A Day Trip: The Sandman Hotel, Santa Rosa's Best Kept Secret

A Day Trip: The Sandman Hotel, Santa Rosa's Best Kept Secret

24 hour getaways are like mini vacations for the mind and soul. They are like little tiny pockets to hide away in when the world is getting a little too rough on the edges. This year I didn’t travel as much as the previous years because I was knee deep leveling up in my career and getting my life coach certification and truthfully I’m feeling the pangs from it. Travel is one of those things that light my soul on fire and its honestly good for my personal wellbeing. This year instead of indulging on larger getaways I fed my hunger for travel with little 24 hour staycations.

Celebrating Global Wellness with Four Seasons Aviara

Earlier this month we celebrated Global Wellness Day at the Four Seasons Aviara in Carlsbad, a small little coastal town just north of San Diego. It was our first trip as a family this summer and we decided to hop on a plane the day after the girls ended their school year. Probably not the best idea, but hey leave it to us to try something at least once. We missed our original 6AM flight. It was stressful a bit chaotic, but it all worked out.

We arrived to San Diego and checked into the Four Seasons a day before Global Wellness Day. For those of you who don’t know, Global Wellness Day was established in Turkey as the “first” day dedicated to living well. It’s celebrated on the second Saturday of June every year. The purpose of Global Wellness Day is to ask the question, even if for just one day, “How can I live a healthier and better life?”, to direct the thoughts of both individuals and society towards “living well” and to raise awareness.


The moment we checked into Four Seasons Aviara we were immediately greeted with the most amazing service and healthy snacks provided by Chef James from the on site restaurant Seasons. The perfect snack that we needed before we headed off to the pool to unwind before our family paddle board adventure.

One of the things I appreciated about the pool menu from the Four Seasons Aviara was the healthy options they offered such as the raw veggie wrap that I ate that was filled with garbanzo beans, sprouts, hummus, and a whole lot of greens. I like to think that my family eats “healthy-ish” and having a variety of options that fills everyone’s needs is always a must for us when choosing a place to eat or stay on vacation.


After our pool time we did one of the most fun things we could’ve ever experienced as a family, stand up paddle boarding. It was our first time experiencing this. If you’ve never tried stand up paddle board, I highly suggest it. It’s actually a lot easier than it looks and there’s something so peaceful about gliding over the water. Stand up paddle board lessons were a part of the Global Wellness Day offerings, but something that Four Seasons Aviara could set up for their guests at any time. The lessons happen at a lagoon not too far from the hotel and they arrange transportation to and from the lagoon.

After our stand up paddle board lesson, we headed back to the Four Seasons to freshen up for dinner at the Seasons.

The Seasons is located at the Four Seasons Aviara and features a farm to table menu that emphasizes on what’s local, seasonal and organic. We had an incredible dinner experience filled with delicious food and exceptional service.

Four Seasons Aviara hosted a range of different activities for Global Wellness Day from yoga to mala bracelet making. They also offered a different brunch menu for the day that offered healthier options to celebrate Global Wellness Day and to show their hotel guests how easy it is to integrate healthy and tasty options. We participated in the Family Yoga session they had, Olivia wanted to make mala bracelets, and we got to do a cooking class as a family which was my personal favorite activity.

The Plant Now, Thrive Tomorrow cooking class with Chef De Cuisine James Waters was our favorite activity. It was a hands on interactive demonstration that the girls and I got to enjoy with a small intimate group. Joanna Traiilov taught us the importance of incorporating seeds into our diet and how beneficial it is in helping balance out women’s hormones during their menstrual cycles. The girls loved every moment of this cooking class. I think for any parent who’s struggling to integrate healthier options for their older children or teenagers, cooking classes are one way to teach them how to be healthy.

As we ate the grain salads that we made, Chef James prepared an Ahi Poke dish for us that was perfect snack for our afternoon pool session.

We only spent two nights at the Four Seasons Aviara, but I could’ve stayed for an entire week! The service was amazing, the food at the Seasons was absolutely perfect, and they had everything on site that I needed from a gym, yoga deck, and two pools to enjoy. Not to mention Seasons which also offers an incredible dining experience in the kitchen and the kitchen counter which allows you for a more intimate dining experience with the ones creating your meal.


The main goals for Global Wellness Day are

  • To recognize the value of our lives

  • To pause and think, even if for just one day of the year

  • To be free from the stress of everyday city life and bad habits

  • To make peace with ourselves

  • To raise awareness about living well and increase motivation, not just for today, but for the remaining 364 days of the year

I would have to say that the Four Seasons Aviara definitely hit all those points for me and gave me a moment to sink in and drop into myself. I left feeling inspired to evaluate some of our family’s wellness lifestyle. I feel like a broken record saying this, but 2019 hit us hard as a family. Life has been incredibly busy in a seasons of growth and change as individuals. Our first year as high school parents, I went back to school, Jonathan has been working on changing up and rebranding his photography business, and Olivia still remains the joyful little girl that she is.


We couldn’t have been more grateful to take a day to slow down, break free from a little bit of the stress, and pause to take a moment to reevaluate the things we value in life, our wellbeing. I’m thankful for the generosity of Four Seasons Aviara for inviting us to celebrate Global Wellness Day with them.

We were able to get away from our day to day lives to focus on our wellness as a family, but you can do also do this together anywhere. Wellness isn’t just about trips or getaways, although for me its a huge part of my own self care practice, wellness is an active process of becoming aware of and making choices towards a healthy and fulfilling life. Look at the different areas in your life that you want to improve and start with small little steps to do that. It could be as simple as getting into a better sleep routine.

A Day Trip: San Francisco to Sonoma

A Day Trip: San Francisco to Sonoma

I’m a huge fan of day trips. It’s a chance to get away to a destination that’s right in your backyard. Sometimes we don’t get to discover some of the hidden treasures just outside of our home city because we’re so busy planning out adventures that require extensive transport and advanced detailing. Everyone deserves a mini-break from their lives, even if it is only 24 hours.

My Travel Essentials

The past few weeks have been a whirlwind. We moved into our new house, move to a new city, the girls transferred to new schools and we're just finally finding our groove back in our new space. Somehow it feels as if we finally found this feeling of home and happiness that most people talk about. Sadly, shortly after moving into our dream home I've hit the most amount of travel I've done in a month.

With all this travel coming up I was packing up some of my must-haves and quickly realized there are a few things that I cannot leave home without. 


This might be super silly but I feel more at home when something familiar hits my sense of smell and for me that's my shower/bath time essentials. I recently became obsessed with Le Labo Fragrances, Santal 33 is my jam. Soulcycle recently collaborated with Le Labo and came out with this amazing gift set, which has now been in my bag any time I leave home.  



I love the sun and thankfully my complexion can soak it in. But lately, as I've started to age I've noticed that the sun and I aren't as close as friends as we used to be. My snowboarding trip last weekend was a reminder that I need to always carry a good sunblock with me. I recently got turned on to Supergoop. Supergoop makes this really awesome setting mist that sets your make up and includes an SPF 50. Perfect for touch ups on the go.



My body has been craving a lot more gentle movement rather than super intense sweat induced exercise. I'm not sure if it's because I'm getting older or because I've begun to shift my thinking into exercise being an optional action, but movement an essential one. I love to stretch my body after a flight or long road trip which is where my yoga strap comes in. I use the Align Strap from Manduka, but honestly, any yoga strap will do. Not pictured are a set of resistance bands that I love using. My go to are from a brand called X-bands that I do with this booty workout. 


Eating healthy while traveling can be a challenge. Airport food is rarely nutritious or good for you and of course, one airport meal won't set you back drastically. However, packing a few healthy options like fresh fruit, veggies, or even a meal will help keep you on track. I love packing proteins bars as my in-flight option.  A few of my favorites lately have been Perfect Bar and GoMacro. Both are made with simple ingredients and packed with lots of flavor.  


5. MY


I often travel without my husband and kids for work which is often the perfect opportunity for me to spend some time planning, writing, and reflecting. 


One of the best things about working for yourself is the flexibility you have to create your own schedule, but one of the downfalls is that you typically start your business as a team of one and you're always working nonstop. I love my Away luggage because it comes with a portable USB charger. During the holidays they release a mini Away luggage which was perfect for all my cords, chargers, and everything I need to keep my tech alive and strong!

What are some of the things you can't leave home without? 

Soul seeking in Baja, a Todos Santos Travel Guide

Soul seeking in Baja, a Todos Santos Travel Guide

Somedays your soul is screaming to take you away from the life you're living, not because you hate it or because you're so done (well maybe) but other times your soul needs a quick 3 day break to become re-inspired with life.  One of my good friend and fellow creatives, Meg,  sent me a text one day back in spring and it said, "Flights are on sale on Southwest to Mexico, let's go!" and without any hesitation I said, "Ok, FUCK IT, booking flights now." And so was the start of a spontaneous getaway with little to no planning on what we would do, see, or eat in Cabo San Lucas. Months passed after booking our flights and we still hadn't planned a place to stay, so again with little research, Meg called me one day and said, "I booked Hotel San Cristobal, I'm not really sure what's around there, but figured it's better for us to have somewhere to sleep, than nothing, and Vogue said it was cool."