Tucked away off the beaten path of the Santa Ana Freeway (I-5) and Crown Valley Parkway is 18 acres of natural preserve. What started out as a vegetable garden in 1981 has kept volunteers busy for three decades upgrading the grounds to what it is today—a beautiful collection of walking trails past hundreds of species of plants. Seven days a week from sunrise to sunset you can enjoy the rose garden while taking in the view of Saddleback Mountain all free of charge. It’s a great place to pack a picnic and plan to spend an August afternoon. There are rattlesnakes in the area, so watch out for the signs posted warning of their presence.
What better way to deal with the triple digits of summer than to stay put and settle back in your easy chair to read. Nothing like getting your hands on an adventure to another realm, a touch of romance, a splash of suspense, or a hard-edge mystery to get your mind off the August doldrums. Get your beach read on before school starts!
“I’ve been all over the world and I’ve never seen a statue of a critic.” ~ Leonard Bernstein
I don’t sleep much, never have. That’s especially true when I’m in the middle of a manuscript. My mind is usually going in seven different directions anyway, let alone when I try to sleep while forging through plot lines. But I must say I do my best thinking when I’m at my most quiet, in the middle of the night, in the darkness and silence. That’s the way it’s always been. In high school when I had a writing assignment, I got it done first in my head. Images come and go, some warm and fuzzy, others, not so much. But I have to “see” the scene in order to nail it. Engaging in the scene often makes for a crazy few months until completion.
There’s a point when the lack of sleep starts taking its toll. I think it’s that way for most writers. When that happens I need a break, of mind, of spirit, of soul, and recognize when it’s time to get away to recharge. Everyone needs downtime. In these waning days of July when the heart longs to travel, I’m going to hike into a forest long enough to do research, trek down a sandy shore I’ve never experienced before to get my creative juices flowing again.
As always, here’s to all of you having a happy, creative August!
“People who love to eat are always the best people.
– Julia Child”
On our weekend trip to San Diego we may have missed out on its infamous Comic-Con by days but we made up for it by eating and drinking our way around town while there. Our destination’s purpose was a beachside wedding. The event turned out to be uber romantic and a lot of fun with dancing, plenty to eat and drink, and hooking up with old friends we hadn’t seen in ages.
Sunday morning we met same friends for brunch at a little cafe they favored called Hash House a Go Go. Apparently it’s claim to fame was when it had been featured on Food Network once upon a time. The place is located off the 163 on 5th Ave. They have other locations in places like Nevada, Connecticut and Illinois.
When we were there it was crowded, lots of people waiting and I began to wonder if it was even worth hanging around. The food turned out to be quite good. They serve buttermilk biscuits which were a hit with the hubby. The breakfast bacon sandwich is so huge you couldn’t possibly open the mouth wide enough to stuff a single bite inside. In fact, it’s big enough to be split between two people. Anyway, the trip made for a fun weekend before getting back down to the nitty gritty of plot lines.