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On The Lake

I had the pleasure of a girl’s weekend with my bestie, Rachel! Last year we rented an Airbnb on the water in Shelton (very remote, very peaceful). This year we rented a place on Lake Steilacoom in Lakewood, Washington. It’s between Olympia and Tacoma. I’ve honestly never been–I’ve just seen signs off the freeway. 😉

The place we rented was the basement apartment of a house right on the lake.

I arrived a little before Rachel on Friday afternoon and after unpacking, I sat outside in the sun and read my book next to the lake. It was peaceful and quiet and beautiful.

When Rachel arrived we got some food at the nearby Trader Joe’s and then cooked dinner while catching up. We made goat cheese ravioli topped with Autumn Pumpkin Alfredo sauce–sounds a bit weird but it was tasty! Not too overpowering in either direction.

We drank wine, we talked late into the night, we ate the homemade popcorn the owners gave us and then went in the hot tub. It was a really nice, relaxing evening!

Saturday we both slept in (amazing!) had breakfast and lots of coffee:

And then I went for a run. The place we rented was right on the water and the neighborhood was very nice, but the streets were narrow and windy and not safe to run on. I asked the owner if there was any where I could go and she recommended Fort Steilacoom Park.

Apparently it’s a nice place for all kinds of activities and when I showed up there were tons of people doing stuff. There was some kind of event going on, then there was a soccer tournament and there was a huge dog park area, which looked cool.

There were a bunch of trails. I ran on the gravel/dirt trails a bit until I found the paved path:

It was a beautiful fall day, slightly crisp but not too cold. The sun was out, the leaves were turning. The paved path went around the lake and it was flat and clean and very nice. There were lots of other walkers, runners and bikers. It kind of reminded me of Greenlake in Seattle.

 

It was a nice run. I felt pretty good. I wasn’t in a rush, either, just enjoyed the scenery. Rachel was going to the store to get a few things and she said no rush, so I looked around a bit and found a cool old ruin:

I did a little more running and then headed back to the car. I did just under 3 miles and felt great!

I stretched and then drove back to the house (about a mile or so away), showered and then we kicked back with Pandora tunes and played board games a bit. Then Trader Joe’s honey goat cheese on crackers and some soup for lunch. We played a few rounds of Ticket to Ride.

Then chick flicks on Netflix! We decided to order takeout for dinner and picked up Italian food at Casa Mia. It was pretty close to where we were staying, so that was nice. Rachel got the mushroom risotto and I got spaghetti noodles with pesto and Caesar Salad. The portions were pretty big so we had lots of leftovers. It was a weekend full of carbs!

Then more hot tub time:

And bed. Sunday I hit the gym and then drove home to Portland. It was a fantastic weekend! I really needed the girl time and time to catch up with Rachel (and time to relax and do NOTHING) but I was feeling a little homesick. I missed my boys! I got home just in time for Logan to wake up from his nap!

It felt good to be home. 🙂

Bread

I had a success this weekend!

My sourdough! I think this is the 4th loaf I’ve tried and it’s definitely the best so far! I didn’t let it rise overnight this time, but it did rise for about 12 hours before I baked it.

I’ve been having much better luck with this sourdough recipe:

Sourdough Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 cups sourdough starter
  • 5-6 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 heaping Tbsp salt
  • 1 cup filtered water, cold or room temperature

Instructions

  1. In a very large bowl, mix starter, water and 3 cups of whole wheat flour with a wooden spoon and combine well.
  2. Add salt and remaining flour ½ cup at a time, attempting to completely stir in the flour with each addition. When you can no longer mix with a spoon, use your hands to mix in the flour. Continue adding flour until your dough begins to resemble dough, but is still sticky and "pourable."
  3. Pour dough into large loaf pans and fill ? way up. Cover with a towel and allow to sit in a warm place for 4-12 hours, until the dough is at least doubled in size and looks to be "domed" on top.
  4. Place loaves in a cold oven and turn the oven on to 350 degrees. Bake bread for 50-60 minutes, until the edges are golden and the bottom sounds hollow when tapped.
  5. Remove to cool on wire racks for at least 30 minutes. Makes 2-3 loaves, depending on the amount of flour used and size of loaf pans.
http://www.110pounds.com/?p=55052

It came from this blogIt has some pretty good tips in the post, too, so worth a read through.

I also recently bought this: Round Banneton Dough Proofing Rising Rattan Basket & LinerI’d seen it in some different blogs about baking and read up about it. Basically it’s for the last rise of the bread and to make those pretty grooves in the loaf.

I was so happy that it rose to the right shape, had the grooves and the right color I was going for. I let it cool a bit and then sliced into it. It wasn’t as sour as the last loaf, but the flavor was good and it was light. Not quite as airy as the sourdough professionals make but it’s getting better each time. It wasn’t as dense, too.

So happy with the result!!!!

In other news…I ended up getting sick this weekend. Michael was sick last week with whatever the nasty cold is that’s going around. Last week I was so exhausted I could barely function, but I thought I was going to miss this illness. Sadly, I did not. Saturday I got up with a stuffy nose and swollen glands and it progressed as the day went on.

What a bummer. 🙁 Not how I wanted to spend my weekend! We had plans, too. Now, of course, Logan is starting to show signs of getting the cold, too!

So I spent the weekend in and out of bed with cold meds, chicken noodle soup and my homemade sourdough bread. And the second season of Marcella on Netflix.