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Urban Lumberjack / Mind Wanderer / Adventurous Homebody

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flowerland / wedding

I was invited by my friend Diana to be her date for a wedding in Berkeley. I was surprised when I found out the wedding was in a flower nursery but I have to be honest - this was perfect.

Diana is friends with the groom, who is a part time yoga teacher at YTP in Berkeley.

I am a sucker for a garden dinner party and I loved the simplistic approach they took with their table setting - white linen, burlap table runner, unbleached linen napkins, rustic bread from Acme, bowls of olives and cilantro dip. It was truly Californian.

The wedding was catered by Bartavelle - a coffee and wine bar from Berkeley. Suzanne the owner of Bartavelle mentioned that everything served was locally sourced and organic from Berkeley’s farmers market.

We were served halibut wrapped in grape leaves, a mixed tomato summer salad (best tomatoes i’ve ever had), quinoa and grilled zucchini, summer squash and eggplant. It was a delicious, healthy, true Californian meal.

After dinner, we were served Four Barrel coffee to accompany the super light wedding cake that had merengue in the layers. There were fresh fruits and nuts served as well as dessert.

The bride had a lovely simple but classic dress and I love the fact that she chose to wear flats! She embodied my vision of a true California girl.

I had a lovely night and I wish the best for the new couple!

iPhone 5S, iPhone 5C and iOS 7

Are you an Apple junkie?

I am. 

Just today Apple announced the new iPhone 5S, with the revolutionary security feature called Touch ID and a better camera - to name a few new features. 

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They also announced the iPhone 5C - which is basically a colorful iPhone 5 made of plastic in super fun colors! This iPhone is at a lower price point and I think it’s going to be a huge hit with teenagers!

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Apple announced iOS 7 earlier this year during WWC, but today they’ve released the Golden Master of the operating system and it’s a beauty!

Are you getting a new iPhone?

SLC / WYOMING

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I recently got the chance to fly out to Salt Lake City and then head over to Evanston, Wyoming for both a quick getaway and for the wedding of a family friend.

I love to travel! I take any opportunity I have to get on a plane/train/boat or car and I go exploring new lands! I had never been to Salt Lake City or Wyoming before - so I was very excited to go. The bonus for the particular trip was that I would be able to see new sights and see family members - my dad, brother and nephew to be exact! 

I arrived in SLC on thursday night (9/5) and headed straight to the hotel to relax and have some precious me time! :) I took a lovely bath and then crashed immediately after, which was great because I knew I would have a long day ahead.

On Friday, I woke up at 8am, had breakfast and headed out to explore SLC. First stop on the list was City Creek Shopping Center - a beautiful open sky mall with all the stores you would expect to find - and being an an old Apple employee - you know I had to check the City Creek store out.

After CCSC, I headed over to Temple Square, a beautifully manicured cluster of gardens and Mormon temples. The grounds are truly phenomenal.

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After Temple Square, I walked over to the old Union Pacific station and I was surprised to see it had become a shopping mall with one the most impressive Urban Outfitters I’ve ever seen. Since I wasn’t in the mood to walk around a second mall for the day, I hopped on the light rail and headed to PictureLine to buy some film for my camera. PictureLine was impressive and the service was great!

I quickly stopped at Target to get some snacks for my nephew and headed back to the hotel to meet up with my family who had just landed! 

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After hugs and cheerful tears, we split into two trucks and headed to Wyoming. It was fantastic to simply sit back and watch the scenery go by - the canyons you’ll see are breathtaking and the ones I saw are apparently just the wee-tiny ones.

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Friday night our hosts treated us to some delicious local steaks and a fresh salad and it was off to bed - since we all had a wedding to pull off Saturday morning.

Bright and early I gathered the troops and we started putting everything in place for the ceremony and reception. This was a traditional garden wedding and the colors were beautiful against the green grass and blue Wyoming skies. 

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Although we did get hit with some rain, the wedding still happened and the bride and groom were super happy with the turn out! We can’t control mother nature but we can focus on the positive right? :) 

Sunday, this was our day to relax and really just enjoy each other’s company! I woke up with my nephew and spent some awesome quality time with him - got to help him brush his teeth and get dressed! AHHH! that felt soooo awesome to do! 

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After lunch we went out to see the bison and the elk that live in this local park - it was so magical to see such grand animals so close! I’m convinced that the bison is my spirit animal.

We eventually ended up in an old round house where old trains would get worked on and fixed up before criss-crossing the country. My brother and I were feeling pretty adventurous so we climbed to the top of an old oiler - the view from up there was phenomenal!

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Lil’ Alberto was getting tired of all the walking around - so here he is on my shoulders - acting silly as we always do! 

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After the engine yard, we headed home to pack and for dinner. It was then that I realized how much fun I had with my dad, brother and nephew - it could’ve only been better if my mom would’ve been able to join us - but that’s a good excuse for another family get together! :-P

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On monday morning, we drove back to SLC so the rest of the crew could visit Temple Square and get their photos taken there - after we took plenty of pictures I got dropped off at the airport to head back to SF and the fam went back to Wyoming to pack for their early flight back to NY on tuesday morning. 

I had the absolute best time with everyone and everything - I look forward to my next trip to Wyoming and for the next time I get to spend quality time with my family, mom included next time.

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Caffe Macaroni

Dare I say I’ve found the best Italian food in San Francisco?

It’s a hole in the wall and it transports me to Italy. 

I loved it so much that I went for dinner two days in a row.

The first time I had the Linguine Ai Frutti Di Mare, which was so simple and so delicious.

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The second day I went back and let Mario - the chef and owner - pick a dish and he chose the Spaghetti de polipo, which is spaghetti with baby octopus. This dish was even better than the previous one - the ingredients are so honest to their flavors and everything is balanced to perfection.

Michaela - the waiter - is so charming and insists in speaking to me in Italian even though I barely remember any of the Italian I learned in college.

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I’ve already told my parents I’m bring them here next time they’re in town.

Buon Appetito!

Mt. Tam

Hello!

I had never been to the top of Mt. Tam - and then the other day Delissa invited me to join her for an #instawalk and I happily obliged.

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It was honestly true love at first sight! Being above the fog and watching it do it’s dance around the mountain is truly something one must experience at least once. 

It’s so close to the city and when you’re up there - you feel so removed and so embraced by pure nature. It’s awesome! I recommend going on a late afternoon and staying up there for the sunset. It’s truly breathtaking.

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Me and Delissa agreed that we needed to bring more friends up to experience Mt. Tam, we gathered a group of adventurers and we set off to the top of the mountain.

Dev, a a dear friend who’s a very talented film maker made the following video and frankly - it captures the true spirit of my friends and our time in Mt. Tam.

If you’re ever in the Bay Area - there’s no questions about it - you must make a trip up to experience a Mt. Tam sunset.

Renegade Craft Fair

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It seems like it was just yesterday that I first was invited by Delissa to join her at Renegade Craft Fair here in San Francisco.

I love anything made by people who are creative and passionate about their craft - whether it’s candle making, stationary or knitting! I love it all!

Last year at RCF I fell in love with a Spruce candle from Pomme Frites Candle Company - a small company from Long Beach, CA. Pomme Frite is hand poured in California with 100% soy wax. I loved the candle so much that I tweeted Pomme Frites every time I lit the candle, because it instantly transported me to the woods and brought a piece of something I love so much into my home.

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When I found out Pomme Frites was going to be at RCF this year again, with new scents (eeek!), I just had to stop by and stock up! I ended up buying two spruce candles, one amber and moss and a teakwood and tobacco candle.

You can find out more Pomme Frites on their Etsy page, on twitter and instagram

What are you favorite scents when it comes to candles?

Baschti

Hello!

My dear friend Sebastian is in town visiting and it’s been such a pleasure showing him around town and just getting to spend quality time together.

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I met Sebastian in a merchandising class a few years back in college - our friendship really grew when we got to work on a group project and after that we were basically inseparable. 

Sebastian is from Germany and currently works as a freelance photographer and producer for other photographers/videographers in New York City. Make sure you check his website.

While in San Francisco we got to spend some time at the Ocean Beach, made a stop at the Ferry Building Farmer’s Market, drove down HWY 1 and tried every raw food restaurant we could find. 

I cannot wait to have Sebastian back in the bay, for a visit or for a permanent stay. 

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Fourth of July at The Herceg’s

I met Ava when I worked at the Apple Store in San Francisco and it was truly love at first interaction! I remember like it was today! So much sass, too much for me not to immediately fall in love with her. 

I had the pleasure of meeting Ava’s parents two years ago at their famous Fourth of July gathering and just like when I first met Ava - this too was love at first meeting! From Mato’s (Ava’s dad) extravagant and larger than life presence to Tana’s (Ava’s mom)  easy going and comforting presence - I felt right at home.

This year’s festivities were so much fun! Mato just recently built a roasting pit and the main attraction was the whole pig roasting on a spit in their backyard, for dessert Tana made handmade cookies and handmade ice cream - fresh sweet corn ice cream anyone!? (ps. one of my favorite flavors!)

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The Herceg’s have a lovely garden with wild flowers, fresh grown vegetables, fruit trees, a chicken coop with eight lovely chickens and their latest addition, two hard working beehives! I love how in touch with nature they are! 

There were delicious food, amazing people and an overall pride for the country that brought us all together!

I’m already looking forward for next year! 

Happy Fourth!

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