I call these my “weekend pants” because they’re the comfiest, easiest choice for a lazy day. Stylish but non-restrictive. I wore them yesterday when we walked over to Stag’s Lunchette for some lunch and coffee. There’s something about this style of pant, though. I bought ‘em for $10 at Forever 21 but they flatter my curves perfectly. Holly loves it when I wear them because they show off my feminine sway (to put it mildly). It’s a win-win!
Currently listening to: All About That Bass by Meghan Trainor
It’s summer here in the Bay Area. High 80’s and 90’s for the past couple of weeks. If you travel inland it gets into the 100’s! Since public nudity is frowned upon, I put together this simple getup before running errands in Walnut Creek, where it was hotter than hell itself. Nothing fancy – a breezy blue maxi accented by a cute necklace and some chic eyewear. To the rest of the country with cooler temps: we’ll be with ya before you know it. Stay cool, CA folks.
Now that it’s all said and done I’ve been reflecting a lot lately about being a “bride.” And that’s exactly how I thought of myself – a “bride” punctuated by air quotes. To me, the word “bride” has a lot of strong connotations, some good but a lot bad. It conjures thoughts of self-centeredness, greed and most of all a narrow focus on the wedding day itself rather than the marriage. My mind rejected it immediately and I found myself trying to go about planning our ceremony as a devout anti-bride. We had already decided to go the courthouse route; no family or friends. Short, simple ceremony. No engagement party or photo shoot. I did have an un-official bachelorette dinner with a friend that was lovely. (Shout out to Rachel <3) I tried to avoid the attention that comes with discussing something that Holly and I find so intimate. In the name of simplicity and a bit of superstition, we abstained from the hoopla. Putting too much pressure on a thing is sure to make it fail, isn’t that so? Right or wrong, that’s what I felt. It was sorta my way of protecting it I guess you could say. On the days when my heart won my brain over I would have little breakthroughs and remind myself not to cheapen our day. Take it in. Accept the warm wishes and excited hugs. Don’t skip the details. Enjoy it. And I’m glad that I did. Marrying Holly is the best decision that I’ve ever made and everyone else just wanted to acknowledge/celebrate that. I understood it. I accepted it. I did it. But, I’m here to say that being a “bride” is just not my thing. Being married to Holly, however, IS. Be warned though – when our baby shower comes along ALL EYES ON US. It’s party time!
Above: A snap of Holly’s rose gold band on the day we bought it.
Directly after our ceremony at City Hall we rushed back to the hotel, grabbed our things and hopped the train to the airport. It was all very rushed and stressful since we were running late. We didn’t really have a chance to process how we were feeling until we were sitting safely in our seats on the plane. The hour and a half flight gave us time to reflect and finally start to relax. We decided on an abbreviated honeymoon to buy us more time. More time to plan and save for the extravagant, ultra-honeymoon that I’ve always dreamed of: an African safari! Palm Springs was the perfect little getaway, though. The slower pace hits immediately once you feel the dry desert heat. Our stay at the Viceroy was tranquil. We were encouraged and allowed to unwind and just be. Just thinking about it makes me involuntarily tilt my head back, close my eyes and take a deep breath. Aaaahhhhhhhhh, yes. A soothing memory not soon to be forgotten.
The last surprise that I’d arranged for Holly on our wedding night was a little wedding cake. She dislikes cake. I love cake. I hold the belief that all weddings must have a cake! So while we were having our late night dinner, the lovely staff at the Viceroy snuck into our room and set it up. Since the cake needed to be small enough for the two of us, the baker (Roman @ Over The Rainbow bakery in Palm Springs) added a dummy layer on the bottom to make it appear more full and beautiful. I wanted to keep it simple with a bit of desert-chic thrown into the mix. I chose a lemon-raspberry-champagne cake with buttercream frosting. We were so beat from the ceremony and traveling that we decided to enjoy our wedding cake with our coffee the next morning. We popped the top layer into the freezer overnight then sliced it up with our french-press the next day. The flavor was incredible!! There is no better way to enjoy cake than eating it for breakfast, I’m telling you. This may have to be a new tradition…
Well, guys. WE FINALLY DID IT! On Tuesday, September 23rd Holly and I got hitched. Yaaahhooooooo! We had a very private ceremony; just the two of us, a photographer and a judge. Being married feels how I’d always hoped it would: DAMN GOOD. More photos from the ceremony and mini-moon to come! Stay tuned. Thanks to our family and friends for the support. Love levels are at an all-time high around here.
This post, aptly named, is all about my newest obsession with kouign amann (pronounced: queen-ahmon) pastries. You guys. Fer serious. These things are out of this world! You can think of this pastry like the more beautiful, tanner, multilingual cousin to the croissant…that also happens to be married to George Clooney. This pastry is Amal Alamuddin. Perfect. Flaky, buttery, sweet, carmelized – think of the truest incarnations of each of these adjectives and that is what the kouign amann tastes like. Lucky for me, they sell them at a few different eateries around Oakland. Grand Lake Kitchen + Room 389 to name a few. We shall revisit this subject when I attempt to make a batch of my own using this recipe. Until then, you can track my whereabouts by following the flaky trail of crumbs behind me.
Last Sunday was Love Our Lake day here in Oakland. When you live on or near Lake Merritt, every weekend feels like Love Our Lake day. Hell, every day even. That’s one of the reasons why we’re so in love with our neighborhood. The lake is the epicenter of all activity. Families out walking, joggers, hipsters sitting on the hill. We often talk about how fortunate we are to live here and how special this place is. I plan on writing an ode to Oakland at some point but for this post, let’s stick to the matter at hand. As soon as we could drag our asses outta bed we got ready and walked halfway around the lake to hear Mayor Quan speak (that’ s her in the teal dress above). There was music, food trucks and a bicycle-powered sound stage. Ya know, the usual NorCal fare. Afterwards we walked the rest of the way around the lake to a late lunch at Grand Lake Kitchen where I wish I’d made my fiancee wear a bib.
In our house, the meat and cheese platter (or charcuterie for you bougie folks) isn’t just a spread for house guests it’s a staple. Not up for cooking tonight? No probz. Go to the nearest market, pick up some quality cured meats and cheeses and dinner is done! Even better if you toast up a baguette to eat with it. Veggies and fruits are invited to the party as well, if you’re into that sorta thing. Sure, it’s decadent. Yes, you’ll consume way more than your daily-allotted amount of sodium. You might bloat but you’ll still feel hella fancy. That’s a promise.
Photo Contributors: H. Jackson + M. Garcia
I can’t promise that this blog will turn into one of those blogs that you go to for recipes. Step-by-step photos and instructions – I’m just not there yet. Not sure that I ever will be. There are so many blogs out there that do it so well already, don’t you agree? What I can promise is that I will beautifully photograph and vaguely explain the things that my Boo makes for me. Ya see, she’s the cook in the family. A very legit, very meat-centered cook. It’s one of the reasons that I fell in love with her. Girl has a palate! When we’re lucky enough to have a weekend off together, delicious and creative meals happen. Enter: Cloud Eggs. I believe that the technical term is Poached Scrambled but that doesn’t sound very technical to me. Some sort of elegant French name would serve much better, but I digress. Last weekend Holly made us poached scrambled eggs on toast using this method. When made this way, the eggs have the consistency of burrata cheese. Soft, moist, super duper light. How I would imagine a cloud made of eggs would feel, essentially. She layered some butter, triple crème brie and heirloom tomatoes on a thick slice of sourdough then topped it with the cloud eggs. Sprinkle some paprika, sea salt and chopped parsley to finish, bingbangboom you’re good to go! Bellissimo! *Italian finger kiss*