Recently my aunt and uncle visited us from Ottawa. Their anticipated arrival prompted me to start thinking like a tourist–trying to develop an itinerary that would showcase Santa Barbara to a visitor. Lots of suggestions from Facebook friends and a list of places I’ve never been to despite the fact that I have lived here for 16 years!
Thankfully the weather was spectacular and we took full advantage of outdoor activities.
After a leisurely stroll, we drove down town to browse the weekly Arts and Crafts show on Cabrillo Blvd.
Next, we boarded the Land Shark! This amphibious vehicle toured us around down town and out into the harbor and Stearn’s Wharf area.
After a full day, we returned home to a comfy dinner of beef stew. This is the recipe of the week.
I found this delight on the Pioneer Woman‘s blog–a rich resource of fabulous foods, and other assorted tidbits.
I followed the recipe pretty closely–although I did not add the 2 cups of water. I used Arrogant Bastard Ale because I couldn’t resist such an intriguing name! Here’s the finished results:
If you want to give it a try, here is the link for The Pioneer Woman’s Beef Stew with Beer and Paprika.
The next day Aunt Marg, Uncle Larry and I went wine tasting at Babcock Winery–a friend from Ottawa works there now. She did a special barrel tasting for us. Very nice! We also had a chance to meet with the vineyard owner. He took us out to the fields and discussed some cutting edge technology to improve grapes and streamline labor. Fascinating!
We were referred to a lovely sandwich shop in Buellton: Pattibakes. We packed up our fresh made sandwiches (on VERY fresh bread I might add) and headed over to Sanford Winery to picnic. Just another day in paradise…sigh…
On the way back to Santa Barbara, we hiked up to Nojoqui Falls–peaceful and serene.
The day finished with Meg and Aunt Marg (world-renowned cook book author) preparing Coconut Shrimp. Tasty!
My last day as a tourist featured a wonderful visit to Lotusland. This place is simply amazing and deserves its own blog entry, so stay tuned for a Lotusland post soon.
In the meantime, I am in the middle of 2 books: Wicked by Gregory Maguire. It’s an adult book which delves into the back story of the wicked witch of the west from The Wizard of Oz. I’m intrigued! I am also reading In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan. Completely different read from Wicked. I have the opportunity to see Michael Pollan soon (thanks Debbie!), so I want to do a little background reading in order to enjoy his presentation fully.
So, what do you do with your out-of-town guests? I’m starting a list!