Happiness Files

May 12, 2016

The weather is warming up and I’m getting ‘summer on the mind.’  My next few months are packed with some pretty fun weekends, so it’s been nice to relax and enjoy our home before the (fun) chaos begins!

IMG_3570 Homemade Poke Bowls

IMG_3659 My favorite wrapping paper

IMG_3674 The prettiest wisteria in front of Chez Panisse 

IMG_3697 Glistening chandelier at the Claremont


The most gorgeous arrangement and vase that from The Gardner


I wasn’t even sad when I finished this cocktail – how could you be when it looks like this?

  IMG_3897 Loved this acrylic chair display at HD Buttercup

IMG_4022 Monte (my boss’s new puppy)


Peony season is here!!! #basic


Pretty proud of our picnic spread at the KRTY Song & Sip event

IMG_4042 Watching Brett Young perform at Clos LaChance 

IMG_4088 Post brunch walk with my favorite babe


Spring Cleaning Tips

April 24, 2016


It took me a few days to figure out what I wanted to write…. organization and cleaning gets me pretty pumped up, and this could easily turn into a novel… so I’m going to take a step (or 10) back and share with you my top 3 organization/cleaning tips.

  1. If you can do it in 30 seconds take care of it now. 
    • This is a life mantra of mine… but if you come home and take your jacket off, only to throw it on the chair that is 5 feet from the closet it should hang in – just take the extra 10 seconds and hang it up.  Between putting keys on the hook, shoes in the closet, junk mail in the trash or anything else that gets thrown to the side, you are saving yourself an hour of clutter clean up, whenever you decide to get around to tidying up (and wouldn’t we all rather be watching Real Housewives!?).
  2.  Give everything a place. 
    • This can be a pretty larger under taking… but once you take inventory of everything in your home (and get rid of what you don’t need), it is so much easier to clean your home because everything has a place.  I know exactly what room/drawer/space within each drawer a particular item belongs, and it makes cleaning up less stressful (and sending people to get stuff for you a lot easier).  I am a strong believer in junk drawers (allow yourself ONE in your home), but make sure to purge it once a month..
  3. Buy a label maker. 
    • One of my favorite things is my label maker. A few years ago I binged on shoe-box sized Tupperware and created boxes for everything in my home from appliance manuals, to nail polish, remote controls, to sunscreen and party decorations. I also purchased a ton of mason jars that I use to store bulk goods in my freezer (nuts, seeds, dried fruit, etc.). It comes back to not only making your home easier for you to maneuver through, but whoever you live with or whomever is visiting your home.  I love that when people are staying over, I can send them upstairs for extra toothbrushes and face wash, and while I’d like to say this has helped my husband figure out where things go, I can’t lie to you all (I figured the giant MEDICINE label would help him to figure out where the Advil would be stashed… but to no avail).


For more spring cleaning tips click here, here and here!



Happiness Files

April 14, 2016

The past few weeks have been a whirlwind – we completely renovated our family room and then I proceed to get sick smack dab in the middle of it.  Oh and did I mention my husband was gone for the majority of the time? C’est la vie!

While the majority of our time has been devoted to our home lately, I wanted to share a few things that have been making me happy lately… so here we go!


Gave Bywater a try and felt transported to NOLA on an impromptu date night


Beautiful flowers from J paired perfectly with our weekly pizza/wine night


Enjoying the Pro-Am at Pebble Beach with my family


Our sweet/suite view from the 17th Skybox


The perfect afternoon ritual – Vogue and rose.


The boys golfing on our annual Cordevalle couples trip.


I love a matching mani, Lululemon, cocktail situation.


The prettist sunset.




I find this hilarious.


The most gorgeous (and delicious) drinks at Marengo.


I wish San Jose had as many flower stands as the city…

Happiness Files - Avo Salad

My favorite avocado and citrus salad.


Round two of our Easter festivities (I picked up cherry blossom branches at Whole Foods for a simple but fabulous centerpiece).


Thistle is my latest food delivery system obsession. I was hooked when I saw this testimonial: Getting Thistle Co food delivery is like having your mom pack your lunch if your mom is a 24 year old vegan style blogger.” Hook, line and sinker. Use code: WHITNEY291 for $20 off your order!


The prettiest gimlet.


Dragging the boys out for a double date on their work trip at Bardot.



Cilantro Grapefruit Cooler

April 1, 2016

Like most people my phone holds most of my life… most importantly my pictures.  I clean my phone archives out at least once a week and have over a thousand photos that I look back at regularly. How can this be? The majority of them are pictures of recipes that I want to make and considering today’s lineup dated back to last March, I figured a year was long enough to be looking at this guy.  I bit the bullet (not hard to do considering I had everything in my fridge), and whipped up this magical concoction.


Cilantro is a top herb contender for me (sorry Jeff!) but I rarely use it in drinks.  Jokes on me, because mixed with a little mint (also a surprising mixture for me) and some citrus this drink hit the spot.  Perfect for the spring season ahead… I’d add this to your list for pool parties in the next few months.


Cilantro Grapefruit Cooler 

  • handful of cilantro
  • 2 mint leaves
  • 3 oz vodka
  • 6 oz grapefruit juice
  • juice from half a lime
  • 1 oz vermouth
  • splash of agave
  1. Muddle cilantro and mint in a cocktail shaker.
  2. Top with vodka, juices, vermouth and agave, and add ice.
  3. Shake until icy and strain into an ice filled lowball glass.
  4. Garnish with a cilantro sprig and lime wheel. Enjoy!

IMG_5893 IMG_5895 IMG_5898    IMG_5917


Grapefruit Tarragon Gin and Tonic

March 25, 2016

Tarragon is a herb that I love but typically forget about…. sorry tarragon!

I’m used to it as a pleasant surprise in salads or chicken dishes, but when I saw it in a cocktail recipe, I had to try it for myself.


Grapefruit Tarragon Gin and Tonic 

  • 2 sprigs fresh tarragon
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar (or turbinado sugar or brown sugar should do the trick)
  • 2 ounces fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 2 ounces gin
  • 5 ounces tonic water
  1. Muddle tarragon and sugar in a cocktail shaker and fill with ice.
  2. Add grapefruit juice and gin and shake until icy.
  3. Pour cocktail mixture into an ice filled highball glass and top with tonic water.
  4. Garnish with an extra tarragon sprig and grapefruit slice.