Dinner with Friends
A design-focused, quarterly lifestyle magazine celebrating California's Central Valley, one dinner party at a time.




It’s been a minute since we last blogged. But there’s no better time to get it going again than Thanksgiving. It’s a time when we get to let loose and exhale all the gratitude we’ve been storing throughout the year. And a blog is the perfect place to spill those beans of thanks.

This year has been tough for us personally (we set a lot of big goals for the magazine and didn’t reach many of them) and in general (the devastating fires still burning at both ends of California, the continued division of the country). Does that mean we have nothing to be thankful for? Heck no. We are grateful.

On top of simply still existing, which sometimes feels like a huge win, and our family and friends who we could not live without, we’ve got new content coming. Our third dinner party (coming very soon) is particularly close to our hearts, because at the center of it are two gents we call friends. This gathering wasn’t so much about a particular theme as it was about personal connection. We are so excited to tell you more about these two great guys, the friends who joined them for the evening and what they are all doing to better our beloved Central Valley.

This latest dinner party also gave us a chance to collaborate with a photographer we hadn’t worked with before. We’d been following Erica Houck on Instagram for awhile, so when she agreed to shoot the dinner party, we were beyond excited. Each photographer brings a different perspective to things, and Erica’s photos (see below) have a warm glow to them that’s perfect for showcasing a fall feast. We’re still thanking our lucky stars she wanted to collaborate.

And then there are all the little things, which really aren’t so little: a roof over our heads, good health, the abundance of choices we get to make everyday, love (and even heartbreak), good coffee, long drives, falling leaves, food in our bellies (sometimes maybe too much), and YOU, our dear readers. We could go on.

Now that we’ve spilled our gratitude, maybe you will, too. We’d love to hear what you are grateful for. And, if you’re feeling inspired to take your gratitude to the next level and give back, here are some links to get you started.

To help victims of the California wildfires:

The American Red Cross

LAFD Foundation

International Association of Firefighters

California Community Foundation’s Wildfire Relief Fund

To help people in the Central Valley:

Fresno Rescue Mission

Poverello House

Central California Food Bank

Valley Teen Ranch

The Heart of the Horse Therapy Ranch

Kendra Gilbert