Today at Williams Sonoma in Bell-Square I met Bakerella. Yes, Angie Dudley of http://www.bakerella.com/ the queen of the Cake Pop! Above we have Me and Vi and Vera with her while she is signing my book. I even wore my Bakerella T-shirt. She was suprise and glad I did. What book you ask? Oh! The cake pop book. Amazing ideas and tips on how to make awesome and delicious cake pops. I have already looked throught it and you should go get one too.
Here is her signature!
I am so excited to start using it. Hooray! Thanks Angie for coming to my neck of the woods.
My very big girl Virginia Ines has started preschool. Above is a picture of her on her first day, after school was over. She has been excited for months to go to school and loves every day. I asked Ginny what her favorite parts of school were, "I like how fun it is and I like the sandbox." I asked her what was fun about school and she said, "play dough and painting, and there is one more thing... oh actually its about the park. I already told you though." This is a picture of her take home bag she decorated at preschool orientation. She did it herself. I helped her with the gingerbread but the concept was hers. She also wanted a rainbow out of pipe cleaners so we braided them and she added glow in the dark beads to the top and now it kind of is a rainbow tree. This is Ginny posing in her first day of school dress.
And this is her first painting of the year. I asked her to tell me about it and she said, "It is an orange Robin because the color of the tummy tells you what kind of Robin it is."
Often I find Virginia somewhere in the house doing this: marking her Book of Mormon OR
Doing this: Reading the children's scripture book or the gospel art book (under the piano bench).Now I am not the most diligent personal scripture reader myself but we do well as a family or a couple. Ginny continually amazes me with her spongy brain. She will sit and tell Violet what is what in the gospel art book or "read" aloud the children's scripture book (she watches the videos and memorizes the words) its kind of crazy. I will find her with the video on just watching happily. Thanks to her amazing primary teacher for all the church items she has given Virginia.
Now for some examples of spongy-ness:
*We are leaving our old building in Seattle (we went to a baby blessing) and Ginny sees another church nearby and says, "Mom, you see that church over there." "Yes," I said. "They don't teach God's plan," she explains. "How do you know that Ginny?" I ask. She says in a mysterious hushed tone, "I just know." Totally cracked me up.
*Ben was showing her a picture of Joseph Smith reading the Bible, you know the one before he goes to the grove to pray. Ben says, "Whats this a picture of Ginny?" And she says, "Joesph Smith." And he says, "What is he doing?" She replies, "Reading James 1:5 in the Bible." Ben looked at me with amazement.
*I finished reading a series of books and started crying on the couch because that's what I do when I finish books (well sad ones anyway, okay and really happy ones). So Ginny and Vi came up to me and put their little hands on my face and ask me what was wrong. I say, "I just finished my book and a lot of good people died." And without any pause Ginny says in a sweet reassuring voice, "Its okay mom we will see them in the Resurrection." That sure made me smile and I gave them hugs.
Those are just some of the best ones from the past few months. I am sure we will continue to get a bunch more.
I will leave this post with two photos of Ginny at swimming lessons this summer. The top is of her first day and the bottom her last. She loved her teacher Katie and did level one with her twice. We hope to start again soon. I really recommend Gold's Gym for lessons, you don't have to be a member, and you can use their showers.
So our little Vera will be 8 months on Tuesday and I finally finished her nursery. This is the only nursery I have been able to all out decorate because you can't paint in apartments. So this is still the same bedding and mobile the older girls used and we went off of that theme. Ben did the painting. Nice work honey!I think you can tell from this first photo that Vera really likes her new room! A special thanks to Auntie Cyddie for her favorite blanket, which matches the room very nicely. And to Ashley B. for the bear Vera loves to grab at night. I hemmed some cream curtains for the window and found a cream rug to match the bedding. Then I painted the three paintings to match the bedding and used white to tie in the baseboard trims.
I finally framed some cute artwork of animals I found at Ikea. Then I set up Vera's dresser with blankets and burpies and a basket of books for bedtime. With Muffy Vanderbear living on the top shelves, as well as Gunny Bunny (a bunny Gunnar bought me that looks like him, glasses and all). And I keep the quilt on the rocker for my back and because it looks nice. The wall above will have the girls baby annoucements framed when Grandma is finished cross-stiching them. Love you Gram.
So this third camping trip we won at Ginny's preschool aution. We were going to go with another family who would bring all the food and cook it for us. Turns out that family had a serious emergency and couldnt come with us. We hope they are doing well and our prayers are with them. So instead of that senario we were able to invite Meaghan's family, Ben's sister, to join us and bring our own food. We camped at Gold Basin near Granite Falls, Washington.
We went on a hike at the Ice Caves. It was beautiful and an easy hike for our girls. It was a little scary for me considering and 11 year old girl passed away there the week prior due to ice collapsing. Our hearts are with that family aswell. We didn't venture close to the ice.
Where we stopped for lunch Anika found a napping rock. We thought that was pretty cool.Bridget also napped in the pack on the way back to the car. Due to rain for most of the second half of the trip we spent some wild time in the tent.
And under blue tarps Garrick lashed to the trees.We had lots of fun catching up with eachother and riding bikes and enjoying good food, thanks to Garrick's awesomely constructed box oven. I plan to make one soon. Hooray for camping! Next summer we won't do it on consecutive weeks.
On July 22-24th we went camping with my Mom and Gunnar and Lily, while Gavin was spending time with my Dad. Sadly Grant and Elaine couldnt make it. We had lots of fun below are some highlights.
Ben was the master chef this trip and the Evil Gunnar kept him as a pet as you can see. Grandma helped Ginny work on a puzzle book given to us by the campground host. Ever heard of Harold the Hodag? He was featured on this puzzle book. If you know who & what Harold is I will send you 4 homemade cards if you are the first to comment the correct answer on this post.Ben told Lilly a pretty scary story at campfire. Yes our fire was pretty much out.Ben took us all on a hike. Violet enjoyed the pack this time.Ginny found some pretty flowers.After some car sickness, from the car ride to the trail head, Lily and I joined in the hiking. We saw a really cool bird while getting over the nausea; he got so close he even stole a tissue from Lily.After the hike a cool dip in the river made it a great day. Warmer and slower than the last river we had a great time. Can you see Gunnar in this picture? Stay tuned for our last camping trip this summer.
We went camping at Salmon La Sac campground in our great state of Washington with our good buddies the Maxfields. It was great weather and the girls had fun hanging out together in the tent, playing in the dirt and water, and going to the bathroom in groups a whole bunch of times. While the kiddos slept Catan, Ticket to Ride, and other fun games were played by the parents. S'mores were made with Reese's, which were delicious!We also did a family hike. The girls learned about things like horse poop and huckleberries.Vera had a good time in the pack with dad.After, because we were hot and dirty, we jumped in the river right on the edge of our campsite.Throwing rocks was Emma and Violet's favorite thing to do.It was so nice to cool off in the COLD water.Later we went to CleElum Lake not too far from the campsite for a little dip. It was pretty full, even some trees were underwater.
Ginny found a tree stump she called her "look out" that she fit in. It was pretty cool. We had so much fun with our pals that we wish we were doing it again next month. We miss them already. The good news is we are going camping again two of the next three weeks. Happy summer everyone.
Here are some six month Vera photos for your enjoyment! She is such an angel in our family. She has been rocking back and forth on all fours for a few weeks and should be crawling anytime. She likes to say "Buh." She loves her sisters and always want to see what is going on. She doesnt like baby food or a bottle, but she is definately getting enough milk from mom. Vera also really loves chewing on books, we try to keep her from doing it. She is still working on sleeping throught the night, I think she will have it in one more week.
Last Friday was my mother's 50th birthday. It was also my brother-in-law's bday. I made the above cake for his party that we were unable to attend because we were celebrating with my mom. The cake is called "Pretty in Pink" from Marcel Desaulniers book Celebrate with Chocolate. It's a rich chocolate cake with a strawberry cream cheese frosting. Below is a picture of the granny smith apple pie I made my mother. She is about to blow out the candles and on the table are flowers from Pike Place Market thanks to Aunt Cyddie.Here we have a goofy Gunnar with the balloons.The next day we had a chocolate tour in Seattle. The party included Cousin Mary, Aunt Angie, My Mom, Me, Aunt Cyddie, and Cousin April.We started out at the Dahlia Bakery, famous for coconut cream pie by chef Tom Douglas. This bakery is also the bakery in Sleepless in Seattle. We had a sample of the coconut cream pie. As well as a chocolate krinkle cookie. (This is an example cookie, not the exact ones we had).
Then we went to the chocolate box and sampled their brownies. They were chocolate covered, very moist, and delicious. Here is a picture of our tour guide passing out the chocolate.
Then we sampled a cupcake from Look Cupcakes. Best cupcake I have ever had. It had ganache inside as well as chocolate Swissbuttercream icing. Then we had Gelato from Gelatiamo, it was chocolate gelato and lemon sorbet gelato. The pair together was divine. Note I've eaten a bunch of the lemon already. Here is a photo of the sisters in front of Sister Sandwich.Then it was on to Pike Place Market. We went to the Confectional for raspberry white chocolate cheesecake. The Confectionals slogan is "Forgive me Chocolate for I have sinned. I have not yet had my daily confection." I didn't have much of the cheesecake for fear of my dairy allergy, but what I had was good.They also serve a very rich dark chocolate drink with spices. It was so good. They say you have to serve it warm or it will solidify. Kukuruza was our next stop and it was yummy gourmet popcorn. We had rocky road (below) and Tuxedo (further below).They also sell all different kinds of old fashion pop and candy. Like lipstick candy and candy buttons.Our last stop on the tour was Fran's Chocolates, yes now even more famous for BarakObama's love of the salted milk chocolate carmel. Although I agree with Michelle Obama that the dark chocolate is better. Below is what we sampled, a raspberry truffle, a milk chocolate sea salt, and a dark chocolate square. I have loved Fran's for years, this stop was no surprise for me. We had a fabulous time and then ate lunch at Art at the Four Seasons Hotel, where I had the best crab cakes. The tour includes a bunch of chocolate history as well as a card to get us discounts at these and more places in Seattle for the next two weeks. If you get the chance take the tour! HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM.