Maui

To awaken in a tropical paradise is one of the most pleasant sensations in the world. I am not the same having seen the sun rise and set on the lush green tropical landscape and restless ocean waters of Maui. Spoiled by its beauty, I left wanting more.

Spanish Style Gardens & Doors

Do you have a special local spot you go to when you need an escape from the bustle of daily life? For me, it’s the Spanish-influenced gardens and artisan shops at the Allied Arts Guild in Menlo Park. Every season brings different blooms and lush green vegetation thanks to our mild California climate. I last visited…

Bare Bones Landscaping Co.

I’m currently looking for a landscape company to design and install our patio garden. While I’d like a low-cost solution, this company looks a little too bare bones for my tastes. Heehee. On the serious side, the owners of the Pond House Cafe in West Hartford have a good sense of humor. This clever Halloween garden…

Garden Doors at the Pond House Café

Whenever I visit family in Connecticut, the Pond House Café in West Hartford tops my list of places to go for delicious food and inspirational seasonal gardens. Per tradition, after a tasty lunch in the Café with my parents, we strolled through the gardens to admire the summer blooms. Notice how doors and windows are…

A Blissful Afternoon at the Menlo Allied Arts Guild

What’s not to love about the Menlo Allied Arts Guild? This lovely property hits the spot with Spanish-influenced architecture and gardens, artist shops, and Al Fresco dining at Blue Garden Café. Shop for handmade items at the Artisan Shop where proceeds go to the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford. Yesterday, I headed to the Arts…

Summer Colors at Filoli Gardens

Timing is everything when visiting a flower garden. Each season in Northern California brings fresh new blooms. Different colors, textures, and moods are created by nature in slow motion over days, weeks, months. Buds appear, and then from one day to the next, sudden bursts of color appear in the garden. In due time, the…

Fun Sculpture Exhibit: Filoli Gardens

On a recent visit to Filoli Gardens, I was pleasantly surprised to see an exhibit of fun ceramic, glass, and metal sculptures made by local artists. The sculptures were staged throughout the formal gardens. Walking along a path near the Visitor & Education Center, I came across a metal sculpture of a funky, crazy-eyed dog. Seeing the…

The Menlo Allied Arts Guild

Spanish-Colonial Art Studios, Shops, Café, and Gardens   I love going to the Allied Arts Guild. It’s not just the unique artist studios and shops; it’s also the Spanish-Colonial architecture, delightful murals, peaceful gardens, and lovely café that draw me there. This charming historic property is tucked away in a residential neighborhood in Menlo Park…

Hakone Gardens

Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not. -Ralph Waldo Emerson When it’s time to take a break from the fast pace of life, one of my favorite places in Silicon Valley to spend a quiet afternoon is Hakone Japanese Gardens. Hidden…