Tag Archives: San Diego

“Mangia Mangia” at Bongiorno’s Pizza in Poway Valley Center!

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Hometown eateries are always a great find because they’re like hidden gems.  My sister and I have been discovering fun places to eat up near where she lives in Rancho Bernardo, and Bongiorno’s Pizza in the Poway Valley Center is a tasty and affordable choice for Italian cuisine.  Our entire lunch meal, which included our main dishes with garlic knots, drinks and dessert only came to $29!  There were so many great choices, which solidifies a return trip with our families!

If you would like a great and affordable Italian dining experience, Bongiorno’s Pizza is located at 13332 Poway Road, Poway CA 92064 and they can be reached at (858) 679-3278.  They also do deliveries within 5 miles.  Cheers!

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Bongiorno’s has a cozy feel, with lots of pictures of New York.  Isn’t that pizza clock awesome?

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I had the spaghetti with meat sauce, and my sister had the baked ziti.  Both were really good, and we loved the garlic knots!

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“Leave the gun, take the cannoli…”

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This is absolutely one of the best deals at Bongiorno’s: the Dough Bites.  They are deep fried dough rolled in powdered sugar, and come in a small pizza box.  The entire box was only $4.99 and so great hot and right out of the box!

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FTC Disclosure:  I received compensation to patronize a business at Poway Valley Center.  Although I did receive compensation, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.

(Most photos by Rholnna Jiao)

Modern Map Art: San Diego

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I have been working with my husband on enhancing our bedroom since we’ve been married.  He got a great start a couple of years ago when he decided to get all of our records in order by putting together shelving and created a wonderful wall space showcasing our love for music and travel.  London, Paris and New York are always represented, because it’s so easy to find murals, maps and cityscapes of those major international cities.  As much as I love those cities, especially London, I also adore my hometown of San Diego.

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This San Diego city street map by Modern Map Art is the perfect way to incorporate my city into our decor, without detracting from the simplicity my husband and I crave.  This print comes in four different colors, but this black & white version complements everything in our room, and I love that my hometown is beautifully represented.  Pictured is the 16×20 version, but they come in five different sizes from 8×10 to 24×36.  Modern Map Art has over 500 renderings of maps from all over the world, so I’m sure you can find one of your favorite city, or maybe for someone special as a gift.

Thank you Modern Map Art for the lovely print.  It holds a pride of place in our room!

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FTC Disclosure:  I received product in exchange for a product review for Modern Map Art.  Although I did receive product, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.

Lunch With the Girls at Oggi’s in Rancho Carmel Plaza

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It’s not everyday that I get the chance to go out and spend an afternoon with my sister, Rholnna, and my niece, Mei-Lin, so it’s wonderful when that opportunity happens.  Since my sister’s family lives in Rancho Bernardo, I headed north a couple of weeks ago and we decided to eat at Oggi’s Pizza & Brewing Co., located in Rancho Carmel Plaza in the Carmel Mountain Ranch area.  Oggi’s is a family spot that my husband, son and I like to frequent because of their delicious menu and sports bar surroundings.  I’ve watched quite a few San Diego Chargers games at Oggi’s!

I’ve always had their pizza, sticking with favorites like The Works or The Heavy Weight.  For this outing, I decided on the Prosciutto Mac & Cheese because I have this secret goal to try a “mac & cheese” dish at every restaurant that offers it!  I’m glad I strayed from my norm because this version was absolutely delicious.  The three-cheese blend elbow pasta, baked with crispy prosciutto, broccoli and crushed red peppers looked great in the menu description, and was even better on my plate.  I guess I’ve met my new favorite! My sister and niece both felt like pizza for lunch, but had different tastes in which ones they wanted, so it’s great that Oggi’s offers several sizes, including a personal size.  We had a fantastic time, but it’s easy when there’s great food in a fun atmosphere!

Oggi’s Pizza & Brewing Co. is located at Rancho Carmel Plaza, 10155-10195 Rancho Carmel Drive, San Diego, CA 92128.

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Prosciutto Mac & Cheese

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Personal Size “Create Your Own” Pizza

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Kids’ Mini Cheese Pizza

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FTC Disclosure:  I received compensation to patronize a business at Rancho Carmel Plaza.  Although I did receive compensation, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.

(Photos by Rholnna Jiao and myself)

Get Your Stroll On!

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Last month, I attended a special blogger private preview party of Stroll’s new location!  I had a great time celebrating with owner Katie McCarthy and my fellow San Diego Style Bloggers!

Stroll is located in Little Italy and it’s a great new space that they share with Craftmossphere.  Prior to the brick & mortar shop, Katie used to own the fashion retail truck called Stop Shop and Roll (post featuring her truck here).  After trying out this venture for a year, she opened Stroll in its first location back in 2014.  At the end of September this year, Stroll re-opened in its new location, just a few blocks down, still on India Street.  I took a few pictures of the festivities, which included bites, sips and more importantly, shopping!  I bought a great new dress there, which will be perfect for fall, and I’ll be sure to put up an outfit post featuring it soon.

Be sure to head over to Stroll in their new location for some fantastic boutique shopping!

Stroll Boutique

2360 India Street, San Diego, CA 92101

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The new location is lovely, with everything on trend!

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The mules were made with an infused bourbon.  So delicious!

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I felt like a boho butterfly with these wings by Craftmossphere!

(Photo taken by Rhea of Sew Stylish Rhea)

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The first 10 bloggers received a fantastic gift bag, which had a beautiful plant from Craftmossphere (below)!

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Bloggers Gonna Blog:  It was great to celebrate with old & new blogger friends!

Left to right (top): Lindsay of Affordably Accessorized; Brittany of Pennies into Pearls; Ashley of Ash Poppe From Wear to Where; Nihan of Style with Nihan; Devon of Seventeen Dresses; Rhea of Sew Stylish Rhea; Lilia of Curls and Fashion

Left to right (bottom): Katie owner of Stroll; Gray of GILGU; Moi; Bel of Bunk Beds and Mascara

(Photo courtesy of Lindsay of Affordably Accessorized)

Fashionably Late: June & July 2016 Events!

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Yes I know, it’s me again, LATE as usual!  It has been very crazy lately with lots of work events, dealing with exterminators and the newest addition to the family: Joey, who we adopted from Clear The Shelters!  This “Catching Up” post will cover June and July, then I’ll get through August in another post.

Have a great weekend, cheers!


“LIVING IN STYLE” AT POTTERY BARN, FASHION VALLEY – 6/12/16

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In June, I attended the “Living in Style” event hosted by stylist Dean Hall and Autumn Ajirotutu of WAGS (who also has a blog, Temptasteious), at Pottery Barn at Fashion Valley.  She is the wife of Seyi Ajirotutu, who was formerly with the San Diego Chargers and most recently of the Philadelphia Eagles, but is now a free agent.  They both styled some fantastic tables in-store, and Autumn baked delicious treats, which Dominic very much enjoyed!


SAN DIEGO COUNTY FAIR – 6/18/16

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Yes, that is Chicken & Waffles on a Stick and it was everything I hoped it would be!

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I think my hubby wants that Steelers neon sign, what do you think?

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Our brave boy, always ready to try something new, like holding a frog as big as his head!

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I don’t think I documented our adventures at The San Diego County Fair last year on the blog, but I always do everything in real-time if you follow me on my Instagram.  In addition to the Chicken & Waffles on a Stick, I also dove into the French Toast Bacon Bombs head first because it’s what you do at a fair!


COMIC CON INTERNATIONAL – 7/23/16

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Power Puff Girls IRL (sort of)!

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Adventures in South Park:  Not sure what my husband is doing in the picture below, but I think it has to do with Santa Claus?!

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As we did last year, we ventured around outside the world-famous Comic Con because tickets are not as easy to get as they were, once upon a time!  But we still had fun because they’re just so much to do and look at all around the San Diego Convention Center and we were pretty exhausted by the time we got around to it all.

Just for fun, here are my passes from previous years, when you could walk up to the box office and purchase them on the day of the Comic Con.  Those were the days!

Old Comic Con Passes


CLEAR THE SHELTERS – 7/23/16

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For new adoptive pet parents, wonderful free services are offered from their first vet visit to their first grooming session.  We took Joey to Preen 2 Pristine and he got an adorable little bandana after he was groomed fresh and clean!

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Right after the Comic Con, we decided to adopt our newest family member from the Clear the Shelters event.  Meet Joey, our 1.5 year old Chihuahua mix!  He is amazing and we didn’t even have to “potty” train him, so someone must have taken good care of him when he was a puppy.  The description on his cage stated he was good for kids 8 and older, so the handler allowed us to play with Joey prior to making the decision, and so she could see if Dominic would be compatible with him.  Joey and Dominic played well together, and now Joey is a part of our family!

We absolutely love him and we’re so glad we adopted!


MEETING ERICA STOLMAN OF FASHION LUSH AT UNO DE 50, FASHION VALLEY – 7/30/16

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Free gifts with my purchase below!

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At the end of July, I stopped by to meet Erica of the blog Fashion Lush at her Uno de 50 event at Fashion Valley, who is absolutely adorable and sweet in person!

This was my first time really getting a look at the Uno de 50 jewelry up close, and they have a lot of very cool silver pieces.  I liked the skull bracelet I purchased because the leather was brown, and I got a few cool “gifts with purchase” like a shirt, Godiva gift card and another bracelet!

Checking Out The Carlsbad Flower Fields & Premium Outlets

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I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but I have been spending a lot of time up in Carlsbad lately.  Although I’ve lived in San Diego my whole life, I rarely got the chance to get to know the North County because when I was younger, it always seemed so far away.  That has definitely changed, and I was recently invited as a blogger to re-explore a couple of my favorite places in Carlsbad during a media day:  The Flower Fields and The Premium Outlets.  I remember once going to The Flower Fields with my dad because he was such a plantsman.  Then I went a few times after, most recently last year (post here).  But this was the first time I actually rode the tractor and toured the entire grounds of The Flower Fields in-depth, really learning about the family behind the beautiful gardens.  The Ecke Family currently owns the land and we had the pleasure of Paul Ecke III giving us the tour of his family’s farm.  There really is so much more to explore at The Flower Fields, as you can see in the pictures below.  The Flower Fields will be open until May 8, and you can purchase tickets here.

After exploring The Flower Fields, bloggers were treated to lunch at Blaze Pizza, then toured the Carlsbad Premium Outlets with Terri Mannes, General Manager and Janissa Reyes, Director of Marketing and Business Development, both of Carlsbad Premium Outlets.  Thank you to Noelle of Curator PR for the invite and to everyone at The Flower Fields and The Premium Outlets for a fun-filled day of exploring and shopping!

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Fun Facts about The Flower Fields:

– There are over 70 million flowers!

– Most of the flowers in the main field are ranunculus, also known as the Persian Buttercup.

– Ranunculus are native to Asia and are normally a cold season plant.

– The seeds are kept in a 32 degrees cooler, then planted.

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Our souvenir bouquets of beautiful ranunculus to take home!

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Paul Ecke III mentioned they purchased all of the pieces in their Santa’s Playground from the original Santa’s Village in Arrowhead.  He had a bidding war with Paul Rubens (aka Pee Wee Herman) on one of the mushrooms!

Carlsbad Flower Fields 2016

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Being silly with Laura of Laura Neuzeth at Santa’s Playground!

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In addition to Santa’s Playground, kids can pan for treasures at The Carlsbad Mining Co!

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We didn’t get a chance to try it, but I want to come back with my husband and son to take on the Sweet Pea Maze!

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Events can be held at Ecke Family Barn, which has an additional seating area for an outdoor affair!

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The Ecke Family are known for their poinsettia, grown beautifully in their greenhouse.

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I’m sure it’s the influence of my dad, but orchids are one of my favorite flowers, and The Cymbidium Orchids Greenhouse had some gorgeous ones that I’m sure my father would have loved!

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My humble attempt at emulating Anton Corbijn’s photographic style (blurry forefront, clear background).

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Paul Ecke III, Angelica Banales of IMW Agency and grower Jess Williams of Mellano & Company, our hosts and tour guides at The Flower Fields.

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Lunch c/o Blaze Pizza, which makes artisan pizzas from their established menu or you can have them create a custom pizza from their selection of toppings.  That blood orange lemonade is fantastic!

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(Photo courtesy of Carlsbad Premium Outlets’ Twitter page)

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All of the bloggers who attended that day, including some of my fellow San Diego Style Bloggers!

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Somehow I always end up at Kate Spade when I shop at the Carlsbad Premium Outlets!

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This was an awesome goodie bag!

(All photos taken by me, except where noted)

FTC Disclosure:  Bloggers were treated to a tour of The Flower Fields, and we received a gift card as a courtesy to enjoy the Carlsbad Premium Outlets, but not as compensation for this post.  Although I did receive a gift card, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.

A Fun Night Out: The Murder Mystery Company

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I’m always looking for and thinking of fun things to do with my friends and family that are bit out of the normal dinner or amusement park.  I recently had the opportunity to experience a night out with The Murder Mystery Company at The Old Spaghetti Factory in Downtown San Diego.  I had always heard about The Murder Mystery Company, but didn’t truly understand what exactly what it was about.  So I thought it would be a fun way to celebrate a date night out for my husband’s birthday!  The Murder Mystery Company hosts several events throughout San Diego and there are different themes.  The event we attended was “Midnight at the Masquerade” where guests are encouraged to don attire appropriate for the theme:

The rustle of silks and feathers under muted conversation was probably the last thing heard by the tragically and unexpectedly deceased at the Annual Billionaires Club Masquerade Ball. With a mystery under each feathery façade, unmasking the killer may be quite a challenge. It’s up to you to determine which partygoer is guilty, bring this crime to justice, and save the party!

Attend the Billionaires’ Club Annual Masquerade Ball and help get this soiree back on track by trading clues with your guests, gathering information, and solving the crime before the masked menace gets away! Evening wear, ball gowns, Venetian masks, suits, and tuxes are what to wear to this high class night of masks and murder. Get ready for a glamorous evening of mystery, intrigue and, murder.

There are several different types of tickets to purchase including General Admission and Early Access (the price differential allows earlier access).  We had the Gold Circle Access, which includes preferential seating, a “Mugshot Momento Set”, and 30 minutes early access.  All ticket levels include the show and a three course dinner (drinks not included).  We really liked our seats because we were right in the middle of the action, directly in the area where most of the improv takes place.

To have the most fun, you have to participate.  Each table has a person who will be directly involved in the action, meaning they will play an actual character in the mystery that will need to be solved by the end of the evening.  There are books at each table with clues for your table’s character, and the “money” at each table will be used to purchase clues from other tables to help solve the mystery.  Tables have “investigation” time where your table can interact with any other table or their characters, and each table has a scribe who will ensure your clues are documented.  At the end, all tables turn in their “whodunit”, and the winning table gets bragging rights for solving the mystery.

We really enjoyed the direct involvement of the improv actors, who never break character throughout the performance.  As I mentioned previously, you will have the most fun if you are active with your table, and get up and really roam around to get the definitive clues you need to solve the mystery.  I won’t give away too much because it’s really something that you have to enjoy for yourself.  Deon and I already know from this experience that it makes for a great date night, but I think it would make for a great “Girls/Guys Night Out” or even family night if you have kids who are old enough to participate.  I’ve included some pictures from the evening, including our “mugshots”.  Thank you to The Murder Mystery Company for adding a great alternative for a night out in San Diego!

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Are you ready to play?

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The awesome improv cast of The Murder Mystery Company!

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How do you like these mugs?

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I wore my fabulous vintage opera coat that I bought from La Femme Chic Consignment Boutique!

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FTC Disclosure:  I received complementary Gold Circle passes to attend a show.  Although I did receive complementary passes as a courtesy, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.