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Travelog for: Ewan E. Ewok

LAX Airport, United States - 7th October 2009

By: sararingham

Well... back to where it all started... LAX... were getting ready to board the plane to Seattle... and the sun is coming up, isn't it pretty?

Sara took a few shots of views on the plane ride to Seattle... we were in a very small 70 seater plane. We even had to get off the plane on the tarmac rather than going into the gate... pretty crazy... anyways here are a few shots...

If you look really closely here you can see the California coastline... isn't it pretty?

About 30 minutes into the flight... it suddenly hits me why Southern California is so prone to earthquakes... can you see that fault line? It's massive! There are the mountains... and then... flat flat land... crazy!

* Posted Oct 14, 2009, 8:38 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Sea-Tac Intl Airport, United States - 7th October 2009

By: sararingham

Sara fell asleep for a little bit and woke up to Oregon's Crater Lake...

Coming into the famous Pacific Northwest... you're bound to see a lot of mountains and volcanos... Sara thinks this might be Oregon's famous volcano... Mt Hood...

Unfortunately, Washington has a lot more volcanos... makes for some nice views... but quite scary too... Washington has the famous Mt Saint Helens, Mt Rainier, and the less known Mt Baker. All three of them are active volcanos... as well as Mt. Hood it makes for an interesting combination in a very small area... You can see three of the volcanos here...

...and here you can see, Mt Rainier closer up... isn't it gorgeous?

Sara believes Washington has some of the most amazing mountain ranges as there are two mountain ranges that come into Washington... the Cascade Mountains which goes from British Columbia, Canada to Northern California... and the Olympic Mountains which is on the Western edge of Washington, West of Puget Sound... gorgeous!

Finally coming in for a landing... we flew over Seattle... can you see the famous Space Needle? You have to look closely... it's next to that strange shaped colourful building in the middle of the photo... by the way, that strange building is the EMP (Experience Music Project) building..

...and we flew over the famous Puget Sound and in the background you can see the Olympic Mountains... some of the islands in the Puget Sound are extremely beautiful and there's lots of marine wildlife including orcas that live in there... isn't it pretty though?

Well... coming in for a landing now at Sea-Tac International Airport... were safely here...

Write again soon!

* Posted Oct 14, 2009, 8:41 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Monroe, Washington, United States - 12th October 2009

By: sararingham

Hi mom! Well, I've been here 5 days now and I can tell you. I've not been doing too much... we've been relaxing and catching up on sleep. It's been pretty crazy - to say the least! Sara decided to show us the huge pumpkins in their neighbours yard... isn't it massive?

We get to have a nice barbeque for dinner tonight, yummy!

...and she finally introduced us to the furry friends of the house... Jethro...

...Ellie May...

...and the little ginger cat, Mojo...

Write again soon! Miss you!

* Posted Oct 19, 2009, 10:39 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Kirkland, Washington, United States - 15th October 2009

By: sararingham

Today we decided to take a short trip to Kirkland. This and the world famous Redmond is where Sara grew up and spent most of her life. It's pretty beautiful. Unfortunately we spent most of the day either in the backpack or relaxing at Sara's sister's house... Julie. :-) It was fun though!

We decided to have some breakfast before starting the day... breakfast of champions is what Sara called this. Being very sarcastic of course...

Since we got there around 5am, it was still dark and everyone was asleep so we used the flash and got around the house seeking out the fuzzy, and not so fuzzy creatures... lets see... there was Tank...


Here's a photo of both kitties together, aren't they cute?

...the hamster, I'm not sure of it's name... suppose I never thought to ask?...

...and when everyone got up, we fed the not so fuzzy creature... T-Rex, the bearded dragon!

Once he was done eating he nearly posed for a photo for us... how cool is that?

We also got to see a common squirrel that you see around here quite a bit... Sara loves seeing them since you don't really see things like that in Australia so she misses watching them bounce around! Aren't they cute?

We also got the view from her balcony, leaves much to be desired doesn't it?

Sara decided anyways later in the afternoon to break off on her own and buy a few things at the local stores. We stayed safely in the backpack, but decided to come out and pose on the huge pumpkins! Look how big they are, I mean compared to us.. they're massive!

...well, it's been a long day... were about to head home and get some rest! We'll see more of Kirkland on a later day!

Write again soon!

* Posted Oct 19, 2009, 10:54 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Monroe, Washington, United States - 17th October 2009

By: sararingham

Hi mom! Sara and her family were holding a family party so Sara had to make a whole bunch of food for the party while her step mom, Tiff, and her dad were carpet cleaning... I'm glad I stayed up to help Sara because that just seemed SO much more fun... and it was! We made a real famous Australian desert, the Pavlova. I'm attaching a few recipes if you're interested in trying to make it yourself! It's really yummy mom! Trust me!

Sara first had to put the pavlova egg (which had the mixture already in it)...

...and then we mixed in the milk... easy as, right?

Once you mix it with the beater on high for a while - well, you can just see how much it grows... very meringue like isn't it?

Then we filled the top part of the egg with sugar, and poured it in...

...and mixed it again!

We then lined the baking tray with aluminum foil... stacked the mixture high like a mountain in the middle...

...and stuck it in the oven for an hour!

It's not easy to tell - but once it's in the oven it spreads out and turns quite hard with a nice soft inside... yummy!

At this point, we covered it and waited a day... so fast forward a day, we made a nice whipped cream and put it over the top and put lots of fruit on the top... Sara improvised and put grapes, bananas, raspberries, blueberries and strawberries. Kind of a weird combination, but it was quite good... this is what it looked like in the end...

Yummy! If you'd ever like to try to make it... here's a recipe for the famous pavlova that we just made!



4 egg whites
1 1/4 cups white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 pint heavy cream
6 kiwi, peeled and sliced


Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Draw a 9 inch circle on the parchment paper.

In a large bowl, beat egg whites until stiff but not dry. Gradually add in the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat until thick and glossy. Over beaten egg whites lose volume and deflate when folded into other ingredients. Be absolutely sure not a particle of grease or egg yolk gets into the whites. Gently fold in vanilla extract, lemon juice and cornstarch.

Spoon mixture inside the circle drawn on the parchment paper. Working from the center, spread mixture toward the outside edge, building edge slightly. This should leave a slight depression in the center.

Bake for 1 hour. Cool on a wire rack.

Remove the paper, and place meringue on a flat serving plate. Fill the center of the meringue with whipped cream, sweetened if desired. Top whipped cream with kiwifruit slices, or any kind of fruits you'd like (black berries, blue berries, strawberries, even grapes and bananas)! Yummy!

Makes 8 servings

Next thing we made was very easy. We made a raspberry Jello with raspberries... we ended up mixing that with whipped cream and blending it with the mixer... yummy!

...and last thing we made... but definitely the hardest of the bunch was the Sweet Corn Muffins which vary ever so slightly from the famous American cornbread... seems we just flew from Australia to America in the foods were making as well... fun!

Saving you all the boring stuff in between... we mixed the dry ingredients like corn meal (also known as polenta), flour, salt, sugar and baking powder into one bowl...

...and the wet ingredients into another bowl...

..and mixed them together!

Easy as, right? Suppose it looks that way when you only see it in that amount of photos haha... :-P Next we got the muffin tray out and set it up with the muffin paper liner things...

Then we poured the batter and cleaned up the mess around the edges!

...Last but not least we put it in the oven for around 15 to 18 minutes and here they are... the finished product! Aren't they yummy looking?

Of course here's the recipe if you'd like to make these for yourself! They're really yummy mom!



1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup cornmeal
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup milk, divided


In a mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Add eggs, shortening and 1/2 cup of milk; beat for 1 minute. Add remaining milk; beat just until blended. Fill paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths full. Bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes or until muffins test done

Makes 12 servings

Well, that was the end of that! I'm glad we can finally rest... tomorrow's a big day!

* Posted Oct 23, 2009, 6:44 am [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Monroe, Washington, United States - 18th October 2009

By: sararingham

Well, today was the big day... Unfortunately Sara said we had to stay away during the lot of it since I could have been lost or mixed in with the toys the younger children were bringing with them. Since Sara's family was hosting there was a lot of preparation, and finally someone arrived! Sara's step mom's mom, she decorated the table... isn't it gorgeous?

She even decorated it with these small, almost toyvoyager sized pumpkins! Aren't they cute?

After helping and watching all that food yesterday being prepared I couldn't even try it! To make it worse, there were some really nice looking Apple pies that Tiff's mom brought! Geez! Toyvoyagers don't have the luck do they?

Well, we got a photo of a ghost candle holder and some eye balls before we went to hide in the bedroom for the night... those eye balls were really yummy! Who would know eyes were chocolate peanut butter balls! Mmmm!

Well, off to hide in the room... suppose I do need a bit more sleep! Miss you mom and write again soon! :-)

* Posted Oct 23, 2009, 6:50 am [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Monroe, Washington, United States - 23rd October 2009

By: sararingham

Unfortunately we haven't done too much since we've been here. Oh well, it's a lot of rest time for us. But Sara says we'll hopefully get to go to a Bavarian village before we leave... what? Well, I guess I'll find out won't I? Today we made another Australian recipe. This one is very popular down in Australia - the Shepards Pie!


Here's a recipe if you'd like to cook it yourself!

2 -3 lbs hamburger meat (lean) or ground turkey
1 med onion
2 stalks celery
1/2 green pepper (1 whole pepper if very small)
1 can 12 oz tomato paste
1 tsp garlic powder or 1 clove garlic crushed
1 tsp onion Powder
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp basil
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup water
12 oz cheddar cheese

Mashed Potatoes
5 medium to large potatoes
1 tsp salt
1/2 stick butter
1/2 - 3/4 cup milk

Cut up celery and onion in bite size pieces, Saute in skillet/frying pan in a little oil, until onion is translucent. Remove vegetables, add hamburger and cook until done. (If you are using ground turkey add directly to the pan of celery and onion and pepper, cook until done, no need to drain). Drain grease and return hamburger to pan with the celery and onion. Add all spices and 1/4 cup water. Let simmer 10 minutes. Add your tomato paste mixing well.

Peel Potatoes and add to pot of cold water, enough water to cover potatoes. Add salt. Boil uncovered about 10 minutes or until fork tender.  Drain water and return to pot. Add 1/2 stick of butter and mash until soft. Heat up milk in the microwave or stove top. Add milk to the potatoes a little at a time while using a mixer. Add and a beat potatoes until a fluffy consistency. For added flavor to your potatoes, add some onion powder, salt and pepper, or what ever spices you like in your home made potatoes.

In a Casserole Dish place the meat mixture on the bottom, cover with potatoes and top with the cheddar cheese. Bake on 350 degree’s for 20 minutes.

...that recipe is obviously a bit different than what were doing but you can change it how ever to your liking if that's what you'd like to do! :-)

First we started with the potatoes...

...then we peeled them...

...then we chopped them into small cubes and boiled them...

...once that was done we chopped up the onion and started to fry that on the stove... until it was nice and golden...

...and then we got one pound of hamburger mince...

...and threw that into the fry pan...

...next we pulled a carrot out of the fridge... wow that's a big carrot!

...and chopped that up!

...and threw that into the fry pan to soften the carrots...

...looking yummy now isn't it? next we added the shepards pie seasoning... smells really yummy now!

...and mixed that in with a cup of water...

Once it was nice and thickened we put it in a loaf pan... flattened it along the top...

...by the time that was all done the potatoes were done and nearly mashed themselves... easy! We put that on top of the meat mixture...

...and put it in the oven...

...for 20 minutes!

...and after about an hour of cooking... were done! Very yummy dinner!

Everyone enjoyed it so much it was nearly gone that night... obviously we did a good job! I've been learning a lot of cooking while being here! So much fun! :-) Write again soon! :-)

* Posted Nov 12, 2009, 7:58 pm Last edited Nov 12, 2009, 8:20 pm by sararingham [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Monroe, Washington, United States - 26th October 2009

By: sararingham

5 days till Halloween!

What do we need to do to get ready for Halloween? Oh yeah! Carve a pumpkin! :-) Here's a pumpkin right here... how convenient!

Sara says we might get a bit messy doing this and were dealing with sharp knives so we have to stay back and be careful... we happily watched as she cut into the pumpkin and emptied it... seems like it was done and over within a few minutes... maybe less... geez! Sara says she's carved many a pumpkin in her days... :-P

...First the top came off... see it in the background?

...and then she pulled out all the 'guts'...

...pretty clean inside!

...and now we had to think of a face... either a scary face or a happy face... I suppose since the pumpkin was easy to clean... we'll do a happy face! This is the final result... isn't it cute?

Well... that's it, it'll sit on the porch until Halloween night! Exciting little tradition isn't it?

* Posted Nov 12, 2009, 8:05 pm Last edited Nov 12, 2009, 8:20 pm by sararingham [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Seattle, Washington, United States - 31st October 2009

By: sararingham

Hi mom! So Halloween was a bit of a surprise, we decided to go to Seattle for the Bodies Exhibition unfortunately no toyvoyagers were allowed... but it's all about plastination which you might have heard of... maybe? The art of turning the muscle and removing all fluids from the body and turning it to plastic to preserve it. It was very interesting... unfortunately no photos were allowed either... so we just waited patiently in the car... afterwards we spent no time in Seattle - we went back home... on the way back home Sara took a few photos in the car...

Here was the hotel we parked next to - kinda looks cool doesn't it?

We also got to see the Space Needle... looks a lot more three dimensional than it did from the air doesn't it?

Heading out of Seattle and across the lake we pass by the famous floating bridge that goes over Lake Washington... here we are coming onto the bridge... you can see the boats floating on Lake Union which is a smaller lake just next to Lake Washington...

Another picture of Lake Union...

...and going onto Lake Washington now... if you look closely on the shoreline you can see a LOT of house boats...

...and here we are in the middle of the lake... crazy huh? Bill Gates lives on this lake just on the other side of a hill facing the opposite direction from where were looking... what you didn't see, is on the other side of the bridge there were pretty large waves, white tips even! Crazy how big those waves got, while this side was totally calm...

...and here we are on the other side of the lake coming into Kirkland...

Suppose that's all... unfortunately we didn't see much but hey, I got see the space needle... it's so amazing huge mom! :-)

* Posted Nov 12, 2009, 8:16 pm Last edited Nov 12, 2009, 8:16 pm by sararingham [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Monroe, Washington, United States - 31st October 2009

By: sararingham

Back home in good ol' Monroe! Were getting ready now for the trick-or-treaters... now it really feels like Halloween!


Happy Halloween Mom! :-)

* Posted Nov 12, 2009, 8:19 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Monroe, Washington, United States - 13th November 2009

By: sararingham

Well, back from Everett... since today was such a quiet day Sara decided to make the self-saucing sponge pudding for her family...

...we first had to put in some milk and an egg...

...and then add in the mixture...

...then mix it up really well...

...put it in a square baking pan...

...boil 1-1/2 cups of water...

...and pour it over the top of the other mixture...

...and throw it in the oven for about an hour...

Now is where we stop... because Sara totally messed up here but is having a hard time admitting she messed up on something SO easy. She put in double the milk she was supposed to - so tried to make up for it... but the mixture was put in, so it was too late. So it turned into more of a weird hard custard type thing... it's supposed to be like a cake on the top with a custard on the bottom... but none the less... here is Sara's creation... here is the finished product!

It wasn't too bad all things considered, but if you'd like to try it - here's the recipe for what it was supposed to be...

3/4 cup (55g) brown sugar
1 1/4 cups (190g) self-raising flour
100g butter, melted
1 egg
1/2 cup (125ml) milk
4 tbs golden syrup
1 tbs cornflour
1 1/2 cups (375ml) boiling water
Double cream or ice cream, to serve

Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a 1.5 litre (6 cup) ovenproof dish.

Combine 1/4 cup of the brown sugar and all of the flour in a bowl. Add the melted butter, egg, milk and 2 tbs of the golden syrup and stir until combined. Spoon into greased dish.

Combine the remaining 1/2 cup of brown sugar and cornflour. Sprinkle over the pudding mixture. Combine boiling water with the remaining 2 tbs of golden syrup.

Pour over the top of the pudding mixture and bake for 40-45 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

Serve with double cream or ice cream.


* Posted Nov 26, 2009, 12:52 am [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Everett, Washington, United States - 14th November 2009

By: sararingham

Hi mom! We didn't do too much when we went to Everett... Sara went with her parents to a doctors appointment and literally that's all we saw before we headed back home... tomorrow was definitely going to be a busier day though... we'll be seeing tons tomorrow apparently. I wonder where we are going?

Write again soon! :-)

* Posted Nov 26, 2009, 12:41 am Last edited Nov 26, 2009, 1:56 am by sararingham [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Stevens Pass, Washington, United States - 14th November 2009

By: sararingham

We got in the car about an hour ago, and have been driving... progressively seen more and more snow. Sara's brother, Todd, wanted to stop off at his winter playground Stevens Pass. There had recently been a TON of snow coming down... it's going to be an awesome Winter for people who ski and snowboard! Sara's only been to Steven's once... and she had quite a lot of bad luck from what she said... but we'll leave it at that... have a look at this snow fall...

...have you noticed anything? Well, the pass isn't open yet... but people are skiing? What? People are walking up those huge hills just to ski down? Crazy people!

...well, onto our next stop. I think Sara's gotten a few too many crazy looks haha! :-P

* Posted Nov 26, 2009, 1:04 am [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Lake Wenatchee, Washington, United States - 14th November 2009

By: sararingham

Next stop... well, Sara requested a stop there so she could get some new shots so lucky for us. We got to stop at Lake Wenatchee! Were really in the Cascades now aren't we? Gorgeous! It's cold, but obviously not cold enough to freeze the lake yet... like you can see in Benni's log... check that out! Here's some dark photos from more of a distance...

...and here are some MUCH better shots as almost a panoramic type view of the area in front of us... right to left...

Now were headed just a little bit farther... just over the other side of the mountains into Eastern Washington. Write again soon!

* Posted Nov 26, 2009, 1:12 am [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

Leavenworth, Washington, United States - 14th November 2009

By: sararingham

Here we are! The little Bavarian town in the Cascade mountains, Leavenworth. Who would know there would be a Bavarian town here? It's a big tourist town, it thrives on the people coming back to Western Washington from the I-90 highway. It's gorgeous during the Autumn and Winter, which you can see in Benni's log as well if you'd like to see it there too... so here we are... Welcome to Leavenworth!

First things first, we got a few photos from where we were standing... in front of me here... is the Australian store... ha!

...and here's the main street... isn't it pretty?

...we even got to see a horse drawn carriage... isn't it pretty?

...we went into TONS of different shops... from a huge candy store...

...to a cheese and wine shop... the Cheese Monger... yummy!

...a few more shots while walking down the main street...

...and a photo of us with one of the really awesome paintings throughout the town... isn't it pretty?

...well, after a few hours... and having a really nice lunch at a pub we headed home. It's been a long day! Write again soon! :-)

* Posted Nov 26, 2009, 1:28 am [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page

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