Tag Archives: inspiration

Hunger Games food round-up

It’s no secret that our family is a little obsessed with the Hunger Games trilogy. The movie version opens this week, and I would guess that probably a full fifty percent of my waking hours are devoted to thinking about the Hunger Games. Krista wrangled up a collection of Hunger Games-inspired food for your District 12 parties this week.

Photo via Instructables user thatgirlwithacurl

We are in love with this step-by-step instructable for District 12 Coal Cookies! We might just be packing these for the midnight screening!

Check out The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook if you need 150 recipes to get you started.

Photo via San Jose Mercury News

A reader submitted feast for ‘Hunger Games’ enthusiasts from the San Jose Mercury News.

Photo via The Huffington Post

The Huffington Post’s Kitchen Daily collection of ‘Hunger Games’ recipes, including apple-goat cheese tarts a la Mellark’s Bakery.

Photo via Fictional Food

Fictional Food has a ton of Hunger Games recipes. The blogger goes by the name Greasy Sae, after all. What a cool idea – a blog entirely of food inspired by books, television, movies, and such.

Photo via Lizy B Bakes

Lizy B Bakes shares her method for these works of art here.

So what kind of snacks would you pack for a freezing cold midnight showing of the Hunger Games? May the odds be ever in your favor, and may the moviemakers not destroy all of our hopes and expectations with this movie!


Filed under food

design-inspired cookies

Jess and I both gasped when we saw one of our favorite design trends on a cookie: CHEVRON!

Check out these chevron-striped cookies from The Adventures of Sweet Sugarbelle.

(Photo by The Adventures of Sweet Sugarbelle)

You know, this could save me a ton of money if I focus on putting some of these design trends we are obsessed with on baked goods instead of around the house.

Be sure to see the list of links on the bottom of her Pinterest inspired cookie post. There are more cookies to “ooh” and “ahh” over, including MUSTACHE COOKIES. Amazing!

And if you’re not on Pinterest yet, you should be! I see something wonderful on there everyday. Organize the gorgeous and inspirational stuff you find online.


Filed under art, food


I’ve had regular people weekends off all summer, but I’ve now reached the part of my schedule where work overlaps the Saturday/Sunday weekends that Jess has off. Boo. We debated what to do with my last Sunday off. Tackle a project around the house? Do something really fun? We opted for the latter, and took a quickie road trip for the day.

Satsop Nuclear Power Plant, Satsop.

Don’t worry, moms, it was abandoned before it was ever used.

Kurt Cobain Riverfront Park, Aberdeen

I remarked on how the neighbors must hate having the park there, but turns out one of them made it happen.

Zelasko Park, Aberdeen

Chainsaw carvings and one of them a lumberjack? This combines some of my favorite Pacific-Northwesty things. We had to stop. The carvings have plaques that say “Louis Benanto Jr. 1971.” I couldn’t find a lot of information about them or the park online.

Ruby Beach, Olympic National Park

I cannot say enough good things about this gorgeous beach.

Hoh Rainforest, Olympic National Park

Where we saw lots of moss, elk, slugs, and billions of mosquitos.

What a spectacular day. Staycation for the win.

Want to see more photos? Yes, there are more. Full Flickr set here.


Filed under family

2011 Northwest Flower & Garden Show

The snow in Olympia last week was hard on me, so over the weekend I made my annual pilgrimage to the largest garden show west of the Mississippi: the Northwest Flower & Garden Show.

This is a crucial part of my wintertime mental health. Here in the PNW, we don’t specialize in the “glowing orb in the sky,” but when you walk into the NWFGS and the wall of smells hits you – thousands of flowers in bloom, dirt, enthusiasm, money running like water – winter melts away. It’s good for your heart to see so many beautiful plants in one place, even if it’s not great for your budget to impulsively buy too many and bring them home. The display gardens were amazing. I saw some great people talk about growing things.

This year was a personal triumph for three main reasons:

1. I took the light rail for 1/3 of my trip. I avoided all the stress, cost and drama of parking in downtown Seattle and I read an entire book. It was so awesome, I may never drive to Seattle again. A+
2. I had a shopping list for the plant market at NWFGS so I didn’t make any crazy purchases. I knew what I was buying, I was able to pack the right number of sturdy cloth bags. And Raintree didn’t have any filberts, so I spent the extra money on a new garden tool. A+
3. I packed food for the day. The Seattle convention center has veggie burgers, but the price & nutritional value are never where I’d like them. An organic Minneola tangelo is more exciting. It makes me so happy to have good food when I’m braving Weather and Crowds. A+
Verdict: I win at NWFGS 2011.

The show’s theme this year was “Once Upon a Time…”, so many of the gardens leaned toward fairy tale / fantasy themes: Rapunzel, Alice in Wonderland, Three Little Pigs, The old woman who lived in a shoe, etc. Some of the gardens were not so literal about the theme, and that’s alright by me too.

The first fairy tale I spotted was the Rapunzel vertical garden. Rapunzel, her hair and her prince are all made from plants. This is one of the coolest vertical gardens I’ve seen in person.

Suburu called their garden, “Paul Bunyan Gets a Conscience.” I guess Mr. Bunyan is reconsidering the sustainability of his ways.

This is from the Wrinkle in Time display garden. I don’t understand it at all, but I do love a Wrinkle in Time. This garden won the Founders Cup (which is the plant show version of Best in Show).

One of my favorite themed gardens was the Alice in Wonderland garden by Zsofia Pasztor from Innovative Landscape Technologies. I mention the creator because the same company created my favorite planted vertical garden at the NW Flower & Garden Show in 2010 (photo here). The Alice garden had sculptural elements, a ginormous staghorn fern suspended overhead, pink plastic flamingos & a live white rabbit. I heard some woman call the bunny “a little dog” but I can verify it was actually a rabbit. With the scale, the colors, textures and sculptures, I really felt like I was in wonderland in this garden. And now I want a completely impractical large “drink me” vessel for my yard.

Hopefully I will find some time this week to talk about what else? The on-trend topics of vertical gardening, container gardening, city farming, edible gardening, succulents and other plant-related stuff I collected at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show.

Here’s our 2010 NWFGS coverage: general info here, vertical gardening here and cold frames here.


Filed under garden

Northwest Flower & Garden Show

This weekend, we walked about 100 miles around the NW Flower & Garden Show in Seattle. It’s the third largest garden show in the country, and my feet are sore. I wore good shoes for walking – real sneakers not silly ballet flats or kitten heels as I am wont to do – but there’s no kind of shoe that can stand up to so much pavement pounding. The demo gardens were beautiful and inspirational. The vendors were friendly and had some incredible products. We saw extraordinary things, from very steampunk-meets-band nerd water features to worlds in miniature in the container garden display, lots of rhubarb and chickens, dinosaurs, dragons, and a huge number of dahlias and bulbs. Krista took a lot of photos (you can see them through that handy flickr widget-thing over to the right), and we’ll be rolling/trickling out blog posts about the most interesting, impressive and inspirational things we saw over the next…. well, I could say week, but it will probably take a few weeks to get through it. Actually, Krista just told me I cannot post about this garden show for three weeks, so I guess I’ll have to type quickly & do it in two weeks. There was a lot of stuff, though! I’m also happy to report that the PNW gnome population is doing quite well this year. We spotted a few.


Filed under family, winter