Exploring Auburn’s Historic Charm, Aperol Margaritas, a Book Giveaway and DIY Chair Cushions

Today on Weekend Meanderings history meets charm in Old Town Auburn, refreshing Aperol Margaritas, recovering chair cushions DIY and a just-released book giveaway.

Happy Weekend Friends!

It’s time for the weekend post with Kim and Elizabketh.

Our weekly roundup of inspiration and goings on.

This article includes affiliate links; if you click on a shopping link and make a purchase I may receive a commission. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Wrapped gift on woven mat.

How was your week?

Mine was full of house maintenance and repair.

Starting with unclogging our backed up kitchen sink.

Semi-annual HVAC maintenance.

Annual tankless water heater maintenance.

And all three happening at exactly the same time.

Update: For those asking, we highly recommend Leap Frog Plumbing & Moore Mechanical (HVAC/water heater work).

Camelia bush blooming in early spring.

Order is restored and I managed a few fun things too … and a DIY.



Niece Shelby and I took a short road trip to Old Town Auburn to meet up with her sister, my niece Sophie. And Sophie’s two littles. Haddie, almost three, and Rett, just turned one. A couple of years ago I shared Sophie and Chad’s beautiful, intimate family wedding.

We met up at one of our favorite spots, The Pour Choice. A popular local hangout and a great place to stop on the way to and from Lake Tahoe.

I always order the biscuit with butter and honey. Shelby had avocado toast, which is Jim’s favorite too. And Soph had the prettiest little deviled egg combo and some sort of breakfast sandwich. Haddie and Rett shared a poppy seed muffin, but I think most of it ended up on the floor to the delight of a cute little dog that escaped from her table to assist with clean up.

Macha latte.

Old Town Auburn is a totally charming gold rush era town dating to 1849. It’s fun to walk around soaking up history and wandering in and out of the eclectic mix of shops.

Map of old town Auburn.

Haddie wanted to visit ‘the rock store’ otherwise known as Back Country Jewelry where she got some hands on experience.

Little girl playing with bin of rocks.

Across the street, The Front Porch is a popular home store … currently packed with fun Easter and spring related kitchen and decor items. Haddie selected three bottle brush style little chicks and was very proud to carry her own shopping bag.

We walked thru Ragged Glory Trading Co. full of vintage clothing, handmade goods and local art.

The Historic Courthouse is a beautiful landmark building. A guided walking tour of old town meets at the courthouse Saturday’s at 10am. You can also take a self-guided or virtual tour.

Mom, aunt and two littles in front of Auburn historic courthouse.

Niece Sophie has become an expert sourdough bread baker and brought loaves for me and Shel. Maybe I can talk her into sharing her recipe and method with us.

Homemade round sourdough loaf.




Don’t be shocked, I did a DIY. It doesn’t happen often, but this is one of those rare occasions. I recovered an old chair. Jim helped. A lot.

Old dining chair with throw blanket and magazines in seat.

This sweet little chair is a family heirloom and functioned as my nightstand in the late 80’s/early 90’s. And it was in the late 1980’s that I last reupholstered the seat cushion. I remember picking out and ordering the fabric (which I still love), and somehow figuring out how to get the job done. There was no YouTube back in the dark ages.

Fast forward 30+ years and this little cutie had fallen on hard times. About three years ago I resurrected her and dragged her into my office where she’s been sitting ever since waiting for me to figure out what to do. About once a week Jim asks ‘what are you going to do with that chair?’ Well, this week it came to me. There’s a perfect spot for her in our bedroom … and I’ve been holding onto a small remanent of Schumacher’s Sinhala Linen Print fabric used for our bedroom Roman shades. I told Jim my idea. Astutely realizing that his efforts to send my little treasure to the dump were futile, he went the the garage to get a screw driver and staple gun. An hour later, voila … my sweet little chair has a new life.

If you’ve never recovered a chair, it’s easy. Obviously … because I (we) did it. But it was my idea.

Here’s a simple tutorial from HGTV. I ordered  cambric dust cover fabric as a finishing touch for the underside of the cushion (to be attached with upholstery nails or staple gun).



In last Saturday’s post I shared my newfound love for Amore Pacific’s Treatment Enzyme Peel Cleansing Powder. I received a comment from reader Deb that DHC has a very similar facial cleanser, Face Wash Powder. Of course, I Googled it immediately and decided to order a bottle to compare.

DHC facial cleaners on bathroom vanity.

For the past two mornings I’ve used the DHC Face Wash Powder and it pains me to say that it feels very similar to Amore Pacific’s Treatment Enzyme Peel Cleanings Powder. Why do I say it pains me? Well … the Amore Pacific product is $68 (for a 1.9oz bottle) while the DHS Face Wash Powder is $13.50 (for a 1.7oz bottle). Yikes, that’s quite a price difference. The Amore Pacific is slightly larger quantity, but hardly justifying the must larger package and price. The Amore Pacific products feels just a tad bit smoother and has a wonderful, subtle scent. The DHS has no detectible scent. DHC recommends their facial cleansing powder as a second step in their double cleanse regime.

Previously unknown to me, DHC is a Japanese skincare brand that’s been around about 40 years. Amore Pacific, founded in 2003, is a Korean brand focused on the benefits formulating green tea extracts as a ingredient in their skincare products.

DHC and Amore Pacific facial cleansers on bathroom vanity.

Here’s what each has to say about their facial cleanser.

Amore Pacific –

Our best-selling powder-to-foam gentle exfoliating cleanser is infused with Hyaluronic Acid and green tea probiotic-derived enzymes* that help hydrate and helps strengthen the skin’s moisture barrier while cleansing for radiant, smoother-looking skin.
*Enzyme extracted from green tea lactobacillus ferment lysate.

Benefits: Helps to gently lift away dirt, dead skin cells and unclogs pores to reveal skin that’s visibly smoother and more radiant.

Immediately after use:
– Cooling Effect:
∙ Skin temperature decreased by 39.74°F temporarily after washing*
– Cleansing effect of ultra-fine dust:
∙ 93.7% cleansing rate of ultra-fine dust pollution particles2
∙ 66.5% decrease in the amount of ultra-fine dust on the skin*

  • Gentle yet effective exfoliation
  • Skin appears visibly smoother
  • Visibly brightens skin tone
  • Helps to eliminate clogged pores
  • Hydrating after cleansing



Just add water to this powder formula to create a luxurious foaming lather. Protease enzyme gently exfoliates for a smoothing complexion. Lavender flower and licorice root extract calm while honey and sodium hyaluronate leave skin feeling soft and hydrated. Gentle enough for daily use, this face wash is great a second step of the Japanese double cleanse regimen (after cleansing oil).


  • Gently exfoliates and hydrates for a smoother complexion
  • Softens skin with honey and sodium hyaluronate
  • Calms with lavender flower and licorice extracts
  • Lightweight powder formula is great for travel
  • Gentle enough for daily use
  • Suitable for all skin types, especially oily and combination skin
  • Foams into a rich lather when used with Foaming Mesh

Full ingredient list: zea mays (corn) starch, maltitol, potassium myristate, sodium cocoyl glycinate, sodium cocoyl isethionate, sorbitol, protease, dipotassium glycrrhizate, glycyl glycine, silica, water/aqua/eau, alcohol, honey/mel/miel, sodium hyaluronate, lavandula angustifolia (lavender) flower extract

After all is said and done, I’m sticking with the Amore Pacific cleanser. It feels and smells a little more luxurious. That said, the price difference certainly gives me pause.



Stefani Bittner and Aletea Harampolis’ beautiful new book is out … The Fragrant Flower Garden!

I’m giving away one copy! Enter to win by subscribing to the blog and leaving a comment below with your favorite garden flower. Drawing on Tuesday, March 12th … I’ll email the lucky winner!

The Fragrant Flower Garden books sitting on raised bed garden ledge.



Jim found a simple and totally delicious Aperol Margarita recipe at @cocktails … did you even know there is such a thing?!

Aperol Magaritas next to platter of chips and salsa.

We made them last night … check out my how-to-make-it Reel here! By the way, you can find my cute Shoreline Cocktail Shaker at Ivy Cove. And get 20% off site-wide using code SPRITZER20.

Recipe for Two Drinks – 4 oz tequila, 2 oz Aperol, 2 oz lime juice | Add ingredients to ice filled cocktail shaker. Shake well. Strain into crushed ice filled glasses and garnish with lime. If you like a salt or sugar rim, by all means go for it. I used this Golden Demerara Sugar. Jim prefers salt.


Odds & Socks ~

Filoli debuted a new podcast – Morning in the Garden

We’re approaching the home and garden tour season! One of my favorite tours is the Lafayette Juniors Lifestyle tour coming up on May 4th. Tickets on sale Monday, March 11th.

Last week I shared the fabulousness that is Gil Schafer III’s latest book, Home at Last. It was serendipitous when I stumbled upon a wonderful PBC Design in Mind episode featuring the architect … Unlocking the Mysteries of Place.

Not only is it Spring Forward weekend, but it’s Oscars weekend (Sunday at 4pm). Will you be watching? Print your Oscar ballot from link in this article.

Current Favorites ~


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And that’s what I have for you today.

Let’s visit Kim and Elizabeth to see what’s inspiring them.



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If you missed last weekend’s post, you can catch up here.

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Until next time, cheers from Snowberry!

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  • I’ve never heard of Face Wash Powder. Will check it out. My favorite flower for cutting and pollinators is the Zinnia. They’re so reliable and so many types and colors. And so easy to grow from seed.

    • Hi Nanci, I think you might like the cleanings powders. I agree, Zinnia’s are beautiful, and colorful … I didn’t know they were good pollinators. Can’t wait for spring and all the flower blooms. xo

  • I could totally relate to Jim asking weekly, “What are you going to do with that chair?”! My husband does the same thing when he wants me to work on some project. I can usually ignore it for a couple months and then I break down and, like you, have him help me do what needs to be done. Our very first apartment dining chairs were painted wooden chairs that we stripped, refinished with wood stain and recovered the seats. I found a pretty Williamsburg upholstery fabric remnant for $10. We were so poor! That was 40 years ago. A ton of work, but those chairs were repurposed many times throughout the years with new seat upholstery. Always love your posts! They make me smile (and often laugh out loud).

    • Hi Kelly … and thanks! We have to have a sense of humor, right? I used to love hunting for remnants in fabric stores. I could spend hours there. Those were the days. Chairs are so easy to recover … and it’s fun to change things up. No need to wait 30 years. Ha! xo

  • Juliet, I love your chair project! I am not a very handy/diy person but once in awhile I take on a project, typically when my mom is in town to help.
    The kiddies are getting so big! They are adorable. It looks like a fun way to spend the day with your nieces.
    I have not heard of either of these face powders. May I ask what you think the benefits are for your skin? What were you looking for when you first purchased the Amore Pacific?
    The Fragrant Flower garden looks like a beautiful book! I love peonies, and savor every day they are in my garden and in the house. Zinnias are my favorite flower that is easy to grow and looks beautiful all summer long.
    Have a wonderful weekend Juliet!
    xo Elizabeth

  • Hi, Juliet –
    Husband and I have discussed recovering our dining room chairs as they don’t “match” anything else in the room, but are comfortable. Finding the fabric will be the key. Thanks for the video link and inspiration! So great that you had that pretty matching fabric.
    Favorite flower? That’s a tough one! Seems like it should be fragrant in keeping with the book, so I will say jasmine! Love the vine up the side of the deck.
    Have a great weekend!

    • Julie … I related, finding the right fabric isn’t easy. I was luck to have a remanent from shades in same room. I remember looking for upholstery fabric when I covered my dining chairs eons ago. It took forever and once I ordered it I was so nervous I made the right choice. These projects aren’t for sissies! Thanks for your Fragrant Flower entry … I love jasmine and it’s just a great filler in the yard. Good pollinator. xo

  • Gee that sour dough bread looks delicious. Hope you get the recipe! And what cute littles!

    Have you tried Beauty Counter products? They have a charcoal cleansing bar that does what your products do without the container that can’t be recycled. First you use a cleansing oil. Then the charcoal bar. Prices are fair because you buy online and there is no middle man markup. Step three is moisturizer. They guarantee a 30 money back refund. Soon all their packaging will be recyclable. I have used their line for over a year and like it. So improved my aging skin.

    • Leslie … I’ll ask Sophie too share her sourdough recipe! I have tried and love Beauty Counter … mostly I’ve used their makeup, not skincare. But I think it’s a great brand. Charcoal is intriguing … I’ll investigate! xo

  • Your blog is such a highlight for me. You teach me so many interesting things. I love all flowers but the Shasta daisy is probably my favorite. It’s such a happy looking flower. And no trouble to grow which is an added benefit.

    • Jenny, a Shasta daisy is cheerful and a wonderful cut flower too. Thanks for entering. And thanks for reading and enjoying the blog. I appreciate you! xo

  • How could I ever pick a favorite?! Perhaps hellebores because they bloom in the winter when I’m longing for spring and all the other flowers in my garden to pop up!

    • So hard, right?! I love hellebores too. They’re the first flower that blooms in our yard each year … and signals spring. In fact, I may go pick a small bouquet right now. Thanks for your entry! xo

  • Love your post. Thank you for the skin cleanser comparison. We are getting ready to plant our Sonoma vegetable garden. My four year old grandson will be here for Easter. He is very excited to plant pumpkins and tomatoes. We need ideas for flowers too. Fingers crossed. Happy Saturday

  • Love the new look to your blog. If I could grow any flower in the garden it would be freesia which smells heavenly.

  • My favourite garden flowers are roses!!! I absolutely love fragrant David Austin Roses and in our small city garden lot we grow over 30 different varieties!
    I use a Babor cleansing powder which sounds a lot like the two you tried…i use it once or twice a week as it has exfoliating properties which help keep my skin looking good.

    The chair DIY was a success! Love that teamwork.

    Hostess of the Humble Bungalow

  • Hi Juliet:
    Would you recommend the company that serviced your tankless water heater? Many thanks,

    • Cindy – yes – I’m sorry for the delay. I actually saw your comment and updated the post because I know others will want to know too. Moore Mechanical served our water heater … they’ve served (and installed) our HVAC for nearly a decade. Leap Frog Plumbing is who we call for sink backups … they are wonderful and may do water heater service too. Thanks for asking, I love both local vendors and I’m so happy to recommend them. xo

  • Oh my! So many to choose from but my sentimental self says Hollyhocks. They were my Mother’s favorite. They are such a cheerful flower! Thanks for the chance for the gorg book.

  • Your chair turned out darling and that aperol margarita looks beyond yummy! We have been meaning to check out Auburn! Will do it on our next trip to Tahoe or Oregon!

  • I love many flowers but cosmos are my favorite. So easy to grow from seed and wonderful for the cottage garden mix. Also can’t beat bachelor buttons for a pop of bright blue! Wishing, hoping for an early spring!

    Would love a post on sourdough bread making. That’s a gorgeous loaf!

    • Catherine, thanks for your entry. Cosmos are beautiful and so good in bouquets. Not sure I know what bachelor buttons are but I’m going to google. I love a blue flower. Our Camellias and hellebores are blooming now but we keep getting rain which is not great for the pedals … although fabulous in the long run. Hope you’re having the best week! xo

  • Before reading this, I had just reordered Tatcha cleansing rice polish which I love, except for the price. I will check out these alternatives next time around. My favorite garden flower is the clematis with its vibrant purple colors. I’m hoping to give mine a more upscale obelisk to climb this year. Thank you for another great Saturday read.

    • Debra, I’ve heard to the rice polish. How does it feel on your skin. Some products we love can be pricey and I justify it by saving on other things like moisturizer, etc. Clematis is a favorite of mine too. I haven’t been successful growing it here, but I love it. Thanks for your entry! xo

    • Kim! I love geraniums too! And they do really well in our backyard which makes me love them even more. Thanks for your entry! xo

  • Growing up in Hawaii, my favorite flower was and still is the fragrant gardenia. It never fails to evoke many happy milestones in my life where this flower was used in bridal bouquets, mother of the bride corsages, graduation leis and floral arrangements. Thank you so much for the opportunity to win and add this beautiful book to my gardening library.

  • Great springtime…well nearly…post! A rather weird March here on eastern Vancouver Island. I have 2 moss lined window baskets near our entry. I just filled them with primulas, tough & pretty flowers that withstand the ups and downs of temps and rainfall during our present inconsistent weather. They can be popped into the garden to reappear next spring. And then a varied mix will be arranged in the moss baskets for warmer times. My favourite flower has to be geraniums with all of their splendid varieties. Great red blooms in clay pots to look provencial, or salmon & peach as stars in multi plant hanging baskets. White arrangements are beautiful , and especially so in twilight .
    Love your chair…my kind of restoration project…and have done so in the past. Very satisfying project.

    • Hi Cath! We’re having a weird March too. Just wrapped up a couple days of rain and it may be fairly warm later in the week. I need to look into primulas for my window boxes. Geraniums are a favorite of mine too. I love the color and they do very well in our backyard. Especially the ivy ones. Thanks for your entry! xo

  • I am missing my flowers, still winter in NH. My favorite is gardenia. I have reupholstered many a dining chairs , benches. Fun to see the finished piece.

  • Re: your niece Sophie’s question of what to do with her wedding dress, this may be too late but here it is anyway. When I was ready to give away my gown, I contacted the drama department at a local college and offered it as a costume. Like Sophie’s dress, mine was simple and elegant and could be used as a wedding dress, or as the basis for a different costume. I had enjoyed attending the college’s plays for many years and was happy the gown lived on with a new purpose.

  • My favorite garden flower is a spiller — the lowly white verbena. It fills out nicely, flowers continuously, no deadheading needed, and is a reliable flower for container gardening. Thank you for your blog. I look forward to reading it every week!

  • Juliet what a fun day trip to Auburn! I also love Press and need to get back there on the next Tahoe trip. I have never been to the cute bite clothing store. Have to check it out. I love the rock store. What cuties! Love the little pigtails. You have cute family.
    I love how the chair came out. That fabric is beautiful and I am so glad you kept your pretty chair. Maybe I should try it with my grandma’s chair that is also in my bedroom.

    I very much appreciate the comparison with the powders. I love Amore Pacific and didn’t know about the other brand. What is obvious is that I need one of these in my routine!

    The garden book looks great! I also love the Aperol idea. I think it could be a good Oscar cocktail . They color is always so attractive isn’t it? I like the sugar rim too.
    Have a lovely weekend Juliet!!

  • My fav flowers are peonies. I have some from my grandmother, my mother in law, and my mother’s gardens. They live for decades. I recently gave some divisions to my daughter in law and hopefully they will continue to be passed down thru our family. Love your blog.

    • Sherry, peonies are so beautiful. I remember back in the day watching Martha Stewart plant them in her garden and wondering if I might ever successfully grow them. The answer to that is no, but I buy them every season. Thanks for entering … and reading the blog! xo

  • It’s difficult to list just one favorite flower! I am truly a “flower child”. I love zinnias, cosmos, marigolds in my veggie garden, peonies, ranunculas, dahlias and on and on. Thanks for the gift book offer.

    • Hi Doris … I love all those flowers too. Marigolds in the veggie garden help prevent pests, right? Thanks for entering … and reading the blog! xo

  • I can’t wait for it to warm up here in Oklahoma so I can get my hands in the dirt. My favorite flower is the Calla Lily but for cut flowers I love Dahlias.

    • Ah, Dahlias … so beautiful and I look forward to the season. As for the Calla Lily, ours are ready to bloom. You must have a lovely flower garden there in Oklahoma. Thanks for entering. xo

  • My favorite garden flower is from the Daphne shrub, its one of the first flowers to bloom here in the northwest. It is so fragrant, it always cheers me up during our rainy and cloudy days during February and March.
    I enjoyed reading your blog this evening, lots to explore further, thank you!

    • Hi Debbie … thanks so much! I’m not familiar with a Daphne shrub but will look it up. It sounds wonderful and there’s nothing like late winter blooms to perk us up before spring. xo

  • Hi Juliet — I always enjoy visiting with you each week! You had a fun outing with two cuties! The recovered chair looks great! That fabric is beautiful. I have been toying with trying the cleansing powder. Maybe I will give the cheaper one a try to see how I like it. Thanks for sharing! Cheers to daylight savings with an aperol margarita!

    • Definitely start with the less expensive option … I’ve been using it up before going back to the AP. Happy book publishing week! xo

  • Hi, I’m Juliet … welcome to Make Mine a Spritzer where we talk about all things home décor, classic style and more! I’m so happy you’re here!

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