Shane has been working long, stressful hours lately and I’ve had a few work-related evening commitments over the past couple of weeks, leaving our schedules uncomfortably full.  I’m feeling mired in the logistics of the day to day: “If I drop off Jules on Monday and Wednesday and pick her up on Wednesday and Thursday, can you do the rest?  And how about leftovers for dinner on Monday, takeout on Tuesday, and takeout leftovers on Wednesday?”

We’re making it work, but by last weekend Shane and I found ourselves desperately in need of some quality family R&R.  An island getaway, perhaps?  Maui sounded nice.  The flight did not.  Whidbey it is, then!  On the ferry we went!

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It’s a short ferry ride from Mukilteo to Clinton, but Jules made the most of it, jetting from one end of the boat to the other.  And back again.

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We breakfasted at Useless Bay Coffee Company - bacon and eggs taste so much better when eaten on a sunny patio.

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Jules was enamored with this glass sculpture garden next door.  I wasn’t sure I should let her pet the glass turtle, as she’s not the gentlest kid on the block, but we made it through with zero casualties.

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Bellies full, we drove over to Ebey’s Landing for a family hike.  The sky was as blue as I’ve ever seen it, the fields popping with yellow and green.

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Some friends gave this backpack to us a few months ago – I was skeptical as to whether Jules would fit in it, or whether Shane could handle 38 pounds of toddler on his shoulders, but apparently she did and he could!

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I know, it’s not Hawaii, but dang, PNW!  Way to bring your A-game!

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Juliette was a champ throughout the duration of the two-mile trail down to the beach, happily snacking and singing from her perch.  Shane was an all-out super-hero, “grimacing with grace” as his shoulders bore the burden of his daughter’s contentedness.

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Finally!  The promised land!

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The beach baby rears her pretty head:

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We slowly made our way back toward the car, and then just flopped down in the warm sand for 30 minutes to eat pretzels and play with rocks.  I could have sat here all afternoon.

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Jules could have happily hung at the beach all day as well, until she heard mention of a trip into town to get some ice cream, at which point she was all too eager to hit the road.  

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It was 2:30 by the time we left Coupeville, which is past Juliette’s regular naptime, so we crossed our fingers that she’d catch some Z’s on the car ride home.  Sure enough, 2 minutes into our drive, this happened:

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It is incredibly satisfying when a day trip with a toddler goes even better than you’d hoped – we were rolling the dice when we set out for a full-day ordeal.  But it was just what we all needed, active but leisurely, sunny and warm and tantrum-free.  Family reboot complete!