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The Gum Wall- and yes, of course we all made our contribution to this sticky wall.




I’ve waited a long time, too long, to taste these donuts again.



The first Starbucks, can you stop the difference in this sign and the sign for all other Starbucks?  I guess it is pretty obvious.



It was a fun day out with the family.  We had to give the kids an education on marijuana use, after there were several questions about “what are all these people doing?”

Until tomorrow.





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This is a great hike for families.  It about a mile through lush Evergreens to beautiful ice caves and waterfalls.

It was a brisk fall day but the sun was out so we were pretty stoked about that, these girls were ready.


Getting close…



We made it and then watched some ice climbers for awhile, talk about a workout!



Jeff in his glory.



One of my favorite pictures from this hike.



We didn’t leave before taking a few selfies.



And what is better than grabbing lunch (literally grabbing) from a conveyer belt full of sushi.  The kids loved this place, how could you not.




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Don’t miss this place if you come to the Seattle area… just don’t.  My pictures aren’t great but I assure you this place is just plain cool.  It is hard to photograph boats moving through locks from Lake Washington to the Puget Sound or vice versa.




Fish Ladder is just across the bridge. We watched as salmon fought hard upstream, like any mother would do, to lay their eggs.  I couldn’t help but feel like I wanted to help them, scoop them up and bring them to where they needed to be.  But the journey must happen for these fish just like it needs to happen in our lives too, even when times get tough.




There is also a great interactive visitors center with a friendly staff.  Although the center was somewhat dated it was super informative in a hands on way for the kids.




One of my most favorite parts of the Hiram Chittenden Locks are the beautiful grounds and gardens that surround it.  We were there at the end of October and weren’t sure we would see much in the way of flowers.  We were all pleasantly surprised and excited to get to see some of these beauties.



Peace Out!




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I begged and pleaded them not to get wet, only because I knew what the ride home could be like in wet clothes.  I thought that maybe we could just watch the fountain close up but not too close.  I must say this fountain is mesmerizing to watch and I could have sat there for a long while… actually we did sit there for a long while.  Long enough to run like mad to find a restroom for 4 kids all at different times. 

The boys, early on.


The girls early on.



20 minutes later…





The only child completely dry upon leaving was Freya, the four year old.   There something about my kids and water.



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Ok I’m over Seahawks losing this Superbowl… well, not really.  But none the less, I have to focus on other things and remember this is just a FOOTBALL GAME!  Speaking of Seattle, here is a post from when we were in Seattle…


We are in Seattle so how could we not take the kids to the Space Needle.  I have to thank our friend pk for mentioning the coupons Bartell Drugs was offering on the Space Needle; for every one adult ticket purchased two children entered free.  We are 2 adults and 4 children…bam…$48 bucks for the 6 of us to visit the Space Needle.  Can’t beat that!



Jeff and I have visited the needle before, about 10 years ago.  Since then the entire viewing area at the top as been updated.  There are a few interactive exhibits and a few cameras with live feeds on TV screens that you can play around with.  While messing around with one screen, I started chatting with a few guys next to me.  We were laughing as we zoomed in on landmarks in the area and also in on people.  As we were laughing, I put myself in the position of the person sitting at the fountain completely unaware that so many eyes were on them.  It felt a little creepy for a brief moment and then it passed and we continued on zooming in on various places and people… these guys had me laughing so hard.

Here is the screen and fountain right below the Space Needle in Seattle Center.



New and improved visitors center.



This was the sky from the top of the Space Needle…


From the time we took the elevator down and walked outside, things had changed a bit… a matter of about 47 seconds. The sky from the ground.



Now with the sun out there was no going inside, so we headed toward the Pacific Science Center to have at it in their outside water area, all part of our museum membership program.  After enjoying the outdoor area, we were sure that we would be headed back here again soon.

The human hamster wheel.





More water and science fun.



We took a ride on the monorail when the sun departed once again.  While we were waiting for the monorail we took a moment to observe this vending machine that sparked our curiosity. We’ve never witnessed a vending machine that sold an oven mitt.  And as odd as it was to see 12th man t-shirts being sold in a vending machine, in this city it made sense to me…. these Seahawk fans are hard core.  There aren’t too many places around here that you don’t see the number 12.






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It only seems appropriate to kick off my posts about Seattle with our tour of Century Link Field, being that the Seahawks are about to kick some Patriot butt at the Superbowl tonight!!


You know that saying, when in Rome do as the Romans do?

Well, when in Seattle do as the Seahawk fans do, seems more appropriate…. these fans, they are like none other.

This is located right before the players enter the tunnel.  The faded part on the lower right side is where the players touch for good luck before entering the tunnel.  Worked well this year.

So what better place to go to acclimate to the Seahawk revolution than a tour of Century Link Field.

Our tour was on a Friday, two days prior to the Seahawks vs. Giants game.  Everyone, and I mean everyone, on the tour was from the tri-state area, mostly New Yorkers.  We fit in perfectly with this east coast crowd, minus the New York accent.  I can not and will not say this about all New Yorkers, because I think mostly New Yorkers are really friendly, but these guys and girls were obnoxious.  I guess it could have been worse, the people could have been from New Jersey…Ha ha ha.

Can you tell which kid was most psyched to be here?  Well, maybe you can’t tell from these pictures but I assure you that Korben was pretty stoked about this tour.



This tour was so great for so many reasons.

1. When is it not cool to stand on an NFL football field, especially of a team you have been cheering for for 10 plus years now.






2. The Press room.  Look at these smiles!




3. Box Seats.



4. Broadcasting booth



5. Locker room shenanigans.



4. Blues skies!!



This was a super fun day for our family!



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And it feels good to meet again.  I’m feeling a bit nostalgic, seeing the hospital where Korben was born,  seeing the first house we bought, visiting with old friends, and remembering just how lush and green this beautiful state is (the western part anyway).  What I have seemed to have forgotten is how much it truly rains here.  But I know that behind all those clouds are the most majestic mountains I have ever encountered in my 39 years of life.  Oh, how I would love to see them again.

We’ve had an amazing fall with incredible weather, that is until we crossed the Cascade Mountain pass on 90 to enter the Seattle area. And then the rain started and it hasn’t stopped in days!  I will not!… I will not let this rain stop us from getting out to show our children the stunning Emerald City.  Well, maybe not so stunning right now being that you can’t even see the city behind the dense clouds.

We went out anyway.  If there is one thing to remember about this area, it is how quickly the weather can and does change.

First up… Oxbow Farm in Carnation, WA.  In between the rain we did manage to get some pumpkins for carving and painting.  This farm is a sweet little place.  No charge to roam the farm and read their informative signs, which we did even in the rain.





We also met the owners of the Wicked Pies food truck, in the Oxbow parking lot mud lot who were just closing up shop truck.  We had a brief discussion on New York style pizza.  They insisted that is what they made… the real deal… NYC pizza.  I will have to be the judge of that next time they are around town and open.  Too many times now I’ve been told by pizza shop owners, that their pizza was NYC style and so far I’ve been extremely disappointed.

It was a fun day in the country, on the outskirts of Seattle.  I am so excited to get into the city again, back to some of my most favorite spots.

To be continued…




Three reasons why I loved this science center:

1.  It was empty.  Which was great for us, but I assume not good for the science center.

2.  There was something for all 4 kids 6 of us.

3.  We saw things here that we hadn’t yet seen elsewhere.  After stopping at so many science/discovery museums things are all starting to look the same… this wasn’t the case here.


The main exhibit here is a T-Rex named Sue.  This particular T-Rex is about 90% complete, the most complete T-Rex ever.  We aren’t much into dinosaurs, so as impressive as this dinosaur was, my kids didn’t stop for a second to check it out, especially when they spotted exhibits that involved water.

As a side note,  you may notice that the quality of some of these pictures are superb.  That is because the day we were here there was also a photography student here.  He was taking lots of pictures of Sue and then he asked if he could take some pictures of us and the kids.  I said sure and the next day he sent us some of the pictures he took.

Meet Sue.

Sue 18


I have to be honest, I’m not sure what they are looking at here but it must have been interesting.



Listening to the radio by biting on the straw.



Jeff and Korben spent a lot of time at this tube wall, creating the prefect path for a traveling ball. Between the water exhibits and this wall, it was like Korben had died and went to heaven. 




My personal favorite, the paper airplane shooter.

Airplane Construction.


And shoot…



While Jeff and the girls were shooting paper airplanes Koah was creating his own flying object with a paper cup and a fan.



But even better than the airplane shooter was watching Koah’s hair stand on its end.  For some reason this struck us all as very very funny.  Koah placed his hands on this large silver ball while Kenzie turned a crank, creating static electricity.   I know I know… it’s not nearly as funny for you as it was for us.  But you gotta love Koah’s face here.



A few other highlights.



As you can see here we had the place to ourselves, which always helps to make for a stress free day (mostly).



I highly recommend this science center.  We spend a good portion of our day here and it was well worth the stop.  It is in the heart of downtown Spokane, just steps away from the Spokane public library and only a few blocks to Riverfront Park.


We found it.




This is located in Riverfront Park at the heart of the city of Spokane.  We didn’t spend too much time at Riverfront Park since by the time we arrived there, there was little daylight left.  From what we saw the park seemed to have a nice variety of activities, even though some of the main attractions were closed for the season.

We were disappointed when the gondola ride was closed.  But that didn’t stop us from creating our own fun, like we have grown accustomed to doing.  The city blocks were a big hit for Freya.



In this area of the park the rides were closed and ice rink wasn’t quite ready for skating yet.  It was a neat little area that we unintentionally wound up exploring in search for a bathroom for the big K.  We never did find that bathroom.  So next time you are in Spokane stay clear of the  wet stop next to the little brown building by the…. oh never mind.



This park is well known for its beautiful waterfalls/rapids and its amazing bridges.  By the time we reached the falls we were only able to capture this one bridge by this one small area of the falls.  Not far from this bridge was another bridge that was super pretty.  We stood on it just as dusk fell and listened to the falling water although we couldn’t really see it.



This sign couldn’t have come into view at a more perfect time.  Freya was having a tantrum in the van about… well, that part is not important nor can I even remember.  It was one of those “take cover your life depends on it” kind of tantrums.  We had all made an effort to calm her with results ending in scratches and/or random van junk getting hurled at us.  But then I saw this sign…pointed it out to her and it was like a switched turned off inside her.  Instant joy!  I have thought about this sign often since this day and have even considered investing in one for those dire need situations but we all know it never works as good the second time around.



And then we went for ice cream but that is not too note worthy since it seems to be a nightly event.  Now there’s idea,  I travel the country testing out all the ice cream shops I can find.  No, all the bakeries I find…yeah that’s it!

I’m gonna stop now.  Good night!