Good Eater

It was one of my parenting goals since well before Day 1, that my son would be a healthy appreciative eater, a real French garçon. Our au pair job description listed assiduous development of our son’s palate, “We look forward to your dedication and enthusiasm with assiduously developing Lake’s palate and sensory appreciation. By cooking and introducing different healthful foods you will be contributing to his culinary education.” It’s working out well. He’s starting to get noticed. He’s always loved apples and carrots and tofu since he was able to eat, at about 7 months old. I’m proud to report his culinary and gastronomic education continues to go well in the ensuing time interval. When queried today, “what are your favorite foods?” “Second one, I like chicken!” he replies exuberantly. “Second you like chicken? So do you have a favorite? What do you like best?” I asked. “Soup! I like soup! I like soup and chicken, Nora”

He likes all vegetables except he’s not keen on leafy greens, but loves cucumbers and he’ll try to steal them off you (asking sweetly first!)! and of course he loves carrots. He especially loves all fruits. One of his favorite traditions is a pear bath (see Peach Bath), or more specifically “cold pear bath” which involves sitting in the kitchen sink “bath tub” eating frozen pear quarters, sometimes with a glass of soy milk (always “I want big soy milk”and/or oats “milk bath” and “oats bath”.

He’s often asking at anytime of the day or night for oats and raisins and soy milk. Oatmeal is a true staple in our home. Recently I taught him how to eat olives with pits!

Of course he loves pomme frites and crisps and cakes and sweets, too. Just this morning he asked me ever so sweetly, “I have a small cookie please? A small one?” How could I say no? It was the “please” combined with the “small”, it really went straight to my heart. And of course he also wanted a “big soy milk” and directly afterwards a whole banana in the peel. He likes to hold the banana whole holding onto the bottom part in the peel. He likes to eat it that way like a grown up, getting some help halfway down to peel the peel the rest of the way back. For the most part Lake’s a good eater. He’ll sit a while and eat a bit.

It’s a Bear

Lake walked Langley with me this weekend as Michael was in California. He did a great job. One evening we passed a nice neighbor lady who paused to visit with Lake.

Hi! What a nice dog. Is this your dog? What’s your dog’s name?


Hi, yes, Langley!

Neighbor lady:

Lay-lee? Is that a girl?


it’s a bear!

Everyone laughs!

Lake is very sweet with all our animals including Langley. He often calls them “sweetheart” and tells them he loves them. He’s starting referring to them as “my Baby.” Missy is “my little Baby” Mr. Cat is “my Baby” and Langley is “my big baby!”, or otherwise, “it’s a bear!”

Nana’s in Morocco!

Nana’s in Morocco! It’s so thrilling. Nana’s parents went to Morocco in their 70’s as well. Mama would love to go to Morocco. Lake says he’ll come with me to Morocco. He likes to play along that he went to Morocco too! In the bathroom behind the towel, in the suitcase, or at the play cars at University Village. He’s vicariously joining in on Nana’s trip to Morocco. We all are a bit. A perfect day, thank you for sharing it with us Nana! Enjoy Morocco to the fullest!

Deception Falls Nature Trail

On our drive back from Leavenworth on Highway 2, just west of Steven’s Pass we stopped for a short piggy-back adventure. It’s seemingly such a diminutive trail (0.5 miles), and it’s on such a thoroughfare, combined with the more obvious obstacle that it’s closed for the season, that it’s easy to pass right by, and thus miss Deception Falls Nature Trail. Well, on Monday, opportunity knocked and we answered. In the spirit of the power of the present moment, the wonder of each turn of toddlerhood, and the healing power of nature, we opted to stop and explore. We celebrated Rev. Martin Luther King Jr Day with an hour of quiet contemplation off the beaten track of the automobile highway. It turned out to be a very special experience We had the place to ourselves, and such an impressive bit of the Tye River where Deception Creek plunges into it. Lake and I stood in awe, as the water roared down, helpless against gravity, relentlessly booming onto the granite rock. Lake surely loved it. It’s such a dramatic scene being played out. Yet, so simple. For a child of 2 1/2, a half mile hike is plenty, really, and we technically didn’t have to drive to the trailhead, since the trailhead came to us. What a rest stop! Restful to the point of rejuvenating in a transformative sense. Highly worth the time of day.

A perfect day; a perfect day hike. I’m glad I explored Deception Falls Nature Trail with you, Lake!

Ice Fest 2019

It’s Ice Fest this weekend in Leavenworth! Melting professional ice sculptures, amateur snow sculptures (also melting), tons of people in town and fireworks! We came over to visit some old friends and catch some snow. Lake has some new snow gear from Nana, and we figured we better go hunt some snow down! We found “snow on Leavenworth!” and made ourselves at home with the Ferrier’s. The were such kind hosts and Lake took to them like a duck to water. They also fell in love with Lake. We had a great time playing inside with their grown up kids’ books, Duplos, and blocks, and then outside there was snow! We walked through the slushy grainy snow (but snow nonetheless!)… in the neighborhood, and downtown. We even made a happy lady snowman. Lake named her Schnee. Jacque: What’s her name? Lake: Snow! On German! Jacquie: Schnee? Lake: Ja, Schnee!

We enjoyed the full experience as Lake exclaimed: Snow on Leavenworth!

Thank you Jacquie and Glen! A perfect snowy weekend! We’re glad we spent it with you!

Mama Teaching Yoga!

Natural beauty of the morning played stunning backdrop to my first official yoga class as instructor. The Tuesday morning 10 week series Hosted by Whole U and the UW Tower couldn’t have gotten off to a better start. We began at 7 am in the darkness and by 8 am the world was awakening in a lavender, periwinkle and peach glow, as pictured above. Meanwhile we woke up our minds and breathed life into our joints, filled our lungs with air and our hearts with joy and gratitude. I feel so proud of my students and grateful for having manifested this opportunity step by step. Thank you to Synergy Yoga School (where I not only became certified, but also holistically nurtured), Cathy Null (my pharmacy manager who made sure My work schedule allowed for the yoga teacher training), Lauren Updyke (of Whole U, who for some unknown reason chose to support and believe in me), Troy Swanson (facilities manager who was excited to add yoga to his building’s green cred) and my lovely prior yoga teachers (all of them!) and my incredible family, especially Michael, Lake, NanaBaba, and Jamma Julie for supporting me along the way. This is a dream come true, and I couldn’t have managed it without your support! Thank you! A perfect day for a yoga class taught by Mama Tolle… I’m glad I spent it with you! And here’s to many more to come!

Gum Wall: a Seattle “must see”

Looking for something to do on a rainy afternoon? The locals’ guide to the unique vibe of Seattle? Some cities have Wall Street, Seattle has Gum Wall. A Seattle pop culture icon, along with the Fremont Troll, Christmas Tree burning at Golden Gardens, Bruce Lee grace on Queen Anne, Jimmy Hendrix statue on Capitol Hill and… (what’s your favorite pop culture icon?) the Gum Wall Of Post Alley is a must see on any scavenger hunt of the city or whirlwind visit from out of town.

Find chewing gum stuck to the wall too base? The city agreed and in an attempt to clean up its act, the gun wall was scraped clean a few years back. Within days it had reappeared (thanks to many devoted jaws!) and was once again tactlessly gracing the old brick wall of Post Alley in Pike Place Market. A must see, really! Pop on over to chicklet it out!

Mama’s Cake Party

Lake loves a party. Leading up to my birthday he said it was “Mama and Lake’s Birthday.” He got very excited about the cake. The minute the cake and the cupcakes appeared nearing the end of dinner he started dancing around. “It’s a party! It’s a party! It’s a party!” And what a cake! It was a gorgeous gluten-free vegan cake Michael ordered from Flying Apron. In the morning after our cake party, Lake told me: “I had fun at the party with Jamma Julie, and Mama, and Lake and Michael and Luisa… and I ate cakes!”

A perfect day; a perfectly imperfect life. I’m soooooo glad I get to spend it with you all! Thank you for many the birthday well wishes from friends and family near and afar. I love you!

Discovery Park

It was a beautiful sunny Sunday, a great day to discover at Discovery Park with Lake, Langley Michael and Jamma Julie! Since Mama’s Saturday birthday was spent hiking with the pharmacist adults to Franklin Falls while Lake stayed home and played with Jamma Julie, it was special to all go out all together again on Sunday. We walked through the trees a bit and then stayed up on the bluff predominantly soaking in the views and the rays. Lake played in the sand dune “build a house; making a door” and tried to befriend a few other kids. He was motivated to walk home by following a girl or as Lake affectionately says “guirrel” (rhymes with squirrel when said by a native German speaker!). He would run up in front of her then turn around to face her then tried to walk next to her with his arm around her. She didn’t seem that interested but he wasn’t deterred. Finally she whispered something to him and ran off. He came back to hold hands with me and seemed self satisfied. What did she say to you, I asked, curious. “That she was going to run up to be with her mom,” he replied, not at all put out. I’m inspired how he sees everything as it is, and in an optimistic light. We had a great time and Langley was the star of the bluff. We actually met a 5 month old Leonbuger puppy and they were sooo cute together, cuddling together a bit. Julie and Michael got a nice catch up too. Mother and son. Boy and dog. Father and son. Man and dog. We basked in the sunshine and camaraderie and made some lovely discoveries about ourselves and each other. A perfect day (especially the blue skies), I’m glad I spent it with you!

Franklin Falls

As part of a very special birthday, Michael invited me to join the Evergreen Health Care Anticoagulation Pharmacist Team on a snow shoe excursion to Franklin Falls. The trailhead is near Snoqualmie Pass at Denny Creek Campground, and Franklin Falls is reachable by car one hour east of Seattle via Interstate 90. It turned out not to require snow shoes, so we left them in the car in favor of lighter going for the six mile round-trip hike. Traction was recommended, though, and for the most part, we all chose to don YakTraks. It was so refreshing to get outside and breathe in the mountain air! A perfect day; a perfect birthday treat!