Happy Hay Honeymoon Day 3 and the RETURN

Saturday is already here! We do have tomorrow, but that will be a travel day.

Another nice morning and for some reason, the coffee was especially delicious today. We needed an extra cup for sure. The beauty of our room is my honey can make a Keurig cup in 3 seconds flat. Takes the edge off before a workout. (we’ll attempt it anyway).

This time, we decided to carry our bikes in the back of the truck. Definitely a bonus of having this Ford beast! That way when we get to Rutherford, we could ride since we didn’t want to ride a cruiser for 20 miles, right?

We drove up to St. Supery, our first appointment. Isn’t this a beautiful drive? A bikeway in our case.

Huffing and puffing, we arrived for our tasting. Our special room was ready for us.

After freezing to death in our special room we were ready to head to our next place, Grgich. We couldn’t get in, but we got a welcome taste of Rose and snapped a few pics.

Isn’t he the cutest?

Ok, our goal was to hit MUMM since I love sparkling wine. The crowds there gave us a doubtful feeling, so we hit the gift shop.

The bell reminded us of his past home bell that we want to put in at our new home. Exquisite and unique!

Since we couldn’t get in for a tasting, we headed to Hess way out in the boonies. The Ford beast took us there in comfort since it was way up in the mountains. The architecture was quite modern and regal. My honey gets inspired often with architecture as you can see by this door. His brain works in creative ways.

We were pooped out and opted out of our reservation for dinner. Whole Foods again was the answer, and guess who got to drive the monster??

It really was quite the monstrous piece of metal, but it was a joy to drive. Not to park, however.

OK, so while all of this is happening, Tot is hanging with Pierce, Kellye’s boy. They had a blast playing!

Knowing Tatum was having fun made all the difference. Also, just being with my honey was so special. We don’t often get to spend this amount of time together. However, we were ready to get back to our home and our routine. I missed the Tot immensely too.

We said goodbye to our Napa friends, including our Ford buddy. I gave Doug a Kleenex as he wiped a tear.

Oh, baby, what a great trip. I am so grateful for you!

Tot, we got you some neat mini-hoop earrings and a HUGE HUG. Thank you to my MOM for taking such amazing care of Tatum too.

All in all, it was the HAPPIEST HAY HONEYMOON!

The Happy Hay Honeymoon Day 2

Up and at ’em early (kinda- wink wink) for a nice workout and delicious breakfast.

Did I mention it is free? That made it taste much better, right?

We had a winery appointment at 1:00, so we decided to visit a winery before this. The hotel had FREE (the savings keep adding up) bikes to rent, so we figured we’d ride the 5-10 miles.

The basket was a nice touch. Doug felt so manly with it. Well, he can come back and drive the truck and he’ll get his man card back. Do you like our matching hats? We were wondering why everyone was stopping us and asking about that Cardinal trade. What did we think of that new quarterback Kyle somethingorother. The hats. Aha…our hats. Oh, how cute we look all matching.

Ok, off to the road. The shoulder of the road was barely existent and this gave Doug a bit of heartache, but we made do. Focus, Steph. Focus! How gorgeous it is!

We arrive at our first stop, Monticello.

OH, look! We are welcome, so we head in.

We decided to split a Rose and sit outside, enjoying the scenery.

Then we headed to our destination, Materra wines.

They made us feel so special! The views were exquisite! We also got a tour of the barrels and the winemaking process.

We tasted the Viogner, the Sauvignon Blanc, and their Rose.

We also cleaned up the cheese plate. Not a problem…glad to help.

Pedro was a superb host, and the winery was just beautiful.

Now, the rest of the day, we’d ride around a bit, but then we’d head back to the hotel for a siesta. Why? Because we could.

Dinner was a special treat. I made a reservation at Celadon which is global cuisine at its finest. Before we went in, we wanted to see the back patio. Isn’t it lovely with these arches? The night would be even more lovely.

Here we are in front of the restaurant. Doug loves this pic because I’m all Marilyn Monroe. The wind was sweeping and strong.

They surprised us with some celebratory champagne. We are getting very spoiled!

I wanted to try the mussels and they did not disappoint.

The dinner, we talked about Date 2 which proved to be very fruitful. We always learn things about each other, and sometimes the most obvious things need to be discussed.

Lamb Shank, Halibut, and great conversation, we had a great time!

After, we had to snap some pics of the environment. Now, it’s all lit up! The place came alive, and guess where we were headed?

Back to the hotel…yes!!!

We were both spent from a full and physical day. I love you honey!!!

Tatum had fun with Ethan. Thank you, Cana!!

The day ahead promises to be amazing. I’m having so much fun, Baby!!

The Happy Hay Honeymoon Day 1

Doug and I had the blessing of receiving a gift from some friends. A lovely couple from our church, Mark and Robyn, own part of a hotel in Napa (The River Terrace Inn). This was where we wanted to go anyway, so it truly was a gift for us. The next step was to find help for Tatum. My mom kindly watched her each evening (Th, Fri, Sat), but during the day, I wanted her to have some different options. Each of my dear friends took a day! Sharon would pick her up from school on Thursday, Cana on Friday, and Kellye would spend the day with her on Saturday. Wow. Now, my honey and I could truly relax.

We packed up and headed out on Thursday.. off to the airport!

Can you tell I’m excited!?

We parked and documented because….well, your mind is really mush upon return.

We decided to work on this 10 Great Date book on our trip.

Homework on the plane for Date 1. Baby is working hard and focused on his answers.

Arrived early and headed to the rental place. They only had a Ford truck and my honey almost lost his snack sized bag of pretzels. This is usually TWICE the money.

Do you like the ride honey? We have about 90 minutes of traffic.

It’s roomy and very cozy. Although he is about two arms length away from me.

After fighting CA freeway traffic, we arrived and were greeted by the lovely staff.

A glass of wine was our welcome. Oh, and a killer riverfront room deeeeeeply discounted. We begin to cha-ching the money we are saving and there is great rejoicing.

Mark and Robyn welcomed us too!

Since it was so late, we decided to walk around and find some dinner. I wanted to eat in the room with my honey. I brought the bluetooth speaker, candles, and cozy room clothes. Now we just needed some chilled wine and a nice …..salad? Actually this sounded really good, so we headed to Whole Foods and loaded up. We figured we could have a jumbo salad chock full of heavy ingredients (they weigh it!) since we were saving money by not going out. Don’t you love our rationale?

It’s going to be a busy day tomorrow so we were glad we stayed in.

Meanwhile, back in AZ….Tot is hanging with Sharon and Coco. (her new puppy)

It’s all good!
Tomorrow is going to be lovely!

Demolition Day at McCormick and lots of BEFORE pics

These guys. Their sole job is to break stuff. Seriously. All they do is demolish and bust. It must be great anger management for them.

Today their job was to get rid of all the cabinets. Tom had to keep an eye on them so they didn’t bring down the retaining wall (a minor detail).

Look at all these before pics!

You get a feel for the foyer, living room and kitchen. Soon to be completely different!
Go Monty and Tom team!
Stay tuned!

Update on our Prayer Growth Lesson and PAINTING!

A few weeks ago, Daddy did a lesson on prayer.

After watering our plants daily (with prayer) it seems as if the cups of seeds are growing. This is showing Tatum that those who pray, grow their hearts, grow in love, and grow closer to God. It sure shows; Daddy’s lesson is producing!

Tatum’s is growing the most. That is a great picture of our walk with Christ.

(Sadly the person who doesn’t know Jesus is not growing much at all).

Upon all this science fun, we were to paint our front door. You see, the HOA mentioned my door was looking a bit drab. (in other words, paint it or get fined). I decided to paint it.

Tot helped of course!

Tape up the parts which were NOT to be painted and go!


Not bad for us amateurs. I hope Daddy doesn’t hire us to do the McCormick house. (wink wink).

Resurrection Day 2019!

He is RISEN!

Tatum woke up to an Easter basket at the front door. It was a taste of the excitement to come.

We headed to church and enjoyed a beautiful service. The sermon was an analogy to taking a train ride. Some are still at the station (checking out Jesus as a teacher or prophet). Some have arrived and are experiencing His forgiveness and LOVE fully as Savior and Lord. We are not to judge where one is on the journey; it’s between them and God. Tatum enjoyed the service with us.

I made a lovely meal for my mom. Daddy, and Tot. First, an Easter egg hunt. Daddy and I hid the eggs last night and documented all of it so we wouldn’t forget any of them.

She had no problem finding all 10!

Next year, you’ll have to be better hiders, Daddy and Mommy.

Apparently so. Mama and Daddy took some nice pics before brekkie.

They are ready to eat now. Here is the menu:
Maple Turkey Blueberry Sausage, Avocado Deviled Eggs, and Coconut Flour and Vanilla Cream Cheese Hot Cross Buns. Fruit and coffee of course.

Dearly delicious and delightful. I love spoiling my family! But more importantly, I love to celebrate our Savior. We opened the last egg today and finished our Benjamin’s Box story.

The last egg which is white is….

EMPTY. He has risen and the tomb is empty.

Praise JESUS!

Easter PREP 2019

Tatum helped me in the kitchen all day. I wanted to make a special meal for my mom, Doug, and Tot. It required lots of prep!
Tatum and I decided to make our own version of Hot Cross Buns with coconut flour and vanilla cream cheese frosting. She helped frost them after a few taste tests. Ha!

We also made maple blueberry turkey sausage patties. DELISH!

Avocado deviled eggs and fruit to finish it off. You’ll see pics tomorrow..

We also made Easter cookies. They were symbolic of the death of Jesus and His resurrection. Her school gave her this recipe, so we decided to try it.

We pounded the pecans to signify His brutal beating.

Then she smelled the vinegar to signify the sour taste of his death.

Then the salt to signify the salty tears he shed for us.

None of this is very appetizing yet. But then…The SUGAR! The sweetness of the Lord’s death and His love for us!

Now we beat until we have peaks forming.

Add in the pecans and drop the mounds on the cookie sheet (with wax paper). These are the tomb. We then put them in the oven (which has been preheated to 300 and then turned off)

Seal the oven shut. (the tomb is now blocked)

The next morning, we unseal the tomb and look what we have!

They are hollow inside like the empty tomb. They also are delicious meringues!
Glory to God; He has risen.

More on the breakfast in the next blog!!