Tag Archives: date night

Dog Days of Summer

It’s June and we’re nine days into summer. I don’t think I’ve felt like we’re in that stretch of hot summer days that don’t seem to end quite this early before. It’s too early to complain, plus it’s not really my style to complain about sunshine and heat, but we are working hard at finding creative solutions to staying cool in our hotbox house.

{Henry and Jackson parked in front of the fan}

{Henry and Jackson parked in front of the fan}

Last week I shared that I had found some new sources and inspiration for how to consume the great produce in our CSA. I’m pleased to report that I had at least one salad every single day last week. If you know much about me, you know that is very strange – it’s unusual for me to have a salad a month let alone a day. But, lo and behold, I have started to come over to the dark side and I’ve got to say I’m enjoying it!

{checking out the goods!}

{checking out the goods! so enjoy having salad as a light, “no cook” meal in the heat.}

{as a "no cook" idea I got a rotisserie chicken from whole foods that I can use in a few different meals this week. tonight's menu is all about grilling, though!}

{as a “no cook” idea I got a rotisserie chicken from whole foods that I can use in a few different meals this week. tonight’s menu is all about grilling, though!}

As another follow up to last week’s post, I’m pleased to report that Alex and I have gotten ourselves into more of a consistent routine, particularly with Spanish. We discussed a daily Spanish schedule with our tutor, and she really upped the homework and told us we need to spend at least an hour a day on Spanish in order to make progress.

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Additionally, I feel like I’m starting to get into a rhythm with my own personal routine. My work schedule slowed down last week and allowed me some consistency. I went for three great runs last week, and this week I plan on starting to increase the length of one of my runs to start officially training for my half marathon this September. I’ll basically just run 2-3 short runs each week {2-3 miles} and one “long” run each week, where I increase the long run by one mile each week, starting with running 4 miles this week.

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Over the weekend, we did find some fun ways to beat the heat. On Friday night we grabbed a quick dinner at one of Tom Douglas’ new spots, TanakaSan, before catching the new Jurassic Park movie at a fancy theater called Cinerama in downtown. The food at TanakaSan was really fun and different- we shared the Osaka Pancake, which was fantastic, and I had a Hawaiian burger, which was amazing. It was nice to have a fun date night – I couldn’t think of the last time I went to a movie! And we both enjoyed the movie – different parts, though 🙂

{just in time... I ordered new natural sunscreen and bug spray. anxious to try them both out!}

{just in time… I ordered new natural sunscreen and bug spray. anxious to try them both out!}

Saturday was a day of running around. We took Jackson down to the lake for a quick swim and then took care of a few things around the house.

{tested out our new griddle - turns out, it is super handy to make pancakes on a griddle rather than a pan!}

{tested out our new griddle – turns out, it is super handy to make pancakes on a griddle rather than a pan!}

{using my CSA and farmer's market berries to make a cobbler}

{using my CSA and farmer’s market berries to make a cobbler}

{a "quint" berry cobbler sounded pretty good... too bad I was a little overzealous and accidentally doubled the amount of butter in the crumble topping. oops! I have never said math was my strong suit... oh, and the cobbler still tasted good!}

{a “quint” berry cobbler sounded pretty good… too bad I was a little overzealous and accidentally doubled the amount of butter in the crumble topping. oops! I have never said math was my strong suit… oh, and the cobbler still tasted good!}

Later on, we headed over to the Eastside to run some errands before meeting our friend Ali at Chateau Ste Michelle for their member appreciation concert. Ali and Tyler have been inviting us to attend this particular concert with them for four years now {they are wine club members at CSM} and the concerts are so fun! This year, a Beatles cover band was playing. Sadly, Tyler missed out because he was home sick.

{enjoying our picnic and thankful the sun went behind the trees!}

{enjoying our picnic and thankful the sun went behind the trees!}

We arrived early so we could partake in the free wine tasting and get set up and start eating our picnic. Each year, though, we get shown up by fancy people with incredible picnic sets. And while we had kind of a fancy picnic, too, we were definitely shown up! Next year we will have a table!

{this was seriously someone's picnic!}

{this was seriously someone’s picnic! can you believe they brought a plant inside a watermelon…!?}

On Sunday morning I took Jackson for a long run down along the lake, followed by a quick swim for him. Just as I was arriving home it started to thunder! Thankfully a little storm blew through and the temperature dropped and the wind picked up so our house cooled off a bit {to 78 degrees}.

{he never can make up his mind whether he wants to be inside or out!}

{he never can make up his mind whether he wants to be inside or out!}

 

That afternoon we headed to Magnuson Park to attend Eat, Run, Hope, an event in support of fetal health. Several of my friends have suffered through pregnancy loss in varying forms, so this was one little way I could give back in support of fetal research. Plus, it was a great event with amazing food tastings from some of the best chefs in Seattle.

{we got to spend the afternoon with this cool dude - Conner is Ali's 13-month old and he is the most chill child I've ever met!}

{we got to spend the afternoon with this cool dude – Conner is Ali’s 13-month old and he is the most chill child I’ve ever met!}

{Vivian, Ali's 2 1/2-year old, kept us entertained all afternoon. Viv is unbelievably cute and has an enormous personality. somehow she ended up with an arm painting instead of on her face?}

{Vivian, Ali’s 2 1/2-year old, kept us entertained all afternoon. Viv is unbelievably cute and has an enormous personality. somehow she ended up with an arm painting instead of on her face?}

This week is moderately busy with some fun outdoor activities planned. We are in town for the 4th {I think we’re the only ones who are!} and looking forward to crossing some more of our summer bucket list items off our list.

Low-Key Seattle Weekend

One of our themes as of late has been to explore the wonderful city in which we live. This past weekend’s neighborhood of choice was Ballard. We very seldom make it to Ballard because it’s not easy for us to get to, but there is a lot that neighborhood has to offer.

{view looking out towards Golden Gardens on the Ballard waterfront}

{view looking out towards Golden Gardens on the Ballard waterfront}

After Alex ran a few errands on Saturday morning we headed over to Ballard to grab lunch, visit a furniture consignment shop and take a stroll on the beach at Golden Gardens.

{lunch at Porkchop & Co was delicious, albeit quite expensive for lunch}

{lunch at Porkchop & Co was delicious, albeit quite expensive for lunch}

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{toes in the sand... ahhhh summer is almost here!}

{toes in the sand… ahhhh summer is almost here!}

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The weather was spectacular all weekend. I just can’t get over how fortunate we have been to have had such a truly gorgeous spring here in Seattle. It has been really hard to remember that it is only the beginning of May because it sure feels more like July here.

{we've all but given up on our backyard until later this summer when we re-do it, so for the time being, it is Jackson's territory to do with as he pleases}

{we’ve all but given up on our backyard until later this summer when we re-do it, so for the time being, it is Jackson’s territory to do with as he pleases. we’re fine looking out above the grass as we sip our summer roses on the patio}

Aside from our day in Ballard we had a lot of time at home to enjoy the nice weather and get some things done around the house. We spent a lot of time enjoying our new Adirondack chairs, courtesy of Alex’s parents, and hanging out with Jackson and Henry. Of course on Saturday evening we found ourselves at Bottlehouse – we had to stop in for a nightcap after our dinner at the Madrona Alehouse.

{our front porch is even more red!}

{our front porch is even more red!}

{coffee on the porch is the best way to kick off a Saturday}

{coffee on the porch is the best way to kick off a Saturday}

{WFP... working from porch}

{WFP… working from porch}

{homemade ice cream is the best!}

{homemade ice cream is the best!}

{first peonies of the season - so gorgeous!}

{first peonies of the season – so gorgeous!}

The Happenings

While this last week has been busy with random activities, mainly planning for winter, it has been so nice and quiet. Does that even make sense? Well, we’ve just had a lot of little stuff keeping us busy.

{Henry loves our new doormat!}

{Henry loves our new doormat!}

Our weekend was superb. My Fridays are finally starting to be “normal” {for me} so this past week I volunteered at the elementary school then ran a bunch of errands. I picked up some fun stuff for our house {and my closet}, and thanks to a very disgruntled employee at the ski shop, we got our skis tuned for free! I had dropped off three of our pairs of skis a few weeks ago to get tuned for the impending ski season and when I picked them up on Friday the employee was so annoyed with the computer system that he said “here… you can just have them… let me help you out to your car.” Ummm okay, not going to argue with that, thanks for saving us over $200!

Alex and his friend Nigel took a quick 25-mile bike ride after work on Friday then came and hung out in the kitchen while I whipped up some curry for our dinner. I had never made curry before and had been wanting to try it for quite a while and I am so glad I did! It was one of my most proud accomplishments in the kitchen. Curry isn’t hard to make, per se, but it requires a lot of ingredients that are unfamiliar to me, lots of prep and a whole lot of love. And boy was it a success!

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Saturday was uber relaxing. One thing I got while I was out and about on Friday was a bunch of new blankets for our beds {think mid-layer blankets} and the one I got for our bed is basically like a sweater blanket. Needless to say, we did not want to get out of bed on Saturday morning! Eventually we did and had a great walk with Jackson, followed by a delicious breakfast of apple spice waffles. We got some stuff done around the house before Carrie and her mom stopped by for a quick visit.

{Henry is such a good supervisor!}

{Henry is such a good supervisor!}

Saturday evening we had dinner reservations at Crush, a restaurant in the Madison Valley, the neighborhood next to ours, that we wanted to go to. I’m not sure if this is a trend across the country, but in a lot of Seattle restaurants they have tasting menus that allow you to taste a variety of dishes. I personally love these because I am the one who always wants to try a bite of whatever anyone else gets, just to try something new. We were under false thinking that Restaurant Week extended into the weekend {oops!} but we were happy to be trying a new restaurant. We ordered a bottle of wine and several different tastes. We had a great time and enjoyed the food, but ultimately left with much to be desired. It’s so unfortunate to go out to a very expensive restaurant and be underwhelmed with the food and service and overwhelmed by the exorbitant cost of the meal.

Sunday, again, was super relaxing. Alex took Jackson for a run in the morning while I whipped up a yummy breakfast scramble and apple chips for a snack, then we got a few things done around the house before our dog trainer came for a quick session with Jackson. We spent the afternoon and sitting in front of the fire reading and chatting.

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It’s back to work for both of us now! I have been really busy with work the last several weeks. I think next week things will finally start to slow down, but in the meantime, I am attending a conference this week, which is taking me out of my office and out of the schools. It’s kind of a nice change of pace, but holy cow is it exhausting to sit and listen to someone all day! That said, I wanted to share a part of a student enrollment form I received that states that someone’s child is allergic to ebola. I mean, really!? I literally laughed out loud…

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Powder, Wine and New Slippers

It’s been a slightly quieter week here in the Allen household. We have been busy planning and preparing for my dad and brother to come visit us this weekend and somehow it is Wednesday evening now. The snow forecast is shaping up quite nicely for their ski trip so we’re really looking forward to their arrival on Friday.

We're hoping for a snowy week at Crystal

We’re hoping for a snowy week at Crystal

Friday night we had our Valentine’s Day celebration a week early. We had a lovely evening out at Harvest Vine near our house.

We loved this wine from the Priorat region in Spain

We loved this wine from the Priorat region in Spain

Because of the forecast and our plans on Friday and Saturday nights we opted to stay home on Saturday and go skiing on Sunday instead. We carried our Valentine’s Day celebration into Saturday morning by starting the day with coffee and watching the opening ceremony of the Olympics. We had memosas and a wonderful breakfast, then took Jackson out for a long walk.

Saturday Brunch!

Saturday Brunch!

We had a pretty relaxing remainder of the day at home on Saturday and then hosted Italian Wine Club at our house that night. We were pleasantly surprised when it started to snow on Saturday evening! It rarely snows in Seattle but it seems like everyone in the city turns into a kid again when the ground turns white.

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We expected that Sunday would bring us some fresh snow to ski so we got up earlier than we had ever gotten up for a ski day and headed to Crystal. The reason we got up so early was so that we could get to Crystal and walk Jackson and be at he lift line when the chair lift opens. Lately we have been arriving around 30 minutes prior to the lifts opening, so we have been having more leisurely days.

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Our expectations were fulfilled and we were greeted with about 8-10 inches of light and fluffy powder! A normal “powder day” for us is a day with a lot of fresh, heavy, wet snow. We in Washington call it Cascade Concrete because it’s like skiing concrete instead of nice fluffy powder.

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While we had a great day with Jackson on Sunday, his behavior for the rest of the weekend wasn’t necessarily pleasant the whole time. He decided that my slippers would become his newest chew toy. Unfortunately for me he finally destroyed them to the point of being unwearable. We have been working on new strategies for keeping him off the couch and our bed and while we were using Alex’s strategy of ignoring him he destroyed one of the pillows on our sofa. We are taking applications for puppy trainers and looking for jobs for Jackson so he can earn his keep and buy me new slippers.

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Our week has been pretty low-key, yet busy during the day for me. We have been enjoying watching the Olympics, which has been great, but I am really excited to not be sitting on the sofa all evening when they’re over. It has been fun and life is good 🙂

This Week’s Happenings

Not a whole lot is going on right now – well, not enough to warrant its own blog post, anyway. In any case, I’ve compiled what’s been happening lately over in our neck of the woods.

Saturdays at the dog park

Saturdays at the dog park

Today Jackson turned 10 months! He weighs about 70 pounds. He definitely has some growing to do still – I noticed today that his head needs to catch up with the rest of his body. As a 10 month old his favorite things include: digging in the backyard, going for walks… lots of walks, playing with other dogs, terrorizing Henry, chasing Henry around the house, and generally doing what we don’t want him to do. In all fairness, Jackson really is a good dog. He’s adorably sweet and he has certainly found his place in our house – usually on top of our feet wherever we’re standing.

Jackson has grown to love playing fetch.

Jackson has grown to love playing fetch.

We began Monday, Wednesday, Friday runs with Jackson this week. Lately we have been realizing that we just can’t tire our little big pup out enough. We are hoping that running will do the trick. Monday marked our first official “family run” and we ran about 3 miles. We had run with Jackson in the past but it was more of a run-walk, whereas this was a solid 3-mile run. Much to our surprise, Jackson did awesome! This makes me so excited for summer.

Alex's new running shoes :)

Alex’s new running shoes :)

Our big trip to Europe is quickly approaching and we are FAR from ready to go! We booked our hotels in Spain and Switzerland last week but still need to get England and Amsterdam locked down, as well as our flight back to the US. Another thing that is on our to do list is figure out what we’re doing with Jackson. I am in the process of “interviewing” dog sitters for Jackson. I am certain we’ll find a good family who will be able to watch him while we’re gone, but it isn’t easy to find a home for him to stay at for nearly 30 days. Henry has a fabulous cat sitter already, so he’s taken care of.

This is what Jackson looks like after a 3-mile run.

This is what Jackson looks like after a 3-mile run.

As a preparation for part of our Europe trip Alex and I decided we’d like to learn to speak a bit of Italian. We will be in parts of Italy where tourists aren’t common and we’ll be attending an Italian wedding so we thought it would be nice to have a few words in our back pocket. We have been using a website called Duo Lingo for a few months and have started to build a small vocabulary but we’re realizing that we really need to step it up in order to be able to have very basic conversations and communicate a little bit in Italian in just a few short months. We are planning on hiring an Italian tutor with the hopes that she will be able to bring us up to speed. I think we’ll start with one session a week and then when we get closer we might increase to two. We’ll see!

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Alex got new glasses!

Alex got new glasses!

Our weekend was pretty low-key. Alex and I got the rare opportunity of having a lunch date on Friday! It was awesome – I met him at his office and we walked up the street to Homegrown, an AMAZING sandwich shop, to grab a bite to eat.

Lunch date at Homegrown in South Lake Union
Lunch date at Homegrown in South Lake Union

Friday night Alex went out with some friends and I stayed in with a spasming abdomen. Saturday we met Ali, Tyler and baby Vivian {and Glory, their dog} at the dog park and had brunch with them afterwards. We did some errands and came home to get a few things done around the house before going out for dinner at Naam Thai and a glass of wine at Bottlehouse. We had originally planned on skiing on Sunday but Alex just wasn’t feeling well enough so we stayed home.

We just adore this girl! How is she 13 months already!?

We just adore this girl! How is she 13 months old already!?

The weather was really nice on Sunday so we took Jackson for a long walk through the Washington Park Arboretum. We spent the rest of the day relaxing and getting stuff done around the house.

Hanging out at the arboretum on Sunday.

Hanging out at the arboretum on Sunday.

We’ve got some good stuff on the menu this week. The lasagna we had for dinner on Sunday was so so good and I can’t wait for pork carnitas tonight. They have been cooking in my crock pot all day and I can’t even pick up the pork without it falling apart. The rest of the week has mushroom ravioli, gnocchi with sausage and peppers and mushroom risotto… lots of mushrooms and pasta this week!

Low-Key Weekly Recap

It has been a pretty low-key week here in the Allen household. We are finally easing our way into a pretty consistent routine and finding that we have some extra time on our hands. Here are some highlights from the week:

Lunch date at Kukai Ramen in Bellevue

Lunch date at Kukai Ramen in Bellevue on Thursday

Puppy play date with Berkeley at Marymoor - 3 weekends in a row!

Puppy play date with Berkeley at Marymoor – 3 weekends in a row!

Henry got a new bed but was more interested in the box it came in

Henry got a new bed but was more interested in the box it came in

Finally got him in the bed! Henry went to the vet for a check-up after the gouge in his leg. It's healing very well but he needs to remain indoors for ten more days to allow his wound to heal.

Finally got him in the bed! Henry went to the vet for a check-up after the gouge in his leg. It’s healing very well but he needs to remain indoors for ten more days to allow his wound to heal.

We took Jackson for a great walk and swim in Lake Washington on Saturday morning, followed by a delicious breakfast of bacon, egg and cheese biscuits at home.

We took Jackson for a great walk and swim in Lake Washington on Saturday morning, followed by a delicious breakfast of bacon, egg and cheese biscuits at home.

Our first fire of the season! We had a perfectly relaxing evening in front of the fire while enjoying a wonderful bottle of wine {Hidden Horse by Two Mountains}

Our first fire of the season! We had a perfectly relaxing evening in front of the fire while enjoying a wonderful bottle of wine {Hidden Horse by Two Mountains}

On Sunday evening we took a Wine 101 class at the Bottlehouse.

On Sunday evening we took a Wine 101 class at the Bottlehouse.

We got to sample 5 wines and learn a lot about identifying wines, as well as tasting and describing wine

We got to sample 5 wines and learn a lot about identifying wines, as well as tasting and describing wine

Jackson started a new tradition of jumping on our bed to get Alex up on the weekends

Jackson started a new tradition of jumping on our bed to get Alex up on the weekends

Jackson is getting pumped for ski season! He gets to experience snow for the first time in 2 weeks... he has no idea what he's in for!

Jackson is getting pumped for ski season! He gets to experience snow for the first time in 2 weeks… he has no idea what he’s in for!

We ended the weekend with a relaxing night on the couch watching a ski movie.

We ended the weekend with a relaxing night on the couch watching a ski movie.

Wine, wilderness and work

It’s been really, really, really busy around here, hence it has taken me until Wednesday evening to post some notes from our weekend of “w’s” – wine, working and wilderness adventures. The last few weeks have made me unbelievably thankful that I’m able to work part-time so that I can manage our house, keep tabs on the pets and successfully plan our adventures all while Alex is working double-time at his job.

Jackson has been such a terror this week! Learning how to jump on the couch was only the beginning....

Jackson has been such a terror this week! Learning how to jump on the couch was only the beginning….

Even though Alex had to work part of Saturday we managed to have a pretty fantastic weekend! After Alex got back from work on Friday evening we headed up to the Bottlehouse and had a wonderful bottle of rose on the patio. We always have such a fun time up there.

Jack-o is getting so long! He weighs over 35 pounds now.

Jack-o is getting so long! He weighs over 35 pounds now.

Saturday was pretty laid back – Alex went in to his office for a few hours and then Jackson and I joined him for a family barbecue that his company was sponsoring, perhaps to make up for the fact that their employees have been working so much lately. Afterwards we brought Jackson to University Village, a dog-friendly outdoor shopping center, and did a little shopping. We were shopping for shorts for Alex but I ended up finding some awesome stuff on super sale at Banana Republic, so I was the only one who purchased anything.

I think Henry wants to go for a bike ride :)

I think Henry wants to go for a bike ride :)

Since it had been a whole day since we had been to the Bottlehouse we decided to run up there and grab a couple of bottles of rose to take back and drink on our patio. It was a wonderful way to spend the evening.

So much to be thankful for.

So much to be thankful for.

We found a very family-friendly hike just off of I-90 near Snoqualmie Pass at Denny Creek to take Jackson to on Sunday. This was his first “mountain hike” – we wanted to see what his limit was and wanted to give him more of a real picture of hiking since we have a big camping trip coming up.

Hiking at Denny Creek

Hiking at Denny Creek

Jackson did really well! The hike was an easy 4 miles with little elevation gain. He was so happy and got an unbelievable amount of attention from other hikers who passed by.

Taking a pit stop for a snack.

Taking a pit stop for a snack.

The mid-point of the hike was a rocky part of Denny Creek, so we let Jackson take a little dip in the water. Needless to say, he was filthy by the time we got back to the car.

Hiking.

Hiking.

Once we got home and got Jackson hosed off he was plum tuckered and passed out in the shower, so we got ready to meet Ali, Tyler and baby Vivian at Chateau Ste. Michelle’s member appreciation concert that they graciously invited us to attend with them again this year. The band was an Abba cover band, so they played a great variety of old Abba tunes – it was really fun!

Ali and Viv at our spot at Chateau Ste Michelle.

Ali and Viv at our spot at Chateau Ste Michelle.

We have been to a few concerts at the winery before and have built up quite a spread – we’ve got the wine glass stakes to hold the glasses in the ground, and thanks to Alex’s cousin Jenny’s generous wedding gift, we have an awesome picnic basket set. We failed to find a low table before the concert, but now know that we need to look on Amazon. There’s always next year, I guess!

Our amazing spread! LOVED the food :)

Our amazing spread! LOVED the food :)

The Furtwanglers!

The Furtwanglers!

Enjoying the music.

Enjoying the music.

This week has been off to a surprisingly busy start – I am frantically putting the finishing touches on planning Sarah’s bachelorette party next weekend, trying to get organized for this weekend, coordinating our amazing new dog walker and both Alex and I have a busy work week. Maybe by this time next year things will calm down???

Cuddles!

Cuddles!

.....quickly turned into biting of the arm.... story of the week!

…..quickly turned into biting of the arm…. story of the week!

Cooling off from the warm week.

Hard to stay mad at this face for too long ;)

Beating the Heat at Snoqualmie Falls

Last night we took an impromptu trip up to Snoqualmie Falls to have a picnic and do some exploring. Our house was just getting a little unbearable with the lack of airflow and the high temperatures so I decided it would be a nice break to hit the road and head up to higher elevation. We ended up falling in love with the city of Snoqualmie and decided to drive around some of the neighborhoods to become more familiar with the town. It was a great stray from the ordinary date night!

Picnic at Snoqualmie Falls Park

Picnic at Snoqualmie Falls Park

This was an impromptu picnic and I didn't want to cook anything so we just had some mini sandwiches and pasta salad from the day before, and of course wine!

This was an impromptu picnic and I didn’t want to cook anything so we just had some mini sandwiches and pasta salad from the day before, and of course wine!

Jackson was so well behaved. He sat or laid next to us the entire time we were eating.

Jackson was so well behaved. He sat or laid next to us the entire time we were eating.

Snoqualmie Falls - the waterfall was a lot more powerful than most of the photos depict it looking. I guess with the high temperatures and the mountain snow melting it was a very full river.

Snoqualmie Falls – the waterfall was a lot more powerful than most of the photos depict it looking. I guess with the high temperatures and the mountain snow melting it was a very full river.

Jackson had a great time!

Jackson had a great time!

We loved our surroundings. It's so nice to get out of the city once in a while and be in the mountains.

We loved our surroundings. It’s so nice to get out of the city once in a while and be in the mountains.

Happy pup!

Happy pup!

Weekend Fun in the Sun!

It was another weekend that flew by and ended up being busier than I expected it to be. The weather on Saturday couldn’t have been more perfect if I wanted it to be. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky for much of the day and it was a glorious 77 degrees and perfectly sunny.

Gorgeous day for a run on the lake!

Gorgeous day for a run on the lake!

While Alex was on a 60 mile bike ride I went for a 5.3 mile run down by Lake Washington. By the end of the weekend I got convinced by my friend Mary to join her and do a half marathon at the end of the summer! We are tentatively planning on running our 13.1 miles on August 24th.

Alex and his pup

Alex and his pup

Alex got back from his bike ride early afternoon and I had mentioned that Jackson seemed to be very hot that day, so Alex went and bought Jackson his very own pool. Jack dipped his feet and his belly in the pool but still needs to get used to the idea of swimming. I think Jackson is going to need a bigger pool soon!

Alex filling up the pool for Henry and Jackson.

Alex filling up the pool for Henry and Jackson.

Jackson preferred sun bathing.

Jackson preferred sun bathing.

Once Jackson petered out, Alex and I walked up to our favorite spot, Bottlehouse, to help them celebrate their 3rd birthday. We sat on the patio and back in their garden spot and soaked up a LOT of sun and drank our fair share of vino as we enjoyed the afternoon together.

We love Bottlehouse!

We love Bottlehouse!

Loving the sunny patio.

Loving the sunny patio.

Alex BH

The sunset on Saturday night was stunning! We are so lucky to have a beautiful view of Madison Valley and our amazing Pacific Northwest sunsets out our back windows.

Amazing sunset from our backyard.

Amazing sunset from our backyard.

Apparently all of our activities on Saturday tuckered our little furball out, because come Sunday, he slept in until 6:30 and then went back to sleep until 10:00! That allowed us to Skype with Alex’s parents and Alina and Alberto, not to mention enjoy some time to ourselves and have a nice breakfast.

Jackson got a new toy from John!

Jackson got a new toy from John!

We did eventually wake Jackson up to take him on his first big adventure. We drove down to Seward Park to do some urban hiking. I love Seward Park and it is so fantastic that it’s so close to our house {4.9 miles to be exact}. We did a very short hike in the middle of the park to expose Jackson to the idea of the wilderness.

Jackson in the woods!

Jackson in the woods!

He did great!

He did great!

Jackson did so well on our little hike. We had him on his 30 foot leash so that he could sort of wander around and explore his surroundings. It was surprising to Alex and me that he stayed so close to us even though he could be 30 feet away.

Running around in an open field.

Running around in an open field.

We closed out our weekend by spending some time with Ryan and Mary, I baked a pig cake for work, and we picked up our first CSA box. Overall, it was an awesome weekend and I can’t wait to eat some of these yummy veggies for dinner tonight.

Our first CSA box arrived.

Our first CSA box arrived.

Weekend Recap

Going into the weekend we didn’t really have much on the radar but somehow it turned out to be a really fun weekend. We squeezed a lot in and had a great time!

Jackson and Alex playing in the backyard! The grass is finally starting to fill in and it looks like a fluid yard now.

Jackson and Alex playing in the backyard! The grass is finally starting to fill in and it looks like a fluid yard now.

We kicked things off on Friday. I started the day being tormented by the puppy and managed to break away to go for my first five mile run down along Lake Washington. My time was 54 minutes {stay tuned to see how many minutes I cut off of today’s 5 mile run!}. I felt great the whole time!

5 miles!

5 miles!

Once Alex got home from work on Friday we walked down to the Farmers Market and grabbed a few things. One of our favorite parts of the Farmers Market is the Mexican food stand. I usually get a pork quesadilla and man is it good!! We ate our Mexican food at the market then came back home and had some wine while we played outside with Jackson.

Jackson is getting so good at just hanging out on the front porch with us. We are so lucky!

Jackson is getting so good at just hanging out on the front porch with us. We are so lucky!

Saturday was a long, but great day. We woke up early {thanks Jackson!} and hung out with our furry friends. Alex and I had a great breakfast together, cleaned up and then he took off for a 65 mile bike ride around Lake Washington and Lake Sammamish. I was left to fend for myself and the little pup, but we had a great day together.

Photo op with Jackson.

Photo op with Jackson.

Date night was Saturday night where Alex and I had a fantastic dinner at Harvest Vine. The food and ambiance made me so nostalgic for Spain and we spent the whole time talking about our upcoming trip to Europe. We were able to narrow down the countries we’ll be visiting next year {Spain, Italy, England and Switzerland, and hopefully a long layover in Amsterdam} and some things we’d like to do and see while we’re there.

Jack decided he wanted to be involved in emptying the dishwasher.

Jack decided he wanted to be involved in emptying the dishwasher.

Sunday morning was kind of a hoot in our zoo. It started with Oliver presenting me with a bird that he had recently caught. He quickly moved on and I watch him catch a second bird – he is such a good hunter! After Alex and I grabbed a cup of coffee, all three of our four legged creatures decided to hang out together in the backyard. Oliver was doing sprints along the fence while Jackson was running alongside the fence on the ground. Meanwhile, Henry had climbed a tree in the backyard. By the time he had gotten down, Oliver decided he needed to climb higher than Henry had gone, so he ran up the tree, only to be followed moments later by Henry. They are so good at climbing!

Henry and Jackson playing together.

Henry and Jackson playing together.

We were hosting Jackson’s first puppy play date on Sunday afternoon so I ran out to the store to get some stuff to make guacamole. On my way to the store I was enticed by a garage sale sign, so I decided to stop. Good thing I did because I found a coffee maker with a grinder for $10 that retails for nearly $200. It’s in great shape and I can’t wait to use it.

New coffee maker with grinder!

New coffee maker with grinder!

The guacamole turned out great! I sure do love a good guac.

Yum.

Yum.

Jackson was in absolute heaven during his play date with Gram, who is a 15 week old Duck Tolling Retriever. Alex’s colleague, Nolan, and his wife Natalie are Gram’s owners. Gram and Jackson weighed the exact same amount and Gram looks smaller but that’s only because Jackson is so fluffy. Gram has Jackson beat in the coordination department, though!

Gram (L) and Jackson (R)

Gram (L) and Jackson (R)

The two puppies were a great match for each other. Neither one was dominant and they both had their moments of being more aggressive and then times where they’d submiss to just be bitten in the ear. It was so fun to watch Jackson run around the backyard having such a good time!

Puppy play time.

Puppy play time.

Roughhousing

Roughhousing

After Nolan and Natalie left with sleepy Gram, Jackson passed out and we decided to run up to the Bottlehouse to take advantage of a beautiful evening and we had a couple glasses of new wines. We are so lucky to have the Bottlehouse so close to us! We got there so late and stayed for more wine than we had intended on that we didn’t end up eating dinner at home until after 9:00 — preparing for our Europe trip, I guess!

Check out the great pictures of Alex I managed to get:

How handsome is he?!

How handsome is he?!

Loving his white wine, which he never drinks.

Loving his white wine, which he never drinks.

Great way to end the weekend.

Great way to end the weekend.

We’re always looking forward to the weekend – hopefully we’ll be able to take Jackson out and do something fun this weekend. Until then, we’ll just enjoy the beautiful weather!