Saturday, July 21, 2012

Chocolate Tour

While the kids were visiting, my daughter-in-law, Meghan, celebrated her birthday. I know Meghan loves all things chocolate, so when walking around Seattle several months ago, and seeing advertisements for Savor Seattle's "Chocolate Indulgence Tour" I knew that was the birthday gift for Meghan.
I booked the tour, took Meghan and Callie and hit the road. It was fabulous!  It was a one mile walking tour in downtown Seattle and took two hours. It was so much fun.

The tour group gathered in the Mayflower Park Hotel. Once we put on our lovely headsets, so we could hear our guide as we walked, we headed to the hotel bar. It wasn't open yet, it was only 11:00 AM, but the bartender was there and he mixed us up a yummy chocolate cocktail.
You really have to love a tour that starts in the bar. And who wouldn't want a chocolate cocktail?

The drink was called "The Seattle Flatliner"  It was GOOD.
Next stop, The Chocolate Box

At The Chocolate Box, we had sipping chocolate. It's like hot chocolate on steroids. SOOOO rich and good. This particular sample of sipping chocolate had a homemade strawberry marshmallow down inside. YUM.

The Dahlia Bakery was next on our tour. Here we had the most delicious coconut cream pie...made with white chocolate. Oh my! It's a good thing it was a small sample.

Pictures out of order here. This sign was over The Chocolate Box, where they also had a wine bar. What's not to love?

I have to admit, I can't remember the name of the bakery where we got the delicious cheesecake. It was right across the street from Pikes Market and they put a birthday candle in Meghan's piece. So sweet.

Next stop was KuKuRuZa gourmet popcorn. I was so looking forward to this place. I love popcorn. I love salty and sweet together. This was heaven. I didn't get photos of the popcorn or the inside of the shop. I admit, I was very busy sampling. I brought home the Hawaiian Salt & Caramel popcorn. Well, I brought some of it home. I ate a lot before I got there with it.

Last stop was Fran's chocolates. This place looked like a jewelry store but with chocolates instead of precious jewels in the glass cases.

I treated myself to the Gray and Smoked Salt Caramels. I have one every few days. It's so good I almost can't stand it.

We had such a good time on the tour. I failed to mention the tea shop we stopped at. I wasn't impressed with chocolate infused tea.... just my opinion.

If you're ever in the Seattle area, Savor Seattle has several foodie tours. I'd like to take Nick on the brewery one. He loves beer and would love that one, I bet.

No one paid me to take this tour or write about it. I bought my own ticket and my opinions are my own!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Kids and the 4th of July

Since I'm so far behind, it shouldn't be a surprise to anyone that I'm just now writing about our 4th of July.
We had kids fly in on the 3rd of July. JD and his wife Meghan, and our daughter Callie. Callie visited us in January, but JD and Meghan had not been here yet. Since they are all sweltering in the Texas heat, they were more than glad to be here in the Pacific Northwest where the weather is JUST NOW getting warm.

We had absolutely fantastic weather while they were here.
These kids spent a 4th of July with me in Hawaii a few years ago when Nick was deployed. It was the first time JD and Meghan had ever been on a military installation for Independence Day. They loved it. They loved the cannons, the tribute to the states, the music, fireworks and the overall atmosphere. I can't blame them. There is nowhere I'd rather be to celebrate Independence Day than with our country's heroes.
Needless to say, they were so excited to spend this holiday with us here.
The day started with a parade. Nick's brigade supports a local town outside of our installation. It's a very small town but they had a parade on July 4th. Because Nick is the commander, he got to be in the parade. Guess who got to ride with him?  That's right, me!  The second car in the parade was the Command Sergeant Major. His wife isn't here with him yet, so the girls rode with him and they loved it!
Here are a few photos of the parade that day.
Soldiers of the Brigade carrying the colors.

There we are! Our 15 (well, more like 5) minutes of fame.

Getting ready to get started.

Pretty girls in a cool car.

They LOVED playing Miss America in the parade.

I'm afraid none of us were as popular as the Stryker vehicle. It is pretty cool.

Soldiers giving out candy. The kids loved it.

Here is Callie and me waiting for it to get dark and for the fireworks show to start. They gave out these funky glasses that are supposed to enhance the whole firework watching experience. I found they made me dizzy. It could be because I'm old. I'm not sure.

It was a great day. I'm so thankful to have shared this day with the kids. I only wish more of them could have been here.
I will share more of their trip in a later post.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Catching Up

I am so far behind in blogging that I don't even know where to begin. I wonder though, is anyone even out there anymore?
I went to visit my mom several weeks ago and attended a park bench dedication in honor of my dad who was a volunteer in this park.

My dad, and the other Master Gardeners in their little town, met once a week to plant, weed and do general maintenance on a beautiful city park. So, the gardeners donated this in memory of my father.
It was a beautiful summer day and was one that my dad would've enjoyed.

Here is the inscription that dedicates the bench to my dad.

My mom, sister and me enjoying the day at the park.

We all shed a few tears as the group took turns speaking of my dad. There were several laughs that morning too. My dad was a joyous man and would have wanted us to laugh. The funniest part was when the guy speaking said "It's ironic that we are putting a bench out here for Paul, because the man never sat down."
He's right. My dad was a hard worker. I learned so much from him. My love of the outdoors, growing things and playing in the dirt and my strong work ethic. Most of all, I learned that life is full of joy and should be enjoyed with those you love.

In the next few days, I will try to post more of the things that have been going and that have been neglected. I am also going to try to catch up on reading some of my favorite blogs! I've missed you guys!!