a few words about miss chelsea elizabeth...

she likes: making kites, dancing in the rain, adventures, little-while friends, letters, whole-leaf tea, crayons, bare feet, jumping in rivers/streams/creeks/waterfalls, language, catching the clock as it changes numbers, sleepovers, trains (big or small), cuddling & waking up before the sun rises, among other random things.

oregon-born, seattle-raised, bellingham-bred and franco-refined, she had moved back to the states from her affairs across the atlantic & now resides in columbia city with french husband & love of her life rémy. they spend most of their time taming the garden, taking care of their three chickens & two cats, and preparing the urban homestead for a new little chick of their own.

Saturday, April 30, 2011


So while I feel that bus drivers in general tend to fall under the "quite a character" category (who knows, maybe it's one of the qualifications or in the job description), there is a certain driver on the 125 route from downtown Seattle to Burien and vice versa that is for serious crazier than a shithouse rat. (Ten points to whoever gets that reference, by the way.)

Tonight on my bus ride home from downtown was my second encounter and it was equally terrifying/entertaining as the first, so I thought I'd get a running list going on of some of the crazy ass shit that comes out of his mouth. He may have one of the coolest 'staches around (which makes him look strikingly like a walrus), but my oh my is he batty. I don't usually like swearing on this blog, but holy mother this guy is effing insane.

Run-in #1:

(A Saturday night, 9pm-ish, on my way up to the Shanty Tavern on Lake City Way to see my friend Sam play his last gig with his group before they break up. By myself. Just finished talking to my sister about going out alone in sketchy areas as a single female.)

[Bus pulls up. I get on & flash my Orca card.]
Me: Hi there.
Crazy Ass Bus Driver (CABD): Do you know where the 120 is? (Another route that runs by my house to/from downtown.)
Me: Umm, nope.
CABD: Me neither, but everyone keeps asking me, like I'm supposed to know every goddamn bus route on the road tonight.
Me: [I look around at "everyone", which seems to be two timid Latino girls.] Hmm.
CABD: Probably just got held up somewhere. I wouldn't be surprised if the same shit that happened last night happened again tonight. You know?
[Beat. I ponder this. He keeps turning his head to look at me, to see if I'm interested. I bite.]
Me: So... what happened last night?
CABD: Oh, two stabbings up on Delridge, right near the community college.
(This is like half a mile from my house, even less from the stop where he just picked me up. I suddenly remember I forgot to lock the back door & realize I am screwed if I want to come home early; Remy doesn't get off work until 11pm, & I certainly don't want to go back home & walk around Delridge by myself.)
Me: Hmm.
[Long beat.]
CABD: [turns his head toward me again] You smell amazing. What fragrance is that?
Me: Ummm, hunh?!
CABD: What perfume are you wearing?
Me: [realizing he's totally serious] Well actually, it's slightly embarassing & you won't believe it, but it's Paris Hilton.
CABD: Well hot damn! Now there's somebody I'd like to see run for president, you know? She'd sure give that Sarah Palin a run for her money!
Me: Umm ok! Have a good night! [runs off bus terrified]

Run-in #2:
(Saturday night, 10:30-ish. I'm on my way home from work, heading back towards White Center from downtown. The bus is late. The 120 is right behind the 125. As I get on, CABD is in the middle of a heated conversation with a random passenger it appears sat in the "hot seat" by accident and is now nodding & smiling at the verbal diarrhea projectile vomiting from CABD's mouth. Here are some verbatim quotes that I had seared into my brain. I have no context & have no idea what they were talking about prior to my entrance on said bus, but somehow this guy seems to start conversations in the middle, if you get what I mean. It seems there rarely is context.)

CABD: Well, I think we need more human sacrifice, you know? There are like three different ways to kill a guy, then throw 'im in a bog up in Canada somewhere. Dig 'im up eight months later and we're all saved, you know what I mean?
Random Guy: Mmm-hmm.
(Bus stops at the last downtown stop. No one gets on. The 120 is right behind us & everyone flocks to hop on.)
CABD: Everyone always wants the damn 120!! What's so special about the 120, hunh?
CABD: That earthquake's coming and it's gonna be about a 9 and all these buildings here in downtown, they're only ready for an 8... All the Native Americans are still talking about the last one, and it was like 400 years ago... It's gonna be really messy, man... When it starts shaking there's this process called liquefaction that happens and basically everything solid turns liquid. All this land's gonna turn to quicksand & we're gonna be in deep shit... When you hear them tellin' you to have enough water & food for three days, that's what they're talking about man, but they don't want the public to get all worked up about it. (At this point, the random guy gets off the bus, and CABD keeps talking as if he is still there.) Three days? When this shit happens, three days ain't gonna cover it. [laughs, shaking his head] Three days?
(We pass a billboard for some new Jalepeno chicken sandwich thing at McDonalds. There is NO one at the front of the bus.)
CABD: Mmmm!!! SPI-SAY!!!!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

houses, promotions & life - oh my!

Well time just flies by, doesn't it?

I can hardly believe it, but somehow in the craze of moving to our own place, getting jobs and starting our new life as young adults in Seattle (& all that jazz!), free time just went out the window. Not only did I somehow miss the one-year countdown mark (I currently only have 340 days left!!! How is that possible???) but this is the first time EVER I have been behind in the percentage race (where I have more time complete than tasks - eek!!!)!!!

So for those of you who follow, here's the Cliff's Note version of life with the Coutarels these days:

A VERY long time ago (we were still crashing with Mama Smith in Bellevue at the time) we were invited over to the Nesteroff's and made some HOMEBREW!!! They were amazingly nice, gave us a sweet Homebrew book and explained it all. It's super fascinating & I've been meaning to do a full-on post just on the process, but since I'm sure I won't get around to it for a while, here are a few pics to summarize.

 cooking the grains.

 getting my stir on.

 malt for daaaays.

 straining the grains.

 the nesterbrocks!

 agitating the brew.

 adding the magic.

 getting yeasty.

 ready to stew away!!!

 a taste test & our new book!!!

Of course we still haven't made it over to taste the final product yet... :(  We're working on it. But a big thanks to Mike & Kimm for having us & teaching us!!! It was a blast & we'd LOVE to brew again!

But... WE MOVED!!! (Finally!) We now have our own place over in West Seattle on Pigeon Point. We love it, and so does Tippen, who even has his own little room.

us looking glamorous on our first eve home!
(thanks for dinner, dad!)

Remy got his physical greencard super fast & we both have jobs. Remy's at the Seward Park PCC & I'm hustling it back at Starbucks in Bellevue again. AND (cat's out of the bag so I can go public now) I just got promoted! Shift supervisor, woo hoo! I'm working on grad school applications to go back & get my Masters in Teaching French & Remy's working on his English & his graphic design portfolio. 

Somewhere in there I turned twenty-six (!!! I'm more than half-way to fifty - WHAT??!),

thanks, mom, for the delicious vegan cake!!

and thank you friends (& too much beer) for helping us celebrate!
/ happy 26 to midnight birthday twin + bff rae!!
(horrid pic, yes, but the only one of us two from our special night!)

mastered vegan cupcakes,
chocolate coconut & chocolate sprinkles

vegan muffins,
lemon poppyseed

and vegan scones,
chocolate chip

inherited a new old bicycle,
may i introduce y'all to peter rabbit, my new used bike!
(a big shout out to previous owner jill - SO generous & don't worry he'll be put to good use!)
(this would be us at the tulip ride in skagit valley, by the by)

and discovered Mighty O Donuts, which just might be my new downfall. Not only are they ridiculously delicious, they are organic AND vegan!!!!! If you're ever in the Greenlake/Tangletown area (just east of the zoo) be sure to check them out.

apple fritter & grasshopper donut = heaven

Not long enough post for you? Haven't had your daily dose of cute? Well Tippen made a new friend, Solomon,
best buds (until sol wanted to play baseball with tippen - then it got a little complicated)

and Remy made a new friend at Mt.Si.
i guess the birdies like my vegan scones, too!

Well there you have it. I promise to try to update more frequently and less schizo-y. Until then, That's all folks!