Wednesday, September 18, 2013

My Favorite Adventure in San Francisco

After living in the Bay Area for 3 years, I've been on lots of adventures in the city. But, so far, my favorite adventure has been...

It was SOOO FUN! There's something about riding a bike that reminds me of being little! We rented bikes near Fisherman's Wharf, rode to the Palace of Fine Arts, then across the Golden Gate bridge to Sausalito. We had lunch at Fish in Sausalito, then rode the ferry from Sausalito back to the Ferry Building. From there, we jumped on the cable car and had dinner in North Beach (Little Italy). Doesn't that just sound like the perfect San Franciscan day?! There was only 1 hill that I just wasn't conditioned for and I walked my bike up with no shame. :) It was a great way for our visitors to experience San Francisco, but even as a "local" I absolutely loved it! If any other visitors want to do this, I'm ready to do it again! 

Monday, September 16, 2013

Wine tasting in Napa

While Nick and Melanie were visiting from Omaha, we did our fair share of wine tasting... When in Rome California!

We visited a local winery in Los Gatos where Nicholas and I are members, Testarossa, on Saturday:

And this is the only group picture I had from wine tasting! #bloggerfail

And, of course a trip to California wouldn't be complete without a visit to Napa! So on Sunday, we drove up to Napa for the day.

Winery 1:
Monticello Vineyards

Rather than having to stand at a bar, we were served our tastings outside in the courtyard. And, wow! It was a beautiful day in Napa. Look at that blue sky!

Winery 2:

Plumpjack was Nick's favorite. He really enjoyed the wine here!

Winery 3:

I wasn't sure what to expect with such a big operation, but I loved visiting Mumm. Our server let us taste way more than we paid for and it was a perfect opportunity to learn about the different types of bubbly. And, again... the gorgeous scenery didn't hurt.

Winery 4:

Sterling was fun because you get to ride a gondola up to the top of this mountain to do your tasting. And, I know I sound like a broken record, but it really was one of the most beautiful days in Napa I've had!

After a full day of wine tasting (we did have lunch somewhere in between wineries), we stopped at Farmstead in St. Helena for dinner.


Most farm-to-table restaurants are rank high in my book and this one was no exception.
We sat out on the airy patio and watched the sunset.
A perfect ending to a great day in Napa!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Top of the Mark

Nick's sister Melanie and her husband, who is also named Nick, were just in town visiting from Omaha this week. It was their first time to visit us and Melanie's first time to California, so of course we had to show them a good time!

We picked them up from SFO and went straight to the Top of the Mark at the Mark Hopkins hotel in San Francisco. The bar has spectacular views of the city, so it was a great way to show off the beauty of the city and let them unwind with a cocktail after a long day of travelling.

I highly recommended stopping by the Top of the Mark for at least one cocktail.
Try to get there before sunset so you can see the views,
then enjoy the piano player or jazz band as the sun sets.

This picture is from the website, but it looked just like this when we were there.

They had the longest martini menu I've ever seen, so that is what we all went for!

After our cocktail hour, we explored the Marina with dinner at Mamacita's (delicious!!) and then drinks at Reed & Greenough (loved that place, too.)

Next up, wine tasting with Mel and Nick!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Ooh la la...

My beautiful anniversary bouquet from Nicholas still smell amazing, almost a week later. 
I love, love, love having fresh flowers at home!

Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Traditional Anniversary Gifts

Showering someone with gifts is always a fun way to express how much you love them and think about them all day, every day! For our anniversaries, we've (so far) followed the traditional anniversary gift guide... with a bit of personal interpretation!
traditional + modern anniversary gifts!
Paper/1st Anniversary: I commissioned a watercolor of our wedding portrait for Nicholas. He gave me a gold necklace and a very sweet (like it made me sob) handwritten card/letter.

Cotton/2nd Anniversary: Our main gift to each other was a 10 day trip to the UK, so in preparation for that, we gave each other new clothes for the trip. (And, I'm pretty sure some of those clothes were cotton!)

Leather/3rd Anniversary: This year, I bought Nicholas his very first pair of cowboy boots! I mean, he is married to a Texan after all. Good news is, he LOVES them and wears them all the time!! I received some items off of my wish list... that weren't very anniversary-ish, but I wanted them! Leather sandals, a maxi skirt, and a Keurig! Oh, and a trip to Carmel!

I hope to stick with these traditional gifts, but the main "gift" I'd like us to give each other is new memories. Travelling somewhere new (or loved)... just the two of us!
Here's to many more anniversaries with my love.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Blog Award!

I am not entirely sure how this happened since I've been a terrible blogger lately, but Cortney at Our Fishy Family nominated me for a blogger award! How sweet! This award is given by peers to up-and-coming bloggers with less than 200 followers.
The rules of the award are:
1. Link back to the person who nominated you
2. Answer the questions asked by the nominator
3. Choose up to 11 bloggers with less than 200 followers to nominate for the award
4. Come up with 11 questions for your nominees to answer
5. Notify your nominees of the award

Here are the my answer to the questions I was asked:

1. What must you have when going on a road trip?
I love to have a good audiobook on a roadtrip. It makes the time fly by. When my husband and I drove 15 hours from San Jose, CA to Seattle, WA for Christmas several years ago, we listened to the Girl with the Dragon tattoo series. When we finally reached our destination, we waited in the car to finish the chapter because it was so engaging!

2. What was the last movie you saw and how was it?
We're the Millers. It was hilarious!

3. What is your biggest accomplishment?
 Hm, great question. I'd have to say my marriage. Not only did I pick the perfect guy to spend the rest of my life with, but we've really dedicated ourselves to each other and to putting our marriage first. I know too many people (our age!) who are divorced or in the process of getting divorced and I am so blessed to have Nicholas by my side. We just celebrated our 3rd anniversary on September 5th!

4. Who is the most annoying person on t.v.?
Mainstream media is hard to watch in general these days with its extreme liberal bias.

5. You have a roundtrip ticket. Where are you going and who are you taking?
I've been following @googleearthpics on twitter and the northern lights are just breathtaking. Doesn't Iceland look magical? And, my favorite travel companion, Nicholas, would of course be along for the ride. 
Iceland pics from here

6. If you had to eat only one food for an entire month what would it be?
Oh, this is easy... Mexican! Fajitas, tacos, guacamole, chips and salsa. That would be an awesome month!

7. What is your greatest fear?
Never moving back to Texas ;)

8. Would you rather have a flawless face or perfect body?
Flawless face. You can always dress your body to compliment your shape or hide your imperfections. A bright smile and voluminous eyelashes can make a world of difference!

9. Spiders or snakes? Which is worse?
Spiders are worse. Yuck!

10. Do you like to DIY or hire someone else?
Depends what it is... I do like to get crafty (like with these table numbers and this painting and the bridesmaids' bouquets I made below and home decorating), but I will NOT attempt to cut/color my own hair or fix the water heater.

11. If you could have a maid, chef, or personal stylist which would you choose and why?
Without a doubt, I would have a maid. We've occasionally hired a maid (especially when we have guests coming to stay with us and we are swamped with work or Nick is travelling) and there's nothing I love more than coming home to a spotless house that I didn't have to clean! To me, it is totally worth the money. Plus, I love cooking and shopping; those are fun to me... but cleaning just seems like a waste of time!

Thanks for the award Cortney! 
Be sure to check out Cortney's darling blog.

To pass this along, I would like to nominate:

Both of these bloggers have two adorable kids and have experienced cross-country moves! Not an easy task, I'm sure!

And my questions for my nominees:
1. What is your favorite city in the USA and why?
2. What is something on your bucket list?
3. What is your favorite blog post that you've published? (Link to it so we can read it!)
4. What is your favorite season?
5. Would you rather spend an evening playing board games or watching movies?
6. When do you find time to blog?
7. What's your go-to Starbucks order?
8. What is your significant other's favorite meal that you've made?
9. What's the most random thing in your purse right now?
10. What is your most embarrassing moment?
11. You have a roundtrip ticket. Where would you go and who would you take with you?

Thanks again to Cortney for the award. This has definitely encouraged me to get back to my bloggin' again, so you better be ready. :)

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Don't Miss a Post!

Sometimes I don't blog for a whole month and then I have to play catch-up to share all of the adventures Nicholas and I have been on! Whoopsie!

To help keep things organized the way I like it, I can "back-date" a post... For example, I'll type up a post on September 7th, but I should've typed it up July 31st so I'll date it back in July. If you aren't following on bloglovin or another reader, you could miss a post because it will be posted back in my July archives.

But, don't worry! If you sign up to receive an email every time I post content, you won't miss a thing!
(Family... this is mainly for YOU!) 
To sign up, just enter your email address in the "Follow By Email" box on the right side bar.
And, if you're getting too many emails, you can unsubscribe at any time.


Friday, September 6, 2013

Anniversary Dinner in Los Gatos

For our 3rd anniversary, Nicholas and I got all dolled up and he took me out to an incredible dinner in Los Gatos. For our 1st anniversary celebration, we had dinner at Nick's On Main in LG. Well, Chef Nick opened another restaurant, literally across the street from Nick's On Main, called Nick's Next Door

Seeing as we've had so much fun and we've been so blessed in our marriage since our first anniversary, we decided to keep the tradition and have dinner at Nick's Next Door!

We started our night with a Moscow Mule (his) and a glass 
of champagne (hers) before our amazing meal.

Just like our anniversary dinner two years ago, the Chef came
by our table and we shared with him our anniversary tradition! He loved it.

Keeping with the theme of our first anniversary, I wore blue and we
snapped pictures in our backyard before heading to dinner! 

Being married to Nicholas have been the happiest 3 years of my life!

PS. We celebrated our second anniversary in Austin!