Last Minute Gifts

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Oh my gosh! Christmas is right around the corner. I like to think I am a thoughtful person but this Christmas I haven't felt like it. I've been very last minute and have forgotten to think of other friends gifts outside my immediate family and boyfriend.

Since I'm such a jerk this year I've compiled a list of last minute gifts I can scramble when someone says they got me something. (Friends - If you see your gift on here... I'm sorry. You can give me shit for the next year!)

1. Birchbox
Gift a subscription to Birchbox where 5 personalized samples are delivered to your mailbox every month. I have been a member of birchbox for 3 years and I still love it. It's really fun to get mail that isn't catalogs or bills!


2. Hulu Plus
I love Hulu Plus. I don't have cable so this is the only way to catch up on my favorite shows!

3. Netflix
Sticking with the TV theme, Netflix is a great way to give the gift of unlimited movies. Netflix also have exclusive shows like House of Cards and Orange is the New Black which are my ultimate favorites. I'm currently obsessed with Scandal and binge watching that show. It's amazing!

3. Soul Cycle
Give the gift of endurance with a class or a few classes to Soul Cycle. It's a 55 minute high intense cardio workout that includes weights and amazing upbeat music to keep you pedaling. Don't forget a cute water bottle and to grab a seat pad in the front of the room!

4. CorePower Yoga
I love CorePower. It's an amazing yoga studio filled with friendly instructors and extremely clean! Give the gift of meditation and relaxation to anyone. They have classes for every level. You should even buy yourself a giftcard and join your friend!

5. Pressed Juicery
Gift a loved one with a cleanse or a juice subscription. Have them be your partner in crime as you both kick the new year off replenished and detoxed!

Hopefully these ideas get you out of a pinch!

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and a have a warm winter!
xColl

Mai Tai

It's been a while since I've posted anything. I've been preoccupied with work and with the holidays. A few weeks ago my family went to mass to celebrate my grandfather and then to dinner at Trader Vic's. I tend to lean towards fruitier drinks because, frankly, they are delicious and you can't taste the alcohol. Since Trader Vic's in Oakland  has the claim to fame for creating the Mai Tai, I just had to order it. I ordered the 1944 Mai Tai fully expecting the cherry and slice of pineapple to turn this drink into something I can quickly gulp down.Well, it was not sweet and was actually quiet strong! The Mai Tai got it's name from the word "Maita'i" translating to "good". When the trader first made this drink back in 1944 to serve to his friend from Taihiti, exclaimed " Maita'i roa ae!" Literally translating into "very good!" Thanks to that friend, Victor named the drink the Mai Tai.

Want to make a Mai Tai for yourself? It's easy!
2 oz of Rum
Shaved Ice
Lime Juice
.5 oz of Orange Curacao
.5 oz of Simple Syrup
.5 oz of French Carnier

Shake Vigorously
Add a spring of Mint and the Lime shell

P.S. This year is Trader Vic's 80th year is business! If Mai Tai's aren't you thing, there are plenty of delicious tropical drinks on the menu.

Rain Rain, Come this Way

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Well this Wednesday the Bay Area is due for some rain. We're expected to get roughly about 3" of rain with 60 mph winds! I began to think about what I used to do during the rainy days. It took me a while to think of this because; one, California is in a drought and two, I used to live in LA where I think it rained like 7 times all 5 years I lived there. So during the storm of the decade I have stocked up on food, one flashlight and pulled out my multiple candles. I'm a little nervous that the power will go out, but hey, it might be fun! I have my books, candles, and rain boots all laid out for Thursdays rain... now to find that umbrella....

Do you have any rainy day traditions? Staying on the couch all day having a Harry Potter movie marathon, catching up on crafts, snuggling with a favorite book, making hot cocoa, or simply just sleeping? I'm a little bummed I'll be at work that day but maybe this storm will linger until the weekend!

Bay Area Date Nights under $50

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

My boyfriend and I have a weekly standing date night. Through the chaotic work week we dedicate Wednesdays to being with each other.  We find that though this day is in the middle of the week, it's pretty much a sure bet that we will both be available. Often times weekends are full, chaotic, or we're out an exploring. I  know these days and after you are with someone for a while getting dinner and going to the movies doesn't become a "date" it's just something you do. Lately, we've become bored of the usual cooking and watching a movie together and are trying to figure out fun ways to spice up our Wednesday nights and turn them back into "dates". I've been exploring ideas of cute and fun date ideas for a midweek date.

 Exploratorium - Thursday nights from 6-10 you can roam the museum with a drink in hand. Best part about this night is that its adults only! You get to be a kid without being around kids, and sometimes that is a blessing.

California Academy of Sciences - Thursday nights from 6-10, explore the rainforest, check out the albino crocodile. Want to know what it felt like during the 1989 and 1906 earthquake, then come here! Each Thursday has a theme; tickets are only $12 and there are themed signature cocktails available too.

Trivia Night - San Pedro Square Market - Trivia is Monday nights at 7, get there early to grab a seat, drinks and some grub. This is a perfect place for a double, triple or quadruple date too... if you dare. Be sure to brush up on all knowledge, there are 6 rounds of different topics!

J. Lohr - Want to go to Napa but want to skip the 2 hour drive? Head over the J. Lohr for some wine flights. They have cheese and chocolate parings too!

Bowling - Seems like an outdated date night activity but

Sports - Living in the bay area we are fortunate enough to be close to some amazing colleges. Check out your local university for tickets. Support some less popular sports like volleyball, basketball, lacrosse, and rugby. Stanford Athletics Cal Bears USF  SF State St. Marys Santa Clara

Movies - Instead of going to a megaplex, check out your local historic theater. I absolutely love the Grand Lake in Oakland, the marquee is absolutely gorgeous and its just screams art deco! If you have the courage ask to speak to one of the managers and ask if you can see a projection booth. You'll probably have to wait until all the movies start but I am sure they'd love to give you a tour. (P.S. I've never asked but I used to work at a movie theater.) Castro has an amazing theater!


Cyber Monday

Monday, December 1, 2014

Eek! I've been super busy these past two weeks. Thanksgiving was a blast and I was able to relax during the much deserved 4 day weekend. Now, I'm back at work and browsing Cyber Monday on my lunch break. While I can't divulge what I am purchasing, because it is for other people... I will let you know where I am getting things.

Madewell - 25% off your purchase
Kate Spade - 30% off your purchase, purses, shoes, glassware oh my!
Loft - 50% off your purchase! I definitely stocked up on some winter essentials!
Pretty Smitten - 25% off your purchase. Can we say monogrammed iPhone cases?
Tory Burch - Up to 25% off! Check the exclusions
Nordstroms - Price matching deals so you get points with your Nordies card! Not everything is on sale but yay!
White Elephant Designs All items marked down. Lucite and monogrammed, how can we say no?
Target BOGO 60% off! On for someone special and one for you!

I think thats all... happy shopping!