October 21, 2014

iTAN Spa Week and GIVEAWAY

All my fellow Southern California natives probably already know,
that healthy, glowing skin is always in. 
That's why I'm SO excited to partner with iTAN during their Spa Week to offer one of you lucky readers a chance to win 
one week of unlimited Sun, Spray and Spa services, along with a bottle of FIT booster spray!
Sounds like a killer deal, right? 
The winner will have an opportunity to redeem their services at any of the iTAN locations.

I have personally been an iTAN member for several years, 
and am a big fan of the Mystic Tan and the FIT Bodywrap
It's a perfect combo of services to get ready for a special event, 
or even as a weekly ritual to look and feel your best. 
Who doesn't like to strut around like a bronze god or goddess?!

To enter the giveaway, please leave your name and email in the comments below before October 30th. 
I will randomly pick a winner and contact them to arrange all the details. 
Earn extra entries by tweeting about the giveaway, using the following hashtags: 
#iTANSpaWeek, #ModernBeauty and #SunSpraySpa 

And of course, 
don't delay in taking advantage of the iTAN services,
because during iTAN Spa Week on October 20-26, 2014, 
guests can take advantage of 2 weeks of unlimited spa services for only $50 at all 30 iTAN locations!
 iTAN Spa Week includes all six self-serve spa treatments at iTAN, which feature full-body toning systems, detoxifying body wraps, steam pod therapy, teeth whitening, aqua massage and photo facials.  

natasha

October 15, 2014

Bottega Americano

A few weeks ago I was in Chicago for my best friend's wedding,
and in case you're wondering, I did, in fact, 
download and purposefully watch My Best Friend's Wedding on my flight there.
But that's neither here nor there. 
The point of me telling you the two aforementioned facts,
is that I happened to stop by Eataly while I was in the Windy City.
I loved the concept - a single location that boasts 23 eateries. 
It's large and in charge, and reminds me of afternoons spent in Italy this past summer. 

But this post isn't about Eataly.
It's about a new restaurant, located at Park & Island, 
in the burgeoning Downtown East Village neighborhood of San Diego.  
Bottega Americano is getting some rave reviews about town lately,
so naturally I had to check it out as soon as possible. 

The restaurant and marketplace is impressive. 
The space is beautifully decorated, offering five interactive food bars, 
as well as a market for those that only have a few minutes to grab something to go.
The menu combines classic Italian dishes with fresh ingredients and innovation of Modern California. 

I stopped by for lunch yesterday and noshed on some freshly cooked pasta,
as I cursed the fact that I had to go back to work, otherwise I would totally try one of the Snake Oil cocktails,
always a treat. 
marinated ciliegine mozzarella / roasted garlic / tomato marmellata / saba
grilled Mary’s farm chicken / fire roasted peppers / fontina / broccoli rabe / roasted garlic aioli hoagie roll  
garganelli / spicy lobster broth / jumbo shrimp / sweet garlic / mint 
1195 Island Ave.
East Village, San Diego

natasha

October 11, 2014

Eat, Drink & Be Crafty

How it's already mid-October is beyond me. 
Last night, I took the pups for a walk around the block, 
and was baffled to see all the pumpkins decorating the front stoops of my neighbors' homes. 
The holidays will be here before we know it,
and to get us into the spirit,
the wonderful people at Waters Fine Foods & Catering hosted a Holiday Workshop,
and guess who was invited? 

"Eat Drink  & Be Crafty" said the invite.
Hmm... well I surely don't have a problem with eating and drinking,
but the crafting thing? 
Let's just say Martha Stewart won't be calling me to guest-post on her blog any time soon. 
Either way, my bestie and I were overdue for a catchup session, 
so we decided to make an evening out of it. 
And I'm so glad we did!

The evening consisted of two parts.. 
Upon arrival, we were served with a generous helping of wine 
and escorted into a room where we proceeded to make dream catchers. 
Baskets of thread, feathers, beads, oh my!
My eyes darted from one thing to another, but thankfully, the sweet hosts were right by my side,
helping with artsy ideas, and before I knew it, my very own craft was coming together,
and to my surprise, it didn't look half bad!

After chatting it up with the other attendees for a bit,
we made our way into the kitchen,
where we put our culinary skills to work and made a few appetizers, along with a signature holiday cocktail. 
It was such a fun night, and is the perfect idea for a holiday party with your friends or coworkers.
Our final products. I swear we did NOT match on purpose. 
You know what they say... great minds think alike!
Rule no. 1 - must match the ingredients. 
Bloggers in the house!
Brisket atop a toasted crositni with freshly made slaw and aoli.
Toasted brioche with goat cheese and sauteed mushrooms. Yum!
Punch bowls filled with tequila will surely liven up any party. Cheers!
If you're looking for ideas to plan this year's holiday party,
you should definitely check out Waters!
Their talented team of event designers will help you create the perfect holiday gathering from start to finish. 

natasha

September 13, 2014

Paris, France - Part I

Paris.
Oh, Paris. 
Words can't describe how much I love this city. 

Although this wasn't my first, or even my second time in the city of lights,
I couldn't help but be awe-stricken by the beauty of it all as my train pulled into Gare du Nord.
We spent five blissful nights in a tiny apartment located in Saint Germain,
settling into the routine life of fresh-baked baguettes, strolls among the gorgeous buildings, and falling in love with the beautiful people. 

The fact that we've seen most of the major tourist attractions during our first few visits, 
really took the pressure off. 
We didn't feel the need to rush around town, stand in long lines, and constantly check "must-see" monuments off our to-do list. 
Rather, we woke up whenever our little hearts desired and set off on leisurely strolls to explore Paris at our own pace. 
Most of the time, we didn't even refer to a map. 
Somehow, everything just fell into place. 

natasha