Sunday, July 31, 2011

And In That Moment, I Swear We Were Infinite...

This weekend was full of shenanigans as I enjoyed a bittersweet weekend with the lovely Nicoley. She's leaving to teach English in Spain for ten months, and I cannot even wrap my head around how long that actually is. Girlfriend was my lifeline during finals craziness, my partner in crime any night of the week, and one of the most genuine people I have ever met. She drove nearly 20 hours round trip with her mama and sister just to enjoy one last magical night before she embarks on her grand EspaƱa adventure. It seems like we nearly touched every corner of SF — riding the "RocketBoat" at Pier 39, dining and drinking at Fisherman's Wharf, playing in the Castro and the Tenderloin, and shopping and people watching in Haight-Ashbury.

The RocketBoat at Pier 39. No words, just water, water everywhere! We couldn't stop laughing nearly the entire ride.

Chillin' on the RocketBoat in McCovey Cove. A dream come true!

Irish coffee at the Buena Vista. Nicoley's mom loved it, while we had the reaction of any newb to this treat.

Our trip to the Haight included a performance from an Avett Brothers-esque performance in a random doorway.

Everyone needs a friend that will partake in cheesy tourist activities with you, try PBR with you just because, and run through sketchy streets at 3 a.m. because you both didn't realize you were in the, well, sketchy part of town. It's not goodbye, it's until next time!

Really great people make you feel that you, too, can be great.
-Mark Twain

PS: If you can identify the title of my post without Googling it, I heart you.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Wall Art

I would love to have this as a poster in my apartment. First of all, it could definitely tie in the eclectic furniture I've got going on and help me define a color scheme. Secondly, I could play the exciting game of 'What's your colorscope?' any time I have guests over. So what if I enjoy defining personality types? I dream big folks.

Via Paper Source.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

One is Silver and the Other Gold

My friend Ashley came up this weekend with another gal in our sorority, and I had the best tie with them in the city... and I think they did too! We shopped in Haight, ate a delicious dinner at The Tipsy Pig (check that one off the bucket list), and hung out with some of my new Bay friends/co-workers late into the evening. PS: How gorgeous is this pooch we were obsessing over in SF?

Delish drinks!

My "Auntie" Claire also traveled up to MV this weekend with her friend Ruth just to see my apartment and my place of employment. I was overjoyed to share my new independent lifestyle with them, especially considering my kitchen is stocked with cups, bowls and baking utensils thanks to Claire. Ruth also brought her college-aged grandniece (i think that's how they are related anyways!), so we shared a perfect girls dinner, gabbing, laughing, and sharing stories. I may have teared up all the way home wishing my grandma was still with us, and am truly grateful that my grandparents connected with Claire and her hubby so many years ago. There's nothing like friends that become family!

She said she usually cried at least once each day, not because she was sad, but because the world was so beautiful and life was so short.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

My Second Home

One of the contestants on this season of The Bachelorette is the adorable Ben F. from Sonoma. Last night's episode highlighted the hometown dates, and I was dying for a glimpse of one of my favorite cities in the whole wide worl. Too bad all we got was some brief stock footage of the Sebastiani Theater and barracks from the mission days. If I were to be your tour guide for a day in Sonoma, here is what I would highly recommend:

Tiddle E. Winks is a precious retro shop filled with niche candy you cannot find anywhere else, amazing vintage jewelry, and enough Hello Kitty items to make this gal happy. The store itself is so lovely that I wish I could have a cute little living area just in its style.

And in case you don't get your candy fill, I also recommend The Chocolate Cow. They offer the best ice cream for the best price. Sonoma is obsessed with cows, and the table in the shop is unbelievable.

Happy to be in Sonoma despite a little rain. Circa Christmas 2009.

What goes better than chocolate than cheese? Sample the cheese at The Cheese Factory or else your trip will not be complete. The lavender cheese is my current fave! They also have the most delicious sandwiches - perfect for a picnic on The Plaza. Don't forget to feed the duckies in The Plaza with your leftover bread.

As far as shopping goes, check out the fair trade store Baksheeseh, The Church Mouse for secondhand finds, and my favorite store for clothes Fleurtique.

The Basque Bakery is the only place to get bread, bu I recommend saving this for a late night trip. Whenever I go to Sonoma overnight, I head down to the bakery around 10:00 p.m. to grab a pull-a-part hot out of the oven. Simply, the best!

I'd offer you restaurant recommendations, but nothing beats my Nan's kitchen.
This city is such a well-preserved treasure of California, so I highly recommend a visit!

My heaven is between the historic Toscano Hotel and The Cheese Factory

Sunday, July 17, 2011


My attempt to make a 'Welcome' banner definitely looks better from far away. I think I'll try it again at some point, and actually print out letters to use as a stencil. I've seen some really cute projects using paint swatches, and that's exactly why these colors look so precise. I cannot wait to welcome all the visitors that are coming to Mountain View in the next couple weeks!

I went to the most delish cafe in San Fran this weekend. Why have I never thought of using a croissant as the base for French toast? The over-the-top-ness of this dish actually makes it comparable to Griddle Cafe in LA. It was almost too perfect that the restaurant was named Chloe's Cafe... missing my friend who is bravely conquering Vietnam for the next year.

I hope you all had an equally fabulous weekend!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Recent Obsessions

My new Weber barbecue! Never have I ever barbecued, but boy am I excited to try this baby out. I feel like a barbecue opens up a nearly limitless array of options for a gal that isn't a huge fan of making time-consuming dinners. Barbecued pizza, here I come!

This lime green Preserve kitchen equipment. How could you not be excited in the kitchen when your tools are a technicolor dream? I love how big this bowl and the colander are, and it definitely helps keep messes to a minimum. Thanks mom!

My first slab of Corian! I am obsessed with Corian as a work surface – it comes in a close second to granite. It is extremely heat resistant, makes for a great surface to roll out cookie dough, and is SO easy to clean. I like my little slab an awful lot, and I will cherish this baby until I can design my own fab kitchen. Again, thanks mom for the sweet Corian pieces.

Does it sound like I should pick up a copy of Good Housekeeping or what? Well...

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Find Your Bliss

Maybe I can't wear hairbows any longer, but patent bow flip-flops are totally appropriate. Right?

Today was definitely a chick lit day at the library. Sex and the City, Michelle Obama, and Jodi Picoult are perfect reads for breezy summer nights.

And to top it all off, I've been snacking on delicious Colorado taffy babygirl brought us back from her trip. Neapolitan delight!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


After a fabulous wedding on Saturday, we spend the rest of the weekend celebrating birthdays - my dear Uncle Dan's and America's, that is! My uncle is an avid fisherman, and this fish from Occasional Cakes is something worthy of Cake Boss. Look at my fondant uncle in the corner! I am so blessed to have this guy in my life. He has such an inspirational work ethic, gives so generously, and loves his family so much. I will always treasure our fishing memories.

Fourth of July in Sonoma is always a fantastic affair. There's nothing like sitting around the plaza with my family watching the parade, seeing babygirl dominate the potato toss to win salami as we peruse the games on the Plaza, and eating all day long as we visit at my Nan's house the rest of the day. The small town feel of Sonoma is definitely evident: neighbors streaming in and out all day long, saying "Happy Fourth!" to anyone on the street, and watching the all-town fireworks show when it gets dark.

My Nan's bff from high school owns a beautiful Thunderbird. So appropriate for such an American weekend!

Don't worry... everyone sets up their chairs the night before the parade and wraps them in caution tape :)

Only in Sonoma would you see a Bichon float.

What a wonderful weekend celebrating America and my uncle with the fam!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

In Your Wedding Dress

Aren't weddings the best? My cousin Gordon got married this weekend, and it was definitely an evening to remember. His bride Katie looked amazing! It was held at a beautiful ranch in Santa Rosa, and everything about the wedding seemed to highlight the love between the couple. They wrote their own vows, the wedding favors included the couple's favorite candy to snack on, and the perfect weather made for a crowded dance floor. I think seeing all my aunts, uncles and cousins dancing together in celebration of the new couple is my favorite part of weddings. Gordon is an avoid fisherman and hunter, and the cake featured a groom "fishing" for his bride using an engagement ring as bait. I feel incredibly blessed for such an awesome extended family, and I can't wait to share other fabulous photos of the rest of our weekend up north!

Clockwise from top left: The cake, the couple's first dance, place settings Katie crafted, and the Fowler kids with their mom.

Clockwise from top left: My sisters and I with Nan, the girls with two cousins, my "baby" sisters and me, and my lovely parents.