Gosh, I can't believe that it's already been one week since we got back from our trip to Washington. We've been so busy since coming home and it seems that the time just slipped away from me. It's funny - I started this blog the day after we got back and I'm just now getting back to it. Better late than never, right? I'm super excited to share all about this trip though, because we had so much fun and did so much in the 6 days that we were there.
We flew into Washington on the Fourth of July and landed in Seattle at about 2 pm. Our brother-in-law, Chad, and Taylor's cousin, Tane, came to pick us up from the airport. Tane and his mom, Shelli, were actually in town all the way from New Zealand, so it was a fun surprise to see him when we got picked up.
From the airport we went straight to Ga's (Taylor's mom) house - all of our family was there and we were excited to see everyone. Also, Ga had just bought a new house and we couldn't wait to see it for the first time.
It didn't take more than 5 minutes after getting to the house for Taylor to steal this little nugget and snuggle him up.
This is my sis-in-laws little guy, but he is a clone of baby Taylor. Take a look.
SO HAPPY to be home
After hanging out for a little while, it was time to do some fireworks on the street!
Shelli + Ga
Taylor + Tane
After fireworks at home, we left the kiddos with Ga and the grown ups headed into town for the big firework show.
Downtown Puyallup for fireworks!
PS. If you're visiting Washington (Seattle area) over the Fourth of July, the firework show in downtown Bellevue is our very FAVORITE!
And that wrapped up the Fourth of July!
Taylor and I had left Austin that morning at 3:45 am, so we crashed hard that night.
On Sunday we woke up rested and ready for a new day. Taylor went golfing with his dad and I spent the day with the girls. We went to the mall to do some shopping and then came home, relaxed and I got ready to go and meet Taylor and his dad for dinner.
Taylor + I had dinner with his dad, step-mom and some of their friends at the country club.
And, in the spirit of Christmas in July, Taylor was sporting his most festive golf polo.
After dinner we headed over to Mercer Island to hang out with the family that I used to nanny for - when I was their nanny they just had one little girl and now they have a new little baby boy!
How precious are these kiddos?!
We love these guys so much and we always can't wait to see them whenever we go back to Washington.
They just met and were best buds already.
And these two . . . they've always been best buds. Just look.
See? BEST BUDS
After seeing the kiddos and hanging out for a little bit, it was time to put the kids to bed and Preston requested that I put her to bed that night . . . melt my heart! I read her a book, snuggled her for a good couple of minutes and then both Taylor + I tucked her in and kissed her goodnight. Seriously - melt my heart. We love her!
After the kiddos were in bed, the four of us headed down to the wine cave for game night and wine!
A rule when going into the wine cave is that you have to wear fur - so fur it was.
We drank wine, laughed and played Telestrations After Dark (which was fun and yet slightly mortifying for my innocent heart, haha). And then all of the sudden it was after midnight and we needed to get home- time flies when you're having fun!
One more picture for the road and we were on our way.
We seriously love this fam so much!
Onto Day #3! Saturday was all about Taylor's dad - he turned SIXTY and we had a big party planned for him!
The birthday party was a hit - a ton of friends showed up to wish Tay's dad a happy 60th and we had so much fun celebrating him!
Happy 60th birthday dad-in-law!
After the birthday party closed down, Taylor + I went to visit his cousin and see her new condo - then to finish out the day, we went to Dick's for fries and chocolate shakes. YUM.
For those that don't know - Dick's Drive In is famous in Seattle. We always make sure to go at least once whenever we're back - if you're visiting, do yourself a favor and make a stop there!
Sunday morning rolled around and we headed out the door early to meet my sis-in-law and her family for Church. After Church we all went and got doughnuts (Taylor + I's tradition) and then Taylor and I headed into Seattle for the Mariners game!
Fun story - my friend from school growing up (elementary, middle and high school) is a starting pitcher for the Mariners - Marco Gonzalez. Marco was able to snag us a couple of tickets to the game on Sunday and we were pumped to go!
Turns out when you get tickets from a player, the seats are pretty stinking good #thanksMarco
The M's lost, but it was a fun game nonetheless.
After the game we went and picked up Taylor's Nana, because she was coming to spend the night at Ga's house with us. We spent that night talking, listening to stories and spending some good time with Nana - we love her!
On Monday morning we drove Nana back up to Bellevue where she lives and where we used to live. Then Taylor + I spent the day hanging out in Bellevue and Kirkland - our very favorite places.
We lived in downtown Bellevue before moving to Austin and we loved it there. If you missed my post about our time living in Washington, you can read Part One here and Part Two here.
We parked at the downtown park and then walked up to Bellevue Square to get some coffee from one of our favorite little spots, Woods Coffee.
After we had our coffee we walked to our favorite restaurant, Tavern Hall, to get sweet potato fries. Then we walked back to the park and sat on a bench while we ate our fries and drank our coffee. It was perfect and totally made us miss living there.
We took the long way back to our car and walked down main street, because it's beautiful and I love it.
Whenever we go back to Bellevue, we make sure to drive by our old place. This time was no different,
Hey old house!
After hanging out in Bellevue for a little bit, we drove over to Kirkland and went straight to the water.
I looooooooove Kirkland. One day we want to raise our babies here - it's the sweetest city and it sits right on Lake Washington, so you have views like this wherever you go.
Kirkland, you are so dreamy.
While we were sitting there just staring at the water, I started to cry. I'm not gonna lie - I miss our life there a lot. We do like Texas and we do embrace the season that we're in, but every once in a while we have moments where we really miss it there. Sitting there on the water was totally one of those moments.
It felt good to be back, even for just a couple of hours.
We left Kirkland in just enough time to make it down to Parker's Vacation Bible School opening night festival! How cute does he look? The theme was country and they had games, pony rides, blow up slides and bouncy houses. He really wanted his Uncle Tay to come so there was no way we were gonna miss it.
How cute are these two!?
To Taylor's disapproval, I taught Parker how to give a wet willie here . . . Parker loved it and Uncle Tay hated it, haha.
One last pony ride
After the festival we headed back to Ga's house, made dinner and chilled for the night. The next day we woke up and headed into Seattle to take the ferry over to Bainbridge Island. If you ever ask me what to do in Seattle, my first answer will always be to take the ferry to Bainbridge Island. The ferry is my favorite thing to do in the city - I love it.
Once on the island, we went straight for downtown - we had our car with us, but you can walk to downtown from the ferry landing. We walked around town, went in some stores (their stores are the cutest!), got a coffee, treated myself to a gf roll and pastry and just hung out in the town for a little while before catching the ferry back to Seattle.
I think Bainbridge is the cutest little town - it's so quaint and charming! This little place here is a salon.
Charming, isn't it?
If you visit Seattle, go and visit Bainbridge too. And if you're gluten free, make a stop at Blackbird Bakery, because that Raspberry Almond Muffin was to.die.for.
We didn't stay on the island real long - we wanted to get back to Kirkland to grab lunch at one of our favorite spots before they closed.
On the ferry ride back to Seattle, I had another moment. I cried again, because it was our last full day and I was sad to leave - this time though, Taylor caught it on camera and in light of being authentic, I thought I'd share the photo(s) with you.
Soooooo, here goes.
Phase 1 | Selfie and trying to get me to smile
Phase 2 | He managed to get me to "smile", although perhaps the fakest smile I've ever given
Phase 3 | Close-up for full effect, black mascara tears and all
You are welcome.
Back to (real) smiling!
I love the ferry.
After the ferry ride, we went back to Bellevue Square, because I wanted to grab a sugar cookie - Jenny Cookies, which is a local bakery shop, sells her cookies at Nordstrom and I've been wanting to try one for a long time so as soon as I found out that they were available at the Bellevue Nordstrom, we went and snagged one.
And then it was time for LUNCH! We went to HB Beverage Co. in Kirkland and got our favorite Acai bowls - this is no joke the BEST Acai bowl you'll probably ever get. Plus, it's massive (in case you couldn't tell)
We took them to one of the beaches in Kirkland and we sat on the dock while we ate them
Favorite food, favorite view.
We spent the rest of the afternoon wandering around the waterfront and relaxing before we went and met up with one of Taylor's old students. Later that night we went back to his dad's place for our last night in town - the four of us (Tay, myself, his dad and step-mom) went out to dinner and then went back to the house and watched a movie.
The next morning we said goodbye to his dad + stepmom and then headed down to his mom's place to hang with her and his sisters before our flight that afternoon.
We took a walk to our favorite coffee shop, went home and got all packed up and then headed over to the YMCA to swim with the kiddos.
Then it was time for us to go home - Taylor's mom brought us to the airport and we flew out that night.
And that's it! This may have been the longest post I've ever done - if you've made it this far, THANK YOU!
We had the best time on this trip - it's not often that we get to take 6 days off to go somewhere, so this trip was extra special to us. We've only been home a week and we're already looking forward to our next trip home.
Hey, hey y'all!
I am currently sitting at the airport in San Francisco - Taylor & I are making our way to Seattle to visit family for the week and celebrate my father-in-laws 60th birthday - woo!
We've got a good 4 hour layover here in San Fran, so I thought it would be the perfect time to share my Seattle travel guide with you. I get asked all the time about Seattle and what to do there, where to eat, things to see, etc. so I put together a guide of our favorite things to do in + around the city.
As most of you probably know by now, our love for Seattle runs pretty deep - it's a special place to us for a lot of reasons, so I hope you love it as much as we do! I'd love to hear what you did while visiting so comment below and share!
And before I go - if you missed my two posts about living in Bellevue, you can read part one here and part two here.
Okay, gotta run and catch a plane!
Download the guide for free HERE
Last week I headed back to Colorado for some sweet family time and it was truly perfect - I hadn't been back home in over a year, so this trip was well overdue and very much needed. Taylor didn't join me this time, because he was up to his neck in school, tests and homework, so I booked a last minute flight and headed home without him.
My sister + hubby were also home one of the days, so I got to catch up with them the first afternoon there. They just got a new little golden doodle puppy, who I have since fallen so in love with. Her name is Scout and she is just the most precious little thing, don't ya think? Lucky for me, my parents are dog sitting for 6 weeks while my sis + hubs are in North Dakota training for their jobs, so I got to spend the whole trip with her.
I got to Denver on Saturday afternoon and my sis came to pick me up. She and her hubby just got a new apartment in the Denver area, so she was excited to show me around. My parents met up with us a little bit later and then we all headed into Belmar, a cute downtown district near their house, and went to a brewery. Later we ordered a couple of pizzas and sat around the house relaxing and playing some games. The weather was also a brisk 60 degrees and I was loving it. It felt like fall and I instantly found myself craving a pumpkin spice latte . . . in June.
Scout + I became fast friends.
Later that night we headed back to my parents house and spent the rest of the night relaxing. Taylor and I are really into this Hallmark show right now, it's called Signed, Sealed and Delivered and it's our new favorite. I knew my parents would love it too, so we watched the first episode that night and they became instant fans.
On Sunday morning we woke up and headed to Church and after we came back and played with Scouty in the backyard. Again - how cute is she?
For whatever reason, I was super eager to dig through some of my old boxes in the basement and see if I could find some of my old yearbooks. I haven't been able to find them for years and sadly, still no luck. I did, however, find this verrrrry artsy sock puppet that I did so many years back. Such an artist, huh?
The rest of the afternoon was spent lounging around and soaking up some pretty Colorado weather. My dad pulled out this chair that apparently he's had for years and I've just never known about - I loved it and so did Scout apparently.
I love my parents' neighborhood - it has a park, baseball fields, batting cage, tennis courts, walking paths and all of that fun stuff. They kept asking me if I wanted to go into town to do something and I didn't - I was so content hanging around the house and neighborhood. Most of my visit was honestly spent in the backyard and that's just how I liked it.
Every night we'd go on a walk together and a couple of the nights they had baseball games going on, so we went a watched the little league kiddos play.
And just like that, it was my last full day there. I still hadn't seen my brother yet, so my mama + I went into town to visit him and his girlfriend, Erin. It's always so fun to see him - we don't get to see each other near enough.
The next morning I woke up and went straight to my dad for a hug - I hate the last day of a trip!
After a lazy morning, I got up, packed and got ready for the airport. A couple last snuggles with Scout to finish off the trip + back to Austin I headed.
This trip was so laid back and easy - I loved every second. These days usually when I see my family, it's often the same time that the rest of our family is also there, which is amazing, but also sort of chaotic. To have a few days with just my parents was soothing to my soul. We really didn't do much of anything other than hang out around the house - we cooked dinners together, had fires in the backyard, watched a little tv, went on walks and just soaked up the sweet time together.
Until next time, Colorado.
I'm Emilee. 26. Homebody. Believer in a simple + intentional life. Daughter of the King. Living in Austin with my hubs.
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