This has been the most family-filled August I’ve had- since, well, probably moving away for college. Seriously, all but two of my siblings visited our home last month, and the two that didn’t, I saw at my folks. It’s been wonderful! I’ve already catalogued the first three family events: reunion, Karlsven visit, and Grandma and Poppa Foutz, so now we’re on to Devin and Jessica, Dantzel and my folks, and then Derek. (I’ll admit to feeling rather popular! wink. Please tell me it’s not just because I live in a gorgeous place.)
Devin and Jessica got free stand-by tickets and decided to use them to visit Seattle, which was quite an honor. I was determined to treat them to a fun trip, because they’re newlyweds, and he’s my younger brother, and because I want them to come back again, and again!
I think what sets Seattle apart from many cities is it wealth in three areas: vibrant city life, gorgeous beaches/water ways, and breathtaking mountain escapes. So we planned our three days accordingly. Day 1: City, Day 2: Water, Day 3: Mountains.
Both Dev and Jess were sweet to help take care of the boys while they were there. Only a true man can confidently wear a baby- and I must say Devin was really styling in the Ergo. Though to be fair, Jess was model-worthy as well.
But I digress, besides wanting to see Pikes, Dev and Jess didn’t have much preference regarding what else we saw downtown, so I decided to take them to a few places I’d heard were interesting- Capitol hill, Volunteer Garden (we’d been here). We decided to walk everywhere, which actually turned out to be a wonderful way to see the city.
I enjoyed stopping in several artsy Cap’ hill boutiques. You never know what you’ll find in these sorts of places. This place featured succulents, air plants, botanical prints, clothes and, you got it a grizzly bear. Why not.
This furry guy definitely up-ed the interest level for Scotland, for which I was grateful.
After hearing Jessica is an ice cream lover, we decided to let her try Seattle’s favorite ice cream- Molly Moon’s.
Notice Anders, he conveniently took advantage of their distraction to steel Jessica’s cone.
Scotland was happy to revisit an old haunt. (We visited Molly Moon’s several times together when we lived around the corner from the one in Wallingford. Back then I had pregnancy to excuse the expense on!)
Not sure why books make Scotland feel this way. . . but. I loved dropping in Elliot Bay Book Co. I always leave book stores like these committed to reading more.
Dev and I had to poise by this sign, because, well,
we’re cheap frugality is our jive.
One of our recent discoveries- the historic water tower at Volunteer Park. The view from on top is stunning!
I really enjoyed walking through the historic Capitol hill neighborhoods. I miss the colonials and tudors that I ran through in Shaker Heights, but the homes in Capitol Hill reminded me of them. I’m grateful there are still people with money willing to keep up these old beauties.
We ended the day watching my younger sister’s first college soccer game. Go Ad!
Catching falling acorns.
We stopped by for the food truck experience at El Camion. My cochinita pibil burrito was amazing. (Ooo. I kind of want one right now. And it’s 10PM.)
They spent the afternoon at the beach with the boys while I taught, and then headed out on the town for dinner, just the two of them.
My youngest sister, Dantzel, joined us for day three. It was so fun to have her. She’d never done a tough hike like we did and her repeated statements of awe and wonder made the hike all the more enjoyable. We climbed Mt. Pilchuck. It wasn’t the best day to climb it, but you work with what you have- and I had a strong back that could carry Scotland, so we went for it. (Thanks Devin!)
One of the highlights of the hike was all the huckleberries, or mountain blueberries. They were everywhere- and got tastier and tastier as we gained in elevation. (Or we got hungrier!)
The hike wasn’t as fun for Scotland, since we made him stay in the pack most of the time. So he was thrilled whenever we let him down to pick berries.
The final descent a boulder scramble to the pinnacle of the mountain! (A bit precarious while carrying children, but do-able!)
Despite the cloud cover the view was still breathtaking. (If the clouds weren’t there we could have had a 360 view of the Cascades with Baker, Adams, Rainier, and St. Helens, the Olympics, and the Puget Sound in view. . .Okay I’m still a bit bummed the clouds didn’t clear! I’ll be going back.) That being said, we did get a quick glimpse of Rainier when the clouds parted for a minute.
I’ll be bold enough to say I doubt there have been many 6 month olds in this look out! I must brag about the Ergo, I carried Anders all six miles in the Ergo (except for the last half mile where I carried him in my arms.) and I wasn’t sore or uncomfortable at all. I love this thing!
On top of the world.
This photo of Devin’s gives you a pretty good idea of how steep this final stretch was.
It was a spectacular hike. Looking at these pictures makes me want to hit the mountain again. If only Tom didn’t work so much! Maybe I just need to get a lama that will carry Scotland so I can go more often! He’s a great hiker, but hikes such as these are just not achievable for a three year old. Any suggestions for a great pack for carrying older children. Scotland has pretty much outgrown the one we used.
We spent the final evening together eating cookies, and playing Dominion. It was great fun. Dantzi was a great addition. Her carefree, “Let’s Party!” attitude lightened everyone up and we all had a great time.
I have long wanted to play the fun, entertaining older sister role. I’ve been begging Dantzi and Adalee to come up for a week-long visit alone to Seattle for the past year, so having Dantzi and Devin here was such a treat. I love giving people new experiences, and while I had a hard time reading Devin, Dantzi was thrilled to be having them, which, in turn, made me very happy. She threw her arms out when we reached the top of the mountain, she smiled brightly as she picked huckleberries, and she stood at the helm of the ferry and let the wind blow through her long hair.
(Meanwhile, Tom worked, and worked and worked. Poor man. Thank goodness he loves his job. And thank goodness I love mine!)