Friday, August 22, 2008

Karny in Seattle

We just got back from our trip to Seattle. I love vaccationing in Seattle. It's so green there...I love the moss growing on the trees. The traffic was nerve racking though. On the way to Seattle we stopped at the Petrified Forest in Vantage...there's a interactive center to look around & some petrified logs...then down the road there's a gift shop where you can purchase petrified wood. I got a piece that looks like a heart. Closer to Seattle we stopped at Snoqualmie Falls. It was cool, but I bet it is much more impressive in the Spring. The gift shop was expensive, so I passed up that shopping opportunity.

Sooooo....Good places to shop in Seattle: The Red Light on Capital is two stories of new & vintage clothing & a large costume section. I got another robe to add to my collection & Tony got a bowling shirt that hade a mortuary sponcership on the back & the name stitched on the front was Phyllis. It was just too kitchy not to purchase! There's also another Red Light in the U District, but we didn't get to that one this time. Urban Outfitters has a lot of very cool things...not just clothes, but shoes, jewelry, stuff for guys & gals, & home decor. It is on the spendy side, but super cute & it can't be bought where we live.

We tried thrift store shopping for the first time in Seattle. We went to three thrift stores...Goodwill in Renton, Goodwill in Bellevue, & Value Village in Redmond. The Goodwill in Renton was the best of the three...we found lots of lovelies cheap, & the coolest chair ever for only $20.00, but we couldn't figure out how to get it home...we were all saddened by having to leave it was really the coolest chair ever...all vintage, turquoise flowers, a high back that kinda wrapped around & made it felt like a big hug. I had visions of sitting in it in my home, next to the fire, crocheting......I loved that chair...even though our time together was breif ;) The Goodwill in Bellevue was dissapointing though...I didn't find much there & most things seemed a bit pricey for what it was. I did find a couple of faux corest like tops for $6.00 a piece so it wasn't a total loss. The Value Village in Redmond was the WORST! The vibe in there was nervous & kinda creepy...very sketchy vibe...WAY too much stuff to go through...most of the wracks were so jam packed that it was difficult to look through things...a lot of over priced stuff...a lot of people...isles too narrow...unfriendly staff...carts fblocking isles full of stuff waiting to be put away...put that all together & it was not a good thrift shopping experience.

We also went to a couple of New Age shops. One was Soul Food in was a nice mix of books & merchandise. They had coffee & food...local art on the walls, & music. And then we went to Stargazers in Bellevue. Stargazers is a bigger shop with many rooms, lots of crystals, books, jewelry, beads...nice shop. I wish we had something like these two shops here locally. The staff at both shops were friendly, helpful, & knowlegable. Both shops had a really good selection of merchandise & lots of different classes & events going on too. There was a nice community vibe going on.

We make sure to hit the Trader Joes while we are there...I love Trader Joes! I wish we had one here. Everything is so cheap! Quality food & ingredients at a reasonable price. I only wish we would have brought a cooler! Most of the food is organic & what's not organic is natural. I've never seen an ingredient in anything there that I could not pronounce & I've never seen high fructose corn syrup in anything either. (Did you know that high fructose corn syrup turns straight into fat??? Your body can't burn it like your body just stores it as fat! Ick!)

Of course no trip to Seattle would be complete without a jont down to IKEA in Renton. We love IKEA! This is another store that I wish we had here. I bought wall stickers this time...I'll take a picture of what they look like on the wall just as soon as I get them up. We always stop by the cafe to have their swedish meatballs...YUM!

Now for restaurants...Every restaurant we went to was really good! No dissapointments here. Victor's Coffee in Redmond was very good. They roast their own coffee beans & it has a very warm & cozy vibe. The coffee was very good & they had specilty coffee drinks like Banana Split & Black Forest...It's a nice break from Starbucks. Taqueria El Gallow in Redmond is hands down the best Mexican restaurant I've eaten at! Very authentic food & run by a father & son. Everything is fresh & homemade with no lard at all. They were voted best Mexican food on the eastside by Seattle Times. Our favorites were the ceviche & the chicken taquitos...the rice & beans were pretty fabulous too. We had Chinese at the Jade Dragon in Redmond, which is honestly the best Chinese I've ever had. They use quality ingredinets & it's really clean old frier oil taste. We ordered the family style combination meals for 3, which could have actually fed 4. And they use no MSG. For fast food we ate at Fatburger, which was pretty good. They have a Babyfat Burger that was just the right size. They are a local chain over in the Seattle area. Another good place that we ate was at Palmers in's a little bar/restaurant, but kids are welcome. They have really good sandwiches & burgers & super yummy french fries! The staff was really friendly too, which is always nice. OH, & then there's the Broadway Grill on Capital Hill. Both times we ate there the food was really good. We had fish & chips & salads & a burger...all of it was really tastey. The fries were my favorite, of course! The decor was really neat...there were roll up doors all allong the front so that when they are all opened it's like eating outside. Again the staff here was friendly & helpful. I almost forgot The Crab Cracker in Kirkland! How could I do that? We ordered family style crab dinner...WOW! A huge platter of king crab, snow crab, & dungenous crab was placed in the middle of our table along with veggies & potatoes. That was super yummy! The atmosphere was cool looked really oceany (is that even a word? lol).

On Saturday we went to Capital Hill again to go to the Fairy Festival in Volunteer Park. That was horribly dissapointing! There was a HUGE grassy area with a total of 5 booths...3 of which were vendors. I was bummed. So we walked down to the conservatory & looked at the plants...took some pictures...Then we went over to the Lakeview Cemetary...drove around & took picutres (it was too hot to walk)...I like to take pictures of the statuary. This is the cemetary that Bruce & Brandon Lee are burried in.

Now for the COOLEST thing that we did....We went to Camlann Medieval Village in Carnation, which is only about a 20 minute drive from Redmond. It is a recreated village from the 14th century. The village is among all of these moss covered trees. Everyone that worked there was in proper dress & in character...everything was as it would have been in the 14th century...down to how they spoke & what they ate. No soda pop, hot dogs, or water bottles here. They even have medieval vendors...& they can tell you all about their craft in the way they would have spoke then. It's like stepping back in time. We purchased pottery that was made on site to drink water out of...& I bought the Camlann cookbook, which I super excited about trying out! (Especially since we did the feast while we were there...but we'll talk about that in a sec)

There was a candlemaker there & there were several people making I asked her how much it was to make a candle & she said something like, "It thou art poor then I have taught thou a trade. It thou has money then I would be happy with whatever you think my services are worth." I just thought that was cool. So Tony & I made candles...they look like unicorn horns...& she told us this whole love story about's like she could see our heart & souls...I'm not even was so romantic. She told us not to burn the candles but to keep them as a reminder of our we put them in candle holders & put them on our love altar. Seriously...this is the coolest thing I've EVER done in the Seattle area. OH, & you can't pay for anything with our regular paper have to go trade it in for their midieval coin. I wish I would have brought some back with me. There was also a woman making head wreaths out of fresh flowers & folliage. Of course we had to get them! She told us to dry them flat & hang them up once they were dry as a decoration...mine is haning in the kitchen now. There was entertainment too! There was a magician, which was histarical...then several people singing...& then there was a play. I wish I would have seen more of the play, but I was busy making a candle. There was even an archery class, a sword fighting class, & a dancing class. We got there too late to do those things, but there will be a next time.

Then once the village closes, you can stay for the feast. The feast was amazing! There's restaurant on site called the Bors Hede Inn. You can just go to the restaurant upstairs or you can go to the feast. We had made reservations for the feast weeks prior. They sereved a total of 12 dishes in two courses announced by trumpet. The food was served family style...wooden bowls passed plates, just round slabs of bread to put the food on. The food was really yummy...I just can't wait to try those recipies at home. The walls in the chamber were painted with medieval hunting scenes & scenes from everyday life. There was entertainment too. It was just the most enjoyable adventure of our whole trip. We can't stop talking about it. It's $10 to get in, but if you pay the $45 for the feast you get in the gates for free.

To see pics of our trip, just look to the left column & find the Karny Slideshow section. Enjoy!

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