Twas the Night Before School Starts

westward beach sunsetTwas the night before school starts, and all through the house…

We were sweating our butts off so we piled into the car and headed for the beach. It’s something of a tradition in our family, that I bully everyone into motion and we all drive out to the beach, where they have so much fun that they feel bad for dragging their feet and they say “why don’t we come to the beach more often?”

Today we were so hot that we stopped and got subs for a picnic dinner instead of eating at home or making food at home to bring with us. Besides, it’s good to support local businesses.

This year we changed up our routine and went to Westward Beach instead of County Line. We were greeted with a beautiful sunset, nice big waves, and another year of memories to close out the summer.

westward beach boy rock

westward beach teens

westward beach ocean wave rocks

The Great Race of Agoura 2020

If a woman runs a cancelled 5K during a pandemic, did it really happen?

Running a 5K is no small challenge for me. I hate running. Every step of the way, I think to myself “Why am I doing this?” which is why I listen to podcasts or audiobooks during my training runs to take my mind off of how my body creaks and groans. But I do well with challenges, so I did my first 5K on my birthday in 2018, and then I did the Great Race in 2019. I signed up again right away because it was fun, and I thought I’d try to beat my time this year.

Alas, the Great Race of Agoura was cancelled in the first wave of cancellations back at the beginning of March. I figured I’d run the course anyway. The cancellation took the urgency out of my training, so I’ve been running just a few times a week. By March 28, the originally scheduled date, I wasn’t ready to run all 5 of the K’s, so I dragged it out. I told myself that as soon as I was able to run the whole distance without feeling like I’d collapse, I’d go out and run the course. By last week, I had gotten up to 4K.

But this morning, Memorial Day, our cat George woke me up early and I couldn’t go back to sleep. I had a sudden urge to just do it. So I did. I opened the package holding my race day shirt and medal that I’ve been saving for this moment, packed a bottle of water for the car, and added a new audiobook to my phone. (The Secrets She Keeps, something easy to listen to.)

I left a car at the finish line and had my husband drive me up the hill to the start. On normal race day I would have walked and used that time to warm up, but it was almost 8AM and I wanted to do it before it got too hot. It was weird running a race without any other runners, with the streets open. It was like any other training run, except at least I saved the course for my own “race day.”

I sprinted toward the “finish line.” The cool balloon arch they usually put in Chumash Park wasn’t there, of course, but I guessed, and I ended my run around where I thought it might be. And in keeping with the tradition of getting pancakes from a booth at the park after the race, I picked up some lemon ricotta pancakes from The Royal Egg. They were delicious.

My final time was between 38 and 39 minutes. It may seem slow, but it was the best I could do. And thank God it’s done, because I’m sick of running. Back to my delicious morning walks and hikes in our gorgeous hills. I hope others will be able to join me for the Great Race in 2021!

Sipurbia 2019 – Get Tickets Now

Mark your calendars for Sipurbia 2.0 – Saturday April 27, 3pm – 7pm at King Gillette Ranch in Calabasas!

Last year, the first Sipurbia happened at Paramount Ranch in Agoura Hills. Billed as a full day of wine and beer tasting, dancing to live music, and fun in the outdoors for adults, Sipurbia delivered. My husband and I attended as guests to experience the magic, and we enjoyed ourselves immensely.

RIP Paramount Ranch. It burned down in the Woolsey Fire and although it’s said that the old western town will be rebuilt, this remains my last memory of frolicking there. At least it is a good one.

For Sipurbia 2019, we will frolic at King Gillette Ranch in Calabasas. We can do all the things we loved about last year, including:

Set up camp for the day under gorgeous old-growth trees for shade.

Smooch your lover. (This is not me or my husband.)

Browse the vendors selling cool stuff or get your beer and wine tastings.

Enjoy quirky side activities like cornhole and getting your photo taken inside a van.

Did I mention the wine tastings?

Bop along to the beat of some fantastic local bands.

 

Notes from our experience last year to make your Sipurbia the best:

-Definitely bring lawn chairs or a blanket to make your little picnic spot.
-Eat! If you focus only on the beer and wine tasting, you’ll surely get too messed up to have the best time you can.
-Don’t rush. You might not be able to cover the whole festival ground, but that’s okay! You’ll learn about wines and beers that are new to you, and maybe find a new favorite.
-The festival is awesome on its own – VIP entrance isn’t really necessary, but you do get early entry, extra goodies, and access to a private bathroom.

Get your tickets now! Visit the Sipurbia ticket website. Use code AHM20 for 20 percent off for a limited time. See you there!