Where the rubber hits the road

In eighth grade I discovered blue Kryptonic skateboard wheels and I’ve been happily rolling around on them ever since.  I remember buying my first set from E.T. Surfboards in Hermosa Beach, CA.  To be honest, I don’t think I’ve been loyal to any one product for longer. Soft, but not too soft, big, but too big and just the right grippiness for my mix of carving and powerslides.

Whether I’m doing hill section runs, bouncing around UCSB’s campus or schlepping myself from my parking garage to my downtown LA highrise, these wheels have never let me down.  

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Every now and then throughout history…

…a genius creates something that is timeless.

Something that is so indisputably timeless and cool that anybody who has ever experienced [said timeless item] has a story of hilarious and gleeful admiration. And the story follows this pattern.

{enthusiastic & loud voice} “No No No….MY [said timeless item]…was terrible it had [insert long list of faults] and it couldn’t [insert long list of limitations] but it had more personality in its [insert small component] than my [insert said timeless item’s replacement] whole being. Every single time it would [story detailing one of the faults that is both unbelievable and hilarious.]

{somber & much quieter voice} One of the biggest mistakes I ever made was [selling said timeless item]. If I could do it all over it again, I would have saved [said timeless item], perhaps restored it. I would have cherished it to this day, man was I stupid for getting rid of [said timeless and genius item].

So here is my story of my timeless and genius possession:

No No No….MY tan ’72 Volkswagen Squareback was terrible it had a starter that wouldn’t work for months, a passenger window that wouldn’t roll down and no CD player. It couldn’t even ride at freeway speeds because the brakes required pumping to stop at any speeds over 40 mph and the wheel bearings were shot so if my speed ever broke 50 mph the “wobble of death” would scare me and my passengers “to death.” That car had more personality in its soft leather shift knob than my 4runner’s whole being. Every single time I had to turn left into oncoming traffic I had to use a hand signal because the front blinker was gone. That’s right, just a hole in the body where the blinker once was…it was cool though, that’s where I stashed my keys when I went surfing.

One of the biggest mistakes I ever made was selling that car for $600 bucks. Even though I didn’t need a car to attend UCSB, if I could do it all over it again, I would have saved my squareback and fixed it’s ailments and maybe even restored it. I would have cherished it to this day, man was I stupid for getting rid of VW.

I know this isn’t a Squareback, but equally cool, the Bug that reminded of my timeless and genius car.

Christmas Fireworks!

One of our favorite festivities is the Manhattan Beach Christmas fireworks, in fact it was our first real dates way back in 2003!  This year, we started the night out at a Christmas party with my sister, Taylor and Alana at their strand house.  From their we walked a bit closer to the pier and had a great time watching with a bunch of friends.  It was a great show, Merry Christmas!

Manhattan Beach Pier

31/365 - Fireworks

Us ball

Check out our sideshow here, and if you want to download a particular shot, try here.

Your Introduction to "The Bull"

This post just had too many possible titles, it was so hard to pick one: The Bull Strikes Again, Wacked, Another One Bites the Dust, Again?, or Man Down . But this is a little introduction to my dearly beloved “Bull”.

Over the years, Ryan has earned himself the nickname, “The Bull” .  This name was the result of years of bull-like incidents such as breaking an ENTIRE box of my wine glasses during a move, snapping my kitchen scissors in half, tackling me (like a real one) without even meaning too, deciding that brut force is always easier than moving whatever is in the way, or even breaking several thick drinking glass while merely rinsing them out. Everytime one of these incidents occurs,  Ryan comes to me with a pitiful face and says sorry and I am left with one less breakable thing in the house.

On Sunday, I spent the afternoon gently placing ornaments on our Christmas tree and listening to the 24 hours Christmas radio station. Ryan came in to help place the last few ornaments on the tree. I believe at ornament No. 6 of his total of 10, I heard the shatter and this poor guy was left splattered on the tile.  I guess this snowman’s ornament days are over!

29/265 - Man Down

26/365 – El Dorado means Gold

I was excited to get a chance to explore a bit of the El Dorado national forest this past Saturday and much to my surprise, Shannon and her father agreed to come along.  The Zavoda’s only live a few minutes from the forest and there are tons of  4×4 trails, I recommend this map to wrap your head around the abundance of places to go.  Since it was cold, and there was snow we headed towards some trails below 4,000 ft in elevation.

The day was cold and snow-less but the views were endless, it turned out to be a great day of exploring.  We drove through a bunch of snow, shot guns, had lunch and enjoyed miles and miles of back country road.  My kind of day (not really Shan’s, but she was a sport).

26/365 - El Dorado means Gold

 

 

25/365 – Leafless Oaks

Being newlyweds and having families in cities 430 miles apart creates a bit of a dilemma come holidays.  Obviously, we both want to share the holidays with our families and share comfortable traditions in our home cities but whichever place we decide, one of us is away from family.  In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we reminded ourselves that we are fortunate to have two places to celebrate, and doubly so, because each family understands if we end up elsewhere.

This Thanksgiving we woke up early and drove up to Placerville to visit the Zavoda’s.  We enjoyed great company and an outright feast that included a bbq’d and deep fried turkey, ham and no joke six desserts!

Did I mention that Thanksgiving is the best holiday of the year?

After dinner we took a walk from the Zavoda house and a enjoyed a cold country sunset which included some great leafless oaks.

25/365 - Leafless Oaks

Riley-Man’s Photoshoot

 

23/365

While up north for Thanksgiving, Ryan and I got a chance to finally see the new addition to the Scheffel family, the Riley-Man. Riley is 14 days old and is already a trained model pro — must have been all those pictures his mama posed for while he was in the womb. After a quick feeding and diaper change this guy was ready for his close up. Ryan got a chance to use his Sigma 30mm lens to snap these totally adorable pictures of the little guy.

At one point, we decided to try and sit him up for a few clicks of the camera. As you can guess, it was a bit pre-mature for this pose. As his Dad held his head to keep his body upright, poor Riley was left looking like a little old-man that had a few too many beers.  While this had us all dying laughing, we quickly realized the poor guy was not having any of this pose.

Here’s the poor little drunk:

Still laughing , just thinking about it!!!!!!!  I guess we all have a bit of learning to do!

Love you guys and can’t wait to see you at Christmas!

t-OUCH-down for USC

20/365

On Saturday, Chris & Kim treated us to a USC game — my first one ever!!! I got a tour of  “The Row“, a street with all the sorority and fraternity houses, saw the Nine-Oh (a frat boy filled sports bar), and then began the fun with a few early morning mimosa’s. Although, USC lost big time, it was still a great time! The Brandon’s were nice enough to share their field passes with us, so we got front row — we even spotted Taylor Jacobson from The Rachel Zoe Project on the field!!  Thumbnails can be seen here.

Quick trip up the coast

Last week I made a quick business trip up to San Francisco, it had been so long since I visited the city.  I actually really love it, so much different than sprawling Los Angeles.  Usually conference rooms are bland, but this one had an excellent view and I had to pull out my iPhone and snap a picture.  (For reference, pulling out your iPhone and taking pictures during a business meeting is a perfectly professional thing to do)

19/365 - San Francisco Treat

Sten's Bachelor Party

Have I mentioned it’s been a busy year?

Sten, one of my best friends and groomsman is getting married in Austria in January. So it was time to celebrate his last days as a bachelor, the venue was a little known area loosely between King City, Big Sur and an Army base.  About 20 of Sten’s closest friends made the trip from San Diego, San Francisco and the southbay, I was looking forward to reunion.

During the day we milled around the wilderness avoiding poison oak and during the nights we all contributed to revolutionizing the camp fire song.  Three straight days of wild times and no serious injuries or deaths, an overwhelmingly successful bachelor party on all accounts.

The Crew

16/365 - Tom the Taranchula

17/365

18/365 - The Bachelor

More pictures can be seen here.

Hydration Station – 15/365

We love the local grocery store across the street from our house and we find reason to visit just about every day.  Like most of El Segundo, it is immaculate. When we move from this town there is a lot I will miss, great restaurants, no parking meters, nice parks, the lack of techno pumping club and Cooke’s Market.

Hydration Station - 15/365

 

Pumpkin Carving Time!

12/365

12/365

Shauna and Kelly held their 3rd Annual Hermosa Beach Pumpkin Carving Party. The night was filled with amazing peach sangria (super yummy), pumpkin chili, cornbread, and of course pumpkin carving.  Ryan took advantage of the gorgeous lighting and snapped this  picture of Jeff and Jen.

This year was the first year I dreaded cleaning the inside of my pumpkin. Suddenly the idea of getting my fingers slimy and sticky just sounded incredibly unpleasant. I knew Ryan would never let me live it down, so I dug in with both hands and conquered the pumpkin guts.  A few things you learn about pumpkin carving as you get older: the smaller the pumpkin the easier to clean it is, the store bought patterns take 3x longer than free handing, and those little knives that come in the kits are easier to use than a big steak knife. Shauna and Kelly always give amazing prizes to the winners including chia pets, pumpkin seeds, and a gold ol’ pat on the back! This years prize did not disappoint…..the second place winner received a head scratcher and first place won a Snuggie!!! Thanks Shauna and Kelly, we can’t wait to do it next year!

Click here for more pictures of the night.

9 & 10/365 – Lunch Walk

Today Shan and I met Brent and Suzi for tacos, it’s really so nice to work across the street from each other. Lately we’ve been having lunch at least a couple of times a week so today we enjoyed the company of friends.  After lunch we walked downtown for awhile and ended up spending a few minutes in the park adjacent to the library.

Since I didn’t post a picture yesterday, there are two today.  #9 is my favorite of the 365 day project so far.  I love ya Shan!

The Braid - 9/365

The Braid - 9/365

Library Fountain - 10/365

Library Fountain - 10/365

Wednesday Night With The Bobs!

8/365

8/365

For the past 5, maybe even 6 years, the boys of Manhattan Beach have participated in a 16″ male softball league. Although the team name began as “Slaughter Your Daughter” several years ago they upgraded their team colors to yellow and green and updated the team name to the “the Bobs”. The boys insist on playing in both the Winter & Summer league, so for almost half of the year, Wednesday nights are devoted to softball.  Some, including myself, view their devotion and enthusiasm for a recreational game sponsored by the city as a weird obsession, but I guess they are just having fun. A few unique things that make them “the Bobs”:  they change eating habits on game days,  slide into home plate when it’s totally unnecessary, have Home & Away jerseys, have cheerleaders called the Bobettes, they even have a Bob alter-egos such as Bob Villa,  Bob Denver, and Bob Barker.  All and all it’s a great way for the guys to go out have some fun at a sport in which they love!

This week while the other girls enjoyed their Wednesday nights catching up on Project Runway and Gossip Girl, I ventured out to the game and snapped a few pre-game shots. Yes, that clipboard below is used to keep track of their “stats”.

Thankfully, they killed the other team and won 11-0, or something like that. Here are a few shots of the action.

See ya next week guys!

5/365

I didn’t have the opportunity to take any photos this Saturday so my bid for 365 pictures in 365 days is off.  I still plan on getting to 365, it just might take a little bit longer than 1 year, that’s all.

This afternoon was grey, but I did have a great time watching this little bird exploit the low tide.  He worked alone, and found lots to eat.  It was interesting because the rest of breed worked in a group, sort of following each other around, he did his own thing.

Lownly Tide - 5/365

Lownly Tide - 5/365