Monday, December 21, 2009

Oakland daycation-My top three favorite picks

1. Brown Sugar Kitchen

Maybe your mother or grandmother has a homemade fried chicken recipe that you loved. The chef over at the Brown Sugar Kitchen put all of that love in hers. I could taste it! I couldn't go without ordering some homemade mac n cheese with it. It was a touch of soul and a whole lot southern. Right up my alley! Yum! Yum!
Ok course I couldn't resist the cornmeal waffles so light and fluffy. Oh my goodness, they top them off with brown sugar butter and apple cider syrup. It wouldn't be breakfast without a side of their chicken apple sausage. Oh dear chef Tanya, if your reading this -I'm in love with your restaurant!
After the first two dishes the waitress brought us these beignets. She said they were on the house. I told her I would be posting about the food on my blog! I like my beignets with a cake like taste, kind of dense. I don't want them to taste like fluffy air. These did not dissapoint!

Oh and course as any Southern girl would do I had to order the grits. They weren't just typical grits. They had a light, delicate, creamy taste with a touch of aged white chedder- perfect for a wintery morning.
My husband ordered the quiche with slaw. The quiche was smooth and creamy with a great flavor. The slaw was not your usual mayonaise slop. It had just a hint of lime and was very delicate.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Oakland daycation-My top three favorite picks

2. Peerless Coffee

You couldn't go to Oakland, CA and not make a stop at Peerless Coffee Company. Peerless was started in 1920 by a Yugoslavian immigrant and still run today by his family. They have 125 different varieties of coffee. While there you can see their museum with memorbelia that spans 80 years. Check out the old coffee grinders, very cool. Take home something from the gift shop. They even give you fresh roasted peanuts to snack on.

Oakland daycation-My top three favorite picks

3. Jack London Square

My daycation to this wonderful and vibrant waterfront in Oakland, CA. was exciting, as it is steeped in history. This waterfront is an estuary that leads to the San Francisco Bay. It's where Jack London spent much of his childhood on the waterfront as a sailor and oyster pirate. Those adventures there inspired his future books like SEA WOLF. While there you can see his own real life cabin on the waterfront brought in from his time in Alaska. It's definitely on my must see list.

A view down the street.

Walking into Jack London Square.

Shopping inside Jack London Square.

Beautiful palm trees inside the square.
The view along the pier at Jack London Square.
A beautiful view of the harbor at Jack London Square.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Winter Wonderland

What fun! We got a light dusting of snow on Monday. Yes it's been known to happen once in awhile. It was warm and cozy inside. The kids were running in and out trying to sled down the hill with the snow they had. I was looking out the window dreaming of all the places that might be a winter wonderland...........

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

........Let's start with a horse drawn sleigh ride in New Hampsihire!
What about cozying up in this beautiful log cabin in .......Minnesota!

.......Let's make our last stop at this beauty in.......Vermont!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Vintage Monday

I've always loved finding a good vintage piece to take home after a day at the flea market or antiques fair. Even the simplest piece can be an object of art in your home. I haven't had much time to do that in the last two years since I had my third child. But I do miss the fun of the hunt. I still have pieces around the house and even though some aren't used the same way they used to be, I still treasure them. I've decided to showcase some of my pieces on Mondays. "Vintage Mondays". This week its my very own market basket -its the one with the white linen below it. I've used it for many things-to hold towels, magazines, even toys. It's a great catchall.
View some great vintage pieces- and my own market basket

What vintage pieces do you have and love?

Friday, November 6, 2009

A brand new look

I wanted to see something beautiful when I got on my blog and I just wasn't feelin it. I'm not so up on the html thing you see and I'm new to the blogosphere. That sweet gal Nancy over at was a big help. We're also both Houstonians. How cool is that? Okay- I'm a CALI. girl now.

Friday, October 30, 2009

OOh-LA LA! The scents of fall and winter

Who doesn't love the smell of a fresh baked pumpkin pie or cinnamon sticks, a crackling fire, and hot chocolate. It's that time of year. Here are some of my picks for winter scents -for your home and yourself...What are your favorite scents this year?

Bodie and Fou Cinnamon and Orange Body Wash

Caldrea Pomegranate Countertop Cleaner

Mistral Winter Berry Soap

Thursday, October 29, 2009

From Bath and Body Works
Slatkin and Co. -Winter Concentrated Room Spray

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Adorable blocks

I saw these at a coffee shop I frequent and it reminded me of a fellow blogger Samantha over at the nestuk. She also makes these adorable blocks herself.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The beauty of northern California

It was a cloudy day yesterday here in northern California. I was just in one of those moods to snap a few shoots on the way to take the kids to school. As I rounded the bend by the lake and headed up the hill I thought of how I loved fall here. I had the windows cracked just a bit and the smell of rain in the air was awesome. Just seeing the pretty clouds and the fall foliage made me appreciate the place I live. People come from all over to see this part of California and I am fortunate enough to live here.

Beautiful fall colors are here.

Arriving to drop kids off at school.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Copperopolis-The Town Square

We spend lots of time here-getting coffee, letting the kids run around, and chatting with the merchants. We love our town square. I thought I would post several pictures to show the various buildings made to look like and old 1800's gold rush town. Actually Copperopolis was one of the towns that copper was mined out of and used in the various world wars. It left here went to Stockton, CA. then onto San Francisco then shipped to the east coast. We still have the general store and hotel from the 1800's on main street. The town square was built last year a few miles down the road from the main street to draw tourists as they come to explore all of the gold rush towns and ski at Bear Valley Ski Resort.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Couldn't you just see a wedding here under the gazebo. It also has lights and a ceiling fan underneath. My kids love coming here. My little guy loves running up and down the stairs and going in the gazebo. You can check out there website.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Organizing is on my mind

This picture had me thinking alot about organization. It's probably the one thing that drives me nuts around our house. You need things to store your stuff in, but even when you have that- things just somehow don't make it there. All the experts say you make time to go through your mail properly every day, edit what you don't need, and even have a basket that you can walk around and pick up the extras then go through it and put your stuff back in its place. These are all great suggestions. I've decided to head on over to the Simplified Bee's Blog and take some inspiration and tips from her. I think it's high time I get busy organizing. Check out her interior design photos also. I love them.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Midtown Daycation- A popular hangout in Sacramento

Decided to leave the hills and head for the city. Sacramento that is. Trying to decide what to feed three kids once we arrived there was the challenge. Thankfully pizza was an easy answer. Popped into Paesano's Pizza in Midtown. Midtown is a quaint area of shops, eateries, lofts, coffee houses and more. A great fit for us. Outside the locals were walking in and out of places and it was a perfect day for it. It was a crisp, sunny, fall day, perfect for strolling. Then we headed on over to Broadway to hit some thrift and antique stores to peruse furniture, decor and more. I'm always on the hunt for that. Then headed back to the foothills as the sun was setting over the hills ahead us. All and all a nice day!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Banana Bread and a fall Saturday morning

Nothing like waking up to the smell of banana bread on a crisp fall saturday morning. This recipe is hands down one of my very favorties. It is so moist, it practically melts in your mouth. My kids it.
2cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg
1 1/8 c. sugar
1/2 c. veg. oil
2 tbsp buttermilk
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
3 ripe medium-large bananas mashed
1/2 c. to 1/3 c. chopped walnuts
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease a loaf pan and dust with flour. Blend together the flour, baking soda, and salt and set it aside. Mix the egg, sugar and veg. oil until combined. Add the flour mixture and when blended add the buttermilk, vanila and mashed bananas and mix until combined. Fold in 1/2 c chopped walnuts and pour batter into loaf pan. Top batter with the remaining 1/3 cup walnuts. Bake for 45 to 60 min. until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 min before removing from the pan.


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Fantasy Bedroom

Ah yes- could it be a fantasy bedroom just for me. Shades of white and beige and the perfect shade of blue.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Wanna go to Berkeley anyone?-My top three favorite picks

When you go to Berkeley you want to check out a great little store called Ellington and French. Look for things out of the ordinary. Journals and stationary not found anywhere else. Great candles and soaps. Awesome ambience. Shabby but utilitarian.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

La Farine Bakery

If you were reading my posts about Berkeley I told you about a bakery that was featured in a Sunset Magazine article. A bakery called La Farine. The inside is just as cool as the bread that comes out of it. As you know, I love design. So these beautiful sconces caught my eye as soon as I first walked in the door! Design and food a great combination!

College Avenue

A view down the sidewalk from Cole Coffee. There is a great little corner market with fresh produce. A flower stand with fresh flowers. Those are all over Berkeley. A bakery that was featured in Sunset Magazine....all of that coming up..... stay tuned.

Cole Coffee

When you think of Berkeley you probably think of University of California at Berkeley, or you may think hippies, or a town with a very hip organic side to it. Everytime we go we hit some of our favorite places to eat, shop, or just have fun. Nestled right at the border of Berkeley and Oakland on College Avenue is Cole Coffee. Just a plain cool hangout to watch the locals and visitors alike and great mochas to boot. From your sidewalk table you can look back down the street to see all kinds of great little shops not to miss when you are here. I'll be posting on those soon.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

It's Fall Already?

Fall has come. But this picture just conjures up one more day of summer. I can just smell the salty sea air and hear the waves crashing. I could fall asleep right in that chair!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Copper Proper

My friend Fran has a store here in our town square. It is one of the best displayed stores I've seen. She has candles and soaps that make you think your in an English garden. Beautiful quilts. Linen Spray, and these very chic, hip shopping bags. If you come to the Calaveras County hills make it a must see!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

A Day in Berkeley.....coming soon

I just got back from Berkeley yesterday and have lots of things to tell you about. I'll be posting about all the hip things to do in this great city. Everything from food to bakeries. So stay tuned....


So I set out to find at least one home decor store to visit for the day in Sacramento. I found it. It's the French Hen. I have her listed under Blissful Blogs to Follow. It was a french treat for my daughter and I. I bought two of the soaps I love (MISTRAL) -in some oh so fragrent smells. She even had a bed in her store with carved wood birds on top of the headboard. They featured this bed in Country Living Magazine. It was beautiful. It is on my list-absolutely a must see!http:/

Taylors Market

Taylors Market. Oh so quaint.

Okay let's talk Taylors Market. They carry Creekstone Farms, Wagyu beef, Estancia and Five Dot Ranch. Yes we love Creekstone Farms. Okay, we do eat the grass fed, no hormone, organic meat and we go out of our way to get it. Of course we think it's better! One of my favorite designers, Tracy Porter buys her salami there. Oh and I can get my Mrs. Meyers kitchen cleaner there with the awesome smell of Basil. I'm a BIG scent fanatic. If it smells like I can eat it I love it. Soaps, kitchen cleaners, candles. I'm there!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

About Me Picture

I have not posted a picture of myself in my profile, hopefully soon. Until then, this is a picture of my pool at my last house. My husband and I designed it. I loved it! The picture is a bit blurry as it was snapped with a cell phone while we sat in the hot tub. Sure do miss it.