Summer in Seattle and Things I’m Enjoying Right Now



Summer is in full force in Seattle, and we are enjoying every minute of it!

We live through 9 months of cold, damp, and drizzly weather to have the most amazing summers you can imagine – pleasant, sunny, and rarely hotter than 85 degrees. Looking at the weather forecast is pretty much unnecessary – it’s the same every day from about July 4th through late September. Here, I’ll show you:

weather

As you might imagine, people around here are much friendlier and happy during the summertime than other parts of the year.

This year, we’re on a mission to find every park in town (and there are a lot) and explore the associated trails. Our town of Bellevue, Washington, has an amazing trail system interspersed throughout the city, but after living here 14 years, neither of us had even scratched the surface on exploring these trails. It took moving to a house that has a trailhead about 400 yards away to start exploring to find out that there is a hidden world of trails right under our noses!

 

So, this is the year, and we’ve been picnicking in a different park each night for the last couple of weeks to get out of the house and to explore the trails. In addition to being good for us to get out, it’s great for our pooch, who loves, loves, loves to hike! Here are a few snapshots from parks we’ve been to in the last week.

parkwindmill

lewis_creek

ballfieldpipa

We’ve been getting some pretty amazing sunsets to go with the amazing days lately as well.  I feel so lucky to be able to see this every evening. I wish I could share with you what it looks like as it progresses, but, alas, I am not that good of a photographer…

sunset

In other news, 2Chili and I joke that I am Amazon’s best customer, but it is pretty much true. We are on a first name basis with the UPS driver. If you are not an Amazon Prime member, I cannot recommend it enough – it is seriously the best deal out there to make your life easier, and comes with lots of perks unrelated to shopping, like free data storage in the cloud, monthly free books for your Kindle (including mine!), and free streaming videos.

I don’t have a new recipe for you guys this week, but I have a spattering of things I’ve been trying out that I want to share. I do have a few things on the “to-do” list, including trying to make coconut whipped cream in the Ninja, and a few ideas for new bars on tap for the next few weeks.

Things I’m Digging Right Now

  • Nativas Naturals Coconut Water Powder. Coconut water is so good for you, especially if you exercise a lot. It is also so expensive. I gave this freeze dried powder a try on a whim, and, I quite like it. There are about 15 servings in the pouch for about $13, and you can mix it to the strength you prefer. I like this for my bike water bottles as well – it makes a great sports drink. Nativas Naturals is a solid brand, and I also buy their cacao nibs.  
  • Tasty Bite Lentil Magic. Believe it or not, the ingredients list in this prepared lentil mixture is very good, and, the lentils themselves are also very good if you like Indian food. They are shelf stable and super convenient. I have been using them in my lunch wrap and they are a nice change from just “plain” lentils. My only gripe is that the sodium is a skosh on the  high side for a serving. Here are the ingredients – all familiar items , and no crazy preservatives: Water, Brown Lentils, Carrot, Celery, Tomato, Sunflower Oil, Garlic, Salt, Cumin, Chilies, Cardamom, Vinegar, Pepper.  At my local Albertson’s these lentils are $3.35/each, but for some reason, a 6-pack is only $6.26 from Amazon.
  • Brita Soft Squeeze Water BottleWe don’t have our fridge hooked up to the water supply yet, so we are just drinking tap or bottled water. I picked up these Brita bottles so we could easily filter tap water from anywhere and cut down on the amount of bottled water we were buying, and, they have been great! So great, in fact, I left one at the pool yesterday. Whoops! They are BPA free and the filters last for 40 gallons, or about 2 months, and are recyclable.
  • DIY Flax Crackers. I’m hooked on these crackers. I have also made them with half flax and half chia as well, and they came out great. Even if you are saying “what, flax crackers, I don’t think so,” I’m telling you, these are crunchy and mild. I gave one to a fairly picky friend at lunch last week and he liked it.

Flax Seed Crackers | Test Kitchen Tuesday

 With that, I think I have randomized your day enough! Have a great week and thanks for reading!

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