I Am A Neighborhood Snob


The Mission is fast becoming one of my favorite neighborhoods, and on Saturday Kevin and I spent some time exploring it a bit more than normal. We had lunch and moseyed around, and every time I’m in that part of the city I become more enamored with it. It’s home to some of the best restuarants in all of San Francisco, great boutiques, and the always wonderful Dolores Park. If the SF rental market wasn’t so ridiculous right now, there is a good chance that Kevin and I would have headed over that direction awhile ago. However, having a two bedroom rent controlled apartment in a neighborhood we love means we wont be moving anywhere anytime soon.

One would think that because the Mission is one of my favorite neighborhoods in the city that I would get over that way often. I am embarrassed to admit it, but that is not the case. I am a lazy lazybones and tend to consider anything more than a one mile radius from my apartment “far.” When you live within walking distance of a million places to eat, drink, and shop, it’s sometimes hard to summon the motivation to go anywhere that requires a bus or taxi. Driving is usually not an option because parking is a bitch, and, well, alcoholic beverages are often included in our outings.

After spending Saturday afternoon in the Mission, Kevin and I took a long drive around San Francisco. We went through Bernal Heights and up to Glen Park, coming back down through Twin Peaks and Upper Market and then heading back home through Hayes Valley. And I realized something…

I am a neighborhood snob.

It’s true. I actually think this is a fairly normal phenomenon in this city… people get very territorial about their neighborhoods. Two blocks in a city this small can make a BIG difference, and when you love the area you live in, you want to share this love with everyone else. After all, San Francisco living doesn’t come cheap.

But on Saturday I realized that so many of the neighborhoods that I’ve written off are actually pretty awesome. Granted, some are still a bit too “far” for my preference, but they all have their own unique San Francisco charm and appeal. I’ve lived in this wonderful city for almost seven years, and I love that it’s still surprising me. It might only be seven by seven miles, but it’s a pretty fantastic seven miles. Some of the best seven miles in the world, if you ask me.

And so I’m vowing to spend more time exploring this city that I am so privileged to call home. Expand my San Francisco horizons. Spend more time discovering new places in new neighborhoods, and step outside of my Russian Hill – North Beach – Marina lazybones comfort zone.

Do you ever get stuck going to the same places because of convenience? SF people, I’d LOVE to hear some of your favorite neighborhood spots!

ritaFebruary 25, 2013 - 7:26 am

i think we all get like that! i’m a neighborhood and a suburb vs. city snob. as my friends move to the burbs (many of which are closer to downtown than parts of the “city”) i’ve had to learn to accept them… and while they may not be for me, they aren’t that bad!

i also love the mission and can’t believe how quickly it has grown and how expensive it is! my cousin has an amazing apt there but i cannot get over the rent.

Julie / BoundFebruary 25, 2013 - 7:37 am

I was definitely a neighborhood snob when we lived in Boston. Beacon Hill = awesome. Cambridge = THE WORST. Haha. I may be a little bitter being tethered there for two years for school. I think it’s totally worth it to get out and explore though! Tell us what you find so I can explore the next time we come up!

JessicaFebruary 25, 2013 - 7:56 am

I’m a neighborhood snob too! I hate going anywhere too far! But it’s true, sometime you find gems outside your comfort zone!

StephanieFebruary 25, 2013 - 9:11 am

I’m a neighborhood snob, too, for the same reasons you mention. The Mission is our neighborhood’s neighbor so I head over there fairly often but, I have to admit, I’m a sucker for our own little neighborhood. I can walk to local grocery stores, the library, an independent bookstore, quite a few non-Starubucks cafes, and a whole lot of yummy restaurants and cute dive bars. Why would I want to drive or (gasp) take muni anywhere else? One of my goals for this year was to take better advantage of living in SF and explore the city more. I’ve only been here a year so there’s a lot for me to discover. If you ever want a partner in crime, let me know. :)

nancy @ adore to adornFebruary 25, 2013 - 10:18 am

OMG…I’m a snob!
Well…sort of. I was born and raised in SF so I have to admit that I tend to stick to what I used to do as a kid. I love exploring but somehow, it doesn’t feel like “home” when I do. Isn’t that weird to say?
I don’t like going to tourist stops (and when I used to work near the wharf…I often found it so frustrating!) but I love to eat so usually my explorations revolve around food. =D SF is such a great food city!
It’s so funny how the Mission is changing. I feel old saying this but it was so not that way before. BUT that’s a good thing it’s changing. I love getting tacos there! =D


BeckyFebruary 25, 2013 - 1:31 pm

Girrrrrl. I am SURE you could rock the bf jeans. I felt frumpy at first, but I think the comfort just got me. My pair are literally 6 years old + they probably need to be replaced.

I was a neighborhood snob in Philly so I can relate to this. I would venture to other neighborhoods to check out restaurants but otherwise kinda stayed in my little hood. SF looks amazing and I need to get there and check it out–looks gorgeous.
Thanks for your sweet comment!
The Pumpkin Spot

AliceFebruary 25, 2013 - 1:37 pm

Oh god I’m exactly like this- though I’m a town/ village snob. Or even a county snob to be completely honest… but I’m sure all the places I’m a bit “ew” over are lovely! And to me, a city of seven mile by seven miles sounds ENORMOUS. My ex lived on an island that was 6 miles by 4- and that boggles my mind!! xx

ChristinFebruary 25, 2013 - 1:55 pm

i’m such a snob about NYC neighborhoods and like rarely leave mine because like…who wants to take the subway if i dont have to go to work? not me. also, i need to spend more time in SF. i’m from the east bay but we rarely made it out there and in college i just went to get drunk and you cant call that seeing the city. lol.

Camille ImanFebruary 25, 2013 - 5:03 pm

I venture into different neighborhoods quite often in SF mainly because I have to. I live in the East Bay which makes me a bit neutral in the snobbery department. I moved to the bay area last year because I love to explore and so I find it adventurous to wander around different neighborhoods in SF because it’s all new. I do have my favorites picked (pretty similar to yours), possibly even where may live next.

MoFebruary 26, 2013 - 7:35 am

I am SO nervous about our apt search this weekend! In DC, I’m not to much of a neighborhood snob, but definitely a VA vs DC snob. There is a very clear divide between the Dc’ers and the VA’ers here – us DC people NEVER go into VA, which causes some hostility between the two groups. It’s all pretty silly when you think about it, but yeah, I’m still not going to Virginia.

StefiMarch 1, 2013 - 1:37 pm

Neighborhood snobbery is definitely a trademark of San Francisco residents! I think it’s because every neighborhood is so different and has such a different personality. I for one live in North Beach and think it’s one of the best neighborhoods! 😉 I also tend to think “Oh, that’s too bad” when I hear people live in Sunset or the Richmond…

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Art + Wine = A Great Time

Random Person: Oh wow! {said with clear appreciation and fondness}
Me: Uh, I wouldn’t exactly say WOW.
Caitlin: I think they were talking about Shannon’s, not yours.

On Tuesday night me and some girlfriends went to an art and wine event in San Francisco.
We had snagged a groupon for it a few months ago, and with the expiration date looming,
we signed up for the only class available: a still life of a fruit bowl.

Basically, you show up at a bar, order a glass of wine, put on an apron,
and sit down in front of your own canvas and personal painting space.
They teach you about the paints and paintbrushes, etc. etc.
and then they teach how you to create the class painting.

In our case, this was Cézanne’s “Still Life With Apples”

The original.

My friends and I were going more for for the experience and less for the actual lesson in painting,
but once we arrived it was clear that this was not the case for others.
Other people in the class were getting into it and taking it SUPER SERIOUSLY.
They did not seem to enjoy our consistent cacophony of laughter,
nor did they find our references to phallic imagery nearly as amusing as we did.
They were there to PAINT!

I was not there to paint.
I was there to drink wine with my friends and hang out and laugh and maybe paint a little.
In the beginning I tried my best to follow along and do as the instructor suggested,
and every time he would walk by he would say “Great! FABULOUS!”

But then I got bored.
So instead of painting apples and pears, I started to do my own thing.
I added a lime! An avocado! I decided that the wine in my jug would be a rosé.

When the instructor came back and saw that I was painting my wine pink, he was silent.
I told him I was going freestyle.
He did not look pleased.

Cézanne, I am not.

My friend Lindsey arrived super late, looked around, and said “screw this.”
Instead of even attempting to replicate the Cézanne, she proceeded to do as follows:

My friend Shannon, however, was a painting master.
Her fruit… looked like actual fruit!
People kept coming over and oohing and ahhing and complementing her.

Caitlin and I were not so impressive.
Ours looked as though we were five-year-olds attempting a bad paint by numbers.

But at least we tried, unlike other people…

Overall, we had a fabulous time, and I’d totally do it again.
My only complaint was that wine was not included. You had to pay for it separately.
I mean, it’s touted as an ART AND WINE event,
so one would think that your $45 bucks would include at least one boozy beverage.
Their motto is “art + wine = a great time” after all.

But even without the free booze, it was still a good time.

The Details:
What: Art Social (formerly Art Uncorked)
Where: Locations throughout the Bay Area
Cost: $45 a person (currently discounted through Living Social!)
*Note that this price is for the class only, food and wine are additional

Art + Wine = A Great Time!!!


Patty McClainFebruary 22, 2013 - 7:25 am

I love that you added a lime and avocado. You must have been craving Mexican food!

JessicaFebruary 22, 2013 - 8:24 am

I think I would have taken Lindsey’s approach. I am artistically challenged. Seriously, the wine wasn’t included?! That’s kinda false advertisement. Glad you ladies had a good time! Some people are too serious!

JulieFebruary 22, 2013 - 8:58 am

This looks so fun! And I think your painting is beautiful, don’t let any crazy instructors bring you down 😉

Michelle LimFebruary 22, 2013 - 9:26 am

HAHAHAHAHA. I just laughed extremely loud looking at the original then scrolling down to your painting! I mean, yours is beautiful of course.

I did this once with Verner… let’s just say he was like your friend who did the “real life fruit” painting and mine was more like yours :/

But yes, the wine part was the best part. You guys didn’t bring your own bottles??
….we brought four. Yes, FOUR bottles of wine.

SerenaFebruary 22, 2013 - 9:33 am

@Michelle – It was hosted at a bar, so you weren’t allowed to bring your own wine! You had to buy it there! Totally false advertising, if you ask me!

nancy @ adore to adornFebruary 22, 2013 - 1:27 pm

aw this looks like fun! =) What a blast…even without the wine! Love that your teacher was silent…haha

Keep Calm and Coffee On

Print from JCSpock Etsy Shop


Sometimes long weekends leave me feeling energized and relaxed,
ready to get stuff done and take on the world!

Other times they leave me with a major case of the Monday blues,
tired and exhausted and feeling like I just want to sleep the week away.

Unfortunately, today I’m feeling like the latter.

I had a great weekend. I didn’t do anything of particular interest,
but I just had a really fun San Francisco weekend.
Brunch with friends in SOMA. North Beach beer festival. Paella dinner party.
Sun and good food and friends and beer.

It wasn’t anything out of the usual, but for some reason,
it has left me feeling exhausted.

I’m grateful it’s a short week, because the only thing making my Monday blues bearable
is the fact that it’s actually Tuesday.

I have a super busy week ahead of me,
one so busy that it almost seems impossible
to get everything I need to get done in just four days,
but I’ve just got to trudge through.
Keep calm and drink coffee, right?

Because before I know it, next week will be here,
and I will be on my way to Hawaii.
I can do it!

What’s that, you say? You didn’t know I was going to Hawaii?

Well I am. Kevin and me. For a wedding in Oahu.
To say I’m excited is an understatement.

I’m sure I’ll be sharing lots of details about this soon,
but right now I’m just too tired.

I hope you all had a lovely holiday weekend,
and that you’re feeling better than I am today.

Anyone else out there whose weekend left them feeling totally drained?

StephanieFebruary 19, 2013 - 9:10 am

I feel you. I’m totally exhausted today and just want to lay on the couch and watch movies. But I hold the weather more responsible than the 3-day weekend. Today is so gloomy!!

SerenaFebruary 19, 2013 - 10:42 am

@ Stephanie – it is SO gloomy today! It’s like the weekend was a tease!

Jenn from Much to My DelightFebruary 19, 2013 - 11:09 am

Gah! So jealous you’re headed to Hawaii!! I would kill to go back there right about now. I always work on those three day weekends, so I can’t empathize with you there, but I definitely know the drained feeling…February in NYC will do that to a person. Hope you get everything you need to get done before your fun trip! Hope that will perk you right back up!

Julie / BoundFebruary 19, 2013 - 11:25 am

Yay Hawaii!! Do you have your beach reads all lined up?

MoFebruary 19, 2013 - 11:47 am

Oooooh Hawaii! One reason I’m excited to be in California is that we’ll be that much closer to Hawaii! I’m guessing this means you’ll be out of town when we’re apartment searching though? Have such a great time!

JessicaFebruary 19, 2013 - 12:04 pm

Hawaii- what?! So jealous. We might be going in November- but that is forever away! You can make it through the week! Since the weather sucks right now, I’m ok with working! I’ve already had coffee and tea and it’s only noon!

AliceFebruary 19, 2013 - 12:18 pm

Oh I’m so jealous of your trip to Hawaii!! I wish we’d had a long weekend here- instead, I started a new job and feel EXHAUSTED. Not to worry though, not long til next weekend! x

nancy @ adore to adornFebruary 19, 2013 - 1:11 pm

say what?! Hawaii???? How amazing! I’m so envious! I have been fortunate to have gone to Hawaii twice in my lifetime, but I have never gone with my husband! I want to do that so we can share memories of the island together! =) haha. Corny eh?
Have so much fun and drink lotsa drinks for me! =D

nicole marieFebruary 20, 2013 - 1:14 pm

totally normal to feel more tired after a long weekend. 1 more day till friday!

ps. for some reason when you comment on my blog now, i can’t respond to you from the email. i thought before i could and i don’t know what changed!

Fun Facts about Presidents Day

Happy Presidents Day friends!

When I think of Presidents Day,
I rarely think of taking time to celebrate and honor the presidents of this nation,
and instead I think more about how I’m going to spend my three-day weekend.

Like most random holidays, I tend to know little about their background.
My pure joy of having an extra day off work supersedes any interest I have in the history behind the holiday.

But in an effort to become a little more educated,
I decided to do a quick Presidents Day for dummies, and share it with you here.
You can thank me later.

Fun Facts About Presidents Day


  • Presidents day was created in 1885 in order to honor our first president, Mr. George Washington, who was born on February 22nd, 1732.
  • Though commonly referred to as “Presidents Day,” its official title is still “Washington’s Birthday.”
  • Up until 1971, the holiday used to be celebrated on Mr. Washington’s actual birthday, February 22nd. In an effort to create more three-day weekends (thanks Uniform Monday Holiday Act!), it is now always celebrated on the third Monday in February.
  • Though the holiday was originally created with the sole purpose of honoring our very first president, it has now come to be viewed as day to recognize and honor all presidents, past and present.
  • The holiday is also viewed as a tribute to the Purple Heart medal, an award established by George Washington for soldiers injured in battle. The award was not actually put into effect until 1932, on what would have been Washington’s 200th birthday.
  • Today, Presidents Day is one of the biggest “sales” weekends of the year.

And there you have it.
Some background on Mr. Washington’s Birthday.

I will be spending my Presidents Day at home trying to catch up on errands and clean the house.
Super fun stuff, let me tell you!
What are you all up to?

Julie / BoundFebruary 18, 2013 - 5:57 pm

Awesome. I think everyone just assumes today is for Lincoln and Washington…tough luck, Hoover.

Rebecca PrillFebruary 19, 2013 - 5:14 pm

Thank you for this post! I am actually a bit ashamed of myself that I didn’t give it more thought. I majored in history/education in college and I too had the day off.

Recently stumbled upon your blog and have to say that I am loving it so far :)

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Happy Valentine’s Day lovelies!

I’m one of those annoying people that love Valentine’s day.
Even when I was single I loved it.

Granted, I’m apt to love any holiday that centers around sweets and wine,
but Valentines Day was always particularly fun for me.
I guess I just enjoy a day that celebrates love, as cheesy as that may be.

Last Valentine’s Day Kevin was out of town,
so I ended up crashing the plans of two of my best friends.
It was a blast.

Fortunately for me, Kevin is in town this year.
We are not doing anything major,
just going to a tapas restaurant in our neighborhood and snuggling with wine.
A night of good food and good wine.

Otherwise known as how I spend most of my weekends.

No matter what you’re relationship status is,
I hope you have a lovely, and loving, Valentine’s Day!

What about you?
Are you a Valentines lover or hater?
Any big plans?

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nancy @ adore to adornFebruary 14, 2013 - 9:33 am

ah…I have to admit, I am not the hugest fan of V-day…but I certainly don’t hate it either. Have a great Valentine’s Day!! xo!

SerenaFebruary 14, 2013 - 9:44 am

@Nancy – Yeah, I’m cheesy like that. My love of it has definitely faded as I’ve gotten older, and I hate the crappy heart shaped chocolate boxes, etc., but I still think it’s a fun excuse to do something nice and have a good date night. And when I’ve been single, it was fun because it was always a crazy girls night.

StephanieFebruary 14, 2013 - 9:48 am

I love Valentine’s Day too! And I blogged about it myself. I’m worried that my Valentine might have to work late – so plans are still up in the air. Enjoy your night!

Julie / BoundFebruary 14, 2013 - 12:03 pm

I love it! My mom used to sneak chocolates underneath my pillow tooth-fairy style when I was little…pretty much sealed the deal.

CourtneyFebruary 15, 2013 - 12:01 pm

Happy day after Valentine’s Day!

Our V-day sounds very similar. My boy and I went out to dinner at a new restaurant in our neighborhood, and then dessert for our favorite banana pudding at a different restaurant that we also love.

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