Final Seattle Blog Post

The day has come, today I went from my home in Seattle to my home in Montreal.

Ryan and I had to get up at 4:20 am and head to the airport, we got there for 5:45

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You can tell I’m a writer because I read The New Yorker

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My first flight was over four hours and I went from Seattle to Toronto

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Waiting in line for Tim Hortons when all I really want is a shower!

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Had to resist buying books!

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Toronto was super annoying, not only did every line take longer than it should have but the flight was delayed too!

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Finally it all came full circle and I ended up at home with my parents in the snow!

The past five and a half months have been one of the best experiences of my life and it was so much fun sharing them with all of you! Alas, this blog has come to an end and I will no longer be posting on it. You can, however, follow me on my new blog

http://sarahwritesreadsanddoesstuff.wordpress.com/

The End (For now … )

Last Day in Seattle :(

Today is sadly the last day of my wonderful trip in Seattle.

Ryan and I started the day by going for breakfast at Patty’s

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After Patty’s we went back home so that I could finish packing and then we headed downtown. We walked around the water garden

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After the water garden we walked around a bit

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We found an amazing used bookstore, even Ryan liked it

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After that we went to the Seattle Public Library which is more of a museum than anything!

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After the library we had lunch

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Walked some more

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Then we went to Ballard for some of the most amazing chocolate molten lava cake EVER!!! I love this stuff to begin with and I’ve never had a better one

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After that we went back home, watched some Fringe :) and then went out for dinner at Ivar’s! Unfortunately I forgot to bring my phone so there are no pictures of dinner but it was a great way to end the trip!

Surprise!

Tonight I was in for a surprise. Ryan told me he was taking me out for dinner (no surprise there, he totally spoils me) and when we arrived Dan, Jaimie, Sydney and Michael were there too! Ryan had planned a surprise going away dinner for me :) It was a lot of fun and really nice to spend time with everyone again before heading back to Montreal for a while. 

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Canada Reads 2014 and my only non photo post

Thanks to my good friend Emma I found out about Canada Reads, not sure how I never heard of it before but it sounds like an awesome idea! 

Pretty much what happens is CBC asked Canada what book (by a Canadian author) has the power to change the country or even the world. People voted the suggestions down to a top 40 then a top 10 and now the panellists, there are five of them, have each chosen a book that they believe has the power to change the world.

The finalists are:

The Year of the Flood by Margaret Atwood and defended by Stephen Lewis
The Orenda by Joseph Boyden, defended by Wab Kinew
Half Blood Blues by Eis Edugyan, defended by Donovan Bailey
Cockroach by Rawi Hage, defended by Samantha Bee 
Annabel by Kathleen Winter, defended by Sarah Gadon 

I’ve read The Year of the Flood and would have to say it probably ranks in the top ten best books that I have ever read in my life. I seriously love the Maddaddam trilogy, admire and respect Atwood so much and can only hope to one day be a fraction as brilliant of a writer as she is. 

Never heard of The Orenda or Cockroach before but based on the fact that they’re in the top five with these other novels I have to assume that they are wonderful. 

I’ve heard great things about Half Blood Blues but have yet to read it. 

As for Annabel…funny thing about this novel. I was browsing reddit for book suggestions (r/booksuggestions) and came across Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides and read and loved it, in the same thread that I found Middlesex I also found Annabel. I wrote it down as something I wanted to read and a few days later I was speaking to my mom and what had she done that day but put a copy of Annabel on my bed for me to read! Now that shows two things, one that my mom is awesome and has amazing taste in literature, two that I really have to read this book. 

March 3rd to 6th there will be debates over which book should win, they will be available online, on TV and on the radio. So you know what that means! You and I have until March 3rd to read these novels which are pretty much guaranteed to be awesome. I know I’ll be reading and I hope you will too! Not only is it important to read but we have to support and promote Canadian literature! 

http://www.cbc.ca/books/canadareads/2013/11/meet-the-canada-reads-2014-contenders.html 

Thanksgiving American Style aka Friendsgiving

Yesterday Ryan and I celebrated American Thanksgiving for the first time, it was also a Friendsgiving since, well, we’re all friends who were away from their families doing Thanksgiving together and let me tell you it was a lot of fun! 

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One important note about American Thanksgiving that Ryan and I did now know about but is apparently widespread here in the States. When you say you are having Thanksgiving dinner it’s not what you think it is. The event said it started at four, we could stop by for noon and hang out. So we came for one pm. We made our potatoes, pigs in a blanket and got the veggies together, had lunch and went over. Turns out we made a grave mistake in having lunch. Americans take their Thanksgiving very seriously and the plan is to eat dinner at four pm (Which by many people’s standards is late!) and eat all day before that and all day after. We had expected to come over, hang out a bit, have some appetizers around four and eat at six-ish. Nope that’s not how it works here! All I can say is I lucked out not liking or really eating my lunch! 

Here’s a look at what we brought 

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Once we got there it was about five minutes before everyone was there so it was time to hand out Thanksgiving presents! Dan has been joking for months that on Thanksgiving Canadians have to give Americans presents so we went to the thrift store and found everyone joke gifts (along with the yummy baked goods!) 

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Julianne got the teddy bear candy dish, Michael got the 2008 Cinco de Mayo shot glasses, Dan got the super American smore guy, Sydney got the bathroom picture, Robbie (Dan’s friend we just met) got the Target dog and Jamie got the Star Wars VHS box set. Everyone loved them and had a good laugh! 

After that we pretty much got down to eating. 

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Those were the appetizers along with apple cider sangria, wine and beer. Julianne made a delicious pumpkin dip that you ate with graham crackers and tasted like a fluffy pie! It’s the orange stuff in the large bowl. 

Appetizers Menu: 

Pumpkin Dip 
salsa
bean dip
chips
Veggies and dip
Peanut butter cups
Pigs in a blanket 

Michael made a 22 pound turkey! 

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It was delicious and thoroughly impressive and we didn’t even get through half of it! Luckily that meant leftovers for everyone! 

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Ryan and I had to bring our table and chairs and it worked out perfectly! 

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Our Thanksgiving menu was… 
Turkey
Stuffing, regular and sausage 
Cheesy carrots
Salad
Cucumber Salad
Cranberry Sauce 
Rolls
Fruit Salad
Sweet and Regular mashed potatoes
Gravy 

and that’s not including the appetizers and desserts :O 

Then we took a few group shots, and of course had to include Josh (who couldn’t make it) in a few!

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Dan took a nap … 

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Then we tackled dessert! 

Dessert Menu: 

Homemade pumpkin pie (courtesy of Sydney) 
Pecan pie 
Peanut butter cup cookies 

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We had such a fun night and it was the perfect way to spend time with everyone before going back home! 

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Thanksgiving Take 2

Happy American Thanksgiving! Ryan and I are getting ready to celebrate with friends so I thought I’d show you some of what we’re bringing. 

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Veggies and dip because every party needs that! 

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Making mashed potatoes, regular and sweet potatoes 

We will also be bringing those desserts I showed you the other day and pigs in a blanket. 

 

Holiday Baking!

Tomorrow is American Thanksgiving, which is completely throwing me off! Since it’s so late compared to normal and so close to Christmas every time people talk about “the holidays” (meaning Thanksgiving) I keep thinking about Christmas! I even put on Christmas socks this morning. With the Thanksgiving pot luck coming up tomorrow I was doing some baking to bring over and of course it felt more like Christmas baking than anything. Even when we went to buy funny Thanksgiving presents (more on that in a later blog post) I was drawn to Christmas things! It’s such a time warp around here. 

Anyway, I wanted to bring a dessert tomorrow and also decided to bake a little thing to give to everyone (There’s that Christmas mentality again!) so I’m going to take you through the three things I baked this morning. 

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Squares. I love squares, my mom used to make them all the time and they are delicious. 

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To make squares you need: 

1/2 cup margarine 
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg 
pinch of salt
Vanilla
1 cup flour (or 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 cup oats but I just used flour) 
Chocolate chips

Mix it all together, put it in a pan and bake for a while! 

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Two lucky people are going to get some squares in a tin tomorrow! 

Three lucky (I think, never made the recepie and haven’t tasted them since they are in a loaf…) people are going to get chocolate chip loaf

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I found this recipe here http://forchicsake.com/chocolate-chip-loaf/

2 cups flour
baking powder
salt
1/4 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 cup milk
vanilla
1 cup chocolate chips

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Finally I made a batch of peanut butter cup cookies. These are supposed to be mini and make a batch of 48 or so. You need to use a mini muffin tin, Ryan and I don’t have one and I didn’t want to buy one so I started out by making them into cookies, that didn’t work at all and 9 cookies had to be tossed (they melted and stuck together and didn’t want to get off the parchment paper at all!) so I used the regular muffin tin and just made massive ones. These also had some problems getting out of the tin, I think next time I should buy a mini muffin tin and muffin papers … oh well 

2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
salt
1 cup butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
2 eggs
vanilla
48 mini peanut butter cups (we have a lot left in the freezer since they didn’t go according to plan!) 

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At least everyone likes peanut butter so they can’t be too bad! 

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Stay tuned for a few days of food posts! Tomorrow Ryan and I cook for the pot luck (potatoes, pigs in a blanket and a veggie platter) and then by Friday the Thanksgiving post should be up!