Category: Travel

Southwest Sojourn

 “As soon as I saw it, that was my country. I’d never seen anything like it before, but it fitted to me exactly. There’s something in the air, it’s just different. The sky is different, the stars are different, the wind is different.” – Georgia O’Keefe

After experiencing Santa Fe and the surrounding area with friends, it’s no wonder why the iconic painter and brilliant colorist was captivated and transformed by New Mexico’s landscape.  We felt the true high dessert’s boldness with a dramatic temperature swing – a snowstorm one day followed by mid-seventies sun! This accentuated the land’s many virtues and I enjoyed perusing the culture of Canyon Road’s gallery art walk, Bandelier National Monument’s majesty and the quaint town with my dearest gals.

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I welcomed my thirties in wine country with my love reminiscing over the last decade and dreaming about the next over Carneros chardonnay and complex cabernets. The celebration culminated with a bucket list evening at Thomas Keller’s French Laundry. Each meal we devoured, every wine pour we savored, and time with friends (old and new!) cherished.

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Beautiful Banff

Our first weekend escapade away from the little man was the best mix of adventure and rejuvenation. We indulged in the quaint town of Banff, treked to the Johnston Canyon frozen waterfalls, skied Sunshine slopes, dog sledded to Spray Lake and relaxed at Lake Louise. Mostly, we marveled how majestic the white blankets of entirely frozen arctic lakes were in the midst of the Rockies. Feeling like dreamy winter wonderlands themselves, my icy aquamarine ring and chrysocaolla, malachite and diamond necklace were fitting travel companions.

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Maui Babe

Carter (and mama!) loved quality time in the Hawaiian breeze with our favorite people, overlapping both sets of grandparents and my brother in Maui. We’re grateful for such a special vacation kicking off Thanksgiving and the holiday season.

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Arches + Canyons

Rocks big and small, I love them all. Working with them on an ornamental scale brings me joy daily but there’s nothing like adventuring among grander ones to appreciate our earth and reignite creativity. Utah’s landscape around Arches and Canyonlands National Parks was majestic geography like nothing I’ve ever experienced – a hybrid between Land Before Time, Indiana Jones and Lion King imagery with an otherworldly golden Mars glow. Exploring these wide open spaces with my best college friends – Kelsey, Natalie and Taylor with intimate conversation and Dixie Chicks as our soundtrack is a girls getaway I’ll cherish.

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Sunset 70th

One of my father-in-law’s most notorious traits is his sun worshiping – as evidenced by his year round tan. If the sun is peaking through Seattle’s overcast skies, he’s soaking it in. While this might be one of his most initially apparent attributes, his greatest is his sentimental love of family. So there was no better way to spend his 70th birthday than for seventeen of us to enjoy his favorite family vacation spot (where they’ve frequented since my husband was 9 months old).  The laid back aloha and gorgeous sunsets haven’t changed over the years, making this our family’s gem full of great memories. Among our large crew, there’s always an anniversary, birthday or reason to celebrate which is a great thing as I’m ready for the next Sunset fete…

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Cabo Color

My tropical weather packing essentials include turquoise, moonstone and orange chalcedony because they’re the best compliment to a freshly sun-kissed glow. These happy hues blended right into the scenic, sun drenched views of our Cabo vacation. Everything about Mexico’s culture is vibrant – the friendly people, plentiful food and traditional craftsmanship and folk art. I scored the orange fiesta-worthy dress below from a vintage boutique in Paris and it was fitting of Cabo’s colorful character. There are certain places, colors, articles of clothing and definitely pieces of jewelry that simply make you happy. These are the best things.

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Algarve // Lisbon

Google image “The Algarve” and you’ll immediately reroute future travel plans to Portugal. The Algarve (the southern region totaling a 200km stretch of beaches) is a dream, in particular Praia de Benagil and Praia da Marinha. Thousands of years of crashing ocean waves have formed pristine beaches and secluded coves into dramatic limestone cliffs. We explored via a trail towering over the numerous beaches and a cave boat tour gave a thrilling perspective (the captain even let me take the wheel!) and was a highlight of the entire vacation. Our trip concluded with a few nights in Lisbon and a day trip to Sintra. There was no shortage of inspiration among ornate patterned tile, colorful rooftops, lush landscaping and various architecture styles especially in Sintra, the historic getaway to Lisbon’s monarchs. I could’ve spent far more time in Portugal (and every place we visited!), but one of the best things about returning home is it’s time to brainstorm the next adventure…

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Barcelona // San Sebastian

We fell in love with the land of sangria, pintxos and espadrilles. Reunited with my parents in Barcelona, we enjoyed late evening dinners and everything fresh at the La Boquiera – squeezed juices in every fruit combo imaginable and grilled baby octopus at the neighboring market stall. City views from our hotel rooftop and the Montjuic gondolas were breathtaking but we were even more mesmerized by La Sagrada Familia (those colors!) Following Barcelona, we drove cross country to the Basque region, spending a few nights in San Sebastian. A gastronomic playground, we had a blast bar hopping and devouring as many pintxos (tapas) as we could. The town also has a lot of eye candy, centered around two gorgeous beaches with lookouts worth the trek.

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Paris // French Riviera

A Europe trip kicked off summer beginning in Paris and the French Open. Checking off 1 of 4 tennis grand slams from my bucket list, we had a blast cheering on two favorites Rafa and Djokovic. We were lucky to share this with my parents and peruse Paris before jetting to the Riviera to relax in Villefranche-sur-Mer, Cannes and Saint Tropez.

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