Joshua and Aaron Thanksgiving Dinner at Fleming's in Newport Beach, California

Thanksgiving Dinner at Fleming’s in Newport Beach

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!  I hope you and your family had a wonderful holiday! This year was a bit different for us.  Aaron and I made a decision awhile ago that we were going to do something we haven’t done since we were college students in our early twenties: skip making Thanksgiving dinner dishes from scratch and, instead, go out to a restaurant.  It felt strange since we cook so much but it was the right call and an easy decision for two reasons. 

Joshua Kennon and Aaron Green at Corona del Mar State Beach on October 6, 2018

After Several Months, We Finally Made a Point to Go Stand in the Ocean

Despite living in Southern California for several months, and being only a short distance from the beach, Aaron and I had not, yet, taken the time to go stand in the ocean. It’s not that we didn’t want to make time for recreation – we very much did.  Rather, we figured it would be better to devote ourselves to getting everything spun-up on the West Coast as quickly as possible, doing as much of the heavy lifting as we could handle upfront so it could be done and behind us.  To make this happen, we turned our productivity into a game of sorts, challenging ourselves to hit certain achievements by specific deadlines.  Tracking our days in a spreadsheet comes in particularly handy.

Armstrong's Garden Centers Newport Beach - Monarch Butterfly Closeup

Visiting Armstrong’s Garden Center in Newport Beach

After writing about the incredible Roger’s Gardens in Corona del Mar, I thought it was only fair to point out that Aaron and I also enjoy a place called Armstrong’s Garden Center in Newport Beach.  The business can trace its roots to 1889 and holds a storied place in the history of the global rose industry (and you know we love our roses!).  A few months ago, we stopped in and spotted a Monarch Butterfly hanging out on some flowers.  We took a video …

Roger's Gardens Newport Beach - Bouquets for Sale

Roger’s Gardens in Corona del Mar Is One of My Favorite Places

In Corona del Mar, California there is a place called Roger’s Gardens.  It is one of the coolest businesses I’ve ever seen and within moments of walking through the entrance, Aaron and I knew it was going to be somewhere we spent a lot of time.  In addition to a covered open-air seating full-service restaurant, it is a multi-acre garden, nursery, and retail experience.  You can eat with friends and family, then design your landscaping, pick out themed Christmas wrapping paper, decorate your home, browse baby gifts, buy water fountains, purchase trees, browse planters and urns, and much more – including designing outdoor furniture!  During a few of our trips, we’ve taken pictures and I thought those of you who love gardening and plants as much as we do would appreciate them.

Joshua and Aaron Reading Setup in the Morning

The Biggest Advantage You Can Give Yourself In Life Is Reading

It is not an exaggeration to say that most of my life and career has been spent reading, writing, and thinking.  In many cases, I turned around and taught others a synthesized version of what I absorbed, putting my own spin on it.  My favorite place in the world during childhood was the public library and even now, I am typing this post surrounded by enormous bookcases overflowing with volumes on everything from trust fund structures to biographies of oil and banking titans.  Reading allows me to satisfy a nearly insatiable curiosity about the world.  More than any other behavior, it has been responsible for my success.

Aaron Birthday Cake Scone Recipe

Italian Pasta, Birthday Cake Scones … We Are Breaking in the Kitchen in Newport Beach

While there is still a lot to get done, much of which will take months as remaining items are crossed off checklists on weekends and during evenings when we have a bit of personal time – hanging pictures, organizing the closets, ordering window treatments, filling in the last few pieces of furniture – our place in Newport Beach is coming along nicely.  After returning from Missouri, where we had been for several weeks in order to continue our planned personal and professional relocation from the state, we finally stocked the kitchen and broke in the appliances beyond our usual breakfasts by cooking one our favorite recipes, the Marcella Hazan tomato sauce with onion and butter over penne, which I first wrote about more than five years ago.

ChanChan Chicken Tenders - Small - From Chan Chan Food House in Irvine

We Had Lunch at Chan Chan Food House in Irvine, California

Today, we were in Newport Beach knocking some things off our task list.  We haven’t had a chance to really explore anything in the surrounding area, nor do we expect to until at least a couple of months after we’ve completed the move as we need to execute it with speed and precision, but we did figure that we could take our lunch break to check out one of the local Korean restaurants.  We settled on a place called Chan Chan Food House in nearby Irvine, California.  We didn’t know what to expect but the food looked delicious and the reviews were good.