Friday, December 31, 2010


since we have been couped up in large amounts as of late, i decided to liven things up. instead of a faux hawk, we opted for an enchanting lady liberty do after baths.........he didn't think it complimented his best features so well.

also, for entertainment, we've turned to food. and unfortunately these *&%$ truffles won my affections. but i refer to them as the *$%# truffles, and of course that counts as mind swearing. never uttered aloud....

ella apparently has also turned to food. but her problems lie with the parentals being in charge of her consumption. because i told her 4 times, no marshmallows before dinner. she took things into her own hands. plastic puts hair on your chest right?

and, just to liven things up, i'll leave you with another shot of our lady/man liberty and the new couch. it only took me remembering that we tested this baby out before i was pregnant and debated every time the price dropped $100. when it got down to $499, i caved...........too many years on a student budget i tell you.

could you just eat him up? grayce asked the other day if it was wrong that she wanted to dollup him in whipped cream and eat him up. no, no, my dear. totally normal.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

humor unfolds and farewell chainsmoker laugh

today i laughed. real hard laugh. this is a fantastic thing if you are a post partum mother with 4 ankle biters, truly. upon laughing at a very funny thing, i found that my pregnancy laugh was gone. leaving behind no traces of the gut wrenching laugh i was tortured with for 9 months.

my little sister kept telling me, oh sister, i will be so sad when your pregnancy laugh goes away.

it was a deep, throaty, relaxed, life is within my grasp laugh. it was a loosey goosey thing that made me laugh hysterically when my husband was attacked by a dog, also when he fell down the hardwood stairs. now. you know i apologized for that. i did, i did. to him, to the world.

what is it with post partum that the entire house has to be cleaned, de-junked and sterile in 5.2 minutes or less? maybe it is the nine months you sit on the couch tortured with whatever ailment has you hanging. like a bad back and a provider that fixes bad backs all day living with you? nightmare city. every time i bent over and winced because of the nature of a bulging disc in your back, the redhead PA was on me like a cop filling up his monthly violation quota. he did dishes, cleaned floors, did laundry. he was such a beautiful house wife. i was on the sidelines watching, feeling guilt like a mountain drenched in snow. it kind of encompassed me that awful guilt. and now, it's gone more or less. the more i clean, de-junk, and scrub it lifts, bit at a time. even the children are not safe from dejunking. i keep telling them to watch out or that next load to the DI could be them. threats are such effective parenting (not):)

so, au revoir chain smoker pregnancy laugh. until we meet again. which, with a looker like this, my hopes are high that we will!!

Thursday, December 2, 2010


time is passing too fast and too slow.

the six week baby mark is upon us. my expectations for this mark were a lot higher than what has actually come from it but such is life.

at my hospital discharge, i was sure at the six week mark a jack hammer would not be requisite for me to get into pants. also, i thought carrying around 12 ounces of milk wouldn't still be so painful and uncomfortable, or for that matter look so chubby on my frame. and for sure i didn't think that i would be suffering high blood pressure from a lack of sleep. but.....

alas. all this has come and life marches on.
and, i am still old and tired, but the upside is this:

he has the same profile all my babies have had, and for that matter, most of my siblings. he belongs, favoring mostly miss grayce lou's looks. which being interpreted is his motha. but just as grayce has he will soon develop a look of his own. speaking of grayce, here is a picture of when she had gotten little bubba to sleep and she wanted to pose as though she was also asleep.

i didn't argue that this looks incredibly incriminating to neglectful parenting. a large child such as herself draped all over such a tiny life.
i remember telling someone once that parenting is the highest high you will ever achieve, also with it are the lowest lows. i think it has something to do with the explosion of love that accompanies this job.
there is nothing better than a newborn smile, goo, smell.
there is nothing more miserable that sleep deprivation and lots of small people depending on you.
4 kids is a lot.
a lot of:
work, poop,food preparation,christmas presents,car seats,fighting,diapers,nursing,patience,laundry,mind swearing,homework.
also a lot of:
laughing,joy,love,kisses,hugs,family dinner,jokes,snowmen,night time stories,holiday joy.
and although the latter list is smaller, it is also more rich and fulfilling which somehow makes the jackhammer routine getting into jeans worth it. also, i have yet to locate my belly button, this may or may not be a problem, depending on how you look at it. and, somewhere out there are my legs, you know the one that got cut out from under me? soon enough they will return and with it will be a mournful momma realizing that her baby is growing all too soon.....

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

look to the left there....

and you will see one of my favorite baby gifts.

my bestie brooke bestowed upon the fruit of my loins the most wonderful gift. a minky. and seriously, i worship the little silky. it goes thru the wash multiple times a week so that my manchild can bask in a little heaven. go visit the sit by nov. 9th and you too will enjoy free luxury.....

like my red head wants a large one from sandy claws, shhhh don't tell

Sunday, October 31, 2010

what's in a name

well, apparently a joke at our house.

you see. i did this earth bending stupid thing once. when scott and i were dating, i said," i have a daughter waiting and her name is grayce." now, realize we both knew we were going to get married so this didn't come as a shock to him. but, i could feel my little grayce long before i was married and i knew she was a grayce, i just knew it. feeling the guilt of just telling scott the name, i stupidly gave up naming rights of any males that might enter our family right there on the spot. let me warn any unmarried readers right now, do not do this. one day, you will be pushing a watermelon thru a lemon and you can name that watermelon any dag gum thing you want. okay?

well, 10 years later, with our recent boy fetus emerging, the above mentioned comes into play. i knew this and told my red head this information, the fetus is a boy honey. i guess i am one of those lucky ones who just know what they are having. one time years ago, he told me that the next manchild should be named william bryant. two family names. great. for 4 years i have been able to feel this little boy hovering around, knowing he was coming forth eventually. once we were pregnant, i quickly reminded husband what the name was, after all, it was his idea. i had just happened to fall in love with it. my best friend snagged the william part and that put a damper on things for us. like my best friend since childhood that i still talk to regularly and we eat dinner together a lot. i asked her where she got the name from and she said they really liked pirates of the caribbean and apparently there is someone named william on that show. ( i know, i know. my cinema retardedness cripples me, i have never seen the show) well. there was no attachment with that right? surely i could steal the name. it is a 5 generation name in my family. so, we thought of naming him william and calling him liam. except once i heard the name liam when i was 18 or so and instantly thought the spelling would be lee-um. and it made me think of a green pea. just like the name gordon makes me think of a pickle. but say liam neeson to me and i get real romantic about the name liam, it sounds so.......brittish. the other bad news about liam is that it is on the top ten list right now and heavens knows there are enough grayce's and ella's for me to want originality.

so, the next step was to find another name. i fell head over heels in love with the name simon. uncrinkle your nose right now. simon cowell will not be around forever. i didn't give grayce the middle name of mae because macey grey was popular at the time and i didn't want to curse my child with a dyslexic future by naming her grayce mae. well, we all know macey grey chased her waterfall out of the spotlight and she became a one hit song wonder. simon, funky traditional. oh so original, but scott hated it.


one day i put out feelers on facebook for a boy name. our friend shawn suggested koen. we both really liked it. for 3 or 4 hours we thought, okay, here it is. as we were parting ways for bed that night, the red head rubbed my belly and said, "goodnight little rowan." we both giggled uncontrollably. like, dry heaving giggling. i told him he had his naming rights revoked. if he couldn't remember what he liked, how could i trust him? we could end up with a boomer if we weren't careful.

it was such a dilemma.

so. one night, said red head was getting serious about the name. (like a week before the induction keep in mind. which is why it was an earth bending stupid thing to let him name the boys. the male clock does not tick like a females.) he looked up rowan and found it was a celtic name that meant little redhead. he also had a praise jesus moment in church one week where he fell in love with simon. so. we had two names, two routes to take. red head got the name rowan and simon for the back up. we were all holding out hope for a curly red head. so as this little one emerged and we saw the gobs of black hair, we thought oh, hello simon. but, this little boy was not a simon. he was rowan. within seconds we knew. and that was okay. the hour we left the hospital we had to give a middle name and i let scott do it. he chose william. he wanted each of our boys to have something from each family. easton got scott and rowan got the 5 generation name from my side. pretty good trade.

and boo to brooke shields for naming her girl rowan. it is a boy name. and it made me cringe when i heard all the girl rowans. no one wants a pat. really. and for all accounts, this poor baby gets called the craziest things. it is just so busy around here. he's been called rogan, owen, baby o, or just baby. sometimes we look at each other, kids included, and say - what's his name again? he's baby to us. either way, there is no shortage of love.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

the fruit of my loins emerges into this world- the birth story

i had a secret this time. well, it was more like a "i don't know if i want to do this secret". i had a scheduled induction and kept it mum. the doctor really pushed for me to do this in a controlled environment because of a collection of things. head placement issues, abundant amniotic fluid, strep b positive.

the morning of the induction was just the most out of body experience. ella's birthday was the day before which was a great distraction, but she had an allergic flare up and was miserable the whole day. i kept debating if i really wanted to go through with it....really, i did. my mom planned a special halloween sleep over with the kids so we could keep it on the down low. i hate others expectations and wanted to do this with scotty and not a million people wondering when, how, know. anyway. i also had a lot of fears. i just kept saying i forgot the good parts and could only remember the bad. after three crazy deliveries you get like that.

when we got to the hospital i had a prime induction rate of 7:00 am, which meant my doctor is grand and had it put on the schedule 2 weeks in advance. i carried baby until 39 weeks and 3 days, which is the longest i have ever done. when the doctor came in he checked baby and sure enough the head was not down but off to the right. we started the penicillin drip and he told me we needed to reevaluate at 10:00am about head placement. he told me to start tinkering with the head to see if i could get fetus to move down. the whole pregnancy i could press by my belly and get his head off from the right or left side.

i knew in his mind he was putting together a back up plan, which meant c-section. with so much fluid (again) he was worried the cord would slip out if the head was too high and other possibilities. i started preparing myself (for the millionth time this pregnancy) for a c-section or some grim scenario. the doctor came in at 10am with the ultra sound machine and we all cheered to find out baby had moved and the head was engaged, although still sunny side up. that was enough. off to the pitocin we went about 10:30am and then the show started.

i wish i could put words together about how different i have felt with this pregnancy. i could have gone two more months, i just didn't get crazy enough to want it out. i know it's odd. i had really forgotten the magic of babies and all of the good stuff. so every minute i was in labor i kept thinking, maybe i could back out and come back next week. then. the pitocin started to work. i am super sensitive to it and was commiserating thru contractions an hour into it. they were close together and long. after an hour i cried "uncle" and got the epidural. i was a four by then. there were a bunch of "new" things the labor and delivery unit wanted to try out on me. a new in utero monitor for baby, the kangaroo(the skin to skin when baby comes out) among other things. i think the hospital i delivered at has the best L&D unit around. the staff is amazing. it seems any nurse on the floor has been there 20 years, they are incredibly competent. anyway, with all of these new things came an onslaught of nurses, reps and others in the delivery room which was amazing for the delivery.

it went fast after the epidural (which worked this time, a dr. patel cocktail, yay!). i was closely monitored after the epidural for a past history of blood pressure dip suddenly. the staff was amazing with every concern that came up. i was a 4cm at twelve and with the help of tons of nurses giving advice on curling up in a ball, rotating every 30 minutes, by 2:00 i was 10 and working on the head coming down and turning baby. a couple of pushes and a vacuum to aid in the crazy head position, by 2:58pm baby emerged. with a room full of spectators knowing we were being surprised, it was like a home run hit with cheers when rocky (our doc) announced the gender.

for a minute, heaven and earth were in my hands. i have never had a moment like that with any delivery. the kangaroo requires immediate skin to skin with a nurse looking over baby to make sure all is normal. this little person laid on me, crying, while i had a good half hour to take it all in. this entire pregnancy i have worried something wouldn't be right, that we had been lucky to that point, that the delivery would be horrific. my miracle was realizing what an amazing experience bringing a baby into this world can be. i had no pain and emotionally i wasn't drained because of the quick pace and amazing support. i had 5 nurses that were there to observe the new utero monitoring machine who all had at least 10-15 years each of labor and delivery experience. they were cheering me on with every push and every great milestone. my doctor was so kind and so sweet. i know doctors are notorious for bedside manner either way. i feel so lucky to have one that offers up a kind and aware disposition. the best complement i can give him is to say that his experience made me feel like he was a pro but his understanding and tenderness with scott and i made us feel like we were his first delivery.

in that moment where i was feeling no pain and taking the relief of being done in with the perfect miracle on my chest, i thought about all my trepidation, nerves, and holding back about going thru the labor. it was like everyone disappeared and for a few sweet moments i thought of everything i would have gone thru to have those moments. the thought that came to my mind was crawling to the hospital thru any circumstance to have experienced that miracle. that's the part i had forgotten. the beauty of heaven extended just to you to offer you its very best. to show you the miracle of life, the miracle of creation, and the opportunity to have your heart opened to one more thing to adore and love. i feel so blessed to have been the receiver of that memory.

my recovery has been a recovery. not always easy and a little bumpy, but having a sweet little boy at my side cooing sure makes it easier. my recovery with ella was incredibly amazing so this has thrown me for a little loop. i guess when you feel everything during labor anything seems better than feeling that. that is all i can attribute the amazingly quick recovery with ella. but, to have those amazing moments while the epidural was still working with rowan was worth every ounce of pain i have had the past 11 days. i feel incredibly lucky to have had this memory and this amazing week with my superstar husband at the helm of all of the organization and sanity at our house.

and, i know 31 seems young. but i old. i tired. seriously. i have been bearing babies for 9 years and the red head and i are bone tired. like head aching all day bone tired. the busyness of 4 kids going 4 different directions makes me so sleepy. while my life feels like a dream of goodness, sometimes i wish i was in a dream, that would mean sleep. this too shall pass and my cup runneth over, that is what i keep telling myself.

many have bluntly asked, so i bet you are done right? 4 kids pretty much translates into you have populated the whole earth with today's trends. i am a firm believer that a family is not about numbers. what resonates for me is giving yourself time to find out what your family is supposed to be. i don't think welcoming a new baby is a time to make drastic decisions either way. we all have a purpose, a plan that is just for us. as unique as our individuality. why try to be like somebody else's family? i think finding out what is meant just for you is one of life's greatest sources of joy. amen :) at least for me.

so there you have. a birth story and a sermon. it's a twofer. two for one......

Saturday, October 23, 2010

the fruit of my loins emerges into this world - the picture version

Rowan William Mac 10/19/10 2:58 p.m. 7 lbs. 15 ounces. 20 1/2 inches. perfection.

Ella is a pro at loving this little man. it is so sweet. the nurses at the hospital got a kick out of this onesie. it is set up like a eye chart and says: mom says if you can read this, change my diaper. unfortunately it is a 10 minute outfit, after it's been on 10 minutes, there are explosions with unfortunate consequences.......
ella was eating m&m's, telling rowan all about them.

nothing better than some cross eyed shots and a chubby toddler face filled with big sister pride.

i really don't know if he could be any more pretty, really i am so in love with this little man.

his head gets so cold. we have had to make him the roman catholic priest and cover him up.

just a few hours old meeting the other fruits of my loins.....

unfortunately ella had a horrible allergic flare up right before he was born. we made her wear the mask and go see dr. lloyd for clearance before she could meet row....

i am working on the birth story which might be a few days. i want to record these great things while they are fresh on my mind. we are doing well at this house.

Monday, October 11, 2010

my mileage is almost up

i feel like all i do is blog about this bloated condition i find myself in but i only have another week of it so i will let it run the proper course here.

maybe common sense has taken over or maybe the whole forgetting about your last labor is no more true once you have successfully pushed three watermelons thru the lemon, but i have not forgotten the last labor. no sir. it was not fun. at all. and while we're on the subject, there is no fun in it, okay. don't get sentimental on a women in her 38th week. you are stuck to every beeping contraption the hospital owns, hooked up to all kinds of dripping apparatuses, and put into a shameful moo-moo for the greeting of your baby. like, hello fetus, i am your mother, like it or not this is what i am wearing. let us greet one another. and the whole thing is quite unfortunate until you hold that baby. then. well, let the sentiments flow. and then the stupid things one would say like, oh, let's not be done having babies husband, no, no, no. let's do it again, and again. okay? hold on wife, let's just enjoy this one okay.

one of the fabulous perks i am finding about this state of my swollen body is the fact that the empathy that flows from on lookers provides some what of a free pass. people take one look at the all or nothing belly and feel their pelvic bones shifting. this means they feel so sorry for your gimpy walk and condition, they bring you dinner BEFORE the baby is born. this has been quite wonderful, kind, and thoughtful from the sorrow filled onlookers. and folks, it's a site to see. all 22 pounds, right there, in the middle, hanging from my broken abdominal muscles. i also get a free pass on my mouth. for instance, yesterday i was observing that dashing red head of mine from the audience in church. he was perched up there on the stand, observing the congregation members. i noticed that his face was quite contorted and looked like he too might be having contractions. normally this is an observation i would keep to myself because who wants to be told they look like some body's skull is banging on their colon in a public setting. i contemplated this and figured i was pretty equal as far as looks at this point and since dignity flies out the door somewhere between the hospital moo-moo that will soon adorn me and the dignified straps i would be placed in, i asked him if he is in pain on the stand. was he also contracting. at first he looked hurt and then he concurred that his contorted facial problem could make for some great sunday dinner humor from the congregation. he said he would take note and possibly maybe we could work out a signal if he looks to be effacing or dilating from the stand.

also, how about being told that you can't do that because you're pregnant. well, if you only knew what i am going to have to do to get this thing out, i assure you folks, i am quite capable of most things in this condition. and that is my firm conclusion. i realize exactly what could be ahead of this mama. and this is why if i go past sunday, it will be the longest i have ever been pregnant. the doc has offered to start me and i am in no rush. i have to get serious about setting a date he says. the head is still floating around despite being transversed by the doctors hands. my abundant fluid is intoxicating to these babies, bumping, rushing, floating. their heads cannot stay down. engage baby, engage, i keep chanting to the unborn fetus which my sister has given the affectionate name of cletus the fetus. well, that was so funny i almost gave birth right then and there. cletus. oh, maybe it is only funny if you live in utah and grew up with an aunt vodice (which i always thought was a body part) or perhaps a grandpa rufus. cletus is not far off from most of our mormon heritage genealogy charts. maybe the day will come when baby cletus will be hip again. possibly deverl. i will stop now. i can feel the wincing.

so, here i sit as happy as a lark can be, because apparently a lark is quite happy.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


things are quiet here as of late,

i mean as in no baby, which honestly, is a relief! i made it, i am technically considered "full term". all of the contracting and misery up to this point has made me so incredibly happy to be 37 weeks pregnant. in fact, at my last appointment, he told me i was good to go. i am dilated and ready to go. my blood pressure has been around 120 the entire pregnancy, mostly from worry i suppose. i was back down to my regular for me 100. the nineties are what i usually chart in at. i think it just goes to show that i am realizing what a miracle 3 healthy babies are and what a body goes thru for these heavenly miracles. and at this point, i can do anything for 3 more weeks, although technically he can induce me in 2 weeks because i have met the dilation requirements. the baby's head is not down where it should be all of the time but the doctor was able to manipulate it on the last visit. again, like the last one, this pregnancy has been met with a surplus of fluid. most surprising, this baby is measuring normal, which is about 37 cm. at this point with ella, i was measuring 44cm and had had her by this point. i am grateful for chubby cheeks and would much rather kiss on those all day, so bring forth a fatty fetus!

as for happenings of significance at this house, my little ella has kept things lively. i have never had a 4 year old to greet a baby at this house, only babies. i have a preschooler greeting this bundle, what joy! and a little sadness, it is insanity when you have a house full of babies but there is something to the busyness of it all that keeps me rolling. i am nearing the end of child bearing possibly and that brings a little sadness. it is a door i am not ready to close, sniff, sniff. open it shall stay.

back to ella's entertaining antics. she is quite sure that if it is a grill (girl) baby that we should name it isabel. a boy name has not been entertained until we recently disclosed the equal possibility that is could be a boy. she proudly announced one morning that if the fetus turns testosterone upon arrival, that "little boot" should suffice for a name. i of course thought that she meant "blue" as she has been smitten with the blue's clue's series on netflix lately. she reprimanded me multiple times and let me know that indeed, she was referring to a boot that goes on your soot (foot). little boot she insists. she also insisted that her littlest pet shop was named "pothead" in the middle of the doctor's waiting room 3 times in a hella voice. i was quite sure she meant spothead. you see, she has entered a phase in which i like to refer to as phonemic awareness. all my kids at the 3-4 age did it. suddenly the pairing of sp, st, anything complex gets dropped, leaving me to believe that the spotted dog she was playing with was not pot but spot. no, indeed, 3 shrill corrections in a room full of waiting patients let me know that indeed,pothead it was.

a word on surprises.
this pregnancy has been so incredibly exciting. usually with babies greeting my babies, i share only with scotty the excitement of it all. the kids are so incredibly helpful and filled with anticipation all of the time. our sweet kind easton is sure crossing his fingers to even the score. he is outnumbered and his kind and easygoing disposition makes me wish for 10 little eastons. the girls of course are hoping to rule and reign with another addition touting estrogen. i keep reminding them all that it will be a baby no matter the color it will wear. they still love, goo, and give way to bodily functions regardless of pink or blue. i highly recommend a surprise. highly, highly. and this is coming from the queen of impatience. it has been a wonderful ride.

upon the little boot revelation, grayce lou ignited the idea that boo radley would be a fine name for a male fetus. she is so honored by the admittance to the "to kill a mockingbird" club last year, that she is begging me to read the book and also integrate this story into every part of our lives possible. it is coming time to have our annual fall family festival where we will retrieve pumpkins, have the last picnic of the season, and watch "to kill a mockingbird". i have eagerly read the book twice last month in show of my appreciation for the season and the tradition. my mother cultivated a fine thing with this great tradition and i suggest it to all. it is a fabulous saturday filled with memories to get you to the next fall.

i am also contemplating painting another pumpkin on my belly. it seems the shape (worn out and broken from three previous tenants) is right. although, it won't be near as big as ella's pumpkin, it is a fun fall pregnancy picture for sure. here is a picture which i was reluctant to take. there are very few pictures i have with pregnancy, i don't love how distorted i feel during it, but appreciate the beauty of it afterwards. but at 37 weeks, here i be.

as you can see, the sag is evident. i can hold the belly and move it up and down which tends to be something of a freak show event. "move your belly" i get requests all of the time.

the nursery is getting some bead board and a ledge tomorrow. the crib has arrived, and mercy mild, a changing table! this is the first of our babies to have new anything. also, this baby has a nursery. my fourth and my firsts all in one. benjamin moore's coventry grey with yellow accents adorn the walls and as soon as my carpenter packs up tomorrow, i will unveil the workings of my brain. what a great time i have had doing a classic, neutral room.

so, here i sign off, a dilated, pumpkin incubator!

Saturday, September 11, 2010


the last few weeks always feel like one long labor for me. i am one of those women who get to the day they are being started and the nurse exclaims, oh my, you are a five and 90 percent effaced. yes, i know, i have been for a few months now. i don't know why it happens to some and not to others. i envy the girl that says she is so desperate for a contraction she will often mistake gas for a contraction.

my sweet red head has taken away the labor including activities around the house for the health of my back and for the health of our child. but, yesterday the floors were so dirty. it had been a week since their last scrubbing. i had to do it. i filled up my rainbow vacuum with water, pulled out the floor attachment and went to work. 4 hours later the floors to this abode were picked up and steamed sparkly clean. unfortunately, it caused me to be on all fours with some intense back labor and contractions. while on all fours rocking back and forth, i was telling scott that i really didn't want to go into labor so soon, what was i thinking. the poor kids all looked wide eyed as they all took a chance to sneak upstairs and peek in on the 3 month labor that takes place in my body. ella was quite curious at the whole situation. she was immediately sympathetic and started rubbing my back. she didn't know it hurt to have a baby. she then proceeded to rub the upper part of my body, or the parts in which she lovingly refers to as the nursies. she has been astonished and quite curious with these body parts the past 8 months. she is quite sure there is another baby in one of those she often states publicly. anyone who knows me knows that i am the epitome of private and modest. to demonstrate this point i will call upon grayce's comment last month.

she out loud wondered when she would ever see a pregnant man. of course i laughed a chain smoker laugh that caused a scene of dry heaving laughter. then i felt guilty that the only biology talk i have ever given her includes guarding her private body parts to the tune of kicking and screaming. the talk has to come soon, i know. fourth grade will all too soon be over and i am sure many questions will be asked. pretty soon, i think the county comes along and makes an afternoon date of it at the school. why, i have always explained to the little babes at my house that the doctor simply untwists my belly button and viola! a baby comes out. the kids most willingly believe this because well, my belly button becomes quite the outtie when i am in this swollen state.

a few more weeks. if i go to the first of october, i will be thrilled. my ultra super duper fertilizer amniotic fluid has kicked in and the baby is suddenly measuring 2 weeks ahead. i had a dream last night that a cute dark haired, chubby cheeked baby slid right out of a water slide into my arms in a hospital room. it was the best labor i ever had. maybe that is how i will take on explaining the biology works of babies to my little ones. one big water slide from heaven. what a great idea, certainly my cheeks would be a much lighter shade of crimson.......

and these are just for you maryann! i ran into a good friend at the store last week and she said she read my blog and it was in need of pictures. i agreed and then remembered there is a reason, we are horrid picture takers at this house! this is me 6 months along at the beach seeking shade under the hatch.

and here at the last mac brothers wedding, four months pregnant with number 4 and further testament that pictures are a failure here. i can't get the picture to turn, boo.

Monday, August 16, 2010

day five: the vampire port

upon the recommendation of some friends who have a family home in port angeles, they convinced us we must head up. i did a lot of WWW research and all of the pictures confirmed that indeed we needed to visit this place. it is on the olympic peninsula right at the foot of the olympic national forrest. that morning, we took a fairy from seattle to bainbridge island and then crossed the bridge to our destination.

this was our departing picture. i would like to take a moment to plug the ferries here. think NYC subway system on a boat. you drive your little car on for $15.00 and get across the water, but you also get phenomenal views.
this is the face of 2 people wanting their own beds and missing their babies. can you tell? also the face of two cold people on the passenger open air deck. i think it was maybe 55 degrees that day, heaven!
bainbridge island. we didn't get much time to explore as we had so much driving ahead of us.
once the ferry landed, we headed first to sequim (skwim). it is the lavender capital of something or other. lots and lots of lavender. it became apparent to us that we crave beautiful architecture that creates small towns. there were some breathtaking views all around us, but the reality is, stephanie meyers based her novels in run down indian reservation towns full of double wides. there is not a lot of charm in port angeles, forks or any surrounding towns. that shock took me a full day to digest. here is a lavender field in sequim just outside of port angeles.
once we got into town we were hungry. thankfully, i did loads of research on food. there were great reviews on everything around. we chose the asian bistro for lunch/dinner that had a great wall street journal review. i thought for sure this would be the place to indulge in seafood and pad thai, seemed the place. no, not the best idea unfortunately. give me some authentic pad thai please with tofu, eggs, bean sprouts and peanuts. this was sub par. scott's was alright. he got a honey walnut prawn dish. once we checked into our bed and breakfast, bob, the owner, pointed us to the mountains. he told us we had to do hurricane ridge before the sunset. this was the drive up.
it was a full panoramic view of the olympic peninsula, i think we went from sea level to 5500 feet elev. in about 20 minutes. it was impressive and i finally felt like i could put a smile on my face.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

sarah agnes prine take two

you know who sarah agnes prine is right? no? click here and buy "these is my words" today. and then, when you are done, reread it like i did. my lovely friend brooke thought real hard about what i would want for my 31st birthday and concluded that a good book and a treat were just the thing. she even stretched herself and got a treat without chocolate so i could fully enjoy and indulge.(chocolate has been poison to me this pregnancy:() so indulge i did and love i do sarah agnes prine.
i think about her (fictional i know)life and feel strength. so as the snake situation was unfolding, with my pregnant belly, i just felt a little sarah in me. i kept joking that while i was getting ready for my evening of cooking for a gathering of women, i was going to put on my green rubber boots and strap a shovel to my waist to keep my assets all safe and protected from the visitor.

this morning i sat around with wet hair in jammies after my shower. i needed to not be needed today, so all i did was answer the phone. first a salesman, and then kaylene.

my dear sweet, i want to be like her when i grow up, neighbor, kaylene called. usually she flows on the phone when we talk, she just kind of paused this time. she finally got out that she had a visitor about an hour after my visit with the slithering fellow. she was innocently gardening in her lot kitty corner adjoining mine that is separated by a fence. pulling weeds, admiring the handy work of the harvest when she nonchalantly looked over to see the biggest reptile she could imagine. overcome with disbelief about the size of the middle of this snake, her screams brought out neighbors inside their homes. her own flesh and blood thought she had discovered a body in the garden. something atrocious for sure.

she was so startled to look over and see this visitor's middle, that she didn't even get a look at it's head or tail. her son went out and confirmed that the tail was indeed a pattern of stripes and not rattles. it didn't matter to kaylene. she declared that the garden was closed. weed patch it was the rest of the year and no one was allowed out ever never ever.

she confided to me that she has come across rattlers without such a reaction, but the sheer monstrous size of that snake took her hours to calm down from. that and i am sure the proximity to her were her undoing. she was still shaky recalling the incident to me this morning.

right after her call this morning alaska called me. he laughed at the incident because he is after all mountain man. he recollected about 25 run ins with rattlers thru the years. some have lurched at him after he provoked them, never bitten him. he attested to their non aggressive ways stating that they have to be provoked incredibly to get a bite. i am sure that is what that bear fella said before he was eaten alive too. beware alaska brother, beware!

his story of the week involved his camping trip last week where he had a black bear running thru the campground and how his biggest concern was all the good gourmet food they had brought up was going to get eaten. he was packing that stuff up faster than he was looking to see where the bear was headed or mace for that matter. he has priorities you know.

so there you have it, my sarah agnes prine tale. kaylene confirmed that it was large, maybe 4 feet with a middle the size of my calf, and that is no tall tale.

Friday, August 13, 2010

the day i got to channel my inner sarah agnes prine

thursday my church commitments required me to be at the church and staffed with a babysitter by 9:50am. i also had a large relief society gathering that night at my house. so, my day was laid out on paper, scheduled, and offered no time for dilly dally. no time at all. i even thought about scheduling bathroom breaks for myself because i get into these zones, it can prove dangerous.

as my mom was pulling out of my house at 9:47am after dropping uncle kyle off to babysit, she quickly returned begging me out the front door privately. she just kept pointing and saying, "what are we going to do?" she was in a panic zone. she related to me that as she was pulling out she saw a visitor coming up the lane. i mean a visitor. and as the story gets relayed over and over let's put the SNAKE at 4 feet long, okay?

as if the slithering creature had turned on its blinker from the main busy road, it was headed right up to my house with purpose. right up to my house. headed up to say hello. in the snippets of story from my mother and what i could process because i was on a schedule, i got bits of diamond back pattern and look at the end of the tail, it looks like rattles. she told me that as she was in her fancy and heavy car pulling out, upon the discovery of this slithering creature, she threw a water bottle out the window at the large snake. her intent was to see if it would coil so she could decipher if our lives were hanging in the balance or not. it didn't coil and her heavy car pulled right back up my driveway and not over the unwelcome visitor. she later confieded that she didn't want to have to clean up the guts.....

there were also other viewers from our bay window keeping an eye on the situation. of course today we are laughing, but yesterday my mother froze. she was asking me, do i run over it with my car? what do i do? yes, yes mom, run over that bad boy with your big heavy car, i kept insisting. but she couldn't. you would have been scared too at the sight of this monstrosity.

with my basketball belly, i bolted next door to the current house being built. there were manly, jacked up trucks parked in front and i thought that surely our answer would be found with all of the testosterone in the construction. surely. the first man i saw acted like he understood english until i said snake. that was met with backing away and saying no, no, no in his accented english. i kept begging if he would come dehead this bad boy with a sharp tool or shovel. he kept at his no, no, no.
upon my return to my house, i was informed that the snake did indeed make it to my house and burrowed into a hole in the front yard.

at this point i am thinking that a rattler lives in my weed infested yard and has underground paths and homes of eggs and mates all over. my poor mother is still frozen repeating, should i run over it with my car? all i knew was that my schedule did not allow for such diversions and i was needed down the street to give rides to girls for our adventure. i should have thought it thru more, contemplated that instead of a resident at my home, this snake was the traveling kind. why, he might be headed to my neighbors.

instead, i called the redhead after an hours contemplation and also upon hearing that my friend in the car, who lives up the street, had to evacuate a rattler living on her front porch last year. so i put the redhead in charge of the removal of the snake. since he and animal control are in each other's cell phones now, he got his friend on the line. mr animal control reported that it is indeed illegal to kill a rattler, but please kill it and don't call me. catch it and call me. he also reassured me that it was more than likely a blow snake. they imitate a rattler with patterns on their back and also markings on the tail looking to be rattles.

by afternoon the tale was spreading about our run in. i kept retelling the tale and had people show up in the front yard with hoes and shovels swiping along my sidewalk. also, advice that wasp spray aimed at the snakes face will kill it deader than heck. i wanted it deader that heck too i said. by the end of the day, i felt like i was crying wolf. really. a 4 foot snake with a middle the size of my thigh, okay, maybe my calf? well, that's how i felt until my back yard neighbor called me this morning.....
(to be continued)


it's been almost a year now with a new job for scotty. we are at the reflective stage as we comprehend how great life is.

sometimes i don't think scott divulges the full extent of how great his job is. his surgeon said is best last week when he commented that a PA and a surgeon partnership is really like a marriage, you never know what you are going to get.

this being the third "marriage" in scott's career, we are very incredibly happy. his doc is incredibly human and realistic. like last night for instance. i had the entire relief society coming over while we had 30 minute meal demos. i was a crazy mess for 2 weeks readying the house, getting a meal ready to demo and such. scott found out that their typical home for dinner schedule was not going to happen. blake was so kind and accommodating, letting him off early so he could come home and grab the kiddos for me. scott of course felt guilty and blake was the one making him feel justified in leaving.

we have decided that a job comes down to lifestyle. scott has been offered multiple jobs this past year (he must be great!). in fact, 2 last month. it comes down to more than a paycheck, really.
if you have full confidence in your surgeon as a PA, your life is good. one of the best parts about this current dig is that scott works for 1 doc. not 60, not a corporation, but one. we have noticed the most difference in that fact alone. with the other jobs there was always something on the table the "big wigs" were taking away, or fighting on. it just wore on scott day after day to go into battle mode.

with this job, he gets to go in, and, gasp, practice medicine. the only stress comes from what normally should in this line of work. super important. we feel incredibly lucky.

here is a cool write up about blake. this story was actually featured in our local paper and picked up by multiple national news sources. i think "the doctors" in LA have actually contacted him too.
because scott doesn't take call, he wasn't in on the initial surgery. but he was assisting when they put the skull back together and did the follow up visit to remove the staples. this was a miraculous story and sure makes anyone feel like god is real. (to get the full story click each picture and a the story unfolds)

i think it odd that scott didn't even mention this surgery day to me. 4 days a week of spine and brain and i guess this is just part of his day. i had to hear about it when my mom asked if i knew about it after it ran on the front page of the paper.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

four days in, four to go

pikes market place is one of my favorites. it is an absolute must if you are anywhere near the seattle vicinity. it is a permanent mass farmers market with some of the most unique products and delectable food. there is every kind of everything you can imagine. give yourself a couple of hours for this. it is downtown so parking can be tricky, and it is crowded. we opted to go on a monday when it would be less crowded. as you can see, it was still busy.

our first stop was piroshky piroshky. it is a fantastic russian bakery with breaded delicacies that cater to the belly's content. the dough they use is similar to a croissant, very buttery and flaky. scott opted for the bavarian cream and i dove into the cheddar cheese roll. we washed it down with a puot,plum, peach, and strawberry smoothie from another street vendor. it was quite heavenly. my cheddar roll won the prize and could account for 3 of the 9 pound gain.

i think it is very comical to look back at pictures scott took of me. one of my biggest discomforts is having my picture taken on vacation. i feel so vain. i don't know why, but it is like a root canal for me. so this is me, pretending to be happy on vacation, which i am, but having to appease my redhead because i love him so. the fruit behind me is the stuff they used in the smoothie, i can almost taste it now.

this picture doesn't do justice to the flowers that line the vendors shops. they were fabulous.

here is a sampling of some of the fresh seafood available for purchase. oh to be a local here......

the flowers. there are masses and masses of these flowers that the sweet oriental ladies are going crazy making nonstop. these bunches? they sell for $5-$20. the ones pictured are the $10 bunches. oh, to be a local. the smell they infuse the market with makes for a great memory.

for lunch we settled on pike's place chowder. they offer a 4 sampler and have won every chowder competition they enter. it was 75 degrees that day and so we were pushing it with hot soup, but it was worth every bite. we did include a cold tomato gazpacho with shrimp that helped cool us down. it was worth it. there was also a cheese shop that boasted the best mac and cheese around, i believe them. the line was half a block. if we were to go back, we probably would have ventured into the line.

there are tons of homeless in seattle. my take on it is the abundance of artistic and ridiculously talented folks who gather up there. i have never seen such homelessness abound in any big town before. this picture is of me watching a teen aged boy lay down on a cement block with his pillow and sleep like there are not 40 million people around him. he was dirty and had pajama pants on but could probably get into julliard with violin skills or something. it is a different crowd up there....i do love my people watching.

we headed down to the aquarium after a couple of hours soaking and strolling pikes. we found an awesome map shop just above the market. we spent quite a bit of time in there and finally settled on a 1500's map of the world to frame for the house. it is really cool. the aquarium is mr zoology's thing. as is the zoo and other living creature exhibits. those places just make me sad looking at all those caged things. i liken it to dogs or cats coming to see people at the jailhouse. it seems odd to look at creatures out of their environment in a glass cage people bonk on all day. oh well. scott said it was nice.

we went to ivar's for fish and chips. someone told us they would walk on glass for ivars. the reviews all over were phenomenal. they have a fine dining place as well. i am hoping the reviews were talking about that place. the fish and chips stand was nothing to holler about. we shared a little boat of them. they did have malt vinegar though, and the englishman red head said that is an authenticity marker. he longs for the days of fish and chips in leeds, england wrapped in newspaper with malt vinegar. sigh.

anyway. after a stroll along the waterfront we decided to attack molly moon's ice cream shop across town. we liked the girl scout thin mint and decided the line would be worth it.
i am still out on molly moon's ice cream. it is run by a bunch of tree hugging organic save the earth nuts. now, i am on board with conservation, really i am. this felt really trendy to me and so i don't know if it has lasting merit. the line was outrageous, around the block long. and, the other thing that has me hung up is that it is not a sweet ice cream. i got the salted caramel and scott had the theo chocolate. i just don't know how i feel about wasting calories on ice cream if it won't suffice my sweet tooth. this place also had a roasted garlic flavor and often boasts a bacon ice cream served atop hot oatmeal with dried fruit. the salted caramel tasted just like it sounded with the salt overpowering any sweetness. even the chocolate was not sweet. it was densely flavored with cocoa but not sweet. hmm. i just don't know what to tell you. i guess it is worth a try to experience a non sweet treat. the service stinks there too. the employees acted like they were put out that they were busy. hello, kids. when you work at a crazy popular ice cream place, you won't get many breaks. if it isn't worth $10 an hour, go somewhere else. they horn rimmed glasses employee was ordering customers to stand here, move here and just jumped in whenever he wanted to serve someone. he was probably the owner. oh well. i am out on this one. i liked the girl scout thin mint. the cookie rendered a sweet element but it was served with vanilla. it needed to be paired with a rich chocolate. anyway. that was the ending to the day. it was right nice.....

Friday, August 6, 2010

ruff ruff

it seems like the hot topic around our house the last of june and all of july has been the red heads dog bite. you can see from the picture below that it wasn't something people ignored. it was right there on his face. right in the middle. this picture can't do the swelling justice. his nose was spliced across the rim and the puncture on his head got to the size of a quarter with infection.

it happened one summer night when he decided to go out jogging. i told him that's what he gets for exercising. he should have stayed home with his incubating wife and eaten ice cream;)

he had just helped the neighbor locate some horses that were thought to be missing. he hadn't been gone for more than 10 minutes. i already told you about the call that made me embarrassed because i laughed so hard. a call telling me my husband was bit on the nose by a dog. i could only picture him dragging his nose along the road to get such punishment. i didn't end up seeing him until the next evening because he spent the night in the ER and got up early for a full day of surgery.

my husband was innocently running along the road. some people were coming off a mountain hike and their trail just happened to intersect with the road scott was running on. these people happen to live a few houses down from the trail and let their 2 large boxers off their leash. scott heard some yelling thru his ipod and took out his speakers. a jogger for these dogs was like a moving target. he decided to stop running as they were right on his heels. they both came up to his waist. he went to pet the one that was acting up and bent his head about 2 inches when the other one lunged at his face. no bark, no growl, nothing. you can see where the jaw was open and got him. he said before he realized what was happening he had this reaction to jerk back. he didn't know why he did this but it coincided with when the boxer clamped his jaw down. just as scott's head came up he saw a jaw clamp down in front of his face. he is incredibly lucky to have his nose still in tact although he now boasts a good scar.

this has been an eye opening experience for us. in our county, a dog can bite three times before it has to be put down. pathetic. why do people buy big dogs? i wonder if these dog owners realize the history of a boxer. boxers were bread to kill cows and take them down at the face, suffocating it. that is why this one went for the face, it's what boxers do. scott was in line with two other dog bites at the er that night. his was the best outcome as the other unfortunate victims were getting their faces put back on in the operating room all night.

every ER staff member told him that boxers, pit bulls and rottweilers are their only offenders in the ER. They are fighting dogs.

of course when this first happened the dog owners were beside themselves, reassuring us they were going to put the dog down. they have small children and didn't want to take any chances. after a day had passed we got a loaf of bread and a promise that they will use a chain to keep the dog restrained along with some training.

this was probably one of the hardest things scott has had to go thru. he really struggled with being upset with these people. he kept saying, why would they waste their free warning on a nice guy like me that won't sue them? his anger came from thoughts of the dog doing this again and the fault being with him because he didn't put up a stink about the dog being put down.

he had me take the above picture in his angry phase, just in case it needed to be documented.

the dog owners kept calling and scott had to leave their calls unreturned. i told him not to call until his anger was gone, that was an okay thing to do. so after a month he ran into them. his anger has dissolved but he didn't side step with them. he told them he is scared to run past thier house now and he hopes they are using a chain......

some people.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

day three

day three was a down day. day two put me into contraction fest. i let scotty go to sleep that night without mentioning i was timing those bad boys. they also started to hurt, really bad. i was one constant prayer that night. i did not want to spend the rest of the vacation in the hospital. i was pumping fluids like they were going out of style and laying on my left side. i know the drill.

that morning we went to a great worship service in seattle and had a really low key morning. we decided after to hit Voula's offshore cafe.

this place is other planet. not only the food, but this place is a religion. people are sold on voula's. so is guy feiri. HERE is the clip of their appearance on triple D (diners, drive ins and dives).
we got there around 11am. when we pulled up, the crowds were outrageous. you actually signed a check in sheet outside the restaurant and waited for the gal to come out and call your name. you waited and you waited. i thought for sure that once you got in, food would be eminent to rescue a starving woman and her fetus. our waitress said it right when she said Voula's is like torture, entertainment and pure indulgence. the wait outside is only half the battle, because once you get in, the show begins.

i was mesmerized by the show. really, 3 guys, cooking every order one at a time. it was a precise science that was fascinating. we didn't even talk to one another we were so entertained. it took a good 45 minutes for us to get our food. i went with the smoked salmon scramble and scotty partook in the chili verde, smoked pork, benedict. they were both ridiculous. it was one crazy experience. and that guy in the above photo to the far right? the guy. voula's son. i felt kind of famous.

by this time, it was well after 1 o'clock and i was due for a nap. the religious experience had put me over the edge, old voula's. so my patient husband sat in the stinky hotel, while i slept in the stinky hotel. boo.

we roused that evening and headed over to the ballard section of seattle to see the ballard locks and the salmon run. it was a good way to spend an afternoon. we browsed the botanical gardens, watched the boats fill the lock system, and then meandered to the salmon run. it was a beautiful stroll.

then. for dinner. we worshipped triple D again. we went to bizarro italian. when guy said that the clam fettuccine made his top 5, i knew we couldn't miss out. it was other planet amazing. they didn't even complain when we asked to split. we had a wonderful appetizer that were these cheese balls. they were centered with fresh mozzarella, surrounded in risotto and then breaded and topped with a roasted red pepper reduction. the whole meal was fantabulous and could just be my favorite meal. the pasta is made on site so it is fresh, add to taht the salted pork and succulent clams. oh honey. it was fantastic.

one of my favorite parts was discovering that molly moon ice cream was served there. i had read amazing incredible things about molly moons. i had also read about the line, so to be able to avoid that peaked my interest. we shared the girl scout thin mint ice cream and were pretty pleased. ( i will give my full review on molly moons on tuesday when we go there and wait in line officially)

on my way

i have issues with food. i love it, love it, i love it.

i do. but i also have discretion about it too. i have the desire to weigh myself everyday which proves daunting when you are on a mission to gain weight to accommodate a growing fetus. i have always weighed the same with each delivery. always. the only part i like about being pregnant in the summer, which i have done 4 times now, is that your summer eating is pretty healthy. with number 2 being born in december, i could definitely see how much harder it was to loose the weight after. it just stuck more. there was not a fest of summer fruits and vegetables during the most pound retaining part. no sir. it was full of turkey and christmas desires.

i feel nearly like a martyr with all the posts of indulgence on our vacation regarding food. but today when i went into the doctor's office. well, he had to "talk" to me about the large amount of weight i had gained the past month. i had gained almost as much this past month as i had the entire pregnancy. when i asked how much i had gained, he chuckled and told me 9 pounds.

9 fraggin pounds in one month. now, to my credit. 2 visits ago the scale boasted 6 pounds and he told me to watch it. last month 1 pound and they figured that their scales had been off. so this go around i promised him there was a vacation involved and i would eat watermelon the whole rest of the pregnancy and to check his scales. he reassured me that i was just fine and on track to gain my regular 30. but still. 9 pounds. i called scott up and told him to write me a note for a handi sticker, his wife was on her way to morbid obesity. my blood pressure was 120. 120. me. i am lucky to pull a 100. sometimes i would go in and it would be in the 90's. so 120 for me was as good as a stroke. let's pick out the casket already.

now these thoughts may seem incredibly irrational to any one's eyes reading this. but my phobia has been discovered. i have an intense fear of gaining weight. i have been there. i dieted all thru high school and beyond. there is no worse way to live that knowing you need to loose weight. really. for me the worry of what health problems i will have from gaining weight are enough to put my husband in the loony bin. like all afternoon, i have told him that i am sure i am one ice cream scoop away from diabetes, one dessert away from a stroke, one night away from severe sleep apnea. he is glad he is working late tonight, that can be sure.

the poor doctor. i told him he gave me a hot flash with the news and at first he laughed until he saw the tears in my eyes and my beet red face. he thought i was joking. he spent the rest of the time reassuring me that i am just fine, not to worry. 20 pounds of weight gain by 29 weeks is normal and regular, just don't do it again kind of thing. i told him i was fine with 20 pounds, but 9 of it in one month. oh lawsy. my blood pressure is spiking retelling the tale......

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

day two

day two was jam packed. we were like two desert travelers soaking up our seattle time. we started out right at sweet iron waffles. they claim the best leige waffle in the country. guess what? they're right. i had heard review after review of nothing but bravo from this little place. each reviewer swore they were in europe. the concept of these waffles is a batter that is raised and in the waffle maker there are sugar crystals that form the most beautiful crust of sweetness around these babies. they are worth the trip alone. right down town, a few blocks up from pikes market.
scotty had the brie with fresh basil. he was in heaven and would talk about it everyday. i opted for the bacon and pure maple syrup. it was absolutely divine. i can't say enough about these waffles. we also felt really lucky because there were only two people there. we heard these kids comment that this was the first time the line wasn't out the door. 3 tables and a maximum occupancy of 12 made me very glad we beat the crowd.
snoqualmie falls was next. i loved the drive thru the mercer island tunnel, thru issaquah and into this scenic falls area. it was so stupendous. really, really lovely. it was a balmy 70 degrees and not a cloud in the sky.

after our hike around the falls we drove around mercer island. i don't know what draws me to this place. it is busy and crowded, but offers some charm that has me captivated. just off downtown and before the eastern side. we spotted this little teeny sign that touted a public beach. scott missed the road because it was so small. we found the parking lot with another downward hike. i geared up for this steep trail and was rewarded with this.
the coolest beach. they have sectioned off for public use with these cool docks and even have lifeguards. it was so famous as ella would say. anything wonderful to her gets claimed as famous, except she can't say f so she says samous. melt me. we sat for a while, taking in the amazing weather and the beautiful water view.
after the falls and the beach, our waffles were long gone and left our bellies begging for more, more, more. this little cafe was the hook to get me on this trip. we loved this place on our honeymoon 10 years ago. we kept speculating about the quality and if ten years ago our tastes might have changed. we were a little off on the distance and were ravenous hungry by the time we got there. it was up the I5 north and at the bottom of chuckanut drive. i had forgotten the funky vibe but not the chocolate ice cream. we were thrilled again to have the place to ourselves. i guess vacation appetites made for no crowds for us, eating at odd times.

we got so lucky as to be at the Rhodie cafe during their celebration of the islands. scott went with pan fried oysters while i ventured out for the shrimp, crab island cakes. they were full of coconut, mango and tender sections of sweet shrimp and buttery crab. it was pure indulgence. and then....

it was time for dessert. we chose the cooked butter and sugar bananas with their chocolate ice cream. normally this lovely dessert is served with vanilla, but i twisted their arm. and oh, was it worth the twist. the cocoa flavor is so intense, i can't even say the ice cream is cold. it essentially captivates what semi cold fudge would be like. it was 10 minutes of pure, sweet indulgence and a memory to make me happy to be alive, seriously.

the rhodie cafe is at the bottom of chuckanut drive which overlooks the san juan islands. it is the most healing drive. it will wipe away any hurt from your past. no joke. for half of it you are surrounded by mass trees, hugging you like a blanket.
the other part of the drive gives you glimpses of the water dotted with small islands.

and then, there are small pull offs with campgrounds and fishing spots. it was why we applied for a job in the town. really, the rhodie and chuckanut. we did it all for them.......pathetic? i just know what i love.
we ended the evening by taking a stroll along the bellingham bay boardwalk.

it was a fantastic day. it was as much fun retelling it too!!! i forget that relishing the vacation is as much fun as being there, well maybe......