Exploring new cities + Toyota Rav 4

2015 Toyota Rav 4I’m pretty independent when it comes to exploring around our new home, here in California. Often times I go out on weekly excursions with Alfie and check out new-to-us places considering a lot of the areas around here are dog friendly, and he’s just as happy to join along.

I mean, look at that smile. Alfie in 2015 Toyota Rav 4

Exploring around California has been put on hold for close to two months. If we’re getting honest here, the hives had put me in a negative self-concious mood and I wouldn’t dare step outside of the house if my face was swollen, or my hives were popping up. I felt down, and generally just pissed off at the fact I couldn’t pinpoint what I am “allergic” to. Some of my blood results have come back and shows no signs of allergies there. Waiting on a few more.

So, I assume I just have chronic hives out of the blue. Luckily I can tame them for the most part during the day time with over the counter allergy pills, which can often cause me to feel drowsy.

However, for the most part they work well, and I’ve been ITCHING (ha, no pun intended) to get out on the road and explore more, when I’m feeling up to it (and not drowsy!).

Alfie and I went back to the little town of Saratoga (see our previous two trips to Saratoga here, and here) to explore and just wander around, window shopping especially since I had the Toyota Rav 4 for a week. Although, many parts of California is dog friendly, including Saratoga Village, we didn’t go inside any stores. But I did end up filming a bit when I was there! Check it out on my YouTube channel.

2015 Toyota Rav 4

2015 Toyota Rav 4 dashboard

I’m pretty sure I’m going to be one of those women whose next car is going to be a little higher up. It might sound silly, but I feel safe when I’m higher up in a vehicle. Like I won’t get sucked into an 18 wheeler on the highway. My mind is wild.

2015 Toyota Rav 4 XM RadioAny time I get a car to review and they have XM radio available, I automatically tune into channel 53 Chill. It’s basically the perfect driving music, although sometimes my husband says it’s often too relaxing. But I’m totally diggin’ it you guys.

ToyotaRav4-4picsI was in the limited edition, all wheel drive model. So given that, it was a great drive, with all the features. The seating was the most comfortable I’ve had in the last few cars I’ve driven — love the cushiony feel to a drivers seat, rather than stiff — the car I own has stiff seats, leaving your butt numb if you’re driving for a few hours on end.

2015 Toyota Rav 4What I did notice though, is although a comfortable ride overall, the suspension in the 2015 Toyota Rav 4 was stiff, and quite noticeable to me, especially going slowly over speed bumps in parking lots. Oof!

Looking at the Rav 4, it’s a 4 cylinder car, and the steering is nice as it’s easy to drive. It’s not sporty at all like my car but remember, it’s not supposed to have that sporty feeling.

Rav-4-wheelThe cabin itself felt a lot larger than other SUV’s I’ve sat in, but parking it was no issue, especially with that helpful backup mirror. It looks really good inside, and imagine it in beige leather — hooboy. See the buttons near the center console? Those are some heated seats for warming up my toosh. Oh man, so nice – and yes I definitely use heated seats in the fall and winter time here in California, as crazy as that sounds! I think my favourite feature on any new car has to be the dual control for both front seat passengers.

2015-Toyota-Rav-4There’s a button you can press on the side of the steering wheel for extra traction, say if you are going from pavement to grass (which is something my husband and I often do when we go to many of his triathlons) so your wheels don’t slip and slide all over the place.

I know the Rav 4 is a popular model of vehicle, so I’d be interested in hearing how many of my readers have bought one of these?

Also don’t forget to check out my video I filmed of the inside of the Toyota, and visiting Saratoga!



There are more inexpensive versions of this 2015 Toyota Rav 4, however this limited edition version sells for $33,600. More information on Toyota.com.

Disclaimer: The 2015 Toyota Rav 4 Limited Edition was loaned to me for a week to review. All opinions are my own

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There’s a Central Park in Santa Clara?!

Central-Park-SCI had all kinds of intentions of checking out Kelley Park somewhere in San Jose, until Alfie and I drove there and it took me to the entrance to the Zoo! Weird. Definitely not going in the zoo and/or paying for parking when I just want to jaunt around aimlessly in a pretty lookin’ park. So that was out of the question. I started driving around and spotted signs for Central Park.

Searching for parks in the San Jose area that are free to enter, and dog friendly is tough. But I found one! Who knew there was a Central Park in Santa Clara?!

 Like every time we go some place new, Alfie is a wild beast on the leash so to speak. He gets really nervous and as I’ve mentioned many a time, he gets nervous poops. I was readily prepared with about 5 (empty lol) bags before we ventured out on our afternoon walk yesterday.

A really pretty park, and quite large — and extremely dirty with bird poo around the pond where all the ducks and Canadian Geese are, so be mindful of that. None the less, it was a pretty park to explore for a little bit of the afternoon. Until the Canadian Geese looked like they were ready to attack Alfie and I. I took a picture in case I needed it for evidence ;)



CentralPark-San-JoseNot sure exactly what this was. Some sort of hang out pavilion. Many people were chawin’ on their lunch when I walked through here.




Canadian-GeeseHere’s where they wouldn’t let us cross. Hey I’m Canadian too don’t be hissin’ at me b’y. Make no wonder though, spot the babies in the back? So cute. But kinda terrifying. I made sure to pick Alfie up in my arms and walk around them up on the grass. I do not want to be attacked by one of those gigantors.




Central Park Santa Clara
969 Kiely Boulevard, Santa Clara CA

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Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum, San Jose




Ros-EgyptWhen I studied Textile Studies straight out of High School, my Mother was going to the same college for Graphic Design (which I later attended). Conveniently, one of our Art History classes were combined in another building. So for a semester, my Mom and I were classmates.

We always had a little friendly competitive streak in us. So we started studying our 7lb Art History book together. Yet somehow she always got better grades. That Mom-brain of hers, she’s some smart, I tell ya.

My husband is huge on museums even more-so than I am, so we checked out the Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum and it was a fantastic way to start our weekend. Although we didn’t get to explore as much into detail as we wanted, we still got to have a good look around for a little over an hour. It’s worth a visit, especially if you’re interested in Egyptian times since it houses the largest collection of Egyptian artifacts on exhibit in western North America!

But fret not! I actually went back to visit this place a second time, but explore the outside grounds with my lil’ pup Alfie! I didn’t realize it was so done up, with many plants and statues until I was told by one of the guys from Team San Jose that I should check it out. Go on over to that blog post if you missed it, it’s really beautiful, and some kid mistook Alfie for a CAT. HAHA.

Right now I’ll take you through a series of photographs (photo heavy!) of the inside.

Ros-Egypt-MerenptahThe piece I’m standing in front of is a cast directly from a mold created from Merenptah’s tomb in Egypt.



Rosicrucian-ThothProbably my favourite little mummy at the museum. It was a fake mummy of a Baboon to fool people from stealing it (as they usually would). You’ll have to visit to find out the whole story behind Baboons being mummified. 

Ros-First-artifactThis little statue of Standing Sekhmet started the whole Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum here in San Jose. You can see she is wearing on her head that she wears a serpent and the solar disc. 

Ros-Egypt-StatuesBeautiful statues. You may recognize the mummy tomb on the far right, it’s King Tut.

Ros-mummybullA bull head, a cat and even baby crocodiles were mummified.

Ros-Early-Dynastic-CoffinThis was an early dynastic coffin was  was no more than 4 feet wide and made of cedar wood since the mummification process had yet to be developed. People were buried in this wooden box, in the fetal position as they were put to rest. Couldn’t be comfortable for them, but I suppose they wouldn’t know, since they had passed on.

Now onto my favourite part of the museum, the cave where tombs would have been buried!Ros-Egypt-Cave

Ros-Egypt-CaveinsideIt was huge inside. I could imagine myself being a little girl, freaking out not wanting to explore this cave. But as a grown adult who knows better — it was super cool.

Ros-Egypt-Cave-stairsTowards the end of the first level. To the left is a set of stairs.

Ros-Egypt-Cave-stairs3Sneak peek of the room the tomb would’ve been buried in.

Ros-Egypt-Cave-stairs2…and down we go to explore.


Ros-Egypt-Cave-Art1I have to leave some stuff up to the imagination. So all I’m showing is what was on the walls. Beneath the floor in this section, was a huge dug-out where a tomb would’ve been buried.

Of course there is so much more to see than what I photographed. But I don’t want to ruin it for anyone who comes to visit. I mean there’s a couple of creepy mummy inside, too. But I don’t want to scare anyone. I could’ve stared at it for a while, but I can imagine it being freaky-deaky to so many people. Even while I was going through the photos to edit them for the blog, I had second thoughts on adding them in here. So if you want to see them for yourself, you’re going to have to come here to visit! :)


Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum 
1660 Park Avenue
San Jose, CA 95191

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