Happiness Files: Carmel Valley

June 9, 2016

We went to Carmel Valley to celebrate the birthday of one of our favorite people, and cheated on our beloved Carmel Valley Ranch for Bernardus Lodge… and let me just tell you CVR may have a little competition…


The gorgeous onsite restaurant – Lucia

Happiness Files - Lucia 2


They have the best outdoor spaces – fire pits, stone fire places, putting green, bocce courts, and most importantly lots of string lighting.


The birthday crew.


A beautiful lavender, lemon & gin concoction to start our trip off on the right foot.

Happiness Files - Entry

There were fresh flowers throughout the hotel (that I obviously loved).


The outdoor chandlier didn’t hurt either…

Happiness Files - Couples

When traveling with the boys, we must always spend some amount of time on a golf course (le sigh).


Charming walk through Carmel by the Sea.


Our poolside view.


Splurging on the most delicious blueberry lemon ricotta pancakes at Lucia.


The prettiest view on 17 Mile Drive that definitely made it hard to head home.

Until next time Carmel!



June 8, 2016

Sorry for uber girl-friendly post today… but when I find something good to share, I always feel like this is the perfect spot to spread the word!  After posting about Burt’s Bee’s Organic Cotton PJs awhile back, I was flooded with many great deodorant recommendations (skim the post to understand the connection) and have tried to dabble in editing my skincare/toiletries to embrace more natural, organic products.


My mom sent me an email awhile back about organic tampons and I was a little blown away that this was something that never occurred to me. I started using Veeda tampons (chemical/synthetic/dye free) post-email, but when my boss’s wife suggested I look into a new organic tampon delivery service – Cora, I was pleasantly surprised.  The discreet wrapper was obviously a big motivator for the girl who refuses to buy tampons at the store (thank god for Amazon), and the 100% organic cotton/BPA free plastic applicator was tugging at my healthy girl heart strings.  Your first order comes with this sleek black box to store your new goodies in, and even comes with a travel clutch (which has made its way into my office drawer).

Once you check out their website you can pick the number of tampons you typically need, along with the absorbency type (and get combinations of regular and super depending on your needs).  Enter in your billing information and pick your payment schedule (monthly, quarterly or annually) and you never have to send your guy on an awkward last minute Tampax run again (your welcome to all parties).


Oh and I almost forgot the best part… for every monthly supply you purchase, Cora gives a supply of of menstrual products to a girl in need.

So if I haven’t convinced you yet, check out Cora’s website and use code whitney9 for a free months supply!




Swimsuit Season – How to Set Your Swimsuit

June 7, 2016


My little sister filled me on everyone’s “must do” when getting getting their new swimsuit for this season.  Sick of buying swimsuits and having them fad out by the end of the summer? Do this simple (and cheap, and easy) little trick to keep your suits in tip top shape for years to come (hey if you’re like me and keep yourself bikini ready 365 days a year, may as well have your suits ready.).

  1. Fill a large bowl with one quart of cold water and 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar.
  2. Submerge your brand new swimsuit for 30 minutes.
  3. Remove suit from liquid and gently wring out (do not rinse).
  4. Let dry and enjoy your vibrant and fabulous looking new suit!



In the market for a new suit? I’m loving this, this, this and this one!


Vietnamese Mango Salad

June 6, 2016

Papaya Tangled Salad

I whipped this up on a sunny Saturday afternoon to enjoy with my stack of magazines and a yummy glass of white wine and let me tell you… it was pretty perfect.

Fish sauce is one of those things that is so disgusting by itself (to me), but when combined with lime juice and a little brown sugar is one of my favorite flavor profiles.  Add some crunchy, tart fruits/veggies to the mix and you have a real winner!


Vietnamese Mango Salad
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 people 30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 people 30 minutes
Vietnamese Mango Salad
Print Recipe
Servings Prep Time
4 people 30 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4 people 30 minutes
Servings: people
  1. Combine sugar and fish sauce in a medium saucepan over moderate heat. Stir until sugar dissolves (about 3 minutes) and remove from heat. Whisk in lime juice and let cool.
  2. Heat oil over moderate heat in a small skillet. Add peanuts and cumin and cook until fragrant (about 1 minute).
  3. Spread lettuce in the bottom of a serving bowl. In a separate bowl toss fruit, vegetables, herbs, nuts and seeds with dressing. Pile on top of lettuce and enjoy right away!
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Happiness Files: LA Trip

June 2, 2016

Last month I was lucky enough to snag my mom for an amazing girls weekend.  Despite my horrendous seasonal allergies we were able to enjoy some amazing spots in LA… here were our favorite parts:


We loved our hotel Mr. C’s in Beverly Hills… the location wasn’t ideal for our itinerary, but the complimentary car service certainly helped!


…the complimentary Cipriani Bellinis didn’t hurt either…



We voted our favorite meal of the trip was at SQRL (be sure to order the Sorrell Pesto Bowl with kale, and the Kabbouleh Salad)


Cute cactus on our walk to Silverlake


Quaint flower shop

Happiness Files - Bar Keeper

Was so bummed we carried on and couldn’t take any of these goodies home from Bar Keeper

Happiness Files - Clare Viver

Loved the fresh blooms at Claire Vivier


Stairs into AOC Wine Bar (go for their happy hour and get the date appetizer and a cocktail… also be sure to check out their outdoor patio space)


(the Fire & Smoke cocktail at AOC Wine Bar)


The “Only in Mexico” cocktail (casamigos reposado, mezcal, pineapple, serrano chili, cilantro, key lime, tamarind foam) from Toca Madera (amazing bar, cool vibe to grab a drink…or two).


My mom knew I would lose my mind in the Restoration Hardware in West Hollywood (I did).




Restoration’s amazing rooftop view


Despite the million cocktail pictures I have, there is 1 picture of us together and 2 of us separately #fail


Gracias Madre’s Purista margarita (their special salt recipe coming to the blog soon!)


We to pop into Jessica Biel’s Au Fudge to see if JT was in the building (he wasn’t), but we did see this adorable neon sign (and picked up a few cute things in their store).


We met Micheal Aram at the opening of his new West Hollywood store (needless to say we were confused why they were giving us champagne in our workout clothes upon arrival)


I need this chair.


…And this chandelier.


Had to stop by Compartes for some chocolate (I came home with Strawberries and Champagne, Vanilla Bean and Animal Crackers and Salted Pistachio)


We tried out Kali – originally a pop up – and I loved their Swedish fish cocktail made with vodka and strawberry shrub (also be sure to order the Yellowtail and Uni appetizer, and the duck entree)


Oh and the next night I went to Beyonce (overall good weekend I’d say) 🙂

If you are in LA anytime soon, I would also recommend the following:

  • Drinks at EP & LP – awesome rooftop bar (great bobba tea cocktails)
  • Brunch at Le Pain Quotidien on Melrose (amazing green smoothie and GF options… would choose over Urth Cafe)
  • Cocktails at Ysabel – a beautiful space with amazing people watching
  • Brunch at Republique – I ordered the Croque Madame (and while delicious) was lusting over my mom’s burger

We didn’t go to any of these places but they were recommended and definitely on our list for next time: