Love, Laughter, and Life

Adventures With a Book Lover


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Haiku Moment: frog prince

wanted: frog to kiss

why are you hiding from me?

lips coming your way

not interested?

maybe I don’t need a prince

just a froggy friend

frog prince

by Angie Quantrell

Yakima Valley, WA


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Haiku Moment: rocket

beach transport Rocket

he’s not rocket-y at all

my view from behind

rocket by Angie Quantrell

photo by Angie Quantrell

Ocean Shores, Washington


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Book Review: Milo’s Moonlight Mission by Kathleen M. Blasi and Petronela Dostalova

Milo’s Moonlight Mission

Written by Kathleen M. Blasi

Illustrated by Petronela Dostalova

Yeehoo Press, 2021

Thank you, Yeehoo Press, Kathleen M. Blasi, Petronela Dostalova, and Kathy Temean for sending me a copy of this fun, adorable picture book! I won a copy from Kathy’s blog, Writing and Illustrating. Two of my grands are really into outer space right now, so this book is perfect! My youngest grand just came home from her first day of kinder, and the coloring page? It was all about outer space.

Book Jacket Flap: “Outer space is there for exploring, and Captain Milo is ready for takeoff! If only he didn’t have to wait for his Second-in-Command . . .”

From the front cover, to the jacket flap, the inside pages, the illustrations, and the lovely story, there is nothing I don’t love about Milo and his urgent desire to head to outer space! I love that this story is based on an actual scientific event – the Leonid Meteor Storm – that occurs every November.

What I love about this book:

~ the enchanting story

~ the large, lovely, colorful, illustrations

~ the idea of Mom being Second-in-Command

~ The way Milo helps out so his dream becomes reality

~ the fun facts I learned about observing celestial events and the Leonid Meteor Storm (incidentally, and now I can’t remember who, but after I had read Milo’s Moonlight Mission, I was reading about a historical person, and his name was Leonid! I imagine his parents were interested in meteor storms just like Milo!)

~ the overall “package” of a captivating picture book, ready for repeated read-alouds

Milo’s Moonlight Mission is the perfect book for your budding astronomer or astronaut.

Amazon Blurb:

The most spectacular night skies are revealed when we plan for the ideal moment–with loved ones by our sides. This heartwarming tale is perfect for space fans and young budding astronauts!


When the weather forecast predicts a middle-of-the-night meteor storm, Captain Milo wants desperately to witness it. But will his Second-in-Command have enough time to accomplish this important mission with him?


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Haiku Moment: beach bum(ble)

purple oasis

sandy beach bee habitat

hello beach bum(ble)

beach bum(ble) by Angie Quantrell

photo by Angie Quantrell

Ocean Shores, Damon Point, WA


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Happy 10th Birthday, Khloe! #birthdaytrip

I started a tradition. When a grand turns 10, we get a special trip, just the 2 of us. Khloe turned 10 on the 23rd, and we left the next day to go to Ocean Shores – the beach! We barely squeezed in our trip with school starting the 31st. But squeeze it in, we did!

Someone (name beginning with “K”) got a phone for her birthday. At the beach? Check. Testing the new phone? Check. We had the most gorgeous weather.

Watch out!!! The shark got her! Thank goodness the shark throat led us on a fun shopping adventure.

We both enjoyed eating out. Bennett’s Fish Shack. Mmmm

Khloe is pretty happy to have her own hotel bed. (Me, too. She hogs the covers.)

Ready for the favorite birthday trip activity: riding horses on the beach!

Khloe. Waving at me (aqua sweater). Me. At the back. Rocket likes the back. Rocket is not very rocket-y. General (aka Mr. Waddles, Khloe’s horse) likes to be up closer to the front in the middle of the herd. Not Rocket. He could care less. He likes to go back “home,” the horse staging area.

The view from the back. Rocket. And everyone else’s backsides. And the beach.

Damon Point is one of my favorite beaches in the Ocean Shores area, so Khloe just had to visit it with me. Look at this sturdy driftwood throne. Perfect for the birthday princess.

The obligatory fairy house, complete with table, chairs, bed, sink, fire pit, and shade.

The puzzle challenge. I did not win. Someone cleverly hid my last 2 pieces . . .

We tried flying a kite (not windy enough that day), had pizza on the beach (it was too windy and cold, so we sat in the car to eat), took a last drive on the beach (it was fogged in on our last morning, and the tide was so far out, we couldn’t even see the water), had fun swimming and enjoying the hotel hot tub, learned how to play solitaire, watched the Food Network, and even hit a huge thrift shop in Packwood on the way home. What a FUN trip with my grand!

Happy 10th birthday, Khloe! Love you!

What special birthday traditions do you have? I need more ideas. 🙂


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Sunday Inspiration

Photo by Angie Quantrell

The Frog Plant, Yakima Valley

(This succulent lives next to our fountain. I recently lately noticed evidence of frogs . . . and then realized at least 3 little guys have claimed this plant for their own insect-hunting territory.)


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Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives: Frost Me Sweet Bakery and Bistro

Once in a long while, we get hooked on watching Guy Fieri as he travels around the U.S. showcasing fabulous meals on the Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. Sometimes I’m hoping to be inspired for dinner, other times I want recipes. I LOVE watching the chefs prepare the meals and I’m always astounded at how MUCH they make! The quantity is mind-boggling. And when the featured location is nearby . . . I want a road trip!

We recently caught an episode filmed in Richland, Washington, a mere 90 minutes or so away. Road trip, here we come! I have no idea about the original air date of the episode, but Frost Me Sweet Bakery and Bistro is still in business, so it’s all good.

Sweet potato lasagna. Oh, boy. That’s what I wanted. And the Duck Banh Mi sandwich. Those were the two items featured on the show, and wow, they looked wonderful! Unfortunately, the Duck Banh Mi was sold out. So Kevin went with the Prime Time, a Prime Rib panini.

The only bad thing about our trip was the heat. We arrived early, about 11, since we eat lunch early. But it was still heading up over 90. Despite that, we chose to sit outside in their adorable covered seating area. There was a line waiting to get in even at that early hour! And nearly the entire time, people were waiting to be seated for the bistro side of the business. Note: The bakery is right next door. Both are connected and you can enter either door or walk between both in the waiting area.

Sweet Potato Lasagna

This dish was so yummy! I loved the sweet potato “noodles”. A few edges were a tiny bit underdone, but not enough to stop me. And I think it could have been hotter (temperature). Well, I ALWAYS want heat in my food, so I would add crushed peppers to my sauce. Mmmm. This dish was so tasty and hugely filling! I think it was a bit much with the heat, but come fall and cooler temps . . . give me ALL the sweet potato lasagna! Served with grilled pesto toast. I LOVED the sauce and meat and the way all the gooeyness came together. Mmm. I would definitely order this again.

Prime Time

Kevin’s Prime Time panini featured thinly sliced prime rib, carmelized onions, horseradish aioli, Swiss cheese, and au jus. The panini was made with their own garlic focaccia bread, and was served with a salad. I had a taste, and it was pretty delish! The au jus was very salty, so dip wisely. And (we both love spice) I think Kev would have loved MORE horseradish to heat things up. The sandwich was very filling and yummy.

The bakery had tempting treats, but we were stuffed, and with the temps, we didn’t want to haul around something that would melt.

Two thumbs up for Frost Me Sweet Bakery and Bistro. The menu is chock full of other dishes we want to try. So once fall hits, I’m counting on another road trip to sample the menu.

Have you hit the road to find a featured location from Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives? Let us know how it went. And if you have any suggestions for fun dining, do share! We’d all love a taste.


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Road Trip: Purple Robe Lavender Farm

I had the best time last week visiting college friends, eating good meals, catching up, making rubber stamped cards, and exploring a bit of the Pacific Northwest. July is a a great month, because it’s lavender time, friends. Lavender Time.

Three of us (waves at Alyson and Renee) traveled to Arlington, Washington, to visit the Purple Robe Lavender Farm. It was such a delight! The bees were humming and buzzing over the lavender-covered hillside, making me want to grab a book and a nice cup of tea and find a spot to plop down. Or a notebook and my purple pen, so I could dream and write. Or spread a blanket on the ground beneath the lavender plants so I could enjoy the activity.

Alas, we were too busy chatting, smelling, and clicking photos. The fragrance was fantastic! We nearly had the place to ourselves. We did swap photo taking tasks with two other women, and I saw a family or two wandering the grounds. But mostly. Us.

White lavender (which I read later was a pink and white lavender named Melissa) and purple lavender created a white-edged purple carpet. I crept carefully between the rows several times, or scooted close to heavy heads, only to be calmly buzzed by bees and bumblebees. They paused, acted like they wondered what great flowers I had to offer, and then toddled back off to their work after they realized I was of the boring flowerless sort.

People in the area: Go now! Take a picnic and camera. The grounds are open for wandering, there is a small shop (of course, with lavender-smelling things-including lavender plants), and I noticed several picnic tables spread about. The lavender is peaking right now. This is the time. You-cut is available if you want to take home a bouquet, and comes complete with a photo-ready basket. A small selection of drinks and snacks are on hand.

Ahhh, lavender. It’s always been one of my favorite flowers. Enjoy.

Angie, Renee (seated on rock), Alyson (seated on ground)

Plus. Take some friends. It’s the best.


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Sunday Inspiration

Photo by Angie Quantrell

Purple Robe Lavender Farm, Arlington, WA