I Left My Heart in San Francisco

Thanks ladies for all of the great San Francisco tips you shared!  I followed a bunch of them and want to say thanks – and point you towards some amazing stuff. Like Maple Glazed Bacon Donuts…

And piles of $1 cuteness…

And mostly just to share my vacation photos because I didn’t make anything all weekend (sorry). But the good news is, leave a comment on this or any post this week and you might win yourself that crazy cute socktopus pictured up there on the left!
Get the full scoop on our Bay Area blast after the jump…

San Francisco There We Went

After dropping off the bean with her grandparents in sunny Sacramento, we headed to the East Bay to check out our old college. Man, doesn’t it all seem so much awesomer in retrospect? All those activities waiting to be activitied!

We stopped by my ex-apartment right off Telegraph and I learned something really important:

That I will never wear a maxi-dress again. (Jacinda said: it’s an optical illusion…unless you gained 75 pounds in your ass since the last time i saw you.) HA!

Of course we went up the campanile.

And checked out the Cal game.

Then walked down telegraph ave. – nothing had changed AT ALL. We hit up our favorite lunch spot Cafe Intermezzo where I saw this little DIY’d lamp made out of cassette tapes. I wish I had thought of the cassette tape garland for Erin’s 80’s Prom Night Party.

We were amused to see this sign:

Yeah right. Like I said, nothing has changed:

Yes, that’s cookie monster smoking a doobie.

We hit up Bows & Arrows where we discovered these adorable shoes for s. They’re rubber like crocs but one hundred times cuter! Go get ’em!

Then we headed into the city. We stayed at the super cute Hotel Tomo in Japantown, right around the corner from the restaurants and shops on Fillmore.

I took reader Ali Smith’s advice and hit up Ichiban Kan for piles of $1 japanese treats for the girlies.

All of this stuff is for packing lunches. Lunch is WAY CUTER in Japan. I bought some molds for hard boiled eggs, so now Scarlet’s eggs are shaped like bunnies.

Of all the ten million treats I bought her, the $1 pink binoculars were most definitely her favorite. Isn’t that always the way?

Over in the mission the line for Tartine was out of control, so we enjoyed a Maple Glazed Bacon Donut and a Caramel de Sel donut from Dynamo Donuts. Why has the gourmet donut trend not hit LA yet? Actually, it’s probably for the best if it just stays in SF, or my maxi-dress nightmare may become a reality. If I wasn’t so full I would have totally tried the Strawberry Earl Grey. I mean seriously! So good!

We also enjoyed some squid ink pasta at A16 in the marina, some crab cellophane noodles at Out The Doors in j-town, and some Roasted Shishito Peppers at turn-of-the-century-style Wayfare Tavern. I’m so down with the prohibition-era trend in restaurants right now, too fun.

In the Mission I met up with an old high school friend (what up Archana!) who put me to shame with her law degree and running of several charity funds doing good all over the world. We hit up Dolores Park Cafe but bypassed the crazy line at Bi-Rite Creamery. She directed me to the finest shops in the city -and I knew they’d be good because reader Wendy from Kid n Kitties told me they would- including 826 Valencia, the pirate supply shop/ kids tutoring center, where i picked up some awesome books and a postcard to stick above my desk and comfort me when I’m writing. Oh, and a postcard to rub it in to Jacinda how close we are to the ocean:

Also had to hit up Paxton Gate and their kid’s shop for some taxidermy viewing. They wouldn’t allow pics but I snuck one in:

Look at the cute loot I picked up!

And on the advice of reader Vanessa, we also hit up the new-to-us Ferry Building for some fresh seafood, fresh sourdough bread, and the Cowgirl Creamery shop (Carleton’s favorite cheese ever is their Mt. Tam, and he knows his cheese). I tried to get Carleton to recreate his iconic Marie Claire magazine spread but he wasn’t super accommodating. I guess that means I can’t scan it in for you. Can I?

We stopped in the Haight where Carleton bought me an adorable dress, but the shop clerk was such a jerk when I exchanged it because it HAD A HOLE IN IT, that I won’t be telling you where. Bitter. ANYWAY! We stopped over in Dogpatch to check out a friend’s loft and eat some crazy delicious beignets at Just For You Cafe before taking the long way home across the Golden Gate. That bridge is so dang gorgeous, no matter how many times you see it. We tried to hit up the park at Fort Point as recommended by reader kekubski, but the traffic was so wild we had to skip it and get back to our baby, who we were jonesing for by then!

Back in Sacto we packed up the Volvo for the sad goodbye. But we’ll be heading back shortly because look at the heartbreak in her eyes at leaving her Meemah! Gah!

Thanks again everyone for your thoughtful advice. Now get yourselves to San Francisco!

And remember, leave a comment on this or any post this week and you could be the proud owner of an adorable socktopus as pictured up thereon the left!




I have the same problem with tunics – I instantly look 8 months pregnant. And I would have TORN UP that shop full of cheap plastic stuff!


My husband and I are going to SF next weekend for a mini fall vaca. I look forward to it even more after reading about your trip and I can't wait to see it all!



Oh goodness, you are a seriously brave soul for posting that unfortunate maxi dress picture. Optical illusion or otherwise, had that been me in that pic, it would have gone straight to the trash, which would have been emptied posthaste. Otherwise, what a FUN sounding trip. I've never been to SF, but it's on my short list, and when I make it, I'll be borrowing (stealing) your itinerary. Glad you had a great time!


I've always wanted to venture to the West Coast to visit California, your pictures just make that desire even stronger. Thanks for allowing me to live vicariously though your pictures.
Cookie Monster smoking a doobie?! Hahahaha!
PS. My husband and I both are drooling over the socktopus!


I am of the strong belief that bacon makes everything better. That said, I am lusting after those bacon maple doughnuts something fierce!


This post brings back memories. I grew up back in the SF Bay Area, but transplanted to Virginia 4 years ago. I miss it more and more each day.

Amy H.

Lets just say SWINE is always FINE. That doughnut looks like I might crawl into a fetal position and savor every last finger licking bite. Did they have seating section for that, if not I would have to HIGHLY suggest to the owners.



Bacon maple donuts. Sounds like something from Tim Hortons in Canada.
Love the goodie pile. I might have to go to SF just for that store. What was it called?

Jenn Doll

Hello there! Well, let me first say that I am so jealous of your fab trip to SF! I am 6mths pregnant and on limited activity, so I have been perched on the couch for the last two weeks! Since seeing the sticky bun photo, I phone the hubby and told him that he must stop off on his way home from work and grab me a cinnabun! So if he values his spot in our bed, I hope to enjoy a little treat later today! We'll see!

And all of those little $1 trinkets are so fun & cute!! I can't wait to go shopping again!! Hopefully some time soon!!

Smooches ladies!


Love, love, love all the treats at Ichiban Kan. When my mom was alive, she was at California Pacific Medical Center a lot, just up the hill from Japantown so I spent a lot of time down there shopping and eating Nutella and Strawberry crepes. Miss all those $1 goodies!


I left my heart in SF too! Love to travel up there~! This post is full of great finds! Can't wait for my next trip!


Oh it looks like so much fun, We used to live in San Diego. We drove up to LA one weekend and went to china town. The shops were filled with so much neat stuff. I wish we could go back to california and take my son. He was born there but was too little to remember ever living there. I love your blog!


I would take the lil girly to apple hill this fall. Just 20min out of Sacramento up towards Tahoe on 50. There is also a festival happening in Oct in Old town Sacramento for the Gold Rush days. While you are in Old Sac.. Go to Evangelines the best costume shop ever! There are also some neat little candy stores of barrels full of taffy that you can sample. Then go eat at Joe's Crab shack..


Love San Francisco!

I look okay standing up in a maxi dress. Sitting? Forget it (consult my last blog post for proof)).


Your daughter is beautiful. I just love that little sad face. How precious. Glad your trip was nice. Thanks for sharing with us.


I literally drooled on my keyboard when I saw and read about the donuts. Eww. lol San Francisco is on my "bucket list." I told my 13 yr old, on her 16th birthday we would take the trip out west and visit SF, just the two of us.


I've been reading your blog for a few months now and just love it! So far I've made 2 hooded bath towels for my daughter :) ~ Stacy


Shoot I should've read your readers suggestions before I went. Looks like we missed some amazing food in the Mission!


oooohhh! Why don't we go into the city more often?!?! NOW I'm inspired. Counting calories now to make room for much needed donut stop!


Ack! I'm a bum-I meant to leave a message re: SF,but it looks like you hit all the awesome spots anyway. And that maxi dress thing is just bananas. Total optical illusion.

Yes, Dynamo Donuts is evil. Evil GOOD!

Ali Smith and Noah Thomas

Looks like a super fun trip and some great ideas for next time my family is in San Fran. And that octopus is so cute, I think I might get one for my one-year old who does a really sweet octopus dance to the Slippery fish song!

Jennifer Marie Land

I'm so jealous of the amazing $1 girly goodies you found…if only I had girls. Do I need to have the excuse of daughters to by them?! Well I know for a fact the boys would love that octopus!


I'm so happy that you put that maxi dress photo up. It kind of looks like you are trying to smuggle the rest of your family in there… or maybe hide a doobie-smoking cookie monster.


Just saw your 'photography' page in your emporium. I shoot Canon, too! Any longer lenses you like? I want a little something new; longer than my 50mm. 'little something' as if it was just some pocket change. Maybe I should start selling my work to raise the funds for a new lens, to shoot more work, of course!

alexis maia

I live in the Bay Area and have for all my life. I LOVE reading posts about other people's vacations here because it reminds me of all the super cool stuff waiting for me right outside my doorstep! I am taking my little girl to Japantown to.mor.row. Thanks for sharing Jaime.


Oh, next time we go to the city we'll definitely go to Japantown! I love it anyway, but my daughter needs bunny shaped eggs!

paisley and lace

Recently we've been going on adventures to SF since my daughter and her husband moved there not too long ago. Some of the same places. Good job sneaking a picture at the crazy amazing Paxton Gate!


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