Weekly Ponderings #3: birthday weekend in wine country

I escaped to the West Coast this week with the husband for a couple glorious days in Sonoma to celebrate my 31st birthday. We spent two days drinking wine, eating indulgent meals, and laughing. It was my first time there and I can't wait to go back again.

On my actual birthday, my husband had to go to some company party with a bunch of big time people, so I took advantage and spent the day doing whatever the f*ck I wanted. I wandered San Francisco's Mission district, got a massage, hung with some friends and their pup, treated myself to a new piercing, and ate some pretty damn authentic tacos, before reuniting with my boo at SFO for the red-eye. It was a perfect end to the trip.

Sonoma Recs 

  • Winery: my favorite winery we visited was Scribe (pic above). It was so beautiful and peaceful - the seating area felt more intimate and less commercial than other wineries. Reservations are required and weekends book up 4-5 weeks in advance, so don't be like me and wait until the day before to email them. Luckily I got a last minute reso on a Thursday. The tasting is $60/person and includes 4 wines and super fresh, delicious seasonal snacks: olives, almonds, salad, veggies + tahini, focaccia, and this BOMB cucumber + peach salad with herbs.
  • Restaurants: our first night we ate at Tasca Tasca (Portuguese tapas) and I loved it. You can order 7 tapas for $35, which is enough for a light dinner for two people after a tasting with snacks. My favorites were the Achadinha Broncha Cheese and Smoked Duck Breast.   
  • Lodging: we stayed at The Wolf & Horseshoe, which I found on Airbnb. It's a beautiful property with 4 guest rooms + 1 room where the couple who owns the property lives. They basically invite you into their home for your stay. All doors are unlocked, you use their kitchen, living rooms, pool, and hang with their dogs. Staying there feels like you also live there, which would be a freaking dream.


I don't have a gym membership. When I'm in the mood for a class, I pull up the MINDBODY app to browse and book. It's great for last minute bookings in your neighborhood but also fabulous when traveling to quickly see what studios are in the area, class schedules and pricing, and book in a couple taps. Once you sign up and put in your CC info, all your info is saved, which makes checking out really easy. A little too easy. You never have to create a new account for a specific studio again. And if you buy a class pack, the app KNOWS and tracks how many you have left. Brilliant.


I wrote a whole blog post after my Thailand honeymoon about some of my fav travel products, so I'm not going to repeat all of that again. Instead, I'll do a plug for my favorite JESSI+CO products that I never travel without:

  • Aloe + Rose Hydrating Face Mist100% pure rose water mixed with aloe vera, grapeseed oil and witch hazel. I use this as my toner every morning and night after I wash my face. I spray liberally (like 5+ mists each time) then pat in. It also gives you LIFE on a plane or after a long day.
  • Anti-aging + Restorative Facial Oil: Made of apricot kernal, argan, and rosehip oils, this facial oil leaves your skin moisturized but not greasy. I use this as my only moisturizer, after my face mist, morning and night. If you have a daily moisturizer that you love already, adding a few drops of this oil to it will be a game changer.

Both products are incredibly easy to add to your skincare routine (takes 1 min max for the whole rigamarole), and are my two BEST SELLERS. They're TSA friendly, coming in at 1 oz each so you don't have to struggle with pouring them into silicone tubes with a tiny funnel and spilling everywhere. And don't worry about traveling with glass bottles - I throw them in my diddy every week when I go to NYC with no issues.

Tip: Save 10% if you buy them together in this Hydrating Duo Set.


Random Ponderings

If you're on a trip with your partner and find the two of you wanting to do different things, consider separating for awhile! My husband and I do it all the time, especially when it comes to walking around. This is my fav and his least fav thing to do when traveling. Two times in Sonoma, I had him leave me in the town square so I could walk around to my heart's content alone and he could do work and exercise. I even stopped off at a cafe and ate lunch by myself. And when I was all walked out, he scooped me up. Give it a try next time you have conflicting itineraries!

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