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Monthly Archives: November 2015

Friday Five

Did you guys survive Thanksgiving?! I had a lovely turkey day filled with tasty food and family. What did you do for Black Friday? I was lazy, ate waffles and bacon and drank mimosas and then went for a lovely fall walk. No Black Friday shopping for me — unless you count shopping from my couch in my pjs.

Seeing as this is the season of gratitude, we’re going to shake things up a bit this Friday Five.

Friday Five | In Natalie's Shoes @innatsshoes Here are five groups of things I’m ever so grateful for. Thank you for inspiring, educating, and supporting me, whether you knew it or not.

1. People: my parents, my “sisters” from other parents, my boyfriend, framly, and extended family for supporting me through what looked like it was going to be a tough year filled with heartbreak and massive changes. I seriously couldn’t have blossomed without all of your love and laughter.

2. Travel bloggers: The World Wanderer, The Lazy Travelers, GQ Trippin’, Currently Exploring and Mrs. O Around the World your words and travels helping me be adventurous and creating a sense of wanderlust for places I’ve never been.

3. Food bloggers: Joy the Baker, Foodologie, How Sweet It Is, Sweet Potato Bites, and David Lebovitz for always inspiring me to cook and bake fabulous things and to be open new foods!

4. Practical things: my job, Betsey and Marvin, my running shoes, my yoga studio and Headspace for keeping my happy, loved, and healthy, both mentally and physically.

5. Frivolous things: the ability to travel, my iPhone, the Internet, Champagne, and grande salted caramel hot chocolates with extra whip for keeping me connected to things I love and bringing a smile to my face when I need it most.

What are you grateful for this time of year?


Friday Five

Happy Friday! It’s been feeling quite fall-y lately. Leaves everywhere, soups showing up in my weekly rotation more frequently, salted caramel hot chocolates being ordered multiple times a week.. Ah, yes, it’s fall in Napa Valley.Friday Five | In Natalie's Shoes @innatsshoes1. David made a fall/winter cocktail that I’m currently obsessing over.

2. Because Jessica is trying to make me fat with this s’mores inspired recipe.

3. The always fabulous Mrs. O spent a luxury weekend in this Indian city. So, so jealous! She always knows how to travel in style.

4. Ugh. This crab news makes me so sad. And really hungry for crab from other areas…

5. The wino is celebrating a big birthday in Switzerland! She doesn’t even look close to the age she’s celebrating!


Celebrating Fall at Apple Hill

Celebrating Fall at Apple Hill

Do you have any fall traditions? I started a new one this year!

I’ve heard about Apple Hill for many years and I’ve been wanting to go for a while. Located about 90 minutes from Napa in Placerville, Apple Hill attracts people from all over northern California and is known for its gorgeous views, bountiful apple harvest, and great photo opps.

And who doesn’t love an opportunity to try apple beer, apple bbq sauce and pick out pumpkins?! Read the rest of this entry

Friday Five

I love autumn in Napa. When we have an autumn season, that is. Cheers to autumn and Friday!!

Friday Five | In Natalie's Shoes @innatsshoes 1. I can say that I’m a fan, especially if I’m flying solo, but what do you think about this list of things to love about Southwest?

2. As a baker, I don’t use food coloring as many as most do. But I still found this article on natural food coloring interesting. Here’s to hoping my favorite mac ‘n cheese doesn’t alter the flavor due to the now natural coloring! I swear I’m an adult.

3. The Daily Meal dishes on the 25 Best Dive Bars in America and I’ve actually been to one on the list (Snake and Jake’s)! However, I’m wondering how Pancha’s in Yountville didn’t make the cut? It’s a classic!

4. Can we talk about this slow cooker bolognese sauce? How good does it sound? I need it.

5. This DIY scrub is everything I want to make for holiday gifting. Funny how the holiday season makes you think you’re Martha Stewart, right?

Roasted Butternut Squash and Bacon Soup

It’s finally acting like fall in Napa and I am so absolutely thrilled! We had a very intense thunder and lightening storm all afternoon, which reminded me of the summer storms back in Tennessee. It was perfect. Well, almost. I was really wishing I’d been at home snuggled up in bed with Betsey, a book, and a huge bowl of my new favorite soup.

But instead, I was at work. Womp womp.

Let’s chat about my new favorite soup that I found on Damn Delicious, shall we?

I had a butternut squash I needed to use from my Apple Hill trip. You know, the one where I bought a million apples and I made the Brown Butter Apple Pecan Upside Down Cake to use up some of the apples? I swear I’m sharing more about that soon.

Anyway, I was on the search for a tasty butternut squash soup recipe and stumbled upon one on Damn Delicious. It seemed like it would fit my bill. As Damn Delicious blogger Chungah notes, “The secret is simple but very crucial to make this soup what it is is. It’s the process of roasting the butternut squash with bacon, and then blending them right up. That way, you have that smoky bacon goodness built right into the soup.” And boy is she right! The bacon adds a rich smokiness that makes the soup silky and decadent without the addition of cream or butter. Plus, the onions and garlic start to caramelize and it’s just absolute heaven.

And I cannot get enough.  Read the rest of this entry