Ok, so I didn’t get a pedicure before going on vacation.  I thought I might treat myself to one while away, but I didn’t.  I didn’t feel the need.  Why bother?  Who cares?  They’re aired out for three days and then they get wrapped in warm swaddling socks until summer.

I didn’t anticipate my toes being in any pictures…you’ve all seen those annoying vacation photos of the girl’s perfectly pedicured toes in the sand.  Yeah, I thought so.  We know you’re on vacation…stop taking pictures of your feet and take a picture of something pretty!!!  Or something boring like your dessert of creme brulee.   I would rather see a million photos of the water and the waves and the sand and anything else.

I didn’t even take a picture of myself on my trip!  Wait…now that I think about it, I did take a picture of my bangs sticking straight up one morning.  I also had my toothbrush hanging out of my mouth.  What can I say, Danger is my middle name.  Yeah, baby!

My toes were not supposed to make an appearance in this picture…and I neglected to crop them out.  And now, it has taken over my whole train of thought….because as I type this, those fat little cheese sticks are wiggling hello at me.





Life is better when you end dinner with dessert.  Or if you begin dinner with dessert…or if you have dessert in the middle of the day just because you want to.  Life is better with Creme Brulee.  Let’s face it, it just is.  No questions, hands down, absolutely better with a whole creme brulee all to yourself.

Be still my heart…



We were out on the Pier in Oceanside, gazing out into the ocean.  The waves were crashing, the wind was blowing, and life was good.  Surfers were paddling out and riding waves, families were watching their young ones splash on the shore.  A man was feeding little fishies to a pelican and the seagulls were hovering over, waiting for a little crumb to snack on.  There was even a group of people from the Sea World rescue collecting sea lions.

We had just driven through all the adorable coastal towns of Encinitas, Carlsbad, and now into Oceanside.  If we kept going we would be in southern Los Angeles.  Each had their own feel and their own charm.  They all had their own set of characters.  We could see them all from the end of the pier.  We could see how long the beach stretched.

I was in awe.  I was in awe because this beautiful coastline is enjoyed by people every single day.  I live near one of the Great Lakes…and it is not enjoyed to this extent year round.  It just isn’t.  It would be if the 70 degree sunshine were smiling down on your face.

Oh man, the San Diego area is stealing my heart.  You better up your game, Wisconsin…





I am on vacation.  Va-kate-tion…this is who I am on vacation.  Va-Kate!

Despite the rain and 55 degree temperatures here in southern California, I am quite content.  I am up for anything.  I have no plans…I will make little plans.  I seem to always have plans and responsibilities and children and people to tend to.  Today…I do not.  And I am going to enjoy it, dammit.

My friend and her husband are graciously hosting me here in Del Mar, outside of San Diego.  It is gorgeous!  Why doesn’t everyone live here?  Why do people choose to stay in the arctic winter that is the Midwest?  I don’t know….It seems pretty wonderful.  The beach, the sun, the green and blue, the never-ending supply of local, organic produce….heaven.

Yesterday, after I arrived, we ate brunch at a place called Snooze.  Don’t you want to eat brunch at a place called Snooze?  Yes, yes you do.

We then strolled a farmer’s market and browsed through adorable art galleries and boutiques.  I had visions of opening up a fun little shop with coffee, art, comedy, and good vibes. The rain drops splattered on my glasses and it felt great.  It felt great to feel rain and not snow, to feel a chilly rainy California day over a bitter blast of below zero winds.

I was worn out from travelling but wanted to soak it all in.  After our peaceful strolls, we snuggled up on the couch and enjoyed some pizza, a cocktail and a little Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery.  Yes, yes we did.  We laughed at how much we remembered about the movie and also at the parts that we’d forgotten.

Today, I am sitting in the sun on the balcony.

what to do while traveling

Sleep.  That is the obvious answer.  It’s hard to sleep for 12 hours though…well, comfortably anyway.

Read.  Yes.  For a while.  I feel like when I’m flying, my eyes start to cross and I get a little nauseated if I try to read something intense.  Especially a new book that smells like a new book.  I tend to lean towards more humorous tales (um, really, Kate?).  Perhaps I can find that new David Sedaris book…or Chelsea Handler.  I love some good ol inappropriateness as well.

Listen to music.  I’ve got the ipod all charged and re-stocked with some tunes I haven’t listened to in a while but love.  Also, some Soundgarden and Pearl Jam.  I’m not vacationing from my faves.

Paint my nails?  I could really use a pedicure since I’ll be in sandal weather.  How hilarious would it be if I was sawing away at my callouses and fuming up the whole plane with polish?  Asking the flight attendant for some hot towels to soften my cuticles.  We’d all feel a little better about flying with a little contact buzz.

Paint on paper?  I could stash a little watercolor set in my purse.  It’s a big purse.  It’s more like a backpack.  That’s why women are so fortunate on airplanes.  We can actually have like 2 carry-ons.  One that looks like a carry on, and one that looks like a purse…but you can pull out lamps and umbrellas and mini-refrigerators like Mary Poppins.

Apply self tanner?

Start a sing-a-long?

Gorge myself on trail mix and hope that I never have to use the airplane lavatory?  I hate that little stinky box.

Yoga?  I did talk to a woman who said she would do stretches in the aisle on long flights overseas.  And you thought I was crazy.  I like to keep my muscles stiff and mushy.