North America,  Travel

Spring in Seattle

It is May already and I wonder what it shall bring, but in the last sunny week of April, we were whirling around Seattle. It was my mother-in-law’s 70th birthday and the family had decided to get together at my sister-in-law’s who lives in a cul-de-sac on the outskirts of the city. It was a merry gang of 8 and there was enough feasting to last us a month. I have to confess that Adi and I have returned home with food tucked into our waistlines. The sister-in-law is a great cook just like her mother and it was a pleasure to do justice to her efforts in the kitchen. Plus there was all the wonderful eating out.

We gorged on juicy chicken wings at Wing Dome which does a bang-up job including smothering its 7 Alarm Wings in heavy-duty sauce. There’s enough of it. So much so that the wings are incidental to the sauce.

Now the 7 alarm is a serious challenge. Worthy individuals have admitted defeat. That would include Adam Richman of Man Vs. Food. Imagine the hottest dish you have had and triple it — and you have this shattering sauce that sets your nerves on fire. The crackling in this affair is that they refuse you tissues to dab your runny nose nose or burning lips. Who said it was pretty? Then there is no beverage to accompany this challenge of stripping meat off 7 wings within 7 minutes, if you are up for fame upon its Wall of Flame.

The Wing Dome is kind though. It advises you to order a recovery kit before you start on this path of intense adventure. Expect two glasses of ice-cold milk and an ice cream sandwich to feel anywhere near human again.

Three years ago, we had visited Seattle from the UK. A time when I had short hair and the ability to handle nerve-wracking hot food. The niece had insisted that we take part in the 7 Alarm challenge. With no time at hand, we had to relegate it to our next trip. What broke me on that particular trip was a certain sauce in Leavenworth. Naturally, I am a cautious creature today.

This time, Adi, his sister and I, each ordered one 7 Alarm wing. The brother-in-law refused to be party to this brand of gastronomic self-flagellation. I threw up my hands halfway through that one wing and was tearing up, hyperventilating, while Adi and his sister finished it. And then began their tears.

The rest of the holiday was spent mooching around decor boutiques and antique shops in Snohomish which were exquisite and we had to garner all the self-control we could to not lay our greedy hands on just about everything; celebrating the mother-in-law’s birthday at a beautiful restaurant on the Puget Sound, along with an early barbecue supper; laying her hands on some exquisite Beecher’s handmade cheese; catching up with old friends and listening to smoky jazz in charming eateries; ooh-ing and aah-ing over cakes and mousses from Taiwanese bakeries (and making a mental note to never scoff again at the likes of them); and stalking neighbouring dogs.

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The family catching up at the sister-in-law’s tastefully done-up home

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Pink azaleas and us


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Violet azaleas
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Spring glory on the roads
And some cherry blossoms, please
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Noshing at The Pink Door in an alley off Pike Place Market 
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Browsing stores in Snohomish

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This beauty of a lamp now graces my sister-in-law’s home
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A caramel coffee brûlée that had me heart and soul at 85°C, the Taiwanese bakery 
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Chocolate bomb at the Taiwanese bakery
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Shaky shot at Wing Dome. Blame the 7 Alarm Wings!
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Oden the Mighty





  • InspiresN

    Family re-unions are really fun looks like you had a great time in Seattle ,loved the pictures with the pretty flowers. The 7 -alarm wing sounds challenging indeed but I don’t think I could do it .Those pastries and goodies look super yum!

    • dippydottygirl

      Thank you Nisha 🙂 It was a perfect holiday and lovely to catch up with the young nephew and niece. They were all grown up! The Taiwanese bakery was an unexpected goodness 😀 xx

  • Nemorino

    Fine photos of the spring blossoms and the pastries. Actually I don’t think I would order the 7-alarm wing challenge, but I do have a sort of guilty admiration for those who do.

    • dippydottygirl

      Thank you! Haha the 7 Alarm is not ideal for Anybody. Only a crackpot 🙂 So you get an idea about my personality. Hope you have been enjoying spring.

    • dippydottygirl

      Thank you Angela! It was such a wonderful holiday with perfectly blue skies and sunny days. Since Seattle is notorious for its whimsical rainy weather, we struck lucky. Thank you 🙂 xx

  • Invisibly Me

    Such gorgeous photos! I love cherry blossoms, I think they have to be my favourite. And that dog… beautiful! Is Oden The Mighty a golden retriever? I’ve wanted a goldie (who I’ve already named Finn) for many years now, though I’m not sure I’ll ever be fortunate enough to be in the positive to have one. They are wonderful dogs though.
    It made me chuckle that with the foodie challenge they suggest you order a recovery kit – definitely think I’d need one of those!! 🙂
    Caz xx

    • dippydottygirl

      Hiya Caz, spring blossoms win the heart so easily. Thank you for the kind comment. Oden the Mighty is indeed a fluffy golden retriever who is approaching a chubby personality but hey I cannot complain 😛 I love fat dogs. Not that I be bodyshaming this wonderful fella.

      You have a boy called Finn in your mind already? How I love that! I have had two for sometime too. Their names are Frank Sinatra and Eric Clapton. And in my mind they woof musically.

      I would not even veer towards the recovery kit because that would mean going through the agony of it! But if you do, let me know. The Hall of Flame is no small feat. xx

    • dippydottygirl

      Oden 🙂 Though I believe I would love an Ogden too, going by my partiality towards Ogden Nash. Have you read him? He is adorable with his nonsense rhymes.

      I think I should go on a fast to atone what I put my body through! 🙂 xx

      • Sheree

        No I’ve never read anything of his but I’m going to look him up.

        Oden/Ogden – I can now add failing eyesight to my list of woes.

        • dippydottygirl

          You are talking to one who wears an extra pair of eyes, so… Oden and Ogden are both keepers. xx

  • josypheen

    All those flowers are sooo pretty!

    I am impressed that you even attempted the hot wings, even if you could not quite keep them down!

    • dippydottygirl

      Thank you my lovely 🙂 I had to try. The niece would have been quite put out otherwise. And how can one disappoint a little one so 😉 xx

  • kasiawrites

    Just the thougth of anything that spicy makes me cringe! Unfortunately, I’m not gifted with the ability to eat spicy food. But I’m ok with that 🙂 The flowers look so pretty! I love them!

    • dippydottygirl

      Ah well your stomach is a happy being and not complaining about mind-numbing heat in food. I have started going easy on mine.
      Thanks Kasia, spring’s loveliness knows no bounds. xx

  • a mindful traveler

    Always great times catching up with family. Looks like you guys had a great time. Mmmmm, those cakes from the Taiwanese bakery look divine. I think I would prefer that over the 7 Alarm challenge! Xx

    • dippydottygirl

      Thank you Jo. Seattle is pretty. The evergreens and the volcanoes make for a scenic setting. And yes, it rains a lot, but I remember a summer three years ago when it was searingly hot. xx

  • lexandneek

    Wow! Springtime in Seattle. Such a burst of beautiful flowers and colors. Your sister in law’s house looks so comfortable and cozy – perfect for family get togethers. As for the hot wings, Yikes! :-0

    • dippydottygirl

      Hey Neek! It was a wonderful time to see the city. But then it is so pretty in all seasons. Her house is warm and inviting and she has just given it a makeover with hardwood floors, so it was a nice change. The hot wings were ooh la la. xx

  • crystalsandcurls

    As always, what gorgeous photos! This sounds like an awesome trip….and those wings sound like death incarnate (although a wonderful thing to dare your friends to do after a few drinks 😉 ) xx

    • dippydottygirl

      Thank you Amor. It was a lot of fun and after a couple of years with my sister-in-law and her family, so it was lovely. xx

  • TheresaBarker

    Snohomish is lovely. I’m so excited for you that you got to visit! You went to the Pink Door! I’m envious! I’ve been wanting to go for a long time, and I have not made it yet. Glad you had a good visit! Terrific photos!

    • dippydottygirl

      I did think of you when I was there but we were strapped for time. The Pink Door…ah it was serendipitous. The plan was for the Elysian Bar which did not work out. One of our friends did not have an ID deemed appropriate enough by the bouncers, hence the Pink Door from sheer desperation to catch a bite after an evening of drinking. I loved the entire vibe of The Pink Door. Thank you for the appreciation as always. xx

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