Family boating in the Pacific Northwest

You see us mostly heading to the mountains or the beach, but we like to do so many other things.  Something we enjoy and do with our whole family every summer is boating.  Boating in the Pacific Northwest is an amazing experience and there are so many ways to do it.  Discover Boating asked us […]

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 […]

Our Non Complete Guide to Lighthouses in the USA

Why in the world are we making a non complete guide to lighthouses in the USA??  Simple:  there are so many lighthouses that one could not possibly hope to visit them all… but we are trying to, so as we add more and more to our roster, we’ll share them too.  Having a non complete […]

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 […]

The Westin Seattle: missing the mark

We pride ourselves on giving honest and positive reviews of the hotels we visit, the parks we go to, the restaurants we dine in… but now it’s time to share one that’s not so great. As we go to more and more destinations and stay in different types of accommodations, we’ve really learned what works […]

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: Portland’s best day trip

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 […]

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 […]

Behind the Picture: Before the Splash at Poulsbo Fish Park

The story:  it was a fun day in the middle of the week and I had the boys with me.  Papa (Chris) was at work so the three of us were exploring.  We happened onto Fish Park.  That’s a weird name.  Weird but really cool.  We started trekking through the park and discovered that it’s […]

Behind the Picture: Port Ludlow Sunset and Reflections in the Marina

The story:  we love to play tourist at home.  That includes going to dinner at fun restaurants we wouldn’t normally dine at.  Port Ludlow is a beautiful, tiny port town on the Olympic Peninsula.  Unless you’re trying to get there, you’ll miss it.  In the 1800s it was a port for tall ships.  Today it’s […]

Pacific Northwest Sunsets: too beautiful to pass up

One of our favorite things to do when traveling is to watch the sunset.  The mood changes, the people quiet down (usually) and you say goodnight to the sun.  And we do a lot of local travel, so Pacific Northwest sunsets have a special place in our hearts.  Here are some of our favorite sunsets […]

Kayaking in the Pacific Northwest: just dipping the toe into it

Originally written for TrippinTwins travel blog. The Seattle area is best seen from the water:  sailing, on a ferry, or on a kayak.  Just short drives from the city are countless islands and bays to explore.  Across the Puget Sound are the Olympic and Kitsap Peninsulas, which are dotted with lakes and waterways, ready to be […]

Victoria BC: for a day or a week

We are blessed to live in Seattle, Washington. It’s close to the ocean, mountains, countryside and several other metropolitan areas.  One of our favorite cities to visit is Victoria BC.  The city touts itself as being more British than Britain.  Well, I can’t agree for certain, but it does a fine job of trying. If you’re […]

The Columbia Gorge: driving the northern road

One of our favorite movies of all time is Maverick, starring Jodie Foster and Mel Gibson.  I don’t know if it’s the humor, the ridiculous story or what, but if nothing else, there’s a lot to be said of the scenery.  Deserts, prairies, cliffs, buttes, winding rivers.  It’s amazing.  If you’ve ever been to eastern Washington, […]

Flying Solo: a one-parent road trip

I’m used to individual parenting. I mean, I’m home alone with the kids most of the time and I’m fine dealing with random tantrums and epic breakdowns with no logic behind them. When I’m on the road though and I’m staying in somebody else’s house, yeah no.  At home I’m the epitome of patience and […]