Sunday, August 12, 2012

A perfect summer day!

Temperatures in Southern California had been overly hot during the past couple of weeks and what to do better than spend a day at the beach right?
Well, after having some crazy days at work and all the pressure steaming out at all directions, I decided I needed a very well deserved day off.
My body and mind were desperately in need of it and one more time I hit the road and went away to an adventure day (you know I like doing that!). My original intention was driving towards Mission Beach, in San Diego, but when I was about to take the I-5 south and I saw that the traffic was jammed all the way to Camp Pendleton, I shifted my direction. I turned around and decided to go to "The Balboa Peninsula" instead. 
The Balboa Peninsula is located at Newport Beach, California and it was named after the famous spanish explorer, Vasco Nunez de Balboa. This area is mainly residential but it includes several commercial areas as well.
It was insanely crowed, but what else should be expected on a hot summer weekend off, right?
It took me around 40 mins to find parking and honestly, I was about to give up when I suddenly found a nice spot at the very beginning of the Peninsula, very close to "Lido Plaza".
I grabbed my camera bag and took off for a nice stroll.
Lido Plaza

I couldn't resist taking a picture of this meter; isn't it amazing that they have been adapted to receive credit card payments? I think is awesome!!! How often we do not have quarters and we have to be looking  for places to break down a bill so we can add some change to the meter.
Good meter!!!! make our lives easier.. hehe

Brick buildings at Lido Plaza

A fantastic clock at the very entrance of the plaza

The famous "Lido Theater"
It was opened in 1938, and the first film it was played was Bette Davis" in "Jezebel". The reason for that was that Davis lived nearby in Corona del Mar and traveled by the site daily. Upon stopping on site, she told the owner "they had better opened with my picture". And they did. Davis also is responsible for the sitting parlor at the ladies room that resembles back to a time when women sat and smoked and chatted while arranging make up in the mirrors.
The entire theater has been restored and has a wonderful sound system. It is only a block from the ocean , and houses independent surfing and skateboarding films. It is the Surf Film capitol of Southern CA. Every April, they participate in the New Port Beach Film Festival. 
To say the least, it s the kind of place that you can't miss out! 
The bike culture at Balboa Peninsula is huge; you see them all over and in great shinny colors!
A cute space to sit down and enjoy your local coffee

  After strolling around the Lido Plaza, I made a stop at Pavilions to grab my lunch and walked towards the beach. The first picture I took was the one below, and it could not resemble best the tittle of this post: "A perfect summer day!". I love how it tells different stories: from the young guys playing volley ball, the group of friends chatting to the families laying around enjoying the day. Isn't it great?
Bikers in action on the sidewalk

 Volley ball match in action!  
A super fun way to enjoy a day at the beach.
 It was so much fun to watch these multiple bike carts; too bad when I took this picture some girls were crossing by and I couldn't get a better shot of it. The guys that were riding it were having a bliss...
Water sports are very popular too: 
Kayaking, Stand up paddling and Boating are some of the favorites!

Below are some commercial buildings from the area and some prime real state as well. Houses here are stunning, specially at Lido Isle. This area is also known as the Beverly Hills by the beach in Southern California. Some of the most expensive houses are located in this area and you can see why!

  Personal Training someone?
This place looks like a perfect one if you're interested ;)

My dream house!!! 
Oh boy, when I was driving on Lido Isle and I saw this house I just couldn't do anything else than stop and take a picture!. If I could ever have a place like this....... big sigh....
 Oh well, maybe to refresh those hot Sumer days it is always welcome to pay a visit to the local Newport Beach Brew Company located on Lido Street where handcrafted brews area available on tap.

 Awwwwww, I had such a great day!!!
I really missed having a day off like this! Just for me! With my camera and my pair of slacks to tour around a new neighborhood and capture the fantastic stories they live and breathe around this area, and, of course, to reflect it through my lens.
I hope you enjoyed this post as much as I did.
I will be posting soon.... I hope..... =)

Saturday, July 28, 2012

A new start

Today, for the first time in my life, I have been exposed at my professional work. As you know, I recently joined my new job, and for the last three days we have been audited. It was a complete different animal when I was audited the last time in my previous work; I came out clean,  and this time I was not..
My fault or not my fault? that is the question...
It is hard though, when you have to take the hit on somebody else work and the fact that because you are the new person that make mistakes,  and that you are the cause you were part of a failure rating too ... 
Lack of supervision perhaps! Lack of raising my hand too maybe ..
There are so many factors involved at this time that my mind is just going nuts thinking about it...
I feel awful about it!!!!!
 It is the first time I get exposed in this way and I don't like it a bit!
I am overwhelmed with the amount of work my branch requires and I am having a hard time catching up with all I need to do.
Challenge is the word right now!!!
Am I all for it?
Perhaps ,,,,,,,,,,,, maybe........ I don't freaking know. 

Can I do it?  but at what cost?
My personal life is getting affected,  my stress levels are rising up and I know is my responsibility... eventhough the old manager is gone and she is responsible of part of this mess I am on board too...
I am lost here......
For many years I haven't gone through a situation like this and I am really challenged this time!
Do I want to  quit? .......
Should I quit?
Should I prove these people I can do a better job?
How will this affect my personal life?
Does it really worth it?
But,  will this  clean my name?
Should I work hard and show them I can strengthen things up: YES!!!!!!!

Oh boy.......Am I  at the end of a back wall and I a feel completely  useless. Am I knowledgeable? 

Do I have the skills to fix this?
Do I want to do it?
I don't know...
Does it worth it?

What should I do?

I don't know

Oh boy! I need help here !!!
My responsibility side says : YES: go for it... show them  how you can do this!!

But my evil side says: Nope.... Don't  do it!

What to do?

Please.... I need some help here....

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Smart Phone - Smart Mariana!!!!

Well, after much fuzz and fight on if I should get a smart phone or not, finally a couple of weeks ago, the death of my phone pushed me into getting a new one.
For  a long time, I have seen the different models that are on the market, and to be honest with you guys, I don't know why, but the iPhone doesn't make it for me! I don't understand why people are so crazy about it. Oh yeah, is kinda of cool with all its 'apps' and extra features but to me the screen is too small and the keyboard drives me nutssssssssss..... and nutsssssssss and super nutsssssssssssss

Nick loves his iPhone and I have played and used it here and there. 
You have to understand, I am not the techno-savvy person in the whole world, and for me a phone suffices the basic needs it was created for. 

The two most important things I was looking to get, were a basic navigation system (for my long drives while I am a slave of the 405) and to have email access. 

My work at the branch is really busy; I am on my feet running around all day, and to be honest, getting at night to check my email and stuff was getting a little complicated. I totally stopped doing it. I am so tired after work, and after my yoga classes that my email list was getting long and long and long. 
So, having this extra feature is nice!
I know, it was about time to join modern times and start taking advantage of technology.

So, for that reason, I decided to go for the android "Samsung Galaxy II", and I couldn't be happier.
This phone has a super nice size screen, and amazing design. 
I went for the white model and the thing I love the most is that I can talk to my navigation system and tell it where I wanna go and it takes me there!!!!! I LOVE IT!!!!!!

So, welcome Mariana to the smart phone world! I believe it makes me smart, right????

And this is my post #300 so Congratulations to meeeeeeeeee!!!!!! Yayyyyyyyyyy.......
Well done Mariana, well done......

=) hehehe

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Rod Run 2012 - Temecula

On March 7-8, Temecula hosted the 2012 Rod Run. This is a famous exposition  that includes hundreds of classic vehicles from all over the country. The city of Temecula locks down Old Town from Arch to Arch to allow these classic beauties to run wild.
This show attracts thousands of fans and spectator's year after year and over 500 entries are accepted every year.
Back then, we decided to take the tour and we jumped on the car and drove there to be part of this event. For me, it was the first time to be able to watch so many beautiful cars. 
And to be honest, it was an impressive exposition, where you can see soo many different vehicles.

It is amazing how much time, money and care their owners spend on these vehicles.
The event is free to the public, and you knowing me, if something is free and I can bring my camera with me to snap some shots "I am on it"!!!!!

 Old Mini Couper, if not one of the first models to be out in the market!

I have wanted to work for so long on these pictures, and finally today, I was able to finish editing them so I could upload them to the blog.

 It has been challenging for me to keep the blog a float after I started working again, but now I will be dedicating more time to it. These months have been hard on me, getting used to the new schedule, trying to keep up with my yoga classes and finding time to work on my pictures and the blogs. 
I update a little more often my other blog, as it is easier just to post a picture and add a little explanation instead of the trip description I have been doing on this one.
We have been doing lots of stuff but haven't blogged about it. Be patient with me.

Check the interior of this one! I love the detail...

Look at these beauties, aren't they nice?

I love the engine of this car, it was so clean and polished!

I couldn't let this little car pass by, I snapped this photo on our way back to the parking lot and I thought it was such a cute little car, and specially their owners...

 This motorcycle really got my attention; they were two, one in black and one in white. But this one was the most impressive one. Really nice!

 Awesome truck

 And of course, I could not let pass by to include a shot including a self portrait.
Can you see me??

I overall, it was such a fantastic day. We had a lot of fun, had a delicious meal at Mary's Hamburgers and got to enjoy this gorgeous display of cars.
If you have time next year I will totally recommend visiting it. It worths the trip!
Next Temecula Rod Run is scheduled next Spring on March 8 & 9, 2012.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Where I am?

Next post I will let you know, but I wanna hear any ideas of as where do you think I was when this picture was taken. Comments are welcomed followers =)

See ya!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Happy Birthday Monica!!!

Happy Birthday to my sister Monica!!!!
I love you and miss you very much =)

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Two months away...

I am very sorry I have not been updating the blog lately. Literally, it's been almost two months since I posted a long nice story.

And that's why, I said to myself: this can't happen any longer!!
You can't do this to all your loyal readers that have been following you for so long.

Ok, so let's go back in time just to bring you up to date.
Mid March, I got a job offer from Citibank for an Assistant Branch Manager position at one of their branches, with that said, a lot of paper work needed to be filled. As I was terminated from my previous employer for almost 4 months earlier,  I had to start all over with my fingerprints and background check.

It was a busy week and before I started my new job Nick and I decided to go to Palm Springs for a short trip. Everything was planned very fast but turned out to be really nice.
I found a really nice B&B called "Rendezvous" and we booked the Rebel room. Go and check out their site as they are a super cool little bed and breakfast that has been decorated in the 50's theme. At the time we arrived, we went for a stroll  to main street and once we got our room we decided to dive and spent all the afternoon at the pool. The staff of this little place is super friendly, gave us some welcoming treats as well as with some martinis and quesadillas. o much fun and sooooooo relaxing.
To be honest, this time we decided we wanted to chill at the pool and hotel more than going for a hike like the last time we were there. We had a great time, some good food and some not that good. There is one place that we went that is named "Las Cazuelas" and I just couldn't have been more insulted by it. It is a Mexican Restaurant that serves very bad food and very bad drinks just using a Mexican theme and exploiting the image of it. It  is completely geared for gringos and as a mexican I was not very happy with the overall experience. A lot of people might give good reviews to it, but i just couldn't sand the place. Bad food, bad drinks and amazingly overpriced.
Anyway, we spend there two nights and three days and at our return Nick dropped me at the airport so I could catch a flight to Mexico City.

Yes, I decided at the very last minute that going to visit my family before starting the new job was a good idea and I didn't even went home to change suitcases. I brought all my outfits together and went to catch my flight. 
It turned into a whole ordeal as the connecting flight to San Francisco got delayed and I ended waiting at the OC airport for over 4 hrs. Thing, that complicated my little existence way too much at the time I had to connect my flight. I barely made it, I ran like a chicken without head around SF airport and I literally felt that my heart was going to get out of my chest.  But I got into the plane and arrived around 5:30 am. Yes, I can assure you the red eye is not always the best option but for sure it is the cheapest!!!
Oh well, I got to Mexico, took a cab and landed at my moms for a very well deserved nap. Later that afternoon we went to Marcela's house for lunch and we had a fantastic time. My sister Monica and Bruno joined the party too and we all ended having a blast! You have seen the pictures I had posted recently while I was there.

The trip was way to short, it always is. Or perhaps it always feel like that because it is always  hard to come back and leave my beloved family behind.
The return flight was another experience, having to connect through Houston and then landing almost at 9 pm and having to get ready to go to work the next day.
It was exhausting, but it totally worth it!!!

I have been month and a half in training mode, my head is almost exploiting as there is soooooooooo soooooooooo much information that I am learning. But it is a big challenge and I am sure little by little everything will start falling into place.

My birthday was at the beginning of this month and the husband surprised me with an orchid, a chocolate cake and amazing home made dinner. Nico, has become quite the baker let me tell you. This time we had hamburgers but he baked the hamburgers buns and they turned out delicious.
At the office they gave me a really nice birthday card and they got me some yummy cupcakes!
To tell the truth I have been finding quite challenging to combine the new job, my yoga classes and the blog. I have been very good about not dropping my classes. I have worked so hard to keep the weight off that I lost and the balance it has given to me that I just resist to give it up. Yoga has transformed our lives. 

But now that things are starting to settle for me again I am going to start blogging again. 
The other day, talking with my sister Marcela I  came to realize how much she misses my updates. It is the best way for my family to see and hear about my whereabouts and I promise her I will keep working on it. 
And, I love my blog! Well, my blogs. Because I have been working on my photography blog too.

Check it out:

Ok, it is almost midnight and I really need to go to sleep.
But I just want to leave you with a gorgeous photo I got while we were at Palm Springs:
I can't wait to have another relaxing trip like the one we had. Looking at this picture makes me wanna escape again!!!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

My beautiful niece Ana Paula!

With my new job, I have had very little time to edit pictures and work on my photography but I just loved how these two came out!
I promise I will catch up this weekend and will be back on the blogging world.....