Fall is here…Time for apple picking!!!

Fall is here…Time for apple picking

It is time to get outside and enjoy all that the Fall season has to offer. One of my favorite family-friendly Fall activities is to visit a local farm with friends and pick apples. It’s such a simple way to have fun as a family, create lasting memories and support local farmers!!!

Here are some apple picking farms around the Bay Area for your enjoyment. Some are just a short drive while others are a great day trip.

Twin Hill Ranch
1689 Pleasant Hill Raod
Sebastopol, CA 95472
(707) 823-2815
www.twinhillranch.com
Dog Friendly.

Gabriel Farm
3175 Sullivan Road
Sebastopol, CA 95472
(707) 829-0617
www.gabrielfarm.com

Chileno Valley Ranch
5105 Chileno Valley Road
Petaluma, CA 94952
(707) 765-6664
www.chilenobnb.com

Apple-A-Day Ratzlaff Ranch
13128 Occidental Road
Sebastopol, CA 95472
(707) 823-0538

Depending where you are in the Bay Area, Watsonville may be closer than Sonoma County:
Gizdich Ranch
55 Peckham Road
Watsonville, CA 95076
(831) 722-1056
www.gizdich-ranch.com

Be sure to call ahead of time to confirm availability before planning your trip!

We visited Twin Hill Ranch this weekend and had a wonderful day and went back home with over 10 lbs of a variety of apples.

Fall is here…Time for apple picking
– Picnic tables and beautiful open areas where the kids can play at Twin Hill Ranch.

Fall is here…Time for apple picking
– Delicious Apple Bread from Twin Hill Ranch.

Fall is here…Time for apple picking

Now, it is time to learn and enjoy making all sorts of apple things.

I would LOVE to know where your favorite apple picking spots are.

We hope you have fun during Apple Picking Time!

Victoria 😉

Scratch one item off of the Fall Bucket List 🙂

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Yarn Bombing in Downtown Santa Rosa

I was driving in Santa Rosa downtown a couple weeks ago and suddenly started to notice colorful and vibrant trees around town. I thought I was entering Dr. Seuss’s colorful imaginative world and seeing the famous “Truffula trees” 😉

I started wondering what was going on? Well, it is “Yarn Bombing” also known as yarn storming, guerrilla knitting, urban knitting or graffiti knitting. Technically it’s a kind of graffiti with the difference that it can be easily removed if necessary.

Yarn bombing has been around for quite some time and has become a global phenomenon, but I only heard about it around a year ago.

Mark di Suvero at Crissy Field

Mark di Suvero at Crissy Field

Even the Santa Rosa Empire Building got targeted! 🙂

Mark di Suvero at Crissy Field

Yarn Bombing began in Houston when Magda Sayeg decided to knit a cover for her store’s door handle. Soon after followers from all over the world started yarn bombing!

Mark di Suvero at Crissy Field

Yarn Bombers knit tree branches, furniture, bus seats, abandoned cars, statues & monuments, and all sorts of things.  There is even a book about this subject full of photos, step-by-step instructions for knit and crochet and large-scale patterns.

I took this photo last year in Washington DC. I also saw a lot of bicycle racks decorated with yarn. I loved it!
Mark di Suvero at Crissy Field

…and what about this iPayPhone Yarn Bomb in San Mateo, CA from Knits For Life?  Very cool Huh?

Mark di Suvero at Crissy Field

Have you seen any other yarn bombing around the Bay Area? Are you a yarn bomber? Shared your pictures with me in our Facebook page….I would love to see them!!!

Have a smiley day!!!

Victoria 😉

Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa

This week we visited the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa (about an hour north of San Francisco). Growing up Snoopy was one of my favorite cartoon characters that brought a lot of happy childhood memories and smiles to my face.

There are three main buildings and two different free parking areas. The first building is the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center, the second building is the Redwood Empire Ice Skating Rink with the cozy ‘Warm Puppy Café’ inside and the third building is the Snoopy’s Gallery & Gift Shop full of PEANUTS products.

Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa

1. Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center

Once we parked the car I really enjoyed the outdoor Peanuts-themed music as we walked up to the museum building.

The museum was built in 2002, two years after the artist’s death as a tribute to celebrate the life of “Sparky,” (as the artist was called by close friends) the Peanuts characters, and increased understanding of cartoonists and cartoon art.

Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa

The Museum offers something for everyone in the family and all “Peanuts” fans. It includes several permanent exhibits like the re-creation of Schulz’s working studio, the Wrapped Snoopy House, a labyrinth on the grounds shaped like Snoopy’s head, Peanuts Tile Mural, the Nursery Wall and the Morphing Snoopy Wood Sculpture. There are also some exhibitions that changes 3 to 4 times a year.

Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa
My favorite exhibition is the “Peanuts Tile Mural” by Japanese artist Yoshiteru Otani. Once you get closer you’ll see that the work is made up of 3,588 tiles, each one featuring a different Peanuts strip. It is amazing!!!

Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa

You can enjoy the charming outdoor garden with Peanuts inspired sculptures. You can also find the Lucy’s Baseball Cap that covers Woodstock’s Bird bath, which features five Peanuts holograms.

Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa

Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa

During our visit we meet some fans that were visiting from Japan, a very friendly couple from Italy and a large tour group all wearing the same bright colored t-shirts.

2. Redwood Empire Ice Skating Rink

Once we finished touring the museum we headed to the Ice Skating Rink built by Schulz in 1969 and had lunch and coffee at the Warm Puppy Café and enjoyed the hockey game that was taking place at the moment.

The café was Schulz’s lunchtime hangout where he ate regularly a tuna salad sandwich with a cup of tea. He used to walk from his home to the Cafe twice a day. The Café still keeps his table near the window reserved.

We had visited the Ice Skating Rink before for ice skating and friends birthday parties.

Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa

If you want to have some fun outside the ice rink, call a friend who is at the computer and say “Hi” to them through the webcam 😉

Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa

3. Snoopy’s Gallery & Gift Shop
The extensive gift shop sells just about every kind of Peanuts memorabilia you could imagine. The shop is a ‘must-see’, even if you don’t buy anything.
Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa

My favorite, “MonaLucy”, an oil 21″x30″ board by Hallmark. Painted in 1989 to commemorate the 67th birthday of Charles M. Schulz 🙂Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa

Visiting the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center in Santa Rosa

Website: www.SchulzMuseum.org
Address:2301 Hardies Lane, Santa Rosa, CA 95403
See in Google Maps >

Hours: Weekdays 11 am to 5 pm —  Weekends 10 am to 5 pm
Admisions:
Adults — $10
Seniors (62 and over with ID) — $5
Youth/Students (4–18 or w/valid student ID) – $5
Museum Members & Youth 3 and Under — FREE

We had a fantastic time at the museum seeing thousands of comic strips, exhibitions and learning about Snoopy, Charlie Brown, Lucy and the gang. There were a lot of giggles and non-loud happy laughs!!!

Have a smiley day!!!

Victoria 😉

Visiting Mrs. Grossman’s Sticker Factory

Today we visited Mrs. Grossman’s Sticker Factory in Petaluma, CA. It is the oldest and largest sticker company in the United States and the world’s only sticker factory tour.

Mrs. Grossman’s Sticker Factory

We visited the factory a few years ago and the store and tour space is now reduced due to space and storage challenges. Actually the tours ended and the retail sticker store was closed for some period of time in 2011. Even though the tour area and the store is a lot smaller I’m very happy that we can still have the opportunity to appreciate how many people, technology and equipment it takes to create a sticker.

Mrs. Grossman’s Sticker Factory

The tour takes about 45 minutes. It starts with an informative five-minute video in a small room followed by a guided walking tour of the factory floor. Besides their decorative stickers you can also see Paragon Labels, their daughter company printing elegant and beautiful labels. The labels are for different products and wine bottles from prestigious wineries like Francis Ford Coppola, Viansa, Sebastiani, St. Supery, B.R. Cohn, Iron Horse and Domenichelli among others.

Due to confidentiality agreement with the wineries, photography is not allowed in the factory. Sorry, no pictures of the factory.

During the tour you can watch stickers being printed while you learn some facts during the stops of the printing process. 1) Printing, 2) Rewinding & Finishing, 3) high-speed Packaging, 4) Recycling, it was very interesting to know that Mrs Grossman have received different awards for her compromise with the environment and everything in the building is recycled. 5) Hot Foil Stamping & Embossing and 6) the impressive Laser-cut. This is the only system of its kind in the world that cuts the more delicate and detailed stickers.

We saw a few dogs walking in the building. Mrs. Grossman’s is a dog-friendly workplace and employees can bring their dogs in the factory.

Once the tour is finished you can go back to the video room and create a sticker postcard project.

Mrs. Grossman’s Sticker Factory

We didn’t know there was so much work in the production of a sticker!

If you are ever in Petaluma, this is a fun short tour to make. Just make sure you call in advance for reservations.

We had fun, learned a lot and got inspired by Mrs. Grossman’s story!

Have a Happy Day!!!

Victoria 😉

Mrs. Grossman’s Sticker Factory
Website: http://www.mrsgrossmans.com/
Tour Days/Times:  Monday through Thursday, 10:00, 11:00, 1:00 and 2:00.
No walk-ins. Strollers are not allowed on the factory tour.
Reservations Required: 800.429.4549
Admission: Adults – $7.00, Youth under twelve – $5.00, Children under three – Free

Address: 3810 Cypress Drive, Petaluma, CA 94954
See in Google Maps >

Hippity Hoppity in the Vineyards!

Vineyard Easter Egg Hunt - Francis Ford Coppola
Thousands of colorful eggs loaded with sweet goodies were hidden or shall we say placed in the beautiful vineyards of Francis Ford Coppola today.

Vineyard Easter Egg Hunt - Francis Ford Coppola

There were three categories of hunts: ❤ years, 4-7 years and 8-12 years. Fun for everybody!

After the egg hunt, kids enjoyed the Petite Picasso art activity and the furry friends from Foggy River Farms, Healdsburg Animal Shelter and Safari West. You can also enjoy a special menu at the outdoor Pool Cafe.

Vineyard Easter Egg Hunt - Francis Ford Coppola

The Easter Egg hunt is one of the winery’s most popular event. Space is limited to 400 children and reservations are always required. Don’t wait until the last minute, this year’s event sold out in less than 3 hours!

The nicest thing about this event is that 100% of proceeds are being donated to the Redwood Empire Food Bank!

…and… it was very nice to see a lot of familiar faces hopping in the vineyards! 🙂

See in Google Maps >