Make time for yourself.

Since my husband was gone for two fun vacations in a row (and I couldn’t attend either of them — boo!), I lucked out and was invited to visit Burke Williams Spa in Santana Row for the second time. I happily obliged as anyone would, am I right? Because I signed a paper at the front desk of Burke Williams, there was to be no photography in the spa at all. So instead, you’ll have to revert back to me describing the location back in October, and have some photos of the outside in this post!

These April showers better be bringing some May flowers. Let me just say that right now. The scent of spring is simply refreshing and my surroundings are blooming all over the place. A visit to Burke Williams was thee spot to go to to balance myself, relax a little and feel renewed. A few weeks ago I went in for a full body Pure Relaxation massage, where actually although full-body, I asked my massage therapist to focus mainly on my shoulder area where I thought I was feeling a bit tight. However I was definitely in heaven getting massaged literally from the nape of my neck, right down to my toes.

Burke Williams has special pricing on their massage and skin care treatments this month; which is perfect timing to spoil your Mother considering Mother’s Day is coming up in a few short weeks. I can’t wait until my Mom comes down to California to visit us (she’s literally right across the North America continent, in Newfoundland Canada for those that are new to my blog). I’ll definitely be treating her to a spa day here at Burke Williams Spa Santana Row, since it’s so close to us and I have always enjoyed every second that I was there.

Ananda Ayurvedic Treatments: 80 minutes ($169-$189 depending on location)  One of my favourite treatments of all time, I had this done in October!

The Anti-Aging Facial: Regenerate and firm your skin ($179-$199 depending on location, regularly $205+)

Mother’s Day Packages: 

Choose from either Relax, Escape, or For Two: A Special Mother/Daughter Experience. Each package includes the Passion Fruit and Agave Pedi, which uses Passion Fruit and Blue Agave Sugar Scrub to exfoliate, Honey Heel Glaze to nourish the skin, and Passion Fruit and Agave body soufflé to hydrate. Each package is offered at an incredible value, and packages are available now and vary slightly per spa location.

“Relax” with the Passion Fruit and Agave Pedicure with her choice of a 50-minute Pure Relaxation Massage -or- Spa Style facial starting at $149 ($189+ value).
“Escape” with a Passion Fruit and Agave Pedicure, a 50-minute Pure Relaxation Massage -and- a 50-minute Spa Style facial all starting at $249 ($308+ value).
“For Two: A Special Mother / Daughter Experience” welcomes mothers and daughters to share in a relaxing experience and enjoy the nourishing Passion Fruit and Agave Pedicure with their choice of a 50-minute Pure Relaxation Massage -or- a 50-minute Spa Style facial for $299 ($378 value).

Burke Williams has incredible services that you should take advantage of while you’re there. It was suggested to me, my first time there that we arrive an hour early to do so. While I didn’t arrive an hour early this time, I ended up staying a little longer after my treatment to relax in the quiet atmosphere without my cell phone at my side. The robes you change into at Burke Williams do not have pockets — which I love, because that means I can fully recharge, and relax without the feeling of needing to check my phone every few minutes.

When I was called into the treatment room with my massage therapist, she asked me how deep I wanted my massage – and although it was labeled as a relaxing massage, I wanted her to dig deep and get the knots out of my shoulders. Definitely bearable, but some parts definitely took my breath away (it was my request, remember lol… you can ask to apply as much pressure as you want with a massage), but I felt a million times lighter in my shoulders once the 55 minutes were up. Although I knew I was feeling a bit tight, I never really knew how much I needed that. I guess I simply don’t get a massage as often as one should. I can count the times on one hand how many times I’ve ever gotten a massage to be honest.

Definitely an excellent relaxing retreat for part of my day a few weeks ago, and thanks again to Burke Williams for inviting me to try out the Pure Relaxation Massage.

Burke Williams Spa
355 Santana Row #2010
San Jose, CA 95128
T. 408 241 0071
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For information on Burke Williams and to find a spa near you visit Burke Williams Spa or call 1 866 239 6635. Spa services and pricing vary per spa location.

Disclaimer: My Pure Relaxation Massage was complimentary in exchange for my review. 

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Poke lunch and a drive down Highway 9

Another day, another adventure.

One of the days I had the Mazda 6 for the week, I ended up taking a mini-road trip with my sidekick while my husband was away with my car, in Santa Barabara on a cycling trip with his buds (my car fits his bike way better since it’s a hatch). So it was just the two of us goin’ for a day drive road trip.

And Alfie thought he was the boss, as per usual. I posted this exact photo on IG last week captioning it appropriately so: I feel like Alfie is giving me that stern look from a parent, or a chauffeur, looking back at the kids telling them to behave in the back seat “or we’ll turn right around and go back home!” 😂.

First stop was to Santana Row to try out the new Poke place on the row. I’m going to admit right now that I’m not the most adventurous eater, as many already know I much prefer a meat-and-potatoes dish. I’m easy to please with simple cuisines. However, Santana Row reached out to me and since I go there tons anyway, I thought hey — why not brand out of my comfort zone and pop in.

Honestly, my full-intentions when visiting, was to select the vegetarian options. But the two managers serving me on that particular day suggested I try some of the items that were cooked (guys, I can’t do raw fish, sorry). I ended up choosing a brown rice bowl with octopus (!!!!), shrimp, crab and tofu (that was the first thing I added to my meal because I was so afraid haha! I got it all mixed together with two types of sauce/dressing: ponzu and spicy mix (which wasn’t that spicy at all, which is nice).

A view from the front door of Poke Bar, Santana Row

To my surprise I think the octopus was the best part. Until… I thought about what I was eating. I got through over half my meal and then I couldn’t stop thinking about the suction-cup arms and couldn’t do it anymore. I got weirded out! Not sure if a poke dish is for me, but I was pretty stoked I tried it. Coming from a gal who wouldn’t eat bell peppers in her 20’s! Ha! Are you guys into poke? Have you tried it before? The line-up when I was there was literally out the door, so I know it’s a pretty popular spot.

After my lunch I swung by the house to pick up Alfie and go on our excursion to check out some new-to-me places in the Mazda 6 that I had for all of last week.

I probably say this in every car write-up that I’ve talked about here on the blog. My Mazda is 10 years old as of this year, it’s definitely not in its prime but I’m not getting rid of it any time soon, either. While I enjoy driving tons of other vehicles, Mazda still has that familiarity with me when I sit inside a new one. This 2017 was no different. White interiors are totally my jam. They’re beautiful, but I can imagine they’d be difficult to keep clean especially if I cart my little Alfie, the Captain in Command around all the time. Looks pretty sleek in the machine gray metallic exterior with a parchment nappa leather interior.

We ended up checking out this vista-point lookout at the mountain range, how beautiful is it now that all the rain has made everything green again? Lol poor little Alfie waiting patiently and attentively at me, waiting for a command to come racing back to my side. Some boy.

If you are diggin’ my outfit (which will actually be featured on the blog here in a few days — the post is already scheduled out), don’t forget to scope out Coupon Sherpa (they have online, printable and grocery coupons; you can also download their app) before hunting it down in stores and shopping online, my jean-top is from Forever 21. For the most part I do a lot of my shopping online since I pay with PayPal and always use a coupon code with it to get that added discount. I also scoped out a sweet pair of suede slip-on sneakers from Steve Madden when I went to Marshall’s last night with my husband. But they didn’t have my size— online I go, get the discount from coupon sherpa, because I ain’t payin’ full price! :)

2017 Mazda 6 Grand Touring
From $30,695

I was spoiled last week — thanks to both Santana Row for lunch, and Mazda for a review car for the week, and thanks to Coupon Sherpa for sponsoring this post! 

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Shop Local Gift Guide: Santana Row

Santana-Row-headerShopping local is something I try to keep in mind not only at Christmas time, but year round. I’m doing a round-up for a Holiday Gift Guide for shopping local around the Bay Area here in California and thought it’d be helpful for those that live in the Bay Area too.

First up, my favourite spot in San Jose: Santana Row! It’s an excellent source for all the things. Whether you’re brunching with girlfriends, Christmas dress shopping on a budget or have the dollars to spend, they have it all. So I thought I’d do a themed Santana Row post based around Christmas dresses.

I always love visiting Santana Row around this time of year. They’re always so decked out in twinkly lights.Christmas-at-Santana-Row

Now, you’ll never see me wearing a dress, actually that’s a lie. You’ll rarely see me in a dress, but I found some gems at Santana Row yesterday afternoon and I even got stuck in one of them in the change rooms. My body temperature definitely rose when I was trying to remove it, I’ll tell you which one it is when I get to it :) But for now… here are some of the dresses that can easily be worn year round, and if you dig my style then you’ll probably love these as well. Most of them aren’t your traditional Christmas-style frilly red/green dress. It’s my style. I mean, only fair I show you what I’d actually wear, right?

7 stores/many different looks. Let’s get to it.

Ted-Baker-dressTed Baker| $279. You know you’re in a fancy store when they let you borrow heels for trying the dress on to see what it looks like. I think the dress is perfect for a Holiday party, and considering how pricey Ted Baker pieces are, this one is on the ‘lower’ end of his line. I’m digging the shape.

Anthropologie2Anthropologie| $138. Anthropologie is such a feel-good store. A lot of the pieces fit me so well, and make me feel awesome. Plus, velvet has made an incredible come back this year and I’m quite happy about it. I’ve always had a thing for velvet, and to be honest I loved this plum velvet dress so much I was carrying it around the store with me for a good twenty minutes deciding on whether or not to buy it. I didn’t :( I might go back for it though! I literally stole the fur vest idea from the mannequin that was showcased as soon as you walked in the store. It goes well, ya? :)

Anthropologie1Anthropologie| $148. LOL. Can you tell I’m feelin’ this dress? Sunglasses and all, hey I had to see if it worked with my ensemble! I needed to put Anthropologie in here twice. It’s my favourite store in the entire world and their pieces are always unique. This dress is definitely me. Although perhaps too casual for a work Christmas party, you could easily wear this with a hint of red to make it more Holiday appropriate. Ooooh cute red leggings and some boots? Got it figured out. Isn’t it cute?! I’m going to wait for this one to go on sale. It’s a bit

MadewellMadewell| $118. Can’t go wrong with a comfy knit sweatery feeling dress. This one was so cozy with fun almost-bell-like sleeves!

hmH&M| $49. I’ve yet to find a jumpsuit that doesn’t make me look large around the hips/stomach area. I’ve always been bigger there than anywhere else on my body, and while this is a fun bright red jumpsuit with a flattering neckline, it was way too short! It didn’t even hit my ankles. Weird. It was super fun looking, minus the shortness of it, heehe.

Kate-SpadeKate Spade| $398. Kate Spade’s dressing room is huge at Santana Row! I could do cartwheels in there. This dress is something I would wear to a formal event, and like Ted Baker, they allowed me to try on some fancy peep toe heels with the dress to get a feel for how it looks all prettied up. I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about the frilly bits on the side, but it works out well!


Free-People2Free People| navy $128/plum $228.Free people clothing are quite …. boobie. I don’t mind it, just stating the fact. The dresses are also short. Maybe they’re not dresses at all. But I kept my jeans on and tried to visualize what the items would look like with black leggings. I’m a huge fan of the velvet, as you probably already know from the Anthropologie dress above. The plum one had pockets! I really loved the fit of the two also, and both work well with jeans don’t you think?

Urban-OutfittersUrban Outfitters| $149. Such a statement dress! I love a good sparkle, and in one of my favourite bold colours, too. Red! Okay, so this is the sequins dress I got stuck in. It was a short dress hence why I cut off showing you where it ended on me. You know that sense of panic when you can’t get something off your body when you’re in a change room by yourself? Pretty sure my eyes went bloodshot and I have scratch-marks all over my shoulders from trying to remove the dress carefully but in a state of panic.

After you’re done dress shopping you definitely deserve to relax at Burke Williams Spa in Santana Row, especially after that last try-on dress I did and panicing for a few moments. Remember back in October when I surprised my husband with a treatment for us both there? It was incredible.

They have holiday gift card packages which benefits YOU if you decide to gift to someone this season. Win win. Each gift purchased will include a coveted 3-Day Spa Pass as a special gift just for you. I mean, ’tis the season of giving and receiving am I right?

There are three holiday packages to choose from *note, packages vary slightly by spa location!*:

Introduction| (yes! that’s the name of the package!) includes a luxurious 50-minute Pure Relaxation Massage or nourishing Spy Style Facial, and Spa Pedicure starting at $129 (regularly $169 and up).

Relaxation| is a rejuvenating escape that offers an 80-minute Burke Williams Massage or 80-minute Spa Style Facial with peel and Spa Pedicure starting at $179 (regularly $239 and up).

Transformation For Her| allows the ladies in your life to indulge in an 80-minute Burke Williams Massage, a 50-minute Spa Style Facial, and Spa Pedicure, starting at $279 (regularly $358 and up).
Transformation For Him| offers the special men in your life a chance to enjoy an 80-minute Deep Tissue Massage, 50-minute Men’s Facial, and Spa Pedicure starting at $279 (regularly $368 and up).

Disclaimer: I was provided compensation from Santana Row for this Holiday post. 

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