Postcards from Alaska ~ Slugs

slug crossing
 

Dear friends….

I was really hoping to have time to write more….. but I think little tidbits of sharing our adventure through postcards is so much more fitting. We’re having a great time……. and what would a coastal Alaskan trip be without some slug humor….. 

Cheers!

Steph & kids

Hello from Alaska!

What a crazy week we’ve had. A nasty cold has made it’s way through most of us….. I think germs should know not to bother people on vacation…. it should be a rule.

We made a trip to the E.R. after our sweet Miss Seven was bit by a dog!! I won’t share the picture, but it was bad. My poor girl has two puncture wounds and some nasty bruising on her calf. No stitches were needed and thankfully she was not hurt worse. I was totally impressed by her bravery, she has handled the whole thing very, very well. The best part was when she looked at me in the E.R. room and said “mama, people should not have dogs if they aren’t nice like Sid.” I wholeheartedly agree.

In the midst of all the above, we have had some great adventures too….. and the tide pool, gnome seeking, rock collecting, beach combing adventures have begun. Those walks at low tide are one of the things my kids look forward to the most. They definitely inherited their mama’s love of treasure hunting.

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend….. can’t wait to share the knitting project next week!

boots
   

trail
  

tide pool
   

snails
  

beach boy
   

hermit crab
    

searching for gnomes
   

sea 

   
       

working on some knitting….

and of course a little knitting taking place amidst the park time……. 

knitting 

    

The littles & I are headed to Alaska this afternoon….. such an exited buzz in the air for us…. looking forward to having a great adventure….

wishin you all a happy weekend!

  

climbing

I think this is our favorite adventure yet…. a trip with our pals to Vertical World for a climb….. 

    

harnessed
      

brave climber 

    

     
going up
       

climbing down 

    

Both of the kids really loved climbing….. and they were totally fearless! Not that I was very much surprised by that. They did however find that climbing down was a little trickier than going up… SO much fun!!!

   

Adventuring in Seattle ~ Alki Beach

The big kids are off on their adventure to camp! 

The little kids & I are hanging out in Seattle for the week with some good friends of ours….. it's always awesome to reconnect with far away pals…. we are so enjoying the weather and outdoor time here in in the city. 

And of course a trip to beach(Alki) is always so much fun….. 

Alki Beach Seattle
 
   

Alki Beach Seattle
  

Alki Beach Seattle
 

 I'll be popping in throughout the week to share some photos of our city adventuring….

     

Gardening :: Food & Cool Bugs

The garden is looking so full of delicious things to eat. We've been picking tomatoes daily and tonight we'll be eating our first cucumber and eggplant. Yum!

Joe will certainly have his hands full of care taking and eating from the gardens while we are away.

  

romas
  

baby cuke
  

cucumber
  

eggplant
   

This is a totally random memory, but I remember eating eggplant the first time at my Great Grandma Turner's house when I was about six years old. I can't remember what she made with it…. or if I even liked it… but I do remember being amazed at the purple vegetable she was going to feed me. 

While tending to the tomatoes I found this HUGE cicada bug. I'd never seen one before…. though I have certainly heard them! They are so loud! It's amazing a little bug can make a noise like that! This one had just molted and was moving really slowly…. I used a stick to move it out of the garden….. for our friend Raelee, a bug enthusiast, who is away in Paris… these pictures are just for you! {We think it is a Superb Green Cicada.}

  

molting cicada
  

cicada
   

cicada 2
     

Isn't it cool looking? I found a cool short video about cicadas life cycle & reproduction on youtube here.

Happy Gardening 😉

     

life with a teen…..

Today…..

Today was a whirlwind of packing bags for our Alaska trip…

finding lost glasses….

rescuing a little mourning dove fledgling..

clearing out the girls room of furniture for the next remodeling project….

(I know, we haven't shared the boys room yet… it's about 90% done)

the usual chaos and pre-departure excitement.

And to all that we add the following:

Our eldest, Mr Sam, is officially registered for 9th grade.

This spring he decided to go back to public school and I swallowed my *huge* nonconformist pride and drove him to a week worth of standardized testing so they could "place" him. I will not get into how I loathe that type of testing…. but seriously, I despise it. He did very well on the tests (he's a smarty pants) and today he & I went to the guidance counselor to get him enrolled. He's nervous and excited and looking forward to some honors classes that will keep him challenged. 

{Mom, I remember sitting in next to you doing the same thing….. talk about flashbacks!}

And now, please excuse me while I hide some mama tears…

Oh my.

How did we get to here? A 9th grader? Wow.

I am excited for him…. and worried…. and feeling a little…. uhm… old. 

And in the newspaper was the most perfect comic that really sums up life with a teen… it's entertaining, challenging and fun. Some moments… when you're feeling frustrated and things are going sour… try singing. I'm not kidding. I really do that. I'll start belting out "You are my sunshine……" and nobody can stay grumpy after that. Joe & Sam both think I'm crazy… and they're partly right. But everyone starts to laugh.

So when this comic was in the paper this week… Joe and I laughed and laughed…. and Sam laughed too. It was sort of like someone was peeking in at our life…. of course I realize I am not the first mama to resort to acting foolish to lighten things up.

"Mom, they even have your song right." Sam said to me.

Ahhhh my boy…. changing into a man before my eyes…. wow. Just, wow.

IMG
      

     

From the Garden: Herbs

garden herbs
 
 

My herbs are looking pretty darn good these days, if I do say so myself.

Rosemary and basil thrive in this hot humid climate and I love snipping off bits of parsley and oregano to throw in whatever is cooking up for dinner. 

Are any of you out there herb fans too? We've got mint, parsley, 2 kinds of basil, rosemary, oregano, lemon balm, thyme, cilantro, sage, curry and some dill at our place. 

What are your favorites?

I had a pineapple sage years ago when we lived in cape cod and a chocolate mint there as well, both fond memories……. so very, very good!

I had some wonderful ciabatta bread here at the house and made up some herb olive oil to dip it in. Even the kids gobbled this up, it was so yummy. And one of the mouth-full-of-bread-ers even piped in "and we grew all of these flavors too".

Yep, we grew all the flavors…… so if you have some flavors growing in your yard you might like this recipe….

chop chop
 

Herbed Olive Oil

1 handful of fresh herbs rinsed and patted dry

(we used rosemary, sage, parsley, basil & oregano)

1/3 cup olive oil

sea salt

Remove the leaves from the stems, discard the stems. You should have about 1/4 cup of fresh herb leaves. Chop them and set aside. In a pan warm the olive oil. Add herbs and stir. Remove from heat and let sit for 10 minutes. Add a bit of sea salt and serve with a good crusty bread. It is also delicious to add a splash of balsamic vinegar to this. Any leftovers can be tossed with fresh veggies like tomatoes & cucumbers for a delicious summer salad.

herbed olive oil
 

Happy Gardening to you!