Parents on the Penninsula

My parents came to visit this past weekend!!! We were very excited and quickly came up with an adventure to take them on. They are very amenable but also always up for a good adventure no matter the weather. This was all excellent as the weather for the first few days they were here was dreadful and rain was crushing us. 

Friday I rolled out of work early and grabbed lunch with my parents and then we headed up to Joshua's work to steal him and Walter to go adventuring. Also having Walter on this trip was so awesome, leg room, able to eat lunch in the rain in him, so good. We drove out to the Peninsula to stay in our little cabin right on the water. It was heated only by a wood burning stove and had no electricity. The waves washed up right outside our door and once it heated up it was such a cute little space. 
I was not very good at this
Next morning, in the middle of a downpour, we drove to Rialto Beach to check it out. It was high tide so we dodged some waves, walked on some logs, and got lots of photos with our hoods up. 

After that we headed to the Hoh Rainforest. We went on the coolest hike called Hall of Moses. The maple trees leave's were all changing colors and the branches were dripping in giant cascades of moss. The moss gave the trees such personality. One looked like a tree of wisdom, one looked like a dragon head reaching down to you, and the whole atmosphere was just stunning. The hike was only about a mile and a half but despite the rain we dawdled quite a bit. We also hiked the Spruce Nature Trail which popped us up alongside the river for a bit. Then once we were nice and soggy we loaded back into Walter to go back to the cabin where we made a fabulous dinner of sausages and veggies.

The next morning we lucked out and the rain halted! We got a giant rainbow on the beach in front of our place and we enjoyed muffins while watching the waves. I even put the team to work picking out white rocks on the beach for a project I have.

As a detour on the way home we swung by Fort Warden, which was a battlement along the waterfront. We wandered, in the sun!!!, along the old structures and had a little picnic outside. After that it was home, showers, clam chowder and grilled cheese, and the airport. It was sad to see them go but we were so thankful to get some uninterrupted time with them and to get to share Walter with them!


Walter the Westy's first adventure

We've been looking into Vanagon's for awhile now. As in Joshua finds them and I offer comments. Recently he found one in Sacramento, CA and was like this is the one. So we did it- we bought tickets, flew to California with only sleeping  bags, drove around in a van and then bought it! The man we bought it from was so kind and took such good care of the van. Also turns out buying a car and spending lots of money is a fast process so before you knew it the van was ours and we were driving it back to Seattle.

The first little town we came upon happened to be called YOLO which we found very amusing as this was the most YOLOey thing we've ever done. So we searched for a sign to get our van a selfie with. :) We grabbed some typical California In n Out burger and we were on our way. 
I think Joshua had a smile on his face the whole time he was driving the van. It felt like ours, it felt like home. We made lots of little pit stops, dreamt of adventures we wanted to go on, and discussed names for the van. Stopped at a little state park for the night where we got to pop the top and sleep in him! The previous owner gave us the foam mattress topper and it was amazing. We both woke up very giddy.

Then it was to the Redwood Forest NP. Figured since it was mostly on the way we didn't want to waste the drive or Walter's first adventure. We got passes to do the Tall Trees Grove which was filled with some very very tall redwoods. We got there early and had the trail to ourselves. It was quite magical to walk around among these beasts by ourselves.

Then I remembered a café and had him backtrack to snag some diner breakfast, worth it! Drove out to do the Fern Canyon hike, as featured in Jurassic Park. You walk up a creek, never been more thankful for waterproof boots, that is walled in by these 50 ft lush green fern walls. They are magical, that much texture on the walls towering over you was quite a sight. We also met another Westy friend in the parking lot. It appears we may have joined some kind of culture cult. I think Walter will equal many random friends, which we look forward to.

Then we still had about 6 hours to drive home. It was a haul and we rolled in at 2am Sunday night but decided it was still totally worth it to sneak in the hikes in the Redwoods. Monday was a little rough though.

Now to fix up Walter, Joshua the mechanical/electrical parts, me the inside fun parts. Can't wait to share his adventures!!!


Month of Cakes

October is oddly my busiest month of cakes. I have 1-2 every week. Luckily they all have a lot of variety to keep it fun. This year I made a Care Bear birthday cake, Flower Baby shower cake, Fiesta 1 year old smash cake, and I have an upcoming Daniel the Tiger cake. Plus United way bake sale at work is coming up so my freezer is quite full.

I really enjoyed the differences in each of these cakes. I even got to try out a few new techniques.

The flower cake was my first time trying buttercream roses. They were far from perfect but when I made a whole field of them they looked really spectacular. I loved all the texture they created. Plus it was a bonus that it was tons of frosting for the buttercream loving momma!

 The Care Bear cake was nerve wracking for me because you have to make the characters so perfect. Luckily I think my cheer bear turned out pretty darn cute. He's also totally edible- marzipan.

The fiesta cake was fun because they didn't give much direction. I got to doodle on the cake with bright colors. I like the textures the frosting took on and how it feels additive to the white background of the cake. I really hope she digs into it!

 Side note: I made a falafel waffle this week! It was so cool, also sooooo tasty!


Corn Maze & Pumpkin Patch

On our drive out to the hike Sunday we passed a corn maze, I casually mentioned that I'd like to do it if we had time on our way home. Cut to our way home when I was like nah let's skip it, he pushed, I caved cause I really did wanna do it so we turned around and it was lovely.

The farm was chill and the guys running it were so friendly. The maze was apparently shaped like a bat. We had to find 6 stations and answer the questions, all about bats.

It was an easy maze but still pretty fun to be meandering around among the corn stalks. The sky away from the mountains was blue and warm. Lovely to just exist outside and sit in some grass for a bit. We also snagged a cute little pumpkin for only $2.


Catching the Larches

This Sunday we packed up and headed east on Highway 20. Joshua thought he had this great fall loop hike, it has great sweeping views, it's a loop, a few lakes dot the trail. So we get on the trail and realize it actually had a pretty big dusting of snow the last few days and our fall hike is now a winter hike. At first we were a tad disappointed, and cold, but then we spotted the larches! We have been trying to catch these stunning golden trees. They are coniferous trees that loose their needles so they turn bright yellow. We've tried to catch them since we've lived here and always been too early, too late, hit the wrong spots. This loop was full of them, and the snow actually made them pop in a really magical way.

We started by heading up the steep side of the loop first so we had the first half of the trail almost to ourselves. The bright larches were so fun that we let our fingers get numb snapping photos of them.

The hike down from the pass we ran into gobs, I mean gobs of people hiking toward us. We were so glad we went the opposite way. The blue sky started peeping out more on our way down and the snow was much heavier on this side of the pass. Once we were out of the hike we headed to burger barn where we shared an oreo milkshake and an entire lap full of curly fries.