Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Take a Scenic Stroll Back in Time and Walk the Lands of the Cowboys at Bartley Ranch, Nevada.

6000 Bartley Ranch Road,
Reno, NV 89511

Park Ranger Office: (775) 828-6612
Pavilion Reservations (775) 823-6501

Bartley Ranch occupies a cherished spot among my favorite parks in Reno. Its Western ambiance, unique beauty, and array of amenities, along with special events, firmly establish it as a top contender on my all-time favorite list.

This park offers a variety of spaces, ideal for diverse activities such as picnics, leisurely strolls, wildlife observation, pet walking, and the hosting of special events like parties, concerts, weddings, or even providing an immersive experience of stepping back in time.

The park is decorated with old vintage tractors and wooden shacks, evoking a sense of what life was like in bygone days. The presence of horse tracks along the trails enhances the historical experience.

The park features a beautiful Western Heritage Interpretive Center, a vintage Huffaker School, and an amphitheater available for rental for special occasions. Informative pamphlets in front of the interpretive center provide details about the park's flora, fauna, and history.

Approaching from the south, a scenic lookout presents breathtaking views before descending into the ranch. From this vantage point, one can appreciate a white picket fence shaped like Nevada, observe runners traversing the slopes, witness dog walkers, and see individuals enjoying the scenery from benches.

Within a short 30 minutes, I encountered a wide variety of wildlife and traversed various terrains during a short walk. A charming nature trail, complete with a quaint bridge, led to a wooden walkway against picturesque mountainous hills, followed by a zigzagging trail looping back to the ranch.

Whether participating in a special event, embarking on a scenic stroll, observing wildlife, taking in scenic views, walking your furry friends, celebrating a special occasion, or enjoying a picnic, Bartley Ranch Park is sure to please. It's a park that consistently draws me back for more, and I'm delighted to share this experience with all of you.

*Plenty of parking available
*Arrive early for special events as parking fills up fast
*Bartley Ranch Park is a popular place for photo sessions

Reccomended Gear
-Sunscreen (after trying so many options, this is my family's favorite)
-Water Bottle (definitely a must in Reno's dry climate)
-Portable potty Liners (priceless gadget that makes any hike with kids a breeze)

*As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases at no extra cost to you.

Bartley Ranch in Fall

Park at Audrey Harris Park for lookout.

©Katherine Fung,
All rights reserved.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Amazing Birth Experience at Renown Medical Center, Reno NV

1155 Mill St, Reno, NV 89502

Click HERE for their pre-registration form
Click HERE for more reviews of the hospital on Yelp

Renown Medical Center delivers a ridiculous amount of babies every day (4,063 in the year 2016) and I was lucky to have been under their care and witness their abilities firsthand.  It is one of the main hospitals in Reno (next to St. Mary's) and I couldn't have been happier with my birth experience.

I'm the mother of three children and two of them were born at Renown Medical Center.  My experiences were nothing short of amazing.  The ease of check-in, skill level of the doctors, nurses and staff, resources available, and level of comfort all contributed to my amazing experiences and I would easily come back to Renown if I ever planned on having another child.

My second child (photographed in pictures) arrived half the time as my first child. Instead of 12 hours, he arrived in six hours. I was at home laboring up a storm and suddenly my water broke.  I knew in an instant that I was on the edge of giving birth and called for help to be transported to the hospital at lightning speed.  Sure enough, my sister's instincts were on point and she arrived just in time to get me to the hospital with less than ten minutes to deliver the baby.  We arrived at the emergency section of the hospital, where someone with a chair wheeled me into the delivery room.  The nurses heard me coming down the hall and my sister said they all quickly flocked together in a group waiting to receive me.

They transferred me to the bed and immediately called the doctor.  The doctor arrived promptly and was very skillful with how he delivered my baby.  He did a technique that prevented tares and I couldn't have been happier since my first birthing experience left me in pain with a third-degree tear.  The doctor that delivered my first baby in New Jersey just watched as the baby pushed through.  Asking your doctor ahead of time about ways to prevent tares could be beneficial so as to reduce healing time post-delivery.

After my baby came out, the nurses quickly wiped him with towels and placed him on my chest.  Bonding occurs right away and it is said that skin-to-skin contact also helps calm babies while keeping them warm and helps trigger your milk supply for breastfeeding.  They also applied antibiotic eye drops to prevent eye infections.

While holding my baby, the doctor came in and made sure the placenta came out.  One firm press to my stomach did the trick and the placenta slipped right out.

Shortly after, the nurses took him to a table right next to my bed. There, they suctioned out extra fluids to help him breathe better, took some measurements, and made sure everything was normal.

After being asked some questions, I was transferred to my recovery room.

In recovery, the nurse helped me with my first bathroom break and gave me some instruction on how to care for myself.  The bathroom was fully stocked with everything I needed-underwear, pads, wash bottles, gowns, and towels.   After, she offered me an ice pack for my bottom and I was so thankful since it was so soothing.

With my second baby, my husband went along with the nurses for his first bath. With the third baby, I could watch my baby's first bath.

They watched me and my baby closely to make sure our vitals were on point and to make sure I was feeling OK and that I wasn't bleeding excessively.

A lactation consultant visited me to help me with breastfeeding and any questions I had.  This resource is very useful to have.  Renown does have alternatives and resources to breastfeeding if you're unable to.

My doctor visited me the following day to see my progress and gave me the o.k. to go home.  They monitor you for a minimum of 24 hours to make sure everything is fine.  Mothers usually stay for 24–48 hours after giving birth.

It took 10 minutes from the time I arrived to the time my baby came out.  With such little time, Renown delivered in all areas.  I was so impressed with how prepared they were.  There's nothing more comforting than knowing you have people you can depend on to get you through your birthing experience.

I gave birth to my three children without an epidural, and I wouldn't have done it any other way.  Of course, I feared the unknowns of pain that I would experience, but I knew it was pain that I could handle and pain that would be worthwhile.

There are many options available for pain management at Renown and different methods of giving birth.

With my second delivery at Renown, I made sure to allow extra time to check in.  I went in through the front entrance of the hospital and was checked into a screening room, where they determined that I was far enough in to be admitted.  This time around, they called my doctor (information on hand from pre-registration) who made it just in time to deliver my third baby.  I gave birth yet again and couldn't have been happier with the service given.

In the end, Renown's doctors, nurses and staff exceeded my expectations.  The beautiful hospital allowed my husband to sleep overnight with me. The snack room (accessible to only mothers that had just given birth) was a pleasant surprise, and me and my husband couldn't have been happier with the care we received.

Renown has created the ultimate pregnancy guide, including all the information you need to know to have the best pregnancy and birthing experience.  You can access it by clicking HERE.

-what to expect
-information on getting sick during pregnancy
-nutrition and how to stay healthy 
-frequently asked questions
-prep for the big day
-what to expect during pregnancy, pre and post delivery
-nursing tips
-childbirth classes available
-tips for caring for your newborn 
-safety guidelines
-plenty of resources

My Top Ten Items to Bring to the Hospital:
1. Car Seat + Car Seat Base installed in car (All 3 of my kids love their Foonf Clek Carseat.  Purchase with Infant Thingy insert for newborns)
2. Slippers
3. Nursing Bra + Pads(washable or disposable)
4. Aquaphor (they have ointment at the hospital, but I brought my favorite because it makes changing diapers so much easier) + Lanolin nipple cream to soothe nipples .
5. Phone Charger
6. Camera
7. Snacks for you and loved ones staying overnight
8. Going home outfit for you and baby
9.  Everything is supplied at the hospital, but I like to bring my own overnight heavy Always pads for comfort.
10.  Toiletries

*Dermoplast spray helped with the soreness below during bathroom breaks
*You can ask for ice packs, which really help give relief
*If you're into books, bringing one can help past time
*If you're in need of a little break, they can help watch baby in the nursery
*Perineal wash bottles help a lot during potty breaks.  I sprayed cold water while peeing to prevent stings.
*There are many baby apps to help keep track of baby-feeding, diapering, sleeping.
*I took advantage of the underwear they had and disposed of them when I had leaks.
*Get as much rest as you can because if you plan to breastfeed, you'll be needing it.

Monday, March 9, 2020

Have a Good Old Fashion Burger and Milkshake at One of the Best Burger Joints in the World- Five Guys

6395 S McCarran Blvd, Reno, NV 89509

Click HERE for their website
Click HERE for hours, directions, more pictures and reviews on Yelp

*You can order online without having to make an account.  Milkshakes are made upon arrival. Skip the link and go straight to pick up and inform them of your online order.  Super convenient. 
*They do not serve a veggie patty but they have enough toppings to make a decent veggie burger.  Double up the cheese.

I grew up on the West Coast in San Diego and as you've probably guessed, I'm a die hard In-N-Out fan.  The only burger I've ever known and cared for was the the "Animal Style" Cheeseburger (a regular cheeseburger with grilled onions, special spread and pickles added).  It was the burger that saw me through my childhood, through my ups and downs and would be the burger that would always have my heart.  

During my two short years of living in New Jersey, I learned of the East Coast's go-to burger, Five Guys.  One day, I longed for an In-N-Out burger there were none to be found.  I was excited to find a temporary fix while away from San Diego so I went out and tried Five Guy's popular burgers.  I was blown away by this burger. It was substantial, it was huge, it was loaded and it was beyond fresh.  I didn't know that I would ever crave another burger than In-N-Out, but that was not the case.  Five guys is the only other burger I will dream about and crave because it's so good that it makes that kind of impression.  

You can get crazy with customization or just leave it to them and "go all the way" with their set award winning combination of toppings- Mayo, lettuce, pickles, tomatoes, grilled mushrooms, ketchup, grilled onions, mustard.  Other topping options include: onions, fried onions, jalapeno peppers, green peppers, A-1 sauce, Bar-B-Q sauce and hot sauce.  I could only imagine and dream about the other undiscovered award winning combinations out there.  I'm glad I have a lot of time to explore.  

I thought wow, this burger is great, but then I hear from family & friends, "Wait, there's more!"  Yes, their sides of Cajun fries and milkshakes were equally as satisfying.  Great portion and great flavor, Cajun fries always hits the spot (with just the perfect amount of spice).  I love that they fry them in peanut oil and that they're always super fresh.  Though after sitting in a bag, you can see some oil seep through but that's why I like to share them with my family, so as to cut down on the fat.  If the fries weren't enough, they even serve milkshakes, that are without a doubt, super refreshing, true to their flavor, without preservatives and super delicious.

During my visits throughout the year, I always went directly for the burgers, but one day I saw their hot dogs on the menu and felt it was time to try them out.  Not only does Five Guys have award winning hamburgers, but yes, award winning hot dogs as well.  I had the plain hot dog with "all the way" toppings and I couldn't stop saying "Yum!" with each bite.  The dog was seasoned perfectly, not too salty (as lots of dogs are for me) and with no preserved taste at all.  I would encourage for everyone to try their hot dogs.

Service is very efficient at Five Guys.  They have a nice energy between their team, communicating and talking to one another to ensure the best experience possible.  I love that they are fast with food prep and hand off with confidence and a smile.

Five guys, along with In-N-Out, will always be among my top favorite burgers.  They're both different, but both so good so I can't choose a number one.  Last thing to note is that they have complimentary peanuts (self-serve).  Say What!?  As if the burgers, fries, and milkshakes weren't enough. I know...

Categorized under "Good Eats"---> "Burgers"

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Let You Imagination Run Wild at the Children's Museum, Carson City

813 N Carson Street, Carson City, NV 89701

With its population of only 55,500 people, Carson City managed to create a special, hands-on, play-based museum for children.  Geared toward younger children, you will find many exhibits where kids can let their imaginations go wild through play.

There are many well-thought-out exhibits that are nicely made and my kids can spend a lot of time role-playing.  At the hospital exhibit, they can treat their patients, learn how to take care of a baby and develop their bedside manner.  At the supermarket, they learn how to budget their money and love to prepare gourmet meals for mommy.  When they need an outlet for extra energy, they will climb up the indoor structures, crawl around the tunnels, and slide down countless times with joy.  

The children's museum also has a lower level where children can engage in STEM activities and art.  Please call in before your visit to check for availability.      

I love that the children's museum has story time and hosts special events throughout the year.  Me and my kids love attending their annual Chinese New Year Celebration, where you will find activities such as calligraphy and origami, and have a chance to watch Chinese cultural dances.  The date for Chinese New Year changes each year and falls between January 21-February and is determined by the Chinese lunar calendar.

Imagination development and creative play is really big with my family as it is part of what me and my husband think is integral in a well rounded upbringing.  For this reason, The Children's Museum of Nevada is a really big hit with us.  

-visit website for general admission rates
-Story time: Wednesdays 10AM & Saturdays 10AM (Please visit their website for their current schedule)
-Snacks for sale at check-in
-Toddler section available (alphabet toys, books, play table)
-Educational displays with facts
-Art room open Saturdays & Sundays 1-3PM 
-Museum Store
-Birthday Parties 
-Yearly membership available
-Volunteer opportunities available 
-Closed on major holidays
-moving rock climbing wall
-special field trip rates
-Reno Taiko Japanese drummers performed during Chinese New Year. Click HERE to follow them and find out about their next performances
-elevator access for strollers/wheelchairs available. Check in with front first to ask for assistance/access

Rates as of 3/2021
Please check website for current rates

Japanese New Year Tradition

Categorized under "Museums and Birthday/Event Venues"