Jun 252012
 

“Did you know you would be spending over six hours on Yellow Island Monica?” asked Phil.

“Why yes!”

(he smiled and looked very surprised)

Who is Phil you ask?

Well, to me, he is one of the most incredible people I have ever met. Ever.

You see, Phil lives here on Yellow Island which is one of many islands here in the San Juan Islands.  He lives in a cottage, by the sea, that looks like it came straight out of a fairytale. He has lived here for not one, not two – but 14 years and he helps take care of Yellow Island for the Nature Conservancy.

“It’s just the seals and I,” he tells me when I mention to him how wonderful it must be to live here.

Of course he has a boat to reach Orcas Island but just for a moment, try and imagine his life here as I take you through my day on Yellow Island.

Skipper Ward Fay of Northwest Classic Day Sailing brought me to Yellow Island so I could photograph the wooden sailboat race that had its course plotted around the island of which hubby and little B were participating in.  Access here is via boat (there are no docks) or kayak. 

Prior to the race, Skipper Ward took us on a beautiful cruise in the San Juan Islands aboard “Aura.”  He showed us many breathtaking places and even let B take the helm.  Oh the thrill B had knowing that “Aura’s” destination was completely in his little hands.

I spent my day on Yellow Island photographing the boats as they sailed by and taking in the stunning landscape of this magical island.

When my day was over and we arrived back at the Airstream I couldn’t stop thinking of all the beautiful colors of the wild flowers that surrounded me during my stay on Yellow Island. With inspiration from those colors I put together a colorful salad and baked a cherry clafoutis for dinner.

Classic Northwest Daysailing
~Skipper Ward and B

Aura
~ Aura and Skipper Ward well on their way . . .


~ Just one of many pathways to serenity you will find here on Yellow Island

Yellow Island, WA State


~beautiful wooden kayaks on the shore of Yellow Island


~ Kayakers paddling past Yellow Island


~ Phil’s Cabin


~ Fava beans from the Orcas Island farmer’s market

view of Yellow Island from the top of Turtleback Mtn, Orcas Island
~ Yellow Island as seen from the top of Turtleback Mtn., Orcas Island, WA


~ Yellow Island as seen from the water

~ Cherry Clafoutis fresh out of my Airstream oven


~Beautiful “Aura”


~ Phil waving good-bye :)

It was the perfect ending to a day that I am certain I will never forget.

Thank you Skipper Ward Fay for the incredible day!  Not only did we enjoy viewing the islands through a different perspective, I was able to enjoy my day on Yellow Island.

You can find the Clafoutis recipe here and as for the salad?  I used Tom Thumb lettuce that I grew in my home garden, watercress, quickly blanched fava beans, sliced red onions and grape tomatoes. The magic happens with the basil oil and a squeeze of lemon.

Basil oil is simple — just a handful of b
asil and 1/2 cup of olive oil and give it a whir in your blender. Don’t forget to add some salt and voila — you have a delicious oil you can use on anything from salads to soups or mix in with sour cream for a delicious dip.

Bon appetit!

Mar 192012
 

Strawberry Clafoutis fresh out of the Airstream's oven

It was hubby’s last weekend teaching skiing at Alpental.  I can’t believe how quickly the time has gone.  It just seemed like the winter activities were just beginning and now, here we are, entering the Spring season.

Is it me or is time just going faster and faster these days?  I don’t know . . .

For three consecutive months, every weekend (except when we were gone on our Big Red Cat trip) we would bring the Airstream here so hubby could teach and B could ski.  This was going to be our last night.

Since it was going to be our last night I decided to make a nice dessert.  A Clafoutis to be specific.  This was going to be a great recipe to celebrate the beautiful eggs I was given from some really special friends of mine.

These eggs are so special to me.  Why?  You see, I have known these lovely little “First” ladies for quite some time now.Jackie, Barbara and Ladybird are their given names :)  My friends know how special these eggs are to me also as they decorated the egg carton for me in such a beautiful way.

That was very special.

As the boys went about their day, I went about mine happily baking away with this view out of my kitchen window.

Alpental, Snoqualmie Pass

The clafoutis was delicious.  It was my first I had made ever and I will absolutely be making it again.

As we woke up the next morning, we had a choice to head straight home, or to take a trip into the country and see how things were coming along at our little cabin.

“I vote for the cabin,” I said.

“Me toooooooo mommy!” declared B from his bed — and I thought he was still asleep!  My mother was right, children are always listening when you think they are not.  Hah!

Roslyn, Washington

Wow, the snow is gone and Spring is definitely here.

That is our little cabin you see.  We don’t sleep in it, but a very, very long time ago a family once did sleep in it.  It was their home.  It is on my list to try and figure out exactly who this family was, I think it would be very interesting to share what I find out with B.  I do understand it was built in the 1800′s but that is it.

Fiddler's Green Forever :)

Spring was most definitely in the air.  I could smell it — the sweet yet earthy scent of the ground coming alive. I was truly at that moment excited and ready for the warmer weather ahead.

Pasture in Roslyn, WA

As we walked around and checked on things I was full of inspiration. How I would love to start a garden here and how wonderful it is going to be spending lazy summer nights under the stars listening to the chirping of the crickets.

There are so many crickets here in summer.

I was also thinking about my most amazing night I had attending Amanda Hesser’s lecture at Benaroya Hall. What an inspiration she is to me and for her to think my site is “Fabulous,” and then write about it? I felt so happy and so honored.

This recipe that I prepared on the Airstream in “The Tiniest Kitchen,” is from the New York Times of which Amanda was a food writer for (in addition to many other amazing endeavors). I accidentally used three eggs instead of two, but it still turned out delicious.

For you my readers, a Strawberry Clafoutis :)

Clafoutis with Strawberries