Talus Loop 1/14/18

I love hiking, but sometimes I just don’t love the getting ready, getting up early, heading out in the car etc. This sometimes means that although we plan to hike at the weekend, it can take a long time moving and therefore we lose the light especially in winter, or we need to find a shorter hike to do.

Talus Loop is one of those hikes. It is short, around 4 miles long; it is nearby, less than an hour; and it gives beautiful views!

We headed out to arrive at the trail around 11am, as we drove past the parking lots for Little Si and the overflow lot, I noticed the number of people walking along the road – this is not a good sign! It means the lots are busy and full, which in turn means the trail will be busy. We turned into the parking lot for Mount Si and it was a disaster zone. Cars were parked in any way they could, thankfully no one blocked others in! Mount Si is a well used trail, it is about 8 miles long, but with a lot of elevation. The Talus Loop is a right turn loop off of Mount Si.  We drove around the lot twice, and thankfully found a spot! We weren’t entirely sure what to do if we hadn’t!

The trail is well used, and therefore in good condition. It has been raining lately, are we surprised it is January in the Pacific Northwest?! The path was muddy, at times water was running on it. It was not slippery, nor was it off-putting. The weather was beautiful and I wore too many layers, so near the beginning I took some off, realising later on that I didn’t have my woolly hat 😦



Just before a mile, a sign post appears letting you know which direction you want to take, we veered to the right which takes you through trees which are so green at the moment. This trail is less travelled, most choosing to stay on the main Mount Si trail. We passed about 6 people for the entire time we were on it. This path gently slopes upwards, and is easy to follow. We came to a split in the trail, with a sign post saying “Roaring Creek Trail”. I have a GPS tracker on my phone, so we had a look to see where this goes, how long it is, and if we can get back to where our car is. On the tracker it was labelled as Lower Teneriffe Connector, and we could see that it loops back onto the Talus Loop and just at the right point to hit the views!

Walking this new path, which neither of us have done before we discovered a bridge which goes over a small river coming out of a waterfall.


We realised that we had been walking down hill since we joined this path, and that only means one thing! We had to head back upwards. This was not a problem though, the upwards was actually easy.

We re-joined the Talus Loop, unfortunately we didn’t miss the switchbacks 🙂 Heading up those I began to get excited. It was a warm, clear, beautiful day so the views would be amazing. Plus we could eat some food!


Stopping to look at the views is the mid-way point, after that it is the way back down. We discovered the tree roots which I love, and then walked back along the trail until we joined back to the Mount Si trail.


We found my missing hat!! Someone had kindly picked it up and placed it on a rock.


We had a beautiful hike, and were now looking forward to heading to the airport to pick up my friends who were arriving from the UK, but they had been in New York and Toronto before heading to Seattle.




Week 2 of Project 365

Here we are in week two, and this has been an exciting week! We have NEW WINDOWS!! This makes me so very happy, no more breeze coming through our back door, no more windows moving in the wind, no more water getting in between the panes and no more heat escaping!

6th Jan – I’ve been trying to utilize our space room/study room/craft room space better. Trying it with my desk facing the wall instead of overlooking the balcony so I can also use the top of the bookcase.

7th Jan – I have a poster to track my running for this year, I’m giving it a tick everytime I run…even if it’s a walky run 😀 I’m trying to get back into running, even though the weather is awfully wet!

8th Jan – Crochet! I have a separate site and Instagram for my crafts to keep them together but this is the only photo I took today. I receive a monthly crochet box from Little Box of Crochet. I am a little behind making them, so this is the Blue Sky Hug Scarf.

9th Jan – I’m almost there with making my desk space cosy and personal.

10th Jan – One of our windows on the back wall, and we opted to have it open a little bit on the ground, partly so we don’t have to have the back door open to give air flow but also so we can try and build a catio on the deck from here for Max and Marie. Here is Marie already giving it a good sniff!

11th Jan  – The window people had been in so the house hadn’t had time to heat up so I hid in the bedroom! Max decided to be a silent non-scary hunter and I did not know he was above me until his tail swooshed my face!

12th Jan – I saw a friend for lunch near to my main work place, it’s a wonderful chocolate and coffee shop which overlooks part of Mercer Slough. In warmer months there are kayakers on the water along with the wildlife!

Happy week to everyone, this is a blog hop linky. Check everyone else out too!


Project 365 Week 15 & 16

So I am a little out of order, I am missing some photos from the previous two weeks – they are on my actual camera rather than my phone so I need to find that before I can write up. Plus I am a whole month behind! Not only my own post writing, but also visiting everyone else involved in this project. I’m having a computer afternoon and evening today so I will not only catch up on writing but also visiting! In order to catch up lets go straight into photos!

Week 15

Day 99 – We were out gardening and suddenly saw that Max had gotten himself up on the upper window! This is really high, we have floor to ceiling windows. Later on this week he walked all the way to the end and got himself stuck which meant I had to stand on a chair and coach him to jump into my arms! Daft thing.

Day 100 – Marie cat being her usual pretty self.

Day 101 – My backpacking tent arrived from REI….I cannot wait for August when I use this with two hiking ladies 😀 hoping to use it before then but depends if we can all find dates to work! Of course I had to set up indoors.

Day 102 – Pansy! We planted this over a year a go to see how quickly they would grow in glass jars as possible table favours at our wedding. Pleased we didn’t just hope as it’s only just bloomed!

Day 103 – I love to see this view when I pull up after work. They are the talk of our section of the complex, seems they spend most of their days staring out the bedroom window!

Day 104 – Pub. Silly, uppity, snobby pub food. This is Mac & Cheese, granted it tasted really good and it was happy hour, but we then left the pub and went to the club house on our complex for “dinner” because I was starving! I would pay more money to have a decent sized plate of food which fills me up, rather than $6 for 5 mouthfuls of food!! *rant is over*

Day 105 – The weather has turned really nice, so we went for a wander around our complex. We have a couple of lakes where we live, this is the main lake which has two swans (plus fish/ducks/geese etc). This sign is well needed – that swan swam really fast towards where we were walking along the path, we moved pretty sharpish up the slope and away from the lake! Once on the other side of the lake we went back to the lower path, and this swan made a beeline for us again! We think they either have mated and there is a nest nearby, or they are trying to mate but…..we were also told they are gay and actually two males. So maybe they are just grumpy!

Week 16

Day 106 – Tulip Town – read more here – there is a town which has tulips! It was a beautiful day, the sun was out and the drive was ok! We live 60 miles from Tulip Town in Skagit, and this place is only 70 miles away from the Canadian border. Later on this year we will be visiting Canada 😀

Day 107 – Instead of sitting on top of the bookcase where there is a lot of space, I found Max in the cubby hole, squashed and surrounded by our piano music. Daft!

Day 108 – Last winter I planted our spring bulbs, and now my tulips are nearly out! I was really pleased with the crocus, then the daffs and now with the tulips! 😀 I have my fingers crossed for all my summer bulbs which are finally planted!

Day 109 – Yup the sun is here – not due to stay – and the cats are loving it! Sometimes I feel we should let them out, but they are not top of the food chain here. Too many lost cat posters up, there are multiple things which eat cats in this area.

Day 110 – Blossom. Outside my other real life job, there is this beautiful big blossom tree. Makes me smile, and I love seeing the children’s faces when they walk or are carried underneath it.

Day 111 – Friday night drinkies out in Kirkland. We found a voucher for Anthony’s Homeport which we were given for joining the dental practice we go to, so we decided as it was such a beautiful evening to catch the bus — yes we have public transport, it is limited and not reliable but there is a bus — wander the marina, and eat out. They do seasonal cocktails and it is rhubarb season in Puyallup so Anthony’s had a Rhubarb Drop cocktail. Vodka I think!

Day 112 – Saturday morning wander for coffee and a doughnut and these big pink blooms looked too inviting to not photograph. It was either this or a photo of my bookcase which I reordered!


I have had a busy, challenging 4 weeks. I have a last minute flight booked back to the UK leaving this coming Monday for my Grandad’s funeral. He went into hospital in March and sadly passed on the 5th April, hence why I am so far behind my posts. Me and Hubster spent a long time trying to decide whether we could afford for me to go back and see him whilst in the hospice, or wait a little as he had been given months. Unfortunately it was weeks instead and the decision was made for me! This has been the most challenging aspect of living so far away from my family. I’ve been sad to miss friends weddings, and jealous of all the snuggles friends have with newborn babies in my friendships, but not being there to say goodbye to a family member before they die has been heart-breaking. The emotions I’ve gone through have been a roller-coaster : from grief, to guilt, to envy and jealously and back to grief. But it is hard to grieve when you are so far away from those who know and remember that person.

I hope everyone else has had a great month, and I look forward to reading and seeing what everyone is up to. 🙂

Project 365 Week 11 & 12

After last weeks high of managing to write up just one week, we are back to a two week write up!  It is beginning to look like spring, it has also chucked it down with rain almost every day, there are a lot of cats and two hiking trips!  Happy Mother’s Day to those in the UK 🙂

Week 11

Day 71 – The morning after my works auction, we were headed down the elevator to check out, and look at that ceiling!

Day 72 – A lazy Monday for me, and the cats too. I couldn’t help by snap a sleeping Max in his basket.

Day 73 – Daffodils!! They are coming! I really need to dig out the dead autumn plants and get the ground ready for my summer plants. If the rain and cold ever stops that is!

Day 74 – My crocus’ all came up, I’m really happy these bloomed as I thought the ground had been too hard and cold for them. I also have a whole hanging basket of purple and white blooms 🙂

Day 75 – One thing I’ve wanted since moving to Seattle is Chinese Take-Away in a box like this, like in Grey’s Anatomy, NCIS (ok they are Portland but it’s near to us in Seattle!) and other American shows. We have failed to find somewhere that does their take out in these boxes but a colleague of mine came in with this take out box with Chinese in!! I was very excited, we are hoping to go to Downtown Seattle just to get take out in a box 😀

Day 76 – It is St. Patricks Day and we cannot find any Guinness! Luckily after this photo we found some 🙂 Bottled and a bit fizzy…oh well, they tried!

Day 77 – We went for a wander to pick up some craft supplies from Joanns and Micheals and on the stage in the food court was a lady playing a portable organ! It sounded very realistic and yet it was so little!

Week 12

Day 78 – Hiking with friends. See here for the full post. This is a place called Olallie Lake. We’ve tried getting here before, but not made it. This time being snow covered we tried an alternate route and came up Pratt Lake/Granite Mountain Trail and then off to Olallie. I was so happy to reach this beautiful snow covered view.

Day 79 – Hiking again! This time to Gold Creek Pond. See here for full post on this day. I love that it is March and we can drive an hour from home into the mountain and find this amount of snow. It is like Narnia ❤

Day 80 – Hubster and I went for a local wander along Kirkland waterfront. This is the view over Lake Washington to Seattle.

Day 81 – Sleepy cat! Marie snuggled in bed.

Day 82 – I went out with a friend for dinner after work and came home to Max cat poking his head out of the side hole of their tunnel. Funny monster 🙂

Day 83 – World Market is a store we go to a lot, they have a lot of foreign foods like Bisto Gravy Granules and Birds Custard Powder! 😀 Found some flowering tea in here.

Day 84 – I didn’t take any other photos today which was silly. We had a nice morning, we saw Beauty and the Beast, followed by brunch at Homegrown – a lovely sandwich and salad place! Then a trip to Half Price Books which has many books, some second hand and some new. I love to check out the music section and found a book of Beatles Songs and Bach Two Part Inventions! Both came to $18!!

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Project 365 Weeks 8 & 9

At some point I’ll actually manage to do a weekly instead of fortnightly write up!

The last two weeks have been “boring” in the world of me. So more cat’s, plants and random life. The weather is hopefully going to improve so hiking will begin again! I would like to say I’ll be back to running, but who am I kidding!

Week 8

Day 50 – Marie and her catnip cat. I love seeing our cats play with these because they are so funny! If only I could capture them on video.

Day 51 – Both cats were watching through the window as I came home.

Day 52 – I woke up suddenly in the morning because something felt wrong. I opened my eyes and saw Max staring at me….very freaky! Is this what having children is like?!

Day 53 – Snuggles with Marie cat 🙂

Day 54 – No more cats! This time it is my new plant stand for out the front of our home. Lots of people in the complex have lovely flowers and plant displays outside their town homes so I’ve decided to be a sheep and do the same 🙂

Day 55 – I babysit after music practice with a pianist and clarinettist, and today we decided to get the paints out and have a crafty afternoon…this is a medium I am not good with using.

Day 56 – Hubster had a night on the town with a friend all the way across the lake into Seattle city! I was feeling under the weather so didn’t join him and instead after dropping him at the Park and Ride decided to stop at the store and pig out.

Week 9

Day 57 – Romantic wander along Kirkland Marina, view over to the city. We were too early for sunset, but nice weather means more wanders.

Day 58 – Woke up this morning to snow! I work within Bellevue School district and we did not have a late start so I needed to drive out early to get to work on time. Thankfully drivers were taking it slow and I didn’t see any accidents on the way. (Gritting the roads doesn’t really happen around here and people are very good at tailgating EVERY SINGLE DAY!)

Day 59 – No snow today, so whilst I was babysitting I took lil’un out to the park. One I haven’t been to before and it had a castle in it! I We loved it!

Day 60 – Our boy Max has for some reason decided he likes to bother Hubster when he is working at his computer, not by asking for attention like a normal cat but by climbing over him and eating his hair. Each to their own I guess.

Day 61 – The weather was clear today, and I needed some fresh air out for my lunch so I walked around to a wonderful – but expensive – lunch chocolate coffee place. They are on the edge of slough and it was lovely to see geese, ducks and the water.

Day 62 – Our seedlings are growing really well. We’ve got a mixture of radishes and flowers. The random frost and snow means we can’t put them out on the deck because it is still too cold.

Day 63 – Rare work related photo but how could I not share these! Guittens. I love them, they go over the head of a guitar and stop little fingers from playing with the tuning pegs. Perfect for both my jobs as I work with under 5’s.


My two weeks in photos. I love my little life in America, and although sometimes I don’t leave the house or if I do I forget to take any photos, I think I will enjoy the memories at the end of the year.

Happy project 365 everyone. 😀

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Project 365 – Week 3

My week in photos, I still need to go around most of the week 2 posts and write a little message. Somehow this was both a busy and non-busy week!

Day 15 – New Years Resolutions simply do not work for me, I stress about them, or don’t fulfil them. This year I’ve decided instead to do a vision board of hopes, things which make me happy and areas I would like to change. This is a positive board, which is not complete yet but that is the great thing – I can add to it! I though about 5 areas in my life which are important “Health” ”

Wealth” “Family & Friends” “Work”  and “Be Happier”  I’ll do a post about my vision board hopefully this week, and will write more about my choices.

Day 16 – We had a Cross Country or Nordic skiing lesson and then explored some of the trails – read more here 🙂

Day 17 – I love paper crafts, knitting & crocheting, painting – anything craft related! But this year I think I want to focus a little more on my colouring and paper crafts so I brought some Lawn Fawn stamps and stamps lots onto one page ready for colouring and cutting out when needed.

Day 18 – Another crafty day after work, and I’m getting back into knitting. As my main focus has been crochet I needed to refresh my memory and make sure my tension is okay. I’m knitting a soft scarf for myself.

Day 19 – The ducks on the lake outside have a new little area to swim in! The lake is beginning to unfreeze.

Day 20 – Feeling kinda under the weather so I spent a while in the bedroom which is our warmest room currently, and Marie decided to snuggle in close with her grumpy face whilst I watched Grimm on the iPad.

Day 21 – A day indoors with a full blown beginning of a cold and cough. We are trying to reduce the number of cat things in our bedroom so moved their shark bed to the top of the stairs. Max made this his evening home, whilst Marie slept nearby too. Max is clearly too big for this bed!

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Project 365 – Week 2

My week in photos 🙂

I really enjoyed pinging around other blogs last weekend!

Day 8 – I live in a gated complex community which has 3 lakes and lots of ducks! I ended up stuck behind a lots of ducks who decided as the lakes were frozen they should walk along the road in the rain, so I stopped and started etc in the car, but boy do ducks move fast. I was hooted at by another car who came up behind me whilst I was outside the car clapping my hands and stamping my feet to get the ducks out of the road. One thing which annoys me is people who hoot because they haven’t bothered to look further than their own car bonnet. So I confronted them, which they didn’t like. I shouted and said did they want me to run over the ducks or couldn’t they see them?! They stopped hooting.

Day 9 – we went climbing this evening, Hubby showed the way up a route I kept falling on.

Day 10 – Today was a tough choice, Marie joined me for my yoga practice…very cute, but the daily photo had to be finding a hidden Cadburys chocolate bar on top of the bookcase! Cadburys from the home land (UK) is gold in this house! Care packages of cadburys, Jaffa cakes,  monster munch and prawn cocktail walkers are always loved!

Day 11 – I’m going back to piano lessons to really focus on more “classical” – said with the loosest of term – pieces. These are two of the books I took with me. Hubster went for his first ever piano lesson today too. The pros of working in a music school for my day job!

Day 12 – A long and kind of stressful day at work, so I hadn’t taken any photos. I parked opposite home and saw Marie watching from the bedroom window.

Day 13 – I joined ipsy and this was my first surprised package of make up and beauty products.

Day 14 – Saturday morning hike today. See here for more photos and full post. This is Rattlesnake Ledge, one I’ve not done before. Short and fun, which turned into a not so fun one due to all the ice on the trail.

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Project 365 – Week 1

It is another year, and another attempt!

Here is my week in photos 🙂

I considered how much I wanted to write when I do these posts, and I think the reason I have struggled to complete previously is because I put too much pressure on myself. So I’m reducing it this year, if the photos have been used in another post I’m going to link to it so you can read more 🙂

Day 1 – It was 31F on New Years Day so I did not leave the house! This is the view from our back windows and I love seeing the snow settling on the ground. (I’m still not used to temperature in Fahrenheit and still think in Celsius!)

Day 2 – We went out for a late brunch with Igloo and Sausage who sometimes appear in my blog, all the way to Issaquah to the Flat Iron Grill. Yummy Quinoa Salad for me 🙂 I also found a yarn shop…..eeek roll on pay day!

Day 3 – First hike of the year…Franklin Falls, WA – more details here  – this was beautiful hike, the falls will not remain frozen for much longer and I missed them last year so I was please to make it out…it was 23F though, my hands did not thank me for taking any photos!

Day 4 – Furbaby 1!! Marie, or chunky monkey, or pain in the butt!! Our domestic long hair female. In this photo she is trying to tell me she is hungry, underfed, starving…I can assure everyone that this chunky monkey is none of those things!

Day 5 – Indoor climbing, and my face says it all I think. I was not in the mood, it was cold, I was cold, I did not have the energy and when I’m not in the right mood my climbing really sucks and I become disheartened and frustrated. Yup…

Day 6 – Furbaby 2! Max the Maincoon boy. This face…shucks, I’m hooked! Our cats are so completely different, which I love! He was giving me this face because Marie had taken the top tier on the cat tree looking out the window and that is usually his daytime sleeping spot 🙂

Day 7 – Max the cat was ill from Friday afternoon all through Saturday night, this photo is Marie on the bed with me in the early hours of Saturday morning. As we weren’t sure why Max was sick – both ends – and wasn’t drinking or eating, we separated them. Unfortunately we spoil out furbabies, and they always sleep in or on the bed with us. That means if they cannot then they cry, scratch or bash the door, and then pee the floor due to stress. So Hubster slept in the spare room with poorly Max and I slept in our bedroom with Marie. No duvet as Max had been sick on it, so I’m covered in blankets to stay warm. Marie decided she was not going to leave my side all night and snuggled up close until 6am when she woke and cried at the room Hubster was in.  We had a trip to the vets with Max, he was given fluids, and blood taken. The vet thinks he ate something he shouldn’t. Thankfully he has started to eat some more, he lost 1.5lbs though so we have to help him gain some more weight. He was underweight when we got him so it’s been a slow journey trying to increase his weight, whilst trying to stop Marie continuing to gain weight! I’m just pleased he is feeling better.

I’m off to blog hop around now!

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Pre-Wedding Photography Shoot 05/12/2016

It is almost our wedding part 2 day 😀 We married officially on February 21st 2015, not long before Hubster left for the USA. We had already planned on what I call a “proper wedding”. Now by that I mean, the wedding I had dreamed of. With all the trimmings – photographer, cake, dinner, bridal gown, bridesmaids, etc etc etc – and that day is nearly on us.

We booked the wonderful Alison Buchanan as our photographer. Pop along to her website here. Within the package we booked, we have a pre-wedding shoot. This sounded great to me because if anyone has seen photos of the two of us they are primarily selfies, or silly poses, or not very good!

Alison offers this within packages and meant that we could try different poses together, see what worked, see which felt more comfortable than not. She is brilliant. I cannot recommend Alison enough, she spent a long time walking through the bluebells, lying on the ground, giving us advice and making us feel so comfortable. We had the shoot at our venue, the East Sussex National Golf Course, two days before our wedding. It was very close to the day because Hubster was still in the USA working. I came over 5 weeks before him to finalise wedding pieces.

These are some of the photos we have. I love them all. I simply cannot choose which to have printed.

Our pre wedding

West Summit Snoqualmie 12/30/15

Bam! Snowboards are out, and we are ready!

It took less than an hour from ours to West Summit. We went along the I-90 and took my baby girl for a spin to the mountains. She did brilliantly…didn’t get to try out her out in snow mode as the roads were clear the entire way up.

It was not too busy on the slopes, which were wide and well looked after. I class myself as an experienced beginner…I like to take it slowish and enjoy the board down, I’m happy on Green and Blue runs mainly and might occasionally but accidentally end up on Reds which I can get down after a weeks holiday! These were pretty much Green and Blue but Hubster found an “easy” Black with moguls. The sky was clear, and it was such a lovely day. There is a shuttle bus which takes you between West, Central and East Summit’s. So we visited Central Summit which seemed similar…longer lifts maybe?!

We are looking forward to going again soon, and also to go further afield to Steven’s Pass.