Utah- Via Ferrata Climbing

Ken and I went to Utah this past weekend for a belated 10th anniversary celebration. And what a weekend it was — can’t rave enough about the extraordinary experience we had during our stay. It was to date, one of my favorite vacations and involved everything I love: adventure, exercise, beautiful sunny weather, nature, great food, and relaxing. One of my favorite activities was a climb in the mesas of the Canyon Valley of Southern Utah. The type of climb we did is called a Via Ferrata which involves steel rods / climbing ladders, and a steel cable that you are connected to. So yeah, JV type of climbing, but so fun and scary nonetheless!

 

This activity involved a guide, and I told the guide that we were both in good shape (#humblebrag) and wanted the hardest via ferrata climb that they had…..so look at the mesa we climbed. OY.

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Mexican Corn Quinoa Salad

Last week, I had a Mexican themed dinner and made the most delicious corn quinoa salad! It was cheese-less, oil-less, but full of flavor, spunk, color, and taste. You must make it — even if you don’t like quinoa or corn, make it! (I served it along with a green salad, kale-chicken enchiladas, and salsa….yum!)

 

When I cook, I am a mess. But then I clean up. And hello tequila in the background. You must serve tequila when eating Mexican food.

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Ronnybrook Butter

Hands down my favorite food product is “butter.” YUP, butta. Love it. LOOOVE it. Like an unusual amount — I can actually eat it by the spoonful if it is good butter. Sounds gross, but good butter is better than anything. European butter is my favorite, but in the USA, I used to settle for Kerry Gold Butter. That is, until I discovered Ronnybrook Butter, and it is to die for.

 

Heaven. Sweet and salty. The perfect combination.

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Inside Natori: Mariah, Natori E-commerce / Licensing

Time for another inside look into how the Natori team incorporates Natori fashion into their lives! First, we had Josie designer, Talia. And now it is Mariah, works on both Natori.com and licensing. She looks stunning and gorgeous in her Natori pieces… take a look! Thanks so much, Mariah!

 

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Hello! This is Mariah, the e-commerce and licensing assistant at Natori. As we kick off fall, I’m happy to share how I mixed my love for kimonos with my love for the jersey shore over the past few months. My go-to ensemble at the beach has always included various wraps/kimonos to pair with my bathing suits. They are truly multi-functional, tripling as a robe for indoors, cover-up for the beach and kimono jacket for outerwear. Good thing I work where I do!

 

Pictured here is my latest favorite, The Xanado robe, from the Fall collection.

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Josie Natori RTW Spring 2018 Fashion Presentation BTS

This past Tuesday, my mother-in-law had her Josie Natori Ready to Wear Spring 2018 Fashion Presentation. It was a low-key event with great press and turn out. Every Fashion presentation takes a lot of effort, organization, and design. Enjoy these behind the scene photos!

 

Great view for the photo shoot.

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Bathroom Shark Painting

One of my friends, Scarlett Baily, is a talented artist based in Mexico City. She is young, fun, stylish, and oh-so-cool, painting mainly caricatures of people and animals for different events and companies. Scarlett also has painted two portraits for us that are my favorite two pieces of art in our house — they make me so happy and give such a fun flair to the playroom. So when she texted me this summer that she was coming to NYC, I came up with the idea of having her paint a shark in the kids’ bathroom. You see, Cruzzie is obsessed with sharks and loves everything about them. They are his go-to stuffed animals, his favorite books.. and he can basically name every shark in existence. So I wanted something special in the kids’ bathroom to reflect his love for the animal (and yes, first child’s love is overlooked by second kid’s interests. oops). Here they are, I love the final Sharkie! It is so different, special, and unique. It brightens up the bathroom and looks fresh and young!

 

Mr. Sharkie!

Mr. Sharkie!

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Kids in School

While the transition from summer to fall (and from Oregon to a New York State of Mind) is always a whirlwind, it has been especially so this year. While Cruzzie started 2nd grade, Tusia started Kindergarten, which feels really symbolic. It seems like yesterday the kids were born, and WAM BAM, all of a sudden they are in elementary school. To say it is a wild ride is an understatement. I can’t believe how much they have grown (and therefore how old I *am*).

 

Cruzzie started 2nd grade on Wednesday. He has a uniform of coat and tie, but can wear anything. So of course, I bought him a NEON orange shirt, bright shorts, and a fun tie. Why not make a uniform full of pizazz and color?

Cruzzie started 2nd grade on Wednesday. He has a uniform of coat and tie, but can wear anything. So of course, I bought him a NEON orange shirt, bright shorts, and a fun tie. Why not make a uniform full of pizazz and color?

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Crap Eyewear

Yes I realize that summer is now over so sunglasses are less important. BUT, big but, there is always a time and place to wear sunglasses. I found a pair of sunglasses in June, and they immediately became my favorite pair. They are cheap (although not GAP cheap), good looking enough, durable, and snazzy (super important adjective). And they have the best name, Crap Eyewear. I know, right? The line was born in reaction to the expensive eyewear market, but the glasses are fashion forward and… affordable! Win-win.

Here I am in ny crap eyewear.

Here I am in my Crap Eyewear.

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Currently Loving September 2017

Happy September, happy back to real life! I hope everyone settles in to the fall with ease and peace despite the craze and chaos it tends to bring. I know that I am trying to take one day at a time; better yet, hour to hour. I am not sure how summer disappeared as fast as it did, but I’m happy we created fond and wonderful memories that will forever be in our hearts! That said, here is what I am currently loving!

 

1. Slides. Yes, I know, shower slides from the 1990s are finally back in. I have been a fan of them the past two summers and have worn them non-stop. I love that they are easy, and go with everything. Although not practical for urban daily city life, I plan on wearing them once again NEXT summer, too. Thank god they are finally in fashion — last year I got a lot of weird looks.

 

Shower slides.

Shower slides. With no shower.

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Wine in a Can – Union Wine / Underwood

My love of Oregon runs deep; as I am a sucker for anything that comes from Oregon or looks like it is FROM Oregon. So I am giddy that Union Wine (an Oregon company) is now sold all over the country. Union Wine (Underwood) has been selling wine in a can for quite some time and has always been my go-to-dinner-party-gift, but now they sell SPARKLING WINE and RIESLING in a can, and I can’t control my happiness. Last week when visiting my sister in Portland, I visited a grocery store (truly, my favorite hobby) and I came across these new cans and I am sold. Pretty! And you can order them online, here.

 

I think these are the prettiest cans I have ever seen. SO SO pretty and feminine and fun.

I think these are the prettiest cans I have ever seen. SO SO pretty and feminine and fun.

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End of Summer 2017

To us, summer is ending. We return to NYC tomorrow night after 2 plus months in Oregon, and as usual, the time flew by and summer disappeared in a *snap*. We had the best time doing a lot of nothing except for exploring Oregon and California, spending time together as a family, and taking advantage of the beautiful nature. It is fun to look back at the goals I set for myself at the beginning of the summer as I accomplished ABSOLUTELY NONE OF THEM. It is almost funny, um, well sort of funny. Literally, NONE OF THEM. Take a look. Maybe looking at my failing my goals will make you feel good about yourselves!

 

First off, thank you to my parents for always being so generous, loving, and wonderful. They hosted many of my friends (and their families) and always let their house feel like my house. I can't thank them enough -- forever grateful for them.

First off, thank you to my parents for always being so generous, loving, and wonderful. They hosted many of my friends (and their families) and always let their house feel like my house. I can’t thank them enough — forever grateful for them. They are the reason I am who I am, and I couldn’t love them anymore (even if my mom wears socks with her birkenstocks and my dad’s fancy shoes are New Balances).

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Inside Natori: Talia, Josie Designer

Over here at the Josie Girl Blog, we thought it would be fun to have employees from The Natori Company share how they incorporate the House of Natori into their every day wardrobes. So first up is the super cool, super young, super HIP designer of the contemporary Josie collection, Talia. She has been with Natori for a couple of years, and has brought a great new energy and direction to Josie, under the tutelage of my mother in law Josie Natori. So here she is… thank you, Talia!

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Hi Everyone! This is Talia (the Josie designer) taking over for the Josie Girl! This past weekend I enjoyed some much needed time in the ‘country’ with my husband, sister, and brother in law. We rented the cutest little cottage in Barryville, New York- just a short 2 hour drive from the city. The cottage was surrounded by lush greenery, fresh air and best of all decorated with an eclectic charm!

 

The perfect cottage with a red door.

The perfect cottage with a red door. And the matching flowers and pillows on the lounge chair. Nice coordination.

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Stanford Vacation

After spending the weekend in Costanoa, we continued our California vacation by spending a couple of days around Stanford University. As readers of the blog know, Ken and I started dating at graduate school at Stanford (although Ken and my brother were best friends and roommates at Amherst for undergraduate). It was extra special to be there with the kids and show them the various places that had an impact on our life (i.e. dating –> love –> marriage –> life –> kids). Not only did we go to Stanford, but my father did as well for graduate school (right after marrying my mother), so this place is special to the whole family, and not just me and Ken. Take a look at the pictures (and I promise this will be our last post on our vacations, as we return to NYC so soon).

 

My squad at the hotel.

My (good looking) squad at the hotel.

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Costanoa

Greetings from beautiful Northern California!  We just had an amazing weekend catching up with our Stanford friends in Costanoa. Part camping, part hotel; basically high-end roughing it. Not camping, but pretending to camp.

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Our bungalow, aka a yurt. This little shelter is made up of plastic walls. Like a tent, but actually a little cottage.

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Poetry Boxes

One of the reasons I love my hometown is that it feels so 1960s. Like a happy hippy commune. Nothing is upscale, fancy, or pretentious. Everything has a super “love makes the world go round” “kumbaya” type of vibe. Case in point:  Eugene has ‘poetry boxes’ dispersed throughout the town. They perfectly describe Eugene — random mailboxes in town with poems to share with the community (what is NOT to love about this).

 

Two blocks from my parents house is this mailbox with the poetry. They change it once a month.

Two blocks from my parents house is this mailbox with poetry. They change it once a month.

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Korean Skincare 101

One of my college classmates is obsessed with Korean skincare. Since her skin looks amazing, I thought we would all benefit from a 101 tutorial. Thank you, Bridget Humphrey!!!

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If you want your skin to look amazing, bright, and blemish free, you should start using Korean skincare asap.  I stumbled upon this insight haphazardly. My friend mentioned how Korean skincare products are considered the best in the world. I was hesitant once I learned there were 10 steps involved with Korean skincare. But despite the hard labor involved, I thought I’d try it. (I desperately wanted my skin to be wrinkle free and bright.) And because the products are generally not expensive, I decided to be brave and take the plunge.

 

Once I started my skincare routine (years ago now), I never looked back. People started to notice the difference in how my skin looked, and I was hooked. I began loving and enjoying the 10 step process.

 

Here’s a quick and easy tutorial. KBeauty 101:

 

 

  • Step #1: Oil Cleanser
  • * You need this step to really loosen up the dirt and makeup on your face.
  • * I love the THE FACE SHOP Rice Water Cleansing Oil – $9, because rice is great for anti-aging (and this cleanser smells great)

 

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African Printed Overalls – Royal Native

My only purchase of the summer has been not *one* but *two* pairs of African printed overalls from Royal Native. They are so fun, vibrant, unique, and different.  I ordered one pair and loved them so much, that I immediately ordered a second. If they weren’t all currently sold out, I would order a third pair (a girl can’t have too many crazy pairs of overalls, can she?)

 

The yellow overalls. They are described as "THE SEXY TOMBOY piece de resistance in your wardrobe," and I couldn't agree more.

The yellow overalls. They are described as “THE SEXY TOMBOY piece de resistance in your wardrobe,” and I couldn’t agree more.

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Raspberry Crisp

This summer, we have gone to lots of local Oregon farms to pick our own fruit. The best trip was to the raspberry farm, when we came home with 9 pounds.  I wanted to make a raspberry crisp but couldn’t find a recipe anywhere, so I improvised and made my own! It was so good that I made not one, not two, but THREE!  This recipe is low sugar, tart, but oh-so-good.

 

First, you pick.

 

Toosh is officially my picking partner and could stay all day picking the fruit. She never wants to leave when we decide we are done.

Toosh is officially my picking partner.  She never wants to leave.

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Fun Posters- Renovation Hacks

Readers of the blog know we recently finished a major home renovation.  One of my favorite hacks is in our laundry room, where we had an old-school (retro like 1960s) lobby intercom AND an electric wiring box that required covering up. Since we need access to the electrical box,  we wanted something cheap, easy, and replaceable. The laundry room is fun and playful (my favorite room in the house), so we added to the fun by covering the wall with place posters and washi tape.

UGLY!

UGLY! HELP! SOS!

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1st Week of Summer 2017 in Oregon

It is hard to believe that ten days ago, I was in NYC….it feels like I’ve been gone for months! My life in Oregon is quite simple, but it is easy, wonderful, and I love it. Here are some pictures of the past week – Enjoy!

 

We do a lot of biking in Eugene. My parents actually don't drive anywhere, they SOLELY bike. So we have fun biking around the river, picking the kids up from camp, or just doing errands. In this photo, I am with my daughter and my littlest niece, Nadia.

We do a lot of biking in Eugene. My parents actually don’t drive anywhere. So we have fun biking around the river, picking the kids up from camp, or just doing errands. In this photo, I am with my daughter and my littlest niece, Nadia. (My helmet is from Sawako Furono Helmets)

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Summer 2017 To-Do-List

Greetings from Oregon!  The kids and I have officially relocated for the summer. Every year, I am a broken record with very similar summer to-do lists. It either means that I set the right intentions that I want to repeat OR that I have goals that I never end up accomplishing….I really hope that this summer, I am able to commit to my list and make it happen!

 

1. Learn how to breathe.

 

Waves = calming sound = meditiating?

Waves = calming sound = meditating?

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