Thursday, March 19, 2020

My Sister Says I Have to Start Blogging Again! Trip to Oxnard

Hi All! It's been a while since I popped in to blog about something. I've been wanting to but time just seems to fly by. It's funny that I always thought as I got older I would have more time, but the opposite has happened, I have less time...or maybe it's just that I get tired faster and go to sleep earlier? I am again at the demand (request) of my sister Lisa.

I didn't know it but she was using my blog as her own personal calendar of places we went too, things we did and when we did them. So to humor her, I'm going to try to at least blog about events in our lives.

On February 20th Lisa and I attended another one of her work conferences, this time in beautiful Oxnard. How did such a beautiful city get such a weird name? Well legend has it that the founder, Henry T. Oxnard wanted to name the city Zachari the Greek word for sugar. He was the president of the American Beet Sugar Company and the American Beet Sugar Association, but even way back then bureaucracy reared it's ugly head and he got tired of jumping through hoops and named the city after his family, Oxnard. I think Zachari would have been a beautiful name. 

We stayed at the beautiful Embassy Suites by Hilton Mandalay Bay. This is the view that greeted us as we turned off of Harbor Blvd. Breathtaking! Very California, very Spanish style inspired. 

This time unfortunately we did not have a room that overlooked the ocean like we did last time, but still...this is the view we did have from our room. Can't complain right?

We arrived on Thursday and settled into our room. Then we went down to the lobby for a Vendor Meet and Greet event with a sponsored bar and waiters constantly coming out with trays filled with delicious hors d'oeuvres, my favorite being the juicy ripe melon wrapped with prosciutto and drizzled with a balsamic glaze...mmmmmmm! 

Here's a picture of Lisa that I love! She was given a duck by one of the vendors. 

Me, Lisa and photo-bombed by the duck! It was sunset so the lighting was bad, but we had to take a picture to commemorate the weekend together. 

The next day (Friday) poor Lisa had to be in the dining room early for breakfast with her team as this was a working weekend for her. But I was on vacation, I slept in, got ready, had a leisurely free breakfast and then went to Starbucks to get poor Lisa a "medicine ball" drink as she was dying due to allergies and could not stop coughing and blowing her nose. She was pretty miserable!

Once I had her all medicated and working, I headed to The Painted Cabernet, this fabulous place that Lisa found for me where they have an Open Studio from noon to 4 pm. For $25 they provide all the art supplies and you just go in and paint to your little hearts content!

I was inspired by a painting they had on their wall to paint these cute little cactus plants in Terra Cotta pots. It was such a fun time, so relaxing, the weight of the world just melted away!

It didn't hurt that I sipped on this yummy peach Bellini while I painted!

When Lisa was done with her meetings, we took a walk on the beach and then came back to the room to get ready for the dinner that night. 

The next day (Saturday) Lisa again had meetings and I headed out to do some shopping. I didn't really buy anything, mainly just window shopping, but it was fun and relaxing. I picked up a salad at Rubio's Fresh Grill along with some chips and guacamole so Lisa and I could enjoy that once she got out of her meetings. 

I got back to the hotel in time to take a long walk along the beach with Lisa before she had to head back for her afternoon session of classes and meeting. I headed back to the room and decided I was going to enjoy my salad on the balcony...but I had a friend arrive that unfortunately drove me back to my room. Lesson no. 1, never feed a sea gull.

I'd brought some art books with me and spent a pleasant afternoon just sketching and watching art tutorials on YouTube. That evening they had their award dinner and we enjoyed a nice dinner with a couple of glasses of wine. 

The last day we slept in, took our time getting ready and had a quick complimentary breakfast and headed back home. The drive was uneventful and it was nice to have spent this time with my sister.

There you go Lisa, now you can remember this trip!