The redheaded McCollister women are at it again!

Auntie Carol and Meg enjoying the sun outside at the Cline Pendulum Club.

Auntie Carol and Meg, enjoying the sun outside at the Cline Pendulum Club.

Relaxing in the sun, drinking some delicious wine, tasting the yumminess of truffle, and enjoying the company of our handsome hubbies. What a great way to spend a Saturday!

Tio and Jake, enjoying wine on the patio.

Tio and Jake, enjoying wine on the patio.

EDK truffle fries, the most amazing thing you ever taste in downtown Sonoma.

EDK truffle fries, the most amazing thing you’ll ever taste in downtown Sonoma.

#BecauseWeLiveHere

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Mystery Photo: Can you guess what it is?

While walking around Adobe State Historic Park, these caught my attention. Old and dried out by the sun.

Just another Saturday in Sonoma

Jake and I finally had a Saturday to ourselves this weekend, so we tried to come up with something wonderful and exciting to do. We were a little too exhausted to go on a new adventure, so instead we decided to do one of our favorite standby activities…head into Sonoma, drink some wine, and eat some truffle fries.

First we stopped at Cline Cellars, where we got married back in May 2010. We finished off our tasting with their Late Harvest Mourvèdre. It was a port-style red, paired with bittersweet chocolate chunks. Absolutely delicious!

After our tasting, we walked around the Cline grounds. We stopped at the fountain near the courtyard where we were married, and then the courtyard itself.

When we left Cline, we headed to downtown Sonoma, where we met our friend John at the Roche Tasting Room. Since we’re members at Roche, we do go there on the occasional Saturday afternoon. Today, we were delighted to see both John and Harry, who are always a joy to be around and very knowledgeable about wine. And of course, the day would not be complete without El Dorado Kitchen’s truffle fries.

Jake was feeling particularly adventurous at this point, so he decided to order a new favorite called a “Moscow Mule.” It has vodka, lime juice and ginger beer, and it is very refreshing. Mostly, I like the fact that it comes in a copper mug, and I thought it made for a great photo.

It was a great afternoon. I think sometimes we work so hard that we need to remember all the wonderful things to do in the area, and all the joys there are to experience. As we walked along the square, I looked over at one point and saw Jake leaning against the wall, happy as a clam. We really do love living here!

Signs, Signs, Everywhere Signs

Some signs just have to be enjoyed and remembered:

Hilton Head Nature Center

Siesta Key, Florida

Il Centro, Kansas City, Missouri

Sonoma County, California

Siesta Key, Florida

“Signs, Signs” by Les Emmerson, was awarded a gold disc by the R.I.A.A. in August 1971.

Sonoma’s Tuesday Night Market

There are so many reasons we love living in California. Now that Spring has sprung, we can add one more reason to the list. Downtown Sonoma’s Tuesday night farmer’s market.

Our new friends, Laura and John, live in Sonoma near the square, so we were excited to get together for the first Tuesday night market of the season. The square was full of people enjoying the evening. Picnic tables and blankets were spread throughout the park surrounding city hall, and the market was bustling with vendors, customers, and lots of delicious eats. The best part? You could carry your wine glass through the whole event. It truly is a wine country market!

Jake was particularly excited when he found the corn dog stand. For some reason, I just can’t understand the draw to the corn dog. It is such a bizarre food, but people seem to love it. These particular corn dogs looked delicious, so I did try a bite. For a corn dog, it was pretty yummy!

All in all, the evening was lovely. We met some wonderful people, a really cute baby (don’t worry, she wasn’t actually drinking wine..it was an empty glass!), and had some delicious food and wine.

I look forward to going again soon!

Sonoma Wine Country: From Mom’s Camera

It’s Saturday morning in Petaluma.  Today all four of us are ready to spend the day in the wine country.  On Friday we got an early start when we visited Roche Wine’s tasting room in downtown Sonoma.  Terry was ready to begin to kick-start our adventure as he hovered over the wine barrels.

Our wine tour Saturday morning began at the Iron Horse Winery.  It is in a beautiful setting in the hills of Sonoma with vineyards all around it.  The Iron Horse focused on sparkling wines and chardonnay.  The overall mood of the tasting room was lots of fun and the great attitude of the servers added to the experience.

We were lucky that Jake was able to break free from work for some well deserved fun as he joined us for our wine tasting adventure.  He took it seriously as he discussed with Meg which wines they each preferred.

By the time we arrived in Healdsburg we needed a break from wine tasting. We decided to stop at Wurst Sausage Grill. While I think of California as a mecca of fish, vegetables and fresh fruit, our lunch was definitely all about grease and french fries.  But the food was full of flavor and very satisfying.

Healdsburg is another town with a small town feeling.  In addition to the wine tasting room, the square is filled with restaurants, jewelry stores and gift shops.  Wine is a constant theme.  The reflection of the brick building across the street in this photograph of Papitre’s shop window suggested the tricks the mind can play as a result of “over-tasting”.

We travelled on to Hawke Winery’s tasting room with its wonderful view of the Alexander Valley.  The view was worth the visit.  The vineyard out the window was owned by Kendall Jackson.

We continued on to the Alexander Valley Winery.  It is also a beautiful location in the valley.  The wines are among Terry’s favorites, since he is a regular at Costco.  The wine cellars are quite elegant.  Meg and I both included them in our photos. To me it looks like the entrance to a medieval castle.

Our trip through wine country was a memorable experience.  We’ve had a great time and met some delightful people.  We head for home happy and satisfied.