Saturday, November 21, 2015


It was a beautiful drive back down to the United States from Vancouver.  We enjoyed the majestic pine and cedar that Washington is so famous for.  Then we made it to my Uncle Bud’s, he is my dad’s older brother, in Puyallup.  He has a really nice place in a quiet corner of the city.  My dad’s younger brother, Dan, also lives in Puyallup with his wife, Chris.  

 We first went to visit one of their friends who had set up tracks and landscapes for miniature trains.  It was incredible.  The entire back yard was filled with train tracks and miniature cabins, buildings, towns, fields, and even a coy pond.  The kids had a blast!  They were even able to control their own trains.  So they followed the trains around and had to stop and wait while the other trains went by on the same track.  It was a lot of fun and our hosts were very gracious and even served us drinks and cookies.

We then set off for the Pier and some fish and chips.  It was great to see Seattle again and all its’ historic buildings. While we ate our delicious fish and chips we were able to feed the seagulls which was pretty fun.  If we held the french fries straight out over the water the seagulls would fly beside us and take in right out of our hands.  The kids thought that was so cool!

We then meandered along the wharf, through the shops, and Pike market.  It was lovely, the flowers were amazing, the fruit was very fresh, and the fish market was fun.  The salesmen would throw the fish to each other as they called out the instructions and they were so entertaining that they drew a large crowd.  Malaya liked the large pig that is famous there and of course wanted her picture taken with it.

 Our final stop was the famous gum wall.  Yes, it is an alley that has gum all over the walls on either side of it.  It was crazy!  So with that we were off, home to supper and bed.

The next day we went with Bud and Dan to Mount Rainier.  It was a beautiful drive and seeing the mountain was breathtaking.  As we entered the park we were amazed by the very tall pine and cedar trees.  It was also gorgeous to see the waterfalls that we drove by on the way up to Paradise.

After we stopped for a quick picnic, we then set off on a hike.  Just as we were starting, we heard there was a bear on the hill at the beginning of the trail.  We were fortunate to see it wandering around peacefully eating the berries.

Then we headed up further on the trail and saw a stunning waterfall and a big fat marmot.

We ended with a hike up closer to the summit for a fantastic view of Mount Rainier.  We were close enough to see the waterfall made by the glacier.  Amazing!  On our way back we saw a rare bird and as we drove away back down the mountain we saw one more big, fat marmot!  We stopped at another lovely waterfall on the way home and hiked down to the base.  It was an amazing adventure and we are so thankful to my uncle’s who took us there.

When we arrived back in Puyalup, we met up with Dan’s wife, Chris and took their two dogs for a walk in the park.  The kids had fun doing that and ran and played to their hearts content.  Caleb, of course, rode his ripstick all around the lake.  Pizza was on the menu for supper and so we enjoyed that and ended our evening with a very nice visit with everyone back at Bud’s house.  Overall we had a wonderful time and are thankful for the wonderful hospitality.  


Leaving Summerland, we headed down to Vancouver and as we neared Hope we stopped at some old train tunnels from 1913.  The forest by this time had changed to huge moss covered trees.  It was gorgeous!  We went on the walk through the forest to see the tunnels.  They were amazing and even more amazing was the fact that they had been built in 1913.  The scenery was also incredible and we were awed by the beauty.  We also were able to see the salmon in the pools of river between the falls.  They were just resting when we saw them.  Beautiful!

Then we were off to Port Moody near Vancouver to see my Aunty Shirley and her husband Alden.  She is my mother’s younger sister.  It was wonderful to be lovingly welcomed into their home.  We were able to stay over the weekend and were very excited that we were able to see all their children, who are now grown.  We got to see lots of Chris which was great.  He played lots of games with the kids and they loved that.  Matthew and his girlfriend came over for supper one evening and we had a great time getting to know them.  Ramona made the effort to come over twice and visit with us.  It was so nice to chat with her and get to know her better.  She told us all about how she works as a storyboard artist on the cartoon, `Puss in Boots.’  Now the kids want to watch the cartoon and see her work!  She also spent some time chatting with Hannah and coloring with Malaya.  She even drew out some cartoons for them.  

As an outing Shirley and Alden took us to see the Market down by the wharf.  It was bustling with people, yummy food, and interesting things.  We had a great time meandering through the market and even found dragon fruit to take home and enjoy!   We stopped to see the glass sculptor as we walked back.  We were able to see him working on a twisted centerpiece, it was really interesting.  Then we headed home and finished the day with a lovely dinner and swim.    

They also took us down to the houseboats, which were literally houses that floated on the water; they were really neat. 

Alden also took us to a local park with an amazing view of Vancouver.  It was beautiful and the kids got to run and play.

 We had a wonderful time in Vancouver and were sad to go and sad to say good-bye to Canada as well.  We had such an amazing Canadian adventure, one that we will always remember fondly.