Monday, January 12, 2015

a minimoon

A lot of people asked where we were planning to go on our honeymoon and then a lot of those people were surprised when we said we weren't going on a honeymoon. We just didn't have time and I was more than okay with that. I was so excited to be flying across the country, moving in with my guy and setting up our home, that I was happy to put off the honeymoon until we can do it properly in a few years.

But then we realized that we would have a few extra days after the wedding before T.J. had to go back to work and we decided to take advantage of it. T.J. sweetly planned what we affectionately called our "minimoon".  T.J. found and booked us a cabin for two nights on San Juan Island and it was the perfect getaway and not too far from our neck of the woods.

We got back to Washington on Sunday night after the wedding and early Monday morning we were up and on our way North. We drove about 3 hours and boarded a ferry and travelled another hour across the smooth, green, foggy Sound until we reached Friday Harbor. Doesn't that just sound like a fun little spot? In the summer San Juan is a really popular vacation destination and the perfect place to go whale watching.  But in January it was quiet and secluded and the perfect place for us to unwind after a whirlwind couple of days. 
We pulled off the ferry and went in search of lunch, which we found at Market Chef. It definitely seemed like a favorite with the locals, it was warm and cozy, buzzing with moms and people on their lunch breaks, all greeted by name by the woman behind the counter taking orders and fixing sandwiches. T.J. and I both got a cup of squash soup and half a sandwich to warm us up before we grabbed some groceries and set off to find our hideaway.
We were booked in cabin 16 at Snug Harbor on the opposite side of the island from the ferry port. Isn't that just the most adorable name for a minmoon retreat? The cabins are equally adorable, smell fantastically like cedar, and the owners have thought of every little detail right down to the smore's supplies stocked in the gift shop. We took the name's advice and snuggled in for the night. I made spaghetti and meatballs and we watched movies in front of the fire in our cabin overlooking the bay.
The next morning we slept in before heading out to explore the island. It doesn't really feel like an island in the typical sense. It's covered in fields, alpaca and lavender farms, artist studios, and streams, a view of the Olympic Mountain region in the distance and the promise of whales along the shores. We first headed up to the North end to Roche Harbor, another resort with lots of big boats and the weirdest mausoleum hidden in the woods. The manager at Snug Harbor told us to park at the "airport" (a single runway for people with fancy private planes) and to follow the signs to something like the knight's templar. It was super foggy and the woods felt appropriately mystical- it was definitely something odd that we didn't expect find, complete with a round table. Oh, and it was called Afterglow Vista.... weird Washington.

After that little adventure we stopped at the English Camp. At one point the island was jointly occupied by American and English troops. Tensions rose and another war almost erupted when an American killed a English pig that was rooting around his garden (men...) but eventually they worked it out and the Americans got to keep the territory.  We hiked around the old camp for a bit and then headed further South to Lime Kiln State Park. Not prepared to pay to park we only peaked around a bit at the view and made plans to come back the next day to see more.
That night we headed back into Friday Harbor for dinner (at pretty much the only place open in town) before heading back to our cabin to enjoy ice cream for dessert. In the morning we were greeted by the sun!! Can I just tell you that it rained our entire wedding weekend and the first couple days back in Washington so we were full on praising the sun on our last day on the island.
We headed back in the car and back to Lime Kiln State park, keeping one eye on the water looking for blowhole sprays though sadly no luck this time (an excuse to come back now). This time we paid to park and trekked down to the lighthouse. Doesn't the sunshine make all the pictures so much better? Guess I need to get used to dark photos for the next five years or learn to compensate for the gray...
We made one final stop at the American Camp and for a moment I felt like we were in Ireland or on the cost of England. One of my favorite parts of our new part of the country is how very wonderfully green it is year round. Makes up for the gray I was just whining about. 
T.J. kept teasing, wasn't this the honeymoon of every little girl's dreams? To be dragged to a rainy, dark, foggy corner of the country to hike around in the damp for two days? Yes it looked a little different than the Caribbean but truly it was so much more than I could have asked for and I love that we spent it in our new home state.  I loved this time with the just the two of us before unpacking boxes, and thank you notes and a month of overnight shifts divided our time again. 
We packed up our little minimoon cottage and made our way back to Friday Harbor to meet the ferry. We stopped for fish and chips and a browse through the best little used book store that I wanted to move in to before heading home to start married life for real. 

7 comments :

  1. Excellent!! Even the mist and the fog helped to make your get-away perfect.

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  2. What a perfect minimoon. Love the cabins!

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  3. I enjoyed the recap of your "minimoon." What a cute description of a short honeymoon. Here's to a wonderful life ahead!

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  4. Great pics. Very fun. The coast photos remind me a little of our trips to Durdle Door in Dorset England xoxox Dad

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  5. Congratulations! Your dress - and you- were lovely! Welcome to the PNW and JBLM- hopefully we'll run into each other!

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    1. Thank you, thank you!! I am so glad to finally be out here and it would be so fun to bump into another JBLM blogger/newlywed!

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  6. Looks like an amazing "Minimoon"! We went to Friday Harbor for three amazing days last April to celebrate our anniversary. (Part of a week long trip to Seattle & Friday Harbor.) It was an amazing time... A perfect get away spot!

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