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Our Three Year Old!!!

In what feels like a blink of an eye our little Reese is now a big three year old. I think this is really shocking to me, especially as I continue to get more pregnant I’ve been looking at more and more photos of when she was a newborn and it just seems like so long ago. This year, her birthday has seemed to last about a month and still isn’t completely over, but that’s okay, she will be sharing some of the attention here soon. We’ve had a great time celebrating her birthday.

Two weeks ago was her birthday party, shared with Lottie, with her friends from school coming over to play, bounce and eat cupcakes. On Friday, I made birthday cake rice krispie treats for her to take into school to share with her classmates and she got to wear her purple Birthday Queen dress again and she had a great time being sung to by all of her friends and teachers. Thankfully, the rice krispie treats were a hit with the kids and teachers as I haven’t made rice krispie treats in at least a decade.

This past weekend we partook in a family adventure with our first overnight camping trip with Reese and finally getting in a bike ride around quaint Lopez Island in the San Juans. There was not a whole lot of discussion surrounding the trip and we more or less settled on trying to make it happen Friday night but fortunately everything went as we had hoped for. We got the camping gear together on Friday night and once Reese was up at 7 am on Saturday we all got into gear, making Saturday morning pancakes and then finishing up packing, loading up the bikes and gear, and getting Reese in the car. We hit the road before 10 am heading north and pulled into Washington Park in Anacortes, WA around 11:30 am. This is where I was crossing my fingers because we did not have a camping reservation but were lucky to snag one of the non-reservable sites in the small campgrounds. With this in place all plans moved forward.

We set up camp and then got a bag ready to walk to the very nearby playground and beach to spend a good portion of the afternoon. This was an extremely pleasant way to spend a few hours. The playground was not large but filled with kids at all hours, which Reese is all about right now, and with views of the Sound during our supervising made it worth it. We enjoyed some peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on our picnic blanket by the water before getting our feet wet and then hitting the playground again.

After a few hours we went back to our campsite to get our bike trailer to make use as a stroller while we strolled the 2.5 mile loop around Washington Park, taking in the views of the Sound and stopping a few times to perch on large rocks or benches for the scenery. We made our way back to camp to make dinner on our propane stove (there is still a strict burn ban so no fires were allowed). We feasted on a sausage, pepper and mushroom pasta with salad and were stuffed and loaded for our bike ride the next day. We made some hot cocoa and snacked on some Hershey’s and then walked the short distance back over to the playground for the last hour to catch the sunset. The sunset was beautiful and then the temps got chilly and Reese and I settled into our tent to get some sleep while Bryan finished packing up the majority of the camp for an early morning departure.

Reese did pretty well during the night. She fell asleep without too much hassle and woke up a few brief times during the night but didn’t fully wake up until just after 7 am which is her usual. We had some cereal at our campsite before getting dressed and packing up the tent. We were in the car just before 8 am, had time to get a Starbucks in Anacortes and then made our way to the ferry for the 9:30 am departure to Lopez Island. There was a slew of passengers on the 9 am ferry to Friday Harbor but our Lopez Island ferry was very quiet with a small posse of cyclists (this is what Lopez is more or less known for). The ferry to Lopez is only about 45 minutes and we spent that time taking in the views as well as chasing down Reese. We got to Lopez around 10:30 am and after letting all of the cars off, we set off on our bike loop around the island. We had opted for a 28 mile loop around the island, heading west first from the ferry terminal, as opposed to east first which much of the cyclists went. Reese fell asleep for a nap almost immediately and we made a quick pitstop at the village market to pick up a picnic lunch to take with us. The village is only about 4-5 miles off the ferry terminal so after this brief stop we continued on south towards the south end of the island. We had a steep climb as we headed out of the village and then we were greeted with beautiful views of the water as well as the farmlands on the island. We saw very few cars or cyclists on this stretch and in no time we hit the one out and back road that took us to the very south end with a picnic stop at Agate Beach.

We took about a 45 minute break to go to the bathrooms and enjoy our sandwiches that we purchased at one of the two picnic tables overlooking the breathtaking water. After finishing up the sandwiches we walked down to the water to throw some rocks before we got the bikes ready for the second half of the ride. We had a decent climb to head back north away from the beach and then had a stretch through the center of the island which was much hotter and a little less interesting. We started to approach the northeastern part of the island which again provided a more woodsy/shaded stretch with peek-a-boo views of the water. There were several steep climbs throughout the ride that I think surprised us both but we made it back to the ferry terminal with plenty of time to spare before the 2:40 pm return trip to Anacortes, with tired legs but a total of 28 miles and about 1,600 feet of elevation gain. Reese was covered in chocolate donut that we had gotten her from the store (for her birthday) so we cleaned her up and hydrated while waiting for the ferry back.

The ferry was on time and we enjoyed the views back but an even crazier Reese to keep up with on the ride back. We got back to the car and loaded up the bikes and headed to a nearby playground in Anacortes for Reese to get her energy burned before driving the 1.5 hours back to Seattle. The park was an amazing wooden park that reminded me of one from my childhood and Reese enjoyed exploring it as well as playing in the spray park before we got back in the car for a quick fast food stop and then the drive back which Reese slept the entire way more or less.

Reese woke up right as we were pulling into the driveway but let us unload the car while she watched a show on the couch. We then got her birthday presents out for her to open and she was eager and excited to open each one. We stayed up until past 9 pm playing with her new toys before she was finally too tired to play anymore and headed to bed. It was a wonderful weekend filled with adventure but we definitely all slept hard as a result of it. The house was a bit of a mess this morning but we are working through that and Bryan had to tag team important business meetings this morning while also packing to head out to Charleston for the week. I dropped him off at the airport around 11:40 am this morning and will miss him this week. I feel like I need a nap now but I so enjoyed our eventful weekend, Reese’s birthday, and much looking forward to heading to Michigan on Saturday!

Chelsea

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