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I am weeping in happiness watching this movie.

With a cranberry crumb cake in the oven, the warm buttery smell filling my kitchen, I cannot keep my eyes dry watching two women strive to learn everything they can about the thing they love, cooking, and in turn, learn something very true about themselves and the things that matter in life. It’s a beautiful thing.

Did you know Julia Child didn’t start really cooking until well after she was 40? I certainly don’t mean to say that 40 is “old”, but, well, I’m only 23. It’s not too late. I can hope. I can do this. I can do this. I have to. I love it.

I realized there were a few more shots from our trip that I would really like to post. Because I like them. So deal.

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Who knew I could make pictures into a pretty slideshow! Technology is so cool.

In other news, my roommate and maid of honor Sarah is leaving for a summer-long camp tomorrow, and I will miss her. Have fun, Sarah!

Turns out one sick crew member can really eff up your plans for the day.

Our original flight-plan: 8:30 flight from SeaTac to JFK (landing 3:30ish Eastern time), 6:15 flight from JFK to ROC, arriving home around 8:30. A long day, but doable, right? Only 9 hours with the time change.

Actual travel-day: 7:30 arrival at SeaTac, flight delayed to 9, flight delayed to 11:45. Quality time with Elliot (you know, I read Bon Appetit while he caught up on the Apple keynote from yesterday). 11:45 flight to JFK, landed around 7:30 local time. Now we are sitting in the terminal. Waiting. We got some dinner, and are waiting for a 10:45 flight to finally bring us home, more than 15 hours after our day began.

I think it’s safe to say I am officially longing for my bed. My eyelids are heavy, and the tv at the terminal is not showing anything particularly interesting. We are wiped.

Hello! We are still in Seattle. What a great trip this has been (so I’m posting a photo-filled blog!). Seriously, Eric and Alanna are great. Elliot picks good friends.

Yesterday, we went to see a waterfall, which was very misty. And of course, the waterfall had a gift shop.

We got to walk around a bit and check it out from all different angles. We would have taken the trail down to the bottom of the falls, but that trail is apparently closed until 2013.

After the waterfall, we helped Eric and Alanna get all set up for their youth group dinner thing, and then Elliot and I went to Paolo’s on Eric and Alanna’s strong recommendation, and it was fantastic! Great local wine selection, fresh local pasta, handmade desserts…it was wonderful. Then we got to hang out the rest of the night with our hosts. Elliot and I pretty much mopped the floor with them in a couple rounds of Rook.

Today we had a huge breakfast of eggs and french toast and turkey bacon, and then took off for the city. We went on the Underground Tour. It was really fun, and we learned a lot about Seattle. Apparently once upon a time, the city burned down, and instead of waiting for the city to be rebuilt at a higher level as promised, the merchants rebuilt their stores at the same level beginning the very next day after the fire. Then the city got to work on raising the street level, which left a 20-block network of underground tunnels where the old sidewalks used to be. Crazy! Here are some (pretty bad) pictures from the tour:

The brick framework under the streets.

A view of the skylights from underneath the street.

An old bank teller's cage.

Clearly, the tour was very informative. From there, we headed to Kerry Park, which is more of an overlook, and took a few more pictures.

After Kerry Park, we drove back down to Pike Place Market, and spent hours walking around. We had sandwiches at Beecher’s while we watched them make the cheese, we saw the original Starbucks, checked out the myriad of shops, bought some vanilla beans!, and then headed over to Elliott’s on the water for some really wonderful dinner. I had mushroom ravioli with asparagus, tomatoes, crab meat, and a really light cream sauce. Delightful! Also, I am very excited about the vanilla beans, because I really want to make this.

I really need to stop writing this post now. It is currently 11:42 local time, and we need to get up in about 6 hours to get to the airport on time. And then not let ourselves sleep on the planes so we can get to bed at a regular Eastern time tomorrow night. Ugh. I’m tired already.

I’m writing now from across our fair country, and it’s strange to think our friends are in the middle of the evening church service we normally attend and it’s not even 3pm yet here. We left yesterday from Rochester around 8:30 and arrived in Seattle 3:30pm Pacific time, having eaten lunch at noon our time, which was 9am Pacific. 27 hours is a long day.

Our friends Eric and Alanna met us at the airport, and we squeezed in a wine tasting (yum!) before heading out to the Red Hook brewery for the best $1 tour I have ever taken. The tour lasted about an hour, and we got to try 5 beers, one of them twice, for a total of 24oz. of beer, plus a taste of their Imperial IPA, Big Ballard, downstairs at the pub, purely for comparison’s sake. Not bad for a buck, right?

We got home, got the tour of their lovely abode, and Alanna and I started in on dinner. I made a cherry vanilla crisp with some fresh cherries we had bought on the side of the road, and Alanna made a spicy parmesan kale dish, some rice with beans and veggies, and they treated us to some fresh-caught, never-frozen salmon from Pike’s market.

Eric preached this morning, and it was absolutely beautiful, but more on that later. We’re off to see a waterfall!

I’ve been here all along. It’s been a hell of a few months, I’ll say that much. The new job is well, not so new anymore, and it’s again left me pining for something that feels more fulfilling. I’ve been writing a lot in my head lately, which is what made me think that perhaps I needed to do some actual writing, a little Nickel Creek in the background.

Lately I’ve been pretty wrapped up in wedding plans, the crazy traveling schedule that Elliot and I set up for ourselves, and diving head-first into my newly rediscovered love for baking. What could possibly be more simultaneously exciting and soothing than flour and sugar and butter?

After all this time trying to figure out what it is I want to do…dare I say this might be it? I can say with confidence that I never wanted to spend hours pouring over music history textbooks or even practicing in college, and now it seems I cannot get enough reading into one day. Recipes, techniques…is it because there are pictures? It helps.

Dear Lord, let this be it. First it was seminary, and then motherhood (which I’m still quite stuck on–no worries there!), but…baking. Baking…if I say it, will it be true?

I want to bake. Forever. And hopefully someday for my job.

There is so much to learn–that is one thing I am sorely aware of–but thankfully I have many guinea pig-friends who eagerly and honestly taste my convections.

*le sigh*

How can a girl be this lucky? In love with a beautiful man and feeling so blissed out in her kitchen. It feels right and lovely.