August 16th – 24th ~ Spent with family on Whidbey Island, Washington
Our air quality had been poor for some time due to the many fires in British Columbia. After disappointing photos, and diminished views of the mountains, we decided to say goodbye to Canada and headed toward the border back into the USA.
Making a diagonal trail across British Columbia from Jasper to Vancouver, we had one overnight in Kamloops where we enjoyed a fabulous dinner at Terra Restaurant. This excellent restaurant is known for creating a new menu every month to highlight what is in season. The beet salad was outstanding.
After making a list of all of our fresh produce ahead of time and presenting it at the border our crossing went smoothly. The agent requested we donate our remaining bell pepper and green onions, then we were on our way.
My sister, brother-in-law and his mother live on Whidbey Island in Washington State. We had long-planned on stopping there to spend a few days on our way south. We were just a couple of weeks earlier than anticipated.
One of the best things about visiting this area in late summer is the fresh berries. We managed two outings to pick both blueberries and blackberries.
Blackberries were just getting to the sweet stage. All of the berries were carefully washed, laid out to dry and then frozen on baking sheets. Once frozen, they were packaged in freezer bags to be used over the coming months. We did of course keep some fresh that we greatly enjoyed over the next few days. Jan even treated us to a fabulous berry pie!
Tim woke me up before 6:00 one morning to make sure I did not miss seeing this spectacular sunrise:
But even the daytime view from their deck is pretty amazing:
Our favorite place to eat in Oak Harbor is a seafood restaurant called Seabolt’s Smokehouse. We try to get at least one meal here each time we come for a visit. Everything is fresh, well seasoned, and cooked to perfection.
This time we made it more than once and I got to try their mixed shells (Penn Cove Mussels and Manila Clams steamed with garlic, white wine, lemon & butter) combo on one trip and the calamari and sweet potato fries on another visit. The crab cakes are another excellent choice. Tim is particularly fond of the wild salmon sandwich.
Another benefit to arriving back in the state two weeks early, was that we would be able to see the total eclipse. But I’m going to save that side trip for our next post.
GRATITUDE MOMENT: I am always grateful to be able to spend time with my sister and her family. We are so fortunate to have a close, kind, and supportive relationship. Jan got the brains in our family (PhD in Geophysics from Stanford) and is a fantastic cook on top of that. I’m a very proud big sister ❤