IPA Me!

ballast

OK, I think by now, y’all are aware of my fondness for beers. Particularly my penchant for IPAs. One of my favorite go-to beers is Ballast Point Sculpin IPA. Ballast Point has a bunch of other tasty brews, too. And that is why I am so excited about their new Tasting Room and Kitchen that is opening today in Alamitos Bay! It’s right on the water, which will make for delightful afternoons and killer sunsets. It’s in the South side of the plaza (where Khoury’s used to be.) No menu up on the website yet, but I checked out some of the grub at the other locations. Featuring pub fare of shared plates, flatbreads, sandwiches, and salads. Everything sounds yummy, and is reasonably priced.

I know it’s not in BS, but it is pretty close. All ya’ have to do is hop on the AquaLink at Belmont Pier, take a nice little boat ride over to the marina, and you are good to go! I am already dreaming about what I will be ordering…

 

 

 

Mama Mia!

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Guys! I have two words. Ground Pepperoni. As in, pizza. As in, not like the slices you usually find on pizza. I dream about this pizza. And, believe it or not, their salad dressing, too. Today, Domenico’s is celebrating 62 years in BS! They are Long Beach’s oldest restaurant. They must be doing something right. They are. And it’s actually not just ground pepperoni pizza. Domenico’s is your father’s Italian restaurant. It’s old school. Dimly lit interior with red leather booths. But don’t get me wrong, it’s not a bad thing. It’s not an old fogey place. It’s a comforting, homey kind of place. With attentive service and excellent homemade food just like Nonna used to make.

Their pizzas are thin crust. I’m sure they have a variety of toppings, but I honestly have no idea because I have only eaten their ground pepperoni pizza. Why ground? IDK, but they are on to something. The way it gets crispy and caramelized in the pizza oven is simply delightful. Ya. I just used “delightful” to describe a cured meat. And I mentioned their salad. It’s a basic side salad, but they have this incredible creamy garlic salad dressing. I’m drooling just thinking about it! It’s so good, you can buy it by the jar from them. Y’all know how much I love cheese. Their mozzarella cheese sticks are more like cheese logs. Like, the size of my forearm. Since I’m not a huge fan of red sauce – unless it’s on pizza, of course – two of my favorite pastas are in a cream sauce. One is a tomato cream sauce, and one is a basil cream sauce. Seriously, this food is so good! They have a small yet charming bar area where you can enjoy some adult beverages if you’re waiting to get your pizza to go. Not like I have ever done that. But seriously, it’s almost dinner time…

 

Ahoy!

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Oh no! What is that?! I can feel it in my bones; the pirates are going to invade soon! In fact, this weekend, Alfredo’s Beach Club is sponsoring the annual Pirate Invasion of Belmont Pier! Guys, this event is one of my favorite summer festivals. It takes place all day both Saturday and Sunday, and is FREE! So much fun for both adults and children. I don’t even think I can fit it all into one post. Not only are there craft and food vendors on the pier, but the pirate encampment also takes over part of the beach area. There will be sword fights and gunpowder demonstrations, and watch out for the pirate ship attacks on the pier! Two stages featuring live music. Yummy grub and grog. Two bars serving delectable rum drinks. Wandering pirates. A kids zone. All in all, a fantastic day to hang out by the water and re-enact a little bit of history. And, if you’re lucky, you just may spot a glimpse of a mermaid in the ocean…

 

 

Dive In Movies

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Today marks the official first day of Summer! WOOHOO! You know I love all of the (mostly free) festivities that happen in and around BS during the summer. This evening marks the start of one of these great activities. Moonlight Movies on the Beach! Every week, Alfredo’s Beach Club shows free movies right on Granada Beach. Movies begin around 8:00, or when it gets dark, and most of them are family-friendly.

You can spend the day at the beach, swimming and sunning. Then, pack up your dinner – and maybe even a few adult beverages (but you didn’t hear that from me) – and enjoy the evening catching a great flick. Mr. and I had one of our first dates at the Moonlight Movies, so these always seem a little special to me. So, gather up your lawn chairs, coolers, and blankets, and get ready to create some special memories for you and your loved ones…

 

 

FOMO

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I had knee surgery on Friday. Wasn’t looking forward to it, but I knew it had to be done. As I sit here on “bed rest” this weekend, I am beginning to worry. I knew I wouldn’t make it to this month’s Stroll and Savor (this week.) Nor the Moonlight Movies that start on the 21st. But Pirate Fest is this weekend. And what about next month’s Stroll and Savor? Independence Day is coming up! And the Tiki Beach Festival. And mine and Mr.’s favorite event, the Taste of Brews at the lighthouse?!?!?! Maybe it’s the intense pain that is making me delusional. Maybe it’s the drugs. But, I think it’s sitting here, staring out of my apartment window at my bike that has been dutifully locked up and unridden, smelling the fresh ocean air, and hearing the sound of laughter and clinking beer bottles that has me stricken with FOMO…

 

 

 

 

Bad Pun

lobsta

Today is National Lobster Day, and I was going to start off with some kid of pun about being “shellfish” when it comes to lobster. Then I thought that wouldn’t go over too well considering lobster is a crustacean. humpf! (Don’t worry. I have plenty of bad puns in me.)

But I love lobster. No. I love it. I would marry it, if I could. I kinda’ don’t trust people who don’t like it. Or claim that’s it’s too messy. I know extracting it might be a bit of a challenge, but it is oh so worth it! Those big, juicy bites. So sweet and briny. So delicious in its simplicity. Take a lobster roll, for example. I feel like there are two schools of lobster roll. One is the mayo-celery-onion-lobster-whatever recipe. The other is lobster and butter, maybe with a slight hint of a fresh herb like tarragon or dill, on a lightly toasted roll. OMG, I’m drooling just thinking about it! In the summer, Mr. and I will occasionally buy a few lobster tails for dinner, and just toss them on the grill (yes it’s that easy,) then dip them in a little drawn butter. hmm, butter seems to be a recurring theme here.

Anyhoo. Today is National Lobster Day!!! I almost let it get past me! But don’t worry, you still have time to get out there and devour enjoy some for dinner. Or a midnight snack…

 

 

 

 

sigh

sadworld

I try to keep things pretty light on here. I try not to be political. But sometimes, things weigh heavy on my mind and my heart. The attack in Orlando. The attack in Tel Aviv last week. The individual in Santa Monica with a car full of explosives headed to the LA Pride Parade. They may be called hate crimes, radical religious crimes, or terrorism. They are all tragedies. And this has to stop…

 

 

Karma

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IDK if you remember some time last year (like almost 8 months ago,) I wrote about helping a guy jump start his car in front of the Post Office. It was a Friday afternoon. All I had to do was drop off a few packages to be mailed, and I would be done with work, ready to start my weekend. I left the Post Office, and saw a man standing on the curb looking worried, with the hood of his truck open. Turned out, he needed a jump. All I wanted to do was go home, change, be done with my day, and have multiple a drinks. I helped him. He offered to pay me, and I declined.

Today, I dropped off some parcels at the same Post Office for work. Friday afternoon, and my work day was done. Time to go home, change, and have multiple a drinks. Guess what? Yeah, you know. My car wouldn’t start. Two postal employees – who were also done with their day and ready to go home – stayed to help me. “Do good things and good things will come your way.” When I helped that gentleman last year, I didn’t do it because I was hoping to get something in return. But today, I did…

 

 

 

71%

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I feel like we are sooooo lucky to live by the ocean! I have no idea what the percentage is of people who live near the water, but I feel like it might be pretty low. And, that’s kinda surprising because about 71% of the Earth’s surface is covered by water. And of that, about 96.5% of the water comes from the oceans. Why am I prattling on about oceanic statistics? Because today is World Oceans Day!

World Oceans Day not only celebrates the oceans, it educates us, and perhaps even encourages us to change the way we think about the ocean. Right now, you may be saying, “I don’t live by the ocean.” Or, “The ocean is cold and gross.” But the oceans are important to everyone. The oceans are like the heart of the earth. Oceans produce oxygen, regulate the climate, feed millions of people every year, are the home to an incredible array of wildlife, provide us with important medicines, and so much more!

This year, the theme is Healthy Oceans, Healthy Planet, and the focus is on the prevention of plastic pollution in our waters. Plastic pollution is a serious threat because it degrades very slowly, polluting waterways for an incredibly long time. Plus, it can injure or kill aquatic animals and plants. But getting involved is hard. Volunteering is so time consuming. Yeah, whatevs. Shut your trap. Some suuuper simple ways you can help are to drink water out of your reusable container, actually use those canvas tote bags that are shoved in the back of your closet everywhere you shop (not just the grocery store,) and simply clean up either after yourself, or after others who leave trash on or near the beaches.

OK, I’ll stop blabbering, but will leave you with these shocking facts about why we should be concerned. So whether you hate it or love it, each one of us has to not only think about how the ocean affects us, but how we affect the ocean…

 

 

 

Spring Cleaning

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I did a little spring cleaning today, and cleaned out my closets. I have a few bags of clothing and shoes to donate, and I’m just in time for Justin Rudd’s annual Birthday Week Clothing and Shoe Drive. Clothes, shoes, backpacks, hats, belts, etc. are being collected to be distributed to local Long Beach homeless agencies. I’ll be dropping off my donations at Bay Shore Church in BS tomorrow, but there are other participating drop-off locations, too. This Tuesday, the 7th is the last day of the Drive, but you can take donations to Bay Shore Church any time of the year. After all, it feels good to get rid of those pants you haven’t worn in 4 years, but it fees even even better knowing they will be going to someone who will truly appreciate them…