Live so that when your children think of fairness and integrity, they think of you. The highest courage is to dare to be yourself in the face of adversity. Choosing right over wrong, ethic over convenience, and truth over popularity ... these are choices that measure your life. Travel the path of integrity without looking back, for there is never a wrong time to do the right thing.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Hello Seattle...

Gosh time flies! It has already been a 6 weeks!! Memorial Weekend is also Drew's Bday weekend & we went to Seattle to surprise the kids, celebrate Drew's Bday, & mostly have a fun little family getaway! We had so much fun!!! Sorry for the billion pics but I want to catalog it for my kids! If I didn't hate Owl City, I'd put them on for this post, but I do hate Owl City :) Sorry Haliee

It had been a crazy week beforehand. I had planned everything out in my head to be but, even our best laid plans right!?!...Our plans changed that week before when my Uncle Jim suddenly passed away from Heart Problems. My Uncle Jim (My Dad's Brother) was a great man, a hard worker, a fun, caring, giving man. He & my Dad were extremely close and my poor Dad had a rough time. So Hal & I flew out to Sacramento as soon as the funeral plans were made. My parents drove their RV down from Boise, so we decided to ride back with 2 of my brothers who had also flown in & we'd stay the night in Reno, hang out with the family, have a little fun, & fly home from there the next morning. It was a nice little ride minus my car sickness which I blame on my Dad's inability to talk to Hal next to him & keep it on the road, Love Ya Dad! :) We got to Reno, went to gamble a bit, had dinner, gambled a bit {Did I say that twice?? Naughty} When we got back to the RV, I checked our flight (my sister works for Alaska Airlines so we fly at a discount & a standby risk) which had 19 open seats before the casino...and something had happened, here were negative seats on the plane now!!! AHHHH! My kiddos were ready for us to be home, my Mom who was staying with them was ready to go home as she was already going to be staying at my house for our Seattle trip, Hal was supposed to work the next day...I checked every.single.possible.flight out of there I mean going to Colorado, back to California, you name it. luck! Grab a full price last minute a car & drive 11 hours. those were options not sounding all that enjoyable! So, we drove back to Boise in the RV, hung out with family, saw new nieces & nephews, got up the next morning @ 4 am & flew home!!! We got home around 10:30ish (there is no longer a nonstop Boise - Spokane WHATEVER! Ugh) Hal slept for an hour & a half, showered and went to work til' 11 pm :(. I hung out with my babes, unpacked, did laundry, repacked and we finally got to bed around Midnight. At 3:30ish...I sat up in bed with that weird wake up in a panic feeling. Hal asked what I was doing, lol, I didn't know, until...we hear this revving of an engine. Super LOUD! Hal goes to investigate & it is the stupid drunk driver kid I talked about a few posts ago. Here is a pic of the aftermath UGHHHH! So we chat with the cops, write a report, and finally get to bed a little before 5...the alarm went off @ 6 and we away we went to Seattle. SO beyond exhausted after not sleeping well while traveling, and coming home to this chaos! Drew had been feeling under the weather but just a slight cold we thought so...With very excited kiddos...we were off!

Now those best laid plans were slightly modified by life, and recognising I was human right!?! We started with a little less cute version of "Cash Cab" where the kids were asked a variety of questions about Seattle. They received $1 for each correct answer. Since we couldn't pull over on the freeway, we allowed them as many phone a friends as they wanted, but...they had to split the pot between them with those ones. They were so dang funny! Thanks to Grandma, Grandpa, Ola, Erin...they won some spending $!
Poor Sickie Boy
We stopped on the pass and ate a little picnic lunch I packed. When we got to Seattle, we went to the Pacific Science Center. It was super fun for the kids but a total let down for us. We expected it to be like the Museum of Science & Industry in Los Angeles. NOT EVEN CLOSE! The kids learned about dinosaurs, the Puget Sound, energy, our bodies, naked mole rats, they each played tic tac toe with a robot, man I was in a fog that day, I can't remember everything! We watched a laser light show featuring songs from Michael Jackson. That was pretty cool. We tried to take pics & video, but even without flash, the screen on the cameras make too much light, so they shut us down! :) we played with a few more exhibits and made our way through the gift shop. I was proud of my kids (what a difference having their own $ made) they barely bought anything!
The 2nd pic below is a newborn whale skeleton. Isn't that crazy how big it is!

. Drew making an astronaut! He loved it~

We left a few hours later us feeling lethargic and bummed at the quality of the Museum, the kids were excited, over the moon, and raring to go!!! We checked in to the hotel. We stayed @ The Warwick International Hotel Downtown. It was nice minus the $27 a day parking!
UGH! I would recommend it as it was close enough to walk to everything! I forgot to take a pic of the hotel but here is the link if anyone is interested in seeing it.
We decided to walk the few blocks to Pike St. and eat at one of our favorite restaurants there called The Steel Head Diner. It is really not a diner, it is quite nice with very organic unique local menu items. I wasn't all that hungry, so I got the clam chowder. they made the most unique yummy chowder complete with a yummy swirl of truffle oil! MMM..Dang, I think Hal had the fish & chips I can't remember we were so exhausted. But...if you are ever in the area, you MUST eat here! Fresh, Quality, YUMMY Food! The kids opted for their grilled cheese it is made from local bread & cheese purchased just down the street & is TDF truly & I am no grilled cheese fan. Drew was really not feeling all that hot, so although he really really wanted seafood, he played it safe. He was starving after not eating much but crackers & fluids for 2 days, I warned him to slow it down, luck. I looked up after we were just about finished eating to see my son with that glazed look in his eye...UH OH, I had just enough time to grab my cloth napkin & catch the 1st of his sick tummy before it hit the restaurant table. I swooped him up and sprinted for the restroom :( Phew, luckily we didn't ruin anyone's dinner. Poor Baby! Haliee said, "Mom, you were amazing, you have crazy reflexes. How did you know?" *sigh* I just did!We walked back to the hotel and although the kids were begging to go to the pool, we decided Mom & Dad could not physically go 1 more step. We were in bed @ 8:30 & the kiddos really didn't last much longer watching TV.

One of the very few things I LOVE about big cities...the shopping! I didn't really shop this trip as it wasn't about shopping but I was intrigued by some of the storefronts~ Isn't this grocery store across from our hotel stinkin' cute!?! I LOVE their curb appeal.

The next morning, we planned to take the tour of SafeCo Field & the game was later that evening. Hal HATES driving in Seattle, I hate paying $30 to park @ the field when we just paid $20 @ the Science Center & $27 @ the hotel. We asked the concierge about public transportation & he said the city bus actually picks up & drops off across the street. Perfect. He walked us over, showed us what bus to take to & from the stadium & we were off. The driver was super nice, also reiterating we take the same bus home. We got to the field it was pouring rain, after 2 blocks walking in the rain we made it inside the gift shop & purchased our tickets for the tour. We walked around & the kids were manically window shopping over the moon for all this baseball stuff! Drew was starving, there was a super YUMMY Bagel place right next door so he managed to eat about an 1/8th of a plain bagel & was full. :( Poor kiddo sick on his Birthday and on vacation YUCK!
The tour WAS AWESOME! Out tour guide was super nice. We got to go on the field, in the dugout, in the press room, in the diamond club, owners suites, sky boxes, it was so dang cool!

Walking out on the field~

Afterwords, the tour guide held Drewy back taking him down & giving him some baseball cards as a birthday gift! :) Drew shook his hand & thanked him but I missed it on camera, so here they are together afterword~
In the dugout

This is in the entryway. It is made from plastic bats. Pretty cool light!
Only players and managers are allowed in the locker rooms ever. All family, etc. has to meet in here. Crazy.

The more fortunate fan area! It was awesome! Several Chefs, 5 Star Dining...All the food you can possibly eat..sign me up! They can keep their peanuts & crackers jacks :)

This was a cool room! Well, when you win...

The Press Box.
If you notice the papers in each place, they are assigned seating for the press that night.

The Owner's Suite! Super awesome. Thanks to all us Nintendo supporters!

We walked across the street & had lunch & then walked down by the docks and looked at
the enormous shipping barges, sea trains we are ridiculous crazy consumers sad really! :( The skyline was cool though!

We went back to the gift shop & the kids ironed out their purchases. The had their names engraved in mini wooden bats, shirts, trinkets, they were in heaven!

We patiently waited for the gates to open for batting practice. We watched and waited ever so patiently hoping for an autograph! Drew was able to get #55 Michael Saunders to sign his bat & his foul ball he caught during practice! As soon as people noticed they were signing anything, it was a ridiculous swarm & poor Haliee was overlooked in the process. Poor sweet girl stood their teary eyed, disappointed and grateful for, but a lil' envious of her Birthday Boy Brother beaming at his score.

Paying our respects this Memorial Day!

We had the most awesome seats! Right behind home plate just above the season ticket holders! Thanks DADDY! My husband is a big kid on we had hot dogs, sodas, frozen lemonade, peanuts, kettle corn, candy, cotton candy, fruit kabobs...good grief! :\ We planned & paid beforehand for a birthday pack for Drew. He received a Mariners Duffel Bag, Hat, Birthday Ball, $5 gift card, & $25 gift card to Ivar's Seafood.
The loot..

The Food...

Play Ball...

He also had his name on the scoreboard!! I waited patiently with my camera aimed and as soon as his name came up on the board this stinking HUGE BRAT OF A KID WHO BUGGED US ALL NIGHT jumped up & down in front of me and I got a picture of the back of his head instead. I was so so beyond mad and just sick about it. I mean I was so dang ticked I could've spanked his butt and I don't even spank my kids. I WAS FURIOUS! Did I mention I was mad...ok...moving on. It read "Happy 9th Birthday Andrew "ACE" Hunter We LOVE you Love Mom, Dad, & Haliee. Ola & Papa Ken." (My parents wanted to pay for part of it & wish him a Happy BDay too!) I wish I had a picture of it...sigh...I know let it go, but my pictures are so important to me :( Still pouting...ok...moving on...

Needin' a rally...

The game was so so so much fun! They loved it. watched so intently. Drew arguing with the umps calls a few times, like a true ball player! And not knowing it then, but, we were able to watch Ken Griffey Jr.'s last at bat as he retired the next day! Super cool!

After the game we jammed out of there, hustling the 2 blocks away to the bus terminal...we got on the same bus just as instructed and man we were tired. We had been gone ALL DAY! We started home and got on the the morning bus driver had told me they would go a slightly different route home because of traffic, but I had an uneasy feeling about the freeway. After a minute or 2 I looked over & saw Boeing, I turned to Hal & said, "Hey that would be a neat place to tour." About that instant, I realized "Dorothy, I don't think were in Kansas anymore"!!!! I said Hal, we were only like 10 blocks from the hotel, I don't think were going the right way...The couple next to us asked where we were wanting to go, I told them to which they replied, Um...this is the Commuter Bus to Tacoma!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Here we are, 10:45 p.m. with about $11 on us, and...we are headed to stinkin' TACOMA! OH NO! Apparently after 10 pm the bus only heads back to Tacoma! Ummm...nice to know! No wonder there were no stops...oh dear. After a 30 minute ride, we stopped at the Tacoma terminal IN THE HOOD! I tried my best to excuse myself to the front of the bus to talk to the driver. HE WAS A TOTAL JERK & ABSOLUTELY NO HELP. Parked on the other side of the terminal was the ONLY bus back to Seattle, thanks to a fellow passenger I was able to jump off the bus and I sprinted behind it as it took off...It was like a bad dream. I ran down the street after the bus, but it wouldn't stop :( Hal had just enough cash to pay the fare & I got back on the bus to hear a nice man asking the bus driver if he would radio that bus & ask if it would stop so we could get on it, if he would phone the bus barn to see if there was anything they could do, if he would do ANYTHING FOR US...UMMMM....NO!!!!!!!!!! We got off the bus and I looked around at the deserted dark area, graffiti, homeless people, a closed Greyhound Station, and NOTHING. For blocks there were no gas stations, nothing!!! Thankfully there were 3 taxis parked in front of the Greyhound Station the 1st one we came to had a VISA/Mastercard Sticker on the window. Thank YOU GOD! I had been praying my little guts out! We got in and after $80 the rest is history. We were back after midnight, safe & although thoroughly irritated, making memories right!?! Don't think I didn't let the concierge know of his misstep though! Not that it did us any good.

Hal took this pic of Drew saying he looked like a man just hangin' out in bed reading.relaxing. :)

The next morning I walked down to the "Top Pot" Doughnut. We had read about it in the Airline Magazine on the flight home & were excited to try it! It was a super cute little shop! the doughnuts were ok. Hal wasn't all that impressed, but we showered and checked out. We were able to leave our car parked @ the hotel until 4 pm., so we decided to walk down to Pike St. and shop the farmers market. We walked down to the water & had lunch @ Ivar's. It was ok. {They have NOTHING on Splash Cafe~ Pismo Beach, CA} We went to the Aquarium, Zoo, etc. last time we were there & noone was really impressed enough for a repeat. So we just messed around the Market, got some fruits & veggies & walked back to the hotel. Hal ran to get our car to find a parking ticket on it! *sigh* After going back into the hotel, we worked it out & were on the way home!

Finally feeling good enough to eat some Seafood!

These 2 Fire Department Boats were docked right beside the Ivar's Restaurant. They were neat!

This barge was so crazy. I am assuming it went out to Mercer Island. All of a sudden tons of cars started driving onto it (double decker) & away it went! It was huge.

All in all it was a great trip! Drew had a fun Birthday, us a fab mini vacay...and TONS of mostly great memories!! :)

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