Out & About: Flora Grubb Gardens

Out & About: Flora Grubb Gardens

My love for plants started in college when I bought my first spider plant. I cannot tell you how many black & white images I took of that dang plant. I send my deepest apologies to my photography professors. I now get it. Not everyone is into pictures of plants like I am.  However, I managed to keep that spider plant alive for 5 years and made some new plants from cuttings. When I moved home to California, I moved into a new apartment with Casey where I proceeded to kill it. Caring for plants is a learning process. You have to pay attention, take notes  and act accordingly.  I’ve learned so much since then and I strive to learn even more!

I recently had a little Crazy Plant Lady date with my friends Jen & Leslie. We met for lunch and then headed Flora Grubb Gardens where I fell in love…felt paralyzed and vowed to come back AGAIN and AGAIN. If you’re into plants and you live in the San Francisco Bay Area, this place IS IT. It is purely plant heaven.  The only thing I regret was delaying my first visit for this long.  If you haven’t gone, GO.


Salted Caramel Macaroons

Salted Caramel Macaroons // shutterbean

I made this recipe twice on Saturday. The first time went really well until… I burned the caramel. I should seriously have a leash on me when I’m working in the kitchen with things that require attention. If I have enough counter space free, I almost always find another project to work on. It just doesn’t feel right to have less than three things going on at once. After the caramel burning fiasco I sat there in my kitchen contemplating whether or not I should call these Burnt Salted Caramel Macaroons or just scrap the recipe altogether because I actually drizzled all of the macaroons with the burnt caramel. I wasn’t convinced.

Salted Caramel Macaroons // shutterbean

Then I found another bag of coconut in my pantry as well as a can of condensed milk and HALLELUJAH round two!

Salted Caramel Macaroons // shutterbean

I’m glad I gave it another go because these macaroons (from The Macaroon Bible) are incredible. They taste amazing with or without the salted caramel. The caramel adds a little bit of a crunch to the crispy/chewy macaroon. Plus! It’s salted so HELLO. If you haven’t noticed, I’m a sucker for anything with coconutcaramel or salted caramel.

My Everyday Life: Week 14

Here’s what this past week looked like:

Epic sunset & JUMP.

My Everyday Life: Week 14

I love lists, Friday!


  1. 53 Thoughts Every Girl Has While Shopping at Target. Pretty much.
  2. My mind EXPLODED with this treat.
  3. That baguette bag cracked me up!
  4. How to be the Best Food Blogger of All Time. Maj hilarious.
  5. A Visual to Ira Glass’ chat on Creativity.
  6. Why Keeping Weight Off is the Real Victory. (I’ll say!)
  7. Epic Cooking Fails. Umm. Yikes.
  8. I’ve been wanting to get into calligraphy. Online classes maybe?
  9. These 10 Universal Truths are SO TRUE. Especially #5
  10. I’m done making my kid’s childhood magical. (GOOD READ)
  11. I want to paint the window trim black thanks to this room.
  12. Are you a morning person? I am most of the time.
  13. The greatest use of emojis EVER.
  14. I’ve got my eyes on this print!
  15. Books on my Wish List: The Flower Recipe Book & The Plant Recipe Book
  16. Speaking of plants… DIY Plant stands!
  17. Oh my goodness. These smells take me back. Why is GAP’s Grass not on there??
  18. These images of abandoned malls are creepy/cool.
  19. 13 Awesome & Quirky Commercials directed by Wes Anderson.


There’s a new Joy the Baker podcast!  Welcome to New Orleans!!


Your Neighbor’s Kitchen adapted my Chocolate Chip Cookie Energy Bars

A Glass of Milk made my Garlic Herb Breadsticks

Ready to Salivate was inspired by my Chocolate Cake with Strawberries & Cream

Peanut Butter Banana Roll-ups

Peanut Butter & Banana Roll-ups // shutterbean

Is this indulgent or healthy? I’m not quite sure!

What we have here is a flour tortilla with a good/even smear of chunky (or die!) peanut butter. We add a banana to the top and roll it up to make a burrito. Then we cut the roll-up into pieces and move ourselves to the couch and watch really bad/indulgent TV.  Say Yes to the Dress? Maybe? (She should have picked the beaded bodice!) Add some nutella to the mix or COOKIE BUTTER and we’re on Team INDULGENT. You might as well put on the Housewives. We’re going in for a marathon.

But then maybe you’re in the mood for it to be healthy? Fiiiiiine. Use a whole wheat tortilla or better yet-make it SPROUTED and we’ll watch Man vs. Wild or some other Discovery Channel program. Put some chia seeds in there already! It’s vegan, gosh.


Homemade Vanilla Almond Milk

Homemade Vanilla Almond Milk // shutterbean

When I was little I was always so curious as to why my grandparents couldn’t eat a lot of foods. I just thought you ate what you liked and that was that. Going out to dinner with my grandparents went something like this, “So, Grandma isn’t eating meat tonight? So we can’t have burgers? Wait. She already had meat this week? Now she’s not eating dairy? It gave her indigestion last week?!”

And on and on…

Homemade Vanilla Almond Milk // shutterbean

FLASH FORWARD a few decades and I see what my grandma meant about the dairy. Oof. Getting older has meant there are certain things I have to start avoiding and milk is one of those things. Fortunately a little bit in my coffee doesn’t slay me (thank GOD as I CANNOT put another milk in my coffee for the life of me).  But I haven’t really been able to eat a bowl of cereal with milk for a few years. Ice cream? Whew! Through the years I’ve grown an aversion to the taste of milk. Perhaps it’s motherhood…and having to clean it up off the floor ALL THE TIME. Or maybe it’s trauma from cleaning out that sippy cup that was left in my car for a month? I digress…

I’ve been making my own Vanilla Almond Milk for the past month and am LOVING IT. It’s been a really great/easy addition to my Meal Prep for the week. I make one batch-sometimes two each week.  And if I have a little leftover, I add it to Cooper’s smoothies; it’s a great base. It’s light and slightly sweet. Sometimes I just drink it plain if I wanna little something something. I love it.