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Monday, 1 August 2016

CAR TRIP in WASHINGTON . . . and PIZZA with Artichokes and Tomatoes

 SUNDAY, July 10

·          TACOMA Art Museum: closed Mondays, but Kepler enjoyed the outdoor installations.

 TACOMA Union Station (now a Courthouse):  Free: View Chihuly glass installations

On the bridge of Chihuly glass:


·         Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium:  open till 6 pm:
Kepler loved the sharks and peacocks.

 TACOMA NATURE CENTER:   trail and "hollow tree" slide on playground:  open Mon – Sat 

Hotel:   Tacoma Holiday Inn Express:  indoor pool and central location but situated on top of a high hill.  With little kids, the Courtyard by Marriott might be a better choice, but more expensive.  

TUESDAY: Tacoma to OLYMPIA    30 miles = 36 minutes

·         Grandma & Kepler went to Children’s Museum.

We thought Bryan & Nicole would go on a self-guiding tour of 80 art installations downtown but these turned out to be decorated benches, at least as far as we could find out.  We got a map but you couldn't just walk around to see all of them.

The Iron Skillet Restaurant at 2103 Harrison Ave:   family friendly & good food   

We stayed at the Ramada Olympia -- it's a nice hotel with a pool, but isolated.  The most interesting thing about Olympia is the downtown area with all its antique stores so that's where one ought to stay.
WED.  Olympia to WESTPORT:  70 miles = 1 hour, 20 minutes

While planning the trip, I checked online for comparisons of Westport to Ocean Shores.  Westport seemed to be the winner, but, personally, I would opt for trying Ocean Shores if I were doing it again.

We stayed at the Chateau Westport Resort but were disappointed to find it was a 15 minute walk down to the ocean so we drove each time.  Also, the pool wasn't open.  

The beach was great though!  18 miles long!

(There’s supposed to be a Children’s Discovery room in Westport Maritime Museum with great whale skeletons but we didn’t go there.)

I found this blurb about a winery on the way to Westport so we went there.

If you opt to take WA 105 west, Westport Winery, about half-way en route to Westport, serves up activities for all members of the family, including Fido. Besides a world-class selection of wines available in their tasting room, Westport Winery features a farm-to-fork menu in their dining room occasionally served with live entertainment. Your pet pooch can romp in the dog park adjacent to the parking lot. Kids of all ages enjoy navigating the grape maze or wandering through the sculpture and botanical gardens. 

We ate at the restaurant and each had flights of wine for tasting, but when I wanted to buy a $25.00 bottle, they wouldn’t take off the $5.00 for my wine flight – said I would have had to drink the flight at the bar.  Hmmm. 

Also, kids of all ages may enjoy the gardens but it meant someone kept running around after Kepler all through lunch.  

Nicole commented:  Kepler marched around and kissed the flowers "on their hearts"....sounds adorable right? Less so when all you want to do is sip your silly wine flight lol and you have to chase down a stubborn daisy Casanova

We didn't see the grape maze or the sculpture garden.


Book hotels EARLY!  I tried to book Kalaloch by the ocean for this night but it was all full months ahead. 

 So we went to Lake Quinault instead. 

The Rain Forest Village Lodge is VERY NICE with a great view of the lake. 

 There’s a lot of goose poop down by the lake, however.   Shoes for wading are good here.  

Lake Quinault Lodge has a gorgeous restaurant and the Cheesy Eggs Benedict for breakfast were delicious.  

The trees are absolutely tremendous.   This is a Sitka Spruce.

FRI.  Lake Quinault to HOH RAIN FOREST 

Hall of Mosses Trail

HOH RAIN FOREST to FORKS:  31 miles = 45 min

We stayed at the Forks Motel.  Book early!  It was full up!

Warmest outdoor pool ever!

SAT. Forks to PORT ANGELES:  56 miles = 1 hr. 10 min

·         Feiro Marine Life Center:  Daily 10-5:   touch tank:   A grumpy guy told us not to touch the anemone in it.

 There’s a very good Chinese restaurant here: Tendy's Garden:  Yum!           


  Raccoon fishing for breakfast

SUN.  Port Angeles to VICTORIA:   Ferry:  need reservation

 1.75 hours:  8:15 am.  $18 per adult, $9 for Kepler, $63 for car:

                cafeteria on ferry:


We ate a lot of pizza on this trip because guess who loves pizza!


1 jar (370 ml) marinated artichoke hearts
2 cups grape tomatoes
1 tsp crushed dried chilli peppers
3 cloves garlic
Fresh basil ( ½ cup to ¾ cup chopped)
Green pepper
8 ounces Mozzarella

*Drain the artichoke hearts.  Reserve the oil.
*Chop the artichokes.
*Slice tomatoes in halves or thirds.
*Slice garlic thinly.
*Chop the basil.  Set aside about ¼ cup for garnishing after pizza is baked.
*Chop the green pepper.
*Grate the mozzarella.
*Pat pizza dough out onto pan.  It doesn’t need to rise again.
*Brush dough with oil reserved from artichoke hearts.
*Scatter crushed chilli peppers over the crust.
*Distribute sliced garlic over the crust. 
*Bake pizza crust in 500 degree oven for 7 minutes. 
*Reduce oven heat to 450.
*Distribute chopped artichokes on top of partially baked pizza crust.
*Scatter chopped basil over the crust. 
*Distribute sliced tomatoes and green peppers.

*Top with mozzarella.

Let pizza rest until 15 minutes before you want to serve.  Then pop it in the oven at 450 degrees and bake for 15 minutes.   Garnish with reserved fresh basil.   YUM!