West Coast Weekend trips: exploring new cities one weekend at a time

It’s no secret that we love the weekends.  I mean, who doesn’t? With or without the kids we try to break away to a new city or visit one of our old favs whenever possible, and we’ve partnered with Hampton by Hilton to share some of what we think are the best destinations to be […]

A Seekender experience in Hood River, Oregon: relaxing with family time

There are days or weeks when we are just worn out; sometimes it’s from traveling a ton and sometimes it’s just because life can be a lot to deal with.  That’s why we always try to relax on our weekends and get a good recharge. We’ve partnered up with Hampton by Hilton to both help […]

A weekend in Port Townsend, Washington: Victorian charm meets the outdoors

More often than not we find ourselves visiting places we’ve been 10,000 times.  We don’t live far from Port Townsend, Washington and that’s where a lot of our family is so we are there quite often.  We love Port Townsend, as most Pacific Northwest residents do, and it’s our duty to share just why and […]

Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge: PNW nature at its finest

We love our hikes.  Winter, summer, whenever.  We also love visiting beaches.  Have you ever done beach hiking? Beach hiking is an awesome challenge because it is so different than hiking on a hard rock trail. The Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge is a perfect place to experience beach hiking as well as have some fun […]

Seattle’s Volunteer Park: a perfect break within the city

When you’ve lived in Seattle for a long time, you stop trying to find new things to do or you forget the fun things you used to do.  When we were much younger, Chris and I lived very close to Volunteer Park in the Capitol Hill neighborhood.  The Hill is one of Seattle’s oldest neighborhoods […]

Fall traditions: travel and pumpkins

Since summer keeps us going going going we are always a tiny bit excited for fall.  Fall is the perfect time to chill for a bit (for at least three weeks straight), prep for the next big trip (usually a warm couple weeks in Mexico) and do our pumpkin thing.  Yes, most families have some […]

Local learning at the Port Townsend Marine Science Center

We’ll never get tired of sharing certain types of things with the world.  We have our favorite destinations and activities and we’ll share lots of different ways to experience them.  Port Townsend, Washington is one of those destinations and something we love there is Fort Worden.  And at Fort Worden we have discovered the Port […]

Destination Dining with the Pretty Fork: an Orcas Island food escape

Okay, new favorite thing to do on a Thursday afternoon:  destination dining.  Whaaaaa?  Yep, it’s the coolest and most unusual, but most Pacific Northwest thing you can possibly do.  The Pretty Fork, a local Seattle progressive dining tour operator, has got the concept of destination dining down.   I heard about destination dining with the […]

Our Annual Family Reunion Trip – #HowWeFamily

Every year we get together with our family for a big family reunion trip.  Hold up, that’s a vague statement because our family is enormous.  We get together annually with our immediate family for a week at Lake Cushman on the Olympic Peninsula of Washington State.  We love it there; it’s beautiful.  We love even […]

Lake Cushman on the Olympic Peninsula: Tahoe of the North

Until I moved to San Francisco in my early 20s I’d always heard of Tahoe and people going to Tahoe for the summer or staying in a lodge for skiing at Tahoe for the winter and I never got it.  It seemed so common and yet so exclusive.  Well, it turns out that we have […]

A family travel adventure: Puget Sound itinerary

We get a lot of questions about visiting the Pacific Northwest with kids.  People want to know the obvious like “what are the can’t-miss sights?” or “should we really pack for cold weather in July?”  We’ll answer that second question first:  yes, it rains.  For the other questions though, here is the first of 3 […]

How travel impacts kids: interview with a 4 year old

We travel a lot, right?  Do you ever wonder what actually sticks with kids and makes a lasting impression?  When you’re planning your own vacation, do you seriously talk to your kids to see what they want to do or where they want to go.  After interviewing our own 4 year old, it’s become a […]

Silver Falls, Mt Rainier Nat’l Park: not to be missed

We’re going to do a stereotypical and highly ridiculous thing.  A lot of writers will tell you about the “only sight you need to see in…” or the “absolute most perfect…” and we try not to do that.  Ever.  Tell you what though, we are going to tell you about the best most worthwhile hike […]

A not-so Northern Exposure weekend in Roslyn, Washington

It’s probably been a long while since you have sat down and watched Northern Exposure, right?  Yeah, I can’t say that I’ve seen an episode in the last 20 years, but we went a had an awesome family weekend in Roslyn, Washington where they filmed it and the town is just as rustic, quirky, and […]

A beautiful day at Deception Pass, Whidbey Island

I’m sure we all have memories, either recent or from childhood, that are grossly inaccurate.  A great example is when you can recall a great hike and it’s been years and you think taking your kids on it will be a blast… and then you realize that it’s a hike along cliffs and above churning […]

A weekend at Washington Park in Anacortes

Apparently our new hangout is Anacortes.  We’ve now had several trips up, all for different reasons and love it.  We just returned from another awesome trip, this time specifically camping and spending the weekend at Washington Park in Anacortes.  We’d visiting the Park once before and it was fun, but this time we dedicated our […]

Family Friendly Wine Tasting AniChe Cellars

Family travel usually keeps us doing things like hiking and animal related activities, which we completely love, but what if we said that a new thing happening in Washington State adds a fun new aspect to family travel:  wine tasting.  That’s right, family friendly wine tasting is happening in the Pacific Northwest.   We travel […]

A visit to Fort Casey: more beaches and bunkers

The Pacific Northwest has countless spots where you can look around and say “Wow, I love it here!”  Seriously, every view is different and beautiful.  It’s also a place where kids can run wild and play on the beach (almost year round).  Fort Casey on Whidbey Island is such a place.  From forest trails to […]

An ideal PNW hotel: the Majestic Inn of Anacortes

So, if you read our article about Anacortes, you know that the town totally surprised us.  We always thought of it as a town that we just had to drive through to get to the ferry for the San Juan Islands, but we discovered it’s much more than that.  While there we stayed at the […]

Anacortes: a family travel surprise

Once upon a time we wrote this great article about why you shouldn’t write off a destination and basically said that you should always give a place a second chance or even just go experience it for the first time despite what others have said.  Anacortes, Washington is one of those places.  There are so […]

Spring at the Bloedel Reserve on Bainbridge Island

From the first day we moved to Suquamish, Washington we had friends telling us about the Bloedel Reserve on Bainbridge Island.  Always being busy and never being bored, we’d never carved out time to visit.  Well, we finally did and it was amazing! We’re going to keep it brief because the best way to explain […]

Fort Worden: beaches, bunkers and beauty

Beaches and bunkers.  That’s what we did this weekend.  We loved every moment of it.  If you’ve not lived on a US coast, you might not have ever been to a pre-WWII fort.  Close to home for us is Fort Worden State Park in Port Townsend, Washington.  Fort Worden rocks for a family travel day […]

Snoqualmie: the best day trip with kids. Ever.

If you live in Seattle you know that you’ll never be bored and that there are 10,000 day trips you can take in and out of the city.  Well, do you know what the best day trip just outside of Seattle is?  It’s actually a trip to Snoqualmie, both the falls and the town.  Snoqualmie […]

Day Hiking in Mt Rainier National Park: trails for any age

Even though we love going to Olympic National Park, Mount Rainier National Park is one of our favorite spots in the state of Washington. One of the things we love about Mount Rainier is that you can enjoy the North or the South Side and have very different experiences.  On the north side there are […]

Waterfalls of Mt Rainier National Park

There are few things that we’re just suckers for:  lighthouses, bathrobes, and waterfalls.  When you’re heading to the mountains to go hiking, you can only count on getting one of those boxes checked off, and it’s waterfalls.  Mt Rainier National Park is an easy day trip or multi-day camping destination for any type of traveler, […]

Waterfalls of the Columbia Gorge, a how-to guide

Two of our favorite things are hiking and waterfalls. Do you know what is really amazing? When you can actually put the two of them together. One of our favorite places to see waterfalls almost any time of year is the Columbia Gorge on the Oregon side of the river. The Columbia Gorge waterfall area […]

Leavenworth: more than a Bavarian façade

We live in the Seattle area of Washington State and we love it!  It’s got everything from the mountains to the Puget Sound.  Heck, even the ocean isn’t too far for a day trip.  We also have some really amazing small towns.  One of our favorites is Leavenworth, Washington.  It’s cute.  It’s quaint.  It’s manufactured. […]

A Sleigh Ride: not just for Christmas anymore

Let’s just be cheesy up front and quote some Johnny Mathis:  “Just hear those sleigh bells jingle-ing, ring-ting-tingle-ing too; Come on, it’s lovely weather for a sleigh ride together with you.”  Well, it was lovely weather when we were recently in Leavenworth, Washington and we did go on a sleigh ride even though it wasn’t […]

7 Reasons to Love and Hate Cross Country Skiing (but really love it)

I’ve had a few interviews in the last couple of weeks and been asked what sort of family travel we love to do.  The answer is always so quick to come to my tongue:  hot, sunny beaches.  And it’s true.  We just aren’t snow people.  Snow is pretty but it’s never our first choice, even […]

Icicle Brewing Co: microbrew heaven

There are so many approaches you can take to writing about a brewery.  You can highlight the unusual brewing process or talk about the great food they pair with beers.  You could tell the story of each beer’s creation.  How about we do a little of all of that to share about Icicle Brewing Co […]

Kingfisher Restaurant: unusual, stellar dining

We are always up for an unusual dining experience.  We love sushi when there’s the chef’s choice or ordering “catch of the day”.  Um, what’s it gonna be?  We also love when the dining style is totally unexpected.  Example:  you’re seated for fine dining and discover that it’s a buffet style dining room with really […]

Sleeping Lady Resort: an artful mountain retreat

As we stay in more and more hotels it becomes clear what we like and don’t like, what is good for family travel vs couples travel, and what’s just awesome.  We snuck away without the kids again (really, it’s not our norm) and got to celebrate our anniversary weekend across the mountains at the Sleeping […]

…and then there was the Waterleaf Spa…

A dream vacation is this:  a nice hotel, hiking, beaches, great food, fancy drinks in non-fancy cups, well behaved kids, an art museum or two, sunshine and massages everyday.  An actual vacation is this:  a nice place to stay or camp, hiking or chill walks, a beach that you might put your feet in the […]

8 Reasons to Lose Your Shoes at the Hyatt Olive 8

Confession:  we went somewhere without the kids.  Yep.  And we didn’t feel bad about it.  Well, maybe a little bad.  But, we showed up at the Hyatt Olive 8 and they welcomed us swiftly.  We made it up to our room and quickly discovered that we’d made the right choice to spend the weekend chillin’ out […]

Hiking Cape Flattery:  land’s end on the Olympic Peninsula

Want to have an awesome day hiking Cape Flattery?  Where?  Oh, I see.  You’ve never head of Cape Flattery.  Well, let us enlighten you about one of the most beautiful places in all of the Pacific Northwest. About four hours, maybe a little more, from Seattle is the Makah Indian Reservation.  If you watch the […]

A Cabin in the Woods:  why you should find one

Part of travel planning is finding suitable accommodations.  We’re pretty rough and tumble, so for us this could be a campsite or a cabin in the woods sooner than it’d be a 5 start hotel.  Not all of us are fortunate enough to know somebody with a cabin to borrow or have that second home […]

Family Camping With Kids: 5 Dad Hacks

Dads have the stereotypical reputation of a few key things:  bad jokes, BBQing and convincing the family to rough it.  None of these are bad stereotypes, but also none are true for every dad.  I’ll be honest, these all are true for us…and doubly so as we’re a gay dad household.  Our sons are used to […]

Behind the Picture at the Beach… without a helmet

The story behind the picture at the beach:  we live very close to a great beach.  Like, we can walk there in five minutes so we’re there ALLLLLL the time.  It’s still special and exciting to go even though we practically live there March through October.  This particular day was a very special one though.  […]

Behind the Picture at Point No Point Lighthouse

The story behind the picture:  we live in an amazing place called the Kitsap Peninsula.  It’s across the Puget Sound from Seattle and is just south of a major shipping lane.  It’s a place where you can watch small sailboats float by as three cruise ships barge through.  Because of the shipping lane, the Puget Sound […]

Behind the Picture: at the Aquarium Touch Tank

The story behind the picture:  I’m a stay-at-home dad (me, Rob) so I get to do fun stuff with the boys every day.  Chris works in Seattle five days a week, so most of his fun time is mainly on the weekends or when we’re traveling.  One of our favorite things to do is to […]