While our friends back east battle another blizzard, I'm out in San Diego this week shooting a story for Better Homes. Jaithan's here, too, so it was the perfect opportunity to catch up with friends like Melissa Anderson and Betsy Bracken of Bixby & Ball, a super stylish home store in Solana Beach.
Melissa and her husband David live in a gorgeous house in nearby Encinitas where last Sunday they summoned the troops for a fun seafood boil at dusk.
When we arrived, the sun was just beginning to set over the Pacific. Two words about the views out back: A-MAZING.
Here's our friend Kevin leading the way.
Down at the beach, two good friends from the blogging world, Amy Meier and Grace Sorenson, greeted us with hugs. (Remember this pretty kitchen Amy designed for a story I produced in Woman's Day?) We even got googly eyes from Amy and Kevin's adorable new baby Lilly!
After clinking glasses with old friends, grazing on hors d'oeuvres and watching the sun slip gloriously into the ocean, we headed back the house.
Over the deck, Melissa and David had strung pretty white lights and lined their picnic table with kraft paper.
As soon as Melissa poured out the shrimp, clams, mussels and corn on the cob from the boil...
...I got to work on the lobsters.
I love how Melissa let the fresh food be the star of her table. Simple...pretty...perfect!
After nestling fresh drawn butter and lemons in the mix along with hot buttered garlic bread, dinner was served. (Lilly, in the distance, couldn't wait!)
I have to say: sharing a meal this way really brings people together. I can't wait to try it myself this summer!
After finishing every last bite, we headed back into Melissa's pretty living room for dessert by the fire.
Her mother was good enough to whip up a delicious dessert for us with fresh cream and berries. I even have the same vintage brass and enamel tray!
Thank you, Melissa and David, for such a fun, beautiful and delicious evening.
I only wish I didn't have to head back to Wintersville so soon!