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Dusty Country Store

20137027672_e27b05bbec_kEach time I drive dear daughter to college I drive by the Dusty Country Store and wonder what it is like inside. I don’t think I had ever been in a Quonset Hut before and that alone was reason to stop. I purchased a nice cold bottle of water at a reasonable price and was on my way.

Dusty is a community in unincorporated Whitman County and Wikipedia tells me that it has a population of 11 or 12 and is the home of Wylie Gustafson, leader of the musical group Wylie & The Wild West.

I’m also including two other photos. The first is from a nearby rest stop where a man on a motorcycle was pulling a homemade dog RV. The dog seemed happy. And the second photo is of a barn that I’ve often admired, but never stopped to capture.

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The fence at Dahmen Barn in Uniontown, WA

imageDear daughter was eager to show me the fence around the Dahmen Barn in Uniontown. The artisans barn was closed, but we did walk all around the barn admiring the fine and unique workmanship of the fence. We also admired the two freestanding cow sculptures. The barn was constructed in 1935 and began its conversion to its current use in 2004. The fence was constructed over a 30 year period and includes over 1,000 wheels. It was a lovely mini-adventure. More info can be found here.

We also stopped to see a two story barn on the way home.

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The Peace Arch connecting the ties between the US and Canada

imageThe Peace Arch spans the United States and Canadian border and commentates the signing of the Treaty of Ghent in 1814. The arch was dedicated in 1921 and was placed on the US National Register of Historic Places in 1996. Both countries flags fly on the monument. The Peace Arch and the associated area are considered to be an international park and one does not need to have a passport to visit it. The Peace Arch border crossing never closes.  It was a pretty quick passage for us, only about 45 minutes.

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Vancouver Whale Watch, Richmond

imageThe last full day on our short family vacation we went whale watching with Vancouver Whale Watch out of Richmond, BC.  There were about 40 folks in our zodiac boat and we traveled out into the Strait of Georgia and among the islands. We were lucky enough to see the J Pod of Orcas, including Granny (who maybe upwards of 100 years old) and several babies. They swam near our boat for upward of an hour. They surfaced and slapped and spyhopped.  It was Vancouver Whale Watch’s 104th consecutive days of orca sightings of those they went out. At the end of our time three large ferry boats came into view and the pod frolicked in the foreground. What a perfect scene! We also saw a young eagle and seals lounging about.

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Lan Su Chinese Garden, Vancouver

IMG_3681The Lan Su Chinese Garden in the Chinatown neighborhood of Vancouver, BC. is a little piece of serenity in a very busy downtown. All of the garden’s materials were brought in from the city of Suzhou, Vancouver’s sister city and built by citizens of that city. I took the 45 minute tour lead by a wonderful docent while my other family members wondered off to find their own adventures. One of the interesting facts I learned is that the decorative windows in the walls are all different and they are called leaks because they lead in light and air. More information can be found here.

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Granville Island, Vancouver BC

During our last Vancouver visit many years ago, we explored Granville Island, so I was eager to return and see if it is as wonderful as I remembered. It was even better. We took the SkyTrain into the city and then caught the bus to the market entrance.

19919280216_d4d7793528_k The first thing we did was go to the market building to grab some lunch, which we enjoyed along with the stunning view of the harbor and city.  Dear husband and I shared the mushroom pot pie.

19379968373_1c47338dce_o(1)19993094492_21c5710e37_oLater we strolled through the busy market with its many buildings, enjoying the unusual produce, delis and gift items. It is a foodie mecca. In 1915 the island was created from reclaimed land and became home to industrial uses and in the late 1970s it developed into its current mixed use.

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Hooked Fish Bar has a view!

IMG_3629We hadn’t been to Vancouver in well over 20 years and it was past time. So dear husband and I gathered up dear daughter and off we went. Along the way we stopped at the Vancouver Airport and picked up her boyfriend. Once at the hotel we asked for a dinner recommendation  and we were sent to Hooked Fish Bar at Crescent Beach area. I had the fish tacos, dh had the fish & chips, dd had the salmon burger and bf had the mussels. We shared some poutine, a first for dh who took right to them! Afterwards we walked along the beach and even into the water, gathering shells, admiring the view and generally playing.

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Federal Way Farmer’s Market

imageFederal Way has a pretty righteous farmer’s market located in the parking lot next to Sears at the Federal Way Commons. It has a nice mix of farmers and crafts people and this Saturday there was also a safety fair going on with a fire truck and police dogs.  I enjoyed some delicious fish tacos (2 tacos for $8) and homemade lemonade from The Frying Dutchman and bought two pair of earrings (2 pair for $5!). For more information, check out their website.

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Tacoma Cemetery Living History Tour

imageOnce a year, the Tacoma Historical Society, Tacoma Cemetery and the Fort Nisqually Living History Museum join forces to produce a Living History Tour.  Each historical reenactor is from the Fort Nisqually Time Travelers and has assumed the role of a Tacoma citizen in the time period around World War I.  This is the 7th tour and the first that I remember that photography was allowed as long as we waited until the end of each talk and didn’t bother the actors.

The list of those represented is here. Thanks to Tacoma Weekly!

  • Alexander Baillie (with the golf club)-  the founder of Tacoma Country & Golf Club. It isn’t often you actually see a twinkle in somebody’s eye! I loved the story about how he imported golf clubs from his beloved Scotland. When the port didn’t know what they were, he convinced the port officials that they were farming equipment so he had less of a tax burden.
  • Annie Brown (white dress) – Annie and Oscar were the lighthouse keepers at Brown’s Point for many years. When she teared up talking about how she missed the lighthouse in her old age, I sniffed a little myself.
  • Ada Bel Tutton Gifford (red dress) had a great hat, as she should since she owned a millinery shop on Broadway Avenue. I loved her pride in her accomplishments.
  • Chester Thorne (arms to side), owner of Thornwood Castle and accomplished local businessman. He owned a yacht name the El Primero and President Taft was one of his more famous guests on it. He lost the yacht in a poker game.
  • Peter Wallerich (hands folded in front), told some of his story in rhyme. He was responsible for the automotive industry situating on South Tacoma Way and bought the Northern Pacific Bank.
  • Hugh and Mildred Wallace (couple) each told their stories of being part of high society. He was the ambassador to France and the French often honored him. She was the much loved daughter of a Chief Justice. They donated the clock tower chimes in Old City Hall to honor their daughter who died. Note to self, their house is still standing at 402 North J.
  • W.F. Sheard (with chair) has a shop across the street from the Tacoma Hotel and was well known for his furs. He is also known for designing the gold bead sight used on Winchester rifles and for bringing the totem pole in Firemen’s Park to Tacoma.

I believe the tour is full for today, but you can contact the Tacoma Historical Society to double check. And make a note to go next year :)

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Little Free Library #7684, Tacoma

imageThis Little Free Library is located at 3815 South Ainsworth Avenue, south of South 38th Street and is part of the Little Free Library Project. This high quality Little Free Library has a lovely varnished wood with details including side windows and a sun. There is a little walk up area also. Inside there are over a dozen books, with an emphasis on good quality children’s chapter books. For the first time, I found a book I actually wanted, Tacoma-Pierce Co Walking Guide.

Little Free Libraries is part of a community movement which offers free books. When I considered my first Little Free Library in November 2012, a Wikipedia article informed me that there were over 200 of these libraries. Per their website, there are now over 25,000!  Each of the libraries is registered and can be located by their GPS coordinates.

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