October 11, 2011

A Break

This is me.  Ok, it’s not but it’s definitely close to how I’d be if you saw me.  I know I have things to do like laundry that constantly piles up, but somehow more pressing matters need immediate attention.  A friend’s wake, for instance.  Or caring for someone with pneumonia.  Cooking a meal (last night’s beef & mushroom ragu turned out well!).  Or giving my scraggly hair some much needed love (thank you, Kumi, for the fabulous cut and color.  It’s like the greys never existed!)  Today the laundry climbs up to the top of the charts.  Gotta be done or… let’s just say commando is NOT an option.  Yes, it’s come to that. 

Which segues, sort of, to my current blog post.  I have a jumble of topics just waiting to get its fair share of the web clutter.  But alas, laundry happens.  Actual life happens.  Before I know it, the topics have become so last month.

Dear followers (all 5 of you!), bear with me as I create some type of rhythm here.  A posting routine will emerge soon.

~composed during my lunch hour

October 3, 2011

Sunday Supper

We consider ourselves spoiled… by the fresh produce, organically raised meat and responsibly caught fish and seafood that are easily accessible to us.  From the spring to early fall months, a farmers’ market just down the hill from our neighborhood sets up shop on Sundays and we take full advantage of their bounty as much as we can.  More on the market later.  For now, let me share with you one of the dinners we’ve made (and enjoyed) from our farmers’ market shopping… with a little help from Trader Joe’s.

heirloom tomatoes

ground beef from Bear River Valley Beef; cheeseburgers for us and plain tiny patties for our Kimba

building the perfect burger
oven fries from Trader Joe's
our little kitty enjoying her meal
i think her look means "thank you"

August 25, 2011

Happy Birthday, Dear May!

Some years ago, on this date, my life as an only child was turned upside down… in a good way.  No, in a great way.  I became an older sister to a cute little baby who seemed to exhibit incredible sense of humor even as an infant.  She filled my days with fun and, I must admit, it felt pretty amazing to come home from school and greeted by her baby giggles.

happy baby

our afternoon walks

visiting family during the holidays
a few holidays later

Although she and I are much older now, we still have so much fun together.  We’re so different from each other (she’s the vibrant one).  But each time we’re together, we get silly and laugh endlessly.

with plastic duck bills that quack

Happy birthday to my dearest baby sister!

one of my favorite photos of us

August 21, 2011

This Little Piggy Went to the Wine Country

I love spontaneous day trips!  A recent weekend without prior commitments led us to our favorite Bay Area getaway.  We never get tired of the wine country.  We’ve been curious to try Ad Hoc for some time now so we jumped at the opportunity when we found an available timeslot for brunch.

our table

The restaurant’s interior is warm and inviting with chunky wood furniture and soft leather padded seating.  Simple, comforting, yet polished.  Much like their food.  The fixed menu started off with a Berry Sangria mixed with sparkling wine.   

brunch cocktail

Though good, it didn’t quite wow me… it got me worried.  Will Ad Hoc turn out to be an over-hyped restaurant in the Thomas Keller empire?  I remained hopeful as the next course came.  A refreshing salad with cucumbers, watermelon, cantaloupe and radish with a watercress dressing and topped with crème fraiche and lemon zest – sweet, slightly crunchy and tasting like summer.  It was unique and it tasted amazing.  We’re back in business!   

dishes served family style
the perfect summer salad

The main event was Steak and Eggs – tender and perfectly grilled skirt steak topped with sautéed mushrooms.  A buttery toasted brioche hid under sunny side up eggs.  It came with grits complimented with sweet blistered tomatoes.  While I enjoyed the grits, I would’ve loved a potato dish instead.  Perhaps that was too predictable?   


Dessert was a beautiful combination of peaches and caramel on a buttery crust, topped with sweet cream.

a perfect ending

The service reflected the overall feel – casual and friendly but, again, polished.  We have every intention to come back and excited to try their dinner menu. 

August 16, 2011

A Special Note of Thanks...

... to my BBF (that's Bestest Best Friend), Being Lease, for creating my new pretty banner!  It's perfect!  Just the way I envisioned - and I didn't have to describe it to her.  I had two key words and, voila!

Loafing Around

Anyone who knows me well can attest to my love for J. Crew.  Their twist on classic styles and remarkable quality make their products a step above other retailers in comparable price points.  And since I'm patient when it comes to waiting for an item to go on sale, I feel extra pleased with my purchases.  I took a sneak peek at their early fall line and giggled at the sight of loafers.  I adored them in the 80's, and when I finally had enough money saved up and bought a pair, they were on their way out of the style radar.  Will I redeem my adoration and add a pair of loafers to my fall wardrobe?

Biella loafers in Warm Sienna

Biella loafers in patent leather Bronzed Clay

August 2, 2011

One Of Our Favorite Things

We recently had the opportunity to sample a small café and wine bar near our neighborhood, thanks to a popular deal-of-the-day website.  Needless to say, it is now one of our favorites!  Noeteca is an intimate space with small tables, a couple of loungey seats, and a small bar-height table tucked in a corner (we like that spot).  They have a page-long list of California and European wines that are predominantly small production type labels and offered in half and full glass portions.   
what's left of my Austrian "Gruve"

these might have been a Pinot Noir and a Cotes du Rhone

The appetizers are substantial portions of typical wine bar fare such as cheese and salumi, and check the chalkboard for the evening’s special (we caught their angel hair pasta with meatballs – it was so delicious I forgot to take a photo).   
the Burrata Plate:  prosciutto, salami, burrata, grilled baguette, and seasoned cherry tomatoes

manchego cheese accompanied with fresh apple, fruit preserves, nuts and crusty bread

cured meat and toasty bread... mmm!

sheep's milk and goat milk cheese alongside duck & chicken liver pate

apricot poached in sauvignon blanc goes so well with sheep's milk cheese

Make sure to leave room for dessert, which we foolishly didn’t.  But to our surprise, a little sampling of sweet treats came to our table free of charge.  The staff is always friendly, incredibly knowledgeable, and the overall vibe is comfortable.  We promised ourselves to come back, even just to have dessert.
something fudgey with coconut shavings and a trio of sauces
cheers to our new casual favorite!

July 24, 2011

Kitty Sports

a sunday afternoon of kitty athletics and the SF Giants game on tv

July 19, 2011

Pink Revival

I was surrounded by the color pink during my childhood.  I may have liked the color for a week and that might have been the same week my Mom had me pick my room colors.  

my incredibly pink room at age 10ish - and yes, i was wearing a pink shirt

 So there it was, for ten years I had curtains, bedding, even a small desk - all in pink.  As I got older, I got so tired of pink that the next chance I had to decorate my space, I chose black & white.  Dim, neutral.  I avoided all shades of pink.  Until recently.  In the last couple of years, I've slowly brought the girly color back into my palette, though restricted to little pops of accent here and there, and never worn simultaneously (unless it's lipstick and gloss).  My current favorites:

shoes, Kenneth Cole; belt, Banana Republic

gloss, MAC in Girl Heart Boy; nail polish in OPI Lucky Lucky Lavender  

nail polish matching Kimba's nose

NARS in Dolce Vita

June 14, 2011



I've finally decided to add to the web clutter.  After years (yes, that's right) of pondering - will my topics be interesting; do I have time to maintain it; what should I call it... well, here we are.

L-310 is laid back, fun, and oh-so-normal.  A pretty four-legged furry one will periodically make contributions, too.


With her bear