Our family has now been in Orange County for 5 months. It has taken some getting used to, but I have found that I have some things that are worthy of the title "Favorite." By definition, one can only have 1 favorite thing, but I have noticed that you can have favorite things in different genres. This list encompasses those favorite things in our lives that we have discovered here in Orange County. These are in no particular order, again, seeing as they are all favorites!
#10 : Laguna Main Beach. I have never really liked the beach, being a non-swimmer. For me, all it means is dirty hands and feet! That being said, I have really gained an affinity for this beach, with it's charming light tower and beautiful art galleries, just on the other side of PCH. I plan to spend a lot more time here in the summer.
#9 : Ladera Ranch. Alright, sometimes it's a little too quiet at night and sometimes, it has a "Pleasantville" feel to it. In the end, the amenities are really amazing. The parks, the pools, the water park and the lovely scenery all make this a wonderful place to live.
#8 : Kingsfield Church. I'm sorry, but we have a wonderful church! I love the staff, the vision, the love that we feel as a body and the incredible times of worship that Chris Reinhardt leads us in. It's an honor to be part of what God is doing, and in a few years, when we are bursting at the seams, it will have been a great pleasure to look back at these "pioneering" years.
#7 : The Apple Store. As you may or may not know, I am an Apple FANATIC!! These fingers have been dedicated to typing on all Apple equipment for most of my computer life and I would not have it any other way. I live and work within 5 minutes of two Apple Stores, one at the Mission Viejo Shops and the Spectrum in Irvine.
#6 : NYC Cafe. I have had an epiphany and it's name is "Corned Beef!" The NYC Cafe is just a few minutes from our church and I discovered this sandwich around Christmas. It's the only "gift" that I received that keeps on giving!
#5 : Home Fellowships. I gave attended one for the first time in my Christian life and I must say that it seriously qualifies as a favorite thing. Our group meets and every time, it is an enriching and encouraging time in the Lord.
#4 : The Weather. What can I say, the weather down here is amazing! It does get pretty hot in the summer, but the night cools down tremendously, making it really pleasant. Back in the I.E. or back in Spain, when it got hot, it stayed hot. Not here! Woo-Hoo!!
#3 : Starbucks. I am convinced that there is a Starbucks every quarter mile in Orange County. I have played a little mental game as I have driven around the O.C. At random times, I have just said "Starbucks" and then looked around...sure enough, there's one on the corner, in the shopping center, etc. It would be annoying if it were anything else, but it's a true comfort for the truly addicted!
#2 : One Dollar Bookstore. I am not sure that this is the accurate name of this wonderful place, but that's what I call it. For a "bookphile" this is the place to go. Lela and I discovered it one night on a drive out to look for a zoo. (That's another story!) We went all the way up Jamboree off of the 5 Fwy, could not find the zoo, dropped into the Chevron for some gas, when we saw it. A ridiculous sign telling the tale of $1 books! This cannot be so, I mused, only to pleasantly discover that the truth was in the advertising. We got there after hours, but the owner was still there, doing some accounting. Think Santa Claus and you will have a good idea of what he looked like. In fact, he is a Santa on the side, as well as a yoga instructor. Yeah, I was sorry for the visual as well! But anyway, we persused through the giant grocery type store and picked through some titles. Later, I was able to return, during business hours, and I purchased 5 books. Guess how much it cost? That's right: $5!
#1 : Yogurtland. Now, remember, this is just another favorite thing, but this place is truly great. Imagine your choice of Yogurt, self-served from a wall of veritable sweetness. You fill up your cup with delicious yogurt and then you come to the toppings. Not just your ordinary toppings, but some really great stuff! At the end is the cash register, where you pay a small amount of change per ounce. Our family is able to normally get out of there having spent about $9, a wonderful price for a Pastor's family! Of course, if Daddy goes light on the Cocoa Puff topping, we could get out of there for $8, but I won't, so why mention it!?
Well, I hope that I have made you envious of my life, if you are outside of Orange County. If you are inside, at least you know where you might find me on my off hours! I'm beginning to really love it here.
Blessings...To Our Friends,