Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Olympia Farmers Market

Back to Norwin and Karen's house to meet up before hitting the city for Farmers Market and antiquing.  Before we headed off, Norwin took the kids (and Petter) for a ride pulled by the tractor.  They went all around their property and saw where a baby fox lives after his family left him- the kids gave him a name and talked about him for days.
 The farmers market was so much fun, the kids loved the balloon man and everyone got a balloon from him

 Simeon got a hat, a sword, a parrot and a belt
 Olivia got a heart
 Jayda got a dog.
 After the market we went to a cute antique shop where I bought two big rectangle wire baskets, and Karen got me a lighthouse.  Laurel found a throw and some cute napkins.  We needed some food so we went to Anthony's for some seafood.  We sat out on the porch and had a beautiful view of the boats and water.

 When our bellies were full with clam chowder and delicious bread, we went for a little walk out to see the boats.  There was a tower that Olivia and I climbed up for a better view.
 Olympia is the Capital of Washington, I love this picture with the sail boats in front and the building in the background- again a view from the tower.
We met up with Brandi and her kids again for a visit to the Nisqually Bird Refuge.  We didn't see one single bird but enjoyed the walk around the park.  We will visit another time of year and hopefully see a bird or two.

Fish farms and a fire (say that 10 times fast)

Next day we visited two fish hatcheries- one trout farm and one salmon.  The trout farm was fun because we could walk right up to the water.  The fish went crazy when we came by probably because they thought we were going to feed them, but we told the kids it's because they liked them.
 They are kept in round tanks full of water with water spraying in to make it like a current.

 I didn't get any pictures at the salmon farm because it was a little more secure so we couldn't go right in but we learned a lot about salmon.  The farms are located right next to a river and when they let the salmon go into the wild, they always return right to the same spot and then the eggs are harvested.  I can't believe all those salmon can find their way back home- very cool.

After the fish farms, we stopped at the store and bought hot dogs and fixings for smores. 
 Before it got dark, one more trip around the lake.

Vacation Continued... A day at the lake

First thing in the morning the day after crabbing, everyone ran down to the lake.  It was such a perfect, sunny day
 The kids were still in their jammies but wanted to hang out a little with their feet in the water looking at this beautiful, quiet lake
 After breakfast, canoeing
 paddling (or peddling?)
 fishing (he's trying to convince me that a little pebble is a fish)
 and floating.
 After lunch, Barretts wife, Brandi came with her kids and the kids played and played some more

 They even caught a snake and let it go in the water.  This was one of my favorite days of our vacation, I read, napped, talked with Brandi (whom I love), swam and lounged.
 After the party left, we drove a little while to Hoodsport for some dinner.  We ate at a combination burger/chinese place
 and then went exploring a little in this cute town.  We walked down a long pier and watched some people fish and try for some crabs.  This is an inlet of the ocean and I love how it feels more like a lake with the trees on both sides.

 The small area by the water had tons of clam shells- the kids loved how one side is so smooth and the other is rough and full of barnacles 

Monday, August 29, 2011


We woke up in the morning and had a few minutes of relaxing and snuggling before our big day at the beach and catching crabs
Everyone slept great in this adorable house
And off we went to meet up with cousins and Karen and Norwin for my kids first visit to the ocean- they were in love
Petter's cousins, Jared and Barrett have crab traps and set some turkey legs out for a few days to get nice and smelly so the crabs would come running
Simeon was way into it

We walked along the pier and took in the views of beautiful Westport, Washington

Sisters watching the show
They let Sim hold the rope and throw the trap in the water
The family genetically has enormous calves- so we had to see them together to compare- the order is Barrett, Petter, Jared- pretty close family resemblance.

Barrett throwing his trap in to sit for a few hours at the bottom
Jayda made a new friend- her second cousin Bella, they enjoyed an ice cream before we headed to the beach

The beach was beautiful, the sun was out and the kids had so much fun while some of the adults took a breather

Simeon was in sand and water heaven

There were so many sand dollars all over the place

The sand was so sticky we had to hose the kids down before they got in the car
A few hours later back at the crab traps to see if we caught anything- they have to be at least 6 inches across for Dungeness
We ended up catching 6 crabs: a few dungeness and a few rock
We had to throw a few back because they were too small. We learned a lot about crab anatomy: this ones a male- females we had to throw back
We ended up buying a few more crabs and then headed over to Jared's house for our feast. Simeon has a new BFF named Norwin
We had the most delicious meal ever: all the crab we could eat, baked potatoes, watermelon and salad
Part of what makes it so yummy is the effort it takes just to eat a piece
We ate our fill and loved hanging out with the family and seeing cousins we rarely get to see
And the kids topped the night off with a game before we had to say good bye for the night.
We love crab!