Mashka Jewelers with Gemologist and Author Elizabeth Van Tassel, books with gems displayed.

Mashka Jewelers, San Francisco

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I discovered wonderful Mashka Jewelers, truly a new favorite treasure by the historic area of Fisherman’s Wharf, where seagulls fly high, swimmers brave the brisk waves with Alcatraz in the distance, and fog burns away to reveal historic vessels and blue waters. I was with friends visiting San Francisco at the iconic Ghirardelli Square, the […]

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Great Fake, Great Escapes – Royal Wedding Repost

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In honor of the Royal Wedding, I’m re-posting this fun tidbit about the royal crown. Did you know there’s a mystery right there? What are your plans for the wedding this weekend? Did you know that the large ruby, called the Black Prince’s Ruby, on the front of Britain’s Imperial State Crown isn’t a ruby […]

Desert flowers from Anza Borego Springs with Resilience Expert Elizabeth Van Tassel

Insights From The California Desert Super Bloom

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Searching for the super blooms sounded like a great adventure, and we settled in for a long, scenic drive ready to see the transformation we’d heard so much about in the California desert. As we approached Anza Borrego Springs, the mountainous terrain changed to rocky high hills dotted with cactus and rams romping on the […]

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Fourtané Jewelers delights with stories behind gems

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On a cold, rainy day in Carmel, CA, I tucked inside and found a whole other world with the wonderful, historic Fourtané Jewelers. As a gemologist, I’m always looking for exceptional jewelry, and as a resilience expert I love to focus on beauty. I was especially thrilled to spend time with their master jeweler who […]

So many great tools and treasures are on the way for Thorn & Vine readers!

Tools and Treasures For A Great New Year

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Thorn & Vine blog features three key areas to ramp-up your new year dreams and reenergize your family during this first quarter of 2017. Life 101 has tips for living well and intentionally with your choices and planning. Life Stories dives deep with books and inspiring stories of resilience. And in A Beautiful Life, you’ll […]

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Seven Steps to a Resilient Christmas

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Have you ever wondered if your holiday could be more about gathering and connecting rather than collecting stuff? I’ve got seven of my favorite tips to share with you below to bring a sense of hope and refreshment to you during the holidays this year. Discuss what kind of holiday you want to have as […]

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Creative Family Times At Sawdust Art Festival

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Having difficulty accepting that the holidays are here? Looking to restart your excitement for the Christmas season, finding joy that bubbles up from within? Try visiting a local art festival in your area. We discovered art festivals when my kids were much younger and my husband and I wanted to begin sharing our love for […]

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New Frozen Musical Medley at Hyperion Theater

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As part of living a beautiful life, it’s important to seek out uplifting moments for the whole family, especially with all of the turmoil going on in the world. Come find some refreshment and truly “let it go” watching captured moments of Disney’s production of Frozen at the Hyperion Theater in California Adventure. You can […]