Just got back from a whirlwind away on the west coast in the Bay Area. We decided to visit our best friends from Stanford for the holiday, and it was truly one of the best weekends yet. We laughed, ate, ate some more, ate even more, laughed some more, and just had great quality time together. Here is what we did (and great recommendations for anyone going to the Bay Area, too!)
National Forest north of San Francisco in Marin. A beautiful, relaxing, and incredible sigh of redwood trees. Redwood trees are supposed to be healing, and just being in their presence felt magical. They are HUGE and ANCIENT.
Thanks to friend and interior designer, Lucie Ayres, for the guest post! Always love hearing slash reading what she has to say! Take a look!
Want to know a secret? An interior designer’s hardest job is finding good art for our clients. It is a process that can take months or even years. Often more than one person is involved in the decision making which is what makes it extra challenging.
So, when I saw Christy Schnabel’s Bike Path images, I was floored. Not only are the colors of the photographs so beautiful – but the characters and details are just perfect. I said we must collaborate! Our clients (and friends and family, I mean almost everyone) are always searching for stunning, unexpected art and photography pieces that can be rendered on a large scale and convey a strong sense of place.
To me, Christy’s work celebrates the diversity of Los Angeles in a simple, joyful, and strikingly original way – with the artist’s punk-rock spirit and sense of humor shining through – using one of the city’s most iconic locations as a backdrop. Several of our clients, including one of LA’s premiere fitness chains, have become fans and collectors of Christy’s work.
We had a launch event at her house where we framed and hung about 45 pieces and the feedback was tremendous – people engaged and discussed who these characters could be. The breakout stars from the show were the athletic California woman and the young girl walker below. Both embody a clear female confidence with a good dose of intrigue.
Bikini Girl Star
In my last overly-personal-post, here is my round up of pictures on our second week of vacation in Palm Springs, California. Thank you in advance for looking at the photos and learning more about Palm Springs — and I promise you that next week, we will be back to NORMAL posts that are not overly personal or sappy……After Sunriver, we decided to spend a week with our best friends from Stanford (who live in San Francisco) somewhere warm(ish), so we picked Palm Springs. I actually spent time in Palm Springs growing up as my childhood best friend’s parents had a home there, so I had fond memories. Although NOT warm this year, we had a wonderful time exploring a new place for the family and quality time with our friends — they are friends that are family, where they know you so well (that they can give you unsolicited feedback) and will always be close to us despite the fact we live on different coasts.
Palm Springs is really retro and is a serious throwback to older times. We had amazing meals, all arranged by our friends (who did the research and reservations — thank you!).
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 (good looking) squad at the hotel.
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.
Our bungalow, aka a yurt. This little shelter is made up of plastic walls. Like a tent, but actually a little cottage.
We returned Sunday night from our Third Annual Sonoma Trip with a small group of our Stanford friends. It continues to be a wonderful tradition and something we look forward to each summer. If you have never been to wine country in CA before, I highly suggest doing it– beautiful vineyard views, hot dry weather, delicious farm-to-table-food, and of course… amazing local wine. Can life be any better? Thank you to our wonderful friends and hosts, Kimmers and Joe. Enjoy the photos — I want to go back now!
The guest house we stayed at on our friend’s property. We took over a cabin close to the main house and it was oh so cute (and all four of us Natoris slept in the same bed for three nights!)
On our final weekend on the West Coast (Best Coast), we went to Napa to celebrate our best friends’ joint 40th birthdays. It seems like there were a lot of California trips this summer (there were), but this one topped them all. Just like we did 10 years prior for our friends’ wedding, we stayed at The Carneros Inn. Over the weekend, we had an incredible (INCREDIBLE) dinner at Ad Hoc, one of Thomas Keller’s restaurants, brunch at The Fremont Diner, and the party at The Barn at Cornerstone. Not only was it hog heaven food wise, but the weather, the company, and the experiences were all top notch. I already miss the ease of flying from Eugene to San Francisco, and all our West Coast friends….
White farm flowers.
Just returned heavier and happier from another great California trip with the family. We started the week in Yosemite and ended in beautiful Sonoma. Invited by close friends from Stanford, we spent last weekend with several other families to enjoy nature and beauty in wine country, on a ridiculously beautiful ranch filled with plums, pears, apples, peaches, berries, vegetables, bees, hiking, pool, tennis, and MORE. Every step I took, I was reminded of the movie Parent Trap (top 5 movies for me, and yes, the one with Lindsay Lohan). To take a look at our California Dreaming, see below.
ATV picnic. I love how California can be so high class and cowboy at the same time.
Saddened.. yet again.. by another mass tragedy. France is incredibly close to my heart as I spent all my summers going up with my French exchange family and try to go back as often as I can.
I am sad for all of the victims, and for humanity.
Let me count the ways that I love the West Coast: 1) Oregon 2) California 3) Washington. This past week, we traveled to Yosemite with Stanford Classmates where we lounged, hiked, made smores, laughed, swam, and simply enjoyed the simplicity of the California Nature. AHHHHHH California.
Yosemite National Park is known for its waterfalls, meadows, giant sequoias, and vast wildnerness. This is a photo from our hike on Day 1. It was an easy hike yet truly beautiful, surrounded by trees, water, and waterfalls.
I FEEL LIKE I DRANK TEN SHOTS OF TEQUILA LAST NIGHT! HUNG OVER! In reality, I am still recovering from our weekend and was in my pajamas by 6:15 pm. We did nothing for Cinco-de-Mayo (my favorite holiday). But still, my head feels fuzzy….
EXACTLY! Follow this guy on instagram (earmuffs!) for belly laughs.