Category Archives: Off the Beaten Path

A Movie Scene Christmas Market

Over the weekend I got a text from my sister in Philadelphia asking me what one of my daughters would like for Christmas, as she was at a Christmas Market on a farm looking for some cool finds. Her text to me read, “I’m at a German Christmas market on a farm.  It’s snowing outside and there’s nice apple cider inside!  Just loving it!

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A Visit To A Music Store – Kamimoto Strings in San Jose, California

One of my twins Rani takes cello lessons and she informed me a few weeks ago that she is ready for an adult or rather a big cello instrument. “What’s wrong with the one you have? I asked her. It looked pretty big to me already.

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And Rani in her ultimate wisdom informs me, “Mom, I am 15 now, not a little kid anymore, the one I have is from Middle School, I’m in High School now and it’s time for me to get a big cello.”   Continue reading A Visit To A Music Store – Kamimoto Strings in San Jose, California

Heirloom Tomato Harvest Festival in Los Gatos, California

As if we weren’t swimming in tomatoes already from the bounty we had received from our neighbor, Hitesh informs me that there is an Heirloom Tomato Harvest Festival going on in town on Sunday the 17th. How could I resist? I couldn’t. I dragged the girls with me on that Sunday and headed to downtown Los Gatos to check out the Heirloom Tomato Festival.

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What a unique experience this was.  Continue reading Heirloom Tomato Harvest Festival in Los Gatos, California

Point Reyes Station, California

Point Reyes Station is a charming small western town an hour north of San Francisco off Hwy 1. It is a lovely little town no more than three to four streets with plenty of appeal. Think modern health conscious boutiques, farm-to table cafes, farmer’s markets, locally sourced food-items, and hand-made artisanal goods.

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Continue reading Point Reyes Station, California

An Afternoon in Santa Cruz, California

We are so fortunate to be living so close to our favorite beach town of Santa Cruz, California; just a 20-minute drive on Hwy 17 over the Santa Cruz Mountains.  Santa Cruz has everything a beach town should have and more. First and foremost are what everyone goes to Santa Cruz for – the beaches.

Beautiful beaches line the Pacific Coast in Santa Cruz.

Panther Beach.

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“FIght for a just cause; LOve your fellow man; LIve a good life.” FILOLI Gardens in the Summer

I’ve been to Filoli Gardens in Woodside, California so many times that I’ve lost count. But somehow I’ve never visited the gardens in the summer. Hard to believe, even for me. I usually stop by Filoli Gardens in the spring for their Daffodil Daydreams Extravaganza, or in early summer around May for a Mother’s Day girls afternoon out, or to attend one of their classes on watercolor painting.

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I’ve never gone to Filoli Gardens in the peek of summer – i.e. July. I’ve assumed all the flowers are frying in the summer-time heat, so why bother going? But this year I had an opportunity to stop by this beautiful garden with my Uncle Chary and his niece Geetha and husband Sampath who were visiting from Mumbai, India.

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Who knew Filoli Gardens could be just as spectacular in the summer as at other times of the year?  At least not I.  The garden is amazing in the summer! Continue reading “FIght for a just cause; LOve your fellow man; LIve a good life.” FILOLI Gardens in the Summer

Dinner at Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California

We have heard so much about this talked about restaurant here in the Bay Area  – Alice Waters’ Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California.  This restaurant is so popular that you have to plan at least a month in advance just to make a reservation, and cross your fingers and hope that you can get a reservation. On top of that, there are guidelines for when one can call to make that reservation; one has to wait for the exact day to the month when you want to go for dinner. This is what I did; I patiently waited to the exact day one month before Hitesh’s birthday to make dinner reservations for his special birthday celebration with the family.  I was fortunate enough to get reservations for the day that I requested! This is how we ended up going to Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California.

Was it worth the hype and the wait? YES, YES, YES. Continue reading Dinner at Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California

Half Moon Bay Nursery in Half Moon Bay, California

When was the last time you stopped by a plant nursery with soft classical music playing in the background? A nursery where during the holidays there is hot apple cider waiting to be sipped by their customers. A nursery that is more of an experience than a functional errand to purchase some plants. Half Moon Bay Nursery in Half Moon Bay, California is one of those places which is more of a destination rather than a nursery where one goes to just to buy a few garden plants.

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Elizabeth F. Gamble Garden. Old Palo Alto, California

Elizabeth F. Gamble Garden is a historic home and garden located in old Palo Alto, California. The story of how this lovely home became a historic home and garden can be credited to Ms. Elizabeth Gamble who lived in Palo Alto with her family.

Elizabeth’s family – the Gamble family moved to Palo Alto back in 1902 and had four children:  James, George, Elizabeth Frances, and Launcelot.  Palo Alto at that time was a little town with a population of a mere 3000.  One of the kids Elizabeth, decided after college to spend the remainder of her life in the Gamble family home on Waverley Street in Palo Alto.

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