Thursday, December 8, 2011

weekend trip to vashon island

One of my favorite things about living in Washington is getting to live close to our friends Tyrel and Sophia.  They don't live super far away, but it takes a little longer simply because you have to take a ferry to Vashon Island (an island!)!  Since I grew up in Colorado, taking a ferry (or being on any boat in general) is SUPER FUN and exciting to me.  It's seriously one of my favorite things ever . . . especially when you have a view of Mount Rainier like the picture above, the chance of seeing orcas (Tyrel was late to work one day because the ferry had to stop to let the orcas cross!), and a billion giant jellyfish to count from the deck.  I love this place!

On this particular weekend that we went to visit, I had kayaking on my mind and Tyrel's family is lucky enough to live on a gorgeous beach, and happens to have access to a few kayaks and tons of animals.  We made friends (obviously) with all of the chickens, pigs, and goats (the donkey was scared of us!), and headed down there.  We also got to see little baby peacocks (only a couple of days old!), tadpoles (above), and lots of wild guinea pigs.  TOO CUTE!

Ty's family had a couple of paddles stolen, so Joel and him went out first while Sophia and I hung out on the beach until they got back.

One of my long-term goals is to save up enough to buy a kayak of our own because I really feel like I could be out on the water every single day of my life.  I feel so lucky to have the kind of friends who are so down to do whatever and to be so adventurous.  I love these guys!

Goat and pig buddies!

After our day in the sun, we went back to their new house (It's too cute!) for a bbq in the backyard and to hang out around the fire pit.  Island life is too nice!

The next day we went out for breakfast in preparation for a hike right after . . . and it kicked my butt!  

It was seriously SO beautiful, but the trails literally went straight up and down the hills (you can kind of see it above), and it finally led us an hour or so later to a really beautiful beach . . .and the tide was out! My favorite!

We found lots of shells and crabs, starfish and weird sea worms (I'm sure there's got to be a better word for them), and scattered all over the beach were these crazy looking "clay pots," which were what some creature makes as a home . . . or something.  I can't actually remember, and googling didn't do me much good.  Maybe if you're reading this and you know you could comment and fill me in?  TOTALLY COOL, though, and unfortunately, we didn't find any baby octopus. One of these days!

My shoes were SOAKED for the walk home, but totally worth it!

After a bit of exploring under the walks, we took the same hike back, and I swear it about killed me (the ups and downs!).  At one point, I could literally feel my heartbeat in my teeth (!), and had to sit down . . . turns out, we were only about 50 feet from the top!  Ha!  Three hours later, and we were back at the car.  Visiting Vashon is the best!

Thanks for the amazing trips, Sophia and Ty!


k potlucks

Pretty often, I feel like I really have the best job ever, and as the weather warms up during the year, we have more potlucks and bbqs during our lunch breaks and it gets even more fun!  These pictures were from our wonderful co-worker, Jill Puccarelli's going away party, followed by Calvin's birthday this year! 

Joel had a tough time opening the pickle jar . . . and then Mar comes through like it's NBD!

My favorite part about this day was that CJ tried to blow out his candle from the other side of the room, couldn't do it, and tapped out the flame with a knife!  Ha!