Month of Cakes

October is oddly my busiest month of cakes. I have 1-2 every week. Luckily they all have a lot of variety to keep it fun. This year I made a Care Bear birthday cake, Flower Baby shower cake, Fiesta 1 year old smash cake, and I have an upcoming Daniel the Tiger cake. Plus United way bake sale at work is coming up so my freezer is quite full.

I really enjoyed the differences in each of these cakes. I even got to try out a few new techniques.

The flower cake was my first time trying buttercream roses. They were far from perfect but when I made a whole field of them they looked really spectacular. I loved all the texture they created. Plus it was a bonus that it was tons of frosting for the buttercream loving momma!

 The Care Bear cake was nerve wracking for me because you have to make the characters so perfect. Luckily I think my cheer bear turned out pretty darn cute. He's also totally edible- marzipan.

The fiesta cake was fun because they didn't give much direction. I got to doodle on the cake with bright colors. I like the textures the frosting took on and how it feels additive to the white background of the cake. I really hope she digs into it!

 Side note: I made a falafel waffle this week! It was so cool, also sooooo tasty!


Corn Maze & Pumpkin Patch

On our drive out to the hike Sunday we passed a corn maze, I casually mentioned that I'd like to do it if we had time on our way home. Cut to our way home when I was like nah let's skip it, he pushed, I caved cause I really did wanna do it so we turned around and it was lovely.

The farm was chill and the guys running it were so friendly. The maze was apparently shaped like a bat. We had to find 6 stations and answer the questions, all about bats.

It was an easy maze but still pretty fun to be meandering around among the corn stalks. The sky away from the mountains was blue and warm. Lovely to just exist outside and sit in some grass for a bit. We also snagged a cute little pumpkin for only $2.


Catching the Larches

This Sunday we packed up and headed east on Highway 20. Joshua thought he had this great fall loop hike, it has great sweeping views, it's a loop, a few lakes dot the trail. So we get on the trail and realize it actually had a pretty big dusting of snow the last few days and our fall hike is now a winter hike. At first we were a tad disappointed, and cold, but then we spotted the larches! We have been trying to catch these stunning golden trees. They are coniferous trees that loose their needles so they turn bright yellow. We've tried to catch them since we've lived here and always been too early, too late, hit the wrong spots. This loop was full of them, and the snow actually made them pop in a really magical way.

We started by heading up the steep side of the loop first so we had the first half of the trail almost to ourselves. The bright larches were so fun that we let our fingers get numb snapping photos of them.

The hike down from the pass we ran into gobs, I mean gobs of people hiking toward us. We were so glad we went the opposite way. The blue sky started peeping out more on our way down and the snow was much heavier on this side of the pass. Once we were out of the hike we headed to burger barn where we shared an oreo milkshake and an entire lap full of curly fries.


Island Wedding

Last weekend a friend was getting married on Whidbey Island. I'd only been years ago for Bike MS and Joshua had never been so we headed up on Friday night. We drove over Deception Pass as the sun was setting. It really is a beautiful spot. Then we spent the evening camping out, making pizzas over the fire, and star gazing.

Next day we make huckleberry stuffed pies and bacon over the fire for breakfast. We never take slow mornings and it was so so lovely. Walked to the beach from our site, played on a driftwood teeter totter and scoped out a good spot to put in our kayaks. We checked out a few beaches before we decided upon a spot, the water can get pretty rough here and the tides are no joke. Right before lunch we launched in and puttered around in the water. Just as I commented that I hope we find jellyfish one bobbed its way past me. We spotted a few starfish and sea anemone. Normally when we do outdoorsy things we go fast and hard. This time we kayaked around casually and paddled into the rocks to look for sea creatures. It was nice to change up the pace. Bacon, avocado, arugula sandwiches for lunch and then we were off to a park bathroom to get ready for the wedding. Being as the mirror wasn't a mirror but a metal panel screwed to the wall I was relying on Joshua to tell me if I overdid the blush.

The wedding was along the groom's dad's property that overlooked the water. It was beautiful and touching. The reception set up was intimate and cozy. We had a lovely evening. I even managed to drive Richard, the stick shift truck, home including a ferry ride. Capped of the evening with a burger, milkshakes, and bed.


Ethical Fashion

Top from Elizabeth Suzann,
shoes from Olive Thomas shoes (etsy),
Jeans from Madewell
I've been curious about how to stop participating in fast fashion for awhile. After reading about how many lbs of clothes American's throw away a year, to sweat shops, to undervaluing creativity and design (which is a problem that affects my own job) and many other problems with how I've been buying/treating clothes I wanted to change.

I was curious how to waste less, support local/small designers, and save money.

I've come up with a few answers that I've enjoyed living into that I wanted to share.

Tank top from Thred Up
Pants from TopoDesigns

1. I sell or give away my clothing, using the stuff you really can't salvage as rags. I sell to local consignment shops and Thred Up or I drop off bags of clothes at Goodwill.

2. I've been trying to buy clothes of better quality. Real materials- wool, cotton, silk that are made with good construction. This allows my clothes to last longer so I don't have to keep replacing clothes that the wash destroys or that aren't scrubbable, I spill a lot. These pieces are usually more expensive so I don't get things like this often and I have mostly just been replacing basic pieces as my poorly made ones give out. Items include coats, jeans, trousers, sweaters, cardigans, basic staple dresses, and shoes.

Leather jacket -local thrift store
Wool sweater - Thred up
Hat- Lack of color

3. My favorite find was companies like Thred Up and Tradesy. They are like online thrift stores. The thrift stores in Seattle are heavily picked over but online they are hugeI love the idea of something someone else is done with being exactly what I'm looking for. I especially love that it means the items come a steep discount. Need a dress for a wedding- they have tons, for cheap, and for brands I couldn't afford otherwise. I also like these websites for trends. I don't want to spend a lot of money on a pattern I may not like in a year but I can spend $15 on a top that is gently used.
dress I got on Thred up for $23, original price $107.
(Also love that Thred Up tells you how much
money you saved, I blame my mom.
I love a good deal)

4. I've also been compiling a list of USA made designers that I like, designers that support ethical causes and groups, make clothing out of industry scrapes, or small handmade international shops. For about the last year I have been trying to only buy from and ask for clothes as gifts from these designers. I know it can seem like these are always expensive but I have found a wide range of designers and subscribe to their newsletters so I know when they have their change of season sales. Some of the brands below are a bit pricier, albeit stunning, but most have some really reasonably priced items!
skirt from Style Saint
cardigan from Everlane

Matterprints                                Krotchet Kids

some Current favorites:
Krochet Kids
Being Apparel
People Tree
Matter Prints
Temperate Co
Make it Good
Style Saints
Slum Love
Elizabeth Suzann
Up Down Across
Style Saint
Albion Fit
The Palatines
Topo Designs

5. Maybe most importantly, I've also tried to shop less and not impulse buy at all. I don't go perusing stores at my lunch hour anymore and I don't subscribe to newsletters of stores I like but aren't ethical or sustainable. A really amazing tool I use to keep this in check is the Stylebook app.

It lets you put in all your clothing you own, make outfits out of them, follow how often you wear something, how much money per wear an item is, use a calendar to plan out your outfits for the month, pack for trips. I'm honestly a little obsessed! I also never have to wonder what I'm going to wear in the morning, I just look at my calendar. I can plan the whole month so that I know when I  have important meetings and need to wear my power skirt.

Besides how much fun it is- I put items in the remove category if I see I haven't worn it in 6 months. I see if I need to just rework outfits to like the item again or if it's really not me anymore. Then I grab all the items in the remove folder and sell or donate them. I've been trying to do this regularly as I define my style etc. I have a goal of # of clothes I'd like to get down to so I am seeing what I truly don't wear. I don't want to wear anything because I feel like I have to or because I didn't know what else to wear. I've loved knowing I feel like me and look the way I want in every outfit because I only save the outfits in the app that I like.

The other thing I do is bring in clothing items I think I want to purchase. I can see if I already have something like it. Does it go with my other clothes? Can I make multiple outfits with it? If I'm replacing something I look at the cost per wear. If it's really low it means I wear it a lot so it may make sense to spend more money and get a really good quality piece of that item.

tunic by Temperate Co
Necklace by local jewlry co

That is currently my strategy/take on ethical fashion. It seems to be constantly evolving. If you want to chat about it or the app I'd be 100% down to talk!