Kayaking On South Lake Union

I’ve been hearing a lot about how SLU – or South Lake Union as some know it better, is the next up and coming area in Seattle. While its currently developing as an Urban Center with over 10 new buildings over 20+ stories tall, I’ve stuck to visiting my favorite spots in this area– Art Marble, MOHAI & South Lake Union Park.

If you’re looking for a quick fun stop to explore the water that connects Downtown Seattle and Gas Works Park, try out this kayaking adventure with a few friends in South Lake Union!

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If it weren’t for this development, my newly-found-mountain-friend Kayla might have never moved here with her man who is working right in the middle of it all. Last week we took a day off real life to go try out Moss Bay Kayaking with her Dachshund Mya.

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First off, Fuel up

I parked my car for our adventure up the road in a parking garage next to our lunch spot, Lunchbox Laboratory. They have a yelp deal for happy hour priced cocktails. I was brave and tried cow tongue sopas, while Kayla opted in for classic mac and greens.

Plan Accordingly

I wasn’t able to find any free parking near Moss Bay, and they will apparently tow your car if you don’t pay. It makes sense to plan for 2-3 hours even if you’re only renting for an hour… you never know how long your expedition will take!

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We made it to Gas Works Park and back in under an hour!

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Enjoy the waves

The water was surprisingly pleasant. We brought along a GoPro to be able to fully capture the adventure. They do supply water safe bags that you can store your stuff in, but I know how clumsy I am, so I opted in to leave my camera at home. Glad there were a few photos snapped from this day, it was definitely a fun day!❤

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I’m Grumpy, Can We Go Camping Again Already?

This weekend was pretty uneventful. I defaulted to looking at photos and playing computer games while staying in with a sick Stee. In the midst of tidying up my Photos Library I realized I didn’t share our first camping trip of the season with our friends Kayla and Matt. I want NOTHING more than to be back in this sunshine and be dirty and scraped up from tripping over rocks, watching the sun set over Lake Wenatchee. The campground was at the state park, and although I usually prefer solitude of backpacking camping I was pleasantly surprised with how empty it was. I have my eye on a campsite at Glacier View next time were up that way. Check out the end of this post for some more camping tips🙂

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I can’t even recall the details of how it became decided to go to Lake Wenatchee, but we got the car packed up and headed east Friday after work. Got camp set up and busted out a board game. Mya joined us for a bit before she passed out in Kayla’s arms.

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lol at Mya contemplating life by the fire

Waking up next to this guy was the best! We had talked my dad into coming over to Leavenworth to visit, so after some oatmeal in my Jetboil we drove around a bit and then went into town. This is where we stopped at the campsite on the other end of the lake, Glacier View Campground. Apparently this end sits in a little cove with little to no wind and attracts LOTS of mosquitos, we were in love with the views that a lot of the campsites had. We will be back to stay for sure after June when the bugs aren’t so bad.

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Of course no visit to Leavenworth is complete without a pretzel and a beer from Icicle Brewery.

My dad rode over on his Indian and got his usual KOA campsite so we went to go hammock for a bit after our lunch at Fresh Burger Cafe– Not your typical german food but these guys know how to put together an amazing burger.

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We decided to check out Hidden Lake, a small hike near Lake Wenatchee. We had a great time stumbling through the woods. It really ended our trip with a bang.

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Some of my other favorite shots from this weekend were when we got back from our hike and went for a walk.

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What a nice weekend. Can’t wait to be back outdoors next weekend. If anyone is a late planner and wants to join us for Memorial Day Weekend get in touch🙂

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I’m excited to start compiling my favorite campsites this summer, and i’ll be sure to share them all here and link to posts in the future!

Lake Diablo, Colonial Creek Campground

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Lake Wenatchee – Glacier View Campground

(Don’t forget bugspray!)

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Verlot/Mt Index

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Lake Chelan – Can anyone PLEASE help me get to the “boat in” campgrounds here??

 

Photo to come!😉

 

National Josh Geb Day

You know when you meet a bunch of new people you instantly like and want to immediately become friends with? I met a lot of those kind of humans last weekend for one of Steven’s friends birthday celebrations,

National Josh Geb Day.

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for more debauchery, follow along on snapchat: @ellofrankenbery

Josh got his own geofilter for snapchat, how freaking cool is that? We celebrated at Saint Helens Cafe in University District and had unlimited mimosas (See snapchat above for proof), the most amazing tasting hamburger ever, and took to the photo booth that was set up, courtesy of The Snap Bar. Here are some of my favorites that I had to save from our boozy brunch.

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If you haven’t been to a recent wedding or party with a Photo Booth, make your own! Check out my post on our homemade photobooth here.

Our Weekend in Colorado: Denver, Boulder, Golden and More

This was one of those trips that I booked on a whim, forgot about until the week it was happening, and then proceeded to have the most amazing vacation with my best friends. In December when The 1975 Tour got announced I was looking at the dates for Seattle, but my eyes did the emoji face when I saw that the next show was at Red Rocks Amphitheater in Colorado. It was hands down the easiest decision to buy tickets to both shows. Many people compare the venue to The Gorge in Washington – but I have to say although they are both beautiful outdoor venues, they are gloriously different in their own way.

Now I’m sure many of you saw my snapchat (@ellofrankenbery hollaa), but there is no. way. to do it justice without experiencing this place. Internationally known, this venue sits between two towering red sandstone rocks.

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I highly recommend anyone who has a love for music and outdoors to look out for this venue on any band tour. Tickets to Denver from Seattle are as low as $140 and the experience is priceless.

Things You Should Know About Denver

1. Springtime has VERY weird weather. I didn’t know this when I booked our trip. I didn’t really grasp this when people were telling me this season is very unpredictable. We got snow, 34 degree freezing rain, incredible blue skies and awesome sunsets… but be prepared for everything and anything!

2. Remember friends, you cannot buy alcohol at grocery stores yet. Liquor stores close as early as 5pm so remember to prepare if you’re planning a weekend. I forgot how lucky we are in Washington to be able to walk into a Safeway and get a bottle of wine!

3. Frontier Airlines is based out of Denver... but I can’t recall having a good experience with them. Southwest all the way baby!

4. There are a lot of awesome Air BNB’s for ridiculously good deals, but pay attention to the season. This city loves their Broncos and their Rockies… so book early unless you’re traveling in their off-seasons.

5. Red Rocks Amphitheater doesn’t allow selfie sticks. Sorry Jordan.

Okay, Are You Ready to Fall in Love?

Stella, Jordan and I collectively took over 500 photos in 4 days of the beautiful rockies, Boulder Flat Irons, and landmarks… in all kinds of weather. I’ll save you some of the tirades that happened in our hotel rooms, and show you the primes.

When we got to the airport, Jordan darted into one of those expensive knickknack stores and said she was buying something that she saw last time she was flying somewhere. That “knickknack” turned out to be a beautiful print by Frida Clements that was bigger than Jordan herself. Stella and I were doubtful it would make the entire weekend of crazyX3 so we snapped a photo of her with it and admired more of her artwork.

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We got out of the freezing rain and into our Air BNB late Saturday afternoon and settled into our king sized bed that we decided we’d all share.

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Our View from our Air BNB Rooftop! Look at those beautiful mountains❤

 

Saturday Night we took a chance without a reservation at this restaurant in the Highland neighborhood called Linger–if you ever venture this way GO TO THIS RESTAURANT. Find a table in the upstairs lounge and order one of everything. They have beautiful cocktails and lovely waitresses and amazing global small plates. Not to mention complimentary valet parking… Have I said how much I love Denver yet?? They gave us free fish tacos and a small dessert mousse for Stellas 23rd celebration, as well as bars to check out after. I never felt intimidated by anyone we got served by in our weekend here. The went to Viewhouse for a few cheap drinks and dancing and the Gin Mill, both were full of people out celebrating. Click the photos below for their info!

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The next morning we got on the waitlist for Snooze, another must visit for any brunch enthusiast. The wait is worth it, especially downtown where you have Union Station. Our bartender suggested a tattoo art gallery– because by this point, we wanted to leave a piece of Denver on us forever. (Jordan said she was never leaving!)

View More: http://june-cochran.pass.us/stoic--genuine

After an amazing colorful meal at snooze, we were off to Ritual Tattoo Art Gallery for a walk in appointment to each get three foxes… for fox sake.

 

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lovely phallic doodles on the water closet door

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They turned out so amazing! Many thanks to Jake Diamond!

Monday we headed out of the city and went to Chautauqua Park in Boulder, CO. We went shopping in the outdoor Pearl St Mall and ate at the Organic Sandwich Shop.

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After some shopping we made the drive to Golden, CO to check into our hotel, The Table Mountain Inn. At this point we learned that it was necessary to buy alcohol early, and got to getting ready. Had ‘the best happy hour in Golden’ downstairs at our hotel and then ran around and took photos.

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I told a lot of friends and family that I went to Denver for Red Rocks + The 1975, but I think you can tell we did much more than that. They did put on an incredible show, including an acoustic song, Nana, that I didn’t get to hear in Seattle because Matty was ‘feeling blue’. I think he was stunned by the glorious venue he was in and felt connected to the new music they put out.

If you haven’t given this band the chance please go watch these beautiful music videos. Probably some of the more beautiful short films i’ve ever seenRobbers, The Sound, and A Change of Heart being my newest favorite.

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Trying to squeeze one last adventure before we left on Tuesday, we drove up to Lookout Mountain and got to see Golden on a beautiful clear day. Wrapped up our trip with some southern style ‘Po Boys, Mac and Cheese, and a Bloody Mary Sampler at Sassafrass and snatched the window seat home.

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Granted we found a lot of reasons to fall in love this weekend. Four days wasn’t enough time to try everything and we will definitely be back. If you’re looking for cool restaurants to eat, fun bars to dance, or places to explore around Denver – feel free to comment below or reach out! I’m going to go ice my fingers from writing this huge blog post and head down to Greenlake Bar and Grill just in time for happy hour.

Travelogue – Updated!

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Using Instagram to help with your Travel Bug

How often do you use the mapper in Instagram?

I highly recommend you find some of your favorite ‘grammers and look at there maps. I promise it will encourage you to start building your own! With a trip plan in the works in June… I am excited to add more to mine. My USA map is pretty pathetic… but I just can’t rationalize spending $500+ to go to the east coast when that money can get me to another country.

It’s save to say I have the travel bug right now.

Now the important question… Costa Rica or Hawaii?

Photos:

@missholldoll – Currently in Thailand! This amazing lady has photos from all over the PNW and beyond, and writes about it adventures at mymountaintherapy.com

@youngadventuress – I got to meet the one and old Liz in New Zealand last year! Her travels never stop on her blog missadventuress.com

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We Sing In Time – From Anacortes to Friday Harbor

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Weekends well spent with this fella range from choosing a neighborhood in Seattle to meet up with friends, lounging around making dinner together, or finding a Groupon to try. I like to consider myself pretty adventurous when it comes to thinking of new things to try–IE, the whole premise of this blog

but I have to give Steven credit for this date.

Even though we got a late start last Saturday morning (in return for some pretty goofy blurry bar photos) we drove up North to take a ferry ride over to Friday Harbor. He has this saved note in his phone of date ideas hidden up his sleeve and this one was perfect for the great weather we had in the midst of all this rain and wind. Sorry to those who are without power tonight! After a ice-cream + french fry stop we drove through downtown Anacortes where we stopped at Boxes and Bears Puzzles and Games where we found none other than…

John Van freaking Deusen.

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Look who we found – John from The Lonely Forest!

Who is this lovely human in between us?

Please improve your life by taking three minutes to watch this video:

Now the lucky owner of the cool Puzzle and Games store we found, he is living a ‘rual lifestyle’ in Anacortes with his family. (Source) We each got a hug before heading out towards the ferry line, where we tried curing a hangover with more alcohol. (I’ll let you decide if you agree with these studies…)

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Pro Tip: Bring fun activities. I don’t think we prepared for the 2 hour ferry ride, but at least we had a pretty nice nap. and napping is the key in a successful relationship. 

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You can’t get more Pacific Northwest than taking a ferry boat in some classic cloudy weather.

Some things I would share is if you go to an oceanfront town of any sorts, don’t expect it to be as thriving as it is in the summertime. We luckily had practice in this when we got stuck in the i-5 mudslide on our road trip last December when we stayed in Seaside, OR… and I think it can make for some out of the ordinary memories. We got to drink a beer on the benches right in the middle of town, have a bookstore all to ourselves, and experience some usual service at Blue Water Bar and Grill. (save yourself the $80 check and make your own meatballs from home.)

 

Now to my favorite part of the evening,

the ferry ride home.

I don’t have any images of this part so you’ll have to use your imagination.

We were smart enough to stop at Kings Market, and grabbed a sketch book and some easter eggs. We filled it up with my 4lbs tub of Jelly Bellies (thanks mom) and hid eggs for each other on opposite sides of the ferry. We wrapped it up with some doodling.

Well… I doodled. Steven sketched out this beautiful thing.

 

Raglan, NZ Reminiscing

I’m not gonna lie, this 7-day forecast of rain and gloom is hitting me hard. I love fuzzy socks and oversized cozy sweaters as much as the next girl, but I am getting impatient waiting for warm summer nights and for my friends to come out of hibernation mode (Something that typically occurs here between the month of November-March.) I was scrolling through my Photos Library and came upon the warm sunny Raglan photos at the start of my trip last year. What I wouldn’t give to go back here. Right. Now.

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Mt Karioi

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If you ever find yourself exploring the North Island of New Zealand, please promise me you will visit my favorite town I ever stumbled into. Raglan was one of those places that wasn’t on my “plan” when I was mapping out where I wanted to travel to, but I’m so glad I ended up here, many thanks to my free spirited best-best-best friend, Abbie. We met up with Steve and Ryan for a weekend filled with Good George Beer, Fish and Chips Takeaways, and  new card games. Friend Tip: Show me a new game and win a piece of my heart forever.

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It was in this adorable little surf town that I found Three Little Birds, a shop filled with delectable little treasures just waiting to be gobbled up. Tony, originally from Jamaica, owns this little charming place and I got to spend an entire week working on their social marketing, running around the town with a beautiful Canadian gal taking photos of the clothes and accessories sold there.

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If you ever find yourself in this little gem of a town:

  • Try surfing
  • Hit up Mt. Karioi
  • Make friends with the locals + travellers
  • Enjoy as much brunch as you possibly can

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Home is where…

It seems that coming back home center and getting an inspiration to write has been a trend that i’ve noticed about this blog– so I am going to channel it one last time (and then I promise not to have the word ‘home’ in a blog title ever again… for a while).

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photo/illustration by @samlarson

It’s been exactly a year since I landed in New Zealand and since then my perspective on life has shifted. I went back to working for Apple, which is where I spent almost three years before I left to go travel to a new country. Since then I started exploring my backyard, leaving footprints all around Washington. Although the Pacific Northwest will always have my heart, I have recently fallen in love with a new city. Translation:

San Francisco is opening her arms to me and I want to fly into them.

At the end of January I left for AMCT (Apple Mac Certification Training) in the Bay Area. It was my first trip traveling for business and I got to take a peak into Corporate life. If you are ever in a situation where your work wants to send you somewhere, jump on the opportunity. Not only did I get to spend three weeks in Sunny California, I met so many amazing individuals from all over the US. When you’re traveling for business you do have to give up some luxuries– the comfort of your own bed for example– but getting a little time away was really helpful in making me realize how appreciative I am for home. Besides falling in love with SF, I fell even harder for my boyfriend that seemed like he was a million miles away.

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Steven showed me the city not long ago when we went on our road trip last December in my new Subaru. It’s funny how un-interested I was at the time to fall in love with anything besides the mountains. I thought I was so high and mighty after basically living in the cascade mountains all summer that I couldn’t see how interesting and adorable San Francisco was. It took some resettling back into my life and thinking about my future before I could even subconsciously be open to the idea of it. I saw the city a second time, but it was with whole new eyes. 

How I fell in love with in the city of San Francisco:

How I fell in love with the city of San Francisco

Our good friend Sarah recently moved to Lower Height, which is covered in pine trees and has a generously sized recreation area otherwise known as Buena Vista Park. The first weekend we were there we were surrounded by people from all over visiting for Super Bowl 50. We walked down the Lyon Street steps to the Marina after shopping and brunch in Fillmore, which is filled with a designers dream of stylish eats and boutiques. They had a shop just for lamp shades, guys. Like, how adorable does that get??!

Bun Mee, A Motorized Scooter Lover/Vietnamese sandwich shop.

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Lyon Street Steps, Courtesy of San Francisco Days

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Height Ashbury, photo by Anthony Hall

Nob Hill San Francisco neighborhood

Nob Hill, photo by Can Balcioglu

Exploring around the city got me thinking about how easy I could pick up my life in Seattle and do these things every day.

I pictured walking up my steep stairs to my row house, walking inside to high ceilings and Steven and our cat watching sports on Sunday. Running to the market deli to grab snacks. Going to our neighborhood cafe and talking a long walk around the countless adorable neighborhoods. Burning calories walking up Haight street and running up to the Buena Vista viewpoint every weekend after trying a new cafe or restaurant (there is no shortage of these in SF.)

Obviously the cutest city has to be one of the most expensive places to live. Demand is high, and it’ s about 2% more expensive than New York City for cost of living. So while I start digging in my pockets and look for dream jobs with my boyfriend so we can have the dream house and life, I’ll just keep flipping through my memories made in this charming place I can hopefully one day call home.

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Delores Park

Delores Park

Even without the sun, this city still shines.

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We’ll take the top floor apartment, please and thank you.

 

Revel-ious youth

There has been a lot of thought about what big thing is in store for me next. When this blog was started I hadn’t experienced much out of my hometown in Lake Stevens and my tiny dorm room in Bellingham, WA. I read this post today about what a college girl wishes she could tell herself in the last semester in high school and it gave advice to enjoy the memories with your best friends, because that familiar feeling will go away when you’re constantly meeting new people for the next four years–and lets be real–the rest of your 20’s. I noticed how a lot of the things in her list, ‘go out of your way to say thank you, hang out with friends in the middle of the week’, etc. are life-long focuses that you should have. So why do we revel in these things when were young? When are we too young to do these things?

So many thoughts

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It’s been a year since I made the decision and book my flight to backpack in New Zealand. I just read through this entire blog and realized how much I miss the adventures leading up to that, and owe it to myself for keeping this platform alive.

Why do people lose sight of their life? I just read this post about how ‘everybody wants what feels good. Everyone wants to live a carefree, happy and easy life, to fall in love…’ etc.   and I think that recently I took all these things for granted. Over the past year I lost touch with people, family, friends, and maybe that’s a part of life.

But I was so blind to it happening.

On the flip side, I have changed tremendously since I made that decision to book my flight last New Year’s Day. I have thrown out 3/4 of my closet, hiked in almost every national park in Washington, made my first big purchase and got a new car, and have completely re-analyzed how I can picture spending the next five years of my life. I don’t have all the details planned out, but I have faith that whether i’m spending it jumping from country to country or building the happiest family imaginable I will choose. to be happy. Not only that, but will accept that happiness requires struggle. The positive is the side effect of handling the negative.

hellofrankenberyI dare you to go through your photos and find the ones that you remember being the happiest in. Or maybe you don’t take photos. Reflect. (Prime example of why I do take photos… my memory doesn’t know how to reflect. *sad face*) My instagram best nine of 2015 probably collaged it pretty well, but social media is a front, as much as I don’t want to accept that. It’s what you want people to see about your life, all in a little 3×3 square. Here are the ones that might surprise you–or maybe not, depending on how well you know me.

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Exploring with the people I love.❤

Night.

**If the end of this blog post seems abrupt. It’s because I’m dying at this episode of friends:

Monica: “Tim, this is phoebe he’s my sous chef.”

Phoebe: “Oh your Monica’s boss?”

Tim: “No I work under her ‘sous’ means under.”

Phoebe: “Oh, I ‘sous’-stand.”

Please watch this entire scene.