UP NORTH

I’m just getting home & settled in from an enjoyable trip “up north”. If you’re a Minnesotan you know what that means. For those who aren’t familiar with this odd obsession, just about anyone & everyone makes their way “up north” (north of the Twin Cities metro area) most summer weekends but especially on holiday weekends. Every direction you look, you’ll see campers, boats, trailers, atvs & more being hauled, as people are fleeing the city for the weekend! Just a few short hours out of the city & it feels like you’re in a completely different place. There’s something about unplugging & just relaxing away from the hustle & bustle of the city that rejuvenates people. MN is the land of 10,000 lakes after all!

My parents officially retired & moved up north this past year. It’s nice to have a beautiful place to visit & enjoy the MN lake life. I personally could never live up there full time but they seem to have adjusted and like it! Anyways, Alex, Mia & I ventured 3 hours northwest to spend the weekend with my parents. Being that it was Labor Day weekend, lots of others had the same thought. It was an abnormally cool weekend for this time of year, so there was not much water & beach action, but it was nice to just move slowly & lounge up there. We went out to brunch, enjoyed bloodies & mimosas, ate way too much good food, hot-tubed a bit, napped, went on a boat ride, got lots of laughs in with my parents, watched some tv & just straight chilled. Perfection in my book.

I didn’t take many pictures but here’s a few:

I hope you all had a great Labor Day weekend doing whatever brings you joy. Now it’s onto a short 4 day work week! YAY!

SEATTLE

Although my trip to Seattle was several months ago, I am still going to blog about it to document my suggestions, tips and adventures!

I decided that for my 30th (I know, right!) birthday I would go to Seattle for a mini vacay by myself! It was meant to prove to myself as I entered a new decade, that I was still a strong independent woman who could do hard & new things on my own! I planned this about two weeks prior to my birthday, which is June 29th. It was my first time away from Mia so of course I was nervous about that and didn’t want to be gone too long. I settled on leaving early Thursday morning and coming home late Saturday night. I crammed a lot of adventures in during that time and I really do feel like I saw enough to feel accomplished in Seattle.

So Thursday morning bright and early I dropped Mia off at her Rover and raced to the airport. Made it there without any issues, although, the flight was quite long (4 hours). When I got there I made my way to the light rail line. I used a mix of public transportation and ubers to get around. I successfully navigated downtown Seattle. I went from the airport to Public Market Center. I grabbed a quick bowl of the famous Beecher’s Mac & Cheese (which was SO good that I got it again TWO more times) and then ubered to my awesome airbnb.

I have used airbnb before but had never stayed in a SHARED house. But since this trip was allllll about doing new things alone I decided I would try it. I found a home that had amazing reviews and bedrooms on the first and second floor that they rented out. I opted for the first floor one … it had its own private bathroom, mini fridge and an electronic lock on the door. I never even ended up seeing the owners and it was seriously perfect! They had a keypad on the front door and you could come and go as you please. Once I came home at night I didn’t venture back out … just relaxed in my room and went to bed. I would totally do this again especially with the private bathroom. It literally felt like a hotel room. If you ever travel to Seattle and want the link let me know!

So anyway, I ubered to the house and dropped off my stuff. I only traveled with a backpack but it was getting pretty heavy. I freshened up and headed back downtown. It was only like a 10 minute uber ride from my airbnb. I loved that they have uber pool in Seattle … it was always like $2-3 for a ride. You just can’t be in a rush because you pick up other people on the way. The app tells you where to stand and then the uber comes and picks you up. It was usually just me and maybe one or two other people. I actually enjoyed this! I explored the market & famous gum wall. Then after a while, I ubered North to the Queen Anne neighborhood. I went to find this cupcake joint which did not disappoint. Then I walked South to Kerry Park. This was apparently the BEST view of the city skyline … and it truly was beautiful!! Snapped a few pictures and took in the beauty. Then I walked to a burger joint and had a late dinner before ubering home and calling it a night.

Kerry Park Overlook

Friday morning I woke up super early because of the time change. I just laid in bed for a couple of hours relaxing. The bed was SO comfy and it was nice to just do nothing. Today was my 30th birthday! I had so many fun plans for the day so I eventually got up and headed downtown again. My go-to place was always the market. I had an amazing breakfast bagel for breakfast and some bday Starbucks of course! I then headed to the Seattle Art Museum. Since it was a Friday morning it was pretty quiet in there. There were some really neat exhibits. It was about lunchtime by the time I finished up at the Museum so I walked back over to the market. I went to Pike Place Chowder. There was about a 30 minute line but I had read such good reviews so I waited it out. It was the best $30 birthday lobster roll of my life. So good. For the afternoon I took the light rail train up to Chihuly Glass Gardens and the Space Needle. The glass gardens were beautiful. I ended up just finding a bench and chilling there for a while because my Space Needle time slot wasn’t for an hour or so. I could have done without the Space Needle … it really wasn’t that great and I sort of felt weird all the way up there. Snapped a few pictures and got out of there. Ended up ubering further North to the Ballard neighborhood. Found a booth at Mod Pizza and had some really good pizza. Walked around the neighborhood a little bit and then had a massage booked for 6 pm. After the massage, I went home and crashed! I did so much on Day 2.

Saturday morning I woke up and headed to none other than the market! I got some really good maple bacon donuts and then just spent the morning shopping downtown and roaming around. There was Starbucks involved and just taking it slow. It was starting to sprinkle a little around lunch time. Later that afternoon I took the light rail back to the airport and headed back to MSP. It was truly a special trip for me. I tried new things and felt rejuvenated when I got back home. I will definitely return someday for another long weekend. It was the perfect place to travel solo and was filled with such amazing food!