{sf} operation coin-op

May 15, 2017

Did you know that on the last Sunday of the month you can throw away the fact that you’re an adult and go play all the old school arcade games you want for free?!? Yup, well at Coin-Op Game Room San Francisco, this is quite the reality. Now, let’s be honest, I didn’t step foot into a single arcade until like the two times this happened in college, but I hear that arcades were huge back when kids walked around with quarters in their pockets, inserted them into machines, and then engaged in some game for a few minutes until they lost and had to try again. Games like Street Fighter and Pac-Man were big during these times and going to Coin-Op it was pretty amazing to see all these adults (you have to 21+ since it’s essentially a bar with local and California beers on tap) get really into racing each other, throwing basketballs to try and beat the record, and shoot at the bad guys. And for sure it’s better when it’s free, right?

An operational photo adventure:

food: muffin tops

March 15, 2017

For those Seinfeld sitcom fans, “The Muffin Tops” was one of the more memorable episodes. It asked the questions on all of our minds, whenever we had muffins. “Can I have just the top?” “Why do they have to make the bottom also?” Muffin top is the crunchy, flavorful, essence of a muffin. The bottom stump is that dry…. Does anyone even remember what the bottom tastes like? Is the stump really necessary?

McDonald’s apparently did not think so. It came out with the Muffin Toppers. Has McDonald’s hit another jackpot, like the all-day breakfast?

I haven’t seen the muffin toppers in our local stores. There are reviews online. Apparently, it’s not really a muffin top “popped” from a whole muffin. They are really muffins with a very shallow stump. It’s more like a miniature muffin.

You don’t really get that crunchy top, baked to perfection. Worse, you just get a miniature muffin that tastes like it’s all stump.



McDonald’s apparently did not follow Seinfeld’s (Elaine’s) advice. You need to bake the whole muffin, then “pop” the top, chuck the stump away.

{phx} casino az salsas

December 27, 2014

Even after living in Arizona for 6 years, it’s hard for me to wrap my head around how close the casinos are around here. Growing in Massachusetts, we always had to go out of state to get to the casino. Here, you just drive outside city limits and there are casinos in every direction. This, of course, is because of the tribal lands and the various tribes that open casinos in the area.

Of the few in the area, I’ve been to Talking Stick to eat before, but never Casino Arizona. Recently, I went with some friends and even though we were planning just to walk around and play some penny slots, we ended up eating in the Arizona Room. The food was ok, but my favorite part was their salsas. None of them were very spicy, but I just loved the mango one! The mangos were clearly freshly diced and paired well with the red onions and other flavors. That salsa paired with chips was even better than my wrap!

A casino-style photo adventure:







{phx} pjs + park + elf

December 6, 2014

pjsparkelf1Last night, there was a special event at Civic Space Park in Downtown Phoenix. Living used to live right by this park with the infamous Saguaro Blossom, I’m always excited to hear about fun events at the park. Most often, I end up reading about them at the Downtown Phoenix blog.

This Holiday Movies Under the Stars event, of course, sounded very excited so I had to go! Some friends and I put on lots of extra layers, unrolled an old sleeping bag and some extra fleece blankets and headed for this event. I was incredibly surprised to find so many people at CivicSpace Park! In fact, the park was packed with people from all walks of life. Since Santa also made a special visit, there were tons of kids there, too! It’s nice for a park in Downtown Phoenix to see such patronage. While we missed the first movie, the Polar Express, I’m glad we got to see Elf, just because it’s so hilarious!

I also thought the view from the park was amazing … with the Saguaro Blossom hanging there in front of the tall buildings and lots of people. What a fun view of the city!

View from our blanket spot

{last vegas} on july 4th

August 20, 2014


This past July 4th we were in Las Vegas. For most of the millions of visitors, nothing really unexpected about Las Vegas – casinos, black jack tables, slot machines, shows, the Strip. Is there really anything special ? Well, for this trip, something kind of special. Watching the Bellagio fountain show accompanied by “God Bless The USA” on the 4th of July! Pretty special. These pictures are screen-captured from video recorded on my cell phone. Also contributing to the blurriness are light over-exposure (there are 4,500 lights), water vapor, and fog (yes, they use fog machine to enhance the effect). To really check out the sights with sound, YouTube it.

A Fourth of July Bellagio photo adventure: