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LIGHT + SPRINGY BRUNCH MENU

As promised last week, I’m back with another super yummy and absolutely easy Mother’s Day Brunch [or dinner!] menu! If you love sweet and zesty fruits paired with seasonal flavors, this is your kind of menu…

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Light and Springy

Mandarine Arugula Salad 
Arugula • Mandarines • White Truffle Vinaigrette • Sliced Almonds
Prep: Drizzle and toss dressing lightly onto salad [less is more, here], add sliced almonds and mandarine slices, and serve! I love this White Truffle Oil!

Ricotta Toast
Sourdough Bread • Ricotta [vegan’s try this!] • Raspberries • Honey
Prep: Generously spread ricotta, gently muddle the raspberries and put on top of ricotta, drizzle honey on top, et voila!

Dijon Grilled Eggplant
Eggplant • Whole Grain Mustard • Dijon Mustard • White Wine Vinegar • Salt + Pepper • Olive Oil • Parsley • Thyme • Micro Greens
Prep: Slice Eggplant, brush with olive oil and roast in oven/grill until cooked through. Chop parsley and thyme. In a small bowl whisk together whole grain and dijon mustard, white wine vinegar, olive oil, parsley and thyme. Brush dressing over Eggplant, and garnish with micro greens. [adapted from here]

 

AN AFTERNOON IN HEALDSBURG

How did I go to Napa Valley and almost miss this adorably quaint, sweet town? This is the question I ask myself everytime I look at these pictures. The Healdsburg Shed would be enough of a draw, but add in the amazing coffee shops, lovely town square and beautiful, rolling drive to or from Napa Valley? It’s the kind of town that makes you want to put down roots and bask in small town living. 

Healdsburg is technically located in Sonoma Wine Country, and there are some fantastic vineyards in the area- but I think vineyards are a rather personal choice so I’ll leave them out here and instead share the best of Healdsburg the town:

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FLYING GOAT COFFEE

Start your day here by ordering up your favorite caffeinated beverage and maybe grab a muffin to go with that meets your dietary preferences [a few delicious gluten, dairy free options] Then take a seat and take it all in as the locals filter in and out and the little town center comes alive.

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HEALDBURG SHED

So many wonderful things to say about this unique spot that is clearly a meeting place in the community. The have a collection of beautifully curated housewares, culinary finds, a fresh cut flower market, outdoor spaces and I certainly can’t leave off the restaurant. Their locally small-farm sourced, fresh and seasonal menu was a true highlight of the trip.  We ate here for lunch and ordered a few things to share. Every last thing was absolutely amazing. This is a place to enjoy yourself for a little mid-afternoon break.

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Healdsburg 10TAKE A SPIN AROUND TOWN

I noticed many hotels in Healdsburg offered bikes for their guests. The quaint neighborhood streets lined with early Californian bungalows, carefully curated shops, romantic corners like that of the Barndiva Restaurant and more fun finds at the Dry Creek General Store. The middle of Healdsburg is designated by its large park and there seemed to be something going on there all hours of the day – music, lawn games, interest group meet-ups- its a location worthy of a few minutes of your time.

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Healdsburg 7POP INTO A TASTING ROOM

There were many, many tasting rooms in Healdsburg [several recognizable names] and each day around happy hour they would begin to fill up with people just looking to ease into the evening. It seemed like an enjoyable thing to do and get a taste of the local wines – a good way to decide if you want to visit their vineyards!

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GRAB A SLICE OF PIE AT NOBLE FOLK

We wandered into Noble Folk just before they closed one evening and it kinda felt like winning the lottery. Mississippi Mud Slide pie, anyone? They house-made pies we can vouch for- it was maybe one of the best slices of pie I’ve ever had and their ice creams didn’t look so bad either. Their simplistic modern farmhouse interior styling made this even more of a draw for me!

EARTHY + FRESH BRUNCH MENU

Mothers Day is right around the corner and instead of braving the crowds, my siblings and I have decided to host brunch at my home. We’ll grab some pretty flower bunches from Trader Joe’s, put a little “Laid Back Brunch” station on Pandora, enjoy the glow of candlelight  and serve up our personal favorites from these easy but delicious brunch menu’s. When I say easy, I mean it. I hate to be caught up in the kitchen while everyone else is enjoying their mimosa! Today I’m sharing my personal favorite “Earthy + Fresh” menu [I love every. single. thing about this menu but the new to me Capellini Alla Checca is amazing!]. This weekend and early next week I’ll share two more equally delicious and easy menus with a little something for everyone – think “Light + Springy” and “Cozy Comforts”.

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Earthy + Fresh Menu

Roasted Brussel Sprout Salad
Brussel Sprouts • Olive Oil • Minced Garlic • Lemon • Sea Salt
Prep:Halve each brussel sprout, toss brussel spouts, a pinch of minced garlic, sea salt and olive oil in a bowl, spread the brussel sprouts onto a baking sheet and roast at 400 until golden brown, splash with a squeeze of lemon juice and serve

Avocado Toast
Whole Wheat Sourdough Bread • Olive Oil • Lemon • Himalayan Salt Flakes
Prep: Mix olive oil and a squeeze of lemon into a small bowl and chill in the fridge for 20 minutes, Toast bread,  mash Avocado and put a generous amount on top of the bread, drizzle with olive oil marinade and top with himalayan salt flakes.* add chili flakes if desired

Capellini Alla Checca
Capellini • Olive Oil • Minced Garlic • Heirloom Tomatoes • Basil • Sea Salt • Parmesan Flakes
Prep: While bringing water for the capellini to a boil, peel the skin from the tomatoes with a vegetable peeler, dicing when finished. In a bowl mix together the diced heirloom tomatoes, olive oil and a generous pinch of salt. Tear a few leaves of basil apart with your hands a stir them in. Once the water has come to a boil, add sea salt and cook the capellini al dente. Plate/Bowl the capellini when cooked, top with the tomato mix and garnish with parmesan flakes. [adapted from here]

* All of these recipes are pretty allergy friendly. If you have any questions on how to make any of these with substitutions that would still be delicious and not change the integrity of the recipe, please email me!

 

 

TRAVEL NOTES: NEW YORK STATE OF MIND

It’s a moody time of year here in the North. One day its 70 degrees and absolutely glorious and the next five days it pours rain. It’s the highest of highest and the lowest of lows. It always has me craving a change of scenery- the energy of somewhere new that makes you feel so undeniably alive.  

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Really not someone who loves to be alone… I love spending time alone in NYC. I intentionally fly into JFK so I can take the subway into the city- its almost as if that time lets the energy build and all of the sudden 45 minutes pass by, you hustle up the stairs of the station and you’re smack in the middle of it all.  For me, there are few places that are as creatively reinvigorating as New York City, I always find myself clinging onto the last seconds not wanting to leave.

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Truth be told, I always have the same-ish agenda – it makes me feel a little more local. They’re things I truly love to spend my time doing and I’m fascinated by the idea that every single person on that island has a different version of that agenda. A few of the things I love to do…

  • Spend an day wandering Chelsea, shopping around the Chelsea Market and walking up and down the Highline
  • Sunday Picnic in Central Park
  • An Afternoon at The Met
  • Grabbing Lunch at one of the many amazing restaurants in TriBeCa
  • Midnight in Times Square
  • Seeing the world from the Top of The Rock

What are your favorite things to do in NYC? The things that make you feel like you’ve got a handle on that 8 mile island, the things that you feel like you’re divulging your best NYC secret to a close friend? 

WEEKEND NOTES

saturday morning coffee

 

I LOVED this article on Why Now, More Than Ever Is The Time to Travel. It’s a quick and poignant reminder that we can’t let fear stop us.

I can’t stop looking at this Tumblr.

This post makes me anxious to scrounge up my favorite family photos and get them on my walls.

Assess your health by looking at your tongue

My husband and I and our friends were just talking about this, what do you call your grandparents?

One more [greener & cleaner] reason to love Target

Have a lovely weekend everyone!

ON THE HUNT

On a sunny, unassuming Saturday two weeks ago, I decided it looked like a beautiful day for a through cleansing and purge of our home. It really took us two days because we spent all of Saturday throwing things away. When we come home now, Marc jokes that someone robbed us because its such a drastic, minimalistic change from what once was. Less [much less] is most definitely more.

With a blank slate [just awaiting a fresh coat of white paint!] I’ve already started to take our home from a more clean, polished slightly glam look to clean, minimal and boho. It feels like this is how it should have been all along and I love the new life already being breathed in.

Here are the items I’ve loved as I’ve been on the hunt the last few weeks. Pottery Barn is seriously knocking it out of the park with their pillows and the price points to match. Now – how to decide between two gorgeous rugs?

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WHY YOU SHOULD BE GOAL-SETTING FOR YOUR BUSINESS

Want your life to look like this [see below] on a weekday morning? Me too, me too! More vacation time, more money, creative freedom, not having to commute? One of these reasons probably vaguely describes why you went to/want to work for yourself. When you work for yourself, it can be really easy to get caught up in all the work to be done everyday and it seems hard to remember why you started when those moments kick in…

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This is why, even if you don’t personally goal set, you NEED to be goal-setting professionally. Not only will it help you stay the course- decisions will be easier to make, your workload will seem more manageable and the light [reaching that goal!] at the end of the tunnel might not seem so far away. Here are three reasons you need to be setting goals for your business…

CLEAR DIRECTION

Your light at the end of the tunnel on those dark days comes in the form of goals. What is it you’re working towards? When you’re honest with yourself about the things that you truly want to achieve in your business, the skills you might need to learn, strategies to put into action or people/systems to let go of – you’re more likely to focus on the things that are going to build the strongest foundation for the next year of business and beyond that will guide you through that [at times dark] tunnel.

YOUR MEASURING STICK

You are making decisions about your business everyday. Some are made practically from auto-pilot but others are more difficult and give us pause. When you have clear, defined goals – you know where you want your business to end up at the end of the day. Measure EVERYTHING against those goals and your decisions will become easier to make. Does it bring you closer or further away from your goals? Does it teach you something valuable that will enable you to take steps towards your goals? Does it align you to achieve your goal?

PROGRESS VS. PERFECTION

I’m a believer that evaluation is absolutely necessary to the success of any business. Conversely, constant evaluation can become a cog in the wheel. As business owners, we are constantly striving to make progress and get to the next level. When we forget to celebrate our victories [yay! you’ve reached a goal] work begins to feel monotonous and work turns into the grind. Feel good about your achievements and little victories by measuring your progress and celebrating the milestones when you’ve reached them – it’s a good reminder that we’re striving for progress, not perfection.

Are you goal setting now? How has it helped you in your business? 

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