san francisco

More Fun in the Wine Country (Mother’s Day, Part Two)

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Last week, I gave you all the details on our fun picnic in the wine country for Mother’s Day.  Today, I want to fill you in on the rest of our fabulously relaxing and fun day!

After our picnic at Rombauer, we drove over to Paraduxx, which is an adorable little winery on the Silverado Trail.  It is owned by the same couple that started Duckhorn Vineyards. Paraduxx has some really good wines and a really gorgeous outdoor backyard space in which to drink them.  They have several “living room” like stations with outdoor couches and coffee tables set up next to the vineyards and also some fun little tables on a porch and some grassy areas for letting the kids run.   (more…)

A Picnic in the Wine Country (Mother’s Day, Part I)

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One major perk of living in the Bay Area is that we can easily hop in the car and head to a really cool destination for the day.  When we return, it always feels like we’ve had a little mini vacation and it’s always so refreshing to get out of the city for a bit.  Sunday was one of those days…

This morning, we made some lattes at home and then piled in the car and drove up to the wine country.  It was cool but sunny in the city, but as we drove across the bridge, we could see “Karl” the fog rolling in.  We couldn’t even see the water, much less the iconic orange towers as we drove across the bridge, which is always such a crazy feeling (and our two year old was baffled and kept asking us where the bridge had gone – try explaining that!)  Just on the other side of the bridge, though, it was hot and sunny (another reason to get of the city once in a while!)  We drove up to St. Helena, which is one of our favorite little towns and went into Dean and Deluca to do our shopping. (more…)

Hair Tutorial

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We are absolutely thrilled that an Andrea Montgomery necklace is featured in this fun hair tutorial post.  The always-stylish Michaela Warner was asked to do a hair tutorial on her fabulous waterfall braid for Rue Magazine’s daily inspiration, Rue Daily, which you can see by clicking on that link.  Her hair and outfit are so lovely and she has inspired us to try something new with our hairstyling (which, let’s admit, has been a daily ponytail as of late!)  Also, we are loving the pop of green in her top.  Emerald is Pantone’s color of the year for 2013 and it has been everywhere this Spring, adding a fresh breath of life all over town! (more…)

Wine Country for Kids – Yountville

So, you’re headed to the wine country, but you’re packing some rather active baggage (read: your children) Never fear, the wine country is very kid-friendly!  We go all the time since we are blessed to live just an hour away from this incredible area and take our kiddos almost every time we go.  (Hey, you gotta teach them to appreciate wine at an early age, right?!)  (more…)

Bouchon Bakery

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One of the fabulous things about living in San Francisco (and there are many!) is that we are so close to the wine country.  Sonoma is a quick 45-minute drive and Napa is just an hour away, making it really easy to drive up for the day.  The landscape is beautiful, the shops adorable and the weather is usually warm and sunny, which is a nice break from the city fog in the Summer!  There are more wineries than you can possible visit and more great food than is reasonable for anyone to eat and when you visit the wine country, even for a day, you feel like you’re on vacation – a million miles away from the city.  It makes for a wonderful day trip or weekend getaway if you life in SF and a fabulous vacation destination if you don’t!  (more…)

Carousel!

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Today, we went to a super fun birthday party in Golden Gate Park. Despite living in the city for three years now, we have not visited this park nearly enough.  There is just so much to see and do there – and it was a perfect spot for a first birthday party.  After the adorable birthday party, we wandered over to the Koret Children’s Quarter playground in the park, which (according to the sign there) was the first public children’s playground in the US, established in 1887.  It’s a fun (and very large) playground with lots to do.  (more…)

The Ferry Building

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Without a doubt, when people come to visit me here in San Francisco, one of the very first places that I take them is to the Ferry Building.  Even when we don’t have friends visiting, the farmers’  market there is one of our very favorite weekend activities.  If you’re coming to SF, I highly recommend you carve out a few hours to visit it – it is well worth it!  (more…)

Absinthe

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If you haven’t been to Absinthe in San Francisco, you owe it a visit.  It is delicious!  I had some friends in town this past weekend and it was our Sunday night dinner spot.  It is one of our favorites and did not disappoint this weekend.  Absinthe is a darling French brassiere in Hayes Valley, where the ambiance is fabulous and the food delicious!  (more…)

Packing for Fog City

This weekend, two of my dearest girlfriends are coming to San Francisco for a much-needed girls’ weekend and I cannot wait!  It’s sure to be a time filled with wine, good food, shopping, heart talks and LOTS of laughter.

Whenever friends come to visit San Francisco, I get the same question – “What do I pack?”  It’s completely understandable.  A lot of my friends are coming from Texas, where it is generally hot and very humid and it’s hard when you’ve worn shorts and flops for the past 8 months to figure out what to wear in a city with weather patterns as crazy as SF’s.  San Francisco is a big city that is comprised of many small neighborhoods that are really almost like small towns themselves.   (more…)

Flour + Water = Yum

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On Friday night, we went out to dinner with some friends in town from Texas.  We went to Flour + Water in the Mission, which both of us had been wanting to try.  It was FANTASTIC!  I wasn’t totally sure what the whole flour and water deal was about, but I quickly learned it refers to the ingredients for pasta, for which the restaurant is known.  They had an entire tasting menu dedicated just to pastas and had a ton of fabulous pasta choices on the menu.  When I first looked over the menu, I was a little put off by how many ingredients listed were completely foreign to me.  (Don’t you just hate it when restaurants use ridiculous words for something totally normal, just to look cool?)  With a little explanation from our very knowledgeable waitress, however, I could see that they weren’t being pretentious at all.  They just really like to use unique ingredients – and they do so with great success!  We ended up getting a few appetizers (including pig’s feet, which was surprisingly yummy!), a few pasta dishes and one of their incredible thin crust pizzas and for dessert, the INCREDIBLE chocolate budino with espresso caramel cream and sea salt – YUM.  Every single thing I ate was delicious.  Check them out at Flour + Water and then stop by for a bite.  You won’t be sorry!