Life took a wild roller coaster ride in the last quarter of 2017 and beginning of 2018. I received the promotion I have been working on for several years, took my first ever two week vacation, have been working on some maintenance and upgrading to the cozy cottage, the holidays came and went, and then working on the monumental tasks associated with year end in my accounting position. Time has been extremely precious.
There have been some projects that I have wanted to do since I bought the cozy cottage back in October of 2011. Time passed quickly and I decided in the Fall that I needed to get started, so I have been painting, upgrading the electrical a little at a time (found the best electrician!), and just trying to make my home a little smarter and more energy efficient. I had a new LG HE washer and dryer installed. I can not believe how much less water the new washing machines use. This is a big deal in California. So now I am trying to get a little done on upgrading and maintenance every weekend which cuts into a lot of stitching time. :(
As an industry accountant, the last two weeks of December and the first three months of the new year are insane and require working long hours. (This is a little different than tax accountants, who I am not sure get to sleep during tax season.) January is the absolute busiest time of all, with long hours required beginning on January 2nd. I work a lot of nights and weekends during this time. This was not my sweet baboo's first rodeo, so right before Christmas, he told me that he had booked a little trip for the New Year's weekend, so that I could rest before the wild ride that is January.
There was nothing available in Sea Ranch, our usual get away spot so he booked us one of the little cottages at St. Orres in Gualala. (pronounced Wha-la-la, sort of like Vahl-ha-la.) St. Orres is a cool, sort of funky (in a cool way) inn on the Redwood Coast. The style of the hotel is Russian, and the inn boasts an amazing restaurant. The staff is amazing and the owner is very cool. Each morning a great breakfast is delivered to your cottage in a cool box (included in the price of the stay). The Pacific Ocean is in front of St. Orres and redwoods behind it.
|Cottage at St. Orres|
|St. Orres Main Hotel|
|View of the windows in the restaurant|
|New Year's Dinner at St. Orres|
It is not widely known that from 1809-1850ish, while the Spanish were colonizing Baja California, the Russians were attempting to colonize Alta California. They created a settlement at Fort Ross (Ross is a poetic name for Russia) in Northern California. Fort Ross is now a State Park and is just above the Russian River. The early settlers were fur traders. While there are several acknowledgements of this early history, the style of the buildings at St. Orres seems to be the most consistent with the style of Russian churches.
We love the Redwood Coast and its beauty and peace. Liesl loves it because she gets to walk the scenic trails and gets to go to the beach every day. Here are her favorite beaches:
These are not hot, tropical beaches. The coast line up there is very rugged, and the surf pounds a lot of there, but it is so peaceful. She especially loves the first beach because sometimes the surf is calm enough for her to put her puppy toes into.
On our little retreat, I was able to work on a little project I have had going for a while. It is Chessie and Me's Pumpkin Row, worked with Weeks Dye Works threads. I just have a little backstitching to do and then I will just sew it into a little pillow/pincushion.