Thursday, October 9, 2008

Welcome, BATW!







Welcome, BATW'ers! I'm so glad you found your way here today! (If you don't know what BATW is all about, click on the above image and find out what all the excitement is about!) I'm sure Daja's blog will be so much more creative than mine today. It usually is. She is a gifted writer (even published!) and her mind just works in a much more creative fashion in all areas than mine!





A quote from my other daughter is much more like me. "My mother says I'm, uh.....um......uh, oh, yeah, quick-witted!"





But welcome, anyway, to where I journal my days. Sometimes I get caught up with life and forget to journal it; other times I forget to see the wonder of the day and so don't journal it; but my goal here is to journal my days as I walk this journey here on earth. Sometimes, it may actually interest some of you. Sometimes, it may only interest my husband who also enjoys every little detail about our grandchildren!

Just a few words about me. I am the mother of six -- three by marriage (update explanation: my children-in-law), and the grandmother of soon-to-be twelve. Yes, can you believe that? And here I am so young and all. My husband and I pastor a small church in a small town. We enjoy life and thank God for His many blessings as we purpose our lives around Him. Oh, and we ride a Goldwing.





So, I live on the Central Coast of California. I'm not just giving you directions on where to look on a map, that is what we call where we live -- The Central Coast of California. It is basically made up of two counties, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo. I live in San Luis Obispo County. Our county is divided into South County and North County. I live in North County. Even though there are quite a few towns in both North and South County, we will often just refer to something being in North or South County. Why all that is important to tell you, I have no idea.





You will notice a great many Spanish city names and Saints' names for cities in California. California was settled by the Catholics bringing Christianity to the natives. (very simplified explanation) I'm not Catholic, but the missions are fascinating places to visit. There are twenty-one in all. We have two in San Luis Obispo County -- one in South County, one in North County.






One of the things I always seem to be explaining to people is that I don't live in L.A. California and Los Angeles are not synonymous. I'm a native Californian and have lived in many places here. Some of those places look like the following. Definitely not L.A.




But, what's it like where I live now?


No, this isn't where I live, but I did live in what used to be a caretaker's cottage once. This is Hearst Castle, where William Randolph Hearst actually lived and entertained the famous and the infamous of Hollywood. It is reported that one day he said to his architect, "…Miss Morgan, we are tired of camping out in tents at the ranch in San Simeon, I would like to build a little something…” It is now a state park and you can take tours.




I live in the midst of vineyards,



and the road to my house is surrounded by olive and almond trees.



Not far from where I live is this place:


Can you read what it says? The EARTHQUAKE CAPITOL OF THE WORLD! Yes, here is where they have equipment buried deep in the earth to register the earthquakes. Yes, I live close to two major fault lines.

Three days before Christmas in 2003, our town suffered extensive damage from a major earthquake.



One of the important reasons for our town existing is the sulphur hot springs. A upscale resort was built and attracted folks from all over to come bathe in the healing springs. Our town boasts the famous -- Paderewski lived here, and the infamous -- Jesse James and his gang had hide-out tunnels under said resort. I guess they all came to enjoy the hot springs! They (the springs, not the outlaws) are still here, but aren't the big draw anymore.


One of the more interesting things that happened during the earthquake was a HUGE spring came shooting forth out of our library/city hall parking lot! The hot sulphur water flowed through town for days before it could be re-routed. It's hard to shut off a geyser. People sat on curbs soaking their feet! It is still flowing and being pumped into a river that flows through town. (The sulphur can still be smelled once in awhile and in certain places.) However, the sinkhole is still there and they don't really know what to do about it. So, there's a big fence around the hole in the parking lot and we lost a big part of our downtown parking!



This picture was taken toward the bottom, but that's about 100 - 150 feet down!


One of my favorite things about our town is the city park. Isn't it pretty?



The park is used quite a bit. There are wine festivals, olive festivals, farmers' markets, car shows, and concerts. I blogged about how much fun those concerts are here. A very special thing happened in that gazebo. One anniversary, my husband presented me with dinner right in the gazebo! Catered with linen, crystal, and roses. Serenaded by violinists! Just like in the movies! Isn't he the most romantic?


A couple more fun things about my town.


One Saturday night each December, about ten blocks of a popular street are blocked off and every house is decorated and offers something to eat or entertain you. This evening attracts people from far and wide and about 10,000 people crowd into those ten blocks during the evening. You are greeted by carolers and entertained by dance troupes. You can visit Scrooge's house where he keeps yelling at you to go away (probably the biggest crowd is around this house) or you can come by where my church's worship team is singing and handing out hot chocolate. You can view living Nativity scenes and send a letter to Santa Claus. You come home with your pockets laden with candy canes and your fingers sticky from cotton candy. You also come home with the Christmas spirit launched for the season!



A grand thing about our town is that it hosts the California Mid-State Fair. It is twelve days long and brings the hottest names in entertainment to this little place. It's amazing.


Actually, the fairgrounds have now been re-named. It is now called the Event Center. Probably more aptly named, but not as old-fashioned as "fairgrounds". I doubt that there is a weekend all year long that something isn't happening there. From horse shows to home shows, from bike runs to gala events. For being a small town, we have a lot happening here. That's what we get for being halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles and on a major highway, I guess.



I was going to tell you a bit about South County and the coast, where we used to live, but I think you're probably tired of reading by now. So, I'll keep Madonna Inn, Bubblegum Alley, the sand dunes, our tourist towns, and our university for another time. I'll leave you with a few pictures and you can guess which one is which!

















Thank you for visiting today. I so enjoyed having you. Please come again. I'll be seeing you around your place!

68 comments:

  1. You had me at the lovely city park. It's good to always see the beauty around us!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Much aloha from Hawaii! I loved the city park dinner. WOW! We have family in Paso and Templeton. We visited them this summer. I HEART the Cowgirl Cafe in Paso. We ate there at least three or four mornings!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Wow, now that's an impressive sinkhole. I love the the picture -- really helped bring it home. And hmmm, sulphur springs sound lovely. What a pleasant area to live in!

    ReplyDelete
  4. WOW! WOW! I'd say you did a fantastic job! Those pictures are great..and you really live in around a vinyard? I am so jealous because next to my diet coke with a fresh lemon wedge I love wine. Oh and I sure hope you have Earthquake insurance. Oh oh oh and you ride motorcycles?? I knew you were hip...I knew it I knew it I knew it! Thanks so much for hosting us...I think you were very creative in your post and very interesting.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Debbie, you are right! My mom is a lot more hip than she thinks she is! Doesn't she live in a lovely area?! I love visiting her and just relaxing!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks for the tour. What beautiful pictures! I am glad you made the distinction between California and LA. I think that get's missed alot!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I had a friend in Camarillo and she just fell in love with it there! It all looks much less California-ish than LA :)! Thanks for the tour and ENJOY your BATW day!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Wow what beautiful pictures. Loved reading you blog hope you stop by for a visit. Thanks for sharing!

    Much Love

    Anissa

    ReplyDelete
  9. California is beautiful. I lived 4 years of my childhood in Oceanside and have made many visits since. Thanks for the tour of your piece of Cali. It was a great reminder of the beauty of the state.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Aloha, and thank you for a wonderful tour of California. I love these BATW tours and we don't have have to sit on a long flight to get there!!!

    Lorie

    ReplyDelete
  11. Thanks for showing us the CA life many don't know about! You live in a lovely place!

    ReplyDelete
  12. wow - you really know how to host a party for us BATW-ers! So many Pics! so many fun facts! Your town looks quaint. I love how you & hubby pastor a church together. And you are soooo right - you are TOO YOUNG to have 12 grandchildren!!! Thanks for being such a great host!!!

    ReplyDelete
  13. What a great tour!!!! Here from Arkansas. Wow Almond and Olive trees....I bet thats amazing to drive through.

    ReplyDelete
  14. What a great post!! I really enjoyed seeing all the pictures!

    ReplyDelete
  15. How beautiful! You did a great job with your tour! I want to come in Decemeber for the festival!! Christmas is my favorite time!! Enjoy your BATW day!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Hello from Arkansas!

    My husband and I have family in Arroyo Grande - the central coast is beautiful!!

    Thank you for the great tour.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Thanks for such a great tour with such beautiful pictures!!!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Hey from Louisiana! Thanks for the tour! What a beautiful place! Normally when I think of CA, I think of busy streets and rude people with great tans! haha! great post!

    ReplyDelete
  19. what lovely pictures :)
    Thanks for such a wonderful tour!

    ReplyDelete
  20. I LOVE your part of Cali. I spent a summer working at Kings Canyon National park back in the 90's, and got to San Luis a couple times - SO pretty!!! Thanks for sharing all about your life with us today!!!

    ReplyDelete
  21. I've driven thru your area a couple of times. Beautiful Beautiful! Looks like a wonderful life. Thanks for posting all the great pictures. Hugs from Texas via BATW.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Great tour! I love pictures. I bet that Mid-State Fair is awesome!

    ReplyDelete
  23. What a refreshing tour of Cali. I lived in Riverside for 13 years & my best friend is still a Cali girl. I love picture of the mountains. I think that is what I miss most about California - 30 minutes from the beach in one direction & not much farther from the mountains in the other direction. Thanks for bringing good memories back!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Great post Lady Dorothy! Very interesting facts about the earthquake that I didn't know. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  25. Greetings from Nebraska! I hope you are enjoying your highlight day!! I loved your pictures & your motorcycle!!

    ReplyDelete
  26. WOW, Dorothy! I want to visit that mountain lake, and then come back for the Christmas extravaganza. That was an awesome tour!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Anonymous7:28 AM

    Babycakes,

    You did a FANTASTIC job on this blog tour. I am so proud that you are MY wife. California is definitely beautiful, all the vineyards, rolling hills, the beaches, the historical spots and unique places of intrest. But the loveliest thing in California is you. Thank you for making me proud of you. I come to BATW and can say that's my girl. You are so creative,wise with your time and a great homemaker. I love you!

    Love you,
    Your Hubby

    ReplyDelete
  28. Well hello from a fellow BATW spotlighter. Thanks for visiting on your layover. Come back anytime!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Your pictures are beautiful! I makes me want to visit California.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Thanks for the wonderful tour, I learned so much that I didn't know. Congrats on the spotlight from BATW, I visting from Georgia. You live in a beautiful part of the country.
    Hugs, Amy ;)

    ReplyDelete
  31. How sweet is your husband!!! I hope the BATW readers see the message from "Anonymous" above to his "BABYCAKES!" So so sweet. He gets BIG points from this blogger!

    ReplyDelete
  32. Greetings from Texas and BATW! What a wonderful tour you gave us and the photos are incredible!

    ReplyDelete
  33. Wow, amazing!

    Those giant trees slay me.

    Happy BATW day!

    ReplyDelete
  34. Loved your awesome post.Have been to parts of CA and this brought back wonderful memories. Also, loved the comment from your hubby! Greetings from Alberta, Canada!

    ReplyDelete
  35. i think that you live the dream---beauty surrounds you in trees and sunshine---and i think that small town-living in CA is the only way to go. my parents lived in san diego county when i was in HS and i enjoyed it while there, but i'm pretty positive that i would not like it now.
    thanks for sharing such amazing things!

    ReplyDelete
  36. OH you live in one of my favorite places. When hubby and I get a couple vacation, rare that they are, we LOVE driving the california central coast. We make no plans just when we will get there and when we have to leave. the rest is up to fate.


    Have a HAPPY BATW day.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Hello! I came from BATW! Loved taking the tour of your hometown, it seems so lovely! Christmas times, especially sound so quaint -- I'd love to see all of that!

    ReplyDelete
  38. Look at you on the Goldwing!

    Loved the pictures--and seeing more of California than LA!

    ReplyDelete
  39. Greetings from Wisconsin. Congratulation on your BATW feature. I hope you enjoy your day in the sun. Thanks for the wonderful tour:-)

    ReplyDelete
  40. I visited that area a couple of years ago and I think it might just be one of the most beautiful places on earth. Thank you for sharing today and love seeing you on the Goldwing.

    ReplyDelete
  41. You live in a lovely area and I am so jealous! JK :)
    I enjoyed the look into your life and world!
    A fellow BATW´er!

    ReplyDelete
  42. I love California wine country. So beautiful. Thanks for the tour!

    ReplyDelete
  43. thanks for the tour.

    ReplyDelete
  44. wow... all the best things about California!!!

    ReplyDelete
  45. Sarah-Kate*10:56 AM

    YEA MOMMY!!! YOU DID IT!!!! How come there were no pics of me????!??!

    ReplyDelete
  46. Happy BATW day. It's good to see you again.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Congrats on your BATW feature!!! What beautiful, beautiful pictures! Definitely not like L.A. at all! And I need to plan some road trips with the family to the Central Coast! (love the picture of you and your husband on the Goldwing)

    ReplyDelete
  48. Thanks for sharing. I grew up in the bay area and always loved CA I do miss it sometimes. I remember my parents and I going to San Luis Obispo and going through all the mission. Thanks again it brings back memeories.

    ReplyDelete
  49. What a great tour! It looks like a beautiful area to live in. Except for the fault lines. : ) I live near one, too, and we keep expecting a huge earthquake any time. *shivers*

    ReplyDelete
  50. Happy BATW day! Your part of CA looks beautiful! Thanks for having us. Enjoy the rest of your day. :)

    ReplyDelete
  51. This was a great tour! I loved that you foceused on your town and not Cali as a whole. I've lived here all my life, and even I learned some new things! Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  52. How lucky you are to live in such a beautiful place! Thank you for the tour!

    ReplyDelete
  53. The Gum Alley made me need to wash my hands. Ick!!!!
    What a fun tour and so many wonderful things to see. Thanks for letting us all come by, enjoy your BATW day!!!

    ReplyDelete
  54. California is one of the most beautiful places in the world. . . from someone who has lived many places and once-upon-a-time lived in Santa Barbara County.

    Love the post!

    ReplyDelete
  55. What a tour!!! I visited a delightful beach last December. It was called Santa Claus Beach. It had to be one of the most pristine beaches I had ever seen. Are you near it? Probably not, because as I think about it, it was only an hour or so north of LA and even though you live in CA., CA is not LA!!!
    I was happy to see you featured today and hope to be back. I visited a few times earlier, but lost your connection. Got it now.
    Happy BATW day to you:}

    ReplyDelete
  56. Happy BATW day.I love all the pictures of California you showed. It is truly a beautiful state. Your hubby is really cute.

    ReplyDelete
  57. Congrats on the BATW feature! You gave a grand tour!

    California is beautiful.

    Waving from Iowa,
    Darcy

    ReplyDelete
  58. What a great BATW! I loved seeing the sites where you live.

    ReplyDelete
  59. WOW! Greetings from Ms. Oklahoma! What an absolutely great post! I have only been to CA one time but enjoyed it so much! I want to go back and see that Hearst Castle! Hope you have a great day in the spotlight!

    ReplyDelete
  60. Thanks for the tour! You live in such a lovely area. It seems you have it all in California, as far as landscapes, climate and entertainment. And the Christmas gathering sounds so charming!

    ReplyDelete
  61. I LOVED the pictures! With views like that it's no wonder you ride a motorcycle!
    Thanks for the tour:)

    ReplyDelete
  62. I'm late on the game, but thanks for the intro the rest of California. So beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
  63. I loved all the pictures. What a great tour. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  64. Earthquake capital of the world? That doesn't seem like something that the board of tourism or whoever would want to focus on!

    ReplyDelete
  65. Thank you for an incredible tour! I loved reading every word of it. I would love to transplant from San Diego to the Central Coast area, but our jobs are keeping us here for now.

    ReplyDelete
  66. Thanks for this it's reminded me of my roadtrip through your part of the world about 20 years ago. The pictures are really wonderful and capture the beauty. Lucky you to have such a great place to live.

    ReplyDelete
  67. thank you for the tour, what a beautiful place to live!

    ReplyDelete
  68. Thanks for the tour! I'm a little late getting off the plane, since work has been so hectic this week. You live in such a beautiful part of the country!

    ReplyDelete

I love comments!

Note: Anonymous comments are allowed so that those without blogger accounts can easily comment. However, please identify yourself or it will most likely not be posted. Thank you!

Related Posts with Thumbnails