Macaroon Making Class


Two things you should know about me –  1.) I’m addicted to sweet things, 2.) I love to bake – they go hand in hand. I like to cook too, but baking is really where it’s at. I like to consider myself as a pretty adventurous and advanced baker but when it came to macaroons I was a little afraid to try it. All of the recipes have such specific temperature and timing rules, and add in  the fact that I don’t have a convection oven (which apparently is where most people go wrong) I just stayed away from them all together.


So while looking for patisserie school classes (always in the back of my mind) I found this great workshop. Baking Arts is a single class workshop that teaches you how to bake various things. You can choose from so many classes like cake decorating, or pie making or fondant rolling – I chose macaroons, to get over my fear.



The class was amazing! Richard, the instructor, took us through all the meticulous steps before we went to do it on our own. The process is very temperature and time sensitive so it requires a lot of attention to detail.






The class size is small, there were only six of us so he could walk around and help us with each step and with recognizing when the folding was done or when the temperature and texture were just right.






You could fill these things with anything and make so many different colors and flavors. In Paris they literally have every shade of every color in every size and crazy flavor. We filled ours with chocolate, or caramel or coconut or a combination of the three.





I forgot to mention that they were DELICIOUS too! If you are looking for a fun baking class try one of these, it was so great, I want to go back again! Cheers to a sweet weekend!



Love n’ Haight

In fourth grade I made a terrarium out of a plastic animal crackers container. We were taught how to layer it from the bottom up, first the stones, then the moss and plants and I think I even painted a rock and put it inside. Little did I know that they would be all the rage today (I was ahead of my time, obviously) or that I would continue to make them (or buy them already made for me).


I would love to have this bubble shaped terrarium in my house, it’s a little classier than my animal cracker original. I love its unique shape. I would put all the succulents I could find in it – just like this succulent sign outside a little neighborhood gem called Nectar. The entire sign is made of live plants and it is a little hint for the amazing back patio they have inside. This could be a fun DIY – half terrarium half sign, I also really love this one with the flowers!

Friday’s Favs

Long weekends are the best – it’s funny how just one more day makes such a difference. That one extra day makes me feel like I have so much more time – more time to jam in more activities. We have some apartments to see (yep still looking), some birthday parties to go to, a new museum and restaurant to try and a trip to Great America – that’s right, I’m a child and I love funnel cake and roller coasters.


I made chicken gyros (protein style) on Monday for dinner and they were so tastey I made them again last night. I am on a Greek kick these days and cannot get enough tzatziki, I want to put it on everything.


For the non-SF natives – this past Sunday was Bay to Breakers. And my explanation will not do it justice, because its the best day of the year – but it’s a race in the city from the Bay (the Ferry Building) to the breakers (Ocean Beach). Its about 7 miles and everyone dresses up (or not – many people wear their birthday suits) and walks along the race route. Our theme this year was “garden,” so naturally I spent way too much money and time making something elaborate – bird wings (mini tutorial on those to come).


This building is the gift shop for the Contemporary Jewish Art Museum. I love how it hides in a little alley between big brick buildings.


I bought something outrageous this week – a jumpsuit -( more on that to come) but while I was perusing Anthropologie and wishing I could buy more things, I came across this shift dress. The pattern is so bright and vibrant but not overbearing.

This flower is just too pretty not to share. It lives on the gardener’s hut in the Panhandle and I admire it every time I pass it. Have an AMAZING long weekend friends!

Bacon Jam

There are just too many good places to eat in this city. I literally want to try every single one too, which isn’t good for the wallet – or the waistband of the pants the wallet sits in. But I am a firm believer of all things in proportion – except when they come in the form of a burger or a fried chicken sandwich. Enter Corner Store – a new place on Masonic and Geary.


The lunch menu looked the best so on Friday (work – who works?) my boo and I grabbed some lunch. Of course we got two things and shared and of course those two things were the fried chicken sandwich and the burger.


The sandwich was great, the chicken crust was crispy but the meat was still juicy and the slaw added a nice tang. It’s just hard not comparing it to this sandwich that we love so dearly. But it was totally different and delicious – as was the warm potato salad that came with it.


The burger was the real gem here though. Two words – bacon jam.


The burger had all the right toppings to accompany the bacon jam, cheese, pickled onions, garlic aioli, pickles and it was perfectly cooked and plated on an amazing bun. Everything just worked together, one bite was a perfect blend of all the flavors you want in a burger bite. Juicy, savory, sour from the pickled onions and pickle, sweet and crunchy from the bread = perfection. This place was great, go here and get the burger. (Ok, one more picture)


Hearst Castle


Sometimes you just need a weekend away from the city and the fog and last weekend my roommate gave us a reason to take one. Her family was hosting a fundraiser in SLO so my boo and I drove down for a weekend getaway. We were in need of some sunshine and warm weather (nowhere to be found in SF) and SLO did not disappoint. On the drive back up we stopped at Hearst Castle, we have been wanting to go for a while and who knows when we will get the chance next.



Let me just say it was so beautiful! We did the grand rooms tour, which went through all the main rooms in the big house (casa grande as Hearst called it).


When we walked inside, it was like a step back in time.  Julia Morgan was the architect and interior designer for this project and the interior screams of her style. Every nook and cranny of every room was flawless, either hand carved, sculpted or painted.




Hearst was an interesting man, his castle is extravagant (to say the least) – painted ceilings, art from the renaissance, 115 rooms – but apparently he wasn’t lavish at all. He ate in the dining room with paper napkins, with ketchup and mustard bottles sitting on the table. He also didn’t like snobs or celebrities, so he never invited them to the castle.



The grounds were really spectacular. The view alone is worth a million bucks.







But the ‘pièce de résistance’ (i know the french man voice just said that in  your head) was the pool. Look at it, its just too good to be true – we contemplated jumping in. The penalty for jumping in is a huge fine and ‘a lot of hassle’ – said the guard. So we refrained.





It was a perfect day for a tour up on the hill.



If you live near this place and have never been I HIGHLY recommend it! It was gorgeous! I also recommend taking multiple tours, we only did the grand rooms tour, but we felt like there was so much more to see. We would have loved to take the cottages tour too. You can take as many tours in a day as you like, and you can also stay for the whole day if you want, people were lounging by the pool and just hanging out. Hearst would have loved to see his guests relaxing and enjoying themselves (no snobs allowed though).


It’s weird being an adult (or pretending to be one) and thinking back on times when life was easier – even if a little crazier. Every year when the Cannes Film Festival rolls around I get a little nostalgic for my times abroad. Before getting to Paris, my study abroad program took us to Cannes for two weeks (a sort of ‘language introduction’ if you will). And every year when the pictures from the film festival come out I scroll through them, reminiscing and feeling homesick for France.


Leo, you’re killing me with  your good looks!

Our ‘introductory’ language and culture classes were only from 8-10 am every morning so after that we were free to roam the city (enter in the easy, care free lifestyle of studying abroad) and I feel so lucky to have had that experience. I grew up so much during that time and without it I wouldn’t be me. Did any of you study abroad or live abroad? Have you been back yet – I haven’t, but I know that I will because “America is my country, but Paris is my hometown.” (Gertrude Stein)

Love n’ Haight

I’ve never been much of a collector of things. My sister used to collect stamps, my dad collects model airplanes, I knew someone who’s mom collected teddy bears (literally ALL over the house), my uncle had a great collection of little matchbox cars and and an even cooler case that held them all (enter in my organizing obsession – I didn’t play with the cars I just took them out of their awesome case so I could organize them and put them back in). But I guess if I actually collected something it would be knick-knacks. Does that count, does everyone collect knick-knacks?


People go crazy for collections, you gotta get them all. Baseball cards, pogs, smushed pennies, beanie babies (definitely went through this phase),  postcards, snow globes, stuffed animals – what kind of things did / do you collect?  This store on Haight, has a great collection of bugs, if that is your kind of thing. Me, I’d rather stick to knick-knacks, like these gold animals from Target – can’t just get one – gotta get them all!

Friday’s Favs

Weekends are too short and the weeks are becoming too long for me. I feel like I barely made it to Friday this week. But it’s here finally and the weekend is ready to roll!


Cranes on cranes on cranes – SOMA is getting a facelift, there is construction going on everywhere.


If I had my own backyard or patio I would definitely make this! Such a cool DIY for displaying flowers in the summertime.


We took my boo’s little nieces (little as in barely a year old and nieces plural as in twinsies) to the San Francisco Zoo. I had never been before but it was really cool. Sometimes zoos make me a little sad but the flamingos seemed to be enjoying themselves.


Sometimes you just need a night with the ladies and lots of wine. We made this recipe and it turned out perfectly. The noodles were thick and chewy almost and the sauce was light and flavorful. Topped with salty prosciutto and cheese = a perfect dinner.


View from Treasure Island – it’s never going to get old. Happy weekend friends!

Wall Art

I have recently been buying more and more art to cover the walls. All the walls in my room have something on them so I started buying art for the rest of the apartment. Artwork is a true representation of your personality and it makes your apartment feel lived-in and homier.


This drawing if of the Scott Monument in Edinburgh. A couple years ago I went to visit my sister (who was staying there for a month) and this is where we first met up. It was the first thing I saw in this magical town and it has stuck with me. It is so fitting that J.K Rowling wrote Harry Potter in the Elephant House Cafe in Edinburgh because this city literally feels like Hogsmeade.

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Do you guys remember VHS? I know my kids will have no idea what these are and I think that is part of why I bought this print. There used to be stacks and stacks of these in the cabinet next to the TV when I was little. Remember how you had to rewind all the way to the beginning and how you could hear the little wheels with the film turning? Nostalgia, my friends, I think I am getting old.

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I studied abroad in Paris and it is so much a part of me. I know my house (when I grow up) will have little touches of it here and there, and I love this print because it reminds me of the little things I would pass everyday. From far away you can tell its about Paris (the Eiffel Tower is hard to miss) but when you get closer you can see street names and famous French people and things that you would only recognize from living there.


I’m not sure if it’s kosher to have SF prints/stuff in your SF apartment but I couldn’t say no to these. The neighborhoods in SF, like many other cities, are so unique and these prints capture all of their different identities perfectly.

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I got these four because obviously I live in, blog about and love the Haight and that mural is actually where the background for my blog title letters comes from (copycats).

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The Panhandle print is so colorful and I have never lived that far away from it. It’s near and dear to me, as I run/picnic/walk through it a lot.

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Alamo Square is an SF icon, the Pink Ladies with the view of the skyline in the back screams SF, and everyone loves a cute picture of a dog.

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The Hayes Valley print feels like summer in SF to me. It is the cutest little neighborhood – with its Beirgarten, cute shops and amazing brunch places. I bought these SF prints and I hang them in my SF apartment because they are meaningful in my SF life and no matter where I go I can always take these little pieces of San Francisco with me.

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These two are from Etsy, (ISeeNoise) and there are so many to choose from. I got these because 1. I love gold and white (I’m a neutrals kind of girl), 2. they are super girly and 3. because I had nothing like them. They live on the wall next to where I keep all my jewelry and they add the perfect touch of sparkle.

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This print is also from Etsy (yellowlion) and my initial reaction to it was that it reminded me of the circle of life song from The Lion King (yellow lion = Simba = song stuck in my head, see my progression). It has tiny trees on it and hand prints and as you back away it all becomes a soft white circle of life.  I had it framed with a weighted bottom to accentuate the circular feel and it is one of my favorites.

What are your favorite pieces of art? Where and how do you find them? I’m always looking for new stuff!

Love n’ Haight

I’m not a huge hair product person, I know I should be more, to protect it from all the bad stuff I do to it, but sometimes it’s just so much work. The one product I do use consistently is the Surf Spray from Bumble & Bumble. It is a miracle worker. I usually wear my hair in a bun to bed and when I wake up I spray a little surf in the waves and go. This stuff is the best, it adds texture and it holds a curl really well – not to mention it smells like summer – and sometimes if you’re having a good hair day it can even make waves out of straight hair, I told you it could work miracles.


I don’t do much with my hair for work (hence my love for the wave making spray) but I do love trying out new hairstyles and braids and buns and such. This cool girl on Haight, I stalked her a little bit, had an awesome sweeping-from-one-side-to-the-other braid that I was envious of and that I will have to try out.