The Best of 2016

Hello Friends,

Happy New Years! We spent the evening at our neighborhood party, and then relaxed at our house playing boardgames. It’s very homey with the fire roaring and we drink tons of thai iced tea to last us til midnight. It’s always very festive and fun. How was your New Year’s Eve? Do anything fun?


Looking back on 2016, it was a very full and exciting year, with many highs and quite a few lows.

From left to right, I had amazing time with A flying to Florida and having the time of my life at Harry Potter World in January.

Relaxing on the beach in Hawaii with A in February was exactly what I needed heading into a busy time prepping my students to submit their AP portfolios. In June I watched my prides and joy (all 45 of them) walk down the aisle and receive their diplomas. I also said goodbye to the school that made me into the teacher that I am today, and hugged & waved goodbye to all my LPS Phoenix’s (and my classroom) for the last time ever.

In July we took a family trip and fulfilled a childhood dream of mine to return to the island where I had spent a glorious summer (#sweet15) in Nantucket. In July we spent some time with my Grandfather in Pennsylvania.

In August, I lounged at an amazing lake house and soaked up every last bit of summer before starting school at my new job. In September we enjoyed glorious weather on many walks in San Francisco. In October A and I cajoled our friends into eating the brunch buffet at the Ritz in Half Moon Bay. I also saw my favorite musician Ingrid Michaelson on her latest musical tour.

In November A and I took a food eating tour through Portland, and I got to explore the beauty of the Northwest (and see Shannon!). For Thanksgiving Week I joined Aaron and Kim and her family on a week-long sunny stay in Cancun, Mexico.

And finally, I’ve been here in Tahoe for the last week and a half, being as lazy as I possibly can before starting back to work on the 3rd. The snow has been kind to us, and I’ve been able to get in 3!! days of skiing in between the hot tub, reading books, watching movies and boardgames.

I’m sure 2017 will keep me just as busy as 2016 did, as I know I already have a few trips planned with A, seeing my first crop of seniors at Notre Dame graduate in May, and adding a few new things to the new pad in Santa Clara (like finally owning a Tv.)

Are you looking forward to 2017? Any fun things you are looking forward to? Thanks so much for reading the blog these last 12 months, I couldn’t do it without you guys!






Life Lately

Hello Friends, Here are a few snaps from my Instagram, which I update a little bit more often than the blog here. Feel free to follow me (@sisforSandy) to see more about what I’m up to! My amazing brother make … Continue reading

Pier 39


Hello Friends,

A weekend or two back Annie and I schlepped up to the city via Caltrain. I always feel like it is so much more of a hassle than it really it (we only really noticed it on our trip home) but as we sat there in the Sunnyvale Caltrain in the gorgeous sunshine with snacks in our bags, it was a great idea. We had wanted to explore the walk to Pier 39, and thought that we since are hearty walkers (#thankspokemongo), we decided we could handle the 2.9 mile walk there from the Caltrain station. We enjoyed a lovely but windy walk after stopping to caffeine up at Philz. I am so glad A finally joined the coffee train! My weekends are often so jampacked that I need coffee stops throughout the day. Annie and I loved all the nautical decorations on our walk.



It was an all around perfect weather day up in the city, which is extremely rare. It was sunny but not too hot. Windy but not too biting. We were aware that walking along the bay could (and would be later!) chilly and potentially rough wind-wise. But we were very lucky. I did bring more than one jacket to prepare for the late night walk back but it was a great walk both ways.


I was vastly unprepared for the crazy amount of tourists we encountered once we got to both the Ferry Building and Pier 39. So many people! It was insane.

We finally put in our name at Swiss Louis, where we had excellent service and fantastic food. I highly recommend it if you can get there early enough to put your name in. We had soup in a bread bowl and split a salad, which was the perfect amount of food for me. We also saw a great sunset as we ate.

We walked back to the Caltrain station, where we learned I had read the times wrong, and the next train wasn’t till midnight. #whompwhomp. So we called an uber pool, grabbed a cocktail while we waited and finally made the treck home. 

img_7046 img_7049

It was a great day up in the City. I love SF for day visits, but like my sleepy little suburbia for every day life. What do you like to do in the City? Have you been to Pier 39 or walked along the water?





A Weekend at Clear Lake Video

Hello Friends,

I had so much fun at our friend’s house at Clearlake, it was probably my favorite weekend of summer! I loved how warm it was there, which made me want to get in the water the whole time! I had so much fun in the boat, tubing and just how great everyone was the whole weekend. I snapped a few videos, so I hope you enjoy this video. Tell me if you like it in the comments, or if you want to see more videos!


Have you ever been to Clearlake? Or been to a lake house? Have you tried boating or water skiing?



Nantucket Day 5

Thursday was a day of sunshine, wind in your face and gorgeous ocean views. We started with breakfast at Downyflake, where I had delicious doughnuts, eggs and bacon. A breakfast of champions for a busy day. My dad brother and … Continue reading

Nantucket Trip

Hello Friends! I will be doing longer posts with more photos on the various activities we did, but I created this fun short little vlog of our family trip to Nantucket two weeks ago. We had a blast when we … Continue reading

Life Lately

Girls Day at the Beach

So this is a few snaps from the last week! It’s only been one short week of summer, but I’ve packed a lot in.

Three beach days in one Week!
Sun Hats

A and I hitting up the beach on Tuesday. Sun hats are crucial to not ending up with a sunburnt nose!

Summer Sunsets

We’ve had some pretty amazing sunsets here in San Jose, and I tried to capture the gorgeous colors we got last week!


We had a lovely mellow Father’s Day in Capitola with the whole fam (including the dog!) at a dog friendly beach, followed up by yummy food at Gayle’s Bakery.

How was your week? Do anything fun or summery?



Sun, Sand and the Surf

Hyannis Port

I really like the motto of working hard so that you can play hard. And for me, playing hard always means relaxing somewhere warm on a sunny beach. My 2015 resolution was to travel more, and that means regularly putting some money aside for a later date to have fun somewhere new!

Often I’m pretty busy, between working a full time teaching job, babysitting around 25 hours a week. Sometimes I’ll sneak in time for a workout, or to grab dinner with either friends or family. When at home, I’m usually washing up some dishes, trying to get a load of laundry done, finishing lessonplans/powerpoints for work and sleeping! I do tend to relax in the form of watching a show for an hour or so in the later evenings.

I usually need to block out time for a trip before I’m able to put away my endless to-do lists, and pull out a fun book! On Monday, my girlfriend and I will be flying to Maui for 5 days, and I couldn’t be more excited to unplug, and enjoy lots of down time

I’ve been on the hunt for a new bathing suit, and even though its a bit early in the season to be shopping for summer, there are tons of choices online that I’ve been eying.

So many have cute back details! I’ve been mostly leaning towards one pieces because I think they will be more comfortable under my swim shirt when I’m snorkeling.

La Blanca *image from Nordstroms website

                                image of Tommy Bahama from Nordstroms Website

There are so many cute choices out there! Any places that you love to score a new bathing suit? Do you prefer a one piece or a bikini?