Miracles Can Happen

All of the glitter, eggnog and fireball is finally put away.  Usually I start off the new year by rambling off some New Year's resolutions that I think might stick but this time, I'm not going to bother you with that.  Screw it.  I'm not striving to change everything. I'm accepting things.  Instead of vowing to workout more and eat less, I'm just realizing it's not the end of the universe if I just size up in my pants.  They look fine, and at least fit better so I can breathe easy.  Instead of resolutions, this year I am going to share a little Christmas miracle that happened in our house this holiday. Then a few Kirkland updates, of course.

Our son is 14 and our daughters are 16 now.  Those parents of little kids that still stay up late doing 'elf on the shelf' and assembling gifts- I want you to know, there is a turning point when you no longer feel like you have to do it all.  And this year was ours. The one where lightening struck and our children finally had more moments of maturity, forethought, appreciation, gratitude and unprompted kindness.    Just a few examples..first, the girls drove themselves to Nordstrom Rack and bought us well-thought out gifts with their hard-earned babysitting money.    Then on Christmas Eve, after a great meal and conversation at home, all three voluntarily popped out of their seats and cleared every item off of the table, loaded the dishwasher and hand-washed every pot, pan and serving bowl. They were laughing and chatting together the whole time.   I had to pinch myself. Was it our often questionable parenting style to credit for this?  Were we being Punk'd? Or perhaps the wine and holiday music were feeding a hallucination? Their hugs and thank you's that evening suddenly seemed to have depth, as if they could see every stocking we stuffed and ribbon we curled over the last decade.  I wish I could have bottled that feeling.   With 2020 underway, everything is back to normal with the sarcasm and procrastinating in full swing, but hopefully that magical spell is cast again next season.  

Kirkland things you might be curious about:

Which gyms have smokin' deals to help you achieve your fitness New Year's Resolutions? Summary post soon, get your gym pants ON (or just size up like me). 

Park Lane Public House is closed and will become "Feast," a french brasserie with lots of wines by the glass and a PNW flair on French food.

Top Golf Lounge is opening at Kirkland Urban on 1/24. I'm previewing this week, stay tuned!

Bailey's Shoe Repair in Rose Hill (previously in Kirkland Park Place) has closed. 

Summertime Sunnytime, please!

It feels like the awesome weather is a little slow to start this summer.  The sun took a little vacation.  Those of us with school-aged kids start pulling our hair out.  When it's nice out the list of  fun opportunities are endless. But this gray stuff has got to stop.  I just made up some new rules for the mopey 'bored' teenagers at our house to prevent a Snapchat  Zombie Apocalypse. And yes, I make this stuff up as I go along (Parenting 101)

I'd love to know what you all are doing to help keep your kids motivated during these days.

Here's our latest:

  • If you wake up before 9:30 am- congrats 'early bird'! You can read a book for 30 mins before having access to your phone.
  • If you wake up after 9:30 am, no problem! You can read a book for 60 mins before having access to your phone.

I know, I know..sleeping is important for their developing brains, so I felt like 9:30 was pretty generous because I also still need their brains to WORK when they are awake, hence the reading.  Somehow in the last few years reading books for pleasure seems to have turned into something my kids equate to being tortured.   This new rule has been in effect for a few days and I've noticed they set their alarms for 9:25, baby steps, but at least they are vertical by 9:30.  They also get to work on their negotiation skills- can I bank time? What if I read the night before instead? Does reading the news count? Do you have to do this too? 

Teach me your tricks.

Oh, and if you have teens with phones always in their hands, here's a great resource- I love her Tech Talk Tuesday subscription.


Scraps of Info

Have you ever noticed that when it's sunny you don't see many blog posts from me? hmmmm. Something to ponder.  Along with things like this..

Park Lane closing to cars this summer- May 26th thru Sept 22nd  on SUNDAYS Park Lane will be closing to vehicles so that downtown will be walkable from Lake Street through to Kirkland Urban. More sidewalk spaces for the business and al-fresco dining.  If this is successful they may do it all weekend next summer.woot!

COMO is opening at Carillon Point this June.  Slightly mysterious so far, but it sounds like they are a sister restaurant of Cantinetta in Bellevue (yum) and focusing on cuisine from the Lombardia area of Italy that is surrounding Lake Como.  Which I haven't been to yet, but George Clooney hangs out there so it must be awesome.       

Roo's World of Discovery on Central Ave- it's CLOSED. I never had the chance to discover them, but it looks like many parents of toddlers did and really liked it. 

Kirkland Weds Market opens 6/5.  Mark your calendar. You know what to do.

Smoke & Shine Opens in Totem Lake--- Amazing brisket. Super loud. Post coming soon but I'm heading back to the sunshine now.        

I Spy with my Little Eyes...

Bibi2019 (3)
Bibi Catering
is open in Shamiana's old spot in Houghton.  I haven't tried it yet, just popped my head in after a quick PCC run.  Looks casual with a handful of tables and a lunchtime buffet of Persian food.  The free mini cake slices and cookie samples by the register swooped in for the early win of my heart.  

Looks like Ivar's is getting going on the old Kidd Valley location- hopefully in time for summer? 

Public Service Announcement: Subway in Houghton does not have a drive-thru.  Perhaps you knew this but someone didn't.

The Best Kept Secret has moved to Mukilteo.  I wish I didn't have to drive so far for my secrets. You know I love a good secret.

What's Going on out There?

Well, let me tell ya.  People are everywhere- mostly on foot. But I've seen plenty on sleds, snowshoes and cross-country skis. You guys are creative like that, and it's fun seeing the smiles on everyone's faces.  There are a few cars out and about.  For those feeling fearful to head out, it's probably best to stay home if you can, the roads have lots of compact snow.  After deciding NOT to drive to Oregon today for Syd's gymnastics,  I did a little exploring around Kirkland (in my AWD) and took some photos for you, in case you are burrowing in and want to feel connected to the outside world. There was one bus w/chains stuck trying to make the turn onto 6th St from Kirkland Ave, but otherwise everyone was moving around ok at about 18 mph.  I also saw a few not-so-smart drivers going quickly into turns and following too closely behind the car ahead of them.... so don't be that guy, there's still slippage out there. 

Lots of stores are closed today but  people were definitely meandering around and gathering at those that are OPEN.  I got a few groceries at Met Market that had a 'normal day' number of people shopping there and 2 registers open.  Not an official list in any way, but here are shops that I noticed seemed OPEN as of 1:30 today (Sat). Chime in with others as you know them. Many businesses are updating their snow status on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

  • Hector's
  • George's
  • Isarn
  • Starbucks
  • Casa Ricardo
  • Met Market
  • Bartell's
  • PCC
  • Bombaii Cutters
  • Public House
  • Cactus
  • Rococo
  • Wing Dome (packed!)
  • Tobacco Patch 
  • Zoka
  • Cafe Ladro

Not to freak you out, but the "Big Kahuna" is still on it's way-- maybe 8-12 inches of new snow-- and it's looking like Tuesday.  See Cliff's latest update here.

IMG_3609  <--thx USPS  IMG_3609 <--DT Kirkland
IMG_3609                     IMG_3597

IMG_3597  <-Lake St      IMG_3597 <- Market St

IMG_3602 <-Park Ln        IMG_3602 <-Marina Park
IMG_3602 <---made me laugh  IMG_3602 <--stuck bus, that stinks


Who you callin' Papi?

My hubs spotted this sign at the old Milagro location on his drive to work.  Yep, he went in to work today while most of us stayed in our pj's until noon. Anyone have any scoop? I can't find "Papi's Cantina" on the beloved interwebs yet, but I think the tagline "It's Margarita Time" says a lot about their fun factor and willingness to get to know us.  Cause tequila gets me talkin', Papi. 

PS- LWSD peeps, enjoy your delayed opening tomorrow.  Anyone want to take bets that it turns into another snow day?  My kids are delighted by the idea.  The Jersey girl in me laughs a little at how a few inches of snow catches us in a 'flurried' panic. Stay safe, friends. j


Who you callin' Papi?

My hubs spotted this sign at the old Milagro location on his drive to work.  Yep, he went in to work today while most of us stayed in our pj's until noon. Anyone have any scoop? I can't find "Papi's Cantina" on the beloved interwebs yet, but I think the tagline "It's Margarita Time" says a lot about their fun factor and willingness to get to know us.  Cause tequila gets me talkin', Papi. 

PS- LWSD peeps, enjoy your delayed opening tomorrow.  Anyone want to take bets that it turns into another snow day?  My kids are delighted by the idea.  The Jersey girl in me laughs a little at how a few inches of snow catches us in a 'flurried' panic. Stay safe, friends. j


Hello 2019- what's in store?

IMG_1181 This is the Rabuchin 'Polar' Plunge 2019 (w/guide ChiChi in the back who kept us alive)

Did you guys do the Polar Plunge? Man that looked cold.  We did ours in Costa Rica this year, which was uncharacteristically and amazingly easy, but I promise I was thinking about you all. Turning the page on a new year always brings up the topic of resolutions.  My kids never seem to have any they want to commit to, so I told them to pick a few small attainable things so they'll easily be able to feel good about themselves.  That's my strategy this year.  Perhaps just some little personal challenges.  Like doing less talking with my hands.  I hate when I do that, but often I will be enthusiastically explaining something and realize that the annoying hands waving around in the air uselessly trying to assist are my own. Taking more deep breaths is another one- it feels so good! Especially when the air is crisp outside.  It feels like a treat to inhale until my lungs can't hold anymore and then slowly let it out.  Perfect blend of relaxing and invigorating and less calories than a cocktail.  I've noticed that my kids are nilly willies when it comes to doing anything outside of their comfort zone, such as talking to someone at school they don't know, standing up for themselves  or asking for help.  So I've decided I'm going to do a better job of practicing what I preach and consciously try to do more things outside of my comfort zone.  This may include resisting the urge to be clean and organized 24/7.  And along with the everyday stuff, I've got to throw one out there that I never got around to last year, which is giving the ole Kirkland Blog a facelift.  It's time. This is the year. And even though it should look more clean and organized and I just said I'm trying to avoid that, it is definitely out of my comfort zone.  So hold tight with me while I figure out how to get 12 years of content moved to a new platform and polish up this old lady beast.  If you or someone you know wants to help me embark on this escapade- awesome- send me an email to kirklandweblog@gmail.com.  Or if you have ideas for features, layout, and content you'd like to see here in the future, comment away!  I'll add them to my already lengthy dream list. Oh, and don't worry, this will definitely happen in phases.  Last time I changed one little thingy on the top banner of the page I got a bunch of emails from you guys freaking out wondering what happened. If we hold hands, we can do this together.  2019. 

Other random info chunkers to know:

2008FourthofJuly 004 a fave photo of Penny I took back in 2018 (4th of July of course) , she's been a Kirkland do-er FOREVER. 

  • Congrats to Penny Sweet, our new Mayor!
  • BookTree's next few months are critical to their survival, if you love our local bookstore, it's good time to go support them.
  • Best Kept Secret is MOVING on 1/19 (out of Kirkland, waahhh!) - hustle on in for their moving clearance sales
  • Katy, the owner of Vovina bought The Slip, will give you that scoop in an upcoming post 


The Sky is Falling

I can't think of a more annoying interruption to my late morning workout than a blaring cell phone alert from President Trump.  Just when I was trying to let off some steam...perfect timing dude. Great to know you know how to find me. And also that there's not a real emergency?  There was also some mayhem on the roads of Kirkland this morning, though. At the 116th/98th, the  traffic light (in every direction) was blinking and so  we all acted like grown-ups and had to treat it like a 4-way stop.  Then as I head up Market St to the light at Forbes Creek Rd at a whopping 4 mph in standstill traffic, it appears that light is only letting 2-3 cars through per green light. Software issues? Also problems at lights in Houghton some friend mentioned. Anyone else experience this?  Maybe Trump was checking if he could jam our grids too.

Then the afternoon came around with the news that The Slip is closing. Twenty two years and done. So no more Earth burgers for you.  Heavy day, right? They will be open Thursday through Sunday until Oct 21st so you have a little time to say goodbye.  And also hello to Orange Theory opening soon on Park Lane (you read that right, another gym in the -033 now?!)