Blogfriends in The ‘Burgh

Filed under all of my friends are prettier than i am, travels

I have to admit that the first time I read Cassie‘s blog, I didn’t know quite what to think. Well, actually, I did know quite what to think, and what I thought was that she was some mostly-unemployed teen mom who wasn’t sure who her dad is. I wasn’t totally unjustified:

1) She and her husband decided to start having kids right away, so even though they look really young, they’re well out of the age range where old ladies might faint and townsfolk might try to stone Cassie when she runs by with her triple-wide jogging stroller.

2) She only works one day a week because she spends the rest of her time raising her beautiful children to not judge others by the first page of posts on their blogs.

3) Her URL may include the words “whosmydaddy”, but that’s just because she has several father figures. Not because her mom was a lady of the night with an undetermined number of partners.

Anyway. After months of being like, “Who do all of my other blogfriends like Cassie so much?”, I checked her out again and realized that for some reason, I’m really interested in this person who blogs about children, cooking, and exercise.

I know. I have no idea why, either.

So while I was in Ohio for two weeks, Cassie and I made a plan to somehow coerce my best friend, Tracey, to drive me the three hours to Pittsburgh so the three of us could, you know, stuff our faces, taunt some geese, and generally align our menstrual cycles, as women are wont to do.

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

We met as Cassie’s house just outside of the city and said a quick hello to the kids before thrusting them at her wonderful husband, Matt, and driving downtown to enjoy the Christmas decorations

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

and dinosaur decorations,

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

to eat some saucy Mexican food at Las Velas,

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

and to walk along the shore of the Allegheny. Or the Monongahela. I’m not sure.

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

As we were coming up from the riverfront, Cassie warned us to watch our step and to not excite the geese, who frequently attack her with their great, stabby beaks while she’s out running. She began quietly herding them using her best mama duck walk,

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

but of course Tracey couldn’t help but antagonize them:

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

Cassie drove us in her fancy rich people SUV to the neighborhood of Mount Washington, which is perched high on a cliff that overlooks the entire city and takes advantage of it with these balconies that hang out over the edge:

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

It was a cloudy, rainy, gross day, but the view was nonetheless amazing and had us regretting that Columbus and NYC are both totally flat:

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie
view larger

I tried to take some glamour shots of Cassie and pretty much failed,

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

but I was a teeny bit more successful with Tracey, probably because she’s more used to my shenanigans. And is also kind of slutty. (Just kidding! She’s totally respectable!)

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

We took in all of the sights:

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

and then Cassie drove us from neighborhood to neighborhood, pointing out all of Pittsburgh’s landmarks, until we go to the most important one of all, Oakmont Bakery:

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

This place was extensive. Just cases and cases of pies, donuts, truffles, macarons, cupcakes, chocolate-dipped everything, cake pops, cinnamon buns–you name it. And all of it was astoundingly cheap. When the cashier charged me less than $6 for my mini peanut butter pie, lemon French macaron, buckeye, and black and white cookie (covered with icing on both sides!), I told her she must have mischarged me. But no.

Our diabetes satiated, we drove back to Cassie’s house to let the kids entertain us for a couple of hours. I find children really intimidating and, you know, generally annoying, but hers are both friendly and angelic, quick to smile for the camera and slow to pee on the carpet.

Claire tried on all of her costumes for us:

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

Luca played with everything and everyone in the house:

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

and Mae proved that no picture can adequately capture her cuteness (but I sure tried):

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

They were the

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

most adorable

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

family ever:

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

Even while this was happening:

Pittsburgh with Tracey and Cassie

Cassie did such a great job of tour guiding us that I left feeling like Pittsburgh is place not just for headsick sports fans but for real people who like amazing views, dirt roads just miles from downtown, and lots and lots of baked goods.

Thanks for the awesome time, Cassie! And get ready for our next visit, because I accidentally threw out my macaron and peanut butter pie on the way home with our Burger King trash and the wrapper for the cookie dough we ate that morning on the way to see you (what?), and you know that will not stand.


  1. Jessica R. says:


    I am so incredibly jealous. Looks like you guys had an amazing time and I’m putting that bakery on my list of places I must visit while I’m there.

    Amazing photos. I especially love the ones of the kids piling on top of Matt and the ketchup bottle dinosaur.

    Also, Cassie looks like she’s using her mom discipline face in her beauty shot.

  2. Serial says:

    Blogfriends everywhere!

  3. kimz says:

    I consider this post to be incomplete, and therefore unsuccessful, without a picture of the black and white cookie.

  4. Cassie says:

    So, I’m curious…which one is the best photo you’ve ever taken?

    Also, this was so sweet! I had a feeling you’d write, “HOLY CRAP, SHE’S SO ANNOYING AND HER KIDS ARE ANNOYING AND PITTSBURGH IS ANNOYING.” But I didn’t annoy you! So…you’ll have to visit again, so I can annoy you to the max.

  5. Andrea says:

    What a fun visit. MY TURN!

  6. Andrea says:

    In other words, come to Dallas and let me show you practically no cool touristy spots. Unless you’re into dead presidents and assassinations.

  7. Emily says:

    My niece pretty much rocks. Thanks for the awesome photos of her and my great-nieces and nephew! Oh, and that stinky Matt – haha!

  8. Um, this post was both brilliant and hilarious (the hilarious probably contributed to the brilliant…)

    And I’m pretty sure I need that ketchup dinosaur.
    I’m prepared to move my couches so it fits in the living room.


  9. Jen says:

    Aw, what a lovely family and visit and … ooooh … enchilada …. *slobber*

  10. bluzdude says:

    While I already had a good sense about Cassie and her awesomeness, I have to say that this post is put together absolutely brilliantly. Great pictures, great story, great city, great family.

  11. Christy says:

    Yet another reason to miss Philly. Just a short 4 hr drive to that bakery. Sigh..

  12. Jessica R. says:

    All those photos and not a single one of you. I’m disappointed!

  13. Tracey says:

    It really WAS a great day!

    I love the panoramic photo so much! I wish blogs were better optimized for viewing those, but the “click to enlarge” was a nice touch.

  14. Looks (and sounds) like so much fun!
    Except now I’m all hungry and such.
    And craving ketchup.


  1. Someone did all the work for me. « Sisters From Different Misters