Life was Just Happening, Part 1

Hello!

In my last post, I mentioned that I’m behind on posting blog-able events.  Here is an attempt at catching up – at least a bit!

A couple of weeks ago, my roomies and I woke up early (well, for a Saturday, at least), packed up a cooler full of lunch, jackets, bocci ball, and a frisbee and hit the road.  Destination: Fort Casey.  One roomie had never been there, and the other hadn’t been in years, so we decided that for and end-of-the-year celebration/quality time session, we just had to go!  And of course, copious amounts of photos were taken.

As soon as we were ready, we hopped in my car and thus begins our epic adventure.

We were seriously excited.  Obviously.

Our first stop?  The ferry.

Again, there was some serious excitement amongst the ranks!

And before we knew it…we had arrived at the highly anticipated destination: Fort Casey!  Our first item of business?  Explore the bunkers and guns.

For the record, you’re never too old to play in the bunkers.  Basically, it’s a playground for adults big kids. Point proven #1.

Point proven #2!

After exploring for a bit, we went to a particular part of the bunker that has AMAZING acoustics.  It makes even the smallest voice sound big – so imagine four voices…in harmony!  We sang as many songs as we could remember — and even had a passerby add his bass voice to our rendition of Amazing Grace.  Proof that you don’t always have to be in a church service to worship God!

But all that singing sure did make us hungry…

So we set up our picnic.  And got comfy 🙂

But Marisa and I had a surprise.  We decided that our roomies are SO great that they needed some awards.  So we put our heads together and invented some pretty snazzy certificates.

Yes, that does say “Brown Trout Wrangler Award”.  And yes, that’s a plunger.

Here is one of several awarded to Nikki.  Others included “Late Night Champ”, “Spunktastic Quirkny”, and “Best Listener”.

And here is what happens when you’re laughing hysterically and a sudden gust of wind comes up…and you’re STILL laughing hysterically as you dive for the awards shouting, “SAVE THE CERTIFICATES!!!!!!!”  I love these girls.

After lunch, comical games of frisbee, and many many rounds of bocci, we decided to take a walk to explore another set of bunkers.

We saw this little feller along the way.

And then we arrived at our destination.  But now the question was…how do we get down there?  The answer?

Uh…very carefully?

You got this, Nikki!

Like a champ!

We came upon these stairs with an open door.  Where would they go?  Into the depths of the hill?  Would it be creepy?  Would it be an adventure?

Who knew it would just be an old bathroom.  Ha!

After thoroughly creeping ourselves out/getting adrenaline rushes in the depths of the bunkers, we decided to mosey on back to the main part of the fort for more singing and some beach time.

Are they just the greatest??

Marisa tried waving at the ferry.  Who knows if they actually saw us though…

Marisa also snapped this prime shot.  I seriously giggle every, and I mean EVERY time I see it!

In case you ever wondered…yep, this is how cool my roomies are.

No explanation needed.

Photo credit: Elizabeth.  Caption Credit: Nikki.  So much love/loveliness.

Here is proof that even big kids get tired after playing all day!

But what an excellent day it was.  I can think of few things better than spending the day with wonderful, Godly women, exploring, adventuring, sharing a meal, and rejoicing in the God-painted beauty of the creation and people around us.

As captioned by Elizabeth, and quoted from Switchfoot:

Part 2 is coming your way soon – until then, “may the peace of the Lord be with you.”

Blessings,

Beth

 

 

Evening – the Event, Not the Time of Day

Hello friends!  Goodness, time flies when you’re a busy college kid.

I don’t know about you, but I had a jam-packed and FUN weekend!  I almost feel like I need a weekend from my weekend, but that’s beside the point.  There is WAY too much to put into one blog post, though, so I’ll start with Friday night.

Every spring, here at Northwest, we have an event called “Evening”.  Basically, think “prom-minus-the-dancing”.  We all dress up, go out to dinner, then meet at a fancy venue where our student committee provides dessert and coffee etc, along with some entertainment.  This year, we heard an improv group…they were alright.  But the real fun of Evening is getting all fancied up and seeing your school friends outside of school.  Are you ready for some pics?  Aaaaaaaand go!

We often go in groups to Evening rather than with one “date”.  My group consisted of (from L to R) Melissa, Marisa and Elizabeth, and….

…Ron, our fearless driver…and my date!

The weather could not have been more perfect!

Ivar’s on the Seattle waterfront was our dinner choice – and a tasty choice it turned out to be!

Oh, and by the way...ED wasn’t invited.  No sir.

Here is my dinner: I started off with a sourdough roll – soft, warm, and basically dinner roll perfection.  And they even gave us SOFT butter!  Next, Ron and I split an appetizer of crab cakes.  They were served with a tangy tomato relish (maybe with balsamic?) and a spicy aioli.  For my entree, I had grilled lingcod with  fresh asparagus and VERY garlicky yukon gold potatoes.  My tummy was full, but it all tasted super good!

 

A sunset of dreams.

And lovely, squinty eyes. 🙂  We were probably laughing.

Evening took place at the Experience Music Project (EMP) at the Seattle Center.  And I can’t go to the Seattle Center without snapping a shot of our dear Space Needle!

The EMP is an interactive museum, mostly of the history of Rock n’ Roll.  This tower-like structure of guitars is one of the most popular highlights.

Here is the “interactive” part of the EMP at its finest!  There are several rooms in which to “jam”…they have some combo of drums, guitar, bass and keyboard.  We like to pretend we’re rock stars, obviously!

As this year’s Yearbook Editor, Marisa had to give a short speech – an introduction to the yearbook, basically.  She rocked it!

Melissa threw caution to the wind and volunteered to be part of the improv show – she succeeded in entertaining us!

Here’s me with the date!

And just in case you ever wondered, me and Beyonce (also known as Michelle) frequently sit together in chapel and make music jokes.  Uh-huh!  And she’s pretty stinkin’ awesome!

All of the roomies – together in our finery!  I simply adore each of these girls.  They are all beautiful (beautiful) gifts from God, willing to help me as they can on my journey, because they love.  Ohhhh I love these girls!

Stay tuned for the rest of my weekend!  It was jam-packed, let me tell ya!

Blessings,

Beth

A Lovely Easter Weekend

I hope you all had a great Easter, filled with sunshine, loved ones, and the Joy of our risen Savior!  I certainly did 🙂

My Easter loveliness wasn’t limited to Sunday – nope, it began on Saturday with a trip to meet my roommate’s (Nikki) grandma.  The day could not have been better for a drive – warm, soft breeze and SUNSHINE!! 

We were treated to this breathtaking view.  I mean!  And check out the PERFECT placement of that little tuft of cloud on top.

But the main event – the thing we were most excited for – was meeting Nikki’s grandma, most commonly known as Lightbulb.

And you can see where she gets the nickname!  This woman just sparkles!  She is so full of joy and happiness – I found myself just smiling the whole time I was with her.  She has so many stories, ranging from growing up on a farm in Montana and learning how to track animals to surviving the Great Depression.  Talking about enriching conversation!  Oh, and she thoroughly enjoyed the green tea frape and cake pop we brought her.  Yes, she is that hip.

After our wonderful visit, we headed to Nikki’s house to have a delicious dinner (courtesy of her sweet mom) and watch the movie, “One Fine Day”.

I was too busy having fun to remember to snap a shot of dinner, but here’s the picture from the Taste of Home website!

source

Let me tell ya…these were SO tasty!  Rich, slightly spicy, soft…basically, comfort food wrapped up in a neat little tortilla package.  And what college kid doesn’t like a home cooked meal?  Yeah, I don’t know either.  Thank you, Debbie and Rick!!

And then came Sunday.

It was the perfect sun-shiney weather that we always hope for on Easter.

First up, church!  The stage was set for a string ensemble, and was complete with a Cross.

After the service, it was time to head to Marisa’s house for Easter dinner – and some serious traditions.

The table was beautifully set.

Each place setting held a festive napkin and a special Easter Petit Four.

And Joce kept busy in the kitchen!  Let me just say…this lady knows how to cook. 🙂

What do we do while waiting for dinner time?  Take pictures, of course!

A lovely bunch of ladies, wouldn’t you say?

Need I say more?  Didn’t think so.

And then…the dinner bell sounded.  Or maybe my tummy just grumbled loudly.  At any rate, the time for food had arrived!

Asparagus, yams, green been casserole, ham, rolls, and the scalloped potatoes were on there way….

And naturally, I had salad!

Oh, and then there was dessert.

Are you drooling?  ‘Cause this molten chocolate cake could make anyone drool!  Fresh from the oven, these cute little cakes are slightly crispy on the outside but warm and gooey on the inside.  Strawberries (or any berry) makes the perfect accompaniment, especially with a dollop of whipped cream.  So.GOOD!

I also tasted the strawberry shortcake, which was the perfect blend of sweet and buttery.

And who says we’re too old for jello eggs?  Not I!

You know what else we’re not too old for?

Microwaving peeps.  And peep jousting.  Traditioooonnnnn, tradition! ……TRADITION!  Sorry…Fiddler on the Roof moment…. 😀

We were like children, watching, waiting to see who’s peep would poke the other first.  Laugh, but don’t judge – it’s Easter tradition!

I ended my day at Marisa’s with our other tradition – playing “The Phantom of the Opera” on piano while the other ladies sing…which I don’t have a photo of.  But believe me, it happened, and it was joyful!

With all that delicious food, you might be wondering how everything went from an Eating Disorder perspective.  Check back soon for how I coped with a weekend of delicious (but challenging) eats!

And to close, let this, the Joy of Easter, lift your spirits on this Monday!

Christ is risen from the dead

trampling over death by death

Come awake come awake!

Come and rise up from the grave!

Blessings,

Beth

Pizza and Roomies

SNOW DAY!!  Yep, that’s right, classes were cancelled today due to dangerous roads and snow, and with the severe weather alert (have you seen this article!??!), I’m not certain as to how much schooling we’ll actually have this week.  *knock on wood*

I mentioned in my snowy post that the roomies and I would be making pizza, and promised to write a post about it…and since I make a habit of keeping my promises……..here’s the pizza post!!!

First, I must thank my dear roommate, Nikki, for being our faithful photographer and sharing her pictures with me.

THANK YOU, NIKKI!!! 😀

And also, may I say…Betty Crocker Pizza crust recipe, for the win!

First, we measured flour, salt, sugar and yeast, then mixed them together in a large bowl.

This was my first attempt at cooking anything with yeast that WASN’T in a bread machine.  Yikes!

Style is a must in our kitchen.  Coordination is especially key.  Notice how the red floral pattern compliments the purple plaid pants.  Perfection. 😉

Look at the aprons!  That’s also a must for our kitchen (Elizabeth, we missed you!!!!)

Ok, back to the cooking!  We added oil and water to the dry ingredients, then mixed them with a hand mixer for awhile before adding more flour, then mixing by hand.

Then, our oh-so-strong roomie, Marisa, got her knead on.  And she showed that dough who was boss!

I gave Nikki a break from the camera ’cause she needed in some of these shots!  And she wanted to properly cheer on Marisa’s kneading endeavor and show her overall excitement for pizza 🙂

Back in the bowl the dough went to rise in the oven…

…except it didn’t rise very much.  Oops.  Hope that doesn’t cause problems…

But we kept calm and carried on!  Dividing our dough into two sections, we flung skillfully tossed our dough.  Except nothing really happened.  So we took to the safer route and patted them onto our greased cookie sheets.

Yep, much safer!

While the crusts pre-baked, we gathered our toppings!  Ohhhh yum.

We got a little ansty waiting…

But finally it was time to make pizza!  Nikki expertly sauced the crusts.

Next came the cheese and salami (just cheese on the other) and then…….

…..and then they were DONE!  Hooray!

We had salad and bread with our pizza-pies…sound weird?  Then just pretend the bread was bread sticks 😉

So there’s our pizza adventure!  The crust turned out quite tasty, and all in all, we thoroughly enjoyed the fruits of our labor.

And now I’m hungry.  Better go find some dinner!

OH MY GOSH!  HOW COULD I FORGET!!!  Make Food Not [Body] War is now on Facebook!  Hop on over there a click like, if you please 🙂

Here’s a link, for your convenience.

Blessings,

Beth

And Just Like That, it’s Christmas!

Hello, my loyal blog readers!  Can I just take a moment to thank you for reading?  Okay, I thought so….THANK YOU!!!!!  I really do appreciate you taking a few moments out to read my random and rambling thoughts 🙂  Enough with the mushy stuff, and on to the Seattle Tree Lighting!

The day after Thanksgiving, it’s my roomie’s family tradition to bundle up and head downtown to hit up a few quintessentially Christmas spots – specifically the Gingerbread houses, the Teddy Bear Suite, and the main event, the Tree Lighting.  Aaaaaaaand cue photos!

Here’s the gang at our meeting spot – the lower level of Pacific Place.  This is the “we-don’t-know-where-we’re-going-so-lets-catch-up” phase.  I love it 🙂

Our first stop was the ginger bread houses at the Sheraton Hotel.  Each year has a different theme, and this year, it was trains!  Everything from the main Christmas tree to the movies playing in the background has some relationship to trains.  Polar Express, anyone?

A train station in New Zealand.

Melbourne, Australia!

And a lovely Canadian Station!

There were a few more amazing gingerbread creations (Kings Cross and the Island of Misfits!) but these were my favorites.  By the way, the display is up all month if you want to check it out!

Next, we made our way to the Fairmont Olympic Hotel to check out the Teddy Bear suite!  Imagine a hotel suite – sitting room, bedroom and bathroom – completely decked out for Christmas with possibly hundreds of teddy bears…and I mean DECKED out!  A large, cozy fireplace with decorations and stockings welcomes you in.  A family of child-size (and I mean the size of children) teddy bears ushers you to the inner room, and trees, a canopy bed, MORE bears, and extra-big decorations dazzle you  instantly.  The lights are low and red-hued, while the green decorations bring a little contrast.  It’s quite lovely!

 

I wasn’t kidding about the child-size bears!

After much photography, and oohing and ahing over the beautiful trees in the lobby, we were off to MOD pizza for an early dinner.  SO YUM!  I was so hungry that I forgot all about pictures…but I didn’t forget to take a picture of a lovely window display:

 

I think I love everything about this display.  The plaid, the old fashioned record player, the classy suit…sigh.  And the gifts!  How adorable!  Anyways……

Now, the moment we’ve all been waiting for…the TREE LIGHTING!  The program always begins with some music and short speeches – sing-along carols and professional performances.  They sounded quite good, but I couldn’t really see them…yay for being short…ha!  And there was this little issue of crowd smash.  It was chaotic.  Don’t get me started.  Just look at the pretty lights!!!

The tree (on the right) is slightly outdone by the super-bright Macy’s star and the fireworks.

But our smiles outshine them all…cheeeeeeeeese!  Couldn’t resist 😉

We waited till the crowd thinned out a bit, then walked across the block to Westlake Center.  Marisa and I were in serious need of chocolate.  Godiva to the rescue!

This is a creme brulee truffle.  Don’t tell anyone, but I paid *cough* $2.25 *cough* for this delicious little bugger!  But it was sooooo tasty!  This truffle – half milky chocolate, half white chocolate (or creamy something), dipped in white chocolate and dusted in sugar….ah-mazing!  Gotta live a little, right? 😉

This pretty well sums up the day!  After Westlake, we ventured to Macy’s to try on fancy, far too expensive dresses, and naturally, I fell in love with one.  What are the chances it’ll go on sale?  Sigh.  If you want to see it’s beauty, here’s the link.  So lovely!

All in all, I had an excellent Thanksgiving weekend.  And now, I’ll buckle my seat belt and take a deep breath…these next couple weeks are gonna be crazy!

I’ll leave you with what is perhaps my favorite verse of a Christmas song ever.

Then let us all with one accord

Sing praises to our heavenly Lord

That hath made Heaven and earth of naught

And with His blood mankind hath bought.

Amazing.

Blessings,

Beth