Monday, June 28, 2010

Lookit her go!

Mia's perfected scooting, and now we have a supercharged inchworm on our hands! When she spots something interesting and forbidden (like a remote or video camera, for example) she goes turbo. I love her little excited breathing too.

I love having her on the move. No more frustrated crying because she's stuck in one spot...she just scooters on over to whatever she wants to play with and entertains herself for the most part. B has mixed feelings. Her new favorite activity is building "Mia blockades" out of toys to keep her out of various areas of the house.

Oh, and she has TEETH! Her two bottom middle teeth have popped through. I can't get a pic of them because she keeps sticking her tongue out to feel them. Adorable. :)

Friday, June 25, 2010

A little taste of summer

Yesterday we took advantage of the brief burst of sunshine and picked some berries.

Mia really wanted to join in. She participated by grabbing and trying to chew any leaf or berry in arm's reach.

Bianca and Calvin with their buckets.

Our bounty!

Afterward we met up with my mom, who now works just a hop skip and a jump away in downtown Tacoma, and had lunch at the Broadway farmer's market. A pretty perfect summer morning.

Has it really been nine years?

Nine years ago, before we had kids, cats, careers, houses, coaching, or any of the general craziness of our adult lives, there was just us. Two crazy kids.

I love you, honey. Here's to many more great years.

P.S. Who knew that we would end up living only a couple of miles from the spot where we said "I do"? We drive by the Pagoda all the time on our way to the zoo. I love seeing it and remembering the day.

P.P.S. I was just thinking about how little wedding trends seem to have changed over the past decade. Strapless dresses...still in. Bright flowers...still in. Simple cakes decorated with flowers...still in. Bridesmaid fashions have probably changed the most. Now, maids are wearing shorter dresses, brighter colors or accessories, and prints, which I love.

I guess the bridal world isn't one to be rocked by trends. Or maybe I just made timeless choices. :) At least that's what I like to think.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Nature Walk

We took a walk at Snake Lake with some friends yesterday, hoping that we might get some sun and the turtles might be out. Unforunately both the sun and the turtles stayed hidden.

Sweaters and down vests in mid-June. Who would have thought?

Mia blowing spit bubbles...her new favorite pastime! :)

Running ahead on the trail.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

And the bread...

My last post reminded me that several people have asked me to post my bread recipe. Here's my no-fail recipe for basic sandwich bread. I almost never buy it from the grocery store...the recipe is easy, foolproof, and makes the house smell great!

No-fail sandwich bread
1 cup warm (110 degree) water
2.5 tsp active dry yeast (I use Red Star)
2 tsbp sugar
3 cups bread flour (I use 2 cups bread flour and 1 cup King Arthur white whole wheat flour)
1tsp salt
1/3 cup vegetable oil

Here's the secret...add the water, yeast, and sugar to the bread machine pan and let it sit for 10 minutes to activate the yeast. When it foams up, you're good to go. Then add the remaining ingredients and set it for the dough cycle. (I think this tip would work for any bread machine recipe...just IGNORE the order that the recipe tells you to put things in and do it this way instead).

When the dough cycle completes, remove the dough (it will probably be pretty soft) and use a rolling pin to flatten it out into a rectangle and remove all air bubbles. Roll it into a loaf shape, tucking the seams under at the ends. Place it into a greased bread plan and use a sharp knife or razor blade to slit the top lengthwise. Allow to rise for 20 minutes or so until doubled in size.

Don't let it rise too long. It will double in size again during baking. Bake at 375 for 30 minutes.

Remove it from the pan promptly after baking (otherwise it gets soggy) and enjoy!

A word about flour...bread flour is a must, at least for me. It contains more protein and gluten to give the finished product a chewy, moist, professional texture. Bread baked with regular flour seems spongy and dry to me. That goes for pizza dough too. :)

The loaf pictured is actually a whole wheat loaf...I use white whole wheat flour in almost everything I bake to sneak in extra nutrients and fiber. The ratio is 2 parts regular flour to one part whole wheat. King Arthur's is the bomb!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Bread baking playdate

These days I'm planning more activities for playdates, versus just having kids over to play (aka tear through the house). Three year olds have so much energy that needs to be directed somewhere, at least for a few minutes.
Last week we had some friends over to bake bread...I had the dough ready when the kiddos got here, then they all got to shape their own loaf. The bread rose and baked while they played, then everyone got to take their loaf home (actually I think most of it was devoured on the spot). YUM!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

The big day

Mr. and Mrs.! I love this photo of them.

After a week of rain, Saturday dawned sunny and beautiful. Not too hot, not too cold...perfect wedding weather.

With so much talk of wedding schedules (wedding planner Megan made a very helpful, very detailed schedule for the wedding) B made sure to draw up her own schedule for us all.

Getting ready in the suite. I really wanted to get ready in the suite with Laura and the other bridesmaids...however, I knew if I set foot outside of our hotel before I was fully ready, the craziness of the day would take over and I would never get any makeup on. So Steve took B and Mia down to the suite to let me get ready. B loved it.
All ready to go!

Here's a shot of everyone walking down to the site. I loved the beach grass in this shot, and our dresses. They were comfortable and looked great on everyone off-the-rack--I don't think anyone needed alterations.
Port Ludlow is such a gorgeous locale. The beachy scenery and sparkly water set off the wedding colors so beautifully.

Laura and John.

Just like we practiced! Although she didn't wait her turn to go, she made it down the aisle! Yay!

All married! Yipee!
Post-wedding. The kids were pretty done at this point. :)

Handsome John and his scrumptious cake.

The tablescape. Laura wrote little personalized notes in our place cards...such a sweet touch.

Mini-flower girl.

Conked out.
Kendra and mom


Sisters! Laura's bling is rockin' in this pic. Poor Kendra and her sunburned shoulders. I doubted that we would get sunburned at a 4pm wedding but Kendra managed to. :)

Of course, didn't take nearly enough pics. Juggling two kiddos with bridesmaid duties kept me and Steve hopping. Thank goodness Kora and Marisa were there to handle Mia during the wedding.

I was so glad to have the kids there, but it was a mixed blessing. They looked darling, but they got super tired and taking care of them caused me to miss out on some important wedding moments. I can't wait to see the wedding video so I can see Kendra's toast and some other highlights that I missed.

In the meantime, here is the short-edit version of the wedding video. Her videographer put this together during the reception and showed it at the end of the night, right before Laura and Is made their getaway on a sailboat as the guests waved goodbye with sparklers. The perfect end to a perfect wedding day. Can't wait to see the professional photos!

Welcome reception

The next event in the wedding lineup...Friday before the wedding Laura and Is welcomed their guests with a dessert and wine reception. Strawberry shortcake and Riesling...perfect for a sweet summer night.

Mia was soooo ready for bed, so Steve and I took turns staying with her while the other one stayed with B at the reception, who kept everyone entertained with her drawings. We hardly took any pics, but here are a few.

This might be her best drawing yet! It was a portrait of soon-to-be uncle Ty.

B's self-portrait.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Practice makes perfect

Wow, where to begin. The past week has been a crazy whirlwind that ended with my little sister becoming a wife and my family gaining new brother-in-law/uncle.
First, the rehersal dinner. The week kicked off with a dinner at the gorgeous home of Michael and Alejandro, friends of Laura and Israel, in Newcastle. I was inspired by their colors and their decor. And they had the cleanest garage I've ever seen, the perfect indoor spot to rehearse on a drizzly day.

We'd just picked up a Dora book from the library about estrellas (stars) and just returned another one featuring a pinata, so imagine Bianca's joy to walk in and see a real estrella pinata! Perfection!
Bianca with her flower girl basket and book from Laura.

Practicing--she did a great job! She definitely needed to practice so I'm very glad we had the rehersal.

Laura walking down the "aisle" with wedding planner Megan (just because I don't think we have any other shots of Megan and she was a big part of the wedding).

The cutest ring "pillow" ever.

Silly Sarah.
Pretty much everyone took turns whacking the pinata. Here it's my aunt Kim.

Concerto in B.

Mia with grandma. She's in a face-grabbing stage, as anyone who's held her recently can attest. Who says she's tiny--look at those chubby arms!

Bianca in her jammies with treats from the pinata. Time to go home and get into bed!