Pizza school

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I’m pretty much over this election already, given how much media we’ve been enduring for the last year and a half, but I LOVED this pizza box from local pizza chain Pagliacci (also affectionately known as “pags”) It’s filled with “fun facts” about the electoral process:

It had some really interesting information, such as:

and this one:

I wish we’d had this pizza box back in my high school government class…

Birthday boy

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T is now very, very old (39) and was not feeling particularly pleased with his closer proximity to 40, so to cheer him up we went out with our friends M & J to a local place called Pies & Pints. Pies & Pints has been an ongoing joke in our circle (One of those “you had to be there” things where M, in a moment of hunger and parking-induced crankiness snapped at J that he’d been to P&P many times and it was his FAVORITE place, when in fact he had never been. Naturally, we’ve been teasing her about it ever since.) So, neither of the boys had been and were both immediately big fans, since the menu is potpies and beer. Pretty much the perfect fare for rainy Seattle evenings…

We settled in at a booth and ordered some sweet potato fries to tide us over. I got a very delicious pear cider and the rest of the crew had Mac & Jack’s porter, which was also quite good. I tried to balance out my pie by getting a salad with it. They totally cancel each other out, right?

A pies eye view:

The adorable M & J:

And of course, the birthday boy and yours truly…

T had a slice of very decadent Guiness layer cake for dessert, (I may have stolen a few bites here and there) and M had a very lovely looking chocolate mousse. We then went to Half Price Books for T to see if they had a textbook of his (school being around the corner and all… ) and for M and I to restock our dwindling bookshelves, ha ha…

Happy birthday, T. Next year we’ll make a bigger fuss as you enter the brave new world of your FORTIES!

Seven years…

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This my first year of having a blog on the anniversary of the attacks, so I feel compelled to comment on the thoughts and feelings that always swirl around my head on this date. Every year I’m surprised by what emotions come to the surface and how raw I still feel about it all. I can’t think of another day I can remember with such picture-perfect clarity. It’s been seven years and I still feel the sadness and the fear and the sheer disbelief of the atrocities of that day.

I try to focus on the positive that came out of the tragedy. As always, I’m soooooo grateful that my friend Heidi took the day off of work to celebrate my finding an apartment. Had she not, I don’t even want to imagine what might have happened. I will forever thank whatever divine being/cosmic entity/random force that governs our world for having one of my closest friends with me when the world seemed to be coming to an end.

I also credit watching those towers fall with a lot of the positive steps I’ve made in my life. I would never have lost the weight, started the exercising, gone through therapy, gone back to school, started a new career and done triathlons, had I not seen first-hand what can happen on a random gorgeous sunny Tuesday in September. How many office temps/actors/directors/writers died in those towers? How many people spent their last minutes alive at a job they hated?

So, while every year I fight back tears at least three times, get mad at the media for treating the deaths of 3,000 people like it was the latest Die Hard movie and remind myself to be patient when I hear yet another person telling me their 9/11 story from the perspective of 3,000 miles away – I try to hold on to that faint glimmer of positive.

Thanks for listening. Blog-therapy rules!

Use it or lose it

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I’ve always hated that expression, but unfortunately it’s all too true. Tonight I rode my bike for the first time in weeks. I decided to try a different route home from work, since it was windy and I didn’t feel like crossing the I-90 bridge with a crosswind. The route I chose goes around the northern part of Lake Washington, coming home on the Burke-Gilman trail. For the most part, it was a gorgeous ride. The weather was beautiful. There was a bike lane for a lot of the urban riding and other bicyclists in front of me to call attention to our presence on the road. As I started out, all I could think about was how out of shape I felt – the effects of the laziness/bad food choices of the past few weeks. (Bike clothing is not the thing to wear when you’re feeling fat – ugh!)

But as I rode along, I realized that I was still riding my bike for 27 miles, a feat unimaginable not so long ago. And I was keeping pace with some of the hardcore looking bike commuters, the same folks who zipped past me on my 4 mile commute home last year. I still have a ways to go if I’m to accomplish the lofty goal I’ve set for myself, but at least today I took a step in the right direction…

Saturday morning in Ballard

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This was the first weekend that I haven’t had any plans in quite some time. Between the move and various travel plans, it’s been a very busy summer. The down side was that T has a temp job on weekends until the end of October. 😦 So, to cheer him up I decided to surprise him with a little breakfast at a place in our neighborhood I’d read about on Yelp.

As we walked up Market, there was this highly creepy marketing installation:

Yes, those are cardboard children holding signs. Disturbing…

We also passed one of my favorite public art pieces in Ballard – a series of marine sculptures:

My favorite is the jellyfish:

Finally, we arrived at our destination – Cafe Besalu. It’s a DELICIOUS french pastry place. There was a line out the door when we got there at 8:30, despite the fact that we’d walked through a totally empty neighborhood. It was totally worth it though, as the pastries were amazing. Luckily, I managed to snap a picture before we devoured these:

If you are ever in the Ballard area, I HIGHLY recommend this place. Yummy!