All posts tagged: bay area

ashkenaz.

Hula time! For my second hula performance with Halau Makana we danced at Ashkenaz Music and Dance Community Center. Ashkenaz has music and dance events six days a week; the last Sunday of each month is dedicated to Ethnic Dance. Pre-performance I asked Hubby to take a photo of me in my Halau Makana gear and pre-hula hair. He took a mirror photo O_o, and then a real one… Behind the scenes! While I was waiting my turn to practice our routine, I enjoyed the sweet sounds of soundcheck (our band was awesome!), watched some of the performances, and helped get costumes ready. Check the space! Ashkenaz has been a Berkeley establishment for 45 years; imagine all the sharing and community building that has happened over the years in this space! I performed the same dance as my first performance, but this time we had different costumes: Red! Ooh la la. I had so much fun performing with these ladies. And to start a tradition – selfies with Cat! Since I was only in one dance, …

a day at the races.

I have lived in the Bay Area for almost fourteen years now and whenever I drive by Golden Gate fields I think to myself “hm, I should go there.” Well, I finally went! My friend and I went for Dollar Sunday which also happened to be closing day. Entrance, programs, hot dogs, beer, and mimosas were all $1 each. A steal! But, (what had happened was…) we ended up entering the fields at the top floor and paying $5 for entrance which granted us access to all three levels of the arena (instead of just two levels). And then a lady offered us a reserved box seat for $5 per person. The alternative was free in the sun or free in shade with a not-as-good view. So we went for it. So much for Dollar Sunday! But I’d say it was worth it. We felt real adult/fancy. And every time we left our seat we knew we could come back to it, no problem. We did, however, partake in the dollar food. Hot dogs, beer, …

heath.

I went on the Heath Ceramics tour – so impressive and so inspiring! I have been a fan of Heath for some time and dream of having a complete Heath dining set one day. I love the simplicity and color palettes. Learning about the history of the company and seeing the entire process makes me even more appreciative of the craftsmanship that goes into each piece. Our tour guide shared the company’s origin story then took us around the factory, starting with the clay mixing room. The factory aims to be zero-waste; any scrap clay gets sent back upstream in the process. There are so many steps in making a Health piece. Some pieces begin with a mold… Larger pieces begin on these spinny cutting machines… The pieces sit to cure, get sanded and glazed by experts, then hang out in the oven. All of the pieces get inspected and triaged into firsts (for sale!), seconds (for sale on sale!), and thirds (not for sale, but used for construction and other projects!). Heath began as …

holiyay!

Had to, had to visit the Brit & co Holiday House this year. What a cutie! The venue is small and homey but packed with tons of colorful fun. At the front and headlining the welcoming committee are the featured local makers. On my visit it was Marley & Alfie and An Astrid Endeavor, super talented ladies with lovingly made goods. I snagged a lucky horseshoe from Marley & Alfie! Ahhh! The coolest! There was hot cocoa for all, free make and takes, and lots of backdrops and decorated nooks for all the photo taking. Everyone got to decorate a postcard and take home shimmer frame. There was a snow globe jar making station and a pom pom station, and for extra credit you can make pom pom earrings or a snowman. I made earrings! There’s a candy wall, a silver corner, a washi tape city, a white texture wall, a tassel /fiber wall, disco ball wall, a colorful geometric shape wall, a gold wall, an ugly sweater room, and a peppermint room – it …

good morning. 

Hubs and I have started a coffee shop tour! It’s easy to get stuck in a routine, or stay home because pajamas, but it really does feel good to get dressed for a coffee shop date and some strolling. Also, it’s nice to go somewhere together when it doesn’t involve errands or getting something done. We get to sit and talk with each other without distractions or responsibilities (even though some of the conversation might be what needs to get done when we get home. Ha!). Explore along with us! Hal’s Office in Albany, California We ventured to Hal’s, a new kid on the block. Sit by the window on a sunny morning and take fancy pictures, people watch, dragon watch (yes, we saw a dragon pass by – it was Lunar New Year weekend), dog watch. The workers get excited when you order mochas “for here” because they get to practice their coffee art skills. Check out this beauty. We tried the cherry pastry and the sausage & cream cheese croissant, both by Firebrand. And to …

bestie’s bach in the bay.

Bestie got married last weekend and it was…PURPLE! 🙂 But before we celebrated nuptials, we celebrated Bestie’s Bachelorette in the Bay! The bride’s request: calm fun. Yes, it’s a real thing! She was in town for a conference and it just so happened to be the week of the presidential election so we were all feeling a bit…exhausted. We decided on an evening of tea tasting, painting/glass fusing, and eating! Keepin’ it rated G, y’all! The tea tasting room at Teance is all the calm. Our tea guide is officially my tea hero. He knew so much about the various teas we chose for our tasting, and he put up with all of our tea inquiries. We tried nine teas, learned to properly steep and taste each one, and we left with some of our favorites. We could have easily spent hours here, but we needed to run off to the next adventure: glass fusing and ceramic painting! Brushstrokes is my favorite painting studio, and Bestie is super creative so we thought she’d enjoy a visit …

lighten up!

My friend Joy teaches soy candle making classes and I finally got to join in on the fun. You may recognize Joy from my Leap Day post. She’s the lady behind Lighten Up Shoppe, candle lady extraordinaire! Class was held at Workshop SF, a DIY studio based in the NOPA of San Francisco. You can come here to learn sewing, flower arranging, gardening, pickling, and so much more.   We started class with introductions and then Joy gave a detailed how to. We went over all of the supplies and why we would pick one supply over another, and then we got to planning and making our custom candles. There were a number of essential oils, fragrances, and dried botanicals to scent our candles. Choosing our favorite combinations was the hard part. We fixed our wicks at the bottom of the jars, mixed our scents with the melted soy wax and poured. For my first candle I used a honeydew and pear scent and topped my candle with rose petals. For my second candle I mixed blood …