Thursday, April 30, 2009

A Blanket of Color!

Well...I got the weather I was hoping for today! It was an absolutely gorgeous day -- blue skies and temps in the high 60's. So I grabbed my oldest son, Sean, who had the day off from work, and we drove up north for a day of simple beauty! Our first stop was to pick up my daughter, Katie. She goes to college up at Western Washington in Bellingham. We haven't seen much of her lately because of her busy schedule, so I figured since we were going to be so close we'd stop by and take her to lunch. My son Sean was happy to see his little sister. Well, I don't know how "little" since she's only 14 months younger and at 6 feet, a full inch taller! LOL But we had a nice lunch and then dropped her off on campus. Katie is majoring in Visual Journalism and is the Photo Editor for the college paper. So she stays pretty busy with that, as well as her classes.

Anyway, after we dropped Katie off it was on to our original destination. Leaving Bellingham we decided to take the scenic Chuckanut Drive (just love that name!). When the road isn't running along beautiful Bellingham Bay (above), it's eveloped in a cloud of trees, barely letting the sun shine through. For miles it's pure wilderness, occasionally interrupted by an Oyster Shack or other similar restaurant. At the end of this drive we made a couple of stops. The first was at a nice little junk-tique shop. Lots of good old rusty stuff. I didn't see anything that called out for me to take it home, but it was a fun little shop.

And right next to the antique/junk shop was this quaint little cafe. Had we not already had our lunch I would have loved trying this place out!

Our next stop was at one of the numerous alpaca farms up there. This was a pure treat! The owner was SO nice and he took Sean and me out to visit with a few of the alpacas. They are so interesting and very curious. Alpacas are a member of the camel family and often spit like a camel does. They would get very excited at our being there and it was so funny to hear them spit! I fell in love with a brown male who seemed as curious about us as we were of him! His name was Carumba! and that's him below. After walking around on our own a bit and visiting with the female group, we eventually made our way to the little gift shop. Alpaca wool is SO soft, and I ended up picking up a couple of "feel goods" from there.Isn't he so sweet! And he was SO soft! Below are a couple of pics of the gals. They were in another section of the farm. I just love the closeup of the white female. I can just picture her batting those eyes at Carumba!

And then it was on to our main reason for heading north today. Today was the last day of the month-long Skagit Valley Tulip Festival. This area grows more tulips than anywhere else in the US. It is farm after farm after farm of blankets of red, yellow, purple, orange, amongst a beautiful backdrop of the snow peaked Cascade mountains! They grow every color imaginable and sell and ship all over the world. The area also grows fields of daffodills, iris and many other bulb flowers. With today being the last day, many of the fields had already been harvested, but there were still two beautiful fields left for us to walk through and enjoy. Here's a few pictures from the tulip fields. You can click on any of the pictures to enlarge them.

I just LOVED this moss ridden barn! What a beautiful backdrop to the tulips!

We also walked through the personal gardens. There, we were able to see the numerous varieties of tulips and all the different colors they grow, as well as many different daffodils.

I just love the combination of these colors below!

And of course, no tulip farm would be complete without its Dutch windmill!

We then drove back through the quaint downtown of Mount Vernon, home to this festival, and stopped at the Red Door Antique shop. I saw several things I would have LOVED to have taken home, but they were a little pricey there. But it was still fun walking through this wonderful shop.

Okay...this last picture is for my North Carolina friends! Having lived in NC most of my life and eventually in the Triangle area, I can't tell you how many times I drove over to Burlington to shop at all the outlet stores there! That was about the only thing Burlington was known for! So when we moved out here and took our first trip up north, I was quite surprised and rather amused to discover that Washington also has a Burlington that is filled with its own outlet stores. And they also have a Burlington Coat Factory there! Go figure! LOL!

Thanks for joining me today on this wonderful adventure! I sure hope you enjoyed the ride! ~~Annie


  1. Oh Annie, what a wonderful day you must have had with your kids! I'm in awe of all the beautiful pictures you took. They're just breath-taking! My favorite is the barn and the tulips too.
    Hugs~ Birgit

  2. I enjoyed your trip. Your photography is super incredible. It's easy to figure out why your daughter is sort of in this field.

  3. What a gorgeous day you had! Thanks for sharing it!

  4. Oh those tulips - so gorgeous and fun shopping too! What a trip! I have been to the Burlington shops in NC many times. Had a friend who lived in the triangle and DH worked near Raleigh for a short time.

  5. WOW, those tulips are so pretty! I love tulips!
    the moles
    always get mine :(
    I wanted to thank you for your comment and for your prayers for baby Ava...I appreciate both!

    Thanks so much, Annie!

    Have a beautiful weekend.
    hugs, Kath


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