Aug 1, 2012 Allstar Trip - Day 3

view from our beautiful room

Evening of July 25th, 2012
We are finally in Seattle! spoiled us on this trip. From the time I received the email announcing the trip until this very day - I felt very special.  The folks at were very accommodating and allowed the Allstars to extend their trips as they wished, which is how we spent a couple days in the mountains and were able to get to the city a bit early.  We found the hotel in which was putting up all of the Allstars - The Inn at the Washington Athletic Club

What a great location! We checked in on the evening of the 25th, and everyone was very accommodating! I had requested a room with 2 beds since Madison was with me. Because they were full that weekend - they couldn't guarantee me more than just a queen room with 1 bed, but the front desk personnel were determined to find me the room I had requested!  And boy did they come through in a big way! When we got to the room we were thrilled! It was a huge corner room with a beautiful view of the city, Puget Sound, and the Olympic Mountains!  It was a lovely place to stay and oh soooo very comfy!! We were spoiled and very thankful to for their generous gift!

After leaving our luggage in the room, we had to make a quick trip back to the airport to return the rental car. On the way we made a stop at Target to buy Mads a new pair of sunglasses - hers broke early on and needed to be replaced. We were supposed to pick up a new card for the camera too, but both of us forgot! Anyhoo, we got the rental car back and hopped on the train to head back into the city. We walked the short distance to the WAC from the Westlake Station and got dressed for dinner.

The WAC also provided us with a coupon for a buy 1 get 1 free entree to their best restaurant, Torchy's.  This was a pleasant surprise, as we were way too tired to go out.  We enjoyed a lovely dinner before settling into our comfy beds and getting some much-needed rest.

July 26th, 2012
Madison and I had the entire day to explore Seattle before all of the birthday festivities were to begin! We started our day at the Pike Place Market.  This market is HUGE!  It was difficult to know where to begin, but I had printed out a walking tour to follow, so we tried to stick to that so we could see everything.

We entered the market at the corner of Pike St. and First Avenue

where we found the famous Rachel the Pig statue and some fishmongers - no throwing fish though :o(

Mads on Things

From here we went down the stairs to Lower Post Alley to see the legendary Gum Wall.  Is it art?  I don't know, but it is pretty cool...albeit GROSS!

It went against our grain to stick gum on the wall, so we decided not to leave any behind.

We made our way back up to the market and saw many wonderful sites from rows and rows of beautiful cut flowers and wonderful fresh fruit and veges to custom made pasta in all sorts of flavors - including chocolate! Yes, chocolate pasta. I would have liked to bring some home, but nothing extra was going to fit in my suitcase for the trip home!

We enjoyed a wonderful breakfast on the third floor of Lowell's overlooking Puget Sound. We shared the Cinnamon Vanilla French Toast and it was delish!

"Marion"berry Bars!!  There was also a Marion St and a Madison St 

These were so pretty - wish my picture was in focus

We came across the very first Starbucks - although this is not the original location, it is the original store and logo which is slightly different from the famous logo of today

We found this little cutie waiting patiently outside one of the pastry shops

We stopped into the French Style Bakery, La Panier to enjoy the sights and smells

We watched the women patiently making cheese at the famous Beecher's Cheese shop - yes, that is a giant vat of cheese!

after exploring every little bit of the market, we still had time left in our day, so we made our way to the Olympic Sculpture Park. On the way we came across Angie's Umbrella

This beautifully tiled wall

Some things for Mads to stand on.... Mads on Things

Not sure if this is illegal, but we didn't get arrested in Seattle - so all is good!

we finally made it to the Olympic Sculpture Park, and I have to say - I didn't get it. We only took 1 picture

Next up was Seattle Center to see the Space Needle

We did not go up it - there was a long line, and friends had mentioned there was a great view from the Columbia Center Building for 1/2 the price!

We did, however, find something for Mads on Things

There were lots of people walking by, but I really wish I had snapped a picture of this one little old lady - she was cracking up!!  It was great!!  you'll have to take my word for it haha

We took the monorail back to the Westlake Center and walked back to the hotel so Mads could get something warmer. It was chilly in Seattle, but it was a nice change of pace from the heat and humidity here in FL.  We decided we wanted to take a ride on Seattle's Big Wheel. It recently opened in June of this year, and looked like a great opportunity to get some nice shots from the waterfront.  On the way there we found this fisherman...

The line was very long, and I had to be at the office. We were afraid it would make me late

So we decided to grab a bite to eat and then head back to the hotel so I could get cleaned up. Of course, we found some interesting things along the way...

Driftwood Whale across from the Seattle Aquarium - Mads on Things

Pike Street Hill Climb

We made our way back to Post Alley and found The Pink Door restaurant. I was craving a yummy grilled cheese and tomato soup, and we had heard a rumor they make a good one!  When we got to Post Alley and were looking for the restaurant, we realized there was no sign outside (no wonder we hadn't seen it the other times we'd been down the alley), but we figured the one pink door must be it - we were right! Whew! We were seated on the patio overlooking Puget Sound - it was beautiful!  I was disappointed the grilled cheese was only on the winter menu, so we ordered Mama's Meatball Panini with a garden salad.  It was huge! Mads helped me eat it.  The meatballs were full of flavor and the bread was fresh and delicious. It was a lovely meal. Again, I wish I had photographed it :o(

Back at the WAC I met several other Allstars in the lobby and we made our way over to for a tour of the offices and a Happy Hour reception

Just outside of the offices there was a serious game of chess going on...

When we arrived for our tour the first thing we saw was the test kitchen. Chef Karen, the caterer, was making some delicious treats for the reception

We were split into small groups according to our region. I was with the South region and William was our tour guide. William is in charge of the office Culture. He is a fun guy and sounds like he has a great job! From the tour it was clear that is a great place to work!!

Man Tested Recipes has a thing for rubber duckies... 
sorry my photo is out of focus - My photographer stayed back at the hotel to get some much needed rest, so I was on my own with the camera - not a good thing!

There was a team building putt putt golf game set-up in the office. We were passing putt putt holes the entire tour, but this one was the most fun!

This is a food museum wall with lots of  retro food

the awesome logo...

they even have a disco ball!

The large spoon collage had lots of photos from the website - one of them even belonged to one of our Allstars - Nelly was excited to point out her famous picture!

we interrupted an office game of corn hole going on under the disco ball (another blurry pic - sorry)

The happy hour started after our tour. I was busy mingling and getting to know my fellow Allstars, so I didn't get any pictures.  It was a great evening, and I was so happy to meet everyone in person.

It was a great day! Now that this is all in writing, I cannot believe everything we did in just one day!  and it's not over yet! I headed back to the hotel to rest up for Friday, as I was going to be back to the offices bright and early Friday morning for some more Allstar fun!!

I can't say it nearly enough - THANK YOU,!!!


  1. Love the pics! It looks like you had a great time :) It was nice to meet you in Seattle!

    1. Thanks! It was a great time! I only wish we had more time!

  2. Your daughter is adorable and it looks like you two caused some trouble around town :) You really did a great job capturing the essence of our trip. Makes me want to go back!


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