25 April 2012

Block 3 of 6

Block 1
Block 2

This week's block was a hand quilting block. It involved paper piecing and applique.

Grandmother's Garden

22 April 2012

(Extended) Weekend in Photos

George and I spent the last few days in the Silicon Valley. Rather than do a post about the trip separate from the weekend in photos, I've decided to combine the two. As you might expect, it's a rather food-heavy post. :-)

We scored some unseasonably warm and ordinarily sunny weather in California, and it seems that it was a pleasant weekend in western Washington as well. We ate good food and caught up with even better friends. Overall, it was a great (and slightly exhausting) weekend!

A girlfriend and I took a cooking class on classic French desserts while our husbands earned a different type of dough. Above: ice cream puffs with homemade chocolate sauce, frangipane tart, and chocolate souffle. 

We found delicious and (super) spicy Thai food, including pad thai, at Bai Tong

22 weeks with twins; 30.5 weeks with singleton

Holy amazing food, Batman. If you find yourself in San Jose, stop by La Villa for a meaty deli sandwich, melt-in-your-mouth meatballs, or take out Italian. You won't be disappointed. 

Sally's homemade watermelon and lemon sorbet hit the spot on a 90-degree day.

Would a trip to California be complete without In-N-Out? Absolutely not. 

Colorful birds of paradise remind me of when I lived in California. 

So many beautiful blooming flowers...

We finally went to see The Hunger Games.
It was a fun date night until we witnessed a semi-serious collision on the way back to the hotel. (We were not involved or harmed in the accident.)

30.5 weeks

"Cultural" experience: first ever bubble tea.  

We came home to pretty tulips.

And our ferns have been busy preparing the next generation.

And our trees have piled their pollen on George's car. 

George graciously modeled his birthday present from his brother.  Hahahahahaha!

How was your weekend?

18 April 2012

Wishes for Baby

Photo Credit: Misha

At the shower, the ladies wrote their wishes for Baby Girl. Of course, these will become part of her baby book, and I thought I'd share the wishes here as well. They are very touching and a little humorous.

I hope you learn...
to let loose.
how to laugh at everything.
to drive a stick.
hablar espanol.
to speak a second language.
more than one language.
gratitude, joy, fearlessness, and to love change.
another language.

I hope you aren't afraid...
to be strong.
of traveling.
of the monster in the closet.
of the closet.
of bees.
to love.
of cows.
to make mistakes.
of the water.
of the dark.

I hope you love...
without bounds.
to try new things.  (x3)
to travel.
the ocean.
the stars.

I hope you get...
lots of love and support.
to smile more than you frown.
everything that you ask your Daddy for!
a puppy.
to travel the world.
to visit Patagonia.
your mama's craftiness.
a younger sibling.
lost in new adventures.
a sense of rhythm.

I hope you laugh...
at silly jokes.
at your parents (and with them).
many times a day.
at yourself.

I hope you never forget...
to enjoy life and family.
that your parents love you.
who you are.
that the sun comes out after the rain.
to try everything once.
the songs your mom sings you to go to sleep.
Ohio and New Zealand.
to say "I love you."
to enjoy the little things.
how much you are loved.

I hope you ignore...
hateful words and actions.
those who do not know better.
people and dance in public.
ignorant people.
the mistakes that others make.
mean critics.
the ordinary.

I hope you become...
a kind, thoughtful person.
who you want to be.
a doll.
a superhero.
comfortable with yourself.
a dual citizen.
happy and healthy.
a scuba diver.
everything you want to be.
an avid reader.

I hope you respect...
humanity and nature.
your elders.
life in all forms.
eggplant, even if you don't like it.
the environment.
the earth.
new experiences.
your mommy.

I hope you grow...
into a wonderful, strong, and successful woman.
very old.
to be a beautiful person.
your very own garden.
tomato plants and share them with me.
not too fast!
really long legs.
never (grow) up.
to be tall.

17 April 2012

Baby Shower Love

Sam, Denaye, Misha, Amanda

Saturday was my baby shower, hosted by three of my good friends, Sam, Misha, and Denaye. The event was gorgeous; the ladies put a ton of thought into all of the details. They made sure we were satisfied with a full Mexican spread (prepared from scratch by Sam and her husband, Brian), sangria, lavender lemonade, and cupcakes. Denaye brought the macaroon favors all the way from Chicago.

There were about a dozen guests. It was wonderful to be surrounded by so much love from such wonderful women. In addition to showering me with love, they also showered me with gifts and books for Baby Girl.

I'll let the photos tell the story...

We were beautified and fed.

Beautiful display of cupcakes and macaroons, straws and flowers, and beautiful paper fans.

Trophy Cupcakes. Delish. Photo Credit: Denaye

Misha's Art Piece. Photo Credit: Denaye

We chatted. 

Photo Credit: Denaye

I glowed.

Photo Credit: Denaye

We had activities and games.

The ladies put library cards with their messages into the books they gave us. Photo Credit: Misha

Name That Baby Food. Photo Credit: Misha

I opened gifts.

Photo Credit: Denaye

Photo Credit: Denaye

Photo Credit: Misha

Photo Credit: Misha

Photo Credit: Misha

I glowed some more. 

Photo Credit: Misha

The shower was absolutely fantastic and will forever be a fond memory for me. Our daughter is so lucky to be so loved before her life has even started. I am extremely grateful to all who made my day so special.

You may want to keep an eye on Misha's blog because I think she's going to share her adventures in creating the beautiful crafts she whipped together for the shower. 

16 April 2012

Block 2 of 6

Block 1

This week's quilt block is the log cabin, a pattern dating back to Lincoln's time (and a sign of safe passage along the Underground Railroad, according to Wikipedia). For a block that my teacher said should be really easy, I found it relatively challenging. I think this stems from my sewing as art (rather than her sewing as science) approach because my seams are clearly not perfect, which affected the final product.

Log Cabin

For class, I sewed a traditional block, but I much prefer the modern take on this pattern. For example, this baby quilt and this fun, red quilt. I now aspire to make a log cabin quilt with all white and grey "logs" and fun, bright "fires." One day...

Renovation Reveal: Upstairs Bathroom

This is the third and final bathroom renovation in our house, and this post is the third and final renovation reveal for our most recent renovation.

When we bought our house, the upstairs bathroom looked like this:

May 2007

Pretty much immediately, the flimsy shower surrounds in all three bathrooms developed gaps, compromising their effectiveness at being a water barrier.

Faced with the reality of doing three bathroom renovations in a house we thought was move-in ready, we prioritized the master bath as the most important renovation. While that was going on, we taped the surround in the main upstairs bathroom so that we could shower during the master reno. And, in the midst of the master bath reno, it was discovered that the toilets in both upstairs bathrooms had been (fortunately, minimally) leaking. So, out went the toilet and old floor.

This is how the bath looked when we mothballed it in 2008.



After sorting through several visions for the bathroom, stripping it to the studs, and rebuilding the room, check out the results.




Curious about the finishes? 

Paint: Sherwin-Williams Harmony, Steely Grey (7664) in Semi-Gloss
Floor Tile: AlfaLux Stoneprints in Nero
Shower Tiles: Pental Subway Gloss in White (4x12) with Pental Glass Mosaic in Rain (1x2)
Cabinet and Mirror: Bertch in Sable Osage
Vanity Top: Fairmont Designs 25" Ceramic Top in White
Light Fixture: George Kovacs Three-Light Bathroom Vanity Light from Seattle Lighting
Toilet: Toto Eco Drake
Trim and Hardware: Kohler Purist in Polished Chrome

15 April 2012

Weekend in Photos

It has been a wonderful weekend, despite George leaving today for another work trip. Denaye is visiting from Chicago; yesterday, I was treated to an amazing baby shower (an entire post in its own right) and gained a brand new cousin (welcome, Trevor!). Did I mention that it was a spectacular weather weekend in western Washington? 

Without further ado, the weekend Sunday in photos:  

I love an excuse to go to the market

Mmmm...Steelhead Diner.

It's tulip season...

...and the end of daffodil season.

Denaye approves of Fran's sea salt caramel.

Mmm...ginger dipped in dark chocolate.

The Gauguin exhibit at the SAM includes a room of art borrowed from New Zealand. 

The mix of ginger ale (from my first trimester) and lavender simple syrup (from the shower) makes for a delicious drink to be enjoyed with a straw from the shower. 

A visit to the market means fresh crab for dinner. As a side, Denaye and I both tried sunchoke for the first time.