Wine Country Weekend: Part I

Wine Country Weekend: Part I

Hello, friends! I hope you all had a terrific weekend.

Friday morning, Bill and I packed up the RV with a few belongings and all four dogs and drove over the hill to the other wine country, Napa Valley. We stayed in Calistoga for two nights.

Once we settled into our camping site, we walked to the main drag, less than 3/4 of a mile away through a charming neighborhood. That’s where most of the shops, restaurants and mineral/mud baths are located. We had a late lunch of pizza and salad, then perused the shops.

We returned to the RV for a nap, then waited for Tori to arrive after work. The three of us had dinner at a Mexican restaurant. The food was great, but there wasn’t much conversing as the mariachi band was rather enthusiastic! We turned in around 10 p.m. and had a great night’s sleep.

Saturday morning, we packed up the dogs in Bill’s truck and went for a drive, heading down the famous Silverado Trail. When we came upon Duckhorn Vineyards, I asked Bill to pull over so I could get a couple of pictures for Rebekah of Cupcake Caramel. Duckhorn is her favorite wine. And I have promised to escort her and Mr. Cupcake there if she ever comes out for a visit.

We veered off the Silverado Trail to highway 29. We stopped briefly at the Culinary Institute, Greystone for a couple of pictures…

then made our way into the charming and sophisticated town of St. Helena. We spotted a sign for an estate sale and I convinced Bill to check it out.
We came upon an absolutely gorgeous home with lots of great items for sale. But what really caught my and Tori’s eyes were these fabulous tea cups for $10.

They were purchased at Shreve and Company of San Francisco.

The camera does not do the rich and vibrant colors of these tea cups justice. I am in love with them both. I’ve already had a pot of tea last night and this morning just so I could drink from them. I also scored a hardcover Marie Antoinette: The Journey by Antonia Fraser for $1…

and this glass container, made in Italy, for $2.

Estate sales at rich people’s homes are awesome!

Giddy from our new purchases, we grabbed the dogs and went to the central shopping area of St. Helena. The shopping is far superior to Calistoga and so is the people watching. I had a couple of super chic sightings, but was unable to capture any of them on my camera.

Tori and I bought some gorgeous goodies at Baksheesh, a local boutique featuring products that are all fair trade (I’ll show you in my next post), while Bill patiently waited for us with the dogs on a bench.

Tori is wearing her new hot pink and orange headband she bought at Baksheesh.
She doesn’t waste anytime wearing her new purchases!


Daisy loves to give Murphy kisses.

Instead of dropping $100+ on lunch in one of the dozens of superb restaurants in the area, we decided to eat al fresco, right next to the vineyards. We couldn’t very well leave four dogs unattended in 85 degree weather. We picked up some sandwiches, olive oil chips, water and French lemonade at Dean and DeLuca,

found a peaceful spot away from the crowds, and soaked in the beauty, while enjoying our meal.

Young Cabernet Sauvignon. These grapes will be a dark purple by late summer.

Would you believe I have more to tell you? But it will have to wait until tomorrow; this post is too long as it is!

Happy Monday!



  1. June 27, 2011 / 8:44 am

    This sounds like a glorious weekend–so glad you had that much fun! I love your Marie Antoinette book–I have a much-read copy, as it’s one of my favorite fun books.

  2. rosemarie
    June 27, 2011 / 8:52 am

    Sounds like a great weekend. What campground stay at?

  3. June 27, 2011 / 9:13 am

    What a great weekend!
    Estate sales seem WAY better in your neck of the woods. All I seem to find up here is chipped Corelle cups and Harlequinn romance novels that have been dropped in the bathtub.

  4. June 27, 2011 / 9:22 am

    Seems like a fantastic weekend! I’m so excited you were able to find an estate sale in your area! Estate sales at rich people’s homes really ARE awesome. I like the tea cups – what great colors. Random question, how were those olive oil chips? Any good? Looking forward to reading about Part II.

  5. June 27, 2011 / 10:07 am

    What a great weekend! I can’t believe we will be up there in less than 2 months. We need that vacation sooooo bad!

    We had lunch at Greystone last time we visited. It was pricey but still worth it. Your picnic looked very yummy, we will probably do more of that this time, especially after seeing all your posts with the great winery lunch breaks.

    I will take an estate sale any day over a garage sale. The last one Tony and I attended we scored. The person was a serious cook so I walked away with a couple things. Just beware of the ones that are run by a company that specializes in estate sales. Because they have to make a profit, usually the prices are inflated. Even still, I have managed to get some good deals at those. It just depends what you are looking for. Love your teacups!


  6. June 27, 2011 / 10:23 am

    st helena is so pretty. our oldest son went to college in angwin so we spent quite a bit of time visiting there, i mean him.

    sounds like a wonderful weekend.


  7. June 27, 2011 / 11:44 am

    Fun day, I am soooo jealous as Napa is where I left my heart last year (actually half my heart is in Napa and the other half in Paris) hopefully I can reclaim both one day by having a home in both places:) So beautiful in every way..looks like a special day and love St. Helena, its so charming!

  8. June 27, 2011 / 12:12 pm

    Sounds like so much fun! I would love to go on a getaway to California (sigh)

  9. June 27, 2011 / 12:37 pm

    Your weekend looked great, but I was captivated by Daisy giving Murphy a kiss. There is a Yorkie in the park that always kisses my Golden Retriever Scout. Wonder what it is about those breeds that make them love each other? Very cute!

  10. June 27, 2011 / 1:03 pm

    @Aesthetic Alterations I am adding M.A. book to my ever-growing stack of summer reads. The fact that you like it so much has pushed it into the next-in-line position!

    Have a safe and comfortable drive to OK! I’m thinking of you. xo

  11. June 27, 2011 / 1:10 pm

    @rosemarie We stay at the fairgrounds about 3 blocks north of the main street in Calistoga. They have full hookups and the location is great. Normally, we bring our bikes but the bike rack broke on the RV so we hoofed it everywhere until Tori arrived with Bill’s truck.
    They have a website to make reservations…of course it’s totally booked well in advance for the Napa County Fair, which I think starts next week.
    You can tent camp too, but it’s mostly RVs.

  12. June 27, 2011 / 1:13 pm

    @fojoy That’s why I rarely go to garage sales and the like – because I never find anything worth buying. IT just seems like too much work for too little return. From now on, if I find myself in a ritzy neighborhood and see a yard sale, I am stopping!

  13. June 27, 2011 / 1:17 pm

    @Mrs. Stranded Thank you for the estate sale inspiration. I was thinking to myself while at the sale, “Wouldn’t Mrs. S just have a field day here?”

    The olive oil chips are very good. So good, I have already scouted them out online. Amazon sells them. We bought the sea salt flavor…not very salty, but full of flavor and crunch. You don’t really taste the olive oil, they taste like regular kettle chips, but not greasy.
    I told myself they are healthy, so I ended up chowing more than I should have.
    Part II is on its way tomorrow morning!

  14. June 27, 2011 / 1:47 pm

    @LRS4AMANDA Greystone is pricey…it’s a once in a long while place for us. Did you visit their kitchen shop while you were there? It’s like a Sur la Table…lots and lots of small kitchen appliances, cookbooks, gadgets, etc. I love places like that. I wanted to shop while we were there on Saturday, but the last things I need are kitchen do-dads.

    Wherever we travel, whether it’s locally, Europe, even Hawaii, we have occasional picnic lunches. I get tired of restaurant food and I don’t like crowds, waiting or slow service (can you tell I am impatient?). It’s easy, satisfying and usually more memorable to have picnics while traveling.

    We live near a retirement community. There are estate sales each weekend. We used to go, but they are all run by the type of company you mentioned. Other dealers (people who own antique or consignment shops) will get to the sale first – way before it opens to the public – and take the best. Once I caught on, I stopped going to most of those sales.

  15. June 27, 2011 / 1:53 pm

    @the gardener’s cottage How funny that your son went to school not far from here. Bill and I drove up to Angwin a couple of years ago – just to see what was there. Besides the school and a bunch of homes, there’s not much. Luckily, St. Helena is right down the hill.

    I love our house and Kenwood, but someday, I wouldn’t mind living in a little cottage not far from the main drag in St. Helena. It’s such a lovely town.

  16. June 27, 2011 / 2:05 pm

    @The enchanted home Napa is gorgeous…but I have a special preference for Sonoma (where I live. There is the tiniest of rivalries between our regions). I left half of my heart in Paris, too! Maybe my half and your half should get together – they are probably lonely over there!

  17. June 27, 2011 / 2:06 pm

    It is beautiful here…there is so much to see in California. Hopefully, you can come visit our great state one day soon.

  18. June 27, 2011 / 2:09 pm

    @what’s her bucket Daisy is the only one who does that kissy thing. Coco wants nothing to do with the big dogs.

    When our other Golden’s were alive (Buck and Buffy) Daisy would lick their mouths incessantly. It was kind of weird, actually. I don’t know what’s all about. I thought it could be food related because Daisy is such a little porker, but that can’t be it because there is no food involved. Maybe it’s her way of playing with Murphy and Louie? It’s cute, but I think the boys get tired of it. I know I would if I were them!

  19. June 27, 2011 / 3:42 pm

    What a fabulous fun, relaxing and successful (the tea cups) week-end!!! Those tea cups are great!! and a MA book .. the perfect pairing …. Your furbabies look they were having a great time too!!! xo HHL

  20. June 27, 2011 / 3:51 pm

    Your giveaway just gets better and better. I love the tea cups you found at the estate sale. I like going to these sales and trying to piece together a mental image of the owner from the items they owned.

  21. June 27, 2011 / 3:54 pm

    what a wonderful weekend. Love Tori’s scarf!
    Also, that glass jar is fabulous! and only 2$! wow.

  22. June 27, 2011 / 6:03 pm

    What a great trip, Adrienne. You have some lovely adventues. I love your new finds. I think I may need to join you and Mrs. Stranded on trying an estate sale.

    Your area is so beautiful.

  23. June 27, 2011 / 6:06 pm

    @High Heeled Life I am in love with the tea cups! I’m having three pots a day just so I can use them!

    The furbabies has a blast!

  24. June 27, 2011 / 6:48 pm

    @Terri I think we met the owner while at the estate sale. He was in his 50’s, well dressed (casually) and you could tell he really wanted to get rid of everything. If I had wanted, I’m sure I could have gotten the tea cups for less than $10. I have to be in the mood for bargaining, and that day I wasn’t. Besides, I think the tea cups are worth every penny and then some!.

  25. June 27, 2011 / 6:51 pm

    @Laura Tori is actually wearing a headband that she bought in St. Helena, but it does look like a scarf.

    The glass container/jar was without a gasket. We found a perfectly fitting gasket at Bill’s dad’s house last night. Now I can put something in it and not worry about it going stale. But what? Oatmeal? Flour? Cereal?

  26. June 27, 2011 / 6:52 pm

    @Hines-Sight It was a great trip. How was your vacation? I realize the importance of vacations, even if it’s just a night or two.

    It would be so fun to go estate sale-ing with you and Mrs. S. Maybe someday!

  27. June 27, 2011 / 8:11 pm

    Adreienne, I personally think that your lunch was even better than a hundred dollar lunch!
    What a GREAT weekend! I am overdue for a getaway!
    Have a PRETTY day!

  28. June 27, 2011 / 8:31 pm

    @Bringing Pretty Back Hi Kristin! Thank you for stopping by. Our lunch was much better than a $100+ meal. No restaurant could get us any closer to the vineyards!

  29. June 28, 2011 / 5:44 am

    You have the most fabulous blog. It’s wonderful here. It’s like being on holiday.
    Thank you for coming by yesterday and following me. I am definitely following you now too -I love this way of life. Great photos too. Lovely to meet you.
    Carol aka Facing 50 with humour

  30. June 28, 2011 / 6:15 am

    Thank you for this post. I feel like I just had a little California vacation, a good thing since I don’t know if I’ll make it to San Diego this year. I love those teacups, so beautiful and chic and hurray for $1 Marie Antoinette! It’s a good book, which I hope to actually finish one day. I got as far as Marie Antoinette giving birth to her daughter before I had to give it back to the library, boo-hiss. I loved how Marie Antoinette was so happy to have a girl, because she knew her daughter would belong to her, and not the state.

  31. June 28, 2011 / 7:41 am

    What fabulous fun! I think I must make a pilgrimage to Calistoga some day just to taste the water!!! 😉

    The lavender festival looks fun too! We have one of those around here but I always forget to go!

  32. June 28, 2011 / 8:31 am

    @Carol Wyer Hi Carol,
    I was so pleased to have found you yesterday through High Heeled Life. I am thrilled about your new book – what a huge feat!

    Thank you for following!

  33. June 28, 2011 / 9:49 am

    @jill815 Do you try to take a vacation in San Diego each year? Do you have family there?

    I know what you mean about library books. I am STILL reading the Edith Piaf biography and it was due back last Thursday, but I must finish it before I return it.
    I am looking forward to starting the M.A. book next…but it might take me all summer to finish it.

  34. June 28, 2011 / 9:51 am

    @~ B. You can taste the Calistoga bottled water – they serve it in all the restaurants. And you can visit one of the several mineral baths and mud baths that Calistoga is famous for.
    If you ever get out my way, please let me know!

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