Seattle, Washington

The day after Christmas Day, we headed to Seattle for the day. Since we only had one day, we stuck to touristy spots, which were a lot of fun, nonetheless! Naturally, one must stop in at the Public Market. I believe it's also mandatory to have your photo taken in front of the Pike Place Market sign!

BTW, this is me in my very snazzy, new holiday hat. I had seen this hat at Hot Toddy in downtown Olympia the day before and instantly loved it, but for a hat, it was pretty pricey. It was the last gift handed out on Christmas Day, and it was "To Cathy, From Santa." No one knew how it mysteriously appeared under the tree and despite my prying attempts, no one would fess up. Needless to say, I came to the only reasonable conclusion that, indeed, Santa does exist. I'm 32, so apparently you are never too old to believe in the old man. (I'm still conducting handwriting analysis, though. Beware.)

So, what does one do at a Public Market? Eat and shop, naturally. You can stop in at the very first Starbucks. Actually, it was nice to see many other coffee/roasteries in both Seattle and Olympia. Competition always makes for a better cup o' joe, right?

The Public Market and adjacent area are filled with a wide variety of shops, as well as great bakeries such as Le Panier. A must have purchase--if you're a tea drinker--is Market Spice Tea. It's been at Pike Place for almost 100 years, and their signature tea, aptly named Original Market Spice Flavor, is a naturally sweet and spicy mix of citrus and cinnamon.

We took a stroll through the fish market. What can I say? It's a fish market. It smelled. That's pretty much it.

One shop where we stocked up, was Sotto Voce. The locally-owned company offers a wide and ecclectic selection of olive oils, and balsamic and white wine vinegars. My favorite olive oil is the Olio Dorato, infused with dried lemons, sun-dried tomatoes, and cinnamon sticks. We also purchased the Aceto Balsamico, which is marinated with garlic cloves, crushed red peppers, and whole chilis. Spicy and oh so good!

One other shop that I really liked was Milagros Seattle, a Mexican folk art store. Very inspirational if you're interested in getting crafty with the Saints!

After the Market experience, Owen forced me to walk in the rain, up a REALLY big hill, to see a library of all things. Okay ... so the Seattle Central Library turned out to be worth it. This building is amazing.

During the summer, they have nearly 10,000 visitors a day. Their mission statement really and truly says, "Our mission is to become the best public library in the world."

Once you see this place, you believe it. It's all very functional ... as in, you can actually find your way around. The colors are amazing, bright, dark, perfect. Every floor is different in terms of coloring, style, and feel. All throughout there is plenty of space and free WiFi is offered. There also are over 400 computer stations with a selections of programs people can use. There were people in there that basically looked homeless, but damn if they didn't have a laptop! I thought that was the most interesting aspect, the concept of a Library for All People.

[More Seattle Photos]

As my jaunty Christmas cap took another beating in the rain, we headed to Serious Pie for lunch and picked up some great sourdough bread to bring back with us from Dahlia Bakery.

Based on a recommendation from friends, Serious Pie turned out to be just what we needed to tide us over for the rest of the afternoon, which included a ferry ride from the Seattle Pier and a stop at REI.

The atmosphere in the restaurant was warm and cozy, with wood-burning stoves behind glassed walls where the meals are prepared. We shared a yukon gold potato, rosemary, and olive oil pizza. The crust was amazing. For starters, I had a bowl of soup, but not just any soup... A warm broth with lots of olive oil, white beans, kale still firm but soft, and toasted bread pieces soaking in it all.

HAPPY NEW YEAR ... May it be filled with warm soups, fun trips, and lots of opportunities to laugh at yourself ... but in a good way.

No comments: