I can be somewhat of a picky eater… My husband will tell you I can be an EXTREMELY picky eater. Until recently I have been a little nervous to try Indian Food. The spices were new to me, curries confused me and it was different. A few years ago I made a promise to step out of my comfort zone when it comes to food. We have a restaurant in the Conejo Valley called Saffron, located in the Ralphs shopping center off Ventu. I had heard tons of friends chatting about it so I began with asking friends what they ordered and then started with take out,
I had my favorite dish, Shahi Paneer, over the past few months it has been my GO TO take out choice, like every single time. It's the most delicious tomato puree base, with ground up cashews and paneer cheese. You put it on top of rice with Naan, it is, I can't explain how amazing it is. But try it, please!
So, after getting comfortable with take out we decided to go into the restaurant & have dinner. I love this little corner restaurant, the ambiance, the bar, the tables lit by candle. It's absolutely perfect for a date night! Saffron isn't just your average Indian restaurant though, the bar is phenomenal, I highly recommend the “Bomb-rita” - it was amazing!
We started with the Aloo Tikki & 69 (get your mind out of the gutter… it was date night!) which were perfectly sized appetizers! I loved the crunchy then soft inside of the Aloo Tikki and the sauce was divine.
Jake got a Curry with chicken that he loved & I got the vegetarian delight. We added a new kind of Naan this time, the Peshawari Naan, it had cheese, cashews and raisins. Sweet, Salty, Creamy bread… Yes, please & more! The lentils that came with my vegetarian delight were SO GOOD! Prior to eating at the restaurant I had never had the yogurt called Raita, and boy, let me tell you,. I HAVE BEEN MISSING OUT! Dipping potatoes in that yogurt was a party in my mouth!
I HIGHLY recommend immersing yourself in the culture with Saffron. Go in, eat inside, watch the movie they have playing on the projector, soak in the ambiance and wonderful scent of food, have a drink & enjoy a date night at Saffron!
Hey Conejo Valley, Freda’s is OPEN in our hood & its definitely worth a trip! Its located in the Trader Joe’s and Bj’s center on the corner of TO & Westlake Boulevard. Its beautifully decorated with black & white tile, some beautiful fiddles (if you love indoor plants you'll notice these when you walk in!) & great lighting! There are booths with chairs along the side wall and bar tops in the middle of the restaurant. The inside is perfect for a quick family dinner or even a bigger group of friends.
The menu has a ton of great options, and honestly took us a bit to decide because everything looked so good! We decided on a few things, first we started with the chips and cheese with a caesar. Sign me up friends, I'm now a regular… HOLY MOLY, the chips and cheese is AMAZING. The chips were SO CRUNCHY & freshly made, we actually brought them home and they were still crisp the next day. The caesar had a lighter dressing on it and the most delish parmesan crisp on the side.
We decided on the Short Rib Pizza for Jake and a Potato Pizza for me, a cheese for the kids with a side of french fries. I haven't had potato pizza since we were in Italy, and Freda’s does it RIGHT! The thinly sliced potatoes with the creamy aioli, then add the cheese and dough, it's HEAVENLY! Add in your glass of wine or beer with it, and this meal was a 10 out of 10! Freda’s is a great addition to the Conejo Valley its great for family dinners or a night out with friends.
PS…. They’ve got slices too!
Gahhhhh. 5th grade math & 1st grade site words, who knew they’d make you want to pull your hair out.
They do. Homework for some kids is easy, there aren’t any fights. There is no yelling, or crying, or rolling on the ground. If you’re one of those parents, wanna trade kids after school for a bit? Just kidding… Kinda.
Just as the school years in full swing & all is back to “normal”, I’m not loving homework.
So today we tried something new! I picked up my crew, 3 families, 5 kids & we headed to the Thousand Oaks Library for their Homework Help program!
It was LOVELY! By lovely I mean, we spent 2 hours at the library, the kids got their homework done, roamed the library & I had such a peaceful afternoon while I finished up work.
We went to the TO library (NP also has the program!) & the program was located in the main hall near the front of the library. There were tons of tables set out and quite a few helpers. My 3 5th graders sat at one table with a student helper & my 1st + 2nd grader sat at another table with a helper. ALL 5 got their homework completed with no complaints!
Here’s the details!
Wednesday’s & Thursdays 3-5
Parents must stay in the library.
If you’re a camper in Southern California, you know how difficult finding a spot can be at times. We have some of the most popular sites, Thornhill, Rincon, Faria, Carpinteria, just to name a few. If you’ve been lucky enough to snag a spot at these places, you’re so lucky, they can be hard to come by! But I’m going to let you in on a little secret, hidden gem if you will, Camp Comfort, its BEAUTIFUL and you don’t have to
book your site at 8am 6 months prior!
This lovely campground is located just about 2 miles outside of downtown Ojai, nestled near a creek with lots of trees with room to explore, play and ride all the bikes + scooters too! There are 16 campsites at this location, and some of them can fit 32+ size trailers/rv’s. All of the 16 upper sites, have FULL hook ups too! The sites have level pads, a table and a fire pit. The park has a large grass area (HUGE), a playground, bbq’s and set of fenced horse shoe pits.
We spent Christmas 2022 at Camp Comfort, the weather was lovely, the trees were dropping leaves like snow & our kids had room to play safely! At $46 dollars a night, we will definitely be heading back!
Staycations are MY FAVORITE! Get out of your house, have your bed made, and the drive is a breeze!
For this Staycation we chose Best Western Thousand Oaks Inn. Located just off Thousand Oaks Blvd. near the Mall off Moorpark
I had my 16th birthday in their ball room, but haven’t been back in years! The Thousand Oaks in has a huge ballroom that’s great for all types of events. The Saturday that we were there they were hosting a quinceañera, I popped in to sneak a peek!
We arrived at the hotel on a Friday afternoon & check in was a breeze! The hotel has a ton of great amenities, including:
Picnic Area & Outdoor Common Area
Library with Books & Magazines
The kids first choice, was the pool, obviously! The Inn was kind enough to leave us some goodies! Pool Floats, Toys & Candy from Newberry Candy! The kids couldn’t wait to use & eat it all!
The pool was the perfect temperature and had comfy seating for me! My husband loved the putting green, they also had putters to borrow, so don’t worry if you don’t bring your own!
The outside space was so lovely! Tons of trees & greenery with comfy seats! One night we walked by and some families were eating dinner out there. It makes you feel like you’re in a tropical paradise.
The pancake maker was definitely the highlight of Patriots stay!
The breakfast was SO good! Pancakes, Bacon, Sausage, Eggs, Cereal, Toast, Bagels, Oatmeal, Fruit,Juice, Coffee & more! Everyone in our family definitely left with a full belly!
Staycations are one of my favorite things to do when we need a break from life, but don’t want the drive or have other commitments. This weekend although we were having a sort of vacation, we still participated in scouts, went to a gala, worked for a few hours & went to our nieces graduation party! Even though we did all of that we got to spend a ton of quality time together & even got in 3 swims! If you are looking to get away from regular life, spend some family time together or need an event space - check out Thousand Oaks in!
Ps. I LOVED all the Oak Trees & history around the hotel!
TO Inn’s Facebook Page
TO Inn’s Instagram
Happy Mothers day to ALL my MOMS of Conejo Valley! I hope you are celebrated for all that you do this weekend, heck the entire month! If you know me, you know that I celebrate with FOOD so I wanted to share my FAVORITE Mothers Day spots in & around the Conejo Valley.
Wolfe Canyon Ranch has quickly risen to one of my TOP places to go. The scenery, the outdoors, the live music and the friends is FABULOUS! Check out their "Dads Night In" event coming up!
Slate Bistro- Camarillo
Slate is my hidden gem, shhhhhh, Don't tell everyone! Its amazing food from Brunch to Dinner and don't even get me started on their cocktails!
El Sancho Loco
Give me some Tacos & a Mango Margarita. If you've never had their Mango Margaritas, GO GET in the car NOW! This is the perfect spot for an easy brunch, lunch or dinner on their patio!
Finney's Crafthouse & Kitchen
We LOVE Finney's! Especially for a special occasion and or a midday snack! They have the best items to share & their cocktails are to die for! This is a fair warning, if you try your kids chicken fingers from here, you'll eat the ENTIRE thing..... Not kidding, these are my favorite chicken fingers around!
Country Harvest, Newbury Park
This is our feel like its home cooked kinda place. They have something on the menu everyone likes AND a special Mothers Day brunch too! We love Country Harvest as our Mothers Day brunch spot! My favorite things on the breakfast menu are the Waffles, Eggs Benedict & Biscuits and Gravy too! Dont forget your Mimosas! Moms deserve lots of those on Mothers Day :)
During the beginning of the pandemic it often felt like groundhogs day, every day the same thing... over and over and over again...... and If you know me, you know, I LOVE FOOD. All kinds of DIFFERENT food, all the time. I will research the best restaurants, ones I've never been to, specialties.... I am here for it. Well, during the Pandemic, we stayed in our little circle, I felt like we were going to the same restaurants over, and over again........Not that I don't love them, but we just needed to switch things up. When I found Tabu Shabu I was SO EXCITED! We got take out it was more than I imagined! First of all the kids felt like it was SO different & exciting, you saw the joy in their eyes from something NEW! I could smell the flavors filling up our home, the kids were cooking their own food and we were all laughing. For a minute, we traveled outside of our little walls and had some JOY! We will be visiting Tabu Shabu for at home special occasions and probably a few date nights in the future!
Self Care is taking care of YOU! We all know to be our best we have to eat our best, drink water & get the nutrients your body needs. Plan ahead! Prep your lunches and snacks.
Quick Tip- after your coffee has cooled off, stick it in the fridge for later. Viola, you’ve got iced coffee in the afternoon! If coffee in the afternoon isn’t self care, I don’t know what is!
Sometimes Self Care can be getting your life together. Take a moment, de clutter a space, clean out a drawer or empty out your purse. I cleaned off my desk!
Self Care : At Home
Face Masks, Hair Masks, Foot Peels, Manicures & Pedicures, Oh my!
This is a great way to practice self care.
There are so many options out there, here are some of our favorites!
Do something to help you grow professionally or find a cause that you can support in your community.
Getting to know your community is so important in creating a place to raise your family. Last week my friend Jess and I attended our local Chamber Breakfast. She is always super inspiring, always has an idea up her sleeve & truly motivates me to get involved and do more for my community. This act of self care gives you time to be you, find a passion and drive forward!
Go eat at a new restaurant! Last week my husband and I went to Chocolatine, a lovely French restaurant in Thousand Oaks. It was the perfect change of scenery to take a moment, step out of our reality and into a little cafe in Paris. We chatted, shared bites and enjoyed the view! This is a perfect way to practice self care!
Every parent deserves the best sitter for their children. Download the Bambino app today and get connected to your neighborhood sitters that are recommended by friends and neighbors!
With the school year just around the corner, we’re all trying to juggle a million things, don’t get stressed over a sitter!
Oh Las Vegas.... you make my heart so happy with all of your culinary delight! So much to choose from, so many great choices. From famous chefs, to buffets to things I’ve never seen before.
Every year in July we get our one adult vacation we can’t count on. It’s like a 3 day summer break for parents. Pretty much like Adult Disneyland.
Shop this dress here: https://amzn.to/2L6IjPv
My favorite thing to do is find out where I’m going to eat! I’ve got 3 new ones for you this time!
Let’s start with late night street food.
After dancing, gambling or my favorite activity people watching and cocktails you need something delicious, but not sit down, and it needs to be quick. By this hour, most restaurants have closed. I mean sure you could grab a burger at McDonald’s or a sub from the 24 hour subway. But why not search out the best late night food in Vegas!? That’s what I did.
I bring to you, DIRT DOGS.
Flavorful, filling, piled high with goodness.
Choose a hot dog, elote, or a few other fried goodness options.
I chose the Elote, and it did not disappoint. I had on a fancy pants dress on so I chose the cup, and gosh darn it, it was amazing!
We sat at the bar across the alley and they delivered it to me there.
Next up, dinner.