Sunday, February 8, 2009

My Week In Seattle - Part I

My visit started out at my favorite restaurant, Pho Binh. I enjoyed every bite of my fresh spring rolls and noodle soup and I intend to go back at least once before I leave.

I am trying to get as much training done with Teal as possible. On Saturday we went to puppy play hour and Teal showed us that she has a demon inside of her. That's what we tell her at least. She was perfectly calm, if not a little shy. Then, she went ballistic on a King Charles Cavalier Spaniel - a good choice in our opinion. It was pretty funny because she is such a tiny puppy and the spaniels owner was extremely worried that little miss growly Teal was going to attack her baby. I am working hard to make sure her demon leaves before I go back to Seattle! In an effort to get maximum socializing for our little girl, I took her to the dog self-wash. It went fairly smoothly, other than her trying to attack the dryer as if it was a King Chaaarles Cavalier Spaniel.

Joy, Kat and Polly came over later to play board games....always a fun time. Ezri (Joy's border collie cousin to Teal) and Teal played non-stop, which meant that Teal was so exhausted that she slept through the night. Friends coming over was a perfect excuse for me to make dessert. I made cupcakes after I realized I love cupcakes and never made them before. For my first cupcake experience I wanted to use a flavor combination that everyone (that isnt weird) loves - chocolate and peanut butter.

One of Ari's favorite humans - Polly

Ezri and Teal biting faces


Joy and Polly

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

For the cake........

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • pinch salt
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  1. Preheat oven to 350 . In a small bowl, mix together flour cocoa powder, baking powder and salt.
  2. In a bowl, beat together granulated and brown sugars and butter until well combined. Add peanut butter, beating until smooth. Beat in egg and vanilla until mixture is smooth. Alternately beat in flour mixture and milk, making three additions of flour mixture and two of milk, beating until until smooth. Stir in chocolate chips.
  3. Scoop batter into prepared pan. Bake at 350 degree oven for 20-25 minutes or until tops spring back when lightly touched. Let cool completely on a rack.
Peanut Butter Buttercream
  • 1/2 creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • pinch salt
  • 1 Tbs milk or heavy cream

Beat together butter and peanut butter until creamy. Add sugar and salt, beating well. Add milk and until smooth and creamy.

My cupcake making days have definitely just started. They are so perfect because you get your own little cake and you don't have to share with anyone. I'm not good at sharing.


On Sunday after puppy class, we also went to the very impressive farmers market in Ballard, in full swing even in February. Ben bought a pint of peanut butter ice cream and some meat. Teal was in my arms the whole time, getting pet and cuddled by many new people. She even met some kids and she loved them...our first dog that likes kids! Later we met up with Kate and Jacob and went out to lunch at Ray's cafe on the water.

We got home just in time to get ready for flyball practice. It was fun to watch and help where I was needed. Teal was extremely distracted and would not tug or chase the ball unless no other dogs were playing. We had some trouble communicating that need, so she didn't get much training. She did enjoy watching, especially when Ezri was running.


Today I did some more socializing with Teal during the day while Ben was at school. We went to two little dog stores, a coffee shop and walked on leash in a few downtown areas. Conveniently we saw plenty of screaming children, buses, skateboards and some generally weird freaky people that might scare a dog.

After a hard day of socializing


There will be more to write about before I leave. I will try to post again before I leave. Please send positive thoughts to our big boy Ari, who is having major knee surgery on Wednesday. I am very worried about him.

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