Category Archives: Family

The Caldwells in Seattle

Tyrel’s older sister, Autum, and her husband, David, came to Seattle to visit us! It was so much fun having them here. I earnestly try to convince them to move here. In very subtle ways, of course. Can’t be obvious about it. Doesn’t work as well that way.


I feel like you should meet them. You’d benefit from knowing these two. Autum and David are the types that bring you fresh herbs from their garden at home as a kind gesture “just because” – that’s awesome.

Reasons why you should be friends with Autum: she’s the type of girl that you can have an intelligent conversation with and then five minutes later be doing something ridiculously silly with – she has a very dynamic personality in that way. She’s also the type of person that will order the strangest looking item on the menu for the sheer adventure of it. Being very well-cultured, I always learn something new when I spend time with her.

Reasons why you should be friends with David: he’s one of the most even-tempered individuals I’ve ever met. Sometimes, I secretly hope someone will say or do something that will set him off just so I can see how he reacts. (Is that weird of me? Probably.) But, alas, he’s been a part of the family for a year now and it hasn’t happened and I honestly wonder if it ever will. He’s effortlessly able to form a connection with literally anyone of any age, background, or nationality.

So, now that you really want to be friends with them (as you should), you are now obligated to help me convince them to move here. 🙂

We celebrated David’s birthday by going to Umi for Sushi. Best sushi I’ve had so far in Seattle.


And we did a trapeze class at Emerald City Trapeze Arts which was LOADS of fun! I think I’m going to encourage Ty to try out for Cirque du Soleil because he is a 6 foot 4 inch mass of sheer gracefulness, that one. Maybe he can join these two in their next act?

This is where the magic happened. I would definitely go back.


The trapeze class was in an area we hadn’t spent much time in – Georgetown. We were going to tour a brewery but when that fell through, we decided we’d wander around and have a beer somewhere anyway. We felt like we stepped out of the car and into another era. (Have you ever experienced that?) Everything looked and felt like it was a thriving metropolis decades ago (which, turns out it was) but now it felt like a ghost town. It was kind of seedy…kind of antiquated…and a whole lotta awesome. Naturally.


From inside the bar “9 LB Hammer” where we sat for a little while eating cupcakes we brought with us (for David’s birthday) and having a beer.


We visited the Ballard Locks as the mature salmon were making their way up the salmon ladder from the Puget Sound to spawn in the creeks they were born in. (Maybe one day I’ll devote a whole post to salmon. Very interesting lives they lead!)

Hi Mr. Salmon. I want to eat you.



Autum’s one thing she wanted to make sure we squeezed in while they were here, was to grub on some fresh oysters. So of course we took them to Taylor Shellfish.

Tyrel is a kid in a candy store. Can you tell?


We tried geoduck sashimi because none of us had had it before and, let me tell you, it was delicious. It’s a cross between the texture of calamari and an oyster (I think).


OYSTERS. Sad to think they were alive 5 minutes before this photo was taken. But not as sad once they were in our bellies. For the record, Virginica oysters are the yummiest oyster I’ve eaten. “A sharp brine gives way to a delightful buttery finish” – said the Taylor Shellfish employee when asked which oyster he’d recommend. Spot on, shellfish man. Spot. On.



I love them. I’m pretty convinced they’ll move here eventually.

[Ever tried oysters or flying trapeze? What did you think?]

[For you Washingtonians, where are some of your favorite places you take visitors when they’re in town?]


My stud cousins

My cousins, Jared and Jay Ryan, are in the middle of cross country season right now and are loving it!  Jared is a junior in high school and Jay is in 7th grade. Can I just say how fun it is to see my cousins, whom I love so much, enjoying a shared passion of running?

It’s so much fun to receive texts like these…

From Jay: “18th for 7th and 8th grade and 2nd for 7th!!!”


From Jared: “Thanks Lana for encouraging me”


From Jared again: “Thanks for the encouragement!!!”


Love these boys.


My brother ran in a cross country race a this past weekend that I remember hating with a passion when I ran it myself. But he’s still smiling afterwards! (I, on the other hand, was always passed out on a grassy knoll somewhere with my hair plastered to my sweaty face and gatorade dribbled down my racing singlet. Not to mention short-term amnesia from oxygen deprivation to my brain. [Durrr who am I?]) Can anyone say, “attractive”?

Don’t Coop and my dad look so much alike? And isn’t my dad the cutest man in the whole wide world?


So proud of you, Cooper, Jared, and Jay! Good luck with the rest of your season!

[What has put a smile on your face today?] 🙂

Visit from Grandparents

Tyrel’s grandparents (now mine as well! HA! Benefit of marriage once again) came to visit this summer and yes, I’m just now sharing it with you.

Meet Grandpa and Blue Jean.



They are so much fun.


While they were here, we took a ferry over to the Olympic Peninsula, stayed at Kalaloch Lodge, hiked in the Hoh Rainforest, hiked Hurricane Ridge, and visited Ruby Beach. Oh and also picked blackberries.

Here’s a couple a zillion photos of the days they were here!


This is Kalaloch Lodge.


And these are the cabins we stayed in…


Ruby beach…


photo-116The Hoh Rainforest…



I found my happy place. Underneath a tree.


Blue Jean found hers too.


And so did Tyrel.


Jean has an affinity for moss just like I do. It must be touched. We couldn’t leave the forest until we buried our hands in some.


“Hey Ty can we pretend I’m lichen and you’re a tree?”

Hiking Hurricane Ridge.








Here is a chipmuck licking it’s butt. This one’s for free. You’re welcome.


And, of course, blackberry picking.


We had such an amazing time with Grandpa and Blue Jean.

At the end of their trip, Ty and I wanted to take advantage of their wisdom and life experience. So we asked them to share five “nuggets of wisdom” with us before they left. Here’s what they said:

1. “You only have control over your action, reaction, and attitude.”

2. “Learn to laugh at yourself.”

3. “Life is messy and that’s okay.”

4. “Don’t take things too seriously.”

5. “Don’t do drugs or drink alcohol to excess.”

Thanks, Grandpa and Blue Jean for coming to stay with us! It was a memory we’ll always treasure!