Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Crazy of the Day: Star Wars Style

We haven't had a Crazy of the Day in a while and this one comes directly from Erik.

Yes, he saw a man dressed as Chewbacca on his way to work. The best part? A guy went up to take his picture, he looked at him, and gave him the "Chewy Growl".


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Presidio Trails

We started our Sunday with french toast made with cinnamon raisin challah bread.

Then, we were lounging and we picked a documentary to watch on Netflix. We watched Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead. It was a film about a guy who was overweight and wanted to take control of his life. He also inspired a guy who was 400+ lbs to get moving, too. It was also an exploration of food intake in the US. It was like watching Biggest Loser, but it was interesting & inspiring!

We hit up the Farmer's Market and I picked up some things to make my own juice. So far, I've had a fruit smoothie from the juicer but I decided to try a vegetable juice today.

In the juice, I put cucumber, celery, tomato, carrot, and kale.

It wasn't a pretty color but it was good! It tasted a little like V8.

Even Evie wanted some vegetables!

After juicing and having lunch, we went up to the Presidio to take Evie on a walk. I just discovered these different trails up in the Presidio so we decided to check them out.

Evie was super excited, of course!

It smells SO good here. It's a mix of the different trees and the Eucalyptus trees.

The trees here are huge & we went in to an area off the path so Evie could run around.

Freaky. Very Blair Witch. Or, this area also reminded me of The Village. Eeeekk!

Evie and her Dad

Great walk on a new path!

Sleepy Evie....

Great weekend!

The Boxing Room

Saturday was a fun day! There was the usual chores but then Erik and I went our separate ways. I dropped him off at the golf course for his annual hockey team golf outing. Then, I went to get my hair done and then met up with Betsy for a manicure. There is noting better than getting your hair and nails done to feel great!

I went home to walk Evie and watched a movie, The Switch. It was pretty predictable. The only thing that saved this movie was that Jason Bateman is cute! So predictable = boring.

For dinner, Betsy, Jun, and I went to The Boxing Room. This place opened a few months ago and I have been wanting to go! The Boxing Room is billed as a Southern Louisiana cajun cuisine.

To start, we shared the Hushpuppies and the Heirloom tomato salad. Both were delish. The Boxing Room makes their own Hot Sauce which was verrrryyy good. Spicy and but not too hot.

For my dinner, I had the fried chicken with corn maque choux, buttermilk mashed potatoes, & gravy. Everything was very good and of course, fried chicken with hot sauce is delish.

We shared dessert which was out of this world. We had Pralines and Cream with pecan pralines, brown sugar blondie, & vanilla ice cream. Oh my god. Delicious!!

We also shared a bottle of wine. Love bringing our own wine to restaurants - it's so much cheaper than buying individual glasses or even a bottle.

The Boxing Room was a great dinner. I don't think this is a very "New Orleans" style place. The interior was very sleek, wood finishes. The music was a little bit NoLa-ish. There are a few more "Creole" restaurants in the city that I would like to try to see how they stack up against Boxing Room. Overall, the food was good and I would probably go back.

After dinner, we made a few more stops. First to Marlena's for a drink & watch a few songs of the weekly drag show. Then, we went to Sugar for a drink and finally to The Mint to watch some karaoke. Unfortunately, we did not get to sing because we got there too late but it is always a good time there! Fun day and night!!

Friday, August 26, 2011


This weekend looks like it will be a good one! I recently received Gwyneth Paltrow's cookbook, "My Father's Daughter." I already flipped through it and picked out recipes that I want to make. I hope to make at least one this weekend. I love Gwyneth!

I also recently got the Food Network app and want to make Maple Scones. Yum - they look delish!

Tonight, we are going to see a surfing movie tonight called "Under The Sun" It looks pretty cool and is a look back on the history of surfing. Under the Sun is a documentary film shot in Byron Bay and the Gold Coast, Australia, it explores the roots of surfing commercialism. Often dark and subversive, this brilliant super 16mm film strikes a compelling story through stunning surfing and never-before-seen 70's footage.

Under the Sun Trailer from on Vimeo.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


When we lived in CT, I volunteered at PAWS Animal Shelter in Norwalk. I looooved being around those dogs and seeing them get adopted. That is where I got Evie!

Well, there are some great dogs available for adoption but I wanted to share the newest addition....puppies! SO adorable. I think that this is what Evie must have looked like as a puppy. I didn't get her until she was one year old.

If you're interested, check them out!

Amazing Chicken Dinner

The other day, I saw Barefoot Contessa make Chicken with Shallots and Haricot Verts with Herb Butter. It looked so good that I had to make it. The consensus - it is amazing. We were practically licking our plates clean, it was that good. And, it wasn't that hard to make!

First things first, of course - get a glass of wine. I also used this in the sauce for the chicken. The name was perfect so I had to use it!

For the Chicken:


  • 4 boneless chicken breasts, skin on (6 to 8 ounces each)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (3 lemons)
  • 1/4 cup minced shallots (1 large)
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, diced, at room temperature


Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

Pat the chicken breasts dry with paper towels and sprinkle them generously on both sides with salt and pepper. In a 12-inch cast-iron skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat for 2 minutes, until it begins to smoke. Place the chicken breasts, skin side down, in the skillet and cook for 4 to 5 minutes without moving, until golden brown.

Using tongs, turn the chicken breasts skin side up, place the skillet in the oven, and roast for 12 to 15 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.

Meanwhile, in a medium saute pan, combine the white wine, lemon juice, and shallots and cook over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, until only 2 tablespoons of liquid remain in the pan. If it reduces too much, add an extra splash of white wine or water. Add the cream, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and bring to a full boil. Remove from the heat, add the diced butter, and swirl the pan until the butter is incorporated. Don't reheat or the sauce will "break"! Sprinkle with salt and serve the chicken hot with the sauce spooned over it.


For the Haricots Verts (aka green beans):


  • Kosher salt
  • 1 pound French string beans, stem end removed
  • 1 tablespoon minced scallion, white and green parts
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh flat leaf parsley
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Sea salt or fleur de sel, for serving


Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add 1 tablespoon salt. Add the string beans and cook for 2 minutes. Drain and then place the string beans in a serving dish.

For the herb butter, placed the scallion, dill, parsley, butter, 1 teaspoon salt and the pepper in a small bowl and combine.

Scoop a generous tablespoon of the herb butter and place it on top of the string beans. Sprinkle with sea salt and serve.

Make this for dinner & you will not be disappointed!!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Pool Time

On Sunday, we drove up to the Francis Ford Coppola Pool in Geyserville, CA for Amy's birthday. The pool is on the property of the Coppola winery, restaurant, and movie museum.

The pool was really gorgeous & the weather was sunny and in the 80's!

They have little 'cabines' there that you can rent which are like your own personal changing room complete with a shower!

We started the day off with mimosas and laid in the sun.

We went inside and I checked out the movie memorbilia. It was really cool to see everything from the Godfather!

The actual Godfather desk!

The original scribbles of the cast. So cool that he kept this for so many years!

The Oscars!

After swimming & sunning, we went inside for dinner at Rustic.

There were some great items on the menus from pizza, pasta, to Mrs. Scorcese's lemon chicken! We started with the French Fried Zucchini strips - so good! I had the Salmon with a side of vegetables which was OK. I think everyone thought there food was 'just OK' and nothing amazing. I had high hopes for this restaurant, too! The service was also suuuuuuperer slow. Our server was delightful but dinner took forever!

It was a great day at the pool! This place was so nice & relaxing. If it weren't over an hour away, I might be there every weekend. haha

Last Weekend

Last weekend was a nice mix of fun & relaxing. On Friday, I went to visit with the Florist for our wedding. We talked about some ideas I had and she shared out some photos of her past work. She is putting together our quote now! Things are moving right along in the wedding planning! I also saw The Help. What a great movie. The book was wonderful and the movie was great - really brought to life the story and the characters.

On Saturday, we just hung around & did our chores. Got a mani/pedi, took Evie for a long walk, and did some grocery shopping. We also tried out our new juicer that we bought.

Yum...strawberry & banana smoothie!

Erik made homemade rolls and I made turkey meatballs so we had turkey meatball subs for dinner. We also watched....Gymnastics on Saturday night. haha I have not seen gymnastics in soooo long and the National Championships were on! Jordyn Wieber is the new National Champion but some girls from the 2008 Olympics are also still competing like Shawn Johnson.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Wonderful Dinner

Last night, I went to dinner with two old co-workers at a restaurant called, Georges. It is downtown SF in between North Beach and Market St, so it was a quick walk from my office. I have seen this restaurant and heard about it a few times but have never tried it. The menu was mostly seafood and they also boast having a raw bar with a great happy hour.

Everyone thoroughly enjoyed their dinner and everything was delicious! To start, we shared the:
Heirloom Tomato and Di Stefano Burrata
with White and Red Corn, Crispy Onions, Smoked Salt salad

For dinner, I had the:

Line Caught Alaskan Halibut with Charred Scallion Grits, Chanterelles, Favas, Corn Nage

The halibut was cooked perfectly with a brown, crispy top and it sat upon the scallion grits. The chanterelles, favas, corn, and grape tomatoes were in this delicious, lemon sauce. It was amazing.

I would definitely go back and this is a perfect spot for Client lunches or dinner since it's so close to the office!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Peach Pie

On Sunday, I made a peach pie with peaches from the Farmer's Market.

The peaches were big and easy to peel.

It was so easy to make. Just cup up peaches, mix with flour, sugar, & cinnamon. I used store brand rolled up crust for the pie. Just roll out the dough, dump the peaches in, put another dough on top of the peaches and cook for 35 min!

Here is the pie BEFORE it went into the oven. I never got an after shot. We dove right into the pie. haha.

Here is the recipe:



  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Stir together flour, 1 cup sugar, and cinnamon and set aside.
  3. Wash, peel, and slice fresh peaches.
  4. Mix together peaches with the combined dry ingredients.
  5. Turn into pastry-lined pie pan and dot with butter.
  6. Cover with top crust, cut slits in it, seal the edges.
  7. Sprinkle top with 2 tablespoons of sugar.
  8. Cover the edges with foil to prevent over browning; remove foil for the last 15 minutes of baking.
  9. Bake 35 to 45 minutes or until crust is brown and juice begins to bubble through the slits in the crust.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Tank Hill

Evie and I made a great find today! We went out for our long walk and I felt so bored going to the same old parks. So, I pulled up Google Maps to see if there were any little parks we have not been to yet. Sure enough - we found Tank Hill Park. Tank Hill is up near Twin Peaks, which is a neighborhood made up of two hills located in the center of SF.

Our walk was only about 3 miles, round trip. It felt like 5 miles since our travel TO the hill was of course, up hill. We founds some cute sites along the way. Here is a little park we stopped in and saw this cute little design. Reminds me of Alice in Wonderland.

We walked up a LOT of stairs to get to this park on the hill. I love the hidden staircases of SF!

We passed some great homes along the way.

Here's Evie...heading up Tank Hill. I looked up some history on this park because it looked like a foundation of a building had been up there but no buildings are up there now.

"The view here is selected as the most beautiful panorama of San Francisco from any hilltop park in the city, which is quite a distinction considering the stiff competition. The park is so small that it does not even appear on some maps of San Francisco."

When we got up there, it was totally worth it. The view was amazing! We could literally see 360 views of the entire city!

Rich in history, Tank Hill is named for the Clarendon Heights water tank built in 1894 to store drinking water pumped from Laguna Honda. After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, eucalyptus trees were planted around the tank to hide it from feared Japanese airplane attacks. In 1977, the hill was wrestled away from private developers by the community, who convinced the city that it was a significant natural resource. The city purchased the land back for nearly three times what it sold it for 17 years earlier as part of its newly created Open Space Program. The price paid was $650,000 which by today's market would not buy one house in this area.

In the distance, you could see the top of Golden Gate Bridge!

Although it is shaky cam, here is a video of the view!

On our way home, we passed a cute little B&B called Belvedere House. If you are ever in SF & want to stay in a quiet neighborhood, away from the touristy areas, this looked cute! Although, I have to admit B&B's creep me out!
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This is obviously a mistake photo but I think it's cool.

What a great walk!!