Easter on The Ranch



We spent Easter Sunday on the ranch together with just our little family - a rare event coming from big families on both sides! We had intended to go to Easter mass in Fort Jones - even stopped by Saturday to check the time at the adorable little church in town! - but after a late night at the neighbors the girls were all sound asleep at 9am and seemed ambitious to get up, fed, dressed and have pleasant church goers ;)

but the Easter bunny still found us!


and then we had an egg hunt up behind the house


my Ukrainian egg attempts. Not winning any awards here ;)


the girls found them and hid them all again 


JJ in her finest Easter ranch wardrobe


her curls are the best after she actually has a shampoo ;)


and this kid made fast friends with a pet Lizard - carrying it around everywhere and insisted on bringing it home in a Tupperware habitat with straws for air holes. #sorrylizard


and there were many lizard shows. JJ was Francie's loyal assistant (just don't ask her to hold the lizard)


I love my view from the cozy couch in this little cabin :) happy Easter!


and another reason to celebrate - the end of Lent means Heff and I can drink our road trip Diet Cokes again, woohoo! ;)


The Botanist

The Botanist is the newest addition to The H & H :) (and for a good long while - hopefully the last new addition!!) Marisa Lyssand is the official "Botanist" and has such an amazing eye for all things flowers and garden. She and her sister Alicia, who is Director of The Makery, have been helping me with a bunch of projects around work and home. Our little town flower shop just went out of business and a space opened up - so we put our heads together and came up with The Botanist!

It's a beautiful store for all things floral and home... succulents, air plants, orchids, cut flowers that are local and seasonal and lots of awesome one-of-a-kind flea market and vintage finds. We've been scouring the fleas for months and will continue to do it to keep our stock ready for buying! Come check us out at 363 State Street in Downtown Los Altos.

Arrangements - small to large for $45-150

Red Racer is OPEN!

Last week we opened Red Racer Hobby Shop! It's so much fun!! When we moved PLAY's entrance to the back we had a great little retail space in the front and wanted to do something that would tie into The Makery - Heff had lots of great ideas for a hobby shop!

pulling the window paper off - one of my favorite all time tasks :)

We have a custom built slot car track where we can race

and a construction zone to build your own creations and enter our monthly contest for free pit passes

and lots of really cool retail like rockets, models, kites, race cars, building sets... and tons more

Now let's get RACING!

Canton Texas Trip - First Monday Trade Days

We are back from an awesome trip to Canton, Texas for the July First Monday Trade Days... with a U-Haul full of flea market finds! It was the first time Heff and I left the kids for a few days (what a good sport - I asked him if he wanted to go to a flea market in the middle on nowhere and he was game :) Canton is east of Dallas and it's 23 miles of walking paths of booths. Lots of junk but some really cool gems mixed in if you dig hard enough! Alicia is Director of The Makery and Marisa is Director of The Botanist so they came along to find some cool stuff for the shops.

We preflighted Wednesday and Thursday and then Heff joined Thursday night and was on "logistics" helping us rent the U-Haul, get it packed up, make the final decision on all the "should we?" finds we had hidden and find a driver to get it all back. 4 days, 23 miles, 107 degrees... and a whole bunch of cool stuff!

Arrival in Dallas - we rented a truck and of course it's cherry red!

tractor ride from the parking lot. We were practically the first ones there

ready to dig!


made some new friends

we filled these carts every few hours and took them back to the cart rental station

Friday morning back at it!

Heff was the braun we needed :)

we made time for one dinner out in the Big D! Nothing fancy- just a burger joint to "test" burgers for The Alley ;)

and this was my favorite sign ever. #restaurantownerproblems

high class

my dinner dates!

and then when we thought we were done... we found the secret warehouse behind the warehouse! Hand carved wooden fabric stamps we had been SEARCHING for!

U-Haul with random bat facts? Thanks for the knowledge U-Haul

and that's a wrap

BBQ breakfast and Fried Pies on the way to the airport (I voted Applebees but Heff made us eat somewhere authentic ;)

The Buzz on Biz

We've been making lots of changes at Bumble (and Area 151 and PLAY!) for the winter. We switched to a new seasonal menu at Bumble today - very exciting after about a month of ideas, trying recipes, creating a new menu format and executing. I keep saying it but this restaurant business is nuts. We really do enjoy it but it's about 20x more work than any of the other businesses. But the "fruits" of our labor are delicious so it's worth it :)

(a photographer came to take some pictures of 'how I work' and sent me a few of them - JJ and Tess look way cuter than me in these but that's ok)

yup that's right - I just play on the floor all day - NEVER ignoring my kids on my laptop at work ;)

The new menu is ALL locally sourced and mostly organic. It makes it a little tricky since we took off tomatoes, avocado, strawberries and wild salmon (all California cuisine ingredients) but most people don't realize these items all come from out of the country and some are gassed to ripen by the time they get to grocery store shelves. So we have switched out avocado for artichoke hearts and have some fresh takes on winter veggies on the menu. We've also upped the ante a little with braised short ribs and cioppino for dinner - come try it's all good! Here is Breakfast

we also got some good press last week with an article in the San Jose/Silicon Valley Business Journal - always helpful to get some free PR :) Brian's law firm was on the cover of the Journal a year ago - he has been teasing me he beat me with better billing as I was only on page 3 ;)

and Area 151 promoting our awesome event space! Host your next kids party or corporate event, it's like Dave and Busters only no security guard at the front door

Party Room!

As you can see business is just buzzing along!