Follow Me In Las Vegas

YUP, It's me
April 2012:
I visit Las Vegas two to three times a year, mainly because my husband has a friend he enjoys visiting there. I do not gamble - we go there for the great food and variety of shopping. So follow me around town during my typical three day weekend.
San Jose Airport to McCarran takes about 1 hour 15 minutes to fly on Southwest Airlines. Always expect a bit of air turbulence just before landing after passing over the mountain ridge and sometimes there is no in-flight beverage service because of it.
After checking into our hotel room usually at Paris, New York New York or Venetian we put on our comfy shoes and hit the ground running over to Bellagio for a gourmet double gelato downstairs nearest the street front dancing water show (VIDEO). One scoop each of Lemon and Dark Chocolate

California Antique Auto Race

The 30th Anniversary of the California Mille Miglia for 2020 will be held Sunday, April 26.

May 2012:
The Mille Miglia (one thousand miles) auto endurance race was held only 24 times in Brescia, Italy from 1927 to 1957. Martin Swig, auto collector and racer also of the Fairmont Hotel Swig Family lineage, founded the California Mille (web link) in 1990 after participating in the Mille Miglia beginning in 1982 and subsequent races with his good friend John Lamm

You Might Be Missing These

July 2012:
You may have been left behind at the gate early but there is still time left for you to  update your fashion accessories for 2012.

Sunglasses have long been a fashion staple in varying degrees of popularity. Today even more so as a relatively affordable bit of luxury using your economy . So carefully wrap your classic Ray Ban Aviators and put them in a safe place to wear another day. How about Tom Ford’s ‘Daphne’ extreme cat eyes, or the Barton Perriera ‘Chanteuse’ flavor of the 90’s fade with a sprinkling of snake skin

Accessories, Let's Play

December 2011:
Fashion Accessories have the ability to change the flavor of any ensemble. Grab a handful of mismatched pearl strands, layer them over whatever you are wearing and you are now elegantly transformed into evening. I have several long strands that I purchased from 

Affordable Wedding Gowns

September 2011:
$1,000.00, $5,000.00...$25.000.00!!
Can you believe the cost of one single dress that is available in one color, and one length?  Forgive me for not being "au courant" (hip) in reality television where everything today must be over the top.  Let's not even talk about the likes of programs such as "Bridezillas" (click). In the world of wedding planning I sometimes scratch my

Fashion Culture CLASH

London Runway-2012
March 2012:
Have you heard, dressing all in black everyday is out.
Color is the way to represent fashion today. However bold color alone is still not enough to stand out and keep up to date. In a word "clash" is what you strive towards. Textures, colors and patterns which

Nail Art

14 Karat Gold Press-On Nail
April 2012:
Nails are exploding everywhere. The hottest and fastest growing fashion accessory is how to adorn one's finger and toe nails. Google "nail art" (click here) on their images page and be prepared to lose your breath. My hairdresser Marla at KRUSH in Los Gatos has been pressing me to write

Los Barriles, Mexico

September 2012 April 1999 gave us a family vacation to a little coastal fishing village named Los Barriles in the state of Baja Sur, Mexico. Thirteen in our group which included four kids ranging in age from a few months to age 11. We made the five hour flight from the San Francisco Bay area to what would turn out to be absolute Nirvana. For those of you who fish with a passion this little village

Make A Money Lei

May 2012:
It's graduation season and flower leis are popular celebratory attire to accompany cap and gown. Today the money lei made from real currency is on the rise. However, to be truthful the use of currency other than payment

For Men Only

The Stripped Down Model
March 2012:
Life-Style Me says calling all men "Let's start from the beginning."

Kiton Chinchilla Suit Fabric
Have you discovered KiTON suits yet? Forget 'Mad Men', that look is so yesterday's newspaper. Today you need Style, Fit, Color and Balls. Their 1960's Italian inspired "CIPA" line is for every man today who wants an edge in the office and to be noticed on the dating scene, or to show your partner you care enough to look your very best. Luxury fabrics are all they do, there is even a Chinchilla hair fabric

For Women Only

January 2012:
Now that the turkey, mashed potatoes with extra gravy, and every assortment of Grandma's pies is behind you there is one thing that remains...extra body weight. Last week I wrote about the ever classic January theme of new year's resolutions (NYR). It must have been somewhat compelling because Kelly in my office is now a week into her new exercise routine and my husband Sean made his very first NYR in the 23 years

E A S Y Ice Box Cake

July 2011:
Here is a wonderfully simple dessert idea from mid-century Americana.  Icebox Cake traditionally made with multi-layered cookies and whipped cream and allowed to set 24 hours.  I had heard about Icebox Cake from my childhood and being the offspring of immigrants I had no idea what it was.  My first attempt was for Father's Day weekend and this recipe was perfect with one tiny exception

Best Fried Chicken

'Brown Sugar Kitchen' Fried Chicken and Waffles
April 2012:
Perhaps the quintessential American family dinner staple and fast-food destination meal and you might well agree is fried chicken or more correctly named "Southern Fried Chicken". But did you know its original roots are not American? We have the West Africans and the slave trade to recognize for bringing this wonderful

Pick A Place and Love It

August 2011:
American fashion designer Marc Jacobs once said the ultimate luxurious LIFE-Style is travelling with only a toothbrush...give that one some thought.  On the flip-side I am one of those “kitchen sink” travelers when it comes to packing.  Once on a trip to NYC visiting our son my husband and I shipped a box of 12 pairs of shoes to his apartment

Father's Day Cool

No More Ties For Father's Day
June 2012:
Father's Day for 2012 is Sunday, June 19, and you still have time to shop.
If Dad's closet is cluttered with neckties, grooming accessories and household gadgets from Father's days gone by, you are likely to enjoy these

Another Halloween...and Bloody

October 2011:
Legendary actor James Dean was killed in his brand new 1955 Porsche Spyder on a country road in California, and it was not only the actor that was legendary.  Here is the folklore that surrounds the Porsche that lives on. After Dean's death, car enthusiast George Burris bought the car remains and

Fashion Spring/Summer 2013

February 2013:
It is almost the budding of Spring and another fashion season. Here are the the main highlights of what you should be wearing this season, or at very least an education enough to be conversational.


Braids for warmer months is an obvious choice, this season roll them up to create a textured bun, or weave back and forth like a southern garden

Vintage Fashion Expo

September 2011:
Concourse Exhibition Center, SF
For 2012, the expo runs September 22 and 23
Vintage Fashion Expo (click) is back in San Francisco-
Looking for unique treasures for your body? No doubt you will find whatever your heart desires for men and women. Vintage Fashion Expo was born in 1980 when there was only one show in the country

Sunday Morning, Time For Donuts

July 2011:
The world is round, and it tastes great-
Okay I admit it, I am using food to address the travel section of my blog this week, but don't we all seek interesting food wherever we travel?  While having drinks with Kyle and Chelsea last week it occurred to me I have deliberately traveled to several US cities just to try their donuts.  Donuts are donuts are donuts you may say

Life's Better In A Great Hat with 2023 UPDATE

<< 2023 UPDATE >>
Graham Thompson, the owner of Optimo Hats in Chicago, IL has written a glossy, picture filled and history packed book "The History of the Hatmaker". As a customer of Optimo, his team creates some of the best classic hats you will ever wear, custom-made for the right fit and you get to pick the style, color and accessories.  
LINK FOR Thompson's First Edition Book:  "The Art Of The Hatmaker" First Edition

August 2011:
Life IS better in a great hat.  Take a fashion tip from Johnny Depp who is frequently pictured wearing a custom hat from his own personal collection made by our friend Graham Thompson in Chicago. He opened OPTIMO in 1995 after college at the age of 22. Graham purchased traditional gentleman's hatmaking machinery from his old friend Johnny Tyus and studied age old methods

Why Old Navy?

July 2011:
Why Old Navy?  Why not Old Navy?
Can a Louis Vuitton Monogramouflage bag and a Diva-styled pair of jeans from Old Navy co-exist happily without incident in your closet? Excluding additional consultation from a psych-therapist I must officially say yes they can.  I reference my very first article "Haute Couture is nice, in doses"; which states: "Don't drip in labels".  Even a second grader knows jeans are all about proper fit, and

Christmas Facts and Myths

December 2012:
History of the Red Kettle Campaign
In 1891, Salvation Army Captain Joseph McFee was troubled because so many poor individuals in San Francisco were going hungry. During the holiday season, he resolved to provide a free Christmas dinner for the destitute and poverty-stricken. He only had one major difficulty to overcome -- funding the project. As he contemplated the issue, he recollected his sailor days in Liverpool, England. He remembered how at Stage Landing, where the boats came in, there was a large, iron kettle called "Simpson's Pot" into which passers-by tossed

Do It, I Double Dare You

August 2011:
Will you wear white after Labor Day?
What do you mean "Will you wear white after Labor Day?" Convention dictates one should only wear white between Easter and Labor Day. Okay, convention. Why?   I never knew why just like I was also told as a child never reveal your bare shoulders in church, black is only

Luxury Watches

July 2011:
Luxury watch in my future? I was at a party a few weeks ago and met a gal sporting a wristwatch that I could not take away my eyes.  It was chunky, it was gold, it was HOT.  I had to have it. Large-faced watches have been in season for years and here to stay but where to make my purchase, and what to buy? Rolex, Patek Philippe, Chanel? A well established jeweler is a great place

Wine, Beer and Sake Too

Artisan Wine Depot
October 2011:
"Drink quality, and pay less" is the motto of Artisan Wine Depot. At the conclusion of this article you will be compelled to immediately start planning your holiday 2011 beverage purchases and gift-giving while supplies are ample. Artisan Wine Depot is a San Francisco Bay Area local secret and connoisseurs' gem located in Mountain View. The nearby High-Tech global companies such as

TOP MODEL-An Interview

September 2011:
'America's Next Top Model' television reality show hosted by Super Model Tyra Banks began in 2003 in the United States. As of 2011 there now exists 44 successful adaptations around the world in a near identical format. One of the Executive Producers of 'Viet Nam's Next Top Model' Ryan Hoang Hubris and my good friend allowed me the opportunity of a candid interview with their first ever winner


September 2011:
PORTUGAL (VIDEO click)-A member of the European Union, area is approximately the size of the state of Maine at 35,000 sq. mi. and a population roughly equivalent to the state of Michigan at about 10 million.  Recognition of this country goes as far back as 868, their language is Portuguese and life expectancy as of 2010 is 79.1 years.  On October 5, 1910 they tossed out their Monarchy and became the Republic of Portugal we know today; with the most liberal laws in illicit drug use (click), the 6th country in Europe to allow same sex

Not Easy Being Green

October 2011:
It's not easy being green, when it comes to doing your very best at reuse and recycling. It sometimes takes great imagination and dedication.  Fashion student Rebekah Kirkland of Leicester College recently won first prize in their Sustainable Design Award for her dress made entirely of used Crisp Packets. (potato chip bags) It took Rebekah two months to assemble the dress

Rent The Runway

November 2011:
The title to this weeks' article says it all; it's about RENT and BORROW...or temporary ownership of party dresses. This could be a turning point for some of you when dress shopping for bridal showers, weddings, holiday parties or in the case of my co-worker Jessica a lost weekend with the girls in Las Vegas. Also, when one gets to a certain age, it is likely you may have half a dozen wedding invitations in one year. Between the party dress and the wedding gift: "forget-about-it", you're broke.

Phew, They've Gone Back

August 2011:
Back in 2003 I decided it was time to explore my own neighborhood's natural beauty and climb Mission Peak in Fremont, CA, elevation 2,517 feet.  It was in the month of February, I filled a backpack with a couple sandwiches and juice boxes.  My son Blaze and I bundled up in sweaters, jackets and hiking boots that had gone unused for perhaps almost a decade.  The weather was crisp and bright and I fortunately grabbed a disposable camera from a drawer so that I could record the adventure. Yes, a disposable was not yet part of my world.  The views from all heights are amazing, the walking paths easy to


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The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts.  No Americans have been more impoverished than these who, nevertheless, set aside a day

Fashion Spring/Summer 2012

January 2012:
It's mid-January and by now you would have completed all your holiday gift returns and your more savvy gift giving friends and family smartly gave you a gift card. Now you are armed with a fistful of them swimming at the bottom of your bag,

Trick or Treat

Ghoulish Blaze Mancillas

October 2011:
Halloween to me means the beginning of the holiday shopping, partying and travel season.  I try to add one piece to my collection of Halloween spirit every year. My favorite oldie is still the screaming door mat (click), gotta remember my fresh supply of AA  batteries this year. Pottery Barn (click) has an elegant or chic selection of goodies for your home. Z Gallerie (click) and Horchow (click) has fun stuff too. My friend Shirley who is a self-proclaimed "Bad Witch" will likely buy the


December 2011:
Monday, December 26 is the first day of 7 to celebrate Kwanzaa. An American holiday celebrating the pan-African cultures. It was created in 1967 by UCLA Professor of African Studies Ronald McKinley Everett, now known as Mulana Karenga scholar, activist, and author. The week-long holiday is honored by lighting a candle colored in green, red and black, one for each of the seven principals and exchanging gifts on the last day. The seven principals:

Chopstick and Obama

December 2011:
I have never given them much thought, I was not raised with them nor have I had formal training or practice. I am speaking of the use of Chinese chopsticks to eat your meal. I was moved to think about chopsticks when I recently saw a story on CBS Sunday Morning program giving the history of Chinese chopsticks. 5,000 years in the making and now out of favor in China. Japan has become the capital of hardwood chopstick manufacture and have held on to the long tradition of

Holiday Post Mortem

December 2012
For me it all begins around Halloween, the holiday season I mean. Decorations, food, shopping, friends, cocktails, gifting, wrapping, pumpkin carving, turkey, stuffing, music, traditions, family, pomp and circumstance, desserts, I enjoy it all.

When December 26 comes around I sometimes look introspectively and wonder

Looking For A New Addiction

December 2011:
The end of another year. January 1 is a 24-hour window the same as any other calendar day, somehow we like to take the opportunity to make changes to our individual lives. Those changes are commonly known as New Year's Resolutions.
Imagine being able to magically lose weight, stop smoking, make more money or be a better person with the turn of a page

A Day In The Life of Wine Tasting

July 2012:
On June 30, 2012 I visited Napa Valley with 7 friends and 1 husband on a day trip for a little wine tasting on the Napa/Calistoga famed dusty roads. Truth be told this was actually my second visit, the first time was with my employer sanctioned office party while in my teens...yep, it was illegal for me to drink alcohol that September


February 2012:
I am often accused of writing only to the interests of women. This week I hope to attract the interest of all people. This week is about beer <hic>.

Anchor Brewery better known as Anchor Steam beer is a 116 year old San Francisco premier beer maker that has remained in business after suffering 6 location moves throughout the city due in part to two locations being burned down, 13 years of federal Prohibition

Paris Birthday

December 2011:
My birthday was November 5th, and my amazing husband Sean secretly spent 4 months planning a surprise trip for the two of us to Paris, France. It was a tough secret to keep and in 4 months he talked to so many of our friends doing research that nearly everyone we know knew about it but me

LUV Between Two Buns

Lamb Burger-The Breslin
January 2012:
Even though I enjoy cooking, trying out new recipes and venturing into unfamiliar cuisines my favorite menu item is a truly amazing sandwich. To fine point this statement, no one can resist a well-built burger. Here are some of my picks you must try:

Char Grilled Lamb Burger, $21.00
The Breslin (click)-New York City-Chelsea
Juicy and served medium/rare to bring out the flavor of ground lamb at its best

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

This is me-
January 2012:
On December 21, 2011 I made a telephone call to my local salon for a hair cut; the stylist appointment was scheduled for January 10, 2012 at 5:00pm with Marla at Lux Image Agency in Los Gatos..the longest 3 weeks of my life.
The wait felt endless because this time I knew what I wanted and I was ready for the change, a simple bob halfway between the chin and shoulders. About 12 inches of hair length was about to be severed like an old Rose on your mother's favorite bush. In my birthday trip to Paris December article (click) you may recall I fried my hair using my curling iron due to Europe's fortified electricity current. It was time to have my long locks surgically

APPS, not Appetizers

November 2011:
NOTE TO READER:  This article will require you to click on title of each application for maximum benefit.

MOBOFASHION.Fashion,trends,bargains,tips,accessory,hairstyle,jewelry,makeup,shoes,handbags. Also shopping deals. Comes with free 'My Celebs' add-on, and your personal tracker of favorite fashions.

G Q STYLE GUIDE-Your essential mobile men's fashion manual.

TREND TRACKER-Gives you the inside track on the latest fashion


Blurring the lines, Man/Animal
February 2012:
Let's talk about shoes-
I love shoes. They have the ability to alter the way you feel while wearing them. I normally wear heels at a minimum of 4 inches and so I now have to regularly stretch my leg muscles or the next day it feels like I ran a marathon. <ouch> But it's worth the joy

Overnight Guests

November 2011:
Mid summer and Holidays are the most likely seasons to entertain overnights guests. Is your home ready to receive them during this upcoming holiday season? Reach way back in your memory bank the last time you experienced amazing service in a hotel. I am willing to bet most everyone will have a similar response, "They thought about every detail." Now apply this positive experience to your

My Cuban Adventure - October 2016

My  trip to Cuba all began a couple years ago when my husband joined a social club in San Francisco, "Wingtip". Soon after he was accepted into the club he heard of an annual trip to Cuba for its willing members.  Sean and I looked at each other and immediately agreed "We're in!".  California Building Bridges is the non-profit that organizes trips to Cuba for Americans

Weekend In Los Angeles

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to spend three days in Los Angeles. My husband had scheduled a business meeting for a Friday and asked if I would like to make a long weekend out of it? Sure, why not. As a SF Bay Area girl born and raised I had some doubts as to how enjoyable a trip this would become. Los Angeles is surrounded by many cliches regarding its people and lifestyle, I know you've heard them all: silicone-laden, phoney, trendy, drugs, fashion desert,

February Is Black History Month

February 2012:
February is Black History month and many people have their own idea of what this stands for. History, celebration, recognition; whatever you choose to call it, it means nothing until you read it, taste it, wear it, sing it, and see it. We should always remember to "Walk in another man's

Casino M8trix Opens In San Jose

August 2012:
Five years in the making, $50,000,000.00 of private investment, the newly constructed Las Vegas designed Casino M8trix in San Jose (click link) opened it doors Tuesday at 10am for what is called a soft opening intended for friends and family. There was nothing soft about it, within a few hours the casino floor was buzzing with an estimated 1,000 happy patrons and all 49 card tables