Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Parading through Homes

This year Ben and I did Parade of Homes. I've always wanted to do this and tricked Ben into coming with me. At first, I could tell his enthusiasm was a little forced but then after seeing some really cool entertainment rooms and looking at floor plans, his enthusiasm beat mine. We loved doing this together and it was very informative. I feel like we will have an easy time finding a house that we both like because we have the same ideas of what we want our home to look like as well as interior design. I never knew a male could have opinions about decor (Ben doesn't have too many opinions about it because he is a man but he knows what he likes and especially what he doesn't like). 

The third home that we saw was my favorite. However, I didn't take as many pictures of it beacuse at that point I didn't know it would be my favorite. I loved the open floor plan. I'm really big into the kitchen, dining, and living area flowing. Also the dark hard wood floors and the tall ceilings were so cool. And my dream home was $10,000 less than Ben's dream home (just had to include that I'm thifty). 
Here were some of my favorite parts of the house (mostly decorating):

Cute little book nook.

Love the bedroom. Ben and I are going to put pictures like this above our bed.

A recipe for art--how perfect for a kitchen.

Really loved the bird art. They did such a good job at staging the home.

One of our favorite ideal dream homes (meaning it's not a billion dollars)

We loved the entertainment room downstairs and there was a full kitchen down in the basement.

I did a poor job at capturing the awesomeness of this pantry. But it was hidden behind a cupboard looking wall and this was behind it. I giggled when I opened it. A pantry with counters=awesome! Plus you can prepare food without it taking over your kitchen. Genius.

Ben's favorite shower! Just his size!

One of the more spacious homes we visited had a Dr. Seuss theme in the basement. Kind of crazy!

A slide in the bedroom? Why not!

Of course, we had to stop at Coldstone. It was so hot outside and we were melting. The perfect treat.

Then we went into a manly story--it was the trade off.

Day 3 we saw this--totally cool for a kids room

I was all over the purple chairs. Not literally, but I wanted to be. So comfy looking.

This was a cool staircase and this house had an elevator in the basement--an elevator!

So homey looking.

There was one house in the parade that was super modern. There was even a putt-putt course on one of the 4 patios! This was really interesting--a plant wall--with 700 plants. Luckily if your purchase this home there is an automated watering system to keep the plant alive. Talk about a green thumb!

Ben was a fan of this room. It was for the ultimate BYU fan!

Mudroom wall. Cute.

We ended the Parade of Homes (we visited all 19 homes) by visiting Culver's in American Fork. Ben was so stoked to see this place. Culver's was a burger and shake place in his mission and he claimed it was very yummy. IT WAS! The strawberry shake was particularly the yummiest thing because there were real strawberries in it. Ben and I loved doing this!

Sleepless in Seattle-Part 4

Our last day in Seattle, we went to the Space Needle for lunch. We had heard that the view was incredible and that lunch time was the more affordable time to go. Also, whenever you eat a meal at the Space Needle, the price includes go up to the observation deck.

The Space Needle!

Our reservation ticket! We were waiting to board the elevator to go up.

The great view! The restaurant lowly spins so guests can enjoy the whole city. It was cool to look into downtown Seattle and the bay. 

Welcome sign

The menu had so many delicious things on it--we had a tough time deciding

Yummy bread. We weren't fans of the olive bread (I hate olives and Ben said that it just tasted weird...but it was pretty) but the potato bread was out of this world.

Ben got a Salmon Burger.

I wasn't feeling too brave so I went with the classic fish and chips. Safe and delicious option.

While we were eating I was sitting spinning backwards. After eating I had to change seats with Ben and he quickly became a little queasy. Who know--spinning and eating don't really go together. After we finished our lunch, we went to the blustery observation deck for about 5 minutes. It was really high up and we still felt like we were spinning. It was awesome to be on the top of the world though.

Proof we made it to the top! After this picture we quickly squeezed into an elevator and made our way back to solid ground. We loved the experience.

Then we went back to the market to get some last minute souvenirs and to breeze through one of our favorite parts of Seattle. Had to walk by the flowers and found a really cool glassmaker. 

Beautiful glass work. Had to bring something home.

We were so glad that we visited the market one last time. This was our favorite performing group "One Moment in Time." They were a fabulous acapella group that had both a CD and DVD for sale (sadly we didn't snag one) . A whole crowd was gathered around them. Quite the entertainment. Ben and I wished we had gotten them for the wedding reception.

After that we took the monorail back to the Space Needle and headed for airport where we headed to home sweet home! 

We had a stash of presents (Thanks to my mom who so awesomely set them up) waiting for us and had so much fun opening them until 2 am! The best welcome home surprise everywhere.

Sleepless in Seattle-Part 3

We enjoyed doing lots of things in Seattle and seeing the sites. One day we took advantage of the Pacific Science Center. We went to go see the King Tut exhibit (it's last stop in North America) but before we could go through the exhibit we had some time to kill. We visited the space and bug areas of the museum.

The entrance

Cool science. It shows how big the sun is compared to the earth.

We hung out with some butterflies.

Modern sculpture. I love that Seattle is so artsy!

The King Tut exhibit was so interesting. We were able to see lots of statues, beautiful jewelry, and King Tut's bed--crazy! 

Huge statue of a pharaoh

We also went on an underground tour of Seattle. Originally, the city was built at sea level and constantly flooded. So, the city decided to build itself up. Businesses had a first floor entry and a street level entry for years. Eventually, because of rats and disease the unground was closed. On the tour it was really like the people of Seattle packed up their important things and left. Teller doors, a bank vault, showers, sinks, toilets, and couches were all left.  it was a little abandoned ghost town city that we walked through.

Underground tour entry. It was a cool old building.


On the underground level, to let light in they had glass sidewalks. Our tour guide said that unfortunately for gentlemen they were not see through, but rather translucent. 

We also went to "Ye Olde Curiosity Shop," a stop recommended to us from Ben's brother-in-law David. It was a very curious place indeed. There were real mummies, huge crabs, and lots of old fashioned arcade games. 

Ben loved the show! Just kidding, he didn't even insert the coins. :)

Using up another nickel to test my love--look like I'm wild! 

These were some of our favorite stops on the trip! Seattle had so much to offer. We loved that while it was a city it still had charm. Also there were lots of street characters and homeless people but they weren't scary. I feel like in some big cities (New Oreleans, Vegas specifically) I want to hold tight to my purse and take on the persona of Leighanne Tuey from the Blindside because it's so scary. However, Seattle was so friendly and we loved exploring it.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Sleepless in Seattle-Part 2

We were both looking forward to going to the Public Market in Seattle and it did not disappoint. We went back the morning before we left Seattle to visit it again.

The famous picture taking spot.

However, to get to the market, we had to find parking. Which was tricky. We forget how nice free parking is here in Provo. In Seattle it can cost $6 for 30 minutes of parking--that can add up. Once we found an affordable lot we then had to find a spot. We did discover that if you park farther away and ride the monorail into downtown it's way cheaper. Talk about a tight spot!

Proof of the sticker/parking shock!

Oh, we made it!

There were so many booths selling fresh flowers for dirt cheap. Good thing we don't live in Seattle--otherwise I would spend lots of money on fresh flowers. One of my favorite things!

There were all sorts of talented folks at the market.

Well, actually it was more like on the way to the Gum Wall

The Gum Wall! Entering the wall area was like entering Harry Potter whenever they are in a dark and creepy alley. Some weird creatures were lurking here but the wall was really cool.

Sadly, we didn't add our DNA to the wall. It was too repulsive to even think about touching.

But we did get a picture!

It was so cool to see them throw HUGE, SLIPPERY, FISHY fish across people and counters. I had seen this on TV and always wanted to see it in person. This business drew quite the crowd.

Lunch break!

REAL clam chowder

We ate at Lowell's. For all of the Sleepless in Seattle enthusiasts you can see it in the movie. It was delicious and is a great go to spot at the market.

Ben got me flowers. 

Love my flowers. 

After spending the day wandering around downtown we were driving home but got stopped by a...

Draw Bridge. It was really cool to see the road just flip up in front of us.

We got back to the B&B and realized that we needed a vase. We just called Penny and she brought us one. It was so nice to enjoy the flowers for a few days!

Ben and I loved the Market and wish that there was something similar to it closer to us. Someday, right? After visiting Seattle we definitely would love to go back and if we had to live there we wouldn't complain. Ben has already promised flowers every week if we do. I wouldn't mind seeing him make good on that deal. :)