Life lately, according to my iPhone.

 

Lately life consists of:

♥ a short trip to San Francisco ♥ little kittens  

♥ tagging my name on a friend’s wall ♥ lots of delicious coffee

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Be a Tourist in Your Own City

Recently I read a blog post about 8 Great Alternative Budget Vacation Ideas by one of my favorite travel bloggers, Nomadic Matt. One of his tips was to be a local tourist. I don’t know about you, but I have not taken full advantage of all that my city has to offer. Have you?

So in light of this idea, I ventured off on a mini road trip last weekend with family and friends to explore the little gold rush town of Julian to go apple picking and wine tasting. Only an hour drive away from San Diego, we hit the sierras and escaped the local beach towns and large highways for little windy roads and beautiful fall leaves. It was a refreshing change of scenery without having to venture too far.

So be a little spontaneous this weekend and be a tourist in your city. Happy Friday!

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Mood Music

I love being able to share music between friends; it’s such a good way to discover new artists. A friend of mine introduced me Zaz a couple days ago and it has been playing nonstop. Even if you don’t speak French, you can still fall in love with the jazzy beats. If you would like to listen to the full album for free, check out their music and many more on Spotify.

Zaz – “Je Veux”

Lyrics Translation: Je Veux –  I Want

Give me a suite at the Ritz hotel, I don’t want that
Chanel’s jewellery, I don’t want that
Give me a limo, what would I do with it?
Offer me staff, what would I do with it?
A mansion in Neufchatel, it’s not for me
Offer me the Eiffel tower, what would I do with it?

I want love, joy, good spirit
It’s not your money that will make me happy
I want to die with a hand on my heart
Let’s go together, let’s discover my freedom,
Forget all your prejudice, welcome to my reality

I’m fed up with your good manners, it’s too much for me
I eat with my hands, I’m like that
I speak loud and I’m direct, sorry
Let’s end the hypocrisy, I’m out of it
I’m tired of double-talks
Look at me, I’m not even mad at you, I’m just like that

I want love, joy, good spirit
It’s not your money that will make me happy
I want to die with a hand on my heart
Let’s go together, let’s discover my freedom,
Forget all your prejudice, welcome to my reality

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Pumpkin Donuts

For a brief moment we had a breathe of fresh, crisp fall air here in San Diego. I got all bundled up on the couch with my kindle, a cup of tea and a cozy blanket. Sure enough the next day it was 80˚F again with not a cloud in the sky. During that momentary teaser of fall weather, I made some homemade cinnamon sugar and glaze covered pumpkin donuts with the help and recommendation of my madre. There is nothing quite like fresh donuts, even in the evening.

This was my first time making donuts so I was pretty skeptical how they would turn out (anything deep fried usually doesn’t go well for me). But no worries, they are not as difficult as they seem. If you plan to venture on and make these delectable treats, make sure you watch the temperature of the oil when you are frying and know that the dough has to sit for at least 3 hours before cooking. With that said, it may be better to make it the night before if you plan on eating these donuts fresh in the morning.  Also, if you don’t have cookie cutters to make the donut shape, you can use a round drinking glass and a shot glass. Those work just fine.

Pumpkin Donuts Recipe – from Epicurious.com

INGREDIENTS:

Spiced sugar

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg

Doughnuts

  • 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon buttermilk
  • 1 cup canned pure pumpkin
  • Canola oil (for deep-frying)

Powdered Sugar Glaze

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • Whipping cream

PREPARATION:

For spiced sugar:
Whisk all ingredients in medium bowl to blend.

For doughnuts:
Whisk first 8 ingredients in medium bowl to blend. Using electric mixer, beat sugar and butter in large bowl until blended (mixture will be grainy). Beat in egg, then yolks and vanilla. Gradually beat in buttermilk; beat in pumpkin in 4 additions. Using rubber spatula, fold in dry ingredients in 4 additions, blending gently after each addition. Cover with plastic; chill 3 hours.

Sprinkle 2 rimmed baking sheets lightly with flour. Press out 1/3 of dough on floured surface to 1/2- to 2/3-inch thickness. Using 2 1/2-inch-diameter round cutter, cut out dough rounds. Arrange on sheets. Repeat with remaining dough in 2 more batches. Gather dough scraps. Press out dough and cut out more dough rounds until all dough is used.

Using 1-inch-diameter round cutter, cut out center of each dough round to make doughnuts and doughnut holes.

Line 2 baking sheets with several layers of paper towels. Pour oil into large deep skillet to depth of 1 1/2 inches. Attach deep-fry thermometer and heat oil to 365°F to 370°F. Fry doughnut holes in 2 batches until golden brown, turning occasionally, about 2 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain. Fry doughnuts, 3 or 4 at a time, until golden brown, adjusting heat to maintain temperature, about 1 minute per side. Using slotted spoon, transfer doughnuts to paper towels to drain. Cool completely.

For powdered sugar glaze:
Whisk powdered sugar and 4 tablespoons whipping cream to blend. Whisk in additional cream, 1 teaspoon at a time, to form medium thick glaze. Can be made up to 3 hours ahead. Add doughnut holes to bowl of spiced sugar and toss to coat. Spread doughnuts on 1 side with Powdered Sugar Glaze. Arrange doughnuts, glazed side up, on racks. Let stand until glaze sets, at least 30 minutes.

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Life lately, according to my iPhone.

Lately life consists of:

mini road trips ♥ a renewed inspiration to write ♥ family trip to the zoo

movie dates ♥ a puppy halloween costume

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Ponte Winery

One of my favorite “getaways” with out actually having to get away very far is to the Temecula wineries. It has become customary to make our first stop at Ponte Winery, where we line our stomachs with a bit of delectable bites before venturing on to multiple tasting rooms available throughout the county. This is one of my favorite pitstops with a gorgeous restaurant patio and misters for those hot, humid days. They have a great selection of light lunch options like the cheese plate you see above. Tastings in Temecula range from $12 – $20 for 5 to 6 tastings a person. Just remember, get a designated driver. If you cannot find one, there are many services available for hire. No one wants to end a great day on a bad note.

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Visually Pleasing

Anyone who has searched in the job market knows that the task of applying to jobs can be a bit monotonous (but very necessary, of course). Constantly reiterating basic information, strategically selling your best and brightest qualities depending on the job description and highlighting your past experience becomes, well, a bit of a bore. Lets be honest, how many people do you know that are truly thrilled when going through the process of looking for a new job? Probably none.

Unfortunately, I do not have a solution to this problem; however, there is an alternative way to present this information that may give your monotonous process a bit of flare. Vizify and Vizualize.me are two websites that group your information and present it in a graphical bio format. Other than posting these links on Linkedin, at the moment, I am not sure how else to present this to employers. But it does make your accomplishments look very….well, dazzling. Check out some examples of the two layouts below.

~ VIZIFY ~

https://www.vizify.com/samantha-runge

~ VIZUALIZE.ME ~

http://vizualize.me/samrunge

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