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Lily’s First *Real* Beach Day
Lily has been to the beach many times before for walks/naps in her wrap, but this was her first outing where she was actually aware she was somewhere new and different. She sat in the sand for the first time (and miraculously didn’t eat it!) but really enjoyed trying to pick it up in her hands. She adorably got a little concerned when we buried her feet and cried when we got ambitious and optimistic about summer and dipped her toes in the ocean. Too cold!


Grandma is back!
Moms sure are amazing. I was having a bit of a breakdown at the beginning of August because of a combination of wedding cake season, a scheduling issue at work (we overbooked ourselves on a week when half our staff was on summer holiday! Aaah!) and Chris’ upcoming camping trip with the youth. Mom could tell I was barely hanging in there on Skype and within a few days she had bought flights to come help with Lily for the last few weeks of wedding season.
Did I already mention moms are amazing? Because they really really are!
We didn’t get to do much outside of the bakery because of my crazy work schdeule, but Mom and Lily tagged along on a particular long delivery to Bakernes Paradis and we ended up having a gorgeous afternoon near the fjords eating waffles and homemade bread and artisan peach soda from the cafe at the wedding venue. Summer days were rare this year so we soaked it up while we could!

We sure love Grandma Osborn!

A Word from the Bird: Intruder
Hello. It’s me Skittles the bird.


Chelsea and Chris get asked all the time, “How is Skittles handling the new addition to the family?” I’ll answer this for you:


I dislike that stinky wiggly thing.


Chelsea tried to get me used to the idea of having a baby around before she was born by buying me a doll to hang out with, but I tell you… a doll is nothing like an actual living breathing tiny human. For one thing, a doll doesn’t make sounds. A baby makes A LOT of sounds and I don’t like any of them. I’m pretty chillaxed if the baby is silent, but if it is making sounds it is obviously untrustworthy.


It also gets ALL the attention. I used to be the baby of the family, but now I only get to come out to play during nap time or after bed. Chelsea says it’s because I get too defensive and territorial when the baby makes noises and I need to learn to control my temper, but whatever. I know when I’ve been unfairly demoted.

Why couldn’t it come out as an automatic 10 year old? Yes… 10 years olds are nice. I like 10 year olds. Babies grow fast, right?



I’m obsessed with watching Lily discover her world. I had no idea it was so fascinating to watch a person discover things for the very first time. She reaches out to touch anything and everything she can and it’s just so darn cute I can’t help but capture it when I can.


Trying to grab the fondant at work:



The phone is always something that must be reached for:



Chris was helping me cook dinner one evening and I turned around to see this:“Must. Touch. The butt.”



Daddy’s glowy computer mouse and keyboard is also a favorite.


Category: Daily life, Spawn  Tags:  Leave a Comment
June Bug

First off, June brought Chris’ birthday. Lily got dressed up especially for the occasion:

For all you non-nerds, she’s wearing a World of Warcraft onesie. Definitely her daddy’s girl!


June also ushers in the Norwegian strawberry season. Oh Norwegian strawberries, you tender, luscious drops of juicy sweetness. Chris’ birthday conveniently falls right when strawberry season and rhubarb season overlap, so OF COURSE we celebrate each year with Chris’ favorite strawberry rhubarb pie. Yet again, I was reminded that we have to buy twice as many strawberries as we think we need if we are going to use them besides eating fresh. “One for the pie. And one for Chelsea! One for the pie. And one for Chelsea!” You just can’t stop! I’ll include the recipe below since this year I feel like I finally nailed it!


Have you tried the “soaking strawberries in vinegar” trick to keep them fresh? It’s awesome! We do it every time we buy strawberries and they last much longer than they usually do (if we happen to have any leftovers, that is. Which is rare.)
Strawberry-rhubarb pie in the making!


We’ve basically been eating our weight in strawberries this season!
Strawberry muffins.


Salads with strawberries, pecans, and poppyseed dressing.


So gorgeous!
Lily being her cute self.
We’ve reached the MUSTCHEWONEVERYTHING!!!! stage. I suspect teething is imminent.


Cloudy walk.


This spring has officially been one of the coldest springs on record here in Stavanger. Not much sun, lots of rain, and cold winds off the coast. Not very springy and a total bummer, especially for my poor garden. This year I went all out and bought a small raised bed gardening box to try my hand at the square foot gardening method (we have awesome landlords who let me take over a portion of our backyard for this experiment). I planned the layout and planting dates over 6 months in advance, I spent a lot of my maternity leave during naps mixing the soil correctly (I think) and felt like I had all my research in order so that this year was going to be the Year of the Garden of Awesome.


Then, as I said before, the coldest spring on record hit. I waited almost 4 weeks for anything to sprout (when it should have taken a 1-2 weeks) and the little seedlings that did manage to sprout eventually were stunted and small. I barely even got some of my radishes to grow, and radishes basically grow themselves. Apparently I seeded WAY too early, despite the guidelines from this planting guide for Stavanger. I tried planting some more later on in hopes that the weather would warm up, and so far I’ve been able to get somewhat of a harvest.


Some lettuces:
The radishes that eventually did grow:


Kale and sugar snap peas have also managed to pull through lately and I have some small shreds of hope left for a broccoli plant. Total failures = Romaine, spinach, butter lettuce, green beans, two broccoli plants, sunflowers, and beets. I’ve replanted everything but the broccoli, so we’ll see how that turns out.


Also, see this sheep?
This jerk managed to hop the fence and get into our backyard. When Chris tried to shoo her back over the fence, she panicked and trampled through my garden patch instead. Thankfully the only major casualties were my spinach and green beans but they were pretty much failures anyway. All in all not a good year for the garden.


Chris also celebrated his first Father’s Day. Dads rock! This is one of his many attempts to convince/trick/bribe Lily to drink from a bottle…to no avail.


One weekend it was pretty sunny out and looked decently warm, so we packed some blankets and headed for a new beach that I happened upon on my way home from a cake delivery. Because it is summer dang it!
Turns out this summery day was a big fat lie and we spent 2 minutes sitting on towels in the sand huddled behind a rock attempting to block the wind before we decided pretending it was summer wasn’t going to actually make it summer. We did see this random fellow wandering down the shore though:
And then he met up with some friends:
Only in Norway…
C2's Strawberry Rhubarb Pie
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Classic strawberry rhubarb pie that isn't watery and runny! Be sure to follow the recipe exactly. Speaking from experience, varying the ingredients too much usually makes for a runny pie and nobody wants that!
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 1 pie
  • 1 double pie crust (Use your favorite one. I love this one:
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup corn starch
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 3 ½ to 4 cups lightly packed diced rhubarb, fresh or frozen
  • 3 ½ cups hulled, quartered fresh strawberries
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • coarse white sparkling sugar, to garnish
  1. To make the crust: Line a 9" pie pan (or two 6" pie pans) with half the crust. Refrigerate while you make the filling, for at least 30 minutes.
  2. To make the filling: Whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, and salt.
  3. Toss the rhubarb and strawberries with the sugar mixture. Spoon the fruit into the pan(s), filling them about ¾ full and mounding the filling a bit in the center.
  4. Place dabs of the butter atop the filling. Return the pie to the refrigerator.
  5. Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  6. Roll out the remaining crust, and cut it into strips for a latice top, or cookie cutter shapes for a festive touch.
  7. Place the pastry atop the filling in a lattice pattern or arrange the shapes however you would like. Brush with egg white wash (beaten egg white and a little bit of water) and sprinkle with coarse white sparkling sugar, if desired.
  8. Bake the pie(s) for 30 minutes (for the 9" pie), or 20 minutes (for the 6" pies), then reduce the oven heat to 375°F and bake for an additional 30 to 40 minutes (9" pie), or 20 to 25 minutes (6" pies), until the filling is bubbling and the crust nicely browned. (Cover top with tin foil if too much browning is occurring.
  9. Remove the pie(s) from the oven, and let them cool to room temperature before serving.
  10. The pie may be served warm, but it'll be a bit messy; it sets as it cools. You can reheat after setting and just before serving if desired. Top with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream, if desired.
Use the ripest, most local strawberries you can find. It really does make a difference!
When making your pie crust, DO NOT OVERMIX. If your butter is cut into the flour in the size of large peas and you don't overmix, you will end up with a lovely flaky crust :)