before their poker game started


6. San Jose > Mountain View at 7 PM to quickly pack for…….

tahoe alpine meadows lake view

7. Impromptu Tahoe trip!!!

Since Nicole came home Thursday for her birthday, I didn’t think Tahoe was in the cards this weekend. I looked at my schedule and realized that Nicole wouldn’t miss me (sad, but true) if I was gone on Sunday. So, I drove up to Tahoe late Saturday night, all by myself, to take advantage of the cabin and “new” snow. I arrived around midnight, just in time for the rave music and laser light show. If you know me, you know I can sleep through ANNNYYYYTHING. It’s a terrific skill.

The ski slopes were great, all things considered (translation: what can you do with just 6″ of new snow? #imeanreally). I spent Sunday at Alpine Meadows skiing with everyone from the cabin. Party of 8! And then a little extra time at Squaw Valley….


Assessing KT-22….


I love my K2 skis!

I was going to turn this post into my weekly workout recap, but I’ll save that for tomorrow. Spoiler: I didn’t do any strength training. Whoops?

Question: If you had a full tank of gas and nowhere to be for 24 hours, where would you go? If only you could drive to Hawaii… :)