15 July 2017

Victoria Bug Zoo!

Daniel has a great love of bugs, something I've grown to be fond of as well in a broader scope. I have a big soft spot for butterflies and caterpillars,  but it wasn't til we started hanging out more that I came to appreciate other types of bugs and insects. When you spend time with people who are passionate about something, I think it's easier to appreciate that thing on a more personal level. Watching someone you care about having fun with a subject you're not familiar with is a very humbling experience -- the world is full of so many things I haven't learned about.

One of the sights we wanted to see while in Victoria was their Bug Zoo, so while we waited for our room we took a walk over!
I think we went through a backway on accident, because we had to go through a few hallways and up a couple stairs. But because of that, we stumbled across a super pretty outdoor walkway. There was only the soft rustling of trees while the sunlight danced along the path -- one of my favorite things. 
We bought our tickets, and immediately got to hold bugs!! This one is a Thorny Devil Stick insect. They grow up to 12 inches and, as their name implies, they're great at camouflage in the forests for resembling sticks.
Here's a mantis peeking out~
We also got to hold a Malaysian jungle nymph. They're one of the heaviest insects in the world! Female Malaysian jungle nymphs can grow to a little under 10 inches, while males are much smaller and skinnier.
What I really liked about this zoo was that everyone, children and adults alike, quietly waited for their turn to hold the various insects in wonder. The tour guides created an atmosphere of positivity on a subject that most people are "creeped" out by, and it was nice watching everyone's faces light up when they saw the insects up close.
It was so cute how it slowly climbed up on people's hands

I was feeling a little lightheaded and warm from the humidity and temperature in the room (gotta keep them in the proper climate!), so I sat down for a few minutes and watched these sunburst diving beetles. You can see in this photo that they have a little air bubble -- they use it to stay underwater for several minutes at a time, and when it's all used up they swim back to the surface to grab another one. We watched them go up and down every so often (so cute). At first, they kinda looked like they were sleeping, with a little nose bubble haha.

After we were done, we saw a cute chihuahua named peanut at the register!! The staff told us that his mom had a chihuahua much smaller named Cassie, to which Daniel laughed and we had an awkward conversation about me having the same name as a chihuahua...
On our way back to our hotel, we stopped by for some ice cream at the soda shoppe!!
We got raspberry chips and espresso flakes~
We also walked through the Empress Hotel for a little bit~ it'd be so nice to come back and have high tea here. It looked so fun!
By then our hotel was ready, so we checked in and freshened up to head to Butchart Gardens!! Thanks for reading. 

A weekend in Victoria, BC

Before Daniel left for Japan, we wanted to take a trip to Victoria, BC. I've only been to Vancouver, so I was really excited to go! It is surprisingly very easy to travel to Victoria from Seattle, thanks to the Victoria Clipper rides. I spent 5 years watching the boats come and go from class, and now it was my turn!

On the day of, we woke up early and had a delicious breakfast sandwich at the Clipper cafe. Both of us were exhausted, so as soon as we boarded and grabbed our seats we passed out lol!

We were worried about the weather, but as we docked into Victoria the sun was shining, and everyone was out and about. Since it was such a nice day we started walking towards our hotel.
As soon as we started walking, we heard music playing and decided to follow it. Along the marina, a water ballet was going on! The Victoria Harbour Ferry has been putting on performances for the past 25 years, every Saturday and Sunday during the summer.
You can read more about them the water ballet here.
As we kept walking, I kept stopping to snap photos of all of the beautiful buildings (sorry Daniel!) 

It's completely different from Seattle, and I was immediately smitten.
We stopped for lunch at Frankie's Diner. I was feeling a bit nauseous so I stuck with clam chowder and salad.
There was still a lot of time left til our room was ready, so we walked around The Empress Hotel garden
These hydrangeas were such cute shades of pink and blue, it was like cotton candy flowers.

12 July 2017

A Day in Olympia

Daniel's family and I took a daytrip down to Olympia to celebrate his birthday!
I met his sisters' cat, Su-su. ♡ He was so friendly, and loved following us around.
Their house was surrounded by plants and flowers everywhere. The backyard was especially abundant in fruits and vegetables they've been growing!
 Before dinner, we took a walk around a park. 
 Daniel and his sister had a rock-skipping contest. Now I want to practice skipping rocks after seeing them...
 We headed back and talked while dinner was prepared~
 After dinner was ready, Daniel's sisters took us to the backyard as the sun was setting. The lights and growing vines created such a beautiful and intimate atmosphere. Eventually the vines will grow along the wires and create a canopy - something I'm super looking forward to see!
Flowers that his dad brought. Such a beautiful color!
A lot of their ingredients came from their garden. Someday I'd love to have a house and grow my own garden, ahhh!

We ended the night with a quiet, beautifully-sung Happy Birthday (in both English and Spanish!) and headed home.
See you later, Su-su~

22 June 2017

Entiat, WA: Lake Chelan

We woke up bright and early today to go down to Lake Chelan! I loved how the light was resting on the curtains, so I snapped a quick photo before going downstairs.
Jeanie's mom's made bulgogi for the trip prior, so we ate that for breakfast with rice. It was soooo good.

We had a little downtime before we packed up for the drive, so I took some photos of the cabin. There were a lot of cute bear-themed items!
After everything was packed up into the cars, we drove to town and grabbed groceries for the BBQ
Setting up shop!!! All of the grills were in use/far from the tables we wanted, so thankfully Jeanie and Nick brought their tabletop grills! I've never seen ones like these!!
We ate lunch first, and listened to Jack Johnson while enjoying the summer breeze~ there were lots of birds chirping everywhere.
While people-watching, we saw baby ducklings in the water and ran down the hill to see them!! Then we followed them quietly along the beach until they swam away. So cute...

Despite the summer sun, Lake Chelan is still glacier-fed, so it was ICE COLDDDD.

We all floated around for awhile trying to find sun spots, but we couldn't get used to the cold water and eventually went back up the hill.
There was some spicy bulgogi left, so we ate more~~ hahaha

Most of us put blankets out in the sun to dry off, but it was so nice that we all got sleepy...
We left with the sun beginning to set, which made the water pump for washing off super pretty

For dinner Daniel and I made crispy curry-rubbed chicken thighs and red-skin mashed potatoes! Since we got home so late, we finished making dinner around 1AM... yikes!!

As soon as we all finished eating, everyone passed out. It was a fun day!
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