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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Sweaty Betty Ski Pants

I buy new snow pants every 15 years, so when we had our ski trip last week, I knew that I needed an updated pant that was more durable, water proof, and a little more fashionable. There are an incredible amount of ski pant options on the internet (thank you world wide web), but they are either absurdly expensive, way too trendy, or just not good enough. So when I came across Sweaty Betty’s ski pants, I knew that they were the one.

 

 

Suspenders (or you can zip them off)

Suspenders (that are detachable if you don’t want them). They are wind and waterproof fabric with fleece lining, stretchy, lots of pockets, and fit perfectly over your snow boot.

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Kypris Moonlight Catalyst

As a female in my late  30s (denial), I constantly feel like I am fighting wrinkles and / or acne. So, I am constantly searching for the right moisturizer, serum, magic potion. I want my skin to be hydrated (decrease wrinkles) while combating acne (no oil).  So when I found out about Kypris Moonlight Catalyst, a night-time serum that helps BOTH, I was over the moon. And highly hopeful.

 

Look at the box! White and gold and sparkly!

Look at the box! White and gold and sparkly!

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Tracksmith

I am always on the lookout for new workout gear as I spend a large portion of my existence schlepping around / working out / thinking about running. Bandier has mastered most of my workout closet, but I was still searching for the perfect short (vs legging). I have found that many things are wrong with workout shorts: too short, too tight, cotton inside (vs mesh), not flattering, generic, the list goes on and on. Until I came across Tracksmith. And now I am in love. They are expensive ($60) but worth every single cent. Seriously, they are the perfect short.

 

This past Saturday, at a 10K in Central Park, rocking it out in my tracksmith shorts and my proud Paris marathon finisher shirt.

This past Saturday, at a 10K in Central Park, rocking it out in my Tracksmith shorts and my proud Paris marathon finisher shirt.

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Happy T’giving!

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!  We are in New York and had dinner with Ken’s family, minus my mother-in-law, who is in the Philippines.  We are laying low this weekend in New York, outside of a fun event tomorrow night (more on that next week).

 

Around Thanksgiving, I always think about the following story that I shared with you a couple years ago.  A true story of tragedy, inspiration, and determination involving one of our amazing friends, Laura Wales Holliday, who survived, and another friend, James Hsu, who didn’t. The story is re-copied below and the link to the original post is here.  Have a great Thanksgiving weekend with your loved ones.

Laura

Laura — pretty as can be. Always a smile on her face and a twinkle in her eye.

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Buly 1803

Paris has so much to offer….food, clothing, chocolate, beauty products, you name it. On our recent trip, I visited (thanks to a friend’s recommendation) the most insanely beautiful and luxurious fragrance and skincare boutique, Buly 1803. Originally founded in 1803 by Frenchman Jean-Vincent Bully, who was known for his signature perfumes and scented vinegars, it was reopened in April 2014 by Victoire and Ramdane Touhami on the quaint Rue Bonaporte in St Germain de Près. It maintains an old vibe with some new, modern flair (they took out the second ‘l’ in Buly to make it similar, but different). This place is incredible — old school, antique, and classic, but with new skin care concoctions that draw on the virtues of natural ingredients. All of the products are made without parabens, phenoxyethanol or silicone! What is not to love?

 

Classic French

Classic French

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2014 NYC Marathon- We Did It!

Geez louise, holy moly, what an amazing day! The conditions were extremely difficult: cold weather, damp, and 20 – 40 MPH winds. Nonetheless, Ken and I finished the NYC Marathon and *both* made our goals: Ken broke 4 hours (3:58) in his first marathon ever and I ran in 3:38 which qualified me for the 2016 Boston Marathon. It was an incredible, emotional, and gratifying day. We both worked so hard — physical training and fundraising, which required time and energy, and we are so pleased that we raised $13,525 for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in memory of our family member Joanna.  More later (I am tired!) but here are some pics.

 

Welcome to 4:45 AM Sunday morning at our house.  Getting ready for our 6 AM bus to Staten Island.

Welcome to 4:45 AM Sunday morning at our house. Getting ready for our 6 AM bus to Staten Island. This was my actual running day attire — but it took until mile 13 to get to this point — I layered so many shirts, gloves, hat, jackets, and discarded them slowly.

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Ballpoint Pen

Although I do my fair share of typing on computers and phones, I also spend a lot of time writing, whether it is for thank you notes (most recently for Cruzzie’s birthday party and the donations for the marathon), to-do lists, and / or snail-mail cards. Not only am I particular about the paper I write on, but even more so, the pens that I write with. So I was ecstatic when I was gifted the coolest pen EVER. Swiss made (of course), this ball point pen is not only durable, beautiful, and unique, but it is also easy and smooth to write with. AND it comes with the coolest case ever.

 

A whole lot of orange going on.

A whole lot of orange going on.

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Sylvain Le Hen Hair Clip

Side view.

Although I like to change my wardrobe frequently, I never ever ever change my hairstyle. 100% of the time, my hair is back in a ponytail, bun or chignon. My mom even nicknamed me ‘Olive Oyl‘ like Popeye’s girlfriend, as her hair (and mine, too) is always back in a bun. What can I say, I like my hair up! Because it is always up, I am willing to invest in nice, beautiful hair clips.

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Mother’s Day Gift Guide 2014

Mother’s Day is around the corner….literally, 6 days away! So time to get online, double click, and get yo mama some Natori gear! And this year, there is so much goodness at Natori that it is hard to dwindle down a selection. Everything at Natori is on fire right now. Seriously, you could go to www.natori.com, close your eyes, randomly start clicking on items and voila, you would have the perfect gift for your mother. All of the items are beautiful, luxurious, stylish, comfortable, and must have. But since that is not reality, here is my MOTHER’S DAY GIFT GUIDE. Enjoy, and special treat: you get 20% off orders of $250 or more with the code LOVEMOM2014 at checkout (through May 11th)!

Happy mother's day!

Happy Mother’s day!

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Josie Hollywood Boho Pant

New season (it is Spring, right? NOT in NYC…) so new lounge pants from Josie! These Josie Hollywood Boho pants (now sold out) are perfection; the right combination of slinky and luxurious,  cozy and bohemian. The vibrant print is an ultra-soft woven with colorblock detail, and the drawstring waist is easy to wear. These pants are the right choice to slip on to when lounging around the house, whether it is daytime or nighttime.

 

How cool and boho does the Josie model look in the whole ensemble?

How cool and boho does the Josie model look in the whole ensemble?

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Kinfolk

Coffee table goodness.

Obsessed with anything from Portland, Brooklyn, and / or Stockholm, I recently came across the magazine, Kinfolk, from Portland, Oregon. And now, I am hooked. This inspirational, quarterly, ad-free print magazine is a piece of art, not just a magazine. Goodbye, Cosmo, and Hello, Basquiat! (And yes, I had this planned before the New York Times Sunday Styles article yesterday! The Josie Girl and the NYT apparently think alike!)

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Wallpaper Art

Wallpaper as art — what??? Super duper unique, interesting, playful, and affordable. Just what we like in art! When we were re-doing the house in Pound Ridge, NY, we had a huge blank wall that needed some OOMPH but didn’t want to spend the $$ on anything. So, our lovely designer, Ali Tick, came up with the most innovative and smart move EVER (hence the reason she is the designer, and we are the consumers).  Wallpaper on a section of the wall, covered with plexiglass and large nails to LOOK like a piece of art. Brilliant.

Entrance

Entrance into the house with the wallpaper in the center.

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Pratima Spa

In October, I was lucky enough to participate in a 50-hour intensive Ayurvedic workshop. It was incredible. Learning about the doshas, the mudras, the mantras, the practice, the breathing, ALL OF IT, was an unbelievable, life changing, unforgettable opportunity.  Two months later, I am still reflecting on this journey, and am beginning to incorporate parts of my studies into my everyday life. I want to share more about this experience with you readers, bit by bit. And today, Pratima spa!

Pratima

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Fall 2013 Reading List

Maybe it is because I am becoming older and more “mature,” but recently, I’ve been craving books instead of TV (or maybe it is because I need more TV shows to watch).  I know, crazy… I am a full-fledged adult. Here are my top picks for this Fall and Winter!  Perfect as you gear up for Thanksgiving travel..

 

books

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Yoga Guru Mandy Ingber

You know when you have one of those sleepless weekends? Raging with a 4 year-old-who-doesn’t-sleep? Welcome to my world. Thank you, Ali (Contributing Editor for this blog!), for saving my not-working-sleep-deprived-brain and writing today’s post.

___

Mandy Ingber is one of the most sought after yoga and fitness instructors in Los Angeles.  Her philosophies draw people into her world, offering a plan for “healthier bodies and happier minds”.  That’s right in my wheelhouse.  A good-looking shell that’s undernourished spiritually and emotionally is not all that sexy.

"Having the body you want begins with loving the body you have."  --Mandy Ingber

“Having the body you want begins with loving the body you have.”
–Mandy Ingber

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Clogmaster

Nothing is more comfortable than clogs (tied with birkenstocks, obvi), so when I found out about Clogmaster — custom fit clogs — I got super excited. While store bought clogs are already almost like the perfectly fit glass slippers, CUSTOM fit clogs seriously make me Cinderella. And yet again, an awesome product from my very own, Oregon (but available elsewhere!).

 

clogmaster

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Lonny Magazine Feature!

Thank you, Lonny Magazine!  Ken and I are so excited (and can’t believe) that we were featured in their June magazine.  The piece was on young families that try to make their homes hip and chic, while also family-friendly and functional.

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My favorite picture of the photo shoot!

The article featured both our New York apartment, and our home in Pound Ridge, NY, which the Natoris have owned for more than 25 years (Ken’s parents just completed building another home on the property).  We have spent the past few months redoing and redecorating the house, and are so excited with how it turned out.

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Cruz’s bedroom in NYC; my favorite room in our whole apartment. The colors and patterns bring such happiness and joy to the room, and to us!

We worked with 2 amazing interior decorators.  Nicki Hill Rose helped us with the first renovation in New York (pre-Cruz), and Allison Tick did the second renovation (pre-Zoe), and the full project in Pound Ridge. We would not have been able to do it without their help!

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Our bedroom in NYC, not shy of vibrant colors.

We are so thrilled with how everything turned out.  The article has a lot more pictures (32 pages!) so please check it out and support Lonny!

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Pound Ridge, NY. Master bedroom. Love the LOVE.

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Pound Ridge living room, outside. And yes, hello plastic red and yellow airplane. (Cruzzie loves this plane so much he sleeps with it every night. No joke. He cuddles it like a teddy bear. Safe to say he is a dedicated airplane lover).

Screen shot 2013-06-10 at 5.34.29 AM

Cruz’s teepee, Pound Ridge guest room. I found the teepee on etsy and love it more than Cruzzie does. If I go missing, that is where I will be…huddled up in the teepee with a jar of peanut butter and some babka.

Thanks to the amazing Lonny team!  To read the whole feature, go here.

Anika Yael Natori, aka, The Josie Girl

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Home Renovation Blog

Those of you that have gone through a home renovation, no matter how big or small, know how painful (not to mention time-consuming and expensive) the process can be.  It’s the nature of the beast: changing your mind, delays, and inevitably, spending more than you planned to.  Outside of envisioning the final outcome, one of the few sources of solace is that everyone goes through the same thing.

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The Traditional Home website is hosting a new blog series by Jaqui Lividini, who owns and runs the PR agency that Natori has worked with for years. Diary of a Mad Renovator will document her major renovation of a dream home she found on the Connecticut beach right on the Long Island sound.  I thought we had renovation stress.  Jaqui has already dealt with: Hurricane Sandy, major damage, and new FEMA regulations forcing her to either tear down the house, or raise it above sea level (forcing her to completely scrap the plans she had already developed.)

Jaqui bought the house from the great-granddaughter of the original builder/owner, and had promised her to restore it to a modern day version of its 1901 self.

Jaqui bought the house from the great-granddaughter of the original builder/owner, and had promised her to restore it to a modern day version of its 1901 self.

Screen shot 2013-04-07 at 6.45.57 AM

Damage from Hurricane Sandy

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Beach Towels/Giveaway!

Ken and I snuck away to Florida this weekend with the kids for a little getaway.  All of the locals said the weather has been horrible, but bad February Florida weather > any February New York weather.  Great to get away!

While it is way too early to think about the beach in many parts of the country, it is never too early to get excited about a Natori Beach Towel giveaway!  Natori has been making beach towels for the last three years.  The prints that are great on sleepwear are even better on beach towels.  The new collection of beach towels is out, and we are giving away my favorites from the new collection: the Cool and Warm Agila Beach Towels.

Agila Beach Towel - Cool

Agila Beach Towel – Cool

Agila Beach Towel - Warm

Agila Beach Towel – Warm

Agila Beach Towel - Cool and Warm

Agila Beach Towel – Cool and Warm

One lucky winner will win the set of two towels (one winner, two towels).  Rules are here, but in short, sign up to receive Josie Girl Blog posts by email (signup is on the top of the right nav on the blog), and you are eligible to win.  If you have already signed up, tell a friend! And if you don’t win, check them out online (30 bucks! What an awesome gift!!!!)

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Upstate Sweatshirt

I love tie-dye. Tie-dye is TO-DIE for. Especially when it is on a hoodie sweatshirt. I mean, can you get a better combination than that???? That combo is like peanut butter and jelly. Or cookies and milk. Or toast and butter. It just makes perfect sense and goes together hand in hand. So, thank you Upstate for making the most amazing and awesome sweatshirts. It is my dream come true!

Upstate is a Brooklyn based company that designs (and hand dyes) garments with a technique known as shibori. Shibori is an ancient Japanese tradition of dyeing cloth using several different methods of binding, folding, or compressing the fabric. The look creates an artsy array of patterns and textures.

pattern

Love the contrast in colors, the geometric consistency, and overall look of this Upstate piece!

dress

Here is me from September in an Upstate dress. Super easy, fun, unique, and summery. LOVE.

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Gossip Girl loves JN

Tonight, we bid adieu to the fictional fashionable elite of the Upper East Side, as Gossip Girl comes to an end.  Throughout the series Queen Bee (Blair Waldorf) has been spotted wearing gorgeous silk caftans, robes and chemises designed by who other than the beloved, Josie Natori. To celebrate B’s impeccable taste in sleepwear and lingerie, we’ve gathered the best pieces that she has worn to create a Gossip Girl retrospective of Josie Natori, as seen on Blair Waldorf. Enjoy!

Natori robe

Blair Waldorf in a Josie Natori Robe Season 3, Episode 15: “The Sixteen Year Old Virgin” Hello, sexy black dragon.

Lace chemise

Blair Waldorf in Glamour Lace Chemise Season 4, Episode 9 : “Witches of Bushwick” RED, LACY, SILKY, SEXY, AH-MAZING.

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Socks!

Need a simple stocking stuffer? Fun socks are always the perfect gift as they fit everyone; are bright, colorful and cheery; and come in a range of prices. Socks are like candles: everyone loves them but will not splurge on them for themselves… they are a perfect, easy gift. I try to get Ken to wear fun socks to work with his suits. Help push the movement. No more boring dark work socks!

Add some flavor to your Josie Guy’s suit!

Here are my top sock choices, for you or your guy (excluding my hand knit socks from my mother that I get for every holiday).

Corgi Socks

Cotton, wool, and cashmere options are available at Corgi, an old school English company.

stripes

Hello fun stripes!

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Track + Field Olympic Trials

Olympic Trials

The Olympic Trials for Track and Field.

With school out for the summer, I am in Oregon for the next two months with my parents and the kids, and Ken is going to be back and forth from New York.  New York has the Yankees, Mets, Knicks, Rangers, Islanders, Jets, and Giants.  Eugene, Oregon has the Track and Field Olympic Trials!  Eugene is actually known for its track (nickname: Tracktown, USA). It is the home of Prefontaine and is where Nike was born.

Even if you don’t love track (I do), watching Olympic Trials is pretty cool. Hundreds of athletes from around the U.S. come here after training for years.  What transpires at Hayward Field determines if all of the blood, sweat, tears, and sacrifice are worth it.  Lots of emotion, suspense, drama, and great track and field.  Enjoy the pics!

Hayward Field. Big crowd. Despite the rain.

Anatomy of a successful Pole Vault: Part 1

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