snacks

On The Lake

I had the pleasure of a girl’s weekend with my bestie, Rachel! Last year we rented an Airbnb on the water in Shelton (very remote, very peaceful). This year we rented a place on Lake Steilacoom in Lakewood, Washington. It’s between Olympia and Tacoma. I’ve honestly never been–I’ve just seen signs off the freeway. 😉

The place we rented was the basement apartment of a house right on the lake.

I arrived a little before Rachel on Friday afternoon and after unpacking, I sat outside in the sun and read my book next to the lake. It was peaceful and quiet and beautiful.

When Rachel arrived we got some food at the nearby Trader Joe’s and then cooked dinner while catching up. We made goat cheese ravioli topped with Autumn Pumpkin Alfredo sauce–sounds a bit weird but it was tasty! Not too overpowering in either direction.

We drank wine, we talked late into the night, we ate the homemade popcorn the owners gave us and then went in the hot tub. It was a really nice, relaxing evening!

Saturday we both slept in (amazing!) had breakfast and lots of coffee:

And then I went for a run. The place we rented was right on the water and the neighborhood was very nice, but the streets were narrow and windy and not safe to run on. I asked the owner if there was any where I could go and she recommended Fort Steilacoom Park.

Apparently it’s a nice place for all kinds of activities and when I showed up there were tons of people doing stuff. There was some kind of event going on, then there was a soccer tournament and there was a huge dog park area, which looked cool.

There were a bunch of trails. I ran on the gravel/dirt trails a bit until I found the paved path:

It was a beautiful fall day, slightly crisp but not too cold. The sun was out, the leaves were turning. The paved path went around the lake and it was flat and clean and very nice. There were lots of other walkers, runners and bikers. It kind of reminded me of Greenlake in Seattle.

 

It was a nice run. I felt pretty good. I wasn’t in a rush, either, just enjoyed the scenery. Rachel was going to the store to get a few things and she said no rush, so I looked around a bit and found a cool old ruin:

I did a little more running and then headed back to the car. I did just under 3 miles and felt great!

I stretched and then drove back to the house (about a mile or so away), showered and then we kicked back with Pandora tunes and played board games a bit. Then Trader Joe’s honey goat cheese on crackers and some soup for lunch. We played a few rounds of Ticket to Ride.

Then chick flicks on Netflix! We decided to order takeout for dinner and picked up Italian food at Casa Mia. It was pretty close to where we were staying, so that was nice. Rachel got the mushroom risotto and I got spaghetti noodles with pesto and Caesar Salad. The portions were pretty big so we had lots of leftovers. It was a weekend full of carbs!

Then more hot tub time:

And bed. Sunday I hit the gym and then drove home to Portland. It was a fantastic weekend! I really needed the girl time and time to catch up with Rachel (and time to relax and do NOTHING) but I was feeling a little homesick. I missed my boys! I got home just in time for Logan to wake up from his nap!

It felt good to be home. 🙂

Mirror Lake and a Girl’s Day

On Thursday I took Logan to daycare and then Miss B and I got to do our own thing! I packed up some stuff and we drove up to Mount Hood, listening to Beth Hart and Lucinda Williams CDs. Bella was super excited for an adventure!

It was such a nice day and I had the whole day to do whatever I wanted. I wasn’t really up for working out yet (still a little sick) but an easy hike in some fresh air sounded right. I looked around for some hikes near us but found that the Gorge hikes are still largely closed due to the Eagle Creek Fire last year. Multnomah Falls is open but not all the way. So I decided to drive out to Mirror Lake.

Mirror Lake has been on my To Do List for years! It’s a super popular hike, though, and so we’ve never done it. Thee’s not a ton of parking available and it always fills up fast.

I got to the trailhead at 9:20 AM and I got the last parking spot (barely).

Bella and I got ready and headed out on the trail. You cross a bridge right away and I had to kind of wrangle Bella to get up on it and walk across and then she was ok. We hiked through the forest on a pretty manicured trail and then crossed another bridge.

Bella did great! The trail started to climb a little bit but it was never too steep or difficult. I thought it would be a good hike for Logan to do but then we came to this little area of rock scramble:

It looks worse than it was but it would be hard for a toddler to navigate. So not sure if Logan is ready for this one yet,

After the rocks, there were some mild switchbacks. We hike through the old growth alpine forest. It was fairly crowded but not too bad. Not like I imagine weekends to be! We got to a fork in the trail and took a left across this bridge:

The trail climbed again through some more forest and then it opened up and I got glimpses of the lake. Oh, one thing to note: The mosquitoes were SUPER bad! I got a few bites! Thankfully I had some bug spray in my backpack and so I put some of that on (a little too late, though).

The trail goes around the small lake and then there are parts of the forest that open up to the lakeside and you get THIS amazing view!

HELLO! There’s the mountain! What a perfect picture, too! It was so pretty. And all around the lake there were swarms of butterflies EVERYWHERE! It was kind of creepy, honestly! So many!

I walked around the lake (it’s pretty small) and then headed back down the trail. All in all it was a really nice, fairly easy hike. It’s good for older kids and was good for dogs. It would be a nice place to hike in and have a picnic lunch by the lake. Don’t forget your bug spray!

We got back to the car. I had packed some lunch in a cooler but it was only 11am so I decided to just drive home and eat there. Home to have lunch, shower, nap (I was worn out!) and then I spent the afternoon at the Oregon Humane Society.

I did NOT come home with a cat. 😉 But there were plenty of adorable ones! I found one that I loved. But she was a) a kitten–and I think I want a cat that’s around a year or two old and b) she looked exactly like Yggdrasil but with gold eyes. It made me cry a bit when I saw her and I just couldn’t do it. I think my next cat will have to look different than my baby did, otherwise I think I’d feel too sad.

But it was nice to look around. There were a TON of kittens at the Humane Society!

FRIDAY

Friday I went to the gym and then I got to take my new car on a little mini road trip! Some friends came over and we went to Sokol Blosser for a picnic lunch and tasting. None of them had ever been there, so it was nice to share it with them.

We had various cheeses, hummus and naan, tons of fruit and crackers. It was such a perfect day for a picnic!

After that we spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying the sun and nice breeze at Stoller:

I stuck with water at the second place and they split a bottle of the Stoller Chardonnay (they all loved it as I knew they would!). It was nice just lounging in the chairs in the sun catching up with friends. I think Erika and I are going to do the Stoller 5k Race next year!

It was such a nice day! I got slightly sunburned, even though I used sunscreen! But other than that, it was chill and relaxing and perfect for my soul. 🙂