Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 - Year In Review

2011 was a good GREAT year. Looking back, the husband and I got to see some amazing places and do some amazing things. So, here's an extra-long post about the Kane version of 2011. Let's start with the Grand Canyon...


The Grand Canyon // Being temporary Arizonians, the top requirement on my list was a visit to the Grand Canyon. It's one of the seven natural wonders of the world, after all. And boy, was it amazing. Buster even liked it (although he didn't want to get too close to the edge... the little scared-y cat). It was even snowy up there! Imagine - snow in Arizona?! I was baffled too. But there it was, and BBoy loved it.

Blogging! // That's right! In 2011 I started blogging again (check out my original blog from back in the day, Meg's Italy, about the summer I spent in Italy; and my first new post), and I kinda fell in love with it. What started as a way to keep in contact with family and friends while we were far away in the AZ, has turned in to such a great way for me to express some creativity and get back to doing some of the hobbies I love, explore more of my baking, share all of our fun and crazy Buster shenanigans, and honestly, fill a void that had been haunting me since moving to Arizona. 

And of course, a huge thank you to my loyal readers (all two of you!). Thanks for stopping by and sharing in the madness. You're the best!

Remember this? It was my "original" blog name, but after a few months I decided it was too hard to spell and/or remember and changed it up to what it is now, make bake & love. Ah, memories. For those of you wondering what a lilliputian is, here's the official meaning.


As we know, February is smack in the middle of busy season, so we didn't get out too much. But I did bake quite a bit (Sugar Cookies, PB + Chocolate Chip, and Gingersnaps). We got some tickets to a golf tournament (the Phoenix Open), started a spending diet (via And Then She Saved) and Buster chewed a lot of stuff... 

Hiking // We did discover how much we loved to get out and enjoy the sun with a little hiking on South Mountain.


Still knee-deep in busy season, I actually made some time to get out and explore. 

Flea Market // We took a trip to the Mesa Flea Market, where I got my very first cactus, that I promptly named Pokey.

Nerdy-ness // I tried out Warby Parker, an online shop where you can by glasses and frames for a fraction of the cost, and had a little fun with the home try-on. Update: still loving my glasses!

Ostrich Races // We saw some Ostrich Races (and enjoyed an Ostrich burger). 

Spring Training // The in-laws came for a visit and we got to see the Mariners at spring training camp (my first time!).

Buster learned to shake, destroyed his favorite toy (thrice), and took a lover. And we said Auf Weidershen to my bro as he started his professional career as a German Football player.


In April, busy season finally ended, my parents visited during their spring break and Zach got to witness some autopsies (creepy!).

Quarter Century // We celebrated Zach's 25th birthday with homemade chocolate cake!

Tombstone // With busy season stick-a-fork-in-it done, we decided we needed to see more of Arizona. On to Tombstone we went to experience the Wild Wild West and a little theater. 

Bisbee // We heard about this little town called Bisbee and had to check it out. We were so glad we did!

Buster Turns One! // Our little puppy is all grown up!


With May, came some good news (we were moving back to WA!) and some bad news (Carl, the Camry, died on me) and some more good news (we booked our trip to Europe!) and some more bad news (I got sick). 

It's My Birthday! // I celebrated my 26th with my very first piece of Emersonmade. And I love it.

Painting // I finally started painting again (for the first time since we got Buster). 

Sedona // We took a day trip and went hiking in Sedona. One of the most beautiful places. 

Jerome // We found this cute little mile-high town on our way home from Sedona. 


We celebrated our third anniversary in June and started getting ready for the big move (I finally shared a tour of our apartment, too). I even wrote a break-up letter to Arizona. Don't worry, we're still friends.

DIY // I did a little DIY project - my very own camera bag.

Buster Graduates // BBoy graduated from puppy school (with almost flying colors).

Moving Day // Buster liked helping us move... a little too much.


July brought travel. And lots of it. We moved across country and traveled through four different states and five countries in one month! 

Goodbye Arizona // We said goodbye to our home in AZ and started our journey back to the rainy Northwest.

Napa, CA // We stopped and said Hello! to Zach's grandma in Napa (and did a little wine tasting).

Redding, CA and Albany, OR //  In California, we saw Zach's Aunt and Uncle and in Oregon, we stopped and saw my Aunt and Uncle.

Vancouver, BC // I went with some friends up to Vancouver, BC for a bachelorette party! 

London, England // We flew across the pond and spent four days exploring all the history of London. (see more here, here, here, here, and here).

Paris, France // After taking the chunnel, we ended up in Paris (truly a romantic city!). Although rainy, we still loved seeing the sites (and getting soaked). (see more here, here, here, here, here, here, and again here)

Schwaebisch Hall, Germany // Next up was Germany to visit my baby brother, take in a Unicorns football game and fall in love with this small German town. (I'm going to post on this leg of our trip soon! Only six months late!).

Seaside, OR // We couldn't wait one day after getting home from Europe to see our Buster Boo, so we headed out to Seaside to do some camping with Zach's parents and the pup. 

Colville, WA // Then it was off to Colville (straight from Seaside) for one of my best friend's weddings!

Phew! July is finally done. Jam-packed, right?!


Coming down off of our July travel high, August was pretty slow. We got settled in to our new house and caught up with friends we hadn't seen in over a year!

Kim + Jake // We had back to back wedding weekends, this time in Seattle!

Seahawks Spirit // Buster proudly showed his team spirit!


Bainbridge Island, WA // For Labor Day weekend, we hopped on a ferry and went over to Bainbridge to do a little camping with the fam.

Crepes // I found a delicious crepe recipe and quickly became a crepe fiend! So delicious!

Ikea Hacker // I spruced up an ikea bookcase with some good old wrapping paper.

New Chairs // We finally got some new chairs (and I can't wait to do some re-upholstering).


Apple-Pears // We discovered the perks of having our own backyard and harvested some apple-pears.

We are the CHAMPIONS! // The Unicorns won the German Super Bowl and my bro was MVP!

Power Drill // I got creative with my power drill while carving pumpkins.

Pillows and Frames // I finally got to decorating the house with a wall collage and some pillows.

Cookies, Lots of Cookies // I baked over twelve dozen cookies for our work cookie decorating contest!


We celebrated Thanksgiving and spent time with family. 

DIY // I got bit by the DIY bug again and re-finished a thrifted side table.

Upholstering // I finally got up the guts to try an easy little reupholstering project.

Friendsgiving! // Food + Friends = Fun! 


December was full of Christmas fun. Decorating our house (our first time putting up outside lights!), putting up the tree, and trying to keep BBoy away from our Christmas presents. We rounded out the month with a lot of family time and celebration. A great way to end the year!

Projects! // Check out all my winter-y projects (snow globes, yarn letters, hobo mittens, and pom poms)

Ugly Sweaters // We hosted our first Ugly Christmas Sweater Party with great success! 

I hope your year was as great as ours! Here's to a happy, healthy 2012!

Happy New Year!

P.S. Don't forget to check out a year's worth of yummy cookies and treats here!

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