From Barndiva and Oliver Ranch with MAC

Barndiva, Healdsburg CAIt all began at Barndiva in Healdsburg. Joan, our hostess-extraordinaire arranged a gorgeous lunch before our magical journey through Oliver Ranch. Thank you Joan and our MAC friends. Lunch highlights below.

Barndiva, Healdsburg California

Barndiva, Healdsburg CAMy kind of tasty treats: Goat cheese croquettes with tomato jam and lavender honey | Yellowfin tuna sashimi with saffron aioli, pickled chili, and watermelon

Oliver Ranch, Geyserville
“I mean what do you do with such a place? There’s really only one thing to do – you give it to the community”” – Steve Oliver, Oliver Ranch

Oliver Ranch, Geyserville CaPanoramic images around the main house.

Oliver Ranch, Geyserville

Steve Oliver at Oliver RanchBefore a two-hour walk through the ranch, we gathered to hear stories from Steve Oliver. An earnest and engaging speaker, he has a genuine passion artists, independent and famous. Each site-specific installation was commissioned for the 100-acre Oliver Ranch in Geyserville, California. Here are a few images from this amazing place.

Artists David Rabinowitch  and Jim JenningsModern dwelling by David Rabinowitch and Jim Jennings

oliver ranch treeOne of my favorite views.

Oliver RanchMartin Puryear‘s awe-inspiring fieldstone sculpture. Behind the wooden gate, is a small table-for-two cave. Steve and his wife, Nancy, had a chance to enjoy a meal inside before Mr. Puryear securely closed it off. How cool is that?

Oliver RanchMartin Puryear, “Untitled”, 1994-1995
(Mortared fieldstone sculpture installation with red cedar)

Roger Berry sculptureRoger Berry, “Darwin”, 1988-89 (Corten steel sculpture)

Roger Berry Darwin

Richard Serra at Oliver RanchRichard Serra, “Snake Eyes and Boxcars”, 1990-1993
(Six pairs of forged hyper-dense corten steel blocks)

Steve almost burned his hands on one of these cooling blocks of steel, whilke holding his hand about 30″ away! I believe each one took about two months to cool completely.

Terry Allen artistTerry Allen, “humanature”, 1991-1992 (bronze sculptures)

terry-allen-2Terry Allen, “humanature”, 1991-1992 (bronze sculptures)

Who doesn’t love a good sense of humor? Terry Allen is apparently an amazing songwriter as well. Amazing.

Ursula Von Rydingsvard

Ursula von Rydingsvard, “Iggy’s Pride”, 1990-91
(Cedar beam sculpture with graphite)

Ursula-Von-Rydingsvard-2The deep colors, rich texture, and grand size (77′ span) of this childhood-inspired work, was my favorite installation.

Ann Hamilton Oliver RanchAnn Hamilton, “The tower designed by Ann Hamilton for the Oliver Ranch, Geyserville, CA”, 2003-2007 (Cast concrete tower performance space)

Ann Hamilton Oliver RanchInside were a double set of identical staircases, both leading to the view above. The only way to enter was through the concrete windows.

heart tree trunkNear the end of the art walk, I stumbled upon this old tree trunk. As I peered in, I saw this lovely shape and thought what a perfect way to end the day. Thank you Steve for an extraordinary experience.

For a complete list of Oliver Ranch artists and more information, visit their website Oliver Ranch Foundation.

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Halloween Theme Parent Party

halloween theme parent partyThis weekend, we kicked off the fall season with a 4th grade parent party. My husband and I co-hosted with good friends, Dyer and Rob. Held at our friend’s lovely home, Dyer curated all the Halloween decor which set the tone for a festive evening. Here are a few pictures from the party. I wish there were more but we were having too much fun!

halloween-party-cheese-platterSomething sweet, something savory, and lots of cheese for the table..

halloween-party-camembert

halloween-party-bourbon-punchAlthough we had lots of wine, of course we needed a signature cocktail. This recipe showed up in my inbox just in time (funny how that happened). We turned this apple cider cocktail-for-one into punch, which worked well for a big group. You’ll find the adjusted measurements for 30 guests in italics.

Bourbon Apple Cider Cocktail (Serves 1)
1 ½ ounces bourbon  45 ounces
1 ounce fresh apple cider (or unpasteurized apple juice)  45 ounces
½ ounce Ginger Simple Syrup (recipe below)  15 ounces
½ ounce fresh squeezed lemon juice  15 ounces
Combine all the ingredients in a shaker and then add ice cubes. Shake vigorously until a slight frost has formed on the shaker, around 30 seconds. Strain into a coupe glass and garnish with a star anise seed or lemon wheel (optional).

Ginger Simple Syrup
¼ cup white sugar  4 cups
¼ cup water  4 cups
1 inch knob of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced thinly

In a small pot, combine all the ingredients and bring to a boil on the stove, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Turn off the heat and let cool. Pick out the ginger pieces before serving. Makes roughly 2 ounces. Save the leftover for other drinks or cocktails, worked as a nice substitute for maraschino liqueur in a Martinez.

Recipe Source: The Proof

halloween-party-dessertsWhat’s Halloween with red velvet cupcakes and sugary ghosts?

halloween-party-spider-wineA bit kitschy but fun.

Happy Halloween!

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Baby Shower Gift Ideas

Eco-friendly baby shower gifts
Our friends are expecting their first baby… and it’s a boy! We’re so excited for them and their new family, due in December. The baby shower is in a few weeks, and I’ve been pouring through all my favorite baby shops (obsessions), crafting the right package. While trying to find wintery baby accessories, I was also on the look out for eco-friendly designs that this modern couple would appreciate. Melding contemporary with traditional styles (love the color blue), I came up with these lovely little goodies for the soon-to-be-parents.

A classic Japanese onesie from Makie ($36) for those winter evenings. Baby sock box set from Jonathan Adler ($34) to keep tiny toes warm and chic. Organic rattle set from the Wind and the Sail ($18). And keeping with the nature theme, You Are My Baby ($8.99) because what child doesn’t love animals.

And if he was a she? Here’s another version.
best baby shower gifts for a girlsCertified organic and irresistably cute Cat Tee and Leggings from Oeuf ($31 and $27, respectively). Handcrafted bunny from Yume ($58), nursery decoration now and adorable companion later. Warm and fuzzy organic terry blanket from Winter Water Factory ($32). Stylish silicone all-in-one teething ring and rattle from Chewbeads ($18).

Whether you’re building a luxe gift set or looking for one fabulous find, any of these pieces would certainly be treasured and loved for years to come. Here’s to a happy baby shower!

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Happy Birthday Nonchalant Mom!

Nonchalant Mom Birthday 10% Off

Congratulations Carina and team on your 10th birthday! I can’t believe it was just eight years ago that my daughter wore her first Makie hat that was purchased from your shop. Fast forward and she’s now collecting favorites from Nico Nico, Atsuyo et Akiko, and Jess Brown. We thank you for always sharing fresh, modern, and fun styles for kids and moms.

Now until Monday, you  can enjoy 10% off and Free Shipping on your Nonchalant Mom purchase.
Use code BIRTHDAY at checkout.

Shop Nonchalant Mom

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I Love Quirky iPhone Cases

While I don’t plan on sitting on or playing Gumby with my phone, I can’t think of a better way to protect my new iPhone 6 than with one of these illustrious gentlemen waving off danger. But which one.. there’s the stoic Wes Anderson-styled Bill Murray, iconic David Bowie, or the debonair Downey Jr… What’s your favorite?

Bill Murray iPhone 6 caseBill Murray iPhone Case

David Bowie iPhone CaseDavid Bowie iPhone Case

Robert Downey Jr. iPhone 6 CaseIro… oops Robert Downey Jr. iPhone Case

See all Replaceface styles

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Cross-Country Clouds

beautiful sky in marin
We’ve been experiencing crazy climate in the Bay Area. This morning, our kids school hosted their annual cross country race. The event started with sunshine but ended with this moody gathering of clouds. Though a bit rain followed, the sky was quite beautiful.

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Sir Jonathan Ive

Jonathan Ive Bay Area Treasure

I heart my new iPhone 6, it’s light as a feather, loads faster than Go-Speed-Racer, and displays a bounty of crystal-clear visual candy. Thank you Jonathan Ive for constantly pushing design boundaries. Please join SFMOMA’s Modern Art Council in honoring Jonathan Ive with our Bay Area Treasure Award on October 30! There will be an exquisite seated dinner, plus an exclusive conversation with Jonathan Ive and Jennifer Dunlop Fletcher, SFMOMA’s Helen Hilton Raiser Associate Curator of Architecture and Design. All proceeds from ticket sales support SFMOMA’s fabulous exhibitions and vital education programs! Help us support the museum by purchasing tickets here.

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