Weekend Recap: 24 Hours in San Diego.

Helloooooo party people! Did everyone have a good weekend? I hope so!!

My dad came into town Saturday morning for conference in San Diego, so I picked him up at LAX before we grabbed lunch and headed south! I wanted to show him the neighborhood I work in and then took him to Hot’s KitchenHot’s Kitchen in Hermosa for some grub. Their tacos are THE best. If you’re ever in the area, go go go.

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: 24 Hours in San Diego.

Our drive to SD took a bit longer than we had expected (ohhhh LA traffic), so we didn’t make it to the zoo like we wanted to, but that was okay! We checked into the hotel (the Grand Hyatt) and rested for a few before we walked over to dinner.

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My dad had read an article about Ironside Fish & Oyster, so we made a reservation there a few weeks ago. Let me just tell you, this place is a MUST. Like literally do not skip this one if you’re in San Diego, I can’t say enough wonderful things.

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: 24 Hours in San Diego.

We started 2 delicious drinks, green lip mussels (YUM) and their famous octopus & chorizo appetizer. For dinner, we both had two delicious fish filets, mine was Escolar and dad’s was Thresher, with lemon butter and a side of greens.

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: 24 Hours in San Diego.

We also ordered the charred broccolini and romanesco with mint pistachio pesto on the side. So freakin’ delicious. We were obviously super stuffed after dinner, but couldn’t pass up their new panna cotta dessert with angel food cake, rhubarb, and strawberry ice cream. UNREAL. Then, Sunday morning we woke up early and ventured out to Coronado Del Mar.

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I don’t know about you, but I had literally never heard of this place and apparently Walt Disney modeled off one of the famous hotels at Disneyland after the Hotel del Coronado. So, obviously, we had to go see it and it turned out they were doing a Sunday brunch buffet (aka the DREAM).

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: 24 Hours in San Diego.

After stuffing our faces with insanely good omelettes, fruit, pastries, fresh juice and coffee, we walked for about 3 miles on the beach. The weather couldn’t have been more perfect – sun and a slight breeze.

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: 24 Hours in San Diego.

Apparently the beach by the hotel is also ranked #7 in the country or something and for good reason! I wish I had brought a swimsuit and had more time, but I’m hoping to go back very soon!

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: 24 Hours in San Diego.

I had to head back to LA in the early afternoon since the traffic was already building, but spending 24 hours with my dad was the best. My parents don’t come out west very often, so when they do it feels extra special 🙂

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: 24 Hours in San Diego.

Hope your Monday is short and your coffee is strong. Be back soon!

xo Jordan

Weekend Recap: San Francisco & Sonoma.

I’m not gonna lie to you, it’s only 7:15pm and I’m about ready to pass the F out.

Even though I had to wake up at 5am for my flight back in time for work this morning, I feel badly complaining since I had pretty much the best time ever up in the Bay Area this weekend. Since my company allows us to work from anywhere on Fridays and my boyfriend works up in SF half the week, I decided to fly up Thursday night (on a $96 round-trip flight on Virgin from LA, YES PLEASE).

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: San Francisco & Sonoma.

After a quick workout Friday morning and a few hours of working from the hotel (The Hilton in Union Square), I headed down to the Mission to meet my best friend for lunch. She works at Tartine, which is quite possibly the best bakery in San Francisco. She spoiled the heck out of me with a ham & gruyere panini, a chocolate croissant, lemon tart, and this chocolate bar thing with jam? Honestly it was all insanely delicious and I’m kind of craving that lemon thing right now…

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: San Francisco & Sonoma.

I worked out of The Mill all afternoon before meeting up with the boy for happy hour. We had dinner reservations at 8, so we popped back to the hotel to get ready and then strolled over to Hops & Hominy. If you haven’t been here yet, you need to. Granted, I didn’t take a single picture, but that should be a testament to how good the food was and how I scarfed it down before any snaps could be shot. They start you out with some amazing cornbread, and then we split the mac & cheese (do ittttttttt), spicy chicken wings and the most amazing po’boy I’ve ever had. The old bay fries on the side didn’t hurt, either.

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: San Francisco & Sonoma.

The next day, we picked up a rental car on the earlier side and drove out to wine country. Luckily we were able to check in early at The Lodge at Sonoma Renaissance Resort and Spa. Our room was so perfect, complete with a fireplace and one of those bathtubs you can watch the tv from. Have you ever seen one of those?! They’re the best.

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Next on our itinerary were 3 wine tastings: Cline Family Cellars, Gloria Ferrer and Buena Vista. I loved how different these wineries all were from each other, but they were all top notch and I’d recommend them in a heartbeat! Cline actually had a free tasting with 5 different samples. You could pick from a variety to suit your tastes, so I went with 3 whites, a red and a dessert wine.

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: San Francisco & Sonoma.

They gave a small piece of chocolate with the dessert wine so you could pair the flavors – it was SO good! The property at Cline is gorgeous and there are tons of tables for picnicking in the back, which I would love to do next time!

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: San Francisco & Sonoma.

Gloria Ferrer was my favorite of the three, I think. At the base of the rolling hills and looking out over a field, this winery specializes in sparkling wines. It was a touch on the expensive side, but with the ambience it was so worth it. We each tried 3 different varieties that came served with breadsticks (so you don’t get tooooo tipsy!). They also have cozy blankets because it tends to get a little chilly, which I was very grateful for since the views were way too pretty to sit inside!

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: San Francisco & Sonoma.

Our final stop was Buena Vista, a more European looking winery nestled in the woods. Our tasting here was the most extensive – I think we each tried about 6 or 7 different varieties, both regular and reserve. We nibbled on some cheese and crackers and enjoyed our tasting so much that we bought a bottle of the Pinot Noir – my favorite of the entire day! Afterwards, we went back to the hotel for another mini-tasting and a glass of sangria (both complimentary), and then jumped in the hot tub for half an hour or so. It was perfect.

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: San Francisco & Sonoma.

Dinner was at a newer restaurant in downtown Sonoma called Tasca Tasca. I wanted to eat here because it was Portuguese-style tapas, which reminds me of our trip to Portugal last July. The food was outstanding and I ate entirely too much. They don’t take reservations, but we didn’t have to wait at all! The hotel provided a free shuttle too, which was amazing.

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: San Francisco & Sonoma.

On Sunday, we slept in a little and then forced ourselves to workout. Sometimes getting to the gym is the hardest part, but I try to just tell myself I’ll do 30 minutes because it’s better than nothing, and then if I stay longer that’s great! I’m so glad we got to sweat a little after all the indulging over the weekend. Our post-workout breakfast was at Community Cafe, which is just a 5-minute drive from downtown. We split the huevos rancheros and this chicken hash, which were both delicious!

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: San Francisco & Sonoma.

On our drive back to San Francisco, we stopped at Muir Woods for a mile and a half walk (so pretty, one of my favorite parks!), a pitstop at the Golden Gate bridge, Bloody Mary’s and some appetizers at Cliff House (epic views), and a little stroll along Ocean Beach.

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We rounded off the weekend with homemade pizza and dessert with a friend who graciously offered to host us for the night. I couldn’t have asked for a better 3 days, especially with all the chaos going on in the world right now.

Dancing for Donuts | Weekend Recap: San Francisco & Sonoma.

I can’t wait for my next trip up to Northern California – let me know if you have any suggestions for next time!! Have a great week, y’all 🙂

xo Jordan

Happy Valentine’s Day! [+ a last minute dessert idea]

Happy Valentine’s Day, loves!

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I know I disappeared last week, but I wanted to pop in and say how much I appreciate all of you, and that I hope you’re all doing something today with the people you love, whoever they may be! For me, Valentine’s day isn’t about being in a relationship, mostly because if you are then you should really be celebrating your love everyday…amiright?! I think it should be a day to be grateful for the people in your life and show them how much you care. Whether you’re out and about with a partner, hanging in with your girls and chillin’ it solo, don’t forget to do something for yourself, too 😉

Dancing for Donuts | Happy Valentine's Day! [+ a last minute dessert idea!]

White Chocolate Candy Hearts Popcorn

6 cups popped popcorn

1 1/2 cups white chocolate chips

2 cups candy conversation hearts

1/4 cup rainbow sprinkles

  1. In a microwave safe bowl, heat the white chocolate chips in the microwave at 30 second increments, being sure to stir at every interval. *I often check mine after 15 seconds when I think it’s almost done!

2. While the chocolate is melting, lay out your popcorn on a baking sheet lined with wax paper.

3. Drizzle the white chocolate over the popcorn, sprinkle on the candy hearts and top with the sprinkles. Let cool for 15 minutes.

4. Break up the popcorn into pieces and enjoy or store in an airtight container for up to 5 days. <3

xo Jordan

Friday Finds.

It’s the weeeeeeeeeekend!!!!!

And I’m clearly very excited. I have a few fun things planned for the next two days, including some baking, time with friends and a big hair change (!!), but before I disappear again, I wanted to leave you with some interesting things I’ve been finding around the internet! I haven’t done one of these posts in a bit, so excuse me if they’re a little outdated 🙂

Dancing for Donuts | Friday Finds.

7 Healthy Swaps to Make in 2016 – all. of. these.

Top 10 Videos for Working Out at Home – a go-to for lazy days when you can’t stop binge-watching your new favorite show…*guilty*

The New Workout to Try in 2016 – SO cool.

10 Things We Learned About Healthier Eating This Year – hadn’t actually learned these until i read this article…

16 Healthy Eating Rules You Should Always Follow – so good for keeping resolutions.

How to Get Your Best Butt in 28 Days – please and thank you.

5 Life Hacks for Making Good Decisions – don’t we all need help in this department, though?

10 Breakfast Making Tips Every 20-Something Should Know – eggs in a cupcake tin. do it.

Small Lifestyle Habits That Will Help You Lose Weight – personally need to work on all of these.

Have a great weekend, y’all!

xo Jordan

Friday Finds.

So. Close. To Christmas!

Another Friday is here, and thank goodness for that. I’ll be presenting my master’s thesis tomorrow morning and then it’s home free! Well, basically. I’ve been trying to keep a balance between eating all of the holiday cookies and cardio-ing my booty off. It’s a constant struggle. Here are some helpful holiday tips I’ve come across on the web lately including recipes, baking advice, and tips through making it through the month without getting a muffin top! Happy weekend reading 🙂

Dancing for Donuts | Friday Finds.

18 Unique Gift Ideas for Bakers – because who’s done present shopping yet? nobody.

11 Refreshing Smoothies for Your Post-Holiday Restart – yes please.

What a Fitness Guru’s Perfect Day of Eating Looks Like – how interesting!

5 Ways to Manage Stress This Season – valid for pretty much everyone.

12 Food that will be Super Trendy in 2016 – so down with all of these.

5 Tips to Bounce Back from the Weekend – have your cake & eat it, too!

17 Dessert Recipes Made With Veggies – don’t forget to have some!

Enjoy your weekends!

xo Jordan

Friday Finds.

Oh goodness, this week went by way too quickly and now we’re heading into the LAST weekend of August. Ugh.

I do have to say that this week made my heart so happy. I had a wonderful birthday (celebrations to be continued for approx. the next 2 weeks, of course) and am feeling like just about the luckiest girl on the planet. I’ll be heading back to the east coast for vacation on Sunday, but before I go I wanted to share with you some fun articles I’ve been reading this week. I can’t wait to show you all the yummy things I’ll be cooking at home while I’m away!

Dancing for Donuts | Eat Cake for Breakfast.

More Baking Basics: Dutch-process & Natural Cocoa Powder – key facts for any baker!

7 Tips to Making the Ultimate To-Do List – so important to stay organized as we head into fall.

10 Sandwich-Free Lunch Ideas for Kids & Grownups – love these! perfect for when you need to switch it up.

Well-Stocked Kitchen: Freezer, Friday & Pantry Staples – the ultimate list. so helpful!

Food Typography Artists – beautiful and delicious. too cool.

Rose Wine Slush Recipe – you can bet your bottom dollar I’ll be making this on vacation.

Peanut Butter & Blueberry Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies – oh, and these too.

The Best Way to Quickly Chill a Glass of Wine – because knowledge.

Enjoy your weekend, everybody 🙂

xo Jordan

Friday Faves & Finds.

It is 100 degrees in LA on this lovely Friday, and I’ve spent the morning dealing with an allergic reaction. So Happy Friday! Or not…

Luckily this week did have some wonderful moments like finally getting to try an acai bowl (is this beautiful or what?!)…

 Dancing for Donuts | Friday Faves & Finds.

I also splurged on this ridiculously gorgeous sunflowers from the farmer’s market. No joke, they turned the water in the vase PINK. It was crazy and awesome and I would totally buy them again. Too bad they didn’t last more than 5 days 🙁

Dancing for Donuts | Friday Faves & Finds.

I also got new glasses! I’ve had the same pair for about 5 years or so, and figured it would be good to get new ones before my insurance runs out when I turn 26 (in 10 DAYS!). Warby Parker is my new favorite company.

Dancing for Donuts | Friday Faves & Finds.

And before I leave you with some light reading & my favorite links from around the web this week, I leave you with this quote that makes my smile…

Dancing for Donuts | Friday Faves & Finds.

From around the web:

30 Kitchen Hacks Everyone Should Know – so true, so helpful.

A Letter to This Blog’s Readers on It’s Birthday – full of incredible wisdom & advice.

23 Recipes That Will Feed Your Inner Flower Child – I’ll need to make at least one of these just for the photos…

Three Fun Things – these beautiful Japanese words are perfect.

12 Best Avocado Toast Recipes – yes please!

Tropical Melon Breakfast Bowls – prettiest (and probably most delicious) breakfast ever.

6 Meals to Make When You Work Crazy Hours – because the hustle is NON. STOP.

Have a lovely weekend, y’all!

xo Jordan

NorCal Re-cap (Or The Weekend I Ate Like A Queen).

Well hello there!

I’ve been playing catch-up all week, but I’m finally back to bring you guys a re-cap of my awesome weekend up in Northern California with my parents. I met them up in San Francisco last Thursday, where we squeezed in a bit of sight-seeing!

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

The next day we took a drive to Sonoma, where we went to two different wine-tastings and enjoyed lunch. It was one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been to.

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

We also got to take a pretty detailed tour of the first winery, Ramsgate, with its owner where we learned about how they make their wine of the highest quality. Almost everything there is done completely by hand and tested frequently so that the final product is wine that is out of this world. We tasted their brut, chardonnay (my personal favorite, I think!), pinot noir, and malbec. They also offered a tasting menu with dishes that are specially paired to match the wines and bring out the best flavors in both.

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

It was such an incredible experience, I seriously felt like a princess. I definitely want to experiment more with wine pairings in my cooking now!

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

The next day we made our way over to Half Moon Bay on the Northern California coast. I’ve never been up there before, but had always wanted to, and it was so unbelievably beautiful.

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

There was an immediate feeling of tranquility driving along the coast and though Southern California is also gorgeous, the views are just…different. I fell in love with it right away. When we got to our hotel, the Ritz Carlton (I know, spoiled, right?), we had a light lunch before exploring the private beach.

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

I don’t know why, but I think there’s something so beautiful about rocks and cliffs by the ocean. Maybe it’s because we didn’t have any on the east coast? I think it just makes it look even more secluded and organic. It’s not overrun or dirty, like some other beaches I’ve been to. It’s just peaceful and perfect! Can you tell I didn’t want to leave?!

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

Dinner was at Sam’s Chowder House, a locals’ favorite. We decided to eat outside at the bar with a glass of prosecco and a view. We even caught a beach wedding!

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

That ridiculously beautiful dish up there is the paella for two that I shared with my mom. It was full of fresh seafood, some of the best I’ve tasted in ages, including scallops, clams, mussels, shrimp and calamari. The peas were delicious too, which is something I never really thought I’d say. I need to re-create this dish at home!

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

Dinner was followed by s’mores out by the fire pits at the hotel! Can’t beat that view. And we had so much fun making them, everyone else outside was definitely jealous!

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

Nothing screams summer like s’mores on the beach at sunset 🙂

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

The next day we slept in and enjoyed a healthy brunch before our workout. And when I say healthy, I’m entirely omitting the part where I grabbed a chocolate croissant, proceeded to cover it in peanut butter, and then shoveled in that + half of my mom’s sticky bun. WHAT?! Shh…

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

After a few hours laying on the beach and soaking up the sun (we definitely lucked out with the weather), we packed up our things. Since we had to drive a ways back to the airport, we decided to have an early dinner. Guess where…

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

Yep, that would be the famous Lobster Roll from Sam’s. We had such amazing food there the night before that we had to try more! This roll did not disappoint – it was just a ton of fresh lobster, sautéed in butter and lemon, inside a buttered sourdough roll. Those fries were a total splurge, but when I saw that they were topped with Old Bay, I couldn’t resist. Even the coleslaw was good and I don’t like coleslaw!

Dancing for Donuts | NorCal Re-Cap

It was such a perfect weekend, just thinking about it makes me happy! After treating myself one too many times though, I definitely feel like I need to get back on track this week. I have some healthy recipes on deck for you guys. Be back soon!

xo Jordan

Weekend In Austin Part 2.

Oh, hello. I’m back with the second half of my Texas recap – I miss tacos already! Now where was I…

Dancing For Donuts | Weekend In Austin, Texas

Ah yes, Saturday morning! We started with Gordough’s Donuts, a local favorite. Thank goodness we got there too early for any of the really crazy donuts with chocolate and brownies and stuff because ours were indulgent enough! We had the South 1st Hipster (topped with maple frosting, bananas and granola) and the Ms. Shortcake (cream cheese frosting with fresh strawberries) to split. They were both insanely delicious and so rich. It’s probably a good thing we don’t have a place like this nearby in LA…

We ended up walking around for quite awhile after that, even though temperatures were in the 90’s and humidity was about 80%. We stopped by Uncommon Objects, the antique shop, and Allen’s boots! I wish I could own every pair of shoes in there.

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We found some awesome graffiti too, so we took an obligatory cheesy tourist photo =D

Dancing For Donuts | Weekend In Austin, Texas

We stopped for a light lunch and some relief from the heat, and then went back to the cottage to relax. After a quiet afternoon, we ventured back out for dinner at Bufalina, which was just a short walk from where we were staying. Because we wanted a break from tex-mex, we chose Italian and we couldn’t have made a better decision. The pizza at Bufalina had a perfectly doughy yet thin crust and just enough sauce and cheese to not feel heavy. My friend ordered the Margherita and I had sausage, mozzarella and scallions on mine (with a side of Aranciata!). Pretty sure my mouth just watered while typing that, actually…

Dancing For Donuts | Weekend In Austin, Texas

Since we hadn’t really eaten dessert any other day (aside from our doughnuts for breakfast of course), we chose to end with a blackberry crostada a la mode. It was out. of. control.

Dancing For Donuts | Weekend In Austin, Texas

Okay now I’m definitely drooling. Good thing I’m almost done.

For our last meal, we went with Torchy’s Tacos, another favorite of the locals. I didn’t have super high expectations for breakfast tacos to be honest, just because I feel like I can make them at home, but boy was I wrong. I ordered two – one with brisket and the other with chorizo and cheddar. I can’t even begin to tell you how mind blowingly awesome these were, The brisket was definitely my favorite of the two, but both had the perfect amount of spice, flavor and smokiness in each bite.

Dancing For Donuts | Weekend In Austin, Texas

Needless to say, I had the most wonderful weekend. Texas is hot as hell, but it has some amazing food. I should probably just eat kale for a week or something now, but I think I might be addicted to tacos. Oops…

Have a great week, y’all!!!

xo Jord

The Little Things #3.

Oh, hello! I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend – I know I did! It was waaaaay too hard to get back to real life this morning. Here are some of the things making me happy this week…

Getting to spend time with my brother! He’s here from NY from work, but we were able to hang out all weekend. We snuck in a hike to the Griffith Observatory to see the views of LA, but only found fog instead…It was still fun, though 🙂

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  After our hike, we grabbed some brunch (which was so delicious I forgot to photograph it before quickly shoveling it in…) and then did more exploring! Echo Park Lake is so beautiful. I need to have a picnic down there soon.

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Other than my weekend adventures, I’ve been enjoying some summer eats. Like this fro-yo, which had way too many toppings to be remotely nutritious.

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And I discovered Hubert’s Lemonade – finally! This stuff is incredible and so refreshing. I only tried the watermelon flavor, which was a tiny bit sweet, but I bet it would be even better mixed with some sparkling water.

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Plus some fruit! Mangoes have been on sale, thank goodness. They’re one of my favorite fruits but they’re usually too expensive. Luckily I’ve been able to stock up!

Dancing for Donuts | Summer Fruit

That’s all for now, friends. I’ll be back later this week with some more healthy recipes and fun things 😉

xo Jordan