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    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

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    A Look Back.



Weekend.

What a weekend!  I felt like we did so much, and yet somehow still felt refreshed and relaxed at the end of it (despite my swelling ankles!).  Casey had to work on Friday, but it still felt like a longer weekend since we got to spend Thursday together celebrating the Fourth

Friday night we continued our grill-a-thon.  We bought it last weekend and have grilled almost every night since.  I never want to turn on the stove again!  Cullen ran around in the yard and ate dirt while I prepped our dinner spread. 

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And then we got to grilling.  In culinary school, we had an entire class focused just on grilling and deep-frying, but the skills I learned then don’t really apply to a backyard grill.  We learned a lot about technique, which helps, but it mostly applied to large commercial kitchen grills that are quite different from our little setup on the deck.  Also – we grilled mostly meat.

So what I’m saying is, I’m kind of a rookie with this!  But so far I’m loving it.  I’m burning things less each day, and learning the hot spots and quirks of our particular grill.  Since it’s just the three of us, we didn’t need a big monster taking over the deck.  This compact gas model is the perfect size for us!

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On the menu – vegan black bean burgers – our favorites!

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Yellow and white corn on the cob, and grilled asparagus…

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Dirt was the appetizer.

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I’ve been dragging Cullen’s high chair outside and we’ve been eating al fresco every night – I’m obsessed.  This dinner was our best grilling yet!

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I picked up these brioche hamburger buns from Seattle’s Macrina Bakery.  I don’t use this term lightly or often but – OMG.  I hate when buns are too heavy and all you taste is bread, rather than the burger or hot dog within.  These buns were amazing and I am never buying anything else again. 

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Bean burger topped with butter lettuce, fresh tomato, and an alarming amount of ketchup.  I’m pretty sure I ate this in one full swoop because I could.not.put.it.down. 

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Cullen wouldn’t touch the burger (typical), but got really into his corn on the cob.  He even ate a few pieces of asparagus once I told him they were “beans.” 

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We were up and out the door early on Saturday.  Casey made us pancakes and then we headed to Greenlake for a family walk.  We looped three miles with Cullen in the stroller before letting him get out and walk the last quarter mile or so.  It was absolutely gorgeous outside, even at 9am when Seattle still usually has a morning chill. 

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After a very peaceful stroller ride, he earned a good hour on the playground.  Lots of swinging and sandbox digging ensued. 

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I haven’t been lugging my big camera around with us much anymore – mostly out of pure laziness – but I’m trying to be more mindful to bring it from time to time.  I don’t want to bombard people with camera clicking and posing, but I also know how much I love to go back and read about our weekend adventures on a gloomy, rainy day.  This weekend, I was glad I had it on hand.  Accidental twins!

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After the playground, we headed to Eltana Bagels for a family lunch.  Cullen and I had actually checked this place out the day before after barre class, but I wanted to go back with Casey since I knew he’d love it.  HOW did I not know about the wood-fired bagel place during my first trimester?? 

I adore bagels, but Cullen and Casey don’t eat much (really, any) dairy, which can make it a hard sell sometimes since most places just carry cream cheese spreads.  Eltana has cream cheeses, but they also have an extensive menu of both savory and sweet non-dairy spreads too, not to mention salads, egg dishes, and soups!  I got an everything bagel with caramelized onion hummus and a big bowl of lentil soup. 

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Back at home, it was nap time for Cullen and garage time for mom and dad.  Tackling our frightening garage was the last big home-project remaining since we moved in a little over a month ago.  There was a mountain of crap sitting in the middle – left there since moving day – that we’ve been avoiding touching (or even looking at) until now.  But I was determined we needed to tackle it sooner than later, as our summer calendar is about to heat up! 

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I got started by dragging every single item out into our driveway and organizing it into piles, while Casey finished up a bit of work.  Once he was done, he came out and started all the tough manual labor – hauling stuff down to the basement, hanging bikes, etc. 

As I moved things around the driveway, I looked over and saw I had been joined by two friends.  You know you live in Seattle when there are backyard chickens wandering into your yard. 

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The chicks were hilarious, and ended up hanging out with us for about three hours.  They definitely picked the right house too.  I had to lock my dogs up (they were going INSANE!), and defend them from a very determined neighborhood cat.  Eventually, they decided they were quite comfortable with us and they laid down and perched on our new tool shelves – while I hoped someone would notice they were gone and coming looking for them!

Three hours later, the garage was organized and clean!  (Ten points if you can spot the chickens.) 

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After a few hours, we were done in the garage and Cullen was waking up, and I didn’t know what to do about these darn chickens!  The cat was still prowling around, so they weren’t willing to leave the back corner of my garage.  I tried shooing them out toward (what I thought was) their house, but we just went in circles.  Eventually I got brave and crept up behind them to pick them up (one at a time), and hand-deliver them home.  I missed them once they were gone!  Maybe some day we’ll get some chicks of our own…

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With our chick friends safely back across the street and a hungry toddler yapping in his crib, Casey and I packed up the car to get ready for a family picnic at Golden Gardens Park. 

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Anyone in Seattle can tell you that sandwiches from Paseo’s are a THING here.  And yet, it is a thing that we haven’t tried in the 2+ years we’ve lived here!  It was time to change that.  We waited in the very long line (that is always there), and then waited even longer for our sandwiches to be ready, and then we picked them up and headed to the beach!

Casey and I both got the Tofu Delight sandwich – organic firm tofu, garlic tapenade, aioli, fresh cilantro, pickled jalapenos, romaine lettuce, and gigantic caramelized onions.  It was a total mess, and it was totally delicious. 

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I didn’t order one for Cullen because whenever I do, he inevitably won’t eat a single bite.  So I brought him some leftover food and fruit from home instead.  And then he proceeded to devour our sandwiches bite after bite.  It never fails. 

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Giant tub of watermelon from home for dessert…

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I did order Cullen a small rice and black bean side dish, which he surprised me by gobbling down as well. 

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At one point I asked him to share some of the watermelon he was hoarding, and he proceeded to jam an entire fist-full in my mouth before I knew what had even happened. 

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It was an absolutely gorgeous night at the beach, and there were families picnicking and sunbathing all over the sand and grass.  I could have stayed there for hours!

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I wasn’t sure how Cullen would feel about a picnic, and I knew at his current age he’d likely spend the whole time running away from our blanket.  I quickly discovered that as long as he had his own beach chair, he was happy to stay put.  So Cullen got my big cozy chair and I parked it in the grass.  The things we do for the kiddos we love. 

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But the kisses we get in return make it all more than worth it.

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A perfect Saturday spent with the people I love most. 

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I ended up leaving my camera at home on Sunday, since I’d already captured so much the day before.  But it was another great family day with more strolling, more grilling, and somehow walking six miles over the course of the day.  My feet are feeling it today! 

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We have a crazy week coming up, leading up to a big weekend for me – a trip away by myself!  More on that to come, and a few other fun posts planned in the meantime.  Happy Monday! 

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60 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Ashley @ My Food N Fitness Diaries     at 3:06 pm

This post is full of some absolutely adorable photos! I love the one of Cullen eating corn on the cob, shoving his fist in your mouth, and Cullen on Casey’s shoulders hugging him. So so so sweet! Glad you guys had a great weekend!

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Shel@PeachyPalate     at 3:22 pm

Oh he really is a complete little mini person now! So cute! Can’t belief you got him red handed eating the dirt…the joys of being a kid! That tofu sandwich sounds and looks divine!

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Devon     at 3:25 pm

I can’t believe you guys went to Paseo on Saturday; we did, too, for the first time ever!! We lined up around 5:45 for sandwiches and made it near the front of the line about 40 minutes later, when an employee came out and announced that Aaron and I would be getting the last two sandwiches since they were out of bread! So lucky, and SO tasty. Those caramelized onions are amaaaazing.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Omg too funny!! We went to the Ballard one, even though we used to live within walking distance of Fremont. We were probably there at 5:30. :) I had heard they run out of bread and was nervous!

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Ina Reply:

Tip for next time: call your order in ahead of time – you can skip the line! :)

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Christina @ The Beautiful Balance     at 3:25 pm

What an amazing weekend! I wish it was not so hot here (117 degrees!) or I would be enjoying outdoors as well. I can’t wait to try your vegan burger recipe!

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Emily Malone Reply:

Yikes, that is HOT! Hope you are staying cool indoors!

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Emily     at 3:34 pm

you capture the BEST expressions on Cullen – i am so jealous! Even with our DSLR I cant get what I want out of Parker :)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Aww thanks! On the weekends I usually get better pictures because Casey is there to entertain/distract. It’s nearly impossible when I’m alone!

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Caitlin     at 3:52 pm

That bagel place looks fantastic!! What does Cullen think about your belly? Does he say anything or does he not even notice it?

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Emily Malone Reply:

He kisses it and says “baby!” but I don’t think he understands the concept behind what is happening. He definitely notices that it’s bigger though, haha.

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Lindsey     at 3:56 pm

Love the watermelon-jammed-in-your-mouth picture! Too funny!

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Lindsey     at 3:57 pm

I love Paseo’s! I haven’t been there in years but your post makes me want to visit again soon. That bagel place also looks really good!

Your jeans shorts are cute – I need to find some maternity shorts because all I have that fit right now are skirts and work out shorts!

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Renee     at 4:00 pm

This looks like an amazing weekend with your family! I love the messy photos of Cullen eating. So precious. Those are memories you’ll be so happy that you captured. Thank you for sharing them! P.S… your burgers look delicious!

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Megan     at 4:14 pm

Love reading your blog! Been reading for a few years! Now that I am pregnant with my first (14 weeks – with a boy! They told us at our 13 week apt like you), I’ve been going back to read each of your weekly updates. Did you ever find a solution to the headaches you were having (I think just with Cullen you got them)? All of my first trimester ailments went away except for these DAILY headaches. Been doing some caffeine, and Tylenol for extreme situations, but both of those don’t always work. Thanks for any advice! I know this is totally not related to your post about this weekend. so sorry!

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Theresa     at 4:17 pm

What a great weekend! It seems like there are so many amazing, healthy restaurants in Seattle! One of my best friends just moved up there, I can’t wait to visit!

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Elisabeth     at 4:46 pm

I’m always amazed at how much stuff you guys pack into your weekends – way to go! I need to take lessons from you ;)

Love those pics of Cullen around Casey’s neck, too :)

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JessicaR     at 5:08 pm

The chickens are so cute! My mom bought 27 of them (she has 15 acres) about three weeks ago and it is so fun watching them grow up. I can’t wait until they’re old enough to lay eggs!

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Jean     at 5:19 pm

My boyfriend and I will be visiting Seattle from NYC this September and your photos make me super excited! I can’t wait to enjoy the beautiful city.

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Ali @ Peaches and Football     at 5:37 pm

I love how you mention Cullen’s dirt eating so nonchalantly. It’s hilarious. I had a ridiculous thing for play-doh when I was a kid.

Hurray for all the grilling! I’m loving it on the hot days we’ve been having so we don’t have to heat up the kitchen

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Katie @ Talk Less, Say More     at 5:46 pm

Your family really is the cutest – so glad you guys had a great, fun weekend!

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Kinsey     at 6:06 pm

One of my favorite things to do during the summer in Seattle is to go find some wild blackberry bushes, bring and few plastic bins, and fill them up with free berries! I also think that you should try D’Ambrosio gelato over in Ballard. It’s phenomenal! (and next door to a vegetarian Thai restaurant…)

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Kileen     at 6:51 pm

What a great weekend. Those last pictures with Cullen are absolutely precious!

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Rachael     at 7:18 pm

You have an absolutely gorgeous family.

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padma     at 7:37 pm

I love family picnics in the park. It’s one of those things we did a lot when I was a kid, but now not so much. And barbecues in the backyard!

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Leah M     at 9:07 pm

Love the Cullen dirt pictures! What a fun weekend you had!

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Vicky     at 9:09 pm

Would you mind sharing which grill you guys got? We have limited space and yours looks like it’s not too big. Thanks!

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Carly @ Snack Therapy     at 12:13 am

Ahh, grilled veggies. Is there anything yummier? I think not!

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Kris     at 3:48 am

We did garage organization this weekend too. Not fun, but such a good feeling when everything is put away! I have major location envy of you now after visiting Seattle for the first time a couple of weeks ago. Loved it!!! I didn’t get to see much since I was there with my mom who was having a neurosurgery procedure, but I loved what I saw. So green, so beautiful and not as much gloom as I expected. And people were so friendly, helpful and kind. I hope to get back for a real visit either with DH or maybe a girlfriend trip. Too bad I live clear across the country (FL)!

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Simply Life     at 4:09 am

Oh that picture of him feeding you the watermelon is too cute!

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Katie     at 5:29 am

Grilled asparagus!! How? Just olive oil (or similar) with salt/pepper? Straight on the grill? It’s about the only veggie my kid will eat (though I didn’t used to like it and so am just learning how to prepare it well). We’re definitely loving the cool-ish temps down here in Georgia. Grilling is my favorite part about summer.

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Lee     at 5:31 am

For some reason, it cracked me up that Cullen ate the asparagus after you told him it was beans.

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Angela Gilmore     at 7:29 am

Dirt appetizer! Omg that is too cute!

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Melissa     at 8:23 am

This post makes me so giddy for what’s to come! I just found out that # 2 is on the way after 3 ½ years of waiting, and the watermelon picture cracked me up and then got me misty eyed, thinking how lucky I am to experience that type of toddler unselfishness all over again!

Oh, and to be fair, I’m still early, and the dirt pictures made me gag. LOL

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Anna @ On Anna's Plate     at 8:42 am

Those chickens– LOL. Too funny. I would have been scared to pick them up!! I’m a bird wuss. :-)

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Christine     at 8:43 am

Great post! I’ve been a long time reader and finally had to comment. Your family is so beautiful, I love the picture of Cullen feeding you the watermelon. Can I ask where you got your jean shorts?

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Leah     at 8:46 am

That’s great that Seattle allows backyard chickens to free-range. It’s better for the chickens in terms of diet (they get to eat insects and do lovely things like eat ticks which is beneficial to humans of course).

We do hope to get chickens someday (I live just outside Boston) but there’s a process with the board of health and a hearing so it’s kind of a pain. We do have to build a chicken run since we have coyotes, foxes and hawks (all harmful to chickens) so we would not really be able to let them hang out in neighbor’s garages–haha. :)

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ML     at 9:34 am

Super cute pics- makes me miss Seattle.
I’m about 31 weeks along and I would love to know where you got your shorts- are they old navy? (i assume maternity?) Thanks!!

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Jennifer     at 10:54 am

Great post! More ideas for heathy stuff on the BBQ please. Never even thought of asparagus before. Thanks xxx

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Gwen     at 2:04 pm

I just love your family pics! Cullen feeding you the watermelon is precious! I think I would have FREAKED though at the chickens. <3

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Carley@OptimisticHealth     at 2:10 pm

How perfect of a weekend. We just left Seattle (area) after 10 days there with fam and are missing it like crazy but hopefully we’ll be there for good in less than a year :)

I got to check out the infamous green lake while we were there and what a neat little place with sweet people too! The puppy even liked it :)

Your son is adorable and looks like such a happy boy!

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Carrie     at 4:06 pm

You take such great pictures…..your blog always makes me smile, even though I’m a Nana myself now and well past the child-rearing stage. Helps to have one of the cutest babies I’ve ever seen, though! Just love the dirt eating ones…..!

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Lisa     at 6:26 pm

I enjoy reading about your Seattle adventures! I am looking for a barbecue — & yours looks perfect! Is it a Charbroil? Which one, size, model # ? It is NOT infared — correct? I live in Western Washington — where did you purchase or mail order from? Many thanx! I can’t wait to start grillin’ — esp after seeing your delicious pix!

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Sarah @ Kids Heart Real Food     at 8:30 pm

It’s funny how those toddlers surprise you by eating things you don’t expect! Looks like a lovely weekend – and definitely makes me want to visit Seattle.

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Makena     at 8:49 am

If you grill the corn on the grill, out of husk with butter and salt it is 500x better than in the husk! Something I recently learned this summer and I made it for a crowd camping over the fourth and was told it was the best corn they’ve had! Just something to experiment with, I’m no expert :)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Mmmm I’ve been grilling ours in foil with coconut oil and salt and pepper. It has been fabulous! Can’t get enough.

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Meg D     at 11:15 am

Off-topic but I saw this article and was reminded of your pregnancy/running posts! Really interesting study. Hope all is going well with the pregnancy.

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/07/10/how-pregnancy-changes-a-runners-body/

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Emily Malone Reply:

Thanks for the link! Clicking to check it out now. :)

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Sarah K     at 3:53 pm

Yum Yum Yum. I should not have read this around dinner time. My mouth was watering and stomach growling looking at all that wonderful food! And as always, I loved the adorable photos of you guys in the park.

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char eats greens     at 7:47 pm

Those last pictures are so adorable!! Can I ask (I’m sure you’ve probably addressed it somewhere else though) why your boys don’t eat a lot of dairy? Preference or allergy? I’m vegan, so I think it’s pretty cool (my husband is pretty much as well), and I love seeing that eat tofu dogs!!

We were just at a cottage with a bunch of friends this weekend and we brought our tofurkey sausages, grilled portabellas and Amy’s burgs, so it was awesome :)

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Emily Malone Reply:

Casey doesn’t eat dairy bc that’s his preference. And Cullen doesn’t eat much dairy, honestly because Casey prefers it that way (and I agree).

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Meagan     at 1:12 pm

That photo with Cullen feeding you is a keeper!!!!

Did you notice if they have gluten-free options at Paseo’s? I’ve always wanted to go!!

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Emily Malone Reply:

They had a gluten-free bun option! And many other rice bowl type of entrees that would be GF.

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Meagan Reply:

Great! Thanks Emily :)

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Jen @ The Well Read Fish     at 3:39 pm

Possibly my favorite post of yours to date.

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Jill     at 9:20 pm

The heavy finger on the shadow/ highlight filter makes your pictures look muddy.

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Emily Malone Reply:

Yes, “Jill” — you have told me that before. Believe it or not, I don’t do much photo editing, and just use a basic free program. Not sure why you feel the need to keep leaving this comment!

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Kathy Reply:

ditto!

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Kelly     at 12:21 pm

I’ve made an attempt to *actually comment* on blogs I’ve been reading lately and I’ve been following your blog since before you had Cullen…so I think it’s time to say hello! I couldn’t resist commenting on this particular post because the cleaning out the garage months after moving, kiddo not eating HIS food but devouring what’s on Mom & Dad’s plate and kiddo running away from the picnic blanket are totally my world right now too! It made me laugh. =) I’m so glad you mentioned giving him the beach chair to sit in. I’m going to have to try that. I have a 13 month old who crawls faster in the sand at the beach then he does at home! It’s exhausting trying to chase after him when we are trying to eat on the beach or on the lawn.

Cullen is such a cutie. Congrats on baby number 2!!!

[Reply]

Emily Malone Reply:

Hello! And thanks for reading for so long! :) Funny the things we find to connect on, right? Hope the beach chair helps!

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