Bright and early Friday morning Chad, Connor, Alli, Natalie, and I set out on our journey. A drive that is supposed to take around 14 and a half hours ended up taking 17. A small gas tank and even smaller bladders led to many stops. The longest stop (this one was actually planned) was in Portland. We stopped to eat dinner and experience the magic of Voodoo Doughnuts. Let me tell you, Portland is weird and I love it! It was fun to be out of the BYU bubble and see all sorts of different people. Finally, at about 10:30, we arrived at my house. We were joined there by Hannah!
Friday brought rain and a trip to Seattle. I am actually really glad that it rained. Is there any other way to truly experience Seattle? Together we explored Pike's Place, fed seagulls on the pier, admired the Space Needle, and "conquered" the International Fountain. I love Seattle! Such a cool city. That night my parents threw a belated birthday party for me. My cousins and high school friends came. It was so nice to see everyone. We ate lots of good food and I got lots of things I needed for Italy. The highlight: getting to drive a mustang. Aww yeah! After the party we went to see "Dark Knight Rises." It was pretty dang good.
Washingtonians in their natural habitat!
Elephant ears! Yum!
Struttin' our stuff
Eating seafood that I actually enjoyed!
The delicious raspberries that stained my shirt...
The gorgeous pier!
Off to Pike's Place.
On Saturday we took a trip to my second favorite place on earth (Disneyland is the first), Mt. Rainier! After realizing that the trail we planned to hike on was closed because of avalanche damage we decided to head off to Cougar Rock and the Nisqually River. After crossing the river we hiked up to a beautiful waterfall. Then we headed up to Paradise, literally. The mountain flowers were in full bloom and the day was sunny and clear. It was perfect! For me Mt. Rainier is almost sacred. I am always in awe of it's beauty and vastness. It humbles me to think that the being who created that gorgeous mountain created me too. We ended the night with an incredible dinner at the Copper Creek Inn.
The gorgeous dinner setting.
Gangsta lichen mustaches.
So happy to be there.
Trying to climb a tree...
The most epic shirt ever.
We spent Sunday with my family. After church we just relaxed, played games, and had a most excellent dance party. It was so nice to be with my family. I hadn't seen them in seven months!
On my Monday we headed back to Utah.
It was a whirlwind, but great trip!