Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The Wednesday Links from Around The Web 7.31.2013

Perspective #fmsphotoaday

Cartwheels make this dolphin laugh!

18 signs you went to Wazzu! GO COUGS!

Terrible reporting, saved only by a fantastic, knowledgeable author!

Having kids and pets I feel completely differently about pets than this author. We have cats and not dogs but I disagree. They still get the same amount of love from me and have really brought a lot of joy to Molly's life. Someday in the future, I want to get a dog but we are waiting for now. 

Inca child sacrifices were drugged for months before their deaths

Data Driven Parents If there is one thing I've learned as a parent, it is that tracking my child's every move DOES NOT make me a better parent. Giving her space to learn and fail is what is important. 
Tuesday, July 30, 2013

20 months with Molly Pop

20 months

I'm a little late with this month's post but that is because we have been so busy having so much fun! We started going on weekly adventures this month along with our regular swim lessons, walks around Greenlake and Zoo visits.


You spilled the beans this month that you are getting a little sister at the end of the year. All weekend when we asked you where your little sister lived, you'd point to your belly and say, "Siiiiisssssster!" It's adorable and hilarious! We keep telling you that she is in my belly but that seems to be a big concept for you right now.


We had a horrific week of sleep this month too. It left us all feeling a bit like zombies but we got through it and we're back to our usual patterns for which we are all thankful! We're hoping that you were busy processing or learning something during the sleep disruption or maybe you are just having bad dreams.

Someone asked to color!

Your vocabulary is exploding which is so much fun! I really enjoy communicating with you. You ask a lot of questions which I always try to answer. You are so very curious about everything and so very much like your Momma.


You had a friend visit this month and you are in love with her! We've face-timed a few times since she left and the two of you just sit and stare at each other. At least I get to catch up with her Mom!

7:40 am Molly gets a time-out after getting on the table. She thinks they are funny. *sigh* #adayinthelifechallenge

You've really started coloring and asking to color a lot this month. I'm working to put together a fun art station down in our basement for you but it's not quite done yet. I think you are going to be so excited when you have a place to color and paint! Maybe you'll be an artist like your Dad or a social communicator at your Mom or maybe you'll surprise us and be something totally different!


We went to a BBQ this weekend and all of Momma's high school friends laughed and said she had created a Mini-Me. It is true. You are so very much my child. You have no fear and are so social. We do need to work a little harder at being gentle and kind to other people. Not everyone responds well to our blunt personalities and some need a gentler touch.

Watching Baxter and Barkley (the pigs)

We do love your zest for life! You are a fun little girl who brings joy everywhere she goes. The people around Greenlake especially agree since you love waving at them and shouting, "HI!" as we pass people. It's so much fun! We love you, Molly Pop! Keep rocking!
Monday, July 29, 2013

Adventures with Molly - Blueberry Picking at Mercer Slough

Bountiful Blueberries

For this week's adventure, I decided to take Molly blueberry picking! There is a wonderful blueberry farm about 30 minutes away in Bellevue. I emailed a bunch of friends and we all gathered for some hard-core fruit picking.

Bagel Girl

Before we started on our adventure though, I took Molly to Eltana Bagels for breakfast. They have this great deal where you can get a third half for a $1 in addition to your regular bagel order. It's perfect for Molly! We enjoyed our bagels and then headed across the water for berry picking.

Berry Bucket

We arrived right as the Mercer Slough Blueberry Farm was opening which I'd highly recommend. When we left a few hours later, there was no parking and the sun was really starting to beat down. The farm provides buckets for picking, you just need to leave your photo id. They even have kid buckets!

Berry Fields

We headed out to the fields and started picking. All of the kids started eating blueberries directly off the trees. We tried to show them which ones to eat but I'm pretty sure they ate a lot of the green ones too. The funniest part was watching the kids figure out that eating berries out of the buckets was faster than off the trees. One by one, they learned that the buckets were filling with berries and would try to grab berries as quickly as they could.

Eating off the trees!

The farm provides these HUGE buckets and I had dreams of filling it to overflowing. Sadly blueberry picking is not a quick process. After an hour of picking and chasing Molly, the bottom of my bucket was barely covered.

Big Bucket

The kids started to lose their patience with the Mommas after about an hour and a half so we headed back in to pay for our loot. I was pleased to see that they had more blueberries for sale. I teased my friends and said I was going to lie on the blog and tell everyone that I had picked ALL of the blueberries I was buying but not to give me away. But hey, I decided to be truthful! I did end up picking about a pound and a half of blueberries (about 4 cups) which was great! I bought 4 more pints and on Friday will share what I made with all my berries.


I'd highly recommend heading out to the Mercer Slough Blueberry Farm if you live in the Seattle area. It's a beautiful farm and the berries are cheap! Only $1.50 a pound! I'm planning on going back soon with a girlfriend to pick more berries. This time though we are leaving our children behind so we can actually pick some berries.
Saturday, July 27, 2013

Chicken Nugget - 17 weeks


I had my 17 week doctor's appointment this week and left with a long list of to-dos. Luckily they were quick things to schedule and do so I got through them quickly. Chicken Nugget's heartbeat was right on target. 

I've been walking a lot this week and Molly has been enjoying the stroller time, mainly because she gets a reward of playing at the park or wadding pool when I'm done and she gets to see doggies. She also waves at everyone as we pass them. She's a welcoming committee. 

So far, I'm feel good and doing well. My nausea is ok. I did throw up this week but that was a bad combination of a bad diaper and morning sickness. Ewwwww! 
Friday, July 26, 2013

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

With the death of my oven, I've had a sudden desire to bake all the things! Luckily for me, I also seem to have all the appliances. I pulled out my bread machine earlier this week and attempted to make a Scone Loaf. That was an unmitigated disaster though it made the entire house smell wonderful. It was fun experimenting though.

Pumpkin Bread in Machine

This morning I decided to bake Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread in the machine even though it is entirely the wrong season. I'm so glad I did.

Sliced Pumpkin Bread

When Molly and I got back from blueberry picking (post on that coming this Monday!), I put Molly down for a nap and tucked into a nice warm piece of bread that had been baking while we were toiling in the hot sun. It was a delicious treat especially since I'm still low-carbing most days.

Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread
Makes 1 large loaf

1/4 cup Vegetable Oil
1 cup Canned Pumpkin
2 Eggs
1 cup packed Brown Sugar
2 1/4 cups All-Purpose Flour
2 teaspoons Pumpkin Spice Seasoning
1 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
1 cup  semi-sweet chocolate chips

1. Add ingredients to your bread machine in the order listed, excluding the chocolate chips.
2. I have a Cuisinart™ Convection Bread Maker so I cooked mine the following way: Quick Bread/Cake, Medium crust, Large Loaf.
3. After the batter has mixed for about 5-10 minutes, stop the machine and scrape the sides of the pan. Add the chocolate chips at this point and mix well. Press start again.
4. Drink a cup of tea or go blueberry picking while the bread bakes. When you return, your house will smell delicious and a treat will be ready for you to consume. This bread freezes well for up to 3 months.

Pumpkin Bread with Butter
Thursday, July 25, 2013

Pinterest Thursday - Knitted Washcloths

I've been busy sorting out my yarn stash. I'm being ruthless, if I don't love it, into the sell/donate bin it goes! Along the way, I've rediscovered some yarns that I absolutely love. I found five skeins of Malabrigo Organic Cotton that I had originally purchased to make washcloths for myself. It sounds very grandma-ish but I love the feel of hand-knit washcloths on my skin.


I had recently pinned this pin with a how-to on knitting waffle knit dishcloths so I decided to cast on. I knit on these all weekend and before I knew it, I had three lovely new washcloths.


I did adjust the pattern a little bit though. It says to repeat the waffle knit pattern six time but I really like square washcloths so I did 10 repeats. This created a perfect square and is just the right size to wash my face with.


If you have someone who appreciates a nice hand knit washcloth, these would also make easy and nice gifts!


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Weekend Fun and Adventures


Weekends are a lot of fun around here. We tend to spend them together as a family of three and have been taking the time to explore different parts of our city. Most of our activity selections are based on wearing Molly out while also having a good time ourselves.


This past weekend, we decided to take a city hike through the Washington Park Arboretum even though the tired was pulling us to stay home on the couch. Molly had a really rough weekend of sleep with Friday night being the worst. We pushed through the exhaustion and headed over to the park with a stop at The Essential Bakery for some breakfast sandwiches.


After filling our bellies, we parked by the Japanese Gardens and started walking. We brought the hiking backpack with us but surprisingly Molly walked for most of our jaunt. She spent a lot of time running ahead and then getting distracted by a rock or a pine cone. At one point, she had almost 10 pine cones jammed in various pockets and down her shirt. It was hilarious.


It was a nice overcast day which actually made for a great walk. The park is so beautiful and it was nice to explore it at a leisurely pace. I usually run through the park and it is almost always at the end of my run when I'm exhausted and just want to be done. This time though, I was able to see the true beauty of the park.


We then drove home so Molly could nap but the walk had knocked her out. Luckily she made the transfer from the car to the crib without a peep! I headed down to the basement to continue the "Great Yarn Sort" and Scott hung out upstairs.


When Molly woke up at 2 p.m., we were all starving and headed to Red Mill Burgers for lunch. The place was packed so we got our food to go and headed across the street to The Ballard Locks. We found a great grassy area and sat down to enjoy our food. There happened to be a free Caribbean Music concert going on which Molly loved! She grooved for quite some time before giving into her hunger and enjoying her food. She also stole Scott's milkshake and drank it all up. It might be time to get her a milkshake of her own but then again, stolen milkshakes taste better.


Sunday morning, after another rough night, Scott asked to sleep some more so I took Molly to Eltana Bagels and to the Ballard Farmer's Market. Don't tell Scott but the market was soooo much more fun without him. He just doesn't share my love for the market and grudgingly goes with me. Molly, on the other hand, LOVES the market. Her love might be influenced by all the doggies who frequent the market.


We came home shortly after 11 a.m. and started talking about lunch. I had a hankering for a burrito from El Camion so we decided to nosh there.



After filling Molly up, we headed back to the house so she could nap and we could weed. Our yard is in desperate need of some serious weeding but most of our weekend energy has been spent on the basement. Also weeding during the week with Molly in tow is a recipe for disaster! I wish she was more helpful on that front but I think we have a lot more years before that happens.


After getting a good hour of weeding in, we headed inside to just relax. I got the chicken together for our dinner and popped it in the oven. After about 20 minutes, I decided to check on the chicken when I noticed the oven was cold. It was dead! I had even used the oven that morning to roast my market bounty so I was upset. I wrapped the chicken back up and put it in the fridge. At this point, it was too late to use my favorite cooking appliance, the slow cooker so I made Scott come up with Plan B for dinner. He decided on Thai food which we had delivered. And now I'm working to have someone come out to figure out what is wrong with our oven. Luckily most meals this week were scheduled to be in the slow cooker but still, I want my oven to work!


Monday, July 22, 2013

Adventures with Molly - Kelsey Creek Farm

Molly Run

One of my summer goals is to take Molly on a weekly adventure. The best part of this is that a lot of our friends are super excited to join us in our adventurous ventures!

Kelsey Creek Farm Welcome

This week, we headed over to Bellevue to check out Kelsey Creek Farms. Located in central Bellevue, Kelsey Creek Farm is a quiet and secluded place full of farm animals. Owned and operated by the Bellevue Parks and Community Services Department, the farm is free to visit. 

Friends with Chickens

The animals were everywhere! Molly quickly began mooing at the cows and baaing at the sheep. She and her little friends may have spent most of their time checking out the chickens though. This cracked us up because one of our friends has chickens at their house. We can see chickens any time! 

Moo! Moo! Moo!

We also got to see some day campers putting on a horse show. They had decorated their horses and were doing tricks with them. What a fun camp to attend!

Kelsey Creek Farm Barn

Our first adventure was so much fun! It wore Molly out and she slept the entire way home from Bellevue. I ended up sitting in the grocery store parking lot waiting for her to wake up so I could pick up a few things that I had missed earlier that week. Luckily I had my knitting to keep me company. 

Walking with Friends
Saturday, July 20, 2013

Chicken Nugget - 16 weeks


It's different being pregnant a second time. All those things that either sent me into a spiral of worry or a spiral of wonder are now just second nature and yet there is still something so special about growing another human. 

This time though, I know that when I feel a twinge in my uterus that it is probably ligament pain and when I woke up on Tuesday with the sorest stomach, I knew Chicken Nugget had been busy growing overnight. The funny part is that she grew and popped out and then retreated the next day. She's probably hanging out behind my pelvic bone while she is still small enough to do so. Maybe her foray into the middle of the uterus wasn't as comfy as the corner is. 

Overall, I'm still feeling good. I've been a little more tired this week but that was bound to happen. 
Friday, July 19, 2013

Eggs in Purgatory

Purgatory Eggs

I eat a lot of eggs but sometimes I get bored with the tradition fried or scrambled egg dish. Then I go out hunting for new ideas. I've seen this dish a few times on Pinterest and in my favorite cookbooks. One of my favorite celebrity recipe writers is Nigella Lawson so I always check out her site too. I found Eggs in Purgatory on her site and had to make it! 

Ready to Bake

It is a very filling dish but also low-carb if you skip the bread. It's quick to make and you get a nice serving of vegetables along the way. I think it is a great way to start out the day! Molly and I went on a nice hike with some friends after breakfast and this meal really got me through! I was barely hungry for lunch afterwards (but I made room). 

Eggs in Purgatory

Eggs in Purgatory
Makes 1 serving

1 Tablespoon olive oil
2-3 cloves of garlic (minced)
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1-15 oz can chopped tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 large eggs
2 Tablespoons grated parmesan
2 Tablespoons crumbled feta
2 slices crusty bread


1. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan with the minced garlic, red pepper flakes and Italian seasoning over medium heat for about a minute. 

2. Add the tomatoes and let the mixture come to a simmer. 

3. Add the eggs to the tomato mixture and sprinkle the Parmesan and Feta cheeses over the eggs. Cover with a lid and let it cook for about 5 minutes until the white is set. The yolk may still be runny. 

4. Remove from heat and serve with some nice crusty bread. I only had english muffins in the house which were delicious but I think a nice crusty french bread would be delicious! 

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