Thursday 31 January 2013

The Competitive Side of Seattle's Pacific Science Center

Do you know what the best thing about visiting the Pacific Science Center in Seattle is? It's not all the educational opportunities that it presents your children, although there are plenty of those. Nor is the highlight any of the IMAX, planetarium, or laser light shows that are available for you to watch. It even gets better than the live science demonstrations and experiments that the Center puts on for it's patrons. No, the very best part about any visit to the Pacific Science Center is getting a chance to compete against your family....assuming you can find something you can beat them at.

Seattle Science Center games

Monday 28 January 2013

Behind the Gum Wall - Our Night at the Seattle Improv

Seattle Theatresports Gum Wall
If the Gum Wall made my wife uneasy, taking my kids to the Seattle Improv had the same effect on me. Don't get me wrong...I love's just that in a completely improvised atmosphere, you never know what's going to get tossed out there. All it takes is one person bent on sending the show in an adult direction, and I'm spending the rest of my night explaining things to my children that I really don't want to delve into. This could very easily have ended up being the newest entry on our list of places we shouldn't have taken our kids

Wednesday 23 January 2013

The Seattle Gum Wall at Pike Place Market

"DON'T TOUCH ANYTHING!" is all I remember hearing as we came down the alley. It's not an unusual sentiment coming from someone who would consider herself a bit of an overprotective mother, but Lori usually manages to keep her concerns bottled up inside. The Gum Wall in Seattle was too much for her though. It didn't matter how many little bottles of hand sanitizer she had in her purse (and it's usually quite a few), she wanted nothing to do with this so-called tourist attraction. 

Of course, that just served as motivation for the rest of us to get a little closer.

Post Alley Market Theater Seattle

Monday 21 January 2013

Friends of MKTS - Travel Mamas

Blog Address:
Facebook: Travel Mamas
Twitter: @TravelMamas
Pinterest: ColleenLanin TravelMamas 

WHO ARE THEY? - Well actually there's quite a few Travel Mamas (and one Travel Daddy I believe), but the head Travel Mama is Colleen Lanin. She's a budding media mogul based in San Diego, and when she's not traveling she keeps herself busy writing articles for magazines, making appearances on television, and I think I even saw her hanging out in the same room as Oprah at one point. Of course all that goes on the back burner if it's playtime with her kids or date night with her husband. Well...maybe not all that. Her husband might have to wait a few minutes if Oprah wants to have drinks first.

Friday 18 January 2013

My Family's Problem with Following Instructions

It's not hard. Following instructions is a very simple thing to do. Models do it all the time. The cameraman tells them what kind of pose he wants, and the models follow his instructions and make it happen. It's a simple system that seems to have worked well for the photo shoot industry for many, many years. 

My family apparently works on a different system though. I mean, I'm not trying to hold them up to the high modeling standards of the professionals, but I'm not exactly asking for "Blue Steel" here. So on our recent trip to Safeco Field, all I was asking is that they follow the simplest of instructions and pose for pictures they way I ask. That's clear enough isn't it?

The message isn't getting through.

Wednesday 16 January 2013

The People You Meet in the Elevators of Hyatt Olive 8

While in Seattle for our New Years trip, we were fortunate enough to spend a couple of nights at the Hyatt Olive 8. It's a hotel that we've stayed at before, and one we really enjoy for it's large rooms, great staff, and fantastic breakfasts. If you're looking for a place to stay in Seattle, I highly recommend it. 

Seattle sign Hyatt Olive 8
Of course, unless you're a close personal friend of mine, you'd probably like a few more details than me just telling you that the Olive 8 is a great hotel. That's fair enough, so let me elaborate by telling you about the people of the Hyatt Olive 8. Not the staff, although I could go on for a while telling you how wonderful they are, but I think the real way to get to know a hotel is by examining the people who stay there. Unfortunately, following random guests around a hotel and taking notes on their activities is generally frowned upon by hotel management (and may very well be illegal in the State of Washington), but there's one place where looking at each other and taking mental notes is perfectly acceptable. We all have to get up and down, so here's a look at the people you'll meet in the elevators of the Hyatt Olive 8.

Monday 14 January 2013

Friends of MKTS - Easy Hiker

Blog Address:
Facebook: Easy Hiker - Adventure for Beginners
Twitter: @EasyHiker101
Google+: Michael Schuermann

WHO ARE THEY? - Easy Hiker are the awesome husband and wife team of Michael and Marlys Schuermann. They've spent the last few years exploring their adopted hometown of Paris, which means my wife is insanely jealous of them. Before that, Michael worked as a sportscaster, which means I'm insanely jealous of him. I mean, he might even have been working when Leeds had a respectable football team. Wait...did I just call him old?

Wednesday 9 January 2013

Behind the Scenes on a Tour of Safeco Field

Touring Safeco Field brought back memories of my youth. In my younger days, I could swing a fairly decent bat. It wasn't my passion (that was soccer back then), but I dare say that if I had chosen to pursue baseball as a career, I could have made a go of it. All I would have needed was a little more practice, some high level coaching, and a promise from opposing pitchers to throw softly, underhanded, and over the middle of the plate. With those three things in hand, this post might have been titled Hanging Out at Daddy's Work instead of Touring Safeco Field. Alas fate has dictated that we use the latter title, so let's get on with that story.

Safeco Mariners Seattle sign

Monday 7 January 2013

Friends of MKTS - Walking On Travels

Blog Address:
Facebook: Walkingon Travels
Twitter: @walkingontravel
Pinterest: Walking On Travels
Google+: Walking On Travels

WHO ARE THEY? - Keryn and her husband live in Seattle with their two young boys. Somehow in addition to raising her children, Keryn finds time to write her own site, contribute to two or three others, and still have at least six or seven trips in the planning stages at all times. She also bears a striking resemblance to a girl named Sherri that I crushed on all through eighth grade until she threatened to move away and change her name if I didn't leave her alone. Hmm... 

Friday 4 January 2013

Our Worst Travel Plays of 2012

If you read yesterday's post about our best travel plays of 2012, you might think that, as a team, we had a pretty good season. Truth be told, it was a good year, but even good years have their missteps. One minute you're cruising along, looking at an undefeated season,  the next minute something unexpected sneaks up on you and blasts you from behind. Something that you had no way to avoid. Something you could never have seen coming...unless your wife with the camera warned you....

Florida standing in waves surf beach

Thursday 3 January 2013

Our Best Travel Plays of 2012

I'm a pretty serious sports fan. Lori would probably use the word "addict", but I think I've still got a few steps to go before that choice of terms would be correct. Just because everybody knows not to bother me on Sunday while I'm watching football, that doesn't qualify me as an addict. It's not like I dragged my family clear across the country just to see my favorite football team's stadium or something crazy like that.

Miami Dolphins Football Stadium
Oh wait...I didn't make them go in though. That would be "addict" level.