Friday, June 19, 2015

Playing Tourist in Seattle

On Wednesday, my sister arrived from San Diego. And it was good.
On Thursday, my sister's daughters arrived from San Diego. And it was even better!

Wednesday was loads of fun because Suzanne and I got to have some much-needed sister time. We went out to dinner at a fun local French-ish restaurant called Gainsbourg. We shared a to-die-for burger and plate of amazing Brussels sprouts. We also tried some fun cocktails that were very lovely and things we'd never make at home because of the rather uncommon ingredients (namely things like celery shrub!) After dinner, we really cut lose and went grocery shopping together. I know, we party HARD when we're in the same area code.

My sister's girls arrived bright and early yesterday morning. The poor things were bleary eyed, to say the least, from having to be up at 4:30 to make their flight. Once we picked them up at the airport and showered Emily with lots of happy birthday wishes, we made our way to Starbucks so everyone could fuel up a bit.

Our main attraction of the day was the Chihuly Garden and Glass display in the Seattle Center. Oh... my... goodness!! I've heard about this place, seen pictures and TV footage of this place, and read articles about its construction (safest place to be during a Seattle earthquake), but none of that prepared me for the eye-popping nature of the art. Just wow. The shapes, colors, and artistry all hit your vision in waves. Even now as I think back, it stuns me that this form of artistry is even possible. Beyond the glass, we got to see some of Dale Chihuly's paintings that served as "rough sketches" for the glass pieces. If given the option, I think I'd almost prefer having one or more of the paintings in our home instead of the glass pieces, just to avoid the breakage issue. All of it was just absolutely incredible!!

This looks like a row boat full of candy!

Under the sea

This is actually a ceiling

In the event/banquet area

A very tired birthday girl getting a hug from her mama

Space Needle

Anna, stop being so darned serious all of the time!

Reflections of thistle-y flowers and the Space Needle

This "tree" looks like it was plucked from the world of Dr. Seuss

I call this "seals and Advent candles" ... no clue what Chihuly calls it

Reflections of a tree

It amazes me how the foliage so perfectly
coordinates with the colors in the glass art throughout
the entire garden
After our eye-popping time at the Chihuly exhibit, we made our way to Ballard for a quick lunch (Scooter's Burgers ... wonderful onion rings, who knew??) and for a little wine tasting/shopping. We wound up at Portalis, which is a lovely wine shop with a very knowledgeable shop keeper. She was very welcoming and definitely is in the right profession! That lady knows her stuff. She was able to not only talk about various wines and regions, but also some of the science behind wine making. Cool stuff! We brought a couple of bottles home, as well as some port for Eric (happy Father's Day, Sweetie!) and a bottle of a Belgian beer that Emily pointed out. (She has become so worldly since her recent 3-month stint in Brussels!)

Ruby port for a very deserving father
We made it home around 2:30 and the girls were practically falling over with fatigue by that point. The three of them curled up on the couch, watched a movie, and basically sat comatose for a bit. Our kids briefly disturbed the peace and quiet when they got home from the park and very eagerly greeted their cousins and showed them their latest skills and abilities. (not to mention, Annika did a little "I have new glasses" fashion show.) ;)

Later that evening, we had a lovely "it's Emily's birthday!" dinner of Uncle E's famous chicken, pasta salad, cheesy bread, and strawberry shortcake for dessert. Basically, we were all stuffed ... but in a good way.

Happy birthday, Emily!!!

Happy birthday, sweet Mimi! We love you so much and hope your birthday was as fun for you as it was for the rest of us. You're cherished and we are so grateful to have had the chance to celebrate your day with you!!

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