Today is a special day. On this day, exactly six years ago, my life changed forever. It was on this day, which was also a Friday, that I met a bunch of my friends at one of our favorite downtown bars in Orlando for happy hour after a long week of work. There was a group of about 10 of us, including my older brother, and we were all gathered at a table. I saw a guy walk in, he caught my eye, and I kept a watch on him for a little while, until our paths crossed and I decided to talk to him. Once we started chatting, we realized we lived in the very same high-rise building in downtown Orlando and shared a lot of common interests. We exchanged phone numbers and never looked back. As you may have guessed, that guy was Dave, who is now my husband of nearly three years. We had a chance encounter, which was clearly meant to be. Throughout the years, we’ve always tried to celebrate the anniversary of the day we met, because we’ve been together nonstop from that day forward. And here we are now in San Francisco all grown up.
In light of that, and the fact that it’s a Friday before a three-day weekend, I’m in very peppy spirits today, my friends. Dave and I have a lot of fun ahead, and for once, I’m not teaching any group fitness classes at all. We’re going out to dinner to a new restaurant with two of our friends tonight. And we’re taking a little trip up to Napa tomorrow to do some wine tasting. I must say that wine country is my happy place. Even though it’s only an hour drive from San Francisco, we haven’t been in far too long, so I’m eager to bask in the smell of grapes. However, you came by the blog today for some fun “Friday Favorites,” and so I’m going to give those to you right now. Let’s go!
My favorite domestic accessory
Leave it to my Momma to give me something so-very-domestic for my birthday this year — a polka-dot apron. Her vision behind this adorable item, is not only for me to keep my clothes clean while in the kitchen, but also to give me some extra culinary inspiration. I’m pretty good with cooking when I give it a shot, yet tend to stick to the same basics. But once I put this little number on, all of a sudden my ability to whip up masterpieces with many ingredients should skyrocket. Right?
The Martha Stewart Collection Polka Dot Apron displayed in front of my teeny-tiny kitchen.
Hopefully so, because I made a goal to cook one new-to-me recipe every month during 2015, and I haven’t done my first yet. Nonetheless, I love a thoughtful gift, and this is definitely a good one.
My favorite way to picnic
I think presentation of food is important. I always like to display my food nicely on my plate. And when I’m eating with others, hostessing or just putting together a meal for Dave and me, I like to spend even more time to get it looking just right. Who says you can’t enjoy the aesthetics of your sustenance? Dave and I used to be big on making “nibbly picnics” at home, which consisted of nothing but finger foods for dinner. We don’t do it as much anymore, but a couple of weeks ago, we had a few nice spreads two days in-a-row. Here’s a taste of what I put together …
A look at a few fancy trays of food I arranged, featuring various crackers, chopped-up apples, pears, salami, cucumbers, almonds, fancy cheeses, roasted cauliflower, pigs in a blanket, hummus, shrimp cocktail, more crackers, fruit, cheese and meat. Good stuff.
Finger foods may not be the healthiest way to eat, but they are certainly a fun way to eat, making it so you can taste all of the good stuff. But truthfully, even at restaurants, I really enjoy making a meal out of appetizers rather then ordering an entree, but we don’t seem to do that very much. Those pretty silver trays up there? Compliments of our wedding registry just a few years ago and still getting plenty of use.
My favorite new glass
Another gift from my Momma. If you were reading A Lady Goes West back in December, you’d know that I received a cool wine glass at a Christmas party gift exchange and immediately dropped it, shattering all over the hosts’ apartment. Well my Mom remembered that story and came in with a much-appreciated substitution.
This is the Lolita Love My Wine “Wine Tasting” Glass and it surely suits me.
I haven’t used this wine glass yet, because I’m saving it until we move. I don’t know why I do that, but a lot of times I save new things for a while before opening them up. Same goes with clothes. Nonetheless, I can just picture myself in my bigger apartment, in my leopard-print pajamas, feet up on the couch asking Dave to “bring me my wine” all the way over in the kitchen, which will be at least a few feet away more than it is now. Oh, domestic bliss.
My favorite new piece of jewelry
I love a good long pendant necklace to dress up any outfit. I received this necklace in the December POPSUGAR Must Have box, which was so kindly gifted to me by the POPSUGAR ladies. There were a lot of great things in that box, but this necklace was my favorite thing. Speaking of the POPSUGAR Must Have Box, that’s something else I really enjoy. If you’ve never heard of the monthly subscription service full of curated goodies, check it out today. <<affiliate link!>>
A lovely shot of the Sydney Pendant Necklace by Sparklepop.
I had a few compliments on this little beauty while home in Florida over Christmas break, so I felt like it was worth sharing. So shiny and dressy. Maybe I’ll throw it on for wine country tomorrow? Who knows.
My favorite links of the week
I’ll admit it, I spend a lot of time online. But there’s a ton of good stuff out there to read. Here’s what happened on A Lady Goes West this week and some additional enjoyable links.
- Fun and fitness – My weekend recap, weekly workouts and a review of CORE40 studios
- Foam rolling 101 and a big giveaway – How to foam roll and a RumbleRoller giveaway (This giveaway closes tomorrow, so be sure to enter!)
- Food and drink – Joining a healthy green movement and my eats
- Fashion and thoughts – A Thursday well-suited for Thinking Out Loud
- An awesome shout-out for A Lady Goes West by one of my blogger friends – Favorite Bay Area Blog Buddies
- A FitFluential post featuring my recipe – 10 healthy green smoothie recipes to try
Okay, friends! After some work, I’m heading off to try out a new Pilates-based workout class, attend another laptop training session at the Apple store and start my weekend. If you want to see some pictures of wine and cheese from Napa, be sure to check me out on Instagram. Have a fabulous few days!
Read more Friday Favorites
- A snack, a purse and a ritual
- A delivery, a bra and a guy
- A sweet, a wine and a read
- A drink, a gadget and a plan
- A time, a bottle and a powder
- San Francisco edition
- Beauty edition
- Beach vacation edition
- Hidden meanings
- Kicks, a book and a bowl
- The very best sweatshirts
- Party hosting and froyo
- Fourth of July daytime activity
- Beauty basics edition
- Workplace edition
- Shopping, sales and a show
- The foods I always buy
- Sushi, a game and pants
- Fitness apps
- Delicious and healthy products
- Comfort, fitness and function
- Beauty, buddha and blog events
- Dining, the city and gift ideas
- POPSUGAR, sweets and such
- A bunch of fun stuff
- e-book, food, picnic and tunes
- A link, a superfood and a mask
- Pants, shoes, food and links
- Dining, protein and goodies
- Shopping, events and a book
- A gym bag, pumpkin and juices
- Workout gear, a top and a massage
- prAna, a watch, tea and more
- Tasty stuff and gift sales
- Decor, bars, boots and a drink
- Flowers, music and more
- Coqueta, a brush and food
- My people and the holidays
- Beauty, bling and entertainment
- A hodge-podge of goodies
Questions of the day
Do you have any fun favorites to share today? What are you planning to do this weekend? Do you have Monday off of work? If you have a significant other, do you celebrate the day you met? Fill me in!