May 29, 2011

A Lovely Saturday in Laguna Beach

After a week at Outdoor Ed with 120 5th and 6th graders, my husband and I needed a little get-a-way!

Yesterday was a gorgeous day in Orange County, so we decided to try our luck and head to Laguna Beach.  Laguna holds a special place in our hearts; it was where my husband popped the question four years ago {almost to the date!}.

Laguna Beach is not the "easiest" beach to get to.  I was praying for clear skies on our drive, and we were not disappointed when we arrived!

First, we walked around the little streets of Laguna, searching for a new place to eat.  We walked by Hennessey's - the food looked great and the soccer game was playing - so it was a win/win.

I got the tomato bisque soup, and my husband got the grilled cheese.  DELICIOUS!
One thing that I really loved about Hennessy's?  Their $4 bloody mary's {get there before noon on weekends}.

After our food frenzy, we were in for some pure R&R.  We spent a few hours on the beach relaxing in the sun.  It was even warm enough for my husband to ride some waves!

After all of our time in the sun, we were in the mood for a cold treat.  We popped into the Starbucks on Pacific Coast Highway before heading home to order these bad boys...

Double Chocolate Chip Frappuccino

Coconut Creme' Frappuccino

You know those days that occasionally come by where all you can do is be utterly THANKFUL when you go to bed at night?  This was one of those days.

I hope you all had at least one GREAT day this weekend!

May 28, 2011

Catching up at the Champagne French Bakery

If you've never eaten at Champagne French Bakery, you must!

My best friend from college and I always get together here a few times a year to chat and catch up.  It never fails to satisfy us!  Plus, chatting outside eating a panini, crepe, or tart really makes you feel like you are dining in Europe {a place we both love}!

Their pastries and desserts are just as good as their food.  Taking one {or two} home is a must!

 I've gotten the spinach and goat cheese quiche a few times - delicious!

 This is our "go-to"....The Chicken Florentine Panini.  YUM!

 A strawberry and cream cheese danish never hurt anybody, either.

Get out there and try your local Champagnes.  Click here to find a little taste of Europe near you!

May 27, 2011

Last Minute Memorial Day Treat!

If you're in the need of a quick last-minute Memorial Day treat, try these!

 Dip strawberries in white chocolate and then in fine blue sprinkles.  THAT'S IT!  Does it get any easier than that?

{Image via}

Whether you're staying in, going to the beach, or to a family bbq...enjoy the long weekend!

May 22, 2011

A Week at Camp with 120 5th & 6th Graders!

This week I will be heading to the Irvine Ranch Outdoor Education Center with my teaching team and 120 of our students!  Yikes! 

Don't feel too bad for us, though.  Take a look at what we'll be up to!

This is not the camp you remember going to years ago when you were a kid.  They have plush accommodations {kids are too lucky these days!}.  Every building at Camp is built with a craftsman feel - I love it!

An aerial view of the camp.  Orange groves and orchards have popped up since.

The dining hall {the food is not bad either!}

The kids will do a little mining here {in a real mine!}

...and even do a little zip-lining {teachers, too!}

The camp is surrounded by beautiful Irvine Park

We'll hike here...

...and conduct some scientific investigations here.

We'll investigate the Newport Back Bay...

...and even kayak in the Newport Beach Harbor!

OK, so you're probably not feeling too sorry for me now.  I must admit, I don't hate this week.  Accommodations are great, the scenery is breathtaking, and I love letting loose with my students!

Althought located in the heart of Orange County, Irvine Park really is a little slice of "God's Country."

Here's to a week of laughter, tears,  hikes, camp-fire stories, sshhhhing girls to be quiet and go to sleep, and lifelong memories!

May 18, 2011

TomKat Studio Freebies!

If you're not following The TomKat should!  I am inspired daily by Kim's creative flair and brilliant ideas.  She started an ordinary little blog, and it has grown into an ever-booming business.  She's even gotten to meet MARTHA!

You can buy her party printables on Etsy.  She comes up with the most adorable themes like this Lollipop Sweet Shop!

She and her team also post lots of wonderful inspiration as well.

While I highly recommend checking out TomKat Studio's Etsy Shop, I also recommend checking out her FREEBIES!  Yes, they're free.  Here are just a few...

And you can download them all HERE.  Don't forget to follow The TomKat Studio though.  No one likes a free-loader. = )

Thank you, Kim and The TomKat Studio team for your inspiration ~ You ladies are amazing!

{all images courtesy of The TomKat Studio}

May 16, 2011

OC Greek Food Festival!

We're so excited for the Greek Festival this weekend!

If you're in the Orange County area and in the mood for some good food, fun, and dancing...check it out!

Admission is a mere $3 - or FREE - when you print yourself an e-ticket...yes, please! 
{Click "Print Tickets" on the right hand side of the website}

Look at the deliciousness that will be going on here!

Visit the OC Greek Food Festival website for more info!

May 14, 2011

{Sweet Beignets} Cafe Du Monde

My husband has been working so hard on his MA degree {he's almost done!} and Beignets are his favorite!  My mother-in-law discovered this delicious French doughnut when she student-taught in New Orleans.  My husband has grown up eating these, and I am a me, they are delicious!

This is the first Saturday we've had where we could just RELAX for the day.  So, we slept in, and I fried us up some authentic Cafe Du Monde Beignets!

Fried dough topped with powdered sugar...what's not to love?

You can purchase your own Beignets here!

Watch how easy they are to make here!

A lovely little taste of the New Orleans French Quarter!

May 10, 2011

Happy Teacher Appreciation Week!

It's Teacher Appreciation Week at the school where I teach!

This year, Teacher Appreciation Week is hitting me a little harder than usual.  About a month ago I accepted a new job for next school year, working as the Admissions Event Coordinator for a great high school in Orange County!  I am so excited about this new phase of my life, but also sad to leave this one behind.  {More about that later -- I don't have time to get sappy!}

Anywho, I found the following adorable Teacher Appreciation gift ideas over at Sheek Shindigs.
Trust me when I say that any teacher would love any one of these!

{definitely my favorite}

{images via Sheek Shindigs}

When all else fails, a simple hand-made card will do the trick.  This one got the waterworks flowing for me this morning:

To Mrs. K, the Best Teacher in the Universe!
Thank you for all the hard work you do to make us students happy.  You are so nice and you believe in me.  You are honestly the best teacher I have ever had.  I hate that this amazing year has to end so soon, but all good things have to end.  Thank you for teaching and have fun at your new job.
You rule!


May 9, 2011

A Mother's Day Favorite ~ El Adobe De Capistrano!

Happy belated Mother's Day to all of you Mommies out there!  You are loved, appreciated, and admired!

It's my husband's family tradition to celebrate Mother's Day at El Adobe De Capistrano.  They have an amazing brunch and such a neat atmosphere.  I wanted to make sure all of you Southern California natives knew about this awesome restaurant!

This adobe {now restaurant} was built in 1797!

This is where special events are held at the El Adobe.  There is plenty of seating inside and outside of the restaurant!

Bar/Lounge area

Right across the street...Mission San Juan Capistrano! {and Starbucks}

This would make such a fun date (hint, hint MR. K!):  Hop on the train and get off at San Juan Capistrano.  Browse the streets and neat shops.  Take a tour of the Mission ($9 for Adults, $5 for children 4-11 years, FREE for children under 3).  End your day with a yummy meal and refreshing margarita at El Adobe.  Take a Starbucks latte to go for the train ride home.  Sounds like one fun day to me!

El Adobe has a great lunch and happy hour, too.  Check it out!

I hope you all had a great MOTHER'S DAY!

May 4, 2011

{Sweet Inspiration} A "Bright" Future

As a teacher, my students and I both have summer on the brain.  Maybe that's why I love this tablescape so much?  No...I think it's just because it's ADORABLE!  I love everything about it.

Head over to Celebrations at Home to see more of the details.  Trust me; you want to check it out!

Here's to the end of the school year...almost!

May 2, 2011

A Mother's Day Gift Guide

Mother's Day is less than a week away! We all know that Mom would be grateful for any gift that her children give.  But here are some ideas for a gift she is sure to love!

FOR THE MOM WHO... a fan of DIY projects:
{tutorial via Tatertots & Jello}

...loves a classy mailed envelope:
{custom address stamps from The Paper Source}

...loves to get creative in the kitchen:
{buy at Amazon}

...takes time to relax:
{my all-time favorite scent, Capri Blue, from Anthropologie} on the go:
{sequin & straw tote from GAP}

...loves nature:
{live orchids from Pottery Barn}

...loves photos of "the kids:"
{Loopy 4x6 frame from Crate & Barrel}

...likes to unwind {without the calories}:

{Bethenny Frankel's Skinnygirl Margarita}

...has a sweet tooth:
{Linzer Heart Cookies via Martha Stewart} chic and down for a good cause:
{Bumboo bracelets from 31 Bits}


{oh-so-comfy-cute Toms wedges}
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