Cavs Game & Hiking & A Giant Soft Pretzel!

Hey hey!! I have set aside this Saturday to put my feet up, make no plans, and catch up on blogging/editing pics from some foodie jobs. The baseball season just started for Deej, so unfortunately he’ll be MIA a whole bunch (He’s a marketing manager for a local team & when they’re in season, he works many days 7/8 am- 11 pmish). But I’m excited that this season is shorter for us this year since he’ll be done come July for the move!

Alright, well let’s playyyy ballllll!

Thursday April 4th, I woke up with some coffee, an avocado smoothie, and some oats with vegan chocolate chips.

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I tried to get some assignments turned in, then headed out for a walk to shake off the cobwebs. It looked like it was about to storm the whole time, but I was willing to risk it.

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In the evening I made some tilapia, quinoa, broccoli, & roasted eggplant.

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Friday, April 5th was the same to start the day, but then for lunch I had an open faced tuna sammy with mustard, onion, cabbage mix and almond mozzarella cheese. This was one of the we-are-down-to-the-bare-bones groceries- what can I make out of what we have left? This may be a contender for the usual lunch rotation! I made it for lunch for a couple days after this too.

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In the evening, we headed to the Cavs vs. Warriors game! On the way I ate a buddha bowl of quinoa, vegan crumbles, almond mozz cheese, cabbage mix, and green goddess dressing. I ate it cold since I made it earlier and packed it in a freezer bag to eat right before we went into the game (with traffic it would take 1.5 hours at least to get there). It was sooo delicious cold – I especially loved the “meat & cheese” cold like that. Gonna have to make this again.

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We have a good friend from home who plays on the Cavs, so we love seeing him play whenever he’s close to town. We got to catch up after the game a bit too! DJ made the game in Sacramento the night before, but I couldn’t tag along with the homework load.

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Deej got hungry during the game and grabbed some chicken tenders and fries. These fries were sooooo goooooood. I don’t know how they make them, but they were almost buttery & just crispy perfection.

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On Saturday April 6th I was craving that Toast from Trouble Cafe. Well, since driving over an hour plus rush hour wasn’t exactly practical, I tried to recreate my own. I actually made it more of a french toast to incorporate a little protein! I used Artesano bread, egg, and then topped with some vegan butter & tons of cinnamon. I did end up putting some delicious cinnamon vanilla syrup on too for good measure 🙂

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On my walk that day, the flowers seemed to have really bloomed over night!! My camera couldn’t even keep up with all the spectacular blooms!

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DJ had the evening off, so we were excited to spend the rest of the day together. Since the weather was so inviting we decided on a hike & dinner. Before the long drive to East Bay we stopped for gas. I grabbed some of this Air Heads gum just to see what it was all about- and it is actually quite tasty. The flavor doesn’t last long, but it was a fun find!

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Time to hike Sunol Regional Wilderness. There is a small $5 fee to enter, but there is plentiful parking (a big deal around here) & the hike is well worth it.

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Now lemme tell ya – sure, ya gotta keep an eye out for those mountain lions & rattlers (I know from experience), but what you really need to look out for are the massive cow pies. There is one about every couple feet!

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We just chose a random path and began our ascent. I don’t really care to look at maps, hence why I have gotten lost on paths more times than I can count. I like to think I have a great internal compass, but I think DJ would argue it’s just plain broken, hahah.

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I have always adored rolling hills- and this place was full of them. They are so calming to me & the expansive undulating green makes me want to frolic just all day long in um’. We could not get over how beautiful it all was.

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We even saw this cute little cactus patch. Not something you see everyday up here in NorCal!

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*Swoon*

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We were able to get up close to the grazing cows.

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^^ This guy was not too happy about it. Lol.

But happy happy campers we were.

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My favorite part of it all was just our conversation. Even though we’ve been together since 2010, I still love learning about DJ. I love picking his brain, hearing his thoughts/opinions/perspectives. Since life has been so busy we haven’t had much time to just chit-chat about everything, so it was treasured time.

After that hike we had worked up quite the appetite! We decided to go to BottleTaps which was right down the road to knock off a bucket list foodie item.

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Since it was such a lovely evening we decided to sit outside. Such a great, relaxing vibe. It reminded me a lot of the brewery we went to with my mom and Pete in Roanoke.

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They brought out their menus and their beers on tap were listed on an Ipad.

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We ordered some sour beers with their banquet pretzel board that came with prosciutto, sopressata, mortadella, manchego, gouda, smoked cheddar, mediterranean olives, and Mt. Hope almonds.

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The whole meal hit the spot! The cheese and mustard they served with the warm pretzel was just next level goudanessss. This is one of those times that I cannot put into words how tasty this was- you just have to try it out yourself 😉

After, we went to Cold Stone that was within the same plaza. I didn’t have much room, but naturally I knew DJ would let me have a few sips of his go-to—- the O’Fudge shake. These shakes are a bit nostalgic for us because we used to get them alllll the time when we first started dating. Also, I had a couple giftcards for Coldstone in my purse, and of course the one time I didn’t bring it along, we go to Coldstone, lol. Why does it always happen that way?! Oh well, gives us an excuse to go some other time!

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After, we returned home and watched Ozark until our eyes grew heavy. It was about near as perfect of a day as they come.

Questions for you:

  • Favorite type of sporting event to attend?
  • Milkshake or Ice cream for you? I used to be team milkshakes until about the middle of college then shifted to team ice cream!

xo <3

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47 thoughts on “Cavs Game & Hiking & A Giant Soft Pretzel!

  1. I love your Bay Area Bucket List. Will you create one for your new home town, too?

    OMG running into a mountain lion is my biggest hiking fear. Even more so than running into a bear. There’s been two times when I was on a hike where I just felt this sudden sense of fear and dread like something was nearby and my first thought was a mountain lion was watching me. I didn’t hear anything or see anything, it was just a sudden…terror. I think since you heard that one snarling he maybe wasn’t as close to you as you thought. He was probably having a standoff with another mountain lion (or some cuddling time). I hope so, anyway. Scary!!!!

    I think it’s really amazing that you don’t eat meat but happily cook meals for your husband that you know you’re not going to eat. That’s either a true love of cooking or a true love for your husband. LOL

    I am definitely #TeamShake

    1. Hi, Jinjer! I am so glad you enjoyed this post. I will absolutely create one for Austin! That is such a wonderful idea I had not even given much thought to yet.

      Mountain lions are soo scary, aren’t they?! The way you describe the sudden dread- I’m sure that’s what it was!!! I have heard others say the same thing!! And I really hope he wasn’t as close as I thought! I was so vulnerable being about four miles up the mountain and without much cell service/anyone with me. One of the most terrifying moments of my existence!

      Awww thank you- hahah- I will say it is definitely both !

      Cannot go wrong with a shake! Hope you enjoy one soon. Thanks for stopping in!

      1. So excited you’ll make a bucket list for Austin! Let me know if I can help fill any categories you may need 🙂

        Beautiful pictures, as always! You go on the most wonderful outdoor adventures. Glad you got to see some California cows before you move to Texas and see them everywhere, in the outskirts of all the cities, ha!

      2. Hi, Taylor!!! Your e-mail alone is the start to my bucket list :)!

        Thank you tons! And that’s too funny- I must just be subconsciously trying to prep us for the transition 😉 Thanks for stopping in!

  2. I looove reading your blogs and as usual it is so well written with such a well curated set of photographs i can almost feel as though I’m in California 🙂

    As for milk shake vs ice cream – its ice cream for me. Milk shakes tend to give me stomach aches – maybe its got to do with the fact that I can drink faster than I can eat and a large load of lactose doesn’t agree with my stomach!

    nataliesdailylife.wordpress.com

    1. Hi, Natalie!!! Aww so glad you enjoy these posts- this made me smile big time! I am the same with milkshakes- I drink them far too quickly too!! Ice cream is a bit easier to savor too. Thanks for stopping in 🙂 Hope you are having a nice week!

  3. Oh the CAVS! You had me at hello! You know I am a Cavs fan! Cause I’m all about Cleveland!

    I also get frightened about Mountain Lions, rattlesnakes etc. when hiking here in the desert. Because the heat has turned up… I pretty much stay in the neighborhood now for my walks.

    That Cheese tray was amazing looking!!!

    Happy Palm Sunday my friend.

    1. Awwww!!! YES! Love that you are a fellow Cavs fan 🙂

      You have scorpions to worry about too- right? Definitely smart to stay in the neighborhood during this season then!

      Thank you, Nancy! I hope you are having a beautiful Holy Week <3

  4. Wow that hike! You’ve seriously given me so many bucket list additions recently Mack, I think this place will be my next big holiday that I book! Well, my mum said she wanted to visit San Fran anyway so I guess we could work this out somehow I’m gonna have to look into it! All these incredible hikes seem amazing! And those green rolling hills are just gorgeous and the pics of you are dreamy! Supermodel alert!!! Also mountain lions?? Seriously? Are these hikes safe haha, and when I say safe I mean are there big drops at all because when I lived in Menorca there were amazing hikes but with serious cliff drops either side, like I can’t believe I went on them looking back there’d be a literally a muddy ‘path’ to walk along single file with drops either side??? Mad! So are any of these like that at all cos I’m scared haha 😂 and I’m so happy that you enjoyed spending quality time with DJ! It’s lovely that you still have such a wonderful relationship even after being together such a long time, so beautiful and just how it should be! Thanks for sharing Mack!
    Ooh and I’m definitely a milkshake gal! Chocolate all the way! X

    1. Yay for more bucket list ideas- woohoooo!!! And yesss- I’m excited your mom wants to visit too because that means more of a chance you’ll make your way here soon 🙂 I will say it probably pales in comparison to some of your travels- but would definitely be worth making the trip at least once (I also have so many foodie recs 😉 ).

      Oh my goodness, love!! You are too sweet to me <3

      So this hike was actually very safe! No issues there- no big drops or anything. Some hiking in the area is more dangerous, but this wasn't bad at all! But the hike you are describing sounds like my kinda hike- hahah, I am such an adrenaline junkie- I'd love that!

      Aw, I'm so thankful for him <3 I always joke that he's the only one on earth that could put up with me & God knew it 😉 But then he always argues back that isn't true (he's trained well, huh? LOL) .

      Oohh I am a chocolate lover too! Cannot go wrong with chocolate anything! Thanks for stopping in, J! xo

  5. Your tuna sammy looks delish! You’re so creative!!! I love the pictures from your hike. The pictures of the hills look very Sound of Music-esque! I would love to create a pretzel board board with all of the meat and cheese inside!!! Love the presentation 🙂 Hope you’re having a wonderful weekend!!!

    1. Thanks, girl! It’s always those scrounging for something in the fridge meals that end up being some of my new favorites!

      Ahh I thought the same thing about the Sound of Music when we were there!!

      The presentation was so beautiful— I almost felt bad messing it all up (but only almost 😉 ). Thanks for stopping in, Shan! xo

  6. The colors in this post are just so alive Mackenzie – it is only mid-April and everything is so colorful – those green rolling hills would be a real draw for me, even having to mindful of all the cow pies – LOL. That one cow really gave you the look didn’t it? Like you were intruding on its thoughts … or its space. What a great hike that was, but your hikes around the neighborhood are equally nice, especially when you have all those colorful blooms to look at. All your meals look appetizing – even when you’re being creative and scraping together a meal. The sour beers and pretzel board was the perfect way to top off that hike – great shot by DJ of you up close during the hike – you were blissful looking and fun ones of you running like a young colt, frisky and glad to be outdoors and in the rolling lands. A milkshake sounds awesome – and it doesn’t drip down on a hot day!

    1. Aww I’m so glad you enjoyed all these nature shots! I always think of you when I’m loading them into the post : )

      The cow definitely was NOT amused, hahah. We slowly backed away at one point because he was an angry fella.

      I’m glad even my scraped together meals look appetizing! Forced creativity, lol.

      Aww thank you <3 We definitely did feel free and the comparison to the young colt is spot on!

      That's a great point -- milkshakes definitely are farrr less messy & sticky! Thanks for sharing your thoughts & reading 🙂

      1. I love looking at nature shots and follow several photographers on WordPress – your shots were great.

        That cow looked mad like you were intruding. 🙂

        I was at Kentucky Horse Farm on a vacation awhile back. That park has some thoroughbred horses and their foals stabled there along with a lot of historical info and statues of famous Derby racehorses. So I was there the week after the Kentucky Derby and there were several new foals running around, their little tails flipping up and down and they were playing together in the pasture – it did remind me of them – they were just so beautiful and very carefree. They were frolicking and having a great time.

        I had a friend back in high school and she worked at an ice cream store. The store has a big dairy about 30 miles away, but they did make some of the ice cream right there at the back of the store. She worked Summers while going to college. If I went in, I got a small cone – she made it a triple or quadruple size with the ice cream. On a hot day, you had to take it in a dish with the cone on top as you’d lose most of your scoops walking back to the car!

      2. Aw thanks, Linda! That means a lot.

        That sounds like a beautiful memory of the horses!! How awesome.

        We had a small ice cream shop like that where I grew up in Ohio! There is nothing better than ice cream on a hot summer day (and even though it melts quick, it’s so tasty just makes you want to eat it quicker, right? Hehe)

  7. Great post! That Pretzel board looks absolutely amazing wow! In terms of sport, I mean in the UK it is soccer and only soccer – Chelsea all the way! And ice cream for sure, seems like I have a craving that never disappears!

    1. Thanks so much, Sophia 🙂 The Pretzel board has been on my foodie bucket list for a bit, so it was definitely due time to try it out ! It surpassed the hype/ my expectations!

      Oh yessss! Soccer is a great sport. In the UK do they call it soccer too?

      And yess I am sooo with you. I have it almost every day, lol.

      1. I’m so glad it did, seemed worth the wait! Sure is, except its football over here! Everyday is treat day, can always justify having some lol

      2. That makes sense!! I was wondering about that! We’re weird over here calling it soccer, lol!

        Totally! Each day is worth celebrating 🙂 Have a great day, Sophia!

  8. 1) Horse shows or hockey events. 🙂 I was never much of a sport person growing up, except for horse-related activities, but Alexander has got me hooked on hockey since we’ve been married — haha!
    2) Ice cream….definitely ice cream. I can savor it longer than a milkshake.

    Oh my goodness–those hiking trails look beautiful! So peaceful! I’m sooo glad we’re getting warmer weather here in Wyoming now so I can do more outside things, too!

    1. Hi, Lauren!! Ohhh I feel like Horse shows would be so fascinating/fun to watch. I have never been to one- but I do want to go to the Kentucky Derby someday (although that’s a bit of a different type of horse show, I’d suppose?) . Also, hockey games are a blast!!! I’ve only been to one but it was so much fun. I didn’t really know what was going on- but I loved the fast pace and energy!

      Yesss exactly!! The way you can savor the ice cream is my favorite part about it too.

      Aw I hope you guys get some better weather here soon too!! Wyoming is just beautiful from what I hear !

  9. Oh my goodness, Joshua and I used to go to ColdStone all the time when we were dating as well! In fact, our first date was a movie followed by ColdStone, lol! It’s definitely a big favorite for us. 😉
    Your hike looked absolutely gorgeous and SO GREEN! I never knew there could be so much green in CA, lol. I was a little surprised you have to watch for mountain lions and rattlesnakes there, but I guess that’s because it’s still the desert!
    It sounds like you and DJ had an amazing time together. It is so nice to just take that time to unplug from work and usual activities around the house and spend quality time together, isn’t it? I’ve known a few people who act like dates aren’t necessary if you don’t have kids and I definitely disagree. <3

    1. YEAASS. Hmm is Coldstone really just Cupid’s arrow? Lol. It’s so good! What is your go-to?

      Ok I will say if you were here a couple years ago it would not be this green! There was a severe drought when we moved here, and it looked more like desert. We are really enjoying the green this year thought after all the rain!

      Aw yes absolutely– even when we are both home we have responsibilities and can be together without really spending time together.. so we have to definitely still plan it out! A few couples we know and respect plan at least one date day/ date night a week. We try to do the same thing! It ends up being kinda spur of the moment- but sooo important. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Courtney! <3

      1. It must be! Hmm I really like their creme brulee ice cream but it’s seasonal. 🙁 Otherwise, I love their sweet cream flavor with Oreos or Reese’s mixed in. Of course I go for anything chocolate as well. 😉 What’s your favorite?

        California needs the rain so badly, so I’m super happy to hear that it’s been helping. <3

        Exactly!! I love how you put that — we can be together without really spending time together. So true!! Just because we are physically together doesn't mean we are actually connecting as a couple. <3

      2. Ohhhh I have to try that sometime! Sounds magical.

        YES cannot go wrong with either Oreo or Reese’s. Last year for my sister’s bday we got her a Reese’s cake from Coldstone & it was out of this world goood! I like their strawberry cheesecake, but sometimes when I’m in the chocolatey mood I’ll go for something more along those lines! They have such a big menu- always a hard choice for my indecisive self– thank goodness for samples 😉

        Yesss, Amen sista!!! <3

  10. that looks like such a cool place to go hiking (except the concern of rattlers and mountain lions). I loveeee that cheese try that is on a pretzel! How cool is that? I would totally order something like that just out of the concept of it.

    1. They were so creative with the way they put the cheese IN the pretzel- and it melted just a tiny bit on the pretzel which made it all even more delicious!! mmm mm. I was glad we finally could try it out!

      1. wish I could say I was kidding, but I literally relooked at pictures of it last night because I wanted it again so badly, lol!

  11. That open face tuna sammy though….swoon; seriously, that thing looked divine! Also, I am the QUEEN of getting chicken tenders and fries at almost every sporting event (concerts/festivals too)…except baseball (there’s something about a ballpark hot dog I can’t say no to). Also, what a gorgeous view for hiking, if I had run into a mountain lion or snake of ANY kind, I probably would have died of a heart attack, but the beauty is certainly unmatched!

    1. Glad it looks so yummy to you!!!

      And chicken tenders/fries are hard to beat at sporting events for sure. It’s my husbands go to as well!

      OH, but yes a ballpark hotdog is a MUST. I am so happy so many are serving veggie dogs now because I still crave a hotdog every time we go to a baseball game!

      GIRL, I practically did die of a heart attack the first time. I really thought I was going to die- easily in the top three scariest moments of my life. Thanks for stopping in, Brittney! xo

  12. You got some great pics!

    I used to go to plenty of games when I lived in Sac and I miss it. Sounds like DJ has a pretty cool job, baseball is my #1.

    My first instinct was to quickly join Team Milkshake, but ice cream is pretty tough to beat as well. I can’t choose!

    1. Thanks, Ralph!

      Sac has such an awesome arena. Even their general game entertainment/hype there is better than most!

      There really is something just special about a summer baseball game. I have a new found appreciation for minor league baseball too since he started working with the SJ Giants. Have you ever been to a minor league game with the fam? So fun- especially for the kids!

      It is a hard choice for sureee! I think I just drink milkshakes far too quickly, where ice cream forces me to savor it a bit haha.

      1. We have a single A team here and go all the time. The kids are old enough to suck it up for a whole game now haha.

        I can definitely inhale a milk shake. -1 point for that, even though it’s not the milk shake’s fault.

      2. hahaha not the milkshakes fault at all, but yeah when it comes to that it’s gone within a couple minutes. I have no chilll.

  13. Oh myyy, those pictures of your hike are beautiful! Such a different view that the typical trees, streams, and little water falls. Those cows must’ve loved having people so close, haha. I totally agree with enjoying conversations! John and I were literally just talking last night about how even after 8+ years of dating (and knowing each other for 15+ years) we still are learning things about each other! It’s great to have that time to just talk and talk and talk!

    Bottle Taps seems like a neat place! I love the patio area at restaurants! I am literally drooling over that pretzel right now! How cute that they put everything on the pretzel.

    Yummm Coldstone! We actually have some gift cards lying around too and of course I never have them with me when we are near one. I don’t think I have a preference between ice cream and milkshakes. I think it just depends where we are!

    1. Hi, Em!! I was so glad we finally got to do this ! So much more beautiful than I even imagined!

      I LOVE that you said that about you & John. I almost kept that part out of the blog because I was like, “Will anyone get this?”.. but I didn’t know how else to describe it than we are STILL learning about one another. Glad to hear that you totally resonated with that! I think it’s really important in relationships, ya know? We all continue to evolve and change, so we have to learn and grow with one another!

      I love patios at restaurants too- adds such a relaxing element to it all. I loved the presentation of the pretzel too- but believe it or not the taste was EVEN better than the presentation.

      That definitely makes sense ! With milkshakes you don’t have to worry about any fuss & with ice cream more fun to savor/try all the fixin’s! Thanks for stoppin’ in, girl.

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