Scenes from the Weekend

Hi lovelies! I hope that you all had a wonderful weekend and a fantastic Easter if you celebrate! My weekend was busy with some fun events and a few great surprises. It all started on Friday with a surprise visit from my Delta Gamma little, Ella! She lives in LA and I don’t get to see her that often but she decided last minute to come up to SF for the weekend so we were able to get together! We had lunch together at Plant (my fave restaurant) and then walked to the Ferry Building to explore and so I could pick up some goodies from Mariposa which is the most amazing gluten-free bakery in SF! Saturday was spent picking up my Grandma and going to Sacramento (my old hometown) for a bridal shower for my brother’s fiance. It was a beautiful day and we had so much fun! The next day I woke up and found a gluten-free, dairy-free Easter basket waiting for me courtesy of Daddy Jeff… I mean the Easter bunny! It was such a fun surprise and I was so excited! He really is so amazing. Next up was an amazing, powerful Easter church service and then we went to Blackhawk to feed the ducks and walk around a bit before brunch. My brother and his fiance came and surprised my Grandma at brunch and we had a wonderful time. All in all, it was a great weekend!

Big-Little love!!

Big-Little love!!

The gorgeous bride-to-be and I were color coordinated!

The gorgeous bride-to-be and I were color coordinated!

So amazing treats!!

So amazing treats including a gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free cupcake from Miglets! 

Grandma and I at church- I'm not really quite that much taller than her, but I was wearing 5.5 inch heels!

Grandma and I at church- I’m not really quite that much taller than her, but I was wearing 5.5 inch heels!

The beautiful, flower-covered cross

The beautiful, flower-covered cross

A little overcast but still a nice day and barely any rain!

A little overcast but still a nice day and barely any rain!

Grandma and Daddy Jeff feeding the ducks!

Grandma and Daddy Jeff feeding the ducks!

Questions:

-What did you do this weekend?

-If you celebrated Easter, what did you do?

-Do you have a favorite bakery?

 

Scenes from the Weekend

Hi lovelies! I hope that you all had a wonderful weekend! I continued to take it a little easy this weekend but still had a lot of fun. On Friday night it was my dear friend Katie’s birthday and we gathered at her recently remodeled apartment for a lovely birthday dinner party! It was so much fun catching up with the girls and I had a blast. Early the next morning I piled in car with my mom, Grandma and my mom’s best friend and headed to my sister-to-be’s bridal shower! It was such a wonderful day and this was the start of many of the fun wedding activities to come! Sunday was spent doing errands and taking care of some projects that have been swept aside. Never that enjoyable to do but it is nice to feel accomplished and ready for the week. Have a great Monday!

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Questions:

-Have you been to a bridal shower?

-What did you do this weekend?

2012 Wrap Up

Hi lovelies! I hope that you all had a fantastic holiday season and had a wonderful time ringing in the New Year. I’m so excited to show you some pictures from both holidays and the fantastic gluten-free/dairy-free dishes I made for Christmas Eve, including one that my family declared is now an essential for every future holiday. But before we get to that, I thought it’d be fun to look back on some of the highlights of 2012. Sometimes reflecting on a year can be difficult but having a blog makes it easier!

Also, I wanted to draw your attention to two brand new pages on GGG that are on the top menu. I’ve added a Fashion page where you can find some of my past outfits and What to Wear Wednesday posts and a Parties page, devoted to some of the fun parties my friends in the city there- definitely a place to start when trying to think of your next party idea!

January Highlights:

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I started off the year with a bang when I flew to New York to model for Loft’s denim guide. I had an amazing time at the shoot and was lucky enough to spend the weekend with my best friend enjoying everything NY has to offer… including an amazing brunch at Sarabeths! I hope another NYC visit is in my future soon! Later in the month, I celebrated my mom’s birthday by attending the National Ice Skating championships which were absolutely amazing! I have so much respect for those talented athletes!

February Highlights:

In February, I started cooking things that weren’t already prepped by Trader Joes and realized how much I enjoyed it and that it was possible to cook healthy meals even when I got home from work late! I made Southwestern Quinoa Filled Zucchini and one of my all time favorites Sweet Potato Veggie Chili. Of course, sweets made an appearance as well when I made Slutty brownies for book club.

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March Highlights:

In March, I attended my mom’s best friend’s afternoon tea- it was a wonderful time to catch up with family and friends and everything was delicious! I also went to a fun fashion event with my girlfriends- the opening of the San Francisco Alice & Olivia store!

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April Highlights:

My April highlight is obvious- taking my Grandma to Las Vegas to celebrate her 87th birthday! It was a complete surprise and even after my parents and Grandma arrived in Vegas, she had no idea that my brother and I were joining in on the fun too! We went out to delicious meals, explored and my mom even took her to see Donny & Marie! It was a weekend full of memories I’ll always treasure. During this month, my mom, Grandma and I also did a photoshoot which was so much fun!

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May Highlights:

Looking back, I think May was one of my favorite months this year! I got to hold a baby pig, attend a fantastic Derby Day party (complete with a grilled cheese and mimosa bar) and the most exciting part- go to Indianapolis for the Indy 500! As a huge Indy fan, this was actually the first race I’d been to and it set the bar super high for all future races. It was such an exciting, fabulous time and I loved sharing it with my mom and Daddy Jeff.

June Highlights:

Much of June went undocumented because it was a big health-issues month for me consumed with lots of appointments trying to figure out what was going on with me. But there were still some highlights like attending the Bachelor Auction (see my friend Katie’s blog for a post on it!) and attending Grease the Sing-A-Long at the Castro theater with my girlfriends!

July Highlights:

After kind of a rough June, July was an awesome month. My brother got engaged and we had a surprise engagement party (the wedding is in May and I’m a bridesmaid!) Later in the month, I went to see the Jean Paul Gaultier museum exhibit, went wine tasting in Napa and attended a Bachelorette Finale party, Olympics party and book club brunch! It was a very social, fun month!

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August Highlights:

In August I had Jury Duty which I loved (but didn’t get to be picked as part of the jury-darn), created a recipe for healthy summer ratatouille, went to the Indy race in Sonoma, and did a little modeling at the SF store for LOFT and got a chance to preview their fall collection!

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September Highlights:

September (my birthday month) was full of lots of fun things! I went wine tasting in Napa again, went to San Francisco’s Fashion’s Night Out and a Giant’s game. The birthday celebrations took over the last two weeks of the month and I was showered with love at my Birthday Dinner Party, a family celebration at a favorite restaurant and the most amazing LA reunion trip with my college besties.

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October Highlights:

October brought fun social events like 7×7’s Hot 30 party, my friend’s Halloween party where we all dressed as Disney princesses, and an amazing trip to LA for the O! You conference with my mom as a birthday treat! I still owe you a post about that and this is a good reminder!

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November Highlights:

The month started off great with a visit from one of my best friends who now lives in DC! It was so fun to have her here and reminded me how much I missed her! I also absolutely loved cooking Thanksgiving dinner even though it was my first one being gluten-free and dairy-free. It was so much fun to try new recipes and make delicious foods for my family.

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December Highlights:

December was a very busy month but full of lots of fun activities like a visit from another best friend, going Oyster shucking in Tomales Bay, celebrating my friend Ashley’s birthday with a fun party, and of course Christmas and New Years Eve! Blog posts on much of the aforementioned soon!

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What didn’t make the blog

I mentioned here and there about my health struggles but the extent of which wasn’t ever covered and I’ll probably keep it semi-private. However, what you all do know is that I was finally diagnosed with celiac and am no longer in constant pain! I’m seeing an amazing doctor and am so thankful for my parents who stood by me tirelessly as I endured many a hospital visit and change of plans. I’m on the road to recovery and feeling very excited for what’s sure to be a wonderful 2013.

 

 

Scenes from the Weekend

Hi lovelies! I hope that you all had an absolutely wonderful weekend! It was pouring rain in the city this weekend but it seemed like things worked out perfectly and it always cleared up during times when I was out and about! Love when that happens! I had a full weekend that was the perfect combo of relaxing and fun.

-Daddy Jeff’s Birthday

It was Daddy Jeff’s birthday this weekend so we went out to celebrate on Friday night! It was so great to have an opportunity to celebrate Daddy Jeff because he really is the most incredible, most compassionate, sweetest dad! I am so, so lucky to have him in my life!

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-Gluten-Free/Vegan Pumpkin-Almond Butter Muffins!

Late Friday night I did a little baking so I could bring something special to brunch the next day. In addition to the gluten and dairy, my doctor’s have a few other things I can’t have so I knew it was best to make something out of the ingredients I could! I made a version of Chelsey’s “Pumpkin Surprise Muffins” but substituted almond butter for peanut butter and stevia for the sugar. I also added a little almond milk. Mine didn’t turn out quite as pretty as hers, but they sure tasted delicious!

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-Book Club Brunch

For the Girl’s Book club that I’m in, we usually have our meetings on Friday nights. This time our lovely host Biz decided to do things a little different and we did Brunch instead! It was so fun gathering together and getting to chat with all my friends over a delicious brunch. Oh and we talked about the book too! We read Gone Girl this month and it was so good! I’ll be sure to post a review soon!

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-The Most Exciting Surprise!

A huge highlight of my weekend was when my parents brought home a Vitamix! I cannot even tell you excited I was but will share that I may have been dancing around the kitchen squealing “we got a Vitamix!” I have wanted one so badly for the past two years and cannot wait to start using it. Smoothies, soups, pesto, nut butter, dairy free ice cream? I mean really the possibilities are endless!

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-Starting the Christmas Season off right

Yesterday I went to see the San Francisco Choral Artists perform their Christmas concert and it was just beautiful. They all had such powerful voices and the notes they could hit was awe-inspiring! One of my favorite songs was actually done without words and just with sounds which seems a little odd but was really cool! It was a great night!

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Questions:

-What did you do this weekend?

-Any recipes I must make using my new Vitamix??

Napa Day Trip

Hi lovelies! I hope that you all had a fantastic weekend. I spent this weekend laying low and catching up on some much needed rest after a busy week. Though this weekend was a little more low-key, a few weeks ago my girlfriends and I planned a little day trip to Napa to go wine tasting.

Our first stop of the day was to Jessup, where my friend Meghan is a wine club member. Being a member is really the way to go and we were able to have a wonderful private, sit-down tasting.

Next, we headed to Velo Veno aka the Clif Bar Winery. I first heard about this winery in a 7×7 post and given my love for Luna bars and wine, I thought it was the perfect match up. Oh and then there was the bike riding part. Full disclosure here, I haven’t been on a bike since I was probably 12-years-old and even that’s a stretch. The last bike that moved (aka not spin or stationary) had a fabulous Beauty and the Beast motif with purple and pink tassels coming out of the handle bars. Needless to say, it’d been a while. But I figured there is that lovely phrase “it’s just like riding a bike” which means that once you get back on you remember how to do it.

Posing pre-ride in Velo Veno

Well here’s the thing no one really tells you- it’s actually quite hard to get the hang of riding a bike when you haven’t done it in a very long time. Not to mention that the bike I was riding had gear shifts, handlebar breaks and was without any pretty tassels. I soon realized that it was actually quite hard to get the hang of breaking with your hands, versus just putting your feet on the ground… which I proceeded to do about every 5 feet. Luckily, I have some of the greatest friends in the world and despite them being able to ride circles around me, they stayed with me and encouraged me as I struggled along.

Post-lunch and getting ready to get back on the road. We did wear helmets but I didn’t think you needed to see those attractive pics.

Finally, after a few little tumbles and scrapes, I managed to kind of get the hang of it. It wasn’t easy and I wasn’t by any means good, but I was able to ride along and have a conversation at the same time… a victory in my book. And what would riding through wine country be without a few photo pit stops?

Our Brady Bunch/Partridge Family shot

After a day of riding, we made it back to Velo Veno for a tasting. With the intense heat (96 degrees!) we were all ready for some water, snacks and oh ya wine. Each wine at Velo Veno is paired with a special snack blend, such as Toasted Coconut & Cashews, Sundried Berries & Cherries, and my obvious favorite, dark chocolate almonds with sea salt and olive oil… yum!

Post riding treats!

After Velo Veno we began heading back but made one more pit stop to Domaine Carneros just before closing time. It is a gorgeous winery and known for their bubbles… one of my favorite things to drink!

All in all, it was the perfect day with my girlfriends. We’re so lucky to live close to the gorgeous Napa Valley and what better way to spend a summer afternoon? I can’t say that I’ll be back on a bike anytime soon, but despite some intense bruises that lasted almost two weeks, I’m proud that I managed to complete the bike ride and had a wonderful day!

Questions:

-Have you ever been wine tasting?

-Bike riding, yay or nay?

-Favorite summer activity?

Red, White and Blue

Hi lovelies! I hope that you all had an amazing weekend. Are you all watching the Olympics? I’ve never been that into it before, but this year I can’t seem to get enough. You know I love diving, but I’m also loving swimming, volleyball and of course gymnastics. This weekend has involved lots of Olympics watching, but it started off with a bang on Friday. It was actually supposed to be a book club with some of my girlfriends but because so few people read the book, we also turned it into an Olympics Opening Ceremony party. I always try and make something delicious for Book Club and this party was no exception, but with the added challenge of making something USA-themed. I thought about making my giant cupcake, but wanted to make something a little different, so I decided on Golden Oreo truffles, recipe courtesy of Sally.

The ingredients are super simple…

I followed Sally’s recipe almost exactly but subbed fat-free cream cheese for regular (I mean, why not save a few calories when you can!) And because I only have a mini food processor, I processed everything in batches. Also, I noticed that the truffles turn out best when you really blend the cream cheese and oreos together until they become a similar texture as cookie dough.

But I wasn’t the only one with an Olympic themed treat- everyone brought amazing things, including red, white and blue mac and cheese. And of course, adorable decorations by my friend, party planner extraordinaire, Biz. Also, check out the bowls below- they are Olympic rings ;)

But food wasn’t the only thing on our minds. Of course the wine was flowing as well and we decided to take it a step further as my friend Ashley created something special for our Olympic viewing…

And what kind of an Olympics party would it be without some awesome glasses…

Questions:

-Do you have any television viewing parties?

-If you could compete in any Olympics sport, which one would you do?

Wordless Week and Weekend

Hi lovelies! I hope that you had a great weekend! Are any of you taking an extended vacation this week? I’ll be working, but do have a half-day tomorrow and Wednesday off and am very excited. No big plans, but a day spent with family which will be nice. I’ve had a very busy and fun week and weekend and thought I’d let the pictures do the talking. I left my camera at a friend’s house a few weeks ago and haven’t had a chance to retrieve it, so apologies for the iphone pics!

Homemade sushi and miso soup!!

Grease sing-along at the Castro Theater

Decked out, ’50s style

The best frozen yogurt ever… natural and chocolate swirl with fresh raspberry puree, chocolate shavings and homemade granola

Delicious take-out from Bun Mee

Questions:

-What was the best thing you ate this weekend?

-Have you ever been to a movie sing-along??