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Exploring New York in Three Days

Mondays are not something I try to celebrate normally. But this Monday is exciting because I’m telling you about my trip to New York City! Yes, the one from December 2013. I promise food! booze! adventure! and touristy things! I also promise not to drag this first leg of my trip out any longer!

I’ve been missing New York pretty hard lately. There’s just something about getting lost in the bustling city that makes all of the obnoxious thoughts preoccupying your mind float away. Since I definitely don’t get hustle nor bustle in Napa, I’m forced to relive my New York City adventures through photos of my trip and my travel journal, which I’m so, so thankful I stuck to writing in. Especially since I’ve been putting off writing about my trip for over a year. It helped to remind me of the little details of our trip that my nearly 30 year old brain had already forgotten.

Three Days in NYC

While I’ve been to New York twice before, my parents hadn’t ever been until our trip! I wanted to take them to a few of my favorite places, some which also happen to be New York icons. Over the course of 3-ish days, we explored the known, got lost in the unknown and then ate and drank our way through New York City. At the end of our adventure that wonderful few days in December 2013, my parents felt like they had a pretty great overview of the Big Apple. Here’s what our visit looked like:

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Friday Five

Grab a cuppa joe. It’s Friday and we’re taking off!

Seen in NYC, this coffee contraption. It was my first time using one and I’d only ever seen them in Europe!

1. In an effort to finally finish up my New York & London posts, I shut off all distractions (social media, email, phone, etc.) to just write. I read through my travel journal again. stumbled upon pictures I’d forgotten about (like the one above), and managed to put together a fun recap of my stay in New York City. I can’t wait to share with you bright and early on Monday!

2. Speaking of NYC, umm.. coffee cake was created in Brooklyn?! David’s refreshed recipe sounds amazing!

3. I loved reading this article. Perhaps it’s time to try a new city? Let’s agree to never settle. K?

4. How amazing (and easy!) would this tart be for a Mother’s Day brunch? Throw it in the oven, mimosa in hand. Thanks, Brooks!

5. The Galapagos Islands have always fascinated me. But after seeing these animal pics?! I’m determined to make it there.

Friday Five

We took a brief detour at Hog Island Oyster Company before making it to our destination, Tomales Bay Oyster Company. We get confused easily.

1. Last weekend, I had a bit of a staycation and became obsessed with Marin County. It was only supposed to be a few hours in some tiny little town called Marshall, CA for (other people to eat) oysters and catching up. It turned into a whole afternoon filled with friends, bubbles and great stories. And I ate oysters. I blame the bubbles. Moral of the story: staycations can be a wonderful thing!

2. Jessica made these tacos and I can’t stop thinking about them. I know she said maybe no crockpot, but I’m going to crockpot. I mean, come home from work and BOOM tacos.

3. I don’t think it’s a secret that I love chicken ‘n dumplins and Joy’s version has my mouth watering. Is it too soon to throw a fit that California hasn’t had a winter? Will my East Coast friends hate me? All I want to do is make comfort food with it raining outside..

4. Because, clearly, I need another reason to eat more cheese. This study says I’m supposed to eat cheese all the time! Or.. something like that.

5. We’ve heard of swapping out toiletries in favor of putting airplane-sized booze in your TSA-approved bag for liquids while traveling (or is that just me?), but have you heard of this? I’ve actually sampled it before and it’s tasty! Love the ingenuity in my fellow Napans.

Two Days of Eating My Way Through San Francisco

Though it’s only an hour away, I always feel that I don’t get to San Francisco enough. It’s such a fun city to wander around. It also happens to be superb for people watching and meeting. Plus all of the amazing food and cocktail options? Yeah, it’s a pretty sweet place that I’d love to get to know a lot better.

Early last month, I headed to San Francisco for a work conference and was forced to stay overnight in the city for  two nights. Right off Union Square. At a Kimpton Hotel. With a free rooftop happy hour that was killer. How horrible, I know. 

I had an absolutely amazing time during my stay meeting up with a San Francisco-based blogger you may know, catching some sweet views and, as to be expected, eating and drinking my way through San Francisco. Now, I will pass along my knowledge, for your next trip to SF!

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Friday Five

Happy, happy Friday! I’m clinking you, wherever you are. We’ve made it through another week! 1. In December 2013, I visited the 9/11 Memorial and was privy to views of the stunning One World Trade Center building. Starting next month, the observatory at the top of One World Trade Center will be open for public viewing. I’m already planning to plan my trip back to NYC.

2. As someone who needs to/is currently trying to improve my photo game, I loved this! Christina from Currently Exploring shares 10 tips for taking better photos. You’d better believe I’m looking at new cameras, too.

3. Um.. Napa Valley may have some competition in wine production from this state?! I guess I always figured it was so cold there all the time. Perhaps it’s time for a visit to change my perception?

4. Food lovers rejoice! The Daily Meal has dubbed this the new Gluten Holy Grail! So many questions! Do they serve it with a side of butter? Can I make this at home!? Do they deliver?

5. Having only been to Nashville, New Orleans, and Washington D.C., I’m itching to get to the other 12 cities on this bucket list of vacation spots to visit.

Friday Five

Has this week been weird for anyone else? Not good, not bad, just weird? Let’s distract ourselves with another edition of Friday Five. Because it’s too early to drink and we’ve got to distract ourselves somehow..

1. It’s no secret I love Trader Joe’s flowers, but these hot pink ranunculus have made me swoon pretty hard. They might be my new favorite?

2. Have you been to any of these places Alton Brown visited while in San Francisco and Napa Valley? I can’t wait to check out the ones I haven’t been to! Staycation time!

3. Speaking of traveling around SF, there’s now an audio app for SF tours!? However, I’ll probably get lost..

4. So, apparently, this is why/how Europeans stopped using spices in their cuisine. Say what?!

5. Umm.. There’s now AirBnB, in Cuba!? Sign me up! I want to jet off to Cuba so, so badly.

Curried Chicken Salad


With Easter being this Sunday, those of us who celebrate are probably considering what the heck to do with all of our decorated hardboiled eggs come Sunday night. Friends, I can’t solve all of your egg overload problems, but I do have a solution for some of them.

And for those who don’t celebrate? Well, perhaps you sometimes find yourself with hardboiled eggs that you don’t know what to do with. I like being in that situation.

Sure, you can make Cobb salads or egg salad sandwiches. Both great options. But I want to give you an option with a bit more pizazz.

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