Book Club: #12 – I love you Jonathan Tropper.

Okay, not really. That would be awkward since I’m engaged to someone else.* But what I do love are his books. I go to the gym with them just so I can sit on the elliptical and pretend to be multi-tasking. That’s how much I don’t want to put them down.

My most recent read was “The Book of Joe”, and I won’t lie to you my Internet friends – it was just as good as “This is Where I Leave You”. It’s funny – laugh out loud on the bus funny, but is also incredibly touching. One of the many plot lines is that a high school student is bullied for being homosexual. I’m not going to go into details except to say that I definitely cried once or twice. Kids can be so mean, and to think that this actually happens – that a kid can ridicule one of his peers so much that a 16 or 17 year old child will take his or her own life is absolutely mind blowing to me. The worst part is that statistically, it’s the parents who have turned their back on their own child when a suicide occurs. Who ARE THESE PEOPLE? Is your son or daughter any different after you find out they’re gay? No you idiots. Anyway. I don’t want to get all crazy on the blog, but this is definitely something I feel strongly about. Mostly because I can’t believe that it actually happens. In 2011! I’m a big fan of Dan Savage, and if you haven’t heard of the It Gets Better Project, you should definitely check it out. And if by some crazy chance a 15 year old high school student (LGBT or not) has stumbled across this post, believe me – it gets better. High school is a really good time for a few people, and a mediocre to terrible time for everyone else.

In a nutshell, just go read the book. :)


Side note: I hated “Running With Scissors”, so the fact that Augusten Burroughs has the front and center quote on the cover made me not want to read this book. Thankfully I take most idioms to heart, and decided to read it despite what was on the cover.

*Seriously though, Jon. Call me.

Seattle Tourist

On Saturday Steve and I decided to have a day of Seattle tourist fun. We started by taking the bus to Pacific Science Center.

Then we took the Monorail downtown where we had lunch and did some shopping.

From there we walked to Pike Place Market. (For the record, if you ever come to visit – it is not “Pike’s”, “Pike’s Market” or “Pike Street Market”. Just don’t. I mean you don’t hear people visiting New York calling it “Ellis’s Island” or “The Statue”, do you? Do you?!)

From there we walked further North to the Olympic Sculpture Park.

On our way back to the bus stop, we had us a fancy drink at The Boat Street Cafe. (ohmygodyouneedtogothere.)

Phew. Now that’s what I call a Saturday.

Also, I can’t actually take credit for most of these photos. But if we all want to assume that mine are the better ones, that’s fine by me.

The Walrus and the Carpenter

The Walrus and the Carpenter is my new favorite restaurant. Since discovering it in April, I’ve already been there 4 times (and would totally go more often if I had more friends to accompany me). Here’s our routine. Regardless of who I’m with, we order enough oysters for everyone to have 4 (we usually let the waitress pick), we each order 1 dish from the menu (if I were you I’d start with the the broccoli, fried oysters, and smoked trout) and if we still have room we either order more main dishes, or save room for dessert (you should probably get the medjool dates).  They have quite a few tasty beers and cocktails to choose from, but I feel the Moscow Mule served in a copper mug really sets the mood.

Definitely plan on a wait. For example, on Friday we had a party of 7 and waited for 2.5 hours. Eek, I know. But the host/hostess takes your cell number so you can get a drink somewhere else while you’re waiting.

Check out this article in the New York Times for more information.

Book Club: #11

I’m going to estimate that 65% of you will judge me for liking this book. I’m going to also going to throw it out there that 63% of that 65% probably haven’t read it. When I was working at Starbucks a few years ago, “The Art of Racing in the Rain” was their book of the season. (I have no idea if that’s what they call it, I just know the books they choose are for sale longer than a month, but not longer than a few months. I don’t really know, it’s been a while. And I was so sleep-deprived and buzzed off of caffeine and pumpkin scones the whole time it’s amazing I remember anything from that period in my life.) I do vaguely remember getting excited when I discovered that I could use my discount to buy not only coffee beans and tumblers, but also books. Hot damn, I thought to myself. But after reading the inside flap I was very underwhelmed. You could even say I was judge-y. A book written in the perspective of a dog? Lame. Turns out I was wrong. I’m not sure if I grew a heart in the last 3 years or if I just didn’t give it enough of a chance to begin with, but I thought this book was pretty great. It’s very heart-warming and of course almost makes me not want to get a dog. Because if all goes according to plan, I would outlive said dog and that would be so unbelievably hard to deal with.
Which is obviously a really dumb reason not to get a dog.
Which is why I will one day most likely be able to call myself a dog owner.
And I’ll probably have entire conversations with it, filling in his side of the story to make myself look smarter/funnier/taller, depending on what it is we’re talking about.

Oh, and this book takes place in Seattle. Which usually makes anything way better.

Olympic Peninsula

Because I had such a good time at the Olympic Peninsula a few weeks ago, I thought I should probably share some more photos. I know I said this before, but I can’t wait to go back to Port Angeles to get a coffee here and wander around this used books store. I will probably also go back to the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center (see last 3 photos).

So the next time someone asks me for an idea of what to do for a day trip when visiting Seattle, I will definitely tell them that they should take the Edmonds/Kingston ferry, and then drive to Port Angeles. If the first paragraph of this post hasn’t sold them yet, I’ll remind them that Bella and Edward visited Port Angeles in one of the Twilight books. And when their eyes bulge out with excitement, I’ll also be sure to tell them about the Dazzled By Twilight store they can stop by on their way through town. (No I didn’t go in. Yes I wish I had.)

Strawberry Shortcake

Sunday night I made a batch of strawberry shortcake from this book. (It’s one of my favorite dessert books because it’s small, it’s paperback and it has pictures for every recipe in the book.)

The shortcakes were delicious, but not too sweet. So they were the perfect complement to the vegetable meatloaf I made for dinner.

Dairy doesn’t agree with my stomach too much, so I opted out of making the whipped cream. 

 

Wool capelet

I made this capelet a couple of weeks ago for someone who requested it through Etsy. I realized while spending the time after work to make it that I’m about to stop saying yes to special orders. (For the next few months anyway.) I don’t like when creating things feels like a chore, and I really have too much to do right now as it is with wedding planning and fun summer activities in Seattle. Which is a good reason why I should not have talked myself into making an additional capelet, just because I had enough wool. Sigh. Overachiever 4-eva.

Book Club: #10

Every year for my birthday, my friend Karen will send me one of her favorite books. I cannot even tell you how much I look forward to those little packages, because I always know the book is going to be fantastic. This year I received two books (!) and “Little Bee” was one of them. Karen included a note to tell me that they were both great, and both depressing. She was right. “Little Bee” is a political novel focusing on a Nigerian teenager losing her innocence in the most tragic of ways, and rediscovering who she is in spite of it.  Along the way she befriends a little British boy who wears a Batman costume 23 hours and a day and only answers to “Batman”. (He was obviously my favorite character.) I don’t want to give away too much because the plot is surprising and intriguing. It’s a page-turner, if you will.

(TIP: Don’t read any of the reviews about the book. They’re all positive, but they lay out the entire story and would ruin the suspense. Luckily I read the reviews after I finished the book. Phew.)

Skeet shooting

A couple of weeks ago I got to go skeet shooting for the first time. Which also means I shot a gun for the first time. Eek. I won’t try to downplay this – after the first shot, my adrenaline was through the roof. I played it cool though because if I had freaked out with an expert a foot away teaching me how to shoot at clay discs, I probably would have looked pretty stupid. It turns out I’m not very good at shooting things. I blame it on the fact that it was the week before I got my new glasses.

We were at the Sunnydell Shooting Grounds in Sequim, WA. (Port Angeles is nearby and is an adorable little town that I can’t wait to go back to and do some more exploring.)

 

Holiday Weekend

The 4th of July is quickly becoming my favorite holiday. (Watch your back, Halloween.) It always means time with family and friends, lots of food, sunny weather, and a really good time. This year I was ecstatic to be spending the weekend in Seattle. (Don’t get me wrong, last year in Darien, CT was pretty amazing. But it’s also great to be settled in my favorite city.)

There are supposed to be 50,000 people at Gas Works Park today. Which is exactly why we went there yesterday to fly our recently purchased kites and enjoy the park without the crowds.

In addition to celebrating our independence every year, it is equally important to celebrate the July 2nd birth of my brothers.

 

Happy birthday Derek and Kyle!