Leftover shredded beef, broccoli topped with raw milk white cheddar, homemade beef jerky, apples, cucumbers, cheese stick, and chocolate. (I left one apple at home). Not bad, eh?
Saturday was when we did our sightseeing, since we had the full day in Seattle. And we began it and (almost) ended it with some great food.
So let’s start with some food.
The breakfast at the hotel was pretty awesome, even though it wasn’t included with the room. We both had the breakfast buffet, which had pancakes (regular and chocolate pancakes one morning, and tiramisu pancakes the next), some awesome sausages, scrambled eggs, oatmeal, bacon (cooked properly, too – nice and crispy!), local smoked salmon, salamis, cheeses (I think some at least were local), fruit, and a bunch of breads (which I totally avoided). And omelets and smoothies to order – It was amazing!
The first stop we made was to (drumroll)…Costco! We had some pretty sad luggage (my piece was over 30 years old, and Dad’s luggage had one handle missing, one falling off, and the other might have been cracked). So we picked up two new pieces at Costco.
Next we had to go to Walgreens, since I had forgotten mascara and I had also run out of lip balm. (???) Since I get my mascara online, I had no idea what brands were good, so after some deliberation, I picked one out, making sure that it wasn’t waterproof. Turns out it was designed to stay on for 24 hours, so I had quite a time trying to take it off. And it clumped. 😦 Oh well.
Then we were off to Seattle.
First stop was the Space Needle. I am just amazed that this thing is 60 years old, yet it doesn’t look dated. Like, at all. It still totally fits into the skyline. And the view from the top? Great.
Next we visited Chihuly Garden and Glass. Chihuly’s glass sculptures are beautiful! I love the abstractedness, and the bright colors. Also, I love that he place several of his sculptures on black Plexiglas, and that they are in dimly lit rooms. It just adds to the awesomeness of the sculptures.
After Chihuly, we walked over to the International Fountain. A photo of this fountain had been featured on Bing a few weeks ago, and I thought it would be neat to see it. It was actually much cooler than I had expected. There was a water show to Beethoven’s 9th Symphony (Ode to Joy), which was neat to watch. The water was well coordinated with the music. At the end, the water went really high! Shortly after, a group of people came and danced on the other side of the fountain. Again, great to watch.
I had heard about Pike Place Market that morning (overhearing a conversation at breakfast), and wanted to go. You can’t get much better for someone like me (local food, local artisans, and, although I didn’t know this to begin with, old architecture). We walked through the market, but I (sadly) didn’t purchase anything (my #2 biggest regret, but my last regret – unless you count the fact that I got to the airport late for the trip home, and would have liked to change that). It was great to see the local food movement in another city. AND THEY HAVE FISH AT THEIR FARMER’S MARKET. I am jealous. The architecture of the place is beautiful, and it feels old, in a really good way. The lights are beautiful. And the variety is amazing. There were several shops selling flowers – and all the bouquets were unique and beautiful! Each one had a special quality about it that I can’t quite put my finger on. The placement of the flowers, the colors, were different than any arrangements I’d seen before. And they were gorgeous!
Then it was time for dinner. Dad had made reservations at his favorite restaurant in the world – The Metropolitan Grill. I have heard great things about this restaurant for years – and I have wanted to visit it, although I wasn’t sure when I ever would be able to. And now I was!
Dinner was AWESOME. The Met also had an heirloom tomato salad, which Dad and I split. It was completely different from the heirloom tomato salad we had at Seastar, but it was just as good. Slices of tomatoes topped with a perfectly-dressed green salad, feta cheese, and purple onions. I got a fun fizzy drink, some ginger raspberry thing which had a fancy name, but I can’t really remember it. The drink was really good, though! For my main dish, I got steak (what Metropolitan Grill is famous for). IT. WAS. A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. Dad got prime rib, which he said was really good. I believe him. It looked beautiful. We also got a side of asparagus. For dessert, we shared a flourless chocolate lava cake. Very, very tasty.
We had planned to ride the Seattle Great Wheel after dinner, but I was a little wary of going around and around in a circle after stuffing myself, but by the time we drove over there, purchased tickets, and waited in line, I was fine. And it wouldn’t be honest to tell you that I didn’t get a little scared on the wheel, but overall it was great. And the sunset. Oh the sunset. It was beautiful, over the Sound.
Then, thoroughly exhausted from a day of walking, we headed back to our hotel. I drifted to sleep watching the lights of Bellevue from the window.
The next day I went home.
Seattle was beautiful. I hope to go back someday and see more of it, as the little bit I saw only made me want to see more. And taste more, too! I feel so blessed that I had this amazing opportunity to visit this beautiful city!
(And if you ever get the chance to go, DO IT!)
[breakfast – awesome sausages-the one in front is feta, spinach, and apple (I think), bacon, and potatoes]
[breakfast, part 2: clementine, cheese, salamis, tomato, onion, cucumbers, pineapple, cantaloupe, orange, and smoked salmon]
[heading into Seattle]
Hello, Seattle, I am a mountaineer,
[almost there, crossing Lake Union (I think)]
In the hills and highlands,
[that is Seattle on the right side]
I fall asleep in hospital parking lots,
[Hello, Seattle! I’m finally here!]
And awake in your mouth
Hello Seattle, I am a manta ray
Deep beneath the blue waves
I’ll crawl the sandy bottom of Puget Sound
And construct a summer home
[at the Space Needle]
Hello Seattle, I am an old lighthouse
Throwing beams of bright lights
[on the viewing deck]
Red in the morning, blue in the evening sun,
Taking heed for everyone
Take me above your light
Carry me through the night
Hold me secure in flight
Sing me to sleep tonight
[walking to Chihuly Garden and Glass]
[this is from his collection “Persians”]
[if I remember correctly, this is supposed to resemble a garden. I think it does.]
[this walkway has a name. I have forgotten it.]
[Space Needle. Love this thing. It’s so photogenic. :)]
[the glass sculptures in the garden]
[the Pacific Science Center]
Oh, oh, I can’t even take it in.
[at the International Fountain]
Oh, oh, I can’t even take it in.
Oh, oh, I left my heart in metropolis.
[at the end of Beethoven’s 9th, the water went really high (boy, do I sound intelligent tonight!)]
So far apart, I check but the coast was clear,
[Experience Music Project Museum]
I feel like a postcard,
I wish you were here.
[Going to Pike Place Market]
Subway through the dark, carriage through the park.
Taxi down the street, get out and use my feet
[The fish counter – see, what did I tell you!]
Don’t matter much to me what it is that I do
As long as I’m coming home with you
[people, lights, architecture. love it]
Oh, oh, oh, as far as I can see
You’re the only one, the only one that can get to me
[out in front of the market – aren’t those peppers lovely?]
[The Metropolitan Grill, where we had dinner]
[my AWESOME fizzy drink, whatever it was called – I forgot before I even finished it]
[heirloom tomato salad]
[you know it’s a fancy restaurant when the butter comes like this, looking like ice cream]
[my dinner – steak and a potato]
[and dessert – a flourless chocolate lava cake]
[there is interesting architecture all over Seattle]
Like a hijacked train
[sunset over Puget Sound]
Or a runaway train
[the Seattle Great Wheel at sunset – can’t decide whether I like this exposure…]
Or a speeding bullet
[…or this exposure better. I can’t believe I let that lamppost be in my picture. grrr…]
There’s no stopping this!
[the Seattle Great Wheel]
I left my heart in metropolis!
[the sky put on a beautiful show for us]
[What did I tell you? I LOVE the Space Needle!]
[sailboat coming home]
[playing with shutter speed]
Like a hijacked plane,
[going back to our car – street shots]
or a runaway train
or a speeding bullet, there’s no stopping this.
I left my heart in metropolis.
Oh, oh, I can’t even take it in.
[actually, this picture was taken last. I just have to let you know that.]
Oh, oh, I can’t even take it in.
[goodbye, Seattle! I’ll miss you!]
Oh, oh, I left my heart in metropolis!
Songs: Hello, Seattle written by Adam Young and Metropolis written by Adam Young and Matthew Thiessen
These two songs were songs I thought of, listened to, and had in my head while we were in Seattle.
I’ve been gone again.
I’ve been working.
Helping at home.
Catering my cousin’s bridal shower. (Loose use of the word “catering.”)
Attending my first birth.
Photographing my first birth.
Taking the knife to my closet. (The old ugly stuff has to go!)
First things first. I am working at a fun little salon in town two days a week, four hours a day, as a receptionist, and cleaning. Actually, this is the first week I have worked two days. Which I am really excited about. I like it.
School and life it pretty much normal, so not a whole lot to say about that, except that I’m loving school, as usual.
The shower went well. It was great to see everybody up north. For the dessert at the shower, I made mint chocolate brownie bites, lemon poppy seed cake, and Mom made coffee punch. Yum.
Last night, my good friend had her sweet baby, and I was blessed to have been invited to the birth, and it pleased God to have all the circumstances happen exactly right so I could go! I am so blessed to have gotten to be there, and it was wonderful. She had asked me and another young lady to take some photos during the birth, which I found quite enjoyable. What a blessing to record that special moment!
My closet has been getting too full. Not just that, but after doing the Botkin ladies’ beauty webinar, I have really been thinking about what I am wearing, and trying to look nice. To be honest, some of my old clothes aren’t really nice. So I have decided to start paring down my closet, then filling it with things that look nice and that will look good on me. I emptied a whole bunch yesterday morning, which made me surprisingly slightly apprehensive? anxious? teary? not quite sure which. But the first cut is the deepest, right?
So, that’s what’s been going on. I’ll be hoping to post a full post about the shower tomorrow when I process the pictures, or at least in the very near future. So look for that. In the meantime, here are some photos of the closet-cleaning!
The first pile to go
One side of my closet, after the first clean-out (hopefully not the last)
Fun new hairstyle I tried, and wore all day, and it didn’t give me a headache! Which made me SO HAPPY! (I usually get a headache when I where my hair pulled back, usually at the base or near the base of my head.) What do you think?
“You know what, in hindsight, I think I made a bad decision today.”
Dad’s comment made everyone look up from the conversation and their dinner plates. I, for one, had my heart in my throat.
“I was near a chocolatier today, and they had a sign in the window for chocolate-covered bacon, and I didn’t try any.”
Talk about a sigh of relief!
“And now I am just wondering about it.”
I glanced down at the plate still more than half full of bacon on the table.
“You know what,” I said, “I’ll make you some.”
And so I did, after dinner.
And then I did something I really wasn’t sure that I’d ever do.
I TRIED CHOCOLATE COVERED BACON.
And you know what? It was surprisingly good.
Has anyone else tried any bacon/chocolate combos? What did you think? Any bacon desserts? Let me know!
P.S. I made this soap this week, and it turned out well. Mine is a little thick, but I could fix this.
On Thursday my aunt and two youngest cousins on my dad’s side came down to spend a few days at our home. There was lots of jokes, snow ball fights, games, and Nerf gun wars. And talking. And eating, of course. 🙂
We also celebrated Noah’s birthday while they were here, since it was last weekend and we didn’t get to celebrate it then. Happy birthday, Noah! It’s hard to believe that he is 15 already…
I didn’t take quite as many photos as I would have liked to, since I was still feeling under the weather. Anyways, here are a few from their stay.
Drake playing Hannah’s ukulele (he makes me laugh)
Looking at books
Getting ready to sing (I really liked how these turned out, so there are several :))
Drawing for “Cranium”
We had just picked up “Cranium” at a resale shop a few weeks ago, and got to try it out this weekend!
Hannah really enjoyed getting to snuggle with Lucy
Ready for the Nerf war (or tag – I think they were playing Nerf tag)
Their “cool-guy” poses
These next few are just plain fun with cousins 🙂
Hannah and Lucy snuggling again
Thanks for coming! And come back soon! ❤
Yes, I am. Although I am tempted to say just barely. 🙂
This weekend was our annual Men’s Advance. And it went really well (at least from my view of things it did). I helped it the kitchen, which was great, as usual. But it is all very, very exhausting.
And on top of that, a cold is going around our church, and I could tell last week that, although I wasn’t sick yet, I was going to be soon. So I did what I could to ward off that cold, but I had it on Monday.
It is appearing to be a real mean one. As in it isn’t going to let off easy.
Well, I had several wonderful grain free things over this weekend, and now I have been wanting to make them, as well as several other things that I have been wanting to make, but just haven’t gotten around to. So, instead of making a mental list (which I am probably going to forget anyway, since my brain is out of it), I am going to make a list here.
(I know. Another food list. But bear with me. It is hard not to be able to make any of these things, due to no energy, and the fact that I don’t want sugar while I am sick. So hopefully this will help me let off some steam.)
1. Quiche or egg casserole. Probably quiche, since it has crust. I want crust.
2. Grain-free scones. A dear friend of mine had these at their home when we were there for brunch, and THEY WERE AMAZING. And I put butter on mine. ‘Nuf said.
3. Grain-free chocolate chip biscotti. Again, another dear friend of mine made these, and I had them while at there home for brunch. AND THEY WERE REALLY AMAZING. And I need some again. I think they had walnuts and raisins in them too.
4. Grain-free biscuits. I got a new recipe from a friend, and it is even better that the recipe I had tried. I need something to slather some butter on.
5. I need to make an apple crumble. I tried to make walnut flour, but due to unforeseen circumstances, my walnuts never made flour. Just a moist crumble-y thing that reminded me of a crumble.
So that’s that.
What are you making/craving/hoping to make soon?
Do you have a cold?
I was trying to be the “good” babysitter, even though I wasn’t really babysitting. I had just made a fresh batch of chocolate cupcakes, and, since we were going to watch a movie while Mom and Dad watched theirs (Valentine’s date), I thought I would be fun and let my siblings have cupcakes in the basement.
But I had this feeling of apprehension as I put some cupcakes on a plate. They were chocolate…but hey, we had eaten other desserts in the basement without incident. What difference would cupcakes be? Still.
I even made Meiling and Noah use forks. Just to be safe. Little did I know…
I had unwrapped Meiling’s cupcake and given it to her on a plate, and was working on prepping Noah’s, when suddenly their was a commotion.
Lucy had a cupcake – a chocolate one, at that – in her mouth. Drake was doing his best to prevent her from eating it, while holding her.
I hastily set down Noah’s cupcake and grabbed the cupcake top (she wasn’t lucky enough to grab the whole thing) out of her mouth. I squeezed as much frosting out of her “beard” as I could, then let her go.
“Take her upstairs!” I said to Drake, as I protected the cupcake-laden area of the floor. Of course the cupcake had landed frosting-side down. I sent Noah upstairs for a bowl (also, the frosting-side-down had landed right in the middle of the toy cars and road rug that were all over the floor) to put the dirty cars in.
And then we started laughing. And laughing.
“Well,” I said to Drake, “At least her breath smells better now!”
There was just something so funny about the whole business. I had to go interrupt Mom and Dad. And, laughing, tell them the whole thing.
Lucy had hopped up on Meiling’s lap, since Meiling was sitting on a low chair, and snatched the cupcake right off the plate.
The little stinker.
Lucy didn’t ingest enough chocolate to make her sick, and we got the ensuing mess cleaned up quickly and got our movie rolling shortly.
Recently I picked up The Joy of Gluten-Free Sugar-Free Baking at the library. I was really thrilled, since it uses all sorts of nut and seed flours. I tried one of their roll recipes, and they turned out wonderfully! Their waffle recipe was AWESOME, also. I am hoping to try another recipe before I return the book, and before the week is out.
Today Drake and I ran several errands together. We had quite a bit of fun, even though the errands weren’t all that exciting. Drake’s a lot of fun. 🙂
A few days ago Meiling and I had some kitchen time together. Mom had purchased 2 bricks of cheese, not realizing that we already had 2 at home. Meiling and I started our time together with shredding the cheese. We used the food processor, which, when you shred cheese in it, makes these tasty little cheese balls, which we eat with great satisfaction. Mmmm… We don’t usually use the food processor for cheese, since it can be a bit of a pain to clean, but this was a great excuse to pull it out.
We also worked on spaghetti, which was our dinner. (No photos, so I won’t elaborate.)
Last on our list was to bake cookies. We made chocolate chip cookies and flourless chocolate fudge cookies. The chocolate chip cookies I made using our family favorite recipe, altering it to be grain-free and made with coconut sugar. The flourless chocolate fudge cookies were a recipe was one I found online. Right after I made it, I didn’t like them, and neither did Drake. (Noah liked them, though.) I tried them today, and they were much better. It’s surprising how much difference a few days can make.
Today I made two chilies – our regular chili recipe, a slow-cooker recipe from ATK’s family cookbook, and a buffalo chicken chili I found on the internet. It’s in celebration of my dad coming home – he has been out of town. They (the chilies) are both really, really good. The buffalo chicken chili is spicy, although that is a bit of a given, isn’t it?
Bricks of cheese
And the other kind with a really long name
Today – buffalo chicken chili…
and our regular chili (BAD picture – but I didn’t feel like trying again)
It’s me, Allison!
(It feels like so long since I have been on here that feel like I need to reintroduce myself.)
I’m still here.
Not a whole lot exciting or new here. Just school. And my midwifery course. It has been so wonderful! I love it. I am wrapping up (or should be – but I am blogging :)) the first nutrition module, and enjoying it heartily. It’s been great.
A few days ago I came down with a little bit of a cold (this is starting to sound like the story of my life, isn’t it? It really isn’t, though). I have a little sore throat and a little congestion, and a LOT of tired. So this afternoon I ended up taking a nap. Hopefully it will help me feel better faster.
When I woke up, I glanced at the clock, and it was time to start dinner! Still rather groggy, I got up to head to the kitchen.
Then Mom came in. And she basically said, “We have all these leftovers. I would be so much happier (and I think it would be better) if you didn’t make dinner and we just ate those.”
So I am not making dinner. Which makes me really happy, since I am still a little groggy.
So I thought I would post.
I have been thinking. (Again, I try to do this once in a while.) About what I want to eat when I am back to eating “normal-ish” things. After I introduce the things I haven’t been eating slowly. And these are some of the things I have been craving/wanting/thinking about.
1. Brownies. A whole pan (NOT!). There is an AWESOME looking recipe in Practical Paleo. I really want to try it (both making and eating!)
2. Baconaise. Again, another recipe that is in Practical Paleo. We went to a friend’s home, and they made an AWESOME broccoli salad with it. And I want it again. And it might be fun to try some other things with baconaise. (Tuna salad? Egg salad? Any suggestions? It has to be grain-free.)
3. Egg casserole. And quiche. Something different for breakfast. I’m getting a little tired of leftover meat.
4. Cheese. Cheese sticks. I miss it.
5. Sun-dried tomatoes. I have a jar in the fridge, and I think they would be good on a salad.
6. A faux-Chipotle meal. Keep thinking about it. And I really want to try to imitate their steak. I will say it again: I LOVE CHIPOTLE! Especially the cheese. Don’t ask.
7. Zucchini linguine noodles with tomato sauce. And cheese!
8. Cake. Not sure where this craving is coming from, because I usually am not that big on cake. Maybe because I want a baked good?
9. Paleo French toast, like I made 2 days before I started this. It was good.
10. Chocolate chip cookies. Need I say more?
11. Peanut butter cookies. Maybe with chocolate chips added in.
12. A peanut butter spoon.
13. A large peanut butter spoon with chocolate chips.
14. Quinoa. I want it again. This has been even longer – several months since I had it last.
15. Cookies, in general. I haven’t made that many grain-free cookies. And I need some. (Yes, I do know the difference between “want” and “need.” This IS a need.)
16. Some sort of really good bar thing with a bunch of ooey-gooey toppings. With caramel.
Well, that is it for right now.
If you have ANY suggestions of things that I should make (and eat!) when I get off this diet, I would LOVE to hear!
Well, off to work on that nutrition module.
Now the distance from the gate to the trees seems quite long when you are hauling a wagon containing 2 bags stuffed with books, a thermos of tea (for the pictures, not to drink), a camera bag, a quilt, and a teacup, with the other hand holding the camera. Also, the tall grass covered with ice didn’t aid my journey.
Basically, after hauling out there and back, I was tired. And cold.
So when I was done, I went inside and started a pot of coffee.
Then I went back outside with just my camera and macro lens to take a few pictures before I went in to have my mocha.
These past few days have been normal, or as close to normal as my life ever comes. Just the norms. School. Chores. Dinners. Nothing all that exciting.
Something a bit more exciting is that the first part of my midwifery correspondence course came last week in the mail. Mom and I ordered the first group of books that I need for it on Saturday, and I started it today. I can’t wait for my books to arrive (the earliest I can expect them is the 18th). Oh, I am SO looking forward to reading and learning!
I am not currently planning any desserts this week – but I am hoping that we will be able to pick up another of my favorite chocolate bars (Lindt 90%). I finished the one I had today. It was really good. And now I want more.
I am planning a few new dinners for later this week, from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. We’ll see if they make it on here. I haven’t been posting that many savory things lately – mostly just the sweets. 🙂
Oh. I just remembered. I will be making Mom some coffee chocolate chip coconut milk ice cream this week, and I will hopefully make Dad some chocolate peanut butter frozen yogurt. I also owe my brother Noah a chocolate cake. (For Christmas, I let both of my brothers choose any recipe they wanted, and I would make it for them. Noah requested a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting. Drake wanted Brazilian Black Beans. I think I am going to make Drake’s when I come off this diet, so I can eat it. I really like Brazilian Black Beans.) But I probably won’t make his chocolate cake until next week. (I need to add all three of these things to my schedule.)
Well, that’s all for now, folks!
a few pictures. (You can never tell beforehand how long this section is going to be.)
The frozen grass I was trying to plow through
I should have tried to get this shot horizontally, but I guess I forgot. Plus, this blade of grass was very close to the ground. And normally I am not very close to the ground. This made photographing it rather difficult.
Hate these things. Vehemently. I was VERY careful to walk AROUND them.
This is the photo I posted on 6 Lenses yesterday. Couldn’t decide if I liked the vertical one…
…or the horizontal one better. What do you think?
(Said with an accent) A spot of tea!
Throwing out the tea
Ice is SO FUN to photograph. It has all the benefits of photographing water, except it stays much more still. The only downside is that it is cold out. Freezing cold.
There is a slight focusing difference between these two photos. Which one do you like better: 1…