After the Royal BC Museum, we went to Chinatown (the oldest Chinatown in Canada, the second-oldest in North America) to see Fan Tan Alley. We had lunch there, then went to the Bug Zoo. It is very small, but even just photographing the decor, I was satisfied. We had thought we’d finish the day with a leisurely stroll through the Butchart Gardens (where Nat fondly remembers visiting as a kid), but we got there at the last ticket sale and tickets were $34 each?! We knew we had to do it, though. And it was lovely. It’s beyond any kind of botanical garden I’ve been to before. Dinner was at Moon Under Water, and before going to bed we took another nice walk around the grounds at the Craigflower Manor, right across the street from our Airbnb. In the morning we got on the ferry, and then cut it very close getting Ian to Sea-Tac for his flight home. And then we didn’t do anything until two weeks later! It was nice to hang around home alone – I feel like I don’t even remember what that’s like anymore 😆
Ian came out to visit for my birthday! I was so happy when he offered to make the trip, and decided we should make an adventure out of it. It was a whirlwind weekend.
My birthday was on a Thursday, so I went to work, picked up Ian from the airport, and took us to my neighborhood tap house, the first stop on my 30th birthday pub crawl 😂 All my neighbors were there, plus my buddies Sophie and Jennifer. We got a Morrissey song played at our second stop, played The Smiths on the jukebox at our little downtown’s diviest bar, and ended the night at my house with ice cream cake.
The next morning we drove to Port Angeles to take the ferry to Victoria for the weekend! It was a 4.5-hour drive and we just made it. In Victoria, we checked in to our adorable Airbnb and took a long walk around the Gorge Waters, stopping for pizza and ice cream.
The next day we went to the Royal BC Museum, which was amazing!! I loved its unique displays – maybe I say that about every natural history museum I go to? The modern history gallery was so neat, especially Old Town. It was unlike anything I’ve experienced before. Plus it’s always a joy to share my love of natural history museums with my favorite people.
Picking up from Monday morning, in Kansas City, after spending Sunday driving there from St. Louis: Smoothies at City Market Coffee; a good few hours at River Market Antiques; lunch at Waldo Pizza; Brass Armadillo; the drive to Lawrence; and checking in at our lovely Airbnb at 13th and Haskell, not far at all from our home of three years in Barker. There was so much we wanted to do in Lawrence that that night I actually made a list in my sketchbook of all the things we wanted to do, organized into columns for places to visit/walk, places to buy things, and places to eat, and then numbered in priority order and circled for our final choices 😂
Tuesday: A walk to the Secret Beach (not the same at all without Cody, and with the river so high); breakfast at Milton’s; Wonder Fair (such huge heart eyes for their new space); the Lawrence Antique Mall; gushing over my dream library, LPL; seeing my old work space and friend and coworker in Baldwin; Antiques on the Prairie (my all-time fave); visiting my everyday lunchtime hangout, the cemetery and its cows across the fence; the Douglas Fishing Lake, where we spent many a summer evening on our boat; and driving to our farm stay (you saw those pictures).
Wednesday: The KU Natural History Museum! And then – tattoos! We tried to get Free State on our way to Lucas, but they had just stopped making Wheat State Golden?! (Our wedding beer!) So we got cheddar ale soup to go. Then Lucas – those pictures here.
Thursday: On the way from Lucas to Weston, we stopped in Lawrence one last time to see what the Baker Wetlands look like now. Very different! I miss them so much. The new Discovery Center there looks really neat. And of course, the sky/clouds/sunsets are amazing as ever.
It was such a huge relief to feel like Lawrence is exactly the way we left it over three years ago (four years ago at the end of this month!). Being there, I seriously felt like I had just lived there yesterday. In my experience, not many places have felt that way. I’d really like to make it a priority visit Lawrence every three years or so. It really is such a special place to us, somewhere I’d definitely like my hypothetical child to know well. Until next time, LFK!