Tag Archives: cute

cotopaxi

After concluding our work in Quito, we traveled by bus for a brief tourist visit to the Cotopaxi area. Much of the two hour drive was on a rough cobblestone road, through beautiful farm country.

We stayed at The Secret Garden Cotopaxi, a truly unique hostel/paradise overlooking several volcanoes. Gorgeous flowers and adorable llamas abound. When we arrived, we learned that a baby llama had been born there just that day!

After settling in and having a delicious chickpea and rice lunch, most of our group headed out for a guided waterfall hike. We divided into two groups: the “fun/hard” hike (mostly hiking through a small river to the waterfalls) and the “easy” hike (mostly hiking on land to the waterfalls). I of course opted for the “easy” hike, which honestly wasn’t that easy for me. We still had to hike through part of the river, and there was some steep and slippery hiking on land. With the altitude, all of this was rather challenging for me, but the experience was awesome.

All meals are included when you stay at the Secret Garden, and nearly everything is vegetarian and grown in their substantial gardens. I failed to take any photos of my delicious meals and snacks, but the Secret Garden folks did an amazing job accommodating my vegan and gluten-free dietary restrictions.

Advertisements

sheep cupcakes

I made these adorable sheep cupcakes for Easter, based on these directions.

IMG_5069

I used my favorite chocolate cake recipe (German chocolate cake from the Babycakes Covers the Classics cookbook), and store-bought frosting to save a little time.

dinah the pink dinosaur

After our weekend in Steamboat Springs, we continued west to Vernal, Utah (our home base for exploring Dinosaur National Monument). My favorite thing about Vernal was this gigantic pink dinosaur that welcomes you to the small city.

IMG_3776

If you stop to admire her, you’ll notice that her eyes move.

bunny pancakes

Last year my sister gave me this idea for a cute Easter breakfast and I made it about as simple as possible. I think these bunny pancakes will be an Easter tradition for our family, since they are so easy to make.

img_0516

I made banana pancakes using the recipe from my Babycakes Covers the Classics cookbook, and added a little tail made of shredded coconut. Of course, these pancakes are best served with a side of chocolate bunny. Hoppy Easter!

rocky mountain arsenal national wildlife refuge

The Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge is a great place for  wildlife watching just outside of Denver, and has been surprisingly uncrowded both times I have visited. You can watch cute prairie dogs, birds, the occasional deer, and bison! In some areas the bison are in large fields and there is a fence between the bison and your car.

IMG_0424

And in other areas the bison are free to walk across the road and right up to your car! It’s very exciting, and at least a little bit scary, to see these giant animals (the largest land mammal in North America!) just a few feet away.*

IMG_0431

We even saw one bison rolling in the dirt, which was rather cute. Apparently bison do this either to deter biting flies, remove tufts of molted fur, or for males to display their strength.

IMG_0443

*These photos were all taken on my phone without any zoom.

weekly photo challenge: reflections

An accidental self-portrait from Paris…

IMG_4519_2

If that store had been open when we passed by, I probably would have left Paris with a new wallet, clutch, and perhaps a dress if they had any in my size.

Writing this post led me to look up the designer whose name is written on that big heart in the photo, Agatha Ruiz de la Prada, and I just found an online store full of super cute items to dream about buying!

adventures in PEI

We visited Prince Edward Island for a long weekend in the middle of August and had so much fun exploring the quaint little island province. Here’s a photo journey through some of the highlights of our trip!

watching the Gold Cup Parade in Charlottetown

visiting Green Gables!

a cute drawing we found in the barn at Green Gables

delicious raspberry cordial

sand dunes at PEI National Park

a charming little lighthouse in the village of Victoria

jumping into a tidal stream that feeds into the ocean at Basin Head Beach

sand bars and warm water at Basin Head Beach

Not pictured: fun in Cavendish, including riding down a huge slide in a potato sack and driving bumper cars (both at Sandspit), and a round of challenging mini golf at Mariner’s Cove.

weekly photo challenge: dreaming

Continuing the recent photo series of foxes in our yard, here we have foxy caught taking a morning nap under a nice shady bush.

fox in the sun

Do you remember our furry neighbor, Foxy Brown? There’s a second fox that has also made a few appearances in our yard. Earlier this week, this fox spent a sunny morning lazing amidst the wildflowers.

lemon sugar cookies

I used the sugar cookies recipe from BabyCakes Covers the Classics, with some extra lemon extract, to make these lemon sugar cookies. Of course they were delicious, but let’s talk about their appearance. I don’t usually put much effort into the appearance of my cookies, but since I have a few cute cookie cutters, I tried to make these sugar cookies in cute shapes. As you can see above, the shapes came out a little weird. The heart shape is at least recognizable, but what do you think of those other two cookies? They were supposed to be chubby baby penguins, but I think they look more like a fat T. rex and a fetus!