Alaskan Visitor

This past Thursday, Jake’s niece, Madelynne, came to visit us all the way from Alaska. She is probably the most responsible 13-year-old I’ve ever met…she paid for her own ticket to come here, she works at the library back home, and is a great cook and dishwasher. The best part is she is working this summer babysitting a four-month-old little boy during the day, so she is very experienced with little babies. The girls, of course, were thrilled to have a new face, other than mine, to look at all day.

Alaskan onesies to add to the girls’ collection. 

So far, we’ve done a lot of shopping (the closest mall to where Maddy lives is in Anchorage, about 2 1/2 hours away, so she was very excited to be able to do a little back to school shopping here) and a lot of holding babies. It’s definitely been nice to sit back and relax while Maddy cooks for us (smoothies and zucchini blueberry muffins, yum!) and relax again while she does the dishes. I’m definitely training the girls to do chores as well as she does. 

Samantha and Amelia have been enjoying all the attention from our Alaskan visitor immensely and have had an adventurous time shopping. While Maddy was in Forever 21, I decided to wait for her outside the store next to the main elevator and pool. Samantha chilled in the stroller while I took Amelia out since she was getting a little antsy and wanted to look around a bit. I was instantly mobbed by about fifteen ladies wanting to see the girls. I seriously almost had a panic attack. We were completely surrounded and it was impossible to keep an eye on Amelia, one on Samantha and answer all the busybody questions about if they were twins, if they were identical, how old they were, what their names were, what their personalities were like, what they want to be when they grow up, etc.  One old lady came up THISCLOSE to Amelia and started cooing at her and touching her hands and feet. Cue Threat Level Red.

 “I DON’T KNOW WHERE YOU HAVE BEEN. DON’T TOUCH MY BABY *&%$#!!@” I wanted to scream, but instead, I tried to remain as calm as possible, put Amelia back in the stroller, said we had to go, and basically ran away. Once I found Maddy, we sanitized poor Amelia’s whole body with wipes, and then Samantha, just for good measure. I may be a bit paranoid/OCD, but I seriously don’t understand why complete strangers feel like it’s ok to touch babies without asking! Beyond annoying.

“The nerve of some people!” said the girls.

 End rant. Later on Friday, I happened to see a Groupon for a cooking school called Tspoons, which Jake and I have been to a few times. Since Maddy is an aspiring chef, we went out that night, while Samantha and Amelia had a little Daddy-daughter date at home. 

On the menu was “Steakhouse Classics” -caesar salad, steak au poivre with a peppercorn crust, pan-roasted potatoes, grilled asparagus, sautéed pearl onions and apple tart. We learned how to flambé (so fun!) and picked up tons of fun tips that I wouldn’t have been able to pick up from just reading a recipe alone, like how to make the perfect pie dough without handling it too much, how to whisk properly, how to sear steak, and how to make cute decorative tuile for our salad.

Kind of scary!

I loved the dressing we made for the salad…mmm.

It tasted more delectable than it looks, trust me!

The best part about the class was that there was someone there constantly cleaning up after us–no sink full of dishes for us! At the end of cooking, we sat down with the other classmates and devoured our meal. It was amaaaaaazingly delicious.

We decided to be cruel and text Jake some photo updates of what he was missing. Unfortunately, the chefs wouldn’t let us take any of the food home with us, but we promised Jake we would re-create the meal for him since we have the recipes.

                                         Poor Jake…at home eating cereal when we texted this: 

Today, we lounged around and attempted to entertain the girls. “This time, I would like to hear ‘Itsty Bitsy Spider’ in Spanish, followed by a tango,” says Amelia.

Maddy and Samantha. 

Cousin fun!

Lots of love,


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