A Field Trip to the Zoo

My Friday was spent with 30 third graders and a trip to the zoo. We were fortunate enough to experience some Spring weather for a change, and to be honest I only had five kids in my group. So the day wasn’t so bad…

We started off petting the goats.

Paused at the beauty of the flamingos.

Giggled to the cuteness of the Penguins. They were being camera shy.

In awe of the Bears.

Basked in the colors of the birds.

By the way, this was my favorite exhibit.

We even walked through an African Village.

It was so wonderful to finally soak up some Vitamin D. It turned out to be a great day with many parents taking the opportunity to enjoy a day at the Zoo. PS. Did you know that you can plan an event at the zoo? How fun would it be to have a child’s birthday party or even a wedding there?!

Whatever you decide to do this weekend, Have a Happy One!

Pho Goodness

Seattle’s weather has been a little schizophrenic lately. Today, I thought my house was going to flood. I actually woke up to a leak and a slight power outage. Since I’m an emotional eater, pho was a must for today.

When it comes to customizing my bowl of pho, I’m quite a simple girl. Actually one can argue that I may be sacrilegious. My preference: noodles, meat, broth, a little fish sauce and a squeeze of lime. That’s right I don’t eat any of the herbs or onions, Sriracha or Hoison sauce. I know quite scandalous. And thus, why Mom’s house is the best place for pho, as it’s made to order without judgement.

Aren’t the add-ons pretty though?

Yes, a lemonade or limeade is also a must.

And this was the perfect addition to Seattle’s schizophrenic of day weather. Here’s to hoping that Spring truly is just right around the corner.

Vintage Finds

I recently fell in love with vintage finds…or at least recently admitting to it. One of my new favorite places to shop is located in the heart of Seattle’s industrial area known as SODO. Pacific Galleries is an eclectic mix of everything from vintage jewelry to neon signs to french linens. Yes, all in one place. I love that!

Need vintage bowling pins?

What about a set of silverware?

Or my go-to for a decorative accent piece: vintage books. What are your thoughts on “antiquing?” A trend that’s worth the investment or a trend that needs to be long forgotten?

Portland via Train

Last week I took the train to Portland for an overnight work trip.

I can see the fascination/obsession that some people have with trains. Although my train ride was no more than three hours, I found it quite relaxing and enjoyable. I must add a west coast train trip to my bucket list.

Bouchon Bistro

My friend Victoria recently visited a restaurant that I’ve been coveting, Bouchon Bistro. She was kind enough to write about her experience for Seasons For Cake. Not only has Victoria been a great supporter of S4C, but she is one inspirational human being. She has joined me as a contributing editor and I am so lucky to have her partnership.

Here is Victoria’s recap:

Celebrations can be magical. They can turn darkness into light, hard into soft, etc. And they are ours to create wherever and whenever we like.

I got a taste of how powerful a positive goal can be last weekend when James and I turned a medical drudgery into a culinary campaign.

Tests needed to be done. Poking, prodding, and the rest. Fine. I would submit. But, if you’d asked me why we were going to Las Vegas, I would have said nothing about doctors.  Food was tops on our minds, specifically the gastronomic delights at Bouchon, the Las Vegas outpost of Thomas Keller’s original Yountville, CA bistro

Tucked away on the 10th floor of the Venetian Hotel, the restaurant has a wonderful blue and white tiled floor, brass and mahogany accents, and banquette and individual table seating. The ceilings might as well be in the clouds they are so high, and the dining room looks out over a serene courtyard. We started with fruits de mer, the petit (!!) plateau, which included ½ a lobster, oysters, shrimp, clams, and mussels. Our choices were no surprise.  Onion soup followed for James, with a towering, layered salad of watercress, endive, Roquefort, Fuji apples, walnuts and walnut vinaigrette for me. Steak frîtes and a croque madame were next for us respectively. Our inner wine snobs were on vacation that night, so I drank a white Burgundy from Vézelay.  James drank Kronenbourg beer. Delicious.

After that barrage of victuals, we were full. Desert could not happen. This would have tragic except that Bouchon has a separate bakery, also at the Venetian, that serves pastries and coffees all day. Sunday morning was Bouchon, Part II.

Their chefs must be trained in pastry heaven. Just one bite of the bakery’s almond brioche or chocolate croissant and you will forever be in search of another that’s as good. My favorite breakfast treat was a half croissant layered with apples and a streusel topping, baked to crispy golden deliciousness and sprinkled with flurries of confectioner’s sugar. A bite or two of that with black coffee and any day seems full of possibility, any obstacle surmountable.

Delicious food creates strong connections between minds and bodies. The healing effects of those connections are intense. Whereas the doctoring part of the trip was unmemorable, the dining part was a soothing joy. I’d also say that, although our original mission was the bigger meal at the bistro, the bakery alone is reason enough to go back.

Just one croissant can make any kind of journey a season for cake.

Photos by Bouchon Bistro

Thank you Victoria, for reminding us to celebrate the journey. Happy Weekend.