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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Explore California: Saratoga Village

I can’t believe we’re on week 16 of featuring Alfie on the blog! Time has flown.

Last week I took Alfie out for a little car ride to the downtown core of historic Saratoga Village. We weren’t there too long as I only had one bag to pick up his dung, and of course as soon as we existed the car he took the messiest one of all time. Probably worse than last time at Fremont Older Open Space Preserve with him. Luckily there was a garbage next to us. I swear, he must get excited-nervous about where I’m taking him on these little adventures.

Regardless of that, I’m sure you don’t want visuals of what I’m talking about. Instead, some visuals of this beautiful little town! I’ve been here a couple of times before, but primarily on weekends. Going on a weekday in between lunch time and rush hour was dead silent and perfect for sight-seeing and snapping all the pictures I wanted.




















What are your plans for this weekend?
I’m excited because it’s Banff Mountain Film Festival time! I had to do a bit of research to make sure that it in fact played down in the USA and it sure does. We’re going to be watching some pretty incredible films this weekend. Stay tuned.

Next week I won’t be blogging. As I mentioned in a few other posts I’ll be driving to Yosemite with my first ever climbing partner (we started climbing together in 1995!). She will be flying down here to California from Newfoundland, Canada and we’re renting a car and maybe doing a guided multi-pitch climb if the weather keeps being nice! Cross your fingers :)

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