Wednesday, July 30, 2008

In Tacoma....

....where I am staying at the Hotel Murano, which is quickly becoming one of my favorite little hotels. I stayed here last time I came through town, and as I was running off to my meeting at the crack of dawn the next morning, they had a pipe burst overnight and there was no water. After spit shining myself with the bottle of Evian in the mini bar, and some strong words exchanged at the front desk, I came back to a very nice upgrade in one of their suites without even asking. Score! It really is a cool little boutique hotel right downtown surrounded by some fantastic restaurants, and the entire hotel is covered in amazing glass art from artisits all over the world. One that stood out to me was Bertil Vallien , (showcased on the 18th floor) one of Sweden's best known artists. (holla!)

I could not take going out to dinner one more night, so room service was in order (literally). I ended up getting the most fantastic homemade lobster pot pie that I have ever had. (Eat your heart out Marie Callendar!) The chunks of lobster and the fresh veggies and the most amazing crust were to die for! I topped off the evening with some Pinot and a Pedi and was a new woman! But even after the eating, the drinking, the pampering, there is still no place like home..... (headed your way tomorrow P.!)

Fantastic meal!

A closer look at the pie. Oh man, I would like a lobster pot pie body wrap!

Sandcasted glass boat by Bertil Vallien. (pathetic attempt to capture it in the display)

Bertil says, "The ship is a perfect vessel for the expression of loneliness. It is evocative of femininity, of adventure, of catastrophe, a thin protective shell that demands the absolute respect of all aboard. It is a society in isolation, a self-contained world afloat on the sea."


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Greetings From Seattle

So I have been in a meeting since 8 am (which as we all know that is way too early for a Frog!) and I thought I would share a few sights I could see while I am trapped in this building. Once again I left the house without my camera so the poor quality is due to my handy cell phone camera.

View of the Space Needle. Note the beautiful sunny day. (Not so much)

Anyone can see the Space Needle, but what about the home of the World's Largest Trophy Cup! How awesome would it be to place this on the hood of the Volvo as we proudly display our bocce ball victory in the 4th of July parade??

Monday, July 28, 2008

Chambers Bay

This week I am headed back to Seattle for a little work, and hopefully a mean piece of fish. When I was there back in June I had a little free time to check out Chambers Bay, which will be the home of the 2015 US Open. It was hands down the most challenging course I have ever hacked my way through, but I couldn't resist hitting the sticks on the grounds where future champions will be discovered.  

The word of the day is 'ungulations.'

Couldn't resist the classic 'senior class picture' pose. 

One last look from the top at the 18th hole.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

In Napa....

View from the vineyard.

We found ourselves wandering around Napa again this weekend to take a break from the fog and take in some sunshine a little further inland.  A few weeks ago we were also exploring around and then made a stop for some lunch at Bouchon which was divine! A fantastic little French bistro also run by Thomas Keller, of The French Laundry. It was deelish!  I highly recommend the steak frites, oh, and the scallops were perfection!  You also can't go wrong with some fresh oysters and a glass of champagne.  Until next time.....  

Bouchon Bistro...deelish!

P and T self portrait.  (Nice shadowing.)

The road home.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Happy Birthday dad!!

Another day, another celebration and hopefully some more champagne. Enjoy the good life and your special day!!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Happy Anniversary Kaj & Anneke !!!!

It seems like only yesterday that friends and family gathered in Holland on the 20th of July 1990. 18 years and 6 countries later (Canada, Botswana, South Africa, Holland, Sweden and France) and with many adventures still to come you are still going strong. Here's to many more Champagne wishes!!!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Gin and Tonic on 'The Rocks'

This pic does not even do the park justice, but you can't take large cameras inside.

I have been in Denver for work this week, and I was able to score a ticket to see Lyle Lovett at Red Rocks with my sister and her husband last night. Let me preface this with the fact that I am not a fan of country all! But I don't consider Lyle country, he's just Lyle. (Peter, however, would beg to differ.) I have seen dozens of shows at Red Rocks, from The Allman Brothers to Widespread Panic and I have to say there is nothing quite like a show at this venue. Coming back here is like hanging out in my old back yard, and now that I don't get to frequent it as often, it is really like looking at it for the first time again. Good show Keeleys! Good show!

The Newlyweds (aka Mr. and Mrs. Keeley)

Sisters having a good time! (and no, we didn't plan our matching outfits.)

A view from the inside. 

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Journey Across the Bridge

View from the backseat as we cross the Richmond Bridge.

Last week we headed to the East Bay for a little pizza and some microbrews at Jupiter in Berkeley. It is always an adventure visiting Berkeley and actually reminds me of Boulder, Colorado. Young, aspiring college hopefuls (which oddly seem to be getting younger), a bookstore on every corner, and multiple Birkenstock sightings. Jupiter had a great patio, a DJ that was actually spinning vinyl (to Peter's delight), and some fantastic pizza. 

Brett paying the meter.

Mmmmm, pizza. (not to mention, excellent crust!)

P. always a sucker for the house stout, myself, I am partial to a tasty Pilsner.

The boys making their way back to the car.  
Note:  EP is not pictured on this trek as se was out tearing it up in the city with Cousin Ralph.
Next time Eeps.  Next time.  

Monday, July 14, 2008

A Visit from Dad

Outside on the deck enjoying the nice weather, even though it was foggy.

Last weekend my Dad stopped by our humble abode. It was great to see him and share our little piece of paradise. The weather was really nice, so what would be better than some oysters and cold beer on the patio at Fish? Thanks for stopping by Pop! Until next time...... 

P. and Dad having a detailed discussion about cars.  (imagine that)

Outside at Fish, enjoying the weather and the feast.

P and T loving the warm weather!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

A Celebration of Independence on the Bay

So, after the parade we decided to take a little sail in the Bay. It was a little cooler than we hoped, but the sun was out despite the thick fog, and the wind was blowing! It is always fantastic to get out on the water and view the city and the sights from a little different perspective.

The cruise director.
Our Captain, prepping the crew.
Bergie, our Purser.  
Part of the crew: Karl and Felicia, raring to go.
P. reefing the main.

P. checking the list.
T. happy to be out on the water.
Amanda and Bergie
T. at the helm (Felicia trying to be okay with T. at the helm)
P, T, and Amanda hair blowing in the breeze. 
Chez Nielsen
Amanda just trying to stay in the boat.
Bergie and Karl taking it all in.
A boat with a really huge flag.
Amanda, Felicia, and Bergie trying not to get blown away. (Clearly not having fun at all)
Our fearless leader bringing us back home.

Then back to Chez Nielsen for some BBQ type fare, and the fireworks....

Bergie and Amanda, again, not having much fun.
Karl and Felicia trying to get warm after being out on the water. (not to mention after taking much of that water  in the face!)
The food
The drinks
The chef
The Frog (seen here with aforementioned chef)

And then the sparkler incident.....(don't ask!)

Lighting them up
Showing the people of Sausalito some Independence Day spirit
And the need for some new cushions.....
A VW bus sighting, with a funky exposure that didn't quite work out.  
But mostly a shoutout to our pals Brett and EP while they are in Michigan.  We miss you guys!

The fireworks.  Quite a show!