Monday, September 27, 2010

My first kitchen project starts today!

I've spent the last 6 months looking at kitchen cabinets, appliances, wall tiles, floor tiles, under floor heating, counter tops, etc. Not to mention collecting permits!

Although we are a long way off... demolition starts today! We also need to pour a new concrete foundation and rebuild the back section of the laundry room -- but the exciting part is that we are adding a deck on top which will have french windows leading off an upper floor bedroom!!

It's been fun..... here's a few inspirational pictures and the general direction we're going towards.

Photos courtesy of

Friday, September 24, 2010

Big Daddy's Antiques opens in San Francisco!

The moment I set my eyes on the goodies being sold by Big Daddy's Antiques, at the Alameda Antiques Market, it was love at first sight. They have a fantstic eye for mixing old and new - e.g., burlap covered chairs with industrial tables, oversized clocks and antlers, old buckets and ladders. But guess what? You don't have to wait until the first Sunday of the month to see this LA based firm!! They have just opened a warehouse here in San Francisco! I am beyond excited... here's a small glimpse of some of my favourite pieces:

Big Daddy's North
1550 17th Street
San Francisco, CA 94107
Don't forget to contact me if you'd like a tour of my favourite stores here in the City!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Night and day at Jema al Fnaa

With my guide book in hand, I was told to head for the heart of Marrakech and find Jema al Fnaa which is the main square and it's HUGE! By day it's a dried fruit and spices market, empty spaces are filled with locals trying to tell stories (give them more money and they will continue their story), snake charmers and the odd monkey doing tricks.

We took a photo of this guy and his monkey and before we knew it, he was hounding us for money!!

If you look closely, there's a tiny chipmunk rounding up the snakes! The snake charmers kept trying to wrap snakes around our necks!!!

As the sun was setting, the daily stall holders headed home.....

... and the night market started to take shape:

In what seemed like seconds - the food stalls were up and running. There was so much smoke from the BBQs and noise from the stall holders shouting that their stall was the best:

We settled at a table and felt like Anthony Bourdain..... here are the small plates we ordered AND we didn't get sick... although the next day we went to lunch at a fancy restaurant and that evening I got terribly sick - which lasted for well over 3 weeks!!!!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Moroccan doors

More on our little jaunt to Marrakech. We were mesmerized by the City's tiny passageways which seemed to shrink as we got closer to Jema al Fnaa (the main square, where we actually ate one evening - just like Anthony Bourdain!).

It was fun walking through the souks, especially as we were trying to haggle with store owners, get away from aggressive sellers, not get run over by speeding mopeds or the odd donkey or have the girls' heads rubbed by the locals!!!! It was crazy.... but through all of this noise and hustle and bustle you occasionally find a door and start to wonder what lies beyond!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Ksar Anika, Marrakech, Morocco

While we were in Marrakech, we stayed at the Ksar Anika, a gorgeous riad which was tucked away in a little side street, surrounded by cotton manufacturers. When our driver dropped us at a large black door, we had no idea what lay beyond. It was far better than we imagined - Venetian plastered walls in varying colours, huge Moroccan lanterns and intricately carved tables next to comfortable chairs. There was a beautiful courtyard where a small pool shocked the eye with its blue tiles. We also ate breakfast here, which consisted of fresh fruit, yogurt, freshly squeezed orange juice, baked breads drizzled with honey and a steaming hot pot of strong black coffee.

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