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11 Tried and True Recipes Anyone Can Make During Quarantine

March 24, 2020
This is a good time to share some of my favorite recipes. Please enjoy!

Cheesy Italian Beef Bake
1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1 jar (26 ounces) tomato pasta sauce (any variety)
1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese softened
1/3 cup sour cream
2 cups shredded Parmesan cheese
3/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 cups Original Bisquick™ mix 1 1/2 cups milk

Steps
1. Heat oven to 375°F. Spray rectangular baking dish, 13x9x2 inches, with cooking spray. Cook beef in 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until brown; drain. Stir in pasta sauce.

2. Mix cream cheese, sour cream, 1/2 cup of the Parmesan cheese and 1/4 teaspoon of the Italian seasoning in a small bowl until smooth and creamy.

3. Spoon half of the beef mixture (about 2 cups) into a baking dish. Drop spoonfuls of the cream cheese mixture evenly onto beef mixture. Spoon remaining beef mixture over cream cheese mixture.

4. Stir 1 cup of the Parmesan cheese, the Bisquick mix and milk in a medium bowl until blended. Pour over beef mixture.

5. Bake uncovered 30 to 35 minutes or until light golden brown. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese and 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning. Bake 5 minutes longer. Let stand at least 10 minutes before cutting.



Brown Sugar Meatloaf
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup ketchup
1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
3/4 cup milk
2 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 small onion, chopped
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 cup finely crushed saltine cracker crumbs

Steps
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 5x9 inch loaf pan.

2. Press the brown sugar in the bottom of the prepared loaf pan and spread the ketchup over the sugar.

3. In a mixing bowl, mix thoroughly all remaining ingredients and shape into a loaf. Place on top of the ketchup.

4. Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour or until juices are clear.



Chicken Enchiladas
1 package (10 ct) Medium Flour Tortillas
2 cans of Cream of Chichen Soup
4-6 chicken breasts: Cooked and Chopped
1 small onion: Chopped
3 cups of grated Cheddar Cheese
1 container (8oz) of Sour Cream
Garlic powder + salt + pepper (to taste)

Steps
1. Mix chopped and cooked chicken, onion, soup, chilies, sour cream, and 1 1/2 cups of cheese. Add garlic powder, salt, and pepper.

2. Spray pan with cooking spray. Roll each tortilla with 1/2 - 3/4 cup of mixture. Place in pan seam side down. Cover the top with the remaining mixture.

3. Cover with foil. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Uncover. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake uncovered for 5 minutes.



Dumplings

2 chicken breasts
4 eggs
2 teaspoons of salt
3 cups of flour
Milk
1 can of Chicken Broth
1 can of Cream of Chicken Soup

Steps
1. Boil chicken until it falls apart. Let it cool in the broth. Save the broth. Cut the chicken up and dump it back in the broth.

2. Mix eggs and salt. Add flour. Pour in milk (just enough to stir it). Mix until you think your arm is going to fall off.

3. Broil the broth. Add the can of chicken broth into it.

4. Hold a teaspoon in the boiling broth to get it hot (this is to prevent the dough from sticking to the spoon. Scoop a spoonful of the dough, then hold it in the broth and shake the spoon until the dough falls off. Repeat until all the dough is gone.

5. Add the cream of chicken soup. Dumplings are done when they float to the top.



Rice Cones
3 cups of white long-grain rice
6 cups of milk
Dash of salt

Steps
1. Cook rice until done, then let it cool.

2. Mix 2 eggs and 1 cup of milk.

3. Fill another bowl with breadcrumbs.

4. Spray your hands with cooking spray. Grab a handful of rice and shape it into a cone (ball). Roll the cone in the breadcrumbs. Then, roll the cone in the milk and egg. Next, roll it in the crumbs again.

5. Fry cones in hot oil until brown on all sides. Cover with ketchup and eat.



Busy Day Chicken and Rice
1 1/2 cups long-grain white rice (uncooked)
4-6 chicken breasts
6 tablespoons of butter
1 package of dry onion soup mix
6 cups of boiling water
Salt and pepper to taste

Steps
1. Grease 9 x 13 Rectangular Glass Baking Dish.

2. Cover bottom with rice. Arrange chicken on top of rice and dot with butter.

3. Sprinkle onion soup over it. Add salt and pepper. Pour boiling water over it.

4. Bake 350 degrees for 1 hour.



Chicken Pot Pie
2 count Pie Crusts (in the frozen section)
2 cooked and chopped chicken breasts
1 can of Cream of Chicken Soup
1 can of Cream of Potatoe Soup
1/4 cup of chopped onion
1/3 cup of chopped carrots
1/3 cup of chopped broccoli
1/4 teaspoon of Italian seasoning
Salt & pepper to taste

Steps
1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl.

2. Follow directions on the package for two-pie crust.

3. Bake 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Let cool. Then serve.



Beer-battered Fish Tacos
1 package of corn tortillas
1 lb. cod, cut into 16 slices
1 cup of dark beer
1 cup of all-purpose flour
1/2 cup of canola oil

Steps
1. Make the white sauce first (recipe below).
2. Prepare all sides (list below).
3. Stir dark beer and flour (may need to add more flour or beer) until pancake consistency.
4. Dip and cover slices of fish (not frozen) into the beer and flour mixture.
5. Fry dipped fish slices in canola oil in frying pan until both sides are golden brown.
6. Place fried fish onto a rack.

Sides
Shredded Cheese (or Pepper Jack)
Chopped Cilantro
Chopped Onion
Chopped Cabbage
Limes
Hot sauce

White sauce recipe
1 cup of mayonnaise
1/4 cup of milk
1/2 teaspoon of garlic salt
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
Steps
1. Mix all ingredients. Then refrigerate until ready to eat.

Last step: Heat corn tortillas. Place fried fish on warm corn tortillas, add a spoonful of white sauce, then add desired sides on taco.



PHILADELPHIA 3-Step Cheesecake
2 pkg. (8 oz. each) Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1 ready-to-use graham cracker crumb crust (6 oz.)

Steps
1. Heat oven to 325°F.
2. Beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla with mixer until blended. Add eggs; beat just until blended.
3. Pour into crust.
4. Bake 40 min. or until center is almost set. Cool. Refrigerate 3 hours.
5. Topping: Pie Filling & Topping, Original Country Cherry



Jamba Juice Peanut Butter Moo’d Smoothie Copycat
2 cups chocolate or dark chocolate almond
1/4 cup natural peanut butter
2 frozen bananas

Steps
In a Vitamix blender, add ingredients in order listed. Blend on high until smooth and slushy.



Best Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons hot water
½ teaspoon salt
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Steps
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

2. Cream together the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Dissolve baking soda in hot water. Add to batter along with salt. Stir in flour, chocolate chips, and nuts. Drop by large spoonfuls onto ungreased pans.

3. Bake for about 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until edges are nicely browned.
 

Online Resources for Everyone During the Stay-At-Home Order

March 23, 2020
This is an interesting, uncertain, and unprecedented time. We are keeping our clients, friends, and family in our thoughts and doing our best to remain as optimistic as possible. This time will pass and we will be left with gratitude for things we use to take for granted.

When you are struggling to understand the global situation we are facing it helps to stay present. Spiritual leader Eckhart Tolle says, “To stay present in everyday life, it helps to be deeply rooted within yourself; otherwise, the mind, which has incredible momentum, will drag you along like a wild river.”

In this day and age we can connect socially using technology. The phrase "social distancing" doesn't sit right with me because as humans we need social connection. In my family, we have chosen to "physically distance" from our family and friends as to protect them and us, but social distancing hasn't happened. We have been staying in contact through Zoom, Facetime, and Messenger Kids.

The internet is full of great resources people of all ages can use. Below you will find links to audiobooks, music lessons, mindful mediations, exercise programs, and even some of my favorite recipes.

Online Resources to Enjoy During This Time at Home

San Diego Public Library - Library patrons can access a collection of 125,000 audiobooks, e-books, and e-magazine collection 24 hours a day virtually. The Libby (e-books) and Flipster (e-magazines) apps give access to magazines and books.

Hoffman Academy - FREE 30 day premium trial of online piano lessons. Receive online music lessons for beginners including worksheets, audio tracks, games, worksheets, and activities.

LesMills OnDemand - FREE 14 day trial. Work out in the comfort of your own home with unlimited access to programs taught in 21,000 gyms all over the world.

UCLA Mindfull App -  Find the free UCLA Mindful App on iTunes or Google Play, download the guided meditations here https://www.uclahealth.org/marc/mindful-meditations, or stream. Kindly recorded by UCLA MARC's Director of Mindfulness Education, Diana Winston.

Learn at Home website - Scholastic lauched this website with daily lessons that combine stories, prompts for writing activities and drawings, and videos. Grade levels include pre-K, kindergarten, grades 1 and 2, grades 3 to 5, and grades 6 and up.

11 Tried and True Recipes Anyone Can Make During Quarantine - Family recipes include Brown Sugar Meatloaf, Chicken Enchiladas, Chicken Pot Pie, Beer-Battered Fish Tacos, 3-Step Cheesecake, and more.
 

The Cliffs in La Jolla are Beautiful But Don't Get Too Close

March 17, 2020
La Jolla is one of the most beautiful places in San Diego. The expansive cliffs, numerous sea lions, incredible views of the coast, and classy shops and dining options attract thousands of visitors daily. On a beautiful Sunday in March, the 8th to be exact, I ventured out to find a coffee shop with an ocean view and to take a nice walk around La Jolla Cove. It takes patience to find parking, but eventually one of the 2-hour spots near the grassy area will become available.

Having been to The Living Room Coffeehouse on Prospect Street only a handful of times, I wasn't positive I would find what I was looking for. Thankfully, a little table in the back was situated above a walkway leading right to the ocean. After the barista finished with my tasty handcrafted mocha, I settled into my seat to soak in the view. Considering it was at the beginning of what is now being called the pandemic, there were only a few people scattered about. They have a great menu including cookies, pastries, muffins, scones, chicken pie, quiche, soup, hummus, and many more delicious items.

After enjoying my time at the coffeehouse I made my way to the cliffs near the Sunny Jim Cave. The ocean view is incredible with walkways, trees, and cliffs. I walked over by the cliffs where many people were looking out over the ocean. Many kayakers in the water, from La Jolla Shores, were being instructed on how to get in and out of the caves. The sea lions and seals were barking and grunting loudly below. As I climbed closer to the edge of the cliff to take pictures of the waves crashing on the rocks below I could see other people getting dangerously close to the edge.

As I was about to go up the wooden stairs to walk back to my car a firefighter ran by me. Turns out there was a woman who fell about 10 feet. Before I knew it a cliff rescue was in full force. It was amazing to see the amount of care and attention the firefighters put into rescuing this woman. She had injured her ankle and was cold from the breeze. One firefighter brought her several blankets, while another asked if she needed medication for the pain. It took some time before they pulled her up. She was in good spirits, but extremely embarrassed. Every year firefighters are forced to rescue people who either get stuck on the cliff or fall. Be careful so you can enjoy the day and not end up in the emergency room or worse.

Before you leave head over to the La Jolla Cave store where you can pay $5 a person to go into the cave. The steps are long and slippery so be prepared to get a workout. Once you get to the bottom there is a nice lookout point. It's a great experience for anyone who has never been in a cave before. The store has jewelry, shells, and trinkets for sale, so grab a souvenir or keepsake to remember this wonderful experience.

This is an unprecedented time and as always we are dedicated to helping our clients in the buying or selling process. San Diego stay healthy and stay home to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

View homes for sale in La Jolla.


Cliffs in La Jolla near The La Jolla Cave Store


Cliff rescue in La Jolla


Successful cliff rescue in La Jolla


Wooden bench overlooking the Cliffs in La Jolla


Ocean view from the cliffs in La Jolla


La Jolla Cove beach


Sunny Jim Cave in La Jolla


Stairway to Sunny Jim Cave
 

The Secrets Of The Magic Castle A Private Invite-Only Club

February 14, 2020
Have you heard of The Magic Castle in Los Angeles? A family friend who lives in Playa Del Rey promised to try to score us tickets to this private, invite-only club. Months later we were gifted VIP tickets to attend The Magic Castle. Weekdays and evenings are reserved for adults only, however, families can attend brunch on the weekends. The only weekday available was a Monday, which was inconvenient for us. We opted for making reservations for Sunday brunch with family and friends.

The valet was ready for us as we pulled up to the legendary castle. There was a line to get in as the attendant briefs each party on what to expect. The dress code is strictly enforced and anyone not adhering to the code will be denied entrance. My daughter had to check in her coat and was told by the valet to change her shoes. Ironically, once we were admitted we noticed another young girl with the same shoes my daughter was told to change. Also, be prepared to take pictures outside and in the lobby as taking pictures is not permitted inside the club.

We finally entered the exclusive club and truthfully it was not what we were expecting. There was a bartender available as we entered, we were given the schedule of magic shows, and directed on where to go. The staff told us to get in line early for the shows as they tend to fill up. We expected magicians to be walking around everywhere doing tricks. Although, this wasn't the case we had a terrific time and the kids loved it.

The first show we attended was a children's magic show. Our kids sat in the front row and laughed at everything Tricky Tim the Magician did. The tricks were funny and intriguing. Our brunch reservation was later in the day, so we had plenty of time to see another show. The magicians, both professional and amateur, were passionate about their craft.

Our friend's young son was getting hungry so we asked for an earlier brunch reservation. Surprisingly, we were given an earlier time slot. The buffet-style brunch is $45 per person and includes prime rib, crab legs, smoked salmon, eggs benedict, shrimp cocktail, pastries, chicken nuggets, an omelet station, unlimited mimosas, ice cream, and more. After brunch, they gave us each a ticket for a special magic show. Last but not least, Irma the invisible piano player was a big hit. She takes musical requests. My oldest son asked her to play his favorite song "Blue Sky."

If you are interested in visiting The Magic Castle I have a few suggestions on how to get an invite. First, when booking a room for The Magic Castle hotel ask them to also book your visit to The Magic Castle. Second, meet people, ask around, visit magic stores in Los Angeles, anywhere you might meet a magician who may feel inclined to give you a ticket.

For more information visit magiccastle.com.











 

Eight Features Of The San Diego Public Library That You May Not Know

January 16, 2020
With over 30 public libraries in San Diego, there are so many resources for people of all ages. After visiting the Point Loma library with my three kids in tow I felt prompted to write this post. The librarian was very friendly and helpful when it came to finding and checking out books. My kids were excited to choose their library cards and electronically check out books by themselves. We were happy to find out the city is no longer charging a fee for items returned late. This library has a good size book store to purchase used books and a large kids area with comfortable reading corners. The boat design leading downstairs to the Teen and Children's area is very fun and has an area underneath for reading.

In January alone the events calendar for the Point Loma/Hervey Library location is chock-full of great activities. There's something for everyone including storytime, lego or chess club, Zumba, emerging poets gathering, gaming, and even a Prep Academy to prepare high schoolers for the SAT & ACTs.

Interested in trying out a 3D printer? Several locations offer this service. Make an appointment at the library of your choice, but keep in mind the rule is one item per day up to 2 hours a day. Scanning and 3D printing are free, but it is required to stay in the lab to monitor prints.

Eight features that make San Diego Public Libraries great:

1. Homework help for kids and teens as well as a variety of events and fun activities
2. Summer and winter reading challenges offering rewards to encourage young readers
3. Resume strategies workshop and What to say during job interviews workshop
4. Resources for Veterans such as connecting them with benefits they are entitled to
5. Reserve rooms for gaming on Xbox or Wii
6. Exercise classes
7. Legal clinic for men and women experiencing homelessness
8. Free computer classes

Get more information about locations, directions, and events by going to their website at https://sandiego.librarymarket.com.

If you have any questions about San Diego real estate or to just say hi, please contact Alexander Pfleger. Our company can assist with selling or buying a home, financing, refinancing, and even reverse mortgages.

View homes for sale in Point Loma.

Point Loma Library
Entrance of Point Loma/Hervey Library


Teens & Children's area


Stairs leading to the downstairs


Computers in the children area


Comfortable reading area for kids


Surfboard tables in the downstairs area
 

Find delicious food at the award winning French Gourmet

December 9, 2019
If you have been in Pacific Beach you will have likely driven by The French Gourmet restaurant on Turquoise Street. Having been in business since 1979 they are successful and experienced in catering corporate events, holiday parties, fundraisers, and special occasions. Gourmet is the perfect word to describe the elegant wedding cakes, fresh pastries, pomegranate salad, Lollipop lamb chop, New York steak, Smoked Salmon, Chicken Pot Pie, and other delicious food.

Their fine dining restaurant is quaint and cozy. Locals and tourists come to enjoy the cocktails and wine as well as the amazing entrees. You will be welcomed with warm baguette bread and soft butter. The three-course fixed-price dinner is worth it at $29.95. One of the options is house salad, confit duck, and Millenium chocolate cake. The servers are polite, attentive, helpful, and friendly.

I visited the bakery while waiting for the oil in my car to be changed. The hand-crafted espresso drink was very good as well as the breakfast burrito. All the pastries and treats in the case looked delicious, especially the chocolate croissants. For directions, catering, and to view the menu please visit their website at www.thefrenchgourmet.com.

View homes for sale in Pacific Beach.


Entrance of The French Gourmet restaurant


Bakery case in entryway


Fine dining restaurant at The French Gourmet


Advertising on the side of the building
 

Surf, Relax, Breathe in the Ocean Air at Swami's Beach in Encinitas

November 15, 2019
One of the best beaches in Encinitas is Swami's Beach, named after Swami Paramahansa Yogananda (1893-1952). The Self-Realization Fellowship use to own the land comprising of Swami's State Beach park. There are numerous shops, restaurants, cafe's, and the beautiful Meditation Gardens within walking distance. The long wooden staircase leading to the beach is rewarding for both the exercise and the incredible beauty on the way down and once your feet hit the sand.

This beach appeals to many visitors for the tide pools, waves, soft sand, dramatic beach cliffs, and even an outdoor shower facility to rinse off in freshwater. Make sure to visit Swami's beach on days where the tide is particularly low to see the tidepools. Surfers and guests can park in the small paved parking lot or find street parking on the Pacific Coast Highway. There is a large grassy area with benches for those simply wanting to enjoy the sun to study or have lunch with the family.

Swami's is one of the best family beaches because it is far from the road and the area south of the steps is gently sloping and shallow. If the stairs are too much of a challenge the views overlooking the beach below are wonderful. There are many talented surfers in the water to watch and admire. It's not uncommon to see generations of families surfing together at Swami's, adding to its charm. New surfers should keep in mind the paddle out to the point break is fairly long, it can be crowded making surf etiquette a must, and due to it being a reef there are sharp rocks on the bottom.


Nearby Restaurants, Cafe's, and Bars

Swami's Cafe Encinitas Blvd
1298 S Coast Hwy 101, Encinitas, CA 92024
Enjoy a self-serve coffee bar with a variety of options to choose from and delicious food including breakfast, acai bowls, and sandwiches. Guests can sit outside under umbrellas, while still taking in the beautiful weather.

Union Kitchen & Tap
1108 S Coast Hwy 101, Encinitas, CA
Gather with friends to drink great beer with TV's to watch sports. Families and dog owners enjoy the outdoor area. Live music and a fun atmosphere make for a good day or night out. Patrons love the Mr. Fox cocktail, the scallops in the jambalaya, and bison burger just to name a few.

Encinitas Ale House
1044 S Coast Hwy 101, Encinitas, CA
Popular pub to enjoy amazing beer and food. The menu consists of pretzels with beer cheese, parmesan garlic fries, fried chicken sandwiches, tacos, burgers, pizza, and more. The Kobe burger gets raving reviews by diners.

Encinitas Fish Shop
1010 S Coast Hwy 101, Encinitas, CA
Casual sit-down restaurant with outdoor dining. The menu has many choices like Red Snapper, Fish and Chips, Fish Tacos, Clam Chowder, Oysters, Macaroni Salad, Blackened Swordfish, a Mahi Mahi plate, and delicious Pokie Bowls.

Philz Coffee
1060 S Coast Hwy 101, Encinitas, CA
This coffee shop has delicious pour-over coffee and excellent tea. Customers enjoy the iced coffee Rose', Mint Mojito iced coffee, and other amazing options on the menu. Parking can be a little difficult, but worth your time.

View homes for sale in Encinitas.


Staircase down to Swami's Beach


Beautiful ocean view on the way down to Swami's


Staircase, lifeguard tower, and sandy beach


Peaceful beach, cliffs, and waves


Beach and ocean view between the palm trees


View of Swami's looking towards the staircase and lifeguard tower


Beautiful Swami's beach in Encinitas


Stone, wave art at Swami's


City of Encinitas, Welcome to Swami's Beach, Simple Rules sign


Swami's Ped Xing


City of Encinitas Welcome sign


Dining patio at Swami's Cafe


Swami's Cafe


Philz Coffee in Encinitas


Union Kitchen & Tap


Mural of a sunset and surfers in Encinitas
 

Relax and Reflect at the Meditation Gardens in Encinitas

October 17, 2019
We all need to take time to stay present, enjoy our surroundings, and connect with nature. One of the most beautiful and calm settings in Encinitas is the Meditation Gardens at The Self-Realization Fellowship. As I walked into the garden, greeted by a friendly security guard, the breeze coupled with the sun made me feel at peace.

Each path leads to a different tranquil backdrop. Thankfully, the day I toured the grounds there were very few visitors. Guests spent their time engrossed in books, focused on journaling, quietly meditating, or gazing at the crashing waves.

Meditation is widely known as an effective method to get centered. With the large to-do lists, responsibilities, and inevitable life changes we all need to find time to breathe and be mindful. According to Mindworks.org the definition of meditation is taking charge of the mind and being able to concentrate on one thing. Many of life's circumstances are out of our control; through meditation, we all can gain greater control over our actions when situations arise.

The Meditation Gardens provide a safe, quiet, and serene place to take a moment to relax and find comfort in just being. To get more information about activities and directions visit encinitastemple.org.

10 Highlights of the Meditation Gardens in Encinitas, San Diego:
  • Colorful flowers
  • Clean and serene koi ponds
  • Many green plants
  • Sounds and view of the Pacific Ocean
  • Private spots with benches
  • Quiet setting for reflecting
  • Clean restrooms
  • Near the Encinitas Temple
  • Walkability to Swami's beach and the town of Encinitas
  • Close to restaurants, cafes, and stores
The Encinitas Temple is beautiful and close to the gardens. Enjoy inspirational lecture services, Sunday School and Teen classes, and other helpful activities to deepen spiritual practices. There are services and events offered seven days a week, including energization exercises, study groups, and inspirational services.

View homes for sale in Encinitas.


White bench to sit and enjoy the view


Beautiful view of the Pacific Ocean


Path to walk and enjoy the ocean air


Read about The Golden Lotus Temple


Beautiful ocean view seen from within the gardens


Stairway to the gardens


Peaceful spot to meditate


Koi pond in the gardens


Gate to blocked off area


House blocked by a fence


Part of the Self-Realization Temple grounds


Self-Realization Fellowship Sign


Welcome sign to the Self-Realization Fellowship Meditation Gardens
 

College Student? Plenty of Study Space, Rooftop Courtyard, Nine Floors of Books

September 16, 2019
Many college students find their way to San Diego, considering it is home to many universities. Some of the well-known schools are University of California, University of San Diego, and San Diego State University. The San Diego Public Central Library downtown is one of the best places to study on your own or for a group discussion. It is worth mentioning the study rooms are for San Diego residents only. Parking is free with two-hour validation in the attached parking garage.

Below is a list of amenities offered:

1. Free two-hour parking
2. Store for used books
3. Gift shop
4. Children's area with nursing rooms
5. Teen section with a snack bar and full game room
6. Large chess game on first floor
7. Several large tables, near windows, with electrical outlets
8. Nine floors lined with books
9. Computers on the ninth floor
10. Rooftop courtyard
11. Kassianna The Living Room coffee bar out front

View homes for sale in Downtown San Diego.

San Diego Public Central Library























 

Top 6 Reasons to Plan a San Diego Winery Staycation

August 15, 2019
On a warm Saturday in August, after getting a babysitter for the weekend, we headed to Cheval Winery in Escondido. It’s a quick 40 minute drive from our house in Bay Park. The moment we entered the property lined with grapevines we felt at home. Easy parking on the gravel and a short walk to the vineyard casita and tasting room. The rustic, cozy bungalow had everything we needed including a coffee maker, dishes, refrigerator, and even a frother.

After settling in, we walked over to the Tipsy Barrel Tasting Room where we sampled 6 different wines. Our favorites, Johnny Walker Bay and Red Hot Diva, suited us. We relaxed on the comfortable sofas in the shade drinking wine and listening to live music. It was a calm afternoon, before the evening crowd, with plenty of seating.

Later we explored the grounds to revel in the fruitful grapevines, exquisite show horses, a riding arena, and llamas. The incredible orange blazing sunset added to the charm of the evening. Daytime visitors go home by 7 pm, allowing overnight guests to enjoy the serene property. The three-bedroom villa, available on Airbnb, has a terrace with tables, an outdoor television, and a stone fireplace.

We ate dinner at Vintana’s, a fine dining restaurant, the food was delicious. It’s an interesting experience as the restaurant is in the same building as a high end car dealership. The main entrance is confusing, but once you get there valet is waiting to take your car. We dined on the spacious lanai enjoying the vibrant ambiance with a live band and wonderful views of city lights. Our attentive waiter explained the menu and answered our questions. We went with the Grilled Duroc Pork Chops and Crusted Ahi Tuna.

The morning was a dream, just us and the horses, drinking our coffee surrounded by nature. It was nice getting away from responsibilities and kids. Book a trip or get more information by visiting their website at ChevalWinery.com. Weekday and weekend events include yoga in the vines, Two-Step workshops, and more. Be ready to spoil yourselves because the wine is pricey.

Top 6 reasons to plan a San Diego winery staycation at Cheval Winery::
  1. Amazing variety of distinctive wines
  2. Casita and villa available for rent, no need to drive home
  3. Quiet getaway in San Diego County away from crowds
  4. Country Two-Step Bootcamp, yoga in the vines, and wine workshops
  5. Champion show horses to see
  6. Live music
View homes for sale in Escondido.


View of outside from tasting room


Outside sitting area


Tipsy Barrel Tasting Room


Tasting Room and Luxury Villa


Sofas and tables outside tasting room


Vineyard Casita


Interior of Casita


Rows of Grapevines


Bunch of Grapes


Champion Show horses


Riding arena for horses


Llama Holding Pen


Outside sitting area


Crusted Ahi Tuna at Vintana’s
 
 

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