The "Plug" Every Parent Needs to Know About

This is truly frightening.

With this last year behind us, it seems not much surprises me anymore, but we need to sound the alarm on this one. This is happening in our schools here and now.  A friend from Redmond messaged me in a panic that she recently learned about “Plugs” on Snapchat and Instagram.  I had never heard of this. Her daughter’s 12-year-old friend used a 'plug' to buy weed in Kirkland.  TWELVE.  Buying drugs quickly and easily online using social media platforms that don’t have a paper trail.  These dealers/fellow students/adults that are selling these products apparently will come to your house or a nearby meeting spot so you don’t have to know how to drive, or even leave the comfort of your pandemic pajamas.  Nobody knows what they are REALLY buying and putting in their bodies, not to mention the buyers are often minors  10-15 years old.  When I asked my 15yo son if he knew what a ‘plug’ was, he said he did.  And so do my friends’ children when they asked.  This trend is alive here in Kirkland/Seattle at this very moment.

This video in this UK article is worth watching.

How do we as a community help prevent this troublesome trend from escalating?  Education, prevention, regulations, let's get this on the radar of every leader and influencer.  Many have not even heard of it yet. So pick your jaw up off the floor and let's go.


You Can Do It, 2021!


I feel sort of bad for 2021 and the weight she must carry on her shoulders.   I do not envy her. We are all cautiously optimistic knowing 2021 has to pick up the pieces of that fresh hell that was 2020 and try to get us moving forward again.   I figured it's a good sign that she's making her best effort when I opened my blinds to see THIS, a rainbow so close I could almost touch it (no pot of gold at the end, we checked).  I was, however, getting a little uneasy when I read about the series of minor quakes and tremors that have been rumbling nearby lately.  Not now 2021, not now, we need you to hold tight sister.  I decided it was wise to double-check the status of my emergency-prep supplies and wanted to give you this reminder too. What a great stay-at-home project-right?! Here's a link to our city's advice on building a kit/making a plan.  And you can also buy kits from a local company in Redmond that I've used called Prepare Smart, where I'm sure they would do a touch-free pick up and appreciate the support. 

Speaking of supporting small businesses- have you heard the news? Kirkland is hosting free parking spots in the Marina Park lot for in-car dining.  A handful of the restaurants downtown will deliver right to your car! That's pretty exciting around this house, because if our family can all pile in the car and place a few food orders to arrive curbside while we stare at the lake, pounding rain,  and lingering holiday lights from our cars then THAT would be a big night out circa 2021. Baby steps- first a rainbow, then a meal in public inside my car? Things are looking up my friends.  Participating restaurants and their online menus can be found here.  See you in the park ( lot?) ? Yessssss. C'mon 2021. We can do THIS.

PS- are you following the Kirkland Weblog on social media? New Year's reminder: Facebook, Insta, Twitter. Sometimes secrets and little tidbits hit there first. ;-) Besides, we're already friends what are you waiting for?








Enough Already

What's next??! At this point I don't even think I'd flinch if I saw a dinosaur walk past my window.  Asteroid? No problem. In case limiting my social interactions and altering life for COVID wasn't enough, now there's a a dangerous smoke cloud encompassing us while flashing an evil fiery 2020 themed smile.  I just spent last week convincing myself that having my kids doing school at the dining room table w/earbuds and blue light glasses while my husband works in the next room all day is okay.  I was even coming to grips with noticing that my pajama pants (!) are getting snug.  I know, at least I have pants, and a dining room table and nice family and good health/safety, so for those things I am thankful.  But I can still get pissed that 2020 has essentially been an epic game of  disaster whack-a-mole.  I've been trying to think of an appropriate way to celebrate New Year's this year because, honestly, it can't come soon enough. 

I've decided I would like to invent a new drink and that is........... tequila-champagne.  That's right, tequila b/c it's uniquely flavored with a hint of anger to really give our usual light and celebratory champagne-worthy holiday a one-upper.  And if we call it 'Quilapagne' it sounds an awful lot like 'kill-the-pain' which is definitely on-point, don't you think?  Make note, both of these are intentionally low-cal beverages so we can begin to fit back into our normal clothes for 2021. I realize tequila distillers are going to start filling up my inbox after this stroke-of-genius post, but don't worry, I promise to include you all in my celebration when I make the Quilapagne big time.  Fingers crossed that when Good Morning America interviews me I won't still have to be in my mask or on Zoom.  I'm also open to your suggestions of how to celebrate the end of 2020. Please indulge me.


A=Anxiety B=Back to School C=Chainline

School2020 TentMarinaPark

This is what high school looks like at Lake WA HS in my house in 2020.  And this is what it might look like if we don't survive the week. Kudos to the genius in the tent using Kirkland wifi. Actually, I was pretty impressed that my kids all got dressed and ate breakfast and assembled themselves in the dining room like good little worker bees on the first day.  A few minor bumps with laptop audio and Microsoft Teams adjustments, but then again, what fun would it be if nothing unexpected happened?  BIG props to all of the teachers and school district support folks that have obviously worked tirelessly to make this remote learning recipe work.  Nothing is perfect, but teachers seem prepared and the tech teams are quickly responding even though we know they must be overwhelmed (Syd got a new laptop the same day she logged her issue w/ helpdesk!). Of course I say this as a parent of three teenagers that attend school at home and craft college essays all day while I sneak off to re-start my waterski habit.  They can feed and manage themselves.  My heart really goes out to all of the parents with full time jobs that are trying to not only doing their own work, but have suddenly become teacher's assistants, tech advisors and short order chefs to their young children.  I would be pulling my hair out if COVID hit our family 10 years ago. Literally.  I am thinking of you all, and I think it's important for your mental health to realize that Chainline Brewery is now open at Kirkland Urban. 

Chainlineexterior     Chainlineexterior  Chainlineexterior   Chainlineexterior
If you can't escape your kids/pets, then just mask up and bring them! You'll find Chainline's new location (formerly next to Google/the CKC trail) on the second level in the northeast corner of Urban.  There's plenty of outdoor space with a view towards Seattle, and well spread indoor space with high ceilings.  The sun was shining on the patio when I popped in at 3:30, and I had to agree with Ariel (photo) that Chainline is the new 'cool kids on the block' with their friendly easy vibe.  They've got food bites (pretzels, flatbreads), plenty of flagship and seasonal beers, and even cider and wine on tap!

Their hours are Sunday 12-8 and Mon-Sat 12-10pm, so you can escape head out after you put those kiddos to bed. We've got this #KirklandStrong.  Cheers to a new school year!



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