Thanksgiving In Wine Country

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Thanksgiving has come and gone, and I have finally emerged from my food and wine induced coma to share photos of my family and friends gatherings from the last week. My biggest accomplishments this holiday were that I made pies for the first time ever, (gluten-free and dairy-free) and that my cousin and I managed to drink several bottles of wine, including a giant magnum of prosecco. The more wine we drink, the less wine there is out there in the world for the kids to get their hands on. We do it for the kids.

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I have had 5 Thanksgiving meals this past week thanks to all the “Friendsgiving” gatherings and multi-family meals, including leftovers of course. I got to catch up with old friends over coffee and bloody marys, while laughing at the thought of actually attending our ten year high school reunion this past weekend. That’s a big “NOPE” for me.

On Friday, we had dinner at Press, in Saint Helena with close friends. I went through the wine closet before we left to choose a bottle for dinner and found a ’94 Cab from Freemark Abbey, covered in dust and just begging to be consumed. It turns out that bottle was one of the first wines anyone ever gave my family when we moved to the Wine Country over 20 years ago. It seems like we lay down bottles and save them for special occasions only to be forgotten. What’s more special than dinner with close friends and family?!

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To conclude, I have over eaten, over indulged, and am not looking forward to detoxing and dieting for the next few weeks, but it was totally worth it. I have the most kick-ass friends and family and I am so lucky I got to break bread with all of you.

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Till next time

No Talkie Before Coffee

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My Spoiled To Perfection adventures have led me to discover the wonders of coffee. Of course, I was thrilled to find out that coffee beans are fermented. But I also wanted to know why humans are so obsessed with our coffee and why we “LITERALLY” can’t live without it! So I went straight to the source and sat down with the folks in charge of production at my two favorite local coffee roasters, Taylor Maid Organic Coffee and Tea, and Flying Goat Coffee. Darren O’Brien, who happens to be one of my closest friends, my ex-roommate and ex-band mate, is also the head of production at Taylor Maid. Darren walked me through the “cupping” process and we tasted two different styles of coffee that have been processed in both the “washed,” and “natural” methods. Check out the video below and read the article at Spoiled To Perfection.

Things I Learned About Myself At Outside Lands

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Things I learned about myself at Outside Lands:

  1. Death by trampling is a serious fear of mine.
  2. I do not like crowds.
  3. I will never again share a hotel room with my guy friends.
  4. I am a master at using a porto potty without actually having to touch a single thing.
  5. More than 5 hours of sleep is a must during a three day festival
  6. Festival feet is a real thing people. Post festival pedicures are a requirement.

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The only word I can use to describe this past weekend is “ridiculous.” It was ridiculously fun, ridiculously crowded,  and ridiculously expensive.

Outside Lands is an annual music festival in Golden Gate Park and only gets bigger and more outrageous every year, so I’m told. This was my first time attending. I celebrate music festival season like most people celebrate the holiday season. I take time off work months in advance for the festivals I love the most. I have a “music festival,” checklist/binder full of tips, packing lists, sheet music and more. However, Outside Lands is not the type of festival you will usually spot me at. I prefer events like Strawberry, Hardly Strickly, Annual Father’s Day Bluegrass Fest etc. I prefer that style of music, I prefer to camp and I do not like near death experiences.


Yes, I thought I was going to die on Saturday. My group and I were really jazzed about going to see G Eazy. He’s a local SF hip hop artist that we’e been following for a few years now. The crowds were insane so we got to the stage 30 min early so that we could be close to the front. We never really looked back to see how deep the sea of people was behind us.

After his set was over, (which was totally kick ass by the way, probably my favorite show of the whole weekend) a mass entrance and exit of people merged into one and it started to get really cramped. Think about 10 thousand people all trying to get in and get out at the same time. After a few minutes of pushing our way out, tension started to rise and people started tripping, falling, elbowing and yelling and I was sure I was going to get trampled and swallowed by the insanity. It’s hard to explain in words how scared I was. I looked back at my boyfriend with a “panic attack” look on my face and he knew instantly that I was on the verge of a total freak out. He wrapped himself around my body and just started body slamming people out of the way to get me the hell out of there. It must have taken 15 min to get through, that’s how deep the sea of people was. When we finally broke free, I felt like bursting into tears. I always knew I was a little claustrophobic, but this was the ultimate test. I held it together, but needless to say, we watched the rest of the shows from the back row. That just isn’t my idea of fun. Maybe I’m getting old, or maybe I’m really out of touch with what’s considered exciting, but I’ll take boring ole bluegrass over that craziness any day.

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It wasn’t all bad. Lake Street Dive, Elton John, and Devil Makes Three were awesome! The food vendors were so tasty and creative. Oh and of course, WineLands, the tent full of some of the best wineries in our area. I indulged at Preston, Ridge and Red Car. All in all, the weekend was insanely over priced. The hotels, the ubers, the drinks, the food. If I do it again, I’m picking my one favorite day and that’s it. By Sunday, we were all so wiped out, we were walking around like zombies just trying to find somewhere quiet to lay in the grass.

I am looking forward to Strawberry Music Festival in Yosemite next month. I get to see my Strawberry family, jam with talented musicians and have quality times with my old man.